So some woman comes up with an unbelieveable story about Catholic priests using her in Satanic rituals, and not surprisingly, she isn't much believed--and then one of the accused priests is arrested for a murder decades ago that seems to fit her claims:
TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) - The Toledo Diocese is taking another look at a woman's previously dismissed claims of satanic sexual abuse by Roman Catholic priests now that one of the clergymen has been charged with the ``ritualistic'' slaying of a nun 24 years ago.This should shock the Catholic Church to its very core--not only widespread sexual abuse, but now evidence of priests engaged in Satanism.
The Rev. Gerald Robinson was arrested last week on charges of strangling and stabbing Sister Margaret Ann Pahl, 71, about 30 times during Easter weekend 1980. Her body, covered by an altar cloth and surrounded by burning candles, was found in a hospital chapel.
Pahl's body was posed to look as if she had been sexually assaulted, but investigators said they found no evidence of sexual activity.
Bishop Leonard Blair announced Tuesday that a seven-member diocesan review board will re-examine allegations made by a woman who told the panel in June that when she was a child she was physically and sexually abused by several priests, including Robinson.
The woman described satanic ceremonies in which clergy members placed her in a coffin filled with cockroaches, forced her to swallow what she believed to be a human eyeball and penetrated her with a snake ``to consecrate these orifices to Satan.''
The diocese had decided not to forward the woman's claims to authorities because it could not substantiate them.
However, the allegations were brought to the attention of prosecutors in a letter received in December, assistant prosecutor Gary Cook said Monday. He would not say who sent the letter.
Three other people have said they also were abused by priests in rituals, said Catherine Hoolahan, an attorney who represents about a dozen people with abuse lawsuits against the Toledo Diocese. They all mentioned similar occurrences, she said, but she would not provide details.
Hoolahan said the victims, both men and women, could not recall how many priests abused them.
``Remember, they were children,'' she said. ``They were scared to death, but they remember a bunch - a large number.''
Louis Schlesinger, a forensic psychology professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City, said people committing ritual crimes seek sexual gratification by posing their victims in certain ways or by making them say certain things or act in a certain way.
It is also common for a sexual offender to kill one of his victims but not the others, he said.
UPDATE: This seems to be the Catholic Church's day for bad press:
The U.S. Roman Catholic priest who has provided the most visible help to victims of clergy sex abuse (search) for the past 18 years has been fired by his archbishop and cannot celebrate public Masses.Maybe there is some other reason that Doyle just lost his job--but let's hope that a really good reason comes out, real soon.
It's the second career disruption for the Rev. Thomas P. Doyle. In 1986, the Vatican embassy in Washington ended his employment as staff canon lawyer after Doyle co-authored a detailed memo sent to the nation's bishops that warned of the molestation crisis.
Doyle became the most outspoken U.S. priest in criticizing the American hierarchy's handling of the scandal. He has provided victims pastoral counsel and expert legal advise in numerous suits against the church.
After Vatican service, Doyle enlisted as a U.S. Air Force chaplain. Last Sept. 17, Archbishop Edwin O'Brien of the Archdiocese for the Military Services withdrew his endorsement as a chaplain, meaning he cannot function as a priest on military bases or celebrate sacraments.
The stated reason was a disagreement over whether military chaplains must provide public Masses every day, but observers charged Thursday that Doyle's advocacy for victims is the underlying reason.
You know, I actually agree with the Catholic Church's decision not to include pro-abortion politicians in Communion. Perhaps they could decide not to include child molesting priests as well. Of course, that might lead back to rearguing the Donatist controversy of the fourth century.