Broken Trust

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Broken Trust

Stories of Pain, Hope, and Healing from Clerical Abuse Survivors and Abusers

This Catholic Press Award-winner tells the personal stories of sexual abuse perpetrators and survivors in the Catholic church. The authors offer an informative context for these complex and devastating stories and point the way toward the possibility of healing.

The Catholic sexual abuse scandal shocked the nation and the world. While still recoiling from the pain and trauma of these tragedies, many seek to heal from the past and avoid the perpetuation of similar problems in the future. Eight stories, 5 from the point of view of the abusers and 3 from the victims', help us understand how events and circumstances in individual lives led to the betrayals that so wounded the church and her people.

The authors, Patrick Fleming, Sue Lauber-Fleming, and Mark T. Matousek, are experienced counselors of both sexual victims and perpetrators. The authors' commentary on each story reveals patterns and conditions that led to the incidents, offers pychological insights on the behaviors, and points to resources available to process and move on from these kinds of abuses. 

A vitally important aid in the recovery of those affected by clerical sexual abuse scandal and a valuable resource for all who wish to safeguard against future offenses.

Reviews and endorsements

"The significance of this book cannot be overestimated . . . For those who honestly seek to understand this great tragedy that has so devastated the Church, this book will be a light in the darkness of a shameful period in Church history."
Catholic Press Association

,

"If there is any light to be found in the darkness of the catholic clerical sexual abuse scandal, these authors point the way toward it by letting five recovering abusers tell their stories. Fleming and Lauber-Fleming, both psychotherapists, and Matousek, a chemical dependency counselor, say the abusers with whom they have worked professionally all have suffered some kind of trauma, often sexual abuse, that in turn affected their behavior as priests. These stories need to be told, the authors say, in the interest of breaking the cycle of abuse. Abusers whose stories appear in the book had to meet strict criteria, including taking full responsibility for their behavior. The book also includes narratives from three victims, one of whom is Lauber-Fleming, and makes a strong case that priests who abuse are sick, much like alcoholics. The authors insist that such priests can be helped, and they present a proposal for church-sponsored healing dialogues between victim and abuser as well as a model of residential recovery based on a facility directed by Matousek. Readers who are open to hearing the voices of abusers will find a very human portrayal, but one that also offers sound solutions."
Publishers Weekly

“The truth that sets us free is not just theoretical and philosophical, but often feels much more like simple honesty. We must speak with honesty without seeking vengeance or creating more victims. Here is a book of such healing honesty.”
Fr. Richard Rohr, author of Everything Belongs

,

"This timely book gives a much-needed perspective from both the victims and the perpetrators, who are—in these stories—themselves victims."
Patrick J. Carnes, Ph.D, bestselling author of Out of the Shadows: Understanding Sexual Addiction

,

“Within the area of sexual abuse, this might be the most helpful single book you can read. I have not found anything that is as systematic, as sympathetic, as fair, and as insightful on this question. It lays out the anatomy of the disease, the devastation it does to its victims, and the complex array of factors that help trigger sexual abuse—all from the inside, with fairness and sympathy. Everyone should read Broken Trust!
Rev. Ronald Rolheiser, author of The Holy Longing

,

Broken Trust, reintroduces the theme of forgiveness and reconciliation as a way forward for the Church in responding to the sexual abuse crisis. The stories stir in us the ancient memories of the Church about redemption, not only for individuals, but for the Church as a community of faith. By tapping into these deep sources of our tradition, we find the possibility of a hope which is totally undeserved because it is total grace."
Most. Rev. Blase J. Cupich, diocese of Rapid City, South Dakota

,

“This work courageously and honestly reveals the human side of clergy sexual offenders while mirroring the tragic experience of their victims. When survivors see only the evil side of their abuser, an opportunity is lost. These accounts give real meaning to the term “cycle of abuse” and open new avenues to forgiveness and recovery. Broken Trust is a must-read for those struggling to understand why priests abuse, why victims suffer, and why all sides are in need of healing.”
Susan Archibald, president, The Healing Alliance

,

"Broken Trust is a stunning book! Compelling, moving and inspiring. I appreciated its integrity, telling the heart wrenching stories of those who had been abused and the terrible tales of the abusers who look back in horror at what they had done. This book both challenges us to forgive and most amazingly shows us the way to make forgiveness possible. Everyone who cares about the future of our church should read this book.”
Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, former Lt. Governor of Maryland and author of Failing America's Faithful

,

“These experienced authors have put a compassionate face on the abusers who have been mostly victims of sexual abuse themselves. They have described the depth and dynamics of therapeutic healing instead of a punitive approach. As restorative justice practitioners, we are concerned with the healing and accountability for the victim, offender, and the community. Hopefully, Broken Trust will create a greater understanding with the public of this complicated problem.”
Linda Harvey, founder, Restorative Justice Council on Sexual Misconduct in Faith Communities

,

“This masterful look at woundedness, healing, and hope is a tour de force: a wonderful and searching study with far-reaching implications for so many.”
—Paula D’Arcy

