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May 31, 2010

Former archbishop Cormac Murphy-O'Connor to head papal inquiry into sex abuse in Ireland

UNITED KINGDOM
Guardian

John Hooper in Rome
guardian.co.uk, Monday 31 May 2010

The retired archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor, was today appointed by the pope to take the leading role in a top-level investigation of the Roman Catholic church in Ireland and its handling of the clerical sex abuse that has shaken it.

Two official reports have pointed to decades of rape, coercion and sexual attack by predatory clerics whose activities, in the words of one of the reports, were "obsessively" concealed by the church hierarchy.

A statement issued on behalf of Pope Benedict said the investigators' job would be "to explore more deeply questions concerning the handling of cases of abuse and the assistance owed to the victims".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:10 PM

Seriousness of intent evident in papal choice of heavy hitters

IRELAND
The Irish Times

The strong line-up of the planned visitation may be marred by Irish diaspora roots and the lack of any lay person, writes PATSY McGARRY, Religious Affairs Correspondent

THERE HAS never been anything like it where the Catholic Church is concerned. It is fair to say that the decision of Pope Benedict to send in nine such “heavy hitters” to investigate the Irish church is a strong indication of the seriousness of his intent when it comes to addressing the clerical child sex abuse crisis in the church. And not just in Ireland.

The recent Vatican apostolic visitation to the international Legionaries of Christ congregation, founded by the deceased (and now established as disreputable) Fr Marcial Maciel, involved just five prelates, none of them at cardinal rank.

But where the team of apostolic visitors announced for Ireland yesterday is somewhat marred is in its composition. All are children of the Irish diaspora, mainly from North America. On the positive side, this may allow for greater insight into the culture of the Irish Catholic church but it may also, unconsciously even, allow for a less than detached approach to aspects of that culture which so easily tolerated the cover-up of clerical child sex abuse, and on such a scale.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:07 PM

Irish Archbishop of Benin resigns over sexual affair

IRELAND
The Irish Times

PATSY McGARRY

THE IRISH-BORN Catholic Archbishop of Benin City in Nigeria has resigned.

In a statement yesterday Archbishop Richard Burke (61), who grew up in Fethard, Co Tipperary, said his resignation, which has been accepted by Pope Benedict, was because he had been unfaithful to his vow of celibacy.

Early last year Archbishop Burke, a member of St Patrick’s Missionary Society, based at Kiltegan, Co Wicklow, stepped aside as Archbishop of Benin City when he was accused of child sex abuse. He has always denied the allegation.

The woman making the allegation, Dolores Attwood (41), now lives in Canada with her husband and three children. In a detailed statement last October she accused the archbishop of having abused her in 1983 when she was 14 and a patient in hospital. She also alleged he had abused other young Nigerian girls.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:04 PM

2 Canadian archbishops to examine Catholic Church abuse scandals

CANADA
The Vancouver Sun

By Jennifer Green, Ottawa Citizen

OTTAWA — Pope Benedict has appointed the Roman Catholic archbishops of Ottawa and Toronto as senior clerics to examine abuse scandals in Ireland.

This fall, Ottawa Archbishop Terrence Prendergast will visit the ancient archdiocese of Tuam in County Galway on Ireland's west coast.

The pontiff also appointed Toronto's archbishop, Thomas Christopher Collins, who will visit Cashel and Emly.

Westminster Archbishop Cormac Murphy O'Connor will go to Armagh, and Boston Archbishop Sean Patrick O'Malley is slated for Dublin. O'Malley was brought in to Boston after a priest sex abuse furor erupted there in 2002, prompting Cardinal Bernard Law to resign.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:01 PM

Archbishop Dolan Urges Irish Priests to be Grounded in Holiness

VATICAN CITY
Vatican Radio

(31 May 10 – RV) On Monday, it was confirmed that the Apostolic Visitation of the Church in Ireland will begin this Autumn. It will involve the nation’s four metropolitan diocese, seminaries and religious congregations.

In a statement released shortly after Monday’s announcement, the standing committee of the Irish Bishops Conference pledged their full cooperation and greeted the Visitation as “an expression of the personal closeness of Pope Benedict XVI to the Catholics of Ireland, [that] represents one more important step on the path to healing, reparation and renewal in the Church in Ireland”.

In a separate statement the Archbishop of Dublin, Diarmuid Martin, said he “looks forward to receiving the Formal document which will define the nature and the precise terms and objectives of the Visitation”.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:13 PM

Boston’s O’Malley To Investigate Irish Clergy Abuse

BOSTON (MA)
WBUR

By Deborah Becker

Published May 31, 2010

BOSTON — The Vatican has nominated Boston Cardinal Sean O’Malley to be one of the investigators looking into the clergy abuse scandal in Ireland.

In announcing the Vatican investigation today, Pope Benedict said Cardinal O’Malley will be one of nine so-called apostolic visitors to Ireland. They will look at the Irish church procedures to prevent abuse and how they might be improved. The investigators will also report their findings to the Vatican.

In a statement, Cardinal O’Malley says he’s humbled by his nomination.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:10 PM

Pope names 9 visitors to investigate sex abuse crisis in Ireland

VATICAN CITY
Rome Reports

[with video]

May 31, 2010. The Vatican has announced that the Apostolic Visitation to Ireland will take place this fall and has named the 9 visitors who will lead the charge. The visit, which the pope ordered and mentioned in his letter to Irish Catholics, is part of an investigation aimed at eradicating clerical sex abuse. The panel is made up of 5 archbishops and 4 religious.

Pope Benedict XVI announced such a visit would take place in his letter to Irish Catholics back in March, but had never mentioned when it would take place or who would be part of the visit.

The delegation includes, Archbishop of New York, Timothy Dolan, Cardinal Sean Patrick O’Malley of Boston, Cardinal Emeritus of Westminister Cormac Murphy O’Connor and the Archbishop of Toronto Canada, Thomas Christopher Collins. The visitors have all previously successfully handled similar clean up efforts in their respective countries.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:07 PM

Dolan To Make Apostolic Visit To Ireland

NEW YORK
NY1

[with video]

New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan has been tapped by Pope Benedict XVI to join an upcoming apostolic visit to Ireland.

The trip scheduled for this fall is being made to offer assistance and respond to the situation caused by abusive priests and to support spiritual and moral growth.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:42 PM

Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor to lead Irish sex abuse investigation

UNITED KINGDOM
Telegraph

By Nick Squires in Rome

Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor will carry out a wide-ranging investigation into the scandal, which has caused outrage among Irish Catholics and forced the resignation of three bishops.

Working alongside prominent cardinals and archbishops from the US and Canada, he will look at procedures that are currently designed to prevent abuse and study possible ways to improve them.

Benedict XVI announced the inquiry, formally known as an "apostolic visitation", in March in an unprecedented open letter to the Irish people about the scandals.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:38 PM

Italian bishop accused of sex abuse cover-up

ITALY
Montreal Gazette

ROME - The alleged victim of an Italian priest who is on trial for sex abuse has pressed charges against the bishop overseeing the accused's diocese at a court in Rome, his lawyer said Monday.

Bishop Gino Reali of Porto San Rufina outside Rome is charged with complicity in the abuse crimes of Ruggero Conti, who was arrested in June 2008 and is being tried on charges of sexually abusing children in his parish.

Reali "should have told Italian judicial authorities" as well as the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith — the Vatican body that deals with sex abuse allegations — about the case, lawyer Farbrizio Gallo told AFP.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:33 PM

Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor to lead Vatican paedophile inquiry

UNITED KINGDOM
The Times

David Sharrock, Ireland Correspondent

The former leader of the Roman Catholic Church in England and Wales is to investigate the Irish paedophile priest scandal, the Vatican announced yesterday.

Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor, the former Archbishop of Westminster, who stepped down last year, was criticised over his handling of clerical sexual abuse allegations.

Victims’ groups demanded his resignation in 2002 when Father Michael Hill was jailed for 17 years after the Cardinal appointed the priest to Gatwick airport despite warnings that he could be a danger to children.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:29 PM

HALL TRIPLETT: Sexual abuse and the Catholic Church

UNITED STATES
San Angelo Standard-Times

SAN ANGELO, Texas — I have never understood the logic of those who profess that everything is forgivable. If every atrocity were forgivable, what need would we have for a sense of judgment? What need would judges have for a sense of justice?

I am reminded of these thoughts, seasoned over seven decades now, by Garry Wills’ stunning essay, “Forgive Not: A Catholic’s Struggle with the Sins of his Church,” in the May 27 issue of The New Republic. Everyone who is identified even remotely as a Christian should read this essay.

Not to be confused with George Will, Garry Wills is one of the most exhaustively informed, perceptive and powerfully articulate intellectuals in American history.

The vast scope of his learning is awesome, from a Ph.D. in the classics and translations of ancient Latin to brilliant studies of George Washington, Jefferson’s Declaration at Philadelphia, Lincoln’s classic words at Gettysburg, Reagan, Nixon and Kennedy, the effect of nuclear weapons, plus detailed studies of Christian origins and papal history.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:26 PM

Irish bishop in Nigeria resigns after scandal

VATICAN CITY/NIGERIA
BBC News

The Vatican has accepted the resignation of an Irish archbishop in Nigeria accused of sexually abusing a teenage girl in the Niger Delta.

Richard Burke, the archbishop of Benin City, admits to a relationship but denies she was a minor when it began.

"The reason for my resignation is that I have been unfaithful to my oath of celibacy," he said in a statement in the Irish Catholic newspaper.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:59 PM

Pope appoints panel to investigate Ireland abuse

VATICAN CITY
The Associated Press

By ALESSANDRA RIZZO (AP)

VATICAN CITY — Pope Benedict XVI on Monday appointed nine prelates, including the archbishops of Boston and New York, to investigate child abuse in Ireland's Catholic institutions.

The pope urged the Irish church to support the investigation, saying it could be a chance for hope and renewal. In a March letter to the Irish faithful, Benedict had promised an investigation that addressed chronic clerical child abuse in Ireland and decades of cover-ups by church authorities.

Also Monday, the Vatican announced the pope had accepted the resignation of an Irish-born archbishop who had led the Benin City diocese in Nigeria and faced accusations that he carried on a 20-year relationship with a woman that began when she was 14.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:56 PM

U.S. Roman Catholic Church accused of scapegoating homosexuals trying to enter priesthood

UNITED STATES
Mail (United Kingdom)

By Simon Caldwell
Last updated at 7:11 PM on 31st May 2010

Trainee priests are being grilled about their sexual experiences under tough procedures designed to stamp out child abuse in the Roman Catholic Church.

They are being confronted with a list of shockingly intimate questions from psychologists paid by Church officials in the U.S. to try tosimon weed out men who they think could go on to commit sexual assaults.

The questions include: 'When did you last have sex?', 'What kind of sexual experiences have you had?', 'Do you like pornography?', 'Do you like children?' and 'Do you like children more than you like people your own age?'

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:52 PM

Remembering clergy abuse victims who have committed suicide

UNITED STATES
Voice from the Desert

On Memorial Day we remember those men and women who gave their lives during war in service to our country.

It’s also a day that many of us remember our own relatives and friends who have died.

It is fitting and appropriate that we, survivors and supporters, remember clergy sexual abuse victims who were unable to bear the effects of their abuse and committed suicide.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:48 PM

Popes Names Team to Investigate Abuse in Ireland

VATICAN CITY
The New York Times

By RACHEL DONADIO
Published: May 31, 2010

ROME — In one of his most concrete actions since a sexual abuse scandal began sweeping the Catholic Church in Europe, Pope Benedict XVI on Monday appointed a high-profile team of prelates, including the archbishop of New York, to investigate Irish dioceses and seminaries.

The pope had announced that he would open the investigation in a strong letter to Irish Catholics in March, in which he expressed “shame and remorse” for “sinful and criminal” acts committed by members of the clergy, following two scathing Irish government reports documenting widespread abuse in church-run schools and other institutions.

On Monday the pope also accepted the resignation of Richard Burke, an Irish-born archbishop in Benin City, Nigeria, who had been suspended after he acknowledged having a 20-year relationship with a woman. In a statement, the bishop apologized and denied accusations of child abuse. He said the sexual relationship began when the woman was 21. The woman has said it began when she was 14.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:45 PM

Choir Director On Leave For Alleged Sexual Misconduct

WOBURN (MA)
TheBostonChannel

[with video]

BOSTON --
An employee of St. Charles Borromeo Parish in Woburn was placed on unpaid leave without pay on Sunday by the Archdiocese of Boston while police investigate alleged sexual misconduct.

The Archdiocese of Boston said Thomas DeBlois, 47, served as choir director and director of music at the parish since 1992. He previously served as a music teacher at the St. Charles Borromeo School.

Upon learning of the alleged misconduct, the Archdiocese of Boston immediately notified local law enforcement and was cooperating fully with the Middlesex District Attorney's Office, the Woburn Police Department and the Massachusetts Department of Family and Children as authorities investigated the allegation.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:26 AM

Church Employee Accused Of Sexual Misconduct

WOBURN (MA)
WBZ

[with video]

WOBURN (WBZ)

The director of music and choir director at St. Charles Borromeo Parish in Woburn is being investigated for alleged sexual misconduct.

Thomas DeBlois has been placed on unpaid leave from the parish while the Woburn Police Department, Middlesex Distict Attorney's office, and Massachusetts Department of Family and Children investigate the claims.

The Archdiocese of Boston says DeBlois previously served as a music teacher at St. Charles Borromeo School. He has been en employee of the parish since 1992.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:23 AM

Church choir director accused of sexual misconduct

WOBURN (MA)
WHDH

[with video]

WOBURN, Mass. -- A church choir director has been placed on leave by the Archdiocese of Boston after being accused of sexual misconduct.

Thomas DeBlois, 47, was arrested on Saturday and charged with enticement of a child.

"It’s a shame it has to happen, especially with everything going on with the church the past few years," said parishioner Bob Angelo.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:20 AM

Church choir leader in sex rap

WOBURN (MA)
Boston Herald

By Jessica Van Sack
Monday, May 31, 2010

The choir director at St. Charles Borromeo Parish in Woburn is due to be arraigned tomorrow in connection with allegations of “sexual misconduct,” according to the Boston archdiocese and local police.

Thomas DeBlois, 47, who heads the church choir and serves as director of music at St. Charles, was placed on unpaid leave pending the outcome of an investigation into the unspecified sexual misconduct.

DeBlois is scheduled to be arraigned tomorrow on a charge of enticement of a child, said Woburn police officer Mark Shaughnessy

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:15 AM

Still breathing

AUSTRALIA
The Age

BARNEY ZWARTZ
June 1, 2010

IT HAS taken most of her life to discover, but Noreen Wood knows now she is a fighter. Like most victims of sexual abuse, she has many needs - financial, physical and emotional - but the most urgent, the one that drives her even when she feels that tackling the Catholic Church is like tilting at windmills, is for the truth to be heard and acknowledged.

At least four generations of Noreen's family have been shaped by the Catholic Church. Once, like her great-grandmother - a generous donor to Mary MacKillop - she would have seen this as a blessing. No longer.

''Why I'm still breathing today, I don't know. In a million years I would never have thought the church was so corrupt,'' she says.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:09 AM

Statement of Cardinal Seán P. O’Malley Regarding Apostolic Visitation of the Church in Ireland

BOSTON (MA)
Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston

(Braintree, MA) May 31, 2010…The Archdiocese of Boston today released the following statement from Cardinal Seán P. O’Malley regarding the Holy See’s decision to conduct an Apostolic Visitation of the Church in Ireland:

“With deep respect for Pope Benedict XVI and sincere humility, I have accepted the Holy Father’s request to serve as Apostolic Visitor to the Archdiocese of Dublin during the upcoming Apostolic Visitation of the Church in Ireland. I look forward to meeting with Archbishop Diarmuid Martin and our working together.

The Church must be unfailingly vigilant in protecting children and young people. Our ongoing efforts in the Archdiocese of Boston to ensure their safety will be helpful for the visitation. It will also be important to respond to the concerns of the Catholic community and the survivors in the manner that will promote the process of healing.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:23 AM

Archdiocese of Boston Places Employee of St. Charles Borromeo Parish, Woburn, on Leave

BOSTON (MA)
Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston

(Braintree, MA) May 30, 2010...The Archdiocese of Boston today announced that an employee of St. Charles Borromeo Parish in Woburn, Mr. Thomas DeBlois, has been placed on leave without pay pending the outcome of an investigation by local law enforcement into alleged sexual misconduct. Mr. DeBlois serves as Choir Director and Director of Music at St. Charles Borromeo Parish. Mr. DeBlois previously served as a music teacher at the St. Charles Borromeo School.

Upon learning of the alleged misconduct, the Archdiocese of Boston immediately notified local law enforcement and is cooperating fully with the Middlesex District Attorney's office, the Woburn Police Department and the Massachusetts Department of Family and Children as these authorities investigate the allegation.

As part of the Archdiocese of Boston's commitment to protect children, it requires that any employee or volunteer working with children undergo a background screening check on an annual basis. Mr. DeBlois, who has been an employee of St. Charles Borromeo Parish since 1992, was last screened in January 2010 and no criminal entries were discovered.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:20 AM

Cardinal O’Malley to participate in Apostolic Visitation to the Church in Ireland

BOSTON (MA)
The Pilot

By Pilot Staff
Posted: 5/31/2010

BRAINTREE – Following the Holy Father’s Letter to the Catholics of Ireland, the Apostolic Visitation of certain Irish dioceses, seminaries and religious congregations will begin in autumn of this year. Cardinal Seán P. O’Malley has been named visitor of the Archdiocese of Dublin.

Through this Visitation, the Holy See intends to offer assistance to the Bishops, clergy, religious and lay faithful as they seek to respond adequately to the situation caused by the tragic cases of abuse perpetrated by priests and religious upon minors. It is also intended to contribute to the desired spiritual and moral renewal that is already being vigorously pursued by the Church in Ireland.

The Visitation will begin in the four Metropolitan Archdioceses of Ireland (Armagh, Dublin, Cashel and Emly, and Tuam) and will then be extended to some other dioceses.
In a statement released by the Archdiocese of Boston May 31 Cardinal O’Malley welcomes the Holy Father decision.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:17 AM

Choir director faces sex charge

WOBURN (MA)
Boston Globe

By Emily Sweeney
Globe Staff / May 31, 2010

A choir director accused of sexual misconduct was arrested over the weekend and placed on leave from St. Charles Borromeo Parish in Woburn.

Thomas DeBlois, 47, of Woburn, faces one charge of enticement of a child, according to Woburn police.

After his arrest Saturday, DeBlois was released on $500 bail. He is scheduled to be arraigned tomorrow morning in Woburn District Court.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:13 AM

Pope names inspectors in Irish Church abuse probe

VATICAN CITY
Reuters

Philip Pullella
VATICAN CITY
Mon May 31, 2010

(Reuters) - The Vatican on Monday named prominent Churchmen to lead its official inquiry into sexual abuse of children by clergy in predominantly Roman Catholic Ireland.

The wide-ranging inquiry, which will begin in the autumn, will be headed by two cardinals and three archbishops from England, the United States and Canada.

Pope Benedict announced the inquiry, formally known as an "apostolic visitation," last March in a letter to the Irish people about the sexual abuse scandal in their country, which has led to the resignation of three Irish bishops.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:08 AM

Vatican promises investigation into paedophile priest scandal in Ireland

IRELAND
Herald Sun (Australia)

THE Vatican said it will launch a promised probe in the northern autumn into the paedophile priest scandal that has rocked the Irish Catholic Church.

The Vatican's announcement came as the Pope accepted the resignation of Irish prelate Richard Anthony Burke, archbishop of the Nigerian diocese of Benin City, who is accused of molesting a teenage girl.

Burke, in a statement to the weekly Irish Catholic, voiced "deepest sorrow for my inappropriate, irresponsible and repeatedly sinful conduct", but denied having abused a minor.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:03 AM

Row over abuse claim settlement

AUSTRALIA
The Age

BARNEY ZWARTZ
June 1, 2010

A MELBOURNE woman allegedly abused by two Jesuit priests has been unable to pursue the second priest because of a mysterious legal settlement giving up her rights.

Noreen Wood says she did not see - and never would have approved - the binding settlement lodged in the County Court on her behalf by leading barrister Tim Tobin, SC.

She claims Mr Tobin acted without instructions and against her interest when he signed the settlement on December 20, 1999.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:57 AM

Edmundston diocese suspends priest

CANADA
Telegraph-Journal

Benjamin Shingler
Telegraph-Journal

A Roman Catholic priest in northwestern New Brunswick has been suspended indefinitely by the Diocese of Edmundston.

The parish priest of Rivière-Verte and Ste-Anne-de-Madawaska, Father Joseph Numbi Phaku Mavambu, has been suspended for a period by the Edmundston diocese. Father Joseph Numbi Phaku Mavambu, the parish priest of Rivière-Verte and Ste-Anne-de-Madawaska, was discretely removed from his post earlier this month.

Parishioners were advised of the suspension last Sunday through a letter from Edmundston bishop Msgr. Claude Champagne.

In the letter, Champagne stated that "serious allegations" have been made against Mavambu.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:48 AM

Pope Requests Cardinal O'Malley's Help In Ireland

BOSTON (MA)
WBZ

BOSTON (WBZ)

Boston Cardinal Sean O'Malley has been asked by the pope to help deal with the clergy abuse crisis in Ireland. He is one of four archbishops from around the world appointed as Apolistic Visitors to specific Irish dioceses.

O'Malley will work with the Archdiocese of Dublin beginning this fall, while retaining his position as Archbishop of Boston.

"The Church must be unfailingly vigilant in protecting children and young people. Our ongoing efforts in the Archdiocese of Boston to ensure their safety will be helpful for the visitation," O'Malley said in a written statement Monday.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:40 AM

OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS

VATICAN CITY
Vatican Information Service

VATICAN CITY, 31 MAY 2010 (VIS) - The Holy Father:

- Accepted the resignation from the pastoral care of the archdiocese of Benin City, Nigeria, presented by Archbishop Richard Anthony Burke S.P.S., in accordance with canon 401 para. 2 of the Code of Canon Law. ...

- Accepted the resignation from the office of auxiliary of the diocese of Munster, Germany, presented by Bishop Heinrich Janssen, in accordance with canons 411 and 401 para. 1 of the Code of Canon Law.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:33 AM

APOSTOLIC VISITATION OF IRELAND TO BEGIN THIS AUTUMN

VATICAN CITY
Vatican Information Service

VATICAN CITY, 31 MAY 2010 (VIS) - This morning the Holy See Press Office released the following English-language communique concerning the apostolic visitation of Ireland as announced in the Holy Father's 19 March Letter to the Catholics of Ireland:

"Following the Holy Father's Letter to the Catholics of Ireland, the apostolic visitation of certain Irish dioceses, seminaries and religious congregations will begin in autumn of this year.

"Through this visitation, the Holy See intends to offer assistance to the bishops, clergy, religious and lay faithful as they seek to respond adequately to the situation caused by the tragic cases of abuse perpetrated by priests and religious upon minors. It is also intended to contribute to the desired spiritual and moral renewal that is already being vigorously pursued by the Church in Ireland.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:22 AM

Pope accepts resignation of Tipperary-born Archbishop

IRELAND
Breaking News

31/05/2010
The Pope has today accepted the resignation of a Tipperary-born Archbishop.

Richard Burke, a member of St Patricks Missionary Society, says the reason for his resignation was his failure to observe his vow of celibacy.

He was accused of sexually assaulting a teenage girl in Nigeria before having a 20-year affair with her.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:19 AM

Vatican to launch internal inquiry into clerical abuse

IRELAND
Breaking News

31/05/2010
The Vatican has announced details of a special inquiry into the Church in Ireland.

The root and branch investigation, which will look the sexual abuse scandals, was first mooted by Pope Benedict in March.

Today the Pontiff has confirmed the names of five senior clergymen who will head up the inquiry. All of them are based outside of Ireland but are of Irish descent.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:17 AM

Vatican names clerical abuse inquiry panel

IRELAND
BBC News

Details of a special inquiry into sexual abuse in the Catholic Church in Ireland have been announced by the Vatican.

The Apostolic Visitation, as it is known, was first announced by Pope Benedict in a letter to the Catholics of Ireland in March.

Five senior prelates have been named as members of the inquiry panel.

They include Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor, retired Archbishop of Westminster and Cardinal O'Malley, Boston, USA.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:15 AM

Vatican names pope's inspectors to sex scandal hit Irish church

VATICAN CITY
Earth Times

Vatican City - The Vatican on Monday announced that it will dispatch four senior clerics to Ireland in September as inspectors chosen by Pope Benedict XVI to investigate the handling of sex abuse cases involving priests there.

Benedict first referred to the probe, or apostolic visitation, in a March 19 letter to Irish Catholics in which he apologised to those who suffered molestations when they were children.

The inspectors, or "apostolic visitors," aim to "explore more deeply the handling of cases of abuse and the assistance owed to the victims," the Vatican said in a statement.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:12 AM

Pope accepts abuse scandal Irish prelate's resignation

VATICAN CITY
Asia One

Mon, May 31, 2010
AFP

VATICAN CITY (AFP) - Pope Benedict XVI on Monday accepted the resignation of Irish prelate Richard Anthony Burke, archbishop of the Nigerian diocese of Benin City, accused of molesting a teenaged girl, the Vatican said.

Burke, in a statement to the weekly Irish Catholic, voiced "deepest sorrow for my inappropriate, irresponsible and repeatedly sinful conduct," but denied having abused a minor.

"I take full responsibility for my actions. I wish to express my deepest sorrow for my inappropriate, irresponsible and repeatedly sinful conduct," he wrote.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:08 AM

Barnidge: These are hard times for men of the cloth

CALIFORNIA
Contra Costa Times

By Tom Barnidge
Contra Costa Times columnist
Posted: 05/30/2010

THE DARK CLOUD that has hovered over the Catholic Church since revelations of a child-abuse scandal still casts a long shadow over the members of its religious community. Everyone from the pope to cardinals to bishops to priests has been scarred by the stigma of pedophilia.

But no one has felt the reverberations quite like parish pastors, who are stationed on the frontline interacting with parishioners. They have been asked to keep the flock together in the midst of a thunderstorm.

Monsignor Theodore Kraus of Santa Maria Church in Orinda, who has worn the cloth for 45 years, regards the challenge as "one of the most important issues during my priesthood, because it deals with the very question of the priesthood itself."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:02 AM

Abuses are possible in charismatic communities, author contends

UNITED STATES
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Monday, May 31, 2010

By Ann Rodgers, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

As a young religion journalist 25 years ago in Houston, Julia Duin joined an Episcopal charismatic community that was repairing ruined buildings and ruined lives.

But, after following the Community of Celebration to Beaver County, where she attended Trinity School for Ministry, she became disenchanted. Her 1992 master's thesis documented abuse of authority within the community, and the role of its founder, the Rev. Graham Pulkingham, in spreading a highly authoritarian theology to other charismatic communities nationwide. Months later she amended it to include evidence of sexual misconduct by Father Pulkingham, who was under suspension from ministry when he died suddenly in 1993.

Now Ms. Duin has written a book, "Days of Fire and Glory" (Crossland Press $24.95) which weaves a tale both soaring and sordid of the community's rise and fall. She will speak Sunday at 9:30 a.m. in St. Thomas-in-the-Field Church (Anglican), in Richland.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:59 AM

Chaisson replaces suspended Kinkora priest

CANADA
The Guardian

EDITORIAL STAFF
The Guardian

Rev. Gerard Chaisson has been appointed as the new parish priest at St. Malachy’s Church in Kinkora, replacing Rev. George Smith, who was suspended from his duties there May 16 following an abuse allegation from an incident in Deer Lake, N.L., more than 25 years ago.

Chaisson was pastor at Immaculate Heart in Wellington/Richmond and pastoral administrator at St. Patrick’s in Grand River. Prior to that, he served at St. Pius X in Parkdale. Chaisson will also serve in St. Peter’s, Seven Mile Bay.

The traditional June clergy changes were confirmed by Bishop Richard Grecco following the annual retreat of diocesan priests at Belcourt Lodge in South Rustico last week.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:56 AM

Prospective Catholic Priests Face Sexuality Hurdles

UNITED STATES
The New York Times

By PAUL VITELLO
Published: May 30, 2010

Every job interview has its awkward moments, but in recent years, the standard interview for men seeking a life in the Roman Catholic priesthood has made the awkward moment a requirement.

“When was the last time you had sex?” all candidates for the seminary are asked. (The preferred answer: not for three years or more.)

“What kind of sexual experiences have you had?” is another common question. “Do you like pornography?”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:53 AM

Strapped towns tax Catholic properties

MASSACHUSETTS
Boston Globe

By Lisa Wangsness
Globe Staff / May 31, 2010

Nine cities and towns have forced the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston to pay property taxes on closed churches, schools, convents, and parish halls, contending that the buildings no longer qualify as tax-exempt because the archdiocese is not using them.

Two of the taxed churches — St. Frances X. Cabrini in Scituate and St. Jeremiah in Framingham — have been occupied for years by former parishioners protesting their closure. But local assessors insist the church buildings are now taxable because the vigils are not sanctioned by the archdiocese.

The archdiocese has fought back, arguing that its closed churches should remain exempt from taxation, but has had little success. In Belmont, Danvers, Lowell, Lynn, and Revere, the archdiocese has withdrawn appeals of tax bills for closed churches, reluctantly agreeing to pay reduced levies totaling about $280,000. This year, for example, it will pay the city of Lowell about $19,400 in property taxes on Sacred Heart Church, which was closed in 2003.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:50 AM

Pope assigns Cardinal O'Malley to help abuse-wracked Dublin archdiocese

BOSTON (MA)
Boston Globe

May 31, 2010
By Globe Staff

Pope Benedict XVI today named Cardinal Sean P. O'Malley of Boston to assist the Archdiocese of Dublin, which is the largest of several Irish dioceses reeling from a clergy sexual abuse crisis.

O'Malley will remain the archbishop of Boston, but will also have new duties as an "apostolic visitor" to the Dublin archdiocese, a job that will require him to "explore more deeply questions concerning the handling of cases of abuse and the assistance owed to the victims,'' according to a statement issued by the Vatican press office. He will also be asked to "monitor the effectiveness of and seek possible improvements to the current procedures for preventing abuse.''

The new assignment marks the fourth time in his career that O'Malley, 65, has been asked to intervene in a diocese that had been seriously damaged by clergy sexual abuse. In 1992 he was named the bishop of Fall River, a diocese roiled by the serial pedophilia of the Rev. James R. Porter; in 2002 he was named bishop of Palm Beach, where the two previous bishops had acknowledged sexually abusing minors; and in 2003 he was named archbishop of Boston, replacing Cardinal Bernard F. Law, who resigned over criticism of his failure to remove multiple sexually abusive priests from ministry.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:48 AM

Cardinal: 'Mistakes have been made'

CHICAGO (IL)
Chicago Sun-Times

[Cardinal George's letter]

May 31, 2010

BY DAVID ROEDER Staff Reporter
Cardinal Francis George, in new remarks on the sexual abuse scandal involving clergy, commented Sunday on the "long-lasting and often devastating" impact on victims and said the Roman Catholic Church is focused on healing and on preventing future crimes.

He recorded his comments on an audio CD sent to churches for playing at their Sunday masses at each priest's discretion. The archdiocese posted George's text on its website.

"Mistakes have been made here and elsewhere" in response to the abuse, George said. He said the church has learned from them, and he outlined its efforts to keep children safe.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:41 AM

Archbishop resigns over oath of celibacy

IRELAND
RTE News

Monday, 31 May 2010
Pope Benedict XVI has accepted the resignation of the Tipperary-born Archbishop of Benin City in Nigeria, Richard Burke.

The decision was confirmed in a message posted on the Vatican's website.

In a statement the St Patrick's Missionary Society, which Richard Burke was a member of, said former Archbishop Burke informed the society that the reason for his resignation was his failure to observe his oath of celibacy.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:37 AM

Archbishop says visitation about renewal, not sex abuse

IRELAND
The Irish Times

PATSY McGARRY Religious Affairs Correspondent

THE APOSTOLIC visitation announced by Pope Benedict in his letter will involve a visit to “certain dioceses in Ireland, as well as seminaries and religious congregations”, by officials from the Roman curia.

They will assess how much practices and procedures in each are in line with what the Vatican expects.

In his letter, the pope said the visitation was intended “to assist the local [Irish] church on her path to renewal.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:33 AM

Vatican to begin abuse inquiry

IRELAND
The Irish Times

The Vatican said today it will begin its investigation into clerical sexual abuse in Ireland this autumn.

The Vatican will send senior clerics to Ireland to look into the Catholic Church's handling of sexual abuse cases and "assistance owed to the victims," according to a statement posted on the Holy See's website today.

The so-called apostolic visitation was first announced in Pope Benedict XVI’s letter to the Catholics of Ireland on the abuse in March of this year. In his letter, the pope said the visitation was intended “to assist the local [Irish] church on her path to renewal.”

The Archbishop of Boston, Cardinal Sean O’Malley, has been appointed apostolic visitor to the Archdiocese of Dublin. The four apostolic visitors will be retired Archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor; Archbishop of New York Timothy Dolan, Archbishop Archbishop of Toronto Thomas Collins and Archbishop of Ottowa Terence Prendergast.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:31 AM

Archbishop Welcomes announcement of Apostolic Visitation

IRELAND
Irish Catholic Bishops Conference

Archbishop Diarmuid Martin welcomes the Press Statement of the Holy See announcing that the Apostolic Visitation of the Church in Ireland, already announced by Pope Benedict XVI in his Letter to the Catholics of Ireland, is to begin shortly.

Archbishop Martin looks forward to receiving the Formal document which will define the nature and the precise terms and objectives of the Visitation. The Visitation is an important element in the broad process being set in place by Pope Benedict to assist the Catholic Church in Ireland in its renewal.

Archbishop Martin welcomes in particular the announcement that the Visitation is being asked to evaluate the current response to victims and the quality of the assistance which the Church in Ireland owes to survivors.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:26 AM

Address of Archbishop Timothy Dolan, Archbishop of New York ...

IRELAND
Irish Catholic Bishops Conference

(Thursday May 27, 2010)

As part of the worldwide celebration of the Year for Priests, inaugurated by Pope Benedict XVI in June 2009, Archbishop Timothy Dolan, Archbishop of New York, delivered a lecture in St Patrick’s College Maynooth on the theme God is the only treasure people desire to find in a priest. The lecture was delivered in Callan Hall on Thursday 27 May last, to an audience of priests, religious, seminarians, college staff and those with a particular interest in priesthood and vocations. Cardinal Seán Brady, Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland made the response.

The full text of Archbishop Dolan’s lecture follows below. A special feature on the lecture will be available on www.catholicbishops.ie later today. The feature includes an interview with Archbishop Dolan, video recording of excerpts of the lecture and a selection of images from the event. ...

Thank you for your gracious invitation and warm welcome. It is an honor and a joy to be with you.

To converse with you about such an exhilarating topic -- God is the only treasure people desire to find in a priest -- is a challenge and a delight. To do so during this Year for Priests, before a group I admire very much, adds to that thrill.

I stand before you no guru or expert, no acclaimed theologian or renowned mystic; I am hardly some “know-it-all-Yankee” here to lecture you on how-you-got-into-or-how-to-get-out-of-the current crisis you are in, ‘cause I don’t know.

Keep in mind, now, that 2002 was a high crisis period in our own history, very similar to what you are going through right now. It was even worse in Milwaukee, because my predecessor had sadly resigned in ignominy after revelations that he had paid an adult male partner $450,000 of archdiocesan funds.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:22 AM

Irish-born archbishop resigns

IRELAND/NIGERIA
The Irish Times

EOIN BURKE-KENNEDY

Pope Benedict has accepted the resignation of the Irish-born archbishop of Benin city in Nigeria following allegations of sexual abuse against him.

Archbishop Richard Burke, a member of the St Patrick’s Missionary Society based in Co Wicklow, said the reason for his resignation was his failure to observe his vow of celibacy.

In a statement issued today through the Irish Catholic journal, Dr Burke said he was deeply ashamed of his behaviour.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:19 AM

Archbishop resigns after abuse claim

IRELAND/NIGERIA
UTV

An Irish Archbishop accused of sexually assaulting a teenage girl in Nigeria before having a 20-year affair with her has resigned.

Richard Burke stepped down from the Archdiocese of Benin in Nigeria earlier this year after a woman, aged in her 40s and now living in Canada, made a complaint against him.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:15 AM

May 30, 2010

Dublin archdiocese seeks to rezone 20 surplus properties

IRELAND
The Irish Times

OLIVIA KELLY and PATSY McGARRY

DUBLIN’S CATHOLIC archdiocese has applied for 20 properties and lands to be rezoned for residential development.

They had become “surplus to requirements” due to the decline in Mass attendances and numbers of priests, it told Dublin City Council.

The properties include two churches but are mainly presbyteries and parochial houses which, generally, are located in the same grounds as churches and schools.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:04 PM

Paedophile priests destined for hell - Vatican

VATICAN CITY
The Irish Times

PADDY AGNEW in Rome

HELL IS not empty. On the contrary, according to the Holy See’s Promoter Of Justice, Msgr Charles Scicluna, hell is full of paedophile priests.

Speaking on Saturday in St Peter’s at a service of reparation for abuse committed by priests, Msgr Scicluna suggested that priests guilty of paedophile abuse were destined for particular punishment in the afterlife.

Quoting Christ’s teaching that “whosoever shall offend one of these little ones . . . it is better that a millstone were hanged about his neck and he were cast into the sea” (Mark, 9,42), Msgr Scicluna then made reference to the interpretation of Christ’s words as offered by Pope Gregory the Great: “After having taken a profession of holiness, anyone who destroys others through words or deeds would have been better off if their misdeeds had caused them to die in secular dress (ie as a lay person) rather than, through their holy office, being imposed as an example for others in their sins.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:59 PM

Biloxi congregation wants formal apology

BILOXI (MS)
WLOX

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - Members of a Biloxi church say they are the victims of unfair and untruthful accusations. On Sunday, parishioners of Vietnamese Martyrs Catholic Church marched in protest in front of the church wearing shirts that read "Hear Our Cries."

They are upset with their priest Father Jimmy Pham for several reasons including his stopping the practice of giving quarterly financial reports. The protestors say they feel they have a right to know how church donations are spent.

The Catholic Diocese of Biloxi has told WLOX that the congregation held "secret" bank accounts. Parishioners say that is not true and it's time the Diocese issued a formal apology for all the name calling.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:55 PM

Future pope refused defrocking of convicted priest

UNITED STATES
Washington Post

MATT SEDENSKY
The Associated Press
Sunday, May 30, 2010

-- The future Pope Benedict XVI refused to defrock an American priest who confessed to molesting numerous children and even served prison time for it, simply because the cleric wouldn't agree to the discipline. The case provides the latest evidence of how changes in church law under Pope John Paul II frustrated and hamstrung U.S. bishops struggling with an abuse crisis that would eventually explode.

Documents obtained by The Associated Press from court filings in the case of the late Rev. Alvin Campbell of Illinois show Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, following church law at the time, turned down a bishop's plea to remove the priest for no other reason than the abuser's refusal to go along with it.

"The petition in question cannot be admitted in as much as it lacks the request of Father Campbell himself," Ratzinger wrote in a July 3, 1989, letter to Bishop Daniel Ryan of the Diocese of Springfield, Ill.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:07 PM

Pope 'failed to defrock priest despite being asked to by bishop'

UNITED STATES
Telegraph (United Kingdom)

By Nick Allen in Los Angeles

The case involved an American priest, the late Rev Alvin Campbell, who was sentenced to 14 years in prison in 1985 for abusing seven boys.

After he was jailed Bishop Daniel Ryan of the diocese of Springfield, Illinois, wrote to Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, the future pope, asking for Campbell to be defrocked immediately, instead of going through a church trial which would be harrowing for victims.

But Cardinal Ratzinger turned down the bishop's plea because the abuser himself refused to agree to it.

According to documents obtained by the Associated Press from court records, the cardinal wrote on July 3, 1989: "The petition in question cannot be admitted in as much as it lacks the request of Father Campbell himself." The decision was in keeping with church law at the time and provides the latest evidence of how the system frustrated US bishops struggling to root out abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:01 PM

Usa, nuove accuse a Ratzinger: non cacciò un prete colpevole di abusi

ITALIA
Giornalettisimo

pubblicato il 30 maggio 2010

Dalle carte processuali risulta chiaro che il Pontefice, all’epoca ancora cardinale, non ridusse allo stato laicale Padre Alvin Campbell, che confessò abusi su molti bambini e scontò molti anni di carcere.

Joseph Ratzinger che sarebbe poi divenuto Papa Benedetto XVI si rifiutò di sconsacrare un sacerdote americano che ammise di aver molestato numerosi bambini e fu condannato anche al carcere, semplicemente perché il religioso non sarebbe stato d’accordo. Per l’ennesima volta questo nuovo caso venuto alla luce fornisce le prove delle direttive che venivano attuate durante il pontificato di Papa Giovanni Paolo II, che di fatto insabbiavano la crisi esplosa in questo periodo impedendo di agire ai vescovi statunitensi. Secondo la documentazione processuale esaminata dall’Associated Press per il caso del defunto padre Alvin Campbell si evince che il Cardinale Joseph Ratzinger, impedì al vescovo Daniel Ryan della diocesi di Springfield, Illinois, di ridurre allo stato laicale il sacerdote:”la richiesta in questione non può essere accettata in quanto manca la richiesta dello stesso padre Campbell,” Ratzinger scrisse il 3 luglio 1989. all’epoca per arginare la penuria di nuovi sacerdoti causata dalla crisi delle vocazioni Giovanni Paolo II rese più difficile abbandonare il sacerdozio: la prima conseguenza di questa politica fu la difficoltà per i vescovi di allontanare i preti che avevano commesso abusi; infatti le nuove regole dal1980 tolsero la possibilità ai vescovi,senza un processo canonico, di sconsacrare autonomamente. Ora tali norme sono state ridimensionate in seguito allo scandalo.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:56 PM

Priest who kissed girlfriend on beach is ordained an Episcopalian priest

MIAMI (FL)
nwf Daily News

The Associated Press
MIAMI — A Miami priest who left the Catholic Church after photos surfaced of him kissing his girlfriend on the beach has been ordained as an Episcopal priest.

Alberto Cutie, known as "Father Oprah," has since married Ruhama Canellis and the two are expecting a baby.

Cutie was removed from his parish last year after the photos were first made public. He said he met Canellis at church, and the two were friends for years before becoming romantically involved.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:55 PM

Give Sex Education in Seminaries - Mrs Kwofie

GHANA
Ghana Web

Cape Coast, May 30, GNA - The Managing Director of DOMOD Ghana Limited, Mrs Cecilia Kwofie, has urged authorities of Seminaries to ensure that Sex Education is well delivered in their institutions. This, she said, would aid the priests in their roles as marriage counsellors and also eliminate the curiosity that tempt some of them to break their vows.

Additionally, she said, Human Relations and Administrative Procedures must be taught to prepare students adequately for the outside world. Mrs Kwofie made the call at this year's graduation ceremony of the St. Peter's Regional Seminary in Cape Coast, under the theme: "The Formation of a Catholic Priest - A Laywoman's Perspective." She also advised the authorities to scrutinize to ensure that students admitted have very good character because a good character should be the very essence of priesthood.

She advised the graduates to serve as bridges that led people to Christ and not to become obstacles because they would be held accountable for the lives that are under their care. Mrs Kwofie urged them to identify with the ordinary people and be willing to sacrifice and serve in the remotest part of the country when the need arose.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:52 PM

Vatican official tells paedophile priests to expect damnation

VATICAN CITY
Guardian (United Kingdom)

Tom Kington in Vatican City

guardian.co.uk, Sunday 30 May 2010

The Vatican official in charge of catching paedophile priests has said their punishment in hell would be worse than receiving the death penalty on earth.

Monsignor Charles Scicluna issued the warning to seminarians at St Peter's basilica, in Rome, during prayers for abuse victims.

Quoting Gregory the Great, an early pope and monk who laid down rules for the clergy, he said a paedophile priest who exploited his office would get tougher treatment in hell than a layman.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:49 PM

I’ve no regrets, says Milingo

KENYA
Sunday Nation

By Daniel Wesangula
Posted Sunday, May 30 2010

At 80, Archbishop Emmanuel Milingo may be running out of steam. His walk is a bit laboured and his breath is somewhat raspy. Some puff also seems to have gone from his cheeks, but his conviction, he says, has never been stronger.

The controversial priest and self-proclaimed healer on Sunday presided over the consecration of two deacons within his Married Priests Now church.

The archbishop, who shot into international fame in 2006, when he publicly challenged the relevance of celibacy in the Catholic Church believes he has fought a good fight and that his years of struggle will soon bear fruit.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:45 PM

Tombstone, shackles found in priest's home

CHRISTOPHER (IL)
Belleville News-Democrat

BY GEORGE PAWLACZYK - News-Democrat

CHRISTOPHER -- It took 30 minutes of persistent questioning before a reluctant Linda Burkitt would finally say what she saw in the rectory at St. Andrew Catholic Church.

Until several months ago, the nine-room rectory was the home of the Rev. Steven Poole, 42, who was charged with felony shoplifting in January at a Wal-Mart in West City after police said he tried to steal a $3.22 container of butter and a $60 sofa cover after he switched the bar code tag on a $144.88 foam mattress to read $30.88. Poole was charged with felony stealing in 2000 when he walked out of a trendy Ladue, Mo., antiques shop with a 5-foot-long 19th century English tavern sign valued at $900.

"Shackles," said the 72-year-old Burkitt, who has been involved in Catholic Church matters in her hometown all her life.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:39 PM

Future pope refused defrocking of convicted priest

UNITED STATES
The Associated Press

The future Pope Benedict XVI refused to defrock an American priest who confessed to molesting numerous children and even served prison time for it, simply because the cleric wouldn't agree to the discipline. The case provides the latest evidence of how changes in church law under Pope John Paul II frustrated and hamstrung U.S. bishops struggling with an abuse crisis that would eventually explode.

Documents obtained by The Associated Press from court filings in the case of the late Rev. Alvin Campbell of Illinois show Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, following church law at the time, turned down a bishop's plea to remove the priest for no other reason than the abuser's refusal to go along with it.

"The petition in question cannot be admitted in as much as it lacks the request of Father Campbell himself," Ratzinger wrote in a July 3, 1989, letter to Bishop Daniel Ryan of the Diocese of Springfield, Ill.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:55 PM

Irish nun pays ultimate price for defying bishop in abortion case

UNITED STATES
Irish Independent

Sunday May 30 2010

The centrepiece of the drive in front of St Joseph's Hospital in Phoenix, Arizona, is a white marble statue of the saint cradling an infant. St Joe, as he is known to the locals, has been here since the Irish Sisters of Mercy founded the medical centre back when the area was still part of the old 'Wild West'. Today he still watches over the faithful of the city. The sick touch him for good luck and hopeful home-owners bury miniature versions of him in their yards when they are trying to sell their house. He is patron saint, amulet and mascot all in one.

