We call on Pope Benedict and his Vatican staff to investigate and harshly punish the priests who violated the privacy of these young, devout girls and abused their trust in the confessional. It’s a horrific betrayal for Catholic officials to use the sacrament of confession to manipulate vulnerable youngsters.
The 77 brave women who spoke out about the abuses they had suffered under the Legion of Christ at their high school in Rhode Island deserve praise for stepping forward and trying to protect other girls from suffering the same fate.
This story is another mar on the face of the controversial and cult-like Legion of Christ. The evidence that this group is out of control is overwhelming, as reports of abuse suffered at the hands of Legion priests have existed for as long as the organization has. In May, it was revealed that the long-time public face of the Legion, Fr. Thomas Williams, had secretly fathered a child after manipulating a parishioner. The worst part of this case is that the head of the Legion, Fr. Alvaro Corcuera, had known of Williams’ manipulation since 2005, when he began to “take steps” to remove Williams, but never followed through.
Earlier that month, the Vatican opened an investigation into seven Legion priests and whether or not they had abused children. The investigated priests hailed from different countries, but all were alike in that they had received allegations of abuse against them, and the Legion had been slow to act.
We hope that the Vatican does not allow the Legion to drag its feet in this case. We urge an immediate and independent investigation to find out what went on in Rhode Island, and whether any church officials outside of the school were aware of what was going on.
This tragic story should be the final nail in the coffin for the scandal-ridden, unhealthy Legion of Christ. We hope that the Vatican reaches for the hammer quickly.
Let Church officials accused of sex crimes face their accusers in a court of law
Church seems to be engaging in a huge cover up