The Pope has been scrutinized by survivors and can feel the heat. What proclamation will redeem him?
In the last several decades, stories of sexual abuse in Catholic Churches have come forward full throttle. Many people have finally told their stories of being mishandled at the hands of a clergyman. Sadly, most of these tales were recounted only after years and years following the violations.
The Pope has stated that these instances need to be taken much more seriously, even suggesting that steps be taken to identify people who are abusing their roles while under cloaks.
I feel that our world is one in which sometimes the humans in it are not much different from the animals out in the wild. Except in the wilderness, we are warned and instructed to expect or prepare for danger. Yet, how many of us think we need to gear up for an attack when going to our local churches or schools?
It is an ever evil thought to envision a person who takes the vows to become a priest, but then turns that accolade into something that wields nefariousness. Mixing God with abuse is one thing that can cause so much pain to someone who unexpectedly finds themselves on the losing end of a terrible trick. That is what this is after all; a trick.
I grew up Catholic. I went to a Catholic school. I received all of the sacraments. I knew it all. From a young age, we young-lings were surrounded by priests and encouraged to listen to them. They were supreme beings and we were warned never to disrespect them. Their homilies could be boring, but that was the worst of it. Some of them, I came to really enjoy and as I grew up, I would oftentimes go to speak to them one on one.
Those times, when I went to a priest, were when I needed help the most. I was, in a sense, seeking out the closest thing to God that I could get to as I was already in a vulnerable state. I counted on my convictions to guide me and saw the priests as the vessels in which I could be helped, salvaged or healed. Imagine if these men had then decided to take advantage of me? It would have been rather easy to do.
Priests who hide behind their Holy Orders in order to enact devious deeds are a special kind of apex in my opinion. Maybe I would have known it if I had been approached that it seemed off or felt off. But, I’m willing to bet that my faith would have been the catalyst that would have confused me to oblivion. Wasn’t I there because of God? Didn’t He send this priest into my life to help me? How could I question that or accuse such a person? I mean, didn’t God make this person a priest? And priests don’t do that kind of thing because of God, right? Therefore, I would be wrong for even suggesting or thinking such a thing. In fact, it would be me who would be punished, not them. That would have been my conclusion and a rather easy one to arrive at.
Sadly, that is not the way it works and predators know that better than anyone.
One can see how this would become a whirlwind of what to do and it would be nice to see the response of the Catholic Church matching that of the damage that such a thing causes. When one is injured by or in a place that is holy and sanctified, it then becomes nearly impossible to make rational or sensible judgments of the reality. Therefore, those people who do choose to masquerade for the benefit of promoting vice and impairment deserve swift and equitable reprimands. As I see it, parading around in God’s house and under a guise in order to disable some of His followers is one of the purest forms of depravity that I could ever hope to conjure up.