Robert Barron | – Bishop Barron’s New Book on the Sexual Abuse Crisis

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Today we discuss my new book, titled “Letter to a Suffering Church: A Bishop Speaks on the Sexual Abuse Crisis.”

In light of this current crisis, many Catholics are understandably asking, “Why should I stay? Why not abandon this sinking ship before it drags me or my children under?”

This book explains why this is not the time to leave, but the time to stay and fight.

Thanks to generous donors, you can claim a copy of the print book for free (you just cover shipping) and place bulk orders of 20+ copies for just $1 per copy (with free shipping).

Encourage your pastor and staff to order copies for your whole parish!

NOTE: Any and all profits from the sale of this book will go to trusted charities that support the victims of sexual abuse.

About The Author

Bishop Robert Barron These are brief and insightful commentaries on faith and culture by Catholic theologian and author Bishop Robert Barron. The videos complement his weekly sermons posted and podcasted at

Comment (49)

  1. @bishopbarron and @brandobvogt : I hope you are truly prepared to “fight” as you say and suggest here. John 2:15 tells us Jesus fashioned whips out of cords and chased the money changers out of His Father’s Holy Temple. The priests, bishops and cardinals who are this very day engaged in sodomy and/or natural sex are changing believers into nonbelievers; virgins into non virgins; lovers of God’s Holy Church into haters of the church. What are you prepared to do?
    We must chase these heretics out! St. Peter Damian pray for us. Archangel Michael fight for us. This evil in the church must be eradicated. Bishop Barron there are sexually active priests in your arch diocese of Los Angelos. What are you prepared to do?

  2. Bishop Barron,

    Thank you for giving us this letter. Brandon mentioned that you all would like to get this out to as many people as possible. Could you please release a PDF document online? I cannot find one and it would be a way for people to have access to this letter without spending money.

    Thank you

  3. Why do we write a book when the Satan is not only deep in the church but spread wide throughout the church… stunning that this is taken this amount of time and still the problem exists.. find them,, hunt them down,,, eradicate them,,,what is wromg with you Sir. ..thw Fear of God needs to be put into the devils that are in the church acting as Priests and Bishops … Hate the sin Hate the sin, Hate the sin…compassion? !? Yes.. its called thank you for your service.
    Get out! !! Do what Jesus says,, pp dont hamper the children in their quest for finding the Lord… these gay and straight people in sheep's clothing are satanic.. eradicate them NOW!!! All of us are in a war for our souls amd for the souls of others but we are told by both Jesus amd Paul that we can erase people with no desire to know God from our lives, none of us are commanded to use unending compassion when dealing with our fellow man, instead we are shake the dust off our feet, to leave them for God himself leaves them to their ways… what in God's name are you people, the Pope and his bishop's thinking by allowimg this infection, this assault, this hollowing out of / on the Church to continue. .

    Shame on you allllll and this Book is not the answer and it is just part of the problem.. you are all lukewarm! !! Decide for His sake not the reputation of mens sake… decide to fix the problem, .. annihilation of this problem is the only answer that satan could respect and annihilation of this evil is the only acceptable answer to the church.. these cardinals, bishops and priests and deacon need to be thrown out, no retirement in a far away monastery, no pension, eradicate them from the ranks as they are excommunicated already!!! GET them out, no books, no nice and slick youtube videos… get them out … incredible that the video starts with a pride filled acclamation. .. shame on you shame on you… I am picturing Jesus, the Lord of the Universe, shaking his head and weeping,
    … shame on you.. a Bishop making excuses for the past and wasting everyone's time with a book that is not needed… everyone knows what needs to be done.. get them out or leave yourself. .. you are lukewarm Jesus spits you out.. the Luke warm.. everyone in a leadership position is luke warm…can you not understand? Beware, stop being lukewarm.. its insulting, its weak, Jesus is not com ba yah . JESUS is a sharp two edged sword come to divide, create seperation, come to sift.. get them out.. totally out. . Let them go to . prison or on the street and leave them to God, He will work with those willing to listen but they all must fall…this is still going on now. . No Doubt! !this problem can be solved in maybe 2 years. Many will leave once the Cardinals and bishop are sent packing. .. this is sooo easy to fix yet here we are with pride about a book! !! Shame on all you but especially you Bishop. ..look in the mirror and decide if you are lukewarm and remember Jesus already knows. May the Lords face shine upon you and may His peace surround you throughput your life, with great respect and boiling hot advice…. Christopher Michael Jones

