Much of American public policy decision-making is premised upon the distinctly American ideology called "pragmatism," which convinces people to focus on "solving" immediate problems at hand as quickly and as efficiently as possible without seeking to address the root causes of those problems. This is a distinctly American ideology as part of the national character of the United States of America is immediacy and urgency of "action" as an end in and of itself. Americans, by and large, are not prone to reflecting on life or its problems, less yet to consider them in light of the true Faith. Got a problem? Let's solve it now, instantly.
With very few exceptions, most notably during the major wars that the government of the United States of America has participated in, most American policy-making in the past and at the present time has been premised upon short-term "fixes" designed to "buy time" until the next election. To wit, very few members of the professional political class in this country have ever wanted to face, no less discuss seriously, the simple fact that the demographic reality in this country is such that the current Social Security system is not fiscally sustainable. Those who seek to discuss this reality seriously are considered to be touching the "third rail" of American politics even though Social Security was never designed to be the principal means of support for the elderly retired. This Franklin Delano Roosevelt experiment in socialism, which had been pioneered another Freemason, Otto von Bismarck, in Germany in the 1870s, has become an established "right" or "goodie" which has become such an established part of American life that most people view it as their "entitlement."
This is all a farce, designed to create the illusion of "solving" one set of problems in order to get past the hurdle of the next election. It is supreme naturalist farce.
Similarly, officials, both in the Catholic Church before the "Second" Vatican Council and in the counterfeit church of conciliarism thereafter, sought to "solve" the problems caused by predatory priests by seeking to intimidate victims and their families and/or by seeking to purchase silence from them in exchange for small amounts of cash while the predators were transferred from one parish to another without warning anyone in order to "prevent scandal." Behold the plethora of scandals that have erupted as a result of such short-sighted pragmatism and institutional self-protection. Countless numbers of souls were wounded as a result. Some of these wounded souls committed suicide. That's quite a high price to "prevent scandal" and to "preserve" institutional "peace."
Sadly, many in underground Catholic chapels have learned nothing from the horrific example given by the conciliar "bishops" and their chancery thugs as it is believed by some that it is best to sweep the behavior of recidivist predators under the rug for the sake of "peace" and to "prevent scandal" from "harming" the "traditional movement," thereby being willing to sacrifice the good of possible future victims in order to avoid having to admit errors of judgment that could, if admitted openly and in a spirit of humility, help to minimize any further damage to souls that could be done by these predators.
Mrs. Randy Engel has posted an article on the Renew America site that deals with objections raised by some traditional Catholics to the publicizing of predatory behavior. And while, of course, I do not accept the conciliar officials as members of the Catholic Church, Mrs. Engel's vast expertise in this field can be dismissed only by those who want to bury their heads in the sands and seek to "solve" today's problems by creating tomorrow's, especially for souls they may never meet until eternity:
The first in-depth book I ever read on the sexual abuse of young boys by Catholic clergy and religious was Unholy Orders — Tragedy at Mount Cashel by Michael Harris, an account of institutionalized pederasty by Christian Brothers at the Mount Cashel Orphanage in Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, published in 1990. I still recall the moment I began to convulse with uncontrollable tears at reading a description of one orphan's being forced into a sex act with a priest after being given the "holy bread." That page remains stained with tears — a reminder to me of the horrific implications of clerical sexual abuse. All these feelings of emotional pain came flooding back to me when I read In The Shadow Of The Cross by Charles L. Bailey.
Charles "Charley" Bailey was ten years old when he was sodomized, anally and orally, by Father Thomas Neary, a Catholic priest of the Diocese of Syracuse, New York. Most of the attacks took place in his own bedroom while his mother and his siblings were downstairs — just a scream away if he could only manage one scream — but he could not. With the 175 pound plus weight pressing down on his back it was all he could do to breathe. And so Charley screamed silently, inwardly, not unlike the unborn child held hostage in the womb of his mother trying to escape the abortionist's suction curette in the Bernard Nathanson 1984 film, The Silent Scream.
The sexual assaults on Charley, more than 100 incidents in all, went on for two years, until he was twelve and entering puberty, at which time Father Neary told him that he was not pleasing to God, and announced to Mrs. Bailey that his "counseling" sessions to assess Charley's vocation to the priesthood were terminated. Mrs. Bailey was crushed, but Charley was relieved, thinking his hell had finally come to an end — but it had not.
For you see, while Charley kept Father's "dirty little secret," Father's "dirty little secret" held Charley in bondage and in a state of emotional, mental, spiritual bondage turmoil for more than forty years. The dam finally burst on Memorial Day of 2002 when Charles told his wife, Sue, the story of his sexual abuse at the hands of a Catholic priest. On that day, Charley took back his life and started the long and difficult road to recovery.
Conversations With Sex Abuse Victims
I originally met Charles Bailey via the internet. We began by exchanging books and a friendship developed from there. Charles is one of many clerical sexual abuse victims, (mostly male), whom I have corresponded and/or interviewed over the last twenty years largely in connection with my own book The Rite of Sodomy (www.newengelpublishing.com) .
