“Bombshell” revelations of child abuse in Catholic Church expected to cause contoversy

Author of book “Lust” had exposed widespread corruption in Vatican in past

A book revealing widespread child molestation and a cover-up by Pope Francis of sexual abuses in the Catholic Church, which will be released on January 19, is expected to cause new controversy. Italian investigative journalist Emiliano Fittipaldi, who was had taken on the Vatican in an expose about corruption in the Holy See, and was subsequently exonerated of charges that he had illegally obtained documents, is now taking on the Catholic Church again in his new book called “”Lussuria” (Lust). Fittipladi, 42, discloses numerous documents and cites interviews with priests and legal officials presenting a damning picture of clerical sexual abuse against young boys and girls, while accusing Pope Francis, who has asserted that would not tolerate any child abuse, that he did next to nothing to address the problem. In his book, Fittipaldi claims 1,200 complaints of molestation against boys and girls from around the world were known to the Vatican during Pope Francis’s tenure, without the suspected priests suffering any canonical ramifications, despite the fact they had been convicted of abuse. He cites some of the 20 cases in Italy in 2016 to support his assertions. Fittipaldi alleges that under Francis’s watch, priests who practice omertà – a term that refers to a code of silence, usually by the mafia – have been favoured by the church. Clerical sexual abuse has received close media scrutiny in the US since 2002, when the Boston Globe exposed hundreds of abuse cases and brought the issue to light. But in Italy, even after the success of the film Spotlight, which chronicled the Globe’s investigation and won the Academy Award for best film last year, the issue is still considered a taboo and has never been viewed as an endemic problem.
“In all the Catholic countries, in Italy, Spain, South America, the sexual crimes of the priests are hard to tell. There is a kind of auto-censoring, on the part of journalists and victims because of the shame and because the culture of the church is very strong,” Fittipaldi said.