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Not a few bad apples—the barrel is rotten: Tom Doyle on clerical child abuse

Tom Doyle brings a wealth of knowledge, experience of both research and litigation, and a solid integrity to the examination of the abuse of children by clergymen in the Roman Catholic Church.

He speaks on this subject with an honesty, and courage that is peerless. His testimony is precise without being sensational. The analysis he outlines explains the role of church history, church government and church theology in creating this catastrophe.

The response from the bishops and cardinals is one of denial, cover-up, control and outright lies, often under oath. Despite all that has been revealed, they still refuse to address the horror of what has been done to the most vulnerable in society—little children. They do not grasp the lifelong suffering of the victims. Instead spending more time, care and resources on the abusers.

Every time a documentary is shown on TV, more victims come forward. Suicide, substance abuse and physical and mental health problems are at epidemic proportions amongst victims.

Tom Doyle worked with the Royal Commission on Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse in Australia. Well funded and well staffed by knowledgeable, competent and motivated people, the Commission produced a fifteen-volume report and came to definite and practical proposals to address the matter. It was the gold standard for investigating child abuse. He has also addressed the New Zealand Royal Commission of Inquiry on Abuse in Care, for its Faith-based Redress hearing.

He explains the issues relating to the Roman Catholic priesthood and to celibacy, and the effect this is having on those entering the priesthood, again with an uncommon clarity.

Tom Doyle’s life is devoted to helping victims; everyone who considers it their duty to care for those abused as children should listen to what he has to say.

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