LA Church in Record Abuse Deal

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Source: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/6899391.stm

The Catholic Church in Los Angeles has reached a financial deal with more than 500 people alleging sexual abuse by priests, the plaintiffs' lawyer says.

The deal, said to be for $660m (£324m), has yet to be approved by a judge.

It would be the biggest compensation payment the Church has made since the sexual abuse scandal exploded into public view in 2002.

Yet another huge payout to abuse victims and it seems the church is having to sell lots of property to afford the settlement. I wonder how the church is ever going to recover from the effect this will have both on their finances and their parishoners?
 
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A few things here trouble me.

1. The Catholic church has assets of $660 million dollars to sell to fund the payout when its flock worldwide can't even afford the most basic food.

2. There are over 1000 victims who have claimed in L.A alone.

3. How does this abuse scale in terms of the world?

4. The total payout in L.A alone since 1990 is $2billion dollars.

5. A report in 2004 commissioned by the Catholic church estimates 4000 priests in the US have been involved in abuse 1954.
 
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Why is there even a payout? Throw them in jail for the rest of their lives.

Simple really
 
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Slinwagh said:
A few things here trouble me.

1. The Catholic church has assets of $660 million dollars to sell to fund the payout when its flock worldwide can't even afford the most basic food.

If you have ever been to the Vatican in Rome and been round the museum you'll be amazed. It truely disgusted me to see a snap shot of how much money the Catholic church has gathered.

On top of that the Catholic church has covered up child abuse time after time, they have guilt on all of their hands and as such should be torn down and the money taken from them and given to charity.
 
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Bear said:
On top of that the Catholic church has covered up child abuse time after time, they have guilt on all of their hands and as such should be torn down and the money taken from them and given to charity.

The cover up is in large part an artifact of the confessional system, which is - interestingly - wholly unbiblical.
 
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Bear said:
On top of that the Catholic church has covered up child abuse time after time, they have guilt on all of their hands and as such should be torn down and the money taken from them and given to charity.

It's covered it up for the simple reason that it is endemic within the church. The cover up's arn't just limited to the USA either. The UK and the Irish Republic were and still are riddled with priests that pray on children. Those priests eventually get to higher positions and carry on the cover for other priests. Anyone that thinks this has been stopped or will be stopped, is living in cloud cuckoo land.
 
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vonhelmet said:
The cover up is in large part an artifact of the confessional system, which is - interestingly - wholly unbiblical.

Not everything practised in churches is found in the Bible. I think thats pretty common knowledge tbh.

On topic, I can see how stories like this could really damage people's faiths. Not just those directly involved, but lots of people in the wider church community could be really confused by this. Why were these people allowed to be priests? How could they do this, and then not come forward themselves? How could they live with themself hearing other people admit to things they'd done wrong, but not confess to their own (terrible) actions? And on the latest development, how could someone calling themself a christian accept a million-pound (or dollar, whatever) payout from the church, rather than insist the money be given to some other worthy cause?
 
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kitfit1 said:
It's covered it up for the simple reason that it is endemic within the church. The cover up's arn't just limited to the USA either. The UK and the Irish Republic were and still are riddled with priests that pray on children. Those priests eventually get to higher positions and carry on the cover for other priests. Anyone that thinks this has been stopped or will be stopped, is living in cloud cuckoo land.

Do you have any evidence at all to support that rather horrible claim?
 
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calnen said:
Do you have any evidence at all to support that rather horrible claim?

Maybe not now but the Irish church was certainly involved in a similar scandal recently and there were plenty of recent cases in the UK, though I think it's more a case of them trying to protect the image of the church from being damaged by these claims (and failing badly at it) rather than abuser priests protecting each other.
 
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calnen said:
How could they live with themself hearing other people admit to things they'd done wrong, but not confess to their own (terrible) actions?
Why are you surprised that paedophile priests lack the morality and ethics to make them confess, or feel guilt! :confused:
 
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anarchist said:
Why are you surprised that paedophile priests lack the morality and ethics to make them confess, or feel guilt! :confused:

It just compounds it, is the thing. It seems so much worse than an 'ordinary' paedophile because of the privileged position they're in. Its like being invited to tea with the queen, being mugged by her cronies and no-one believing you.
 
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calnen said:
It just compounds it, is the thing.
I'm vastly more worried by the fact that they abuse kids in the first place, than the fact that don't feel guilty about it afterwards.

calnen said:
It seems so much worse than an 'ordinary' paedophile because of the privileged position they're in.
Yes I know what you mean. People expect priests (and people in authority in general) to be good, so perhaps people should change their expectations. The reality is that power corrupts or, equally bad, corrupt people seek power.
 
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kitfit1 said:
It's covered it up for the simple reason that it is endemic within the church. The cover up's arn't just limited to the USA either. The UK and the Irish Republic were and still are riddled with priests that pray on children. Those priests eventually get to higher positions and carry on the cover for other priests. Anyone that thinks this has been stopped or will be stopped, is living in cloud cuckoo land.

There was a edition of Panorama or Dispatches, I can't remember which that recently came into possession of a document from the Catholic church that was a guide for the church on how to deal with Pedophilia.

The actual document never mentioned Pedophilia but it was blatantly obvious what the purpose of the document was, to cover up abuse. I will try and link to the program when i find it.

Here goes..

Panorama Progam here

The Document here

The following quote is by a Father Tom Doyle, a lawyer

Crimen solicitationis is indicative of a worldwide policy of absolute secrecy and control of all cases of sexual abuse by the clergy. But what you really have here is an explicit written policy to cover up cases of child sexual abuse by the clergy to punish those who would call attention to these crimes by the churchmen.

