Abuse Tracker
A Blog by Kathy Shaw

BishopAccountability.org – Documenting the Abuse Crisis

October 7, 2015

Superior Court tosses suits against Phila. Archdiocese that exceeded statute of limitations


Pennsylvania's Superior Court on Tuesday ruled that two men who had sued the Archdiocese of Philadelphia for alleged sex abuse missed their legal deadlines to file.

The decision affirmed a Philadelphia judge's separate rulings against Francis Finnegan, who alleged he was abused from 1968 to 1979, and Philip Gaughan, who alleged he was abused from 1994 to 1997.

The Record: Closure for victims

The Record

WHEN POPE Francis came to the United States, there was talk about a "Francis effect." Perhaps such an effect will light a fire under state senators who, so far, have failed to take action on a bill that would offer justice and closure to adults who were sexually abused as children.

A bill sponsored by Sens. Joseph Vitale, D-Middlesex, and Nicholas Scutari, D-Union, and co-sponsored by Sen. Loretta Weinberg, D-Teaneck, among others, would do just that. It would remove the statute of limitations on many civil cases of sexual abuse. As it stands now, someone who was abused as a minor has only two years after turning 18 to bring a civil suit.

The proposed bill, which appears to be going nowhere in the Legislature, would make it possible for someone to file a civil suit at any age. While the removal of all restrictions may be hard to sell to legislators, the current two-year time limit is woefully inadequate. If legislators want to get serious about a serious issue — and at the moment they are putting their energies behind a bill unofficially named for Britney Spears — this is the bill that should demand their immediate attention.

For many sexually abused children, there is a long road before closure. Memories are repressed, and often too much time passes from when the abuse occurred to bring criminal charges. And sadly, there are some in our society who see civil suits by victims as a ploy for money rather than a necessary public validation that something horrible was done to them as children.

Court hears of massive brief in child abuse case against Catholic brother

ABC News

Newcastle local court has heard the brief of evidence in the case against a Catholic brother, accused of hundreds of child sex offences, is now more than 9,000 pages long.

Bernard Kevin McGrath was extradited from New Zealand last year to face 252 child sex offences, alleged to have happened in the Lake Macquarie region in the 1970s.

McGrath faced court today via video link, dressed in prison greens and showing no emotion.

The court heard McGrath has recently changed lawyers, with his new solicitor expressing concern about the size of the brief of evidence.

She said she is at a slight disadvantage having only recently taken on the case.

The court heard a trial is likely to last at least six months.

Quote for Day: Archbishop Chaput, Either Join Us As We Seek to Protect Our Children, or Get Out of the Way and Stop Attacks on Our Representative Democracy


William D. Lindsey

I really like Captain Michael Skiendzielewski's comment in response to the article by Kieran Tapsell on the strange disconnect between Pope Francis's words and actions re: sex abuse that I discussed in a previous posting today. I like it so much that I'm going to share it with you in its entirety:

It becomes more difficult with each passing day here in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia to remain civil and respectful in one’s comments regarding the local RCC leadership, their statements, conduct and decision-making, past and present, relative to the abuse, destruction and devastation visited on child and young adult clergy abuse victims. Deliberate and deceitful obfuscation and hypocrisy……..Chaput asks "what more do they want us to do?"

He's a learned, mature and educated man and he most assuredly "knows" what must be done to protect our children now and in the future. He also "knows" what must be done in Harrisburg to give past victims a voice, legal access and redress (ALL CHILD VICTIMS here in the Commonwealth of PA, regardless of the venue of the alleged abuse…..public or private, religious or secular, in the home or in the community). It doesn't work, it doesn't sell, and it is unconvincing when a man such as Charles Chaput feigns ignorance on what steps needed to be taken to address the protection of ALL of our children.

Bishop escaped abuse charges after MPs and royal family intervened, court told

The Guardian

Sandra Laville
Wednesday 7 October 2015

MPs, a lord chief justice, a member of the royal family and public school headmasters all intervened to stop a bishop being prosecuted for sexual abuse 22 years ago, the Old Bailey has heard.

Former bishop Peter Ball was facing jail on Wednesday after admitting last month the sexual abuse of 18 young men between 1977 and 1992 when he was bishop of Lewes.

He escaped justice when his first victim complained in 1992 after interventions from leading figures in the establishment. Instead of being prosecuted he was given a caution.

Bobbie Cheema QC prosecuting said: “The police report that accompanied the papers sent to the CPS in 1993 after the police had done their work stated they had received telephone calls supportive of Peter Ball “from many dozens of people – including MPs, former public school headmasters JPs and even a lord chief justice”.

Felipe Berríos sobre respaldo del Papa a obispo Barros: “Es un error”


[Felipe Berrios on support from the pope to Bishop Barros: "It is a mistake". Berrios, a Jesuit and founder of Techo referred to the controversial video in which the pope backed Bishop Juan Barros and said those opposing him were "left-handed" and stupid. The pope made a mistake in what he said and offended people in Osorno, Berrios said.]

El sacerdote jesuita y fundador de "Techo", Felipe Berríos, se refirió al polémico video en el que se ve al Papa respaldando al obispo de Osorno, Juan Barros, diciendo que las críticas hacia él provienen de “zurdos” y “tontos”. Al respecto, dijo que las palabras del Sumo Pontífice son una equivocación.

“Este es un error del Papa. El Papa metió la pata. Este exabrupto ofendió a las personas, especialmente a las de Osorno”, dijo el sacerdote a SoyChile.cl.

Agregó que “este es el primer Papa que improvisa y le salen cosas que nos ha encantado, pero cuando se improvisa, también comete errores. Esto salió hace tiempo y no sé si él pensará lo mismo ahora”.

Senior bishop to be sentenced for sexual abusing young men


An 83 year-old former Bishop of Lewes has said he's "very, very sorry" ahead of his sentencing for sexual offences against 18 young men.

Peter Ball committed the assaults over the course of 15 years stretching from the 1970s to 1990s.

There have been allegations that senior bishops within the Church of England helped cover up abuse allegations.

Establishment flocked to back sex abuse bishop

The Times

Sean O'Neil Chief Reporter

MPs, a senior judge, members of the royal family and public school heads waged a campaign on behalf of an Anglican bishop who was under investigation for sex crimes, the Old Bailey heard today.

Police investigating Peter Ball, the former Bishop of Gloucester, in 1993 said they had received dozens of phone calls expressing support for the suspect.

Lawyers for Ball told the Crown Prosecution Service at the time they had 2,000 letters supporting the bishop including “letters from cabinet ministers and the royal family.

Victims of sex abuse bishop to sue Church

Littlehampton Gazette

Victims of former Bishop of Lewes and Gloucester Peter Ball are suing the Church for hundreds of thousands of pounds after he admitted abusing his position to groom young aspiring priests for his own sexual pleasure.

The ex-bishop will be sentenced at the Old Bailey on Wednesday for misconduct in a public office between 1977 and 1992 and two counts of sexual assault on young men in their late teens.

In all, the charges relate to 18 victims, excluding two counts of indecent assault on a boy of 12 or 13 and a 15-year-old youth which were denied and will lie on file.

Ball, 83, had used religion as a cloak to abuse the young men who had come to his home in Litlington, East Sussex, to religious instruction before he was moved to Gloucester in 1992.

Ex-bishop to be sentenced for sex abuse

Littlehampton Gazette

The disgraced ex-bishop of Lewes and Gloucester will finally face justice later when he is sentenced for preying on aspiring young priests for his own sexual gratification.

Peter Ball, 83, used religion as a "cloak" to groom his victims when they came to his home in Litlington, East Sussex.

Many were teenagers or in their early 20s at the time they sought out the bishop as aspiring priests or to explore their spirituality through a Give A Year For Christ scheme.

Last month, Ball, who has suffered ill health in recent years, pleaded guilty to misconduct in a public office after a last ditch attempt to get the case thrown out failed.

Between 1977 and 1992 he abused his position in authority "to manipulate and prevail upon others for his own sexual gratification" in relation to 16 young men.

Peter Ball sex abuse case: 20 questions that must be answered

National Secular Society

Posted: Wed, 07 Oct 2015 by Keith Porteous Wood

Any genuine inquiry into the handling of allegations of child sex abuse by Bishop Peter Ball must answer key questions about alleged cover-ups by the Church, police and CPS, argues Keith Porteous Wood

The National Secular Society has been closely monitoring cases of clerical child abuse where religious organisations have systematically evaded and denied secular justice to victims. These cover-ups have enabled perpetrators to escape justice entirely and even reoffend. The perception is widely held that the Catholic Church is the chief offender. But cases are increasingly emerging within the Anglican Church.

Unlike his counterparts at the Vatican, however, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, is to be commended for initiating an independent review into a serious abuse case, involving Ex-Bishop of Lewes Peter Ball.

Already in the public domain, there is prime facie evidence of spectacular abuses of process in the Ball case by the Church, and all arms of the law.

The seriousness of these offences and the long term damage to victims cannot be overstated. Shielding alleged perpetrators compounds their abuse.

There can be a no more bitter example than that of Neal Todd, who was one of Peter Ball's victims. "[After] church officials pleaded with [Neal Todd's] family not to go to the police", Neal (like a significant proportion of other abuse survivors) "attempted suicide because he feared the bishops in Dulwich and Chichester would not act on his claims." (Press Association 12/3/93). 20 years later Neal killed himself, in the same year that Sussex police opened a new case and more victims came forward.

Peter Ball: Ex-bishop avoided abuse charges 'after royal family intervened'


By Nicola Harley 07 Oct 2015

A disgraced bishop avoided prosecution for sexual abuse in 1993 after the intervention of the royal family, a Lord Chief Justice and MPs, a court has heard.

Peter Ball, 83, is being sentenced at the Old Bailey after using religion as a "cloak" to groom aspiring young priests for sex during the 1970s, 80s and 90s.

But he almost escaped justice when his first victim reported allegations and was given a police caution after interventions from establishment figures, the Old Bailey was told on Wednesday.

Prosecutor Bobbie Cheema said the prosecution has investigated the way in which the police and prosecutors dealt with the claims in 1993. He was not prosecuted for two of the three offences he has now admitted at the of the initial investigation.

The police report stated that they had received phone calls supportive of Ball "from many dozens of people - including MPs, former public school headmasters, JPs and even a Lord Chief Justice (Lloyd)".

"In addition it was reported that the defence claimed to have more than 2,000 letters of support... including letters from Cabinet ministers and the Royal family," said the prosecutor.

Diagnosis of PTSD Doesn't Toll Statute in Sex-Abuse Cases

The Legal Intelligencer

Gina Passarella, The Legal Intelligencer
October 6, 2015

Failure to realize the full extent of psychological harm from sexual abuse is not enough to toll the statute of limitations, the state Superior Court has ruled in determining a diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder years after the abuse stopped does not extend the time to sue.

The Superior Court issued its unpublished decision Tuesday in lawsuits filed by Francis Finnegan and Philip Gaughan against the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and church administration official Monsignor William Lynn. Both Finnegan, 54, and Gaughan, 35, alleged they were abused by priests when they were children and were more recently diagnosed with PTSD.

The court, in an opinion by President Judge Susan Peikes Gantman, said Finnegan and Gaughan knew or should have known the facts of their injuries and were immediately capable of filing suit.

"That appellant Finnegan and appellant Gaughan might not have known the full extent of the psychological harm done until 2011 when they were diagnosed with chronic PTSD, is immaterial," Gantman said. "The fact remains that they knew what was happening and who was doing it when the abuse occurred and should have instituted their actions within their prescribed statutes of limitations."

Clergy Sex Abuse Survivors Blast Congressman's Remarks Praising Suspended Priest


October 7, 2015

A group representing victims of clergy abuse is taking U.S. Rep. Luis Gutierrez to task for statements he made praising a Des Plaines priest suspended amid allegations of an “inappropriate relationship” with an adult man.

Kate Bochet, a leader from SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, blasted Gutierrez’s remarks and public support of Rev. Marco Mercado as “insensitive,” which could potentially stifle or intimidate other victims of sexual abuse from coming forward.

Archbishop Blaze J. Cupich removed Mercado from his post rector of the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Des Plaines and the priest’s “authority to minister” while the Archdiocese of Chicago conducts an investigation into a relationship that Mercado is said to have had with another adult man. The priest also served as Archbishop Cupich’s delegate to Hispanic ministries.

The Des Plaines priest was the invited guest of Gutierrez to hear Pope Francis’s address to Congress during the pope’s visit to the United States last month. Gutierrez, a Democrat who represents the 4th Congressional District, issued a statement praising the popular Des Plaines priest as an important spiritual and community leader.

Chilean protestors strongly challenge Pope Francis over appointment of bishop

Merco Press

Hundreds of protesters in Chile opposing the controversial appointment of a Santiago bishop, accused of being involved in a cover-up of sexual abuse, marched outside St Matthew’s Cathedral in Osorno, a day after supportive comments by Pope Francis were aired on Chilean television.

A local television station on Friday aired a video in which Pope Francis defends the bishop of Osorno, Monsignor Juan Barros, whose opponents allege was involved in a cover-up pertaining to a notorious pedophile priest. In the video, shot in May and broadcast only this week by Chilean TV channel Mega, Francis attacks “leftists,” blaming them for a campaign against Barros’ appointment.

“Don’t let yourselves be led by the noses, by the leftists who have plotted this,” the pope says in the video, speaking to Chilean visitors at the Vatican.

“Osorno is suffering from stupidity, and for not opening its heart to what God says. And for letting itself get carried away by the garbage everybody says,” he added, according to one translation of the video.

The pontiff also noted that the allegations against Barros had been dismissed by a Chilean court. The video was reportedly filmed by an Argentine on an iPad, who remains unidentified thus far.

This is how abusive priests are able to relocate abroad


Will Carless on Oct 7, 2015

RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil — A recent GlobalPost investigation found that Catholic priests accused of sexually abusing children in the United States and Europe were able to escape accountability by transferring to South America, where they continue to work as priests.

While the abuse crisis has led to more stringent scrutiny of priests in the United States and Europe, in less developed parts of the world, media and law enforcement investigations of priests are relatively rare. Advocates for church sex abuse survivors say problem priests are taking advantage of this by transferring to remote locations in the developing world, to secure impunity and ensure they can continue working for the church.

Among the questions raised by our investigation were:

* How were those priests able to relocate, despite public allegations against them? And,
* To what extent does the Vatican monitor these movements?

According to experts in church law, known as Canon Law, the official process is simple and clear-cut. But as GlobalPost and others have found, the official process isn’t always followed.
Here are three steps to understanding how priest transfers work in the Catholic Church.

1. Relocation depends on whether priests belong to a diocese or a religious order

Every Catholic priest on Earth falls into one of these two categories.

Diocesan priests are geographically organized. They work for an ecclesiastical district known as a diocese, if it’s overseen by a bishop, or an archdiocese (led by an archbishop). They were either "ordained" (given their holy orders) at that specific diocese, or they transferred there and were "incardinated" there (more on this in a minute.)

Religious order priests, in contrast, work for a brotherhood that follows a specific religious philosophy, like the Franciscans or the Dominicans. Franciscans, for example, concentrate on helping the poor.

Religious orders, of which there are hundreds, are often scattered around the globe.

