Catholic Church under scrutiny after allegations

Miles Jordan, [email protected]

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The Roman Catholic Church has had its fair share of scandals. In Aug 2018, the most damning report about the church came to light. The Catholic Church of Pennsylvania, as of a grand jury report, covered up child sexual abuse by more than 300 priests over 70 years.
This is not the first instance of child sexual abuse in the church. In 2002, allegations of the same crime came out of Boston. The church spent billions of dollars in settlements and added programs to stop this after the 2002 incident. Apparently, those measures were not enough.
In a first for the church the Pope has addressed recent issues like the ones in Pennsylvania publicly and said it’s time for change.
These allegations came to light quickly after the resignation of Cardinal Theodore E. McCarrick, the former archbishop of Washington.
McCarrick, as of the report, has been sexually abusing younger priests, seminaries and even minors.
McCarrick is not the only cardinal who has been accused of assault. Since the Pennsylvania bombshell, Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua, the former archbishop of Philadelphia, has been accused of assaulting a teenage girl.
Most of the accusations cannot lead to criminal charges against any of those accused, as the statutes of limitations have passed.
The church has asked for prayers for both the victims and the church. The church has also promised for more openness from the church.
One of the prevailing opinions from people within the church is that the church has been open in its transgressions.
“We have over the course of the last 30 years, for sure, been transparent about everything that has in fact been transpiring,” said David Zubik, Bishop of Pittsburgh, in a news conference.
The two other opinions from the church revolve around homosexuality and on Pope Francis.
Karl Yabut, a senior history and political science major at ULM and the bible study coordinator for the Catholic Campus Ministries, falls in both of those camps.
“Homosexuality in the priesthood should be a more screened thing. When you are leading the people of God in mass and celebration you don’t want that tendency, that sexual desire to affect the way you lead your people,” Yabut said.
Yabut also said that Pope Francis is accountable for these actions.
“It’s also the Pope’s fault for covering it up and keeping it oppressed,” Yabut said.
Though, the church has done these actions, Yabut does not feel Catholics should give up on their faith and that for him “it’s more about moving onward and celebrating what is still good.”
“It hurts to know that there has been a lot of corruption lately within the higher-ups and dealing with that as a Catholic, it shouldn’t deter anyone that is Catholic. It doesn’t deter my faith, personally. Rather, it helps me focus on the quintessential part of our faith.”
He states that people may not understand how in the face of such allegations he simply moves onward but he believes in passing a simple message to his fellow Catholics, “You don’t turn your back on Jesus just because of Judas.”
Recently, a Louisiana bishop, Michael Duca said the church in Louisiana is working on making a list of priests accused of sexual misconduct.