Several times in my blog, I have commented, respectfully and positively, about the long delayed but gradually improving Church’s response to the sexual scandal of the last 10 to 15 years. Back in February, there was an important meeting in Rome on the subject and one of the speakers was Monsignor Charles Scicluna. Monsignor Scicluna is important because he is the Promoter of Justice in the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and the man responsible for dealing with these tragic abuse cases. In his speech to the symposium, he compared the “ecclesiastical cover up” with the Mafia bosses who enforce secrecy of their own criminal actions. He pointed out that the failure of the Church to ensure justice for the victims is no less a scandal than the abuse itself.
“It was a crime in canon law to show malicious or fraudulent negligence in the exercise of one’s duty,” Msgr. Scicluna said, indicating that bishops could be deposed from their sees for falling down in their duty in this respect.
Writing in the February 11th issue of the London Tablet (in my opinion, the most thoughtful Catholic publication in the English language), Robert Mickens states that, “Unfortunately the event has revealed a dark side. And that is the sad fact that there are still powerful men in the Roman Curia and the hierarchy who continue to downplay the seriousness of clergy sexual abuse. This is reflected by the fact that the symposium was not “sponsored” by the Holy See and took place more than a mile away on the other side of the Tiber.”
Onward through the fog.