[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/04/01/art.benedict2.gi.jpg caption="Critics want Pope Benedict and the hierarchy of the Catholic Church held accountable for the recent sex abuse scandals."]
FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:
How sad that during the holiest period in the Catholic Church, the faithful are distracted by the sins of their church.
Today is Holy Thursday and tomorrow is Good Friday, the day Jesus died on the cross for the sins of all mankind. But this year, three days before Easter, the sins of the leaders of his church cast a dark shadow over the most joyous celebration in Catholicism, the resurrection.
Instead, the church is lashing out at those who dare to expose the sexual abuse of children by priests. The Vatican plays victim, claiming it was "attacked" by the New York Times during holy week.
It's the children who go to the Catholic Church who have been attacked. Thousands of them. In one case alone, a single priest abused 200 deaf children and nothing happened to him. Nothing. He wasn't punished by the church, instead he was protected by the church.
And he wasn't punished by the criminal justice system either. There has been no justice for 200 deaf children who were taught to trust and respect a priest who destroyed their innocence.
One spokesman for the church tries to write the sexual abuse of children off as a "homosexual crisis." Like that makes it ok... grown men abusing children is ok because it's a "homosexual crisis." Any excuse to avoid the truth.
Now a lawyer in Kentucky, William McMurry, wants to try to get some justice for the tens of thousands of children around the world who could never speak for themselves. No one would listen.
So here's the question: Should Pope Benedict be required to answer questions under oath about the sexual abuse of children by the Catholic Church?
Interested to know which ones made it on air?
Kelli in Poughkeepsie, New York
Yes. Specifically, I would like a factual answer as to why the Church put the protection of its priests before the safety of innocent children. The Church's behavior suggests an ingrained culture of pedophilia has long existed worldwide. Why is it not called upon to account for this and correct it?
Maria in Tucson, Arizona
No. Now leave my father alone! Isn't anything sacred anymore? Why must we feel like we have to continue destroying everything as if a sense of vengeance will correct the past?
Patty in Bristol, Pennsylvania
Dear Jack, As a lapsed Catholic, I think he should resign. The fact is: he was personally involved. The way the Catholic Church has handled these cases is nothing but appalling. Instead of fixing the problem… the Church covered it up. That is astonishing considering the fact the Catholic Church is the most intolerant to abortion, contraception and gays.
The Prince of the Church is still a human being and ultimately the "CEO" of the Catholic Church. His secular job is under fire here, not religion. This is a corporate culture and management issue. Ultimately, those children need justice and the grown men who preyed on them do not deserve protection.
It is a travesty and disaster how far the Catholic Church will go to protect what shred of credibility it has left these days. These children and their families deserve justice, not criticism. In these times, it seems that the "little people" are consistently battered around by large organizations; the Church was supposed to symbolize an escape from that. If Jesus were to rise today, I wonder what he would have to say to the Church in light of these charges.
Kathy in North Quincy, Massachusetts
Jackie-Me-Boy! This latest train wreck from the Catholic Church reminds me of a Boston Globe cartoon from over a decade ago: A priest and a parishioner are on opposite sides of a confessional, upon which the parishioner says to the priest "You go first.”