Washington, DC –Interfaith Alliance President, Rev. Dr. C. Welton Gaddy, issued the following statement today criticizing an advertisement placed in the New York Times by Bill Donohue and the Catholic League defending Pope Benedict XVI and his actions related to the child sex-abuse scandal embroiling the Catholic Church.
I read with great disappointment the advertisement placed by Bill Donohue and the Catholic League in yesterday’s New York Times. The child-sex abuse scandal the Catholic Church faces is a tragedy of untold proportions. It should be at the top of the Pope’s agenda, as well as a primary concern in every religious denomination that has faced similar scandals. As a member of the clergy myself, I take very seriously the welfare of the children in my congregation.
I do not question Mr. Donahue’s desire to speak out on issues concerning his church and the Pope. But I find his reasoning repugnant. To claim this is a ‘homosexual crisis’ rather than a ‘pedophilia crisis’ is a misguided insult to the millions of gay men and women who find this scandal as devastating as their heterosexual counterparts.
Rather than pointlessly pointing fingers, Mr. Donahue should start focusing on the need for accountability and transparency.. This is a time for constructive dialogue, not for demonizing and disenfranchising entire segments of the population.
Interfaith Alliance is a network of people of diverse faiths and beliefs from across the country working together to build a resilient democracy and fulfill America’s promise of religious freedom and civil rights not just for some, but for all. We mobilize powerful coalitions to challenge Christian nationalism and religious extremism, while fostering a better understanding of the healthy boundaries between religion and government. We advocate at all levels of government for an equitable and just America where the freedoms of belief and religious practice are protected, and where all persons are treated with dignity and have the opportunity to thrive. For more information visit interfaithalliance.org.