The Catholic News Service published a series of reports on the societal scourge of child sexual abuse, examining the scale of the problem, what is being done to help victims and pursue perpetrators, and how the Church has responded in recent years.
Child sex abuse called ‘a serious and pervasive’ issue in U.S. society
"Understanding the plague of sexual abuse in this country means going beyond the immediate headlines and understanding what experts are saying about this scourge. It also means looking not only at the Catholic Church but at all institutions and societal structures where abuse can take place.
"The audit also showed that dioceses/eparchies provided outreach and support to 1,905 victims/survivors; training on abuse prevention and safe environment was provided to more than 4.1 million children and more than 56,000 priests, deacons and candidates for ordination; and background checks have been administered to 97 to 99 percent of all adults serving in ministry with children."
"Whether the call is from someone who is angry, embarrassed, unsure of what to do or needs a friendly ear, diocesan and eparchial victim assistance coordinators are the face of the church’s response to victims of sexual abuse by a church worker — clergy or otherwise."
"Christ, Mary and the saints provide instructive solace when it comes to coping with the terrible things that can mutilate the human psyche: pain, abandonment, emotional neglect, shame, self-hatred."
"The worst evil thrives not in a fiery but a in frozen heart, one that can neither feel another’s pain nor act to assuage it. If our church was born in the flames of Pentecost, then may that same Spirit rage within us now — because we can no longer endure hearts of frost, and we can no longer afford to turn away."