The Pope's Bizarre Justification for Catholic Sex Abuse
The Vatican has come up with some thin explanations for their molestation scandal, but this one by the pope himself last week is a real doozy:
Victims of clerical sex abuse have reacted furiously to Pope Benedict's claim yesterday that paedophilia wasn't considered an “absolute evil” as recently as the 1970s.
In his traditional Christmas address yesterday to cardinals and officials working in Rome, Pope Benedict XVI also claimed that child pornography was increasingly considered “normal” by society.
“In the 1970s, paedophilia was theorised as something fully in conformity with man and even with children,” the Pope said.
“It was maintained — even within the realm of Catholic theology — that there is no such thing as evil in itself or good in itself. There is only a ‘better than' and a ‘worse than'. Nothing is good or bad in itself.”
The Pope said abuse revelations in 2010 reached “an unimaginable dimension” which brought “humiliation” on the Church.
Asking how abuse exploded within the Church, the Pontiff called on senior clerics “to repair as much as possible the injustices that occurred” and to help victims heal through a better presentation of the Christian message.
“We cannot remain silent about the context of these times in which these events have come to light,” he said, citing the growth of child pornography “that seems in some way to be considered more and more normal by society” he said.
I'm fairly sure that pedophilia was considered an absolute evil in the 1970s. It was just covered up --- mostly because of institutions like the Church which made even the thought of sex so shameful that even innocent victims of abuse were afraid to admit it. But whatever "context" he's thinking of, in normal society sexual exploitation of children wasn't part of it except on
(just as it is today among certain
I know the Pope is infallible and all, but you can only conclude from these comments that he still has not come to grips with what happened in his Church and neither has the institution.
There are many examples of our leadership and elite institutions and leadership failing, but I think this one is the best example. When even the Church that has made human sexuality a purely procreative necessity within sanctioned marriage is making excuses for pedophilia among its priests because of "the times" then it's fairly clear that any institution can be thoroughly corrupted to its very core. It tends to create just a little mistrust among the people.