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Buzzfeed news article on abuse at Catholic orphanages


Terrie
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Anyone else read the article recently released by Buzzfeed News?

https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/christinekenneally/orphanage-death-catholic-abuse-nuns-st-josephs?bftwnews&utm_term=4ldqpgc#4ldqpgc

It's brutal. In the focus on sexual abuse by priests, a lot of the other types of abuse perpetrated and covered up by the Church are being swept aside.

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Yes. It was a very long and brutal read. It’s horrible how common place was in catholic orphanages. And the cover up is the worst part of it all. The abuse went on for decades and affected thousands of children. And no one did a damn thing about it. 

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It's a horrific account but it seems well-researched. 

I have no connection with the Catholic orphanage system nor do I know anyone who went through it, but I do recall friends who went through the Catholic school system talking about how viciously mean some of the nuns could be when it came to discipline. Given that, I have no reason to doubt the basic truth of what the survivors have recounted.

 

 

 

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Disgustingly brutal. I had to skim through it, it was just that bad. And the most horrific is that It came up 20+ years ago- and just got swept away. Insult to hideous injury for the survivors.

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A close family member married a man raised in a Catholic orphanage in the West of Ireland. He was/is a deeply messed up man who was brutalised mercilessly. And, in turn, brutalised my loved one. No longer married.

Ironically he wasn't an orphan but the Irish state didn't think men could raise children without a wife so off he went to the orphanage with his sister while their father emigrated to the States.

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There was an article in our local newspaper about a woman who was raised in an catholic orphanage like that. Once the girls got their first period, the nuns shoved a broomstick handle inside them to 'break them in' for the priest. She managed to flee to the local police station twice and was sent back each time. They gave her a laughable sum of money after the court hearings. The archdiocese still refuses to apologise to the children.

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1 hour ago, EmainMacha said:

A close family member married a man raised in a Catholic orphanage in the West of Ireland. He was/is a deeply messed up man who was brutalised mercilessly. And, in turn, brutalised my loved one. No longer married.

Ironically he wasn't an orphan but the Irish state didn't think men could raise children without a wife so off he went to the orphanage with his sister while their father emigrated to the States.

That happened here too. I would say a lot the children who stayed there were not orphans. Just children whose parents were very poor and unable to provide for them or were taken away by the state.

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It is horrific, but also very well researched.

Yes, it was swept away and settled for nothing in the 1990s, but I was impressed by the way the researcher looked for new evidence to confirm the survivors' stories.   Children in those orphanages were so vulnerable.  Some of the stories I have heard about nuns in Catholic schools from Mr. P, and some nun behaviors I have observed myself, are horrific.  

In the 2000s (in the wake of the Boston Archdiocese abuse scandal) the Burlington diocese released their own records, which confirmed many of the St. Joseph's survivor's stories.  As we now know problem sexually abusive priests were shuffled around and enabled.  What better place to park them than an orphanage with no viable parents to complain.  Five out of 6 priests that oversaw St. Joseph's were known sexual abusers.

Historically, the orphanages were for children who were regarded as trash by the Catholic church and the world.  Illegitimate, poor, from dysfunctional families - the forgotten children. 

We know these things happened although there is better forensic evidence (like piles of bones in sewers) in some of these horrendous cases of abuse than others.  So very sad.  

A documentary from Australia "Oranges and Sunshine": https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1438216/

Ireland:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magdalene_Laundries_in_Ireland

The Duplessis Orphans: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Duplessis_Orphans

And so many others.

 

Edited by Palimpsest
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3 hours ago, squiddysquid said:

There was an article in our local newspaper about a woman who was raised in an catholic orphanage like that. Once the girls got their first period, the nuns shoved a broomstick handle inside them to 'break them in' for the priest. She managed to flee to the local police station twice and was sent back each time. They gave her a laughable sum of money after the court hearings. The archdiocese still refuses to apologise to the children.

Can you post a link please? Thank you.

 

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edited out the double post
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5 hours ago, AliceInFundyland said:

@Palimpsest Minor correction, Oranges & Sunshine is a drama starring Emily Watson, not a documentary. Looks good though.

You are right, I linked the wrong thing,  Sorry.  There's a BBC documentary too because many of the children were sent from the UK,.  I'll try to find it.

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That was a sad, difficult read. ☹️

*wanders off to YouTube to watch some kitty videos*

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Yeah, I read it too. Before reading this I never thought of the Roman Church on the whole as being evil but I thought that after reading that story for the first time in my life.

I know other denominations don’t have clean hands either. Especially the Episcopal Church I’m part of. But it seems to me that other denominations are making an effort to right past wrongs but the Catholic Church has buried their heads in the fornicating sand up past their ankles.

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3 hours ago, Palimpsest said:

You are right, I linked the wrong thing,  Sorry.  There's a BBC documentary too because many of the children were sent from the UK,.  I'll try to find it.

Sorry to quote myself but I had a brain fart.  It was a 60 Minutes episode.  https://www.cbsnews.com/news/the-lost-children/

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That many of the children were not actual orphans is common across the history of orphanages. It's still common today that children are often in orphanages have living parents, who are unable to care for them due to poverty or addiction. The true orphan is a rare thing. 

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2 hours ago, Terrie said:

That many of the children were not actual orphans is common across the history of orphanages. It's still common today that children are often in orphanages have living parents, who are unable to care for them due to poverty or addiction. The true orphan is a rare thing. 

Or get stolen by fuck face's ICE, used to fund Betsy de Vos's yachts, then sold off to adoptive parents.

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I’ve been getting through the article very slowly (partially due to being busy, partially because it’s so tough to read). But I can’t describe those nuns and priests etc as anything other than pure evil. Straight up murdering children. They’re evil. How they could call themselves people of Gd, how they could claim that their actions are godly is an incredible insult to Gd, whether or not you believe. They're absolutely evil. 

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I read it in parts all day yesterday on my commute to classes and echo many of your opinions. @47of74 I was thinking the same thing, especially living in PA with the whole child abuse scandal. The institution of the church is evil and despicable. 

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7 hours ago, HarryPotterFan said:

I’ve been getting through the article very slowly (partially due to being busy, partially because it’s so tough to read). But I can’t describe those nuns and priests etc as anything other than pure evil. Straight up murdering children. They’re evil. How they could call themselves people of Gd, how they could claim that their actions are godly is an incredible insult to Gd, whether or not you believe. They're absolutely evil. 

I very rarely use super spiritual language but have no hesitation in describing what the RCC did in these cases as child sacrifice - they destroyed the lives of children and covered it up to save their institutions. 

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