I was alerted to this report by Fr. Zed's blog. I followed it to the source and, in spite of the undoubted political bias of the web site, it seems clear that the evidence is sound. There are other related issues in this area, and even though many will not listen to this, I am going to say it anyway - Satan is involved. Yes, believe it or not, the devil exists; he tempts, confuses, encourages false feelings, memories (with the help of some dubious psychological therapies), anger and even greed. Yes, priests have abused some children, and some homosexual priests have had sexual encounters with teenage and young male victims (through some may not have been real victims). As the report shows, the attempt to even question the ant-Catholic Priest litigation brigade is to invite cries of "shame" "cruelty" and similar responses, but the evidence is pretty clear; many (about half we are told) accusations of sexual molestation against priests are false. None of this mitigates the offenses actually committed by some priests, and this is not an attempt to fudge any issues or deny the terrible damage that has been inflicted on some young lives. One of the questions posed by the report is why the Media does not react to this kind of news. Why do we not hear these things on the mainline channels like the BBC? I doubt sending it to the BBC would produce anything. Some time ago I sent a report about the Pope contradicting falsehoods they had broadcast. There was no response. I often tell my parishioners not to trust the Media news. Even when they do not broadcast outright lies, they tell only part of the truth and deliberately ignore information that would spoil their reports.
Back to the devil. As I have said before on this blog, part of the problem - a part that is usually ignored by bishops and other priests - in the abusing priests scandals is the involvement of evil spirits. One well-known exorcist (not Fr Amorth this time) remarked at a conference that if this kind of evil was not a sign of the presence of evil spirits he did not know what was! The same person also said that he believed that many priests inflicted with a "child attraction" disorder (that is where no sin has been committed, and there are no definite signs that it will be!) need deliverance rather than psychiatric treatment. There is much here to ponder. An Evangelical minister of deliverance agrees with this, saying, in her book, that deliverance prayers are needed and do work, although with regard to a person who has committed an offence we have different set of problems and the authorities need to be involved. Controversially, similar claims have been made for some cases of apparent homosexuality. There is one case I remember reading about which clearly showed the involvement of evil spirits (because of occult knowledge) in encouraging a young man to believe he was gay when he was not. There is much here, regarding emotions and even perceptions, that we do not fully understand. I know I will get brickbats for all this, but some of the literature on exorcism and deliverance includes the possibility of emotional deception, something we have hardly begun to study. Of course there are weakness in people that invite this kind of thing, and some kind of therapy may be needed for some underlying emotional imbalance, but to leave out the spiritual element in both the case of the perpetrator and the (often false) accuser is not only dangerous but, at times, dishonest. When we behave as though the devil either does not exist or that he is simply not a factor in cases of horrific evil, we are doing ourselves a disservice and allowing the Evil One more space in which to attempt the destruction of our spiritual lives.