More than 200,000 children sexually abused by French Catholic clergy, damning report finds
A shocking report has emerged pertaining to the abuse of minors by members of the Catholic clergy in France. According to the report, which was published by the Independent Commission on Sexual Abuse in the Church, found that an estimated 216,000 minors had been sexually abused over the past seven decades. The document states that the Church has continuously prioritized the protection of the institution over victims, who were urged to remain silent or face certain consequences. When including victims of people who were not clergy members but had significant links to the Church, such as leaders of youth programs and staff at Catholic schools, the estimated number of victims rose to 330,000.
Between 2,900 and 3,200 abusers were estimated to have worked in the French Catholic Church between 1950 and 2020 out of a total of 115,000 priests and other clerics. The report condemns the acts of the Catholic Church, stating that the prevalence of sexual violence is at the highest degree other than in family and friend circles. The Independent Commission on Sexual Abuse in the Church also stated that children were more likely to be abused within Church settings rather than in state-run schools or summer camps. The report claims that, in France, the abuse is systemic rather than the result of a few bad actors.