Safety Notice

If you are a survivor, please be careful in reading the information compiled here. It is impossible to give information on ritual abuse, and about people's opinions about ritual abuse, in a way that is not upsetting and/or triggering. Only you know how much is wise to read, and how much information you can absorb at one time.

Sexual Abuse by Clergy

Selected Websites

Crusade Against Clergy Abuse

Stop Baptist Predators: Shining light on Baptist clergy sex abuse.

Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests. The largest, oldest and most active support group for women and men wounded by religious authority figures (priests, ministers, bishops, deacons, nuns and others).

Take Courage: offering insights into collusion, rather than the primary abuses of perpetrators.

Tamar's Voice: Ministering to those who hacve experienced clergy sexual abuse. Includes an e-newsletter.

Voice of the Faithful: Keep the faith, change the church.

Selected Books

Bailey, Charles L. (2006) In the shadow of the cross: The true account of my childhood sexual and ritual abuse at the hands of a Roman Catholic priest. iUniverse, NY, NY. >NOTE: From the publisher: “Bailey’s personal journey of recovery. He reveals how his ill-treatment destroyed his innocence and robbed him of identity and faith and explains how family and friends were impacted by the tragedy, how his development from child to adult was full of pitfalls, and how he struggled with issues of intimacy. Through his work with support groups, such as SNAP, (Survivors’ Network of those Abused by Priests), individual counseling, and his renewed faith in God, Bailey confronted his past and became an advocate for those impacted by clergy sexual abuse. “ Preview in Google books

Bartunek, Jean M. Hinsdale, Mary Ann, and Keenan James F., Eds. (2006) Church ethics and its organizational context: Learning from the sex abuse scandal in the Catholic Church. Rowman and Littlefield, Lanham, MD. NOTE: From the publisher: “Well-known scholars, religious clergy, and laymen in the trenches of church formation and leadership come together from the disciplines of organizational behavior, theology, sociology, history, and law, to foster the creation of a new code of ethics that is both ecclesial and professional. Touching on issues of governance, authority, accountability, and transparency, this volume goes on to specifically explore whether and how professional ethics can shape the identity and actions of Church leaders, ministers, and their congregations. While evoked by the sex scandal in the Church, the essays in this book raise questions that have implications far beyond this current issue, to much broader issues such as the role of professionalism in ethics and what it means for an organization to engage in moral action.” Preview in Google books

Berry, J. (1992, 2000) Lead us not into temptation: Catholic priests and the sexual abuse of children. Doubleday, NY, NY. TABLE OF CONTENTS: PART ONE Anatomy of a Coverup: Pleadings - Ethics of an Expose - Mouton for the Defense - The Passion of J. Minos Simon - Sexual Outcasts - Men in High Places - Rumblings in the Fourth Estate - Prosecution - Monarchy vs Democracy ­Verdict and Counterattack-PART TWO The Political Dynamics of Celibacy:  Homosexuality Birth Control and the Celibacy Crisis - The New Confession ­ - Labyrinths of Secrecy - The Vatican Crackdown - The New Gay Clericalism - Wounded Seminaries - PART THREE Tragedy and Hope - The Bishops Tragic Flaw - Arenas of Justice - Chicago: The Empowerment of Victims - Prospects for Reform NOTE: Father Gauthe’s sexual abuse of children in Louisiana. Preview in Google Books

