While I don't disagree with your outrage over the sexual abuse scandals that have tarnished the Church's reputation and destroyed countless lives, I do have to wonder at your seemingly enjoyment of hearing horrid news. Does it really bring you such joy? Do you not weep for the victims instead of taking pleasure in any and all attacks against the Catholic Church?
There are several things I'd like to address today concerning scandals and these gleeful emails. First up, do you think assorted abuses don't happen in Protestant churches? Do you think that less abuse is happening in Protestant churches?? I know from your emails that many of you blame celibacy in the Latin Rite to be the reason for sexual abuse in the Roman Catholic Church, but statistics say you're wrong.
Since you've got your crooked fingers pointing at the Catholic Church, let me point my finger at some facts and Protestant clergy in the news just to keep things fair.
Recently a protestant Youth Minister in CA decided to make up a game that including POURING HONEY on teenage girls then while they tried to shower off the honey the minister video taped them. The four girls were 15 and 17 years old. Will he get jail time?? Probably not because the statue of limitation for such a crime is only THREE years and the offense occurred in 2007.
For the full story go HERE.
But sex abuse isn't the only crimes happening in protestant churches, there is also violence. At a Baptist church in Alabama a minister fired the choir minister, Simone Moore (who by the way ran for the senate in 2010). The choir minister Moore wasn't happy with his severance pay so he whipped out a taser gun and tased his minister! A brawl ensued in which one of the church's deacon's decided to STAB the choir minister's MOTHER!
What kind of church is it that people carry around taser guns and knives?! What kind of message is being preached that teaches you to taser or stab people when you disagree with something?
For the full story go HERE.
How about those new fangled Baptist prayers?? Let's not forget about "smokin' hot" wives and fast cars when we pray to our Lord! Boogity, boogity, boogity amen!!
Let's hear that put to music, shall we?
So that's just what's happening in Protestant news recently. Now let's look at statistics and facts.
I've posted reports from Catholic sources and Protestant sources and secular sources on sexual abuse by clergy in the past. But I think the short and to the point statistics article published by "StopBapistPredators.com" is one of the best because it includes ALL clergy and compares the "Catholic Scandal" to what is really happening in Protestant churches that the media doesn't report.
"A Baptist-published brochure states that 35% of ministers surveyed "had engaged in sexually inappropriate behavior." It also states that Protestant clergy are "sexually exploiting their parishioners at twice the rate of secular therapists." (Broken Trust, published by the Christian Life Commission of the BGCT)
Other studies "have shown no differences" in the frequency of clergy sexual abuse "by denomination, region, theology, or institutional structure." Thus, "the problem of clergy sexual abuse is not just a Catholic issue - the problem extends to Protestant denominations as well." (Ministerial Ethics at 162*) Penn State professor Philip Jenkens reported that between 2 to 3 percent of Protestant clergy are pedophiles. His same study reported that less than 1.7 percent of Catholic priests are pedophiles. There is simply no reason to think that clergy child molesters are solely a Catholic problem.
Insurance companies receive from Protestant churches each year about 260 reports involving allegations of sexual abuse committed against minors. This is LESS than the annual number of 228 abuse incidents reported against Catholic priests. That reality is particularly noteworthy because Catholics keep track of even "credible accusations," which Southern Baptists don't even bother to determine or keep records on."
Sexual abuse of ANYONE is a heinous crime, especially of our innocent children. They are to be protected and cared for. ANY clergy who harms them should be locked up for life with NO chance of getting out in my personal opinion. The Catholic Church's handling of abuse in the past is disgusting, with no question about it. But it was not our current Pope's blame, as many of you who've written me have declared (by the way, if you call my Pope "Rat" you will not get a response from me publicly or in email). Almost all of these cases happened years before Pope Benedict XVI was pope, and documents prove that while our current Pope was a Cardinal, he tried to make positive changes to help put a stop to abuse and remove guilty clergy. For the story on that go HERE and HERE.
Thankfully, there are new strict policies in place now to put an end to the abuses like we've seen happen in the past. As a convert to the Catholic Church, I can't help but wonder WHY the parents of abused children didn't go directly to the police? I would not leave it to the Church alone to deal with. I would inform the Church AND the police then let them handle the situation, thus making sure pressure would be put on both the Church and the police to investigate quickly, responsibly and above all else protecting other children.
I hear from my cradle Catholic family and friends "that just wasn't done back then" as if they truly believed going to the police rather than the Church would have been a sin. Perhaps they truly believed or felt that. I think maybe many parents just wanted to protect their children from having to expose themselves to questioning by police and a possible court trial where the child would have to relive the horror in front of numerous strangers, thus causing the child more pain. I can understand that.
Parents want to protect their children, but we must never forget that keeping silent only protects the abuser and makes more victims. Child abuse in any form is NOT a Protestant vs Catholic issue. The issue is the child and protecting them while punishing the guilty.
I have other emails about female priests (as if), the Eucharist and infant baptism that I will tackle soon. Until then I thank you for your comments and look forward to your emails.