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March 25th, 2010
06:00 PM ET

In light of the pope's role in the Catholic Church sex abuse scandal, should he resign?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Here we go again. Time now for another chapter in the tawdry tale titled: The Pope and the Pedophile Priests.

The New York Times reports that top Vatican officials - including the future Pope Benedict XVI - refused to defrock a Wisconsin priest who molested as many as 200 deaf boys.

Deaf boys? Doesn't get much sicker than that. This is despite the fact that several American bishops repeatedly warned the Vatican about this creep.

Church files show that although officials disagreed about whether the priest should be dismissed, their top priority was protecting the church from scandal. Of course.

This Wisconsin priest - the Rev. Lawrence Murphy - was never tried or disciplined by the church. He also got a pass from police and the criminal justice system. We all know the story by now... Instead he was "quietly moved" to a different diocese where he spent the last 24 years of his life freely working… ready? With children! He died in 1998... still a priest.

The Vatican calls this case "tragic" and says part of the reason the priest was never defrocked was his poor health and lack of more recent accusations.

Meanwhile this comes on the heels of a sex abuse scandal spreading across Europe - From the pope's native Germany to Ireland, Austria and the Netherlands.

There are other accusations against Pope Benedict that he didn't alert authorities or discipline priests who were sexually abusing children, when he was both an Archbishop in Germany and the Vatican's top doctrinal enforcer.

Critics say it's time for the pope to resign. But that's only happened a handful of times throughout history - and not for 600 years - so don't hold your breath.

Here’s my question to you: In light of the pope’s role in the Catholic Church sex abuse scandal, should he resign?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Christian writes:
Though perhaps unlikely, Pope Benedict XVI should indeed resign… It is clear that Benedict was, to some degree while a Cardinal, complicit in such cover-ups. Because the ultimate measure of an apology's sincerity is made manifest in the actions of the person apologizing, his resignation would send a clear measure that he is not only sincere in wanting to heal both the wounds inflicted upon the Catholic Church in general, and the untold number of wounded souls in particular, but that he is willing to take personal responsibility for his actions, an essential element of contrition.

Janet in Fort Dodge, Iowa writes:
The pope should resign, yes, but the problem is, anybody in line to follow him is going to be just as committed to keeping the church's secrets. The good priests are stuck in little country churches and never move up the corporate ladder. Real reform is needed, and I hope the people will make it happen. I am a priest sexual assault survivor and left the church long ago, but I hope for the sake of the people still in it that true reform occurs. I'm not holding my breath.

John writes:
In my home country of Ireland, the church governed communities with an iron fist and with little love, compassion or a desire for service and understanding. It's disgusting to reflect on how scores of priests got on their moral high horse every weekend and lectured to the people about how to live their lives, made sure they were confined to the narrowest of cultural and intellectual experiences and then raped the most innocent and vulnerable in society.

Peter writes:
His resignation should be demanded. His actions are the worst criminal offense: they are pre-meditated and against children. Many more children and families became victims as priests were repeatedly shuffled about in these sick cover-ups. All this was done to protect the Vatican's image or wealth or both. Famous leaders have resigned for far less crimes.

Joe writes:
Why should he resign? He would just be replaced by another priest who hides pedophiles. In 1966, a priest made a pass at me in the confessional, in Vietnam. I've never had anything to do with the church since.


Filed under: Pope Benedict • Pope Benedict XVI • Religion • Scandals
soundoff (232 Responses)
  1. Stéphane from Ontario, Canada

    No he should be FIRED! it makes me ashamed to have once called myselft Catholic!

    March 25, 2010 at 4:54 pm |
  2. David

    Yes, Pope Benedict XVI must resign.

    March 25, 2010 at 4:56 pm |
  3. Maureen Bucek

    The pope should not resign. Instead, he should use his long-term role and history with this issue to conclude that the priesthood should be open to women and married people. He should acknowledge that God's call to service in the priesthood can come to anyone. This rejuvenation of the ranks of priests would help to bring this job out of its insular and peculiar realm and into the healthy light of diverse adult oversight. Pedophiles inhabit every trade and profession but perhaps find too much power and concealment under the cloak of the Catholic clergy.

    March 25, 2010 at 4:56 pm |
  4. Mike

    Every Priest every Bishop that had the slightest knoweldge, or even heard it through the "grapevine" or even read about it, should be sent to JAIL. This is absolutely the lowest form of a human being. Poor Pope, what about the kids? Akron Ohio

    March 25, 2010 at 4:57 pm |
  5. Daniel Burke

    I don't know. But don't you think the church should let the priest marry? Where in the Bible does it say that they can't? I missed that part. The pope is the disciple of Paul or Peter to guide the church? Right. So after that happened, where does it say they can't marry?

    Columbus, Ohio

    March 25, 2010 at 4:57 pm |
  6. Mr. D

    Six hundred years! Well it's way past time the Pope is shown the nearest exit along with his band of merry pedophiles. What a farce. Smoke is rising from the Vatican and this time it is to flush out the creeps.

    March 25, 2010 at 4:58 pm |
  7. David Flick

    The Pope shouldn't resign, but he should be looking for a solution. Sex abuse has apparently been pervasive in the church; it needs to be rooted out with a comprehensive investigation. The church should give some real thought to allowing priests to marry, as well.

    March 25, 2010 at 4:59 pm |
  8. GeorgeM

    That's funny: popes don't resign.

    March 25, 2010 at 4:59 pm |
  9. Simon/Orlando

    Let's face it. Abuse has been going on in the Catholic church for centuries. No other Pope has resigned. Why should he?

    March 25, 2010 at 5:00 pm |
  10. Paulette in Dallas,PA

    Yes I think Pope Benedict XVI should resign. It's been 600 years. Well it's about time for him to do it now. He was part of the problem and did nothing to create a solution. Time for the Church to get up with the times and meet the needs of 21st century followers.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:01 pm |
  11. Kevin

    Hell yes... that would be the decent thing, but we've already seen that the church has no decency and is more interested in protecting it's image than the people it's supposed to serve and nuture

    March 25, 2010 at 5:03 pm |
  12. Nurse Lisa

    Yes – with his own still-protected brother at the heart of some allegations, and some lies today that he was somehow out of the loop w/info many bishops escalated to him – this former nazi pope is doing a grave disservice to his faith. If he was so apologetic to the Irish, what about to the many abuses he ignored in his own country.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:03 pm |
  13. L. Shads

    YES! What more powerful message that the Catholic Church is finally addressing the abuse scandal head on then to have the Pope resign?

    My suggestion is that he should resign and spearhead a committee to resolve the abuse scandal worldwide and then go on and address the celibacy issue with priests.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:04 pm |
  14. Sue From Idaho

    This abuse has gone on for so long who among them would be fit to serve? Even if they hadn't been a perpetrator they had to of known of what was happening. All the blind eyes should be put out.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:05 pm |
  15. Steffan in New Zealand

    It is illegal to hide child molesters from the law. If the Pope knew, he should resign. I find it hard to believe he didn't know anything.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:08 pm |
  16. Mike in New Orleans

    The pope should be arrested and processed within the criminal justice system just as anyone would be who protected and covered up organized pedophilia. But when you and your friends get by with something for hundreds of years, why worry?

    March 25, 2010 at 5:09 pm |
  17. sam davis

    Frankly that is an issue for Catholics to resolve. It is their religious organization, not ours.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:09 pm |
  18. Fred

    Of course the Pope should be de-Poped. If the Vatican were Lehman Brothers, this joint would have been shuttered long ago. Those folks need to take up pilgramage and "Onward Christian Soldiers" that show to Afghanistan or elsewhere.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:09 pm |
  19. KarenB

    I am not a student of theology, but the little I have heard – I thought the Pope could not resign or be removed/fired/defrocked-whatever, that whatever Papal Law governs it dictates he must remain Pope until death...? I'm not saying that's a good thing – obviously not a good thing.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:10 pm |
  20. Craig

    What kind of excuse is "poor health" and "lack of more recent accusations" for not getting rid of a pedophile priest? What if our judicial system used that same reasoning for every child molester, drug dealer, or murder?