Patrick Wall, a victim’s advocate and former priest who wrote a book on the Catholic sex abuse crisis, estimates that 60 percent of Catholic priests are diocesan and 40 percent belong to religious orders.

Italy diocese fires Roman Catholic priest over paedophilia comments

Daily Mail (UK)

VATICAN CITY, Oct 7 (Reuters) - Italy's Roman Catholic Church on Wednesday fired a priest who said he could "understand" how paedophilia by clergy could occur because some children yearned for affection.

The diocese of Trento, in northern Italy, said Father Gino Flaim, 75, was removed from his position at a parish and was banned from preaching.

"Unfortunately there are children who seek affection because they don't get it at home and then if they find some priest he can even give in (to the temptation). I understand this," Flaim said in an interview on the private La 7 network on Tuesday.

Asked if the children were in some way responsible, he replied: "In many cases, yes."

The diocese said in a statement that Flaim's comments did not reflect the diocese's position on child sex abuse by clergy and ran counter to "the sentiments of the entire Church community" on the scandal.

October 6, 2015

Child sex abuse royal commission: SA government 'knew of sexual abuse' at Salvation Army boys' home from early 1940s

ABC News

By Candice Marcus

The South Australian Government was aware of allegations of physical and sexual abuse at a Salvation Army-run boys' home from as early as the 1940s, the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse has heard.

The commission is examining four Salvation Army-run children's homes in South Australia, Victoria and Western Australia.

On the first day of the hearing the commission was given graphic accounts of former residents of the Eden Park Boys' Home at Wistow in South Australia of the abuse they had endured there.

Current Families SA and Education Department deputy chief executive Etienne Scheepers has given evidence of his review of the Government's historic knowledge of allegations at the home.

He said there was documentary evidence to show the state government's Child Welfare and Public Relief Board knew about allegations of physical and sexual abuse at the home in the early 1940s.

Catholic priest faces child sex charges

ABC News

A former police chaplain remains behind bars after being refused bail on child sex charges.

John Patrick Casey was working at a primary school in Sawtell until his arrest in July this year.

The Catholic priest was charged with nine offences relating to the abuse of two brothers in the Lismore Diocese in 1985.

The diocese takes in the area between Tweed Heads and Camden haven, south of Port Macquarie.

The accused priest had also worked as a police chaplain attached to the Mid North Coast Local Area Command.

Court seeks answers on closed auction

Gallup Independent

Published in the Gallup Independent, Gallup, N.M., Oct. 6, 2015

Protests filed on ‘public auction’ by Gallup Diocese

By Elizabeth Hardin-Burrola
Independent correspondent

ALBUQUERQUE – U.S. Bankruptcy Judge David T. Thuma has ordered attorneys for the Diocese of Gallup into court to explain why the public and media were barred from attending the diocese’s recent property auction.

Thuma issued a notice to show cause Friday and set a hearing date for Oct. 19. However, Thomas D. Walker, the diocese’s Albuquerque bankruptcy attorney, filed an amended notice of hearing Monday, which bumped up the hearing to 1:30 p.m. Wednesday.

In his order, Thuma noted that the Gallup Diocese “may not have conducted a ‘public auction’ as required” by the Federal Rules of Bankruptcy Procedure. Attached to Thuma's order were two letters of complaint from individuals barred from attending the Albuquerque auction Sept. 19. The first letter was written by Meredith Edelman, a doctoral scholar conducting research, and the second letter was from the Gallup Independent.

"These parties claim they were not permitted to observe the New Mexico auction," Thuma stated. "The Court needs more information about whether the auction was a public auction, who was permitted to observe the auction, and who was excluded. If members of the press and/or public were excluded, the Court would like the Debtors to show cause why the auction sales should not be invalidated. If remedies less harsh than invalidation are available, the Court would like to hear argument related to advisability of such alternative relief."

Thuma cited an Aloha Airlines case in 2009, in which U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Lloyd King ordered a new auction to be conducted after a reporter and a labor union representative were barred from attending an auction.

According to a Honolulu media report, King said, "The exclusion of a reporter was an outrage. It's the United States conducting the sale, and you told a reporter no."

The Diocese of Gallup's hearings in U.S. Bankruptcy Court are open to the public, as are documents in the case's court file. The only exceptions to this are confidential documents related to clergy sex abuse survivors who have filed claims in the case.

‘Agent for the court’

In the diocese's Albuquerque auction, Todd Good, the CEO and president of Accelerated Marketing Group, barred anyone from entering the auction who wasn't a qualified bidder. Good, along with George H. "Hank" Amos III, CEO and president of Tucson Realty & Trust Co., was hired by the Gallup Diocese to publicize and conduct the property auctions in Phoenix and Albuquerque.

Good and Amos were paid a flat fee of $45,000 by the diocese and allowed to collect a 10 percent buyer's premium on each sale.

According to sales reports submitted to the court, both auction sales only garnered a fraction of the properties' assessed or actual values. The total sales for both auctions was reported as $225,066, with the diocese only profiting about $160,660 and Good and Amos collecting about $65,500. Both auction reports also appear to contain a number of errors that diocesan attorneys have not explained or corrected.

Good, who described himself as an "agent for the court," told the media, "We have discretions how we conduct the sale. We see no advantage to let somebody in the sale that is not a bidder. In other words, it doesn't benefit the debtors and it doesn't benefit the creditors, and therefore we only let qualified bidders into the event."

In her letter to Thuma, Edelman said Good made a similar statement to her before threatening to have her removed from the hotel property where the auction was taking place. Edelman told the judge she believed it would have been beneficial to creditors to allow observers into the auction.

"The creditors in this instance are survivors of child sexual abuse whose abuse was covered up for years," Edelman said. "They can only benefit from transparency in this process. If members of the public and the press are unable to observe the procedures, this transparency is lacking."

Salvation Army urged to 'step up' over abuse

Sky News

The Salvation Army has been urged to 'step up' and ensure the ongoing welfare of boys sexually abused in its care rather than just offer one-off compensation payments.

Graham Rundle says victims like him should be helped with ongoing expenses like dental and medical bills and with accommodation and counselling.

'The fear of being old with these financial burdens is very real for many victims,' Mr Rundle has told the Royal Commission into child abuse.

'They (the Salvation Army) should be made to step up in this way as they are the cause of our problems.'

Sex abuse victims of former bishop Peter Ball sue Church of England


Victims of former bishop Peter Ball are suing the Church for hundreds of thousands of pounds after he admitted abusing his position to groom young aspiring priests for his own sexual pleasure.

The former bishop of Lewes and Gloucester will be sentenced at the Old Bailey tomorrow for misconduct in a public office between 1977 and 1992 and two counts of sexual assault on young men in their late teens.

In all, the charges relate to 18 victims, excluding two counts of indecent assault on a boy of 12 or 13 and a 15-year-old youth which were denied and will lie on file.

Ball, 83, had used religion as a cloak to abuse the young men who had come to his home in Litlington, East Sussex, to religious instruction before he was moved to Gloucester in 1992.

Some 22 years after allegations first surfaced against him, Ball was finally brought to account in court, despite repeated bids to get the case thrown out.

Today, David Greenwood, of Switalskis Solicitors, who represents four of the victims, said that since his guilty plea, legal action had been lodged against the Diocese of Chichester.

Youth minister from Stuart arrested in Marion County on child-sex charges


By Austin L. Miller
Staff writer
Published: Tuesday, October 6, 2015

FBI agents arrested a former Stuart youth minister Monday on suspicion of sexually abusing at least two girls under his care.

Jeffrey Brian Mobley, 24, was taken for a hearing Monday in federal court, where he was ordered held without bail until a detention hearing and preliminary examination on Oct. 7.

He was picked up in the 11000 block of West State Road 40 in Marion County and is charged with persuading, inducing, or enticing someone under 18 to engage in sexual activity. Mobley, a former youth pastor at The Grace Place Church in Stuart, declined an interview request from the Star-Banner.

If convicted as charged, Mobley could face from 10 years to life in prison, and possibly a lifetime of supervised release, according to a Justice Department news release. He would also have to register as a sexual offender.

Pa. court: Men waited too long to sue over alleged sex-abuse by Catholic priests


By Matt Miller | mmiller@pennlive.com
on October 06, 2015

Two men who claim they were sexually abused by Catholic priests decades ago waited too long to sue the Archdiocese of Philadelphia over the alleged assaults, a state court panel ruled Tuesday.

The Superior Court decision backs an earlier ruling by a Philadelphia judge who dismissed the lawsuits filed against the archdiocese by Francis Finnegan of Delaware County and Philip Gaughan of Delaware.

Both men filed their complaints independently in March 2011, and appealed the initial dismissals to the state court last year.

PennLive does not normally name people who allege they were victims of sexual abuse. However, Finnegan and Gaughan told the Associated Press in interviews soon after their suits were filed that they wanted to be named to encourage other victims to come forward.

The Superior Court opinion, written by President Judge Susan Peikes Gantman, notes that Finnegan, now 54, claims he was abused repeatedly from 1968 to 1970. Finnegan claimed in his suit that he suppressed the memories of the abuse until 2007. Those memories then came back to him "in waves," he claimed and he reported the abuse to the archdiocese's victim assistance program in 2008.

Finnegan, who was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder, refused the archdiocese's offers of medical and psychological assistance before filing his suit in Philadelphia County Court, Gantman noted.



LITTLE FERRY, N.J. (WABC) -- A priest accused of pointing a functioning but unloaded musket at an 8-year-old boy in a church's rectory pleaded not guilty Tuesday, with his lawyer explaining it as a joke spurred by the rivalry between the New York Giants and the Dallas Cowboys.

The Rev. Kevin Carter was arraigned Tuesday on charges of child endangerment and aggravated assault by pointing a firearm.

The priest, who was charged last week and is free on $15,000 cash bail, expressed concern on Monday for any "trauma" that publicity from the case may have caused the boy and his family. But in a statement issued by his lawyer, the 54-year-old priest said he was "confident" he would be vindicated.

The charges against Carter stem from a Sept. 13 incident at St. Margaret of Cortona Roman Catholic Church in Little Ferry.

Priest accused of pointing gun at boy appears in court, report says


By Noah Cohen | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com
on October 06, 2015

HACKENSACK — A judge on Tuesday entered a not-guilty plea on behalf of the Little Ferry priest accused of pointing a replica Civil War-style gun at an 8-year-old boy, according to a published report.

The Rev. Kevin Carter, 55, who is assigned to St. Margaret of Cortona Church, appeared briefly in Bergen County Central Municipal Court, The Record reported.

Defense attorney Harold Cassidy previously said the incident was a joke and a parishioner who reported the encounter to officials misunderstood what happened, CBSNewYork.com reported.

Carter faces charges of child endangerment and aggravated assault by pointing a firearm, the Bergen County Prosecutor's Office said Friday.

He preached goodness but committed sin

Western Daily Press

The Church of England is right to hold an inquiry into how it handled the sex offence complaints against former bishop Peter Ball.

But it will be of value only if the church is willing to publicly admits its mistakes and then to ensure that any similar complaints made today are investigated thoroughly and that the police are contacted at the earliest possible stage.

In Ball's case the church seems to have been in a state of denial initially and then only willing to impose the most lenient sanctions possible against Ball. The fact is he is someone who is a serious and perpetual child-abuser.

A man who cunningly used the apparent security of being a senior member of the church to take advantage of young boys to gratify his perverted sexual cravings.

A man who preached goodness but committed sin. A man who without question damaged many lives. A man whose sordid behaviour makes a mockery of the Christian office he held.

Abuse inquiry questions role of former archbishop

The Times

Sean O’Neill Chief Reporter
October 5 2015

The role of a former archbishop of Canterbury in an alleged establishment cover-up of sex crimes in the Church of England is to be examined by an independent inquiry, The Times has learnt.

The review will scrutinise what Lord Carey of Clifton knew about secret talks in 1992-93 between the Church of England, police and the crown prosecution service concerning Peter Ball, who was then the bishop of Gloucester.

Priest says 'can understand pedophilia but not being gay'

Gazzetta del Sud

Trento, October 6 - A Catholic priest said Tuesday he can understand being a pedophile but not being gay. "I could understand paedophilia, (but) I don't know about homosexuality," Father Gino Flaim, a pastoral collaborator of the San Pio X church in Trento, told an afternoon talk show on La7 TV channel. "I have been to school a lot and I know children," Flaim said when asked to explain. "Unfortunately some children seek affection because they don't get it at home. And maybe they find a priest, and he gives in...I can understand that". Asked whether children cause pedophilia, he answered "to a great extent, yes". Flaim went on to say he believes being gay is a disease. The fact that homosexuality exists "doesn't surprise me, because the Church is a community of sinners". Asked whether he thinks homosexuality is an illness, he said "Yes, I definitely think so". The Trento archdiocese stripped him of his duties soon after the interview aired. "The Trento Church dissociates itself fully from statements made by an elderly diocesan priest to La7 TV," the archdiocese said in a statement. "He expressed positions that do not in any way represent the position of the Trento Archdiocese or the feeling of the ecclesiastical community as a whole".

Not-guilty plea entered for Little Ferry priest accused of pointing rifle at boy

The Record


The pastor of a Little Ferry church made a brief court appearance in Hackensack on Tuesday to answer charges that he pointed an unloaded rifle at an eight-year-old boy last month.

The Rev. Kevin Carter appeared before Judge Louis Dinice in Central Municipal Court who entered a not guilty plea on his behalf to charges of endangering the welfare of a child and aggravated assault for allegedly pointing a replica of a Civil War-era rifle at the boy in the rectory of St. Margaret of Cortona Church on Sept. 13.

A contingent of about 50 supporters, many of them law enforcement officers from the Port Authority and the Jersey City police departments, packed the courtroom and later huddled around the priest as he made a statement to reporters expressing concern for the boy and his family.

Cops Attend Court For Little Ferry Priest Charged With Pointing Gun At Boy

Daily Voice

by Mary K. Miraglia 10/06/2015

LITTLE FERRY, N.J. -- Accompanied by dozens of supporters -- including several law enforcement officers -- a Litte Ferry priest was brought before a judge in Hackensack on Tuesday stemming from an incident in which authorities said he pointed a Civil War-era musket at a boy.

Presiding Central Municipal Judge Louis J. Dinice entered a plea of “not guilty” for the Rev. Kevin Carter to aggravated assault and child endangerment charges.

Defense attorney Harold Cassidy acknowledged that he'd advised Carter of St. Margaret of Cortona R.C. Church of his rights and the proceeding was over.

During a news conference outside, Carter issued a brief statement without answering questions.

He said he was concerned for both the boy and a parishioner who he said "misunderstood” an innocent act of horseplay between the priest, who is a New York Giants fan, and the boy, who wore a Dallas Cowboys jersey to Sunday Mass that September morning, hours before both teams played their NFL season openers.

“My reputation won’t be harmed -- I’m going to be okay,” Carter said. “I’m concerned that the media coverage could put this boy, who came to the rectory with his family for some good-natured fun, into trauma.

