It's like the laity and the Church are speaking two different languages, isn't it?

This week the Vatican is trying to deflect attention away from thousands of sexual abuse cases by painting themselves as the victims of a hate campaign over the church's views on same-sex marriage and abortion.

Are they serious? Do they really believe the press and the public are using the revelations of international, generations long sexual and physical abuse as a ploy to underscore their REAL objective: bashing the Church?

Apparently some otherwise clear thinking individuals have decided to believe this.

'The pope defends life and the family, based on marriage between a man and a woman, in a world in which powerful lobbies would like to impose a completely different agenda,' Spanish Cardinal Julian Herranz, head of the disciplinary commission for Holy See officials, said on the radio at the weekend.

Why, all his friends agree with him, so it must be true.

Pope Benedict’s promotion of conservative family models has provoked these so-called attacks agreed the Vatican’s dean of the College of Cardinals, Angelo Sodano. 'By now, it’s a cultural contrast,' Sodano told the Vatican newspaper L’Osservatore Romano. 'The pope embodies moral truths that aren’t accepted, and so, the shortcomings and errors of priests are used as weapons against the church.'

Reading this I had to take a very deep breath. The rape and molestation of children isn't an 'error' or a 'shortcoming,' it's a crime. Tell me, what faith and what families were defended by all the widespread molestation? The disconnect between the laity and the Church about what happened is contained within Sodano's thoughtless sentence.

What the Vatican doesn't seem to understand is that this is about crime - and yes, also sin - and not just bad press. It's nauseating to see an institution as powerful as the Church claim that it is the real victim, not the thousands who had their childhoods destroyed by so many of their representatives.

The world's revulsion isn't a manufactured press 'hate-campaign.' So it's tragic to see the Church shoot the messengers rather than take stock of their own failings.