    North Beach, MD

    March 25, 2010 at 5:11 pm |
  21. Marcy - Margate, Fl.

    First impressions are lasting impressions: I didn't like the looks of the Pope when he was first elected. I still do not like the Pope, but, then again, I am not Catholic and I do not have to like the Pope. I feel since all this contraversey, the number of years involved and the Pope's participation in trying to hide all of this, yes he should resign.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:11 pm |
  22. Banned in Hartwell GA

    I don't think he should resign. He can stay in office an example of what the Catholic hierarchy has become. If I were a Catholic I'd be ashamed of my leadership.
    Allen
    Hartwell GA

    March 25, 2010 at 5:12 pm |
  23. Hal Cronkite

    Why bother? Who would replace him? It sounds as though it would require dropping down at least half a dozen levels in the church hierarchy in order to find anyone who would behave differently.

    Cape Town, South Africa

    March 25, 2010 at 5:13 pm |
  24. Jesse J Vancouver Canada

    Hi Jack,

    It's time for a new generation to lead and it is time for all religions to have a reconciliation like they did in South Africa... shed light on all the dark secrets of the church and maybe people will start to believe again.

    Until this happens people will leave all churchs and keep losing faith and only the fatatics will remain.

    It also might be a good time for the Pope to forge a new path for the church and reverse an age old rule and let priests get married.

    Jesse J
    Vancouver Canada

    March 25, 2010 at 5:13 pm |
  25. Heru

    The Pope is a joke. God didnt choose him...a bunch of other dudes in a dress did. They should let preist get married...to a man or a woman. That'll eliminate over half of the scandals. Maybe the next Pope should be a lady Pope.

    Baltimore, MD

    March 25, 2010 at 5:14 pm |
  26. Pamela Porter

    Yes.

    The church is one of the problems in this world.

    They sit there in Rome with their jewels, art, etc. and tell poor countries to continue to have babies and pretend there is
    no such thing as AIDS.

    Because men have natural needs and nobody to express those with, they ruin the lives of innocent children. The whole church needs to come into the modern era.

    Pamela
    Austin, TX

    March 25, 2010 at 5:16 pm |
  27. Robert Hitchberg

    Yes, he needs to go. He is an embarrassment to those of faith and conscience.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:17 pm |
  28. Mike in Miami

    It wouldn't change anything if he did. It would still be someone from within the ranks. What does it matter if the church replaces one criminal with another?

    March 25, 2010 at 5:17 pm |
  29. Gigi Oregon

    Let's move on and believe that God will be just in his dealings with each of us. After the past months we need to clean up our own government mess before we mess in someone else's nest..

    March 25, 2010 at 5:17 pm |
  30. Denis Duffy

    The infallible never resign. With sex abuse in the Catholic church, no one need discredit them. They discredit themselves by their actions. The Catholic church sexual abuses have been going on for centuries. They protect their own and hide from reality. The hair shirt they don is fallacious. So sad to see a religion repugnantly protecting child molesters. Morally and religiously bankrupt.

    Denis Duffy
    Upper Saint Clair, Pa.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:18 pm |
  31. Udo

    Yes he should-but who would be put in his place? They're all tainted by this.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:18 pm |
  32. annie kraft Naples FL

    why should he ... the next one will be no better...until the church allows marriage and gets rid of these pedophiles who prey on children it will never change...what a shame...

    March 25, 2010 at 5:20 pm |
  33. Jason

    Yes, he should. However, the Catholic Church is so out of touch with reality and the people it is trying to lead that what would the resignation accomplish? This is an organization that, time and time again, has demonstrated it's perversion and sickness, not to mention it's ignorance and disregard for proper morality and decency.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:22 pm |
  34. Jessica

    yes, but I am not sure the replacement would be any better, the cover-up has been going on for so many decades, that I am sure most present day Cardinals have been touched by it- the last pope and this one, have systematically removed any progressive bishop that there are no progressive Cardinals – the Church in its rigidity has lost the heart and spirt of Jesus' teachings in the last 25 years -

    March 25, 2010 at 5:22 pm |
  35. brenda

    The catholic church does not work like politics, the pope did not participate in this sin the question of resignation should not apply ti him in the first place

    March 25, 2010 at 5:23 pm |
  36. Tim

    Resign? He should be imprisoned. To allow a known child-rapist to continue to rape kids without reporting it is a serious crime. I don't see how people can remain with this church after all it's done trough the centuries, and continues to do.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:23 pm |
  37. Hank Kelly

    Do you really think the Pope is going to show compassion for the abused and leadership for his church by resigning? He's not Harry Truman. Truman accepted responsibility by saying "the buck stops here". With the Pope, the buck stops nowhere.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:24 pm |
  38. Pat

    Yes. But we are living with our heads in the sand if we think that will ever happen.
    The Catholic church has known about abuse since my time in the 50's. Nothing done then and nothing will be done now.

    This tip of the iceburg will never be corrected. Apologies from high ranking Vatical officials just don't cut it anymore.
    Remember all is politics and the pope will keep his job any way he can.

    Pat

    March 25, 2010 at 5:24 pm |
  39. Joshua Driggs

    Yes, of course he should. Members of this Church should demand it !
    Grand Rapids, Michigan

    March 25, 2010 at 5:24 pm |
  40. dennis dehart

    The Catholic church is and has always been about money & power. There is more blood on the hands of the Catholic church than they can ever wash away. But oh wait, they will confess their sins, throw a ittle money around and everything will be like it never happened. Glad I'm not one of their sheep.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:24 pm |
  41. Gail Craig, Plano, TX

    Yes, but he won't! If this latest scandal shows us anything, imagine how many other skeletons are in the Catholic closet. It is so sad Jack, children, our most precious gift, abused at the hands of men who supposedly stand in the stead of Christ.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:24 pm |
  42. Rich

    Resign? No! He should be arrested!
    If the Catholic Church had come forward and told the world what they knew, submitted known clergy abusers to authorities, comforted and supported the victims throughout the world, then I would consider their apologies as positively moving in the right direction. Like I said before, the Catholic Church is equal to the Mafia in it's practices of intergrity, but even the Mafia has some sense of honor!
    The Catholic Church is plain and simple, con-artists who have gotten away with the biggest scam in world history.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:24 pm |
  43. Marian Nielsen

    He should do what's right and just. I always said it was about individuals and some of the leadership not all as you still have very good & decent Catholic Priests and Bishops. We mustn't forget also that they come from the same societies as ourselves and so there will be bad eggs and apples amongst them.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:25 pm |
  44. Praetorian

    Pope Benedict should absolutely resign. If it were proven that he willfully allowed a known pedophile priest to continue working with children, that would just be the icing on the cake. After all, it was the same Pope who ordered under penalty of excommunication that reports of sexual abuse be kept secret. That fact in itself is cause enough for him to step down. And this doesn't just apply to the Pope. Anyone with the mindset that the Church must be protected from scandal over and above all things does not belong in a position of authority, and must be removed from those positions for the Vatican hierarchy to regain any credibility. And if the Vatican is banking on the growth of the Church in the developing world to keep them strong, they would do well to consider the amount of support it can expect from the average follower in sub-Saharan Africa, or from a campesino in South America.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:28 pm |
  45. Gary - Woodhaven, Michigan

    There is no other profession I can think of where a superior covering up the illegal or immoral actions of someone in his or her charge would not be booted out, forced to quit, or willingly resigns in shame.

    Being a Pope is a profession that is no different than any other when it comes to any human violation.

