Henk Heithuis was 20 years old in 1956 when he was castrated in a Dutch Catholic hospital. Two years later he was dead. According to a report in the U.K. newspaper The Telegraph, Heithuis and at least nine others were surgically castrated on order of the Catholic church “as a treatment for homosexuality and also as a punishment for those who accused clergy of sexual abuse.”
The explosive allegations are part of a report by Dutch investigative journalist Joep Dohmen, who told the Telegraph that of the ten reports he uncovered, only Heithuis is named. As for the other nine, he said, “These cases are anonymous and can no longer be traced. There will be many more. But the question is whether those boys, now old men, will want to tell their story.”
The story of Henk Heithuis was brought to light by Dutch sculptor Cornelius Rogge, now 79, whose family knew Heithuis. Rogge first attempted to report the young man’s abuse at the hands of the church as part of an official inquiry launched in December of 2011 by Dutch cabinet minister Wim Deetman.
The Deetman inquiry chose not to look into the allegations, saying that there were “few leads to conduct further research.” Evidence emerged on Monday, however, that not only was the Catholic church ordering castrations, but that government inspectors were present at the meetings discussing castrations and that officials felt no particular need to consult the patients’ families.
Records show that Henk Heithuis, at 20 years old, was considered a minor when he reported to police that had been sexually abused by priests in the Catholic boarding home where he lived. Two priests were ultimately convicted of abuse, but Heithuis was transferred from police custody to a Catholic psychiatric hospital and from there to St. Joseph Hospital in Veghel, where his testicles were removed.
This has been the attitude of the Catholic Church for years. They don't believe the predators, aka the Priests, are the guilty ones. Instead they believe the victims are the evil ones and should be punished. It's the same kind of attitude so many frown upon when talking about the Middle East and their attitude towards women.
Then there's another angle to this story I find really interesting. Women on contraceptives is considered a sin, yet making a man unable to reproduce is apparently God's will? The hypocrisy reeks all the way to the pearly gates.
Luckily the Dutch Parliament is expected to launch a full investigation into exactly what happened and why nothing was done. Hopefully more light will be shed on this horrid story and anyone involved brought to justice. It's time for the Catholic church to pay for their crimes against man and God. It's time for them to just go away.