Scotland, too

In case you missed it, “Government inquiry documents abuse at Catholic orphanages in Scotland.” Even in Scotland, where less than 16% of the population is Catholic, the usual problems arise. In this case, however, it is old news. The orphanages in question were shut down decades ago. But the nature of the abuse is worth noting.

While the Catholic Church boasts of being the Good Shepherd, the government found that children in these Catholic orphanages were “systematically starved of love, dignity and compassion.” It characterized the orphanages as “places of fear, coercive control, threat, excessive discipline and emotional, physical and sexual abuse.”

Sexual abuse was rampant: “Children were sexually abused by priests, a trainee priest, Sisters, members of staff and a volunteer. There was also problematic sexual behavior by other children.” Apparently, just about everybody got involved in these acts. The sheer concentration of depravity boggles the mind. It’s as if they selected for it.

But sexual abuse was only part of the picture. Physical and psychological were even more prevalent. The report says children “were hit with and without implements, either in an excess of punishment or for reasons which the child could not fathom… For some children, being hit was a normal aspect of daily life.”

In terms of emotional abuse, children “were frequently humiliated, controlled and insulted, made to feel worthless, denigrated…  “That emotional abuse is likely to have been exacerbated by the unavailability of family support in circumstances where siblings were routinely separated, where children were told that they did not have family anymore and where there was no evidence of family visits being actively encouraged (on the contrary, some family visitors were sent away).”

And when the children died, they were often buried without a headstone. The Catholic Church makes Dickensian England look admirable. Note that the article says nothing about any inquiry into current crimes of the Catholic Church.


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