Where Gay Priests Are Sent To Be ‘Cured’

The Daily Beast

Barbie Latza Nadeau

ROME — A gray stone wall on the edge of the northern Italian hamlet of Trento hides a former convent where gay priests say they were once sent to be “cured” of their homosexual tendencies. The institute was set up in 1928 by Father Paolo Venturini to offer residential accommodation for clergy who suffer from any number of maladies from depression and addiction to pedophilic urges. But in the last few decades, according to former priest Mario Bonfante, who defied the Vatican’s urging to go, they also offered “treatment” for homosexuality in an attempt to get gay priests “back on track” through any number of means.

The atmosphere could be extraordinarily sinister. In 1983, an elderly homosexual priest by the name of Armando Bison, who was there for “treatment,” was killed in a bizarre incident during which two men drove a wooden crucifix into his skull.

Of course the environment is more civilized now, but Bonfante says that priests who came out as gay in Italy before Pope Francis was elected in 2013 were sent to the Venturini institute to be treated with a type of multi-faceted “retraining” that mixes psychoanalysis with meditative prayer.

Now, gay priests, like the Polish Monsignor Krysztof Charamsa, whose coming out with his Spanish boyfriend last weekend rattled the Vatican on the eve of its Synod on the Family, are generally just sacked rather than sent away for rehabilitation. Charamsa, who was an aide at the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, was fired not for being gay, but for betraying his promise of celibacy. He may or may not be defrocked for breaking his vows.

Bonfante’s case was different. He came out in 2012, pre-Francis, and was promptly told to go to the Venturini Institute after he announced that he was a “happy gay priest” on a Facebook posting on National Coming Out Day, October 11.He wasn’t in a relationship and maintained his vows of celibacy, but he was still told to go or to get out. He refused to go for treatment, he told The Daily Beast, which led to his defrocking. “There were two choices: be cured or be laicized,” he says. “I couldn’t deny my true self so I left the church.”



REV. JOHN F., Jan. 21, 2015. Beloved son of the late John F. and Kathleen (nee McGill) McCole. Beloved brother of James B., Donald V. (the late Dorothy), Barbara J. Mahon (Joseph), Patrick J. (Anne) and the late Lawrence; also survived by his sister-in-law Antoinette McCole and 20 nieces and nephews. Rev. Clergy, Religious, relatives and friends are invited to his Concelebrated Funeral Mass with The Most Reverend Timothy C. Senior, The Principal Celebrant Monday 11 A.M. in the Chapel of The St. Francis Center, 1412 Lansdowne Ave., Darby, PA and to his Viewing after 9 A.M. in the Chapel. Int. Our Lady of Grace Cemetery.
Published on Philly.com on Jan. 25, 2015

Sexual abuse victims of Peter Ball sue Church of England

The Guardian

Press Association
Tuesday 6 October 2015

Victims of the former bishop Peter Ball are suing the Church of England for hundreds of thousands of pounds after he admitted abusing his position to groom young aspiring priests for sex.

The ex-bishop of Lewes and Gloucester will be sentenced at the Old Bailey on Wednesday for misconduct in a public office between 1977 and 1992 and two counts of sexual assault on young men in their late teens.

In all, the charges relate to 18 victims, excluding two counts of indecent assault on a boy of 12 or 13 and a 15-year-old youth, which were denied and will lie on file.

Ball, 83, abused the young men who had come to his home in Litlington, East Sussex, for religious instruction, before he was moved to Gloucester in 1992.

Twenty-two years after allegations were first made against him, Ball was brought to account in court, despite repeated attempts to get the case thrown out.

David Greenwood, who represents four of the victims, said that since Bell’s guilty plea, legal action had been lodged against the diocese of Chichester.

The Shady Group That Played Pope Francis

The Daily Beast

Brandon Ambrosino

The pontiff found his reformer image tarnished when it was announced he met with Kim Davis. The group behind the political coup? The Liberty Counsel.

Around 8 p.m. on September 29, the Liberty Counsel, Kim Davis’s legal representation, tweeted a report from Inside the Vatican that Pope Francis had a secret meeting with their client. Robert Moynihan, the writer who broke the story, had gotten his information exclusively from the Liberty Counsel.

What started out as a rumor about a closed-door meeting quickly evolved into something much bigger—the claim that Pope Francis, for all of his kindness toward LGBT people, was really on the side of the Religious Right.

You can imagine how the secret meeting might have gone, said the Liberty Counsel: Pope Francis embracing a humbled Kim Davis, encouraging her to “stay strong,” and validating her fight against gay marriage. And then mere hours later, with poor, sweet Kim fresh in his memory, telling journalists that government officials—why, just like that Kentucky gal!—have the right to conscientious objection.

But many journalists with connections inside the Vatican, myself included, were having difficulty figuring out exactly what transpired between Francis and Davis because the Liberty Counsel’s story was so incredibly vague. Who, for instance, initiated the meeting—and why?

Franklin Graham Defends the Vatican's Decision to Fire Gay Priest


Outspoken evangelist Christian leader Franklin Graham is chastising a fired gay Catholic priest for criticizing the church as homophobic.

In a Facebook post, the son of the famed preacher Billy Graham staunchly defended the decision to boot the priest, Krzysztof Charamsa, from his job at the Vatican after he came out as gay on the eve of a synod of the world's bishops to discuss church outreach to gays, divorcees and more traditional Catholic families.

"Firing the gay priest was the right thing for the Catholic Church to do," writes Graham, who head's the foundation named after his father and is leader of the global charity, Samaritan's Purse.

"The priest said in a press conference that his coming out was a 'difficult and tough decision in the church's homophobic world.'" Graham adds.

Bishop Peter Ball 'blackmailed' teenager over becoming priest

BBC News

A Church of England vicar said a former bishop tried to blackmail him into having sex if he was going to allow him to become ordained.

As a teenager, the Reverend Graham Sawyer visited the former Bishop of Lewes, Peter Ball, in the 1970s.

He said Ball tried to take off his clothes and wanted an "act of commitment" if he was to be ordained.

Mr Sawyer said Ball was a "monster" who controlled him with a "cloak of spirituality".

Ball, 83, formerly Bishop of Gloucester and Bishop of Lewes, last month admitted abusing 18 young men, including Mr Sawyer, in the 1970s, 80s and 90s.

Now of Langport in Somerset, he will be sentenced on Wednesday.

Comunicado de prensa sobre el Colegio Gaztelueta

Opus Dei

[Press release on the Gaztelueta College. Some media have published today reports on alleged abuses a child in school Gaztelueta.]

Algunos medios de comunicación han difundido hoy informaciones sobre presuntos abusos a un menor en el colegio Gaztelueta. Reproducimos a continuación el comunicado que acaba de publicar el colegio

Desearía compartir algunas consideraciones a propósito del reportaje publicado hoy por el diario “El Mundo” sobre presuntos abusos a un menor por parte de un antiguo profesor de nuestro colegio:

1. Si alguno de los hechos descritos en el reportaje se demostrara cierto, merecería una condena total por nuestra parte. Junto a la familia, somos los primeros interesados en que se esclarezca toda la verdad: sin una claridad absoluta sobre los hechos, se pone en riesgo el bien de numerosas personas.

5 questions as Pope Francis summons bishops for synod on 'family'


By Delia Gallagher, CNN

Rome (CNN) Hundreds of Catholic bishops from around the world are meeting in the Vatican this month, invited by Pope Francis to debate the Catholic Church's position on "the family."

At the Vatican these days, talking about "the family" inevitably means talking about sex, including homosexuality.

Pope Francis has been seen as more accepting of gay people than anyone expected, saying soon after his election, "Who am I to judge" homosexuals who seek God.

But the week before the assembly -- known as a synod -- was marked by a number of controversies involving gay people.

“Spotlight:” Boston Globe church-scandal movie spurs press introspection


by Roy J. Harris Jr.
Published Oct. 6, 2015

After the thunderous applause died down for last week’s preview of “Spotlight,” the new Michael Keaton movie, the real stars took seats in front of the screen. Marty Baron, Walter “Robby” Robinson, Mike Rezendes, Sacha Pfeiffer and Ben Bradlee Jr. — five key figures in the Boston Globe’s 2002 Pulitzer Prize-winning expose into the sexual abuse of young parishioners by Catholic priests.

As good a reaction as they gave the film, attendees at the Investigative Film Festival, hosted by the D.C.-based 100Reporters group, seemed as enthusiastic about hearing from the panelists. Do they believe the movie about their 13-year-old disclosures will inspire the news business during its current financial and technological struggles? (They do.) And will the film go on to win a more universal audience? (Still unclear, although it is earning major Oscar buzz ahead of its November premier.) And just how much literary license was needed to turn the Globe’s shoe-leather and document-based newspaper campaign into the thrilling picture they’d just seen?

The answer to that last question — not much license at all.

Synod Notebook: On Day One, a debate about process and taking things off the table


By John L. Allen Jr.
Associate editor October 6, 2015

ROME – As the 2015 Synod of Bishops gets underway, two things seem clear. One is that many prelates seem determined to stay positive as much as possible, playing down their differences and trying to shift the discussion away from controversial matters toward areas of potential common ground.

The other is that real tensions over issues, as well as the synod process, may make that goal awfully hard to achieve.

On Monday, the real work of the synod began when the opening speeches finished and the live video feed was turned off, allowing bishops to begin delivering their own brief talks to one another. There was an early round of remarks which, under new rules, had to be kept to no more than three minutes.

(One prelate compared the enforced brevity to sending out a tweet.)

Later in the day, there was an hour of “free discussion,” although there was some grumbling that a few participants used the time to deliver a canned speech, taking advantage of the ability to go on for four minutes rather than three.

Changes at the Chancery?

Canonical Consultation


Jennifer Haselberger

Clergy of the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis today received this belated notice of staffing changes at the Chancery. As you can see, the announcement was sent to Archdiocesan employees last week.


Interestingly, in appointing Rip Riordan the legally troubled and criminally charged Archdiocese is both returning to an earlier era and apparently attempting to maintain its connection with the Saint Paul Police Department. Riordan served as the Director of Clergy Services during the McDonough-era (2004 to 2007), when Father Curtis Wehmeyer was running amok at the Church of Saint Joseph. And, while John Vomastek was a former SPPD commander, according to LinkedIn Rip Riordan has been appointed a 'chaplain' to the Saint Paul Police.

Twin Cities Catholics weigh in on new archbishop

Minnesota Public Radio

Madeleine Baran Oct 6, 2015

About 150 Catholics gathered in St. Paul Monday to tell Archbishop Bernard Hebda what they'd like to see in a new archbishop of the Twin Cities archdiocese.

The most common qualities included an archbishop who listens, is humble, can heal divisions in the church, or, as one parishioner put it, someone who is "Pope Francis-esque."

Hebda told the group that Pope Francis would be pleased with the list. "I think it will resonate with him, what you're saying."

The gathering at St. Catherine University was the first of several listening sessions scheduled this fall by the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis to seek input on a new leader.

More: Nienstedt resigns | An isolated Nienstedt tried to limit investigation into himself

Few people proposed specific ways to deal with the clergy sex abuse scandal. One person said the new archbishop should be willing to hire a forensic accountant. A woman noted that many of the people who were harmed have not received an apology or compensation from the archdiocese.

Gay priests are being sent by the Vatican to an Italian monastery to be 'cured' of their 'inappropriate sexual tendencies'

Daily Mail (UK)


The Vatican has been sending homosexual priests to be 'cured' at a monastery in the Italian Alps, it has emerged.

Priests who come out as gay are removed to the monastery in Trento, northern Italy, by the Vatican to be 'treated' alongside drug addicts and paedophiles, Italian press claims.

One former Catholic priest who came out to the Vatican has revealed that he was dismissed from the church after he refused to go to the monastery to 'rediscover the right path'.

Priests who 'show inappropriate sexual tendencies' are sent to the Venturini monastery in Trento for 'a period of training, personal reflection and enlightenment', according to Italian press reports quoted in The Independent.

The head of the monastery, Friar Gianluigi Pasto was quoted by the Independent as telling Italian newspapers that the institute was not 'specifically for gay and paedophile priests' but did not deny that such 'treatments' had taken place in the past.

Gay priests sent to Italy monastery 'to be cured'

The Local

The Vatican allegedly sends gay priests to a monastery in northern Italy “to be cured”, Italian media reported.

The Venturini monastery in Trento, which also allegedly houses paeodophile priests, drug addicts and alcoholics, treats those “who show inappropriate sexual tendencies”, Mario Bonfante, a former Catholic priest who revealed he was gay in 2012, told La Repubblica.

“It’s a place where they help you rediscover the right path. They wanted to cure me. I refused to go,” added Bonfante, who was allegedly dismissed by the Church for refusing.

The Vatican declined to comment.

Father Gianluigi Pastò, the 72-year-old priest in charge at Venturini, denied that the monastery catered for the treatment of gay priests, although in an interview with La Repubblica he did allude to the possibility that both gay and paedophile priests had stayed there in the past.

The ‘cake crush’ porn tape that brought down Orthodox priest

New York Post

[video: contains adult content]

This is a clip from one of the kinky “cake crush” sex videos that sank a prominent Greek Orthodox priest.

Father George Passias, 67, was suspended and then resigned last month from St. Spyridon Church in Washington Heights after church leaders confirmed his affair with Ethel Bouzalas, 45, the principal of the parochial school whom he impregnated.

The sex tapes were downloaded off the computer in Passias’ church office and provided anonymously to The Post along with a letter detailing the logistics of their trysts.

SNAP Update: Pope Francis Doesn’t Offer Real Reform on Sex Abuse During His Trip to U.S.

Hamilton and Griffin on Rights

Pope Francis’ first-ever US trip is over. From the perspective of survivors, how was it? Troubling, to say the least.

In his first comments on US soil about the Catholic church’s clergy sex abuse and cover up crisis, Francis made virtually no mention of victims, offered no apology and praised US bishops for how they’re handling it. He refused to tell or even ask bishops to do anything more about the scandal than they’re already doing.

Within hours, the Kansas City-based National Catholic Reporter opined that the pope’s “sadly disappointing” message was “a glaring oversight” with just one “oblique” reference to the crisis that “puts him back to square one.”

“At the very least,” wrote NCR editor Dennis Coday, Francis “could have used the words ‘clergy sexual abuse of minors’” and his decision to “praise bishops for the courage they have shown, before acknowledging the pain of the victims, will undoubtedly raise the charges of “he just doesn’t get it.”

Somerset County priest convicted in child sex case asks for new trial


By Liz Zemba
Monday, Oct. 5, 2015

The attorney for a Somerset County priest found guilty of having sex with three boys at a Honduran orphanage is seeking a new trial.

The Rev. Joseph D. Maurizio Jr., 70, was found guilty Sept. 22 of three counts of engaging or attempting to engage in illicit sexual conduct in foreign places and one count each of possession of child pornography and money laundering.

Federal prosecutors said Maurizio used a self-run charity based in Johnstown, Humanitarian Interfaith Ministries, to visit the orphanage numerous times between 1999 and 2009, promising candy and cash to boys to watch them shower, have sex or fondle them.

Maurizio had pleaded not guilty and did not testify during the seven-day trial. The former pastor of Our Lady Queen of Angels Church in Central City could be sentenced Feb. 2 to a maximum of 130 years in prison. His attorney on Friday filed a motion seeking a new trial.

