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By Dr. Jeff Mirus, Catholic Culture, March 21, 2023

Jeffrey Mirus holds a Ph.D. in intellectual history from Princeton University. A co-founder of Christendom College, he also pioneered Catholic Internet services. He is the founder of Trinity Communications and

Unless you’ve been living in your crawl space, you know that the sacramental seal of the confessional has been increasingly under attack in recent years, especially amid the growing recognition of child sexual abuse throughout our society, including among Catholic clergy. One may well be astonished at the modern world’s inability to connect the dots between disordered sexuality generally and child sexual abuse in particular, and one might even be astonished by the disproportionate punishment of the Catholic Church as compared with State institutions such as the public schools. But disproportionately punishing the Church is actually a sign of an instinctive recognition that the Church is somehow different from all other institutions.

If the Church is not being both loved and hated in accordance with this difference, then we would be even worse off than we are now. In any case, despite extreme pressure over the past generation or so, it is hard to find cases of the Church’s ministers breaking the seal. …

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