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As Pennsylvania Confronts Clergy Sex Abuse, Victims and Lawmakers Act


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By LAURIE GOODSTEINAPRIL 4, 2016 

 

LORETTO, Pa. — By the age of 12, Maureen Powers, the daughter of a professor at the local Roman Catholic university, played the organ in the magnificent hilltop Catholic basilica here and volunteered in the parish office. But, she said, she was hiding a secret: Her priest sexually abused her for two years, telling her it was for the purpose of “research.”

By her high school years, she felt so tied up in knots of betrayal and shame that she confided in a succession of priests. She said the first tried to take advantage of her sexually, the second suggested she comfort herself with a daily candy bar and the third told her to see a counselor. None of them reported the abuse to the authorities or mentioned that she could take that step.

So when a Pennsylvania grand jury revealed in a report in March that the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown, which includes Loretto, engaged in an extensive cover-up of abuse by as many as 50 church officials, Ms. Powers, now 67, decided to finally report her case. She called the office of the state attorney general and recounted her story, including the name of her abuser, a prominent monsignor who was not listed in the grand jury report.

“I just felt like now, someone will believe me,” said Ms. Powers, who retired after 30 years in leadership positions at the Y.W.C.A. in Lancaster, Pa.

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As a child, Ms. Powers played the organ at St. Michael the Archangel in Loretto and volunteered in the parish office. When she told other priests she had been sexually abused, she says, one tried to take advantage of her sexually, another suggested she comfort herself with a daily candy bar and a third told her to see a counselor.  Credit Nicole Bengiveno/The New York Times 

She was not alone. Ms. Powers was among more than 250 abuse survivors and tipsters who called a hotline set up by the Pennsylvania attorney general, Kathleen G. Kane. Twenty agents were needed to answer the phones, and a voice mailbox was set up to handle the overflow.

Nearly 15 years after Boston suffered through a clergy abuse scandal dramatized in the recent movie “Spotlight,” Pennsylvania is going through its own painful reckoning. From the State Capitol in Harrisburg to kitchens in railroad towns, people say they have been stunned to read evidence that priests they knew as pastors, teachers and confessors were secretly abusing children — findings the grand jury report called “staggering and sobering.” Victims are coming forward for the first time to family and friends, and alumni of parochial schools are pulling out their yearbooks, marveling at how smiling faces hid such pain.

Multiplying the outrage, the grand jury report supplied evidence that the police, district attorneys and judges in the Altoona and Johnstown area colluded with bishops in the cover-up, quashing the pleas of parents who tried to blow the whistle on priests who sexually abused children. Some of those officials are named in the report, and some still hold public office.

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http://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/05/us/pennsylvania-clergy-sex-abuse.html?emc=edit_au_20160404&nl=afternoonupdate&nlid=60657855&_r=0

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In 2001, while he was a cardinal, the pope issued a secret Vatican edict to Catholic bishops all over the world, instructing them to put the Church's interests ahead of child safety.   The document re

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In 2001, while he was a cardinal, the pope issued a secret Vatican edict to Catholic bishops all over the world, instructing them to put the Church's interests ahead of child safety.   The document recommended that rather than reporting sexual abuse to the relevant legal authorities, bishops should encourage the victim, witnesses and perpetrator not to talk about it. And, to keep victims quiet, it threatened that if they repeat the allegations they would be excommunicated.

The main problem here is that the roman catholic "church" is one of the only organizations that has offered peverts of every stripe and pedophiles in particular a career, protection and access to children. Over time this has led to more and more perverts being attracted to the Church.

"The real problem the Catholic Church faces," explains Father Donald B. Cozzens, author of "The Changing Face of the Priesthood," is the "disproportionate number of gay men that populate our seminaries." "I think we have to ask the question: Why are 90 to 95 – and some estimates say as high as 98 – percent of the victims of clergy acting out against teen-agers, boys? Why isn't there ... a higher percentage of teen-age girls?" Cozzens declared on NBC's Meet the Press recently.

January 31, 2000 | CNN KANSAS CITY, Missouri (AP) -- Roman Catholic priests in the United States are dying from AIDS-related illnesses at a rate four times higher than the general population and the cause is often concealed on their death certificates, The Kansas City Star reported in a series of stories that started Sunday.


WE ARE NOT TALKING NUMBERS, BUT ORDERS FROM THE CATHOLIC ORGANISATION TO COVER UP AND HIDE THEM!
 

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