Twin Cities Catholics given chance to speak their minds


[with video]

Boyd Huppert, KARE October 6, 2015

ANOKA, Minn. – Pauline Cahalan arrived early. The "cradle" Catholic didn't want to risk not getting a seat.

"I see this as a unique opportunity," Cahalan said.

On Monday night she joined dozens of other Catholics in the launch of an unprecedented series of listening sessions with the man temporarily at the reigns of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis.

"I want a seat at the table," said Cahalan. "The diocese has a trust factor problem as far as I'm concerned."

The gathering at St. Stephen's Catholic Church in Anoka, and one earlier in the day at St. Catherine University, kicked off nine listening sessions scheduled over the next month.

Many Catholics have had their faith in the church shaken over clergy sexual abuse, bankruptcy and the resignation of the former archbishop John Nienstedt.

Twin Cities Catholics get rare chance to make archbishop recommendations to Vatican

Star Tribune

By Jean Hopfensperger Star Tribune OCTOBER 5, 2015

An often-outspoken group of Twin Cities Catholics packed a conference hall Monday for a rare opportunity to tell church leaders what they think of the archdiocese and what they want in their next archbishop.

With the St. Paul and Minneapolis Archdiocese reeling from a sex abuse scandal, bankruptcy and a theological divide, acting Archbishop Bernard Hebda hosted the first of seven “listening sessions” at St. Catherine University in St. Paul.

It’s an unusual strategy, as archbishop recommendations typically are made by church leaders selected by the Vatican Embassy in Washington, D.C.

It wasn’t a bashful group.

“There’s a lack of trust, both in management and finance,” said Paul Mandell of Inver Grove Heights, one of about 200 people attending. “There’s a frustration with not being heard. There’s morale problems among priests and laity who don’t feel empowered.”

Mary Beth Stein told the archbishop that the sex abuse scandal, clerical coverup and financial woes were among burning issues the next archbishop must address.

Royal Commission into Child Abuse begins hearings in Adelaide to examine Salvation Army homes

The Australian


CHILD sex abuse victims at Salvation Army homes were physically beaten or further sexually abused if they reported crimes against them, the Royal Commission into Institutional Child Sexual Abuse has heard.

Opening the 33rd public hearing of the national commission in Adelaide, counsel assisting Sophie David SC, said the hearing would examine abuse at four Salvation Army homes in South Australia, Victoria and Western Australia between 1940 and 1980.

Three former residents of Eden Park Boys’ Home in the Adelaide Hills will tell the commission of years of abuse they suffered at the hands of Salvation Army members including Sergeant William John Keith Ellis.

Ms David said Eden Park employees were reported as far back as 1940, when a staff member was jailed for indecent conduct against three boys.

Child sex abuse inquiry: Victim Graham Rundle tells Salvation Army to do right thing by victims

ABC News

By Candice Marcus

A victim of a Salvation Army paedophile has made an impassioned plea for change while giving evidence at an inquiry, asking the organisation to do the right thing by all victims.

Graham Rundle, now 63, was repeatedly raped and sexually abused at the Eden Park Boys' Home in South Australia as a child in the 1960s.

He has told the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse about his experiences and what he wanted to come out of the hearing.

At the end of his evidence, Mr Rundle directed his comments directly at Commissioner Floyd Tidd, the current Territorial Commander of the Salvation Army's Southern Territory.

Child abuse royal commission in Adelaide

Sky News

The royal commission into child sexual abuse in Adelaide has heard over 20 perpetrators have been identified at Salvation Army run homes.

Counsel assisting Sophie David says over the two weeks of hearings, survivors will give evidence that child sex abuse was widespread, unchecked and flourished over a long period of time.

The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse will examine four homes operated by the Salvation Army from 1940 to 1980 - Eden Park Boys' Home in South Australia, Box Hill and Bayswater Boys' homes in Victoria and a home at Nedlands in Western Australia.

In a detailed opening address, Ms David said 20 perpetrators had been identified at homes run by the Salvation Army.

Victim tells of Salvation Army abuse

Herald Sun


GRAHAM Rundle says it's hard to remember how many times he was sexually abused during his years at a Salvation Army boys' home in Adelaide, but it was at least 200.

IT started when he was eight, just two months after he arrived at the Eden Park Boy's Home in the Adelaide Hills in 1960.

It involved both older boys and staff, but one man was particularly brutal.

Employee William Ellis sexually assaulted Mr Rundle more than 100 times and was eventually jailed for his crimes.

Appearing before the Royal Commission into child sex abuse in Adelaide on Tuesday, Mr Rundle told how Ellis would blame him or blame the devil after his attacks but would never blame himself.

Man who sexually touched little girls in church sentenced to prison


By John S. Hausman | jhausman@mlive.com
on October 06, 2015

MUSKEGON, MI – Matthew James Vanderkooi is headed to state prison for sexually fondling three little girls, two of them in church.

Muskegon County Circuit Judge Timothy G. Hicks on Monday, Oct. 5, sentenced Vanderkooi, 33, of Laketon Township to three years and 10 months to 15 years in prison for three counts of second-degree criminal sexual conduct. VanderKooi also got 110 days in jail, already served, for resisting and obstructing police – running away when police came to arrest him.

Vanderkooi also must submit to lifetime electronic monitoring and must register as a sex offender.

Vanderkooi was arrested June 17. He was charged with sexually touching an 8-year-old girl who was a friend of the family and two young sisters, both under 13 years old.

Jeffrey Mobley: Former Stuart pastor charged with enticement of a minor over the internet


[with video]

Monica Magalhaes

STUART, Fla. - Federal authorities arrested a former The Grace Place youth pastor Monday in Ocala on a charge of enticing a minor to engage in a sexual relationship.

Officials say, 24-year-old Jeffrey Brian Mobley, formely of Stuart, was arrested by a Marion County Sheriff around 8:30 a.m. at 11000 W SR 40.

Mobley appeared before a federal judge Monday during a first appearance, according to court records. He was ordered to be held in custody pending a detention hearing and preliminary examination on October 7.

Officials say, in September 2015, a suspicious conduct report was made to the Martin County Sheriff’s Office concerning the youth pastor and a minor who was under his trust and care through a religious based youth program in Stuart.

Pope Francis is no saint

Western Courier

Bree Bracey

It’s been said that the pope is now a global celebrity. When he recently came to America, millions of U.S. citizens saw him in person or live on television.

 There is a vast religious audience, in addition to increasing numbers of interested secular viewers, who are attracted to the pope’s progressive views. But how progressive are they, really?

 In a meeting I recently attended, discussion turned to opinions about the pope. One student said she doesn’t like how so many people think the pope is “so fantastic” when really the “progressive” things he’s said are just things good people ought to believe — like preaching about tolerance and acceptance. She also made the point that Pope Francis is probably only saying such things to keep the public happy. Another student quickly shut her down and said that, as a “queer Catholic,” these remarks meant a lot for this student’s entire community.

 This conversation got me thinking. I was sure that the pope was a great man. I finally reasoned that, even if he doesn’t necessarily believe the things he says but is saying them to be progressive, at the very least he is calling for the Catholic Church, and its followers to change its ideals. Though to some it may seem that Pope Francis does not mean what he’s saying, at least he’s saying it. Yesterday I read that the Vatican is stripping a priest of his duties after he openly came out as homosexual.

 I remembered the conversation from before and realized maybe it’s all smoke and mirrors. Maybe nothing has truly changed.

Attorneys For Alleged Sexual Abuse Victims "Encouraged" By Pope's Visit

TWC News

[with video]

By Ryan Whalen
Monday, October 5, 2015

AMHERST, N.Y. -- At the beginning of his trip to the United States, Pope Francis took some criticism from victims' advocates for comments he made praising American bishops on how they'd handled the church's sexual abuse scandal.

"At least at the beginning of his visit he wasn't addressing the issue at all," HoganWillig attorney Diane Tiveron said.

Among those critical of the Pope were Tino Flores and Vanessa DeRosa. Flores claimed to have been abused by a priest starting when he was ten while DeRosa said she was abused by a Catholic School teacher when she was thirteen.

"We are hopeful that the Pope lives up to his word and delivers some relief to people who have been so badly abused," HoganWillig attorney Steven Cohen said.

October 5, 2015

Former Catholic priest charged with rape escapes full glare of media spotlight


Ryan Boswell
ONE News Reporter

The media have been prevented from filming or taking photographs of a former Catholic priest accused of rape.

Joseph Hercock, 71, appeared in the Wellington District Court this morning, charged with rape, indecently assaulting girls aged under 16, assault and unlawfully entering a building.

It is claimed the alleged offences took place in the 70s and 80s when Hercock was a chaplain at Sacred Heart College in Lower Hutt.

ONE News applied to the court to film Mr Hercock, arguing it was of public interest given his status in the community.

But the court declined the request, saying "could compromise his right to a fair trial".

Former Catholic priest to go to trial on historic abuse claims


A former Catholic priest who worked at a Nelson school and Lower Hutt's Sacred Heart College is to go to trial on sex charges next year.

Nelson man Peter Joseph Hercock, 71, has pleaded not guilty to two charges of rape, five of indecent assault of girls under 16, assault on a child and burglary.

All the charges relate to alleged offending in Lower Hutt, Upper Hutt and Wainuiomata in the 1970s and 1980s, most while he was a chaplain at the single-sex girls' school.

Former Treasure Coast Youth Pastor Arrested On Child Sex Crime Charges

CBS 12

Story by Victoria Price/CBS12

STUART, Fla. (CBS12) -- A former youth pastor for 'The Grace Place' was arrested by the FBI for 'use a facility to entice individual under age 18 to engage sexual activity.'

According to federal court documents, while employed as a youth pastor at The Grace Place in Stuart, 24-year-old Jeffrey Brian Mobley had allegedly engaged in sexual intercourse with two minors in the church’s youth program.

The defendant allegedly enticed the minors to engage in sexual activity and exchange sexually explicit images using Twitter and had sex with one of the victim's at a Stuart motel.

Church review into allegations of child sex abuse by an Anglican bishop is branded 'a joke' by former victims

Daily Mail


An Anglican investigation into its handling of child abuse allegations against a predatory Bishop was branded a ‘joke’ by former victims yesterday.

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, ordered an independent review into how the church examined accusations against former Bishop of Lewes Peter Ball, who will be sentenced tomorrow after admitting a string of offences against teenagers and young men from the 1970s to 1990s.

It is expected to examine the role of one of his predecessors, Lord Carey, who sought assurances from prosecutors in 1993 that there would be no further action against Ball after he received a caution for gross indecency, despite police knowing about more complaints.

Survivors have accused the clergy of a ‘cover up’ over the case, which was finally reopened in 2012 following a review by the Church.

Ball, 83, a friend of Prince Charles, pleaded guilty last month after the Old Bailey heard how he used religion as a ‘cloak’ to prey on teenagers after they came to his home to explore their spirituality.

The Church said its review will examine its co-operation with the police and other professionals, and whether information was shared ‘in a timely manner’.

But Rev Graham Sawyer, who was abused by Ball and now heads the Church Reform Group which campaigns for victims of abuse by the clergy, claimed the Archbishop was belatedly responding to events.

He said: ‘It was not a proactive step to inform the police: they had just been caught out.

School E-Mail Admits Mistakes In Teacher’s Sex Abuse Case


By Glenn McEntyre
Monday October 5, 2015

COLUMBUS, Ohio - Brian Sze was arrested last week in Seattle for crimes that allegedly happened while he was a teacher at Bishop Watterson in Columbus.

The Catholic Diocese of Columbus says it fired Sze for inappropriate communication with a different student.

An email sent to parents of St. Brigid of Kildare students said, "Protocols...were not followed" in Sze’s case. The email obtained by 10TV is signed by Monsignor Joseph Hendricks and St. Brigid Principal Kathy O'Reilly. St. Brigid is a feeder school for Bishop Watterson and Brian Sze taught at both.

Kathy O'Reilly is one of the people who gave a positive reference that allowed Sze to get a job at a private school in Seattle, even after he was fired from his job here in Columbus. In the letter, O'Reilly says she and the Monsignor "had no knowledge of Mr. Sze's termination for cause" prior to hearing the news of his arrest Wednesday evening.

The letter refers to a meeting Thursday night where Regina Quinn, the Diocesan Safe Environment Director, told parents "There is not a good reason that the protocols....were not followed at the Diocesan level."

Laicos de Osorno: El papa tiene que pedir perdón por sus declaraciones



[Laity of Osorno: The pope has to apologize for his statement in support on Bishop Juan Barros.]

Mario Vargas, vocero de la Organización de Laicos y Laicas, se refirió a las declaraciones del papa Francisco ante la situación del obispo de Osorno, Juan Barros, quien es acusado de ser uno de los encubridores de los abusos sexuales de Fernando Karadima.

Flock backs priest accused of pointing gun at Cowboys fan in Giants country

Fox News

By Cristina Corbin
Published October 05, 2015

Football and mass are synonymous with Sundays in New York Giants country, where a priest is in hot water for allegedly pointing a gun at an 8-year-old Cowboys fan - even though witnesses say it was all a joke.

The Rev. Kevin Carter -- pastor of St. Margaret of Cortona Church in Little Ferry, N.J. -- was arrested Friday and charged with aggravated assault and endangering the welfare of a child for pointing the firearm at the boy. Carter is expected to be arraigned Tuesday on the charges, which one witness called "fallacious." The move came after the Newark Archdiocese notified Bergen County Prosecutor John Molinelli on Sept. 28 that a parishioner at the church contacted the archdiocese about alleged incident, which had occurred 12 days prior.

Molinelli said his office launched an investigation which found that on Sept. 13, the boy -- who has not been identified publicly -- came to church for Sunday services with his family.

"Prior to the mass beginning, Father Kevin Carter asked to see him in one of the rectory rooms," Molinelli said in a statement. "Once in the room, Father Carter had the victim stand against a wall. He then retrieved a long gun from nearby and pointed it at the child with an indication that he would shoot him."

"This was witnessed by several individuals that were standing outside of the room," the statement said.

Bishop Thomas On The Helena Diocese's Handling Of Sexual Abuse Charges

Montana Public Radio

[with audio]


In 1988, when you were a young Catholic priest, the child sex abuse scandal hit. You urged cooperation, not confrontation, but the church took a different path. Now, you’re a bishop and the scandal explodes in your diocese. What do you do? Bishop George Thomas is the guest on this week's "Home Ground Radio".

Decades ago allegations of sexual abuse of children by Catholic priests emerged. It was stunning, impossible, and true. Criminal prosecutions and convictions followed. And civil lawsuits seeking compensation for victims. How could this be? It got worse. In some places to church had protected pedophile priests from exposure, thinking it was protecting itself. The lawsuits kept coming and still do, and the church defends itself in court.

Now imagine you are a Roman Catholic priest. A man of deep faith. You see the institution to which you have devoted your adult life shaken to the core. You pursue your ministry and after 23 years of service you are appointed bishop in 1999.

Child sex abuse royal commission: Salvation Army boys' homes to come under spotlight again

ABC News

By Candice Marcus

A victim of a notorious South Australian paedophile says the child abuse royal commission's hearings into the Salvation Army over the next fortnight will be an important step in many victims' journeys.

The Salvation Army's response to child sexual abuse will again come under scrutiny as hearings return to Adelaide, beginning today.

