Father Benedict Groeschel, 78, has claimed that it is not the priests who are seducing and attacking teens in their care, but teens who are seducing the priests. Groeschel, in putting the blame on the victims of abuse, told the Catholic Register that “Suppose you have a man having a nervous breakdown, and a youngster comes after him. A lot of the cases, the youngster — 14, 16, 18 — is the seducer.”
Groeschel went on to say “Well, it’s not so hard to see — a kid looking for a father and didn’t have his own — and they won’t be planning to get into heavy-duty sex, but almost romantic, embracing, kissing, perhaps sleeping but not having intercourse or anything like that.”
Groeschel is the director of the Office of Spiritual Development within the New York Archdiocese, which is run by Cardinal Dolan, who is notoriously anti-gay and an apologist for the Catholic Church’s handling of the child sexual abuse scandal. He also hosts a weekly religious show on EWTN and has a doctorate in psychology from Columbia University.
His ‘theory’ is unlikely, however, and may be an attempt to deflect blame for the actions of pedophile priests especially given that most priests abuse more than one teenage boy or girl.