I find it particularly obnoxious that the New York Jewish community have been given legal leave to sort child abuse cases out quietly themselves without involving the legal system at all. Why the hell should they? These were the people who first screamed loudest accusations against Catholics involved in this vile practice and in the New York Times demanded public disgrace again and again, and ensured it by their publicity.
I'm grateful to a reader for drawing my attention to the original article, which does not quite articulate what I had understood from Fr Tim's reference. No doubt I had misunderstood Fr Tim. It seems that rabbinical courts had been routinely settling abuse cases themselves, and often in an unsatisfactory way, this being winked at by some judiciaries, but that now some appellants have approached civil courts for the justice that they could not obtain from the rabbinical courts. The original article is here, and it is from the New York Times itself (this, too, is encouraging). This is a lesson to me to follow up all links carefully! Apologies to all concerned: it seems more honest not to remove my original post, but to post this correction.
Yes Father, and Ab. Dolan of New York sent a letter to the New York Times on the subject of its bias against the Catholic Church in this. Unsurprisingly, the Times refused to print it – so Dolan published it on his Archdiocesan website! He also pointed to the widespread abuse in other institutions (the US Public Schools for instance…) which never gets the same front-page coverage in the mainstream media.
Anti-Catholicism is rife in the mainstream media here in the US and elsewhere – as many commenters noted on Ab. Dolan’s blog – coupled with the fact that lawyers see the Church as a cash cow for settlements. The lawyers are aided and abetted by politicians to whose campaigns they contribute heavily, resulting in Statutes of Limitation laws being repealed – but just for cases against the Catholic Church. There are limitations on awards that can be given in abuse cases against school districts – if the cases can even be brought – but no limits on judgments against the Church.
But as the Sunday’s Gospel pointed out, we are blessed in adversity. And if the Catholic Church is hated and reviled, we know She is doing something right – but, of course, we knew that anyway!
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