He also stands as a reminder of the strictly Catholic ethos at the hospital and the dogmatism of the Church hierarchy in the city. In the past few weeks a scandal has rocked this sun-scorched corner of the South-western US, propelling it into the international news and placing it at the forefront of the culture wars in America. At the centre of it all is an Irish nun who, in attempting to read 21st Century pragmatism into ancient Church doctrine, fell foul of her bishop and became a hero to locals.

Margaret McBride, a medically trained Sister of Mercy and until recently the most senior Church figure at the hospital, has been hailed as "tireless" and "the moral conscience of the hospital" by her colleagues. Gloria Steinem's feminist Ms Magazine called her "a ray of light in the darkness" and the Washington Post described her as "brave". "More mother hen than CEO," according to one man who knows her, she is regarded by locals as a woman of great integrity and moral courage. Several of them wrote to local papers in support of her.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:06 AM

You'll go to hell, Vatican prosecutor tells paedophile priests

VATICAN CITY
Wales Online

May 30 2010

The Vatican prosecutor of clerical sex abuse warned perpetrators that they would suffer damnation in hell that would be worse than the death penalty.

The Rev Charles Scicluna, a Maltese priest who is a top official at the Vatican’s morality office, led a special “make amends” prayer service in St Peter’s Basilica yesterday.

Seminarians and other pontifical university students in Rome wanted to gather for prayers for the victims of clergy abuse and for the healing of the church’s wounds from the scandal over its concealment of abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:58 AM

Two Female Priests Buried as Church Outsiders

UNITED STATES
Women's e-News

By Claire Bushey
WeNews correspondent

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Female Catholic priests, deemed excommunicate by Rome, buried two of their own this month, neither one in a Catholic cemetery. "They threw us away," says a surviving member of Roman Catholic Womenpriests, which marked its first deaths.

CHICAGO (WOMENSENEWS)--Two funerals this month find women ordained as Catholic priests buried outside the church they were striving to change from within.

Mary Styne, 70, of Milwaukee, died May 12. She was ordained in 2009 by Roman Catholic Womenpriests, an organization that has been ordaining women to the priesthood in contravention of church law since 2002.

Janine Denomme, 45, of Chicago, died May 17, just weeks after her ordination by the same group; her funeral was May 22.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:55 AM

What Do Italian Priests' Mistresses Want You To Know?

ITALY
National Catholic Register

by Jimmy Akin Saturday, May 29, 2010

A group of 40 or so mistresses of Italian priests, including Stefania Solomone (pictured), want you—and especially Pope Benedict—to know that they don’t like priestly celibacy.

That’s why they’ve written the Pope a letter (Italian original) on the subject.

The occasion was Pope Benedict’s statement that

“The horizon of the ontological belonging to God also constitutes the proper framework for understanding and reaffirming, in our day too, the value of sacred celibacy which in the Latin Church is a charism required for Sacred Orders and is held in very great consideration in the Eastern Churches . . .

“It is an authentic prophecy of the Kingdom, a sign of consecration with undivided heart to the Lord and to “the affairs of the Lord”, the expression of their gift of self to God and to others. The priest’s vocation is thus most exalted and remains a great mystery, even to us who have received it as a gift. Our limitations and weaknesses must prompt us to live out and preserve with deep faith this precious gift with which Christ has configured us to him, making us sharers in his saving Mission.”

The mistresses particularly objected to the phrase “sacred celibacy,” who seem to have determined to write their letter “from the moment we heard the reaffirmation of the sacredness of what is not sacred in the least.”

This episode just fills me with sadness.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:45 AM

'The first passion must be for the truth'

UNITED STATES
National Catholic Reporter

by Bishop Thomas Gumbleton on May. 28, 2010
The Peace Pulpit

This feast of Pentecost is a feast when we are called to experience great joy, excitement and enthusiasm. We're reminded on this feast of what St. Paul said to the church at Rome: "The love of God has been poured into our hearts by the Holy Spirit which has been given to us. We are infused, filled with the very love of God because the spirit of God has been poured into our hearts." That's what we celebrate today. This is a day for great celebration, and yet we are living at a time when, for many reasons, I think we don't experience that great joy.

As we gather together as the church, as God's people, to celebrate this Eucharist, there is a heaviness in our church today that is felt by many, many people. You could know this by the fact that, as I have mentioned before, 10% of the people in the United States are people who have left the Catholic church -- 30 million people. The second largest Christian denomination in our country now are those who used to be Catholic in a practicing way.

That of course does cause us to feel sadness, but then also, as Pope Benedict himself has said very recently, there is a terrible sin in our church. He named it "sin," and that is this terrible scandal that has swept over our whole church, every part of the world. We have experienced it profoundly here in the United States, a scandal because of what happened to children in our church, but a scandal because the leadership of our church has covered it up, has facilitated it even by allowing priests who are perpetrators of this terrible evil to move from one place to another to continue their acts of abuse against innocent children. This is the sin within our church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:37 AM

Priest gets new date in sexual abuse case

ST. CHARLES (IL)
St. Charles Republican

By Hal Conick, hconick@mysuburbanlife.com
St. Charles Republican
Posted May 28, 2010

St. Charles, IL — Alejandro Flores, a Catholic priest who is accused of molesting a young St. Charles boy, received a new court date Friday morning.

Flores, 37, of the 600 block of Brook Forest Avenue in Shorewood, will appear in court at 9 a.m. on June 25. He is charged with 16 felonies, including predatory sexual assault, criminal sexual assault, criminal sexual abuse, indecent solicitation of a child and attempted aggravated sexual abuse in connection with the alleged sexual abuse how his now 13-year-old godson.

Glenn Sowa, defense attorney for Flores, said he doesn’t expect much movement in the case for a while due to the heavy amount of discovery in the case.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:30 AM

Devine slams anti-Catholic agenda in child sex abuse row

SCOTLAND
Herald Scotland

Stephen Naysmith

The Bishop of Motherwell, Joseph Devine, claims today that opponents of his church are using child sex abuse scandals to further an “insidious” anti-Catholic sectarian agenda.

In an interview with the Sunday Herald, to accompany an exclusive article on the scandals, Devine said sectarianism was “constant” for most Catholics in Scotland, adding: “The proper name for it is anti-Catholicism.”

In his article, Devine describes some commentators as “hell-bent on depicting the Catholic Church as the paedophile empire of sexual abuse against children”. He also attacks “scurrilous” attempts to smear the Pope with the ongoing scandals. The bishop also told the Sunday Herald he wants to lay the issue of sex abuse to rest in Scotland ahead of the visit of Benedict XVI to Scotland in September.

Devine accepts some failings in the way the Catholic Church has dealt with abuse in the past, and says it is important to confront and atone for sins and betrayals. The Church should compensate victims of abuse financially, and perpetrators should be prosecuted, he adds.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:27 AM

‘Yes, we must atone for these sins. But the Catholic Church is not an empire of abuse’

SCOTLAND
Herald Scotland

Published on 30 May 2010

In an exclusive article, Bishop Joseph Devine argues it is time some allegations were laid to rest

The scathing reaction by the media and ­society to the incidence of child sex abuse in the Church has been chastening but for the most part welcome. It has concentrated our minds wonderfully on our faults and failings and vanities. The grievous sins and perversions committed against vulnerable children by rogue priests and others in religious orders were abhorrent and inexcusable.

As for those Bishops who misused clerical power by covering up the crimes of members of their clergy, who mistakenly believed their primary duty was to protect the Church from ­scandal, or who failed to recognise that their true mission and obligation, as disciples of Jesus Christ, was to act in the best interests of the molested children: they must hopefully feel the wounds of their negligence.

The law must prosecute the guilty. The Church must pay generous ­financial compensation to the victims. However, it will take much more than money to make restitution for their distress and pain.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:25 AM

Local view: Churches, and all of us, need to better understand pedophilia

MINNESOTA
Duluth News Tribune

By: Barbara Dickenson,

The Catholic Church and society at large are paying a dear price for the church’s apparent rejection of the science of psychology. Years ago, when behavioral psychologists were denying the concept of sin and individual responsibility for behavior, when they were saying man is controlled by his environment and is unable to rise above it, the church declared war on psychology as a science.

Priest friends of mine have told me they were not allowed to study psychology, so knew little about it. We can assume that a lack of information about psychology extended to the very top of church hierarchy. Recently, a church official suggested publicly that homosexuality was to blame for pedophilia, demonstrating a lack of knowledge of facts related to pedophilia.

Pedophilia is a mental disorder under the classification of obsessive compulsive disorder that cuts across all societal strata. Homosexuals are as likely or as unlikely to be pedophiles as blondes or brunettes; pedophiles can be anyone, according to the American Psychiatric Association. They can be old or young, rich or poor, educated or uneducated, professional or nonprofessional, male or female; or of any race. They can be teachers, parents, priests, pastors, businessmen, businesswomen or those of vocational persuasion.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:22 AM

Paprocki looking forward to challenges as Springfield bishop

SPRINGFIELD (IL)
The State Journal-Register

By STEVEN SPEARIE
THE STATE JOURNAL-REGISTER

Walk the streets of South Austin Boulevard in Cicero, especially around the offices of the Archdiocese of Chicago, and you’re likely to see Polish flags hanging next to Mexican flags in the windows of tidy bungalows, near where parents pick up their children from St. Frances of Rome School.

This is the neighborhood the Rev. Thomas Paprocki has called home since 2003, when he was named an auxiliary bishop. The Poles are the latest arrivals to Cicero — a town more associated with gangster Al Capone — following a wave of Hispanics in the late 1970s and ‘80s. ...

Paprocki will have to navigate more than the back roads of central Illinois.

The 2006 Roberts Report, which cited misconduct by some of the top leaders of the Springfield diocese and a “permissive culture” cultivated by then-Bishop Daniel Ryan, is still fresh in many minds.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:18 AM

Memorial Day in Ireland an opportunity to remember author John McGahern

UNITED STATES
The Republican

By Tom Shea
May 30, 2010

This weekend, many will head to cemeteries to visit the near and dear.

My trip this week was to the far away and the never-met.

My wife was just finishing a week at a writers’ conference outside Dublin, and I’d spent much of that time reading away at Dublin’s National Library, so a literary detour seemed a fitting next step. A tiny graveyard in the microscopic village of Aughawillan, two hours northwest along the twisting, turning, winding roads of County Leitrim, was our destination.

In “The Penguin Book of Irish Fiction,” novelist Colm Toibin calls the late John McGahern’s writing “the most impressive body of work of any Irish writer in the second half of the century.” ...

McGahern’s second novel, “The Dark,” published in 1965, resulted in his most long-lived celebrity. Scenes, including one suggesting a priest’s sexual advances, resulted in its being banned by the government in what was then considered “Holy Catholic Ireland.” The author was fired from his job as a grammar school teacher and left the country for life in England and France.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:15 AM

Sex abuse victims say church is still tenaciously fighting claims

CANADA
Toronto Star

By Mary Ormsby

Feature Writer John Caruso thought his trauma within the Roman Catholic Church began and ended with Rev. James Kneale.

The St. Catharines-area priest was convicted of sexually abusing the former altar boy 11 years ago. Caruso and his Fort Erie family sued Kneale, the Diocese of St. Catharines and former bishops for $8.6 million, claiming, among other things, that church officials knew or should have known the priest was a sexual predator.

The response was an unexpected legal thunderbolt: Kneale and the diocese countersued Caruso’s mother and father. They claimed the parents were negligent in failing to get counselling and medical help for their teenaged son and that Caruso’s father regularly beat him, compounding his psychological troubles.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:10 AM

May 29, 2010

Church abuse cases: Mgr Scicluna speaks on need to 'amputate' to heal'

VATICAN CITY
Times of Malta

The Church 'may have to amputate to heal' the Vatican's top prosecutor in sex abuse cases by priests, Mgr Charles Scicluna, has warned.

Speaking in St Peter's Basilica during a Mass of reparation for abuse committed by priests, and for healing within the church, Mgr Scicluna said that when the innocence of children was trampled upon, broken, sullied, abused, and destroyed, then "the earth becomes arid and the whole world sad."

In a speech given wide publicity in the Catholic media, Mgr Scicluna said that if a member of the church was an "occasion of sin," then there was no other choice but to cut this tie.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:39 PM

OC Catholic Sex-Abuse Survivor to Protest at St. Angelica Merici Tomorrow

ORANGE COUNTY (CA)
Orange County Weekly

By Gustavo Arellano, Saturday, May. 29 2010

While nearly all of us try to relax this Memorial Day weekend, Catholic sex-abuse survivors know that pedo-priest protecting never stops. Thus, the indefatigable Joelle Casteix and other survivors will protest tomorrow at 10 a.m. in front of St. Angela Merici in Brea to warn people for the umpteenth time that Diocese of Orange Bishop Tod D. Brown is a pendejo.

Specifically, they are asking OC's other pedo-protecting bishop, Cirilo Flores, who resides at St. Angela Merici, to pressure Brownie into coming clean about His Excellency's pedophilia cover-ups while serving in the Diocese of Boise during the late 1980s and early 1990s. "If there are men out there who are a significant risk to kids," said Casteix in a press release, "then Flores has an obligation as an attorney, a bishop and a man of faith to make sure that all people who have been credibly accused of abuse anywhere Brown has worked are exposed, people are warned and kids are safe."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:32 PM

Vatican abuse prosecutor warns hell for culprits

VATICAN CITY
The Associated Press

VATICAN CITY — The Vatican prosecutor of clerical sex abuse warned perpetrators on Saturday that they would suffer damnation in hell that would be worse than the death penalty.

The Rev. Charles Scicluna, a Maltese priest who is a top official at the Vatican's morality office, led a special "make amends" prayer service in St. Peter's Basilica. The service grew out of a desire by some seminarians in Rome for a day of prayers for the victims of clergy abuse and for the healing of the church's wounds from the scandal over its concealment of abuse.

"It would be really better" for priests who sexually abuse minors that their crimes "cause them death" because for them, "damnation will be more terrible" in hell, Il Sole 24 Ore online news reported.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:19 PM

Vatican Prosecutor Has Harsh Words for Priest Child Abusers

VATICAN CITY
WBAY

Some harsh words from the Vatican regarding priests who are guilty of child sex abuse. The Vatican prosecutor says perpetrators will suffer, "damnation in hell that will be worse than the death penalty." His words came during a "make amends" prayer service at St. Peter's Basilica Saturday.

The Vatican is fighting several lawsuits, including one from Wisconsin, that accuse the church of keeping sex abuse cases secret and covering them up for decades.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:16 PM

Vatican investigator says hell is harder for paedophile priests

VATICAN CITY
Herald Sun (Australia)

AFP May 30, 2010

THE Vatican's investigator into the Church's paedophilia scandal warned priests that those who abuse children face a harder time in hell.

Monsignor Charles Scicluna, the head of the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith, led prayers in St. Peter's Basilica with students and seminarians from pontifical universities.

Citing a sixth-century saint, he said that priests who abuse others instead of acting as role models would do better to remain outside of the Church "as their torment in hell would be more bearable".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:09 PM

Woman: Church Covered Up My Rape as Teen

NEW HAMPSHIRE
CBS News

(CBS) A woman now living in Arizona alleges she was raped twice 13 years ago by a prominent member of her church at the time, the fundamentalist Trinity Baptist Church in Concord, N.H.

Tina Anderson says the rapes resulted in her becoming pregnant when she was only 15.

She also asserts church officials, led by its now former pastor, covered up the crime.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:05 PM

Benedict XVI is a mixed-up Pope. The Catholic Church is the safest haven for criminals

UNITED STATES
Benedict XVI Ratzinger: God's Rottweiler

Paris Arrow

Benedict XVI is a mixed-up Pope trying to act infallible one way and rambling incoherent words in another. The latest words coming out of Benedict XVI’s mouth are “penance, forgiveness and justice to resolve the sexual abuse” which are contrary and incompatible with each other. There is no room for “penance and forgiveness” in CSI Crime Scene Investigation sites, crime laboratories and jails in every cities and countries in the world. “Penance and forgiveness” have no function in every country’s justice system or else all our courthouses would be empty and judges and lawyers would be totally unnecessary. “Penance and forgiveness”, including the Mass, the Rosary, all forms of spirituality, canon laws and doctrines cannot protect children from criminals and pedophile priests; neither can they control the abominable lust of predator priests as exemplified by the immoral Fr. Marcial Maciel, the most famous cash cow of the Vatican and one of the best friends of John Paul II and Benedict XVI. See our earlier article “Theology and John Paul II are heartless and together they made the immoral Fr. Marcial Maciel thrive"

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:03 PM

'Priester misbruikte comateuze vrouwen’

BELGIE
de Volksrant

ANP op 29 mei '10, 11:58, bijgewerkt 29 mei 2010 12:03

Een inmiddels overleden Belgische priester heeft in de periode tussen de jaren 60 en 80 in een Vlaams ziekenhuis verschillende vrouwen die in coma verkeerden seksueel misbruikt.

De toenmalige ziekenhuisdirectie was hiervan op de hoogte maar greep niet in. Dat beweert de Belgische priester Norbert Bethune zaterdag in de Vlaamse krant Het Laatste Nieuws.

Het misbruik van de vrouwen zou hebben plaatsgevonden in een ziekenhuis in de West-Vlaamse plaats Tielt, waar de priester die het misbruik pleegde als pastor werkzaam was. Hij zou zich niet alleen aan comateuze vrouwen hebben vergrepen maar ook psychiatrische patiënten hebben lastiggevallen.

[summary]

A now deceased priest has been accused of sexually abusing comatose women in a Belgian hospital. Former hospital management was informed but did not intervene. Claims about Norbert Bethune, the Belgian priest, surfaced in the Flemish newspaper Het Laatste Nieuws.

The women would have been in a hospital in West Flanders where the priest once worked. He is accused of abusing psychiatric patients as well as the comatose women.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:52 AM

Vatican's sex abuse prosecutor says church must amputate to heal

VATICAN CITY
National Catholic Reporter

by John L Allen Jr on May. 29, 2010 NCR Today

When the innocence of children is “trampled upon, broken, sullied, abused, and destroyed,” then “the earth becomes arid and the whole world sad,” the Vatican’s top sexual abuse prosecutor said this morning in Rome.

Monsignor Charles J. Scicluna indirectly critiqued the clerical culture in which abuser priests were routinely given second chances.

Christian friendship, Scicluna said, is “submitted to the law of God,” so if a member of the church is an “occasion of sin,” then a believer “has no other choice … but to cut this tie.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:11 AM

Women tell Pope: Scrap no sex rule for priests

ITALY
Mirror (United Kingdom)

Thirty-NINE women who had secret relationships with priests want the Pope to abolish the ban on sex.

The women, some giving their names, spoke out after a cardinal suggested celibacy could lead to further abuse by priests.

They said on a website: "To become effective witnesses to the need for love, priests need to experience it fully, in the way their nature demands it."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:09 AM

Prügel aus sexuellen Motiven

DEUTSCHLAND
Focus

Die Jesuiten haben über Jahrzehnte sexuelle und körperliche Gewalt gegen Kinder an den Schulen des Ordens gedeckt. Inzwischen sind 205 Fälle von Missbrauch an Jesuitenschulen bekannt.

Die Täter wurden in mehreren Fällen von ihren Oberen aus der Schusslinie gebracht und an andere Orte versetzt, wie Ursula Raue, die Missbrauchs-Beauftragte der Jesuiten, am Donnerstag bei ihrem Abschlussbericht zu dem Skandal in München sagte. „Man hat dafür gesorgt, dass die verschoben wurden.“ Insgesamt gingen bei Raue seit dem Bekanntwerden des Skandals Ende Januar 205 „Opfermeldungen“ ehemaliger Schüler des Berliner Canisius-Kollegs und mehrerer anderer Jesuitenschulen ein. Die meisten Fälle ereigneten sich größtenteils in den 70er- und frühen 80er-Jahren.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:03 AM

Is it time for the Pope to resign?

BOSTON (MA)
Catholica (Australia)

Our lead commentary today is the text of a talk given by Richard Sipe to a group of guests invited by www.bishop-accountability.org in the Boston Public Library on May 20, 2010. It is a powerful and provocative commentary setting out the case why the gravity of the present crisis facing the Church calls for Benedict XVI to be the 10th Roman Pontiff in history to resign.

Introduction:

Coming to Boston is a home-coming for anyone who has been concerned with the clergy sex abuse crisis in the United States. We all know now that some Catholic clergy for decades (and centuries) were abusing boys and girls while bishops covered up the crimes, but it took the "guts of The Boston Globe", The Spotlight Team, to ferret out the documents and deliver the news, really to the world, beginning on January 6, 2002.

Boston provided the flashpoint of the Catholic clergy sex abuse crisis in the United States. Lawyers fought for victims: prominent among them Eric Mac Leish, Mitchell Garabedian and Carman Durso.

The combination of press exposure, victims' pressure, legal support and public outrage propelled the bishops into action; within six months they instituted a "zero tolerance" policy toward priest abusers (but not against abusing bishops). They established a National Review Board under lay direction and employed the John Jay School of Criminal Justice to conduct a survey of the U.S. diocesan files. Both unveiled their reports on February 27, 2004. Meanwhile the pope called the American cardinals to Rome and accepted the resignation of the archbishop of Boston, Cardinal Bernard Law.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:57 AM

Madonna School gets new leader

OMAHA (NE)
World-Herald

By Christopher Burbach
WORLD-HERALD STAFF WRITER

The Catholic Archdiocese of Omaha has named an Indiana teacher and communications professional as the new president of its Madonna School for cognitively and developmentally disabled people.

Jay Dunlap, a former TV news anchor in Ohio and Indiana, teaches at a school owned and run by the Legion of Christ, an international Roman Catholic religious order.

Dunlap is the former communications director for the Legion of Christ and its related lay Catholic movement, Regnum Christi.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:52 AM

Hotel rooms scarce for healing conference

CANADA
Winnipeg Free Press

By: Carol Sanders

Would you open your home to a residential school survivor? How about your mind?

A shortage of hotel rooms has the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada asking Winnipeggers to host folks here for a national gathering June 16-19 at The Forks.

It's the first of seven national get-togethers organizers say could draw as many as 15,000 people.

"When there are events like this combined with smaller events, the area can fill up pretty quickly," said Jim Baker, president of the Manitoba Hotel Association.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:45 AM

Anger, betrayal in Antigonish

CANADA
National Post

Katherine Laidlaw, National Post
Published: Saturday, May 29, 2010

Amid the rolling hills of Mabou, Nova Scotia, a tall white steeple emerges.

Not far away, on the road that winds along the western side of Cape Breton Island stands a long wooden building, nondescript to the unfamiliar eye but an anchor in the community of 1,214 people: the parish hall. Inside St. Mary's parish hall is the stage where the Rankin Family band, a bastion of Canadiana, played its first show. It's where the community comes together to celebrate weddings and birthdays, concerts and dances.

But now, because of a deal struck last year by Raymond Lahey, once the Catholic bishop of the Diocese of Antigonish and since charged with possessing child pornography, the diocese is putting about 400 properties up for sale to pay an $18.5-million sexual-abuse settlement. It's a deal that threatens to bankrupt the mostly rural diocese.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:39 AM

Joliet Diocese removes two priests accused of sexual abuse

ILLINOIS
Neighborhood Star

May 29, 2010

BY BOB OKON, Sun-Times Media
Two Joliet Diocese priests were removed from the ministry last week amid allegations they sexually abused a student separately more than 30 years ago at Providence Catholic and Joliet Catholic high schools.

The former student has not been identified, and the priests have not been named by the diocese or in any legal action. The alleged victim is in his late 40s and lives in Florida.

The investigation was made public Friday by the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP), which held a news conference in Joliet to call for more aggressive action against the priests.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:35 AM

Celibacy: whose bright idea was that?

UNITED KINGDOM
Guardian

Guy Dammann

Saturday 29 May 2010

Why does the pope wear underpants in the bath? Because he doesn't like looking down on the unemployed.

I was always fond of this joke, though never more so than when still at school where – this being a Catholic boarding school – unemployment of this variety was rife (albeit not so rife that there wasn't an occasional visit to the job centre).

When it's not the object of irreverent humour, the vow of celibacy – in effect a vow of chastity – undertaken by the Catholic clergy is an issue of great seriousness. We were reminded of its seriousness in March, when the occasionally freethinking cardinal of Vienna, Christoph Schönborn, suggested the issue of celibacy should be the object of "unflinching examination" within the church and enforced chastity may be linked with the secretive cultures of sexual abuse being exposed one after the other.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:30 AM

May 28, 2010

Court Gives Thumbs-Down to Sex Abuse Case

MEMPHIS (TN)
The Daily News

BILL DRIES | The Daily News

The Tennessee Appeals Court has ruled the statute of limitations has run in a Memphis civil case alleging the Catholic Diocese of Memphis was negligent in supervising a priest accused of child sexual abuse.

Norman Redwing, now in his late 40s, filed the suit against the Diocese in 2008, alleging he was sexually abused by the Rev. Milton Guthrie in the 1970s while Guthire was a priest at Holy Names parish. Guthrie died in 2002.

Redwing’s lawsuit claimed the diocese knew or should have known that Guthrie was “a dangerous sexual predator with a depraved sexual interest in young boys.” He also alleged the diocese was part of a coverup of such abuse by priests in general “at the highest levels.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:58 PM

Memphis priest abuse case thrown out

MEMPHIS (TN)
The Commercial Appeal

A 2008 lawsuit accusing a Memphis priest of sexual abuse has been thrown out by an appeals court, which ruled that the statute of limitations had long since passed.

The suit filed by lay minister and community activist Ron Redwing alleged that Father Milton Guthrie sexually abused him in the 1970s when he was a youth in Guthrie’s Holy Names Catholic Church parish.

Guthrie, a pastor, teacher and civil rights activist, died in 2002 at age 70.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:52 PM

Guest column: Catholic Church should still be trusted

MICHIGAN
Advisor & Source Newspapers

By GEORGE DiMICHELE

Recently, many major news leaders have asked if ordinary Catholics continue to trust their church leaders in light of the recent sex abuse scandals and talk of a "cover-up" by Pope Benedict. Since I consider myself very ordinary, yes, of course I trust the church.

Its present problems, while very serious, are being addressed with safeguards for the future. Clearly, some very bad wolves made their way into the flock and did great damage to many. Sadly, some church leaders were too slow to get rid of the bad priests.

Nevertheless, the leadership is fast correcting this problem. Just because the Church, especially the Vatican leadership, is viewed as secretive does not mean that effective corrections are not taking place. I trust the Pope to fix the problem. It is very presumptuous for the news media to believe they are entitled to sit next to Pope Benedict and the leadership as they make the needed changes.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:44 PM

70-plus Church sexual abuse cases in JP

MASSACHUSETTS
Jamaica Plain Gazette

By John Ruch May 28, 2010

Attorney: Numbers are a shock

The sexual abuse crisis that has rocked the Catholic Church for nearly a decade included more than 70 children molested at Jamaica Plain Church institutions, according to data compiled at the Gazette’s request by the famous attorney whose work helped break open the scandal.

Attorney Mitchell Garabedian had never looked at the Church sexual abuses cases he has handled in geographic terms before, and the JP numbers shocked him.

“This is just Jamaica Plain. This is unbelievable,” Garabedian said. “I do this [work] every day and I’m so close to it, but having a local newspaper like yours say there were 70 cases in your neighborhood—it’s just unbelievable.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:40 PM

Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada to hold First National Event

CANADA
The First Perspective

Written by Administrator
Friday, 28 May 2010 10:00
For Immediate release

Winnipeg, Manitoba (May 28, 2010) -- Survivors of Canada’s 150-year-old Indian Residential School system will gather in Winnipeg at The Forks from June 16 to 19 for the first of seven National Events to be hosted by The Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC). The event is intended to draw together survivors, and others whose lives have been impacted by the schools, to contribute their statements to the public record. “The voices of survivors must be heard,” says TRC Commissioner Justice Murray Sinclair. “We are holding these National Events to listen to the survivors and all those affected by residential schools. We want to reach out to the larger community as well, to provide opportunities for healing and greater awareness. Only by sharing these experiences will we truly understand them. This process will help ensure that future generations receive the wisdom of the people and move forward with respect.”

STATEMENTS & HEALING

The seven National Events to be held across Canada will provide individuals with a safe and culturally appropriate setting to provide a statement of their IRS experiences directly to the Commission. "Each statement is a unique experience that will be preserved to form an essential part of Canada’s known history. In this way, Canada will never forget what happened at Indian Residential Schools," says Justice Sinclair.

The process of statement gathering is often traumatic for survivors, and health supports will be available onsite for anyone experiencing difficulty. In addition, traditional healing and meditation practices will be offered, along with opportunities for the community to make gestures of reconciliation. Representatives of Churches involved with residential schools will be available as well, to promote a fuller understanding of the impact the schools have had, and continue to have, on those involved.

New diocesan alignment announced by Bishop Murry

OHIO
Youngstown Vindicator

Published: Fri, May 28, 2010

Bishop George V. Murry of the Catholic Diocese of Youngstown is confident that parishioners will accept a diocese reconfiguration plan announced this morning.

“In order to grow, all of us must leave something behind,” he said. “But we are not alone in our journey.”

Bishop Murry said the final plan is very similar to what was released in February.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:23 PM

Bishop Murry Promulgates the Pastoral Plan for the Diocese of Youngstown

OHIO
Roman Catholic Diocese of Youngstown

Click here to read the letter of promulgation.

Click here to view the Parish Reconfiguration Plan.

Click here to read the guiding principles and criteria for parishes.

Click here to learn what is meant by the terms collaborative and merged units.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:17 PM

10:50 a.m.: Catholic church unveils reconfiguration plan

YOUNGSTOWN (OH)
Tribune Chronicle

POSTED: May 28, 2010

YOUNGSTOWN - The Youngstown Catholic Diocese this morning announced plans to merge seven Trumbull County parishes into three as part of a Diocese-wide downsizing.

In Trumbull County, the diocese is planning to merge:

- St. Bernadette in Masury with St. Vincent de Paul in Vienna;

- St. James in Warren with SS. Cyril & Methodius in Warren; and

- St. Pius X, Christ Our King and St. Joseph, all in Warren.

Bishop George V. Murry said the number of worship sites for the new merged parishes will be determined at a later date.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:14 PM

Church's double standards over barred nun in abortion scandal

UNITED STATES/IRELAND
Irish Central

By CATHY HAYES

The media and public are speaking out on the hypocrisy within the Catholic Church that has been clearly illustrated by Sister Margaret McBride’s excommunication from the Church.

Sister Margaret McBride was excommunicated, by order of Bishop Thomas Olmstead, for agreeing to the abortion of an 11-week-old fetus in order to attempt to save the critically ill mother. An immediate double stand is evident.

For example, Cardinal Sean Brady, Primate of all Ireland, has decided that he will remain as head of the Church in Ireland though he admits that he was part of a 30 year cover up of the sexual abuse perpetrated by Father Brendan Smyth. He had decided for himself that he will remain in authority within the Church until he retires.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:10 PM

BBC plans to help Catholic Church “revitalise” itself during Pope’s visit

UNITED KINGDOM
National Secular Society

By Terry Sanderson

The plea from Catholic leaders for the faithful to “watch the Pope’s visit on TV” raises the next objection – the amount of airtime that is going to be devoted by the BBC to this increasingly niche event. We know that the BBC’s Director General, Mark Thompson, himself a pious Catholic, has had talks at the Vatican about how the visit will be covered, and no doubt he promised hours of outside broadcasts.

But can this be justified now? Do we really want our cash-strapped licence-payer-funded broadcaster spending a small fortune on something that relatively few people want to see?

If you look at this report by the BBC’s religious affairs correspondent, Robert Pigott, you will see that the Church thinks the Pope’s visit will be “priceless” in the sense that it will “revitalise faith” in a Church that is reeling from an endless litany of accusations of criminal activity, and decades of precipitous decline in mass attendance – even before such accusations became such public currency.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:17 AM

Priests’ girlfriends call on Pope to end celibacy law

ITALY
The First Post (United Kingdom)

By Jonathan Harwood
LAST UPDATED 1:08 PM, MAY 28, 2010

A group of 40 frustrated Italian women have written to Pope Benedict XVI begging him to repeal the Catholic church's celibacy rules - so they can have relationships with priests.

The women, most of whom have refused to give their names, have all had, or are having, affairs with members of the clergy and are fed up with having to keep their feelings under wraps.

Their letter describes the vow as a "tattered shroud" and explains how they must "live daily with the doubts, fears and insecurities of our men" because their relationships are clandestine.

The group were moved to write to the Pontiff when he rejected calls to lift the ban. In March the archbishop of Vienna, Cardinal Christoph Schonborn, said that if priests were allowed to live normal lives then the number of sex abuse scandals might fall. But Pope Benedict responded by saying he was in favour of "the principle of holy celibacy".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:14 AM

Lettera aperta a Benedetto XVI

ITALIA
Il Dialogo

Lo spunto è la notizia di alcuni giorni fa, una delle tante affermazioni a valle di una vera e propria esplosione degli scandali di pedofilia nelle fila del clero:

PAPA: Il Celibato è un valore sacro
"L'orizzonte dell'appartenenza ontologica a Dio costituisce la giusta cornice per comprendere e riaffermare, anche ai nostri giorni, il valore del sacro celibato, che nella Chiesa latina è un carisma richiesto per l'Ordine sacro ed è tenuto in grandissima considerazione nelle Chiese Orientali", ha spiegato il Pontefice durante il convegno "Fedeltà di Cristo, fedeltà del sacerdote".

"Esso è autentica profezia del Regno, segno della consacrazione con cuore indiviso al Signore e alle 'cose del Signore', espressione del dono di sè a Dio e agli altri. Quella del sacerdote è, pertanto, un'altissima vocazione che rimane un grande mistero anche per quanti l'abbiamo ricevuta in dono. I nostri limiti e le nostre debolezze devono indurci a vivere e a custodire con profonda fede tale dono prezioso, con il quale Cristo ci ha configurati a sé, rendendoci partecipi della sua missione salvifica".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:08 AM

Hablan las mujeres de los sacerdotes

ITALIA
Atrio

Redacción de Atrio, 13-Mayo-2010
Hoy reproducimos y presentamos a debate una Carta Abierta a Benedicto XVI y a todos los que se empeñan en definir el celibato obligatorio como un “valor sagrado”. Esta firmada por un grupo de mujeres que han mantenido o mantienen relación sentimental con algún sacerdote o religioso. No practican victimismo. Pero descubren un problema, más extendido entre el clero que el de pederastia, ante el que la actitud de la jerarquía sigue vergonzosamente cerrando los ojos.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:05 AM

The Priests' Women Speak Out

ITALY
Rentapriest

This is an open letter from a group of Italian women who are involved with priests to the Pope about celibacy. The letter was first published in Italian on Il Dialogo on March 28, 2010. It has recently been translated into Spanish and posted on Atrio. We now bring it to you in English.

This letter is signed by Antonella Carisio, Maria Grazia Filippucci, Stefania Salomone … together with others … and in the name of all who are suffering because of this unjust law.

The starting point is the news a few days ago, one of many statements following a real explosion of pedophilia scandals in the ranks of the clergy.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:00 AM

My father, my lover: Priests struggle with celibacy

ITALY
Global Post

By Alessandro Speciale — Special to GlobalPost
Published: May 26, 2010

ROME, Italy — They are used to secrecy, to hiding their feelings, to waiting in the shadows for their men. But now a group of women who have had intimate relationships with Catholic priests has decided to speak up against celibacy.

As sex abuse scandals once again rock the Catholic Church, the 39 Italian women who are, or have been, in longtime sentimental and sexual relationships with Catholic priests have penned an open letter to Pope Benedict XVI, denouncing compulsory celibacy as a “torn up shroud.” In the letter, the women describe the closeted lives they lead as companions to priests and ask the pope to consider that, perhaps, their men can only fulfill their priestly duties with their lives fulfilled by marriage.

“In order to become effective witnesses to the need for love, they need to embody it and experience it fully, in the way their nature demands it,” the letter said. “Is it a sick nature? A transgressing one?”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:56 AM

Open letter to pope urges end to celibacy

ITALY
CNN

About a dozen Italian women have posted an open letter to the pope on the internet in which they claim to have had intimate relationships with priests and urge the church to abolish celibacy for Catholic clergy.

The letter was posted on an Italian online forum in March but was not picked up in the media until Global Post, an international news website, reported on it this week.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:54 AM

REDWING v. CATHOLIC BISHOP FOR DIOCESE OF MEMPHIS

MEMPHIS (TN)
Leagle

DAVID R. FARMER, JUDGE.

Plaintiff filed an action against the Catholic Bishop for The Diocese of Memphis, asserting the Diocese was liable for damages arising from the negligent hiring, retention and supervision of a priest, who Plaintiff alleged abused him when he was a child. The Diocese moved to dismiss for lack of subject matter jurisdiction and on the grounds that the statute of limitations prescribed by Tennessee Code Annotated § 28-3-104 had expired. The trial court denied the motions. It also denied the Diocese's motion for permission to seek an interlocutory appeal pursuant to Rule 9 of the Tennessee Rules of Appellate Procedure. We granted the Diocese's motion for extraordinary appeal under Rule 10. We affirm the trial court's judgment with respect to subject matter jurisdiction over Plaintiff's claim of negligent supervision, but hold that Plaintiff's claims of negligent hiring and negligent retention are barred by the ecclesiastical abstention doctrine. We reverse the trial court's judgment with respect to the expiration of the statute of limitations.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:51 AM

Priest found guilty of sexually abusing sisters

NORTHERN IRELAND
News Letter

Published Date: 28 May 2010
A JURY yesterday convicted Dublin-based priest Father Eugene Lewis of sexually abusing three young sisters, one of whom he allegedly went on to rape while counselling her for having an affair with a married policeman.

It took the Omagh Crown Court jury of six men and six women four-and-a-half hours over two days to unanimously convict the former provincial superior of the Society of Missionaries of Africa, or White Fathers as better known, based at Cypress Grove House, Templelogue in Dublin.

The 76-year-old disgraced pensioner priest, who had dismissed the abuse claims as "absolute rubbish... they never happened", showed no emotion, never once looking up, head bowed all the time, as he palmed a set of rosary beads in the dock.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:24 AM

Bericht über Fälle sexuellen Missbrauchs an Schulen und anderen

DEUTSCHLAND
Jesuiten.org (PDF)

[the full report regarding allegations of sexual abuse in German Jesuit schools]

von Ursula Raue
A. Vorbemerkung

Am 18. Februar 2010 habe ich als Beauftragte des Jesuitenordens für Fälle von sexuellem
Kindesmissbrauch einen ersten Bericht zu den bis dahin bekannt gewordenen Fällen an
Schulen und Internaten des Ordens gegeben.

Dieser Bericht ist keine Fortschreibung des Zwischenberichtes vom Februar 2010, sondern
eine Gesamtdarstellung der ermittelten Vorgänge einschließlich deren Bewertung und der
sich daraus ergebenden Konsequenzen.

Die wirklichen Namen der Personen, gegen die Vorwürfe irgendwelcher Art erhoben und die
im Folgenden dargestellt werden, wurden anonymisiert und mit Phantasienamen bezeichnet.

More than 200 children abused by German Jesuits

GERMANY
The Times (United Kingdom)

[with links to the full report and remarks by the Jesuit provincial]

Ruth Gledhill

Our report in today's Times about the extent of child abuse by Jesuits disclosed in Germany yesterday makes shocking reading.

More than 200 children were sexually abused or mistreated by nearly 50 Jesuit priests and teachers in Germany, according to a report published yesterday. Ursula Raue, the Berlin lawyer who carried out the investigation, said that the number of victims could be even higher.

But even more shocking is the graphic detail of what was done to those small boys, detailed in the report itself.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:03 AM

Eunuchs for the Kingdom of Heaven. The Argument over Celibacy

ROME
Chiesa

by Sandro Magister

ROME, May 28, 2010 – Benedict XVI is preparing to conclude the Year for Priests, which he called in order to restore spiritual vigor to the Catholic priests at a difficult time for the entire Church.

Meanwhile, however, one famous cardinal among those closest to the pope, Vienna archbishop Christoph Schönborn continues to beat the drum of a "rethinking" of the discipline of celibacy among the Latin clergy.

Schönborn is a well-educated man, a former student of Joseph Ratzinger when he was a professor of theology. In the 1980's, he collaborated in the writing of the catechism of the Catholic Church. But as a man of command, since he has been at the head of a Church so off-kilter as the Austrian Church is, he has shown himself more attentive to the pressure of public opinion than to his leadership duties.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:57 AM

Pastor: No cover-up of alleged rape

NEW HAMPSHIRE
Concord Monitor

By Ben Leubsdorf / Monitor staff
May 28, 2010

The former pastor of Concord's Trinity Baptist Church says that there was no attempt to cover up the alleged rape of a 15-year-old parishioner in 1997 and that he immediately reported the crime to the police after learning of it.

"I was the first one to report this to the police, as was my duty. . . . The people who didn't do their job was the Concord Police Department," said Chuck Phelps, 51, who is now senior pastor at Colonial Hills Baptist Church in Indianapolis.

Phelps was the pastor at Trinity Baptist Church, located on 80 Clinton St., when a woman, now 28, says she was raped twice and impregnated by a fellow church member. Ernest Willis, 51, of Gilford was arrested last week and charged with two counts of rape and two counts of having sex with a minor.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:52 AM

AP: Woman in rape case says pastor advised she be 'church-disciplined'

NEW HAMPSHIRE
New Hampshire Union Leader

By LYNNE TUOHY
The Associated Press
Thursday, May. 27, 2010

CONCORD – Tina Anderson was a scared 15-year-old when she was summoned by church leaders to stand before her congregation and apologize for getting pregnant out of wedlock.

Just minutes earlier in that evening service in 1997, a longtime church member admitted publicly that he had been unfaithful to his wife.

Now, 13 years later, Ernie Willis is charged with raping Anderson, and police are investigating what church leaders knew about the assault and whether they shipped Anderson out of state to keep the matter quiet.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:37 AM

At least 205 abuse victims in German Jesuit institutions: study

GERMANY
Expatica

At least 205 children suffered sexual or physical abuse at Jesuit-run German institutions in recent decades, often with those in charge aware, according to a study released Thursday.

About 46 Jesuit priests, lay teachers and other educators are suspected of being responsible for the abuse, lawyer Ursula Raue told a press conference in Munich after looking into the cases at the Jesuit order's request.

Twelve priests, of which six are now dead, and two laymen were singled out by more than one victim or witness for acts of sexual abuse, violence or both, Raue said. The other 32 "suspects" were each accused by only one person.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:32 AM

Unique Ukrainian priests escape scandal

AUSTRALIA
ABC - Lateline

Broadcast: 27/05/2010

Reporter: Norman Hermant

Ukrainian Catholic priests have so far escaped the sexual scandals rocking the Church worldwide - a feat they attribute to their rare marital permissions.

Transcript

TICKY FULLERTON, PRESENTER: It seems not a week goes by without some devastating revelation of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church being reported in the international media.

But there's one nation where the Catholic Church has so far avoided scandal.

It's in Ukraine, where millions follow the Greek Catholic Church, a unique branch of Catholicism, which is loyal to Rome and the Pope but with one major difference.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:29 AM

German Jesuits set example on abuse

GERMANY
America Magazine

Posted at: Thursday, May 27, 2010
Author: Austen Ivereigh

"In the name of the order, I acknowledge with shame and guilt our failure", Fr Stefan Dartmann SJ, the German Jesuit provincial. said today. "I ask for forgiveness".

His comments came as the Society of Jesus released a report into abuse at its schools over many decades. The report, which records 205 allegations against priests in Jesuit schools dating back to the 1950s, was commissioned in January after 25 former students at the Jesuit-run Canisius College alleged sexual abuse.

The special investigator, Ursula Raue, said she thinks the number is even higher, as "we cannot expect to have heard everything yet." She said 46 Jesuits and non-clerical staff at the schools have been accused of abuse or of knowing of such crimes without acting. A dozen priests have been accused; six of them are dead.

"There was a widespread mentality in the order, and perhaps still is, that the primary concern was the reputation of the institution and its fellow brothers", said Fr Dartmann, at the left of the picture.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:27 AM

Report Outlines Abuse Claims at German Jesuit Schools

GERMANY
The New York Times

By JUDY DEMPSEY
Published: May 27, 2010

BERLIN — Deepening the sexual abuse crisis in the Roman Catholic Church in Germany, a special investigator released a report on Thursday saying that 205 former students claimed they had been abused in Jesuit schools, including at the prestigious Canisius-Kolleg in Berlin.

The investigator, Ursula Raue, said the actual number could be higher. “We cannot expect to have heard everything yet,” she said. “The question must be asked why the order dealt so dismissively with the well-based information about frequent incidents of sexual abuse in its institutions.”

Father Stefan Dartmann, Germany’s leading Jesuit official, immediately issued a statement acknowledging “with shame and guilt, our failure.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:23 AM

Diocese: Allegation against ex-Pilot Grove priest deemed 'credible'

BOONVILLE (MO)
Boonville Daily News

By Nate Birt
Boonville Daily News

Boonville — A former Pilot Grove priest will stay on administrative leave after a review board concluded that an allegation against him "did constitute sexual abuse of a minor according to the definition in the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People," according to a news release issued tonight by the Diocese of Jefferson City.

The review board has concluded that the allegation made against Thomas Seifner is credible, according to the release, a copy of which diocesan spokesman Mark Saucier provided to the Boonville Daily News after a meeting at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Loose Creek, located southeast of Jefferson City.

Parishioners from the Loose Creek parish and the Bonnots Mill parish, where Seifner had been working until December 2009, were invited to tonight's meeting, said Ron Vessell, administrator of the review board.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:20 AM

German Jesuit report shows years of abuse cover-up

GERMANY
Reuters

By Christopher Lawton

BERLIN (Reuters) - A Jesuit investigation cited 205 allegations of sexual abuse against priests at its schools in Germany on Thursday, revealing decades of systematic abuse and attempts of a cover-up by the Roman Catholic order.

The new allegations threaten to further undermine the German Roman Catholic Church, already accused of hushing up hundreds of sexual and physical abuse allegations in Church-run schools that have come to light recently.