It is examining the experiences of former child residents of four boys' homes run by the Salvation Army in South Australia, Victoria and Western Australia between 1940 and 1990.

Allegations of sexual abuse at the Eden Park Boys' Home in South Australia, the Box Hill Boys' Home in Victoria, Bayswater Boys' Home in Victoria and the Hollywood Children's Village (formerly known as the Salvation Army Boys' Home) at Nedlands in Western Australia will form the basis of the hearing.

The commission will hear about the Salvation Army's responses to the allegations and examine its current and past policies, practices and procedures for responding to claims of abuse.

Espaldarazo del Papa a cuestionado obispo de Osorno: “No se dejen llevar, de las narices de todos los zurdos que han armado esta cosa”


Nadie se lo esperaba, pero sí sospechaban –los detractores del obispo de Osorno Juan Barros Madrid- que algo “muy poderoso” sustentaba al cuestionado prelado por sus vínculos con el cura Karadima y este viernes se develó el secreto, mejor dicho lo destapó el canal MEGA.

El mismísimo Papa Francisco respaldó al que fuera obispo castrense de Chile, despejando toda duda sobre su permanencia en Osorno.

Los dichos del jefe de la Iglesia Católica se dieron en el marco de una “audiencia pública” en El Vaticano el pasado 6 de mayo y –al parecer- la grabación dada a conocer habría sido tomada por un “argentino” comenta en El Mercurio de este sábado Jaime Coiro, en esa fecha vocero de la Conferencia Episcopal de Chile, que se encontraba de vacaciones junto a su familia a y –según su relato- él es quien le pregunta al Papa por Osorno.

Ahora bien, la duda que surge es ¿si está información la conocía la –también cuestionada- jerarquía de la Iglesia chilena encabezada por Ricardo Ezzati, es dada a conocer casi cinco meses después?

La transcripción de lo dicho por Francisco ese 6 de mayo señala: “La Iglesia (Osorno) perdió la libertad, dejándose llenar la cabeza por políticos, juzgando a un obispo sin ninguna prueba, después de 2’ aos de ser obispo. Así que piensen con la cabeza. No se dejen llevar, de las narices, de todos los zurdos, que son los que han armado la cosa. Es más: la única objeción que encontré en este obispo fue de sa cre di ta da por la corte judicial. Así que, por favor, no pierdan la serenidad. Osorno sufre sí, por tonta. Porque no abre su corazón a lo que Dios dice, se deja lelvar por las macanas que dice toda esa gente. Soy el primero en juzgar y castigar a alguien que tiene acusaciones de este tipo, pero en este caso (no hay) ninguna prueba; de corazón se los digo”, señala el Papa en el video tomado ese día en la “ciudad santa”.
Ahora bien cuando el Papa afirma que “No abre su corazón a lo que Dios dice” se refiere al dogma que sostiene que Dios habla a través del Papa.

Make it safer for sexual violence survivors to name perpetrators

The Mennonite

Written By: Stephanie Krehbiel

In August, together with 10 other Mennonite or formerly Mennonite advocates for survivors of sexual violence, I attended the annual conference of the Survivors Network for Those Abused by Priests. SNAP is a 30-year-old organization formed by Catholic survivors of clergy sexual abuse. It has since branched out to serve survivors whose abuse occurred in different faith traditions.

After two days of conference sessions, our Mennonite SNAP group gathered to compare notes, get to know one another better and plan for the future. We discussed our experiences with church leaders and law enforcement. In that trusted company and the privacy of that room, we shared name after name: of rapists, molesters, harassers, and predators. We also named Mennonite pastors, deacons, administrators and elders who, through complicity or passive silence, helped allow the violence to happen.

One overriding theme of our conversation was the retribution and fallout faced by survivors who come forward with the names of their abusers.

We face a dilemma that has confounded survivors’ advocates for years. We can’t do much of anything to stop sexual violence when perpetrators are allowed to hurt people without accountability. Still, it is hard to counsel survivors to name their perpetrators when the consequences of that action are so routinely vicious. All of us in that room had faced the experience of being attacked—verbally, through threats to our employment and sometimes physically—for naming perpetrators or supporting others who did.

I think of this conversation whenever I read about the efforts of Mennonite Church USA leadership to confront sexual abuse. There are good, competent people working on those initiatives. Still, survivors who want to make the names of their abusers public need more concrete reasons to believe they won’t be shamed or ignored when they name names. What will happen, for instance, when those names create embarrassment for powerful Mennonites?

Ricardo Ezzati es citado a declarar tras solicitud de víctimas de Karadima

Bio Bio

[Ricardo Ezzati is called to testify at the request of victims of Karadima.]

Este lunes el ministro de fuero Mario Gómez, citó a declarar al arzobispo de Santiago Ricardo Ezzati, luego de que el pasado viernes la defensa de las víctimas del caso Karadima solicitaron esta diligencia ante tribunales.

Recordemos que esta solicitud se enmarca en la demanda civil de la víctimas en contra del Arzobispado de Santiago, debido a su eventual responsabilidad en torno a los crímenes de abusos sexuales por los que fue condenado canónicamente el ex párroco de El Bosque, Fernando Karadima.

Tres escritos fueron presentados en el proceso que se instruye por la demanda indemnizatoria de 450 millones de pesos que interpusieron James Hamilton, Juan Carlos Cruz y José Murillo.

Marie Collins, member of pope’s sexual abuse panel, criticizes his response to Chile scandal


By John L. Allen Jr.
Associate editor October 5, 2015

ROME – Perhaps the best-known sexual abuse survivor on a panel created by Pope Francis to lead the Church on a path of reform has criticized the pontiff’s comments on an abuse case in Chile, saying she is “discouraged and saddened” by his response.

Irish laywoman Marie Collins made the comments via Twitter, in reaction to news of a five-month-old video made public Friday that shows the pontiff brushing off criticism of his appointment of a bishop in Chile accused of covering up allegations against his country’s most notorious abuser priest.

“Don’t be led around by the nose by these leftists who are the ones who put this [opposition] together,” the pope is heard saying.

It appeared Francis used the term “leftists” to refer to Chilean politicians, mostly members of the country’s main left-wing political party, who have signed a petition opposing the bishop’s nomination.

Francis was speaking about protests against his January selection of Juan de la Cruz Barros Madrid as bishop of the small Osorno diocese in Chile. Barros is widely seen in Chile as a defender of the Rev. Fernando Karadima, a prominent Chilean priest found guilty of abuse by the Vatican in 2011 and sentenced to a life of “prayer and penance.”

Vatican sends gay priests to convent to be 'cured', claims former priest


By Nick Squires, Rome 05 Oct 2015

A row over the Vatican's attitude towards gay priests has been stoked further by a claim that priests with “homosexual tendencies” are packed off to a religious retreat in order to be “cured”.

The Holy See had already been embarrassed by a senior Vatican official’s decision to come out publicly as gay at the weekend, just as 270 bishops from around the world gathered in Rome to attend a synod on family issues.

Krzysztof Charamsa, 43, a Polish priest and theologian who worked in one of the Vatican’s most influential departments, was summarily sacked after criticising what he called "institutionalised homophobia in the Church" and claiming that a majority of priests were gay.

As angry Vatican officials called his provocative gesture “very serious and irresponsible”, it was claimed on Monday that priests suspected of being gay are often sent to a convent in the northern city of Trento in order to “reflect” on their futures.

The Trento convent’s role in trying to “cure” priests of homosexuality was revealed by a former priest who was thrown out of the Church three years ago for being gay.

Priest to plead not guilty to charge of pointing musket at 8-year-old over football rivalry

The Republic

Published: 10/5/15

LITTLE FERRY, New Jersey — A New Jersey priest accused of pointing a functioning but unloaded musket at an 8-year-old boy in a church's rectory will plead not guilty, his lawyer said, explaining it as a joke spurred by a football rivalry.

The Rev. Kevin Carter is to be arraigned Tuesday on charges of child endangerment and aggravated assault by pointing a firearm, lawyer Harold Cassidy told The Record (http://bit.ly/1FSF7yH ).

Bergen County prosecutors charged Carter on Friday; he is free on $15,000 cash bail. Both charges stem from a Sept. 13 incident at St. Margaret of Cortona Roman Catholic Church in Little Ferry.

Authorities have said the incident apparently was spurred by a football rivalry, although Carter maintains it was a joke. A parishioner reported it to the Archdiocese of Newark late last month, and officials there soon notified the prosecutor's office.

Vatican uses Venturini monastery to ‘cure gay priests’, former clergy claim

Independent (UK)

Michael Day @michael2day Monday 5 October 2015

The Vatican has secretly been sending gay priests to a monastery near the Alps to be “cured” alongside paedophiles and drug addicts, it has emerged.

Priests who “show inappropriate sexual tendencies” are removed to the Venturini monastery in Trento for “a period of training, personal reflection and enlightenment”, according to Italian press reports.

The revelation came as hundreds of Catholic bishops, priests and laity began three weeks of deliberations in Rome over the church’s teachings on family life – including gay relationships – at a special synod. It followed a row at the weekend when a Polish theologian, 43-year-old Monsignor Krzysztof Charamsa, was sacked from Vatican posts within hours of declaring he was gay and had a long-term partner.

British clerical abuse victim Peter Saunders, who has been appointed to a Vatican child protection commission by Pope Francis, told The Independent that the Church was too soft on paedophile priests and their protectors, and contrasted this with their swift sacking of Msgr Charamsa.

One former clergyman, Mario Bonfante, was told to go to Venturini when his superiors discovered he was gay, in order for him “to rediscover the right path” – and after he refused, he was dismissed.

The all-male institute, and its order, the Priestly Heart of Jesus, was founded by Fr Mario Venturini in 1928 in a large house in Trento, in the foothills of Alps. As many as a dozen priests can stay there.

En video, papa defiende a obispo acusado de encubrimiento

El Nuevo Herald

The Associated Press


Una estación televisiva en Chile transmitió un video en el que muestra al papa Francisco defendiendo a un obispo de Santiago cuyos oponentes dicen ha encubierto abusos sexuales por un notorio sacerdote pederasta.

En el video, grabado en mayo y transmitido el viernes por el canal Mega, Francisco culpa a izquierdistas por una campaña contra el obispo de Osorno, Juan Barros.

"No se dejan llevar por las narices de todos los zurdos que son los que han armado la cosa", dice el papa en el video, hablando con visitantes chilenos al Vaticano. Francisco hizo notar que las acusaciones contra Barros habían sido desestimadas por un tribunal chileno.

Witness describes physical, sexual abuse at residential schools lawsuit

Gander Beacon

James McLeod
Published on October 05, 2015

An Inuit man broke down sobbing and wailing on the witness stand this morning at Newfoundland Supreme Court in St. John’s as he recounted physical, emotional and sexual abuse at the residential school in Northwest River, Labrador.

Toby Obed described being beaten with a strap for speaking Inukitut, and a worker at the school forcing two older children to have sex, and younger students being made to watch.

“I didn’t want to watch,” he said, sobbing.

The testimony Monday morning is part of a class-action lawsuit which represents more than 1,000 survivors of five residential schools in this province who were not included in a federal settlement in 2007 for survivors in other parts of Canada.

Mediation this summer failed, due to lack of instruction by provincial and federal governments.

'Deeply corrupt' Church of England tried to silence me, abuse victim claims


By Rebecca Barry: ITV News Correspondent

The Church of England has announced it will investigate claims that senior clerics helped cover-up sex crimes committed by a former Bishop.

Peter Ball, 83, will be sentenced at the Old Bailey this week after admitting a string of offences against young men from the 1970s to 1990s. But his victims claim, for decades, the Church of England prevented him from facing justice.

Graham Sawyer, who was abused by Ball when he was a teenager tells ITV News the church's behaviour had been “deeply corrupt, deeply sinister and it must be exposed".

"The truth must come out about those who protected him at that time,” he adds.

Abuse victims bid for justice from inquiry


Monday 05 October 2015

Survivors of child abuse across Nottinghamshire’s care homes are hopeful that an independent inquiry into the scandal will get underway in the coming months.

The victims have been pushing for the investigation into the homes run by Nottinghamshire’s county and the city council.

Nottinghamshire Police are already looking into the case, having launched Operation Daybreak five years ago and Operation Xeres earlier this year, but there is yet to be a prosecution.

Many survivors have questioned the value of the operations, and feel the only way to ensure a fair hearing is to bring in outside bodies to look at the police and both councils.

Hundreds have broken their silence about the systematic sex abuse they suffered at the hands of care home workers stretching back to the 1960s, but remain sceptical about the what the outcome will eventually be, and whether the perpetrators will ever be brought to justice.

The Nottinghamshire Child Sex Abuse (CSA) action group, set up with the help of former Forest Town man and abuse survivor Mickey Summer, recently met with the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse -led by New Zealand’s Judge Lowell 

Child sex abuse: victim’s ‘proof’ state ignored Eden park abuse

The Australian

OCTOBER 6, 2015

A victim of abuse at the Salvation Army’s former Eden Park home in the Adelaide Hills will today provide documents to a royal commission showing the state of South Australia and its child protection agencies knew about what was happening, but did nothing.

The former Salvation Army- run children’s home — where state wards were beaten and raped — will be at the centre of four days of hearings from today when the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse sits in Adelaide for its 33rd case inquiry.

The commission will investigate how the Salvation Army ran Eden Park between 1940 and 1990, and how it responded to child sexual abuse allegations.

Graham Rundle, 63, who was at Eden Park from 1960-68 from the age of seven, told The Australian yesterday that he would give evidence about documents that proved how much the state and its agencies knew.

He said government representatives were sent to Eden Park following complaints, but children continued to be sent there for years.

Pennsylvania priest’s attorney wants new sex tourism trial

ABC 27

JOHNSTOWN, Pa. (AP) — The attorney for a Roman Catholic priest wants a federal judge to grant a new trial on charges the cleric traveled to Honduras to molest poor street children during missionary trips.

The 70-year-old priest, the Rev. Joseph Maurizio was convicted of charges that he had sex with two of three alleged victims identified by federal prosecutors in Johnstown. The third boy recanted his claims that he was molested.

The priest’s attorney, Steven Passarello, says the boys’ testimony contradicted one another with regard to dates and the priest’s alleged behavior, and that prosecutors prejudiced the jury by noting the defense did not cross-examine the one alleged victim who changed his story.

Protests in Chile after Francis backs bishop

Buenos Aires Herald

SANTIAGO — Hundreds of protesters opposing the controversial appointment of a Santiago bishop, accused of being involved in a cover-up of sexual abuse, protested yesterday outside St Matthew’s Cathedral in Osorno, a day after supportive comments by Pope Francis were aired on Chilean television.

A local television station on Friday aired a video in which Pope Francis defends the bishop of Osorno, Monsignor Juan Barros, whose opponents allege was involved in a cover-up pertaining to a notorious paedophile priest. In the video, shot in May and broadcast only this week by Chilean TV channel Mega, Francis attacks “leftists,” blaming them for a campaign against Barros’ appointment.

“Don’t let yourselves be led by the noses, by the leftists who have plotted this,” the pope says in the video, speaking to Chilean visitors at the Vatican.