    What is truly shameful about this is like many corporations, governments, military conflicts; in the end all ill deeds are always about money.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:28 pm |
  46. Jasmine

    Yes, he should resign. I sadly left the Roman Catholic Church about eight years ago when I could no longer take the mockery to decency that the church's magisterium (leadership) displayed towards the sex absuse scandals. Clean up, allow women and married preists, and more people like me will come back to the pews.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:32 pm |
  47. Brent

    The entire religious sect of Catholicism to include the Pope should be resigned as its origin and practices were based on lies and social control from its inception

    March 25, 2010 at 5:32 pm |
  48. Gary H. Boyd

    No, Pope's don't resign, they just fade away. (Wasn't it MacArthur who said that? No, he was a 5-Star General who just thought of himself in that light). . Fact is, Pope's may be immortal to some but our earthly calendar will resolve his reign in due course.

    Gary H. Boyd in Scottsdale, Arizona

    March 25, 2010 at 5:35 pm |
  49. Ann-Virginia

    Absoultely!The Catholic church has abused people in many ways since the beginning of the Catholic church & gotten away with it.Now,it is time to pay the piper.Clean house!!!

    March 25, 2010 at 5:35 pm |
  50. Greg H - Minneapolis

    Jack, you just cannot resist yet another chance for "Catholic bashing" in light of recent news involving the current Pope. Hindsight is always "20-20", with any number of "self appointed" experts getting up and (no pun intended) pontificating on what the Pope should have done. We didn't see any number of Democrat politicians resign when they were PERSONALLY involved in sex scandals (like Gerry Studds), so why hold the Pope to a higher standard?

    March 25, 2010 at 5:37 pm |
  51. bennie

    absolutely the pope should resign better yer arrested and jailed the entire catholic organization are obstructionist of our laws and have committed criminal acts against weaker ones in our society (children) since the beginning of their reign . I don't see any christianity in thier historical heineious behavior.they are not worthy of being characterizes as being christians the world of sicko's might cherish them but my creator does not!

    March 25, 2010 at 5:37 pm |
  52. Mike

    As a fellow Catholic, I can only say I am disgusted. Yes, this pope must set an example for the church and resign. He professes to be a leader so I say he should lead by example and clean house on his way out.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:40 pm |
  53. Carolyn

    I think any Bishop, Cardinal, Rabbi, Minister, Boy Scout Leader etc. etc. that has had any part in covering up such actions should step down. In fact I think they should have charges of child endangerment brought up against them. The fact that they moved these people around to prey on other children is sick.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:41 pm |
  54. Monila75

    These same group of Christians has probably with pro-abortion, but they have molested so many boys in the last half century. No one should be in a leadership position and are committing criminal behavior. Especially to kids! pro-abortion is not criminally, it's a woman's right and women should be able to make that decision, whether it is wrong or right. But our kids do not have the option to have same choice. They are abused. Know the difference in everyone's right's.l

    March 25, 2010 at 5:42 pm |
  55. JackD

    Resign? I was not aware that the Catholic Church was a democratic, performance-based organization.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:44 pm |
  56. Janet Clark, Fort Dodge, Iowa

    The Pope should resign, yes, but the problem is, anybody in line to follow him is going to be just as committed to keeping the church's secrets. The good priests are stuck in little country churches and never move up the corporate ladder. Real reform is needed, and I hope the people will make it happen.
    I am a priest sexual assault survivor and left the church long ago, but I hope for the sake of the people still in it that true reform occurs. I'm not holding my breath.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:44 pm |
  57. Jake

    The Holy Father is infallible. He cannot resign because it would set a new precedent in the whole world.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:46 pm |
  58. Tom in Desoto, Tx

    He should resign, but he'd probably open a day care center.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:47 pm |
  59. David Sisters OR

    He cant resign, he's been appointed by God.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:47 pm |
  60. cy gardner

    Resign? If he sets one goofy red slipper outside the Vatican he should be arrested and extradited for aiding and abetting child molesters. It disgusts me when the church takes a political stand in America and acts as if it has the right to some moral authority. Because of the breadth and depth and despicable nature of these scandals the Catholics have no right to preach to anyone about anything. If they want to get on their high horses again, let them get a pope who doesn't look like a criminal. cy , arlington, va

    March 25, 2010 at 5:50 pm |
  61. Terry from Illinois

    I married into a Catholic family and my wife does not understand why the Catholic church protects these preists who are committing crimes. First, they should be allowed to get married and have a family for a normal life style. Second, if a priest is proven to have committed a crime, no matter what it is, they should be prosecuted just like anybody else !!!

    March 25, 2010 at 5:51 pm |
  62. Michael H. in Albuquerque, NM

    In light of the history of sex abuse scandals the pope should be arrested and prosecuted for obstruction of justice for his part in hiding the pedophile pervert priests. There is only one solution for dealing with perverts and that is prosecution. But the pope chose to protect the reputation of the church instead. As a result the children were put at risk and the church has been brought down. Next time the church wants to cover up a child molestors perversions just tie the pervert up and throw him alive into the Vatican furnace.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:52 pm |
  63. broussca

    a resounding YES!!!

    March 25, 2010 at 5:54 pm |
  64. Moki, Tucson

    They need to resign celibacy and give clergy a natural, healthy outlet for their desires, then they wouldn't have the need to impose themselves on the innocent. When natural, healthy sex is repressed it shows up in distorted fashion.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:58 pm |
  65. Tim in Texas

    Yep and they should put those 60,000 nuns who sent a letter to Congress supporting health care reform in charge. It would sure be nice if the church had people who actually care about people in charge.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:59 pm |
  66. Doug - Dallas

    Don't you just hate when a cover up is exposed especially when you did the covering up? Yeah he should resign but he shouldn't worry; he can always find a job over here as a politician or a lobbyist. There's a demand for that kind of talent.

    March 25, 2010 at 5:59 pm |
  67. oregon ruben

    I am a Catholic and I am ashamed of him and my church. The church is so self righteous when they kick children out of school for being born to a gay woman, then turn their heads when children are raped by clergymen. My Pope must clean his house before getting involved in our non-church lives.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:01 pm |
  68. joe

    Why should he resign? He would just be replaced by another priest who hides pedophiles. In 1966, a priest made a pass at me in the confessional, in Viet Nam. I've never had anything to do with the church since.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:09 pm |
  69. Peter

    His resignation should be demanded. His actions are the worst criminal offense, they are pre-meditated and against children. Many more children and families became victims as priests were repeatedly shuffled about in these sick cover-ups. All this was done to protect the Vatican's image or wealth or both.
    Famous leaders have resigned for far less crimes.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:09 pm |
  70. Peter M

    He should resign. He leads an organization that has been accused of sexually abusing children worldwide with impunity for decades. There is nothing wholly or pious about people who destroy innocent lives and hide behind the religious cross.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:10 pm |
  71. Terry Trafford,PA

    I feel this scandal and others will taint his papacy until his death. I think that advocating his resignation as pope is like crossing a cultural divide. We in America are more open and transparent in our approach to problems, whereas the Vatican represents a different cultural mindset. This particular case and others in Germany only represents a mindset of Old World Catholicism whereby the secret acts of priests were kept secret and dealt with accordingly once it started coming out. This does not excuse the harm done to the victims. However, we can't take our present mindset and inject it back into Cardinal Ratzinger as Archbishop of Milan or head of the Doctrine of the Faith. I know this pope is very sensitive to all this and must realize that he is a "imperfect sinner" in need of continuing forgiveness and redemption just like the rest of all humanity.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:10 pm |
  72. Mari, Utah

    As a cradle Catholic, I am disturbed and disgusted that the pope knew about these abuses and moved the abuser/abusers to other parishes. I believe that the Vatican has always known about these abuses and has chosen to hide the scandal and crimes rather than clean house!

    Yes, the pope should resign, but he wont.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:12 pm |
  73. steve- virginia beach

    Anyone involved in the sex abuse of children should be prosecuted and incarcerated, including those who aid and abet by engaging in cover-ups.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:13 pm |
  74. Cory S.

    I'm SO sick of things like this happening..

