Some years ago, when I went through the initial presentation of the Virtus so-called child-protection program, I raised my hand and quietly related some difficulties I had with the presentation and accompanying film, including:
(1) An actual pedophile in the film was highly praised because of the great concern he supposedly had for the welfare of his teenage victim, whose emotional progress he had been following from prison, all of which is gravely mistaken and wrong on just so very many levels. Is this what a priest chaplain, for instance, is supposed to think? Should priests encourage pedophiles to follow the progress of their victims, convinced of the great concern of pedophiles for their victims? I think not.
(2) A number of suspicious behaviors of pedophiles were listed as a way to determine if someone might be a pedophile, but it was said that two behaviors or more regarding the same person were necessary to be concerned that a person might be a pedophile, so that showing porn to youngsters would not, on its own, raise any extremely grave concerns, which is just so wrong on so very many levels. So, should a priest overlook someone showing porn to youngersters? I think not.
(3) The result of the John Jay College of Criminal Justice report about a strong statistical indication of homosexual interest in youngsters was not mentioned at all in regard to the abuse of youngsters, which I think is a travesty. The program material might well have been published in all its parts before this report was published, but it should have been revised immediately to include this information. Or are priests to labor under the lie that there is no homosexual preponderance to sexual abuse of youngsters?
I think I had a further grave issue, but I can’t remember what it was now… Maybe some readers can come up with a few more.
I put this up on the HSH blog, for the reason that part of the hermitage effort is to help out priests in this life. Programs like Virtus do little but make the priest be treated like a criminal just for having been ordained. The priest is supposed to suck in the rubbish that criminal pedophiles have great concern for their victims as part of child protection training, overlook porn, etc. Nope. I suggest that any (arch)diocese using this program find something else. I also suggest that the backgrounds of those who make such programs be investigated. Why do makers of this program push for respecting the concerned conscience of the pedophile?