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SHOCKING

Ireland's Church Abuse Scandal

Pope Benedict has another controversy on his hands. An inquiry has revealed that up until the 1980s the Irish Catholic Church presided over an out-of-control school system that covered up rampant physical and sexual abuse. Boys' institutions were the sites of the most "endemic" abuse, where "beatings, rapes and humiliation" were the norm. The study, which comprises five volumes and examined a 60-year period, finds that "a culture of self-serving secrecy" created an environment of pervasive pedophilia. The study also says that abuse was even directed at the staff of the Catholic institutions. Overall, 2,000 people told the inquiry that they remained traumatized, leading to the conclusion that "the entire system treated children more like prison inmates and slaves than people."

May 20, 2009 6:59 AM