Monday, June 7, 2010

Little girls are often the forgotten victims of priestly abuse.

Little girls are often the forgotten victims of priestly abuse.
Mary Ormsby is calling it the "next wave" of the Catholic Church's sexual abuse scandal: priests molesting young girls. In a blunt expose for The Toronto Star, Ormsby relates some harrowing instances where the church systematically hid crimes against female children from the public eye, and sheds light on the unique circumstances surrounding these other, less familiar pedophiles: In the small Ontario town of Pain Court, a French-Canadian community near Chatham, Father Charlie’s attention was prized by devout Roman Catholic families like Cecilia McLauchlin's. His interest in their daughter meant the popular priest, once described as "next to God," publicly approved of how she was being raised. So when a gynecologist examined the girl for recurring vaginal infections, it didn't occur to anyone that Father Charlie was the cause of her physical pain. Cecilia McLauchlin was only 5 years old. Now 32, the Chatham woman is the youngest known victim of Father Charles Sylvestre, the smooth-talking priest who groomed his young prey with candies, trinkets and praise. He was convicted in 2006 of sexually assaulting 47 girls over four decades in southwestern Ontario - despite abuse complaints from victims to police, school and church officials during that time... Father Donald Holmes, a modern cleric who rode a motorcycle, sported a beard, played hockey and preferred street clothes to his Roman collar, also preyed on girls as they began taking bigger roles in the church. He was convicted in 2002 of sexually abusing twelve girls around the Sudbury area between 1972 and 1984...

We often hear about young boys being abused, but former priest-turned-lawyer Patrick Wall says clergy members are just as equally disposed to view underage females as sex objects: "If they're going to explore sexually, they're going to explore with a little girl. This is the biggest company in the world, they are not going to shift and move. It doesn't matter what the law is, whether it's the Canadian police or the U.S. police. They’re not going to tell anybody about this criminal behavior."

Back to Ormsby: Wall's perspective on the degree of female abuse is unique. He was a Benedictine monk for 12 years, working as a "fixer" dispatched to tidy up messy sexual problems of priests and laymen at troubled parishes and schools. He said when a girl required surgery after rape, the code was that she needed a "hernia" operation. In a bizarre twinning, he counseled accused priests and heard confessions from traumatized victims. He also worked on cases where priests impregnated girls then procured abortions for them... By age 33, Wall deduced that most, if not all, of the 195 parishes and hundreds of religious orders in the U.S. employed "fixers" like him to wipe down crime scenes that involved children. He quit religious life in disgust and scoffs at the Vatican’s pledge to better protect boys and girls from its surpliced predators... If mentally unhealthy priests are attacking children, it doesn’t prevent the church from using its formidable financial and legal resources to defend their accused, said Wall. The former priest said the church is particularly vicious with women, deploying its "whore defense" to paint schoolgirls as harlots and intimidate them from pursuing criminal and civil complaints.
Experts warn that the number of young females who have been molested by priests will increase dramatically over the next few years, as more victims step forward and law enforcement authorities start taking these complaints seriously. And who will the Vatican decide to blame this time around?

1 comment:

Stolle Family said...

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