Priests who sexually abuse should be in jail or be castrated as prayers will not work for them. This was the take of former Franciscan priest and psychiatrist Dr. Peter Evans while deposing before the Royal Commission on Child Abuse in Australia.
He was referring to alleged incidents of child abuse by Australian Catholic priests. Evans made a pointed reference to incarcerated priest Gerald Ridsdale, whom he called a hard-core sexual deviant and paedophile with significant personality disorders.
“They are far more difficult to treat. They need to be in jail,” Dr. Evans told the child abuse royal commission, reports News Corp.
The expert said priests like Ridsdale lacked empathy and are masters in deception. He said if it is difficult to imprison hard-core deviants, then medical castration must be tried to suppress their wanton sexual drive. “It’s very difficult to treat them out of jail. It’s almost impossible to stop them acting out,” he added.
Ridsdale has been in jail for the last 22 years after being convicted for abusing 53 children. Dr. Evans treated Ridsdale in 1975 for anxiety disorder that followed a police investigation against him on a child sex abuse complaint. Evans said Ridsdale denied the allegation. He found him to be passive aggressive and totally unmotivated in therapy.
Evans said the paedophile priest’s anxiety subsided as soon as the police retracted charges despite knowing that he was guilty. Evans said had he known about the litany of complaints against Ridsdale, he would have regarded him as a danger to children.
Meanwhile, a Rome hotel will be witnessing an extraordinary scene on late Sunday night when a trusted advisor of Pope Francis will be questioned by Australian judges for his alleged role in covering up a sexual abuse case in Melbourne, reports Los Angeles Times.
Australia’s Royal Commission on Child Abuse will quiz the cardinal to verify why he shifted the paedophile priest Gerald Ridsdale from one parish to another in the 1970s and 1980s. Cardinal George Pell, the Vatican finance minister and Australia’s senior Roman Catholic cleric, will be investigated from 10 p.m. until 2 a.m. in a live-streamed testimony by judges in Sydney via video conferencing.
Pell, 74, will not have a lawyer to defend him. During the hearings, he will be joined by a group of victims allegedly abused by priests. They are traveling to Rome from Australia to join him in the room for proceedings.