Contains sixteen essays in which the authors debate issues related to sexual abuse of children by Catholic clergy, including church policies and practices that encourage or discourage sexually predatory behavior against children, and whether the church's response is adequate.
The relentless crescendo of revelations of sexual abuse in the nation's Catholic churches has rocked the nation. Just how widespread is child sexual abuse by the Catholic clergy? And why hasn't the Catholic church done more to stop it? In A Gospel of Shame, Pulitzer Prize-nominated journalists Elinor Burkett and Frank Bruni provide the answers to these questions and more. The answers, however, turn out to be infuriating and heartbreaking, difficult to accept but impossible to dismiss. The authors thoroughly document dozens of cases across the country and reveal how this heinous abuse of trust has been tacitly sanctioned by the Church's silence.
Authors offer several perspectives on the nature and scope of the problem of child sexual abuse in the Catholic Church and debate whether the laity of the Catholic Church should have a greater voice in church policy.
Father Rosetti shows in this book that responding properly to incidents of child sexual abuse presupposes an awareness of the prevasiveness of child abuse, a realization of the trauma it causes victims, a recognition of the mental illness that afflicts perpetrators, and a sensitivity to the signs of child sexual abuse.
A meticulously researched inside look at child sexual abuse by clergy, this exhaustive, hard-hitting analysis weaves together interviews with abusive priests and church historical and administrative details to propose a new way of thinking about clerical sexual offenders. Linking the personal and the institutional, researcher and therapist Marie Keenan locates the problem of child sexual abuse not exclusively in individual pathology, but also within larger systemic factors, such as the very institution of priesthood itself, the Catholic take on sexuality, clerical culture, power relations, governance structures of the Catholic Church, the process of formation for priesthood and religious life, and the complex manner in which these factors coalesce to create serious institutional risks for boundary violations, including child sexual abuse. Keenan draws on the priests' own words not to excuse their horrific crimes, but to offer the first in-depth account of a tragic, multi-faceted phenomenon. What emerges is a troubling portrait of a Church in crisis and a series of recommendations that call for nothing less than a new ecclesiology and a new, more critical theology. Only through radical institutional reform, Keenan argues, can a more representative and accountable Church emerge. Child Sexual Abuse and the Catholic Church is a unique reference for scholars of the Church and therapists who work with both victims and offenders, as well as a forward-thinking blueprint for reform.
A Publishers Weekly Best Nonfiction Book of 2013 A Kirkus Reviews Best Book of 2013 An Edgar Award for Best Fact Crime Nominee An explosive, sweeping account of the scandal that has sent the Catholic Church into a tailspin -- and the brave few who fought for justice In the mid-1980s a dynamic young monsignor assigned to the Vatican's embassy in Washington set out to investigate the problem of sexually abusive priests. He found a scandal in the making, confirmed by secret files revealing complaints that had been hidden from police and covered up by the Church hierarchy. He also understood that the United States judicial system was eager to punish offenders and those who aided them. He presented all of this to the American bishops, warning that the Church could be devastated by negative publicity and bankrupted by its legal liability. They ignored him. Meanwhile, a young lawyer listened to a new client describe an abusive sexual history with a priest that began when he was ten years old. His parents' complaints were downplayed by Church officials who offered them money to go away. The lawyer saw a claim that any defendant would want to settle. Then he began to suspect he was onto something bigger, involving thousands of priests who had abused countless children while the Church had done almost nothing about it. The lawsuit he filed would touch off a legal war of historic and global proportions. Part history, part journalism, and part true-crime thriller, Michael D'Antonio's Mortal Sins brings to mind landmark books such as All the President's Men, And the Band Played On, and The Informant, as it reveals a long and ferocious battle for the soul of the largest and oldest organization in the world.
This acclaimed study breaks through the myths, anger, and confusion that surround the subject of child sexual abuse. It brings together commentary from experts in the fields of medicine, mental health, law and pastoral theology.
Child Sexual Abuse and Canadian Religious Institutions
Author: Tracy J. Trothen
Publisher: Wilfrid Laurier Univ. Press
Shattering the Illusion is the first book to gather and comparatively analyze policies addressing child sexual abuse complaints in a selection of religious institutions in Canada. Although there is a substantial body of literature regarding Christianity and sexual abuse, very little of it focuses on religious institutions in Canada and their respective policies. In the foreword, Tracey J. Trothen summarizes the Cornwall Inquiry, out of which this book arose. She then examines the Roman Catholic Church, The United Church of Canada, the Anglican Church, the Mennonite Church, Islam, and the Canadian Unitarian Council/Unitarian Universalist Association, describing in detail the evolution and particular content of policies and procedures that address child sexual abuse complaints directed at paid and volunteer faith community representatives and/ or leaders. She identifies differences and common themes among the approaches taken by the institutions and provides a summary table for an accessible comparative overview. Child sexual abuse is not new, but the emergence of policies to address abuse complaints within religious institutions is. This book identifies significant and shared causal factors behind the emergence of policy and reviews their content carefully. This review will serve as a significant tool for furthering the development of such policies.
The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse has focused more public attention on the Catholic Church in Australia than on any other organisation subject to this investigation. It is a cathartic moment for the Church. Public disillusionment and a deep distrust within the community about the way the Church has handled clerical sexual abuse cases could prove more damaging – or more transformative – than any findings from the Commission itself. This book examines the public discussion around the child abuse issue and its construction as a problem of Catholicism. It considers what the Australian Catholic response to the greatest crisis in its history will mean in the long term for: • the Australian Church’s credibility, • the reputation of its schools, hospitals and welfare organizations, • and for its future cultural and political influence.