    March 25, 2010 at 6:14 pm |
  75. Liberal4Obama

    Yes, there is no excuse for covering up a crime

    March 25, 2010 at 6:14 pm |
  76. Eric

    YES!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:14 pm |
  77. Bob In Florida

    In the 13th or 14th century the Pope predicted and described each and every new Pope in the Catholic chuch up to and including this one. This one is considered to be the last one. He should resign!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:15 pm |
  78. Mike

    YES! And he should go to jail!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:15 pm |
  79. Sheila from Alberta Canada

    Should the Pope resign? Yes, yes, dear God yes!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:15 pm |
  80. Lucy, Austin, Texas

    After reading this story I am more committed to the fact that religion and politics should never be mixed. Law enforcement gets all screwed up if it is based on who you know instead of the enforceable laws of your city. Politics and religion become amoral when mixed. Politicians are suppose to uphold the law of the land and religious leaders are suppose to uphold our moral standards. What are a few hundred child sacrifices between friends if we can avoid a little public embarrassment. Can these guys be charged for covering up the crimes? Do only the innocents have to pay the price for political and religious ambition?

    March 25, 2010 at 6:15 pm |
  81. linda contract

    immediately if not sooner.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  82. Eric

    arrest him the moment he steps off the vatican grounds.
    Eric
    Largo

    March 25, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  83. Carol Breidenbach

    I am a practicing Catholic and yes the Pope should resign.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  84. Joe Jenkins

    He needs to man up and absolutely resign. Time to take responsibility for your sins Pope.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  85. Chris, Towson Md.

    Resign from the Catholic Church. I did.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  86. Mehdi J Karbasi

    This is a simple question, and deserves a simple answer. Yes.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  87. Al Whassizname

    Infallible?

    March 25, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  88. Edmon

    Absolutely! The Pope knew about the horrendous crimes being perpetrated by high members of the church. Instead of finding a solution for the problem and punishing those responsible he elected to cover everything up and switch the responsible parties to areas where locals knew nothing about these accusations!! Just unacceptable for the leader of the Catholic Church.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  89. Jon, Rural Wisconsin

    I have been hearing horror stories about Priests since I was a child and that goes back quite a way. If someone actually cared don't you think they would have done something about these pedophiles by now? I had a friend that graduated from a catholic school in the eighties and was told his gym teacher was called Father Peter Grabber. I used to think this was funny but now I think these guys should go to prison.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  90. Naomi Bartel

    Yes the pope should resign. Sexual abuse should not be tolerated and as a world figure he should hold the church up to a higher standard. His lack of action shows how dead the Catholic church is.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  91. str84wird in Sedona, AZ

    I think that he should indeed fall on his sword and resign.

    It would send a message to priests and other pedophile religious leaders...like the rabbi on Phoenix news this week.... and they might realize that they are not above the law, just because they think they have an inside line to God.
    These pedophiles are Godless beasts and anyone who defends them is excusing their crime without having the authority to do so....even the Pope.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  92. Nancy Rogers

    I do think he should resign and if he chooses not to, then the Catholic church should demand his resignation.

    His behavior of knowing about a pedophile and "doing nothing" is shameful.

    When are people going to stop tolerating this kind of behavior?

    March 25, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  93. John Walsh

    Why stop at having this old creep resign? The Catholic church is a giant criminal syndicate and the whole thing should be shut down. This enormously wealthy and corrupt organization has long since forgotten the spirit of Christ's gentle, simple, powerful message.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  94. Alberto

    Yes he should, is funny how they defend the creeps, but when is about other people, they just go to the jugular.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  95. Harlan

    In my opinion, all organized religion should be resinged so, I am probably not the best person to ask this question to.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  96. Anthony Nelson

    YES! The pope should resign!!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  97. craig cuddeback

    Not only should the Pope and other church officials resign that have had anything to do with covering up child abuse, they should be investigated for potential criminal or civil charges personally.

    Craig

    March 25, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  98. Melvin

    This is why Martin Luther started the Protestant Reformation. In my opinion there is no need for Popes in order to be a Christian. Yes, all Popes should resign.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  99. QSligh

    I think he should, but that will never happen. Funny how the church will denounce birth control and abortion, but not sex abuse. I guess they want to protect the unborn, so the priest later can abuse them!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  100. Dustin

    The Pope should step down. He helped to cover up the abuse of children. While I guess it is forgivable under Christian law, his “penance” should be to step down from his position of authority. No one who turned a blind eye to the abuse and exploitation of children should be the Representative of Christ on this earth!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  101. Ken (Memphis)

    No, he shouldn't resign. He needs to face the problem.
    If he steps down, the rest of the iceberg will never get discovered.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  102. Sarra

    Can you impeach a pope?

    March 25, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  103. Antonio from Washington D.C.

    As long as he doesn't touch little boys and girls, he's off the hook!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  104. Karen C

    The pope should resign because he obviously doesn't meet the requirement of infallibility.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  105. MOSEANIA from Chicago

    He should be put in jail as a co-conspirator. Why should these people get away with such a henious thing as enabling a pedifier just because he happened to be a priest?

    Wake up religious people, "no one is above the law," and that includes the pope.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  106. Jeriann

    Yes he should resign. He is no better than the priests that do these sick acts. Just because preists ask for forgiveness from the church does not make them exempt from the law.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  107. Bertil

    jack, catholic bishops should stand up and ask the pope to resign. I have nothing against the catholic church, but these reports are shameful. He should resign and really apologize to the families of the kids in WI and the ones in europe.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  108. Noel in Nashville

    Why does this continue to surprise anyone anymore? We know what the policy was and we know that it only changed when it became public. We know that the Church protects pedophiles. Yet, somehow this illusion persists that the Church is a moral institution. I just don't get it. I'll say this: there is no way in hell that any Catholic priest is going anywhere near my young sons!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  109. Jim of Oregon

    OK Jack. The Pope has further degraded his "Power" in the world, and in light of the Papacy's power over the last 2000 years, he is in far worse shape than any other "world leader" in the Polls. Maybe my Bretherin in the Catholic Church should get back to their "roots" and quit worshiping ceremony, and concentrate on real world facts.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  110. Joe

    This story is a broken record, this is not the first time these accusations have come up and won't be the last....the Pope should resign but won't and the media should cover it everyday until justice is served for those boys but won't.

    Joe

    March 25, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  111. martha from tx

    No anybody can make a mistake. The pope should acknowledge his mistake, ask for forgiveness and serve his pennance.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  112. Ellen

    What difference would it make? The cover-ups have been so widespread that he would probably only be replaced by a bishop with the same shameful record. There needs to be a wholesale re-working of the Church, and I am saying this as a practicing Catholic.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  113. Shane Rogers

    Jack, the pressure shouldn't be on the Pope....the pressure should be on those who put him there. I'm a Protestant, so it's really not my right to comment on the Catholics, many who are very good people. However, you're DAMNED RIGHT he should be removed as leader of the Roman Catholic Church because of the crimes that were committed under his "leadership." If the Church can't get it right, real justice should be able to hold him responsible for his actions.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  114. Alex

    Based on what has been uncovered about the Pope, including his negligence on reporting priest at the expense of innocent children, he should resign. Although it may seem a bit extreme, the pope based on what is reported may be at the center of a deep scandal. Overall, because of the children's expense, he should resign.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  115. Misoir-ATS

    These types of disturbing events combined with the cover-ups by the highest ranking catholic could be a leading reason that religion has been sinking in Western Europe. The governments and media are finally revealing negative information about the church that has been hidden since its' founding. Just imagine what kind of sick monstrosities have been covered up throughout history in Europe by the church. That is part of the reason I'm an Agnostic, simply disgusting.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  116. Patricia/Georgia

    Yes he definitely should...and if he doesn't they should call for a quorum and de-throne him. I know this looks bad for the Catholic church but for a holy man to know about something like this and do nothing to protect the church is wrong. It is like hiding a killer because this priest or Bishop whatever he was, was killing the youth of some child. There is no excuse for a cover up here. Too much of this has been going on for too long and it is time to put the child first not the church. The chuch has been here for a long time and it will endure but this scandle will pull it down faster if nothing is done.Before text messages and fast ways of communicating, one could hide it but it is not that easy now.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  117. Jim McKay

    He should resign. The church should issue a policy letter from the next pope that all crimes within the church be reported immediately reported to the local law-enforcement authorities.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  118. Bob

    Why worry about him resigining there religious organization makes no sense unless you are pedohphile. I can't beleive anyone would support the Catholic Church which should make them go broke. There is a lot of strange people out there and that is why some people still attend. Just like I don't join any of these organizations because I know they are a fraud. I also don't go along with the violent attitude in this country which the government pushes to make everybody paranoid because of who their constituency is and tell everybody they are civilized and God fearing individuals which is a bunch of "hog wash".

