As a 6 year old - I was sexually abused by a priest- it took me more than 40 years to say something because I wasn’t going to until I had an audience that would listen to me - that was a royal commission- I went on to sue “god” aka the Catholics- not before I wrapped the church in crime scene tape and put up posters about abuse and the bishop trying to pretend it didn’t happen- it went all the way to Supreme Court where I was given compensation- but here’s the Clanger- they tried to take it off me when I told the media what evil lying low life’s they were - I didn’t have to pay it back but basically the Catholics hate me ..... and that’s just the way I like it - the media do t because my home town newspaper contacts me for my opinion every time the lying bishop gives an opinion- so I can respond with the actual truth - and this is why I’m I. This group- no god would have allowed what happened to me - if he existed- and there’s a certain satisfaction in “ya picked the wrong kid”- I don’t believe religion has any place in society- not be confused with spirituality- do you guys think there is ?
Gina, so sorry to hear about your childhood and so proud of you for fighting back. The only way to deal with these bullies is to expose them; silence is consent. The closest I come to feeling "spiritual" is gazing at the Milky Way on a moonless night and experiencing the awe and amazement of the universe, but nothing supernatural.
I do advocate for others because they still keep saying that the church effectively untouchable if your perpetrators are dead- not true but there is a tormenting torturous process to get justice- you have to fight them because they try and say you’re the only one so “too bad so sad” that attitude has to be met with legal action and then you need a solicitor that cares - I found one - originally the bishop wouldn’t accept his summons- so the solicitor summoned 21 people that surrounded him - another Clanger ? He actually sought out my compulsive carbolic aunt and sneakily talked to her about me for 2 hours - when I found that out I truely went ballistic and slapped an injunction on him- but I swear - there are days I look back- and wonder how I actually survived it the abuse the legal action- the process was in all honesty- a nightmare- but I’m still standing much to their annoyance
There is a quote, not verified or sourced, from a WWII death camp which goes something like this: if there is a god, he will have to ask my forgiveness.
I never suffered sexual abuse but i did endure physical abuse (i can recall the first and last times i was struck, but not many of the thousands of times in between). any abuse leaves scars, some often visible, but most not. the scars build up and form walls of defense and keep one from giving or receiving affection, even from those closest to us.
I sure hope you heal. it would be the best revenge...
Your bravery, tenacity and hunger for justice will have helped others.
But I don't think it is right that atheists should try to stamp out religion. It could antagonise theists and create a war which only entrenches the theist stance.
Take something away from someone and they will want it more.
It would be akin to dropping bombs on a foreign country, with the unwanted side effect of creating terrorists bent on getting revenge.
Logic and reason will win in the end.
I didn't grow up in a Catholic area and didn't know much about what was going on. I guess most of what I know about this situation comes from watching the movie "Spotlight" (great, btw, if you haven't watched it yet--GO WATCH IT! WATCH IT NOW!) ok, enough all-caps... Also, when I lived outside Philly and got the Philly Inquirer they did a GREAT series on some of the stuff around pedophile priests and the power structure within the church that protected them. I also made some Roman Catholic friends once I moved to PA and at least one of them left the church over this and also over the bishops becoming involved in politics by stating that no RC should vote for any candidate that supports legal abortion even if they are (like Bob Casey Jr. and John Kerry) privately religiously opposed. I can only imagine how horrible being sexually abused by a person who should have been the MOST trustworthy, kind, and moral force in your community must have been, and the courage needed to come forward about it.
No. Religions have no place in society.
My early life was in a nonreligious but brutally abusive situation. As I started school and seeing it wasn't normal, I started telling adults about it. Almost all responded with some religious toned bullshit as if to mitigate events.
I had no religion before, and certainly wasn't buying into to it then, or since.
I commend you for standing up for justice, Gina. And I hope you've found reconciliation and control over your sense of self and identity after what was done to you so early in life.
I would hesitate to impute that sort of awfulness to anyone who participates in religious activities. You were in a terrible situation created and enabled by people who wore the outwardly-respectable mantle of what was then thought an unimpeachably good institution. Sadly, institutions are only as good as the people who occupy them and all people are fallible.
The question about does religion have a place in society -- we have to tolerate it when other people use their rights in ways we would not, as long as they aren't hurting the rest of us in the process. For the most part, my religious neighbors are good people and they don't hurt me by going to church on Sundays. That's not my way, it's not yours, but it's theirs, and if I want a right to be an unbothered atheist, then reciprocity demands that I respect their rights to be unbothered Christians.
I say the best policy is to evaluate people by what they actually do when faced with moral decisions, and to look at those sorts of things with clear eyes, fair attitudes, and open minds.
Thank you for having the bravery to go public with your story and thank you for sharing it with us here.
My brother was 10 when I was 7 and he was in a "boys home" for just 5 days. ...we took him there Sunday and got him out Thorsday. ...front page news then: "defrocked priest owns boys home" molested children out of state....bro still laughs stupid about sex so I don't know for sure if he got blow jobs or was raped anally or orally 59 years ago. ....that is when he started pinching my tits and I fought back after it started leaving scar tissue
All religion does more harm then any good they think they do. in the old days they "converted" people with the option to choose or die. then they would hunt witches and test their thoughts about if they had one by killing that person. now today they are wedged into everything in our culture laws, goverment etc... religion has done way more harm then ever good