– Belgian abuse victims sue Holy See (Sydney Morning Herald/AFP, June 3, 2011):
DOZENS of victims of a child-sex scandal in the Belgian Catholic Church are launching legal action against the Holy See, the first such suit in Europe.
Lawyers and victims said on Wednesday at a news conference that a summons was on its way to Rome, as well as to Belgian bishops, to appear before a civil court for failing to stop sexual abuse by priests and church workers. Lawyers said the group of some 80 plaintiffs was growing by the day.
”The Pope is the head of the Holy See,” said lawyer Walter Van Steenbrugge.
”He neglected to intervene himself and to give instructions, which meant that abuse was liable to continue and the damage was able to increase.”
Belgium’s Catholics are reeling over revelations last year of nearly 500 cases of abuse by priests and church workers since the 1950s, including 13 known suicides among victims.
Among victims who stood up to denounce the church’s failure was journalist and author Roel Verschueren, who said he had been abused by Jesuits from age 12 to 14. ”We’ve all been living for years with a church which is in denial.” he said. ”Now we’re turning the situation around. We’re in charge, we’re choosing an independent judicial framework.”
Verschueren said the victims wanted the church to admit its guilt and to pay for the trauma of lost childhoods and lost years.
The Belgian church this week offered compensation via an arbitration panel suggested by Parliament.
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Horned Hand or The Mano Cornuto: this gesture is the Satanic salute, a sign of recognition between and allegiance of members of Satanism or other unholy groups.
– Vatican Warned Irish Bishops Not to Report Child Abuse (AP)
– Pope Benedict’s Child Porn ‘Normal’ Claim Sparks Outrage Among Victims (Belfast Telegraph)
– Exorcists Wanted: Apply to Catholic Church (Reuters)
– UK Paedophile Priests Remain In The Priesthood (Guardian)
– Catholics, It’s You This Freemason-Satanist Pope Has Abused (Independent)
– Database of Catholic Priests Publicly Accused of Sexual Abuse in the US (BishopAccountability.org)
– Catholic Church is ‘like the Mafia’ (The Telegraph)
– Catholic Priest Raped Teenage Boy At Gunpoint (My San Antonio)
– Austrian Catholic Church Abuse Hot Lines Log 566 Reports This Year (Austrian Independent)
– Australian Bishop says ‘vast amount’ of sexual abuse cases yet to emerge (Sydney Morning Herald)
– Deaf Boys Tried to Tell of Priest’s Abuse FOR YEARS (New York Times)
– Christopher Hitchens Slams Vatican, Pope Over Sex Abuse Scandal (Huffington Post)
– The Pope Is Not Above the Law (Slate)
– Sex Abuse Victims to Sue Vatican (Times)
– Vatican knew of abuse in Ontario: Victim (Toronto Star)
– A church sex scandal where the truth is crucified (Toronto Star)
– Catholic Church quietly expelling and punishing children, homeless (Irish Central)
Former Milwaukee Archbishop Rembert Weakland routinely shredded copies of weekly reports about sexual abuse by priests, according to formerly sealed testimony turned over to Milwaukee County’s district attorney on Thursday.
– Catholic Church Child Abuse: Nuns Now Also Accused (Radio Netherlands Worldwide)
– Church: Pope Had Role in Moving Molesting Priest (Bloomberg)
– Pope will struggle to survive abuse scandal (Irish Independent)
– Benedict’s involvement ’shows extent of cover-ups’ (Irish Independent)
– Sinead O’Connor: I’d help Jesus to burn down the Vatican (Irish Independent)