Archive for November, 2010

NEW CATEGORY: Catholic Nuns, Child Abuse Survivors (CNCAS)

November 3, 2010

I’ve established a new category on my a firetender’s blog website so all the writings leading from my initial blog

Catholic Nuns, Child Abuse and Vows

will be in one central space.

Mahalo Nui Loa

Wopila Cepa

(A big fat thank you!)

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Seeking Clarity on Catholic Church, Nuns, Child Abuse and Survivors

November 3, 2010

This site is highly volatile!

There’s a lot of Rage in here, names are being named, pain is being expressed and there’s even talk of murder and damnation!

Wasn’t murder mentioned? Okay, then…for years I was under the impression that were fate some day to put me in the vicinity of a Nun of any order laying a violent hand on a child, well…

Of course, these are mostly the voices of children that never got to be heard before, including mine. It’s a form of celebration really; and like they say, to every time there is a season.

To that end, I want to state my preference for what goes on here. I want there to be room for the expression of pain and rage and any emotion as long as it is not hurtful of the innocent. AND I want every one who contributes here to seek ways to share their experiences of recovery as well.

This is not all about venting,  though there’s room for it. Let’s just say since the intent is to make space for fresh air to come in, the site is about ventillation, NOT dumping. We are here to witness each other in our stories of abuse, NOT demanding that our readers carry them.

We are here to beckon in Allies; THIS IS A NUMBERS GAME, FOLKS!

I’m thinking in terms of this being a dynamic site, tolerant of very human behaviors and weaknesses yet, with an adult focus; to help each other and this gathering as a whole to build strength in numbers.

It’s all about breaking archaic shackles.

Now, here’s something very important for me to clarify. The Catholic Church is a container for much good, as well as evil. I know many of you do not feel hatred for the Church as expressed as a House of God, and, in fact continue to practice your faith there.

I can’t emphasize enough how important it is to me that EVERYONE scarred by abuse by Catholic Nuns has access to this site and feels welcomed and SAFE to be here. Perhaps ESPECIALLY those who still respect and embrace certain of the Institutional characteristics of the religion.

Also, I want to honor those of you who wish to make an impact from WITHIN the Church. I have no idea of where this is all going. I have a bottom line for myself that I’ll be talking about but really, all I’m doing is speaking my truth, making room for you and then, well, it’s kinda up to God ain’t it?

So let me get specific. I rant and rage against the institution, the Catholic Church. I call for it to take responsibility for itself and its abuses. I’m no fool, I know what a windmill looks like, and the Catholic Church is one with  spinning chain saws as blades! I will not die in an attempt to topple it, not for me, you, or anyone, child or adult.

But I’ll tell you why I’m here. Perhaps we can build a movement so strong that we can get legislation behind us that simply takes the Catholic Church AWAY from having any contact whatsoever with our children under 18 years of age.

Keep Confession, Communion, Sunday Mass, Confirmation, the statues, EVERYTHING; just don’t touch our children. That’s what I want to see, and, frankly, I do not care how it comes about.

GET THEM AWAY FROM OUR CHILDREN; PERIOD!

I’m all for letting Catholic clergy deal with and minister to adults; they can protect themselves. But how could it be any more clear that the Institution no longer deserves the privelege of having access to our children?

The care of the emotional lives of children born to others is not a right, it is a sacred trust. The abuse of a child is a Mortal Sin. Mortal, as in, “You’re Dead!” (Funny, not once in the media coverage have I heard mention of the Spiritual implications of a Church managed by so many people guaranteed to land in Hell! Jesus, here comes another blog!)

Fifty years AFTER THE FACT, it begins to come to light that for at least a 30 year period the CULTURE of ALL the the hierarchy of Catholic Church had a “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy about child abuse. What’s worse is it established an almost complete dedication to assuring NO ONE in the clergy would suffer the consequences of their actions! Let’s call it “The Pedophile Priest Shuffle!”

Yes, some convictions slipped in, and now, all the focus is going toward male clergy, and we’re all watching as the Church squirms like a serpent trying to minimize the damage and reducing the financial impact. While individuals within the Church sometimes offer personal apologies, no one is saying it’s an Institution-wide cancer; they’re saying it’s all about a few wayward priests!

