The NYT reported today:
Benedict himself has been under scrutiny, after the German church suspended a priest this week who had been allowed to work with children for decades after a court convicted him of molesting boys. In 1980, Benedict, then Archbishop Joseph Ratzinger, allowed the priest to move to Munich for therapy after allegations of abuse. The priest returned to pastoral work, but last week another church official took responsibility for allowing that move. Some church analysts have questioned whether Cardinal Brady will resign, saying that would only provoke questions about why the pope, who also failed to report a priest accused of abuse to civil authorities, did not also resign.
Here is one small detail of what happened. Benedict was told that the priest in question had raped an eleven-year-old boy by forcing him to perform oral sex on him. He did not report the priest to the civil authorities, he merely sent the priest to therapy, the priest was subsequently convicted of child abuse, but after his prison sentence was allowed to continue in the priesthood until the past week.
Benedict was not just directly implicated in this case, he was subsequently responsible for all sex abuse cases as head of the CDF and in that position supported a policy of maximum secrecy.
How do you retain moral respect for someone who was told that someone under his direct authority had raped a child and did not report that to the police and make sure that person was never allowed near kids again? We are told that the standards then were different, that we shouldn't apply our new and deeper understanding of the horrors of child abuse to days gone by.
Please: raping children is not a hard call for a Christian. Today or at any time in history. Covering it up is evil. If defending the perpetrators, rather than saving the victims, is not immoral, what is?
So when will this Pope resign? And what happens to the church hierarchy's moral authority if he doesn't?
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