Predators Are Telling Children “You Are Special.” Why Aren’t Our Communities?

corey_feldman_lost_boys_sexual_abuse

The most powerful three words of a child predator are: “You are special.” When a predator tells a child she is “special,” he is using the ultimate con, filling a huge void in a vulnerable child’s life. This grooming behavior allows a criminal full access into a child’s psyche to make it easy to sexually […]

Lessons for the Catholic Church from an Unlikely Source—Penn State

joe_paterno_penn_state_sex_abuse_scandal

During the past week, the media and the American public could not help but draw comparisons between the recent child sex abuse scandal at Penn State and the endemic sex abuse scandal in the Catholic Church. But there are major differences that are hard to ignore. At Penn State, the predator and those who covered […]

Occupy the Vatican?

VaticanPriests

Father Roy Bourgeois, a beloved Catholic priest who has supported women’s ordination, was briefly detained in Rome yesterday after he and about a dozen women marched on the Vatican. The marchers held a banner reading “Ordain Catholic Women” and chanted: “What do we want? Women priests! When do we want them? Now.” Bourgeois and two […]

More Priests, More Abuse

BellevilleCathedral

The world waits with bated breath to see if the International Criminal Court will take up a case filed by Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP) and the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) against the Pope and three other high-ranking Vatican officials over sexual abuse cover-ups. Meanwhile, more allegations of both priest abuse and […]

This Week in Priest Abuse

This Week in Priest Abuse

As SNAP (Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests) and the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) anxiously await news from the International Criminal Court (ICC) on whether they will try Pope Benedict XVI and several top Vatican officials for crimes against humanity for the epidemic of clergy sexual abuse and coverups, new allegations concerning sexual abuse […]

Pope Makes Less-Than-Triumphant Return Home

487px-Pope_Benedictus_XVI_january,20_2006_(14)

Pope Benedict XVI is in his native Germany for a long weekend, but it’s not going to be a party. Many German Catholics have turned their backs on the ancient institution and parted ways–180,000 in 2010 alone–as allegations of sexual abuse by priests continue to surface. The Pope is coming home to a Germany that […]

Abuse Survivors Will Try To Take Pope to Court

International Court Investigate Priest

For eight years, I walked through the doors of my Catholic elementary school under the words “Suffer the little children to come unto me.” I haven’t thought about my grade school, Patronage of St. Joseph, in a very, very long time. But as I listened the other night to Barbara Blaine, founder and president of […]

Warren Jeffs’ Conviction Exposes the Coercion of Polygamy

Warrenjeffs2

In a courtroom in San Angelo, Texas, in August 2011, Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS) leader Warren Jeffs defended himself against the charge of sexual assault on the basis of religious freedom. It was an outrageous defense given that the women and children of his FLDS have no freedom whatsoever, religious or otherwise. Their minds have been coerced, cajoled and controlled since the moment of birth.

Catholic Church Takes Action to Stop Sexual Abuse–Or Do They?

4935829221_9532afe781

The Catholic Church has been accused in the past of dragging their feet on predatory priests. Now, they’re taking steps to show us they’re serious. The U.S. Catholic Church has plunked down $2 million to do the largest study to date on child sexual abuse by clergy. Their primary finding, released yesterday, was that the […]

Song of Bernadette: An Irish-Catholic Mother’s Tale

Irish girl

The 20th century Ireland of my mother’s childhood was marked with class distinction, the stigma attached to poorness inescapable. The Catholic Church influenced everything. Irish children attended Catholic schools where nuns, priests and brothers often stifled potential and crushed dreams.  There was much these children had to overcome. My mother was born a lefty, but […]