Uploaded by Eke Nelson

Reflection Paper

Name: Ifeanyi Eke
Reflection Paper on: Sex Abuse in the Catholic Church: How we got here and where are we going?
Speaker: Fr David B. Couturier
Date: 9/18/2019
Sex Abuse of minors in the Catholic Church has been a source of both national and international shame
and mimicry. I must admit that despite not presently identifying as a catholic, I was personally invested in
this talk as someone who had a catholic upbringing, and as a parent. From the title: “Sex Abuse in the
Catholic Church: How we got here and where are we going?” , one can presume a chance for reformation
efforts(making sure no child ever becomes a victim again) propelled by an understanding of the factors
that brought about the problem.
Fr David’s talk informed me on the root of the crime of sexual abuse as not just being of sexual motivation
but a crime of abuse of power. Even more disturbing, was the alarming rate of sexual abuse of children in
other institutions, bringing to light the ‘national epidemic’ that is sexual abuse of minors. A very important
take away was a call for the focus on victims and their families. They deserve appropriate attention and
care and need to be listened to.
In retrospect, I was a bit disappointed at the direction of this talk. There was a lack of focus on the catholic
church and practices that might have facilitated this debacle. How does an organization whose core is
built on service fall victim so frequently to the abuse of power? I also found the talk very deflective,
ignoring responsibility and focusing on national statistics of sex abuse.
I acknowledge the efforts of awareness and education made by the catholic church, but I hope they begin
to look inwardly into psychological patterns and into practices that make abuse of minors so prevalent in
the catholic church and applying these into vetting and training of priests.