/* */ Rosa Rubicondior: Catholic Abuse News - The Missionary Position

Friday, 21 December 2018

Catholic Abuse News - The Missionary Position

American Roman Catholic priest Rev. Kenneth Bernard Hendricks looks at documents after being arrested in a church in Naval town in the island province of Biliran, central Philippines.

Credit: Bureau of Immigration PIO via AP
American priest facing 'horrifying' sex abuse charges during his time as a missionary in Philippines | ABC News.

An American Catholic priest, Rev. Kenneth Hendricks, has been arrested in the Philippines and charged with sexually abusing young boys. He is now facing extradition to Ohio, USA where he is also under investigation for similar crimes in the state.

The case started when two Filipino boys came forward with allegations of abuse to local authorities, prompting an investigation. More boys have subsequently come forward with very similar stories. According to Ben Glassman, the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Ohio, Ben Glassman:

Each of these victims got to know Father Hendricks through the course of his official work as a priest... he befriended them, he would invite them to his residence, often to take a bath or shower. That interaction would proceed to kissing... fondle their genitals... [and] ultimately have oral or anal sex with the victims... It is horrible, horrible abusive conduct. It is grooming children, young children who are interested in being involved in church activities and taking those kids and sexually abusing them.

The director of communications for the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, Mike Schafer, tried to distance the archdiocese from Hendricks and his alleged crimes by stressing that he was ordained a priest in the Philippines and had never held any position with the Archdiocese of Cincinnati. However, Hendricks is listed on the archdiocese website in connection with his missionary work and has received funding from them.

Steve Francis, the special agent in charge from U.S. Immigration and Custom Enforcement's Homeland Security Investigations, confirmed that five accusers are included in the affidavit and there are five others who's claims against Hendricks are currently being investigated.

This news comes as Pope Francis, in his Christmas address to the curia in the Vatican callen on predatory priests to hand themselves in to the authorities and vowed that never again would the Catholic Church treat allegations of abuse without seriousness and promptness. He said:

The Church will never seek to hush up or not take seriously any case. It is undeniable that some in the past, out of irresponsibility, disbelief, lack of training, inexperience, or spiritual and human shortsightedness, treated many cases without the seriousness and promptness that was due.

That must never happen again. This is the choice and the decision of the whole Church.

It is not clear whether this includes priests, bishops and cardinals who, like him, have been accused of turning a blind eye to the abusive activities of priests. Pope Francis has yet to respond to the allegations concerning him in this respect. Apparently realising his schoolboy howler in alleging earlier in the year that Satan was behind the exposure of predatory priests and cover-ups, so implying that exposés were Satanic whilst cover-ups were God's will, he thanks journalists for their honesty and objectivity in exposing predatory priests.

It is not anticipated that there will be queues of predatory priests at the world's police stations obeying Pope Francis' instruction.


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