Tuesday, 15 July 2014


Pope Francis has told the founder of an Italian newspaper that some 2% of priests, bishops and cardinals are pedophiles.

If the popes figures are right that means that there are:

8,000 clerical pedophiles in the church worldwide.


100 clerical pedophiles in Ireland.

Many experts in the field says that the Pope's figures are at the lower end of world statistics and that the world average is about 4%.

If 4% is right it means that there are 16,000 clerical pedophiles world wide and 200 in Ireland.

That 4% is a figure for the whole community. But I think that the percentage of priest and bishop pedophiles in the priesthood is higher than in the population in general. This is true, I believe, for 2 very important reasons:

1. Catholic priests and bishops are more prone to sexual immaturity and problems because of the very unhealthy and negative approach to sexuality they are given in their entire formation in catholic schools and seminaries.

2. Catholic priests and bishops are more prone to sexual dysfunction given the imposition of compulsory clerical celibacy.

If you take a young child and from early on in their life tell them that their body, their sexuality, their feelings etc are "dirty" and sinful then you are setting them up for serious psychosexual dysfunction in later life. 

If you then ordain them, put them on a religious and social pedestal and give them power over people's bodies and souls you are going to discover that they will seek an outlet for their sexual dysfunctions in people they have power over - children, teenagers, women, men, people in confession, people in counselling situations. 

The majority of the people I have ministered to in my 38 years in the priesthood who were "abused" by priests - whether they were children, teenagers or vulnerable women and men - had their abuse begin either in the confessional, on school retreats or in counselling scenarios. 

Let me give you a few examples:

1. One young17 year old man I ministered to over 30 years ago went to a Belfast priest and confessed masturbation. After confession the priest asked him to go to the presbytery with him and remove his trousers and underwear so that he (the priest) could check that he had not damaged his genitals by masturbating. This allowed the priest to get sexual gratification by fondling the young man's privates.

2. A young married woman I ministered to some 20 years ago was having marriage problems. She went to the presbytery to discuss those problems with her local priest. Without any warning the priest physically pinned the woman to the wall and had intercourse with her and they ended up having a very dysfunctional sexual relationship for a number of years until the young woman got the strength to cut the priest out of her life.

3. A young man whose family I worked with wanted to be a priest. The local priest convinced the boy and his family that he should move into the presbytery with the priest at the age of 14 to begin his priestly formation. The priest abused the youth from day one and the young man had to endure years of sexual abuse before he finally broke free. However to this day the abuse has greatly overshadowed his life.   

Some years ago a priest giving the annual retreat to the priests of the Archdiocese of Dublin opened his retreat with these words to the assembled priests:

"Well we all get by Fathers, don't we, on the three excesses: excessive whiskey, excessive golf and excessive masturbation".

That priest - shockingly but truthfully hit the nail on the head. Many Catholic priests do a great deal of good.

But many (if not most) Catholic priests are also ticking sexual time bombs.

It is a miracle that there are not more cases of abuse - against children, teenagers, women and men.

Maybe we have the whiskey and the golf to thank for that?

We also are saved from the explosion by the number of Catholic priests who are in clandestine relationships with woman and men - these days - more men than women.

But every now and then a bomb goes off and we read of a priest abusing a child or a teenager.

If Pope Francis thinks that he only has a problem with 2% of his priests, bishops and cardinals he is deceiving himself.

The Catholic priesthood is NOT working. It is seriously dysfunctional.

The 2 main causes of this dysfunction are:

1. The Catholic Church's flat earth approach to human sexuality.

2. Obligatory celibacy for all priests, bishops and cardinals.

If Pope Francis were to resolve those 2 issues he would have far fewer worries abot his 2%

In fact he would have far few worries about his 100%

+Pat Buckley


  1. The three excesses I would attribute to the Iriish Priest are Golf Whiskey and the Car. Masturbation is neither here nor there as most people do it anyway. As for Pedophelia I believe like Alcoholism it affects people of both sexes from all backgrounds in society. Being a cleric put people in a trusted position. Clerics had access to vulnerable people and had opportunity to comit a crime that was easy to cover up for centuries. Here in the UK the House of Commons is being investigated. Cyril Smith was a well known political figure in the area of Rochdale where I live. I have worked in a community centre that bore his name on the wall-I presume they have taken it down now. Its not about percentages in the end. One pedophile is too many and the Church like other areas of society has to bare responsability for the wrong that was done by officers in its employ. Sean

  2. Would someone please teach that man how to spell. Paedophilia. Commit. Paedophile. God help us what is the Pontifical Irish College producing as priests and thus inflicting on the poor people of God! Sean have you ever heard of a spell check?

    1. Wise up How do you know I'm not dyslexic? Seek for the things that realy matter and stop bs ing about trivialities. This is my last response on this matter Sean

  3. Dear Pat

    I am glad that you have brought Pope Francis's interview with Professor Scalferi to your followers. This latest interview is one of the most honest and startling that the pope has given. It is worth reading in its entirety. I am told that it has caused unbridled fury in the Vatican, with officials, even cardinals, openly attacking the pope, some commenting that the best thing that could happen to him is what happened to John Paul I! Francis really has struck at the heart of the problem and has indicated that he is prepared to attack and destroy these diabolical influences within the highest echelons of the Church. I don't know if it was covered in Ireland but the Vatican spokesman immediately contradicted the contents of the interview saying among other things that the pope never said that there were pedophile cardinals. In actual fact there have been: Cardinal Hans Herman Groer, Archbishop of Vienna was a notorious abuser and was actually stood down by Pope John Paul II and made to retire to his monastery, and that from a pope who did not like to hear any criticism of his hierarchy. I wouldnt be at all surprised if we wake up some morning soon to hear that the Vatican has announced, with great sorrow, that Pope Francis 'has been found dead in his bed, the light still on, papers in his hands, a serene smile on his face..." We have been here before Pat. We should all fear for the safety of this courageous man. FVO

  4. FVO, I hope Francis saw well into that future possibility when he chose not to live in the palatial papal appartments.
    I rather suspect, and hope, that by now, Francis knows well enough who needs to be got rid of, who he can trust, who he must be wary of, and has laid his plans accordingly.
    Let's look forward to a few more well placed bombshells.