More than half of allegations reported to the Catholic Church in Scotland over a six-year period were of a sexual nature, according to a report prepared for the Scottish Catholic Safeguarding Service, reports The Tablet.
The audit report revealed that 46 allegations of abuse were reported between 2006 and 2012. Some 55 per cent of the allegations were of a sexual nature, 19 per cent reported physical abuse, 11 per cent alleged verbal abuse and 15 per cent related to alleged emotional abuse.
More than half of the allegations – 56 per cent – were made against priests, while 22 per cent were claims against volunteers.
The audit report is one of three initiatives announced by the Catholic Church in Scotland 'in a spirit of openness and transparency', following a series of scandals, including a spate of allegations of sexual abuse at Fort Augustus Abbey School.
Earlier this year the most senior Catholic in Scotland, Cardinal Keith O'Brien announced he was stepping down after allegations of sexual misconduct appeared in the press.
The Church has also announced a statistical review of historic abuse cases between 1947 and 2005. It also announced it is bringing in the former moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, Andrew McLellan, to review its safeguarding procedures. Mr McLellan was also chief inspector of prisons in Scotland.
A letter read at all Masses yesterday on behalf of the bishops of Scotland said: 'The bishops’ conference is confident these initiatives will show that the Catholic Church in Scotland is unreservedly committed to the ongoing implementation of safeguarding procedures and protocols.
'Moreover, these initiatives will in large part meet the need for accurate information about our present and historic safeguarding situation, openness and transparency, and a guarantee of independent analysis of our policies and processes.'
Catholic Church in Scotland to reveal past abuse cases (Strathearn Herald)