Here they are, the members of history’s oldest and most elite all-male club, trying to manage what began as a domestic crisis. For decades, priests in America, Europe, Ireland, Brazil (and God knows where else) abused—raped or otherwise molested—children and teenagers not in the frescoed halls of the Vatican but in their own backyards: on camping trips and in cars, in dormitories and confessionals. Those few boys and girls confident enough to tell their secret whispered it to the women they trusted: mothers, aunts, grandmothers. Those few women brave enough to question authority or seek justice from the bishops were hushed up and shut down. In this case Jesus was wrong: the meek did not inherit the earth. They received pious and self-serving sermonizing.
About The Author
Lisa Miller is a contributing editor at New York magazine. She is the former religion columnist for the Washington Post, former senior editor of Newsweek magazine, and author of “Heaven: Our Enduring Fascination with the Afterlife.” She is a multi-year winner of the New York Newswomen’s Club prize for feature writing and has been a finalist for the National Magazine Award.