News from Mother Teresa’s Mission
A new scandal from the Catholic Church has attracted little attention, either from the mainstream or the religious press. Nuns and others from Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity (MC) in India have been arrested for selling babies born to unwed mothers there. CRUX printed the report from the Catholic News Agency (here). They cited an MC spokesman: ‘There was no question of selling any child as the Missionaries of Charity had stopped giving children for adoption three years ago’ …. She explained that they did not accept money for adoptions when they previously administered them.” Non-Catholic newspapers tell a different tale (here, here).
These sources report that even after 2015, when the Mission of Charity claimed it stopped giving children of unwed mothers up for adoption, there were former residents at its gate enquiring about their children who were born there, but were not handed over to them. It is hard to believe that these women made up their stories.
While the Mission of Charity denies selling babies, this is at best technically correct. The non-Catholic sources indicate that couples adopting the babies were made to pay a large “hospital charge,” which turned out to be non-refundable. In similar cases large “donations” were expected.
While this may seem outrageous, it has a long history in Catholic homes for unwed mothers, such as Ireland’s Magdalene Laundries (here). Until recently, demand for adopting babies of color was quite limited. Thus Catholic institutions in Ireland had a long history of selling babies, while only recently has it become feasible in India.
The Church has a long history of blatant lies about such matters. Thus in the early 1980s, after the first child abuse scandal broke out in Louisiana, the Vatican first denied any problem, and when that did not work, Pope John Paul and his minions declared that such a problem only existed in the United States. It was a reflection of America’s immorality, and had nothing to do with the holy Catholic Church. Needless to say, after priestly child abuse turned out to be a worldwide epidemic (which the Vatican was long aware of), no one brought up their earlier denials. Anyone doing so might be accused of religious persecution.