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Catholics Respond To Shocking Abuse Allegations

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) —Over the last five days, the Archdiocese of Philadelphia has been hit with some shocking allegations: negligence, conspiracy, cover-up and repeatedly failing to protect children despite warnings. Could those charges have long-term implications for the future of the Catholic Church in the Delaware Valley?

Eyewitness News found there are some very wide-ranging opinions of how the archdiocese has handled the sex abuse scandal. Perhaps that is a given, considering there are a million and a half Catholics spread across Philadelphia and its four Pennsylvania suburban counties.

The noon mass crowd at the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul in Center City seemed patient and resolute in its faith.

“I don’t go to the negative side. I stay on the positive side,” said Larry Kenney of Haverford, who added that the scandal would have no bearing “whatsoever” on the amount he gives to the archdiocese or the frequency of his attending mass.

He and several others, however, did say they were somewhat disappointed in church leaders.

“I feel they’re a little bit passive on it,” Kenney said. “But maybe then they feel they don’t want to be the judge and condemn their fellow men.”

“It’s up to the cardinal and a lot of others to face reality,” said Joe Harvey of Fairmount. “Treat these men like anybody else.”

Several young Catholics at LaSalle University didn’t seem phased at all by the recent allegations.

“Not at all,” said one student when asked if the scandal would affect his opinion of the church of church leaders.

“Not really,” said another.

Then, there are Catholics like Bud Bretschneider.

“There’s very little reason to trust [the church] at this point,” he said. “It appears that the hierarchy is listening to their lawyers, instead of having a loving, gospel approach to this situation.”

Bretschneider is a Catholic and a member of the group “Voice of the Faithful of Greater Philadelphia” which has been openly critical of the Catholic Church’s handling of the sex abuse scandal.

He says the Archdiocesan leadership must make serious changes to regain the support of the church’s members. That would include no longer worrying about finances and image.

“We would like to see some structural change, but whether it can happen, does not seem possible,” he said.

Almost all Catholics, however, told us, when they have concerns with the church, they turn to their faith.

“We believe in God, we don’t believe in people,” said Joe Harvey. “Our faith is strong.”

Watch this video…

Reported by Ben Simmoneau, CBS 3

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  • Carolyn

    For many years, the Catholic Church has seen a great decline in young men yearning to become priests. Many people feel that the Catholic Church should allow the priests to marry, as a incentive to those youn men contemplating on becoming a priest. Why should the Catholic Church allow the priests to marry, when it’s the church’s teaching, that all nuns and priests, take a vow of CELIBACY, which is to refrain from temptation to begin with? These priests, who hide behind their colloars, are HYPOCRITES at best, but the realty is, they are true adulterated fellons, who committed rape of innocent children, who were afraid to tell of their horrific tales of being raped by someone who they trusted!! The allegations of abuse have come and gone for decades, but the Catholic Church continues to avoid these issues, that have escalated beyond belief, by paying off accusers to keep them quiet! Instead, they should have investigated these “MENLY PRIESTS”, who claimed that they wanted to be part of God’s flock!!!

    • Green Bean

      They’ll continue their evil ways so long as the flock continue to financially support them. Cut them off at the source, I mean with the money, but I’m all for their castration, too.

  • Coop

    What ever happen to tolerance? Why KYW and CBS so negative and report little to nothing positive about Catholics?
    I am a Jew and we would not tolerate this,
    It is biased, slanted, selective, and bigotry.
    Stand up for yourselves. Boycott the media, pull advertising, call you congressman.
    Jews in Europe, Gays, WOmen, Muslims should all rally against this reifying process. YOU WILL BE NEXT! BEWARE

    • CatholicGirl

      Let’s address the poor children who are tarnished for life at the hands of men who aren’t in the least bit holy. This is about crimes. This is about pedophilia.

      Imagine being raped by a man whom you were taught to respect from the eyes of a child. A child being passed around by three men – I want to vomit just thinking of it. And some want us all to be ‘tolerant’? Really?

      Tell me how you want to explain tolerance to a little boy who had an adult man sodomize him? How do you want a child to be tolerant of the most vile act bestowed upon a human being? How do ask the parents of a molested child to be tolerant of a religion that has no interest in protecting children from predators?

      This is about a group of men in an organization where they are free to rape, intimidate, hide their secrets, and get away with it all. Oh, and use parishioners money to pay for their crimes.

      The latest is Rigali’s new ‘consultant’ who will work with questionable priests. He holds a PhD and is an attorney. Who do you think he will be allegiant to? Not the victims.

      I hope the priests who molest children and all of the priests who continue to look the other way suffer exponentially for their heinous crimes. May God bless our children and keep them in your care and give these priests what is coming to them. I know my God and trust that what goes around, comes around.

  • Andrea

    I cherish my faith but men were given too much power
    The church should be ashamed and fess up . They sheltered abusers of God’s children. I feel the hierarchy from the POPE down should be prosecuted with imprisoned tjust like anyone else who isan accomplice to a crime . All the hoopla about the beatification of pope paul is an insult to all catholics.

  • Green Bean

    Like sheep to the slaughter. Fools!

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