154,967 registered members
'Joint culpability in abuse scandal'
[Posted: Tue 02/06/2009 www.irishhealth.com]
While the religious orders must bear the bulk of the blame, no one group was solely responsible for the institutional child abuse holocaust outlined in the recent Commission report, according to our latest viewers' poll.
We asked our registered readers who they would hold mainly responsible for the abuse scandal.
Sixty-three per cent felt it was a combination of the abusers, the religious orders involved and the State.
When singling out one body or institution, some 22% of respondents felt the Church and religious orders were principally to blame. Eleven per cent solely blamed the abusers while just 4% blamed the State alone. In the highly controversial deal completed in 2002 between the Fianna Fail-led government and the religious orders, the Government gave the religious orders complete indemnity against all future criminal and civil liability while also forcing the taxpayer to fund over 90% of the estimated €1.3 billion total compensation cost arising from this scandal.
Among the many comments posted with this poll were the following: "Why are people still going to mass? what kind of message is this sending out?". Another site visitor wrote: "I remember when myself and my brother went up to receive Holy Communion at the age of 4 and 5. We thought everyone was getting sweets so we went up too. Well, all hell broke loose in the school the next day! The nuns took the two of us around to all the classrooms and told everyone what we had done. They called it a sacrilege against the church. At the last classroom they lashed us across the hands with a broad stick. We were absolutely terrified! For years and years I kept going to the church every day begging God to forgive me for what I had done."
Another visitor pointed out that many more than just the original abuse victims have suffered: "There are many many people who are the Children of these victims who are suffering today because of what was inflicted upon their parents. It is a chain of abuse that has infected the souls of many in Ireland. Unfortunately what was done unto their parents was in a lot of cases done unto the children of the victims of abuse".
The Church's continuing role in Irish society was questioned by this site visitor: "When are we going to wake up and do something about this disgrace. We need to seriously restructure the relationship between church and state. I'm a primary teacher and I think they've no business in our schools".
To view the poll results and discussion and to see results of previous polls, click on
See also our feature: "Abuse report a catalogue of horrors".
|To join the discussion, register by clicking here|