Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God

Watch Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God

  • TV-14
  • 2012
  • 1 hr 47 min
  • 8.0  (4,068)
  • 73

In 2012, Alex Gibney released "Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God" a documentary film that explores the widespread sexual abuse perpetrated by Catholic priests and the subsequent cover-up by the church. The film delves into the horrors experienced by victims of sexual abuse and exposes the church's disregard for justice and accountability.

Gibney focuses primarily on the case of four deaf men who were sexually abused by Father Lawrence Murphy at the St. John's School for the Deaf in Milwaukee, Wisconsin during the 1950s. The men, Terry Kohut, Gary Smith, Pat Kuehn, and Arthur Budzinski, bravely come forward to share their stories and the impact that the abuse has had on their lives. Through their accounts of the abuse and the manipulation and deceit of Father Murphy, viewers are confronted with the magnitude of the church's wrongdoing.

Through interviews with experts, including former Benedictine monk Richard Sipe, reporters, and lawyers who represent survivors of sexual abuse, Gibney sheds light on the institutional culture that enabled these atrocities to go unpunished for decades. The film examines the practices of secrecy, intimidation, and guilt used by the church to silence and discredit victims.

Gibney delves into the role of the Vatican in the cover-up of sexual abuse by Catholic priests. He shows how, through canon law, the church has created a parallel justice system, which effectively allows priests who commit sexual crimes to avoid prosecution by secular authorities. The filmmaker also examines how the Vatican has protected priests, even those who have been convicted of abuse, by moving them from diocese to diocese or even to different countries.

"Mea Maxima Culpa" examines the impact of sexual abuse on both victims and their families. The film tells the story of Tom Doyle, a former priest who became an advocate for victims of sexual abuse after his attempts to bring these crimes to the attention of the church were repeatedly met with indifference. The film also includes the tragic story of Gary's brother, who took his own life after being unable to cope with the sexual abuse he endured as a child.

The documentary is a damning indictment of the Catholic Church's handling of sexual abuse by priests. It shows how the church's obsession with secrecy and protecting itself has resulted in untold suffering for countless victims. It is a call to action for Catholics to demand accountability and justice from their church and for society to protect vulnerable children from sexual abuse.

Overall, "Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God" is a powerful and moving documentary that expertly exposes the magnitude of the problem of sexual abuse by Catholic priests. The film is an important contribution to the ongoing discussion about the responsibility of institutions when it comes to protecting vulnerable people from abuse. It is a must-watch for anyone who cares about justice and wants to know the truth about this dark chapter in the history of the Catholic Church.

Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God is a 2012 documentary with a runtime of 1 hour and 47 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 8.0 and a MetaScore of 73.

Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God
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  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 47 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    8.0  (4,068)
  • Metascore