Mormon Church Accused of Concealing Rampant Sexual Abuse, Victims Speak Out
Investigation unveils shocking allegations of sexual abuse within the Mormon Church, drawing parallels to scandals in the Catholic Church.
Victims claim widespread abuse and a pattern of cover-ups, accusing the church of prioritizing its reputation over justice.
The extent of the crisis is brought to light through court documents, police records, and interviews with current and former members.
Allegations Across States:
The investigation highlights specific cases across various states, including Oregon, California, Colorado, and Utah.
Incidents range from a Mormon doctor accused of assaulting over 200 female patients to allegations of fostering silence and covering up child sexual abuse.
The report details how ecclesiastical leaders are accused of perpetuating a cycle of abuse by failing to report cases to authorities.
Abuse and Silence:
Victims, predominantly women and children, describe a culture of silence within the Mormon Church.
They claim to be discouraged from reporting abuse to the police, with some alleging that the church exploits spiritual confessions to conceal criminal acts.
The report cites a recent court ruling in Arizona, where officials were not obligated to report sexual abuse disclosed during a spiritual confession.
Crisis Within Church Culture:
The investigation explores how the structure and beliefs within Mormonism may contribute to the prevalence of abuse.
The authority of local bishops, considered divinely called and led by spiritual revelations, is questioned.
It’s alleged that cases are overlooked to allow young men to complete missionary programs, a crucial rite of passage within the church.
Personal stories from victims shed light on the devastating impact of the alleged abuse.
One survivor, Kathleen Wallace, likens the situation to an “epidemic” within the church, potentially worse than the Catholic Church scandals.
The victims emphasize a need for accountability within the church and express concerns about the safety of the community.
Failure to Act and Legal Maneuvers:
The report details instances where the Mormon Church is accused of failing to take action against alleged abusers, even refusing to excommunicate individuals.
Legal maneuvers, such as claims of clergy-penitent privilege, are cited as methods to avoid legal responsibilities.
The alleged mishandling of cases raises questions about the church’s commitment to addressing and preventing abuse.
Calls for Action:
Victims are urging authorities, including Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum, to launch criminal investigations into the accused individuals.
The report contrasts the church’s handling of this abuse with its response to other cases, highlighting potential inconsistencies in its approach to protecting its reputation.
As the investigation unfolds, it underscores the urgent need for transparency, accountability, and reform within the Mormon Church.
The testimonies of survivors bring to light a deeply rooted issue that demands attention and action to protect vulnerable members and address the alleged systemic problems.