  4. First, convince people that they are lost and in need of salvation. Second, create a messiah to give that salvation. Third, teach people that the bishops and priests are Christ in person. Fourth, make people dependent upon priests for forgiveness of sins. Fifth, convince people that the priest can conjure up the messiah in bread and cheap wine.

    And people wonder why priests are predators. The religion is predatory.

    This bishop is speaking as a charlatan losing money from 33% of the "flock" seeing through the scam.

    "There's never a good reason to leave the Catholic Church" is his message. When your son is bleeding from the anus because the local priest rammed him so hard and your boy never told you because he was told you would be killed–not a good reason. When you have been lied to for 35 years, being told by the church leaders that this was an "isolated incident" and was resolved, and today the count is up to 10,000–not a good reason. When multiple cardinals are exposed as pedophiles–not a good reason.

    The victims have suffered. The church is not suffering, just losing credibility to a new generation that refuses to enslave themselves to its abuse.

  5. The laity needs to pray and fast. Learn to suffer with a heart full of joy and peace. Offer your suffering to the Lord. Learn to work well. Use work as a mirror to see your lack of virtue; use work to develop virtue. Perfect yourself so that you gain merit in the sight of God. It is by Grace that we are healed; It is by Grace the Church is guided; It is by Grace the Church will be healed. Make yourself and your prayers pleasing to God; be a Saint!

  6. Why does he not talk about the real problem? “Homosexuality in the priesthood”.

    A letter from St. Peter Damian in 1050AD, is nothing like the current crises. Where so many Priests are openly homosexual.

    Also outside the church young girls are 12x more likely to be sexually assaulted yet inside the church the sexual abuse is almost exclusively young boys.

    This is not just an abuse crises it is a homosexual Priest crisis.

    Bishop Barrons series on Catholicism’s key players was excellent. However he has missed the mark here. We need courageous bishops to stand up to the false teachings. Such as the “it’s ok for a homosexual to be a priest or seminarian because they are celibate anyway”.

  7. It’s been going on for centuries and the church has covered it up for centuries.

    The church now is showing some concern now that society has lost its reverence for the Catholic Church and its agents. Society is no longer willing to look the other way.

    The Catholic Church has not yet paid adequate compensation to those that have been harmed by the church. People around the world are disgusted by the way the church has and continues to conduct itself.

    The good reason for leaving the church is the lack of evidence for the supernatural Jesus.

    The church has been lying to people for centuries about the gospels.

    People are now too well educated to fall for the stories that we were told and taught to believe as children.

  8. The Pope has just issued new norms on abuse reporting but what I read had one GLARING omission. As soon as a church official in any position or even a Parishioner hears of abuse involving a minor, the first and immediate call should go to the civil authorities. No exceptions ever!

  9. As a Protestant, I am heartened to hear Bishop Barron and his call to stay and fight. I agree. Christians should stay and fight. Christ will prevail. I'll order the book to gain a better understanding of what happened and how Bishop Barron sees the issue. I hope the Bishop also provides a roadmap on how to fight for the faith. No one better than he would know how to get the bureaucracy to respond. May God command his angels to protect you and bring you strength for the struggle. God bless you

  10. Undermined and harmed the church.. the church has been spiraling into despair.. what about the children and families? I am catholic, and I don’t understand why no one is willing to take responsibility. The language surrounding this crisis is so indirect and vague it is FRUSTRATING.

