Yesterday’s Globe headlined an article ‘Pope promises action against abuses’, from the Associated Press, written by Nicole Winfield, in which the Pope’s meeting with eight abuse survivors in Malta is discussed.
The eight men with whom Pope Jonny Rats met were abused by priests when the men were children in a church orphanage.
Pope Rats is quoted:
“I shared with them their suffering, and emotionally prayed with them, assuring them of church action,’’ Benedict told the audience.
The Vatican public relations machine issued at the time of the meeting a statement “saying Benedict had told the men that the church would do everything in its power to bring justice to abusive priests and would protect children.”
The Lion might note, if he were at all cynical, that the statement, and a Pope’s involvement in a manner other than engaging in child abuse himself, are probably about fifteen hundred years too late.
But in the midst of all the spin and noise and teary redemptive blah-blah from Pope Rats, we might note the following:
“Pope Benedict is obviously anguished by sexual abuse in the church, as evidenced by his emotional meeting with victims in Malta,’’ said the Rev. Jim Martin, a Jesuit priest and author. “The personal impact on the pope should not be underestimated as a goad for continuing reform. But follow-up is paramount.’’
Benedict met with them in the Vatican’s embassy for about a half-hour, praying with them and listening to their stories.
The devil, as they say, is in the details.
Eight lifetimes of living with the torment of being abused by priests.
And Pope Rats, who may have covered up child molestation by priests earlier in his career, gave those eight souls an entire half-hour, some of it filled with praying and assuring.
Thirty minutes. Let’s say twenty after RatMan did his praying thing and crocodile tear thing and made other faux sympathy noises.
That leaves a little over two minutes for each man to tell his story of abuse and how it affected his life.
The only thing colder than trying to pass off this pathetic excuse of a meeting as evidence of reform is the long history of abuse and molestation that was deliberately hidden by these pathetic, sorry excuses for men hiding behind fancy robes and gold chalices as they spat on the words of Jesus.
These foul, sick men give a whole new meaning to the words “Suffer little children to come unto me.”