"In the name of the order I acknowledge with shame and guilt our failure," Father Stefan Dartmann, Germany's leading Jesuit official, said in a statement. "I ask for forgiveness."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:18 AM

Systematische Vertuschung

DEUTSCHLAND
Neues Deutschland

Der Missbrauchsskandal an Jesuiten-Einrichtungen hat deutlich größere Ausmaße, als bislang angenommen. Insgesamt gehe es um 205 Kinder und Jugendliche, die Opfer von sexuellem Missbrauch und Misshandlungen wurden, heißt es im am Donnerstag in München vorgestellten Abschlussbericht der vom Jesuitenorden beauftragten Rechtsanwältin Ursula Raue.
München (Agenturen/ND). Über Jahrzehnte hinweg hat der Jesuitenorden sexuellen Missbrauch und Gewalt gegen Kinder in seinen Einrichtungen systematisch vertuscht. Das geht aus dem Abschlussbericht hervor, den die Missbrauchsbeauftragte des Ordens, Ursula Raue, am Donnerstag vorstellte. Seit Bekanntwerden von Missbrauchsfällen am Berliner Jesuiten-Kolleg im Januar hätten sich 205 Opfer sexueller Gewalt beim Orden gemeldet, bestätigte die Berliner Rechtsanwältin.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:15 AM

"Täterkarrieren nicht hinreichend behindert"

DEUTSCHLAND
Sudwest Presse

München. Am Ende zählte nur der Orden. Das ist das Fazit von Ursula Raue, Missbrauchsbeauftragter des Jesuitenordens. Sie benennt schwere Versäumnisse.

Der Jesuitenorden in Deutschland hat sexuelle und körperliche Gewalt gegen Kinder an Ordenseinrichtungen über Jahrzehnte systematisch vertuscht und die Täter gedeckt. Das sagte die Missbrauchsbeauftragte des Ordens, Ursula Raue, bei der Vorstellung ihres Abschlussberichts. Bisher seien bei ihr 205 Meldungen von mutmaßlichen Opfern eingegangen, die den Jesuitenorden betreffen. Dazu gebe es weitere 50 Eingänge, die sich auf andere - meist katholische - Einrichtungen beziehen.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:13 AM

Report cites 205 cases of abuse at Jesuit schools in Germany

GERMANY
Deutsche Welle

A report commissioned by the Jesuit order says it has discovered hundreds of cases of sexual and physical abuse in Jesuit-run German institutions over the past few decades, as well as a culture of cover-ups.

A months-long investigation into Jesuit-run schools in Germany concluded Thursday that at least 205 former students suffered various forms of abuse at the schools, part of a systematic cycle of abuse and cover-up by Jesuit officials.

The report's lead investigator, Ursula Raue, said that the number of victims was likely higher, and that "we cannot expect to have heard everything yet."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:08 AM

May 27, 2010

Much Ado in Miami, Part One

MIAMI (FL)
Talk to Action

Thu May 27, 2010

Frank Cocozzelli

Catholic Archbishop John C. Favalora of Miami is stepping down eight months before the mandatory retirement age of seventy-five. A local group of conservative Catholics, Christifidelis, is taking credit for the early retirement and for the elevation of their preferred candidate, über-traditionalist Bishop Thomas Wenski of Orlando.

Christifidelis activists claim that Favalora 's tenure with the Miami archdiocese was characterized by a "culture of sodomy and theological heterodoxy" and run by a "a gay superculture" But their campaign against Favalora may well be more of a case of political motivation meeting opportunity than their concern about the alleged sexual behavior of priests.

The political opportunity of course, has been how poorly the priest pedophile scandal has been handled by the Church. "Like so many of his brother bishops," said David Clohessy, the Executive Director for the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP), "Favalora has fought against better secular child protection laws, exploited legal technicalities to hide clergy sex crimes and protected predator priests instead of protecting his flock."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:09 PM

Priest (76) guilty of abusing three sisters

NORTHERN IRELAND
The Irish Times

A 76-YEAR-OLD priest has been convicted on 11 counts of sexually abusing three young sisters in Northern Ireland almost 50 years ago.

It took the Omagh Crown Court jury of six men and six women four and a half hours to return unanimous guilty verdicts on Fr Eugene Lewis, former provincial superior of the White Fathers but now based at Cypress Grove House, Templeogue, Dublin.

The pensioner priest, who had dismissed the abuse claims as “absolute rubbish . . . they never happened”, showed no emotion in the dock.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:06 PM

Protecting Children in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

UNITED STATES
FindLaw

By VON G. KEETCH

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Marci Hamilton's recent column entitled "How Other Religious Organizations Echo the Roman Catholic Church's Rule Against Scandal . . ." (Thursday, April 15, 2010) contains numerous inaccuracies about how The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints ("LDS Church") handles child abuse. I have worked very closely with the LDS Church on child abuse issues for twenty years and am fully familiar with its approach. I have also served as an ecclesiastical leader in the LDS Church. And I have worked closely with other religious organizations on abuse issues. With this background and firsthand knowledge, I write to set the record straight.

Child abuse is a society-wide problem that affects people of all demographics. Tragically, every organization with families and children—religious or otherwise—faces the issue. That is particularly true of large and diverse organizations, such as the LDS Church, whose very purpose is to welcome and minister to all people.

The LDS Church has long had a highly effective approach for preventing and responding to abuse. In fact, no religious organization has done more. Although no one system is perfect and no single program will work with every organization, the LDS Church's approach is the gold standard.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:38 PM

A Reply to Von Keetch's Comments on Clergy Child Sex Abuse and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

UNITED STATES
FindLaw

By MARCI A. HAMILTON

Thursday, May 27, 2010

On April 15, FindLaw posted my opening column on the issue of how the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (which I will call the "LDS Church" or "LDS") handles clergy child sex abuse. As I stated there, I welcome further discussion of this important issue. In raising and discussing clergy sex abuse in the contexts of different religious institutions and faiths, I am interested solely in the truth and the protection of children.

Since then, Von Keetch, chief outside counsel to the LDS, has responded to my column, and FindLaw has also posted his response. As Keetch notes in his column, he has worked closely with the LDS Church on child abuse issues for twenty years, and has served as an ecclesiastical leader in the Church. In this column, I will discuss Keetch's points — but first, I will briefly summarize the immediate responses to my column that I received via email.

The Responses I Received from LDS Church Members

Except for one individual's email, the responses I received were unfailingly polite, which is a credit to the LDS Church and its values. And they ran the full gamut. There was the LDS public relations person, who responded very quickly to defend the Church. There were men who had been, or are now, in some positions of leadership who said they believe the Church's rule is to always report abuse. One told me that if that is not the rule, he does not care, because he will do what is right regardless.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:33 PM

Bishop Olmstead defended, attacked for stand against abortion in Catholic hospital

UNITED STATES
Catholic Culture

May 27, 2010
An international coalition of pro-life activists and Catholic scholars has joined in a statement of support for Bishop Thomas Olmstead of Phoenix, who has drawn heavy press criticism for his condemnation of an abortion performed at a Catholic hospital. “We are also aware of the hostility toward Bishop Olmsted created by a media dedicated to watering down Catholic teaching,” said the group, praising the prelate for his "defense of truth and life."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:50 PM

Italian priests' secret mistresses ask pope to scrap celibacy rule

ITALY
Guardian (United Kingdom)

John Hooper in Rome guardian.co.uk, Thursday 27 May 2010

Dozens of Italian women who have had relationships with Roman Catholic priests or lay monks have endorsed an open letter to the pope that calls for the abolition of the celibacy rule. The letter, thought by one signatory to be unprecedented, argues that a priest "needs to live with his fellow human beings, experience feelings, love and be loved".

It also pleads for understanding of those who "live out in secrecy those few moments the priest manages to grant [us] and experience on a daily basis the doubts, fears and insecurities of our men".

The issue was put back on the Vatican's agenda in March when one of Pope Benedict's senior advisers, Cardinal Christoph Schönborn, the archbishop of Vienna, said the abolition of the celibacy rule might curb sex abuse by priests, a suggestion he hastily withdrew after Benedict spoke up for "the principle of holy celibacy".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:48 PM

Norwich Diocese Mulls Church Closings, Mergers

NORWICH (CT)
The Hartford Courant

By JOHN CHARLTON, FoxCT

NORWICH —Some Catholic churches in the Norwich Diocese might merge and others could close because of financial strain, one church official said.

If the cluster of churches in Norwich — St. Mary, St. Joseph and Sacred Heart — loses a priest, then the daily mass schedule could change, and some parishes may drop them completely, said Brian Daly, a member of a parish board at St. Mary.

The churches could also join a rotation of Sunday services, he said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:42 PM

NOW President Calls for Fundamental Reform to Stop Clergy Sexual Abuse

UNITED STATES
National Organization of Women

"Law enforcement authorities need to step up their investigations of sexual abuse in religious organizations because it is apparent that many church officials will not act in a prompt and responsible manner," National Organization for Women President Terry O'Neill stated. "In addition, state laws must clearly define the role of a priest or pastor as one involving a 'fiduciary duty' between a licensed caregiver and a client -- like those accorded psychiatrists or physicians. Sexual relations in those instances should be grounds for appropriate civil as well as criminal sanctions."

Recent reports from European and other countries about physical and sexual abuse of children by Catholic priests and cover-up by those in authority demand swift and effective action. The emerging facts about the church's behind-the-scenes actions are appalling: allowing the sexual exploitation of girls and women, including nuns; procuring abortions for those who became pregnant and intimidating them into silence; and using church officials to "wipe down the crime scene."

"When an all-male church hierarchy poses as unquestioned authority, the potential for abuse and cover-up is great," O'Neill said. "Religious organizations without a strong laity or democratic governance have failed to take the necessary steps. Church members, abuse survivors and their advocates must demand accountability."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:38 PM

The pope insists in penance, forgiveness and justice to resolve sexual abuse

VATICAN CITY
Rome Reports

[with video]

May 27, 2010. Benedict XVI showed again the necessity of penance, forgiveness and justice to overcome the cases of sexual abuse committed by priests. It was during a meeting with Italian bishops.

Benedict XVI
“What gives rise to scandal must, for us, translate into a profound reminder of the need to re-learn penance and accept purification; to learn, on the one hand, forgiveness and, on the other, the need for justice.”

The pope observed that the desire for a new evangelization in the Church “does not hide the wounds” caused by “weakness and sin of some of its members.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:42 PM

Pope to Italian bishops: moral crisis is as serious as economic crisis

VATICAN CITY
Catholic Culture

May 27, 2010
Society today is facing a "cultural and spiritual crisis, as serious as the economic crisis," Pope Benedict XVI told the Italian bishops in a May 27 address. "It would be illusory to counter one, ignoring the other," he added.

Speaking to a meeting of the Italian bishops' conference, the Holy Father said that the spiritual crisis stems from "uncertainty about values, evident in the struggles of many adults to honor commitments."

The Pope commended the Italian bishops for choosing to make education their top priority for the next decade. Forming young people in the faith is critically needed, he said, in response to the spiritual crisis. Christian education, he said, should satisfy the "thirst that young people carry in their hearts is a question of meaning and genuine human relationships that will help them not to feel alone when facing the challenges of life."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:39 PM

Priests’ sex abuse is ‘weakness of sin’, says Pope

VATICAN CITY
Thaindian News

Vatican City, May 27 (IANS/AKI) A few members of the Catholic Church had yielded to the “weakness of sin”, Pope Benedict XVI said Thursday, referring to the sex abuse cases that have engulfed the Vatican.

The pope, who met Catholic priests at the general assembly of the Italian Bishops Conference at the Vatican, said some members of the church had yielded to the “weakness of sin”. But this should not distract people from the contribution of others to the church.

“What gives rise to scandal must, for us, translate into a profound reminder of the need to re-learn penance and accept purification; to learn, on the one hand, forgiveness and, on the other, the need for justice,” Benedict said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:37 PM

Visiting SJF priest accused of harassing nun

CALIFORNIA
Rancho Palos Verdes Peninsula News

By Ashley Ratcliff, Peninsula News
Thursday, May 27, 2010

RPV — A clergyman on sabbatical at St. John Fisher Catholic Church in Rancho Palos Verdes has been sent back to India, as his bishop investigates accusations of inappropriate conduct.

Rev. John Peter, from India, allegedly sexually harassed a Catholic sister in England, between October and December 2009, as he was awaiting his assignment in the United States. Peter has been at the RPV parish since January.

The situation came to light last month, when the nun, who allegedly received inappropriate e-mails from Peter, called Monsignor David Sork, pastor at St. John Fisher, asking if the accused presently was at the church. On April 27, the sister e-mailed associate pastor Monsignor Steven Zak and copied several other staff members, detailing the allegations. The Archdiocese of Los Angeles received the e-mail the following day.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:34 PM

Abuse scars cannot be hidden - Pope

VATICAN CITY
Big Pond News (Australia)

Friday, May 28, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI has told Italian bishops the church's scars from the predator priest scandal could not be hidden, as abuse cases begin to come under the spotlight in the country.

The bishops' evangelical mission 'does not hide the wounds that scar the church community because of the weakness and the sin of some of its members', the Pope said on Thursday.

Italy seemed to be spared by the series of sex abuse revelations rocking European and American churches in past months, but since last week cases have been coming under the national spotlight.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:27 PM

Abuse scandal must inspire purification, justice, pope tells bishops

VATICAN CITY
Catholic News Service

By Carol Glatz
Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- The scandal of clerical abuse of minors must inspire bishops and priests to rediscover the need for penitence, purification, forgiveness and justice, Pope Benedict XVI told Italian bishops.

The church's desire to engage in a new evangelization of the world "does not hide the wounds scarring the church community, (wounds) caused by the weakness and sin of some of its members," he said in an audience with members of the Italian bishops' conference May 27.

While the pope did not specifically mention the crisis of sex abuse in the church, he briefly referred to it in his 20-minute speech to the bishops, who were holding their general assembly in the Vatican synod hall May 24-28.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:23 PM

Abuse victims seek more church transparency

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

A victims' support group is calling on the Maitland-Newcaslte Catholic diocese to be more transparent when it comes to allegations of clergy child sex abuse.

Members of the group, Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, have met Bishop Michael Malone.

They have urged him to approach Cardinal George Pell and ask him to speak to victims before he leaves for the Vatican shortly.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:19 PM

German Jesuit report shows years of abuse cover-up

GERMANY
Reuters

By Christopher Lawton
BERLIN (Reuters) - A Jesuit investigation cited 205 allegations of sexual abuse against priests at its schools in Germany on Thursday, revealing decades of systematic abuse and attempts of a cover-up by the Roman Catholic order.

The new allegations threaten to further undermine the German Roman Catholic Church, already accused of hushing up hundreds of sexual and physical abuse allegations in Church-run schools that have come to light recently.

"In the name of the order I acknowledge with shame and guilt our failure," Father Stefan Dartmann, Germany's leading Jesuit official, said in a statement. "I ask for forgiveness."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:17 PM

Church Pensions in Danger After Sex-Abuse Lawsuits Bankrupt Many Catholic Diocese

UNITED STATES
The Chronicle of Philanthropy

Many current and former church employees could lose retirement money because of a little-known loophole in federal pension protections, says National Public Radio.

For example, when the Catholic Diocese of Wilmington, Del., had to file for bankruptcy as a result of sex-abuse lawsuits, the diocese's lay employees and retirees learned that their pension plan was underfunded and isn't protected like corporate pension plans.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:51 PM

President signs sexual offences bill into law

GUYANA
Stabroek News

By Stabroek staff | May 25, 2010

President Bharrat Jagdeo yesterday signed the Sexual Offences Bill into law saying its reforms are gender-neutral and add to the state’s arsenal to fight predators in the country. He also declared that the legislation was designed to target predators and is not an “anti-male” law.

The legislation protects vulnerable women and children, the President said, noting that as a society people need to be less tolerant of predators, “paedophiles that prey on babies”. Some men appear fearful of the legislation, according to the President, but he emphasized there is no need “if they are law abiding,” and he charged that men have an obligation to ensure women and children are protected in this country.

His assent to the legislation comes a month after it was unanimously passed in the National Assembly; the public occasion drew a sizeable audience at the Police Officer’s Mess, Eve Leary. Jagdeo used the forum to call for broad-based support to implement the laws and underscored training for police officers who he said “have to do a better job”. But he also focused on the judiciary saying the magistracy needs to be consistent with issues such as bail.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:36 AM

Group urges bill for sex abuse victims

BOSTON (MA)
WWLP

[with video]

Jackie Ibanez
BOSTON, Mass. (WWLP) - A rally was held outside the state house Wednesday urging lawmakers to take a closer look at childhood sexual abuse in Massachusetts.

The Coalition to Reform Sex Abuse laws is asking legislators to pass a bill giving child sex abuse victims compensation for mental health treatment.

In addition, they call for eliminating the criminal statute of limitations for childhood sexual abuse and civil statute of limitations for future claims.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:31 AM

Stra Poll: Clergy sex abuse preventuion unresolved

OREGON
Oregon Faith Report

May 27, 2010

This week The Oregonian did a front page series on the Boy Scout Abuse case. You can read it here at Boy Scouts lagged in efforts to protect children from molesters . When the European abuse cases were making headliens this Spring Oregon Faith Report offered up a chance for Oregonians to offer their opinion on how Oregon clergy abuse prevention programs are doing. The survey results show that the issue are greatly unresolved which leaves clergy in a position to make progress or lose ground.

Question: Germany is facing a clergy sex abuse scandal. Oregon has had a similar experience which has led to policy and procedure changes across denominations. Do you feel that Oregon houses of worship have responded adequately since the abuse issue came to light?
The answer choices were; (a) Yes – Positive changes (b) No – Too much more needs to be done (c)No opinion.
Survey comments

- The US should take RICO action against this organization. Victims have suffered, many suicide and others mentally ill. This is lacking information that should be in the news. Show the victims

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:20 AM

The Trial of Benedict XVI

VATICAN CITY
TIME

By Jeff Israely and Howard Chua-Eoan

How do you atone for something terrible, like the Inquisition? Joseph Ratzinger attempted to do just that for the Roman Catholic Church during a grandiose display of Vatican penance — the Day of Pardon on March 12, 2000, a ritual presided over by Pope John Paul II and meant to purify two millenniums of church history. In the presence of a wooden crucifix that had survived every siege of Rome since the 15th century, high-ranking Cardinals and bishops stood up to confess to sins against indigenous peoples, women, Jews, cultural minorities and other Christians and religions. Ratzinger was the appropriate choice to represent the fearsome Holy Office of the Inquisition: the German Cardinal was, at the time, head of its historical successor, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. When his turn came, Ratzinger, the church's premier theologian, intoned a short prayer that said "that even men of the church, in the name of faith and morals, have sometimes used methods not in keeping with the Gospel in the solemn duty of defending the truth."

If you detect ambivalence in those words, you are on the road to understanding the difficulty Ratzinger — now Pope Benedict XVI — faces in leading the Catholic Church to properly atone for another stain on its history: the decades of cases of child abuse by priests and cover-ups by their bishops. And while a well-placed Cardinal has publicly speculated that Benedict will deliver a mea culpa in early June, the words of that apology — if that is what it proves to be — will be severely limited by theology, history and the very person and office of the Pope. It is unlikely to satisfy the many members of Benedict's flock who want a very modern kind of accountability, not just mealymouthed declarations buttressed by arcane religious philosophy. "Someone once told me that if the church survived the Inquisition, it can survive this," says Olan Horne, 50, an American victim of priestly abuse. "But these are different times. And right now, the modern world is wrapping its head around the Catholic Church in a major way."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:25 AM

Nun's excommunication shows hypocrisy

UNITED STATES
The Spectator

By Katie Farden

Sister Margaret McBride, the highest-ranking Catholic official at St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix, Ariz., was excommunicated earlier this month.

The sin that earned her the most severe punishment the church can dole out?
McBride condoned a life-saving abortion for a patient. ...

In a question and answer document the Diocese of Phoenix provided National Public Radio, church officials say the purpose of excommunication is “to repair scandal, to restore justice and to reform the offender.”

Given this definition, excommunication seems a strikingly fitting punishment for some members of the Catholic church who have received far more national attention than McBride for committing another sin: sexually abusing minors.

The growing number of priests charged with molesting children has muddied the church’s name with scandal and eroded its foundation as a just institution.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:21 AM

SNAP disappointed by Vatican, U.S. Justice Dept.

UNITED STATES
One News Now

An Oregon man abused by a priest has sued the Vatican and is now trying to get the U.S. Supreme Court to accept the case.

The latest development is that the U.S. Justice Department has filed a brief siding with the Vatican and suggesting that lower courts erred in ruling that the case could move forward. The National Catholic Reporter notes that, according to experts, it is the first time the U.S. government has officially expressed an opinion about efforts to sue the Vatican in American courts.

David Clohessy, executive director of the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests (SNAP), tells OneNewsNow his organization is disappointed in the stance taken by the government.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:17 AM

Priest found guilty of abuse of three sisters

NORTHERN IRELAND
RTE News

A Dublin-based priest has been convicted of sexually abusing three young sisters in Northern Ireland.

Fr Eugene Lewis is the former provincial superior of the Society of Missionaries of Africa, better known as the White Fathers, who was based at Cypress Grove House, Templeogue, Dublin.

He was found guilty by a jury at Omagh Crown Court of 11 counts of indecently assaulting the three sisters between August 1963 and September 1973.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:14 AM

Former resident sues Morning Star

WASHINGTON
The Spokesman-Review

Kevin Graman The Spokesman-Review

An Alaska man is suing Morning Star Boys’ Ranch, claiming that he was sexually abused nearly 30 years ago by the ranch’s former director, as well as by other residents.

The lawsuit, filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Spokane, names the ranch and its former director, the Rev. Joseph Weitensteiner, as well as the Morning Star Boys’ Ranch Foundation, to which the ranch has transferred the bulk of its assets.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:07 AM

Robbed of their language and pride

CANADA
Winnipeg Free Press

By: Kevin Rollason

27/05/2010

DENNIS White Bird has been chief of the Rolling River First Nation and grand chief of the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs.

But long before that, White Bird was one of thousands of aboriginal children who went to a residential school.

Like many other students, White Bird suffered physical abuse at the hands of the nuns who were his teachers, when he followed in the steps of his grandparents and parents and spent seven years at residential school.

"I didn't speak a word of English when I went to school, so I was severely beaten by the nuns," White Bird told about 300 people gathered at The Forks Oodena Celebration Circle on Wednesday during the Day of Healing and Reconciliation for residential school survivors and their families.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:03 AM

Priest guilty of indecent assaulting sisters

NORTHERN IRELAND
BBC News

A court in Omagh has found a Catholic priest guilty of sexually abusing three young sisters.

Father Eugene Lewis, 76, denied 11 charges of assault between 1963 and 1973. The sisters said the abuse began when they were as young as seven.

The abuse took place at their County Fermanagh home.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:58 AM

Man accuses identical brother of abuse

UNITED KINGDOM
Cambridge News

Jordan Day

A mormon missionary accused of sexually abusing the same boy as his twin brother insists the victim must have been confused by their identical looks.

John Patrick Conway, 50, claims either his brother Martyn Conway “tricked” the boy into thinking it was actually him for seven years or the victim genuinely could not distinguish the difference between them both.

Giving evidence at Cambridge Crown Court yesterday, the former postman told the jury he and his brother were conjoined at birth and were identical in every way.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:52 AM

Opinion - Forgiveness is new frontier in abuse healing

AUSTRALIA
CathNews

More than a decade after they first served to shock, scandals about the mismanagement of child sexual abuse by clergy continue unabated to enter the public domain.

Theories and allegations abound on the causes of such scandals. Everything from institutional structures to maladaptive sexuality have been blamed for the cover-ups that have served to compound the damage done to victims, facilitated further victimisation and resulted in increased public distrust of churches, in particular the Roman Catholic Church.

Seeking to understand something of the management of child sexual abuse by senior religious figures both ordained and lay, I interviewed 15 church leaders from Queensland, NSW and the ACT who have been identified as pro-active in seeking positive management strategies to address child protection within churches, writes Jodi Death.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:48 AM

Church, RCMP disagree over filing charges

CANADA
The Western Star

DEER LAKE
KATHERINE HUDSON
The Western Star

The Roman Catholic church will not automatically be going to police about the allegations of sexual abuse by one of its priests.

Corner Brook and Labrador Bishop Douglas Crosby said it is up to the complainant to decide if he wants to report the alleged abuse to the RCMP, since he is an adult.

He said the church is currently examining the allegation through a committee of professional lay people. The committee will take its lead from the complainant with regards to any recommendations it might make.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:46 AM

Opening the System

UNITED STATES
Metro Weekly

by Allen Rose
Published on May 27, 2010

If you have ever driven by the papal nuncio's residence on Massachusetts Avenue, you may have seen a man standing in front who is protesting about priests who sexually abuse children. I do not know this man. But his public protest, and the thousands of personal stories from victims, demonstrate that the sex-abuse scandal in the Catholic Church is about people who have been harmed, and about an institution that for decades attempted to pretend that no harm had occurred.

This scandal is about the execution of power in a closed system: the power of the abuser-priest over the child or teenager, the power of the bishop over the priest and the Catholics who live in his diocese, and the power of the Vatican over the bishops. Closed systems are very good at keeping secrets.

The clerics are only a small part of the Catholic Church, but they are sometimes thought of as the entire church. Catholics are a diverse group of people who draw strength and support from Catholic traditions and practices, and who have a surprisingly wide variety of beliefs.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:43 AM

Priest convicted of sexual abuse

NORTHERN IRELAND
UTV

A Co Tyrone jury has convicted Dublin based priest Fr Eugene Lewis of sexually abusing three young sisters.

One of the sisters he allegedly went on to rape whilst counselling her for having an affair with a married policeman.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:39 AM

Del. Judge Halts Teacher Sex Abuse Suits

DELAWARE
WJZ

RANDALL CHASE, Associated Press Writer
DOVER, Del. (AP) ― A Kent County judge on Wednesday halted child sexual abuse lawsuits involving several Delaware school districts pending a state Supreme Court ruling on a challenge to the law that allowed victims to sue over what happened decades ago.

Superior Court Judge William Witham Jr. issued an order halting four separate lawsuits in which the Capital, Red Clay, Brandywine and Christina school districts are named as defendants.

A similar child sexual abuse lawsuit involving the Colonial school district was stayed earlier this month by a superior court judge.

Witham ordered that the four lawsuits on his docket be put on hold until the Delaware Supreme Court rules on an appeal in a separate suit involving the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales, a Catholic religious order.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:17 AM

Canon aid

UNITED STATES
America Magazine

Posted at: Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Author: Kevin Clarke

“It has been described as the dark side of the good news,” said Rochester, N.Y.'s Father Kevin McKenna, “the arterial sclerosis of the mystical body.” Father McKenna was, of course, referring to the Canon Law of the Catholic Church, a codification of church rules and regs that can be traced back to the Acts of the Apostles, representing perhaps “the oldest legal system in the world.”

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, perhaps frustrated by the confusion canon law generate among both secular and religious journalists, hosted a one-day canon law teach-in yesterday in Washington. A group of about 20 journalists from around the country, including reporters from USA Today, The New York Times and the Boston Globe (and yours truly), participated. More sat in via an Internet link. Canon Law's European-style, inquiry-based justice seeking has been a source of consternation for U.S. journalists—and it's fair to say U.S. laypeople—more familiar with the rapid confrontations and outcomes of the U.S. adversarial system of justice. It’s too early to say if the U.S.C.C.B. seminar will produce more informed coverage of the sexual abuse crisis and the church’s juridical efforts to respond to it, but I think I can attest there are a handful of budding canon jurists now let loose among the U.S. media, armed with a little more info and perhaps slightly less befuddled by all things Curial. To steal a line from Red Smith: This may be a good thing.

Definitely the best lines of the day went to Father John Beal of the Catholic University of America, whose refreshingly blunt evaluations of Canon Law and the church’s performance during the crisis of clerical sexual abuse seemed to startle the assembled journalists. Asked why church tribunals investigating the abuse of children and other high crimes among the clergy and sometimes their outcomes remain so secretive, Father Beal didn’t miss a beat: “Saving face,” he said. “It’s not always healthy or helpful, but it is.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:12 AM

Sister Margaret’s Choice

UNITED STATES
The New York Times

By NICHOLAS D. KRISTOF
Published: May 26, 2010

We finally have a case where the Roman Catholic Church hierarchy is responding forcefully and speedily to allegations of wrongdoing.

But the target isn’t a pedophile priest. Rather, it’s a nun who helped save a woman’s life. Doctors describe her as saintly.

The excommunication of Sister Margaret McBride in Phoenix underscores all that to me feels morally obtuse about the church hierarchy. I hope that a public outcry can rectify this travesty.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:07 AM

Onus on Church to report abuse charges: RCMP

CANADA
National Post

Charles Lewis, National Post
Published: Wednesday, May 26, 2010

The removal of a P.E.I. priest over allegations of abuse have raised police concerns about not being informed by Catholic Church authorities, and triggered questions about the Church investigating serious charges on its own.

"We have not been contacted in any way shape or form by Church officials or anyone to make a complaint about the allegations against [this priest]," said RCMP Sergeant Jacques Morneau of the Deer Lake, N.L., detachment. "All we know is what we're hearing from the media. But if this was serious enough to suspend him we would expect to be contacted."

Fr. George Smith, a parish priest in P.E.I., was removed from his duties after Richard Grecco, the Bishop of the Diocese of Charlottetown, received a call from the Diocese of Corner Brook and Labrador on May 14 about abuse allegations that allegedly occurred while Fr. Smith served in Deer Lake between 1986 and 1991.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:05 AM

No allegations against P.E.I. priest brought to police

CANADA
The Guardian

JIM DAY
The Guardian

If a complaint against Rev. George Smith was serious enough to have a Roman Catholic priest removed from his duties on P.E.I., the diocese in Newfoundland has the responsibility to report the allegation to police, says an RCMP sergeant.

Smith, a priest at St. Malachy’s Parish in Kinkora, has been removed from his duties following an allegation of abuse originating in Newfoundland and Labrador more than 20 years ago. Smith is reported to be visiting friends out of province.

Rt. Rev. Richard Grecco, bishop of the Diocese of Charlottetown, confirmed Tuesday that he received a call from the Diocese of Corner Brook and Labrador about an allegation of abuse about Smith.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:02 AM

May 26, 2010

Archbishop Responds to Father Murphy Victim

MILWAUKEE (WI)
TMJ4

By Mike Jacobs
MILWAUKEE - Milwaukee Archbishop Jerome Listecki is offering an apology. He agreed to watch our entire interview with Steven Geier, a man who was abused by Father Lawrence Murphy when Geier was a boy.

In the interview TODAY'S TMJ4'S Mike Jacobs asked Geier about Father Murphy, "Was he a monster?"

Geier's response: "Yes, more than a monster, definitely more than a monster. It was like he was a devil in a priest outfit."

The archbishop was blunt with his response.

"It made me sick. To listen to an individual who was victimized the way Steven was. It both disgusts me as it would any Catholic to think that a young child went through that situation," Archbishop Listecki says.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:45 PM

P.E.I. bishop's brother abused Ont. children

CANADA
CBC News

While P.E.I. Bishop Richard Grecco deals with fallout from sex-abuse allegations against a priest in Kinkora, P.E.I., he's also bracing for the sentencing in Ontario of his older brother, a former priest, for sex offences.

Donald Grecco, 70, pleaded guilty to gross indecency in April. He will be sentenced next week in Hamilton.

The charges date back about 30 years when Donald Grecco was a Roman Catholic priest in several parishes in southern Ontario. All the victims were teenage altar boys when Grecco molested them in the late 1970s.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:12 PM

Jury seeks verdict in sexual abuse trial

NORTHERN IRELAND
The Irish Times

A Co Tyrone jury has yet to come to a decision in the case of Dublin-based priest Fr Eugene Lewis, who denies sexually abusing three young sisters, one of whom alleged he went on to rape her while counselling her for having an affair with a married policeman.

Following two and a half hours of deliberation yesterday at the end of the six-week trial, Judge Philip Babington sent the Omagh Crown Court jury of six men and six women home for the day.

They return this morning to continue in their effort to reach unanimous verdicts on the former provincial superior of the Society of Missionaries of Africa, or White Fathers.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:32 PM

La mappa degli abusi sessuali nella Chiesa

ITALY
il Post

Negli ultimi quindici anni circa, una maggior attenzione delle autorità civili, ed una tendenza crescente da parte delle vittime a denunciare gli episodi, hanno portato all’attenzione pubblica l’incidenza dei casi di abusi su minori da parte di membri della Chiesa Cattolica. A partire dai casi di grande rilievo e clamore mediatico degli Stati Uniti e dell’Irlanda, è emerso che il fenomeno coinvolge tutto il mondo cattolico, dal Sudamerica, all’Europa, all’Africa, nelle missioni. Lo scandalo ha costretto i vertici della Chiesa, finora mai intervenuti, a cominciare a prendere posizione pubblicamente in merito alla vicenda, in seguito alle accuse di aver operato con scarsa trasparenza nell’occuparsi dei casi di abuso e di poca incisività nel sanzionare i colpevoli, oltre ad aver sistematicamente tentato di insabbiare i casi senza segnalarli alle forze dell’ordine.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:27 PM

The map of Catholic church's sex abuses

UNITED STATES
The Huffington Post

[with map]

Luca Sofri

To describe the international spread of sex crimes committed by Catholic priests and members of religious orders, we - the italian online magazine Il Post - tried to draw a map, an infographic, that shows every documented and clear case of abuse. The map, built by designer Gino Selva, shows in darker blue the areas of the world where at least 20% of population belongs to catholic faith. And as we expected, the spread on the map of documented abuses is wide and covers nearly all such areas.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:24 PM

Italy priest abuse stats reveal 100 cases in 10yrs

ITALY
ABC News (Australia)

By Europe correspondent Emma Alberici

The body representing Roman Catholic bishops admits there have been at least 100 cases of child sex abuse by priests reported to church authorities in Italy.

The Italian Bishops' Conference estimates there have been about 100 cases over the past 10 years that warranted church trials or other disciplinary action.

The group has refused to say how many of the cases were referred to police, or how many resulted in the priest being defrocked.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:22 PM

Funerals for criminals and abusers

AUSTRALIA
Eureka Street

Andrew Hamilton
May 27, 2010

In the last month Catholic funerals have led to controversy. Many Catholics complained that Carl Williams was allowed burial in a Catholic Church. And some victims of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church expressed anger that bishops and priests in robes glorified the funeral of a priest who had been charged with sexual abuse of minors, but who died before the case could be brought.

These negative responses to different funerals may reflect a changing understanding of funerals in the Catholic Church, aligning it more closely to the approach of the broader society.

A generation or so ago, Catholic funerals emphasised very strongly the relationship of the dead with God and their salvation in heaven. People prayed that God would forgive their sins and receive them into everlasting life. The funeral liturgy consoled the family by encouraging their hope that the dead person was with God, and by allowing them to experience the solidarity of friends united with them in prayer. The virtues and the human foibles of the dead person may have been mentioned, but not emphasised.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:16 PM

19th Lawsuit filed Against Catholic Teacher Accused of Sexual Abuse

MINNESOTA
KSTP

The St. Paul-based law firm of Jeff Anderson & Associates filed a law suit today in North Dakota's Cass County District Court on behalf of a Virginia man who claims he was sexually assaulted by a Shanley High School teacher in 1978.

Named as defendants in the lawsuit are the teacher, Christian Brother Raimond Rose, the Chicago-based Brothers of the Christian Schools-Midwest Province, the Diocese of Fargo and Shanley High School where Raimond was assigned at the time of the alleged sexual assault.

The current case against Brother Rose alleges that the Diocese of Fargo, the Christian Brothers and Shanley had ample evidence and knowledge of his sexual misconduct yet continued to assign him to schools and other situations where he had access to children. Rose was assigned to Shanley in 1976 even after he was known to have abused children. Neither the school or parents of students were informed of his past sexual misconduct.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:12 PM

Canon law guides church's response to clergy sexual abuse

UNITED STATES
U.S. Catholic

By Dennis Sadowski, Catholic News Service

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- With roots in the Council of Jerusalem of the first century, canon law is a cumbersome but necessary set of regulations that help church officials govern the Catholic Church on issues as diverse as clergy sexual abuse and the role of baptized people within church structure.

In most circumstances, canon law gets little notice even though it influences the faith life of average Catholics more than they might realize. Many of the everyday decisions of priests and bishops and efforts by dioceses to carry out their mission through diverse ministries are guided by the omnipresent Code of Canon Law.

Officially, the 1,752 canons guide the actions of bishops, explained Father Kevin McKenna, pastor of Sacred Heart Cathedral in Rochester, N.Y., and a canon law expert. Under the long-established structure of the church, it is the bishops who oversee church operations at the local level and are responsible for all decisions in their diocese.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:09 PM

Brazil church: Polish priest suspended in 2008

BRAZIL
The Associated Press

By BRADLEY BROOKS (AP)

RIO DE JANEIRO — The Rio de Janeiro archdiocese of the Roman Catholic Church said Wednesday that a Polish priest accused of sexually abusing a boy was suspended two years ago when the allegations against him first surfaced.

Adionel Cunha, a spokesman for the church, said a statement released last week indicating that Marcin Michal Strachanowski was suspended after his arrest was ordered last Thursday "was not clear."

"When we heard of the allegations in 2008, the father was automatically suspended of his duties," Cunha said. "That was not clear in the statement."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:04 PM

Brothers Claim Abuse By Teacher

MINERSVILLE (PA)
WFMZ

Jaccii Farris | Reporter

Posted: 4:53 pm EDT May 26, 2010

MINERSVILLE, Pa. -- Two brothers who said they were sexually abused by a teacher 30 years ago claim the Allentown Catholic Diocese is not listening to their complaints.

But the diocese said it reported the brothers' accusation to authorities and have offered counseling.

The two brothers said each had no idea the other had been allegedly abused until three years ago.

Since then, they said they have been seeking some form of justice.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:01 PM

Shades of grey in a world of apparent absolutes

UNITED STATES
National Catholic Reporter

May. 26, 2010
By Thomas P. Doyle

Excommunication is the most severe penalty a Catholic can incur. It is so severe that it is not easily presumed or imposed. In the case of the sister from Phoenix who was declared excommunicated by Thomas Olmsted, the bishop of the Phoenix diocese, the issue is far from clear as it has been presented by the diocese in their Question and Answer statement issued on May 18, 2010. This tragic case involves the convergence of canon law, moral theology, medical ethics, and medical science, all of which should have been carefully considered before any prudential decisions were made by anyone directly involved.

The basic elements of the case have been widely reported in the Catholic and secular media: a religious sister who was directly involved in the decision making process to terminate an eleven week pregnancy in order to save the mother's life, was presumed by the local bishop to have fulfilled all of the requisites for the canonical crime of abortion. Abortion is one of seven crimes included in the Code of canon law that result in immediate and automatic excommunication. The Code contains a number of acts that are deemed to be crimes. All but seven require a process to prove guilt, convict and impose a sentence. Automatic excommunication, called latae sententiae in canonical language, means that as soon as the person performs the act, he or she is excommunicated. ...

This certainly appears to be a case of necessity as envisioned by the Code. One of the respected commentators on canon 2205, 2, Gommar Michiels, writing in 1929 said:

"In penal law necessity may be defined as that objective condition of things, brought about in any manner whatsoever, in which an act that according to penal law is to be placed or omitted cannot so be placed or omitted because of an absolute or moral powerlessness, whether this latter be physical or spiritual." (De Delictis et Poenis, I, 199).

In less dense language, this means that the condition of things, that is, the combination of the pregnancy and the critical heart condition leading to a nearly 100 percent chance of the mother's death, and the absence of any other medical procedure that would enhance the mother's chances, presented a situation where the sister and possibly the others in the decision making process, were in a situation described by the canonical commentators as "moral powerlessness." (Information about the case obtained from the "Fact Sheet" prepared by Catholic Healthcare West and found on the National Catholic Reporter Web site.)

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:31 PM

Church Workers' Pensions Lack Safeguards

UNITED STATES
NPR

[with audio]

by Tamara Keith

May 26, 2010 When sex abuse lawsuits pushed the Catholic Diocese of Wilmington, Del., into bankruptcy, Maria Carpitella got some bad news. Through bankruptcy filings, she and other retirees and lay employees of the diocese learned their pension plan was severely underfunded and isn't protected like corporate pension plans.

Thousands of other church-affiliated workers and retirees are at risk of losing funds they're counting on to see them through retirement because of a little-known loophole in federal pension protections.

Carpitella spent most of her 20-year career working the front desk at a Catholic school for girls in Wilmington. "It was like 14- to 18-year-old girls, which can really be challenging," she says with a chuckle.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:25 PM

Priest who stole from parishes denied appeal

VIRGINIA
Washington Post

A charismatic priest who bolstered attendance at two rural Virginia parishes even as he stole a reported $1 million from them --and also hid a wife and children for years--was denied an appeal of his state convictions for the thefts.

The Rev. Rodney Rodis, who had served the Louisa County parishes of Immaculate Conception near Bumpass and St. Jude in Mineral, claimed his federal convictions for mail fraud and money laundering should have prevented him from being prosecuted in Louisa County Circuit Court. The Virginia Court of Appeals in Richmond denied his appeal on Tuesday.

In January 2009, Rodis was sentenced to 13 years in state prison and ordered to repay more than $400,000 stolen from the two parishes. Rodis, who had led a secret life as a married man an hour away from the churches in Spotsylvania County, will face that sentence after he completes a five-year prison term in the related federal case. The federal case included a restitution order of close to $600,000.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:22 PM

Concerns Voiced Over Bishop Dupre's Whereabouts

SPRINGFIELD (MA)
WGGB

By Ray Hershel

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB) -- A support group for those abused by priests is protesting the reported move of former Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfield Bishop Thomas Dupre.

Dupre suddenly left the diocese in 2004 after allegations of sexual abuse involving two minors were about to surface.

The alleged incidents reportedly took place years before Dupre was made Bishop.

Members of the Survivors Network of Those Abused By Priests held a news conference Tuesday afternoon outside Diocesan Headquarters. Bill Nash spoke for the group.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:17 PM

Bill proposed to help rape victims

SPRINGFIELD (MA)
WWLP

[with video]

Jaclyn Cashman
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) - 22News is taking a closer look at the clergy abuse scandal that's rocked the Catholic church over the last decade. Many Catholics are furious that former Bishop Thomas Dupre never served jail time for child abuse. Now there's a push to change the laws to further protect children.

Former Springfield Diocese Bishop Thomas Dupre is currently living in a retirement home for priests in the Washington area, but clergy abuse survivors wish he were in jail.

Dupre was indicted on child rape charges but never prosecuted because of the statute of limitation laws.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:13 PM

The Dark Path of Bro. Raimond Rose

UNITED STATES
Anderson Advocates Blog

By Patrick Noaker

Just how serious is the situation of Bro. Raimond Rose sexually molesting students? So far, 19 former students of Bro. Rose have reported that they have been sexually abused by Bro. Rose. These students go as far back as 1966 at DeLaSalle High School in Minneapolis, continuing to Cretin High School in St. Paul, then to the Dunrovin Retreat Center, Pacelli High School in Stevens Point Wisconsin, Shanley High School in Fargo North Dakota, DeLaSalle High School in Concord California and then to the Minnesota Department of Corrections Juvenile Detention Facility in Red Wing Minnesota.

Yesterday, I joined with another courageous former Shanley student in filing the 19th lawsuit involving Bro. Rose. In this case, in what has turned out to be foreshadowing of sorts, Bro. Rose took Shanley student Kevin Price to visit juvenile detention facilities in Western North Dakota. During these trips Bro. Rose sexually abused Kevin after getting him intoxicated. We now know that a few years later, after multiple reports of sexual abuse of students, the Christian Brothers allowed Bro. Rose to work in juvenile detention facilities where he sexually abused the kids there. It is difficult to believe that there wasn’t a very calculated and sinister aspect of Bro. Rose seeking work in juvenile detention facilities as far back as the late 1970’s when he visited some facilities with Kevin Price. This is a very dark path for a very dark perpetrator working for a very dark religious order.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:00 PM

Attorney who has gone after abusive priests names his new target: child pornographers

ST. PAUL (MN)
Fox News

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — An attorney who has spent years going after priests accused of sexual abuse is now taking on people who use or produce child pornography.

Jeffrey Anderson filed a lawsuit Wednesday in federal court that he says will help track people who make, download or possess abusive images.

The lawsuit is filed on behalf of a boy who was 9 when abusive images of him were taken.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:55 PM

Homosexualist Activist Priest Arrested for Sex Abuse of Teen in Milan

ITALY
Lifesite

By Hilary White

MILAN, May 26, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) – One of Italy’s most outspokenly dissenting Catholic priests, Domenico Pezzini, has been arrested for abuse of a male teenaged victim. Pezzini, a 73 year-old priest of the diocese of Lodi, was arrested Monday in Milan. Police also revealed that a large quantity of child pornography had been found after a search of Pezzini’s residence.

In keeping with mainstream media coverage of clerical sex abuse, the Italian media is presenting the abuse as a case of “pedophilia,” or the abuse of a child. Nevertheless, police have made it public that the victim was not a child, but a minor adolescent, between 13 and 16, at the time of the alleged abuse, over three years ago.

Aurelio Mancuso, former president of Arcigay, the country’s leading homosexualist activist group, was quoted saying, “In these hours is strong discouragement among many gay Catholics who have known Don Mario Pezzini personally or through his actions and deeds.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:53 PM

Pedofilia, le cifre della Cei: «In Italia 100 processi canonici in 10 anni»

CITTA DEL VATICANO
Corriere della Sera

CITTÀ DEL VATICANO - Sono «un centinaio» i casi di abusi sessuali commessi da sacerdoti «rilevati in Italia con procedimenti canonici nell'ultimo decennio». Lo ha riferito il segretario generale della Cei, monsignor Mariano Crociata, incontrando i giornalisti durante i lavori dell'assemblea generale dei vescovi italiani, riuniti da lunedì in Vaticano.

«TROPPO» - Secondo Crociata, questo è «un dato che indica il quadro complessivo della situazione», ricordando comunque - ha aggiunto - che «anche un solo caso, come ha detto il cardinale Bagnasco, è sempre di troppo». Monsignor Crociata non ha voluto precisare se tali processi si siano conclusi con una condanna.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:04 PM

Italian church handled 100 sex abuse cases in past decade, bishop says

VATICAN CITY
Catholic News Service

By Carol Glatz
Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- As bishops' conferences across Europe are coming to grips with the clerical sex abuse crisis, the Italian bishops' conference revealed for the first time that about 100 cases of alleged abuse had been handled by Italian church courts in the past decade.