  11. there is no organization that anyone could say should not be left. Molesting children in their flock and then having the higher ups cover it all up for decades is unforgivable.Blaming the Devil instead of the evil leaders of the church is a cop out and silly. The devil made me do it! guess anyone can be excused using that logic.

  12. The Devil, the one Jesus called the father of lies, has created this crisis by corrupting, not the Roman Catholic Church, but a relatively small number of sinful people within the church that satan Loathes and Despises. The Devil has installed his agents where they could do the most harm, and uses these vile people to cause this. When we hear that 40% of Catholics are so clueless, so lacking in faith, they see this a fault of the one true church, and not just an attack by Evil on his worst nightmare, the Church of Jesus that saves souls from eternity with the father of lies in hell.

  13. Another scandal as report shows cover up of sexual abuse in Catholic churches in Birmingham under
    Cardinal Nichols watch .
    Shameful organization.
    Parents should keep children well clear of priests .

  14. Bishop Barron is cooperating and enable pedophilia priests against our 19, 20 yr. Old seminaries who are being sexual attack…! Shame on him for not standing up and denouncing this and them. Instead whitewashing the while matter on a book he sent out to bishops all over the United States….!!!

  15. Blame it on the devil? Really? That’s the tactic when churches don’t want to take responsibility. How about bringing the pedophile priests to justice, arrest them, charge them, send them to court and put them away for good instead of moving them around or reassign them or hide them away and then blame the devil. The church needs to be cleansed of these people in order to survive. More transparency would also help so that people can trust the church again.

  16. Got my copy yesterday – read it in one sitting with my Bible on my lap. Bishop Barron presents the facts with no attempt to excuse or mitigate. He also proposes how we can move forward, including the full involvement of the laity, legal and criminal investigators, and pursuing consequences for those involved and how to prevent any more occurrences. I completely agree that we need to 'clean house' and get back to the Holy purpose of the Church, bringing all to Christ. All humans are open to sin (including our priests), but that does not mean that we should EVER turn away from the love of God through Christ. I, for one, will be fighting on! Thank you Bishop. I ordered copies for my whole parish. 🙂

  17. Great letter but I ordered 20 issues and I am, spreading them in parish. BUT GREATER THAN SEXUAL SCANDAL IN CHURCH IS SCANDAL OF NEGLECT!!!! is that Churches hierarchy does not give a flying hoot about catehesis. Ask your average Bishop how many catehists he met in the last year and talked about catehesis for like 3 minutes or more? I have been cathehists for years 0 interest from any priest in my church how my kids are doing? At least 80% of my children will be NONES and not because of scandal but neglect of their parents and pastors

  18. I used to watch this channel called "Church Militant" who totally talk bad about Your Excellency. Im ashamed that I used to believe them. I can feel your heart and I know youre there for us. Ill be reading your book and going to Mass tomorrow for the first time since Christmas. Thank you Father!

  19. Bishop Barron, I've read the booklet. It really does appear that you get it. So I'm appreciative of that. I'm also appreciative that this is aimed at keeping people in the church which is what we want.
    I do have a couple nits to pick though. First, why do we see no bishops or any priests of stature coming forward to say they should have said something? Maybe it wouldn't do any good for the jaded but for the faithful a little sack cloth and ashes in public might help us believe that the clerical folks take this seriously. You talk about St Benedict in the book giving up all that Rome had to offer in terms if earthly power. As you recount, he walked away and lived in a cave. I have yet to see one priest or bishop even offer to give up their fairly cushy lifestyle for penitential service for what they might have done or known but didn't speak about, etc.
    Second, your chapter on historical scandals focus mostly on papal issues. But this one seems like a widespread issue across lower level and higher level prelates. It seems different in the breadth of the issue. I may just not know my church history well enough though.

