Last night I received a letter from the Catholic church in relation to my Facebook post (https://www.facebook.com/notes/vincent-wijeysingha/policing-the-moral-universe-what-role-for-the-catholic-church/820561397961785).
I make it and my reply public below. You may also wish to read my Note in response to Archbishop Goh’s follow-up Pastoral Letter which he issued on 3/7/14: https://www.facebook.com/notes/vincent-wijeysingha/my-reply-to-archbishop-william-goh/826624277355497
Catholic Archdiocese of Singapore
Professional Standards Office
4 July 2014
Dr Vincent Wijeysingha
Dear Dr Wijeysingha,
ALLEGED INCIDENT OF ATTEMPTED MOLEST BY A CATHOLIC CLERGY
I am writing on behalf of the Catholic Archdiocese Professional Standard Office (POS). One of the functions of the POS is to oversee procedures dealing with specific allegations of sexual misconduct against Clergy/Priests and/or Religious in the Archdiocese of Singapore.
I refer to your Facebook post “Policing the Moral Universe: What Role for the Catholic Church” dated 23 June 2014. In paragraph 4 of your posting, we note that you wrote:
“When I was fifteen, I came into unfortunate contact with a priest who would engage me in play wrestling and attempt to touch my crotch in the process. He once brought me to his bedroom and took a stack of pornographic magazines from his wardrobe to show me.”
The post has since been reported in the Straits Times and the New Paper on 25 June 2014.
The PSO takes all allegations of sexual misconduct by clergy/priests and/or religious most seriously. Accordingly, we invite you to lodge a complaint with the police so that the police can investigate this matter, and also lodge a complaint with the PSO.
If you lodge a complaint with the police, please note that while police investigations are ongoing, the PSO will await the results of police investigations so as not to hinder the investigations by the authorities. In such case, please do forward a copy of any police report lodged to us.
If no police report is lodged but a complaint with the PSO is lodged, the PSO investigations will commence immediately. Please be assured that in the PSO inquiry the determination of the truth will be the paramount objective, and the findings, even if adverse to the Church, will be disclosed.
Please let me know if I can be of any assistance to you. My contact details are: email: – – – – – – – – – – and telephone number: – – – – – – – – – – .
– – – – – – – – – –
Dear – – – – – – – – – -,
I am in receipt of your letter of 4/7/14.
I must disagree with you that the Professional Standards Office takes such matters seriously. One of the principal ways the Catholic church abuses the trust of children is by the homophobia it propagates. Archbishop Goh’s three Pastoral Letters on the subject of homosexuality in February, June, and July confirm the church’s destructive attitude.
Had the Catholic church truly intended to propagate a message of love and compassion, the Archbishop would have restrained himself from associating the church with the hateful propaganda publicised by Laurence Khong and Noor Derros in response to Pink Dot. Rather, he made common cause with them. I am sorry to have to say, therefore, I have no confidence in church agencies.
You will see from my Facebook Note that I made no specific allegation of abuse against a priest. It was an attempt without any conclusion and therefore I consider myself neither to have been abused nor damaged subsequently. However, I will say very clearly so the church is left in no doubt that the church’s attitude to homosexuals like myself has damaged me far more and continues to damage homosexual people.
Until the church is willing to publicly acknowledge its responsibility for these problems it has created and undertake a sweeping reform of its teachings on sexuality, I cannot see any good that should come from engaging with the church.
It is extremely regrettable that the Archbishop has announced the setting up of services to minister to homosexuals. The values from which the church proceeds can only damage people who approach it for help and I would advise the church to send such people to secular services which do not have a vested interest in the matter. Otherwise, the PSO should turn its attention to the sort of services such church agencies will provide because their potential to damage homosexual people is far greater.