Cardinal Vincent Nichols, the leader of the Catholic Church in England and Wales, was asked by Pope Francis to remain in his post, regardless of a report that claimed he ignored allegations of child sex abuse during his leadership.
The report alleges that Cardinal Nichols worried more about his position and power than the welfare of young children.
According to the independent inquiry into child sexual abuse (IICSA), a 162 page report, “the church’s neglect of the physical, emotional and spiritual wellbeing of children and young people in favour of protecting its reputation was in conflict with its mission of love and care for the innocent and vulnerable.” The report said, “There was no acknowledgment of any personal responsibility to lead or influence change. Nor did he demonstrate compassion towards victims in the recent cases which we examined.”
Dating back to the 1970’s throughout the mid 2000’s, the church in England and Wales had over 900 complaints of child sex abuse involving 900 members of clergy, including monks, priests, as well as Church staff and volunteers.
The sexual abuse of children involved instances of “masturbation, oral sex, vaginal rape and anal rape”. On occasions, the investigative report says, in addition to “sadistic beatings driven by sexual gratification”and “deeply manipulative behaviour by those in positions of trust”.
One victim of clergy sex abuse said that he was sexually abused over a 100 times by a priest beginning when he was 11 and continued to be abused until he was 15. “After each incident he was required to make confession, and the priest concerned made it plain that his sister’s place at a local convent school depended on his compliance,” all this and several more examples can be found in the report.
Another survivor said “The fact is Nichols is a serial protector of paedophiles and he is the person that you should least expect it from. The head of a church should have the greatest morals of all but instead they were sending paedophiles to other areas of the country – and America – in an attempt to cover the abuse up.”
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The Child Victims Act has a one-year window in some states, some more, some less, for adults who were abused as children to come forward against their perpetrators. Now is the time to act and empower yourselves and begin the healing process.