Sex Abuse Victim’s Incredible Healing
This meeting was not going to produce any kind of apology — that was becoming obvious. He doesn’t get it. My childhood was tarnished beyond belief. How could Bill’s once-trusted, now elderly family priest still dismiss the past sexual abuse as minor incidents he’d simply forgotten?
For Bill, the trauma of his priest’s perverse pleasures had haunted, and then ruined his childish innocence. Playful boyhood pranks spiraled into patterns of anger, fits of rage, and lawless violence. Alcohol and drugs played their part, pushed him into homelessness, and finally brought him to his knees. Desperate, Bill cried out to God for an answer.
Through AA he did stop the drinking, but inner misery cloaked him like an angry shroud. There had to be more. How could he find the peace that he craved? Bill gradually learned to control his behavior and started a business.
Ironically, years later another Priest became his emotional and spiritual mentor. Wanting to work through proper channels with his Catholic diocese, Bill engaged a lawyer. A series of tense, intimidating, and seemingly fruitless meetings dragged on, finally bringing a tepid apology. But his emotional torment remained.
Still in search of closure and inner healing, Bill traveled to the Vatican with his mentor. Together they sought an audience with the Pope. While there Bill received the Sacrament of Reconciliation from Father “B” and finally felt a touch from God.
In Forgiving the Catholic Church, Bill Christman shines a beacon of hope and encouragement for other victims of similar abuse. He desires that all who have suffered thus might dare to confront their terror and shame and find their own path to inner healing.
- BBC News – Australian Roman Catholic Church admits child sex abuse (2012indyinfo.com)
- Calls for independent review of church sex abuse (abc.net.au)
- Nine people accuse Philadelphia church of sexual abuse (amyloutarry.wordpress.com)