Child abuse and cover-up in the Catholic Chuch

Father Kit Cunningham abused schoolchildren in his care at Soni, Tanzania.

Father Kit Cunningham abused schoolchildren in his care at Soni, Tanzania.

My conscience is deeply disturbed by the breach of trust that God placed in me as a Catholic priest. Many of you have suffered and been scarred by your experiences. After much reflection I have decided to return my MBE. — Father Kit Cunningham

In recent years there has been a litany of child sex abuse within and cover-up by the Catholic Church. The latest scandal is in Tanzania.

Sunday – BBC Radio 4
He was my priest and my friend. Then I found out he was a paedophile
Why didn’t the Rosminian order tell us the truth about Fr Kit?
Abused: Breaking the Silence

It was through a web site that victims learnt they had something in common other than being taught by the Catholic Rosminian Order, they had been subjected to child abuse.

They raised it with the head of the order, and unusually for the Catholic Church received an apology, but when they sought legal redress they were told they may have legal grounds but no moral grounds!

The responce of the Church was what it always is. To move the priests on.

the quasi-official Catholic Truth Society published a booklet on clerical sex-abuse that blames it on the “permissive society” of the 1960s.

‘Woodstock defence’ of abuse doesn’t hold water

The Pope when in Croatia had the gall to pontificate on family life. He was the one who in his previous office as head of the Office of the Inquisition covered up the child abuse scandals. Any apology has been like dragging blood out of a stone.

Statistically if you are brought up in a pious religious community lacking in grace, you are more likely to be an abuser and victim of abuse. Where normal sexual behaviour is demonised.

Rob Bell quotes Renee Altson (author of Stumbling Towards Faith) who says she was spiritually abused. Her father raped her whilst reciting the Lord’s Prayer, molested her whist singing hymns. [see Love Wins]

In The Shack, Mack witnesses his drunken father, a church elder, abusing his mother.

In Salt Lake City, Mormons think it their duty if not God-given-right to rape under-age girls to take as a wife.

If human beings are placed in abnormal situations, they behave in abnormal ways.

Some people are asexual, some are celibate by choice. It is when celibacy is an obligation it becomes a problem.

As Paulo Coelho has often said, if the Church treats normal sexual behaviour as a perversion, then sexual behaviour will turn to perversion.

My religious education

But nor should we go to the other extreme. The Lutherian Church in Tanzania requires its priests to be married. The Salvation Army requires its officers to marry within the army.

Jesus took a special interest and delight in children, they had a special place in His heart. His punishment for those who harmed children was to put an anchor around their necks and toss them in the sea.

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