Disturbing, revealing Catholic abuse trends

Female victims multiply, males and gay priests decline.

Male victimization and homosexual priests rose together through the 1980s and have since fallen together. These twin waves have largely receded. Female victimization has not fallen, persisting today at roughly the same level as in the 1980s. See the figure below.


Key Findings:

  • Overall, clergy sexual abuse of minors is recently rising: The priest sexual abuse of children dropped to an all-time low just after 2002 but has since disturbingly risen, though it remains well below its peak in the 1980s. Reports of current abuse averaged 7.0 per year from 2005-09, rising to 8.2 per year from 2010-14, a 17% increase. In the 1980s, there were an average 26.2 reports of current abuse per year. (See Figures 2 and 6 in the main report.)

FYI, Ruth Institute is on the no-fly list of the wild ‘n wooly Southern Poverty Law Center. Pay yr money, take your choice. Mine’s on Ruth, especially in view of the SPLC’s long-over-due fall from grace or at least its fall from unquestioning credibility.

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