,

“As you can well imagine, Broken Trust is a very difficult book to read. The important Trust that is broken is in the pledge of gospel ministers to follow fully the gospel values proclaimed and modeled by Jesus. Barring a miracle of grace it seems that some of these situations of fractured trust will never be mended. But the whole point is that we are all called to pray and work for just such gospel miracles. Mark and his collaborators, Patrick and Sue, have given us the opportunity to examine wounded brothers and their victims in various stages of coping and recovery. For continuing progress there needs to be dedicated involvement in the Church and wider community to foster genuine healing. There are not many more stark situations in which we are called to contemplate the victory Jesus willed to make available to all peoples over sin and death through His Paschal Mystery.”
Bishop John R. Gaydos, diocese of Jefferson City, Missouri

"The significance of this book cannot be overestimated . . . For those who honestly seek to understand this great tragedy that has so devastated the Church, this book will be a light in the darkness of a shameful period in Church history."
Catholic Press Association

,

"If there is any light to be found in the darkness of the catholic clerical sexual abuse scandal, these authors point the way toward it by letting five recovering abusers tell their stories. Fleming and Lauber-Fleming, both psychotherapists, and Matousek, a chemical dependency counselor, say the abusers with whom they have worked professionally all have suffered some kind of trauma, often sexual abuse, that in turn affected their behavior as priests. These stories need to be told, the authors say, in the interest of breaking the cycle of abuse. Abusers whose stories appear in the book had to meet strict criteria, including taking full responsibility for their behavior. The book also includes narratives from three victims, one of whom is Lauber-Fleming, and makes a strong case that priests who abuse are sick, much like alcoholics. The authors insist that such priests can be helped, and they present a proposal for church-sponsored healing dialogues between victim and abuser as well as a model of residential recovery based on a facility directed by Matousek. Readers who are open to hearing the voices of abusers will find a very human portrayal, but one that also offers sound solutions."
Publishers Weekly


“The truth that sets us free is not just theoretical and philosophical, but often feels much more like simple honesty. We must speak with honesty without seeking vengeance or creating more victims. Here is a book of such healing honesty.”
Fr. Richard Rohr, author of Everything Belongs

,

"This timely book gives a much-needed perspective from both the victims and the perpetrators, who are—in these stories—themselves victims."
Patrick J. Carnes, Ph.D, bestselling author of Out of the Shadows: Understanding Sexual Addiction

,

“Within the area of sexual abuse, this might be the most helpful single book you can read. I have not found anything that is as systematic, as sympathetic, as fair, and as insightful on this question. It lays out the anatomy of the disease, the devastation it does to its victims, and the complex array of factors that help trigger sexual abuse—all from the inside, with fairness and sympathy. Everyone should read Broken Trust!
Rev. Ronald Rolheiser, author of The Holy Longing

,

Broken Trust, reintroduces the theme of forgiveness and reconciliation as a way forward for the Church in responding to the sexual abuse crisis. The stories stir in us the ancient memories of the Church about redemption, not only for individuals, but for the Church as a community of faith. By tapping into these deep sources of our tradition, we find the possibility of a hope which is totally undeserved because it is total grace."
Most. Rev. Blase J. Cupich, diocese of Rapid City, South Dakota

,

“This work courageously and honestly reveals the human side of clergy sexual offenders while mirroring the tragic experience of their victims. When survivors see only the evil side of their abuser, an opportunity is lost. These accounts give real meaning to the term “cycle of abuse” and open new avenues to forgiveness and recovery. Broken Trust is a must-read for those struggling to understand why priests abuse, why victims suffer, and why all sides are in need of healing.”
Susan Archibald, president, The Healing Alliance

,

"Broken Trust is a stunning book! Compelling, moving and inspiring. I appreciated its integrity, telling the heart wrenching stories of those who had been abused and the terrible tales of the abusers who look back in horror at what they had done. This book both challenges us to forgive and most amazingly shows us the way to make forgiveness possible. Everyone who cares about the future of our church should read this book.”
Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, former Lt. Governor of Maryland and author of Failing America's Faithful

,

“These experienced authors have put a compassionate face on the abusers who have been mostly victims of sexual abuse themselves. They have described the depth and dynamics of therapeutic healing instead of a punitive approach. As restorative justice practitioners, we are concerned with the healing and accountability for the victim, offender, and the community. Hopefully, Broken Trust will create a greater understanding with the public of this complicated problem.”
Linda Harvey, founder, Restorative Justice Council on Sexual Misconduct in Faith Communities

,

“This masterful look at woundedness, healing, and hope is a tour de force: a wonderful and searching study with far-reaching implications for so many.”
—Paula D’Arcy

,

“As you can well imagine, Broken Trust is a very difficult book to read. The important Trust that is broken is in the pledge of gospel ministers to follow fully the gospel values proclaimed and modeled by Jesus. Barring a miracle of grace it seems that some of these situations of fractured trust will never be mended. But the whole point is that we are all called to pray and work for just such gospel miracles. Mark and his collaborators, Patrick and Sue, have given us the opportunity to examine wounded brothers and their victims in various stages of coping and recovery. For continuing progress there needs to be dedicated involvement in the Church and wider community to foster genuine healing. There are not many more stark situations in which we are called to contemplate the victory Jesus willed to make available to all peoples over sin and death through His Paschal Mystery.”
Bishop John R. Gaydos, diocese of Jefferson City, Missouri

Awards
9780824524104
Hardcover / 240 pages
CROSSROAD, 2007

Dimensions: 6 x 9 1/4