In an editorial about their October court victory in forcing the Catholic Church to turn over secret documents about the child molestation cover-up scandal, yesterday the New York Times noted the starkly differing reactions to such abuses by former New York Archbishop Edward Egan (pictured) and Dublin Archbishop Diarmuid Martin.
Referring to the Rev. Raymond Pcolka, whom 12 former parishioners accused of abuses involving oral and anal sex and beatings, Bishop Egan said: “I am not aware of those things. I am aware of the claims of those things, the allegations of those things. I am aware that there are a number of people who know one another, some are related to one another, have the same lawyers and so forth.”
Absent in those pages is a sense of understanding of the true scope of the tragedy. Compare Bishop Egan’s words with those of the archbishop of Dublin, Diarmuid Martin, who, after the release of a recent report detailing years of abuse and cover-ups in Ireland, said: “The sexual abuse of a child is and always was a crime in civil law; it is and always was a crime in canon law; it is and always was grievously sinful. One of the most heartbreaking aspects of the report is that while church leaders — bishops and religious superiors — failed, almost every parent who came to the diocese to report abuse clearly understood the awfulness of what was involved.”
Bishop Egan, with institutional pride, looks at the relatively low rate of proven abuse cases as a sort of perverse accomplishment. “It’s marvelous,” he said, “when you think of the hundreds and hundreds of priests and how very few have even been accused, and how very few have even come close to having anyone prove anything.”
(Via – Father Tony)