Sin against the Innocents: Sexual Abuse by Priests and the Role of the Catholic Church

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Experts from a variety of fields join forces to show us what fuels a most horrific violation of trust - sexual abuse by priests—and how the Church and Church structure play a role in this abuse. This riveting work includes chapters by a former director of the premiere U.S. facility treating clergy who are sexual offenders, by a Jesuit psychologist who authored the largest study of clergy sexual abusers ever completed, and from a Vatican Correspondent explaining the issues as seen by the Vatican. The text also includes an opening chapter by Michael Rezendes, a Boston Globe investigative reporter and member of the Spotlight Team that won the Pulitzer Prize for breaking the story of sexual abuse by clergy. A statement by the Executive Director of SNAP, the national support group for victims of clergy sexual abuse, is also included. This is the first book to bring together experts from a variety of fields to offer thoughtful, objective perspectives regarding what we know about sexual abuse by clergy and what we can do to solve the problem. Attention is given not only to psychological aspects of both the perpetrators and victims, but also to canon law, to clergy misconduct review boards, to the sexual/celibate agenda of the church, the challenges for treatment facilities, and barriers to resolution that exist within the Roman Catholic Church.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780275981754
  • Publisher: Greenwood Publishing Group, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 3/30/2004
  • Series: Psychology, Religion, and Spirituality Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.40 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

THOMAS G. PLANTE is a Professor of Psychology at Santa Clara University, Adjunct Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, as well as Consulting Associate Professor of Education, at Stanford University. He has authored, edited or co-edited six earlier books, including Bless Me Father for I Have Sinned: Perspectives on Sexual Abuse by Roman Catholic Priests (Praeger, 1999).

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Table of Contents

Series Foreword ix
Preface xiii
Acknowledgments xv
Introduction xvii
1. Scandal: The Boston Globe and Sexual Abuse in the Catholic Church 1
2. Clergy Sexual Abuse in the American Catholic Church: The View from the Vatican 13
3. Canon Law and the Clergy Sex Abuse Crisis: The Failure from Above 25
4. Pledges, Promises, and Actions: The Road to Resolution of the Crisis of Abuse of Children by Catholic Clergy 39
5. Clergy Sexual Misconduct Oversight Review Boards 47
6. The Crisis of Sexual Abuse and the Celibate/Sexual Agenda of the Church 61
7. Clergy Sexual Abuse and Homosexuality 73
8. What Have We Learned? Implications for Future Research and Formation 85
9. Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests (SNAP): An Action Plan 97
10. Perpetrators of Clergy Abuse of Minors: Insights from Attachment Theory 101
11. Collaboration between the Catholic Church, the Mental Health, and the Criminal Justice Systems Regarding Clergy Sex Offenders 115
12. The Relationship between the Treatment Facilities and the Church Hierarchy: Forensic Issues and Future Considerations 123
13. Barriers to Responding to the Clergy Sexual Abuse Crisis within the Roman Catholic Church 139
14. Episcopal Responsibility for the Sexual Abuse Crisis 155
15. What the Bishops Failed to Learn from Corporate Ethics Disasters 169
16. Conclusion: What Do We Know and Where Do We Need to Go? 183
Appendix Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People, Revised Edition 193
Index 203
About the Series Editor and Advisers 217
About the Editor and Contributors 221
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