    March 25, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  119. Eric

    Yes, he should resign. Sex scandals are flashy, but while we are at it – I would love a serious look into his reasons for joining the Hitler Youth, and why he supported the death camp Dachau.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  120. Barbara

    Of course he should resign. Catholics should be demanding his head on a platter. The fact that he hasn't been removed reflects poorly on all Catholics.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  121. K Little,

    Regarding the Pope.... Wrong question Jack. The question should be...."Should the Pope do jail time for his role in all this?" Of course, the answer is yes!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  122. Liz

    You bet the Pope should resign for having turned a blind eye to the sexual abuse of hundreds of children. The Catholic church certainly should not be a shield from either the law or from what is right and moral. The Pope is supposed to be the most pure moral voice for millions of people world wide. He did not protect the most innocent and defenseless among us from serial pedophiles who preyed on children. He deserves not only to be removed from his role as Pope but also legally held responsible for his role in what he let happen.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  123. Bruce

    Yes, he should resign and do penitence in public - doing service for the poor and sick. Fallibility is the rule for all humans and especially where there is such evidence in all level of the Catholic church on protecting officials rather than helping people.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  124. Jim Fay

    There may be jurisdictional concerns within The Vatican that protect the pope, but they should NOT interfere with his arrest the moment he steps outside that border of protection ! His actions of protection show a clear and present danger that exists by telling ANY perpetrator within the church that they will be protected. He must go. If it requires him to dragged out, well at least he will be out.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  125. steve- virginia beach

    Yes but this has been going on so long that I doubt resignations or lawsuits would solve anything. I think that Catholics teaching their children the fist-to-the-groin maneuver and when it would be appropriate to use it would be more effective.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  126. Gregory Miami Beach, Fl.

    Yes he should be replaced , but who would replace him? I'm sure the pedophile impulse runs far and deep in this playground for pedophiles. The church will resist change and we have something better to do on our Sunday's anyway.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  127. Thomas from Chicago, Illinois

    Let the Catholic people decide his fate. It is obvious that the great German born, Martin Luther was right. The Catholic Church should be disbanned.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  128. Cathy Lavin

    As a devout Roman Catholic I am beside myself not only about the abuse but also by the lack of accountability. The only ray of hope regarding accountability is the Irish Church where the implicated bishops stepped up to the plate and resigned over their lack of action. Pope Benedict XVI has accepted each resignation. So, YES, it is time for him to have the wisdom and courage to resign. I am praying for just that. Cathy Lavin

    March 25, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  129. terry from Long Beach, CA

    Absolutely not.

    I don't understand how people are surprised. Dogs bark! Cats meow! And, even though you can teach them to do tricks and live in captivity Orcas are "Killer Whales." The operative word here is killer! So, when the wild animal, or the "good christians" start behaving accordingly people declare they're "outraged."

    I've seen this movie so many times it should be in syndication.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  130. D.

    Honestly I think the entire structure of the catholic church should be torn down, I'm no atheist. But hasn't it been proven that the church can't be trusted. How much more proof do we need? Any time the church has had power in history horrible things have followed. The church,priests and even the pope should have no more power or legal exemption then you myself, or the drug dealer on the corner.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  131. linda contract

    The pope should resign immediately if not sooner.
    The Catholic Church policies are outdated and
    cruel. I work with deaf people (and deaf children
    in years past). This is soooooo outrageous.
    Linda Contract, Santa Monica

    March 25, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  132. Richard

    Most definitely he should, as should each of his cardinals, bishops, priests and nuns and as should every rabbi, reverend, minister and mullah. Just IMAGINE.....Lennon had it so right....John Lennon that is.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  133. Corey Chapman in New York

    Oh of course not Jack this is " a holy man" who praises God he just happens to be a child molester. Come on jack he has this is a sick twisted man and should be asked to do more than just resign.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  134. Shirley

    Hi Jack , I love watching you and Wolf. You asked should the pope resign, he should be kicked to the curb then locked up forever. It is discusting what is going on with the catholic church

    Shirley From Newfoundland Canada

    March 25, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  135. k sedlmeyer

    could not help but comment on your query.

    not only should the pope RESIGN, he should be criminally prosecuted for his role in covering up all this crap for as long as he has been the supposed "watchdog" on abuse cases.

    issues like this (& a few other doozies) have made it a simple decision to sever my ties with the catholic church.

    12 years of catholic education........so many unanswered questions & pathetic non-responses to poverty & human suffering all over the world.

    this is one institution that deserves to see it's doors closed.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  136. Ervin

    I guess the pope would say, it was Gods will for 200 deaf boys to get abused and to let the criminal go free. We would hold accountable anyone for this crime if it was just one child. This is another step towards the unveiling of the Vatican as just simple humans.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  137. Chris in Atlanta

    Jack,

    Hell, if you can get to become the Pope after being a Hitler Youth doesn't seem like there's nothing you CAN'T do... except, well, use contraception! Everyone connected to the scandal should be exposed, prosecuted, and (pardon the term) crucified...

    Chris
    Atlanta,GA

    March 25, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  138. Butch

    No, he should not be forced to resign, but he should be forced to dismantle the Catholic Church, a sickening, corrupt, and greedy institution left over from the Middle Ages and a likely haven for the practice pedophilia for hundreds of years.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  139. Norm Tracy

    Throughout history The Church has wielded huge power and has been involved in some very shady business. This time though, The Church has stooped to all-time low. Yes it is time for the Pope to resign his position and those involved in these horrible acts be prosecuted...just like ordinary citizens of the world who are convicted of similar crimes. This is not only illegal in most civilized societies, but just plain immoral. I'm sure God would not approve.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  140. Trudy Hamor

    After working for 38 years in child protective services, the fact that the Pope and other officials chose to save the church over young boys who could not even express their fears...overwhelms me with sadness. '

    Yes, I think the Pope should resign, along with many others who conspired to protect their church and livelihood over the emotional health of young people. There should be some public penalty for the Catholic Church and those in charge of it. Otherwise it is as if we are all condoning their behavior.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  141. Tony

    If god is real then god should punish him and the rest. If god is not real then the church should be disbanded for being a criminal organization that has crimes like abuse and worse going back for hundreds of years. If god is real and does not want to do anything then it would explain a lot about the true nature of religious history. Kind of like frying ants with a magnifying glass. And we are the ants.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  142. David B, Lynnwood, Wa

    Resign? How about taken away and throw the book at him!
    And I don't mean the Bible!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  143. Hugh

    No, if anything, he should work harder at changing the situation, that allowed the cover-ups to happen. Unless H.G. Wells can lend us the time machine, we can't go back and stop the abuse, but we can go forward and prevent more. Abuse has happened in many places unfortunately, but hopefully the work can be done to make sure it doesn't happen anymore.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  144. Ray Novak

    Yes Jack as a life long Catholic myself, the pope should resign. He knew about this abuse of these innocent deaf boys and did nothing about it. What went on in Ireland and Germany and the Us is despicable. The Cardinals should select someone to take his place who values the life of a child as something precious as did the previous Pope.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  145. Valerie C.

    Yes, the Pope should resign, but of course he won't, consistent with the Church's practice of harboring the guilty.

