Dear Fellow Catholics, If You Ignore Priests Who Rape Children, You Are A Part Of The Problem

Dear Fellow Catholics, If You Ignore Priests Who Rape Children, You Are A Part Of The Problem

These men are predators, not priests.

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Recently in the news, Pennsylvania has reported over 300 Catholic Priests for sexual abuse over the course of many decades. This has been a cover-up operation from the priests by the leaders of the church. Committing heinous crimes, such as sodomy and rape. Yes, rape.

These priests have abused thousands of children dating back to the 1980s and the impact has grown ever since. These men are predators, not priests. They do not represent Christianity or the Catholic church by gaslighting and shaming children into unspeakable and dangerous situations.

Catholicism does not condone rape or pedophilia and especially not from clergymen, so why did it happen?

As a child growing up in the Catholic church, I was always haunted by priests who favored certain children and I thought they could even read my mind. If I even thought about disobeying during mass, I thought Father would notice and stop to scold me. And don't even get me started with the confession. I felt like every time I was called for reconciliation if I didn't repent for everything, the priest was going to punish me.

I am like every Catholic child who was so easily impressionable by adults. When a priest told you to do something, by golly, you did it, and if you didn't the parents would punish you as well. Take someone in power and then add corruption, sex, and the ability to not get caught for almost 40 years at least. Of course, there is going to be abuse and domination in every kyriarchy, but when it comes from a religious place, it makes the impact of abuse so much more disastrous.

The Catholic church, to me, does not depend on the systematic religion, but it does rely on respect and trust, where if there is any question about the truth in all regards, then it is a scramble to mask the concerns. When priests rape children and people know about it but don't intervene, that is just as much a sin as raping. period. There is no place for silent bystanders. Not in America. Not in the world. And most certainly not in church.

Christianity is love. That is all. Rape is not love. Covering up priests who rape is not love. Not talking about how to change and prevent corruption is not love.

Shame on the priests who took part in this atrocity in any capacity. No matter how noble and the labels they have, I hope they burn in Hell for what they did and allowed. I am embarrassed to associate with such horrible people, and it makes me ill to think that a place with rules to not sin is the same house that fills it.

Where there are 300 priests who were indicted, there are more who have not been caught. I urge EVERYONE to not just stand by, and if it feels wrong, it is wrong. There is power in standing against injustice, no matter the perpetrator.

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To The Person Who Feels Suicidal But Doesn't Want To Die

Suicidal thoughts are not black and white.
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Everyone assumes that if you have suicidal thoughts that means you want to die.

Suicidal thoughts are thought of in such black-and-white terms. Either you have suicidal thoughts and you want to die, or you don't have suicidal thoughts and you want to live. What most people don't understand is there are some stuck in the gray area of those two statements, I for one am one of them.

I've had suicidal thoughts since I was a kid.

My first recollection of it was when I came home after school one day and got in trouble, and while I was just sitting in the dining room I kept thinking, “I wonder what it would be like to take a knife from the kitchen and just shove it into my stomach." I didn't want to die, or even hurt myself for that matter. But those thoughts haven't stopped since.

I've thought about going into the bathroom and taking every single pill I could find and just drifting to sleep and never waking back up, I've thought about hurting myself to take the pain away, just a few days ago on my way to work I thought about driving my car straight into a tree. But I didn't. Why? Because even though that urge was so strong, I didn't want to die. I still don't, I don't want my life to end.

I don't think I've ever told anyone about these feelings. I don't want others to worry because the first thing anyone thinks when you tell them you have thoughts about hurting or killing yourself is that you're absolutely going to do it and they begin to panic. Yes, I have suicidal thoughts, but I don't want to die.

It's a confusing feeling, it's a scary feeling.

When the depression takes over you feel like you aren't in control. It's like you're drowning.

Every bad memory, every single thing that hurt you, every bad thing you've ever done comes back and grabs you by the ankle and drags you back under the water just as you're about the reach the surface. It's suffocating and not being able to do anything about it.

The hardest part is you never know when these thoughts are going to come. Some days you're just so happy and can't believe how good your life is, and the very next day you could be alone in a dark room unable to see because of the tears welling up in your eyes and thinking you'd be better off dead. You feel alone, you feel like a burden to everyone around you, you feel like the world would be better off without you. I wish it was something I could just turn off but I can't, no matter how hard I try.

These feelings come in waves.

It feels like you're swimming and the sun is shining and you're having a great time until a wave comes and sucks you under into the darkness of the water. No matter how hard you try to reach the surface again a new wave comes and hits you back under again, and again, and again.

And then it just stops.

But you never know when the next wave is going to come. You never know when you're going to be sucked back under.

I always wondered if I was the only one like this.

It didn't make any sense to me, how did I think about suicide so often but not want to die? But I was thinking about it in black and white, I thought I wasn't allowed to have those feelings since I wasn't going to act on them. But then I read articles much like this one and I realized I'm not the only one. Suicidal thoughts aren't black and white, and my feelings are valid.

To everyone who feels this way, you aren't alone.

I thought I was for the longest time, I thought I was the only one who felt this way and I didn't understand how I could feel this way. But please, I implore you to talk to someone, anyone, about the way you're feeling, whether it be a family member, significant other, a friend, a therapist.

My biggest mistake all these years was never telling anyone how I feel in fear that they would either brush me off because “who could be suicidal but not want to die?" or panic and try to commit me to a hospital or something. Writing this article has been the greatest feeling of relief I've felt in a long time, talking about it helps. I know it's scary to tell people how you're feeling, but you're not alone and you don't have to go through this alone.

Suicidal thoughts aren't black and white, your feelings are valid, and there are people here for you. You are not alone.

If you or someone you know is experiencing suicidal thoughts, call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline — 1-800-273-8255


Cover Image Credit: BengaliClicker

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My Relationship With Religion Will Never Be Black And White

and that's okay!

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I was raised Christian let's get that out the way. Growing up in a small town I went to Awana (a children's church group Wednesday nights) and then once I was in middle school started youth group that night instead as well as a normal church on Sundays. If you would ask me from me being really young to probably around 15 I was all about church and building a relationship with God.

After leaving public school and growing my presence online and meeting so many people from all walks of life, I started questioning things.

Suddenly, I was immersed in this community with the best people who just loved everyone regardless of gender or sexuality or race and it was the place I was able to come to terms with something I had always repressed, my feelings towards girls.

I knew the moment I started talking to a girl named Laura that I had feelings for her I would normally have for a boy and because of the people I now had around me I just didn't suppress it. I identified online and eventually to family and friends as bisexual.

My questions started with wondering how my god this loving all knowing entity I had always known was un-accepting and promoted the exclusion of the LGBTQ+ community from the Christian faith. I knew that this community was full of the most loving and creative and beautiful people I have ever met and that was the start of me knowing my relationship with God would never be the same.

As I grew up and have become an activist for the things that mean a lot to me I have stopped attending church and have begun to see that I do not want any part in ANY religion that takes part in shunning anyone based on how they identify. I have been vocal about this to many people some more excepting then others but regardless I will never again take part in something that I myself am not 100% accepted within

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