At the same time came the disciples unto Jesus, saying, who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven? And Jesus called a little child unto him and set him in the midst of them… (Matt. 18:1).

I do not blame God or Jesus Christ for sexual abuse against children—but for the lack of one or the other. What good do they or prayers do—after the deed is done?

The sexual abuse of a child is such a heinous crime—that the punishment of the accuser should also be just as evident and swift. To place any statute of limitation on such a crime is to approve the act.  Zero Tolerance should be the norm, not the exception—regardless of the accusers’ status in life or position.

Any Government, whether foreign or domestic, local or federal, harboring such individuals or passing laws to protect them because of Diplomatic Immunity or their Religious Status or affiliations, should be held responsible as though they committed the act themselves. Let us stop glorifying the guilty and start honoring the innocent.

Note the following: Father Julio Cesar Grassi of Argentina operated an array of orphanages that started in 1993 and, by 2002, oversaw the caring of some 6,300 children across the country.

In November 2000, a complaint was lodged against Father Grassi in the Argentine Juvenile Court for the sexual abuse of 5 boys. It took until October 2002 when Grassi was formally charged with abusing three boys.

Shortly afterward (November 2002), the Bishops Conference of Argentina, chaired by Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Buenos Aires, stated that such alleged complaints undermined people’s trust in the Catholic Church. 

Father Grassi was brought to trial just short of 6 years in August of 2008 and, after nine months—was found guilty and sentenced to 15 years in prison.

Not long after his guilty verdict, Cardinal Bergoglio approved hiring a top-notch defense lawyer and a legal scholar in defense of Father Grassi—which led to his freedom pending appeal of his conviction.

All efforts of Father Grassi’s appeals failed, and he was sent to prison in September 2013. But due to the steps of Cardinal Bergoglio—Grassi will be eligible for early release in 2021.


On March 13, 2013, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Buenos Aires became Pope Francis.

Ivan Peter Kovak

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