The Netherlands has recently been added to the growing list of countries or local authorities to have conducted official investigations into the catholic church’s cover up of widespread child rape. Just like those in the US and Ireland, Dutch authorities found the actions, or lack of action, by bishops and other church officials disgracefully lacking in ignoring the rights of children not to be raped, and considering only the avoidance of scandal. Just like everywhere else in the world they have a presence, the catholic church in The Netherlands repeatedly and knowingly exposed new children to known rapists in order to protect the interests of the church, with not a moment’s thought for the safety of those children or the devastating effect of such crimes on their entire lives.
In fact, if it were not the obscenely powerful and corruptly influential catholic church being investigated, there is little doubt the words criminal conspiracy would have been used. If we can ignore the threats of retribution from the bullies of the catholic hierarchy for one moment and be perfectly honest, there really is no other way to accurately describe what is going on in front of everyone’s eyes, but which few, even today, are brave enough to correctly label.
What else do you call a consistent worldwide policy to continue to sacrifice many thousands of additional children to the church’s known sexual predators in priests clothing, in order to protect the wealth and influence of the universal church, and the careers and reputations of child sex criminals and those who protect them?
The infallible Vatican denies there is such a policy, but then for many years they also emphatically denied their priests were raping children, despite certain knowledge at the time that the problem was serious, widespread and ongoing.
So any Vatican statements on this subject are hardly trustworthy. As this latest report confirms in common with all previous reports, without hard factual evidence to back them up, Vatican pronouncements about what was, is or is not being done to protect children from their own colleagues cannot be taken as anything other than the latest excuse or diversion. Or in other words, lies.
In fact the Vatican only ceased denying there were rapists preying on children using their status and respect as catholic religious to access victims and avoid discovery, when the volume of evidence that they were lying about this issue was simply too significant to dismiss any longer.
Only one significant internal document has so far managed to escape the veil of deception that the Vatican drapes over their attempts to deal with serious crimes against children in house and in secret. Crimen sollicitationis has provoked many arguments about what it does or does not prove regarding official Vatican policy in dealing with child sex crimes. This organisation has had two millenia of practice in protecting their own interests and wealth, and are not in the habit of making the rookie mistake of being open and honest about their naked self interest. At least not in writing.
But it is simply impossible to deny that crimen sollicitationis proves that telling the truth, by revealing that priests rape children, is treated far more seriously and punished much more severely than the actual child rapes themselves.
Crimen sollicitationis also reveals part of the Vatican policy of re-abuse of victims. Victims are threatened with excommunication if they speak about their abuse. Any trauma recovery specialist can confirm that victims of child sexual abuse remain trapped in a self destructive spiral unless they can face and deal with the crimes committed against them by those they had every right to expect to protect and nurture them. Being bullied into silence by revered authority figures threatening the ultimate punishment, and forcing them to live a lie, condemns innocent victims to self harm in one or more of its many forms, a lifetime of additional suffering, and in far too many cases, direct or indirect suicide.
Unfortunately in Australia there is no political will or moral courage to examine evidence of the catholic church’s crimes against children and their coverup. Or to implement desperately needed changes to protect any more children from being sacrificed by the catholic church or other corrupt and self self serving organisations. Despite barely a handful of brave individuals prepared to fight for our children’s rights to be safe from rape by authority figures, the vast majority of Australian politicians and lawmakers are simply too afraid of the power and influence of the aggressively deceitful local church leaders.
With more than 30 known suicides of victims of just two of the Australian catholic church’s hundreds of expensively protected child rapists, the Victorian Attorney General is nonetheless delaying, with a view to avoiding having to act, calls for a royal commission into this issue. Other states are not even considering the rights of child sex victims to some semblance of justice, despite repeated heartfelt requests for proper investigations over many years.
See the excellent NYT article about the latest damning report on Voice from the Desert’s website