Catholic Myth 5 – The Catholic Church Still Has a Problem with Sex Abuse

Catholic church Sexual abuse

Is the Catholic Church safe for kids?  Why is there an inordinate amount of abuse in this particular organization?  Why does the problem persist even today?  To ask these questions is to give into the myths that the media and secular society purport.  The truth is, the Catholic Church does not have a problem with sex abuse today much less pedophilia.  Moreover, the Church has not had a problem with it for years.   Don’t believe me?  Read on.

Nearly every single case the media has reported happened between 30-50 years ago.  That’s a fact.  Most of the priests are either in jail, dead, or were “fired” (not the technical term).  Very few cases actually happen today.  For example, this past year, out of the 44,000 priests in the United States, there were only 6 credible allegations.  6!  Over the last 5 years or so, there have only been about 5-7 credible allegations.

Why so low?  Because the Church has put in place many checks and programs to make sure this problem never happens again.  Everyone who works with kids or teens must attend training seminars which help them to identify pedophilia and sexual abuse and to help prevent it from happening.  Working in different dioceses, I have had to take the training course 5 times.  To me, this seemed excessive, but not to the Church who is serious about stopping it.  Last summer, I spoke to teens in Ireland, and I was immediately informed that they also have programs set in place that we would have to attend.

Now, some places in the Catholic Church certainly had a problem with sexual abuse.  No doubt; and that can never be justified.  It’s heinous and evil.  However, the Church recognized the problem and has worked hard to fix it.  Even though the dishonesty of the media makes it seem like every other priest across the country is guilty, the fact is that due to the steps the Church has taken, the Catholic Church is now the safest organization in the world.  Here are some facts:

What most people don’t realize is that sex abuse of minors is 100 times more prevalent in the public school systems than in any church.  85% of all sexual abuse happens in the family!  15% takes place in public schools, and nearly 1% occurs in religious institutions, the least of which is now the Catholic Church.  So, those who continue to promote the myth that the Catholic Church still abuses children or has a huge problem are incorrect.  Perhaps unintentionally, but they are spreading ignorance, propaganda, and false claims which are not true.

So, when people are outraged at the Church for sexual abuse, ask them why they are not also outraged at the public school systems.  Yes, the Church is more accountable since they claim a higher morality code, but if people are truly concerned about ending sexual abuse, they will stop being hypocritical and work to end it wherever it’s found, especially where it’s the worst: families and schools.  The Church has taken steps; why haven’t they?

For more information, check out my two blogs on the subject.

About Bryan Mercier

Bryan Mercier is a thirty-eight year old speaker and retreat leader. He has spoken to adults and teens for the last fifteen years on a wide variety of topics; ranging from catechetics and faith formation, to morality, spirituality, and apologetics. He has spoken at youth and adult retreats, workshops, seminars, Catholic schools, parish missions, local, regional and national conferences. He has spoken in front of crowds ranging from thirty to three-thousand and has been aired on both TV and radio in different states. Bryan also runs the R.O.C.K. (Revival Of Catholic Kids) Ministry Team that puts on all-day retreats for teens. He is going for his Masters in theology and working on writing numerous books and tracts.
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2 Responses to Catholic Myth 5 – The Catholic Church Still Has a Problem with Sex Abuse

  1. Anonymous says:

    The catholic sexual abuse cases only shows it is not of God’s churh, more like the devol. Yeah, the devol’s church, why? Cuzz it is so evil to molest young boys in the church given the fact that the parents entrusted the priest to teach their children about religion and Godly stuff, thechildren are being molested by the. Besides if a priest molest a child, he gets a reward from the pope?? Hey read the internet news about the priest reward from the pope, it’s sickening man..

  2. Anonymour 63.229 – I think you need read this post again. If the whole Church was molesting kids, then yes, it would be an evil organization. BUT, if the majority of the priests and the majority of the organization are GOOD and only a few (a tiny minority of priests) do something bad, that doesn’t make the whole organization bad. It only means that THOSE individuals were bad. In fact, the Bible disproves your statement because Jesus himself said that there would be bad people in his Church. There will always be bad bad people in every organization.

    So, Even though what a tiny minority of priests did was horrible and evil, that doesn’t make the whole Church bad and evil. The Apostle Judas betrayed Jesus and did something evil, but that didn’t make the whole group of Apostles bad. Judas was the bad egg, not the other Apostles. And a few bad priests were bad eggs, not all the priests. So, your logic doesn’t follow. And as for the pope giving rewards, that’s just silly … especially since it was Pope Benedict who was the chief whistle blower in the first place. He was one of the people who opened it all up. so, get your facts straight friend and don’t listen to uncredible media and sensationalized sources.

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