Adding to the sexual abuse scandals consuming the Catholic Church globally, a Dutch press report by the daily NRC claimed that 20 of 39 Dutch cardinals, bishops, and their auxiliaries are accused of covering up the sexual assault of children between 1945 and 2010. Four of the church officials were accused of sexually abusing children.
Chile: Cristian Precht Stripped of Priesthood Over Sex Abuse
Daphne van Roosendaal, the church spokeswoman, said the church could confirm part of the report. “The names of several bishops correspond to those named in a report commissioned by the church in 2010,” van Roosendaal said.
The report also reveals that high ranking clergy transferred priests who had been accused of abuse to other parishes. In some cases, clergy members were transferred more than once to cover up their abuse. The investigative report by the Dutch news daily also mentioned that the church destroyed the files of the accused members of the clergy, enabling the cycle of abuse to continue.
Roosendaal said most of the accused clerics have died and in other cases, the statue of limitation has expired.
Local bishop Bruno Grua said Saturday his diocese was "shocked by these unspeakable acts".
This report comes after widespread allegations of abuse by clergies have been storming globally. Last week the pope ordered an investigation of a U.S. bishop accused of assaulting adults. The order of investigation came after the pope and the Vatican were accused of covering up sexual abuse.
In May, Chile’s 34 bishops were summoned to Rome by the pope after Vatican investigation produced a 2,300-page report alleging that senior Church officials in Chile had failed to act on abuse claims and in some cases hid them.
In India, nuns are holding a sit-in protest in the Southern state of Kerala demanding justice for a fellow nun who was allegedly raped by a bishop.