When the subject of religion comes up, and it always does, and the victim/survivor learns that I am a traditional Catholic who loves Holy Mother Church and attends the Traditional Mass, their initial reaction is invariably one of genuine surprise — not a particularly flattering reaction, but an understandable one.
In the United States, and I suspect in Canada as well, liberal Catholic groups like Call To Action, We Are Church, and FutureChurch have managed to corner the market on "compassion" for victims of clerical sexual abuse. To date, they have been the only show in town, so to speak. Sex abuse victims are invited on a regular basis to speak at their conventions and meetings to tell their story and made to feel welcome. So it is easy to understand why victims tend to gravitate in their direction. At the same time, these groups have successfully exploited the genuine plight of victim/survivors and their families, to advance their own agendas which include an "inclusive" priesthood, homosexual and reproductive 'rights," the "democratization" of the Catholic Church, and so on.
Traditional Catholics, I expect, can appreciate the irony of this situation, given the fact that many, but certainly not all, of the conditions leading up to the current sexual abuse scandal in the Catholic Church, can be traced to the liberalization of faith and morals that has occurred over the last century in the United States and around the world.
Then there is the matter of the victim/survivor himself.
For many victims of clerical crimes, especially those abused in their childhood or their teenage years, the loss of innocence has been accompanied by the loss of their Catholic faith, or perhaps more precisely, their loss of faith in the Catholic Church. The tragic result is that many victims and their spouses and members of their family, like Charles and Sue Bailey, both cradle Catholics, have left the Catholic Church altogether.
Not all victims leave the Church voluntarily. I recall one poignant conversation I had with a middle-aged women, a baptized Catholic, who had been sexually abused as a child by her pastor in church. I asked her if she had ever thought of returning to the Catholic Church. She replied that she had on occasion visited a Catholic church, but the scent of candles triggered such a violent emotional and physical reaction in her, that she was forced to leave. She said she still prays, but at home. I told her I would pray for her — and I do every day.
There are, of course, victims who remain Catholic, at least in outward form, that is, they still attend Sunday Mass and continue to receive the Sacraments. As a rule, this group suffers in silence. It is the worse type of suffering. This becomes manifestly evident when, for example, but only a few minutes into an interview concerning their case, the victim starts crying, as if the sexual assault happened just yesterday and they were reliving the experience all over again, when if fact, the abuse happened 20 or 30 years ago or more. Unfortunately, most of these victims have not sought out professional counseling in any form. They have not sought out legal redress for the crime committed against them, largely because of the statute of limitations. Neither have they, by choice, reported their abuse to secular law enforcement officers or made the name of their abuser a matter of public knowledge. In almost every case, Chancery officials had knowledge of the "problem" priest involved, but, unless a law suit has been brought against the diocese and abuser, did nothing to curb his criminal activities. Nevertheless, in private conversation, one can sense the victim's continued feelings of betrayal and isolation, and a sense of bitterness usually directed against diocesan officials, but overflowing into their feelings and thoughts about the Catholic Church.
The Unique Suffering of Victims of Clerical Molestation
Since the release of The Rite of Sodomy in July 2006, my contacts with victims of clerical sexual abuse has greatly increased. This includes not only Catholic laymen and women who were abused in their youth, but seminarians, priests and religious of all ages, who were abused by their seminary professor or spiritual director, or a member of their religious order or even their own bishop or religious superior. And I have learned a great deal about their particular sufferings as a result of their abuse.
Suffering, of course, has been part of the human condition since the Fall. It was and continues to be part of God's Eternal Plan of Redemption. We all suffer. Having acknowledged this reality, I also believe that there are extenuating circumstances related to clerical molestation that make the sufferings of victims particularly tragic. Sufferings which should engender a special concern and solicitude, especially among traditional Catholics.
Whatever the long-term consequences of their assault, I don't recall any victims having claimed that they were made better as a result of the attack.
Patterns of anti-social behavior are one of the consequences of sexual molestation of young males leading to run-ins with the law for crimes involving drug use or petty thievery, male prostitution, and even more serious crimes including murder. Premature sexual seduction of adolescent boys by pederast priests has been a factor in some victims' adaptation of the "gay" death style. Some victims commit suicide. Much of the brunt of these ongoing sorrows, are, of course, bourn by grieving parents, some of whom blame themselves for putting their child in harm's way. Familial frictions can lead to separation of spouses. Attorney and court fees for families taking legal action strain finances to the limit.... And on and on like the ripples of a pebble thrown in a lake.
The Need for Traditionalists to Reach Out to Victims of Clerical Abuse
This brings us to the question as to how the Traditionalist Movement and individuals like you and me can play a role in assisting victims of clerical abuse.