Cafardi,, Nicholas P. (2008) Before Dallas: The U.S. bishops’ response to clergy sexual abuse of children. Paulist Press, Mahwah, NJ. TABLE OF CONTENTS: The Canonical Crime of the Sexual Abuse of a Minor by a Clerk: An Historical Synopsis - The Early Councils - The Corpus Iuris Canonici - Following the Corpus - The Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries - Between the Codes - The 1983 Code - Summary - The Chicago Experience 1991-92 - The Canadian Experience 1989-92 - Archbishop Pilarczyks Statement June 1992 - The National Conference of Catholic Bishops Adoption of the Pilarczyk Statement November 1992 - The Think Tank 1992-93 - The National Conference of Catholic Bishops Ad Hoc Committee on Sexual Abuse June 1993 - Proposed Guidelines on the Assessment of Clergy and Religious for Assignment November 1993 - The Bernardin Accusation and Its Aftermath - The Scope of the Problem: An Historical Synopsis - The Diocese Of Fall River Massachusetts 1992 - The Diocese of Dallas Texas 1997 - The National Picture - Summary - The Canonical Landscape: the Failure of The Penal System - A Description of the Canonical Penal Process - The Reasons Why the Canonical Penal Process Was Not Used - A Penal Process Whether Judicial or Administrative Was Not Favored in the Law - The Penal Process Was Not Adequate to the Problem - American Canonists Lacked Training And Experience in The Canonical Penal Process - The Crimes Were Covered by Prescription - The Rights of the Accused Priest Including His Appeal Rights Would Trump the Canonical Penal Process - The Cooperation of the Victim Could Not Be Counted on and Was Not Sought - Civil Lawyers Strongly Advised against a Canonical Penal Process Because of the Discoverability of the Acts - Summary - What Did the Bishops Do? A Change in the Law - Requests for Changes in The Law - Continued Action by The National Conference of Catholic Bishops-Statement of the Administrative Committee November 1989 - Statement of the Office for Media Relations February 1992 - Early Diocesan Policies 1986-91 - The Ad Hoc Committee 1994-96 - Summary - The Treatment Option - Canon 1722 and Administrative Leave - Canon 1044 and Psychic Illness - The Treatment Centers - The Treatment Option - The Relationship between Dioceses and Treatment Centers - Reassignment after Treatment - Summary - Canonical Lessons to Be Learned - A Means to Vindicate Rights - Tribunals For The Penal Process - The Bishops Authority in The Diocese - The National Bishops Conferences - The Bishops Duty to Foster the Common Good - Secrecy as a Legal Value - The Bishops Duty to Determine Assignments - Necessary Change in the Law - Notes - A Timeline – Bibliography NOTE: A civil and canon lawyer analyzes why bishops chose to treat offending clergy rather than punish them for abusing children. Preview in Google Books

Conway, Eamonn, Duffy, Eugene, and Shields, Attracta, Eds. (1999) The church and child sexual abuse: towards a pastoral response. Columba Press, Blackrock, Co Dublin, Ireland.
NOTE: Essays on the sexual abuse of children in the Catholic Church.

Echols, Mike. (1996) Brother Tony’s boys: The largest case of child prostitution in U.S. history. Prometheus Books, Amherst, NY. 1996. NOTE: From the publisher: “For over 25 years, charismatic Pentecostal evangelist Brother Tony Leyva used Christianity, the Bible, and his status as an “anointed prophet of God” to gain access to, seduce, and sexually assault the young sons of his enthralled followers in 23 states.”

Flanagan, Eamonn. (1995) Father and me: A story of sexual abuse at the hands of a priest. Harper Collins, North Blackburn, Vic., Australia. NOTE: From the publisher: “True story of sexual abuse perpetrated by a Catholic priest in Ireland, written by his victim. Tells of ten years of abuse from the age of twelve. Records the abuse and his experiences and at the same time exploring the writer’s compassion for the priest and his reasons for allowing the abuse to continue. Also records his anger at Church authorities failing to act when informed of the abuse, and explores many of the issues relating to sexual abuse.”