THAT’S WHERE WE COME IN, MY BELOVED BROTHERS AND SISTERS; AND ALL WE HAVE TO DO IS SHOW UP!

This is a simple pattern of conviction and escape, conviction and escape and minimal contrition with marginal reparations BECAUSE the majority of the cases have been INDIVIDUAL. This latest class-action in Ireland is probably the best thing that ever happened for us because it has set a precedent.

Consider all the incredible pain and expense each individual who challenged the Church on its abuse of themselves or their children. I don’t want me, you, or us to go through that. Right now, the ONLY important thing is we swell our numbers.

I’ll be making an announcement about some re-organizing of the blog, and some other sections that I’m building for this sacred space.

Articles I just added to our Reference Library, believe it or not even STUNNED ME! There was actually one describing how the internal culture of the Convent has been fraught with Priests raping Nuns and Lesbian Nuns in authority routinely raping Nuns in their charge, as well!

So, it could very well be a case of the shit of abuse running down hill but all that means is that every inch of the Institution is riddled with abuse, denial, excuses, and what else could there be but coverup, from the bottom to the top?!

AND LET ME ASK YOU THIS: WHAT HAS BEEN DONE TO HELP CATHOLIC CLERGY COME TO TERMS WITH THE CONFLICTS INHERENT IN THE MANDATED SUPPRESSION OF THEIR HUMAN SEXUALITY?

UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES SHOULD ANY MEMBER OF THE CATHOLIC CLERGY HAVE ACCESS TO CHILDREN. DO YOU HEAR ME?

Once we who represent what lies below the whitecaps on the iceberg show our numbers then there can be NO DOUBT the Church is a harborer and protector of child molesters. That must cease.

If an individual is CONVICTED of Child Molestation, there are laws PREVENTING him from having contact with children, and, in fact they make it mandatory that he identify himself and REGISTER as a Child Molester at each and every town he lives in.

Each and every Catholic Church, if its members are not actively involved in child molestation itself is part of a Institution, in part, DEFINED by supporting child molestation. Take the children out of the formula, FIRST, then talk to me about contributing to your “Poor Box”!

WHERE HAS ANYONE SAID; “Well, you know, back in 1980, we, the Catholic Church recognized we had a big problem going back into the 1950’s at least!  We recognized that and cracked down on our own people. Here are the programs and these are the actions we took. So yes, there are some that slipped through the cracks but, as you can see, WE HAVE ASSURED THAT NOTHING LIKE THAT WILL EVER HAPPEN AGAIN.”

Nothing even close to that ever happened. It’s like a pedophile telling the Judge, “Well, yes, your honor, the month that I held thirty-two children hostage and raped them all may not have been the best thing to do, but I beg your lenience because the night I killed those two, well Sir, that was a REALLY bad night!”

NOTHING SUBSTANTIAL HAS CHANGED EXCEPT THE ADMISSION THAT THEY GOT CAUGHT!

Yet, I don’t call out to topple the Church because, after all, even Registered Sex Offenders are not restricted from employment or other rights; they just can’t do ANYTHING that puts them in proximity to their prey.

At its very least, the Catholic Church has identified itself as a world-wide culture of human beings placed in positions of Spiritual leadership who routinely — and WITHOUT PUNISHMENT — are ALLOWED to molest the innocent AND each other.

WHERE WE CAN HAVE AN IMPACT IS, BY ESTABLISHING HOW LARGE HAVE BEEN THE NUMBERS OF CHILDREN AFFECTED — perhaps not even needing to go any further than the psychological/emotional impact on us —WE WILL HAVE LOCKED DOWN ENOUGH CIRCUMSTANTIAL EVIDENCE TO LEGALLY ELIMINATE THE CATHOLIC CHURCH’S ACCESS TO CHILDREN.

Would that be enough for you? It would for me.

Where does it say that abusive behavior is protected under the Constitution of this nation? If such behavior is not tolerated by an individual, it should be made even more impossible for an institution to embody it.

We don’t even extend that right to our Corporations, and let’s face it, they have become the Godheads of our society.