"In general and factual terms, there are about 100 cases relative to canonical procedures carried out during the last 10 years," said Bishop Mariano Crociata, general secretary of the Italian bishops.

Responding to journalists' questions May 25, Bishop Crociata did not respond to queries about the number of cases that ended in a guilty verdict or how many were turned over to the police.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:59 PM

Italy's bishops reveal priest abuse figures

ITALY
BBC News

By David Willey
BBC News, Rome

The conference did not say how many cases were reported to police For the first time the Roman Catholic Church in Italy has admitted that about 100 cases of paedophile priests have been reported to church authorities during the past 10 years.

But the Italian Catholic bishops' conference refused to reveal how many priests in the country had subsequently been defrocked under canon law.

It also did not say how many priests had been prosecuted by police.

The Church has been under pressure to reveal the secret statistics.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:51 PM

Exposing the Pedophile Playbook

UNITED STATES
NBC Philadelphia

[with video]

By HARRY HAIRSTON

The NBC10 Investigators team up with state and federal law enforcement to help you turn the tables on pedophiles. We are exposing the secrets of child sex abusers.

We have uncovered a "Pedophile Playbook" and it's available online. That's right, a how-to guide that's dedicated to teaching adults how to get close to and sexually abuse your children.

Police are aware of this book and want to make sure you are too. The more information you know, the more power you have to protect your child.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:44 PM

Priest allegations reported years ago: bishop

CANADA
CBC News

Allegations that led to the suspension of a Roman Catholic priest in Prince Edward Island were evidently reported to a church official more than a decade ago, a bishop said Wednesday.

Rev. George Smith, who was working at St. Malachy's Church in Kinkora, P.E.I., has been removed from his duties following a complaint about an incident alleged to have occurred while he worked in western Newfoundland.

The complainant made the report earlier this month about an alleged incident of sexual touching that occurred on church property in Deer Lake, N.L., where Smith was assigned as a parish priest between 1986 and 1991.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:37 PM

Surely Rome can do better

UNITED STATES
National Catholic Reporter

by James Ewens on May. 26, 2010
Examining the crisis

Let me take you into a situation that illustrates the church institution's instinctive reaction to cover-up scandal. It was a workshop in 2000 for new Jesuit superiors. The presenter, a former provincial, was discussing the circumstances when a superior could break the bond of confidentiality between himself and the men he was in charge of. He said something could be shared with the provincial "If it was a matter of danger for the individual or to others."

I asked, "What do you mean by others?" His response was concise and immediate: "The Jesuit order." (Not, as I expected, "students, parishioners, those we are counseling, etc.")

I was stunned by his answer, and the fact that none of the other 40 participants expressed any disagreement with it. That same evening we heard a talk by a newly installed bishop. He had worked in another diocese prior to his current post and said he often appeared in court to defend priests facing charges.

He described how, as he was walking into court, he would recite to himself, "I'm sorry, Your Honor, but I do not remember." Those attending the dinner laughed loudly. One wonders if either of these revelations would have occurred if "outsiders" (lay people, the parents and victims of sexual abuse by priests) had been present. I strongly doubt it.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:31 PM

Could the next pope be Irish? Archbishop Martin of Dublin seen as contender

IRELAND
Irish Central

Could the next pope be Irish? The National Catholic Reporter in the U.S. seems to think so.

Don't laugh. Picture the scene, an ailing Pope Benedict, his papacy destroyed by the pedophilia crisis, is on his deathbed.

The cry goes out for a successor untainted by the scandals that have rocked the church. The present 'papabille', or likely popes are all hopelessly compromised.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:15 PM

Yet another Irish bishop ...

IRELAND
Irish Central

By ANTOINETTE KELLY, IrishCentral.com Staff Writer

Speculation is mounting that Pope Benedict may seek the resignation of Cardinal Sean Brady as the head of the Catholic Church in Ireland as another Irish bishop admits he failed to handle a sex abuse case properly.

This comes amid fresh scandal in Ireland, with the Bishop of Waterford and Lismore, Dr William Lee, admitting he managed a sex abuse allegation case in the 1990s in a “seriously inadequate” fashion.

Lee waited two years before divulging the information he had about the priest to the relevant authorities.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:08 PM

Priest Removed From Duties

CANADA
VOCM

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Charlottetown has been forced to remove a priest, who once served in this province, from his duties due to allegations of abuse. The allegation stems from the man's time in this province in the late 80's and early 90's. He had served in the Deer Lake area. He has been in PEI working at St. Malachy's Church in Kinkora since 1994. Bishop Richard Grecco says he's not sure of the exact nature of the alleged abuse, but the congregation is saddened by the allegations.Grecco says procedure called for him to remove the priest until the accusations are investigated. A new priest will be appointed for the parish next week.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:22 AM

Father Murphy's Victims Share Horrors

MILWAUKEE (WI)
WTMJ

[with video]

By Mike Jacobs

A victim of a pedophile priest in Milwaukee shared his story with Mike Jacobs.

The victim, Steven Geier, was one of the many boys assaulted by Father Murphy at St. John's School for the Deaf.

Geier was just 9 when he arrived at St. John's. He was first abused when he was about 13.

With the help of a translator, Geier told us what happened that horrible night... and so many nights after.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:17 AM

Victims’ group claims Bishop Dupré now lives in Washington. D.C.

SPRINGFIELD (MA)
iobserve

Staff report

SPRINGFIELD – Former Springfield Bishop Thomas L. Dupré has moved from a treatment facility for troubled clergy and religious in Silver Spring, Md., to a residence for retired priests in Washington, D.C., according to the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP).

At a press conference in Springfield on May 25, SNAP claimed that Bishop Dupré, who abruptly resigned as head of the diocese in 2004 amid accusations he had sexually abused two minors when he was a priest, now lives at the Cardinal O’Boyle Residence.

The facility on Varnum Street in Northeast Washington is a home for retired priests of the Washington, D.C. Archdiocese.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:06 AM

New Memoir About Life in the Controversial Legion of Christ ...

CONNECTICUT
e-releases

TRUMBULL, Conn., May 26, 2010 — As Vatican-watchers await the appointment of a papal delegate to oversee the Legion of Christ, a new memoir by a former member claims that few Legionaries were aware of the double life led by their founder, the late Father Marcial Maciel.

Driving Straight on Crooked Lines: How an Irishman Found his heart and Nearly Lost his Mind, http://www.drivingstraight.com (ISBN 978-0-9845227-0-5, Trade paperback, 352 pp, 5 1/2 x 8 1/2) provides author Jack Keogh’s insights into the inner workings of the Legion of Christ and the intimate thoughts of a former priest who collaborated with the controversial Maciel, the founder of the Mexican congregation.

Keogh, the first Irish-born Legionary to set foot in Mexico, tells how he ultimately came to believe that God does indeed drive straight on the crooked lines of our lives after first nearly losing his mind.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:55 AM

Public invited to aboriginal healing day

CANADA
Winnipeg Free Press

By: Ashley Prest

26/05/2010

WINNIPEG - The Forks, Winnipeg’s historic gathering place, is hosting a day of healing and all are invited.

The Manitobans For Healing and Reconciliation Day is a grassroots movement to focus on healing and educating people while celebrating the healing journey of the Indian Residential School survivors and their families.

"It is beginning the dialogue between aboriginal and non-aboriginal people about the impact of the Indian Residential Schools in Canada so it’s an opportunity to educate each other and educate ourselves," said Albert McLeod, co-director of Manitobans for Healing and Reconciliation (MBHR), in an interview this morning. "We want to learn from those people who have moved on, who were former students, how they have achieved their healing in their lives as well as in their famililes’ lives."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:51 AM

"Trail of Terror" - Christian Brothers & Raimond Rose

ST. PAUL (MN)
YouTube

Press conference at the Ramsey County District Courthouse, St. Paul, MN. on May 24, 2010. ----- Filing of the 18th FRAUD and SEXUAL ABUSE lawsuit against the Christian Brothers of the Midwest for sexual abuse committed by Br. Raimond Rose.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:47 AM

STEPHANIE SALTER: A heartfelt request for clarity and understanding

TERRE HAUTE (IN)
The Tribune-Star

Stephanie Salter
The Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — Dear God, I am praying to you for three women.

The first is a Catholic Sister of Mercy, Margaret McBride. She took her vows decades ago and has devoted her life to the work your Son so clearly laid out for all of his followers: to minister to the poor, the sick and the outcast.

Please, help her and her order hear your will through the angry and authoritarian din. Last week, Sister Margaret was excommunicated from her Church and demoted from her position as vice president of mission integration at St. Joseph Hospital in Phoenix.

The bishop of Phoenix insists the nun excommunicated herself in November when she and a group of doctors, nurses and administrators weighed nothing but terrible options and made a decision: To abort an 11-week-old fetus rather than let its mother – who has four children – die from a medical condition that was made life-threatening by her pregnancy. ...

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:43 AM

Pastor’s bail hiked in rape case

MASSACHUSETTS
Telegram & Gazette

By Gary V. Murray TELEGRAM & GAZETTE STAFF
gmurray@telegram.com

WORCESTER — Bail was increased yesterday for the pastor of a Leominster church charged with having sex with a 13-year-old female parishioner.

The Rev. Angel Morales, 32, of 1A Goddard St., Fitchburg, pleaded not guilty Monday in Worcester Superior Court to three counts of child rape aggravated by age difference, a charge carrying a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years’ imprisonment upon conviction.

Assistant District Attorney Anthony J. Marotta told Judge John T. Lu that Rev. Morales was accused of engaging in sex with a 13-year-old girl whose family attended the church. The girl’s mother identified the church as Casa de Restauracion at 134 Spruce St., Leominster.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:39 AM

Man arrested on sex assault count

NEW HAMPSHIRE
Concord Monitor

By Trent Spiner / Monitor staff
May 22, 2010

A Gilford man was arrested Thursday on sexual assault charges by the Concord police, 13 years after he impregnated a 15-year-old woman he went to church with, officials said.

Ernest Willis, 51, of Gilford, is accused of having sex with the woman at a number of locations in Concord, the police said yesterday. When the woman became pregnant, her family and the church moved her out of the state to have the baby.

While the church reported the incident to state authorities at the time, the police investigation was hampered because detectives were not able to find the victim, according to a statement released by the police yesterday.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:35 AM

Police: Girl raped, then relocated

NEW HAMPSHIRE
Concord Monitor

By Trent Spiner / Monitor staff
May 25, 2010

After being raped and impregnated by a fellow churchgoer more than twice her age, a 15-year-old Concord girl was forced by Trinity Baptist Church leaders to stand before the congregation to apologize before they helped whisk her out of state, according to the police.

While her pastor, Chuck Phelps, reported the alleged rape in 1997 to state youth officials, Concord police detectives were never able to find the victim. The victim said she was sent to another church member's home in Colorado, where she was home-schooled and not allowed to have contact with others her age. It wasn't until this past February that the victim, who is now 28, decided to come forward after reading about other similar cases, realizing for the first time it wasn't her fault that she had been raped, she told the police.

The police arrested Ernest Willis, 51, of Gilford, last week in connection with the case, accusing him of raping the girl twice - once in the back seat of a car he was teaching her to drive in and again after showing up at her Concord home while her parents were away. He was charged with four felonies - two counts of rape and two counts of having sex with a minor, court records show.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:33 AM

Police Say Church's Actions Thwarted Rape Investigation

NEW HAMPSHIRE
WMUR

[with video]

CONCORD, N.H. --
A man has been charged with raping a woman when she was a teenager 13 years ago and the two were members of the same church -- a church that, police said, thwarted the initial investigation.

Police said their original investigation of rape allegations in 1997 was disrupted because the victim's parents arranged with church leaders to move her out of the state when she became pregnant.

Investigators said the Trinity Baptist Church notified them about the rape allegations in 1997, but police had trouble following up.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:30 AM

NH church focus of 1997 teen churchgoer rape case

NEW HAMPSHIRE
KTAR

By LYNNE TUOHY
Associated Press Writer

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) - A New Hampshire man has been charged with the 1997 rape of a 15-year-old fellow church member who became pregnant and was relocated to Colorado by her strict religious order.

The woman, now 28 and living in Arizona, detailed the alleged rapes in a statement to Concord police this spring after friends urged her to come forward.

Police last week arrested Ernest Willis, 51, of Gilford and charged him with two counts of aggravated felonious sexual assault and two counts of felonious sexual assault. At the time of the alleged assaults, he and the girl were members of Trinity Baptist Church in Concord, a fundamentalist order.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:28 AM

Another abuse claim filed against ex-teacher

NORTH DAKOTA
InForum

By: Dave Roepke, INFORUM

A sixth lawsuit in North Dakota accusing a former religion teacher at Fargo Shanley High School of molesting a teenage boy in the 1970s was filed on Tuesday.

Kevin Price alleges in a complaint in Cass County District Court that in 1978, as a student at Shanley, he was sexually assaulted by Brother Raimond Rose on what he said were school-sponsored trips.

Patrick Noaker, a lawyer from St. Paul who is representing Price and five other plaintiffs in the North Dakota cases, said the accusation mirrors the earlier ones – an assault in an out-of-town hotel room after Rose supplied a male student with alcohol. The assaults are alleged to have occurred in Bis-marck and near Jamestown, N.D.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:22 AM

Anxieties over the Papal visit to Britain

UNITED KINGDOM
Telegraph

By Damian Thompson

There are some good omens for the Pope’s visit to Britain in September. We now know that some (not all) of the music at the Papal Masses in Coventry and Glasgow will be worth hearing, thanks to the decision to perform James MacMillan’s lovely new Mass setting (but, my goodness, those old trendies fight hard: led by Mgr Gerry Fitzpatrick, Glasgow’s musical bureaucrats did everything in their power to get their stuff performed instead. Imagine if the poor Pope had been forced to listen to this). Also, it’s likely that, by the time the Holy Father visits, the Vatican will have announced long overdue worldwide guidelines for the handling of allegations of sexual misconduct. So that should do something to appease public opinion, though I’d lay good money on a certain newspaper dredging up an abuse story just as the papal plane touches down.

What I am picking up, however, is a lot of discontent in Catholic circles at the restrictions on numbers at the Papal Masses – 400,000 combined – which seem to have been imposed by Labour’s health and safety fascists and embraced readily by the papal visit’s politically correct organiser, Mgr Andrew Summersgill.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:19 AM

HERE-SY: CHURCHES TO CLOSE

MASSACHUSETTS
dig

By JAIME LUTZ

Margy O'Brien, a lifelong Catholic, has attended St. Frances X. Cabrini in Scituate since it opened in the 1960s.

"From the time I was bringing up children, it was our parish, and [we had] first communions, confirmations, a couple got married there, we had funerals there," says O'Brien, who taught Catholic Christian doctrine classes there.

Now she's 80 years old, and lately O'Brien has been going to the church almost every day—though not for mass, since there are no priests at the church anymore. In fact, usually she's there alone, because St. Frances is one of dozens of Catholic churches that the Archdiocese of Boston closed in 2004—and one of three that has held 24-hour vigils every day since closing.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:16 AM

OBAMA TEAM BACKS VATICAN IMMUNITY

UNITED STATES
Catholic League

The Obama administration has sided with the Vatican in holding that the Ninth Circuit Court erred when it ruled that an exception could be made to the federal law that grants immunity to other nations seeking immunity from lawsuits arising from cases of abuse in the U.S.

A man who alleges he was sexually abused in the 1960s by a priest in Oregon brought suit maintaining that the Vatican should be held responsible because there were accusations made against the priest before he was transferred to the western state. The Vatican has long argued that the Holy See is not responsible for the behavior of priests in the various dioceses throughout the world.

Catholic League president Bill Donohue was happy with the decision:

By the most elementary standards of justice, this was the right ruling. First, the idea that anyone should be permitted to sue, independent of the nature of the offense, for an incident that allegedly took place a half century ago, is patently outrageous. Second, the idea that Catholic priests line up single file, taking their cues from the Vatican, and that the Holy See could possibly be held accountable for the actions of priests all over the globe, is positively ludicrous.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:13 AM

Obama backs Vatican over abuse case

UNITED STATES
Press TV (Iran)

The administration of President Barack Obama has taken sides with the Vatican over sexual child abuse lawsuits, saying the Holy See is immune from prosecution in the US.

The stance comes after the country's largest court of appeals, the nine Supreme Court Justices, asked the White House to declare its position over a case brought by a victim of alleged priestly pedophilia in the US state of Oregon.

In reaction to the case, Washington threw its weight behind the Roman Catholic Church, citing a 1976 federal law as the basis for its decision.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:10 AM

Fourth priest put on leave

DENMARK
The Copenhagen Post

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Police are investigating 26 cases of abuse by priests in the Catholic Church, which has now put four of them on leave

The Danish Catholic Church has sent a fourth priest on leave after abuse allegations against him have surfaced.

In a press release, the Church said the foreign-born priest has returned to his homeland while the case is being investigated. However, the matter has not been reported to police as it has already been through the legal system, although no specifics regarding that court case have been made public.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:06 AM

May 25, 2010

Louisa Co. Priest Denied Appeal for Embezzlement

VIRGINIA
WTVR

Judy Stinolis Producer
May 25, 2010

A former Louisa County priest has been denied an appeal on his embezzlement conviction.

Father Rodney Rodis was found guilty of embezzling from two parishes in Louisa County back in 2008. On Tuesday, the Virginia Court of Appeals denied his appeal.

Prosecutors say he stole more an a million dollars from both the collection plate at mass and donations sent to the church's post office box. The money was supposed to be used for church maintenance and construction, tsunami relief, children's mission, and mission work in Haiti among numerous other charitable causes. Instead, Rodis took the money and wired it to the Philippines where he invested in numerous properties for himself to include an oceanfront mansion.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:38 PM

Prosecutor: Former Boonville priest doesn't have an attorney

MISSOURI
Boonville Daily News

By Nate Birt
Boonville Daily News
Posted May 25, 2010

Boonville — The former Boonville priest suspected in several sexual assaults has not acquired an attorney, Cooper County Prosecutor Doug Abele said this afternoon.

At a hearing Monday, Gerald Howard “indicated that he was looking to retain private counsel,” Abele said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:35 PM

Arrestato un sacerdote per pedofilia

ITALIA
Corriere della Sera

MILANO - Un sacerdote di 73 anni della Diocesi di Lodi, Domenico Pezzini è stato arrestato con l'accusa di pedofilia. Il sacerdote, arrestato lunedì (ma la notizia è stata diffusa solo oggi) dagli agenti della Squadra Mobile di Milano, è accusato di aver avuto rapporti sessuali con un ragazzino che all'epoca degli abusi aveva 13 anni (ora la presunta vittima ne ha 16). Nel corso di una perquisizione in casa sua, gli agenti avrebbero anche trovato materiale pedopornografico.

IMPEGNO NELLA COMUNITA' OMOSESSUALE - Don Domenico Pezzini è un prete molto conosciuto nella comunità omosessuale. Sin dagli anni '80 anima gruppi di omosessuali credenti che approfondiscono le tematiche relative all'omosessualità e ai suoi rapporti con il cristianesimo. Questi gruppi, diffusi in diverse città d'Italia, sono trasversali a tutte le chiese italiane e dal 2004 hanno anche un coordinamento nazionale. Partecipano a manifestazioni come il World Pride e il Milano Pride per organizzare momenti ecumenici con i partecipanti.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:32 PM

Pedofilia, sacerdote arrestato a Lodi

ITALIA
la Repubblica

MILANO - Un altro episodio che scuote il mondo ecclesiastico, dai contorni ancora tutti da chiarire a causa del muro di silenzio opposto da investigatori e inquirenti. E' l'arresto di un sacerdote 73enne della Diocesi di Lodi, don Domenico Pezzini, con l'accusa di violenza sessuale ai danni di minori. Il sacerdote, arrestato dagli agenti della squadra mobile di Milano, è accusato di aver avuto rapporti sessuali con un ragazzino che all'epoca dei presunti abusi aveva 13 anni e che ora ne ha 16.

Nel corso di una perquisizione in casa sua, a Milano, gli agenti avrebbero anche trovato materiale pedopornografico, nell'ambito di un'inchiesta che prosegue da alcuni mesi. Don Pezzini è un prete molto conosciuto nella comunità omosessuale, in particolare, dagli anni Ottanta. E' animatore di gruppi di omosessuali credenti che approfondiscono le tematiche relative all'omosessualità e ai suoi rapporti con il cristianesimo. Gruppi attivi in diverse città d'Italia e trasversali a tutte le Chiese italiane e che dal 2004 hanno anche un coordinamento nazionale. Partecipano a manifestazioni come il World Pride e il Milano Pride per organizzare momenti ecumenici con i partecipanti.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:28 PM

Italian priest arrested for alleged child sex

ITALY
Inquirer (Philippines)

Agence France-Presse
First Posted 09:06:00 05/26/2010

ROME-- A 73-year-old Italian priest has been arrested in Milan for allegedly abusing a foreign teenager over three years, ANSA news agency reported late Monday.

Domenico Pezzini, from the diocese of Lodi, was arrested on Monday over allegations that he sexually abused the alleged victim from the age of 13 to 16.

The alleged victim, who is now an adult, could have been helped financially by the priest.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:25 PM

Victims worry about Dupre's whereabouts

SPRINGFIELD (MA)
WWLP

Jaclyn Cashman
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) - There’s a change of address for a former Springfield Bishop who was indicted on child rape charges.

Former Bishop Thomas Dupre has checked himself out of a medical facility in the Washington, D.C. area, and now abuse victims are worried about his whereabouts.

Former Bishop Thomas Dupre is no longer at St. Luke Institute, a psychiatric treatment facility in Maryland, but instead at the Bishop O'Boyle Residence, a D.C. retirement facility for priests.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:55 PM

Obama admin. backs Vatican’s claim of immunity to sexual abuse lawsuits

UNITED STATES
Raw Story

By Agence France-Presse
Tuesday, May 25th, 2010 -- 5:55 pm

The Obama administration in a brief to the Supreme Court has backed the Vatican's claim of immunity from lawsuits arising from cases of sexual abuse by priests in the United States.

The Supreme Court is considering an appeal by the Vatican of an appellate court ruling that lifted its immunity in the case of an alleged pedophile priest from Oregon.

In a filing on Friday, the solicitor general's office argued that the Ninth Circuit court of appeals erred in allowing the lawsuit brought by a man who claims he was sexually abused in the 1960s by the Oregon priest.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:52 PM

Survivors of those Abused by Priests complains that former Springfield Bishop Thomas Dupre has been allowed to move to Catholic retirement home

SPRINGFIELD (MA)
The Republican

By Stephanie Barry, The Republican
May 25, 2010

SPRINGFIELD – The elusive Bishop Thomas L. Dupre, former top prelate for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfield, has backed his former flock into a purgatory of sorts.

A victims advocacy group on Tuesday announced that Dupre has taken up residence at a Catholic retirement home in the Archdiocese of Washington, D.C.

Members of Survivors of those Abused by Priests denounced the move as tantamount to letting a “serial predator” move about unfettered.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:47 PM

Brazil: Lawyer for accused priest seek his release

BRAZIL
The Associated Press

By BRADLEY BROOKS (AP)

RIO DE JANEIRO — Lawyers for a Polish priest accused of sexually abusing a teenage boy in Brazil and maintaining an "erotic dungeon" in a parish house requested Tuesday that he be freed pending trial.

Rio de Janeiro state prosecutors accused Marcin Michal Strachanowski of handcuffing a 16-year-old former altar boy to a bed three years ago in the house where the priest lived and threatened to kill the youth if he spoke of the abuse.

The lurid allegations are the latest of several priest sex abuse cases to shake Brazil, which is home to more Roman Catholics than any other nation, and come as the church grapples with scandals around the world.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:39 PM

SNAP Questions Bishop's Retirement

SPRINGFIELD (MA)
CBS 3

By Liz Tufts

Members of the group the Survivors Network of Those Abused By Priests, also known as snap, called for action outside the Springfield Diocese on Elliot Street. They want to know why accused sexual predator Bishop Thomas Dupre moved from a secure treatment facility in Maryland, to a clergy retirement home in Washington D.C.

"We ask officials that he's put into a more secure facility where he is monitored, " says SNAP member, Bill Nash.

Dupre retired and basically disappeared in 2004 after being accused of molesting two minors when he was priest in Holyoke in the 70 's. He was indicted on rape charges but was never convicted because the statue of limitations ran out. Since then he's been getting treatment in Maryland.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:34 PM

Former Baptist camp director charged with abuse found dead

HERTFORD (NC)
Associated Baptist Press

By ABP staff
Tuesday, May 25, 2010

HERTFORD, N.C. (ABP) -- A former director of a North Carolina Baptist camp who was awaiting trial on six child-sex charges was found dead of an apparent suicide May 24.

A newspaper in Hertford, N.C., quoted the sheriff of Perquimans County as confirming that Stephen Carter, former director of Cale Retreat and Conference Center in Hertford from 2002 until his arrest last July, was found dead in a vehicle in Virginia Beach, Va., apparently from carbon-monoxide poisoning.

A Virginia Beach police spokeswoman told the Perquimans Weekly the body was discovered in a wooded area around 10 p.m. Monday night and said there were no signs of foul play.

Carter, 51, was out of jail on $80,000 bond on two counts each of engaging in sexual activities with a child, felony first-degree sex offense of a child and felony indecent liberties with a child. If convicted of the most serious offense he could have faced life in prison.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:23 PM

Naperville attorney accused of stealing $675,000 is disbarred

ILLINOIS
Daily Herald

By Christy Gutowski | Daily Herald Staff

A Naperville attorney accused of stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from his clients and former law partners has been disbarred.

Steven D. Gustafson, 46, suspected of stealing more than $675,000, also faces theft, forgery, financial institution fraud and financial crimes enterprise charges. ...

In one case, Gustafson urged a client's parish priest to use $577,000 of church treasury money to cover an account that the attorney is suspected of depleting for his own use, according to court documents. The priest declined, but he did get a parishioner to donate $77,000, the documents state.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:19 PM

Kinkora priest suspended following abuse allegation from NL.

CANADA
The Guardian

The Roman Catholic parish priest at St. Malachy’s in Kinkora has been removed from his duties following an allegation of abuse originating in Newfoundland and Labrador more than 20 years ago.

Rev. George Smith came out of retirement last year to accept a temporary posting to Kinkora after the priest there was transferred to Charlottetown.

Prior to that, Smith was serving as an associate pastor at St. Dunstan’s Basilica and living in retirement at the parochial house next door.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:15 PM

Italian bishops rule out abuse inquiry

ITALY
Big Pond (Australia)

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Italy's Bishops' Conference ruled out setting up a special commission to look into child abuse in the Catholic Church on Tuesday, despite the high number of cases, its secretary general said.

The Church has dealt with some hundred paedophile priest cases during the past decade and even a single case is always too much, Mariano Crociata said.

But the bishop said there was no need to imitate the German Bishop's Conference and create a special commission.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:09 PM

A betrayal of trust

AUSTRALIA
Yass Tribune

ROBYN SYKES
26 May, 2010

[Bishop Coleridge's letter]

Archbishop Mark Coleridge wrote a letter to all Catholics in the Canberra Goulburn Archdiocese last weekend, concerning sexual abuse and the churches response to it. It was written from a very personal point of view, and details his growing understanding of the nature, extent and effects of sexual abuse by Catholic clergy.

The letter contains many pertinent points for us here in the Yass Valley, and not just for the Catholics amongst us. Sexual abuse by clergy is not confined to the Catholic Church, and clergy are not the only ones who betray the trust of the community.

In a community the size of ours, it is highly likely we have paedophiles in our midst. How many we can’t be sure, but they’ll be there, ingratiating themselves into unsuspecting families, making themselves indispensable and trusted friends and leaders.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:00 PM

Catholic priest suspended over abuse allegations

CANADA
CBC News

A Roman Catholic priest on P.E.I. has been removed from his duties over an allegation of abuse stemming from his time serving in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Rev. George Smith was working at St. Malachy's Church in Kinkora, P.E.I. Bishop Richard Grecco told CBC News on Tuesday that on May 14, he received a call from the Diocese of Corner Brook and Labrador informing him that an allegation of abuse had been received about Smith.

Smith served in Deer Lake, N.L., from 1986-91, and went to P.E.I. in 1994.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:00 PM

Priest abuse jury to consider verdict

NORTHERN IRELAND
UTV

A County Tyrone jury of six men and six women are expected to retire on Wednesday to consider their verdicts in the trial of Fr Eugene Lewis, who is accused of abusing three County Fermanagh sisters.

For the past six weeks the 76-year-old has been depicted on one hand as a vile evil paedophile, while on the other portrayed as a loving caring wonderful man.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:56 PM

"Haremos lo que la Iglesia nos diga que tenemos que hacer"

ESPANA
Religion Digital

Jesús Bastante, 24 de mayo de 2010 a las 19:02

(Jesús Bastante).- "A mí me gustaría que la Legión de Cristo saliera fortalecida de esta dura prueba, porque estoy convencido de que es una obra de Dios y llamada a hacer mucho bien". Quien habla es Jesús María Delgado, el máximo responsable de la Legión de Cristo en España. En mitad del terremoto que ha sacudido a la congregación, y que ha motivado que el Papa nombre un comisario para la orden, Delgado habla para RD sobre el presente y el futuro de los Legionarios, la oscura vida de Maciel y la implicación de los actuales altos cargos de la congregación. Pide perdón por "hechos pasados que hemos conocido con estupor, con incredulidad, con vergüenza, con dolor y con resignación", y sostiene que "la Legión de Cristo sólo tiene sentido en la Iglesia. Fuera de la Iglesia sería como un pez fuera del agua y tendría el mismo triste final".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:51 PM

Spanish Legionary head on post-Maciel future

SPAIN
America Magazine

Posted at: Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Author: Austen Ivereigh

The Legionaries of Christ are "of Christ" and not "of Maciel", Fr Jesús María Delgado, regional head of the Legionaries of Christ in Spain, has told the religious news site Religión Digital in an upbeat interview. "We will do whatever the Church tells us", he says, in reference to the decision by the Vatican to appoint an external head to oversee the restructuring of the Legion following the revelations of its founder's double life as a philanderer, abuser, and drug addict (see my previous post). And if that means the current Legionary heads resigning, he says, so be it.

He gives an interesting insight into the challenges the Legionaries faced as the dark truths about Maciel came to light -- and why they chose to say nothing or take refuge in denials. He says (my trans):

From the beginning we have tried to tell the truth in such a way that the members could absorb that truth and not expire in the process. When we discovered that Fr Maciel was not who we thought he was, as well as the tremendous personal impact we suffered, we understood that it was our obligation to tell the rest of the family what we ourselves were uncovering. How to tell that, to whom, and when, were very difficult decisions.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:48 PM

Shattered lives

MALTA
The Malta Independent

Education, Employment and Family Minister Dolores Cristina is right. Reporting child abuse should be made mandatory, she told The Malta Independent on Sunday yesterday.

As a consequence, all those who in some way or another hide abuse or prevent others from reporting it should be held accountable.

One could go even further and propose that, if and when a register of child abusers is established – and one hopes that it will see the light of day sooner rather than later – people in this register could not be employed by entities or organisations that deal with children. Any employer caught doing this should face a severe penalty. We cannot continue to have situations where child abusers are employed in places where they come in constant contact with children, such as in football nurseries.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:10 AM

Bishop: 100 cases in 10 yrs for Italy priest abuse

ROME
Washington Post

The Associated Press
Tuesday, May 25, 2010; 9:48 AM

ROME -- An Italian bishop says there have been about 100 cases of clerical sex abuse over the past 10 years in Italy that warranted church trials or other canonical procedures.

The ANSA and Apcom news agencies say Monsignor Mariano Crociata, the No. 2 official in the Italian bishops' conference, gave the estimate during a news conference on the sidelines of the bishops' general assembly.

He declined to say how many of the cases resulted in condemnation of the priest. And he insisted that Italian law doesn't require bishops to report suspected abuse to police. Some defense lawyers say bishops are required to report since they are public officials.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:01 AM

Sister Maureen writes to members of the Massachusettes House of Representatives on statutes of limitations reform

MASSACHUSETTS
Voice from the Desert

House of Representatives
Legislative Office Building

Boston, Massachusetts

May 25, 2010

Dear Representative,

I am a member of the Child Victims Voice Coalition of Delaware (www.childvictimsvoice.com) and a founding member of the National Survivor Advocates Coalition (http://www.nsacoalition.org).

I testified before the Senate and House Judiciary Committees in support of Senate Bill 29 which was signed into Delaware law on July 10, 2007 and have been actively involved in advocating for legislative reform on the state level since 2002 and I strongly urge you to support Massachusetts House bill 1523 which will better protect all the children of the commonwealth.

I have spoken recently on National Public Radio on the importance of giving no accommodation in law to any religious denomination or non-profit institution that does more to enable, shield or protect known sexual predators than to childhood victims of sexual abuse – by anyone.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:55 AM

In Brief to High Court, U.S. Supports Vatican in Sex-Abuse Case

UNITED STATES
Wall Street Journal

[the court document]

By Ashby Jones
For the most part, the U.S. government has stayed on the sideline while big-ticket litigation against the Vatican over sex-abuse claims has played out.

But you can rest assured that folks at the U.S. State Department are paying close attention. After all, it’s not every day that litigation against a foreign nation makes its way to the steps of the Supreme Court.

In a filing made late last week, the U.S. government weighed in, largely siding with the Vatican’s argument that the Ninth Circuit erred by allowing a sex-abuse case to go forward against the Vatican. The move represented a rare foray by Washington into the highly sensitive litigation.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:14 AM

Clergy sex victims expose abusive bishop's whereabouts

SPRINGFIELD (MA)
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

What
Holding signs and childhood photos at two sidewalk news conferences, clergy sex abuse victims and supporters will
-- disclose that a Springfield MA bishop indicted for molesting kids has quietly moved from a treatment center into a retirement home, and
-- blast church officials – in MA and in DC - for letting him do so, and for their continued secrecy surrounding his whereabouts and status. ...

WHEN: Tuesday, May 25, 12:30 p.m.

WHERE: In Washington DC, outside the Bishop O’Boyle Residence, 1150 Varnum St. N.E. In Springfield MA, outside the Springfield Catholic Diocese HQ (chancery), 65 Elliot Street

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:09 AM

Leading Irish church abuse figure once claimed he was never abused

IRELAND
Irish Central

By PATRICK O'CONNOR, IrishCentral.com Staff Writer

A major row has broken out between leaders of sex abuse survivors in Ireland after questions about the extent, if any, of the abuse that one leading figure suffered have surfaced.

The former mayor of Clonmel, Michael O'Brien, became a national figure when he spoke out on Irish television about the abuse.

However, a tape has surfaced where he denied he had ever been abused and actually praised the Rosminian Order priests who raised him.

At stake is the $1 billion in compensation for victims of the abuse, which the Irish state has set aside.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:06 AM

Abuse survivors want diocese support

TOLEDO (OH)
13 ABC

[with video]

TOLEDO, OH -- SNAP is demanding the Catholic diocese step up.

Today members of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests asked for Bishop Leonard Blair to support victims of clergy abuse.

The group also wants answers about Father Gerald Robinson, calling for him to be defrocked by the diocese.

A spokesperson for SNAP says, "We want Bishop Blair to come forward and support legislation against predators, making Ohio a strong state for protecting children."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:40 AM

Melbourne-based Mayo priest denies rape charge

IRELAND/AUSTRALIA
The Mayo News

Edwin McGreal

A well-known south Mayo priest has strongly refuted claims that he raped a woman in the 1970s and molested two young sisters in the 1980s.

Fr Padraic Maye, a native of The Neale, who has been based in Melbourne, Australia since 1957 has pleaded his innocence over the charges, despite church authorities in Australia finding him guilty of doing so and forcing him to retire in 2005.

News of these charges only emerged in south Mayo last week when a national newspaper carried a report stating that Fr Maye had said Mass despite being barred from doing so. It would appear that nobody in south Mayo, not even Fr Maye’s family, were aware of the case up to that point.

Speaking to The Mayo News from his Melbourne home yesterday, Fr Maye described the charges as ‘a beat-up story’ and pleaded his innocence.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:35 AM

Child-on-child assault cases come to light in residential school hearings

CANADA
The Globe and Mail

Bill Curry

Ottawa — From Tuesday's Globe and Mail

.As many as 20 per cent of the physical and sexual abuse claims flooding in from Indian residential school students seeking additional compensation involve child-on-child assault, says Canada’s chief adjudicator of a special process set up for students who faced the worst abuses.

Though the schools closed decades ago and thousands of former students are no longer living, Dan Ish’s adjudication secretariat – created as part of a multibillion-dollar out-of-court settlement in 2006 between churches, schools and Ottawa – has already received about 15,000 applications.

Roughly a third of the applicants have had hearings so far through what is called the Independent Assessment Process, resulting in $500-million in compensation. Those hearings offer the first sense of the scope of child-on-child abuse at the schools.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:33 AM

Support group for those abused by priests to protest reported move of Bishop Thomas Dupre to a less secure facility

SPRINGFIELD (MA)
The Republican

By George Graham, The Republican
May 25, 2010

SPRINGFIELD - Bishop Thomas L. Dupre has moved from a church-run treatment center in Maryland to a retirement home in Washington, D.C., according to a support group for those abused by priests.

Dupre was accused of sexually abusing two minors years before became head of the Roman Catholic Diocese in Springfield in 1995.

The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests will hold a press conference Tuesday to disclose the move and urge the Pope and others in the church hierarchy to move Dupre back into a more secure facility.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:29 AM

Why is the church is stonewalling about abuse?

UNITED STATES
Healing and Spirituality

Dr. Jaime Romo

It is only when we have the courage to face things exactly as they are, without any self-deception or illusion, that a light will develop out of events by which the path to success may be recognized

I Ching

What are you hiding? When will you face the truth? What will be possible when you do? These are questions from the ‘Shadow Effect.’ They are questions that seem related to the prevalence of religious authority sexual abuse and the ongoing cover up or stonewalling of so many church leaders related to abuse.

I got, as part of advertising, in the mail today, a full page of faces under a big title that read, HAVE YOU SEEN ME? in large red letters. Some of the photos had been age progressed several years, some for 15- 20 years. It seems to me that a major reason that the church is stonewalling is that there are so many missing people, missing souls, damaged, traumatized people as a result of first betrayal (abuse) and now the ongoing second betrayal that feels like denial, that sounds like blaming victims, and looks like legal battles to bury documents that have been promised through legal settlements.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:24 AM

Sexual abuse suits against Christian Brother now at 18 and counting

MINNESOTA
Star Tribune

Another sexual abuse lawsuit was filed against Christian Brother Raimond Rose in Ramsey County Court on Monday, bringing the number of suits filed against him to 18, with No. 19 expected to come Tuesday with the filing of a suit in Fargo.

Monday's suit accuses Rose of molesting a Cretin High School student in 1971 while he was a chaperone on a school-sponsored trip to Chicago. The suit charges the Christian Brothers with fraud for representing to the victim and his family that Rose was not a danger when they knew he had molested other boys.

It's the 10th suit filed against Rose in Minnesota, and it's the third one connected to his stint as a history teacher at Cretin High School in St. Paul. Other suits stem from assignments he had at De La Salle High School in Minneapolis and the Dunrovin Retreat Center in Marine on St. Croix.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:55 AM

Sex assault trial told of youngster's trip to the park

UNITED KINGDOM
Cambridge News

Stephen Exley

A mormon missionary took a five-year-old boy out of services to sexually abuse him in a park, a court heard.

Former postman John Conway denies six charges of assault on a boy under 14 between April 1979 and May 1986.

His identical twin brother Martyn has admitted six charges of sexual assault on the boy, who is now aged 37.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:45 AM

Pastor, Prosecutor and Politician

MISSOURI
Southeast Missourian

Tammy Gwaltney

What could these three people have in common? Many things I suppose but on May 12, 2010 the thing they had in common was that they were all mentioned in the St. Louis Post Dispatch. Most notably, they were all mentioned in stories related to issues of sexual violence. Let me be clear, the politician, Senator Matt Bartle is the only one of the three trying in vain to curb sexual violence and sexual exploitation by regulating the adult entertainment industry...and finally was somewhat successful this legislative session. The prosecutor, rather former prosecutor, and the pastor were in the news for their inappropriate sexual behavior with children.

For many these stories still come as a surprise. Folks are outraged that our friends in "high places" engage in heinous acts against children or that they view, collect or distribute child pornography etc, etc. I guess I am well beyond the "shock" factor of this crime. I don't adhere to the delusional belief that certain people "just wouldn't do that". You can fill in the blank yourself on what "that" entails.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:43 AM

German Protestant Churches Investigate Abuse Claims

GERMANY
The Huffington Post (United States)

By Stephen Brown
Religion News Service

GENEVA (RNS/ENInews) In the wake of sexual abuse allegations in Germany's Catholic Church, two regional Protestant churches say they are investigating abuse allegations filed against pastors or church workers.

The Evangelical Lutheran Church of Hanover reported five new cases of the sexual abuse of minors dating back several decades, the German Protestant news agency EPD reported on May 19.

"We want to deal with this as openly and as transparently as possible," acting Hanover Bishop Hans-Hermann Jantzen said, according to ENInews. "Any case is one too many."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:40 AM

Toledoans abused by priests want answers

TOLEDO (OH)
Toledo on the Move

TOLEDO -- A handful of folks are putting some pressure on the Diocese of Toledo on some hot topics: sexual abuse and the treatment of Father Gerald Robinson.

Members and supporters of SNAP: Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests gathered Monday to hand-deliver a letter to Bishop Leonard Blair outlining their concerns.

They want openness and transparency from the bishop about the church's current involvement and supporter of Father Robinson--who is jailed on charges of murdering a nun.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:37 AM

Priest at St. John Fisher on sabbatical sent back to India to face sexual harassment charges

CALIFORNIA
Daily Breeze

By Melissa Evans Staff Writer
Posted: 05/24/2010

A priest from India on temporary sabbatical at a Catholic parish in Rancho Palos Verdes was sent back to his native country after allegations surfaced that he had sexually harassed a nun.

The harassment allegedly occurred from October through December of 2009, when the Rev. John Peter was staying in England while awaiting approval of his visa to travel to the United States. He has worked at St. John Fisher Catholic Church since January.

"Whether it is true or not, we don't know," said the Rev. Msgr. David Sork, pastor at the church. "His own bishop in India will investigate, along with the Diocese of England."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:33 AM

May 24, 2010

Eglise catholique : 350 plaintes pour abus sexuels

BELGIQUE
Le Vif

Le flot ne se tarit pas. Depuis la démission forcée de l’évêque de Bruges, 350 plaintes sont déjà parvenues à la commission chargée des dossiers d’abus sexuels commis par des prêtres ou des religieux. Rencontre exclusive avec son président, le pédopsychiatre Peter Adriaenssens (KU Leuven), qui promet un rapport complet pour septembre prochain.

Le Vif.be : Votre commission continue à recevoir des lettres, des e-mails et des appels de victimes d’abus sexuels commis par des prêtres ou des religieux. Combien à ce jour ?

Peter Adriaenssens : En un mois à peine depuis la démission de l’évêque de Bruges, le 23 avril dernier, 350 plaintes pour abus sexuels commis par les ecclésiastiques nous ont été adressées. Elles proviennent à 95 % de Flandre. Seuls 14 dossiers concernent la partie francophone du pays. Tous les diocèses du nord du pays sont touchés, à parts à peu près égales.

Certaines plaintes se rapportent-elles à des faits commis ces dernières années ?

Oui, mais seulement dix, que nous avons réorientées vers la Justice, car elles portent sur des faits qui ne sont pas encore prescrits. Nous nous occupons des 350 autres. Pour rappel, notre commission ne traite que les plaintes pour des faits pour lesquels il y a prescription, c’est-à-dire dix ans après la majorité de la victime. Autres chiffres significatifs : un tiers des prêtres pédophiles concernés par les plaintes sont décédés. Un autre tiers de religieux, même âgés, exercent encore des fonctions dans l’Eglise, fût-ce comme aumôniers dans une maison de retraite.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:26 PM

Feature - Archbishop Coleridge on Church culture and sexual abuse

AUSTRALIA
CathNews

On the feast of Pentecost, the Christian feast that gives birth to the church, Canberra Goulbourn Archbishop Mark Coleridge addresses his community, acknowledging that many of the causes of abuse can be located in the Church's culture.

The ABC'S Encounter program asks experts about the ways culture is a determining factor for sexual abuse. What has been learnt? What ought to be done?

Archbishop Mark Coleridge: The story of sexual abuse of the young within the Catholic Church has been the greatest drama of my 36 in the priesthood. So let me tell my own story of growing awareness of the reality; the story is mine but I suspect it is not unlike the story of many. I speak in retrospect but with no illusions about the present or the future.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:23 PM

Obama administration asserts Vatican immunity

UNITED STATES
CathNews

The Obama administration has taken the side of the Vatican in the US lawsuit that wants the Holy See to be held responsible for the sex abuse crisis in the country.

In a strongly-worded brief for the United States Supreme Court, the government asserted that the standards for an exception to the immunity that foreign governments enjoy under American law have not been met in the Oregon case, according to the National Catholic Reporter.

The brief stops short of recommending that the Supreme Court directly take up the case of Doe v. Holy See, originally filed in federal district court in Oregon in 2002.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:53 PM

U.S. Backs Immunity for Vatican in Case

UNITED STATES
Wall Street Journal

BY ASHBY JONES
The U.S. government has largely sided with the Vatican's argument that a court erred in a closely watched lawsuit alleging sexual abuse by a former priest, a rare foray by Washington into the highly sensitive litigation.

In a filing made Friday, the solicitor general's office urged the Supreme Court to set aside a federal appellate court ruling in a case that had allowed the Oregon suit to go forward against the Vatican. The solicitor general speaks for the government on Supreme Court matters.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:50 PM

Obama administration asks court to bar lawsuit against Vatican

UNITED STATES
Catholic Culture

May 24, 2010
The Obama administration has weighed in strongly against efforts by abuse victims to bring suit against the Vatican.

In a brief filed with the US Supreme Court, the Justice Department asked for a reversal of a federal district court ruling that allowed the Vatican to be listed as a defendant in an Oregon case.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:46 PM

Viewpoint: Catholic church is committed to protecting all children

Michigan
MLive

May 24, 2010
By Victoria Cessna and Deacon Patrick Hall

When a precious child’s innocent life is harmed, our hearts break for them and for their families.

We, as a Catholic community, are deeply saddened and distressed over the ongoing scandal surrounding accounts of clergy sexual abuse being so highly publicized. Sexual abuse of children leaves lifelong scars. It is a crime which steals the peace and joy that each child deserves as a birthright.

