Nuns wait for Pope Francis at Independence Hall Sept. 26, 2015 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images)MORE

BY BOWEN XIAO The Epoch Times.

November 26, 2019 Updated: November 27, 2019

NEW YORK—As a growing number of Roman Catholic dioceses across the United States investigate child sex-abuse claims against clergy and are releasing the names of priests accused of such crimes, another hidden problem has begun to surface—nuns who sexually abuse children.

At least 20 local, state, or federal investigations, either criminal or civil, into church clergy have begun since a Pennsylvania grand jury report released in 2018 detailed abuse by priests. But while those investigations could potentially lead to the release of even more names and accusations, victims’ advocates told The Epoch Times that religious orders should start listing the names of abusive nuns as well—a far less-reported problem, with fewer concrete statistics., a Massachusetts-based nonprofit corporation that tracks cases of sexual abuse by clergy members, has identified over the years “a little over 100 known accused nuns,” Terry McKiernan, the founder of the website, told The Epoch Times.

Its database, meanwhile, has tracked more than 6,000 accused priests across the United States.

See today’s news highlights at a glance. Download the free Epoch Times app.

“The numbers are fairly small, but that’s the number that is known,” McKiernan said, referring to the number of publicly accused abusive nuns. “Its a matter of some debate how big the problem actually is.”

Some of the names of the nuns are incomplete because the alleged victims couldn’t recall, according to a list of the names published in August. More names have since been added to the database that don’t appear on the list. The alleged victims are from across the country and come from a wide array of different religious orders.

McKiernan said most of the nuns his organization identified were accused of abuse “between the 1960s and the 1990s.”

One group of accused nuns that stood out came from an orphanage in Louisville, Kentucky, where McKiernan said they saw the “highest concentration” of abusers in the database.

The Epoch Times reached out to Catholic League, the nation’s largest Catholic civil rights organization, for comment but didn’t receive a response by press time.

Mary Dispenza, a director at the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP) as well as the contact person for those abused by nuns, told The Epoch Times she was approached by 85 alleged survivors of misconduct by nuns during the past two years in the role.

“That’s just a teeny, tiny figure of the number that we think is a possibility,” Dispenza said, adding that a support group has formed that meets with the survivors monthly on the internet.

Only one of the cases that Dispenza heard about filed suit and reached an agreement that was satisfactory. In other cases, some survivors who were nuns themselves told their religious communities about the abuse and the superior removed the nun to what Dispenza called a “motherhouse,” a section away from children. But Dispenza said the nuns weren’t asked to leave unless the case was escalated to the criminal level.

“To date, no religious orders have listed or released any names about nun abusers,” she said, adding that a list placed in a parish or school could encourage people who know the abusive nuns to come forward, which could help survivors affirm their stories.

Dispenza, an author and a former nun of 15 years herself, said she was abused by both a nun and a priest when she was a child.

She said in many of the cases of survivors who spoke to her, the other nuns knew what was happening but protected or tolerated the behavior of the accused, underscoring the church’s decades-long history of covering up crimes.

She recalled being abused by a nun when she was a young postulant—a girl studying to be a nun. She was 13 years old at the time and was leaving the main chapel in line with the other postulants, when the mother superior of the order suddenly called her off the line.

Postulants always stayed in line, so this was already strange to her.

She recalled the mother superior bringing her into her room, and that, in those days, people would kneel close whenever they wanted to discuss or ask anything with the head of the community.
“I did the proper thing and knelt down close to her almost touching her knees, I don’t remember what she said before or after but I just remember that she took my face between her two hands and kissed me all over, and I remember leaving and just feeling totally confused and bewildered.”

Earlier this year, a Minnesota-based law firm released a report about child sexual abuse in the Archdiocese of Chicago and other dioceses in Illinois that identified six nuns among the 390 alleged abusers.

“Above all else, they protected their institution above all costs,” Pennsylvania’s Attorney General Josh Shapiro said last year, in describing the findings of his state’s grand jury report.

Dispenza said alleged victims who contacted her ranged from 7 to 18 years old when they were abused. She said more than half of the survivors who contacted her were girls. Most of the cases involved sexual abuse and inappropriate touching, but some involved physical or psychological abuse that included shaming and embarrassment.

The Epoch Times is declining to include more specific descriptions and accounts of the alleged cases of sexual abuse, due to the graphic nature of the alleged crimes and ages of the alleged victims.

Dispenza wants religious orders to start releasing the names of accused nuns and turn them over to the legal system, and is seeking the suspension or removal of the accused from contact with children. She said SNAP, through research, estimates there are a total of about 45,000 to 55,000 nuns across the United States, among about 200 religious orders.

