Pope Francis hasn't done anything unusual or unexpected in regard to clergy sex abuse
"He's done something unusual/unexpected practically every day." That’s how an anonymous but high ranking Vatican official describes Pope Francis.
Except, however, in clergy sex abuse and cover up cases. So far in that arena, tragically, we see no changes whatsoever.
Pope Francis is being proclaimed as a master of the touching and unexpected gesture. He’s known for his simple lifestyle, and his openness and willingness to meet with “regular” people by doing things like taking the bus to work.
But the sole gesture he's made regarding the church's central crisis has been a hurtful one: meeting with disgraced Cardinal Bernard Law.
And on the most troubling recent disclosure in the church's central and continuing crisis, he has said nothing.
We are referring to the February 19 Washington Post article which revealed that a convicted Argentinean priest – Fr. Julio Cesar Grassi – now walks free largely because of then-Archbishop Jorge Bergoglio’s intervention.
Fr. Grassi, who founded the Fundacion Felices los Ninos (“Happy Children”) charity, was later found to be abusing the children there that he was supposed to be helping. However, following his conviction Bergolgio commissioned a report that proclaimed the priest innocent, and has worked to get his conviction overturned. In the meantime, Fr. Grassi still lives across the street from the location where he abused kids.
It's worth noting that Vatican officials have defended Pope Francis' actions during Argentina's 'dirty war.' As they have done for decades, however, those same Vatican officials are saying nothing about Pope's Francis’ actions in Argentinean clergy sex abuse cases.
50 State AG Call for Grand Jury
Any investigation must be:
- independent of and separate from the church
- must have subpoena powers and ability to compel testimony under oath
Anything short of these criteria is a sham and whitewash.
In addition, write letters to the editor, make phone calls to politicians as they can apply pressure to keep them responsive to our demand. We need to make efforts to ensure that they follow up on what the state is doing to investigate these crimes.
Note to Letter Writers
Use your own words and style of writing. Cut and paste from the templates as you wish. Include your experiences, whether as a survivor or as a member of the community. And relate your letter to the state you were abused in or state now living in.