Sex scandal dents Catholic numbers

2011-07-29 22:13

Berlin - Nearly twice as many Germans left the Roman Catholic Church in 2010 as the year before, as the country faced a spate of cases of priests allegedly sexually abusing minors.

Official numbers released on Thursday by Germany's Roman Catholic Church show a jump of 46.5% in 2010 of the number of people quitting the church as compared with 2009.

Around 181 000 people quit their memberships, with the dioceses of Munich and Freising, Augsburg and Freiburg recording the highest loss of members.

Germans are not required to say why they want to strike their church membership, but many have blamed the reports of sexual and physical abuse of hundreds of children by clergy that surfaced last year.

The news comes ahead of a planned visit by German-born Pope Benedict XVI from 22 to 25 September.

  • NZdreamer - 2011-07-29 22:40 of the cloth! DISGUSTING!!

      Martin du Plessis - 2011-07-29 23:35

      Makes you think what they use the cloth for.

      Creeky - 2011-07-30 07:24

      Sad thing is.... this has been carrying on for DECADES..... and NOTHING GETS DONE ABOUT IT!!!!

      Risen Ape - 2011-07-30 08:07

      Sexual abuse among Catholic Priests is just a FBI conspiracy to discredit the RC Church the same way violent threats from Muslims is a FBI conspiracy to discredit the Religion Of Peace.

      Grayman - 2011-07-30 08:38

      @Risen Ape: there is a name for your condition. It's called denial. But the good news is that it is treatable. You just need to open your eyes.

      Nicky - 2012-01-22 17:57

      Risen Ape: I was abused for six years from the age of 12, by a predator who for decades deliberately targeted the most vulnerable and the already abused. 50 little girls, many as young as six, the known victims of just one predator out of the many thousands protected by the church of child rape, are not an FBI conspiracy, no matter how much better spreading that lie may make you feel about your support for this criminal organisation. Many victims cannot help but read these articles and comments in the forlorn hope that one day we may see a glimmer of humanity or compassion from vicious catholics who attack us because we have personal experience of the dark heart of dysfunctional mother church. You should be ashamed of yourself for adding to the mountain of callous re-abuse we are trying to recover from.

  • NZdreamer - 2011-07-29 23:57

    Yip, Martin - too cover up the perversion? Very tragic for all the good Catholics out there. But sadly this does not just happen in the Catholic faith, perverts are in every religion:(:(:( just that fingers get pointed in the Catholic direction.

      Grayman - 2011-07-30 08:44

      @NZ - You are too right that it happens in every religion but it seems to be more prevalent in Catholicism. Could it be that the Catholic priests are forced into an unnatural state of celibacy?

  • meelo - 2011-07-30 06:59

    If this was Muslim i think Larry King and his crew would have a field time covering this story maybe Barbra Walters would come out of retirement to cover it too

      Creeky - 2011-07-30 07:23

      Larry King has BTW! This is in GERMANY.... not the US... in the US, there are 'no other countries'.... other than oil producing fields....

  • Grayman - 2011-07-30 08:49

    The question is if these Germans are leaving the Catholic Church for Protestant ones or are they just becoming 'un-churched' (for want of a better word).

      darkwing - 2011-07-30 13:48

      I think un-churched. Sums it up it up pretty good. Happening with other churches as well.

  • Messenger - 2011-07-30 13:53

    Dear Catholics It is time to associate yourselves with other chuches where the biblical teachings are followed correctly and properly. What these priests are doing, is wrong in the eyes of God.

      Martin du Plessis - 2011-07-30 18:03

      You mean selling your daughter into slavery being OK?

      RM012 - 2011-09-20 14:24

      Proudly-Catholic: No thanks Messenger, I'd prefer to stay with the original, apostolic church, founded by Jesus and Peter personally, who is responsible for the bible i.e. actually wrote it, and who has for 2000years now follow the bibles teachings properly. Wake up, your form of Christianity is so watered down, misguided and twisted, it's resulted in thousands of protestant churches, each teaching something different!

      RM012 - 2011-09-20 14:27

      P.S. If anyone actually thinks Catholics condone this kind of action and abuse of anyone by priests, you are mistaken! The church might take time to act, but that is because when she does act, she does it properly, with sensitivity to the victims and acused, and only after thorough investigation. No decent human being, let alone devout Catholic, would stand for abuse of anyone - we are as against this as everyone else.

      Nicky - 2012-01-22 18:21

      No, RM, you are either wilfully blind or lying about catholic treatment of victims. I volunteer as a victim supporter, as well as being a victim myself and have never met a victim who has been treated with anything approaching sensitivity by catholics. Devout catholics are some of the most vicious, self righteous attackers of the defenceless victims of their adored rapists. You are, however, right about catholic sensitivity to the rapists and those who enable and cover up for them. Loudly protecting rapists' reputations in the face of evidence to the contrary, publicly honouring known criminals, and undermining anyone who dares to try to recover from abuse by speaking about what happened to them. For example, my abuser was let off scott free on the excuse of being unfit to stand trial, denying me the chance of justice, despite the fact I had numerous witnesses to my abuse. He was surrounded by sensitive catholics laughing, celebrating and patting him on the back in an arrogant show of support, while I, the only one of his 50 known victims even strong enough to come to court, hid alone at the back of the court, still absolutely terrified of the monster who ruined my life, and of the pious hypocrites surrounding him who for decades pretended nothing was going on in front of their eyes, refused to stop his abuse and bullied his victims into silence rather than face their own guilt and cowardice.

  • IceMan - 2011-07-30 17:29

    bunch of pedophiles the lot of them

  • haszard - 2011-08-01 18:20

    Not to diminish the high crimes of the RCC but please examine the Jehovah's Witnesses who go door to door and come on our property. Jehovah's Witnesses pedophiles. Many court documents and news events prove that Jehovah's Witnesses require two witnesses when a child comes forward with allegations of molestation within the congregation. Such allegations have customarily been treated as sins instead of crimes and are only reported to authorities when it is required to do so by law, (which varies by state). It has also been shown that child molesters within the organization usually have not been identified to the congregation members or the public at large. These people engage in a door to door ministry, possibly exposing children to pedophiles. Although the Watchtower Bible Tract Society claims that known pedophiles are accompanied by a non-pedophile in such work, there is no law stating that such a practice must be followed. The Watchtower corporation has paid out millions in settlement money already. -- Danny Haszard abuse victim dannyhaszard(dot)com

      Nicky - 2012-01-22 18:42

      My deepest sympathy for your suffering, Danny. I wish you the best for your journey to recovery. That does sound exactly like catholic tactics to excuse and minimise abuse, undermine, disempower and intimidate victims and endanger additional children in order to protect reputations and wealth. The catholic church is by no means the only organisation to employ these disgraceful tactics. Any organisation that puts powerful adult males above question and above the law, gives them unquestioned access to children and other vulnerable populations, and encourages secrecy and unthinking loyalty above morality or children's right not to be raped is irresistibly attractive to those who feel entitled to abuse their power over the defenceless. If laws were reformed to properly protect children from abuse by powerful adults, no organisation would be able to continue a campaign of widespread and systemic abuse for an extended period, as is still happening in the catholic church and other organisations. Shame on those giving thumbs down to a brave victim talking about his experience and trying to prevent ongoing child endangerment. Do you object to a victim having a voice? Or perhaps exposing the unpalatable truth is against your religion? Must be some more of that sensitivity to victims RM102 is so proud of.

  • mabeeden - 2011-10-16 13:02

    At long last the Catholic congregants are talking with their feet. Well done! Keep it up! And you won't go to hell if you leave the church.

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