Wednesday, 18 September, 2019

Pope Francis Admits Priests Are Abusing Nuns

Pope admits priests, bishops sexually abused nuns Pope Francis admits nuns have been sexually abused by clergy
Patty Aguilar | 08 February, 2019, 02:17

Pope Francis on Tuesday publicly acknowledged the scandal of priests and bishops sexually abusing nuns and vowed to do more to fight the problem, the latest sign that there is no end in sight to the Catholic Church's abuse crisis - and that it now has a reckoning from the #MeToo movement.

Speaking on board the papal plane back from the United Arab Emirates, he argued the phenomenon was rooted in society's mistreatment of women.

Furthermore, Vatican women's magazine Women Church World reported that some nuns were forced to have abortions after being impregnated by priests, the BBC reported.

Although the church has been embroiled in child abuse scandals carried out by the clergy, the widespread problem of abuse within the church has been less publicised.

"I think it's still taking place because it's not as though the moment you become aware of something it goes away".

"It is a problem we have been working on for some time now". As Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, he had headed the Vatican department that investigates sexual abuse, but his efforts had been "blocked".

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That community admitted in 2013 that the priest who founded it had behaved "in ways that went against chastity" with several women in the order, according to French Catholic newspaper La Croix. He stopped short of explaining what that action might be, or when it would take effect, instead telling reporters that the Church - already besieged by an global sex abuse scandal implicating thousands of priests - "shouldn't be scandalized by this". "We have suspended some priests because of this", he said. The United States' bishops conference presented a plan to tackle abuse within the heiarchy of the Church to the Vatican late a year ago, but the Pope refused to sign off on the plan, and did not allow the bishops to discuss how to proceed against abusers within their own ranks.

The nuns recently asked the chief minister of Kerala to intervene on their behalf, after they say church officials ordered them to leave the state.

In 2018, an investigative report from Chilean national TV unearthed allegations from at least six current and former nuns who have claimed that fellow nuns were dismissed from the order after making public allegations of sexual abuse.

The issue was brought to light after the February issue of a monthly woman's magazine, which is distributed alongside Vatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano, was published. "Pope Benedict had the courage to dissolve a female congregation which was at a certain level, because this slavery of women had entered it - slavery, even to the point of sexual slavery - on the part of clerics or the founder".

All the women who received transfer notices had supported a fellow nun who alleged previous year that Bishop Franco Mulakkal had raped her 13 times between 2014 and 2016.

Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI had tried to take action but was thwarted by Vatican insiders.

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