When a sister becomes pregnant

Well now what do you think is going to happen in a secretive all-male organization that employs women to do the scut work?

In his typically free-associating riff, Francis acknowledged “there have been priests and bishops” who have committed sexual abuse against nuns, and that “it’s continuing because it’s not like once you realize it that it stops.” He said the church needed to do more.

Priests and bishops in the Catholic church are all, by definition, men. Women are officially barred from being priests and bishops. That’s step one right there, or steps one and one. It’s a double whammy: women are an inferior caste who may not hold the important jobs, and women are all subordinate to the superior caste who do hold the important jobs and are thus free (and entitled, and inspired) to prey on the inferior caste whenever the mood takes them.

But while attempting to show that his predecessor, Benedict XVI, took tough action on the issue of sexual abuse against nuns, he recalled a separate case of a religious order marred with sexual and economic corruption, but apparently was not one involving nuns.

Francis recounted that Benedict, then known as Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, the church’s doctrinal watchdog, marshaled all his evidence against the complicit order in a meeting with Pope John Paul II. Francis said Benedict returned defeated and told his secretary, “The other side won.” Francis added in an aside, “We should not be scandalized by this — it’s part of a process.”

His point seemed to be that pursuing justice in the church takes time and he said that when Benedict became pope he immediately told his secretary to get him the files “and he began.”

But his example confounded advocates of nuns abused by priests, who noted that the pope is the single person within the church with absolute authority to take action at any time.

I guess by “process” he meant “waiting for the current pope to die or resign”?

Many members of the church, experts said, suffer from a medieval mind-set and consider the priests who commit abuse against nuns to be the victims of seductive temptresses. Since the victims in these cases are adults, the experts say, there is also a reflexive tendency to blame them. The reductive public image of the nun as existing to serve the priest and to pray quietly also undercuts those who speak up.

As does the fact that all women are officially an inferior caste within the church, vide supra.

In 1994, Sister Maura O’Donohue sent the Vatican the results of a multiyear, 23-nation survey about such abuse, which was especially rampant in Africa where nuns were considered safe sexual partners for priests who feared infection by H.I.V.

One 1998 report focused on Africa observed that “sexual harassment and even rape of sisters by priests and bishops is allegedly common.”

“When a sister becomes pregnant, the priest insists that she have an abortion,” the report added. ‘‘The sister is usually dismissed from her congregation while the priest is often only moved to another parish — or sent for studies.”

Let’s hear that again.

“When a sister becomes pregnant, the priest insists that she have an abortion,” the report added.

Oh does he. Does he really.

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