Pope Francis admits of abuse of nuns, sexual slavery

The Catholic Church has struggling with huge problems due to the exposure of sexual abuse by priests over decades if not centuries.

For some time the church, and more recently Pope Francis, have been criticised for doing far too little about the problems.  But the Pope has brought up another dirty secret in the church.

BBC:  Pope admits clerical abuse of nuns including sexual slavery

Pope Francis has admitted that clerics have sexually abused nuns, and in one case they were kept as sex slaves.

He said in that case his predecessor, Pope Benedict, was forced to shut down an entire congregation of nuns who were being abused by priests.

Last November, the Catholic Church’s global organisation for nuns denounced the “culture of silence and secrecy” that prevented them from speaking out.

The female congregation dissolved in 2005 under Pope Benedict was the Community of St Jean, which was based in France, Alessandro Gisotti of the Vatican press office told CBS News.

In 2013, the Community of St Jean admitted that priests had behaved “in ways that went against chastity” with several women in the order, according to the French Roman Catholic newspaper La Croix.

In a separate case in India last year, a bishop was arrested over allegations that he raped a nun 13 times between 2014 and 2016.

Bishop Franco Mulakkal, who headed the diocese in Jalandhar in the northern state of Punjab, has denied the accusations.

In Chile, reports of abuse of nuns carried out by priests led the Vatican to launch an investigation last year. The women were reportedly removed from the order after highlighting the abuse.

Last year, the Associated Press news agency reported cases of abuse in Italy and Africa.

Just days ago the Vatican’s women’s magazine, Women Church World, condemned the abuse, saying in some cases nuns were forced to abort priests’ children – something Catholicism forbids.

Pope Francis has admitted…

…that clerics have sexually abused nuns, and in one case they were kept as sex slaves.

He said in that case his predecessor, Pope Benedict, was forced to shut down an entire congregation of nuns who were being abused by priests.

It is thought to be the first time that Pope Francis has acknowledged the sexual abuse of nuns by the clergy.

He said the Church was attempting to address the problem but said it was “still going on”.

Speaking to reporters while on a historic tour of the Middle East on Tuesday, the pontiff admitted that the Church had an issue, and the roots lay in society “seeing women as second class”.

He said that priests and bishops had abused nuns, but said the Church was aware of the “scandal” and was “working on it”, adding that a number of clerics had been suspended.

“It’s a path that we’ve been on,” he said.

“Pope Benedict had the courage to dissolve a female congregation which was at a certain level, because this slavery of women had entered it – slavery, even to the point of sexual slavery – on the part of clerics or the founder.”

Pope Francis said sexual abuse of nuns was an ongoing problem, but happened largely in “certain congregations, predominantly new ones”.

“I think it’s still taking place because it’s not as though the moment you become aware of something it goes away.”

While shocking it isn’t surprising that nuns have also been victims of abuse.

More shocking is the Pope’s admission that “”I think it’s still taking place”.

CBS News: Pope Francis confirms priests’ abuse of nuns included “sexual slavery”

The pontiff conceded that it was a problem and said more action was needed. He insisted the will to confront the abuse is there, and stressed that the problem is not new, and that the Church has been working to address it for some time.

“It’s a path that we’ve been on. Pope Benedict had the courage to dissolve a female congregation which was at a certain level, because this slavery of women had entered it — slavery, even to the point of sexual slavery — on the part of clerics or the founder,” the pope conceded.

Alessandro Gisotti, interim director of the Vatican press center, later confirmed to CBS News that the order of nuns dissolved under Benedict was the Community of St. Jean in France. The reason the order was dissolved had not previously been made public.

That was in 2005. Shut down due to sexual slavery. Kept secret.

What the hell is wrong with these people?

And why is the church “working on it”? More importantly, why aren’t the police working on it? Have the Catholic priests, bishops and pope learned nothing from the unravelling scourge of scandals?

The Catholic Church has lost all moral credibility.

Human Trafficking in NZ

An Otago politics student Stephanie Lowe has set up an awareness website on Human Trafficking in NZ.

This also covers the trafficking problem worldwide (which is huge). Please at least visit the site and respond to the poll (in the right sidebar on the Home page).

The Problem – on a global scale

1. There are currently more slaves than at any other time in history – with some estimates of the number being as high as twenty-seven-million.

2. Sex trafficking is one of the three largest industries, coming after the arms and drugs industries. It is estimated to be worth around $32 billion.

(more)

The Problem – in NZ

1. There is very little information about the problem of human trafficking in New Zealand

2. New Zealand Government fully complies with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking – and is in tier 1 of the US Department of State’s Trafficking in Perons Report

3. The Prostitution Law Review Committee estimated that approximately 200 young persons under the age of 18 were working as prostitutes in 2004

4. New Zealand is a source country for underage girls who are forced in to internal trafficking

5. New Zealand is a destination country for foreign women and men subjected to forced labour

6. The men are usually from countries such as Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam and Indonesia – and are usually forced to engagd in activities aboard fishing vessels with NZ waters

7. Women who are trafficked to New Zealand usually come from China and countries within South East Asia – they tend to be recruited by people in their home counrties as ‘labour agents’ for the purpose of prostitution

8. Victims trafficked from overseas usually arrive in New Zealand to have their passports confiscated, experience physical and mental abuse, and are forced to work extremely long hours with very little or no pay

9. There is a small percentage of girls and boys of Maori or Pacific Islander descent who are trafficked internally and forced to participate in street prostitution

10. Some Asian or Pacific Islander individuals migrate to New Zealand to work within the agricultural industry. However in some cases once they arrive here they find they have to work in far worse conditions than promised or for far less pay.

For more information about human trafficking in New Zealand you can visit:

http://www.dol.govt.nz/publications/research/people-trafficking/action-items.asp

http://www.dol.govt.nz/publications/research/people-trafficking/people-trafficking.pdf

http://www.humantrafficking.org/countries/new_zealand

http://www.courtsofnz.govt.nz/speechpapers/NZ%20trafficking%20Paper%20-%20final%20-%203%20Feb.pdf

Human Trafficking in NZ website: http://www.humantraffickingnz.com/