“Osorno is suffering from stupidity, and for not opening its heart to what God says. And for letting itself get carried away by the garbage everybody says,” he added, according to one translation of the video.

The pontiff also noted that the allegations against Barros had been dismissed by a Chilean court. The video was reportedly filmed by an Argentine on an iPad, who remains unidentified thus far.

Other Pontifical Acts

Vatican Information Service

Vatican City, 5 October 2015 (VIS) – The Holy Father has appointed:

- Archbishop Salvatore Ligorio of Matera-Irsina, Italy, as metropolitan archbishop of Potenza-Muro-Lucano-Marsico Nuovo (area 1,634, population 154,600, Catholics 152,600, priests 113, permanent deacons 23, religious 124), Italy. He succeeds Archbishop Agostino Superbo, whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same archdiocese upon reaching the age limit was accepted by the Holy Father.

- Msgr. Andrea Migliavacca as bishop of San Miniato (area 691, population 176,794, Catholics 161,000, priests 79, permanent deacons 10, religious 122), Italy. The bishop-elect was born in Pavia, Italy in 1967 and was ordained a priest in 1992. He holds a degree in canon law from the Pontifical Gregorian University and has served in a number of pastoral and administrative roles in Pavia, including notary of the diocesan ecclesiastical tribunal, adjunct judicial vicar, head of youth pastoral, Catholic Action assistant for youth, parish administrator of the San Genesio ed Uniti. He is currently vice chancellor and judge of the Lombard Regional Ecclesiastical Tribunal, rector of the diocesan seminary and head of vocations, judicial vicar and canon of the Cathedral Chapter.

Statement by the Director of the Holy See Press Office

Vatican Information Service

Vatican City, 3 October 2015 (VIS) – The Director of the Holy See Press Office, Fr. Federico Lombardi, S.J., today made the following statement:

“With regard to the declarations and interview given by Msgr. Krzystof Charamsa it should be observed that, notwithstanding the respect due to the events and personal situations, and reflections on the issue, the decision to make such a pointed statement on the eve of the opening of the Synod appears very serious and irresponsible, since it aims to subject the Synod assembly to undue media pressure. Msgr. Charamsa will certainly be unable to continue to carry out his previous work in the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and the Pontifical universities, while the other aspects of his situation shall remain the competence of his diocesan Ordinary”.

Pope Sympathizes More with Bishops, Less with Victims

Counter Punch


The head of the largest religion on earth understands the importance of first impressions. But you couldn’t tell that by his initial remarks the other day when he set foot in the US for the first time ever.

When elected pope, Francis made a spectacular first impression. He asked the crowd in St. Peter’s Square to bless him. (It’s usually the other way around.) The next day, he paid his own hotel bill and carried his own suitcase. And he continued in this humble, self-effacing way and so won the hearts of millions.

But last week, when he set foot in the US for the first time, his first impression was less successful.

Twice in two days, Pope Francis has made vague and brief references to the on-going abuse and cover up crisis, mentioning the pain of church staff but not the pain of abused children and betrayed parishioners. He refused to even call the scandal by its name.

In Washington DC, to bishops, the pontiff made virtually no mention of victims, offered no apology, praised US bishops being “courageous” and “generous” in the handling of the crisis.

Pope Francis: full text of remarks at Synod opening

Vatican Radio

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis addressed the General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops on Monday morning - the morning of their first full day of sessions. Below, please find Vatican Radio's full English translation of the Holy Father's remarks.

Dear Beatitudes, Eminences, Excellencies, brothers and sisters,

The Church today takes up once again the dialogue begun with the announcement of the extraordinary Synod on the family, and certainly even long before that, to evaluate and reflect on the text of the Working Document (Lt. Instrumentum laboris), elaborated on the basis of the [Extraordinary Assembly’s] final report (Relatio Synodi) and the responses of the Bishops’ Conferences and from the other organizations with the right to contribute.

The Synod, as we know, is a journey undertaken together in the spirit of collegiality and synodality, on which participants bravely adopt parrhesia, pastoral zeal and doctrinal wisdom, frankness, and always keep before our eyes the good of the Church, of families and the suprema lex, the Salus animarum.

Parishioners show no mercy for kinky ‘cake porn’ priest

New York Post

By Tom Wilson and Bruce Golding
October 5, 2015

Parishioners at a Manhattan church showed little support Sunday for their disgraced former pastor, who got the boot for knocking up his married mistress during an affair that included making kinky “cake crush” sex tapes.

The pews were emptier than usual Sunday at the St. Spyridon Greek Orthodox Church in Washington Heights, which was led by the Rev. George Passias before his downfall, which was revealed by The Post.

Modal Trigger“He used to be a good priest, he talked nice and everything. He got people into church,” said Nicholas Karaniaks, 68, who has been praying at St. Spyridon over the past 36 years. “Now it’s more empty, because the scandal scares people away.”

Passias, 67, was suspended by the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America on Sept. 16 after the husband of his mistress, Ethel Bouzalas, 45, blew the whistle on their bizarre affair.

Witness comes to defense of Little Ferry priest accused of pointing rifle at boy

The Record


LITTLE FERRY — Blasting law enforcement officials, an eyewitness Sunday disputed the Bergen County prosecutor’s allegation that a Catholic priest aimed an unloaded replica of a Civil War rifle at an 8-year-old boy last month. .

Richard Fritzky, an adjunct professor at Fairleigh Dickinson University, came to the defense of the Rev. Kevin Carter, 54, pastor of St. Margaret of Cortona Church in the borough.

“I neither saw Father Kevin raise the rifle nor threaten anyone,” said Fritzky, former president of the Meadowlands Regional Chamber of Commerce.

At Masses on Sunday, parishioners also voiced support for the priest and applauded when he began the services by reading a statement maintaining his innocence. Carter told his congregation that the charges reflect misinterpreted “jesting” between him — a fervent New York Giants fan — and the boy, who came to church wearing a Dallas Cowboys jersey. One churchgoer called the person who reported Carter to authorities a “Judas.”

CASA 0101 Theater To Present Panel Discussion on Physical Abuse October 11th with Survivor's Network

Broadway World

CASA 0101 Theater will present a Panel Discussion on the subject of physical abuse following the 5:00 p.m. Matinee performance of the play DRUNK GIRL on Sunday, October 11, 2015 on the Main Stage of the CASA 0101 Theater, 2102 East First Street (at St. Louis Street), Boyle Heights, CA 90033. Discussion Panelists with include select members of the cast and production team of DRUNK GIRL, along with representatives from the Survivor's Network of Those Abused by Priests, Alcoholics Anonymous and the East Los Angeles Women's Center.

CASA 0101 Theater's World Premiere production of DRUNK GIRL, part the theater's 15th "Quinceañera" Anniversary Season, is currently receiving critical acclaim. LA Weekly wrote: "Involving 83 characters, nine actors and three directors, squeezed into a breathless 98 minutes...The tone of these pieces - defiant, resilient, refusing to speak in the hushed voices of victims - is admirable...." East Los Angeles College's Campus News wrote: "The stories were told boldly and captivated the audience. The show opened with the wildly hilarious 'Red Flag Game Show' and closed on a musical note with 'Yes, Let's Have Sex.'" www.vivasalsera.com wrote: "The show is only an hour and a half long (no intermission) moving quickly from one scene to the next, bringing equally along moments of laughter, emotion, and thoughtfulness...I recommend that you check it out and bring your late teens and early 20-year-old sons and daughters with you."

Rev. Passias Sex Scandal: Archdciocese Bans Priest for Affair and Pregnancy with Married Mistress


Author: Theodore Kalmoukos
Date Published: 10/03/2015
Publication: The National Herald

NEW YORK – Rev. George Passias, 68, presiding priest at St. Spyridon Greek Orthodox Church in the Upper Manhattan neighborhood of Washington Heights in New York City, is embroiled in a sex scandal with Ethel Bouzalas, to whom he has referred as his “spiritual daughter.” Rev. Passias has impregnated Bouzalas, 45, who has been his close associate for years. Both are married and with children.

Bouzalas’ name was first revealed publicly by the New York Post in a June 1, 2013 article.

TNH has obtained irrefutable evidence that Passias has carried on sexual relations with Bouzalas. Specifically, that they would often frequent the Courtesy Motel in Fort Lee, NJ – as “husband and wife.” Other evidence, including photographs and video footage, shows the couple going to the Countryside Hotel in Cold Spring, NY, and dining at Cliff’s Steak House in Englewood Cliffs, NJ.

The Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America has suspended Passias from every liturgical, pastoral, and administrative ministry.

Archbishop Demetrios of America, expressed to TNH his “deep sorrow for this grievous event” and added that “the Church will take all the necessary measures for this case, according to the law of God.”

VIP child abuse probe harmed by 'false memories': Leading campaigner suggests it is important not to 'make something huge' out of one or two misleading claims

Daily Mail


A leading child abuse campaigner has suggested that the memories of some witnesses in the VIP paedophile inquiry may have become distorted over time.

Peter Saunders, founder of the National Association for People Abused in Childhood, said it was important not to 'make something huge' out of the fact that one or two accounts were misleading.
Such a move would be detrimental to child protection and to the current inquiry into abuse, he said.

Mr Saunders voiced his concern ahead of a BBC documentary that calls into question Scotland Yard's investigation into claims of a historical paedophile ring at the heart of the Establishment.

Panorama – the Corporation's flagship investigative programme – will scrutinise the lurid claims of 'Nick', the anonymous witness at the heart of Operation Midland. The programme, to be shown tomorrow night, will examine the validity of Nick's claims that senior Establishment figures were responsible for murdering three boys in the 1970s and 1980s.

Archbishop of Canterbury launches review of sex abuser bishop case

Christian Today


The Archbishop of Canterbury has commissioned an independent review into how the Church of England responded to abuse allegations against the disgraced former Bishop of Gloucester Peter Ball.

Bishop Ball, a former Anglican monk who set up his own religious order, pleaded guilty last month to two charges of indecent assault against young men and one charge of misconduct in public office by sexually exploiting 18 men who sought religious guidance from him. Two indecent assault charges against boys aged under 16 were left on file. He is due to be sentenced at the Central Criminal Court in London this week.

The Times reports today that the role of former Archbishop of Canterbury Lord Carey of Clifton is to be examined in the affair, in particular regarding what he knew about secret talks in 1992-93 between the Church of England, police and the Crown Prosecution Service concerning Bishop Ball.

In 1993 Bishop Ball was issued with a caution for one act of gross indecency rather than put on trial.

Operation Dunhill, which finally brought the Bishop to book and led to his arrest in 2011, began after the safeguarding officer at Lambeth Palace, a retired police officer, raised concerns. This followed a review of files initiated by the Church, which worked closely with Sussex Police.

"The independent review will examine the Church of England's cooperation with the police and other statutory agencies and the extent to which it shared information in a timely manner, identifying both good practice and shortcomings alike. It will also assess the extent to which the Church both properly assessed the possible risk that Bishop Ball might pose to others and responded adequately to concerns and representations submitted by survivors," the Church said in a statement.

Pope tells Synod to be open-minded, cardinal says no to divorced and remarried

National Catholic Reporter

Joshua J. McElwee | Oct. 5, 2015

Pope Francis has called on the hundreds of prelates gathered for his second worldwide meeting of Catholic bishops on family issues to remain open in their deliberations to the call of the Holy Spirit, repeating his frequent assertion that God is a God of surprises.

Yet, within minutes of the pope’s call, one of the cardinals leading the meeting seemed to say there could be no surprise in one of its most anticipated discussions -- indicating no foreseeable movement on the church’s stance towards couples who are civilly divorced and remarried.

The back-and-forth took place at the first open session of the Synod of Bishops, a highly anticipated meeting that has brought some 318 people to Rome -- mainly male prelates -- for discussions Oct. 4-25.

Francis opened the event Monday at one of the three-week gathering’s only public sessions by calling on the gathered prelates to work in their deliberations with “apostolic courage, evangelical humility, and trust-filled prayer.”

The Synod, the pope said, is not a parliament or a senate, but an “ecclesial expression” of a church “that walks together to read reality with eyes of faith and the heart of God.”

Church review into how bishop sex abuse complaints were handled


The Church of England has launched a review into how it handled complaints of sexual abuse against a former Bishop of Gloucester.

83-year-old Peter Ball, who lives in Somerset and was also once a Bishop of Lewes, has admitted abusing 18 young men from the 1970s to 1990s.

The Archbishop of Canterbury has commissioned an independent report into how the Church dealt with the allegations, which emerged 22 years ago. This will include how it co-operated with the police, and whether the concerns of survivors were responded to.

Ball accepted a caution for one act of gross indecency and resigned his post in 1993 - but was allowed to keep working for the church until 2010 despite several complaints against him.

Welby orders review into church's handling of sex abuse bishop case

The Guardian

Harriet Sherwood
Monday 5 October 2015

The archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, has ordered an independent review of the Church of England’s handling of the case of Peter Ball, the former bishop of Lewes and Gloucester, amid allegations of a cover-up of sexual abuse.

Ball, 83, admitted last month to indecently assaulting two people between 1980 and 1983 and between 1990 and 1991, and will be sentenced on Wednesday. He also admitted misconduct in public office by “misusing his position in authority to manipulate and prevail upon others for his own sexual gratification” in relation to 16 men between 1977 and 1992.

Claims of Ball’s offences surfaced in 1993, when he was cautioned by police, but he was not brought to trial. He resigned from his position, but continued to officiate in churches until 2010.

The Church of England announced on Monday that Welby had commissioned an independent review to examine whether the church “properly assessed the possible risk that Bishop Ball might pose to others and responded adequately to concerns and representations submitted by survivors”.

Ex-Bishop sex abuse case: Victims' lawyers say Church cannot police itself

Express & Star

Former Bishop of Gloucester and Bishop of Lewes Peter Ball, 83, will be sentenced at the Old Bailey this week after admitting a string of offences against young men from the 1970s to 1990s.

Troubling questions have emerged over the Church's handling of the case, prompting the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, to commission an independent report.

Claims against Ball surfaced in 1993 when he accepted a caution for one act of gross indecency, and he resigned from his post.

However, he was allowed to continue working for the church until 2010, despite several complaints being made against him.

It emerged in court that Ball and former Archbishop of Canterbury Lord Carey had been assured in 1993 that there would be no further action against Ball.

Would the real pontiff please stand up?

Irish Examiner

Monday, October 05, 2015

The image of Pope Francis as a great reformer doesn’t yet hold true, writes TP O’Mahony

IS A section of the media in danger of creating a ‘fantasy’ Francis — a Pope whose perceived liberalism is not really rooted in reality?

As the Synod of the Family opens in Rome and speculation begins about a possible papal visit to Ireland in 2018, we are left to ponder the enigma that is Jorge Mario Bergoglio.

Hailed in the current edition of Vanity Fair as “the people’s pontiff”, there is no denying the popularity of Francis. The huge crowds that turned out to greet him during his recent visit to Cuba and the US were further testimony to this. It was at the end of this visit, at the closing mass in Philadelphia, that he announced that the next World Meeting of Families will be held in Dublin in 2018. Whether the pope himself will travel to Ireland for this event — held every three years — remains a matter of speculation. ...

