Posted by George Morrison

The Commission took 9 years to compile its 2,600 page report on child abuse in institutions run by the Catholic Church. It has been a glimmer of light for those who were disbelieved, ignored and discarded by Church and State. The victims had learned to live off crumbs of comfort, the omission of a daily beating, or someone using your name instead of your number would become a cherished memory. It’s well that this is so as the Christian Brothers, in a legal action, successfully removed all names from the report denying victims the comfort of seeing their cases recorded. Any notion of justice in this life would have to be dispelled by the refusal of Church and State to renegotiate the compensation deal which apportioned financially the blame 10 to the State and 1 to the Church. We have had apologies but perhaps the saddest part in all this is the absence of any Christian comment. It’s as if we were dealing with a secular regime which was in total control of its population and could do with them as it liked. The reality is supposed to be different. This is a Church which has good works as a major plank in its scheme of salvation. Perhaps Archbishop Nichols, the new UK appointment, in praising the confession of pedophile priests had this in mind. Some sort of a way back for the perpetrators. What does the Bible have to say? The way was spelled out in the Old Testament, “The LORD said to Moses, “Say to the Israelites: ‘When a man or woman wrongs another in any way and so is unfaithful to the LORD, that person is guilty and must confess the sin he has committed. He must make full restitution for his wrong, add one fifth to it and give it all to the person he has wronged.“ Numbers Chapter 5 verses 5/6. But how can this happen when the perpetuators are bankrupt and could not repay their debt in a 1,000 lifetimes such is the damage they have done? On the other hand the woman who said to Joe Duffy on his radio chat-show, “I will never forgive her” – locks herself into her past and throws away the key. Forgiveness in these extreme circumstances can only be extended by one who has personally been forgiven by Christ bearing their sins on the cross and making a full atonement in their place before the court of heaven. Financial restitution – impossible. Forgiveness and pardon – essential. It can only occur when both parties meet at the foot of the cross of Christ.