Love the time you’ve been given!

your rabble-rousing firetender

Resources/Referrals Nuns Abuse

November 3, 2010

Did some Googling and came up with evidence that we’re not alone. Until I figure out a way to make resource sections more clear, if you have something to add, chime in with a BRIEF description and a LINK.

1) article re: nun’s abuse by an organization I’ll have to look more closely at SNAP which has been focusing on abuse by priests:

http://www.snapnetwork.org/female_victims/complaints_abuse_by_nuns.htm

2) Another SNAP survivor’s Network focusing on nuns

http://snapsurvivorsnetwork.yuku.com/forums/33/t/Sexual-or-Physical-or-Emotional-Abuse-by-NUNS.html

3)

More Info from SNAP

http://www.snapnetwork.org/female_victims/dozens_allege_nuns.htm

4) AND there’s no reason NOT to be aware of a contributing factor, NOT to let them off the hook but to illustrate sexual abuse is EMBEDDED in the Church, here’s an article on how they get as sick as they do!

http://www.weirdload.com/nuns.html

5) and MORE on that…

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/vatican-confirms-report-of-sexual-abuse-and-rape-of-nuns-by-priests-in-23-countries-688261.html

6) Here’s another Abuse by Nuns Blog on WordPress, a year old

http://abusedbynuns.wordpress.com/

7) Just to ruin your lunch; More Horrors from Ireland:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1185094/I-told-lie-nun-beat-repeatedly-scissors-Child-abuse-victim-reveals-horror-past.html

8) Holy Moly; some actually paid off!

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/34260091/

9)  http://blogs.reuters.com/faithworld/2011/01/03/belgian-man-alleges-abuse-by-nuns-at-foster-home/

the 1st 2011 post; may there be many more!
10) http://www.jsonline.com/news/milwaukee/29500544.html

11) http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/former-nun-tells-of-sex-and-suffering-inside-indian-convent-1627077.html

12) http://www.weirdload.com/nuns.html

(At this point in my life, I really seek to understand the bigger picture. This is one more piece to the puzzle in my discovery of the culture of which I was a part and victim of.

13) http://www.infiniteunknown.net/2010/03/14/catholic-church-child-abuse-nuns-now-also-accused/ (Mar. 2010)

14) http://www.enquirer.com/editions/2004/08/25/loc_loc2kychurch.html

(Somebody sued!)

14) http://ncronline.org/blogs/ncr-today/victims-abuse-nuns-speak-out
Here’s that National Catholic Review online

15) http://ethicalnag.org/2010/07/31/women-catholic-church/
Here’s an interesting overview of current issues, with lots of valuable links.

OCTOBER 2012:

A whole lot more people are talking. I’m adding these to our archive,

Abuse by Women Religious (nuns and sisters)  from SNAP

http://www.snapnetwork.org/nun_abuse

Catholic nuns also abused children

 

http://vorige.nrc.nl/international/article2530647.ece

Lawsuit accuses Montana Nuns of child abuse

http://www.nativetimes.com/news/crime/6093-new-lawsuit-accuses-mont-nuns-of-abusing-children

Roman Catholic Nuns torture & abuse children at Orphanages VIMEO video

http://vimeo.com/37322643

Nuns among worst perpetrators of horrific violence and sex abuse in Jesuit-run schools and missions on Indian reservations

http://religiouschildabuse.blogspot.com/2011/06/nuns-among-worst-perpetrators-of.html

Sexual abuse by nuns may be last taboo (Ann Free Spirit has many entries regarding this!)

http://annfreespirit.over-blog.com/article-sexual-abuse-by-nuns-may-be-last-taboo-98290558.html

I told a lie and the nun beat me repeatedly with scissors’: Child abuse victim reveals his horror past

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1185094/I-told-lie-nun-beat-repeatedly-scissors-Child-abuse-victim-reveals-horror-past.html

Catholic Nuns sexually abused children as much as priests (Video)

http://www.wjla.com/news/stories/0809/648351_video.html?ref=newsstory

Victims of Nun’s Sex Abuse Need Our Compassion, Too

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/06/06/1097871/-Victims-of-Nun-s-Sex-Abuse-Need-Our-Compassion-Too

