- For Survivors
- Resource Center
- Make a Difference
- Book Clubs
Ruth Institute's press releases
Posted on: Friday, November 02, 2018
For more information, contact Beth Johnson: email@example.com
The Ruth Institute released a study by Fr. Paul Sullins, Ph.D., that sheds new light on the sexual abuse scandal which has rocked the Catholic Church for years.
The study analyzes national data collected by the John Jay College of Criminal Justice, data codified from the 1100-page Pennsylvania Grand Jury Report released in August 2018, and data from a 2002 survey of Catholic priests by the Los Angeles Times.
The Ruth Institute study shows:
Ruth Institute Founder and President Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse says: “To properly assess the sexual abuse scandal which has plagued the Catholic Church for decades now, certain issues must be confronted with an uncompromising commitment to learning the truth wherever it leads us – even if that truth is politically incorrect.”
Fr. Sullins added, “The data file compiled from the Pennsylvania Grand Jury Report is available at our new webpage (ruthinstitute.org/clergy-sex-abuse) dedicated to gathering information about the clergy sexual abuse in the Catholic Church. We invite other researchers to take advantage of the opportunity to utilize this data. “
The Ruth Institute is a global non-profit organization equipping Christians to defend their beliefs about the family to create a culture of lifelong married love. The Ruth Institute has responded to the latest round of clergy sex abuse revelations by encouraging the laity to do two things:
Dr. Morse has a Ph.D. in economics and taught at Yale and George Mason Universities. She’s the author of numerous books, including The Sexual State: How Elite Ideologies Are Destroying Lives, released in August.
Fr. Sullins has a Ph.D. in sociology and is recently retired from teaching at the Catholic University of America. Formerly a married Episcopalian priest, he is now a married Catholic priest, and has written a book on that subject, Keeping the Vow: The Untold Story of Married Catholic Priests.
For more information or to schedule an interview with Dr. Morse or Fr. Sullins, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
For the Ruth Institute Clergy Sex Abuse webpage: ruthinstitute.org/clergy-sex-abuse
Posted on: Wednesday, September 05, 2018
In a recent interview with The Catholic World Report, Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, Ph.D. dissected the ongoing clerical sex scandals in the light of new book – The Sexual State: How Elite Ideologies are Destroying Lives and Why the Church Was Right All Along.
A noted author, academic and campus speaker, Dr. Morse said revelations of sexual abuse by priests and members of the hierarchy are one more tragic result of the sexual revolution. The sexual revolution “provides cover for predatory behavior. After all,” says Morse, “the bottom line of the sexual revolution is that sex is an entitlement. Who really believes that? The rapist: that’s who.”
Dr. Morse says that “Too many men are using their position of authority and respect in the Church to pursue their private sexual purposes. It is no wonder so many clergy refuse to preach or teach on sexual issues.”
This makes it even more important that faithful Catholics “take up the challenge of educating themselves, living the Church’s teaching, and sharing with others. We can’t wait for the clergy to put their houses in order.”
Publication of The Sexual State comes at a crucial time. It exposes and counters the radical sexual “morality” of “an out-of-touch elite class,” imposed on ordinary people by government, including “three false and calamitous ideologies – contraception, divorce and gender – that have led to widespread and profound unhappiness.”
The best way to fight this is by:
In other words, traditional Christian sexual morality has been right all along.
The Sexual State is essential reading for survivors of the sexual revolution, Catholic educators, clergy of all denominations, parents, grandparents and everyone who wants to know how to counter the current climate of indulgence, tragedy and family decline.
Jennifer Roback Morse has a doctorate in economics and has taught at Yale and George Mason University before leaving academic life to care for her two children. She is the president of the Ruth Institute, located in Lake Charles, LA.
Posted on: Wednesday, August 15, 2018
For more information, contact: Elizabeth Johnson at email@example.com.
Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, president of the Ruth Institute, said most coverage of the Pennsylvania Grand Jury Report on Clerical Sex Abuse overlooks significant facts. The Institute’s publication, “Questions and Answers on The Clerical Sex Abuse Scandal” puts the recent findings by a Pennsylvania grand jury on clerical sex abuse in proper perspective.
Dr. Morse stated, “The Ruth Institute has utmost sympathy for the victims of clerical predation, and revulsion at those who covered up the crimes. We encourage anyone who has been abused to come forward.”
At the same time, she noted that the Ruth Institute report discloses important facts sometimes overlooked or ignored by the media:
Fr. Paul Sullins, Ph.D., the author of “Questions and Answers on the Clerical Sex Abuse Scandal,” is a retired Professor of Sociology at the Catholic University of America, and currently Senior Research Associate at the Ruth Institute. Dr. Morse has spent decades working with survivors of the Sexual Revolution and is the author of the forthcoming book, The Sexual State.
