CLINICAL /MEDICAL QUESTIONS
1. Are psychiatrists, psychologists, and social workers equally qualified,
both professionally and legally, to examine Clerics who have a suspected
problem of sexual molestation of children?
2. If you ask a social worker, psychologist, or psychiatrist to examine
and evaluate your Cleric, is he obliged under your state law to report
this to the District Attorney or the Child Abuse Agency?
3. What is the difference between pedophilia, homosexuality and the
sexual abuse of adolescent males or females?
4. Does the age of the offending Priest (older or younger) create
a significant difference in his diagnosis and treatment?
5. Are there mitigating psychiatric disorders of which it would be
important to be aware before proceeding with a decision on a treatment
facility or a treatment program?
6. If there is a problem of alcohol or drug abuse complicating the
problem of sexual abuse of children or adolescents, would any alcohol
treatment center be capable nf treatinq both the alcohol or drug abuse
and the sexual abuse issues?
7. Are the treatment centers presently used for Catholic Clergy and
Religious, i.e. the Houses of Affirmation, Guest House, St. Luke Institute,
the institutions of the Servants of the Paraclete L and Southdown
(near Toronto) equally qualified to treat both the alcohol/drug abuse
and dependence as well as cases of sexual abuse of children or adolescents?
Do they all have follow up programs for two or more years that would
monitor the Cleric s activity and report to the Ordinary?
8. If the case involves a repeat offender and prior psychiatric or
psychological intervention has been useless, what drug therapy would
be considered in the treatment of the sex offender, whether or not
alcohol or other mitigating psychiatric disorders were present?
9. What constitutes sexual abuse? Does touching the buttocks of a
fully clothed nine year old child constitute sexual abuse either in
the law or from a psychiatrist s viewpoint? Does touching the covered
genitalia of a fully clothed youngster constitute sexual abuse? Does
masturbation of the child by the Priest or of the Priest by the child
constitute sexual abuse?
10. Does the age of the child at the time of the abuse and the extent
of the abuse have any effect on long term function or dysfunction
of this child with adults?
11. At what age would an abused child be eurpose of the Saint Luke Instituxpected to fully comprehend
and be cognizant of the long term effects of prolonged and severe
sexual abuse by a lay person or by a Cleric?
12. If the juvenile were a sixteen year old boy, would this imply
that the abuse would have a lesser impact in the adult life of this
13. If the teenager appeared to initiate the sexual contact and seemed
to Continue to enjoy it over a period of time, would this change the
offense in the eyes of the law or in the eyes of a psychiatrist?
14. If the sexual contact is mainly with juvenile boys or adolescent
boys, does this imply that the boys are more likely to be homosexually
oriented in their future adult life as compared to abuse of pre pubertal
15. Clinically, in cases involving Cleric sexual offenders, is there
a difference if the offender regularly abused children as opposed
to adolescents? Is there a difference if the victims are pre pubertal
girls as opposed to adolescent girls?
16. Would there be more likelihood that the adolescent boy or girl
would "not tell the truth" as compared to a pre pubertal child?17.
If there is a "mitigating" psychiatric disorder or psychological disorder,
would it make any difference in where you would send this priest for
18. Of the facilities listed in number 7 above, which offers a complete
neurological and neuropsychological as well as complete physical and
medical evaluations as well as psychological testing? Would the facility
and the variety of evaluations be important in determining the presence
of mitigating medical or psychiatric disorders?
19. What kind of pre-intervention strategy should the ordinary consider?
20. How soon should a complete evaluation be done?
21. Should the alleged Priest offender see anyone else before the
22. What are the causes of sexual abuse by Roman Catholic clergy?
23. What should an Ordinary look for and expect in an adequate evaluation
of a cleric?
24. How can an Ordinary know which treatment center is best for the
needs of the alleged offender?
25. Can a Priest/cleric ever return and function in the Diocese?
26. What should the Ordinary do with regard to the families of
SIGNIFICANT CRIMINAL AND CIVIL LAW CONSIDERATIONS
The following criminal and civil law considerations follow upon the
pertinent question in the same area, posed elsewhere. These are not
to be construed as answers to these questions. Rather, they expand
upon the questions and suggest the importance in dealing effectively
with the various aspects of these two dimensions of this problem.