The Pennsylvania grand jury report, two years in the making, accused more than 300 “predator priests” across the state of sexual abuse—and the Roman Catholic Church of a decades-long cover-up of the alleged activity. It detailed how church administrators often dissuaded victims from reporting abuse to police, pressured law enforcement officials to terminate or avoid an investigation, or conducted their own deficient, biased investigations without reporting crimes against children to the proper authorities.

The vast majority of nuns don’t commit any crimes, Dispenza stressed, saying her purpose isn’t to tell horrific stories. Instead, she said, it’s to bring truth to light.

“In truth, most nuns have and live their lives within their vows. But we can’t overlook the fact that some have stepped out of those vows and abused children,” she said. “For the sake of the victims, we need to address that and bring it out into the open. Nun abuse too is a part of our history.”


My hunch is, for whats it’s worth, is that far, far fewer nunscsexually abused than priests or bishops.

Perhaps thats true because the number of male paedophiles is far greater than the number of female paedophiles.

Is that something to do with the difference between the sexual behavioural differences of men and women?

I attended convent schools.

A small number of my nun teachers were absolute sadists and beat the shit out of us.

But I never came across sexually abusing nuns.

Even in the story above the Reverend Mother was into kissing and not penile or digital rape.

There seems to have been a lot of lesbianism in convents.

Remember Gay Byrne’s Late Late Show interviewing lesbian nuns?

What do readers think of sexually abusing nuns?

Is it just another, not yet fully explored, area of RCC sexual deviancy and corruption?


sick people abuse the vulnerable. they see an opportunity and abuse it. what their ‘profession’ is has no bearing , although when they are in positions of trust, then its makes it all the more sickening. abuse is abuse, regardless of who perpetrates it. so stop going on about priests and nuns abusing, it happens everywhere; in families, organisations, schools, relationships. you can never get over it and just learn to live with it. its not so much the sexual abuse itself, rather its the breach of trust. you feel so manipulated and angry and you carry this all your life. abuse is abuse, whether it is sexual, physical, mental or otherwise. remember the golden rule


Sean: You sound like + Nichols who used to begin his commentary about clerical sexual abuse by saying that, of course, sexual abuse is a world wide phenomenon and is mostly to be found in families – as a way of minimising and transferring the significance of clerical sexual abuse by his priests and bishops. i note he’s stopped this tactic now, probably because of his ‘newly found’ appreciation of the suffering of victims. Mmmmm? I’m not sure that he still gets it, and in his own mind is a bit bemused at all the fuss, and frustrated by the inconvenience of this stuff to his life and importance. Better that he go now, and let somebody else take over. But, she ?…..


Taking about sexual abuse, anybody know the whereabouts of + Conry ex of A&B ? Yes, I know his peccadillos and proclivities involved women, but he was able to wreak havoc on a few families, individuals, not to mention the damage he did to the Church, so I don’t think it’s too much to call his activities a form of sexual abuse. Anyhow, he’s gone very quiet, although is no doubt living somewhere supported by the Church, and no doubt quite comfortably. And, of course, we are paying for it. So, why should we not know what is happening with him and where he is and what he is up to ? It’s called transparency.


Interesting point about Nichols;
One other strategy he and his predecessor Murphy O’Connor took was to declare to the national media that the rape and sexual abuse of children by Roman clergy and religious was a ‘foreign phenomenon’ it was what ‘Johnny Foreigner’ did. It was something the British would never do….
A good cynical strategy from Nichols and Murphy O Connor and very likely to appeal to the xenophobic fearful national audience that laps up such nastiness.
However such tactics do have a sell by date and this one certainly has seen its day
As for female religious. Are there any real female religious left? Where I now reside they all live in independent units and essentially live secular lifetsyles


But he’s right. It occurs mostly in families. Everything is more clearly understood when it’s contextualised.



That’s the most strained application of the Golden Rule I have ever seen. I sincerely doubt that Christ meant it to be used to cover for abusers of any hue.


