Local SNAP office releases statement on Pope's resignation - wave3.com-Louisville News, Weather & Sports

Local victims of sexual abuse by priests react to Pope's resignation

Source: snapnetwork.org Source: snapnetwork.org

Local victims of sexual abuse by priests reacted to the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI on Monday.

The Pope's old office he once led, 'The Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith', was responsible for dealing with abuse cases. He met with victims and promised that the church must do everything possible to ensure such crimes never happen again.

SNAP, which stands for Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is a global support group for those hurt by religious authority figures.

On Monday, the local Cincinnati office released this statement to FOX19:

Benedict's resignation is being sold as primarily a health related decision, but I suspect there is more to the story than his declining health. Increasing irrelevance in the spiritual world, less tolerance for intolerance, and more and better choices for people to align themselves with spiritually have led many Catholics away from the faith of their childhood. Having a leader like Benedict, an old school conservative with hard line tactics and little if any human compassion, is not the wave of the future if the Catholic faith wants to remain relevant in a modern era. Being dismissive of clergy abuse victims, women, homosexuals, and even their own women religious have led many to decide that Catholicism is not for them, and are seeking their own ways to spiritual connectivity. Perhaps the leadership of the Vatican – Benedict's handlers – have counseled him to step down to head off any further deterioration of their relevance. Recent events in Los Angeles, where former archbishop Cardinal Roger Mahony has been proven to be complicit in the sexual abuse of hundreds of children by documents released as part of civil lawsuit settlements, indicate that Catholic leadership is clearly culpable in the scandal that saw thousands of kids abused over several decades. Mahony's successor, Archbishop Jose Gomez, even took the extraordinary step of relieving him of his public priestly authority as punishment for Mahony's failures. A pending case before the International Criminal Court in The Hague may have played a role in Benedict's decision as well. He was named in a complaint of crimes against humanity for his role in the abuse scandal that goes all the way back to his time as Archbishop of Munich. Surely the court is weighing the evidence and considering the merits because the case has not been immediately dismissed, as many in the Catholic camp had predicted. His resignation does not absolve him of any responsibility for any failures for which the ICC may levy formal charges, but it will be more difficult to prosecute a retired, declining old man than it would be to pursue justice against a sitting religious figurehead and head of state. Notwithstanding the ICC case, it seems unmistakable that the legacy of Ratzinger turned Benedict will include deep, dark scars for his lack of leadership, compassion, and for his inability to treat children, women, homosexuals, and nuns with simple human dignity.

For more information about SNAP, visit their website.

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