    With worldwide pattern unfolding over the 10 years, it is clear that sexual abuse of children by priests is not a "challenge" or a "problem" for the Church but an institutionalized, regulated practice. These guilty priests are protected and supported by the church, while thousands and thousands of children have been irreparably, terribly harmed.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  146. Mike Khavari

    What is it about catholic religion that despite all the problems with the prists, people still continue to go to the catholic church? Are they totaly stupid?

    March 25, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  147. Valerie

    Mr. Cafferty,

    The fallacy of your position is that of broad generalization. For every 2, 10, perhaps dozens of priests behaving badly, there are tens of thousands quietly going about doing the Lord's work. Should those misbehaving be dealt with properly? Of course. But let's not condemn an entire group of people – Catholics – because of what is a RELATIVELY small number of sinners.

    V.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  148. Julie

    The catholic church needs to stop worrying about its image and take care of its members. If the church can be so staunchly pro-life, protecting the lives of unborn children, surely they can take care of the children that already exist to ensure their lives aren't ruined by these predatory priests. If the pope is capable of recognizing this, then he should most definitely resign.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  149. Jill

    If this is indeed the case, then, as a Catholic, there was only one right choice here; this priest should have been dismissed from his duties and prosectuted to the fullest extent of the law. This is a black stain on the goodness that does exist in the Catholic church. There are many good priests out there doing incredible work, and people who do these horrendous acts are casting a shadow on the goodness that many do. Enough of this. As shephard of the flock, the pope has a duty to protect our children first and foremost. End of story. This is clear cut black and white.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  150. tony

    Isn't the pope supposed to be the closest thing to god? Would god do what the pope did? I don't think so, he should go.

    Tony
    Manchester,CT

    March 25, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  151. george german

    Pardon the pun Jack but Oh my god?????.....And to answer your qustion,ummmmmm,yes this person should step down.

    If the pope is incapable or sadly in all likelihood not willing to bring real law and order to his disturbed flock of petefiles and nutbags he should step down.
    George
    chester,ct.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  152. Martin Carrier

    Jack,

    He should resign if he is clearly linked to the cover-up. But at least, he needs to address this major scandal by allowing that justice be done by allowing an independent investigation to proceed.

    Martin
    Tucson, AZ

    March 25, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  153. maggie horn

    hey jack if what you say is true about the pope.sure he should resign and failing that he shouls be fired and defrocked himself he has the lost innocence of hundreds of little kids on his concience.Mag in Quebec (once RC)

    March 25, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  154. Lillian Peracchia

    Yes, absolutely; we definitely need to clean house. However, we could end up with someone worse!!!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  155. Reggie

    No the pope should not resign, thats just silly. The Pope was and is only fullfilling the will of the Catholic leaders. The Pope and the Catholic leadership is full of GAY PEDIFILES who pray on the week. That fact the the Pope WON'T EVEN APOOLIGISE PROOVES MY POINT. The Pope is the ANTI-CHRIST and this prooves it. There are good people in the Catholic church, if your one of them get out now!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  156. DKT

    Jack:

    The not-so-secret fact about the Catholic Church is the subculture of child molestation that has been ongoing for decades. The Pope resigning due to this recent scandal would be a mere drop in the bucket and wouldn't affect squat. The running of the Catholic Church needs to be overhauled to the same degree that the government of this country does.

    Best,
    DKT.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  157. Tom from Vermilion, Ohio

    What would Jesus do?

    March 25, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  158. Mark Green

    No he shouldn't resign. German authorities should be issuing an arrest warrant for Mr. Ratzinger for his complicity in a systemic pedophile ring, both while he was a bishop in Germany plus while he was the head honcho in Rome in charge of how church officials should best avoid dealing with local authorities whenever child abuse allegations were made against priests. He is one of the worst kinds of criminals and should be spending the rest of his life in prison.

    Mark – Vancouver, BC

    March 25, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  159. Tom

    Jack, the answer is YES YES YES. Also did you know Prez Bush granted him immunity from testifying in US sex abuse trials AND that he yanked Cardinal LAW out of BOSTON before he had to go to trial and then gave him a church to run in ITALY? Enough is enough. They have consistently covered up abuse and should all be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law

    March 25, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  160. Rich

    Simply, yes. In most societies this would be called "aiding and abetting". Throw him out, lock him up. That goes for any pedophiles, especially if they are in a position of power.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  161. Mike Scarborough

    The Pope isn't going to resign because he's "infallible." If I were Catholic though, I would seriously consider resigning from the Catholic Church.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  162. Tim

    If he resigned it wouldn't change anything. The problem is the church it self . The church has some clergy that are what I call the good guys but unfortunatly they are not the ones in control. Being a Methodist I find the hypocrisy of the church disappointing. I grew up in New Orleans and was able to witness the good and the bad of the church first hand. New Jersey

    March 25, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  163. Phil

    My heart is sick sick sick, but not as sick as the the leadership of the Catholic Church. Yes, he must go and the election of church leaders must revert to the people.

    The only vote any catholic has is the pocketbook / wallet. All Catholics should vote with their pocketbook until those old men who prance around in dresses resign.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  164. Mike Johnston

    Yes and every church involved should forever lose tax free status!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  165. Tom Libby

    The pope should not only resign, but he should be tried, and if found guilty, jailed. He would then get a taste of what he could have prevented hundreds of children from undergoing, had he done the right thing at the right time.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  166. Corey Chapman in New York

    Oh of course not Jack this is " a holy man" who praises God he just happens to be a child molester. Come on jack this is a sick twisted man and should be asked to do more than just resign

    March 25, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  167. Alan

    Jack,

    As a confirmed Catholic, I am appaled by the sytemic abuse of children by Catholic priests.

    This abuse is reported in all G8 countries...imagine what these pedofiles are getting away with in the third world?

    It's funny that Catholic priests are now commonly associated with sexual abuse.

    Since the Vatican is a state, what prevents nations from taking military action against them?

    Alan

    March 25, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  168. Therese

    Jack, Of course he should resign. My mother was raised as a devout Catholic. When my father requested a divorce, my mother was requiredto pay a fine and file an annulment, if she wanted to remain a Catholic and receive the sacraments. Yet men who use their positions as priests to sexually molest CHILDREN are allowed to remain in the the church, to remain PRIESTS! It is hypocritical and criminal and absolutely disgusting! SHAME on the church. Catholics come home? 40 days for life? Are you serious?

    March 25, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  169. terry albrecht

    In light of all the horror visited on mankind in the name of religion through out history I can only say THANKYOU GOD.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  170. Megan

    NO! We all suffer trials! The church is suffering terribly. I'm not excusing the behaviors of anyone involved. It's horrible the actions of the church but now that it is out in the open hopefully, with prayers the church will be able to return to it's vitures. Satan is everywhere and his biggest enemy is religion therefore we all must live in grace and not be tricked.
    Spfld. MA

    March 25, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  171. pascale luse

    Yes, this pope should resign. He is not infaillible. He protected his "institution" and not the children that were put under the so called protection of his church. The church protected its "sinners "and gave them ABSOLUTION . The church should have punished its CRIMINALS... Shame on the Catholic Church. 2,000 years of power and abuse is enough. The church should start paying taxes on ALL the money they are getting that does not go to charity...including the extravagant salaries at the VATICAN.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  172. Ethan

    I think it's time for the entire Catholic Church to take a step back and look at the way they do business. It seems that they are continually wrapped in a scandal of on sort or another. And like any other 'administration' I am sure that what we know just scratches the surface. With over 1500 years of practice they are just better at concealing it. I would suggest they try stripping away the frills from the church and get back to the bare bones of what is important in their Christian faith. Simplicity of living a good live and having strong moral values.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:23 pm |
  173. EK

    Of course the Pope should resign and the rest of the 'role models' in the church, but there is not a 'facility' large enough to hold them all! It is so interesting that over the years, 'the church' has been hailed as the 'real' religion, while those of us who are not Catholic, or even Christian, are looked down upon as lesser persons. In light of the most recent revelations, I am proud to be one of those in NOT in the that group!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:23 pm |
  174. michel

    He should resign. Isn't it a crime to cover up crimes, especially if covering up the initial crimes leads to more crimes?

