This is not a post about sexual abuse in the Catholic Church. I have written here before about child sexual abuse perpretrated by clergy in the Catholic Church and covered up by others within the Church. Some have claimed it's not that bad and blown out of proportion; others claim such things do not happen anymore; others claim the issue is malice towards the Church. The issue for me has always been the protection of vulnerable children, whom Jesus told us to welcome and protect. This current story, breaking now, about alleged sexual abuse of children by a former Penn State assistant football coach, shows us how vigilant we must always be and how easy it is for people in power to turn from the helpless to protect their own interests.
Dan Wetzel quotes attorney general Linda Kelly in the Yahoo! Sports story,
This is a case about a sexual predator who used his position within the university and community to repeatedly prey on young boys,” attorney general Linda Kelly said. “It is also a case about high-ranking university officials who allegedly failed to report the sexual assault of a young boy after the information was brought to their attention, and later made false statements to a grand jury that was investigating a series of assaults on young boys.”
Childhood sexual abuse is not about the Catholic Church, it is about sin and the willingness of people in power to turn from it and deny it by those who would rather not get involved. As long as children remain vulnerable, we all need to remain vigilant. If these allegations are true and university officials did nothing for almost a decade, shame on them. And pray for the children.
UPDATED: Here is another link to the story from Fox Sports' Greg Couch, Why Didn't Anyone Help? and the New York Times story from yesterday. This is Jason Whitlock's take, November 7, 2011, on the protection of institutions instead of children titled Penn State Cleanup Must Involve Paterno.
John W. Martens
Follow me on Twitter @johnwmartens