What is remarkable to me is how all institutions, regardless of whether they are secular or Church, seem to manifest the same kinds of butt-covering responses which aim to deny, deflect, and detract the victim instead of forthrightly deal with the issue.
Defenders of the Church love to point to stories like this and say, “See! Public schools do this stuff too!” The thing is public schools do not claim to be the sacramental presence of Jesus Christ, the light of the world, and the means by which all men, women and children are to be saved. The Church does.It is a beautiful thing that God has chosen to mediate his salvation to us through ordinary human things like water, bread, wine, oil, and flesh and blood human beings. I love that the Church is, among other things, a thoroughly human thing made of thoroughly human beings. But it is a great tragedy that the Church allows herself to behave as nothing more than human when she is called by Christ to be a communion of saints.
The world, at some level, feels the scandal of this, which is why it expects more of–and metes out much harsher condemnation to–the Church than to the LA school district. Catholics can complain all they like about the double standard, but at the end of the day the ordinary person is right here: Those to whom much is given, much will be required. The Church cannot respond to sin in its midst–especially sin this horrendous–with butt-covering indistinct from how every other human institution responds. It has to do better.