Right now, Pope Francis is being accused of complicity in sexual abuse scandals. These scandals have claimed thousands upon thousands of emotional lives. They span decades. They span the globe. In the United States alone, there are approximately 100,000 reported cases in the Catholic church. These abuses have destroyed lives, and driven many to suicide. There is more on this in the movie Spotlight, released in 2015.
In the news today we are hearing about Theodore McCarrick, a former Archbishop of Washington D.C., who was charged with beyond heinous acts. It was said that he was sanctioned under the last pope. But the sanctions were ignored. Pope Francis hired him back and made him one of his closest advisors.
It’s all unthinkable, but it was thought up anyway, and and there is only one way to stop this run away train of constant emotional murder: make the decision to stay focused on the children, demand change, and encourage the media to do the same.
Massimo Faggioli, a professor of theology and religious studies at Villanova University has stated: “…a pope could conclude he must leave office for the good of the Church if media coverage and public perception of the pontiff becomes too negative.”
This then, could be the goal: keep this issue fully alive until there are answers and change. The best change would be sending all the predators to the place predators are supposed to go: jail.
The Savior reserved some of his harshest statements for those who would hurt children. He said: “…whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea.” The Savior was all about protecting children. We should be too.
There are seemingly countless wonderful Catholic people. I know dozens and dozens of them. They comprise many of my friends and family. They love things of heaven. They never signed up for things of hell-the like the kind of hell we seeing in these abuse cases. They love their children and want to meet their needs. They know that children are the future of our world.
All children need, and deserve a voice. This includes the inner children of adult abuse survivors. We need to remove the statute of limitations so they can have their say in court.
The song says, “Bless the beasts and the children, for in this world, they have no voice, they have no choice.” But we can be their voice. We can help make the impossible happen.
In the New Testament, Peter does the impossible: he walks on water.
“And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus.
But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, Lord, save me.
And immediately Jesus stretched forth his hand, and caught him, and said unto him, O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?” (Matthew 14:22)
At first, Peter was focused on the Savior, who bid Peter to come to HIm. But then Peter shifted his focus to the distracting wind. And just like that, he couldn’t accomplish the impossible anymore. He had taken his eyes off the Savior. He had lost his focus.
If we can remain focused…this time on the children…if we don’t forget them, if we don’t fall for the distracting wind of “other conversations”, offered by the Pope, and currently designed to obfuscate ….we can accomplish the impossible.
With the help of heaven, we can save future children, and try to help redeem the inner children in so many adult abuse survivors.