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Does the Catholic Church and its Pope encourage abuse?

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In accordance with a 2004 research study conducted by the John Jay College of Criminal Justice for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, 4,392 Catholic priests and deacons in active ministry between the years 1950 and 2002 have been plausibly accused of under-age sexual abuse by 10,667 people. Abuse has been commonly known throughout the faction for years. 

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Now, we’re learning (or not) that the Ex-Pope Benedict had failed to act against abusive priests in Germany, reports are finding. The law firm that penned the report, which faulted the current archbishop in two cases, noted that the Catholic pope heavily denied any wrongdoing. 

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People sharing Benedict pope’s spiritual beliefs will often argue with the secular that no one can have a moral compass without God. We won’t really dive into religion today. But after hearing (and/or being reminded of such troubling news), we can’t help but wonder if the Catholic Church and its Pope encouraged the abuse. 

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With cases like the Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell living in the headlines, we’re reminded that absolutely no one should get away with their horrific crimes, no matter how wealthy or powerful they might be. 

Rome

A report into pedophila running rampant in the Catholic Church in Germany’s Munich diocese has discovered that retired Pope Benedict XVI failed to act in four cases between the years 1977 and 1982 when he was Archbishop of Munich. The report blamed Munich’s current archbishop, Cardinal Reinhard Marx, a prominent ally of Pope Francis. 

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The report was commissioned by the archdiocese and came from the law firm Westpfahl Spilker Wastl about two years ago. It was accompanied by a mandate to investigate the abuse between 1945 and 2019 and whether or not the church officials handled allegations correctly and responsibly. 

According to one of the reports’ authors, Martin Pusch, “In a total of four cases, we came to the conclusion that the then-archbishop, Cardinal Ratzinger, can be accused of misconduct. He was talking about the Catholic church’s Benedict’s name prior to becoming Pope. Pusch added that the former pope had “strictly” denied being responsible in response to the accusations.

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His personal secretary, Archbishop Georg Gänswein, informed reporters that Benedict would “examine the text with the necessary attention,” in the coming days. According to his statements, the pope has expressed his “shock and shame” at “the abuse of minors during the years of his pontificate.”

The archdiocese and the law firm have both said that the Catholic church’s top officials had been informed of the results before its publication. However, in a statement addressing NBC News, the Vatican said that the report’s “contents are presently unknown.”

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The report

“In coming days, following its publication, the Holy See will be able to give it a careful and detailed examination,” said Matteo Bruni, the director of the Vatican Press Office.

He added “In reiterating shame and remorse for abuses committed by clerics against minors, the Holy See expresses its closeness to all victims and reaffirms the efforts undertaken to protect minors and ensure safe environments for them.”

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Munich’s current archbishop, Cardinal Reinhard Marx, evaded an invitation to attend the presentation on Thursday. But in a statement, Marx apologized on behalf of his archdiocese “for the suffering inflicted on people in the church over the past decades.” Just last year, Marx offered to step down over the church’s “catastrophic” mishandling of the Catholic church’s clergy sexual abuse cases.

According to Marx, the scandals had brought the church to “a dead end”. Pope Francis denied the offer but added that a process of reform was necessary and crucial and that every bishop needs to take responsibility for the catastrophe of the horrific crises. 

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