Journal Article


Marie Keenan



legal issues catholic church relational perspective child sexual abuse catholic clergy commissions of investigation masculinity social conditions

Masculinity, relationships and Context: Child sexual abuse and the Catholic Church (2015)

Abstract This paper provides background to the sexual abuse crisis in the Catholic Church inIreland and outlines the particular Irish dimensions to the problem. It argues that asystemic perspective offers best promise to conceptualise the problem of sexual abusein the Catholic Church and outlines. In turning to how the problem has beeninvestigated by statutory and church commissioned inquiries and commissions ofinvestigation (Murphy, 2009; Ryan, 2009) it becomes apparent that how the past isinvestigated and framed is not merely a neutral matter, but one that is complexlyinterwoven with present politic and changing social conditions. In offering a critique ofthe Murphy Report into the Handling of Abuse Complaints in the Archdioceses ofDublin (Murphy, 2009), as one example of a statutory commission of investigation inIreland, some significant legal and methodological issues are raised that give cause forconcern regarding some of the findings and judgements made. What cannot be disputedhowever is the fact that thousands of children were abused by Catholic clergy in Irelandand worldwide. We owe it to them to get to the full truth of what occurred and toprevent its re-occurrence. In considering a way forward for the church, victims of clergymust be placed at the centre of the church’s response, other key actors must be broughttogether in dialogue and the church must deal with the systemic genesis of the problemin a spirit of institutional reform and transformation.
Collections Ireland -> University College Dublin -> College of Social Sciences and Law
Ireland -> University College Dublin -> Social Policy, Social Work and Social Justice Research Collection

Full list of authors on original publication

Marie Keenan

Experts in our system

Marie M Keenan
University College Dublin
Total Publications: 26