Scandal of Ealing Abbey & Press Portrayal of “The Church’s Criminality”

Monks no longer allowed to run St Benedict’s school where children were abused;    ENGLAND: London Ealing: St Benedict’s School

Guardian, 24 October, 2019…

A “sadistic and predatory” atmosphere and a culture of cover-up and denial in a Catholic school allowed sexual abusers to commit crimes against children for decades, an independent inquiry has found.

Senior figures at Ealing Abbey and St Benedict’s school in west London, part of the English Benedictine Congregation, were perpetrators of abuse over a 30-year period. Staff members failed to raise concerns because of a “mafia-like” atmosphere and the fear of losing their jobs.

Since 2003, four members of staff, including a former abbot, have been convicted of multiple offences relating to the sexual abuse of more than 20 children. The independent inquiry into child sexual abuse (IICSA) said: “The total scale of abuse can never be known, but it is likely to be much greater.”

…The inquiry heard evidence over five days in February. It sought a witness statement and documentation from the pope’s representative in the UK, the apostolic nuncio, which the Holy See refused to provide.

…“The Catholic church needs to be held accountable for its criminality…”   Click here to read the entire, horrifying, newspaper report

Comment:

There is nobody on this blog who, on reading the above report, will even remotely seek to justify such disgraceful abuse.  The behaviour of all involved is summed up simply as “evil”.

However, such shocking reports of this evil behaviour, which is the very opposite of everything Christ taught, should not, for a second, shake our faith in the four marks of Christ’s Church, which is that it is the one, holy, catholic and apostolic.  The holiness of the Church comes primarily from Christ, not from the members, although when we speak of the Church as “holy” we are thinking, too, of the entire Church, from the beginning – the Church in Heaven (the Church Triumphant); the Church in Purgatory (The Church Suffering) and the Church on earth (The Church Militiant).

Those who look at such evil behaviour perpetrated by some members of the Church on earth at any given point in history and see it as evidence that the Church is not holy, are revealing ignorance of the composition of the Church, which is not confined to the visible body of the Church on earth.

This is not to minimise, in any way, the gravity of what is happening in the Church today, least of all the complicity of the Vatican in evil.  We have just been discussing, on other threads,  the Pope’s own complicity in the utter scandal of promoting the worship of pagan idols within the Vatican itself and various churches around Rome. The breaking of the First Commandment is about as serious as it gets for a Pope.  And Our Lord has warned us that it is not only pagan idols which are to be tossed into rivers:   “…he that shall scandalise one of these little ones that believe in Me, it were better for him that a millstone be hanged about his neck and that he should be drowned int he depth of the sea.” (Matthew 18:6)

“…he that shall scandalise one of these little ones that believe in Me,
it were better for him that a millstone be hanged about his neck and that he should be drowned int he depth of the sea.” (Matthew 18:6)

The questions for discussion here must, therefore, surely include

1) why on earth would the Vatican refuse to co-operate with the authorities investigating the Ealing scandal?

2) how many Catholics actually understand the composition of the Church themselves? 

3) does it all come back to the failure of Catholic education across the board – schools at every level, seminaries, etc?

4)  what sort of episcopal oversight is there of religious Orders within each diocese?

5) How confident can we be that absolutely everything is being done to rid the Church of this evil – abuser priests? 

6)  Or is this evil irrevocably linked to the loss of the supernatural within the  Church since the so-called “reforms” (the rvolution) of Vatican II?

Steve Bannon on Pope Francis, Trump, Theresa May & Brexit… Super-Duper! 

Comment: 

The above video interview lasts around 30 minutes – a bit longer than we usually like to publish, but you won’t want to miss a single word. Take a minute to watch the start – you’ll be hooked as the propaganda pins fall one by one…  

Your thoughts will be welcome on any of the topics covered in this excellent interview.  Raymond Arroyo, as noted in the comments underneath the video on YouTube, is one of the few interviewers who allows his guest to speak, uninterrupted.  The so-called professionals on the main TV news channels could learn from him…  And what about Steve Bannon – is he hitting nails on heads, or what?     The mainstream media here in the UK doesn’t have a good word to say about him.  One wonders why… 😀

From Cardinal To Criminal: Australian Cardinal Pell Jailed … 

Update – 3 March, 2019…

Since writing my original editorial comment below, I have been moved by the information given by bloggers and the evidence provided by several (not least  the Australian bloggers) which appears to point to the Cardinal’s innocence.  Read on, and tell us if you agree.