While we are not able to erase the past and nothing can be said or done to ever right the wrongs, the Catholic church is committed to keep working tirelessly and passionately to protect all children, and to provide whatever opportunities possible to bring about healing for any and all victims.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:38 PM

Italy bishop asks for trust despite abuse scandal

ROME
Atlanta Journal-Constitution

By NICOLE WINFIELD
The Associated Press

ROME — The head of Italy's bishops' conference asked families to trust the Catholic Church despite the clerical abuse scandal, insisting Monday that it had never intended to underestimate the problem.

Cardinal Angelo Bagnasco dedicated more than half of his speech to the bishops' annual general assembly to the scandal, repeating the pope's recent comments that forgiveness of a priest's sins can never take the place of justice for his crimes.

Bagnasco's comments came as more cases are coming to light in the Vatican's backyard: Just Monday a priest in Savona went on trial for alleged sexual violence against a 12-year-old girl, the ANSA news agency reported.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:32 PM

Notorious Pedo-Priest Protector Apologist Matt Cunnigham Billed County for Work with OC Diocese

ORANGE COUNTY (CA)
Orange County Weekly

By Gustavo Arellano, Monday, May. 24 2010

For the past couple of weeks, the Friends for Fullerton's Future blog has been documenting with devastating effectiveness how Matt Cunningham--founder of OC Blog, longtime Republican activist, a supposed lover of small government--is not only sucking from the government teat, he's shoving udders in his mouth like some PR hack version of Jenna Jameson. Under his Pacific Strategies, Cunningham has reaped tens of thousands of dollars in a contract to shill for an obscure county agency called the Children and Families Commission of Orange County, which gets Orange County's share of Prop. 10 revenues, the type of sin tax Cunningham and his ilk rail about--unless they get paid by it.

FFFF--which has proven to be the municipal version of Orange Juice!, every bit as scandalous, hilariously libelous, and surprisingly investigative as the pioneer of OC's blogosphere--has posted invoice after invoice of Cunningham billing the county at the rate of $200 an hour for everything from having lunch to listening to radio and reading blogs. Nice work if you can get it! Included is $940 he received for working with the Diocese of Orange on some dental program in October of 2007--this, shortly after he furiously shilled for his pastor, John Urell to the point of publishing the name of sex-abuse victims.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:27 PM

SNAP challenging Diocese of Toledo on Fr. Robinson's status

TOLEDO (OH)
WTOL

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - The Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests (SNAP) stopped by the Diocese of Toledo Monday to deliver some demands.

SNAP is calling on the diocese to encourage lawmakers to push for reform to the 2006 law that prohibits cases involving repressed memories. The group is also asking Bishop Leonard Paul Blair if Fr. Gerald Robinson, convicted of killing a nun, is still on the diocesan payroll and if the diocese is supporting his legal defense.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:24 PM

Burlington College buys diocese headquarters

BURLINGTON (VT)
Burlington Free Press

By John Briggs, Free Press Staff Writer • Monday, May 24, 2010

Burlington College President Jane Sanders confirmed that the alternative liberal arts college has purchased the sprawling state Roman Catholic Diocese headquarters property on North Avenue.

“We bought all three parcels,” Sanders said. “We’re extremely excited about it. The purchase and sales agreement has been signed.”

The 32.4-acre property was put on the market in late April. Bishop Salvatore Matano, in announcing a $17.65 million settlement of sexual abuse cases, said the church had obtained an interim bank loan and was counting on the sale of the diocesan property to pay off that loan.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:18 PM

Burlington College to buy diocese property

BURLINGTON (VT)
WCAX

Burlington, Vermont - May 24, 2010

Burlington College is buying the North Avenue property owned by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Burlington.

The school says that after months of negotiations, the college and diocese have signed a purchase and sales agreement to close on the property within a year.

It will become the new campus for Burlington College.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:14 PM

Global women religious: the new Catholic leadership

National Catholic Reporter

May. 24, 2010
By An NCR Editorial

Before the women of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious sat down for business last August in New Orleans, they crammed into buses and spent a half day visiting their local sisters who were attending to the needs of the dislocated and dispossessed of the 2005 hurricane and floods. The women came to offer solidarity, give encouragement, and check out the fruits of the more than $8 million raised through their efforts for a number of local ministry projects.

When women religious leaders from throughout Asia and Oceania gathered last October outside Bangkok, Thailand, to reconnect, share stories and generally lift each other’s spirits, they took time during their meeting to learn more about the two Vatican investigations of their sister religious across the globe, in the United States. The women from Australia and New Zealand had the most information and shared it with the Asians. Once informed, the entire group sent a brief letter off to their U.S. sisters as a sign of support and solidarity..

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:09 PM

Rally at State House in Boston, Wed., May 26, to eliminate the statutes of limitations for child sexual abuse claims

MASSACHUSETTS
Voice from the Desert

Frank Douglas

This message, received by e-mail today, 5.24.2010, is intended primarily for Boston-area and Massachusetts readers.

If you can attend the rally, e-mail me at frankdouglas62@yahoo.com and let me know. Your e-mail will help rally organizers estimate rally head count.

* * *
We’re holding a rally at the State House this Wednesday. This is the best chance we’ve had since 2002 to get the legislature to eliminate the statutes of limitations for child sexual abuse claims!

Here are the details:

Wednesday, May 26, State House, Boston

1:30 – 2:30: RALLY and press conference at the Grand Staircase.

11am – 5pm: We visit our legislators’ offices. If they’re not in, we leave our name and message with their aides.

WHY:

In March, the Judiciary Committee put our bill, House Bill No. 1523, “in study.” But recently, House Speaker DeLeo has become interested in our issue. If we hold an impressive rally on Wednesday, there’s a good chance the Speaker will move the bill out of study and bring it to the House floor for a vote!

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:12 AM

Rescue of savings bank seen adding to Spain's fiscal burden

SPAIN
Expatica

The rescue of regional savings bank CajaSur, taken over by the Bank of Spain at the weekend, could cost up to 2.7 billion euros, a newspaper reported Monday, adding to the burden on Spain's already strained public finances.

Business daily Expansion said the amount could be needed under the most pessimistic scenario to clean up the bank's 1.5 billion euros (1.85 billion dollars) in doubtful debt and make up for 364 million euros in irrecoverable credits and the depreciation of property assets.

A Bank of Spain spokesman would not confirm the figure but said the unlisted bank, formerly controlled by the Roman Catholic Church and headed by a priest, would receive an injection of "at least" 523 million euros (657 million dollars).

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:21 AM

Co polski ksiądz robił ministrantom

POLSKA
rp.pl

Piotr Kościński

Brazylia. Do aresztu trafił polski misjonarz oskarżony o gwałcenie ministrantów. Grozi mu 10 lat więzienia.

Prokuratura brazylijska oskarżyła księdza Marcina Strachanowskiego o to, że trzy lata temu przykuwał trzynastoletniego wówczas ministranta do łóżka i zmuszał go do uprawiania z nim seksu. Jednocześnie oferował mu pieniądze i straszył.

Według sędziego Alexandre Abrahao Diasa policja znalazła „materiały internetowe, wysyłane do ofiary po to, by ją uwieść”. Ksiądz zapraszał też innych chłopców do swego mieszkania na parafii, które „przekształcił w rodzaj seksualnych lochów, w których zmuszał ich, często przy użyciu kajdanek, do orgii”. Ministrantowi miał powiedzieć, że „wie, jakie kwiaty położy na jego trumnie”, jeśli się nie zgodzi na wypełnianie seksualnych zachcianek księdza.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:16 AM

Zakopane priest arrested on Brazil pedophilia charges

POLAND
The News

Polish priest, Father Marcin Strachanowski (44), arrested last week in Rio de Janeiro, is being charged with using a parish rectory as an “erotic dungeon” and sexually abusing a 16 year-old former altar boy.

Strachanowski, originally from Zakopane, southern Poland, is accused of handcuffing the boy to a bed to “satisfy his sexual whims”, says the prosecutor in Brazil.

The Polish priest – who claims 'graduate status' in Brazil, which will prevent him from being detained in a prison while he awaits trial – began to “groom” the boy back in 2007 by sending him pornographic material via email. Police had received earlier complaints about the priest’s activity as early as 2004.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:14 AM

CajaSur Seizure Marks Change for Spain’s Ailing Banks (Update2)

SPAIN
Business Week

By Charles Penty

May 24 (Bloomberg) -- As a Roman Catholic priest, Santiago Gomez Sierra began his last board meeting as chairman of the failed Spanish savings bank CajaSur three days ago by saying a prayer. Some of the directors crossed themselves.

Within hours, the Bank of Spain stripped Gomez of his powers and threw out managers at the ailing 146-year-old lender, controlled by the Catholic Church in the southern city of Cordoba, citing “viability problems.” CajaSur lost 596 million euros ($748 million) on 426 million euros in revenue last year.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:10 AM

Sex and the City of God, Part 3: Homophobia and the War on Eros

UNITED STATES
The Huffington Post

Michele Somerville

I have seen it a hundred times, the moment during High Mass when the priest, vested in white, circumnavigates the altar, blessing it with burning hyssop or frankincense in preparation for the celebration of the Eucharist. Recently, however, the beauty of this ritual took me by surprise. The mass was a funeral for a Haitian-born woman. As the priest, who was her friend, walked the perimeter of the altar, swinging the burning fragrance on a chain to the accompaniment of the organ, West Indian steel drums, and Haitian-Creole vocal Musica Sacra that fused and ascended into the apse of the church, he drooped a little: the sorrow of this wonderful priest was as palpable as his hope. My eyes watered. I choked up. My body directed my soul to the fullness of the moment and to the strength of my belief, which sometimes fades, and which I sometimes take for granted. I have been accused of being Catholic because I like the smells and bells. That's not entirely untrue. I'm a poet. Anyone who's ever read Keats' "Ode on a Grecian Urn" knows that we have a weak spot for beauty. ...

It is inevitable that the tension between Catholic sensuality and its hierarchy's commitment to repression should give way to perversion. Why does the Catholic hierarchy devote so much ritual and design to awakening sensuality in us, only to clobber it out of out of us? How do we Catholics square naked cherubs in the Sistine Chapel with learning to bring a copy of the Yellow Pages to the high school dance in case the need to sit on a boy's lap in the car arises (so to speak)?

Why does a religion so erotically charged condemn healthy sexuality in so many ways when it is entirely possible that sexual longing and ecstasy are the closest human beings ever truly get to experiencing the kind of desire and joy we are taught to feel for God? How did sex become more sinful than holy? And if Christ is love, as we Catholics are taught, why must so many women, gay Catholics, and victims of abuse continue to live as collateral damage in the Church hierarchy's unholy war on Eros?

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:06 AM

Reporting child abuse should be made mandatory, insists Cristina

MALTA
The Malta Independent

by Francesca Vella

Minister for Education, Employment and the Family Dolores Cristina is insisting that reporting child sex abuse should be made mandatory and any amendments to the current legislation should ensure that the law provides for children’s complete protection.

Ms Cristina made her comments in an interview with The Malta Independent on Sunday exactly one month after Pope Benedict’s visit to Malta, during which he met eight men who say they were abused by priests as children.

Reports of child sex abuse cases by members of the clergy have rocked the Catholic Church over the past couple of months, and the Vatican has issued new guidelines which specify that child sexual abuse cases should be reported to the police if required by law.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:04 AM

A welcome legislative proposal

MALTA
The Malta Independent

The fact that plans are in the pipeline to amend legislation to make the reporting of child abuse to the competent authorities mandatory is very welcome.

To date, there is no legislation in Malta, in contrast to some to the legal state of affairs some other countries, that mandatorily requires the reporting child abuse. As matters stand, that decision is left completely to the person with knowledge of any such abuse.

In an interview in today’s paper, Minister Dolores Cristina could not have been clearer when she states that the reporting of child sex abuse should be made mandatory and any amendments to the current legislation should ensure that the law provides for children’s complete protection.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:01 AM

OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS

VATICAN CITY
Vatican Information Service

VATICAN CITY, 24 MAY 2010 (VIS) - The Holy Father:

- Appointed Fr. F. Richard Spencer of the clergy of the archdiocese of Baltimore, U.S.A., vice commandant of the military chaplains of the U.S. Forces in Europe, as auxiliary to the military ordinariate of the U.S.A. The bishop-elect was born in Sylacauga, U.S.A. in 1951 and ordained a priest in 1988.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:58 AM

Diocese of Spfld Bishop on clergy abuse

SPRINGFIELD (MA)
WWLP

[with video]

Jacqueline Jing
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) - For the first time in months, we're hearing publicly from Bishop Timothy McDonnell.

The leader of Springfield-area Catholics is dealing with the pressure of church cutbacks, and most recently more allegations of clergy sex abuse.

Last week another alleged victim of clergy abuse came forward, and the Bishop told 22News he's deeply saddened and the diocese is doing everything it can to stop it.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:56 AM

Voice for abused youths

CHARLOTTE (NC)
Charlotte Observer

By Gary L. Wright
gwright@charlotteobserver.com

Kelly Miller has spent most of her career putting child molesters in prison.

Among the hundreds of sex offenders the Mecklenburg prosecutor has convicted are a Catholic priest who molested a 14-year-old boy and a man who raped two teens after targeting them on MySpace.

On Tuesday, Miller will receive the 2010 Attorney General's Special Commendation Award for her work in convicting a man who molested an 8-year-old girl, took photographs of the sex acts and sent the pictures over the Internet. That child molester, John William Worthey, was sentenced in May 2009 to at least 115 years in prison.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:53 AM

Porn Priest Back In Court

UNITED KINGDOM
Jack FM

Monday, May 24th 2010

A Bristol man will appear at Bristol Magistrates Court after breaking court order.

A paedophile Roman Catholic priest involved in a child porn ring will appear before Bristol Magistrates Court today charged with breaching his sex offences order.

Father Barnaby Dowling, 50, was convicted in June 2006 after a police swoop found over 100 images on his computer, some of which had been forwarded to other paedophiles.

He admitted eight offences relating to child porn but escaped jail with a community order and was given a sex offender's order.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:49 AM

Is The Catholic Church Outdated?

AUSTRALIA
The Catholic League of Australia

Tom Craven Reports:

A growing trend of Western Secularism as well as a sudden rise in militant Atheism has recently left religious folk constantly on the defence against attacks on their faith. One Church in particular seems to attract more criticism than any other;this is of course the Catholic Church. The Church has been charged with everything from being sexist, intellectually repressive, homophobic, spreading AIDS, sexually abusive, greedy, racist, starting the crusades, burning witches and murdering millions in the Inquisitions of Europe. These charges can make decent arguments in proving religions and the Catholic Church evil, but these charges are more than often mistaken.

Catholicism is often seen as an outdated passenger of history, a force that has arrived in the 21st century purely by accident. “Politically incorrect” beliefs like those on abortion, gay rights, divorce and contraception can help to confirm this myth. It is important to remember that the Church’s beliefs in these difficult areas are based on the morals that Western Europe held for over 2000 years. The morals of the Church are based on the attainable natural laws as confirmed by Aristotle, Augustine and reaffirmed by Aquinas. These views on moral issues are not outdated, because naturally morals cannot become ‘outdated’, rather society has changed. This does not make the Church’s morals wrong, rather it can make them unpopular. It would be irrational of the Church to change its moral code of over 2000 years purely because some of its beliefs are unpopular, if this were the Church’s policy then it never would have lasted the distance.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:45 AM

Australia archbishop: Church culture tied to abuse

AUSTRALIA
The Associated Press

By ROD McGUIRK

CANBERRA, Australia — The Roman Catholic Church's culture of discretion and focus on "sin and forgiveness rather than crime and punishment" were among ingrained factors that ultimately led to the child sex abuse scandal and cover-up surrounding the church today, a pre-eminent Australian bishop said Monday.

Archbishop Mark Coleridge, whose archdiocese is based in the national capital of Canberra, took the unusual step of writing an open letter attempting to explain the culture that led the church to turn a blind eye to priests accused of molesting children.

Factors include a determination to protect the church's reputation, a culture of discretion, "institutionalized immaturity" of priests fostered by seminary training, and an outlook of "sin and forgiveness rather than crime and punishment," Coleridge wrote.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:41 AM

Former vicar admits child sex assaults

WALES
The Independent

By Antony Stone, PA

Monday, 24 May 2010

A former vicar jailed for possessing thousands of child porn images admitted today a string of child sex assault charges days before his release from prison.

Richard Hart, 60, of Beguildy, near Knighton, mid Wales, admitted nine counts of sexually assaulting a schoolgirl over a prolonged period from April 2000.

During a brief appearance at Merthyr Crown Court he also admitted one count of inciting a child to commit an act of gross indecency.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:38 AM

A former Cooper County catholic priest appears in court Monday

MISSOURI
ConnectMidMissouri

COOPER COUNTY, MO -- A former catholic priest accused of sexually abusing young boys will appear in court Monday.

Gerald Howard faces charges in Cooper County of sexually abusing parishioners in Boonville.

Howard was a priest there in the 1980s.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:36 AM

Elior Chen in court: I believe I will be convicted

ISRAEL
YNet News

Published: 05.24.10

The lawyer representing "abusive rabbi" Elior Chen continued on Monday to refuse to cross examine the prosecution's witnesses in a hearing at the Jerusalem District Court.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:25 AM

Biloxi congregation: protests will go on until Bishop hears our side

BILOXI (MA)
WLOX

[with video]

By Danielle Thomas

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - Dozens of protesters stood outside a Biloxi church Sunday demanding to have their voices heard. Parishioners of Vietnamese Martyrs Catholic Church pledge the demonstrations will continue every week until they get a sit down meeting with the bishop. The dispute centers around their priest and mutual funds estimated to be worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. Protestors said it's time Bishop Roger Morin heard from them first hand.

"We want the Bishop to listen to our side of the story also even if we have to sit in front of the priest and the council members," said Vivian Nguyen, a parishioner. "We'll be more than happy to sit in front of them and explain our side of the story so that he can also get the truth instead of listening to one side of the story. We're all Catholic, and we don't want to put Catholic down. But I think that's always been the downfall of the Catholic organization. Just listening to one side of the story."

Father Jimmy Pham walked in silence on Sunday as parishioners shouted at him outside of Vietnamese Martyrs Catholic Church. The congregation claims he also said nothing when they repeatedly asked why he ended a church tradition of giving quarterly financial reports.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:16 AM

The divine act of forgiveness has cloaked decades of abuse

AUSTRALIA
Sydney Morning Herald

JODI DEATH
May 24, 2010

Victims of the clergy must be allowed to find peace by telling their stories.

More than a decade after they first served to shock, scandals about the mismanagement of child sexual abuse by clergy continue unabated to enter the public domain.

Theories and allegations abound on the causes of such scandals. Everything from institutional structures to maladaptive sexuality have been blamed for the cover-ups that have served to compound the damage done to victims, facilitated further victimisation and resulted in increased public distrust of churches, in particular the Roman Catholic Church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:11 AM

A Pentecost Letter on Sexual Abuse of the Young in the Catholic Church

AUSTRALIA
Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Canberra and Goulburn

Mark Coleridge

It has taken a tragically long time for other Australians to begin to see the faces and hear the voices of Indigenous people. For too long Indigenous Australians were simply unseen and unheard; and that was the way the rest of us seemed to want it. Their land was Terra nullius; they were not citizens. Now that Indigenous people are visible and audible, we others are not sure what exactly to do about their suffering, but at least we can see them and hear them – and even say sorry. The same is true, I now think, of the survivors of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church and elsewhere. For too long they were unseen and unheard. To see their faces and hear their voices has taken people like me a tragically long time. But at least now we can see their faces and hear their voices, even if we have no quick fix for the devastation we see and hear.

The story of sexual abuse of the young within the Catholic Church has been the greatest drama of my thirty-six years in the priesthood. So let me tell my own story of growing awareness of the reality; the story is mine but I suspect it is not unlike the story of many. I speak in retrospect but with no illusions about the present or the future. I cannot say that abuse of the young is not still happening in the Church nor that it will not happen in the future. What I can say is that the bitter lessons of the past have made it more likely that I and the Church will deal sensitively with abuse and its aftermath now and in the future.

The first case I heard of was in the 1970s when I was a young priest in Melbourne. When the news broke, I thought it was weird and distressing. I had hardly heard the word paedophilia in my early life and seminary training; I knew what it meant but I would have struggled to spell it. If I thought of paedophilia at all in the Church, I would have found it mind-boggling that a priest, to whom the young are entrusted in a special way, could abuse children. But there it was undeniably, and I thought it was a tragic and isolated episode.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:06 AM

'Culture' led to sex abuse cover-up in church

AUSTRALIA
The Canberra Times

BY PETER JEAN
24 May, 2010

Canberra's Catholic Archbishop has confessed it took ''people like me a tragically long time'' to see the faces and hear the voices of sexual abuse survivors in the Church.

In a deeply personal letter to parishioners published at the weekend for Pentecost Sunday, Archbishop Mark Coleridge said a culture of discretion had been used to conceal crimes by paedophile priests and protect the reputation of the Church.

Archbishop Coleridge said victims had sometimes been treated as if they were to blame for abuse at the hands of priests and members of religious orders.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:01 AM

Former Powys vicar admits child indecency and assault

WALES
BBC News

A former vicar already serving a prison sentence has admitted indecent assault and indecency with a child.

Richard Hart, 60, formerly from Beguildy, Powys, pleaded guilty to nine counts of indecent assault and one count of indecency with a child between the ages of nine and 11.

At Merthyr Crown Court he denied three further charges of indecent assault and three of indecency with a child.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:59 AM

Will Sisters Save the Catholic Church?

UNITED STATES
Religion Dispatches

By Mary E. Hunt

Though Catholic sisters continue their ministries with the sick and the poor, their simple living, and penchant for green, the media is beginning to pay a lot of attention. The Vatican’s Apostolic Visitation, an investigation of women's religious orders in the U.S., is in full swing, with few optimistic about its outcome. The letter the women religious wrote in support of the health care bill which was opposed by the U.S. Catholic Bishops has made them heroines or heretics, depending on one’s politics. One sister was recently removed from her hospital administration position and allegedly excommunicated for her role in deciding to save the life of a woman who was 11 weeks pregnant by permitting an abortion in a Catholic hospital in Phoenix.

I want to clarify a few basic issues lest the move to focus finally on Catholic women backfire inadvertently. While Maureen Dowd wants a nun for pope, and Nicholas Kristof extols the virtues of “lowly nuns” and all who work for justice, I worry that a lack of nuance can replicate the dynamics of patriarchy only with a few women religious in charge—or held responsible—this time. Catholicism is simply more complex than that. And the sisters, for the most part, are not interested.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:54 AM

'Breeding ground' for sex offenders

AUSTRALIA
3AW

Posted by: Derryn Hinch | 24 May, 2010

I know this is a bald accusation but it can not, nor should not, be sanitised in any way: The Catholic Church has been the safe haven and breeding ground for child sex offenders for decades. Probably a hundred years. And if it were not a religious organisation, shrouded in secrecy and protection, it would be ostracised and targeted by law enforcement agencies around the globe.

The protection granted to pedophiles over the years from popes (including the current one) to cardinals and archbishop is a moral and legal travesty. And it is only because victims have been brave enough to challenge the power of the church from Boston to Bendigo and launch legal actions that has forced a reluctant church to face its own demons.

It has only been since the Catholic Church, in the United States and Europe and Mexico and Australia, has been forced to pay out millions of dollars in compensation to the victims of that church’s priests that Rome has started to listen.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:50 AM

May 23, 2010

Catholic Diocese to Cut 49

SPRINGFIELD (MA)
CBS 3

[with video]

By Matthew Campbell

The Springfield Diocese struggles with financial woes and this time, they'll be cutting from within.

49 layoffs are expected by July 1st as the diocese struggles to close a 5 million dollar budget shortfall.

The news was spread around local churches Sunday morning.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:39 PM

Bishop approves diocesan reconfiguration plan

SPRINGFIELD (MA)
iobserve

[bishop's statement]

Staff report

SPRINGFIELD – Springfield Bishop Timothy A. McDonnell has approved the implementation of a reconfiguration plan for the Diocese of Springfield to take effect July 1.

Under the outline of the plan, 36 percent of the current workforce, or 49 positions will be eliminated from the diocesan payroll. A number of retained employees will take on greater duties and still others will have their hours reduced. Some current departments and agencies will be eliminated entirely with any critical duties being reassigned.

In total, the diocese is seeking to close a $5 million projected deficit for the upcoming fiscal year 2010-2011. Diocesan officials have stated that these changes will narrow that gap considerably but not entirely.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:35 PM

Priest Arrested in Brazil on Charges of Sexually Abusing Boy

BRAZIL
The New York Times

By ALEXEI BARRIONUEVO
Published: May 23, 2010

SÃO PAULO, Brazil — The authorities in Rio de Janeiro said Sunday that they had arrested a Polish priest and charged him with sexually abusing a 16-year-old former altar boy.

The judge who issued the arrest warrant said the priest, Father Marcin Michael Strachanowski, 44, had used his parish’s rectory as an “erotic dungeon” to carry out sex acts with boys.

The police in Rio de Janeiro State said that Father Strachanowski, who was arrested late Friday, was being held at a police station awaiting court proceedings. He is accused of handcuffing the 16-year-old to a bed “to satisfy his sexual whims,” according to state prosecutors.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:32 PM

Female priest ordained in Italy by rebel Catholics

ROME
Guardian (United Kingdom)

John Hooper in Rome guardian.co.uk, Sunday 23 May 2010

A 35-year-old Sicilian became the first Catholic woman to be ordained in Italy on Saturday.

Maria Vittoria Longhitano is a member of the breakaway Old Catholic church. But she was made a priest at the Anglican church of All Saints in Rome ‑ an act some in the Vatican are likely to see as provocative, not least because the organist at the service was dismissed by the Catholic hierarchy after deciding to change sex.

The Old Catholic church broke with the Vatican in the 19th century in protest at the adoption of the doctrine of papal infallibility. It is in full communion with the Anglicans.

Longhitano, who is married, told the congregation: "I have opened the way. Catholicism means universality, and without women it is mutilated." She said she was convinced the laity in Italy were "ready to welcome a female ministry" and that in her native Sicily people often asked her: "Why don't we have the joy of women priests?"

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:17 PM

Do everything to stop abuse: Archbishop Coleridge

AUSTRALIA
CathNews

The Archbishop of Canberra and Goulburn, Mark Coleridge, said an institutional pride within the Church has prevented many from speaking out against abuse, and called for everything possible to be done to stop sexual abuse.

He has told Radio National that although the level of abuse in the Church is small, every incident is appalling, ABC reports.

"No-one now can deny the scale of the problem and the urgent task," he said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:14 PM

Mid-Missouri priest accused of sexual abuse seeks change of venue, different judge

MISSOURI
KPLR

By Associated Press
5:58 PM CDT, May 23, 2010

BOONVILLE, Mo. (AP) — A former Boonville priest accused of sexual abuse is seeking a change of venue and a different judge.

The Boonville Daily News reported that Gerald Howard made the requests in motions filed this past week in Cooper County Circuit Court. The documents were filed ahead of a counsel status hearing scheduled for Monday.

Howard worked as a priest at Saints Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Boonville.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:11 PM

Italian bishop did not believe allegations over ‘abuser’ priest, court hears; SNAP responds

UNITED STATES/ITALY
Voice from the Desert

Statement by Barbara Blaine, president and founder of SNAP, Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (312-399-4747)

Bishop Reali must be severely disciplined, by secular and religious authorities. He admits, under oath, that he broke two key rules. First, he violated Italian law by refusing to call police about credible child sex abuse allegations. Then, he violated church rules by refusing to notify the CDF of the same allegations.

This will be a real test for Pope Benedict – how he responds to such recent and reckless and deceitful misconduct by a bishop right under his nose.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:07 PM

Holy Fathers

UNITED STATES
Tikkun

by: Harriet Fraad on May 15th, 2010

The global Catholic Church is confronting an extraordinary crisis not faced since the Reformation, which began with sharp criticisms of the Church and ended with a schism out of which emerged the establishment of a separate Protestant Church.

Today, sexual abuse allegations against priests are surging in a startling array of nations: the United States and Canada, New Zealand, Australia, France, Italy, Austria, Germany, The Netherlands, Ireland, Switzerland, Belgium, Bolivia, Mexico, Brazil and Chile. New abuse scandals erupt daily. The John Jay School of Criminal Justice estimates that, in the U.S. alone between 1950 and 2002 hundreds of thousands of children have been sexually abused by Catholic Clergy.

In fact, the Catholic Church has a 2,000 year history of sex abuse. In their acclaimed book, Sex, Priests and Secret Codes (2006), Father Thomas Doyle, with former monks Richard Sipes and Patrick Wall, used its own documents to confirm the Church’s 2,000-year problem with clerical sex abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:04 PM

Love Letter to the Pope

UNITED STATES
Psychology Today

by Laura Betzig

A week ago Tuesday, Pope Benedict XVI made a statement about sexual abuse in the Catholic Church. He was talking to reporters on his way to Portugal, on a plane. Sins within the Church had become "truly terrifying," he told them. Penitence had to be done; and forgiveness had to be sought.

Sexual abuse has been reported all over Europe, and in 95% of 195 dioceses in the US. Last Thursday, Gino Reali, the Bishop of Porto-Santa Rufina, testified in the sex abuse trial of a Roman priest. And last March, Benedict XVI sent an open letter to apologize for the "serious mistakes" made in response to pedophilia in the Irish Church. As an Archbishop of Munich and Freising, as Dean of the College of Cardinals, and as Pope, Joseph Ratzinger has repeatedly confronted sexual abuse. But it has always been thus.

For the 2000 years since Jesus made Peter, or petros, the "rock," or foundation of his Church, giving him the keys of the kingdom of heaven with the power to bind and loose, and telling him to "feed my sheep," Roman bishops have ministered to the material needs of the faithful, and to their souls. The better to do that, they've made personal sacrifices. They've been celibate, from the Latin caelib, or unmarried. But they haven't always been chaste, from the Latin castus, or uninterested in sex.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:36 PM

Bishop Matthew Clark visits Hornell

HORNELL (NY)
The Evening Tribune

By Justin Head
The Evening Tribune
Posted May 23, 2010

Hornell, N.Y. — Bishop Matthew Clark said Friday that he wishes for all the prayers possible for Father Paul Schnacky.

In a statement issued May 16, the Diocese announced that it is investigating a complaint alleging Schnacky, a retired 81-year-old priest that lives in Hornell, had improper conduct with minors while serving as a priest in the 1970s.

“I would ask for prayers for all of those who are involved until we come to a resolution,” said Clark, who is head of the Catholic Diocese of Rochester. “I would not say much more than please pray for father and all that are involved with this that it will come to a peaceful and just resolution.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:05 AM

Polish priest detained in Brazil sex-abuse case

BRAZIL
Washington Post

By ALAN CLENDENNING
The Associated Press
Saturday, May 22, 2010

SAO PAULO -- A Polish priest accused of sexually abusing a former altar boy in Rio de Janeiro and turning his parish home into an "erotic dungeon" has surrendered and is now in police custody, a public safety official said Saturday.

State prosecutors have accused Marcin Michael Strachanowski of handcuffing the 16-year-old former altar boy to a bed three years ago in the parish house where the priest lived and threatening to kill the youth if he spoke of the abuse.

Strachanowski arrived at a police station Friday night, said a spokesman for Rio's state public security department. He spoke on condition of anonymity in keeping with departmental policy. Images published in Brazilian newspapers showed Strachanowski being driven away in a police car.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:02 AM

Bishops should be naming and shaming the guilty

IRELAND
Irish Independent

Serious charges can't be brushed off with waffle about 'cultural resistance to change', writes Eilis O'Hanlon

Sunday May 23 2010

A key point of the recent UK election was when Labour leader Gordon Brown was caught on microphone describing an elderly voter he'd just met as a bigot. Within hours, he was back in the woman's garden, humbly describing himself to the assembled media as a "penitent sinner" -- though the fact that he'd reportedly spent the entire time inside Gillian Duffy's house trying to persuade her to join him on the doorstep for a photocall didn't exactly do much to dispel the suspicion that this sinner wasn't quite as penitent as he was letting on.

Last week, Sean Brady stepped forward as Ireland's ecclesiastical answer to Gordon Brown. (Not that anyone asked for one, but still.) Recently exposed for his part in the hushing up of young boys abused by Fr Brendan Smyth in the Seventies, and facing calls for his resignation, the Archbishop of Armagh promptly did a Gordon and described himself as a "wounded healer", before asking for time so that he could "pray, reflect on the Word of God, and discern the will of the Holy Spirit". Now, as luck would have it, the Almighty seems to have come up with the answer that his representative in Armagh should stay on.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:59 AM

the non-story of a non-priest

ILLINOIS
Catholic Culture

By Diogenes | May 21, 2010

What's wrong with this story?

Janinie [sic] Denomme who was ordained a Catholic priest in April last year has died of cancer. The Archdiocese of Chicago is refusing to allow her to be buried at her Catholic parish.

And this one?

A Chicago woman who devoted her life to the Catholic Church and advocated that the church accept women as priests died Monday, and now the church will not allow her to be buried at her own parish.

If the Catholic Church had refused a funeral to a Catholic priest, that would be a legitimate news story. But Janine Denomme was not a Catholic priest. She participated in a ceremony that simulated ordination, but that didn't make her a priest-- any more than I would become the Holy Roman Emperor if a friend placed a crown on my head.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:53 AM

Ordained against all odds

ILLINOIS
Chicago Tribune

By Daarel Burnette II, TRIBUNE REPORTER

May 23, 2010

Janine Denomme 1965-2010

Janine Denomme wouldn't give up on the Catholic Church. She had wanted to be a priest all of her life. But she knew the church wouldn't ordain her as a female and a homosexual in a long-term relationship with another woman.

"There's something about the ritual that's culturally in my blood," she was recently quoted in the Tribune as saying. "I cannot not be a Catholic."

Last month, she was ordained by the Roman Catholic Womenpriests, a group of excommunicated bishops and female priests who are trying to get the church to open clergy ranks to women and married people. After being ordained a deacon last summer, Ms. Denomme was also excommunicated from the church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:50 AM

Italy's first female priest

ITALY
The Province (Canada)

Reuters; Agence France-Presse

May 23, 2010

Italy's first woman priest was ordained on Saturday at a church in central Rome, a stone's throw from the Vatican, a fierce opponent of women entering the priesthood.

Maria Vittoria Longhitano, who is 35 and married, belongs to the Italian Old Catholic Church, a small congregation that exited Roman Catholicism in the 19th century.

"Catholicism -- which means universality -- is crippled without women, because one half of the world does not participate in Christ's mission," said Longhitano, who celebrates her first mass today in Milan.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:44 AM

Progressive Adrian nuns are under the Vatican's microscope

MICHIGAN
Detroit Free Press

BY PATRICIA MONTEMURRI
FREE PRESS STAFF WRITER

They've taught legions of Detroit-area Catholics. They've taken on major corporations. They are watchdog nuns who have urged U.S. companies to be socially responsible.

But to the Vatican, the Adrian Dominican congregation of 850 progressive nuns may be a problem, especially under the conservative papacy of Pope Benedict XVI.

For five days this spring, a Vatican-backed team studied the Adrian Dominicans at their motherhouse in Lenawee County. They are among at least 19 sister congregations being investigated under a process called the Apostolic Visitation.

The investigation hits at a time when the Vatican is dealing with escalating criticism of its oversight of priests accused of sexually abusing children.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:41 AM

Diocese chopping nearly 50 positions

SPRINGFIELD (MA)
WWLP

[with video]

[the letter]

Laura Hutchinson
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) - The Roman Catholic Church has been the center of negative attention lately between allegations of sex abuse and budget problems.

And it seems it's not over yet..

22News got a hold of a letter to co-workers in the Church from the Bishop.

Because of the financial problems facing the church, the Diocese is forced to cut 40 percent of its budget by July 1st.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:35 AM

"Benoît XVI est le pape des occasions manquées"

FRANCE
le JDD

Alors que les scandales n’ont cessé d’éclabousser l’Eglise ces derniers mois, le JDD a rencontré chez lui, en Allemagne, le théologien Hans Küng. Un homme de foi et de conviction en qui ses partisans voient l’un des "sauveurs" de l’Eglise.

Il aime se présenter comme le "frère ennemi" de Benoît XVI ou "son meilleur ennemi", au choix. Hans Küng, 82 ans, se tient droit derrière la baie vitrée de son étrange maison cubique située sur les hauteurs de Tübingen, ville universitaire du Bade-Wurtemberg, où le destin du théologien suisse, ordonné prêtre à 26 ans, et du théologien bavarois Joseph Ratzinger se sont intimement liés pour mieux se séparer.

1966: les deux plus jeunes artisans du concile Vatican II, qui s’est achevé un an auparavant, poursuivent leur réflexion sur l’Eglise du 20e siècle. Küng, doyen de l’université catholique de Tübingen, fait engager "l’érudit Ratzinger" dont il apprécie alors "la pensée éclairée" et "les qualités humaines". S’ensuivent trois années d’une intense collaboration durant lesquelles Küng sent poindre le traditionalisme de son acolyte.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:29 AM

Laughter, Music and Healing

UNITED STATES
The Garden of Roses: Stories of Abuse and Healing

Virginia Jones

I’ve had a busy week and couldn’t write a complete post. I have one I am working on about the importance of friends to walk with us as we heal, but it isn’t ready, but I was a naughty girl this morning. Instead of doing some really important paperwork, I played around on You Tube and put together a favorite video/song list for my You Tube channel --

http://www.youtube.com/user/StopAbuseHealWounds.

I don’t know how to create the link, so you will just have to cut and paste to get to the channel if this doesn’t work.

My favorite songs lean heavily to funny and/or uplifting. I found a blog this week that accused me of being “icky sticky sweet”. I take that as a compliment. Life is meant to be enjoyed. Even when terrible things happen to us, it is possible to find joy and laughter. Before I get to the songs I thought I want to add a few comments on joy and laughter.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:26 AM

Babeu is new face of Arizona sheriffs

ARIZONA
Arizona Daily Star

May 23--You've probably seen him by now, in one of numerous TV interviews or walking with Sen. John McCain along the U.S.-Mexico border fence in the senator's latest television ad.

He's the blue-eyed, shaved-headed man in a crisp sheriff's uniform describing "off-the-charts" violence in Arizona, defending the state's new immigration-enforcement law and lamenting the federal government's inability to secure the border.

"Senator, you're one of us," he tells McCain in the political advertisement.

But who is he? ...

What Babeu learned, he said, is "In the end, every man, every woman has to stand on their own efforts."

The family's life was made harder by encountering Father Richard Lavigne, a Catholic priest who rotated around the Springfield, Mass., diocese for years in the 1970s and '80s, abusing children as he moved. One of the victims was Paul's brother Fran. Another was Paul himself.

In 1986, Paul Babeu, with the help of a Catholic nun and priest, told the diocese Lavigne had abused him. But the diocese let Lavigne remain active as a priest until he was arrested for abusing two other children in 1991. Their inaction is what infuriated Babeu: He estimated in 2002 that Lavigne victimized 10 more children after he spoke up.

Retired journalist Bill Zajac, whose reporting on Bishop Thomas Dupre of Springfield helped force the bishop out, remembered Babeu as an unusual victim in that the abuse hadn't broken him.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:15 AM

WENDY J. MURPHY: Justice suffers when stereotypes used to reach verdict

UNITED STATES
The Patriot Ledger

COMMENTARY BY WENDY J. MURPHY — A female ex-kindergarten teacher from Tennessee named Tonya Craft was recently on trial for molesting three little girls, including her own daughter. The victims, now between ages 7 and 9, were between 5 and 7 when they separately reported in vivid detail that Craft committed several sex crimes against them.

The defense claimed the girls were lying, even though two of them had genital injuries that couldn’t otherwise be explained. It’s certainly possible for kids to lie, even about abuse, but three little girls, who had no way of knowing about adult sexual behavior, duping experienced prosecutors into bringing completely false charges?! All the research says this is impossible. ...

None of this correlates being gay with being dangerous to kids, and there’s been too much bigotry about this issue directed at the gay community primarily because of the Catholic Church crisis, in which priests disproportionately targeted male victims. It’s too bad the media didn’t do a better job showcasing the huge percentage of female victims abused by priests. That might have prevented unfair social myths from developing such strong roots.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:07 AM

The Ryan Report one year later: Still no accountability for the Church

IRELAND
Global Comment

By Feature Writer Mór Rígan

May 22, 2010

Thursday was the first anniversary of the publication of the Commission of Inquiry into Child Abuse. Commonly called the Ryan Report, its publication cumulated in the realisation of the extent of the violence, rape and sexual assault that children suffered in the care of the Catholic Church. I have written more here. Eight organisations (Barnardos, CARI, Children’s Rights Alliance, Irish Association of Young People in Care, ISPCC, One in Four, Rape Crisis Network of Ireland and Dublin Rape Crisis Centre) met to discuss progress on the implementation of the Ryan Report.

To this day not a single additional penny has been paid by the eighteen religious congregations that committed crimes against children. I say additional because the Irish Government struck a shameful deal with the religious orders in 2002. The then Minister for Education Michael Woods and Attorney General Michael McDowell struck a secret deal. It was never put before parliament and there was no vote. In short, religious orders were awarded indemnity against all legal claims provided they supplied €128m in cash and property. The idea was that if there was a shortfall, the taxpayer would provide. Woods expected around 2000 claimants and a total cost of around €300m.

Fast forward to 2010, and 14 000 claimants have come forward. The bill is expected to be around €1.3bn. And the religious orders have not contributed a single additional penny. The congregations claim that the Irish Government had not yet provided the details of what further contributions are required.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:03 AM

Ann Bailey, Grand Forks, column: Raw bigotry against Catholic Church repels

GRAND FORKS (ND)
Grand Forks Herald

By Ann Bailey

GRAND FORKS - I typically don't write about controversial issues. But i feel compelled to point out what seems like an unfair level of attacks on something important to me: my Roman Catholic faith.

Lately, it’s been under siege on talk radio, in newspaper commentaries and especially on the Herald’s website.

Here’s an example with original spelling and syntax, from a recent web comment in the Herald on a question about Pope Benedict and the Catholic Church:

I recognize that the abuse of children by evil priests is something that causes many, including non-Catholics, to become disillusioned with the church. Some people end up leaving the church, and some are just saddened. Those responses I can understand, even if I don’t agree with them.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:58 AM

HC: Accused’s reputation irrelevant in criminal case

INDIA
The Asian Age

May 23rd, 2010 -- SUCHITRA KALYAN MOHANTY | New Delhi.Share ..The high court has said that the reputation of the accused before committing crime should not be considered while adjudicating criminal cases when evidence is against them.

“It was reported recently in the newspapers that a Cardinal, a person of a fairly high standing in the Church, admitted to sexually abusing young boys. What we want to convey is that the cloak of a stature cannot be used as a cover, if otherwise there is good and credible evidence pointing towards the guilt of a person,” Justice Pradeep Nandrajog said.

“The most pious men are found to be indulging in the most nefarious activities. Everyday, a controversy on the issue of sexual abuse of young boys by priests appears in the newspapers pertaining to the visit of the Pope to the United Kingdom,” the court said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:55 AM

Local view: Newspaper’s coverage of Catholic Church and sexual abuse unfair, unbalanced

MINNESOTA
Duluth News Tribune

By: Scott Pionk

You would think with the consistent, front-page coverage the News Tribune has given the Catholic Church sex-abuse scandal that there must have been a flare-up of abuse or a coverup in the church.

Yet, in 2009, of 223 reported cases investigated in the U.S., six were credible, according to Newsweek. In addition, there were approximately 3,000 cases investigated worldwide from 2001 to 2009. By contrast, between 1991 and 2000 there were 290,000 cases of sexual abuse reported in U.S. public schools.

Still, two or three times a week lately, it seems, front-page headlines have focused on the Catholic Church and its handling of the problem. We’ve seen unfair, unbalanced reporting and stories with victims stating the church has done nothing to deal with the problem when, in fact, the steps the church has taken would fill pages of the News Tribune.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:51 AM

Panel: no penalties for not reporting abuses

GERMANY
Gulf Times (Qatar)

Reuters/Berlin

German churches, child protection agencies and officials have said that they opposed legal action against people who fail to report child abuse cases, many of them linked to Roman Catholic clergy.

“There’s general consensus amongst the table that there shouldn’t be any new penalty,” Germany’s justice minister said. “We’re thinking of the victims. They have to trust that they won’t be called by police, before they are ready.”

The minister, Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger, spoke to reporters after the first meeting of a round table working group to discuss over 250 charges of child abuse in Germany, most of them at Catholic schools and dating from several decades ago.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:47 AM

In praise of priests

MALTA
Times of Malta

Fr Joe Borg

The Year of the Priests which is almost over was not the best of years for the clergy. The main debate in the media and in many circles, including Church ones, was not about the identity of the priest or his role in society. The debate about sexual abuse by priests overpowered everything else.

There was the publication of the reports about the fracas in Ireland. Then the floodgates were opened: Austria, Germany, Holland and Belgium. It seems that Spain and Italy will be the next stations of this neverending, self-imposed Via Crucis.

I have written so often about this 'filth' (the word Pope Benedict himself used) that no one can accuse me of ignoring it. However, reducing discussions about the priesthood to discussions about paedophilia is a travesty of reality and an affront to the truth.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:42 AM

May 22, 2010

Archbishop says scale of sex abuse can't be denied

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

The Archbishop of Canberra and Goulburn, Mark Coleridge, has called on Catholic leaders to do everything possible to stop sexual abuse within the Church.

Archbishop Coleridge says he accepts there is a cultural problem within the Church that has led to the abuse, and an institutional pride that has prevented many from speaking out.

The Archbishop will raise the issue in his pastoral address to the community this week.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:43 PM

Padre polonês suspeito de violentar menor se entrega

BRASIL
Extra

Nascido na terra do Papa João Paulo II, o padre polonês Marcin Michael Strachanowski, de 44 anos, seguiu um caminho bem diferente do compatriota. O religioso, suspeito de abusar sexualmente de um menor, se apresentou ontem na 33ª DP (Realengo). O sacerdote estava com a prisão preventiva decretada pela 1ª Vara Criminal de Bangu desde quinta-feira. O juiz Alexandre Abrahão Dias Teixeira acolheu a denúncia apresentada pelo Ministério Público contra o religioso.

