Michael Moloney

Public Forum – Lead us not…

They fuck you up those clergymen. They may not mean to, but they do. They fill you with their guilt and then They add some extra, just for you. (With apologies to Philip Larkin)

Mike Moloney’s
upcoming book
, St Augustine’s Sin, suggests Church rites and rituals play a subtle role in clerical child abuse, and in adult mental well-being

60% of UK state primary schools join in Christian Worship.1  In many of these schools children are ritually taught to confess sins and plead for forgiveness and mercy, often by a cleric.2, 3  Of course pupils are not purposely sexualised, but ‘Guilt and shame used by a figure of authority’ is a form of child sexual grooming.4

In the fourth century Christianity’s great saint, Augustine, wrote of ‘lust’ and ‘filth’ in infants.5, 6  He reframed the rite of Baptism to cleanse children of the original sin of concupiscence (lust).7  This mark of sexual guilt invites casuistry.  It tempts clerics to believe, unconsciously or wilfully, that children are concupscient.8

Click below for a book review, and please contribute to the Forum. 

  1. TeacherTapp. Teachers are losing their religion – Part one. (2019). Retrieved Apr 29, 2020 from https://teachertapp.co.uk/teachers-are-losing-their-religion-how-religious-are-teachers/ 
  2. Media company Ten Ten Resources produces typical prayers for schools.  The Penitential Act.  Retrieved May 1, 2020 from https://www.tentenresources.co.uk/sunday-liturgy-for-families
  3. Church of England. Common Worship and The Confiteor (Confession). Retrieved Mar 11, 2020 from https://www.churchofengland.org/prayer-and-worship/worship-texts-and-resources/common-worship/holy-communion#mm7c
  4. NSPCC, Grooming. Retrieved May 24, 2020 from https://www.nspcc.org.uk/what-is-child-abuse/types-of-abuse/grooming/#types
  5. The Confessions of St Augustine (c. 397), Translation by Pusey, Edward B. ‘no one is free from sin in (God’s) sight, not even an infant whose span of earthly life is but a single day’ (Book one, P9); ‘The only innocence in infants is the weakness of their frames; the minds of infants are not innocent.’ (Book one, P10); ‘weltering in filth and scratching off the itch of lust…my infant tongue spake freely to thee’ (Book nine, P128); ‘(infants) being yet little ones and carnal’ (Book twelve, P213).
  6. Answer to the Pelagians, Translation by Roland J. Teske SJ, ‘Who is clean from filth? Not even an infant who has lived one day on earth’ (Book six, P622)
  7. Christian View – https://www.newworldencyclopedia.org/entry/Concupiscence (Jun 29, 2020)
  8. Thomas P Doyle et al. Sex abuse of minors by priests since AD309: Sex, Priests, and Secret Codes: The Catholic Church’s 2,000 Year Paper Trail of Sexual Abuse.  2006 ISBN-10 1566252652

All claims made above and throughout this site are evidence based.  Supporting materials, documents and sources are comprehensively cited and referenced in the book, St Augustine’s Sin: why child abuse bedevils Christianity