Christian Brother Julian McDonald CFC testified in Australia’s Victoria Inquiry last week that the extraordinary level of child molestation at the Irish Christian Brothers school in Ballarat is CERTAINLY AN ACCIDENT OF HISTORY. Brother Julian is the Provincial and former chancellor of Australian Catholic University.
I applaud Brother Julian for naming the culture of secrecy and his accurate reiteration of the hierarchy’s version of the history of child sexual abuse an ACCIDENT.
Let’s pause for a moment and think about what Brother McDonald said. Was it an accident, a chance occurrence, a “coinkydink?” Or is it an ancient pattern and practice of criminal behavior in the Catholic Church?
Let’s start by looking at the history of the Irish Christian Brothers and then at the Catholic Church in various parts of the globe.
The Canadian Christian Brothers at Mount Cashel Orphanage were first criminally investigated in 1975. That investigation was snuffed even though two brothers admitted wrong-doing. A second investigation began in 1982, a third in 1989 … all of which culminated in a Royal Crown investigation, popularly called the Hughes Inquiry.
The American Christian Brothers filed for bankruptcy protection from child abuse survivors’ claims in 2011. Nearly 500 survivors from Damien Memorial High School in Hawaii to Bergen Catholic came forward to expose dozens of brothers who molested children in U.S. based Irish Christian Brothers schools.
Is it an accident of history that Rome has removed over 22 bishops for sexually abusing children?
Is it a chance occurrence that 30 Jesuits from three continents accused of sexually abuse children ended up in the Jesuit run Diocese of Fairbanks, Alaska?
We are well beyond the tipping point in history: Child sexual abuse in the Catholic Church is part of the criminal fabric of the Bishops’ robes.