As archbishop of Buenos Aires, Jorge Mario Bergoglio opposed plans by the government in Argentina to introduce family planning programmes involving the use of contraceptives. This continues to be Vatican policy globally, a policy whose effects on families in some of the poorest and more deprived regions of the world may be very harsh indeed.

Francis has declared it part of his mission to restore credibility and authenticity to a Church deeply scarred and bedevilled by clerical sex abuse and cover-ups. Some of the worst examples of the latter have occurred in the US, where if justice was properly done, several American bishops would now be behind bars for their complicity and criminal negligence.
Yet, during his recent visit, Francis praised US bishops for their “courage” in handling sex abuse cases — a decision described by one of the pope’s biographers, Paul Vallely, as “a bizarre response”.

Little wonder that there was an angry reaction from abuse victims who said the Church has not done enough. David Clohessy, head of the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests, who himself was abused by a priest, said he unimpressed by Francis’s words.

Ron Southwick: In the Capitol, Catholic church undercuts pope's vow to victims

Reading Eagle

When he was in Philadelphia, Pope Francis said "God weeps" for those who were sexually abused by priests.

"I pledge to you that we will follow the path of truth wherever it may lead," the pope said. "Clergy and bishops will be held accountable when they abuse or fail to protect children."

State Rep. Mark Rozzi bristles at those words.

Rozzi, a Muhlenberg Township Democrat, has sponsored legislation that would extend the statute of limitations for sex abuse victims to file claims in court. The Pennsylvania Catholic Conference continues to fight bills to extend the statute of limitations.

"While the pope was in the U.S., the Pennsylvania Catholic Conference was in Harrisburg lobbying against victims of sexual abuse," Rozzi said.

The issue couldn't be more personal to Rozzi. A priest sexually abused Rozzi when he was 13 years old. Rozzi has said three of his friends who were abused by priests later committed suicide.

Greek Orthodox Priest Forced To Resign Because Of "Cake Porn" Sex Tapes



A staunchly conservative high-ranking Greek Orthodox priest at a Manhattan church has been suspended and forced to resign after evidence of a longtime affair with a practitioner he once called his "goddaughter" came out.

The Post has the exposé on Father George Passias, the married 67-year-old former pastor of St. Spyridon Church in Washington Heights, who they say has impregnated his longtime lover and parish-school principal Ethel Bouzalas. In addition, Passias has been accused of misusing church funds, as documented both by the Post and NY Magazine.

The Post levied these accusations at Passias in 2013—he denied everything at the time, telling them, "They have been saying I’m having a private affair with her. She is a goddaughter to me. That’s it." Steve Papadatos, the Parish Council president, told The National Herald at the time that the allegations against Passias were "lies," blasting the tabloid for publishing a story "replete with slander."

But it seems a series of "shocking" sex tapes leaked to church officials have ended Passias' career. The Post reviewed the tapes, which apparently involved "cake porn."

In one scene, the bearded cleric, wearing only a white T-shirt, watches his long-haired brunette lover plant her thong-clad bottom on a piece of banana bread wrapped in cellophane.

Bouzalas, wearing stiletto heels, oddly wiggles on the loaf until it is flattened — apparently a fetish known as “cake crush” or “cake sitting.”

In another video clip, the pretty Peruvian rubs her feet on the priest’s face as they lie under a mirrored ceiling and she records his ecstasy at the encounter. In another tape, the priest performs oral sex on his lover while she is still clad in sheer pantyhose.

The videos, along with an email from Bouzalas' husband to Bishop Andonios Paropoulos (the chancellor of the Greek Orthodox church in the United States), was enough for the church to suspend him. Passias officially gave his goodbye to his St. Spyridon parish in an email last week, saying he was leaving for “personal and health reasons,” and confessing to “multitudinous sins and shortcomings.”

Top Greek Orthodox priest, 67, resigns over the kinky foot-fetish sex tapes he made with 45-year-old parochial school principal

Daily Mail (UK)

4 October 2015

A high ranking Greek Orthodox priest was forced to resign last week after kinky sex tapes of his much younger parish school principal sitting on cakes in a thong and rubbing her feet in his face surfaced.

Father George Passias, 67, a married pastor at St. Spyridon in New York City at St. Spyridion church in Washington Heights is said to have impregnated Ethel Bouzalas, 45, with whom he had an alleged affair.

The New York Post reports that Passias was once the chancellor of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America and was in charge of all Greek Orthodox priests in the US.

The scandal came to light in September after Bouzalas' husband emailed the current chancellor of the Greek Orthodox Church in the United States, Bishop Andonios Paropoulos.

Bishop Paropoulos told The New York Post that Passias and Bouzalas came to meet with him and that Passias was suspended on September 16.

Bishop Andonios said he had not seen the sex tapes which were sent anonymously to the New York Post but that he 'learned of their existence during our meetings with both parties.'

Worshippers stunned by priest's ouster from Des Plaines shrine

Daily Herald

Steve Zalusky

Shock, sadness and surprise were expressed by worshippers the day after a prominent priest was removed as rector of a Des Plaines shrine.

Rev. Marco A. Mercado was relieved of his duties Saturday at the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe because of his "inappropriate relationship with an adult man," according to a statement from the Archdiocese of Chicago.

The shrine draws more than 100,000 people for its annual observance of Our Lady of Guadalupe, a 36-hour event on the Maryville campus at Central and River roads.

"I feel surprised, because, for me, he was a very good person and he helped out a lot here," said Georgina Rodriguez of Chicago.

"I heard he was a good guy," said Dexter Jasso, of Evanston, whose father attends the church. "He was a director. He was pretty much raising money for the church, and he had plans for making it bigger, growing it,"

Remove Lahey letter from hymnal: survivor

The Telegram

Louis Power
Published on October 04, 2015

A letter written by Raymond Lahey, a Canadian bishop who served time in 2011-12 for importing child pornography, remains in the pews of Catholic churches across the country.

Now — 3 1/2 years after Lahey was defrocked by the Catholic Church — a survivor of clergy sexual abuse is asking for it to be removed.

It’s a letter of introduction in the “Catholic Book of Worship III,” a widely distributed hymn book published in 1994 by the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops. Lahey was the Bishop of St. George’s at the time of publication; he went on to become the Bishop of Antigonish in 2003.

Gemma Hickey, founder of The Pathways Foundation, said she first learned of the letter six months ago when a woman told her she saw it at St. Paul’s church in St. John’s. The woman approached her about the letter after she contacted Archbishop Martin Currie of the St. John’s archdiocese, but didn’t get the results she was looking for.

Campaigners issues Jehovah's Witnesses abuse warning

Belfast Telegraph

Victims of child abuse within the Jehovah's Witnesses may never see the perpetrators brought to justice unless the Government closes a loophole allowing criminals to evade justice, campaigners have warned.

The Government has been asked to introduce mandatory reporting to police whenever an allegation of child sex abuse is made within the faith group.

Currently, the so-called "two-witness rule" means Jehovah's Witnesses deal with allegations of "sins" internally and only investigate themselves if the claim is corroborated by a second testimony - something lawyers say is unlikely given that many victims are abused on their own, in private.

Concern over the number of "hidden" victims has prompted campaigners to hand a letter to Downing Street calling on the government to take action.

Victim Nick French, 43, who was abused by his stepfather Gary Moscrop from the ages of seven to 13, said introducing mandatory reporting would reduce the risk of paedophiles offending.

Book Review: The Well Armored Child by Joelle Casteix

The Legal Examiner

Posted by Joseph H. Saunders
October 4, 2015

This book is subtitled: A Parent’s Guide to Preventing Sexual Abuse. Here, Ms. Casteix provides the reader with compelling and concise information about the dynamics of child sexual abuse. She lists and dispels a number of myths that have served to mislead parents and children for decades.

For example, she addresses the myth that “stranger danger” is the greatest risk. In fact, the closest and most trusted individuals with authority over children have been proven to be the greatest risk. These individuals could include priests, ministers, coaches, scouting leaders, or family friends or relatives.

The book contains chapters about communication between parents and children and discusses red flags in relationships between children and other adults that might not be apparent to a parent.

Joelle Casteix speaks from decades of experience helping survivors of childhood sexual abuse many of whom were unable to come forward for years or decades after their abuse. She also is a survivor of childhood sexual abuse herself. She has worked closely with law enforcement, the National Crime Victim Bar Association, and SNAP, The Survivor’s Network of Those Abused by Priests as well as many other organizations.

Church review into retired bishop Peter Ball abuse case

BBC News

The Archbishop of Canterbury has commissioned an independent review into the way the Church of England responded to sex offence allegations made against a former bishop 22 years ago.

Peter Ball, 83, formerly Bishop of Gloucester and Bishop of Lewes, pleaded guilty last month to charges of sex abuse involving men from the 1970s-90s.

The claims emerged in 1993 but he was allowed to work in churches until 2010.

Ball will be sentenced at the Old Bailey on Wednesday.

Survivors of sexual abuse have been highly critical of the Church's handling of the case even before Ball pleaded guilty last month.

October 4, 2015

El padre del niño que denunció abusos dice que la carta del Papa 'ha sido un rayo de luz dentro de la oscuridad'

El Mundo

El padre del menor que denunció abusos en el colegio Gaztelueta de Vizcaya ha afirmado que la carta del Papa Francisco "ha sido un rayo de luz en la oscuridad" y cree que su actuación demuestra que considera que "hay pruebas suficientes" para darles la razón "de lejos".

Además, ha afirmado que el profesor, presunto culpable, está imputado, y el caso está en el proceso de toma de declaración y realización de pruebas.

El joven denunciante, que ahora tiene 19 años y habría sufrido los presuntos abusos en el curso 2008-2009, tal y como publicó EL MUNDO, envió una carta al Papa Francisco contándole lo sucedido y el Pontífice le respondió a finales de 2014 mostrando su cercanía y asegurando que entregaría la documentación a la Congregación para la Doctrina de la Fe para dar comienzo a un juicio canónico al educador y al colegio, "pero sin molestar al chico".

En una entrevista concedida a Radio Euskadi, el padre del chico ha afirmado que la misiva del Papa "fue realmente un rayo de luz dentro de la oscuridad". "Cuando recogí la carta personalmente, se me saltaron las lágrimas de la emoción que me produjo", ha indicado.

Pope promises Church trial against alleged Spanish sex abuser


By Inés San Martín
Vatican correspondent October 3, 2015

ROME — In a handwritten letter by Pope Francis to a survivor of sexual abuse in a Catholic school in Spain that surfaced on Friday, the pontiff said he requested a Church trial against the teacher who allegedly committed the abuse eight years ago.

News of the letter will likely be seen as a sign of the pontiff’s personal involvement in the abuse issue, coming on the heels of a private meeting with five abuse survivors in Philadelphia during his visit to the United States.

The letter is dated Dec. 29, 2014, and is addressed to the father of a 20-year-old who claimed to have been abused between 2008 and 2010 by an official of his school, called Gaztelueta, which is located in Bilbao, Spain.

The institution is run by the Catholic group Opus Dei, typically seen as fairly conservative, and the alleged abuser is an Opus Dei member, technically known as a numerary.

'Club of One': US Now Lone UN Member Outside Children's Rights Treaty


by Andrea Germanos, staff writer

Somalia on Thursday completed its ratification of the Convention on the Rights of the Child—becoming the 196th nation to do so and making the United States the only United Nations state outside of the treaty.

The UN Committee on the Rights of the Child explains that the Convention, adopted in 1989, "is the most widely ratified international human rights treaty, sets out a number of children’s rights including the right to life, to health, to education and to play, as well as the right to family life, to be protected from violence, to not be discriminated, and to have their views heard."

As for why the U.S. would not ratify this convention that it helped draft and has already signed, Amnesty International has explained that conservative organizations like the Christian Coalition, Family Research Council, and Focus on the Family, "have made a significant effort to portray the Convention as a threat. The majority of the oppositions claims stem from unfounded concerns related to national sovereignty, states' rights, and the parent-child relationship."

The convention needs the approval of two-thirds of the U.S. Senate, where, Amnesty continues, it "has encountered a notable level of opposition" as a result of these misconceptions.

Pope opens Synod of Bishops with call to blend tradition with mercy


By Inés San Martín
Vatican correspondent October 4, 2015

ROME — Pope Francis opened this year’s Synod of Bishops on the family Sunday with a stirring defense of traditional marriage coupled with an insistence that the Church must, at the same time, be merciful and compassionate to those who struggle.

During a solemn Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica, concelebrated by the more than 270 bishops from around the world gathered in Rome for the meeting, the pope tackled one of the thorniest issues the prelates will discuss and debate during the next three weeks: How the Church should approach pastoral care for divorced and separated Catholics.

“The man who falls or who errs must be understood and loved,” Francis said in his homily, quoting Pope St. John Paul II. A Church with closed doors “betrays herself and her mission, and, instead of being a bridge, becomes a roadblock.”

The synod, which lasts until Oct. 25, is the second half of a process started last year to examine issues related to the family. A 39-question survey sent to parishes and filled out by clergy and ordinary Catholics showed a significant gap on many issues, such as birth control, between what the Church teaches and what Catholics practice or believe.

REBUTTAL:TheMediaReport-David Pierre "Same As It Ever Was: NY Times’ Laurie Goodstein Gives Free Publicity to SNAP and Its Claim That Pope Francis Ignores Abuse Victims"

PopeCrimes& Vatican Evils.

Paris Arrow

David Pierre of TheMediaReport is the doppelganger of Goliath-bully Bill Donohue of Catholic League

David Pierre is the twin of Goliath-bully Bill Donohue and their main job is to be the henchmen of the Opus Dei Beast PR Deceits Team and Pope Francis. In the Medieval Ages, kings had foot soldiers and spies who went furtively among the people – to scout and catch critics whom they’d turn-in and were either jailed or hanged if they refused to recant their criticism against the monarch. In the (VA) Vatican Autocracy of the 21st century, David Pierre and Bill Donohue are the foot soldiers and spies for the Opus Dei Beast PR Deceits Team. But when they catch critics – instead of turning them in, they personally and – immediately – deliver the brutal blows of insults and whatever it takes to stop and shut-up those critics. Pierre and Donohue are the verbal terrorists of the Vatican. They have a mandate of verbal “shoot-to-kill” – meaning thrash and bash the opponents and critics – especially SNAP – and wipe them out from the face of the earth ASAP – literally.

Orthodox priest’s weird sex fetishes caught on video

Adelaide Now (Australia)

A HIGH-RANKING Greek Orthodox priest starred in kinky sex tapes with his much-younger parish-school principal and was forced to resign after the affair — which he’d denied for years — was confirmed by church elders.

Father George Passias, the married 67-year-old pastor of St. Spyridon Church in Manhattan, even impregnated his married lover, 45-year-old Ethel Bouzalas, according to sources.

Passias was once the chancellor of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, in charge of all of the religion’s US priests, reports the New York Post.

An adherent to a fundamentalist faction of Greek Orthodoxy led by a controversial cleric in Arizona, he took the helm of St. Spyridon nine years ago — and immediately ordered female worshippers to cover their heads during confession.

But there was no such nod to modesty in their shocking sex videos. In one scene, the bearded cleric, wearing only a white T-shirt, watches his long-haired brunette lover plant her G-string clad bottom on a piece of banana bread wrapped in cling wrap.

