We have been subjected to yet another week of terrible sex scandals concerning high ranking Catholic clergy in the news. Whenever sexual abuse of children takes place it is always horrific, but even worse when the perpetrators are priests or religious who are consecrated to God. Children must always be safe in our churches. Other recent stories have included the abuse of seminarians and also the raping of nuns. All of this is very saddening, as well as the many cover ups orchestrated by some members of the hierarchy and religious superiors over the decades to protect the Church’s reputation, or to protect themselves or their friends who may also have been compromised, while others simply turned a blind eye. I read in an article this week that according to recent polls taken around the world, the Catholic Church is increasingly being seen as a force not for good in the world, but for evil. This is where we are at, and many are losing their faith and leaving the Church because of it. This must stop.
As always, our hearts go out to those victims of abuse who have had their lives ruined by these crimes of the clergy. Many of them never get over it and some have even taken their own lives as a result. We pray for them and their families. Let us pray also for the perpetrators themselves. While there are some who have shown remorse for their evil deeds, it seems many have not. Let us in the spirit of Christ pray that they will show some sign of repentance before they depart this life. Let us also pray that God will use these revelations to purify His Church of this evil once and for all so as the Church may again be a true beacon of light to the world.
Fr Paul Gillham, IC