Segundo a denúncia da 29ª Promotoria de Investigação Penal, em março de 2007, na casa paroquial da Igreja Divino Espírito Santo, em Realengo, o padre constrangeu o menor sexualmente, usando violência. O religioso teria, inclusive, algemado o menor antes de praticar sexo oral e uma tentativa de sexo anal com a vítima.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:56 PM

Padre acusado de molestar dentro de igreja se apresenta à polícia

BRASIL
SRZD

O padre polonês Marcin Michael Strachanowski, de 44 anos, se apresentou no fim da tarde desta última sexta-feira na 33ª DP (Realengo). Ele é suspeito de praticar abusos sexuais contra um jovem e teve prisão preventiva decretada pelo juiz da 1ª Vara Criminal de Bangu, Alexandre Abrahão. O religioso apareceu na delegacia acompanhado por um delegado e vai ficar em uma cela especial na Polinter do Grajaú (Zona Norte do Rio), uma vez que tem diploma de curso superior.

De acordo com a determinação judicial, Marcin usava a Internet para aliciar jovens e transformou a Igreja do Divino Espírito Santo, em Realengo, em uma "masmorra erótica". A suposta vítima do abuso teria 16 anos em 2008.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:52 PM

Brazil: Polish Priest Strachanowski Surrenders Over Sex Abuse

BRAZIL
World of 22 News

Marcin Michael Strachanowski, wanted over allegations of committing child adultery, has reportedly surrendered himself at a police station late Friday night. The 44-year old priest from Poland had been facing an arrest warrant from a Brazilian court, after being accused of sexually abusing a 16-year old 'altar boy in Rio de Janeiro back in 2007.

On Thursday, Judge Alexandre Abrahao Dias of a Rio de Janeiro court had issued the arrest warrant, saying that investigators had found “erotic material sent to the victim via Internet to seduce him” and that the priest also took other youths to the parish house, “which he converted into a kind of erotic dungeon where he submitted them, often with the use of handcuffs, to orgies.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:50 PM

Victims frustrated by Adelaide archbishop

AUSTRALIA
ABC - AM

[with audio]

ELIZABETH JACKSON: The Catholic Archbishop of Adelaide, who has been embroiled in priest sex abuse claims in New South Wales, says he had no idea of the abuse perpetrated by a colleague in his former diocese.

Archbishop Philip Wilson has told the ABC's Stateline program in South Australia that he never saw one incident of abuse. The response has done little to quell the anger of victims.

Bronwyn Herbert reports.

BRONWYN HERBERT: The Newcastle/Maitland diocese is at the epicentre of more than a hundred alleged cases of sexual abuse by at least five different priests.

This week Lateline revealed that one of the Catholic Church's highest leaders, Archbishop Philip Wilson, lived in the same house as a clergyman who was convicted of sexually abusing a teenager.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:42 PM

HELPING VICTIMS OF CLERGY SEXUAL ABUSE: SUGGESTIONS FOR POPE BENEDICT XVI

UNITED STATES
Road to Recovery

Robert M. Hoatson, Ph.D

Pope Benedict XVI has given indications that he is finally “getting it” regarding clergy sexual abuse. During his recent trip to Portugal, he boldly and correctly concluded that the clergy sexual abuse scandal of the Roman Catholic Church is rooted not in covert or overt attacks from the media, survivors of abuse, lawyers, or any other group, but in the “sins’ of those in the Church. The abuse and its cover-up are rooted in the internal dynamics, policies, and personalities of the Church itself, and it behooves the Church at this time to begin implementing practices and procedures that focus on restorative justice for the victims.

In 2003, a priest colleague, Father Ken Lasch of the Paterson, New Jersey, diocese, and I were so moved and disturbed by the stories and plights of clergy abuse survivors that we founded an organization that would deliver direct services to them. Besides the obvious symptoms of guilt, shame, depression, anxiety and a host of other life-long effects that result from the sexual abuse endured by these men and women when they were children, we noticed that many (most) victims we deal with have difficulty holding jobs, entering into and maintaining relationships, renting apartments and houses, keeping their families in food and clothing, and essentially surviving from day to day.

Road to Recovery, Inc., the non-profit organization that Father Lasch and I founded, is the only organization in the United States (perhaps in the world) that provides victims of clergy sexual abuse with financial and other direct aid to help them recover from the ordeal of sexual abuse. Currently, we help dozens of victims with their medical, psychological, spiritual, and financial needs even though we are a simple operation with a skeleton staff and limited resources. Thanks to many faithful and generous Catholics and non-Catholics, we continue to help victims with their everyday needs such as food, clothing, doctor visits, rent, travel, and medicine. In a few cases, we have freed clergy abuse survivors from prison and started them on their roads to recovery.” Since 2003, Road to Recovery has worked with well over one thousand victims and their families. After all, sexual abuse of a child becomes a family tragedy and scandal, not just one that is inflicted on the child. Whole families are affected, and whole families need healing.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:53 AM

THE ROME in Catholic Church

CANADA
Winnipeg Free Press

By: DeLloyd J. Guth

22/05/2010

Why has the Roman Catholic Church all but abandoned its own canon law court system, except for the marriage annulment procedure?

For more than 15 centuries this church has had its own rule-of-law courts for resolving disputes peacefully and for disciplining both its laity and its clergy. In theory that system still exists in its unique Code of Canon Law, recently revised in 1983.

Why do we never hear about this, whether from the pope or the Sunday pulpit? And why not specifically for cases of "sexual abuse of minors?"

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:35 AM

Aussie priest fired after quest for love

AUSTRALIA
The Nelson Mail

By JACQUELINE MALEY - Sydney Morning Herald

The Anglican Bishop of Newcastle stood before the angry congregation of Terrigal parish on Sunday and explained to them why he had fired and defrocked their priest, John Gumbley.

When Bishop Brian Farran finished talking, the parishioners deluged him with complaints. They scorned the procedures of the ecclesiastical court which sacked Gumbley. One man said he was questioning his faith in the Anglican church. Three or four people walked out and a couple of elderly women got the shakes from all the commotion.

It was as close as the Holy Trinity congregation has ever got to the set of The Jerry Springer Show. "The congregation virtually took over and tore the bishop apart," says a parishioner, Trevor Williams. "Everyone was in favour of John."

Gumbley was stood down after the Anglican professional standards board found he had engaged in sexual liaisons, one with a woman from his parish.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:34 AM

Padre é acusado de transformar igreja em "masmorra erótica"

BRASIL
terra

O juiz da 1ª Vara Criminal de Bangu (RJ), Alexandre Abrahão, decretou, na quinta-feira, a prisão preventiva do padre polonês M. M. S., de 44 anos, acusado de ter algemado um jovem de 16 anos e de ter praticado sexo oral nele, na casa paroquial Igreja Divino Espírito Santo de Realengo, em 2007.

Segundo a denúncia do Ministério Público Estadual, a vítima conta que M. chegou a oferecer dinheiro para calá-lo e o ameaçou, dizendo que "já sabia as flores que colocaria em seu caixão".

"O indiciado é uma pessoa compulsivamente ligada a sexo com adolescentes. O acusado arregimentava esse rebanho de inocentes para sua casa paroquial", escreveu o juiz na decisão. O jovem detalhou as tentativas do padre em aliciá-lo. Ele havia deixado a igreja em 2006, após dois anos servindo como coroinha. Mas M. o convenceu a voltar a frequentar a paróquia em 2007.

O abuso teria ocorrido próximo ao período de Carnaval daquele ano. "Ele solicitou a presença do jovem na casa paroquial, que estava deserta. No quarto, no segundo andar, após algemá-lo à cama, o despiu e nele praticou sexo oral", descreve a denúncia. Diante da recusa do garoto por sexo anal, M. teria lhe oferecido dinheiro pelo silêncio.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:32 AM

Polícia procura padre polonês acusado de atentado violento ao pudor

BRASIL
O Dia

POR ADRIANA CRUZ

Rio - A Polícia Civil informou, nesta sexta-feira, que está a procura do padre M.M.S., acusado de transformar a casa paroquial da Igreja Divino Espírito Santo de Realengo, em 2007 , em uma ‘masmorra erótica’. Os agentes estão em vários bairros do Rio, mas ainda não têm pistas do paradeiro dele. A denúncia foi feita por O Dia na quinta-feira.

Na quinta-feira, o juiz da 1ª Vara Criminal de Bangu, Alexandre Abrahão, decretou a prisão preventiva do sacerdote. Segundo a denúncia do Ministério Público Estadual, o religioso teria algemado um jovem, então com 16 anos, e feito sexo oral nele, na casa paroquial. A vítima conta que M. chegou a oferecer dinheiro para calá-lo e o ameaçou, dizendo que “já sabia as flores que colocaria em seu caixão”.

“O indiciado é uma pessoa compulsivamente ligada a sexo com adolescentes. O acusado arregimentava esse rebanho de inocentes para sua casa paroquial”, escreveu o juiz na decisão.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:29 AM

Polícia tenta prender padre polonês denunciado por pedofila

BRASIL
Extra

A Polícia Civil está tentando localizar e prender um padre polonês acusado de pedofilia. A 1ª Vara Criminal de Bangu decretou a prisão do padre polonês M.M.S., por crime de violência sexual contra um adolescente de 16 anos, nesta quinta-feira. O Juiz Alexandre Abrahão Dias Teixeira acolheu a denúncia apresentada pelo Ministério Público contra o religioso.

Segundo a denúncia da 29ª Promotoria de Investigação Penal, da 1ª Central de Inquéritos, no início do mês de março de 2007, na casa paroquial da Igreja Divino espírito Santo, em Realengo, o denunciado constrangeu o menor sexualmente, mediante violência. O padre teria empregado inclusive algemas no jovem, antes de praticar sexo oral e tentativa de sexo anal com a vítima.

A vítima foi coroinha na Paróquia Divino Espírito Santo e desligou-se em 2006 do grupo de jovens da Igreja. No começo de 2007, o padre iniciou uma troca de mensagens pornográficas pela internet com o menor, então com 16 anos.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:25 AM

Priest accused of turning home into 'erotic dungeon' where he held orgies with teens: reports

BRAZIL
Sydney Morning Herald

May 22, 2010

A Polish priest living in Brazil has been arrested on charges of pedophilia and of turning his home into an "erotic dungeon" where he organised orgies with teenagers, Brazilian media reported.

The cleric, identified only by his initials MMS, is "a person compulsively attached to sex with adolescents", the judge overseeing the case, Alexandre Abrahao Teixeira, said in his decision to issue a preventive detention order on Friday.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:21 AM

Sacred Heart congregation, fired executive trade claims in lawsuits

WISCONSIN
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

By Bruce Vielmetti of the Journal Sentinel

Posted: May 22, 2010

From its headquarters in Franklin, the development office for the Priests of the Sacred Heart raises $20 million a year to support a monastery there and priests working around the world.

Some of those donations allegedly did not make it to the charitable end for which they were intended.

According to a civil lawsuit pending in Milwaukee County Circuit Court, a former executive director of the organization's fund-raising arm has "misappropriated significant sums of money" from the congregation for personal expenses, and now a self-insurance fund that covers the Priests of the Sacred Heart's losses wants the money back.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:16 AM

Diocese to merge 8 more parishes

NEW JERSEY
Courier-Post

By JIM WALSH • Courier-Post Staff • May 22, 2010

The Diocese of Camden announced merger dates Friday for eight parishes across South Jersey.

The June 23 mergers will form three new parishes -- based at the current Holy Name of Jesus Church in Mullica Hill, St. Joseph Church in Hammonton and St. John of God Church in North Cape May.

Bishop Joseph Galante now has issued 18 decrees since June 2009 in an ongoing effort to cut the number of parishes in the diocese almost by half. Decrees have yet to be issued for 20 consolidations, the diocese said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:12 AM

Windsor Basilian priest arraigned on sex charge

CANADA
The Windsor Star

By Frances Willick, The Windsor Star

A Basilian priest and former Windsor high school principal has been charged with sexually abusing a child in an allegation that dates back to the 1980s.

Rev. William Hodgson (Hod) Marshall, 87, appeared in court Wednesday to face a charge of sexual abuse for incidents that occurred during a period he was working at a Windsor school from 1981 to 1985.

It is unclear at which school Marshall was serving during the years the alleged incidents took place, and it is unknown whether his alleged victim was a student.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:10 AM

Diocese to cut 49 jobs in face of expected loss

SPRINGFIELD (MA)
The Republican

Saturday, May 22, 2010
By STEPHANIE BARRY
sbarry@repub.com
SPRINGFIELD - The Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfield has announced it will cut 49 positions in the face of a projected $5 million deficit in the coming year.

The figure represents 36 percent of the current workforce, officials said. The layoffs will close the budget gap considerably but not entirely, according to a statement released by Bishop Timothy A. McDonnell.

Some departments or diocesan agencies will be reduced or altogether eliminated, officials said. They did not release names or titles of those who will be cut from the payroll starting July 1. McDonnell's two-page statement issued on Thursday suggested the deep cuts were vital to keeping the local church afloat.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:07 AM

Gardaí re-submit file on alleged 1980s sex assault

IRELAND
Breaking News

Gardaí have re-submitted a file to the DPP after re-interviewing an elderly priest in the Diocese of Cloyne about an allegation that he sexually assaulted a teenager in the 1980s.

The second interview was arranged after new information emerged following a review by the Catholic Church's watchdog on child protection practices in the diocese.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:02 AM

Charged priest faced similar allegations

CANADA
The Windsor Star

By Sarah Sacheli and Trevor Wilhelm, The Windsor Star

A Basilian priest charged with sexually abusing a child in Windsor has faced similar allegations before.

Rev. William Hodgson Marshall, 87, was taken to small claims court in Sudbury in 2002 by a man who claimed the priest had sexually abused him. According to newspaper archives from the Sudbury Star, the allegations dated to the late 1960s and early 1970s when Marshall taught at an all-boys high school.

The Basilian Fathers, a congregation of priests within the Catholic church, this week revealed that Marshall is facing allegations related to his “ministerial assignment” in Windsor. Windsor police Insp. Randy Gould confirmed Friday Marshall faces one count of indecent assault for alleged abuse of a boy between 1981 and 1985. The alleged abuse took place in Windsor and Sault Ste. Marie.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:59 AM

Victim alleges abuse took place here and in Soo

CANADA
The Windsor Star

Windsor lawyer Andrew Bradie has been retained by a Basilian priest charged with sexually abusing a child in Windsor more than two decades ago.

Rev. William Hodgson Marshall, 87, who is facing one count of indecent assault for alleged abuse of a boy between 1981 and 1985, travelled to Windsor this week to be fingerprinted.

Bradie said he will appear for Marshall when his case is in court for the first time June 2.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:54 AM

‘Brothers began abusing boy when he was aged 5’

UNITED KINGDOM
Cambridge News

John Goode

A victim of sexual abuse has told a jury that his ordeal started when he was between 5 and 6-years-old.

John ConwayThe man, now 37, has been giving evidence in the trial of former postman and church missionary John Patrick Conway.

He denies six charges of indecent assault on a boy under 14 between April 1979 and May 1986. His twin brother Martyn has admitted six charges of sexual assault on the same boy.

The brothers, aged 50, befriended the boy at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in Cherry Hinton where many of the assaults took place, Cambridge Crown Court heard yesterday.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:40 AM

Despite recent scandals, many area Catholics hold strong to their religion

KANSAS CITY (MO)
The Kansas City Star

By HELEN T. GRAY
The Kansas City Star

Multiple choice:

A. The Catholic Church = sexually abusive priests and cover-up bishops

B. The Catholic Church = the Vatican and church hierarchy

C. The Catholic Church = local parishes, charity and grassroots ministries

D. All of the above

Your answer may depend on your experiences and whom you listen to.

Among area Catholics who were asked about their church, answers varied. Almost unanimous, however, was the view that while the scandals are terrible, the church is greater than the scandals.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:37 AM

Rebel Nuns

UNITED STATES
The Daily Beast

by Michelle Goldberg

A nun excommunicated for allowing an abortion to save a mother’s life, nuns breaking with Rome to support health-care reform—what’s gotten into the sisters? Michelle Goldberg on the Vatican’s latest scofflaws.

The Catholic Church has claimed that it lacked the resources to properly investigate its sexual-abuse epidemic. It has blamed church bureaucracy for its failure to act quickly against pedophile priests, and has made much of the need to protect priests before they’re proven guilty.

When it comes to nuns, though, the church is somehow able to act with alacrity. This week, Bishop Thomas J. Olmsted of Phoenix announced the excommunication of Sister Margaret McBride for the crime of approving an abortion necessary to save a woman’s life. The patient, a 27-year-old who was 11 weeks pregnant, had pulmonary hypertension, which interferes with the functioning of the heart and lungs. Pregnancy exacerbates the condition, and doctors at St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center determined that she would die without an abortion. St. Joseph’s is Catholic, so an ethics committee meeting was convened. As part of the committee, Sister McBride opted to save the patient’s life. For that, she’s been rebuked, transferred, and essentially barred from participating in Catholic life.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:33 AM

Lawsuit targets retired bishops Allegations against ex-priest

NORTH ADAMS (MA)
Bennington Banner

MEGHAN FOLEY
Posted: 05/21/2010

Friday May 21, 2010
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. -- A former local man who alleges he was molested by former Rev. Richard R. Lavigne is suing two retired bishops of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfield for negligence. Peter J. Caffrey, 47, of Michigan announced the lawsuit this week from the steps of the Franklin County Courthouse in Greenfield with his attorney, John Stobierski of Greenfield.

In the lawsuit, Caffrey, who is a mechanical engineer with the U.S. EnvironmentalProtection Agency, allegesthe Most Rev. JosephF. Maguire and the Most Rev. Thomas L. Dupre were negligent in supervising Lavigne. Lavigne, who was convicted of two counts of child molestation in 1992, served at North Adams’ St. Francis of Assisi Church from 1976 to 1977 before being transferred to St. Joseph’s Church in Shelburne Falls.

In a telephone interview, Stobierski said Caffrey was sexually abused by Lavigne at St. Francis, and then at Lavigne’s lake house in Ashfield.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:30 AM

Retiring bishop talks about the highs and lows

INDIANA
Journal & Courier

By BOB SCOTT • bscott@jconline.com • May 22, 2010

After a record tenure of 26 years as bishop of the Diocese of Lafayette-in-Indiana, the Rev. William Higi is entering retirement. The Anderson native turns 77 on Aug. 29.

Last year, Higi celebrated a double jubilee -- 50 years as a priest and 25 years as a bishop.
He submitted his resignation in 2008 at age 75 as required by the pope. During his time as bishop, he confirmed more than 26,000 people, and the diocese grew by more than 21,000 to 105,000. ...

Q: What was the low point during your time as bishop?
A: The low point of my tenure as diocesan bishop has been the burden of addressing the sexual abuse reality at a time when few if anyone understood that phenomenon and how it should be addressed.

The learning curve was painful. Yet, I firmly believe that this diocese and the Catholic Church in this country learned quickly and is on the cutting edge of making our world safe for children.

Not only do we go to great lengths to make sure that both adults and children understand boundaries, but the responsibility to report abuse to child protection agencies, how to recognize grooming that typically precedes boundary violations and what happens when someone crosses the line.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:23 AM

May 21, 2010

Italian bishop testifies in priest abuse trial

ROME
CNN

By Hada Messia, CNN
May 21, 2010

Rome, Italy (CNN) -- An Italian bishop testified this week in the trial of a priest accused of child abuse, saying that although the accusations were "alarming," he did not stop the priest's contact with children.

Monsignor Gino Reali took the stand Thursday at Rome's Tribunal courthouse, which was packed with journalists and about 50 supporters of the priest, the Rev. Ruggero Conti.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:16 PM

Lexington priest gets a year in jail on abuse charges

KENTUCKY
Lexington Herald-Leader

By Jennifer Hewlett - jhewlett@herald-leader.com

The Rev. Joseph Muench, the former pastor of Mary Queen of the Holy Rosary Parish in Lexington who was criminally charged in a sex-abuse case last fall, is to begin a one-year stint in jail on Monday.

Muench was sentenced Friday to a year in jail on an amended charge of first-degree unlawful imprisonment, which is a felony, and to a year in jail on an amended charge of first-degree criminal attempt to commit sexual abuse, a misdemeanor. The sentences, handed down in Franklin Circuit Court, are to run concurrently.

Muench, 55, was indicted in October on two counts of first-degree sexual abuse. Had he been found guilty of those original felony charges, he could have received up to 10 years in prison. But he entered an Alford plea to the amended charges in March. In an Alford plea, a defendant does not admit guilt but acknowledges that enough evidence exists for judge or a jury to find the defendant guilty.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:13 PM

Unsanctioned Ordination: Washington's First Catholic Woman Priest

WASHINGTON
OBP News

BY AUSTIN JENKINS

Olympia, WA May 21, 2010

Washington is about to have its first Roman Catholic woman priest. Oregon has at least four. And many more serve around the country. The unsanctioned ordination will take place Saturday in Olympia.

Diane Smith Whalen says she's been called to the priesthood since she was a girl. She's a lifelong Catholic, married with two grown daughters. Has a Doctor of Ministry and works as a spiritual counselor.

For thirty years she was an active member of her Olympia parish. But now she's about to do something that will result in her excommunication from the Catholic Church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:05 PM

Polish priest accused of running pedophile 'dungeon'

BRAZIL
Montreal Gazette

Agence France-Presse May 21, 2010
RIO DE JANEIRO - A Polish priest living in Brazil has been arrested on charges of pedophilia and of turning his home into an "erotic dungeon" where he organized orgies with teenagers, Brazilian media reported Friday.

The cleric, identified only by his initials MMS, is "a person compulsively attached to sex with adolescents," the judge overseeing the case, Alexandre Abrahao Teixeira, said in his decision to issue a preventive detention order.

The priest ran a church in the west of Rio de Janeiro state and used his spiritual authority over the youths to prey on them, the judge said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:01 PM

Bishop did not believe allegations over ‘abuser’ priest, court hears

ROME
The Times (United Kingdom)

Richard Owen in Rome

A Catholic diocesan bishop on the Vatican’s doorstep admitted today that he did not suspend or report a priest now on trial for sex abuse because he believed that the allegations were rumours.

Gino Reali, Bishop of Porto Santa Rufina, was giving evidence in the trial of Father Ruggero Conti, a former parish priest who was arrested in June 2008 and accused of molesting seven children between 2002 and 2006.

Nino Marazzita, a lawyer for two of the alleged victims, said that Bishop Reali’s appearance in court marked the first time that an Italian bishop had been called to the witness stand in a paedophilia trial. He said that Bishop Reali should himself face investigation for having concealed a crime.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:56 PM

Piusbrüder: "Homosexualität, nicht Zölibat ist Problem"

EUROPE
Die Presse

Ein "Bischof" der von katholischen Ämtern ausgeschlossenen Bruderschaft fordert in einem Interview Konsequenzen in der Kirche: "Will man Missbrauch verhindern, muss man Homosexuelle vom Priestertum fernhalten".

Die traditionalistische Priesterbruderschaft St. Pius X. (FSSPX) des verstorbenen französischen Konzilsgegners Erzbischof Marcel Lefebvre fordert als Konsequenz aus dem Missbrauchskandal in Einrichtungen der Kirche, dass Homosexuelle vom Priesteramt fernzuhalten sind. Bischof Bernard Fellay, Generalsuperior der Bruderschaft, sagt im deutschen Nachrichtenmagazin "Der Spiegel", die vom sexuellen Missbrauch Betroffenen seien "nahezu ausschließlich Jungen im geschlechtsreifen Alter". Das wertet Fellay als Beweis dafür, dass nicht der Zölibat das Problem der Kirche sei, sondern die Homosexualität. "Will man Missbrauch verhindern, muss man Homosexuelle vom Priestertum fernhalten", sagte Fellay.

[summary]

Bishop Bernard Fellay of the traditionalist Society of St. Pius X, said the sexual abuse scandal in the Catholic Church is a result of homosexuals and they must be kept away from the priesthood.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:49 PM

File on Cloyne priest resubmitted to DPP

IRELAND
The Irish Times

BARRY ROCHE Southern Correspondent, in Cork

GARDAÍ HAVE resubmitted a file to the DPP after reinterviewing an elderly priest in the diocese of Cloyne.

They took the action on foot of new material which came to light in a review of the diocese’s handling of a complaint alleging that the priest had sexually assaulted a young boy.

Detectives added new material to the file after they reinterviewed the elderly priest, identified as “Fr A” by chief executive of the National Board for Safeguarding Children Ian Elliott when he looked at Cloyne child-protection practices in 2008.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:47 PM

Priest in Brazil accused of having 'erotic dungeon'

BRAZIL
CNN

A warrant has been issued for the arrest of a Polish-born priest accused of sexually abusing minors in his parochial residence, Rio de Janeiro state officials said Thursday.

State civil police issued a "preventative arrest warrant" for the Polish-born priest Marcin Michal Strachanowski, 44, who is accused of handcuffing a minor in 2006 and forcing him to perform deviant sexual acts in his residence in the Divino Espírito Santo church in Rio de Janeiro's West zone, the officials said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:51 PM

Rowlett priest on leave after parishioners report inappropriate touching

TEXAS
The Dallas Morning News

By MATTHEW HAAG / The Dallas Morning News
mhaag@dallasnews.com

A longtime Catholic priest has been placed on leave and is under investigation by Rowlett police after two teenage girls and some parish staff members accused him of touching them inappropriately.

The women told the Catholic Diocese of Dallas that in recent months the Rev. Bob Crisp, a priest at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, had made them feel uncomfortable, giving them lengthy hugs and rubbing his feet against their legs. The hugs and leg rubs took place at the Rowlett church when other parishioners were nearby, said diocese spokeswoman Annette Gonzales Taylor.

"It was never that he took someone off alone," she said. "It always happened in front of other people, whether in a meeting or in a gathering area."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:46 PM

Brazil orders Polish priest arrested in abuse case

BRAZIL
The Associated Press

By STAN LEHMAN (AP)

SAO PAULO — A judge in Brazil has ordered the arrest of a Polish priest suspected of sexually abusing a teenager in a Rio de Janeiro suburb.

State prosecutors have accused 44-year-old Marcin Michael Strachanowski of handcuffing the 16-year-old former altar boy to a bed three years ago in the parish house where the priest lived and threatening to kill the youth if he spoke of the abuse.

"I already know the flowers I will place on your coffin," Strachanowski warned, according to prosecutors.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:43 PM

I never covered up abuse, says Archbishop Philip Wilson

AUSTRALIA
Herald Sun

By Michael Owen From: The Australian May 22, 2010

THE Catholic Archbishop of Adelaide, Philip Wilson, has denied claims he covered up sex abuse involving the clergy in NSW.

Archbishop Wilson maintained he had not mishandled nor covered up sexual abuse cases during his time in the Maitland-Newcastle diocese, north of Sydney, in the late 1970s and 80s.

"I have always tried to act correctly in these areas, and to do what's right, and I have such an abhorrence of this," he said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:37 PM

Former Good Shepherd associate pastor sentenced to one year in jail for attempted sex abuse

KENTUCKY
State-Journal

By Paul Glasser

A former Good Shepherd associate pastor who pleaded guilty to charges of unlawful imprisonment and attempted sexual abuse will begin serving a one-year jail sentence on Monday.

Circuit Judge Thomas Wingate ordered Rev. Joseph N. Muench, 55, of Lexington, to report to the Franklin County Regional Jail at 8 a.m. Monday.

Wingate sentenced Muench (pronounced “Minch”) on Friday to one year on each count to run concurrently and denied his attorney’s request for probation.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:35 PM

No return for Hunter pedophile priest

AUSTRALIA
Herald

BY JOANNE MCCARTHY
21 May, 2010

ONE of the Hunter’s most notorious pedophile priests, Vince Ryan, was denied a first taste of freedom today after the State Parole Authority held over his release from jail following a 14-year sentence for child sex offences.

Ryan, 72, will remain in Long Bay Jail for at least another two months, but will not be returning to the Hunter even on his release under the terms of a formal memorandum of understanding with the Catholic Church’s Maitland-Newcastle Bishop Michael Malone.

Ryan ‘‘certainly will not be in the Hunter and will not be in the diocese’’, the bishop said during an interview yesterday.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:31 PM

Adelaide Archbishop denies sex-abuse knowledge

AUSTRALIA
ABC - Lateline

Broadcast: 21/05/2010

Reporter: Leigh Sales

The Catholic Archbishop of Adelaide, Philip Wilson, says he was unaware of sexual abuse by other priests in the 1970s and 80s.

Transcript
LEIGH SALES, PRESENTER: The Catholic Archbishop of Adelaide has denied knowing about sexual abuse by another priest in the New South Wales Hunter Valley in the 1980s. Police are investigating complaints from victims who allege he failed to report sexual abuse by clergy against children.

An abuse victim told Lateline earlier this week that Philip Wilson lived in the same house as an abusive priest and couldn't have avoided seeing him coming or going from the priest's bedroom.

PHILIP WILSON, CATHOLIC ARCHBISHOP OF ADELAIDE: I think that those things at that time were pretty loose, but I had to make it clear that I didn't see anything at that time that indicated abuse was happening. I had no inkling that that was taking place.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:21 PM

Bethany infants buried in unmarked graves

IRELAND
RTE News

Friday, 21 May 2010

The unmarked graves of 40 children from a Protestant residential institution have been discovered in a Dublin cemetery.

They contain the bodies of former residents of the Bethany Home in Rathgar and date from 75 years ago.

A group of survivors, who say they suffered gross neglect there, are demanding access to the State's redress scheme, which applies to similar institutions.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:18 PM

The autonomy of bishops, and suing the Vatican

UNITED STATES
National Catholic Reporter

May. 21, 2010
By John L Allen Jr

At first blush, most people probably assume that the sexual abuse crisis will result in tighter control from Rome over local bishops. The logic is impeccable: The failure of some bishops to do the right thing is a core element of the crisis, and only the pope can really hold bishops accountable.

Yet at the moment, the ecclesiological fallout from the crisis, especially in the United States, seems to cut in the opposite direction -- promoting the autonomy of individual bishops and of the bishops' conference, if not so much theologically and canonically, then psychologically and culturally.

Especially since the election of Pope John Paul II in 1978, reform voices in the church have lamented what they see as excessive Roman centralization, calling for greater freedom of action for bishops and episcopal conferences. Ironically, the sexual abuse crisis may be succeeding where theological argument has often failed.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:15 PM

Former priest sentenced in sexual abuse case

KENTUCKY
WKYT

A former priest who entered an Alford plea in a sex abuse case now knows his punishment.

A Franklin County judge sentenced Rev. Joseph Muench Friday morning.

Muench was sentenced to one year for unlawful imprisonment charges and one year for criminal intent to commit sexual abuse.

This comes after Muench entered an Alford plea in March in the case, which stems from allegations in the 1980s.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:13 PM

Two-part series: Shadows of the Cross

SPRINGFIELD (MA)
WWLP

Tuesday & Wednesday on 22News at 6 p.m.

Jennifer Colby
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) - The Roman Catholic Church has received a lot of negative attention lately between the massive budget problems and more allegations of sexual abuse.

The Springfield Diocese is being forced to cut 40-percent of its budget by July 1. In the past year alone, the diocese has announced the closure of over 20 parishes, five schools, and with the continuing budget woes, more closures are expected.

One of the key local figures of the Catholic Church continues to remain silent about the issue, so 22News went digging for answers.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:03 PM

Catholic church prays for abuse victims and abusers

UNITED KINGDOM
BBC News

By Thelma Etim
BBC News, Hampshire

While the victims of abuse at the hands of Roman Catholic clergy continue their fight for justice and reparation, bishops in the Church have invited parishioners in England and Wales to make the four Fridays in the month special days of prayer for children abused by priests.

The move to introduce a "prayer for reparation and atonement" was announced at Easter following the Catholic Bishops' Conference.

A statement from them read: "We pray for all who have suffered abuse; for those who mishandled these matters and added to the suffering of those affected."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:00 PM

If the church ordained women, there would be no sex abuse crisis

by Eugene Cullen Kennedy on May. 21, 2010
Bulletins from the Human Side

Some years ago I asked in a column, "If the church ordained women would there be fewer abortions?" I suggested that recognizing women as fully equal with men would have obviated centuries of the repression, injustice, and pain inflicted on women and cleared the air of the edgy suspicion and anxiety with which many men, including church leaders, have regarded women throughout the centuries.

In the last century, women sought equal rights for themselves as human beings from the men who had grown up believing that they constituted a second and lesser sex whose main role was, in ways too many to number and too scandalous to name, to take care of them. Had the church ordained women it would have automatically changed history, making them equal in all ways, and striking off the emotional chains that had bound them, voiceless, in time's dungeon. Men would have had to relate to them on the same footing and much of the longing for independence that is symbolized in the abortion struggle would have been lessened.

This is beginning to sound as improbable as "Avatar," but duck away from the cascade of unconvincing arguments dumped on women (e.g., "Women don't look like men so they can't represent Jesus,"} by the usual suspects of the curial all-star theology team. Imagine instead that the church had affirmed their human equality by welcoming women into the priesthood. What would the results be?

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:56 PM

Nun Excommunicated For Allowing Abortion

ARIZONA
NPR

[with audio]

by Barbara Bradley Hagerty

May 19, 2010

Last November, a 27-year-old woman was admitted to St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix. She was 11 weeks pregnant with her fifth child, and she was gravely ill. According to a hospital document, she had "right heart failure," and her doctors told her that if she continued with the pregnancy, her risk of mortality was "close to 100 percent."

The patient, who was too ill to be moved to the operating room much less another hospital, agreed to an abortion. But there was a complication: She was at a Catholic hospital.

"They were in quite a dilemma," says Lisa Sowle Cahill, who teaches Catholic theology at Boston College. "There was no good way out of it. The official church position would mandate that the correct solution would be to let both the mother and the child die. I think in the practical situation that would be a very hard choice to make."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:51 AM

Catholic Nun Excommunicated for Saving Pregnant Woman’s Life!

UNITED STATES
Religion Dispatches

Post by Jonathan L. Walton

Yesterday, I heard a story on NPR that incensed me to no end.

Last year a gravely ill pregnant woman was admitted to St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix with heart failure. Doctors advised the woman that the pregnancy was literally killing her. She agreed to an abortion. One major problem: St. Joseph’s is a Catholic hospital.

Since the woman was too ill to be transferred to another hospital in time to save her life, Sister Margaret McBride, hospital administrator, approved the procedure. Yet when Bishop Thomas Olmsted received word that Sister McBride approved an abortion, he passed down the harshest penalty of the Catholic church, excommunication.

Excommunication?? For saving the life of a gravely ill woman? Is this the same Catholic church known for its sordid shell games with pedophile priests throughout the globe?

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:49 AM

Leadership needed on Magdalene Laundries

IRELAND
The Petition Site

Urge Brian Cowen to call for State acknowledgment of its complicity in remanding women and children to Magdalene Laundries. We also have a direct e-mail form which can be sent to An Taoiseach at http://www.magdalenelaundries.com/an_taoiseach.htm.

Another site: magdalene laundries.com

The letter reads:

Dear Taoiseach,

I am writing to you, as a citizen and concerned human being, to appeal for justice and to add my voice to the call for State acknowledgment of its complicity in remanding women and children to Magdalene Laundries.

Your recent assertion that there is a distinction between "children in the residential institutions" and "women in [Magdalene] laundries" is appalling in the extreme. Justice for Magdalenes has proven beyond doubt that there were children in the Magdalene laundries. The Department of Education acknowledged its awareness of this fact when Justice for Magdalenes met with senior officials on 2 February 2010. Your response signals the State’s primary concern is to limit liability with respect to anticipated claims for compensation. You and your government should be focused on providing justice for women and children denied their constitutional rights. Do you believe that the State, and in particular the Department of Education, did not have a moral and Constitutional obligation to protect every child from the exploitative work conditions in the laundry institutions?

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:40 AM

Covering up a shocking crime

UNITED STATES
The JC

By Miriam Shaviv, May 21, 2010
No subject has irritated the Orthodox world more, this year, than sexual abuse perpetrated by its religious leaders.

In America, the community has had to accept the arrest of 26 strictly Orthodox men in Brooklyn on charges of child molestation. Eight have been convicted; the rest await trial. Many of these have been extremely high-profile, for example Baruch Lebovits, a prominent rabbi who was convicted last month on six counts of sexual abuse. Earlier this year, he was also accused of abusing Motty Borger, a 24-year-old who committed suicide two days after his January wedding, having confided to his new bride that he had been molested as a teenager.

In Israel, the scandal of the year - in a state full of scandals - broke when a group of senior rabbis publicly accused Mordechai Elon, long regarded as the leading rabbi in the religious Zionist camp, of conducting long-term sexual relationships with several of his (male) students.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:14 AM

Martin's speech taken in bad faith by media

IRELAND
The Irish Times

Coverage of the archbishop’s spiritual statement focused only on elements useful to an anti-church agenda, writes JOHN WATERS

FOR 10 days I have absorbed as much as practicable of what has been written and spoken about last week’s speech by Archbishop Diarmuid Martin of Dublin to the Knights of Columbanus.

The speech, The Future of the Catholic Church in Ireland, was roughly 4,000 words in length. About one quarter related to the fallout from the clerical abuse scandals, the rest to the general condition of Irish Catholicism. The archbishop touched on evangelisation, catechesis, religious education, the Gospels, faith and the young, Catholic morality, church attendance, the priesthood, secularism and – twice – the hostility of the broader culture towards the church. His core theme was not sexual abuse, but the Irish crisis of faith. He referred on 12 occasions to sexual abuse, but used the word “faith” 19 times. He spoke the name of Jesus 24 times.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:08 AM

'Dossiers on enemies' found in Italian Scientology raid

ITALY
The Register (United Kingdom)

By John Leyden

Italian police reportedly unearthed hidden dossiers on 'enemies' during a raid on church of Scientology offices in Turin.

The files, apparently discovered behind locked doors in a basement office, allegedly contained personal information on judges, police officers and journalists identified as hostile to the church.

Details on former Church members who have turned against Scientology were also reportedly recovered from handwritten files and computer records seized following a nine-hour search of the premises. No arrests took place, UPI adds.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:04 AM

Church of Scientology denies abuse cover-up

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

The Church of Scientology is vigorously denying accusations a senior figure in the organisation tried to cover up the sexual assault of an 11-year-old girl in Sydney.

It says the allegations, aired on ABC1's Lateline program, are false and highly defamatory.

A former Scientology member, Carmen Rainer, told Lateline she was coached by a senior figure in the church to lie to police about the abuse at the hands of her then stepfather, Robert Kerr.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:01 AM

Warrant alleges year of sex abuse of 15-year-old

CONNECTICUT
Thomaston Express

By RONALD DeROSA

LITCHFIELD — For nearly a year, former religion teacher David G. Stanco allegedly molested one of his 15-year-old students at his Thomaston home, touching the boy while in a hot tub and performing oral sex on him in the suspect’s bedroom, according to an arrest warrant unsealed Tuesday.

That very juvenile lodged a complaint with the Thomaston police on March 28 leading to the arrest of the 57-year-old teacher of Confraternity Christian Doctrine. According to the warrant, the boy looked at Stanco as someone who was “close to God,” trusting him because “he was a CCD teacher.”

Stanco entered not guilty pleas in Litchfield Superior Court Tuesday to charges of second-degree sexual assault and risk of injury to a minor.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:57 AM

Look Back: Bishop Dupre scandal

SPRINGFIELD (MA)
WWLP

[with video]

Jennifer Colby
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) - One day after his resignation, Bishop Thomas Dupre was faced with allegations of sexual abuse. He would never truly ‘face’ the allegations, because that very same day he went into hiding.

In February 2004, after nine years on the job, he unexpectedly resigned from his post, citing health reasons. The very next day, allegations surfaced that Dupre molested two men in the 1970s, when they were 12 and 16 years old. He was indicted on two counts of child rape, but prosecutors didn't pursue the charges because the statute of limitations had expired.

The two victims also filed a civil lawsuit against the former Bishop, charging him with assault and battery and infliction of emotional distress. A settlement was finally reached in 2008, after years of negotiations, when lawyers for the Springfield Diocese settled with dozens of abuse victims and agreed to pay $7.7 million. Diocesan spokesman Mark Dupont told 22News that Dupre donated his own money to the fund.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:54 AM

John Fidler: Families of abuse victims share their pain and anger

PENNSYLVANIA
Reading Eagle

No priest will say Mass at Grazia Rozzi's funeral. The lifelong Catholic wants it that way.

She has given up on the church, because, she said, its priests and bishops did not protect her son.

"I call them the middle men," Grazia told me recently. "The middle men are responsible for this."

This is the sexual abuse crisis that has swept the Catholic Church worldwide.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:51 AM

Former Ontario priest, 87, charged with sexual abuse

CANADA
Montreal Gazette

By Frances Willick, Windsor Star May 21, 2010

WINDSOR, Ont. — A Basilian priest and former Windsor, Ont., high school principal who is now in his late-80s, has been charged with sexually abusing a child in an allegation that dates back to the 1980s.

Rev. William Hodgson (Hod) Marshall, 87, appeared in court Wednesday to face a charge of sexual abuse for incidents that occurred while he was working at a Windsor school from 1981 to 1985.

It is unclear which school Marshall was serving during the years the alleged incidents took place, and it is unknown whether his alleged victim was a student.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:48 AM

Priest Abuse: Male Compared to Female Victimization Impact

UNITED STATES
Psychology Today

by Katherine van Wormer, MSSW, Ph.D.

The sexual crimes committed against children and adolescents by Catholic priest has figured prominently in the media over the past decade, and rocked the Catholic Church the world over. The "sins of the fathers" have been more than matched by the sins of the church hierarchy which showed more concern for the protection of the abusive priests than for the prevention of future violations or for the suffering caused to the victims.

Whereas the media focus has been largely on the scandal of the cover up, on the behavior of individual priests, and on Pope Benedict's complicity in reassigning fallen priests, a concern that is rarely addressed is the psychological impact on the victims of these violations. The psychological impact varies by gender.

First, a look at the statistics: The most detailed statistics on child abuse for the Catholic clergy that I can find comes from the special report based on a national survey of victimization conducted for the 2004 American Catholic bishops' conference. The findings reveal that the frequency of child abuse among Catholic priests is not remarkable-involving around 4 % of priests and deacons who served in the U.S., but its pattern is. Outside of the Catholic Church, the overwhelming numbers of juvenile victims of sexual abuse are female. Within the church, however, four out of five of their victims are male. Most were adolescents aged 14 or over; 15% were under 10.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:45 AM

Diocese refuses to release papers in sex-abuse case

CONNECTICUT
The Day

By Joe Wojtas

Published 05/21/2010

New London - A woman who says the late Catholic priest Rev. Thomas Shea sexually abused her when she was a girl is trying to force the Diocese of Norwich to release 661 pages of documents - including a 2005 letter about Shea that current Bishop Michael Cote sent to then-Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, who is now Pope Benedict XVI.

Diocesan attorneys are fighting an attempt by New London attorney Robert Reardon to force the release of the documents. Reardon has filed a lawsuit on behalf of the woman, who says she was sexually assaulted as a 12-year-old parishioner at St. Joseph's Church in New London.

Among the documents Reardon is seeking are reports, notes and letters about Shea from church officials, the doctors and psychiatrists who treated him and parishioners who complained about him.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:41 AM

May 20, 2010

Cracks in the wall of the curia

UNITED STATES
National Catholic Reporter

by Jason Berry on May. 20, 2010
Examining the crisis

The Roman Curia is the Vatican bureaucracy. Most people know little about the men who run the curia. But press coverage of the clergy abuse crisis is closing in on cardinals whose blunders in the clergy abuse crisis have begun to draw criticism from other Princes of the Church.

As words fire back and forth in the press, the wall of secrecy that traditionally surrounds the curia is showing cracks.

The central issue of this long aching crisis is the Vatican's flawed justice system, rooted in archaic tribunals that use secret proceedings, a holdover from the Inquisition.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:11 PM

Forgive Not

UNITED STATES
The New Republic

Garry Wills

May 18, 2010

This early in the twenty-first century, the rulers of the Catholic Church have suffered an earthquake of crumbling credibility. Nearly ten years ago, with the initial revelations about sexual abuse of the young by priests, some argued that the problem was limited in time and place, since most of the abuse cases had occurred 30 or 40 years before, and they took place in the United States. There was hope that an investigative and reformist effort would restore the U.S. Church’s authority. An emergency Dallas meeting of American bishops in 2002 and a lay inquiry with its recommendations in 2004 were supposed to make the problem go away.

But, ten years later, all across the globe, the problem has shown a stubborn refusal to subside. Pedophile scandals have devastated the Church in Ireland. Fresh horrors have come to light in the United States, especially in Wisconsin and Arizona. There are urgent investigations in Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Australia, and Italy. And the Pope himself has been implicated in the scandals, some of which occurred when he was Archbishop of Munich and some when he oversaw the treatment of pedophile reports at the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. This has led to calls for the Pope’s resignation, or arrest, or criminal indictment—things not even imaginable ten years ago.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:03 PM

Italy bishop testifies in priest sex abuse case

ROME
The Associated Press

By NICOLE WINFIELD

ROME — An Italian bishop testified Thursday in the trial of a priest accused of molesting boys that he heard rumors of abuse two years before the priest was arrested but didn't find them credible enough to warrant removing him or informing the Vatican.

Monsignor Gino Reali's testimony marked the first time an Italian bishop has been called to take the stand in a trial of an Italian priest accused of abusing youngsters, said attorney Nino Marazzita, who is representing two of the seven alleged victims in the civil portion of the case.

The trial of the Rev. Ruggero Conti, taking place in the shadow of the Vatican, comes as the clerical abuse scandal swirls around the Holy See and exposes the depth of the abuse problem in Italy, which has long treated the subject as so taboo it was rarely even discussed.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:56 PM

ABSOLUTE MUST READ: Tom Doyle provides an intimate glimpse into his personal spiritual journey

UNITED STATES
Voice from the Desert

The following very personal note from Tom Doyle about his spiritual journey is an introductory statement to his revised clergy sex abuse bibliography, dated May 20, 2010. [Click here to go to the bibliography.]

* * *
The latest version of my on-going bibliography is attached. The new listings, as is usually the case, are in red. There are three new additions I want to comment on.

