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Abuse scandal may speed global realignment of Catholicism

Catholic World News - April 29, 2010

Writing in the New Republic, Philip Jenkins suggests that the fallout of the sex-abuse scandal could accelerate a trend that is already evident in Catholicism: the shift of Catholic influence to the global South. In Europe, Jenkins reasons, "the crisis will likely alienate already lukewarm Catholics and marginalize the minority of devoted believers." But in Africa, Asia, and Latin America, where Catholicism is expanding, the scandal has had much less effect. "Indeed, as the crisis quickens the wane of Europe's Catholic influence, it will help solidify the Church's new roots in the south," he concludes

Jenkins sees the scandal not as the cause of the decline in Catholic influence in Europe, but as a factor contributing to a trend that is already well established. "Media coverage of the abuse and the Vatican's mangled response will also provide ample ammunition for those who want to keep religion out of the political realm."

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  • Posted by: lynnvinc7142 - Apr. 30, 2010 2:02 PM ET USA

    It's possible the sex abuse scandals have not been exposed yet in those countries of the South (I've heard privately of some cases). As the evils of our times also bloom & blossom outside the Church, there will be people who seek the goodness of Catholicism. We Catholic laity & priests need to (continue to) be beacons of Christlike goodness, mercy & caring. That will draw people to us.

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