Flynn, Kathryn A.  (2003) The sexual abuse of women by members of the clergy. McFarland and Co, Jefferson. NC. NOTE: From the publisher: “This work is based on the author’s study of 25 women from 11 states who were sexually abused by members of the clergy. A primary goal of the study was to help the violated women understand their experiences and make available to educators, practitioners and others concrete information about what it means to be sexually exploited by a trusted religious representative. The author also considers the viability of a trauma model to study the impact of such sexual abuse on women and on their relationships with others, and presents her findings that the participants did exhibit symptoms that strongly correspond with the classical and complex trauma criteria used.” Preview in Google books

Fortune, Marie M. (1999) Is nothing sacred? The story of a pastor, the women he sexually abused, and the congregation he nearly destroyed. United Church Press, Cleveland, OH. NOTE: Marie Fortune founded and directs the Center for the Prevention of Sexual and Domestic Violence, Seattle, Washington. This book has become a primary reference source for many church bodies in dealing with this issue.

Fortune, Marie M. and Longwood, W. Merle, Eds. (2004) Sexual abuse in the Catholic Church: Trusting the clergy? Haworth Pastoral Press, Binghamton, NY. >NOTE: From a public symposium entitled “Trusting the Clergy?” Essays from Catholic and non-Catholic perspectives, statements, and responses regarding Catholic clergy sexual abuse Authors include Archbishop Harry J. Flynn, Bishop Howard Hubbard, and Father Donald B. Cozzens,  Michael J. Bland and Rev. Dr. Marie M. Fortune.

France, David, (2004) Our Fathers: The secret life of the Catholic Church in an age of scandal. Broadway Books, NY, NY. NOTE: The author covered the sexual abuse story for Newsweek. Facts are woven in with personal accounts and of France’s hypothesis that the under lying cause is the Church’s stance on homosexuality.

Frawley-O’Dea, Mary Gail and Goldner, Virginia. Eds. (2007) Predatory priests, silenced victims: The sexual abuse crisis and the Catholic Church. Taylor and Francis, NY, NY. TABLE OF CONTENTS: Gender Sex Power and Discourse - Predatory Priests - Who They Were and Were Not - Psychodynamic Charaterological and Clerical Cultural Considerations - Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy with an Offending Priest - Victims and Survivors: The Clinical Picture - Can You Imagine? Failed Fathers, Boys Betrayed – Living Is What I Am Learning - Severed Selves and Unbridged Truths - Sexual Abuse, Spiritual Formation and Psychoanalysis - The Institutional Church and The Pastoral Church - How Could It Happen? An Analysis of the Catholic Sexual Abuse Scandal - Clericalism and Catholic Clergy Sexual Abuse - Episcopal and Roman Catholic Clergy - A Protestant Approach to Clergy Sexual Abuse - Women Priests and Clergy Sexual Misconduct - A Study in Iconography - Celibacy and Misogyny - The Confusion of Priestly Secrets - Victims and Survivors: Survivors’ Stories

Handlin, J. L., Ed. (2005) Survivors of predator priests. Tapestry Press, Irving, TX. NOTE: Eight men and women recount their childhood experiences of being sexually abused by Roman Catholic priests and discuss the impact that abuse has had on their lives.

Harris, Michael. (1990) Unholy orders: Tragedy at Mount Cashel. Viking Press, NY, NY. NOTE: About the child molestation case against the Christian Brothers at the Mount Cashel Orphanage.

Kennedy, William H. (2004) Lucifer’s lodge: Satanic ritual abuse in the Catholic Church. Sophia Perennis NOTE: Discusses various aspects of sexual abuse within the Roman Catholic Church, including ritual abuse, the cover-up of pedophilia, and the abuse and prostitution of nuns.  The influence of Aleister Crowley and other occultists/satanists on the twisted theology of so many fallen Catholic clergy is documented. In a chapter devoted to Paul Shanley, Kennedy documents that he was connected to the Process Church of the Final Judgement.