Catholic clergy and religious have a long history of both physical and sexual abuse towards minors,vulnerable youngsters. They believed (many still do) that they are a superior type of being and have carter Blanche to behave in any which way they want. Whilst this is not exclusively an abomination relating to catholic clergy or religious, they had (still do) the knowledge that the mother church would cover up for them should their misdeeds come to light. Can’t remember seeing anything in the teachings of Christ where this would be deemed acceptable. But then again they aren’t interested in Christianity. It’s just a smokescreen for them


Catholic clergy and religious have a long history of both physical and sexual abuse towards minors,vulnerable youngsters. They believed (many still do) that they are a superior type of being and have carter Blanche to behave in any which way they want. Whilst this is not exclusively an abomination relating to catholic clergy or religious, they had (still do) the knowledge that the mother church would cover up for them should their misdeeds come to light. Can’t remember seeing anything in the teachings of Christ where this would be deemed acceptable. But then again they aren’t interested in Christianity. It’s just a smokescreen for them


As a balance the BBC today has a video report on the web religion page about the hidden life of nuns. It is the report of a photo journalist over three years following a specific convent of sisters in Rome.
Please always check both and all sides of any story.


Never EVER trust a Romanist!
These vile, vermin, scum, parasites.
The nature of their so-called ‘service’ almost inevitably renders them sexually dysfunctional, even deviant.
Filthy Chtist-betrayers.


Magna at 3.01am: While normal people are sleeping, Maggie Cartwheel is enraged with anger, outrage, viciousness and demonstrable nastiness. Oh what some fools get up to in the dark of night! The demon drink is cruel. Magna: get HELP. We’ll pray for your well being. God live you.


You’d know, Josie, about what some get up to in the dark of night!. 😉
Have you the glad rags ready, the nails varnished and the legs waxed for this evening?
See you later. 😈


11:42, The problem with clerical/religious abuse is that the victim can feel that God is somehow attacking him/her through the perpetrator. Clerical/religious sexual abuse is in a different stratosphere to any other form of abuse. Period. It can destroy a victim’s relationship with God, which is the most important relationship there is.


I disagree with you Sean @ 11:42.
Sociopaths and Narcissists, which are the categories that so called priests and nuns who sexually abuse are in, need to be relentlessly pursued and extirpated from their positions. Positions vested with the greatest conceivable trust.
Church authorities must be ever vigilant against these wolves in sheep’s clothing.


Profile of a Sociopath:
Glibness and Superficial Charm.
Manipulative and Conning:
They never recognize the rights of others and see their self-serving behaviors as permissible. They appear to be charming, yet are covertly hostile and domineering, seeing their victim as merely an instrument to be used. They may dominate and humiliate their victims.
Grandiose Sense of Self:
Feels entitled to certain things as “their right.”
Pathological Lying:
Has no problem lying coolly and easily and it is almost impossible for them to be truthful on a consistent basis. Can create, and get caught up in, a complex belief about their own powers and abilities. Extremely convincing and even able to pass lie detector tests.
Lack of Remorse, Shame or Guilt:
A deep seated rage, which is split off and repressed, is at their core. Does not see others around them as people, but only as targets and opportunities. Instead of friends, they have victims and accomplices who end up as victims. The end always justifies the means and they let nothing stand in their way.
Shallow Emotions:
When they show what seems to be warmth, joy, love and compassion it is more feigned than experienced and serves an ulterior motive. Outraged by insignificant matters, yet remaining unmoved and cold by what would upset a normal person. Since they are not genuine, neither are their promises.
Callousness/Lack of Empathy:
Unable to empathize with the pain of their victims, having only contempt for others’ feelings of distress and readily taking advantage of them.
Not concerned about wrecking others’ lives and dreams. Oblivious or indifferent to the devastation they cause. Does not accept blame themselves, but blames others, even for acts they obviously committed.
Promiscuous Sexual Behavior/Infidelity:
Promiscuity, child sexual abuse, rape and sexual acting out of all sorts.
Lack of Realistic Life Plan/Parasitic Lifestyle:
Tends to move around a lot or makes all encompassing promises for the future, poor work ethic but exploits others effectively.
Criminal or Entrepreneurial Versatility:
Changes their image as needed to avoid prosecution. Changes life story readily.


I have worked alongside many different groups of religious women in schools and parishes. Many of them were and still are exemplary women who give great witness to the charism of their foundresses. Many of them are still active in various ministries, even in their mid 80’s in visiting the sick, those in hospitals and nursing homes: many of them leaders of prayer and spirituality programmes in parishes, some still helping in educational projects for disadvantaged children. We have returned missionary sisters in our parish and they shine a bright light of True Gospel living out of their 40, 50 and 60 years experiences on the missions. Yes, these sisters know there were cruel women among them and they live that sense of betrayal very painfully. Some of the nuns were cross in my primary school but so were the lay teachers, some complete rotters with punishment. Remember some of these women and religious men and priests too went unto these institutions at 13, 14, 15 years of age. That was wrong and unhealthy. It was bound to produce an atmosphere where some would fall apart in every way but would have been too embarrassed to leave. Some religious were victims themselves of a harsh discipline of formation. However, abuse, when perpetrated by a religious or a priest, is a SACRED violation of trust. It is a profound hurt. It is a hurt that permeates all if your life and can have the most negatuve consequences for your life. I am in admiration of the religious I worked with and of the sisters presently in our parish. They are sad that any religious woman could ever countenance abusing a little one. A list of legitimately accused sisters might go someway towards healing. I suspect it will happen in the USA.

