The Clinic Online
[Open letter from James Hamilton to Pope Francis]
January 8, 2018
Aún no comprendo cómo nosotros, los miles de víctimas de abuso, no hayamos sido protegidos por nuestros pastores y sacerdotes, quienes eran testigos mudos de lo que nos pasaba.
Hace pocos días un respetado sacerdote “progre” comentaba que no se sentía en condiciones de denunciar, ni siquiera ante su obispo, a otro sacerdote abusador o perverso. El argumento que esgrimía era que en la justicia civil el testimonio de un cónyuge, hermano o familiar directo, no se consideraba válido, y dado que para él el involucrado era más que un hermano de sangre, no podría elevar testimonio en su contra.
Por breves momento tuve un flashback de cuando Fernando Karadima les hablaba a “sus” sacerdotes y obispos acerca de la dignidad sacerdotal, que pasaban a ser hermanos de Jesucristo y que eso los hacía entrar en la comunidad de los elegidos.
[Partial Google Translation: I still do not understand how we, the thousands of victims of abuse, have not been protected by our pastors and priests, who were silent witnesses of what was happening to us.
A few days ago a respected priest “progre” commented that he did not feel able to denounce, even before his bishop, another abuser or perverse priest. The argument that he wielded was that in civil justice the testimony of a spouse, brother or immediate family member was not considered valid, and since for him the person involved was more than a blood brother, he could not raise testimony against him.
For a brief moment I had a flashback of when Fernando Karadima spoke to “his” priests and bishops about priestly dignity, who became brothers of Jesus Christ and that made them enter the community of the elect.
In that moment, I never imagined that those words were so prophetic. With time before me, a solid, unshakeable ecclesial structure was unveiled, forged in the infinite pacts of silence that they have to protect themselves, while spilling thousand-year-old blood in the bodies of defenseless, curious and kind children who are left to their care.
* * *
Why, faced with the loyal and trusting denunciation of victims already weakened by suffering and age, through the channels established by yourselves, the response has almost invariably been the same: denial, indifference, silence and coldness?
Why is it allowed for the silent transfer of these clerics to other parishes and even other countries or continents, where thousands of children and adolescents continue to be exposed to these predators?
How was it left to numerous priests already identified as pedophiles and abusers in charge of homes for minors?
How was it never explained to us that we were the real victims when the priests gave us an ear to each confession, where we blamed ourselves for having committed a very serious sin that finally induced them to sin against them?]
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