Priests raping and sexually abusing children has cost the U.S. Catholic Church nearly $4 billion according to a new investigation from the National Catholic Reporter (NCR).
NCR reports that between 1950 and August of this year, the church has paid out $3,994,797,060.10 in settlements related to the rampant sexual abuse of children by pedophile priests.
That figure is based on a three-month investigation of data, including a review of more than 7,800 articles gleaned from LexisNexis Academic and NCR databases, as well as information from BishopAccountability.org and from reports from the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.
Up until now, “nearly $3 billion” has been the most widely cited figure by media, academics and activists for the cost to the U.S. church for clergy sex abuse and its cover-up. NCR research shows that figure is too low, probably by as much as a billion dollars — and perhaps much more.
In addition to the $4 Billion paid out in lawsuit settlements, NCR reports that other scandal-related consequences such as lost membership and diverted giving has cost the church more than $2.3 billion annually for the past 30 years.
Yet despite pledges from Pope Francis to clean up the church, the horror continues, and the Catholic Church continues to protect and enable clergy members who rape and sexually abuse children.
A recently released investigative report finds the Catholic Church has allowed priests accused of sexually abusing children in the United States and Europe to relocate to poor parishes located in South American countries like Paraguay, Ecuador, Colombia, Brazil and Peru.
It is no secret that Catholic priests have been sexually abusing children for decades, if not centuries. This most recent report only serves to confirm what many already suspected: nothing has changed – the Catholic Church continues to protect and enable pedophile priests.
As always, it is the children who suffer.
(H/T Friendly Atheist)