Posted by: Martin Scherer | 18/10/2011

Oh dear, another Catholic Scandal: Baby Snatchers

The Catholic Church stands accused of stealing and selling over a quarter of a million babies over the past fifty years.

Let’s put that into context:

  • You wake up one day to discover you were adopted. How do you now feel about the mother and father who abandoned you at birth?
  • You then discover that your real mother and father did not abandon you, the Catholic Church told your distraught parents you were dead. The Church buried your memory in an empty coffin. How do you now feel about your natural parents parents?
  • The Catholic Church stole you because they considered your natural parents not good enough to have you – too poor or because they protested against a dictator.
  • The Catholic Church did it for profit. Around $25,000 per child, at today’s rates.
  • The Church and parents you were taught to trust, always knew and kept a painful secret – that you had been stolen and paid for.

How do you feel?

I hope, indeed I pray, those children, now adults, understand their adopting parents. They did not know the child they adopted had been stolen. They were told the church was not profiting but $25,000 was the cost of arranging the adoption. They were told the child was an orphan. They were desperate to love a child, willing to make major sacrifices for a child, and raised that child in love.

The hurt and anger this scandal creates, should be directed at those who profited from it. The Catholic nuns and priests who did it, the cardinals who profited from it and the governments who encouraged and covered it up. The Spanish government at the time was a dictator.

How far and wide is this scandal?

A quarter of a million is the size of an average city. Imagine a city where every, man woman and child was abducted.

So far this latest scandal is limited to Spain. The world hoped and prayed that religious paedophilia was limited to one priest, one church. Slowly and painfully the world has been forced to realise that atrocity was widespread, that the church had always known and covered it up. How far did Catholic baby snatching extend? We already know those children were sold around Europe and those children have since migrate to other continents including America.

It is probably this scandal extends to everywhere the Catholic Church operated. There are those who believe the Catholic Church is the devil in disguise. With atrocities like these, those beliefs seem to have some justification.

Who knew?

The Catholic Church. Rather than admit and correct the problem, the Church is again refusing to speak. As with religious paedophilia, that gives credence to the fear Catholic baby snatching was world wide and may
even be continuing to this day.

What can we learn?

First, an individual’s relationship with God is private and cannot be mediated by any other. That is a basic tenant of the Protestant Church. Those who claim to have greater communion with God are lying and they use that claim to exploit and abuse their congregation.

No institution is beyond question. We should especially question those who deny the evidence of science or believe they are above the law of the people.

The conspiracy between church and state has existed for thousands of years. It existed to exploit the poor and weak. Any government, any politician, who claims to act in the name of God is part of the same conspiracy and should not be in power. They take the name of the God in vain for their own benefit.

If the pain of those who now find they were stolen at birth is to have any meaning, we must learn those truths.


This issue was the subject of a BBC TV 2, documentary last night 18/10/2011, that can be watched on on-line on BBC i-player, for the next 7 days.  If you are in the USA it will probably appear on BBC America at some time or PBS. Otherwise Google Catholic, Spain, babies.

Thanks to the many who have e-mailed me, with similar stories of Catholic baby trafficking. Please post your comment. Thanks to those who have posted comment. I am sorry for the three or four who find this topic so disturbing they have unsubscribed from this blog and I am sorry but this issue is set to grow.

I hope the Catholic Church puts its house in order and that we all learn from its errors.



  1. Certainly I had never heard of this before, I wish I could say it shocked. While it must be extraordinarily painful for those concerned, I wonder what Jack hopes to achieve? Reparation? Apology? Acknowledgement?

    Denial is the most likely response and this is why I am posting this. The article raises the issue in arresting and emotive terms but there is no concrete evidence.

    It would be good to have a follow up piece with supporting evidence and historical context.

    • Concrete evidence? I doubt that the BBC would put this headline news if they had not thoroughly checked their sources and facts. My article speculated further, that the issue may be wider than Spain because the Catholic Church is following the same path as it did with Catholic Priest paedophilia. Now, as then, victim’s cries are ignored, whilst authorities asked, “Where is the evidence.” The Catholic Church knew the evidence of paedophile priests. That suggests to me the Church knows the evidence of baby snatching.

      It is my job to provide supporting evidence, the media will do that in due course. Nor is it my job to place the abuse in a historical context. A universal human right is universal, it is not limited by time or context.

      Emotive? Is it wrong to empathise with victims? I could describe such feelings in dry technical terms like ‘Sexual Intercourse’, but personally I prefer the feeling of ‘making love’.

      What do I want to achieve? Reparation? Apology?

      No, that is for the victims to achieve and I wish them every success. However I do not see any reparation can compensate a mother’s loss or a child’s right to its parent, and I don’t see any apology that will ever mitigate the damage done. The best I can see is the Catholic Church putting its own house in order.

      If I wanted to achieve anything, it is something more relevant to me and people like me.

      – To emphasis that one’s relationship with God is personal, no-one can intervene, or claim any right to any greater access to God. That puts us all on the same footing before God, thereby giving us the right and authority to question religious leaders.

      – To be aware of the potential for evil in organised religion, in this case the Catholic Church.

      – The importance of separation of church and state and that in a democracy, any political leader who seeks to straddle that divide should be removed from office. We might not have invaded Iraq if that principle had been applied to Tony Blair. History is littered with atrocities born of the collusion between Church and State

      I do have one other concern, for society. The damage the Catholic Church is doing to legitimate authority. Be that the authority of God, the Law or politics. Not all of us can be leaders or seek to be leaders, nor can we scrutinies everything a leader does. We have to put faith in leaders but when leaders behave like this we are naturally disillusioned. We begin to doubt everything they and their predecessors have said. There is a wealth of good in religion, not lease the teachings of Jesus Christ. That wealth deserves our protection.

      So, I’d like to see the Catholic Church come clean and be open about everything it have been involved in. Not least the Catholic Church’s persecution of the authors of the Lost Gospels and everyone who chose to follow and maintain those works. I would especially like to read Mary’s gospel of the man she loved.

      Open honesty will far less damaging to faith in God, than the gradual drip drip, or should I say bombshell after bombshell, of abuse by those who claim to be God’s representative on earth. The Catholic Church. It is not my duty to put the Catholic house in order. That is the duty of all Catholics.

      And yes, I feel emotional about that. My relationship with my God is deeply emotional. Denial is the response of weak people who do not know the humble strength of Jesus Christ.

  2. Terrible, but I am not shocked at anything the Roman Catholic Church does.

  3. power corrupts. absolute power corrupts absolutely.

  4. Thank you for raising it into the public arena. I had no idea. Seems incredible but that is the power of investigative journalism. Well done.

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