    March 25, 2010 at 6:23 pm |
  175. Jason P

    resign? He should be investigated.... If it is found that he knew about abuse and 1 child was harmed after his knowledge and he did nothing, he should be prosecuted. At the very least, there should be no exemption for religion from our justice system!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:23 pm |
  176. Vince

    As far as I'm concerned, he should resign regardless of the clergy abuse matters. Like his predecsssor he is trying his best to undo the advances in the Church made in the last 35 years. He also shows no interest (or ability) to reign in and clean up the incredibly arrogant, incompetent Vatican staff. How bad can a successor be, compared to him?

    March 25, 2010 at 6:23 pm |
  177. Eric

    He hid, and therefore directly participated in child rape. Is there any way he can be arrested?

    March 25, 2010 at 6:23 pm |
  178. Marilyn B.

    Yes, I think he should resign. I feel so badly about this scandal. Nothing will repair the damage done to so many and worse than that the condoning of the secrecy of these vile acts by a man who Catholics believe is infallible!!!!!!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  179. Tony Simon

    There's a paper trail that proves the pope's participation, and makes it mandatory for him to resign. If he doesn't, someone should put together a $25 billion class action suit. That might get the Vatican's attention.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  180. Scott

    The Pope represents "God's" voice here on Earth, if he doesn't resign that would mean "God" condones child molestation. My advice is to leave the Catholic Church. They'll see their profits fall and you'll see the Pope resign.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  181. Bill Carpenter

    The Catholic Church lost its moral authority long long ago. Like all churches it is nothing but a business and should be taxed accordingly. I pay my property taxes and so should the Catholic Church and all other special interest groups that are commonly called religious organizations.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  182. Joe Shields

    I spent two years in the Catholic seminary before becoming disillusioned with the Priesthood as it now exists. These high profile cases of sex abusers in the Priesthood are alas not exceptions, but more of the rule. In the words of Pope John XXIII (my inspiration to enter the seminary way back when), "open all the windows, it stinks in here". The Vatican and the Catholic Church needs to get back to Vatican II Council reforms. Women should be allowed to become priests. Priests should be allowed to marry. That would do it. That would be enough right there to fix the problems with the Church. It's what Jesus would do.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  183. Freeman - St. Thomas

    He won't resign. No one but God can fire him. If this is the kind of person that God employs it really makes me wonder.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  184. Denise

    In light of the pope’s role in the Catholic Church sex abuse scandal, should he resign?
    Yes...how genuine Christ like it would be to take on all the sins of the Christian faith by stepping down as the ultimate act of atrition.
    My 50 something year old husband was molested by a Priest in Lorraine Ohio in the 1960's; he has never gone forward with this and has kept it to himself.The obvious damage done is three fold.He never stepped foot in a Catholic Church again and refused to raise his own 3 children as a Catholic. All churches are notorious for keeping the sins of their flock in house...bad press is not good for the offering plate.Resignation of the highest position is in order.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  185. Mauricio, FL

    Yes he should. Immediately!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  186. Mike Scarborough

    The Pope isn't going to resign because he's "infallible." If I were Catholic though, I would seriously consider resigning from the Catholic Church.

    Atlanta, GA

    March 25, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  187. Marlene

    Yes, the Pope should resign.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  188. carlos florida

    jack, the signs of the times, wolves dressed in sheep clothes,not only he should resign but they should do away with catholic churches its gaining so much steam and a reputation that jesus himself would denounce

    March 25, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  189. john, saskatchewan

    No he should not resign. He should be placed in the Vatican square surrounded by 6,000 children ages 6 to 18 who have been sexually abused. He can explain to them why he did nothing to protect children just like them.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  190. Sue

    Absolutely he must resign. or better yet, be fired. He, and others, should also face criminal charges. When will abuse to children ever end?

    March 25, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  191. P.Bui

    Yes, the Pope should resign, if he knew and took no action about this terrible crime.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  192. Patricia

    Yes, this Pope should resign. He was and still is part of the child abuse problem. I have written to the Jesuits at the Vatican for two days now giving reasons for the Pope to resign.

    It is disgusting that as a Cardinal in Germany, he did not seek to take pedophile priests out of their areas of practice. The pedophile who assaulted the deaf boys should have been tried in the US court system for his felonious crimes.

    I remember when this current Pope denied that Jews were killed during the Holocaust! He speaks against the use of condoms in African countries rife with AIDS. This Pope is a loose canon.

    Currently declared that I am an ex-Catholic and soon to be trying the Episcopal Church.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  193. Chuck Barker

    Should every Catholic complicit in the cover-ups of these acts resign? If so, the entire Catholic church would crumble.

    A better question would be who the hell continues to allow children to be in these positions of vulnerability?

    Chuck
    Longview, Texas

    March 25, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  194. Daniel

    Yes, he should resign

    March 25, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  195. John, Fort Collins, CO

    Since he can no longer have people burned at the stake if they are a problem to the church, the Pope's options are very limited. Although my Scots-Irish Presbyterian forebearers emigrated to America 200 years ago to avoid persecution from this same church, I feel at this time in history this mess is best left up to practicing Catholics. Since many are my close friends, I wish all of them the best.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  196. Joni

    I stopped being a Catholic in the 90's during the Boston etc sex abuse cases. I was incensed by the lack of care for parishioners. They were children for God's sake. And it continues, country after country after country... It's always The Church at all costs. Don't they get it? The church IS the people. How dare they – over and over and over again. POPE Benedict? How about Benedict Arnold?

    March 25, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  197. Robyn C Morrow

    How could any Mother or Father in the world look into their own hearts and not say "resign immediately! if not sooner?!" If this was going on in any other business, the doors would have been closed yesterday!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  198. Barbara Gehringer

    Absolutely he should resign. Will he ? No.
    Does the College of Cardinals have the power and the courage to "impeach" him?
    Barb..... an old catholic from Pa.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  199. Paul Tompkins

    He should never have been elected!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  200. Teena

    For those who are catholic should ask themselves who am i really following the pope, a mere man or christ, lord and savior. Without question, absolutely he should resign.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  201. Paul Barritt

    The Pope should not resign, he should be jailed. Can anyone tell me why none of the pedifile priests have not been prosecuted?

    March 25, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  202. Reggie

    The pope should be charged and sent to prison for his crimes!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  203. Yohann

    Jack , do you remember when the last Pope dismissed this problem as an American problem ! These guys are either out of touch or criminals . Let us treat them as criminals and as they do time, and criminals do it to them , they will recover . Prosicute all of them, including Benedict .

    March 25, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  204. Mary

    The pope should resign. this is not his first coverup and the religious leaders who use the name/word of god to do evil are worse than the evil commited. They're all against abortion, now we know why. Just more for them.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  205. Ronald King

    Absolutely, the Pope should resign or be removed from the post. What hypocrisy! One is left wondering if he engaged, himself, considering priests are promoted to bishops who are promoted to cardinals and one becomes Pope. This is the same Vatican that forbids Catholics to use condoms, even in developing countries, as well as the inner cities in the United States, while the world faces a devastating epidemic of HIV/AIDS.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  206. Joel Zwack

    The Church has never recovered from the infection of the '60s. It saddens all traditional Catholics to see the depths to which the Church has fallen. The virtual solicitiation of the people to enter the priesthood in the 60s has now borne its natural results.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  207. Dennis

    Why should he? It's been the Catholic Church's policy to evil things all throughout it's history! Burn people at the stake, other forms of torture. This orginization makes its existence by treating people like unholy objects that they can treat as Satan's minions in the flesh. They are the one's who should be damned! All of them!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  208. Kelly

    NO ONE should be able to get away with sexually abusing children. ANYONE to be found guilty of this should be criminally punished. It should not matter what religious background you have or who you are. If you touch a child in an inappropriate way you should be punished. Period.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  209. Jeff Fedrick

