February 15 2006, category: Misc, by: Adam

A shameful chapter of Germany's post-war past has surfaced in a new book exposing the plight of thousands of children who were locked up, beaten, and treated as slave labour in church-run foster homes during the 1950s and 1960s.

Beaten in God's Name, by the journalist Peter Wensierski, is a 300-page account of the ordeal suffered by an estimated half a million young people in West Germany's 3,000 Catholic and Protestant church-run children's homes shortly after the Second World War.

Based on interviews with scores of former residents, now in their 50s and 60s, the book describes how they were subjected to humiliating and degrading treatment, often for years, by nuns and monks using punishment methods unchanged since the Nazi era.

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Religious Abuse?


The Catholic Church today is mired in scandal, including shady financial dealings, pedophilia, and nuns who have been raped or have had abortions.
Clergymen who commit pedophilia are often merely transferred or reprimanded by their superiors, who often cover up the crimes to spare the Church public humiliation and the need to pay large financial damages to the victims.