From the L.A. Times:
He is a celebrity across eastern and central Africa, a gospel music star known to many as the “Dancing Priest.” But for years he also was a keeper of painful secrets — his own and many others’.
In going public, Anthony Musaala [photo] has forced the Roman Catholic Church in Uganda to confront a problem it had insisted didn’t exist. And he may stir a debate far beyond Africa’s most Catholic of countries.
The Ugandan priest has been suspended indefinitely by the archbishop of Kampala for exposing what he calls an open secret: Sex abuse in the Catholic Church is a problem in Africa as well as in Western Europe and North America.
The African Catholic Church is fast-growing, pious and traditional. As the church elsewhere forks out billions of dollars to compensate the child sex abuse victims of priests, few African Catholics have questioned the assumption, voiced recently by Ghanaian Cardinal Peter Turkson, that the African church is purer than its counterpart in the West, which is regarded as secular and permissive.
It’s not more pure, says Musaala. He says he has the evidence to prove it.
“The Vatican turns a blind eye because it doesn’t want to be embarrassed about this blooming church. But I think it’s time we had the truth,” Musaala says.
In March, he wrote to the archbishop of Kampala, Cyprian Lwanga, about priests who fathered children, kept secret wives or abused girls or boys, and called for a debate on marriage for priests.
One of the cases of abuse he cited involved himself. He was one of numerous boys sexually abused at 16, he says, by Catholic brothers at one of Uganda’s best boarding schools. He also alleged several other cases of child sex abuse in his letter.
“Wherever you go, people know about this. It’s like an open secret. People know. Nothing is ever done,” said Musaala in an interview.
[image via The Notice]