Catholic Culture Solidarity
Catholic Culture Solidarity
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New study shows clerical abuse charges rising again in US

June 07, 2019

A new study from the Ruth Institute shows a rise in the number of complaints of sexual abuse by Catholic priests in the US.

After peaking in the 1980s, the reported incidents fell after 2000; the figures have shown a small but potentially significant climb since 2010. In the 1980s, the average of new incidents reported each year rose about 26; it fell to 7 in 2005-2009, but inched back up to over 8 in 2011-2014.

Father Paul Sullins, who conducted the report for the Ruth Institute, found that the new cases of reported abuse were more likely to involve female victims. Of the cases reported from 1985, 92% involved male victims; in 2016, only 34%.

The study also found that most of the priests accused of abuse in recent years have been older clerics; 52% had been ordained for at least 30 years.


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  • Posted by: mary_conces3421 - Jun. 08, 2019 8:00 AM ET USA

    I fear that people, in particular women, are becoming hypersensitive—calling “abuse” anything that makes them feel “uncomfortable” Whereas, sometimes it’s their own feelings—or even sinful behavior— often unacknowledged/unrecognized, that cause the discomfort.