[credit provider=”The Onion: www.theonion.com” url=”http://www.theonion.com/articles/pope-vows-to-get-church-pedophilia-down-to-accepta,17201/”]
A German Catholic priest has admitted 280 counts of sexual abuse involving three boys over almost a decade, the BBC reported. About 2,800 pornographic images — including several of his victims — were found on the priest’s computer.Named only as Andreas L, the priest, 46, told a court in Braunschweig he did not think he was doing harm.
Amazingly, the abuse only began recently. The first incident was with a nine-year old in 2004, the son of a widowed woman parishioner. The priest grew close to the family, and would often take trips with the child, giving him presents such as a camera and a mobile phone. When the mother grew suspicious, she reported Fr. Andreas to the diocese, which forbade him from meeting the boy again.
The priest later moved on to two young brothers, aged nine and 13, who were abused under similar circumstances. “It was never my impression that the children did not consent,” the priest was quoted as saying at the trial, according to the BBC.
Pope Benedict XVI briefly met victims of sexual abuse by priests when he visited his native land in September. He has also set up a 100 million euro fund to pay for their therapy, Reuters reports.
About 180,000 Germans renounced Catholicism in 2010, up 40 per cent from 2009, Deutsche Welle reports.