Certainly, we who value our Catholic faith so deeply should be the first to decry the loss of that faith in a fellow Catholic, especially since the loss is precipitated by the criminal actions of a priest or bishop or cardinal who stands in Persona Christi (in the Person of Christ) Ordained to save souls, he becomes a slayer of souls. Instead of praying with his flock, he preys on his flock. Is there a more dangerous man alive?
Traditional Catholics need to be at the forefront of demanding genuine justice for the victims of clerical abuse. This might present problems for some traditionalists, but it should not. I find no contradiction between loving Holy Mother Church and the Sacred Priesthood and the demand that church officials and religious superiors, from the Vatican down, act in an honorable and forthright manner in dealing with victims and their families. The time for cover-ups is over. Victims first — not last — should be out motto.
The key to stopping clerical sexual abuse is prevention, which includes proper vetting of candidates for the priesthood and religious life. That means Rome must take the lead in cleaning up dioceses, seminaries and houses of religious that have been colonized by the Homosexual Collective. Rome needs to remove every bishops and cardinals tainted by the vice of homosexuality and pederasty from office — which would, in the U.S. mean a wholesale housecleaning by the pope.
On an individual basis, we as Traditionalists, owe it to the victims and to ourselves to become better informed on the subject. Charles Bailey's In The Shadow Of The Cross (www.intheshadowofthecross.net) is a worthy read. One need not agree with all of his choices or his politics to appreciate his personal courage in the face of overwhelming odds. Whether he has left the Church or not, a soul is a soul, and every soul is precious in the eyes of God.
Traditionalist priests are in a unique position to make contact with victims of clerical sexual abuse and their families. In addition to offering sound spiritual advice, they can and should encourage victims to seek out other outside forms of counseling and assistance if needed. Laymen also can offer help in countless ways as circumstances permit. Just knowing that other Catholics truly care can be a great source of consolation to victims struggling to rebuild their lives and their faith.
Which brings me to what I believe is the most important way that traditional Catholics can help survivors of clerical sexual abuse.
When all is said and done — when all the dust has settled — the ultimate crisis of the survivor remains a spiritual crisis. And ultimately — so must the remedy be.
And the most efficacious spiritual remedy we can offer them is the Holy Sacrifice of the Traditional Mass. It is through this door, I believe, that victims will recover their faith (or for many, discover it for the first time) and find the true peace of heart and mind that only Christ can give. What greater gift is there? (Clerical sex abuse crimes -- how should traditionalists respond?)
As we know, of course, the Vatican is not going to do anything as the apostates who reside there these days have been part of the cover-up of clerical crimes, although there are some examples where a conciliar official, such as the conciliar "archbishop" of Vancouver, British Columbia, J. Michael Miller, C.S.B. (the Basilian Fathers), might act on information provided to him ("Archbishop" Miller just a few days ago in response to Mr. James Bendell's Pray for the Children). Traditionally-minded Catholics must acquit themselves better than have the officials of the counterfeit church of conciliarism.
Holy Mother Church is not going to be restored on the corrupt foundation of seeking to "prevent scandal" and "preserving reputations" while recidivist predators, men whose perverse attraction to other men has become part of their very pattern of thinking and living, can continue to prey upon others without fear of ever being exposed to public scrutiny. Anything that is truly of God can never bear fruit if we enable recidivist predators by giving them a "pass" for the sake of avoiding "bad press" or having to face the simple truth that we may have placed our trust in those who were unworthy of it. It's better to admit one is wrong now in this life rather than to have the devil accuse us of our faults at the Particular Judgment. Far better.
Obviously, it is one thing to sin and be sorry, to fall once and to truly reform one's life thereafter. Numerous are the stories in the lives of priests who have permitted themselves to become inordinately attached to damsels in distress to such an extent that they lose themselves in a rush of conflicting emotions. Numerous are the stories of priests who have risen from such attachments as they accept the chastisements that come upon them thereafter as the just punishment for their sins of misjudgment that have wounded themselves and others.
Examples of contrition, such as that demonstrated last year by "Father" Thomas Euteneuer (see "Setting the record straight", are rarely found in those engaged in predatory patterns of behavior that have been enabled by "well meaning" people repeatedly in order to "prevent scandal." We must care for the eternal good of the souls of predators, for whom Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ shed every single drop of His Most Precious Blood to redeem. It is thus essential to perform the Spiritual Works of Mercy for these men, including most especially the work of "admonishing the sinner." Failing to do this could very well make us an accessory to his future crimes.
In this world of such evil in which we have played our own roles on so many occasions, may we continue to live as penitentially as possible, especially in this season of Advent, as we seek to make reparation for our sins and those of the whole world, including the sins of the conciliarists against the Faith and of anyone in the underground church in this time of apostasy and betrayal who dares to grow righteously indignant when actions that are indeed quite serious to God coming to public light. We cannot minimize sin and get to Heaven.
May the Rosaries we pray each day help to bring about the restoration of the Church Militant on earth and of Christendom in the world.