Lytton, Timothy D. (2008) Holding bishops accountable: How lawsuits helped the Catholic Church confront clergy sexual abuse. Harvard Univ. Press, Cambridge, MA. TABLE OF CONTENTS: An Overview of Clergy Sexual Abuse Litigation - Litigation and Policymaking - Tort Litigation as a Policy Venue - Appendixes NOTE: From the publisher: “Stories of the tort system as an engine of social justice are rare. Holding Bishops Accountable tells one such story by revealing how pleadings, discovery documents, and depositions fueled media coverage of the scandal. Timothy Lytton shows how the litigation strategy of plaintiffs’ lawyers gave rise to a widespread belief that the real problem was not the actions of individual priests but rather the church’s massive institutional failure. The book documents how church and government policymakers responded to the problem of clergy sexual abuse only under the pressure of private lawsuits.”       Preview in Google books

Moore, Chris. (1995) Betrayal of trust: The Father Brendan Smyth affair and the Catholic Church. Marino, Dublin, Ireland and Dufour Editions, Chester Springs, PA.

Neustein, Amy, Ed. (2009) Tempest in the Temple: Jewish communities and child sex scandals. Brandeis Univ. Press, Waltham, MA.< TABLE OF CONTENTS: Introduction  - Part 1: Breaking Vows: Unholy Waters - Crossing the Line - Straying the Course - Part 2: Sacrificing Victims: Out of the Jewish Closet - A Community of Co-enablers - The Fugitive and the Forgotten - My Cross to Bear - Part 3: Let Me Know the Way - Justice Interrupted - Pedophiles and Penitence – Epilogue NOTE: From the publisher: “This book is divided into three sections. The first section, “When the Vow Breaks,” describes rabbis who break their “vows” through active pedophilia. The second section, “Sacrificing Victims,” illuminates the community dynamics surrounding abuse: how a community unwittingly contributes to the cover-up of abuse; why victims of abuse are all too often ignored or cast off by their religious communities; and the mechanisms by which powerful religious institutions protect their own. The third section, “Let Me Know the Way,” addresses how Jewish communities can overcome the ignorance, bias, and corruption associated with clergy sexual abuse. Solutions--some already successful, others yet to be tried--are explored here.” Preview in Google books

O’Connor, Alison. (2000) A message from Heaven: The life and crimes of Father Sean Fortune. Brandon, Dingle, Co. Kerry, Ireland. NOTE: Publisher’s information: “In the long list of Irish paedophile priests Father Sean Fortune occupies a pre-eminent position as is shown in this powerful investigation into his life by one of Ireland’s most outstanding journalists. Sexual abuse of children was his worst crime, but far from his only one. A master manipulator, capable of incredible charm, he lied, cheated, bullied and abused leaving a trail of destruction in his wake. Fortune avoided trial by committing suicide in March 1999 but he left behind many victims - not least the eight young men who had come forward.”

Parker, Jim. (2004) Raped in the house of God: The murder of my soul. iUniverse, Lincoln, NB. TABLE OF CONTENTS: A Family Defined by Catholicism - Apprenticing for the Priesthood - No One Needs to Know - Put This Behind You and Move On - Awakening a Sexual Obsession - Husband and Father - The Right Thing Is a Disaster - Entrapment at Home and Work – Asking for Support - A Spiritual Transformation - Embracing Friendship and Commitment - Tormented in a Living Hell - Approach and Avoidance - Forgiveness Not Forthcoming - The Healing Begins - Completing the Journey NOTE: Publisher’s information: Author Jim Parker recounts not only the immediate catastrophic impact of a 12-year-old boy being sexually abused, but also how his parents’ request to keep the abuse a secret led to over forty years of frustration and self destructive behavior. Parker gives the reader details of how his life has been altered, including: His loss of purpose - Inability to achieve in school - Distrust of men - Failed relationships with family and others - Inability to set clear boundaries - Years of isolation - Three failed marriages Preview in Google books