Over the course of my years of involvement with the clergy sexual abuse “happening” I have learned that the damage done to the spirituality of the victims has been considerable and in many ways, more difficult to deal with than either the emotional or psychological damage. The victims are not alone in suffering grave spiritual damage. Many of those directly or even indirectly involved with this whole complex phenomenon have found themselves in a growing quandary with their belief systems. I am one of them. For years my belief system and the objects of my faith were gradually shifting, often in ways I did not even notice. Most of what I had been taught about Faith, about Beliefs, about Trust in the human or earthly dimensions of the community of believers, the institutional Church, came under assault. I had believed what the official church had told me without much questioning. I accepted that the Church was what it was and I bought into all of the standard explanations for the historical departures of the institutional Church and its leaders from basic Christian decency and certainly from honesty…like the inquisition, the crusades, the approval of slavery, the colonization of the new world and the Vatican’s diplomatic ties to Hitler and Mussolini. My serious questioning started when I found myself on the inside looking out as the clergy sex abuse scandal started to unfold back in 1984. As I saw first-hand the duplicity and institutionalized lying of the self-proclaimed “successors of the Apostles” I slowly began to wonder if the apostles weren’t actually a cabal of anti-Christian dolts or on the other hand, I wondered if the infallible connection between the popes, bishops and church monarchy was neither infallible nor divinely willed.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:51 PM

Former Franklin county man sues former bishops

SPRINGFIELD (MA)
iobserver

By Father Bill Pomerleau

SPRINGFIELD – A former Franklin County man, dissatisfied with the assistance offered him by the Diocese of Springfield to cope with alleged abuse by former priest Richard Lavigne, has sued two of its former bishops.

Peter J. Caffrey, 47, of Chelsea, Mich., filed a lawsuit in Franklin Superior Court May 19 alleging that Springfield Bishop Emeritus Joseph F. Maguire and former Springfield Bishop Thomas L. Dupré, failed to prevent his sexual abuse by then-Father Lavigne in 1976 or 1977.

At the time of the alleged abuse, Lavigne was the parochial vicar at the former St. Francis of Assisi Parish in North Adams. Caffrey, who was 12 or 13 at the time of the claimed abuse, said that the abuse occurred at that parish, and several other locations, including Lavigne’s home in Ashfield.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:47 PM

Look Back: Father Lavigne scandal

NORTH ADAMS
WWLP

[with video]

Jennifer Colby
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. (WWLP) - Former priest Richard Lavigne, now a registered sex offender, came under fire again last week when another alleged victim came forward.

Pete Caffrey filed a civil lawsuit at the Franklin Count court house on Wednesday, claiming Lavigne raped and molested him in the 1970s. The complaint named former Bishops Joseph Maguire and Thomas Dupre for failure to supervise Lavigne. Caffrey spoke exclusively to 22News Reporter Jaclyn Cashman and you can watch that interview by clicking here .

In 1992, Lavigne pleaded guilty to molesting two 12 year-old boys. He avoided jail time, but was sentenced to 10 years probation and forced to register as a sex offender. The Vatican also defrocked him after his conviction.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:21 PM

Catholic Bishops: Excommunicate a Nun for Permitting Life-Saving Abortion, But Not An Abusive Pr

UNITED STATES
Beliefnet

Nicole Neroulias

I'm no canon law expert, but this story certainly raises interesting questions about the disparity in the Catholic Church's handling of clergy disciplinary issues: Sister Margaret McBride, an administrator at a Catholic hospital in Arizona, has been declared "automatically excommunicated" by a bishop for approving an abortion to save a critically ill mother's life (at 11 weeks, the pregnancy's first trimester) last year. NPR's story points out that meanwhile, no pedophile priests have ever been automatically excommunicated; rather, the norm over the years has been for bishops to protect them.

Apparently, McBride can be un-excommunicated if she goes to confession and repents. No word on what her plans are, though she apparently remains with her religious order, the Sisters of Mercy, and employed by St. Joseph's Hospital.

Australian cardinal urges new action on pedophiles

AUSTRALIA
Herald Sun

By ROD McGUIRK - Associated Press Writer

CANBERRA, Australia -- A Roman Catholic cardinal urged tougher action against pedophile priests after the church confirmed Monday two Irish priests accused of molesting girls continued performing church-related duties in Australia's two largest cities despite being barred from doing so.

Father Padraic Maye was found guilty by the church of molesting two young sisters in the 1980s and raping a woman in the 1970s, and was forced to retire in 2005. He denied the allegations.

Father Finian Egan was accused of groping two girls decades ago and the outcome of a church investigation is pending. Egan has denied the accusations. But Egan's superior, Bishop David Walker who handles complaints against priests at Sydney's Broken Bay diocese, has apologized to Egan's accusers for his actions.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:28 PM

Clarification: Church Abuse-Arizona story

ARIZONA
The Associated Press

In a story April 2, The Associated Press reported that a Catholic Church tribunal examined allegations that the Rev. Michael Teta, an Arizona priest, abused boys in a confessional.

The story should have specified that the tribunal found Teta guilty of soliciting sexual favors during confessions, but not necessarily of conducting that abuse inside the confessional. Allegations of abuse inside the confessional were contained in later civil lawsuits.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:24 PM

Man claims abuse by priest caused lifetime of pain, attempted suicide

OREGON
The Oregonian

By Bryan Denson, The Oregonian
May 20, 2010

A man who claims a 2008 suicide attempt caused him to connect a lifetime of misery to a childhood rape by a Catholic priest has filed a $2.8 million federal lawsuit against the Archdiocese of Portland in Oregon.

The man, identified only by his initials in U.S. District Court papers, accuses Father Leonard E. Plocinski of grooming him for sex and ultimately raping him in the late 1970s, when he was an altar boy of 8 or 9 in Dallas, Ore. The abuse occurred in the changing room at St. Phillip's Catholic Church, the lawsuit alleges.

A civil complaint filed last Friday seeks $2.5 million for pain and suffering and economic damages of $300,000 -- including an estimated $50,000 for counseling and psychological treatment. The suit accuses the archdiocese, its Roman Catholic Archbishop and St. Phillip's of sexual battery of a child, intentional infliction of emotional distress and negligence.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:13 PM

Can the Pope Learn a Lesson From Spiderman? Vatican Claims Bishops Not Employees of Church

UNITED STATES/CANADA
John McKiggan's Sexual Abuse Claims Blog

Vatican Not Responsible for Bishops Actions

The Vatican is defending a lawsuit that claims Bishops in the United States covered up allegations of sexual abuse. That's not news. The Pope and the Roman Catholic Church have never acknowledged the responsibility the Church as an institution has to survivors of priest sexual abuse. The Catholic Church tends to fight lawsuits filed by priest abuse victims vigorously, even if the priests involved have been criminally convicted. ...

Law Different in Canada?

The liability of the Vatican has never been determined by the courts in Canada. However, based on existing case law, including the Supreme Court of Canada, I think it is clear that if the matter came before the courts in this county, the Pope would be found to be vicariously liable for the actions of Catholic Bishops.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:08 PM

Broken Agreement

MINNESOTA
Anderson Advocates Blog

In 2002, an agreement was made. After years of disgraceful cover-ups, leaders of the Benedictine monks at St. John's acknowledged the abuse perpetrated by their clergymen, made financial amends with victims, and agreed to change. A precise plan was forged; one that demanded transparency and accountability. Specifically, it demanded that abusive monks were to live carefully restricted lives away from children.

Sadly, just one year after the agreement, leaders of the Benedictine monks set loose Father Francisco Schulte -- a premeditative pedophile with a history of recruiting his victims on an international level. Until very recently, Father Francisco Schulte lived unrestricted in Rome, with access to unsuspecting parents and children. He wore a collar that reflects trustworthiness and safety, and wore it in front of children.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:05 PM

Petition to the US Attorney General on pedophile priests

UNITED STATES
Voice from the Desert

Frank Douglas

I thank Dick Regan for bringing this petition to my attention.

* * *
Good People,

Please join me in signing this electronic petition to US Attorney General Eric Holder asking him to investigate pedophile priests in the Catholic Church.

http://www.petitiononline.com/PPPP/petition.html

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:01 PM

Springfield bishops facing suit

GREENFIELD (MA)
The Republican

Thursday, May 20, 2010
By JACK FLYNN
jflynn@repub.com
GREENFIELD - A Michigan engineer filed a lawsuit Wednesday against two Springfield bishops, claiming he was sexually assaulted by now-defrocked priest Richard R. Lavigne while living in North Adams in the 1970s.

In a complaint filed in Franklin Superior Court, Peter J. Caffrey, 47, of Chelsea, Mich., accuses Bishops Joseph F. Maguire and Thomas L. Dupre of negligence, saying they allowed him to be molested by Lavigne in 1976 and 1977.

"These allegations of inadequate supervision will be defended vigorously," said Mark E. Dupont, spokesman for the diocese. "This terrible misconduct was clandestine." ...

Dupont said church officials have not received a copy of the suit. He said Caffrey was offered full assistance from the Victim Counseling Office after coming forward in 2009, but broke off contact several months later.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:06 AM

Pope Benedict's Record Speaks for Itself in Fight Against Clergy Sexual Abuse

UNITED STATES
PR Newswire

HUNTINGTON, Ind., May 20 /PRNewswire/ -- The latest accusations against Pope Benedict XVI regarding the clergy sexual abuse problem have left Catholics and others confused, disillusioned, and angry. Many, relying solely on secular media reports regarding the scandal, have rushed to hold the pope responsible for how bishops dealt with abusers in their dioceses, even to the point of calling for his resignation.

Gregory Erlandson, President of Our Sunday Visitor -- one of the largest Catholic publishing houses in the world -- was one of those frustrated with both sides of the communication divide. The secular media was only telling part of the story, but on the other hand, Catholic media was either too quiet or speaking in language easily misinterpreted by the general public. Either way, people were confused about the issue and didn't know what to believe.

"When the accusations intensified against the pope, I could no longer rely on other sources to define the

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:04 AM

Disgraced German bishop buys fake Piranesi with orphanage money

GERMANY
The Art Newspaper

By Josephine von Perfall | Web only
Published online 20 May 10

LONDON. Walter Mixa, who was forced to step down as bishop of Augsburg in southern Germany after five ex-pupils accused him of physical abuse in March, faces another allegation. He is accused of using money intended for a Catholic orphanage to buy a Piranesi engraving that is likely to be fake.

In January 1995, the former priest of the Bavarian city of Schrobenhausen was given a receipt in Rome to confirm his purchase of an “original engraving by G.B. Piranesi (1707)”—worth DM43,000 (€20,000). The money came from a budget intended for the orphanage foundation of St. Josef Schrobenhausen, where Mixa was teaching at the time.

The allegations of forgery lie in the fact that Piranesi was born on 4 October 1720—therefore an engraving dating from 1707 could never be a Piranesi “original”, as stated in the letter from Rome. The price paid for the piece was also extremely high. Already very popular in the 18th century, Piranesi’s engravings were reproduced in multiple editions. Consequently, even works that are undoubtedly by the hand of the artist do not sell for more than €10,000.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:16 AM

Map details sex offender limits

LEOMINSTER (MA)
Telegram & Gazette

By Karen Nugent TELEGRAM & GAZETTE STAFF

LEOMINSTER — A city map depicting circles around schools where sexual offenders would not be allowed to live if a special law was enacted would rule out most of Leominster. At least 20 circles were on a map before a City Council subcommittee last night, as councilors, several of whom said they would approve such a law, pondered legal and constitutional questions, including several submitted by Ronal Madnick, director of the Worcester Chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union.

Councilor John M. Dombrowski of the Legal Affairs subcommittee questioned if the law, which would ban Level 2 and 3 sex offenders from living within 2,000 feet of a school, playground, or other places where children gather, is unconstitutional because it punishes someone twice for the same crime, violates a right to live in a family unit, and illegally drives people out of the city. The three issues were raised by Mr. Madnick in his letter, and he also pointed out that such a law would discriminate by wealth, because it would apply only to renters, not homeowners. ...

Councilor Claire M. Freda, a proponent of the petition since it was brought to the council in March, said she has sat for years on a committee consisting of pediatricians, child psychologists, and social workers dealing with the pedophile priest problems plaguing the Catholic Church.

“It is very clear that there is no cure for this type of person. It’s a grave situation with repetitive, compulsive behavior,” she said. “Nobody’s saying put them out of the community — just not let them live near schools.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:12 AM

Illinois bishop removes priest for homosexual activity

ILLINOIS
Catholic Culture

May 20, 2010
Bishop J. Peter Sartain of Joliet has removed Father Jerry Simonelli from his pastorate because he engaged in homosexual activity.

“It was consenting behavior, but a priest takes a vow of celibacy,” Bishop Sartain’s executive assistant said of Father Simonelli, whose parish-- one of the largest in the diocese-- numbered more than 9,000. “He was unfaithful to his vows on more than one occasion.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:09 AM

Sinead O'Connor seeks justice for church child sex abuse victims

UNITED STATES
Irish Central

By DEBBIE MCGOLDRICK, IrishCentral.com Staff Writer

Irish songbird Sinead O’Connor is persisting in her war against the powers that be at the Vatican, starting with her old friend, the Pope.

O’Connor appeared on PBS News Hour, hosted by Jim Lehrer, last week to once again demand that Pope Benedict and his fellow leaders resign over the clerical abuse scandals that have rocked the church throughout the world, particularly in Ireland.

“I want the entire of the regime to go. The entire of the top echelons of the Vatican should be fired, every single one of them,” O’Connor said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:06 AM

Former Boonville priest makes Cooper County court appearance

MISSOURI
Boonville Daily News

By Nate Birt
Boonville Daily News
Wed May 19, 2010, 04:30 PM CDT

Boonville -
A court on Monday entered a plea of not guilty to all charges on behalf of a former Boonville priest accused in multiple sexual assaults, according to a court document.

The suspect, Gerald J. Howard, appeared in the 18th Circuit Court for Cooper County without an attorney, the document states. A counsel status hearing has been scheduled for 9 a.m. Monday.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:03 AM

Does Celibacy Contribute to Clerical Sex Abuse?

UNITED STATES
Catholic Culture

by Richard Cross, May 19, 2010

The John Jay Report indicated that 4.0% of all priests in the US between 1950 and 2002 had been accused of sexual abuse of a minor. This datum, and the numerous commentaries surrounding the horrific news of sexual abuse by Catholic priests, have been cited as evidence against the discipline of celibacy in the Roman Catholic clergy. Prominent psychotherapists, such as Richard Sipe, have argued that celibacy has been a factor contributing to criminal sexual conduct by clerics over the last half-century. Even Cardinal Christoph Schönborn of Vienna recently suggested that the issue of priestly celibacy should not be ignored in discussions of the sex-abuse scandals in Europe.

The argument against priestly celibacy-- the argument that celibacy is a contributing factor in sexual abuse-- has never been examined in the context of statistics showing abuse rates in other clerical populations that do not require celibacy. Such a comparison between clergy populations is critical, because if celibacy were a major factor in the abuse over the last half-century, then one would expect to see much lower abuse rates in the clergy of other communions. If on the contrary celibacy were unrelated (or even a safeguard against abuse) then the other clergy groups would likely show comparable or even higher levels of abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:00 AM

The Pope, the Cardinals, the Jesuits. Three Responses to the Scandal

ROME
chiesa

The royal road sketched out by Benedict XVI. Schönborn and O'Malley's shots at Sodano. The roles of Bertone and Fr. Lombardi. The battle of "La Civiltà Cattolica" against the "culture of pedophilia"

by Sandro Magister

ROME, May 20, 2010 – The Catholic hierarchy is responding in three ways to the scandal of sexual abuse committed by priests.

The first is at the initiative of the pope. The second through the work of a few cardinals. The third, thanks to the scholarly Jesuits of "La Civiltà Cattolica," with the imprimatur of the Vatican secretariat of state.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:56 AM

Church demands €2m fees from national schools

IRELAND
Irish Independent

By Katherine Donnelly

Thursday May 20 2010

CATHOLIC primary schools are furious after being hit with a new €2m-per-year demand for money from the church.

Cash-strapped principals say that, instead of the church subsidising them, they are now being asked to subsidise the church.

The new request for cash has come from the Catholic Primary School Management Association (CPSMA), the Irish Independent has learned.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:51 AM

AFFTON > Porn investigation continues

MISSOURI
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

05/20/2010

St. Louis County police said Wednesday they are still investigating who might have used a computer at a Catholic child care center here to view child pornography. Officials confiscated the computer April 23 from the Simon Says Early Childhood Center, at 11019 Mueller Road.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:44 AM

Child protection bodies form united front

IRELAND
Ireland Online

Eight child protection organisations today united to launch a campaign to insist that the Government implement key policy changes promised after the publication of the Ryan report into abuse in Church-run institutions.

The campaign - entitled Saving Childhood Ryan - was launched on the first anniversary of the report's publication.

The organisations - Barnardos, CARI, the Children’s Rights Alliance, the Dublin Rape Crisis Centre, the ISPCC, the Irish Association of Young People in Care, One in Four and Rape Crisis Network Ireland - are calling for key legislation and policy change commitments to be implemented.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:21 AM

Opinion - Roman Curia stands at centre of crisis

CathNews

As in the United States eight years ago, in Ireland, Germany, India, and in Rome, steps are now being taken to institute strict accountability for the sexual abuse of minors.

But direct efforts to correct and prevent abuse of minors are only the most obvious part of a larger healing needed in the church.

The less obvious part is the reform of structures of church governance that turned a deaf ear for so long to the victims and repeatedly disparaged bishops who were seeking remedies to the problems haunting their dioceses.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:19 AM

Genuine reform and the church

IRELAND
The Irish Times

THAT GROUPS representing victims of clerical sex abuse should demand the resignation of Cardinal Seán Brady is understandable. It is beyond dispute that his failure in 1975 to report allegations against Fr Brendan Smyth to the police contributed to allowing the latter continue his reign of terror for years. Whether a resignation, although gratifying a desire for holding someone to account, will contribute to protecting children in future or to the dismantling of the Catholic Church’s culture of impunity and cover-up is another matter. Perhaps. But it is not the crucial response.

The real measure of the church’s willingness and ability to face such challenges will not be the number of bishops’ heads on plates, as powerful a symbol as that might be, but the extent of genuine reform in the institution. In that respect the second report of the National Board for Safeguarding Children (NBSC) on Monday and the comments of its chairman, John Morgan, and chief executive, Ian Elliott, provide important and welcome indicators.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:15 AM

Top Scientologist 'covered up sex abuse'

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

[with video and audio]

By Steve Cannane

Updated Thu May 20, 2010

A senior figure in the Church of Scientology has been accused of trying to cover up the sexual assault of an 11-year-old girl in Sydney.

In an exclusive interview for ABC1's Lateline program, a former member of the Church of Scientology says she was coached by a senior figure in the church to lie to police about the abuse at the hands of her stepfather.

Carmen Rainer's mother Phoebe was a member of the Church of Scientology and went to the organisation for advice when she learnt her daughter was being sexually abused. ...

Ms Eastgate declined to talk to Lateline either on the phone or on camera.

In an email to Lateline she described the allegations by Carmen and Phoebe Rainer as "egregiously false".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:09 AM

Church of Scientology faces new abuse claims

AUSTRALIA
Sydney Morning Herald

ELLIE HARVEY
May 20, 2010

More accusations against the Church of Scientology have emerged, with new allegations they were involved in covering up the repeated sexual assault of an 11-year-old girl.

A woman told the ABC's Lateline program last night she had been repeatedly molested as a young girl by her stepfather, and that she had been coached by a senior member of the organisation to lie to investigators.

''Between the age of about [seven or eight] to 11 he was molesting me,'' Carmen Rainer told the program. ...

Lateline said the Church of Scientology wrote in a statement the allegations were untrue.


Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:08 AM

Victim: Scientologists Helped Stepdad Hide My Sex Abuse

AUSTRALIA
Newser

By Nick McMaste

(Newser) – The Australian branch of the Church of Scientology helped a stepfather cover up his sexual assault of his pre-teen daughter and blamed the girl for the attacks, the victim has revealed. The daughter, now an adult, says her stepdad molested her from the ages of 7 to 11, and that Scientology official Jan Eastgate told her and her mother to lie to police about the abuse—and that it was her own fault, the Sydney Morning Herald reports.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:06 AM

Group marks Ryan report anniversary

IRELAND
TV3

20.05.10

Child protection groups will today mark the one year anniversary of the publication of the Ryan Report.

The Ryan Report revealed the Catholic Church and Government covered up almost four decades of sexual abuse and beatings by priests and nuns against thousands of children in state care.

The Saving Childhood Ryan campaign involves Barnardos, CARI, Children's Rights Alliance, Irish Association of Young People in Care, ISPCC, One in Four, Rape Crisis Network of Ireland and Dublin Rape Crisis Centre.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:03 AM

Agencies to assess Ryan report

IRELAND
BBC News

A number of agencies are meeting in Dublin on Thursday to discuss the impact of an inquiry into child abuse at Catholic institutions in Ireland.

The Ryan report, which was published a year ago today, found church leaders knew sexual abuse was "endemic" in boys' institutions.

The inquiry into a 60-year-period from 1936, also found physical and emotional abuse were features of institutions.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:00 AM

Newark pastor charged with sexual assault

NEW JERSEY
WABC

[with video]

by Seung Suh;Eyewitness News
ELIZABETH (WABC) -- The pastor of a church in Newark, New Jersey and one of his female congregants are accused of forcing teenage girls to videotape the pair having sex. 55-year-old Moises Cotto and 37-year-old Brenda Pabon were arrested earlier this week.

According to investigators, Cotto and Pabon allegedly made the girls videotape them having sex and forced at least one girl to strip and pose for pictures. Cotto also is accused of attempting to sexually assault one of the girls.

Cotto is a pastor at the Congregation Yahweh at 20 Chester Avenue. He also is affiliated with Yahweh Congregations in Jersey City and Paterson. Pabon is a member of the congregation in Newark. The two began having an affair in 2008 and would meet regularly at the Benedict Motel in Linden where the alleged abuse took place.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:56 AM

Prosecutor: Pastor, congregant forced teens to videotape sex at Linden motel

NEW JERSEY
MyCentralJersey.com

By JOSHUA BURD • STAFF WRITER • May 19, 2010

A UNION COUNTY — A Middlesex County woman and the pastor of her Newark church face charges after authorities say they forced three teenage girls to videotape them while they engaged in sexual acts at a Linden motel.

Brenda Pabon, 37, and the pastor, 55-year-old Moises Cotto of East Orange, are charged with three counts each of kidnapping and endangering the welfare of a minor. Cotto is also charged with the attempted aggravated sexual assault of one of the victims.

Investigators found that an affair between Pabon and Cotto, who presides over Congregation Yahweh on Chester Avenue, began in 2008 after she sought counseling from the pastor, Union County Prosecutor Theodore Romankow said. When the relationship become sexual, the two allegedly would meet at the Benedict Motel on Routes 1 and 9 in Linden.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:53 AM

Pastor faces sex offense charges

NEWARK (NJ)
The Star-Ledger

Thursday, May 20, 2010
By JULIE O'CONNOR
THE STAR-LEDGER

At the Newark church where his congregants dress all in white, he was known as a husband, father and respected pastor for more than 20 years.

But, authorities say, Moises Cotto, the 55-year-old pastor, had been meeting for the past two years with a female congregant at a motel in Linden where the pair had sex - and forced two teenage girls to videotape them in the act.

Cotto, who is also affiliated with Yahweh Congregations in Jersey City and Paterson, was arrested at his apartment in East Orange on Monday night, and charged with kidnapping, aggravated assault, attempted aggravated sexual assault and endangering the welfare of a minor.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:51 AM

Launching of a Book Chaos to Glory by Pastor Solomon Nganga from Kenya Who Suffered Sexual Abuse

KENT (WA)
PR.com

Pastor Solomon Nganga, a Kenyan pastor is launching his new book, chaos to glory. Talks about his sufferings as a victim of sexual abuse. Will be held on Saturday May 22 2010 at Jubilee Covenant Center 835 N Central ave suite D113, Kent, WA, 98032 from 5 pm to 8 pm.

Kent, WA, May 20, 2010 --(PR.com)-- Pastor Solomon Nganga, a Kenyan pastor is launching his new book, Chaos To Glory; The Truth shall set you free. This book talks about his sufferings as a victim of sexual abuse and how he overcame his adversities. The event will be held on Saturday May 22 2010 at Jubilee Covenant Center 835 N Central avenue suite D113, Kent, WA, 98032 from 5 pm to 8 pm. To get more information contact Pastor Solomon at this number (206) 694-9772.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:47 AM

Michael E. Klos: Is Catholic Church about buildings or about people?

MINNESOTA
Winona Daily News

By the Rev. MICHAEL E. KLOS / Arcadia, Wis. | Posted: Thursday, May 20, 2010

As a Catholic, I too, like Don Doerr, am deeply disappointed by the corruption to be found within the Catholic church.

However, it would seem that our ideas of "corruption" are, in some ways, wildly different.

I would agree that the abuse of other human beings is a profound tragedy and a grave sin. Whether that abuse is psychological, physical, emotional or sexual, anything that causes a heart or a soul to be demeaned or broken is to be strongly condemned.

However, in contrast to Doerr's feelings, I find nothing in the Gospels that would suggest that our Lord is the least bit concerned with preserving buildings.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:44 AM

Hornell Priest Under Investigation For Improper Conduct

NEW YORK
WENY

Renata Stiehl

HORNELL -- The Diocese of Rochester is investigating a retired priest from the Southern TIer.
The Diocese confirms it's investigating a complaint against Reverend Paul Schnacky, accusing him of improper conduct with minors. The complaint alleges Father Schnacky acted improperty - dating back to the 1970's - while serving as an associate pastor at Saint Philip Neri in Rochester. The reverend, now 81 years old, lives in Hornell.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:42 AM

Brax: Confessional no longer inviolable

FINLAND
Helsinki Times

Under current law, discussion between a priest and a paedophile on child sexual abuse is bound by the Seal of Confession, the national daily Helsingin Sanomat reports.

“MINISTER of Justice Tuija Brax (Greens) says that the Church should re-interpret canon law so that the Seal of Confession can no longer apply if children are in danger.

As the law now stands, a priest and a paedophile can talk about child sexual abuse without the priest being obligated to report him to the authorities. The Seal of Confession cannot be broken unless the abuse is considered grievous under criminal law.

According to the penal code, child sexual abuse in itself is not a grievous crime. Therefore the Seal of the Confession remains inviolable according to canon law.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:38 AM

New abuse claim against bishops

MASSACHUSETTS
Berkshire Eagle

By Meghan Foley

Thursday May 20, 2010
New England Newspapers

NORTH ADAMS -- A former local man who alleges he was molested by former Rev. Richard R. Lavigne is suing two retired bishops of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfield for negligence.

Peter J. Caffrey, 47, of Michigan announced the lawsuit Thursday from the steps of the Franklin County Courthouse in Greenfield with his attorney, John Stobierski of Greenfield.

In the lawsuit, Caffrey, who is a mechanical engineer with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, alleges the Most Rev. Joseph F. Maguire and the Most Rev. Thomas L. Dupre were negligent in supervising Lavigne.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:35 AM

Raleigh diocese not part of suit

RALEIGH (NC)
News & Observer

BY YONAT SHIMRON - Staff Writer
RALEIGH -- Despite a lawsuit filed this week by two Raleigh brothers alleging sexual abuse by a Roman Catholic priest, the number of cases involving the Diocese of Raleigh remains far below those at dioceses at the epicenter of scandal that has rocked the church.

In the latest suit, which seeks unspecified damages, the two Raleigh brothers accuse the Rev. Raymond Francisco Schulte, 57, of sexually abusing them beginning in 1984 when Schulte served as a priest at Sacred Heart Cathedral, the mother church of the diocese. The suit was filed against the Order of St. Benedict in Collegeville, Minn., the order to which Schulte belongs.

This year, allegations of sexual abuse have surfaced against three priests who have served in the Diocese of Raleigh. In addition to Schulte, they are Kenneth Parker, a retired priest from Garner, and Edgar Sepulveda, who served two churches in Brunswick County.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:31 AM

May 19, 2010

Why the Vatican needs George Pell

AUSTRALIA
ABC - The Drum

By Scott Stephens

At the height of the Global Financial Crisis, Nobel Laureate Joseph Stiglitz likened the attempt by the US government to re-capitalise the banking system without dealing with the subprime mortgages that underpinned - and undermined - it, to a doctor giving a mass blood transfusion to a patient suffering from internal haemorrhaging.

The same might be said of the Catholic Church's attempts to establish its credibility in the face of the revelations of clerical sexual abuse that have consumed it over the past 12 months.

The Church can claim, with some justification, that the processes it has put in place since 1996 - of which the Australian Catholic Church's Towards Healing is one of the more commendable examples - have both stemmed the incidents of sexual abuse and increased the number of reported cases.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:10 PM

Bishops work for the Vatican: Real aim is to disown the church's victims.

UNITED STATES
The Palm Beach Post

By The Palm Beach Post Posted: 6:45 p.m. Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Cynics say there's a big difference between a moral argument and a legal brief. The Vatican's claim that Catholic bishops are not its employees gives those cynics ammunition.

The Vatican on Monday asked a U.S. district court in Kentucky to dismiss a lawsuit that seeks to hold the Holy See accountable for the failure of bishops to prevent or report child abuse by priests. Bishops, the Vatican argues, don't work for the pope. They're not Vatican "officials" either, the church says.

The plaintiffs' lawyer, William McMurry, says that's nonsense. "Anybody walking around knows that a bishop is an official of the Holy See," he told The Associated Press. He noted that the pope appoints bishops, sets rules they must follow and that the Vatican has oversight for many of a bishop's major decisions.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:07 PM

Albany Diocese priest admits abusing 2 boys

ALBANY (NY)
CBS 6

ALBANY -- An Albany Diocese priest who previously served in Capital District churches has admitted to abusing two young boys in Delaware County.

The Middletown Town Court said 64-year-old James McDevitt pleaded guilty last week to two misdemeanor counts of forcible touching in connection with the abuse of two boys who were around 11 years old at the time.

McDevitt will face six years of probation when he is sentenced July 8.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:46 PM

HOW TO DO SOMETHING MORE IMPORTANT THAN FIRING THE POPE

MASSACHUSETTS
Voice from the Desert

National Survivor Advocates Coalition

Carmen Durso, Esq., Chairman of CORSAL

We who advocate for clergy sexual abuse survivors are angry. We want Bishops to resign, the Pope to be fired, and the Vatican to be held accountable. But we know these things are unlikely to happen. So what can we do? Go to the State House on May 26th, and you may accomplish something more important.

Changes, in a two thousand year old organization, often seem to be glacial, that is to say, not noticeable during our lifetime. And then, the Catholic Church is different from every other religion in one very important respect.

In 2005, Texas attorney Dan Shea sued a local Diocese, on behalf of three abuse victims. A Federal judge gave him permission to depose Cardinal Law, who had fled to Rome. Next, he sought to examine Joseph Ratzinger under oath about Crimen Sollicitationis, a Vatican document imposing secrecy on reports of sexual misconduct. But he hit a brick wall when Ratzinger was named Pope, and the U.S. State Department intervened, persuading the judge to dismiss the claim because, as head of a foreign national state, the Pope is immune from suit.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:42 PM

Bloomingdale priest put on leave

BLOOMINGDALE (IL)
Daily Herald

By Marco Santana | Daily Herald Staff

A Bloomingdale priest accused of inappropriate conduct with a 21-year-old male has been placed on an extended leave of absence from St. Isidore's Catholic Church in Bloomingdale, church officials confirmed Wednesday.

A state's attorney investigation into the matter did not find enough evidence to pursue criminal charges against the Rev. Jerry Simonelli, Executive Administrator Tom Norton said. However, he said, Simonelli and Bishop J. Peter Sartain agreed to the extended leave of absence "due to personal issues on the matter."

Sartain announced the allegations and the resulting leave of absence during weekend Masses, Norton said. He said Sartain did not specify the personal issues and did not mention the accuser's gender. The length of the priest's leave has not been determined.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:38 PM

Peter Caffrey of Michigan, claiming he was raped by disgraced priest Richard Lavigne, sues 2 former Springfield bishops

GREENFIELD (MA)
The Republican

By Jack Flynn, The Republican
May 19, 2010

GREENFIELD – A 47-year-old Michigan man filed a lawsuit against two Springfield bishops today claiming he was molested and raped by disgraced priest Richard Lavigne.

In the complaint filed by Peter J. Caffrey at the Franklin County Courthouse, the lawsuit claims Bishops Joseph F. Maguire and Thomas L. Dupre were negligent for allowing him to be molested by Lavigne in 1976 and 1977.

The announcement was made at a press conference called outside the courthouse by Attorney John J. Stobierski, a Greenfield lawyer, who has represented between 20 to 30 other victims of alleged church abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:33 PM

Priest admits he molested boys

NEW YORK
Albany Times Union

Staff writer Jordan Carleo-Evangelist reports:

A Delaware County priest assigned to several local parishes is poised to be banned permanently from ministry after admitting earlier this month to abusing two young boys, according to a spokesman for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany.

James McDevitt, 64, who had most recently served as pastor at Sacred Heart parish in Margaretville, pleaded guilty last week in the Delaware County town of Middletown to two misdemeanor counts of forcible touching, satisfying a raft of similar charges lodged against him last summer.

McDevitt — who also spent time at St. Pius X Church in Loudonville, St. Mary’s Church in Troy, St. Mary’s Hospital and St. Peter’s Church in Delhi — will face six years of probation, including enhanced restrictions placed on sex offenders, at sentencing July 8, said Chief Assistant Delaware County District Attorney John Hubbard.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:30 PM

Holy row as parishioners call for bishop's resignation

AUSTRALIA
The Standard

PETER COLLINS
20 May, 2010
A BITTER row within the Anglican Church will come to a head next month in Portland with a call for the resignation of Bishop Michael Hough.

The 57-year-old bishop of the Ballarat diocese, which covers most of the south-west, is also at the centre of an ongoing investigation by the national Anglican Episcopal Standards Commission into allegations of bullying and harrassment.

Complaints by at least 20 people including clergy are being examined by the commission which started its investigations 18 months ago.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:27 PM

Are bishops Vatican employees or officials?

UNITED STATES
Palm Beach Post

by Opinion Staff

The Vatican has asked a court in Kentucky to throw out a lawsuit that claims the Holy See should have to pay damages to victims of pedophile priests. The victims’ lawsuit says bishops in the United States were part of a Vatican cover-up of abuse. It says the bishops didn’t prevent the abuse and didn’t report it.

The Vatican says the bishops are not its employees. It says the bishops aren’t church “officials” either.

The plaintiffs say that’s nonsense because the pope appoints bishops and can remove them. Rome also sets rules the bishops must follow and has oversight of some decisions by bishops, for example in financial matters.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:24 PM

Church abuse victims deserve compensation without strings

AUSTRALIA
Sydney Morniing Herald

CATHY KEZELMAN
May 20, 2010 - 6:05AM

In the past 50 years an estimated 30,000 victims from 25 countries have reported the crime of child sexual abuse by clergy within the Catholic Church. Only sustained global outrage has finally prised the lid off the systemic cover-up of clergy sexual abuse. It took until last week, however, for Pope Benedict to acknowledge the Church's responsibility for these crimes and to attest that forgiveness does not obviate the need for justice.

The internal processes by which the Catholic Church in Australia "manages" child sexual assault cases, Towards Healing (and The Melbourne Response), have frequently been presented as ones to which other countries can aspire. Overseas we have seen how countless more crimes have been perpetrated as the Church moved its criminal clergy from parish to parish. However, fresh and very disturbing allegations from victims in Australia highlight how Australian victims of child sexual assault suffer not only from the original abuse and its impact, but from protracted and allegedly flawed internal Church processes. Not only have perpetrators not been brought to account but in some cases it would appear, have continued in their clerical roles, with their hierarchical positions honoured. Recent reports about the ongoing presiding roles played by a Sydney priest, Finian Egan and a Melbourne priest, Patrick Maye, despite serious child sexual assault allegations, are chilling.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:17 PM

Catholic League has New Target

UNITED STATES
Anti-Catholic League

by David Fortwengler

This week bombastic Bill Donohue of the Catholic League has manufactured his newest nonsensical, contrived controversy. The owners of the Empire State Building, a privately held company, have denied Bill’s request to display the blue and white colors of Mother Teresa’s religious order on the ESB’s Tower Lights. The requested date was August 26th, the 100th anniversary of her birth.

The Catholic League’s stated purpose is to safeguard both the religious freedom rights and the free speech rights of Catholics. Why would he consider the lack of blue and white on a private building in any way a denial of those rights? Well, he has to justify that $372,501 salary somehow.

Donohue’s role as a well paid shill and defender of any criticism of the Catholic Church never allows him to let the facts get in the way, especially not when he has a chance to rile up the troops and their checkbooks. He has defended, minimized, and excused the actions of his Church’s employees for sex crimes against children in ways that are hurtful and deny the truth. Ad nauseum (latin), he claims the sex abuse crisis is caused by homosexuality (the facts disprove that), any mention by the media about gross institutional negligence is rooted in anti-Catholicism, and by stating the obvious that child sex crimes occur in all segments of society. Over the past eight years his statements have been extremely hurtful.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:56 PM

Newark Pastor Accused of Forcing Teen Girls Into Sex Acts at NJ Motel

NEWARK (NJ)
NBC New York

A Newark pastor allegedly forced two teenage girls to videotape him and one of his congregants engaged in sexual acts at a New Jersey motel, authorities said.

Cops arrested Rev. Moises Cotto, pastor of the Congregation of Yahweh Templo El Candelero, at his East Orange home Monday night and charged him with kidnapping, aggravated assault, attempted aggravated sexual assault and endangering the welfare of a minor.

Authorities say the 55-year-old Cotto and his congregant, Brenda Pabon, met multiple times a week at the Benedict Motel on Routes 1&9 in Linden and forced the two girls to videotape.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:53 PM

Belgian bishops issue apology for abuse, inadequate reaction

BELGIUM
Catholic Culture

The Catholic bishops of Belgium have issued a public statement asking pardon for their failure to curb sexual abuse.

After completing their ad limina visit to Rome, the Belgian bishops reported that they had discussed the abuse issue at length with Pope Benedict XVI and other Vatican officials. They vowed to put in place programs that will provide a safe environment for young people.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:16 PM

Change is needed to rebuild trust in the Catholic Church

CALIFORNIA
Los Altos Town Crier

Written by Ronna Devincenzi
Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Few Catholics speak publicly, but privately, everyone I know is waiting to see what changes will result from the Vatican as a result of the revelations of clergy sexual abuse overtaking Europe.

Whether Pope Benedict bends to public pressure and resigns or leads the church out of the crisis, one point is certain: The Roman church is imploding. Fallout will not be eradicated by bishops diminishing the problem, a tactic usually employed by John Paul II bishop-appointees.

Europeans yawned when news of the U.S. abuse broke in 2002. Apparently, Italians are so accustomed to their own philandering clergy that hoopla raised by American Catholics did not resonate. So when he took over, I had serious doubts about Benedict. As Cardinal Ratzinger, he once swatted an investigative TV reporter’s hand for getting too close when the man questioned him about Fr. Marcial Maciel Degollado, founder of the Legionaries of Christ, John Paul II’s protected friend and a Vatican cash-cow. Since day one, I have watched Benedict closely. Maciel’s case was a bellwether for me. Free from John Paul II’s shackles, Benedict handled that case remarkably well.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:11 PM

Pedofiele priester vlucht weg uit Peru

BELGIE/PERU
De Standaard

BRUSSEL - De Antwerpse priester die naar Peru vluchtte nadat hij bij ons jongeren misbruikt had, heeft dat land halsoverkop verlaten.

Zondagavond nam Jef V.d.O. (61) een vlucht naar Madrid. Tegen Peruviaanse media had hij gezegd dat hij het land verliet om zich in België te verdedigen. Mogelijks speelde ook mee dat de grond in Peru hem te heet onder de voeten werd. Afgelopen weekend pakten Peruviaanse kranten uit met het nieuws dat een pedofiele Belgische priester al vele jaren in Peru aan de slag is, onder andere als schooldirecteur in een afgelegen provincie.

Peruviaanse politici eisen een diepgaand onderzoek. Het ministerie van onderwijs in Peru gaat nu na hoe de man toch in een schoolomgeving aan de slag kon. ‘Als er fouten zijn gemaakt, zullen we streng optreden', verklaarde de adjunct-onderwijsminister van Peru, Idel Vexler.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:55 PM

Ireland: the Brady crunch

IRELAND
Guardian (United Kingdom)

The Catholic church in Ireland has been ruthlessly criticised by one of its own leaders, while the other refuses to resign

What is going on in the scandal-battered Irish Catholic Church? It has two primates, Cardinal Sean Brady in Armagh, and Archbishop Diarmuid Martin, in Dublin, who was parachuted in from the Vatican to sort out the catastrophic consequences of the child abuse scandals. Brady was discovered earlier this year to have served as a young priest on an inquiry where an oath of secrecy was administered to two teenage victims of Brendan Smyth, Ireland's most notorious paedophile priest. He announced then that he would consider his resignation. Now he has decided not to offer it, though he would like, he says a coadjutor bishop, which is to say a designated successor who will work alongside him until he can take over. That, you might say, is a fighting retreat, and it has been greeted with anger by victims' organisations.

Meanwhile, Martin, last week, gave a speech of astonishing honesty and bleakness. "I have never since becoming Archbishop of Dublin felt so disheartened and discouraged about the level of willingness to really begin what is going to be a painful path of renewal and of what is involved in that renewal" he said. He went on to excoriate every aspect of the church's present position, from its care of children to the predominance of elderly priests.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:52 PM

Alleged Sexual Abuse Victim Sues St. John's Abbey

MINNESOTA
My Fox 9

[with video]

ST. PAUL, Minn. - A man who says he was sexually abused by an instructor at St. John's Preparatory School in Collegeville is filing a Ramsey County lawsuit against the school, the religious order of monks that runs it, and his alleged abuser.

The plaintiff is represented by Jeff Anderson, the St. Paul attorney who has pursued hundreds of lawsuits against alleged abusers and officials of the Catholic Church. In a press release announcing the lawsuit, Anderson says a minister at the school sexually abused two minor students between 1984 and 1986 in North Carolina and Minnesota.

Anderson says the alleged abuser is currently an active Benedictine monk in Rome.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:49 PM

Pedofiele priester vlucht weg uit Peru

PERU
De Standaard (Belgie)

BRUSSEL - De Antwerpse priester die naar Peru vluchtte nadat hij bij ons jongeren misbruikt had, heeft dat land halsoverkop verlaten.

Zondagavond nam Jef V.d.O. (61) een vlucht naar Madrid. Tegen Peruviaanse media had hij gezegd dat hij het land verliet om zich in België te verdedigen. Mogelijks speelde ook mee dat de grond in Peru hem te heet onder de voeten werd. Afgelopen weekend pakten Peruviaanse kranten uit met het nieuws dat een pedofiele Belgische priester al vele jaren in Peru aan de slag is, onder andere als schooldirecteur in een afgelegen provincie.

Peruviaanse politici eisen een diepgaand onderzoek. Het ministerie van onderwijs in Peru gaat nu na hoe de man toch in een schoolomgeving aan de slag kon. ‘Als er fouten zijn gemaakt, zullen we streng optreden', verklaarde de adjunct-onderwijsminister van Peru, Idel Vexler.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:46 PM

Bishop O'Reilly's resignation accepted

IRELAND
RTE News

Wednesday, 19 May 2010

The Bishop of Ardagh and Clonmacnois, Colm O'Reilly, has confirmed that his letter of resignation on age grounds to the Pope has been accepted.

A successor has yet to be named.

Bishop O'Reilly, 75, says that while his resignation has been accepted, he will be happy to stay on in the meantime to begin the process of rebuilding St Mel's Cathedral in Longford.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:43 PM

Police investigate claims of child pornography at church day care

MISSOURI
KSDK

By Leisa Zigman, I-Team Reporter

KSDK -- The St. Louis County Police Department is investigating an incident allegedly involving child pornography at a local day care center run by St. Simon the Apostle Church in Affton.

On April 23, members of the Special Investigation Unit confiscated one computer inside Simon Says Early Childhood Center. Eighty students attend Simon Says, which is on the grounds of St. Simon.

The Special Investigation Unit tracks the distribution of child porn in St. Louis. Police sources tell NewsChannel 5 several people had access to the computer, but since this is an on-going investigation, parents have not been told much.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:40 PM

Lavigne's alleged victim speaks out

GREENFIELD (MA)
WWLP

[with video]

Jennifer Colby
GREENFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) - New sexual abuse allegations have been made against former priest Richard Lavigne.

On Wednesday, the alleged victim, Peter Caffrey, spoke exclusively to 22News about the civil complaint he is filing.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:36 PM

Pope decries child abuse while his satraps resist civil penalties

UNITED STATES
Washington Post

Susan Jacoby

In recent weeks, Pope Benedict XVI has owned up to the pedophile priest scandal in much stronger terms than he has in the past, but church officials throughout the world continue to battle tirelessly against laws that would make it easier for adult victims to file civil lawsuits against their childhood abusers. At a press conference on a plane to Portugal, where the pope was to speak at the shrine of Our Lady of Fatima, he acknowledged that the sex abuse crisis is a "terrifying" example of church failings.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:33 AM

Pédophilie: l'église belge adresse une lettre d'excuses à la communauté catholique

BELGIQUE
RTL

"A toutes les victimes d'abus sexuels, nous demandons pardon, tant pour l'agression que pour le traitement inadéquat de celle-ci", s'exprime mercredi l'église belge dans une lettre adressée aux membres de la communauté catholique de Belgique.

De retour le 8 mai de leur visite "ad limina" au Vatican, les évêques et administrateurs diocésains ont estimé nécessaire de présenter leurs excuses. Lors d'échanges avec divers responsables de la Curie romaine et avec le pape Benoît XVI, ils ont abordé les lacunes et les dossiers sensibles, ainsi que la raison de la récente démission de l'évêque de Bruges. "Ce qui doit prendre le pas sur toute autre considération, est la sécurité et la protection des enfants.

[summary}

The Belgian bishops apologized for their mishandling of sexual abuse allegations.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:44 AM

Pell and 'sex deacon' at conference

AUSTRALIA
The Age

RAFAEL EPSTEIN
May 20, 2010

SYDNEY Archbishop George Pell last year spoke at the same conference as a disgraced Melbourne deacon who Cardinal Pell had previously tried to defrock for suspected sexual misbehaviour.

Cardinal Pell was the keynote speaker, at a small liturgical conference in Ireland, attended by about 100 people in County Cork last July. Another speaker was Dr Scott ''Alcuin'' Reid, who was the subject of claims of inappropriate and aggressive sexual advances when he was in the Melbourne Archdiocese from the mid-80s to 1991.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:38 AM

Martin warns again of strong forces but 'it's not the Vatican'

IRELAND
Herald

By Michael Lavery

Wednesday May 19 2010

ARCHBISHOP Diarmuid Martin reiterated his warning of "strong forces" in the Catholic Church which do not want the truth about clerical sex abuse to come out -- but failed to identify them.

However, the Archbishop of Dublin rejected newspaper reports that his comments of last week were "a criticism of Pope Benedict".

