Marion Witte

September 23, 2018

Another Out-Of-Touch, Old White Man

Filed under: Catholic Church — Marion Witte @ 5:29 pm

I must be naïve, for I thought most people would support the idea that children shouldn’t be raped by men wearing dresses, especially if he flaunts his power by wearing wizard hats and bead necklaces with alpha-male sized crosses.

My latest blog posts are focusing attention on the issue of childhood sexual abuse, especially in religious organizations, including religious schools. Several people have made it clear that this also happens in religious organizations other than the Catholic Church. Point well taken.

That said, I have been somewhat surprised, yet not shocked, by the reaction to my posts about the childhood abuse that occurs specifically within the Catholic Church. Most people agree that this abuse needs to end, yet they offer several reasons why they will not speak up:

  1. They are afraid of what family members will say
  2. They are afraid of what their social media “friends” will say
  3. They are afraid of what their employer might say
  4. They are afraid of the Church’s response to them within their community
  5. They are afraid of what will be uncovered by getting outside law enforcement involved
  6. They are afraid the cost of settling all the lawsuits will bankrupt the Church

These fears, and others that I have probably not considered, appear to be holding people back from expressing an opinion or getting involved with this important issue.  What is disconcerting to me is that, while I believe most people find childhood rape an abhorrent behavior, they also consider it “someone else’s problem.”  Perhaps people would be more vocal in their outrage if they understood that their fear of speaking up is inconsequential compared to the fear inflicted upon these children.  I speak from personal experience.

The Attorney General of the State of Pennsylvania was the first major law enforcement agency in the United States to investigate child abuse within the Catholic Church.  Their report did not cover the entire state, as it did not include the State’s largest diocese in Philadelphia.  In spite of that, the results of that inquiry are appalling.

A national survivor’s organization is calling for an investigation to be conducted by officials in each state.  So far, Michigan, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, Illinois, Nebraska, New Mexico and Kentucky have begun inquiries.  California’s attorney general is currently under pressure to undertake a similar investigation.

Below is a link to an online site where you can petition to have an investigation done in your state.  Note: For some reason the list is not alphabetical, so you have to scroll down this list to find your state.

Call for Church Investigation

God only knows the extent of the massive national abuse that may be uncovered, as it has been in Australia, Ireland, Canada and many of the European countries. We should all welcome the results of the various investigations in the United States that are to take place, so we understand the magnitude of this problem.

If you are a Catholic, a non-Catholic or a compassionate human being, please ask yourself why you have remained silent about this issue, and if there may be some action, even if it is a small one, that you could take to show your support for the survivors, and the children currently being abused. I am one small voice with one small platform, and I do what I can, yet we need many more “small voices” to speak up in order to effect change.

As you decide what personal action you need to take (or not take), you may also want to ponder about what side of history you want to find yourself.

As a society, we can change our political alliances, our court system, and even our Constitution.  That said, if we do not stop raping and abusing children, we are morally bankrupt, and none of those other actions matter.

 

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September 7, 2018

Memes-Catholic Church Abuse

Filed under: Catholic Church — Marion Witte @ 12:22 am

This is an album of 12 memes I prepared for use by any social media sites that are working to keep the awareness of the Catholic Church sexual abuse scandal alive in the news.

Hopefully they will appear around the internet.

Feel free to scroll through these photos using the arrow keys. You can share any that are of interest to you by going to my Marion Witte Connection Facebook Page.


From Memes. Posted by Marion Witte Connection on 9/07/2018 (12 items)

Generated by Facebook Photo Fetcher 2


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August 17, 2018

Father Stephen Colbert, Please Help!

Filed under: Catholic Church — Marion Witte @ 12:05 am

 

Below is a letter I sent to Stephen Colbert at The Late Show.

  If you are interested in supporting this effort, you can email his press secretary,
Lauren Kamm:

lauren.kamm@cbs.com

Or write to an individual or organization who you think can help to effect change.

 

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August 15, 2018

WTF – When Is Enough Enough!

Filed under: Catholic Church — Marion Witte @ 7:09 pm

I usually wait until my outrage over an issue has subsided before I post on my blog.  This is not one of those times.

Yesterday the Pennsylvania Attorney General released a Grand Jury report related to continuing sexual abuse occurring in the Catholic Church.

The report states that “Church leaders protected more than 300 “predator priests” in six Roman Catholic dioceses across Pennsylvania for decades because they were more interested in safeguarding the Church and the abusers than tending to their victims. More than 1,000 young victims were identifiable from the church’s own records.  The main thing was not to help children, but to avoid scandal. Priests were raping little boys and girls and the men of God who were responsible for them did nothing: They hid it all.”

The report includes descriptions of priests engaged in rape and child pornography for decades, using “whips, violence and sadism,” and in one case joining together in a secret cabal of abusers. To add to the injury, the report contained accounts of bishops who had actively defended the accused priests.

Sadly, this is not really anything new – just more of the same.

Bishop Ronald Garner of the Harrisburg Diocese, who was cited in the report as having lobbied not to defrock offending priests, has issued this official statement on behalf of the Catholic Church:

“As part of our on-going need for repentance and healing, Bishop Gainer will celebrate a Mass for Forgiveness at 12 noon on Friday, August 17, in our Cathedral Church of Saint Patrick, 212 State Street, Harrisburg.”

To Bishop Gainer, I say, “enough with the fucking repentance and forgiveness – how about some change.”

As someone who was subjected to sexual abuse myself as a child, by a trusted person, the wounds from my past were reopened as I read this story. I have let many people know during my lifetime that my personal experiences left me with a “hole in my heart.”  I listened to some of the survivors telling their stories today, many of whom still cling to their faith, saying that they have been left “with a hole in their soul.” It was then that I could no longer hold back the tears, for I understand this at a deep level.

I left the Catholic Church at the age of 18, and am still in recovery from it. If I were still involved with that organization (or learned of any organization that operated a pedophile sex ring), I would be protesting and demanding change. Therefore, to the good Catholics who are sitting by silently, I ask “When you are going to wake up?”  If you stop going to Mass for six months, the Church would get your attention and perhaps do something to stop this legalized sexual abuse. Better yet, stop making your weekly donations.  Money is the power base of this organization, so such an action could bring the Church to its knees, and perhaps force it to take some real action to stop all of this, and not just issue statements about repentance and forgiveness.  Ugh.

Churches are much like families, in that the desire of the members to be part of a tribal situation often supersedes the willingness to speak up, tell secrets, and do the right thing.

For me it’s really very simple – you either give a fuck about kids, or you don’t!

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