MMS Friends

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Reader responds to abortion debate

LST reader "Mike" responded today to my earlier post regarding the Pope's affirmation of the Catholic Church's stance against procured abortion. Here is Mike's comment, unabridged:
I don't know about you Matt, but I would think that protecting a large number of priests - that molested a large number of children who trusted them - and allowing them to continue to work in new areas (where the people of those churches were not made aware of their past crimes) would also constitute "moral surrender". This issue should be deemed as significant to their leadership as more political orientated ones. Mike
Mike is basically suggesting that the Church should worry about major issues like sexual abuse, while ignoring relatively minor ones, like the legally sanctioned slaughter of innocents. Let's look at some basic facts. You might want to whip out your calculator and follow along. The John Jay study found that 10,667 minors accused 4,392 clergy (about 4 percent of the total number of clergy) of molesting children from 1950 to 2002. Three-fourths of those alleged molestations took place from 1960 to 1984, meaning that the prevalence of such behavior has plummeted in the last 20 years. Ten percent of those priests received no disciplinary action, and 6 percent were returned to ministry. This means that about 6/10 of 1 percent of U.S. priests molested children and got away with it. As we all know, the Church in the United States has been the center of the worldwide scandal, and there are 44,000 priests (Source: EWTN) and about 71 million Catholics in the United States (Source: CIA World Factbook). Worldwide, the Church has about 404,000 priests (Source: Diocese of Phoenix). So we're talking about roughly 7/100 of 1 percent of priests. While the bulk of these molestations were going on in the United States, Joseph Ratzinger was a professor and an archbishop in Germany. What should he have done, Mike? Meanwhile, from Roe v. Wade in 1973 to 2000, about 100 million live births were recorded in the United States (Source: CDC). During that same time frame, 40 million abortions were carried out in the United States (Source: Alan Guttmacher Institute). Approximately 46 million children are aborted worldwide, every year. (Source: Alan Guttmacher Institute and the World Health Organization). How can the Church ignore that?

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