The Catholic Church May Owe Abuse Victims Another $4 Billion

Posted By on December 6, 2019


The Catholic Church is going
to have to open up its checkbook thanks to new laws allowing
victims to sue predator priests and the institutions
that protected them. After decades of
living with trauma, there may finally
be justice. But to make any
sense of this, let’s talk about
why some victims have not sued the
Church up until now. Let’s say you’re
60 years old. 50 years ago, maybe you were
an altar boy who was abused. But you didn’t tell anyone
because you were scared, or you thought no one
would believe you. Even if you did tell
your parents, it’s not like your family was going
to sue the Church. I mean, that’s scary. No one else
did that at the time, you might lose
your faith community. But now you’re 60 and people are talking about the
scandal rocking the Catholic Church. They’re making
movies about it. There’s the
#MeToo movement. You see in the news that
the Church is settling a lot of these
abuse cases. Or maybe the priest
who abused you is dead. Or maybe you’re just no longer
afraid of telling your story. Or maybe you see the tide is
finally turning against the Church. Whatever the reason,
you’re ready to talk. But there’s a problem. Your state has a statute of limitations when it comes
to charging someone with sexual abuse. Basically, states say victims have a year or two
to bring forth charges against their attackers… or they go free. Generally, this makes
some sense. It’s really hard to recall all
the important details of a crime that occurred
50 years ago. Or even 3 years ago. There may not even be
any evidence anymore. Or maybe your own motives
are questioned, you know, if you waited to tell someone
about a crime; like why are you
complaining now? So there are valid reasons
for putting an expiration date on charging people
with certain crimes. But for a lot of victims
of sexual abuse by priests, they’re only
now realizing that there’s a way
to get justice that didn’t really exist
when they were abused. And that’s why, over the past year, 15 states have either passed laws or are
on the verge of passing laws that let victims of child sexual abuse
file charges against their assailants even if the statute
of limitations has expired. And some of these
states go even further, and this is where
it gets fascinating. In New York, New Jersey, and California,
for example, their lawmakers created
a “lookback window.” Basically, they said, if a priest molested you
30, 40, 50 years ago, we will give you one year to file
a lawsuit. We don’t care
when it happened. Forget the expiration date. Go ahead and tell us
what happened now, because after that
window closes, the statute of limitations
will kick back in again. Well, this week, the Associated Press reported that
in those three states alone, there have been more than 5,000 lawsuits
already filed against the Catholic Church. If the Church settles many of these cases,
which they probably will, they could
end up paying well over $4 billion to the victims. To which I say…
oh well. Too damn bad. The Vatican has
the money, and there’s no doubt
they harbored predators. So let the lawsuits
play out until the Catholic
Church pays out. And to be fair, this
isn’t about the money for the victims. No amount of cash is worth what they’ve had
to live with for much of their life. If it leads more of those dioceses to declare
bankruptcy, like some already have, well, again,
too damn bad. They have enough property
and stashed artwork that they can sell
to cover the costs of the trauma they’ve
inflicted upon victims. No one should feel bad
for the Catholic Church for having to finally
pay a penance for their actions.

Posted by Lewis Heart

This article has 17 comments

  1. I don't like the statue of limitations at all. What if someone is raped and beaten and they go into a coma for more than the statue of limitations allows? Why can charges no longer be filed? That's stupid to me. If you break the law you should be able to be arrested and charged forever.

    Reply
  2. Or maybe an irrational fear of punishment? But now that it's so common, they realize it's okay. Either way it's all good.

    Reply
  3. Outstanding news, somewhat tempered by the fact that there's ANY statute of limitations on this. If it was up to me, the Vatican would have to sell every gold throne, every ostentatious building, and lay crumbling and destitute from the weight of lawsuits. And the world would be better because of it. And on a related note, why do diocese' get to declare bankrupcy independently of the church proper. An indivual Walmart doesn't get to do that, nor a local Post Office branch. They're not franchises FFS!

    Reply
  4. The churches will be alright. If they have nothing to hide, then there's nothing to worry about.
    Ppppttttthhahahahahahahahaahahahaha.. I couldn't keep a straight face anymore. They are so screwed!
    Hell yeah!🤘

    Reply

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