March 23, 2005

Prayer helps member of priest-abuse review panel


Wednesday, March 23, 2005

GRANBY - While sexual abuse by Roman Catholic priests has drawn much negative attention to the church, a Granby man who serves on the diocesan committee that investigates complaints says the problem extends far beyond Catholicism.

"It's a cultural and societal-wide problem," said Robin M. Powell, 52, of South Street. Only 4 percent of his faith's priests are sexual abusers, he said.

The Catholic Church's heavily publicized problems are just "the tip of the iceberg," according to Powell.

"We have an oversexualized society. We are bombarded with sexual imagery," he said. From cradle to grave, Americans are now subject to commercials for products such as Viagra, Powell said.

He believes the problem has roots in the loosening of attitudes that has occurred since the 1960s. "That's not always good. It's not always healthy sexuality," Powell said during a recent interview at his home.

However, Powell, who joined the Springfield Roman Catholic Diocese's review board last summer, said it is humbling to hear testimony from victims.

Posted by kshaw at March 23, 2005 07:05 AM