Sexual Abuse & the Church

What we've learned & what we still don't know


There was a ritual quality to the February 27 release of two studies of the sexual molestation of minors by Catholic clergy. Bishop Wilton Gregory, president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, voiced remorse and determination to do better. Representatives of victims’ groups issued routine dismissals. Millions of Catholics felt fresh spasms of shame and indignation. All the usual headlines and newscasts. Then on to the...

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About the Author

Peter Steinfels, co-founder of the Fordham Center on Religion and Culture and a former editor of Commonweal, is the author of A People Adrift: The Crisis of the Roman Catholic Church in America.