Shocking allegations of abuse in catholic us church

shocking allegations of abuse in catholic us church

Sexual abuse up to and including rape and deliberate cover-ups: more than 300 catholic priests in the u.S. State of pennsylvania are alleged to have abused thousands of children over the past 70 years.

"Although the list of priests is long – we don’t think we got them all," said pennsylvania attorney general josh shapiro. The accusations cover six of the eight dioceses in pennsylvania.

Shapiro, who presented the results of the investigation so far in a nearly 900-page report on tuesday, assumes thousands of victims. He believes that many of them had not dared to report the abuse. About 1000 have been identified. "Priests raped little boys and girls, and the men of god who were responsible for them not only did nothing – they hid everything," the report says. "The church protected its institutions – no matter the cost."

This is the most comprehensive report on child abuse within the church published in the U.S. To date, shapiro said. It comes more than 15 years after the events surrounding the priest john geoghan caused a scandal in boston. The church leadership had also tried to keep the events under wraps as far as possible with massive cover-up actions.

The archbishop of washington and former bishop of pittsburgh in pennsylvania, donald wuerl, had already warned in a letter to the clergy on monday that the report would be "fundamentally frightening". "The report will be a reminder of grave wrongdoing that the church must acknowledge and for which it must ask forgiveness," the letter said.

However, he disagreed with the representation that the church has done nothing about the incidents. Measures have also been taken to protect victims and help those affected. In an interview with CBS broadcast shortly before the report was made public, wuerl rejected calls for his resignation.

Shapiro spoke of a "decades-long cover-up" by senior church leaders in pennsylvania and as far away as the vatican. This has led to the fact that hardly any of the cases can still be prosecuted today – almost all of the acts have lapsed. Offending priests were routinely transferred to other parishes. The parishioners were not informed about the case.

In the pittsburgh diocese, a group of four priests collectively molested young boys – forcing one of them to assume the pose of jesus naked on the cross in a parish hall, justice officials said. According to the report, priests raped and impregnated young girls. In one case, an abortion was arranged. The bishop in charge had then expressed his sympathy – not with the victim, but with the priest. "It must be a very difficult time for them."

Five sisters abused by same priest. Dealing with this is very difficult, one of them said tuesday. "It is very lonely. Especially when it’s your word against the word of god."Another victim, a man who is now 83 years old, asked: "who believed me??"One 48-year-old woman said the abuse is never over: "it affects the rest of your life."

Half a million documents that had previously been kept under wraps in the secret archives of the bisturbs also contributed to the report. Pennsylvania investigators used legal pressure to gain access. Several of the identified clerics had objected to the publication of their names, which delayed the publication of the report. In all, more than 400 priests are under suspicion.

Among them, according to shapiro, are high-ranking church officials. Just a few weeks ago, pope francis accepted the resignation of cardinal theodore mccarrick, the former archbishop of washington, and also placed him under house arrest amid allegations of abuse.

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