By Alex J. Rhowuniong
Child molestation in the church: Keep your eyes not on church leaders
“As a child in the 60s, I used to look up to the Catholic priest on my island, amazed at how pure he was. Or, so I thought. Today, not anymore!” -Anonymous
For decades now, the Catholic church has had to deal with many families — to the tune of billions of dollars — whose children have been molested, whose faiths have been shattered by sickly priests.
Worst things about these cases?
In many, it was the parents who kept pushing these kids into the “gaping mouths” of their predators, choosing to uphold their “pristine and holy” images of priests, rather than believe their suffering children.
These pedophiles did the unthinkable to our kids. But we shouldn't have helped as parents.
Like, freely giving innocent ewes from the flock to wolves in sheep-skins!.On our small island of Guam alone, according to an article in the Pacific Daily News, Aug. 15, 2019; 272 individuals came forward claiming they were abused as children by priests.
Guam’s Catholic faithful have been shaken up. And this is not an understatement, especially when it has everything to do with their faith in the God they should believe, and cling to, in times like these.
In the story, clergy sex abuse survivor Walter Denton told others in same situation to come forth “so they could heal.”
Now, where do these earth-shattering crimes in the midst of our sanctuary leave us and our faiths?
As Christians, our rule of faith is our constitution — the Ten Commandments. It's in the Holy Bible and has many "supporting regulations" (detailed and succinct) throughout the pages of Scripture.
As Christians, our job is to study these, understand and obey them.
One such directive says: “All have sinned and come short of the glory of God! (Romans 3:23).”
A few verses before that, “There is none righteous; no, not one! There is none that does good; no, not one! (Romans 3:10,12).”
From these, it is clear that in the eyes of God, we are all equally sinful. No one is righteous, not without God, anyway.
So, while it is true priests are leaders of the Catholic church, they are still sinful human beings, just like the rest of us.
In fact, I used to believe it was sacrilegious to even think priests were on our level-common people. Let alone believing they were just as sinful.
But the Bible is clear. The verses above just told us there is not a single human being that’s not sinful. “No! Not one!”
Straight from the Bible! Not my words.
We need not elevate priests nor pastors on pedestals holier than ours, because Bible says they are not.
So, it is clear. We look up only to Jesus because all of us equally struggle with sin.Many look to other people, namely priests, because we do not know any better. And it stems from us, God’s people, failing to learn from the directives waiting for us in the pages of Holy Writ.
True, this earth is a sin-sick world. But do God’s people--especially our children--have to suffer at the hands of the very individuals who were supposed to help get them closer to God in the first place?
Alex J. Rhowuniong is a freelance writer. He may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Or, visit his website: www.rhowuniong.com.
That’s why others fooled us. Also, why our kids suffered.