Posted on: Saturday, August 11, 2018
Is the current Catholic sex abuse scandal related to homosexuality?
Yes. The current scandal includes mostly revelations about male on male sexual abuse of seminarians, where the victims are adults. These kinds of cases were not even considered in the responses to the 2002 scandal, which was about the criminal abuse of minors.
Was the 2002 scandal also related to homosexuality?
The US Conference of Catholic Bishops commissioned two reports, one in 2004 and in 2011, by the John Jay College of Criminal Justice to study the reported cases of clerical sex abuse from 1950 through 2002 and 2010 respectively. Both reports found that over 80% of the victims were neither girls, nor pre-pubescent children (true pedophilia), but pre-teen and teenage boys. These results clearly indicate that the problem was male on male predation by priests against under-aged boys.
Is there a “homosexual subculture” which exists within certain Catholic institutions?
Yes. In a 2002 survey of a national sample of 1,852 Catholic priests by the Los Angeles Times, 44% responded"yes" when asked if there was a "homosexual subculture in your diocese or religious institute". To the question, “In the seminary you attended, was there a homosexual subculture at the time?” 53% of recently-ordained priests responded “Yes” (reported in Hoge and Wenger, Evolving Visions of the Priesthood, p. 102. Their own concurrent survey yielded 55% “Yes” to the identical question.)
Books by former seminary rector Donald Cozzens and psychologist Richard Sipe have described how such subcultures encourage and cover up sexual misconduct. Predatory priests and superiors can abuse the confessional by grooming victims who confess sexual temptations. Grossly immature priests are clueless about the extent of the harm they are causing. Cozzens, who writes from firsthand experience, relates that sexually active homosocial groups were at times so dominant that heterosexual men felt that they did not fit in, and left the seminary.
How has this “subculture” contributed to patterns of abuse within the Church?
Sipe chronicles, from mental health records and public court documents, a culture of denial and cover-up by confessors, spiritual directors, faculty, and senior clerics. Sipes wrote presciently in 2011 about what he called the “Cardinal McCarrick Syndrome.” Powerful clerics, including bishops, escaped exposure and penalty even though everyone knew about their predatory behavior and abuse of power. The sense of entitlement shown by senior clerics to seminarians eerily parallels the situation of Hollywood executives to young actresses and actors.
Pictured: A family photograph of Father McCarrick and James in the 1970s. From the New York Times article.
Do these findings suggest that the time has come for the Church to relax its teaching on homosexual activity?
Actually, the exact opposite is true. These findings do not contradict Catholic teaching. The Church holds that homosexual acts are “intrinsically disordered”, which means they are inherently incapable of fulfilling the purpose of human sex relations, like blindness is inherently incapable of fulfilling the purpose of sight. Further, homosexual acts actively interfere with godliness and human well-being. Though individuals can achieve Christian maturity through chastity, self-denial, and self-control, a homosexual inclination is not a recommendation for Church leadership. In fact, since 2005 Catholic norms have formally prohibited any known homosexual man from being ordained. Honestly, applying these norms consistently would have avoided a tremendous number of problems.
Isn’t it rank hypocrisy on the part of the Catholic Church, which seems to be dominated by homosexually active men, to continue to condemn homosexual practice?
Someone once said, “Hypocrisy is the tribute vice pays to virtue.” The failure to live up to the teachings does not prove anything one way or the other about the value of those teachings.
Is allowing priests to marry a potential solution to this problem?
Celibacy is not a scapegoat, and married priests are not a panacea. In my research on married priests, I found that married priests are statistically no less likely to engage in minor sex abuse as are celibate priests. At this point, we need to focus on removing abusers and enablers from positions of power. We can talk about other issues such as the discipline of celibacy once we’ve solved this problem.
The Ruth Institute believes the facts show that:
About Fr. Sullins-- The Rev. D. Paul Sullins, Ph.D., is a Senior Research Associate of the Ruth Institute. He recently retired as Professor of Sociology at the Catholic University of America, Washington DC. Dr. Sullins is a leader in the field of research on same-sex parenting and its implications for child development. He has written four books, including Keeping the Vow: The Untold Story of Married Catholic Priests, and over 100 journal articles, research reports, and essays on issues of family, faith, and culture.
He was ordained by Cardinal McCarrick in 2002, during the height of the sex abuse crisis of that year. Fr. Sullins feels a profound sense of personal disappointment and betrayal, along with a desire to see holiness and trust restored in our hierarchy.
For interviews with Fr. Sullins, or Jennifer Roback Morse, Ph.D. Founder and President of the Ruth Institute, please email Elizabeth Johnson at firstname.lastname@example.org.