Liked by 1 person

You see this played out time and time again in the lives of clerical abuse victims 5:52.
It’s a bad place to be if you think God is out to get you!
Zero tolerance for any form of ecclesiastical abuse.


So what that these religious underwent the same treatment
9:22. It is neither relevant nor excusable that they themselves became abusers


Let Children believe in Santa for as long as they want. After all some Adults still believe in the Catholic Church.


Prince Philip’s mother was a Nun, and her decendants are mad as bats. We should do what Cromwell did and rid the province of Nuns, Bishops, and Priests all of them not just the RC ones but all of them yokes


I have always been very touched by the story of Philip’s mother. She suffered terribly at the hands of her family members and indeed did have a very bad breakdown. She entered a convent later in life and is buried in a convent crypt on the Mount of olives on Jerusalem.
She lived with in Buckingham Palace for quite a while and created quite a stir by smoking in her nuns habit on the corridors.


Down with that sort of thing and down with Cromwell and all he represented @3.38pm. Go and tell that shite you’ve just spoken to the good people of Drogheda and beyond. See how long you can survive!



Actually, Cromwell was an honourable adversary, as Tom Reilly (a native son of Drogheda) had the boldness, and scholarly objectivity, to point out.

The royalist stronghold at Drogheda, outnumbered by parliamentary troops (and outgunned by them in terms of heavy artillery), was given an opportunity of peaceful surrender before the seige of Drogheda got underway; but the offer was rejected by the royalist commander there, Sir Arthur Aston, an Englishman (and one of the few Catholics in the royalist garrison at Drogheda).

The royalists could not possibly have won such an engagement, and Aston’s refusal of Cromwell’s offer of peaceful surrender, led to many needless deaths on either side.

The deaths among the royalists were distinctly not of unarmed civilians (there is no reliable record of non-combatant killings); in fact, the vast majority of those killed on the royalist side were neither Catholic nor Gaelic Irish. On the contrary, they were Protestant.


3.38: All of them yokes – really – including you, Yoke Marsh! You sound like a phillistine – simply ignorant.


2.57: Lily the Pink or Magna! Wgen i awake at such times when you’re boozing I begin to pray. My glad rags are my duvet and pillow underwhich I keep my Rosary Beads. A great way to get back to sleep – pray, pray, pray. Try it Mags/Lily the Pink😆😆😆😆😆🔊🔊🔊🔊🔊😙😙😙🎶🎶🎶🍄🍄🍄😁😁😁 C’mon Maggie – Pray and that auld bottle of gin will go away..


So Josie, you recite a rosary as an aid to sleep. In other words, ‘it’s so bloody boring, one inevitably nods off’. 😅


5.56: Only a jack ass fool would make that kind of remark Magsie Ginsy: You should try praying the rosary: it will prevent you vomiting up your hatred in the middle of the night. Honestly, try it….


Yeah right. 😉
The fruits of your nocturnal rosaries are abusive comments. 😆
That’s Josie, alright. 😊


6.50: Lily the Pink: You lemon head. Lollipop Josie is right. You and that yoke Magna are idiots. Late night boozing by Magna produces rotten fruits. He not only urinates in the loo but also urinates his poison all over others by his words. Do you approve?


6.50: Hi Lily, you haven’t recovered from your late nighg at the Bordello! Get a grip, woman!


Lollipop and Lilly the Pink are stupid inventions of Magna just like his Magna’s Ma idea – all rubbish, infantile booze filled trash and no doubt in preparation of Magna dominating the blog for another Sunday.


Very few genuine Nuns in ministry.
Angry, dictators who have always abused their positions of trust and the care of others.
A tirade within my Church which I’ve little love for.


Josie, you seem to have a one tracked mind and it ain’t exactly pure.😮
More nocturnal rosaries are in order, lollipop. 😉


What a laugh all day: The Twisted Sister: Lollipop Josie: Magna Carta: Lilly the Pink – and in this pot pourri, Bishop Pat. Can’t wait till 3am to read Mags Cartwheel….


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s