Mrs Bouzalas, wearing stiletto heels, oddly wiggles on the loaf until it is flattened — a fetish known as “cake crush” or “cake sitting”.

Chicago priest removed for inappropriate adult relationship

Chicago Tribune

Manya Brachear Pashman
Chicago Tribune

A popular Roman Catholic priest who attended the pope's address to Congress last month has been removed from ministry because of an "inappropriate relationship with an adult man," the Chicago Archdiocese announced Sunday.

Chicago Archbishop Blase Cupich removed the Rev. Marco Mercado, rector of the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Des Plaines, withdrawing his authority to minister. The Rev. Adan Sandoval Duron, head of the archdiocese's new Hispanic Council, has been appointed interim administrator, and Mercado will live away from the shrine.

"As a human being I am not perfect, but as a priest my priority has always been the work of the Gospel and the struggle for immigrants and the most vulnerable," Mercado said in a statement. "I pray that this issue is resolved soon, and I ask for your prayers, at the same time that I apologize if this scandal has caused any hardship to the faithful."

Ordained in 1998, Mercado grew up in Morelia, Mexico, and attended seminary in that country before coming to Casa Jesus, a renowned archdiocese training program for Latin American men who aspire to become priests. He graduated from the University of St. Mary of the Lake/Mundelein Seminary and became associate pastor of St. Anthony of Padua church in west suburban Cicero.

Francis blasts critics of Chilean bishop tied to abuser priest


By Inés San Martín
Vatican correspondent October 4, 2015

ROME — A five-month-old video released Friday shows Pope Francis accusing critics in Chile of “foolishness” for protesting his appointment of a bishop accused of covering up for the country’s most notorious abuser priest.

In January, Francis tapped Juan de la Cruz Barros Madrid as bishop of the small Osorno diocese, a move that sparked nationwide protest because Barros was accused of concealing sexual abuse allegations against the Rev. Fernando Karadima, a well-known local priest.

The video shows Jaime Coiro, a former spokesman for the Chilean Bishops Conference and its current assistant secretary, in St. Peter’s Square, where he greets Francis personally and tells him that the Chilean church is “praying and suffering for you.”

With no prompting, Francis tells Coiro that the local Church in Chile has “lost its head,” allowing a group of politicians to judge a bishop “with no proof whatsoever.”

“Think with the head, don’t be led around by the nose by these leftists who are the ones who put this [opposition] together,” the pope is heard saying.

The “leftists” to whom Francis referred are presumably 51 members of Chile’s Congress, most from the Socialist government of President Michelle Bachelet, who signed a petition opposing Barro’s nomination.

Vídeo: El Papa llama ''zurdos'' a los detractores del obispo chileno

Diario Registrado

[Video: Pope calls critics of Chilean bishop "lefties."]

Francisco respaldó Monseñor Juan Barros, a quien designó como Obispo de Osorno, en el sur de Chile. El religioso fue señalado por las víctimas del sacerdote Fernando Karadima como supuesto encubridor de abusos. La acusación siempre fue negada por el Prelado, y hasta fue desacreditada por las autoridades competentes.

El Papa Francisco realizó una férrea defensa al obispo de Osorno, Juan Barros, en un vídeo publicado en la red social YouTube.

El Pontífice señala que las acusaciones que lo vinculan al caso Karadima fueron hechas "por políticos sin ninguna prueba".

Juan Barros asumió en marzo como obispo de Osorno y en ese momento fue duramente cuestionado por su cercanía con el sacerdote Fernando Karadima, acusado de abusos sexuales.

In video, Pope Francis defends Chilean bishop his opponents accuse of covering up sex abuse

Star Tribune

Associated Press OCTOBER 4, 2015

SANTIAGO, Chile — A Chilean television station has aired a video that shows Pope Francis defending a Santiago bishop whose opponents allege has covered up sexual abuse by a notorious pedophile priest.

In the video, shot in May and broadcast on Friday by Chilean TV channel Mega, Francis blames "leftists" for a campaign against the bishop of Osorno, Monsignor Juan Barros.

"Don't let yourselves be led by the noses, by the leftists who have plotted this," the pope says in the video, speaking to Chilean visitors at the Vatican. He noted that the allegations against Barros had been dismissed by a Chilean court.

Jaime Coiro, a deacon and former spokesman for the church in Chile, said on his Twitter account that he was there when the video was made and that Francis was speaking to him. He said the comments were recorded on an iPad by an Argentine standing nearby.

A spokeswoman for Mega told The Associated Press that it obtained the video from a confidential source on Friday.

The office of the Vatican's spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Sunday. But Francis' comments were in line with his past support of Barros.

In late March, the Vatican released a statement defending Barros, saying the Congregation for Bishops examined his candidacy for bishop "and did not find objective reasons to preclude the appointment."

Archdiocese Removes Popular Suburban Priest for 'Inappropriate Relationship'

NBC Chicago

Father Marco Mercado recently traveled to Washington, D.C., as Congressman Luis Gutierrez's guest for Pope Francis' speech to Congress

Archbishop Blase Cupich has removed a popular suburban priest from the ministry after the Archdiocese discovered the priest had an "inappropriate relationship" with an adult man.

The Archdiocese removed Father Marco Mercado, who was the rector of the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Des Plaines, on Thursday. The Rev. Adan Sandoval Duron was appointed as the interim administrator.

"On October 1, 2015, Archbishop Blase J. Cupich removed Rev. Marco A. Mercado, Rector of the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Des Plaines from ministry because of Fr. Mercado's inappropriate relationship with an adult man," a statement from the Archdiocese reads. "Archbishop Cupich has withdrawn Fr. Mercado's faculties, his authority to minister ... Fr. Mercado will reside away from the Shrine, effective immediately.

Reverend Edward M. Keohan

O'Donnell Funeral Home

BOSTON- Reverend Edward M. Keohan 83, of Boston, died Saturday, Sept 12th, 2015 at Marian Manor in Boston following a brief illness.

Born in Weymouth, he was the son of the late Edward M. and Josephine (Andrew) Keohan. He was raised and educated in Weymouth and was a graduate of Weymouth High School. He continued his education at Boston College graduating in 1954. He then entered St. John Seminary and was ordained a priest of the Archdiocese of Boston in 1959.

Father's first assignment was as associate pastor at St. John Church in Haverhill (1959-1961), he then traveled to Peru and served as a member of the Society of St. James the Apostle (1961-1966). Upon his returned he was assigned as associate pastor of St. Charles in Woburn (1966-1972), St. Rose in Chelsea (1972-1984). He was then made Chaplain of Salem Hospital Complex (1984-1987). His longest tenure would come as Administrator of St. Mary's Italian Church in Salem where he served from 1987 until 2003. He was then Administrator of Our Lady of Lourdes Parish in Revere (2003-2005). He became senior priest in residence at the Immaculate Conception Church in Salem. He was again called to serve as temporary Administrator of St. Margaret's Church in Beverly Farms in 2009. He spent many years serving the catholic community of the North Shore and more recently resided at Regina Cleri and Marion Manor.

Reverend Keohan served where he was called to the best of his abilities through many transitions in his parishes while never losing his faith and the faith of his parishioners was always at the forefront. He was an ardent supporter of Boston College and the Boston College Eagles Football team and would often go to games. He was an animal lover who enjoyed walking the Salem Common.

Nueva protesta de fieles contra obispo Barros en Catedral de Osorno

El Mostrador

[About 100 people protested again this Sunday at the San Mateo de Osorno Cathedral while Bishop Juan Barros officiated at mass. Demonsrations against Barros have been recorded since his arrival in the region because he has been accused of covering up sexual abuse by former pastor of El Bosque, Fernando Karadima. However, this new protest is part of the controversy behind the defense made by Pope Francis of Barros. The pope said the bishop was being accused without evidence and he said parishioners were being swayed by "lefties."]

Unas 100 personas protestaron nuevamente este domingo frente a la Catedral San Mateo de Osorno, mientras el obispo Juan Barros oficiaba la misa del adulto mayor.

Las manifestaciones contra Barros se han registrado desde su llegada a la región, debido a que ha sido acusado de encubrir los abusos sexuales del ex párroco de El Bosque, Fernando Karadima.

Sin embargo, esta nueva protesta se enmarca dentro de la polémica surgida tras la defensa que hizo el Papa Francisco a Barros, afirmando que el obispo estaba siendo juzgado sin ninguna prueba y pidiendo a los feligreses pensar con la cabeza y no dejarse llevar por "los zurdos que son los armaron la cosa".

Osorno: protestas contra obispo Barros se revitalizan tras palabras del Papa


[Osorno: Protests against Bishop Barros revitalized after Pope's words.]

Luego que el Papa Francisco respaldara a Juan Barros, las manifestaciones en contra del representante de la Iglesia en el sur volvió a reunir a fieles que piden su renuncia

Las manifestaciones en Osorno para destituir al obispo de la ciudad, Juan Barros, no han desaparecido desde que se anunció que él ocuparía el cargo, sin embargo habían quedado sin tanta exposición mediática luego que pasaran los días. Sin embargo, tras las palabras de respaldo del Papa al representante de la Iglesia en el sur, las protestas se robustecieron.

De esta manera, un grupo de personas contrarias a la figura de Juan Barros se instaló afuera de la parroquia del centro de la ciudad -ubicada frente a la Plaza de Armas- y con globos negros y carteles piden la destitución del obispo.

El principal grupo que respalda estas manifestaciones es la Organización de Laicos y Laicas de Osorno. Ellos piden que Juan Barros renuncie pues lo acusan de encubrir a Fernando Karadima cuando estaba siendo investigado por su presunta participación en ataques sexuales a tres miembros de la iglesia de El Bosque.

Priest removed from Des Plaines church for ‘inappropriate relationship' with a man

Chicago Sun-Times


A priest has been removed from a northwest suburban church because of his “inappropriate relationship with an adult man.”

Archbishop Blase J. Cupich removed the Rev. Marco A. Mercado from the Shrine of our Lady of Guadalupe in Des Plaines Thursday because of Mercado’s inappropriate relationship with an adult man, according to a statement from the Archdiocese of Chicago.

The Rev. Adan Sandoval Duron has been appointed interim administrator, and Mercado will move out of the shrine, according to the statement.

“The archdiocese is committed to ensuring those serving our parishioners are fit for ministry,” according to the archdiocese’s statement.

Pope Francis faces an uphill climb to get the synod he wants


By John L. Allen Jr.
Associate editor October 3, 2015

ROME – In the wake of bitter controversy surrounding a private meeting with Kentucky clerk Kim Davis during his trip to the United States last week, Pope Francis has a chance beginning Sunday to get back “on message” with the opening of a Synod of Bishops on the family in Rome.

The Oct. 4-25 summit of prelates from around the world is a critically important moment for the pontiff, one he’s been building toward for more than a year. If past is prologue, however, he may face a stiff challenge in steering it toward his desired outcome.

On Friday, the Vatican issued a brief statement on the encounter with Davis, saying it was not intended to endorse her position “in all its particular and complex aspects.”

Whatever one makes of how the meeting happened, or what it ultimately says about Francis’ views – and theories on both matters abound – the big picture remains intact and works to validate a fairly firm conclusion about this pope.

Archdiocese removes suburban priest for “inappropriate relationship”



DES PLAINES, Ill. – A high profile priest in the Chicago Archdiocese has been removed from ministry for what’s being described as an “inappropriate relationship” with an adult man.

Archbishop Blase Cupich announced Father Marco Mercado would no longer serve as rector of the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Des Plaines.

Pope defends marriage, hetero couples after gay priest bombshell

Yahoo! News

By Jean-Louis De La Vaissiere

Vatican City (AFP) - Pope Francis on Sunday defended marriage and heterosexual couples as he opened a synod on the family overshadowed by a challenge to Vatican orthodoxy by a gay priest.

During a mass to mark the three-week meeting of Roman Catholic bishops, the pope delivered a homily on "solitude, love between man and woman, and the family".

He referred to Genesis, the first book of the Bible, as a bedrock for understanding human relationships.

"This is God's dream for his beloved creation: to see it fulfilled in the loving union between a man and a woman, rejoicing in their shared journey, fruitful in their mutual gift of self," he said.

"God," the pope said, "joins the hearts of two people who love one another... (and) joins them together in unity and indissolubility."

One Last Reality Check on the Pope and Kim Davis

Daily Kos

Betty Clermont

The Vatican embassy is operated by the most experienced and oldest continuous foreign affairs department in the world. So, no, no one “duped” or “trapped” any official into having Pope Francis meet with Kim Davis, especially when the pope specifically stated after their meeting that “conscientious objection” by “government employees” is a “human right.”

Today, the pope opened a synod for bishops: "“This is God’s dream for his beloved creation: to see it fulfilled in the loving union between a man and a woman."

The pope has consistently, since his time as cardinal primate of Argentina, shared Davis’ opposition to same-sex marriage. He has referred to such a union as “the work of the devil,” an “anthropological regression,” and “disfiguring God’s plan for creation.” He has called the movement in many countries to accept same-sex marriage as "ideological colonization that we have to be careful about that is trying to destroy the family."

In his speech to the UN, Pope Francis “reminded the UN of their duty to recognize ethical limits, … ‘for carrying out an ideological colonization by the imposition of anomalous models and lifestyles which are alien to people’s identity and, in the end, irresponsible.’”

“Taken together with his unscheduled stop to see the Little Sisters of the Poor the Davis encounter means Francis has expressed personal support to leading symbols of the two most contentious fronts in America’s religious freedom debates – the contraception mandates imposed by the Obama administration, and conscientious objection on gay marriage.” ...

The only “reform” Jorge Mario Bergoglio has brought to the Vatican curia was creating a Secretariat of the Economy under Australian Cardinal George Pell, friend of Rupert Murdoch, and a Secretariat for Communications – which shows where his priorities lie. (The Vatican Bank was forced to begin adopting standardized financial reporting and tightening up its loopholes for money laundering in 2010 or risk being excluded from international financial markets.)

The Secretariat for Communications should be proud of what was accomplished. After the pope had twice sympathized with his US bishops about how much they had suffered from the sex abuse scandal and praised their “courage,” a meeting with five victims abused by clergy or teachers or family members was arranged for the pope’s last day in this country so that that would be the final headline as he boarded the plane for his return to Rome.

Media Mentions

Canonical Consultation


Jennifer Haselberger

In 2013 or 2014, the Communications Office of the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis instituted the practice of sending clergy and other 'stakeholders' weekly emails listing media coverage about the Archdiocese and specifically about the local abuse crisis. The intent was to keep clergy informed of the coverage so that they were not blindsided by parishioners or members of the media. Now, it would appear that the weekly emails have become more self-serving, as the example below indicates.

In the interests of 'transparency', let me mention three things that ought to have appeared in this week's mentions, but did not.

1). The Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis appeared in bankruptcy court again this past week, and requested, but did not receive, permission for additional expenditures. The story was covered by MPR, which reported that bankruptcy costs have now exceeded $3.6 million.

2). The week prior, the Archdiocese, represented by Joe Dixon, appeared in Ramsey County Court in response to the criminal charges and civil petition filed by the Ramsey County Attorney's Office. This was not covered by the media, in part because it was widely believed that the next court date was scheduled for the end of October.