Belgian bishop quits over child sex abuse – CNN.com: Belgian bishop Roger Joseph Vangheluwe has resigned after admitting to sexually abusing a child, a spokesman for the Brussels bishop said Friday.
Is there an end it sight? Will the Pope and the church take the drastic actions that are truly necessary? Probably not. It’s time for a house cleaning, starting at the top. The college of cardinals should appoint a special independent investigator to look into all the allegations and take appropriate (meaning defrocking, handing over to authorities, excommunicating, etc.) actions on anyone found to be guilty of this sort of abuse, or of covering it up, which is actually the graver sin. As [[Roger Ebert]] said, the abuser is sick, the one who covers up for the abuser is evil.
From The London Evening Standard:
Pope ‘led cover-up of child abuse by priests’: The Pope played a leading role in a systematic cover-up of child sex abuse by Roman Catholic priests, according to a shocking documentary to be screened by the BBC tonight.
In 2001, while he was a cardinal, he issued a secret Vatican edict to Catholic bishops all over the world, instructing them to put the Church’s interests ahead of child safety.
The document recommended that rather than reporting sexual abuse to the relevant legal authorities, bishops should encourage the victim, witnesses and perpetrator not to talk about it. And, to keep victims quiet, it threatened that if they repeat the allegations they would be excommunicated.
If this actually happened (and given the recent issues that have surfaced, I think it likely), there’s no choice for this Pope but to resign.
They let Cardinal Law get away with it nearly a decade ago, and that was troubling enough. But now the Pope?!? It’s time for a complete overhaul of the church hierarchy. This cannot go on, and cannot be ignored.