Nun abuse case held up by kids

http://www.thenewage.co.za/37446-1010-53-Nun_abuse_case_held_up_by_kids

Vatican’s worst enemy can’t be stopped

http://www.vaticancrimes.us/2011/12/20000-children-abused-by-catholic.html

Nuncrimes at Blogspot   http://www.nuncrimes.blogspot.com/

ABRIDGED ARTICLES WITH LINKS

November 3, 2010

Quite frankly, now and again I run into a valid and worthy article that’s reference on a website I don’t feel comfortable directing people to. So, here’s a place for you to reprint pertinent text from articles and then LINKS to the SOURCE article so you don’t have to embarrass yourself by identifying with, say, Orangutan feet fetishists.

Nuns as sexual victims get little notice
By Bill Smith Of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch
01/05/2003 (Edited down highlights)
Already shaken by a yearlong sex abuse scandal involving priests and minors, the Roman Catholic Church has yet to face another critical challenge – how to help thousands of nuns who say they have been sexually victimized.

A national survey, completed in 1996 but intentionally never publicized, estimates that a “minimum” of 34,000 Catholic nuns, or about 40 percent of all nuns in the United States, have suffered some form of sexual trauma. Some of that sexual abuse, exploitation or harassment has come at the hands of priests and other nuns in the church, the report said. The study, recently obtained by the Post-Dispatch, indicates that the victimization often has had devastating psychological effects on the women. Many of the nuns said they were left with feelings of anger, shame, anxiety and depression. Some said it made them consider leaving religious life, and a few said they had attempted suicide.

“These women have been the stalwarts of the church for centuries, and a significant percentage of them have been victimized as a result of the structure of the very institution to which they have dedicated their lives,” said study co-author John T. Chibnall, a research psychologist and associate professor at St. Louis University.

Another of the researchers, Ann Wolf, said she believes it is vital that the Catholic Church recognize the problem. “The bishops appear to be only looking at the issue of child sexual abuse, but the problem is bigger than that,” Wolf said. “Catholic sisters are being violated, in their ministries, at work, in pastoral counseling.”

The survey is the only national scientific study dealing with the sexual victimization of nuns in the Catholic Church, according to its researchers. Despite the scope of its findings several years ago, no further studies have been done, they say.

One woman wrote that after a priest fondled one of her breasts during confession, she remained so upset that she did not return to confession for the next 18 years. Another wrote that as a young girl, her uncle, who also was a priest, insisted on touching holy oil to her genital area “to keep me safe while dating.” Later, her superiors forced her to attend religious retreats with the same uncle, she said. Still another wrote that a priest-therapist treating her for severe depression encouraged her to become involved in “sexual experimentation.” The woman said she later began a relationship with another nun.

Study is kept quiet
Findings of the study were published in two religious research journals in the spring and winter of 1998 but have never been reported by the mainstream press. Researchers agreed not to prepare a press release about the findings because a national women’s Catholic group, Leadership Conference of Women Religious, believed that the information would be sensationalized. “It was like this: ‘We don’t wash our dirty laundry in public; we’ll take care of it,'” Chibnall said.

The SLU study is the result of a 15-page survey returned by 1,164 nuns representing 123 religious orders throughout the United States. The large majority of nuns surveyed were highly educated; more than 9 of 10 who returned questionnaires had at least a college education.

Sister Mary Ann Walsh, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, said the group was not aware of the nun survey and had not addressed the issue. That group, headed by Bishop Wilton Gregory of Belleville, has taken a leading role in the debate over new policies in the wake of the priest sex abuse scandal.

Researcher Wolf, who now works in Catholic education, said few nuns have come forth publicly to talk about their experiences. She said that is no surprise. Many may feel shame or guilt and recognize they could have a lot to lose if they come forward. “These women have to ask themselves what are the benefits and what are the costs,” she said. “The church is the only corporation in town.”

Complete article at:
http://stltoday.com/stltoday/news/stories.nsf/News/263AD85EB409BD2786256CA40076DBA4?OpenDocument&Headline=Nuns+as+sexual+victims+get+little+notice