CHASTITY & SEX ABUSE CLAIMS
So often we hear that the sex abuse claims in the Catholic Church were brought about by the requirement of celibacy. But what of the sex abuse claims within protestanism where there is no requirement of celibacy? And what of the sex abuse claims in the secular world? One could argue that those who are not celibate are therefore "satiated" and are less likely to engage in sex abuse crimes. But this is not the case. Below are sex abuse statistics for three of the nations largest insurers of protestant churches:
Church Mutual Insurance Co. insures a total of 95,000 churches and worship centers and 1,000 religious groups. Church Mutual has received an average of about 100 reports a year alleging child sex abuse, and an average of about 100 reports a year alleging other sexual misconduct over the past decade.
GuideOne Insurance Co. insures a total of 43,495 churches-worship centers, and 1,505 religious groups. GuideOne has received an average of about 160 reports of child sex abuse a year, and 40 reports of sexual misconduct each year for the past two decades. The total amount in claims paid over the last five years has averaged approximately $4 million per year excluding attorney fees.
Brotherhood Mutual Insurance Co. insures 27,000 churches-worship centers and 3,000 religious groups. Brotherhood has received an average of 73 reports of BOTH child sex abuse and other sexual misconduct each year for the past 15 years. A total of approximately $7.8 million has been paid out in claims for sexual misconduct and child sex abuse over the past 15 years.
Today moderation of the sexual appetite is seen as unhealthy, while its uninhibited expression is seen as virtuous. The steep decline in sexual morality is the great indicator of our times. Knowing our nature Satan has placed irresistable temptations all around us in the modern world that render our sexual appetites insatiable.
The real problem does not lie in the requirement of celibacy rather it lies in a lack of chastity. The world hasn't a clue as to the meaning or value of the virtue of chastity. Modern man regards the moderation or exclusion of sexual desires as unrealistic and impossible. Well surprisingly this position is in agreement with the late great holy Fr John Hardon who said that it is humanly impossible to control the sexual appetite and be chaste. He stated that chastity and charity are two virtues that are impossible without the grace of God. Further to obtain the grace of chastity one must possess humility to pray for it. "If anyone is to persevere in chastity to the honor of the flesh of the Lord, let him do so in all humility." St Ignatius of Antioch (2nd cent.)
Marriage vows, celibacy vows, and obedience to Gods laws as a single person are all equally impossible without the virtue of chastity. Only when we return to God in humility and prayer can we obtain the grace necessary to do what it is humanly impossible, and overcome our insatiable appetites for pleasure.