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Time to ‘defrock’ churches


Responding to the opinion piece by Matthew Epsom (January 9) where he attacks the moral authority of the Roman Catholic Church, and uses the vehicle of child sexual abuse for his purpose. Of course these child victims were implicated, by being such tender morsels that priests would not be able to resist them. But the real culprits were (and are) surely the parents who supported this evil organisation, and entrusted their children to the priestly predators.

What does it take to open the eyes of the faithful to the abomination that is this church? And yet they will still attend mass, play with rosary beads and pray for divine guidance, while ensuring that this superstitious nonsense is perpetuated.

Late last year, the End Of Life Choice Act was ratified by the electorate. Prior to this, there was intensive campaigning by the RC and Anglican churches, opposing this Act. There was much scaremongering and disingenuous information put out by these organisations, as well as no little expenditure in advertising their opposition to the Act.

For those of us not afflicted by the religious virus, it was risible to see these adverts listing Bishop-this and Cardinal-that setting themselves up as guiding lights to lead us to make the correct moral decisions.

Did these religious zealots not realise their attempt to take the moral high ground would be treated with contempt? Where was the morality in expending large sums of money to influence the electorate, when there are children going hungry in New Zealand?

It is my opinion that these charlatans have one goal in mind, to perpetuate their discredited belief system at the expense of anyone gullible enough to buy into it. It is well overdue for these organisations to be “defrocked” by having any tax breaks currently obtainable rescinded. If they wish to perpetuate fables they should do it from their own pocket, not the taxpayers'.

John Watson, Otaki

  1. Alex D, Whakatane says:

    John, I don’t think it’s fair or reasonable to blame the parents of the child victims back then. As for the parents today, that’s another issue. But the parents of the child-victims were victims themselves because they trusted the priests and bishops back then to do the right thing, and they were betrayed.
    In fact, John, the “parents are to blame” excuse plays right into the hands of the perpetrators and their enablers because it takes away their responsibility and accountability. In fact, NZ Catholic bishops tried to use this excuse not long ago and had to publicly apologise for doing so.

  2. Jenny E, Auckland says:

    No one is ever responsible for such heinous crimes except the perpetrators and those who covered up for them. The criminals who committed these crimes against children, and those who protect the institution and deny justice to the victims, they are both cunning and devious, as well as highly dangerous. Few victims, including the parents, were able to speak out at the time, and when they did, they were silenced in a variety of ways.

  3. Bhuvan Singh, Auckland says:

    Blaming parents for the sexual assault by clergy on the children is disgraceful. Parents confronted church officials time and time again, and time and time again the bishops and church leaders buried the parents’ complaints and hid the abuse from the public. The bishops knew and they let it happen. Some bishops even paid parents to keep quiet about the abuse of their children. The parents were betrayed. They are not to blame.

    1. Tony Lee says:

      I think that I see the point Mr Watson is making: that parents continue to expose their children to the possibility of abuse after it is established as having occurred. Trust has so often been abused that guidelines to ensure a child is never alone with clergy should be a minimum requirement given the pervasive nature of the problem.