It may be just the beginning. The actual Pennsylvania Diocese Victims Report is voluminous and offers nearly a thousand pages documenting horrific occurrences of church leaders betraying trust. Does this mean that more and more clergy sex abuse cases will suddenly appear?
If you can stomach some of the allegations, you may find yourself even more incensed. One video shows an older man recalling his encounter as a youth. Sadly, he recounts that his first erection was at the hands of a priest. Imagine the pain that exists so many decades later.
Since the unveiling of the Grand Jury’s report, new allegations are surfacing. In fact, one news article shares that a designated hotline has already received over 400 calls. The Attorney General has made a call for these reports – hoping to prosecute cases that might otherwise be swept under the carpet.
In the meantime, databases attempt to capture the identities of priests publically accused of sexual abuse. One collection of names is organized by the diocese in each state. Of course, the list is most likely incomplete.
For some, it may seem pointless to bring up repressed memories. There is the fear of public humiliation. What will family, friends, and colleagues think of the revelation? Some victims may also be concerned that they will be judged.
Truth be told, clergy sex abuse is not just a crime. It is also a personal insult that has lifelong consequences.
Clergy Sex Abuse: The Details
The profile of clergy sex abuse victims may not be as clear-cut as you must think. Many victims are boys who have not even reached puberty. Perhaps these are the reasons that many associate clergy sex abuse with young altar services. Nevertheless, young girls have also been abused by priests.
In some cases, clergy sex abuse involves alcohol. It may be a matter of priests directing victims to touch them. In many cases, children are instructed to grope their predators. There may be no limits – including oral or vaginal penetration.
Meanwhile, the problem hasn’t just been that reports weren’t made. As recently evidenced, the Catholic Church elected to cover up the horrific acts – seemingly relocating priests once reports were revealed.
What are the long-term consequences? The survivors suffer from an assortment of issues, including the following:
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
- Trust issues
- Relationship Difficulties
- Attachment Issues
- Hyper-sexuality and hypo-sexuality
The bottom line is that clergy sex abuse steals innocence. No person should be made to feel shame or guilt because of this awful betrayal.
Contact Fellerman & Ciarimboli if you or a loved one has been abused by a member of the clergy. We are here to help you seek legal remedies and pursue the justice you deserve.
With more than 40 years of combined experience, the personal injury attorneys at Fellerman & Ciarimboli strive to provide the best service to clients in Philadelphia, Northeast Pennsylvania, and throughout the Keystone State.