You've got a written policy that says that the Vatican will control these situations and you also have I think clear written evidence of the fact that all they are concerned about is containing and controlling the problem.

Nowhere in any of these documents does it say anything about helping the victims.

The only thing it does is say that they can impose fear on the victims and punish the victims for discussing or disclosing what happened to them.

It's all controlled by the Vatican and at the top of the Vatican is the Pope so Joseph Ratzinger was in the middle of this for most of the years that Crimens was enforced he created the successor to Crimen and now he is the Pope this all says that the policy and systematic approach has not changed.

Cardinal Ratzinger, now as Pope, could tomorrow get up and say: 'Here's the policy: full disclosure to the civil authorities, absolute isolation and dismissal of any accused and proven and convicted clerics, complete openness and transparency, complete openness of all financial situations, stop all barriers to the legal process and completely co-operate with the civil authorities everywhere.'

He could do that.
 
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Slinwagh said:
See my post above.

Thanks for that Slinwagh. That evidence on it's own is damning enough. But i was posting from research that myself and four fellow ex students did between 1976 an 1982, spread over the Uk and the Irish Republic.

We interviewed 642 ex Catholic boys and girls homes residents. To find the extent of physical and sexual abuse. I'm not going to print the whole report here, but i will give some base figures that will certainly shock most people. One thing to keep in mind is that most catholic girls homes at that time were run and staffed by Nuns. Most catholic boys homes were run by Priests, but staffed by lay members.

Irish Republic:
% of girls who suffered physical abuse = 84%
% of girls who suffered sexual abuse = 61%

% of boys who suffered physical abuse = 93%
% of boys who suffered sexual abuse = 31%

UK:
% of girls who suffered physical abuse = 56%
% of girls who suffered sexual abuse = 22%

% of boys who suffered physical abuse = 59%
% of boys who suffered sexual abuse = 18%

These base figures are a % of the 642 we interviewed in total.
So you see when i said it's endemic, that is exactly what i meant

And yes the complete report was handed to the Irish police, to the Primate of all Ireland, to scotland yard, to cardinal Basil Hulme and the Home Office.
It was buried and no action was taken in the uk or the irish republic.
But the Catholic church in the uk started to slowly close the boys homes it had from 1983 onwards, and in fact there are very few left now.
In the irish republic, the irish gov started to force the closure of boys and girls homes from 1984 onwards. Most are now state run.
 
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calnen said:
How could they live with themself hearing other people admit to things they'd done wrong, but not confess to their own (terrible) actions?

That was pretty much my point. The sanctity of the confessional system means that if they confess their sins to another priest, that priest can't report them.
 
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The entire catholic organisation seems to be rife with this stuff. There was a recent high profile case in Glasgow where the priest was knocking off anything that moved, including a 23 year old polish student living in his church. Unfortunately the case was overshadowed at the time by another higher profile case (can't remember exactly what it was though).
 
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kitfit1 said:
Thanks for that Slinwagh. That evidence on it's own is damning enough. But i was posting from research that myself and four fellow ex students did between 1976 an 1982, spread over the UK and the Irish Republic.

We interviewed 642 ex Catholic boys and girls homes residents. To find the extent of physical and sexual abuse. I'm not going to print the whole report here, but i will give some base figures that will certainly shock most people. One thing to keep in mind is that most catholic girls homes at that time were run and staffed by Nuns. Most catholic boys homes were run by Priests, but staffed by lay members.

Irish Republic:
% who suffered physical abuse =
% who suffered sexual abuse =

And yes the complete report was handed to the Irish police, to the Primate of all Ireland, to Scotland Yard, to Cardinal Basil Hulme and the Home Office.
It was buried and no action was taken in the UK or the Irish Republic.
But the Catholic church in the UK started to slowly close the boys homes it had from 1983 onwards, and in fact there are very few left now.
In the Irish Republic, the Irish Government started to force the closure of boys and girls homes from 1984 onwards. Most are now state run.
It would be an interesting report to read.

What exactly did you categorise as "physical abuse", likewise what did you describe as "sexual abuse"?
How did you select your 642 interviewees?

Your percentages seem incredibly high.
 
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Shackley said:
It would be an interesting report to read.

I really really would love to publish it, but legal restraints and a court order prevented us from doing that since it's completion.

Shackley said:
What exactly did you categorise as "physical abuse", likewise what did you describe as "sexual abuse"?

Something you have to keep in mind is, at the time, child abuse either sexual or physical in the minds of the public or the authorities "did not exist". We of course did know. So the way we split it was the way that we were told it by the people we interviewed.

Shackley said:
How did you select your 642 interviewees?

We did'nt select them. The social services directed us towards likely abuse victims in all cases, both in the UK and The Republic of Ireland. We interviewed everyone they gave us. All 642 were interviewed on camera, some for 3hrs or more. So you see the whole report runs for some 6154 pages, including transcripts of the interviews.

Shackley said:
Your percentages seem incredibly high.

As i said, those percentages are of the people we interviewed. Obviously we did'nt interview everyone that was in a home at the time. But even so, i agree, those percentages are very very high. They shocked me to the core at the time, and still do now. They also shocked the Irish Police, hence, Ireland has done a lot to clean up since. The UK though, is a different kettle of fish altogether. Indifference, rejection, apathy and dissinterest. The Catholic church must have a bigger stranglehold over the British authorities than anyone must imagine.
 
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