This is a response to the article regarding the substantiated allegations of abuse of a minor at the hands of Rev. Larry Jensen of St. Joseph Maronite Catholic Church (”Waterville priest removed from duties over allegations of sexual abuse 15 years ago in Connecticut,” May 8).

I was deeply disturbed to read this, even more so, I am disturbed that this has become commonplace in the Catholic church. Perverse sexual abuse at the hands of Catholic priests can no longer be written off as merely an isolated incident. It is rampant. Not only is there not enough being done to prevent it, the punishment for such abuse is too light.

Jensen can no longer be a priest — that is his punishment. Meanwhile, his victim has undoubtedly had to suffer unimaginable torment, costly counseling, and a life of fear, all because of this priest’s vile actions.

One parishioner had this to say in the article: “I can’t even express how badly I feel for him because it is a thing of the past and forgotten and he’s been so wonderful to so many people and so hopeful and he brought so much love.”

Surely, she must have been speaking about the victim? No — she was in fact talking about Jensen, the accused priest. How disgracefully callous that when allegations of abuse of a minor are presented to a congregation, its congregants do not feel badly for the victim, but rather for the accused.

According to the infamous John Jay Report, U.S. bishops have reported receiving allegations of abuse by 6,528 priests in 1950-2015. How many more victims will there be? How many more lives will be torn asunder by these supposed men of God?

If you or someone you know has been the victim of abuse by a priest, don’t be afraid to seek help. Visit www.snapnetwork.org for more information.

Ryan Scott Fairfield

Rome