Stop Touching Those Altar Boys!

More from the ‘you can’t make this shit up’ file:

New York’s Roman Catholic Church is trying a novel approach to alert children to the danger of being sexually assaulted by a priest, with an abuse-themed coloring book, officials said Tuesday.

“Being Friends, Being Safe, Being Catholic,” was distributed earlier this year to several hundred schools in the New York area as part of the church’s Safe Environment Program, a spokeswoman from the city’s Archdiocese said.

One image in the book features a guardian angel hovering over an altar boy with a priest lurking in the background.
“For safety’s sake, a child and an adult shouldn’t be alone in a closed room together,” the angel counsels.

More from the NY Times’ City Room blog:

The comic book, for schoolchildren from the sixth through eighth grades, tells the stories of a girl and a boy who have been victims of sexual abuse in separate incidents, and how they handled the situations. The comic book urges children to tell a trusted adult if they have been abused. The books were illustrated by Charles Barnett, an artist in Lake Katrine, N.Y.

While the books carry messages that are widely echoed in other educational programs for children, they also arise from the context of the sexual abuse scandals that have roiled the Catholic Church.

“It is sad, but it is a reflection of the times,” said Edward T. Mechmann, a former federal and state prosecutor who was hired in 2005 to direct the archdiocese’s Safe Environment Program. “We have to protect the kids and make sure when they deal with adults that it’s within the proper boundaries.”

Here’s a novel idea: why not simply purge the Church of known abusers? Gasp–I know, crazy talk. Still, a bastard can dream (while the Onion weeps).

h/t JJ Hippie

2 Responses to “Stop Touching Those Altar Boys!”

  1. There’s a whiff of the Buddy Christ in there somewhere damn it.

  2. Laura says:

    Well, if only the kids would do a better job defending themselves, the problem wouldn’t exist. (large sarcasm) I heard Miss Coulter say that 5 yo children naturally ‘know it’s wrong’. (On her anti-teaching sex ed to young kids rant.) And what are 5, 10, 15 yo kids might ‘know it’s wrong’ supposed to do about some creepy, scary, old RESPECTED MAN OF GOD cornering them? Get out the crayons?!! Thanks, MatttB, for yet again messing with my blood pressure numbers!! Purge the church… yes, you can dream….

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