Phillips, Donald T. (2002) Unto us a child: Abuse and deception in the Catholic Church: The true story of an American family. Tapestry Press, Irving, TX. NOTE: Publisher’s information: “The Alberts, a Kansas family beset by hard times and too many challenges lost seven of their nine children to the state in the late 1940’s; the other two died as toddlers. The Catholic Church convinced the family and the state that the best place for the children was in the local orphanage run by the church. Once there, the children were exploited and subjected to sexual, physical, emotional, and mental abuse by both the nuns and priests. Darlene, the youngest daughter died tragically at age 47. After her death, her brothers discovered the secret life that she led during her time at the home, and later as a young, beautiful woman when she gave birth to the illegitimate child of a priest. They went about searching for the child that she gave up for adoption years earlier. Ironically, that child also was seeking his birth parents at the same time and they were united - too late for mother and son to meet, but Darlene’s brothers treasured the opportunity of meeting the boy who grew up to be a fine man. Meanwhile, the boys in the Albert family sought vindication in the Kansas courts until the emotional toll was too great to bear. This is their true, fully documented story told by Don Phillips, a best selling New York Times author, outstanding journalist and master story-teller.” Preview in Google books

Plante, Thomas G., Ed. (1999 and 2004) Sins against the innocents: Sexual abuse by priests and the role of the Catholic Church. Praeger, Westport, CT and London, England. TABLE OF CONTENTS: Introduction -  Scandal - Clergy Sexual Abuse in the American Catholic Church - Canon Law and the Clergy Sex Abuse Crisis - Pledges, Promises, and Actions Clergy Sexual Misconduct Oversight Review Boards - The Crisis of Sexual Abuse and the Celibate/Sexual  Agenda of the Church - Clergy Sexual Abuse and Homosexuality Gerald D Coleman - What Have We Learned? Implications for Future Research and Formation - Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests (Snap) Perpetrators of Clergy Abuse of Minors - Collaboration between the Catholic Church, the Mental Health, and the Criminal Justice Systems regarding Clergy Sex Offenders - The Relationship between the Treatment Facilities and the Church Hierarchy - Barriers to Responding to the Clergy Sexual Abuse Crisis within the Roman Catholic Church - Episcopal Responsibility for the Sexual Abuse Crisis -  What the Bishops Failed to Learn from Corporate Ethics Disasters - Conclusion - Appendix: Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People, Revised Editio Preview in Questia

Plante, Thomas G., Ed. (2004) Bless me Father for I have sinned: Perspectives on sexual abuse committed by Roman Catholic priests. Praeger, Westport, CT and London, England. TABLE OF CONTENTS: Introduction: What Do We Know About Roman Catholic Priests Who Sexually Abuse Minors? Sexuality in Priesthood: Noli Me Tangere - Beginning an Intervention in Clergy Sexual Abuse - Forensic Psychological Evaluations in Clergy Abuse - Neuropsychological Findings in Clergy Who Sexually Abuse - Psychological Treatment of Priest Sex Offenders - The Problem of Prevention in Clergy Sexual Abuse - Hear Our Cries: Victim-Survivors of Clergy Sexual Misconduct - Conclusion: Sexual Abuse Committed by Roman Catholic Priests: Current Status, Future Objectives - About the Contributors Preview in Questia

Rossetti, Stephen J. (1990) A tragic grace: the Catholic Church and child sexual abuse. Order of St Benedict, Collegeville, MN. TABLE OF CONTENTS: A Wounded Church - Parishes As Victims of Child Sexual Abuse - Red Flags for Child Sexual Abuse - Suicides of Priests and the Crisis of Faith - A Conversion of Perspective - Silver Lining in a Dark Cloud   Preview in Google books

Sennott, Charles M. (1992) Broken covenant. Simon and Schuster, NY, NY. NOTE: Publisher’s information: “In 1968, a young Catholic priest named Father Bruce Ritter founded a shelter for runaways in Manhattan’s East Village. By 1989, his street ministry had grown into a multi-million dollar empire called Covenant House. But Ritter was leading a shocking double life, and allegations of sexual misconduct and prostitution soon ripped his world apart. Photos.”


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