We must raise $1,463 by March 31st to pay critical bills. Essential to continue our mission. Donate now!
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

South African cardinal apologizes for remarks on pedophilia

Catholic World News - March 18, 2013

Cardinal Wilfrid Fox Napier of Durban has apologized for describing pedophilia as an “illness” rather than a “criminal condition.”

Cardinal Napier had told BBC that “from my experience, pedophilia is actually an illness. It's not a criminal condition, it's an illness.”

“I apologize sincerely and unreservedly to all who were offended by the botched interview, and especially to those who have been abused and need every help and support that the Church can give,” he said. “Child sexual abuse is a heinous crime among other things because of the damage it does to the child. In that concern I include the abused who has become an abuser.”

Additional sources for this story
Some links will take you to other sites, in a new window.

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach seven million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Progress toward our March expenses ($1,463 to go):
$35,000.00 $33,536.96
4% 96%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

Show 3 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: Thomas429 - Mar. 18, 2013 10:23 PM ET USA

    Pedophilia is a sickness. It is also a crime. It is always a shame when anyone fails to supress their urges. It especially sad when the victims are so young and are in so many cases victimized by those who should be protecting them. This is true in cases other than those that occured in the Church.

  • Posted by: AgnesDay - Mar. 18, 2013 12:47 PM ET USA

    wvcatholic--You are right. This sounds in so many ways like the tangle that pulled poor Father Groeschel out of public life. Enemies of the Church want it both ways: deny anyone responsibility for their actions and at the same time hold the Church responsible for the criminal actions of its leaders. The disease Bishop Napier is talking about is concupiscence, and no one wants to talk about it.

  • Posted by: wvcatholic - Mar. 18, 2013 10:49 AM ET USA

    He was absolutely correct. Pedophilia is not a crime. Kleptomania is not a crime. Alcohol addiction is not a crime. HOWEVER, rape or sexual abuse IS a crime. Involvement with child pornography is a crime. Theft is a crime. DUI/DWI is a crime. This is an extremely important distinction. In the same manner temptation or psychological disorders are not a sin. Making the choice to act on those temptations is a sin.

Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org
Shop Amazon

Recent Catholic Commentary

Insights on the enigma that is Pope Francis 7 hours ago
Our Most Characteristic Vice? 8 hours ago
Recognizing the Noonday Devil 8 hours ago
Patricia Jannuzzi on gay activists: And the real problem is? 12 hours ago
Surrogate parenthood = exploitation of desperate women 14 hours ago

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope announces Jubilee: a Year of Mercy CWN - March 13