Buying redemption

by gbrouillard on February 8, 2016 - 2:51pm

Since the first stories about the allegations of physical and sexual abuses by priests started to surface in the late 1980s in Canada, a lot of new cases started to appear in the news. A new case just came up in the Montreal Gazette but this time, it is about the compensation to a newly identified victim. In the article named Victims of Catholic brother will be compensated by Paul Delean, it explains that an out-court settlement has been made between the Catholic brother Jean-Paul Thibault of the congregation Frères de Notre-Dame de la Miséricorde and the victims. This article from February 3rd 2016 states that the 73 years old priest who worked at College Saint-Hilaire will have to compensate an amount ranging from at least $55,000 to upwards to $110,000.

This kind of event really gets to me for two main reasons. The first one is that I went to a catholic school name College Saint-Paul. This means that maybe in the past, this sort of event might have happened in the school that I attended. Another reason is that in my first three years of high school, there was still a priest present in the school. He was really sweet and in no way he could have done an act like described in the article. Based on my experiences about this subject, I can tell that this sort of situation really upsets me. Of course, it upsets me because it is wrong in all the ways imaginable, but also because it depicts a really bad image of the catholic religion and of the priests who worked for the education department and actually did a good job. Because I am sure there are many priest who really cared about their student’s wellbeing and it is sad that only the bad stories come up in the news.


Your text is very well written, as it clearly explains how you feel about these Catholic priests who abused young children and how you relate to the topic as you went to St-Paul. It makes me think of another article, which was written in 2002 by the "Spotlight" team of the Boston Globe which revealed to the United States and the world the clear proof of the existence of such cases where priests abused young children. It has been written by Matt Carroll, Sacha Pfeiffer and Michael Rezendes of the Spotlight team and published on January 6th, 2002 ( It even inspired a film called "Spotlight", which is nominated for many Academy Awards this year. This article shows how the whole "child abuse by priests" concept has appeared only recently in the Western society and that it has been kept under silence for many years because of the influence and power of the Roman Catholic Church in various circles of interest. However, this ultimately led to their downfall, as many people now look at the Roman Catholic Church as a bad institution because of these abuses. No generalization can be allowed in such a context, but the anger some people feel because of these events is completely justified. This is not the only reason why people are not going to the church anymore. The arrival of Pope Francis can be seen, in this context, as a renewal for the Catholic Church, as he is considered more progressive than his predecessors and willing to acknowledge the existence of bad elements that have to be changed in his institution.