BALTIMORE (WJZ) — An attempt to explain the Catholic Church sex abuse scandal is sparking new outrage.
Kelly McPherson explains the findings of a new report and why victims are outraged.
A five-year study of the causes of sexual abuse within the Catholic Church is disappointing abuse victims and their supporters. The report says that homosexuality, celibacy and an all-male priesthood are not the reasons for the scandalous sex abuse. Instead, the report blames the sexual revolution.
“The increase in frequency of abuse in the ’60s and ’70s is consistent with increased deviance in society during that time,” said principal investigator Dr. Karen Terry.
“I feel like they’re minimizing my own abuse and I feel like they’re minimizing by saying, ‘Well, it was what was going on in the ’60s and ’70s,’” said victim Becky Ianni.
The Baltimore Archdiocese says the church is filtering out potential abusers better than they did decades ago.
“I think people can look at the church’s performance in the last 20 years and say that it’s a much safer institution,” said Sean Caine, Archdiocese of Baltimore. “The one thing it does tell us is that the policies we have in place are working.”
“That’s bah humbug,” said Frank Drible.
Victim support groups in Maryland say the information used in the report can’t be trusted since it was provided by the church itself and the report was funded by U.S. bishops.
“To say that it wasn’t pedophilia or not homosexual—it was a sin. It’s a sin to abuse a child,” Drible said. “What we need is honesty and truth and we have not gotten it.”
Drible says his organization, SNAP, is now hearing from more recent victims who take decades to come forward.
“There’s still coming out now and we’re getting people now from the ’80s,” Drible said. “It’s still going on right now, today.”
This is the third and final report commissioned by the church to look into the causes of priests abusing children. Some victim groups want an outside organization to review the data.
The investigation was conducted by the John Jay College of Criminal Justice and cost $2 million.