Comment:

 St John Chrysostom, Bishop and Doctor of the Church, teaches that “…the person who does not become irate when he has cause to be, sins. For an unreasonable patience is the hotbed of many vices:  it fosters negligence, and stimulates not only the wicked, but above all the good, to do wrong. (Homily Xl, super Matheum, 1c, nt 7).

So, what is the correct Catholic response to this sort of horrendous news?  Horror at the Cardinal’s crimes (of which he insists he is innocent); compassion for his victims?  Compassion for the Cardinal himself, that he has, apparently, succumbed to a shocking temptation and thus fallen from grace and brought his high office – and the Catholic Church itself – into disrepute?  

Anger? Compassion?  A combination? 

We may hold different views on this – but we can surely all agree that we must pray hard for all involved. Our Lady of Good Success pray for us!     Our Lady of Fatimapray for us! 

One key question, however, has to be whether or not these appalling crimes are doing irreparable damage to the Bride of Christ, His Church. Of course Christ has promised to be with His Church until the end of time, that the gates of Hell will not prevail against His Church. There was no promise, however, that the gates of Hell wouldn’t come close, and they have never been as close as they are now, in our times.  It has to be the case, then, that in some souls, the answer to the “irreparable damage” question is definitely “yes”.  Some will never see the beauty of the Faith, some will be convinced that all priests are abusers, that the Church is evil.  And isn’t that where St John Chrysostom’s exhortation to righteous anger should move us to action?  But, what, if anything – beyond prayer and sacrifice – can any of us do about this sordid scandal of the abuse of children and vulnerable adults?  There must be something we can do – but what?  

Pope Francis: is it spiritual blindness or sheer idiocy that prevents him from seeing the need to ACT… NOW?! 

Comment invited…    

Out & Proud & Preaching… The Link Between Clergy Abuse & “Gay” Priests

“The pedophile scandal in the Catholic Church is not a pedophile scandal. The vast majority of victims are post-pubescent teens and young men. The real problem in the Church that everyone sees and few will say out loud: gay priests.”  (Matt Walsh, Twitter)

I’m taking some heat on Twitter today because I said that the real problem in the Catholic Church isn’t pedophilia but gay priests. As the statistics clearly show, the vast majority of predators in the clergy were homosexual and the vast majority were not pedophiles. The same study that reported those figures did try to absolve gay priests by claiming that their homosexuality had nothing to do with anything. But this is an assumption — I think a plainly absurd and unprovable assumption — that is not born out by their own statistics.

And the problem goes beyond sex abuse of minors. As Rod Dreher has been reporting, and liberal publications agree, homosexuality runs rampant in the modern priesthood. Sexual activity between priests, and between priests and seminarians, is not uncommon. I think it is rather difficult to separate these facts from the fact that teen boys were so often sexually victimized. Is it just a coincidence that gay priests exist in such large numbers, protected by gay cabals within the Church, and at the same time there happen to be a bunch of priests molesting pubescent boys? Are these two realities entirely separate from one another?

Take the case of the scummy Cardinal McCarrick. He has been accused of preying upon young boys. But most of the stories that have come out about him revolve around his sexual exploits with seminarians. Grown men, in other words. Yet we are told that the fact of his homosexuality is irrelevant. How could it be? If he were not a homosexual, he would not have molested boys. Who could dispute this? I’m not claiming that all homosexuals molest boys. I am claiming that only homosexuals molest boys. A non-homosexual, by definition, is not attracted to males.

I will be told that sex abuse is about “power” not sex, but of course this is ridiculous. It is about both. If all you seek is power over someone, there are other ways to achieve that aim without sexually assaulting them. If you choose sex as your means, then it would follow that you are sexually attracted to your victim.

80% of the victims in the Church have been males. Is it difficult to see how thousands of boys may have been spared this experience if there had not been so many homosexuals in the priesthood? Or are we going to pretend that even a heterosexual may attempt to get his thrills by molesting a 15 year old boy? If so, I have no idea what the words heterosexual and homosexual mean anymore.