  20. This may come in three months late, but may I ask Bishop Barron: why is it that among the clergy, bishops, the Pope and even during the synod dedicated to this, never has this crisis been called explicitly by its name, despite of Cardinal McCarrick's and similar cases coming out, that it is the homosexual predation by the clergy? Why? Is it forbidden to name the gays among clerics and the hierarchy as the perpetrators and at the root of the crisis? Why divert or euphemize it by naming clericalism as the culprit when the elephant in the room is homosexual predation by the gay clergy? Why?

  21. If you’re trying to draw back the people who are discerning whether or not their presence in the Catholic Church is in alignment with God’s will you might want to take the focus off the lacerating impact this has had on our Church and focus on the lacerating effect the abuse has had on the victims and their families. You’ve missed the mark in the intro at least. This has been the challenge I have had over the years. This is a grieving of an abuser, not the victims and their families. Yes these are difficult times and yes we will come through them, but we need to be aware that our actions create a ripple effect on life. And this could be the basis of the Church’e response. “We made evil decisions and now we pay the price for them.” That’s reality. I believe in the Catholic faith. I also believe evil exists and it has taken hold of our church. Your attachment to the veil that once masked these horrors is why they will continue to erode the church.

  22. If you look at schools and families, the overwhelming majority of abuse victims are female. This is to be expected, as most people are heterosexual. In the Catholic Church it is the reverse. 80-90% of victims are teen or pre-teen boys. There has been for 40-50 years, a subculture of homosexuality within the priesthood.

    Bishop Barron blames Satan. Padre Pio once said that there is only one way that evil gains entrance into the soul, through the will. He said there are no hidden doors. The problem isn't Satan, it's gay men with no self-control. I don't blame Bishop Barron for trying to soften the blow, he is trying to rally Catholics, and that is admirable.

    The hardest thing for non-Catholics is to see the Church be so lax with the priests, while barring divorced and remarried women from Communion. It is like a court judge being lenient with severe felons, but giving a harsh penalties to those who commit misdemeanors.

  23. What does "not separating from the fount of Grace" have to do with your institution? It seems to me that catholics don't separate gnosis of the mystical body of Christ from the institution of the church. It's obvious this is a crisis from the top down crafted by all those slithering frauds running the show. At what point does the diabolical masterpiece you mention become so complete that you hand these frauds over to Satan, in the Spirit of Paul, to learn their lesson or perish? Furthermore, who of you would even be able to hand the pope over to satan? You can hardly do this now with known pedo-priests. If no one is able, then what kind of apostolic authority can you actually claim if you can't do something that simple? Do How do you know that your unquestioning work to be faithful within this diabolical masterpiece is not actually cowardice and complicity? Is it unthinkable to believe that God has willed a historical end to the catholic church? I ask these things as a fellow sojourner in christ who takes encouragement from your message but can't get past your allegiance with such a failed institution as the catholic church. Also…writing this helps me clarify my thoughts so thank you for that grace ahead of time.

  24. 22:00 – yes! My humble opinion is we, the laity, need to see our spiritual leaders (all the way up the chain) show repentance for the harm done to these children and take clear steps on dealing with predators and condemning these crimes. We must continue to pray for the victims, pray for the perpetrators (yes, even them…to repent), but we also need to act. WE NEED to resolve to make our presence felt in our own churches…help with RCIA, VBS, choir, join a parish ministry, volunteer in the office, be a sacristan or EM…just BE there and not just for an hour on Sunday. Our churches should be bee hives of activity where no child can be in danger of being left alone with a preditor whether they're clergy or not.

  25. @ Bishop Barron. Why not make this available as a "free" transcript PDF file, or downloadable e-book at word on fire, for those of us who are visually impaired and rely on large monitors for reading. Better yet put it on youtube as a free audio book as other authors have done with their books. This way you will be able to reach the widest audience, both catholic and non-catholic. Thanks