Abuse of Deaf Students by Nuns Recounted in ‘Free Inquiry’


For Immediate Release: March 18, 2019
Contact: Paul Fidalgo, Communications Director
press@centerforinquiry.org - (207) 358-9785

Several decades of crimes against children under the auspices of the Catholic Church have finally begun to come to light. In the latest issue of Free Inquiry magazine, we are reminded that some of those crimes reach depths of depravity that confounds our already shocked consciences, with accounts of nuns as well as priests committing sexual assault and severe corporal punishment on boarding students at a school for the deaf.

Excerpted from her book Behind the Walls of St. John’s: A Story of Catholic Abuse, author Arlene Krieger follows the story of Carolyn as she entered St. John’s School for the Deaf in St. Francis, Wisconsin at age 4. “None of the wealthy children were subjected to corporal punishment or sexual abuse,” she writes. “It was the poor kids who received the wrath from the nuns and it was the poor kids who stayed the weekends who received the worst wrath of all; sexual advances beyond anything Carolyn’s mind could ever imagine.”

Also in this issue: Center for Inquiry president and CEO Robyn Blumner looks to the history of blasphemy and decency laws in America as religious dogma once again becomes “a legal touchstone for repression of nonbelievers”; Free Inquiry editor Tom Flynn urges a serious look at the population explosion through the lens of immigration policy; S.T. Joshi recasts white supremacists as “white inferiorists” for their incessant whining about imaginary anti-white oppression; and Jamie Wodehouse advocates for an evolution of humanism that expands our moral circle of concern to all animals and entities that can experience suffering and flourishing: “sentientism.”

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The Center for Inquiry (CFI) is a nonprofit educational, advocacy, and research organization headquartered in Amherst, New York, with executive offices in Washington, D.C. It is also home to the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason & Science, the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry, and the Council for Secular Humanism. The Center for Inquiry strives to foster a secular society based on reason, science, freedom of inquiry, and humanist values. Visit CFI on the web at centerforinquiry.org.