I have been accused of focusing on this issue because it implicates gays while ignoring abuse perpetrated by heterosexuals. That couldn’t be further from the truth. I have written extensively about the epidemic of (mostly heterosexual) abuse in the public school system. There is very little public interest in this problem, and I have not been able to generate much through my own efforts, but not for lack of trying. As I have observed, it is probably not a great idea to have women in their 20’s teaching teenaged boys, just as it is not ideal to have men in their 20’s teaching teenaged girls. We may not always have much of a choice, but the problems inherent in such an arrangement are apparent.

In a similar way, it is not a good idea to have homosexual men living together in rectories and seminaries, and working closely with teen boys. This is not a homophobic theory I am positing. It is an observation I am making based on 50 years worth of data. It is nothing but moral cowardice to refuse to face the facts.   Source – The Daily Wire

Comment:

Given the above facts, the criteria already set out by the Vatican document Careful Selection And Training Of Candidates For The States Of Perfection And Sacred Orders (S. C. Rel., 2 Feb., 1961) which contains the following warning, is worth noting: Advancement to religious vows and ordination should be barred to those who are afflicted with evil tendencies to homosexuality or pederasty, since for them the common life and the priestly ministry would constitute serious dangers. 

This prohibition on ordaining homosexuals is repeated in 2005 here  so, there can be no possible justification for seminaries to continue accepting and ordaining homosexual men,: “…  the Church, while profoundly respecting the persons in question[9], cannot admit to the seminary or to holy orders those who practise homosexuality, present deep-seated homosexual tendencies or support the so-called “gay culture”[10].  Source

Or, must we ignore the facts, and opt for political correctness to “move with the [ever-changing] – and ever-more sexually permissive – times”?

Australia: Priests Facing Jail for Refusing to Break Seal of Confession…

From Lifesitenews

CANBERRA, Australia, June 12, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – A new law in Australia requires Catholic priests in Canberra to break the sacred seal of confession to report a child-sex abuser. The law, which has drawn fierce opposition from Archbishop Christopher Prowse of Canberra, could result in faithful priests being jailed who refuse to comply.                             

                                                                                                                                                                   A bill passed on June 7 by the Legislative Assembly of the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) extends mandatory reporting of child abuse to cover churches and church activities, including the Catholic confessional. All the political parties in the Assembly supported the measure.

A  Catholic priest cannot violate the seal of the confessional, which means that he cannot repeat what he is told by a penitent confessing his or her sins, without incurring automatic excommunication. The Catholic Church teaches that confession is a sacrament, a place of encounter between the Christian and Jesus Christ. The priest who hears the confession is merely Christ’s instrument of forgiveness.

Hitherto the confessional was exempt from ACT’s reporting laws; from March 31, 2019, priests who do not report confessions regarding child abuse to the police risk prosecution.

Archbishop Prowse slammed the new law, saying “priests are bound by a sacred vow to maintain the seal of the confession. Without that vow, who would be willing to unburden themselves of their sins, seek the wise counsel of a priest and receive the merciful forgiveness of God?”

Prowse, the archbishop of Canberra and Goulburn, wrote an essay in the Canberra Times last week explaining why legislating against the seal of confession will do much harm and no good.

“First, what sexual abuser would confess to a priest if they thought they would be reported?” he asked.

Prouse explained that it is the common experience of pastors that child abusers don’t confess their crimes to either priests or police. If the seal was removed, the theoretical possibility abusers might confess and be counselled to turn themselves in would be lost.

“Second, the government itself has acknowledged [with] the [Catholic] church’s ‘Truth, Justice and Healing Council… that […] it [was] difficult to see systematic abuse of the seal of confession,” Prowse wrote. “People who attend confession are sorry for their sins, indicate resolve not to sin again and seek God’s mercy. Pedophiles carry out evil and unspeakable criminal acts. They hide their crimes; they do not self-report.”

Third, he pointed out that priests do not necessarily know the identities of people who confess to them.

Fourth, he said that such a law attacks the inviolate seal of the confessional.
Originally the ACT government invited the archbishop to meet with the Attorney General to discuss the importance of both the protection of children and the seal of the confessional. However, the legislature began to debate the new bill before this meeting could take place. The archbishop decried this loss of opportunity for dialogue, pointing out that the proposed new law threatened religious freedom.

“Religious freedom is the freedom to hold a belief and, secondly, the freedom to manifest belief in community and in public, privately and individually in worship, observance, practice and teaching,” he explained.

