“Sarah Thomas is one of perhaps thousands of people who were fathered — and then promptly abandoned — by Catholic priests. Now, she’s speaking out.
Thomas found out her father was a priest when she was 12 years old and
has spent a big chunk of her life trying to get to know her dad.
Unfortunately for her, it never worked, and they still don’t have a real relationship.
was initially told that her father was a university lecturer, but she
found out in 1990 that he was really a Roman Catholic priest working in
He was apparently horrified when he found out about the pregnancy years earlier.
He ended the relationship that day and never spoke to Sarah’s mother again on his own — only in the presence of another representative of the church.
senior priest suggested to Sarah’s mother that she go away to stay by
the sea until the baby arrived and then give it up for adoption, but Sarah’s mother refused.
Thomas, who is now non-religious, went through a lot as a result of the rejection.
But Thomas isn’t the only one in this terrible situation. She says there are thousands
of children like her whose fathers are priests. Many of the kids don’t
get proper care, and it’s in part because of the church’s rules
requiring celibacy. There’s even an entire organization, Coping
International, that looks after those kids’ well-being.
“I’m doing this to highlight that there are thousands of children of priests around the world and no-one knows about them,” she says. “They are powerless and they’re at the mercy of this institution and that’s just not right.”