Homosexuality at fault for sex abuse not Catholic Church, says German cardinal

Source: DPA/The Local; news@thelocal.de; @thelocalgermany
4 January 2019

Cardinal Walter Brandmüller. Photo: DPA

One of the most senior German figures in the Catholic Church has controversially denied that sexual abuse was a problem in the Catholic Church, saying that the problem was caused by gay men rather than catholic priests.

Cardinal Walter Brandmüller played down widespread evidence of sexual abuse of minors in the Catholic Church in an interview with news agency DPA on Friday.

cathedral in cologne

The Cathedral of Cologne, in Germany

Bradmüller said that public debate on the sexual abuse “forgets or silences the fact that 80 percent of the cases of sexual assault in the church affected male youths not children”. He added that it was “statistically proven” that there is a connection between homosexuality and sexual abuse.

In an impassioned defence of the Church’s record, Brandmüller claimed that “only a vanishingly small number” of priests has perpetrated abuse.

He also argued that society at large was “hypocritical” in its condemnation of sexual abuse by priests. “What has happened in the church is nothing other than what is happening in society as a whole,” he said.

The 89-year-old from the Bavarian town of Ansbach said that the deeper problem was a growing sexualization of society in recent decades, adding that “the real scandal is that the Catholic Church hasn’t distinguished itself from the rest of society”.

Condemnation of the cleric’s comments wasn’t long in arriving. Ulf Poschardt, editor of the conservative Die Welt newspaper, described it on Twitter as “a disgraceful way of relativizing the guilt of the Catholic church and defaming homosexuals”.

A report published last year found that 1,670 priests had abused 3,677 mostly male minors between the end of the Second World War and 2014. The researchers who conducted the study on behalf of the church said that the vow of celibacy aligned with the largely unchecked power of some religious leaders had exacerbated the problem.

Brandmüller is one of the fiercest critics of Pope Francis from the conservative wing of the priesthood inside the Vatican. He regularly lambasts the Pope for following a doctrine that is too close to mainstream modern morality and told DPA that Francis “isn’t the dear God.”

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5 replies

  1. Does he have a point? Easy to judge: are the majority of abused children boys or girls? It seems actually that they are boys. So ? he seems correct then.

    • Evidence please. Homosexuality and pedophilia are not interchangeable. Plenty of men abuse young girls – does that mean heterosexuality is at fault? Honestly, your bigotry and ignorance are embarrassing. Utterly shameful.

      • I quite admit that I am not an expert in this topic of conversation. men abuse girls, I say it does not mean that heterosexuality is at fault but it is more likely that the men are not gay, that’s all. And no, I am no expert to give you evidence. Ask the Cardinal. Bigotry? I would not say so. Ignorance, more likely.

  2. In fact the Cardinal missed the basic reason for all this mess. It is the permission of marriage to priests and to females working for churches. When Jesus Christ himself was married as well his Mother Mary to a man named yousuf then from where came this order for priests/nuns of churches to stay single. Sex is essential part of human body and God made it so purposely. Neither original Torah nor Bible puts restrictions on marriage. So when Catholic Church since long is violating the instructions of Creator what it should expect.
    Still it is not late. Instead finding scape goats for sex abuse problem try to recognize the factual cause and rectify it.

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