“The government threatens religious freedom by appointing itself an expert on religious practises and by attempting to change the sacrament of confession while delivering not improvement in the safety of children,” he continued.

The new reporting laws will require priests to report allegations or offenses related to children to the ACT Ombudsman within 30 days.

Two members of the ACT Legislative Assembly thought forcing priests to break the seal of the confessional was a step in the wrong direction.

Andrew Wall, a former student of Marist College, a school notorious in Australia for child sex abuse allegations, said that while some of the child protection measures in the new law were “overdue”, he objected to its extension to the confessional.

According to the Canberra Times, Wall said forcing priests to break the confessional seal “significantly impinges on an individual’s freedom of association, freedom of expression and freedom of individual rights.”

Vicki Dunne, the second member, pointed out that a priest who breaks the seal of confession incurs an excommunication that can be lifted only by the pope. In addition, it would undermine Catholics’ trust in the “sacred, sacramental and sacrosanct” rite.

“We need to stop and think twice before we pass legislation that requires Catholic priest to break the seal of the confession,” she had warned.

Comment: 

I have to admit, golden beaches, beautiful homes and sunny climate notwithstanding, I’ve never felt the slightest desire to visit Australia, let alone live there. Now it’s on my list of countries in which I will never set foot.  I mean, the sheer nerve of the  grand-sounding numpties at the ‘Legislative Assembly of the Australian Capital Territory’ to threaten  jail for Catholic priests who adhere to a law of the Church which is entirely rooted in and bound up in divine law, as expressed in the above image, is breathtaking.

Would Australia dare to interfere with – and legislate against – any other religion, as it has outlawed a sacrosanct tenet of Catholicism?  It is, of course, a stupid and unworkable law, as outlined in the Church’s response above but it is revealing of the bigotry and nastiness of the Australian lawmakers that they would even think of passing such an evil law … the weather may be sunny over there in Aussie-land but they can keep it.   I’ll not be visiting Australia – ever.  What about you?  

Smyllum Abuse Diabolical – If True…

A young boy was beaten black and blue after catching two nuns in an embrace, an inquiry has heard. A witness said he was six or seven when one of the nuns went “mental” and lashed out at him in a boiler-room at a care institution in the 1960s.

He told Scotland’s child abuse inquiry the “vicious” assault left him bruised and with blood coming out of his ear and nose. The witness, who cannot be identified, was speaking of his experiences at Smyllum Park orphanage in Lanark, which closed in the 1980s. He said he moved to the orphanage, run by the Daughters of Charity of St Vincent de Paul, in the mid-1960s and was never given any love, affection or praise from the nuns and staff.

Physical abuse in the form of slaps and kicks was routine “for trivial stuff”, he told the hearing in Edinburgh.   Read entire report by clicking here

Comment:

Reading some of the horrendous allegations from former orphans at Smyllum Park is earth-shattering.  If even some of these allegations are true then nobody in their right mind would seek to justify such abuse in any way whatsoever. 

However, it would be mindless to presume guilt, not least because, if such apparently unbridled brutality were the norm at that institution, all sorts of grave questions arise, beginning with what sort of women were choosing to enter the  Religious Life and why? 

Anyone who has taken even a cursory glance at the Rule of any of the great Religious Orders knows that prior to the “reforms” of Vatican II which followed the Council at its close in 1965, they were renowned for their strictness.  Not only the enclosed, contemplative Orders, but the active Orders, such as the Daughters of Charity, were bound by detailed rules throughout their daily lives.  Permissions were required from Superiors for every little thing, and the idea that two Sisters could find a corner to engage in physical or sexual activity in a boiler room or anywhere else, just beggars belief.  That’s not to say it didn’t happen. Obviously, I don’t know, and these allegations do date from the 1960’s when laxity in the Religious Orders as elsewhere, had taken a foothold. 

That still leaves the question of the sort of women choosing Religious Life, and their motivation. Were our Religious Houses jam-packed with evil women who detested children and enjoyed inflicting pain and suffering such as that described by former orphans at Smyllum – or, again, assuming the truth of the allegations, is there another explanation, beyond the obvious diabolical activity at work in the souls of the guilty?   And were there no postulants or novices who left before final vows in disgust to report this scandal to the Bishop, let alone the police?  Surely not every nun was immersed in such evil and brutality.  Those are the first questions that came to my mind on reading about the Smyllum scandal. What are the questions you’d want answered?