    I forgot to push the red submit button about the Pope. The Pope was given amnesty by Pres. Bush jr when he was trying to get some personnel business done with the Vatican.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  210. John Ebert

    The events happened in the 70's. The Pope was made aware in the 90's. Ths is 2010. Give it a rest!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  211. Susan O'Shea

    Jack,

    I am a 69-year-old practicing Catholic from New Canaan CT and Vero Beach FL, and yes the Pope should resign!!!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:28 pm |
  212. spencer in nj

    This is the problem with organized religion, anyone who believes that a god would let this happen to one of his or her people by one of his or her ambassadors to this world is not thinking clearly. Believe in god not in religion.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:28 pm |
  213. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    I'm not a Catholic and know nothing about why and how a Pope becomes a Pope and how he makes his decisions on any matters. But I suspect resign or not resign is something between he and God.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:28 pm |
  214. Ron

    What is the use? If this Pope resigns where are they going to find a replacement that has clean hands? In order to maintain the myth that the RCC is infallible they will do any and everything to hide, detract and cover up any action that would dispel that ideal. Even if the Cardinals are innocent of child abuse yet they are all part of the cover up because from what we see now, that was the Church's policy. How will they find anyone who is not implicated one way or another? The thought is depressing.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:28 pm |
  215. June McKeon

    Yes he should and so should all the others that knew about this scandal and brushed it under the carpet. Disgusting.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:28 pm |
  216. Rob

    The catholic church is a terrible institution!!!
    The Pope was as a matter of fact a member of the Hitler Jugend!!!
    Furthermore the history of the catholic church is tainted with blood!!
    People forget how many women were burned at the stake including Joan of Arc. It is a hypocritical church in relationto birth control and marriage/ divorce etc.
    I am convinced that any Pope is just a human being and has no
    power whatsoever, not even from above!!!
    All the expensive robes and hats do not impress me!!!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:28 pm |
  217. Ferggy

    I am 47, a catholic my entire life. This continued hiding of child preditors has to stop somewhere. It should also START with the current Pope being UN-Poped if he wont willingly resign. It is disgusting and everytime we hear one news scandal more brave souls come forward to tell their abuses at the hands of my church. Preditors place themselves near children. This is a sacrid trust broken by the current Pope. The Pope's job is to serve God AND serve the people. Anyone helping to hide or move a child predator, at ANY time in history committed a crime and they should go to jail as an accessory.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:28 pm |
  218. Linda Lee

    It has been Catholic Church policy for decades to shovel this sick problem under the carpet. Instead of requesting the resignation of this pope, only one part of a vast systemic problem, perhaps he can start to heal this gaping wound by admitting openly not only the overall problem, but his own mistakes in the handling of it. If healing is the goal, it has to start somewhere – why not at the top? Then he can openly admit that even the church cannot try to force human beings to remain celibate. It is unnatural and has obviously failed miserably.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:28 pm |
  219. John in NY

    Yes, the pope should resign. Until the Catholic church cleans house and sweeps their trash overboard, they will not get back the respect they once cammanded, as the great world religion. All priests involved in crimes against children, as well as, those who were involved in coverups should be defrocked.
    If the church let priests marry these problems might not be such a big deal. But, then they would have to support all the wives and children of the clergy and that is why celebacy was instituted, back in 1545.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:28 pm |
  220. panch

    CRUCIFY HIM! Especially before all the facts come out!!!!

    March 25, 2010 at 6:29 pm |
  221. Adam

    I wonder how many people were "calling for the resignation" of Pope Lucius III, during the time of the Spanish Inquisition. I am of the opinion that this "Holy" Leader of the sovereign nation of Vatican City will never be held accountable for these lapses in his holy judgment. Following the Papal rhetoric, asking the Pope to resign would be like asking God to changer her mind. This isn't the first crime that a Papal Administration has committed, and it surely won't be the last.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:30 pm |
  222. Jason P

    If I were politician who had a history of touching children.... would you donate to my campaign? Think about that when you are passed the collection basket on Sunday.... yes he should resign

    March 25, 2010 at 6:30 pm |
  223. Karl from SF, CA

    Yes, sadly, he should resign along with a lot of Bishops, Archbishops and Cardinals. The Church needs a complete remodeling internally. Maybe a little Hope and lot of Change would help. Considering the extent of pedophilia practiced or condoned by the Church’s current administrators, the next Pope should be a recently ordained priest that hasn't been tainted by years of scandal.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:30 pm |
  224. Sarge

    Absolutely, this is totally ridiculous and shameful. These are grown adults, but let's be for real. This religion of Priest and Nuns' who are respected and bowed down to when they pretend to be Holy and uninvolved in sexual activities is all a bunch of "praised" B.S.
    If you are interested in sex with children or just plain gay, this is the perfect place to hide, while gaining respect and trust from dummies who believe you are God's best buddy. They should be executed of such actions and anyone who is guilty of willingly covering such acts of insanity to be removed, NO QUESTIONS ASKED. The Pope shouldn't have the opportunity to resign. He should be Locked Up. No way I would allow my child to enter a catholic church for any reason.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:30 pm |
  225. Bill from Kansas

    If the Catholic Church wants to improve their already atrocious track record of dealing with things like this then yes. The pope should resign. It is the moral thing to do. The only thing I don't understand is why would someone like the pope knowingly let something like this to continue without intervening? I am sure God is ashamed.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:30 pm |
  226. TenLou

    Absolutely. Sexual abuse is the worst evil that can be committed against a being. It has the potential to torture and destroy one's entire life and in most cases does just that. Anyone who has lived through this hell or knows of others who have, realizes this is true. I wish CNN would do a documentary about how this destroys people's and family's lives.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:30 pm |
  227. Michel Auclair

    All of those involved in hiding this monster, including the pope, should face criminal charges. If I am correct, this sound like helping a criminal after the facts which according to the law is as bad as committing the actual crime. There has been enough hypocrisy from the Catholic church and the best way to make sure they think twice next time they commit a criminal act is to charge not only those committing it but those covering it up. This is the law. So should the pope resign, yes. Should the pope be criminally charged, definitely.

    Michel
    Canada

    March 25, 2010 at 6:31 pm |
  228. lea bickerstaff

    I think without question the Pope should resign. How are we Catholics suppose to follow him and do anything he says...he is not a religious man in my opinion. People would have thought a lot more of him had he done the right thing instead of sweeping it under the rug as other Bishops have done through out the country. It is time for these priests, Monsignor's, Bishops, Cardinals and now the Pope to practice what they preach. You see a wrong, correct it....no matter the way it looks....people would have thought better of the Catholic Church had they threw these bad priests out!! Don't turn them loose on other unsuspecting people. I raised 3 boys who were all Alter Boys, would I let them today...no way.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:31 pm |
  229. Michael

    If a law is broken or if a crime is covered up, all involved should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Add to the fact that priests are getting away with crimes against innocent children who are told to respect and honor these individuals. The US Marshalls should use their power to cross borders and bring those involved into custody so that victims can have their day in court.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:31 pm |
  230. Maria

    Fat chance that will happen, altho he should resign. I speak for a family that went thru a son-in-law coming forward with information that a priest abused him as a youngster. Coverup all the way from the top, and the priest had already retired, living a nice life in the south with no apologies. My son-in-law committed suicide a year later after trying to get justice for himself and others. How many other lives have to be ruined before this cult is held responsible?

    March 25, 2010 at 6:31 pm |
  231. Damudbug

    Don't expect anybody in the Catholic Church to come clean on this one. Apparently, Benedict was just as deep in the coverup as all the rest. How shameful that supposed men of God have none. This kind of thing tends to make one wonder if the "evil underground" in the church as presented in THE DA VINCI CODE and ANGELS AND DEMONS might not have several large grains of truth in there with the pure fiction.

    Come clean guys! Show us all what true Godly men are made of......

    March 25, 2010 at 6:31 pm |
  232. Kelly

    Catholics believe in redemption therefore It's not for me to judge. I pray for the victims.

    March 25, 2010 at 6:31 pm |