In a statement, Archbishop Martin said his comments last week to the Knights of Columbanus were a reaffirmation of the Pope's urgent appeal in his letter to Irish Catholics "to address the problem of abuse that has occurred within the Irish Catholic community and to do so with courage and determination".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:35 AM

Cardinal and Robinson lost moral high ground

IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday, 19 May 2010

For those seeking leadership and example, the decision by Cardinal Brady to remain in his post will come as a deep disappointment - coupled with the decision of Peter Robinson to stay as First Minister.

These decisions only serve to reinforce the notion that in Ireland - particularly in Northern Ireland - we have no real leaders.

Regardless of the rights or wrongs of either individual's personal circumstances or culpability, they are dreadfully damaged.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:18 AM

Parents sue Episcopal School of Dallas over daughter's relationship with teacher

DALLAS (TX)
The Dallas Morning News

By DIANE JENNINGS / The Dallas Morning News
djennings@dallasnews.com

The parents of a former student at the Episcopal School of Dallas are suing the private school, accusing it of failing to protect their 16-year-old daughter from a sexual relationship with a teacher and expelling her "for being a victim."

"The teacher victimized her, then the school victimized her," the girl's father said in an interview. The parents are identified in court papers as John and Jane Doe to protect their daughter's privacy.

The Rev. Stephen Swan, the school's headmaster, did not return a call for comment, but attorney Donald E. Godwin said the school "took every appropriate action."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:15 AM

Un mundo con curas pero sin periodistas

PERU
La Republica

Por Augusto Álvarez Rodrich
alvarezrodrich@larepublica.com.pe

La prensa hace la tarea que la Iglesia Católica no ha hecho.

Hizo bien Juan Luis Cipriani al pedir que la justicia procese al sacerdote belga acusado de pedofilia y que ahora trabaja en Moquegua, pero se equivoca al criticar a la prensa por difundir la noticia.

Según la denuncia periodística, Jef Van Den Ouweland fue acusado en Schoten, Bélgica, por abuso sexual de por lo menos tres menores entre 1982 y 1983. Luego, el sacerdote abandonó su país y, desde hace dos décadas, dirige una institución educativa en el distrito de Ichuña, provincia de Sánchez Cerro, donde también oficia misas, dirige ceremonias y enseña idiomas.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:12 AM

Martin reaffirms 'strong forces' warning

IRELAND
RTE News

[with video and audio]

Archbishop Diarmuid Martin has reaffirmed his warning that there are still strong forces in the Catholic Church which would prefer that the truth about clerical child abuse did not emerge.

He has also stood by his statement that 'there are still worrying signs that despite solid regulations and child-protection norms . these were not being followed with the rigour required.'

And he rejected Irish Independent's report that his comments of last week were a 'criticism of Pope Benedict'.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:10 AM

Missionary the surprise choice to take over from Bishop Walsh

IRELAND
Irish Independent

By John Cooney and Gordon Deegan

Wednesday May 19 2010

THE surprise appointment by the Pope of a Rome-based missionary priest from Cork to head the diocese of Killaloe was described by outgoing Bishop Willie Walsh yesterday as "very imaginative" and "quite providential".

Bishop-elect Fr Kieran O'Reilly (57), who has lived in Rome since 2001 as Superior General of the Society of African Missions, said that he was surprised by his promotion.

But he expressed his gratitude to the German Pontiff for being assigned to "this ministry of service and leadership in the Church of Killaloe".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:02 AM

Martin denies 'strong forces' speech was aimed at Pope

IRELAND
Irish Independent

By John Cooney Religion Correspondent

Wednesday May 19 2010

THE Archbishop of Dublin has denied criticising Pope Benedict in a controversial speech last week, in which he warned that "strong forces" did not want the truth about the scale of clerical child abuse to come out.

In a statement yesterday, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin said his comments to the Knights of Columbanus were a reaffirmation of the Pope's appeal in his letter to Irish Catholics "to address the problem of abuse that has occurred within the Irish Catholic community and to do so with courage and determination".

He insisted that he had not "backed off" from his view, adding: "There are still worrying signs that despite solid (child-protection) regulations and norms . . . these are not being followed with the rigour required."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:38 AM

Website sheds light on abbey history

MINNESOTA
St. Cloud Times

By David Unze • dunze@stcloudtimes.com • May 19, 2010

The former St. John’s Prep School student had occasionally tried to find information about the Rev. Francisco Schulte in the years since he was an altar boy at a North Carolina church where Schulte had once served.

When he did a Google search in January for Schulte, he found one of the first links was to a website started by an abuse survivor named Pat Marker.

BehindthePineCurtain.com had been around in some form since 2002, but in recent months has added waves of new information about the monks of St. John’s Abbey. Its “Meet the Monks” section reads like a history of the abbey, with profiles of each monk gleaned from official order directories.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:33 AM

WEB FIRST: Unsealed warrant details allegations of abuse by former Thomaston organist; complainant alleged sexual touching in hot tub

CONNECTICUT
The Register Citizen

By RONALD DeROSA

LITCHFIELD — For nearly a year, former religion teacher David G. Stanco allegedly molested one of his 15-year-old students at his Thomaston home, touching the boy while in a hot tub and performing oral sex on him in the suspect’s bedroom, according to an arrest warrant unsealed Tuesday.

That very juvenile lodged a complaint with the Thomaston police on March 28 leading to the arrest of the 57-year-old teacher of Confraternity Christian Doctrine. According to the warrant, the boy looked at Stanco as someone who was “close to God,” trusting him because “he was a CCD teacher.”

Stanco entered not guilty pleas in Litchfield Superior Court Tuesday to charges of second-degree sexual assault and risk of injury to a minor.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:29 AM

St. John's Abbey faces new abuse suit

MINNESOTA
Star Tribune

By JEFF STRICKLER, Star Tribune

Last update: May 18, 2010

St. John's Abbey in Collegeville, Minn., broke its promise that a monk accused of sexually abusing a 12- and a 14-year-old boy would be barred from working with children, a lawsuit filed Tuesday in Ramsey County Court alleges.

The latest clergy abuse suit filed by St. Paul lawyer Jeff Anderson involves the Rev. Raymond Francisco Schulte, 57, who was accused of abusing the boys in the mid-1980s and is now living in Rome, where his duties include leading school tours of religious landmarks.

The suit contends that the boys and their parents were assured that he would never return to regular duty. But the older victim, now 40, learned earlier this year that Schulte was restored to fully active duty in 2003, and his position occasionally provides him unsupervised access to children.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:26 AM

Catholic schools face challenges

CALIFORNIA
Contra Costa Times

Debbie Pfeiffer Trunnell, Staff Writer

SAN BERNARDINO - Eileen Didier and her family have attended every fundraiser at Aquinas High School in past weeks to help ensure the school is still around for decades to come.

After falling thousands of dollars into debt during the school year, the campus on Sterling Avenue in San Bernardino has needed all the help it can get.

In neighboring Fontana, parents held yard sales and Christmas boutiques to keep Resurrection Academy, a Catholic school, afloat. At least two other area schools have closed their doors for good. ...

CEA president Karen Ristau attributes the situation to the serious economic downturn as well as people becoming more secular and less religious - meaning faith-based schools are no longer a high priority. Also a factor is the lost trust in the church itself because of sexual abuse issues.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:22 AM

Abuse claims require prompt investigation

AUSTRALIA
Illawarra Mercury

The pall of paedophilia and sexual abuse continues to hang over the Catholic Church worldwide.

Recent revelations that thousands of crimes against young children and church members have been ignored and allowed to linger for decades is a blight on the Church.

It has caused deep embarrassment to the Church and Pope Benedict XVI who has been forced to apologise to victims as more and more paedophile priests are uncovered.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:19 AM

NC Brothers Claim Abuse By Monk, Sue Minn. Order

MINNESOTA
WCCO

PATRICK CONDON, Associated Press Writer
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) ― Two brothers who say they were sexually abused by a priest affiliated with a Minnesota abbey filed a lawsuit Tuesday against the religious order that runs the abbey and its preparatory school, as well as their alleged abuser.

The anonymous plaintiffs, now 40 and 37, grew up and still live in North Carolina and were altar boys who served with the Rev. Francisco Schulte when he worked at Sacred Heart Cathedral in Raleigh, N.C., in the mid-1980s.

The older of the two says Schulte began molesting him in 1984, when he was 14 and traveled with the older man as the priest ministered to Hispanics Catholics in the Raleigh diocese. The suit says Schulte recruited the boy to enroll at St. John's Preparatory School in Collegeville, where the abuse continued.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:15 AM

Book shines light on abuse

CANADA
The Chatham Daily News

ERICA BAJER
The Daily News

A new book about a clergy sexual abuse scandal that rocked southwestern Ontario carries a message of hope, the author said Tuesday.

"The message is the important thing," Jim Gilbert said during the launch of Breach of Faith, Breach of Trust: The Story of Lou Ann Soontiens, Father Charles Sylvestre and Sexual Abuse within the Catholic Church.

"Lou Ann is a perfect example of how someone can go through this horrible experience and come out on the other side.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:10 AM

Anger as Primate refuses to resign

IRELAND
Scotsman

Published Date: 19 May 2010
By David Young
CARDINAL Sean Brady is facing a fresh storm of criticism after refusing to quit as head of the Catholic Church in Ireland over his handling of child abuse claims.

The decision by the Primate of All Ireland to remain in his post, made public yesterday, comes despite an unrelenting clamour for him to step down, and provoked an angry response from victims of clerical sex crimes and even fellow members of the cloth.

But Cardinal Brady, 70, was in defiant mood outside his residence at Armagh Cathedral, vowing to stay on and lead the Church's efforts to improve child protection safeguards.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:07 AM

Brady sad to hear of victims' criticism

IRELAND
The Irish Times

DAN KEENAN, Northern News Editor, in Jenkinstown, Co Louth

THE ROLE of the bishop to be appointed to assist Cardinal Seán Brady has not yet been decided, but it will be broader than dealing with the issue of child abuse, the cardinal said yesterday.

Cardinal Brady, the Catholic primate, said that while he had asked the pope for help at episcopal level “it’s not yet clarified if it’s a coadjutor or auxiliary [bishop]” that would be provided.

A coadjutor bishop has automatic rights to succession under canon law. An auxiliary bishop has no such rights.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:05 AM

Victims' groups criticise cardinal

IRELAND
The Irish Times

EOIN BURKE-KENNEDY

VICTIMS’ GROUPS yesterday expressed disappointment at Cardinal Seán Bradys decision not to resign over his handling of abuse allegations against paedophile priest Brendan Smyth.

The One in Four group said Dr Brady’s stance made it difficult to believe the church was truly committed to reforming itself.

“By failing to report Brendan Smith to the authorities at the time he became aware of his sexually abusive behaviour, Cardinal Brady allowed many other children to be sexually abused and their lives to be devastated,” the agency’s director, Maeve Lewis said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:03 AM

'Pope Benedict XVI and the Sexual Abuse Crisis': Chat with the authors Wednesday at 1 p.m.

UNITED STATES
USA Today

Greg Erlandson and Matthew Bunson, authors of the new book Pope Benedict XVI and the Sexual Abuse Crisis: Working for Reform and Renewal, will respond to questions and comments you pose via CoverItLive below.

The chat commences live at 1 p.m. ET on Wednesday, May 19.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:00 AM

Authors defend Pope Benedict, say sex crisis will mold legacy

UNITED STATES
USA Today

By Cathy Lynn Grossman, USA TODAY

Pope Benedict XVI's legacy will be shaped by his response to the explosive global clergy sex-abuse crisis, say two Catholic authors who detail and defend his record in a book published this week.

The Vatican and Benedict are accused of "acts of neglect, cover-up, and disregard for the plight of the victims," they write. Pope Benedict XVI and the Sexual Abuse Crisis: Working for Reform and Renewal is their rebuttal.

FAITH & REASON: Chat with the authors, 1 p.m. ET May 19

Greg Erlandson, head of the Catholic publishing company Our Sunday Visitor, and church historian Matthew Bunson, editor of The Catholic Almanac, take a long view — tracing the church's confrontations with sinful clergy back to the fourth century.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:57 AM

Priests must report abuse confessions: Xenophon

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

The Catholic Church is again being urged to remove the sanctity of the confessional for child abuse cases.

New South Wales police are investigating complaints that now-Adelaide Archbishop Phillip Wilson mishandled alleged sexual abuse cases by clergymen in the 1970s and '80s.

An official for the Archbishop says the allegations are without basis.

South Australian Senator Nick Xenophon says the law requires priests to report sexual abuse cases to the police but not if they learn about them in the confession booth.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:54 AM

The Complexity of Church-State Relations

UNITED STATES
Catholic Culture

By Dr. Jeff Mirus | May 18, 2010

A current legal case, in which sexual abuse victims are attempting to include Pope Benedict XVI as a defendant, demonstrates just how complex the relationship between Church and State really is. When I last commented on this complexity (see When Should a Bishop Expose a Priest to Civil Authority? on April 20th), some readers asserted that it was perfectly obvious that priests and bishops should be completely subject to civil law as well as to ecclesiastical law.

But is it really so obvious? The current Pope, while not a citizen of the United States, is a citizen of Germany. Are we therefore to conclude that he should be subject to German civil law? Some might respond that it is different for the Pope, because he is a head of state in his own right, and so is protected by the usual diplomatic immunity. But the Pope is not a head of state in exactly the same sense as the heads of other states. The Vatican City State is a creation of convenience by a largely Christian culture which saw the importance of providing the Pope and his curia with a small buffer area in which they could be free from political harassment or coercion in governing the Church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:52 AM

Let Priests Marry? Austrian Cardinal Schönborn Roils the Vatican

UNITED STATES
Politics Daily

David Gibson
Columnist

Austrian Cardinal Christoph Schönborn is a former student of the current pope whose efforts in the 2005 conclave were key to Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger's election as Benedict XVI. But these days Schönborn has the Vatican and conservative Catholics wondering whether he's helping his friend, given the independent-minded streak Schönborn has shown amid the ongoing clergy sexual abuse crisis.

In March, Schönborn set off alarm bells in Rome when he said that mandatory celibacy -- the longstanding rule that priests must not marry -- should be included in an "unflinching examination" of the scandal's causes.

Schönborn's spokesman later claimed that the cardinal was not "in any way seeking to question the Catholic Church's celibacy rule" -- though church sources said the backtrack was issued under pressure from the Vatican.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:49 AM

Peter Caffrey to file suit charging two former Springfield Diocese bishops failed to protect him from defrocked priest Richard Lavigne

GREENFIELD (MA)
The Republican

By Patrick Johnson, The Republican
May 18, 2010

GREENFIELD - A former Franklin County resident is expected to file a civil complaint Wednesday seeking unspecified damages against two former bishops for the Diocese of Springfield, charging that they each failed to prevent disgraced priest Richard Lavigne from molesting him as a child.

Defrocked priest Richard Lavigne from a 2008 police photo Peter Caffrey and his lawyer, John J. Stobierski of Greenfield, intend to file a civil complaint at the Franklin County Courthouse on Wednesday. The complaint will name retired bishops Joseph F. Maguire and Thomas L Dupre, charging that each was a direct supervisor for Lavigne in the 1980s and ‘90s and each did nothing to stop him from preying on Caffrey.

Lavigne was convicted of two child molestation charges in 1992. Several years later the diocese settled suits with 17 alleged sexual abuse victims for $1.4 million. He was defrocked as a priest in 2004. Lavigne is the only publicly identified suspect in the unsolved 1972 murder of Springfield altar boy Daniel Croteau. He was never charged.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:47 AM

Man says Colebrook priest abused him in the 1960s

NEW HAMPSHIRE
New Hampshire Union Leader

By KATHRYN MARCHOCKI
New Hampshire Union Leader Staff

Plymouth resident John Labbe said the Rev. George St. Jean sexually assaulted him about 100 times as a boy growing up in Colebrook in the 1960s, often while the two sat in the backseat of the family car while Labbe's father shuttled the priest to Masses, a civil complaint filed yesterday alleges.

"God wants this," St. Jean told Labbe more than once, the suit claims.

St. Jean, who is dead, was a member of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, a Roman Catholic religious order that assigned St. Jean to the Shrine of Our Lady of Grace in Colebrook. St. Jean also received permission to minister in the Manchester diocese and served at St. Brendan Church in Colebrook, the suit alleges.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:43 AM

N.H. man files sex abuse lawsuit against diocese

NEW HAMPSHIRE
Boston Globe

By Lynne Tuohy
Associated Press / May 19, 2010

CONCORD, N.H. — A New Hampshire man has filed a lawsuit against the Catholic Diocese of Manchester, contending that he was repeatedly abused as a youth by a priest in Colebrook.

John Labbe, 53, of Plymouth, alleges that the late Rev. George St. Jean molested him for four years, beginning when he was 9 and an altar boy at St. Brendan’s parish in Colebrook.

Labbe’s lawyer said he did not realize until last year that St. Jean was one of 26 New Hampshire priests who had multiple complaints filed against them for alleged sexual abuse. The state attorney general’s office released the list in March 2009.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:40 AM

Church 'took nine years to reveal case'

NORTHERN IRELAND
News Letter

Published Date: 19 May 2010
THE Catholic Church in Ireland waited nine years before disclosing a case of alleged child abuse, the News Letter has found.

In March 2006, then Archbishop Sean Brady stated publicly that the Church had disclosed all allegations of child sexual abuse against clergy to the police.

The Public Prosecution Service (PPS) has told the News Letter that the Church had been aware of at least one of those cases of alleged abuse for nine years before Cardinal Brady led moves to disclose it.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:37 AM

Archbishop Martin reaffirms: ‘Strong forces’ oppose emergence of truth about abuse

IRELAND
Catholic Culture

May 19, 2010
Archbishop Diarmuid Martin of Dublin has reaffirmed that “strong forces” in the Church are opposed to the emergence of the truth about clerical sexual abuse but has strongly denied a press report that he was referring to Pope Benedict, calling the report “a gratuitous misinterpretation made without any grounds.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:34 AM

Belgian bishops apologise

BELGIUM
The Straits Times (Singapore)

BRUSSELS - BELGIAN bishops asked for forgiveness on Wednesday from the victims of paedophile priests, and for the Church's silence on the abuse, in an open letter to the Catholic community.

'To all the victims of sexual abuse, we ask for forgiveness, both for the acts of aggression and for the inadequate treatment of them,' the bishops wrote in a letter to the faithful following a visit to the Vatican. 'The most important consideration must be the security and protection of children. On this point there can be no equivocation,' they said.

Following priest abuse charges in Austria, Germany, Ireland and the United States, the Belgian Church was plunged into a paedophile scandal last month with the veteran bishop of Bruges forced to step down after admitting to sexually abusing a boy in the 1980s. Roger Vangheluwe, who took up his post as bishop of the Flemish city of Bruges 25 years ago, became the country's first Catholic bishop to resign in those circumstances.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:29 AM

May 18, 2010

Sexual abuse of children crosses faith lines

The ARDA

By David Briggs

The Rev. Dick Darr and his wife, Anne, were model missionaries. They sent their children to boarding school so they could focus on saving the souls of others in remote African villages.

In 1957, while in the country today known as Mali, Darr said he found out his 9-year-old daughter and 8-year-old son were sexually molested by another missionary. When Darr reported it, the missionary was sent back into the mission field. Darr said he was told by the president of United World Mission, “You know the first thing some people want to do is ruin a man’s ministry.”

He left United World Mission in protest, and joined the Gospel Missionary Union, eventually becoming its president. In the early 1990s, he learned his children and others had been the victims of sexual and physical abuse at Mamou Alliance Academy in Guinea, West Africa.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:55 PM

Archbishop Dolan and priestly abuse

UNITED STATES
Washington Post

Donna Freitas

Yesterday, late afternoon, I took The New York Times (yes the one printed on actual paper--I get it every morning) to one of my regular evening spots where I go on nice days for a glass of wine, some pasta, and to do some reading. My intent was to take in The New York Times' whopping front page story, "On Archbishop Dolan and Priestly Abuse," by Serge Kovaleski, that chronicles Archbishop Dolan's long history navigating both victims and perpetrators over the years.

Supposedly, Archbishop Dolan is one of the "good ones" when it comes to bishops responding to accusations of abuse within Catholic parishes in the U.S. The article talks of his crying along with victims and of marathon listening sessions he has led in the past where victims can come and speak out about their experiences. This at least sounds like a good start, and having a bishop listen with a sympathetic ear and open heart is certainly preferable to the terrified, "please go away" look that many victims have received when recounting their stories of abuse to those in power.

But in this lengthy article, Archbishop Dolan seems to be awfully wishy-washy in his dealings with victims and perpetrators, one day adamant about discussing the crisis openly with parishioners, the next day quickly shutting the doors to conversation on the very same issue. One day offering his sympathy and the next turning his back. And Archbishop's support of an accused priest suing a victim for defamation about abuse allegations (because in Archbishop Dolan's "gut" he felt like the priest was telling the truth at the time--a situation that turned out to be a giant mess for all involved) made me queasy. Even more upsetting were Archbishop Dolan's remarks in retrospect about how "he now knew that abusive priests could be deceptive, and that he should not 'trust my gut.'"

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:51 PM

Judge: Scranton diocese owes former teachers more than $1M

SCRANTON (PA)
Catholic Culture

A county judge in Pennsylvania ruled on May 17 that the Diocese of Scranton must pay former teachers from five Catholic schools over $1 million in severance pay and accumulated sick leave in accord with their former contracts.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:48 PM

Lawsuit alleging sexual abuse filed against St. John's Prep

MINNESOTA
KARE

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- A man who says he was sexually abused by an instructor at St. John's Preparatory School in Collegeville has filed a lawsuit against the school, the religious order of monks that runs it, and his alleged abuser.

The plaintiff is represented by St. Paul attorney Jeff Anderson, who has pursued hundreds of lawsuits against alleged abusers and officials of the Catholic Church.

The lawsuit accuses the monk of abusing the boy and his brother in the mid-1980s and accuses St. John's Abbey and the Order of St. Benedict of concealing a pattern of abuse by the accused and other members.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:42 PM

A penitent church

UNITED STATES
Los Angeles Times

Will the Vatican finally stop denying the severity of the sexual abuse scandals? Will it be less defensive when new details emerge about the Roman Catholic hierarchy's efforts to shield offenders? Both possibilities are suggested by a remarkable statement last week from Pope Benedict XVI and by some actions that speak as loudly as his words.

For months, Vatican officials have responded to scandals in Germany — one of which occurred in Munich when the pope was still the archbishop there — as well as in Ireland and other parts of Europe by attacking the church's critics and attempting to shift blame. On Good Friday, for instance, the pope's personal preacher compared criticism of the pope and the church to the "collective violence" inflicted on Jews. The dean of the College of Cardinals — who has been accused by a fellow cardinal of blocking an investigation into an abusive Austrian prelate — said at an Easter Mass that the church would not be intimidated by "petty gossip." Then there was the Vatican secretary of state, who blamed the scandal on homosexuality.

Benedict himself, in a letter to the scandal-scarred Irish church several months ago, complained that psychologists gave bishops "conflicting expert advice" about whether pedophiles could be reformed, and he endorsed the theory, popular with Catholic conservatives in the United States, that abuse by priests had something to do with the liberalization of the church that followed the Second Vatican Council.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:37 PM

En el Perú se refugia cura pedófilo

PERU
Peru21

Párroco de la localidad de Ichuña, en Moquegua, está denunciado por presunto abuso sexual de tres menores de edad en Bélgica, su país de origen.

Autor: Catia Gutiérrez Guerrero

“El sufrimiento más grande de la Iglesia es su propio pecado”, dijo el papa Benedicto XVI hace unos días. Razones no le faltan al máximo representante de la Iglesia Católica para llegar a esta conclusión. Las denuncias de pedofilia contra curas de diferentes países del mundo han llevado a la Iglesia a vivir una de las peores crisis de su historia.

Jef Van Den Ouweland (53), un cura de Bélgica, fue denunciado por haber abusado sexualmente de, por lo menos, tres menores de edad, entre 1982 y 1983, en la localidad de Schoten, en ese país.

Pese a que una de las denuncias ya se encontraba archivada, el obispo de la diócesis de la ciudad de Amberes, Johan Bonny, solicitó la reapertura del expediente. ¿Por qué? Uno de los presuntos abusados –quien mantuvo su nombre en reserva– reveló al diario belga De Morgan, el pasado sábado, que en el año 2003 informó al Comité contra el Abuso Sexual de ese país que el cura Van Den Ouweland lo había violado.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:33 PM

Cipriani: "Cura belga debe dar cuenta a la justicia y a su obispo"

PERU
Peru21

El cardenal se quejó por “armar escándalo” con sacerdote pedófilo, pero dijo que en este caso “no hay nada que tapar, que ocultar”.

Aunque el cardenal Juan Luis Cipriani se quejó con la prensa por “armar escándalo” con el caso del cura belga acusado de pedofilia en su país y que se refugia en el Perú, dijo que el sacerdote Jef Van Den Ouweland deberá dar cuenta a la justicia y a su obispo por esas acusaciones.

“Qué ganas de armar escándalo. Si hay un sacerdote belga, en no sé qué lugar, y por lo visto tiene unas acusaciones en su país, bueno pues tendrá que dar cuenta ante la justicia de su país y ante su obispo. No hay nada que tapar, que ocultar”, indicó el primado de la Iglesia Católica peruana en su programa Diálogos de fe.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:30 PM

Cura belga acusado de pedofilia abandonó el Perú

PERU
El Comercio

[con video]

Se fue. Jef Van Den Ouweland, cura belga acusado de pedofilia en su país, abandonó el Perú tras descubrirse la información que lo compromete.

Según Peru21 , Van Den Ouweland se dirigió a Bélgica anoche tras revelarse que en su país estaba acusado de violar a tres menores a inicios de la década del ochenta. La información fue corroborada por fuentes del aeropuerto Jorge Chávez.

Él está al frente de un centro educativo en la localidad de Ichuña (Moquegua) y oficiaba misa en dicha zona. Llegó al país hace veinte años.

[summary]

Jef Van Den Ouweland, a Belgian priest accused of pedophilia in his country, left Peru after discovery of information that compromised him. He went to Belgium last night after revealing that he was accused of raping three minors in the early 1980s.

He headed a school in the town of Ichuna (Moquegua) and celebrated mass in that area. He arrived here 20 years ago. One of the alleged victims in Belgium said the priest allegedly gave him $106,000 euroes in 2006 to silence him..

Moquegua AORA Congresswoman Hilda Guevara said she feared the priest might have abused children in Peru. She is asking for an evaluation of local children.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:20 PM

Pope not liable for abuse, says Vatican

VATICAN CITY
The Star (South Africa)

May 18, 2010

VATICAN CITY: The Vatican will argue that bishops cannot be considered their employees in its defence of a US priest sex abuse case, their lawyer said, drawing an angry response from a victims group.

"This lawsuit is trying to say that the bishop in Louisville is an employee of the pope," Jeffrey Lena, the Vatican's US attorney said in a telephone interview yesterday.

"I say that's not true."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:14 PM

Former Wollongong Bishop in spotlight over abuse claims

AUSTRALIA
Illawarra Mercury

BY JOANNE MCCARTHY AND MATT CARR
19 May, 2010

Former Wollongong Bishop Philip Wilson has been asked to explain what he knew about sexual abuse by priests in the Maitland-Newcastle Diocese during his time in senior positions there in the 1970s and '80s.

Reports on ABC television on Monday night labelled the Maitland-Newcastle diocese as "perhaps the epicentre of Catholic clerical sexual abuse in Australia".

The ABC reports, which followed coverage in Fairfax's Newcastle Herald detailing the failure of Church authorities to report sexual abuse allegations against priests to police, took particular aim at former Maitland priest and now Adelaide Archbishop Philip Wilson. Archbishop Wilson was Bishop of Wollongong from 1996 until 2001 and has been named as a possible successor to the Archbishop of Sydney Cardinal George Pell should he take a senior post at the Vatican.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:11 PM

Claimed knowledge about pedophile priest

AUSTRALIA
Herald

BY JOANNE MCCARTHY
19 May, 2010

ONE of the Australian Catholic Church's most recognised spokesmen, Father Brian Lucas, allegedly knew of allegations against pedophile priest Denis McAlinden prior to McAlinden's attempted secret defrocking in 1995.

Victims who contacted The Herald after investigations about the church's handling of the problem priest have claimed that Father Lucas, the current Australian Bishops Conference general secretary, met with a victim of McAlinden's at Bishop's House, Maitland, in the months before the attempted defrocking in October 1995.

The claims have not yet been tested by police.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:07 PM

Ann Thompson’s letter to Pope Benedict

UNITED STATES
Voice from the Desert

Frank Douglas

Tom Doyle brought this letter to my attention. Here is what Tom wrote in his covering note.

Attached is a letter from Ann Thompson, addressed to the pope. Ann lives in New Zealand. As an infant she was placed in Nazareth House Orphanage in Christchurch, New Zealand. During her time at the orphanage she was physically and sexually abused by the nuns and the priests. After 2002 she gathered the courage to reveal her abuse and since has become a courageous advocate for victims and a warrior for justice. Last year her story was published in New Zealand. Her book, Say Sorry, is one of the most vivid and disturbing accounts I have yet to read. In January she wrote a letter to Pope Benedict. This letter reveals the anguish of Ann and the other victims with whom she shared the horror of her youth.

She has given me permission to edit her letter for format and to find ways to have it published in the U.S. Consequently I am sending it to you in hopes that you can add it to your respective web pages.


Thanks.
Tom

Warning: The graphic descriptions of physical and sexual abuse may be triggering to victims of abuse.

* * *
January 2010

To Pope Benedict,

I want you to know about the sexually abused men and women down south in New Zealand. Most of us were taken from our mothers’ arms after they gave birth to us. I was taken from my mother at two and half months old to live a life of physical abuse and sexual abuse by the Catholic Church workers, nuns and a priest, and I will tell you what it is like to live in hell for 24 years with them and also about the other men and women with me.

We were given numbers, not our names and if our names were used it was done so with hate for us and for our mothers. To set a child against her parents is against God’s wishes, but we did have the best teachers, the Catholic Church herself. She took every ounce of love and faith from our Hearts and Souls and we were left but a shadow of a person who had no mind. Without Love a child’s soul does not grow and the Catholic Church made sure that we were never to know love or have a family.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:03 PM

NH priest sex abuse lawsuit filed by Plymouth man

NEW HAMPSHIRE
Boston Herald

CONCORD, N.H. — A New Hampshire man has filed a lawsuit against the Diocese of Manchester claiming he was repeatedly abused as a youth by a priest in Colebrook.

Fifty-three-year-old John Labbe of Plymouth claims the late Rev. George St. Jean molested him for four years, beginning when he was age 9 and an altar boy at St. Brendan’s parish in Colebrook.

Labbe didn’t realize until last year that St. Jean was one of 29 New Hampshire priests who had multiple complaints filed against them for alleged sexual abuse. Labbe said St. Jean told him he was doing "God’s will" and threatened him to remain silent.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:56 PM

Performance of the Church's Response Team

MALTA
Times of Malta

Over the past 11 years, the Maltese Church's Response Team received allegations of child abuse involving 45 Maltese priests. When this information emerged, at the end of last March, much to the amazement of many, no information was immediately forthcoming from the Archbishop's Curia on the outcome of such cases.

The news that allegations had been made against 45 Maltese priests spread like wildfire, perhaps also because of Pope Benedict's impending visit to the island in mid-April. Comparisons were made between the number of accused priests with the total number of priests in Malta and also with the size of the Maltese population. Nonetheless, it incredibly took the Archbishop's Curia 12 days to react and, on April 12, provide the additional information that its Response Team had found no basis for such allegations in 19 cases, it identified that cases can be instituted against 13 members of the clergy and that 13 are pending!

The much overdue clarification also explained that, in line with standard procedure, four of the cases were referred to the Holy See and judgment was delivered accordingly. The priests were found guilty and were sentenced. Sentences varied from being defrocked to restrictions placed upon the priest's pastoral activity in such a way that the priest involved would not be permitted to work with minors and be subject to supervision.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:51 PM

Spain struggles with new Catholic sex abuse claims

SPAIN
BBC News

By Sarah Rainsford
BBC News, Cordoba

For almost 50 years, the Franciscan Brothers of the White Cross have run care homes across Spain, looking after the sick and the needy.

Now the Catholic order and its centre in Cordoba are the focus of allegations of sex abuse that have shocked the city.

A Cordoba Catholic care home is at the centre of sex abuse allegations They have also thrust Spain into the global dispute over how the Church handles claims of abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:46 PM

Pope helped tainted deacon

AUSTRALIA
The Age

RAFAEL EPSTEIN AND NICK MCKENZIE
May 19, 2010

POPE Benedict XVI wrote a foreword to a 2004 book by a banned Melbourne theologian despite archbishops George Pell and Denis Hart knowing he had been sanctioned for suspected sexual misconduct.

Scott ''Alcuin'' Reid, a deacon, seems to have had some sway with the Vatican, as a foreword for another book was written by Cardinal Castrillon Hoyos, then head of the Catholic Church's office for clergy.

Mr Reid had his ''canonical faculties'' removed by the Melbourne Archdiocese in 1991, meaning he could no longer act as a deacon or priest's assistant, the most severe church punishment other than defrocking.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:38 PM

Editorial: Anger at Brady's lack of remorse

IRELAND
Herald

Tuesday May 18 2010

THE decision of Cardinal Sean Brady not to resign from his position as leader of the Catholic Church in Ireland has not pleased those survivors of sexual abuse by clerics who had called for his resignation.

Those angry with his decision had pointed out that he was a seasoned canon lawyer 35 years ago when he made two young teenagers swear an oath they would not tell anyone, including gardai, about the abuse they suffered in attacks by notorious paedophile Fr Brendan Smyth.

He and the church authorities assured the victims' families that Fr Smyth would never be allowed the opportunity to continue his sexual assaults on innocent children. But Smyth continued to attack children for years afterwards.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:36 PM

Pope 'not responsible' for Catholic sex abuse priests

VATICAN CITY
Herald (Ireland)

By James Bone

Tuesday May 18 2010

The Vatican has said it cannot be held responsible for the day-to-day actions of Catholic bishops in America, as it scrambles to prevent the Pope from being called to give evidence in a landmark abuse case.

The argument will be made in a case by three Kentucky men who claim that they were abused by priests decades ago.

The men -- one of whom received compensation under a previous court settlement -- are claiming negligence by the Vatican.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:32 PM

Labor powerbroker defends archbishop

AUSTRALIA
The Australian

Michael Owen, SA political reporter From: The Australian May 19, 2010

LABOR powerbroker Don Farrell, a practising Catholic, has come to the defence of the Archbishop of Adelaide, Philip Wilson, over allegations he covered up clerical sexual abuse in the late 1970s and 80s.

Senator Farrell, the leader of the ALP's powerful Right faction in South Australia, said he had faith in Archbishop Wilson, who has been suggested as a successor to the Archbishop of Sydney, Cardinal George Pell, if he takes a senior position in the Vatican.

"I know Archbishop Wilson and I think he is a good man. He has categorically denied the allegations," Senator Farrell said. "It is an occupational hazard to have to fend off such things because of a high profile. As far as I am concerned, he has denied it, and I accept his word."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:29 PM

Child abuse survivors blast Brady for refusal to resign over cover-up

IRELAND
Herald

By Conor Feehan

Tuesday May 18 2010

THE refusal of Cardinal Sean Brady to resign his position as leader of the Irish Catholic Church over his role in the cover-up of notorious paedophile priest Brendan Smyth has been met with anger by survivors of child abuse.

Cardinal Brady became embroiled in controversy when it emerged that he had sworn two of Fr Smyth's teenage victims to secrecy in 1975 after recording their statements in a church inquiry.

Dr Brady has now announced he has no intention of resigning, and is asking Pope Benedict for an assistant bishop he says will help him engage with child abuse survivors and implement child protection procedures.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:26 PM

Abuse victims' fury as Cardinal Sean Brady refuses to quit

IRELAND
The Times (United Kingdom)

David Sharrock, Ireland Correspondent

Survivors of clerical child sexual abuse called on Irish Roman Catholics to make their voices heard today after Cardinal Sean Brady ended months of speculation about his future by saying he would not resign.

The cardinal, the head of the Catholic Church in Ireland, is under pressure to stand down after it emerged that he took part in a secret canonical tribunal in 1975 at which two minors were made to swear oaths of silence about their allegations against the paedophile priest Father Brendan Smyth.

Smyth went on to rape hundreds more children across Ireland, the UK and the United States before he died in prison in 1997.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:24 PM

Comment: canny Cardinal puts Pope on the spot

IRELAND
The Times (United Kingdom)

Ruth Gledhill, Religion Correspondent

The clever canon lawyer who heads the Catholic Church in Ireland has passed the most holy ghost of a dilemma to Rome.

Cardinal Seán Brady, the Irish Primate, has not said he will resign over the terrible scandal of clerical child abuse. But nor has he said he is staying.

In his statement, Cardinal Brady said: “To assist me in addressing the vital work of healing, repentance and renewal, including engagement with survivors of abuse, as well as the many other challenges and opportunities which confront the Diocese of Armagh and the Church in Ireland at this time, I have asked Pope Benedict XVI for additional support for my work, at episcopal level.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:21 PM

A tacit endorsement of a downsized papacy

UNITED STATES
Los Angeles Times

May 18, 2010

There's irony in the decision of the Vatican to fight lawsuits stemming from the allegations of sexual abuse of minors by clergy. In resisting the claims of victims from the United States, the Holy See is arguing that local bishops are not Vatican officials or employees. Whatever its validity in American law, this claim conflicts with the centralization of power in the Roman Catholic Church.

With rare exceptions, bishops are appointed by the pope. What's more, the Vatican bureaucracy keeps a watchful and sometimes censorious eye on policies adopted by national bishops' conferences, including the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People approved by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:19 PM

Documents Sought in Priest Sex Abuse Lawsuit

NORWICH (CT)
NBC Connecticut

The Diocese of Norwich is refusing to hand over hundreds of documents in a sex abuse lawsuit involving one of its former priests.

Those documents include a letter written to the pope, when he was still a cardinal, reports The Hartford Courant.

The lawsuit alleges that Thomas Shea sexually molested a 12-year-old girl while he was at St. Joseph's Church in New London in 1976. The girl's attorney subpoenaed Shea's personnel records and the diocese turned over 405 pages from his file. It refused to turn over another 661 pages it claims are "privileged."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:15 PM

Former Prep School student sues school, monk, abbey

MINNESOTA
St. Cloud Times

By David Unze • dunze@stcloudtimes.com • May 18, 2010

A former St. John’s Prep student is suing the school, a monk who used to teach at the school and the Order of St. Benedict and St. John’s Abbey, alleging a cover-up of sexual abuse.

The lawsuit accuses the Rev. Raymond Francisco Schulte of abusing the boy in the mid-1980s and accuses St. John’s Abbey and the Order of St. Benedict of concealing a pattern of abuse by Schulte and other members.

Schulte, who is known by the names Father Ray and Father Francisco, was listed as a monk subject to restrictions in fall 2002. Schulte later requested and was granted a leave from the abbey and recently was in Rome giving tours of a monastery there.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:12 PM

Statement by Cardinal Seán Brady on resignation of Bishop Walsh

IRELAND
Independent Catholic News

Posted: Tuesday, May 18, 2010

In response to the announcement today that Pope Benedict XVI has accepted the resignation of Bishop William Walsh as Bishop of Killaloe and the announcement of the appointment of Reverend Kieran O'Reilly, SMA, as Bishop of Killaloe, the following statement was issued by Cardinal Seán Brady, President of the Irish Bishops' Conference:

"I wish to acknowledge the contribution that Bishop Willie Walsh has made to the work of the Bishops' Conference and to the Diocese of Killaloe. Bishop Walsh has served the Bishops' Conference for 16 years and he has served his diocese as priest and bishop for 51 years.

"The motto which Bishop Walsh took at his Episcopal Ordination in October 1994 was 'Cinealtas Chriost' which means 'the gentleness of Christ' and he has very much lived out this motto in his Episcopal Ministry. Bishop Walsh is never afraid to speak out and to use his talent in communication to speak for the poor and the marginalised in our society or when it came to issues of injustice and wrongdoing.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:09 PM

Vatican denies authority over bishops

VATICAN CITY
Press TV (Iran)

The Vatican has insisted it is not responsible for clerical sex abuse cases in the United States because the bishops are not technically its employees.

The claim was made in response to court cases in the US state of Kentucky, in which bishops allegedly conspired to conceal sex abuse charges against pedophile priests.

Jeffrey Lena, the Vatican's US-based attorney, argued on Tuesday that as bishops are not paid by the Roman Catholic Church, they are therefore not considered its responsibility.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:02 PM

Legionaries' past, present problems provoke strong opinions in Mexico

MEXICO
Catholic News Service

By David Agren
Catholic News Service

MEXICO CITY (CNS) -- Anabel Mellado, 28, grew up attending schools belonging to the Legionaries of Christ. She later went to work in public relations for the Altius Foundation, a Legionaries' charity responsible for such programs as the 23 Mano Amiga (Helping Hand) schools, which provide children from impoverished barrios with quality educations.

Mellado saw what she says is the good side of the Legionaries -- "education, integral formation and the apostolic spirit."

"I'm proud of the education I got. It's a great education," she said from the northern Mexican city of Monterrey.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:55 PM

BOOK RECOMMENDATION: The Purple Culture

UNITED STATES
Voice from the Desert

It’s said that a wise old Native American storyteller would often preface his tales by saying to his listeners, “I don’t know if things happened exactly this way, but I know this story is true.” The same can be said of novels, at least good ones. Often novels, like the parables of Jesus, get the truth across more effectively than the most logical fact-based exposition or argument. In the same way, The Purple Culture examines the reasons–the why–behind the cover up of Roman Catholic clergy sexual abuse of children more effectively than anything I’ve read to date.

The story plot is straightforward. A federal grand jury indicts three Roman Catholic bishops—Robert Courteer, of San Miguel, Texas; Vincent Barieno of Palm Sands, Florida; and Wilber Sandes of Colchester, New Hampshire. All three are rising stars. Each is educated in Rome, holds an advanced degree, and is originally from the Archdiocese of Chicago, protégés of Cardinal Brendan Patrick O’Connell. The charge against all three: conspiracy under the federal RICO Act. Conspiracy to transfer pedophile priests from parish to parish within their own dioceses. Conspiracy to accept from and transfer to each other’s jurisdictions priest pedophiles to keep them from prosecution, And conspiracy to aid pedophiles against whom arrest warrants had been issued to flee the country.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:51 AM

Gilmore: Abuse report bishops should not be school patrons

IRELAND
Breaking News

18/05/2010
Labour Party leader Eamon Gilmore has said he believes any bishops named and shamed in the recent reports into allegations of mishandling of abuse within the Catholic church should not remain on as patrons of schools.

Deputy Gilmore was speaking after the head of the Catholic Church in Ireland reiterated his intention to remain in his position.

Cardinal Sean Brady had faced calls to resign since it emerged that in 1975 he conducted an investigation into allegations of child sex abuse by Fr Brendan Smyth which involved him swearing two teenagers to secrecy.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:47 AM

Retired Garda welcomes child protection audit

IRELAND
Ocean FM

A retired Garda who investigated cases of child sex abuse in the Donegal Gaeltacht has welcomed indications that an audit of child protection in the Diocese of Raphoe could be complete by the end of 2010.

The head of the National Board for Safeguarding Children in the Catholic Church, Ian Elliot, said yesterday that he was confident the country’s bishops would give the green light to an investigation of Raphoe at their meeting in mid-June.

Mr Elliott said he had discussed claims of cover-ups by the diocese with Falcarragh-based former detective Martin Ridge and the Bishop of Raphoe, Dr Philip Boyce.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:45 AM

Finnish politicians call for priests to break confidentiality

FINLAND
Helsinki Times

Several Finnish politicians on Monday demanded churches to break the strict confidentiality of confessions in order to reveal cases of paedophilia.

Politicians feel that priests should be obliged to break confidentiality so as to avoid leaving children unprotected from child abuse. Paula Risikko (cons), minister of health and social services, threatened that if the church does not take action to protect children then the ministry will.

In interviews printed in regional daily Savon Sanomat on Tuesday, church representatives came out in opposition to eroding the confidentiality of confessions.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:43 AM

Cardinal Sean Brady vows to stay in wake of child abuse cover-up

IRELAND
The Times (United Kingdom)

Joanna Sugden

The head of the Catholic Church in Ireland has indicated he will not resign following a cover-up of child abuse in the Church.

Cardinal Sean Brady had said he would step down if he found that a child had been abused as a result of his managerial failures.

Calls for his resignation came earlier this year after it emerged he was present at meetings more than 30 years ago where children who complained they were abused by a priest were sworn to secrecy.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:38 AM

Parishioners of closed Scituate and Quincy churches ...

MASSACHUSETS
The Patriot Ledger

By Jennifer Mann
The Patriot Ledger

SCITUATE — Parishioners of St. Frances X. Cabrini Church in Scituate say they’re ready to be taken away in handcuffs before ending the around-the-clock vigil they have held there since 2004.

“It’s going to be Catholics in handcuffs, but it’s going to be peaceful,” the group’s spokesman, Jon Rogers, said Monday after a ruling by the Vatican’s highest court that Cabrini would remain closed. “I feel bad for the local authorities who are going to have to arrest us. The blame squarely falls on the shoulders of the archdiocese.”

The rejection by the full college of the Apostolic Signatura was widely expected by parishioners of the 10 churches for which appeals were filed. In addition to the Scituate church, which is one of three occupied by parishioners in vigil, Star of the Sea Church in the Squantum section of Quincy was also appealing its closing.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:19 AM

NY Times critical of Archbishop Timothy Dolan, a St. Louis native

UNITED STATES
KMOX

Fred Bodimer Reporting

NEW YORK, NY (KMOX) -- St. Louis native and current New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan goes under the microscope of the New York Times in a lengthy article on how he has handled clergy abuse cases in the past.

The Sunday piece largely focused on how Archbishop Dolan handled an abuse allegation years ago against a priest in St. Louis when Dolan was an auxiliary bishop here charged with handling clergy abuse cases for the Archdiocese.

In that case, the Times reports, Dolan swiftly took the side of the accused priest and, with the support of the Archdiocese, turned around and sued the accuser.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:16 AM

Irish cardinal defies calls to resign over priest's child abuse

IRELAND
Guardian (United Kingdom)

Henry McDonald in Dublin guardian.co.uk, Tuesday 18 May 2010

The leader of Ireland's Catholics has defied calls to step down over the cover-up of the country's most notorious paedophile priest scandal.

Cardinal Sean Brady said he would stay on as head of the Irish church even though he had previously hinted he may resign.

In a statement last night Brady asked Pope Benedict XVI for "additional support for my work, at episcopal level".

Speaking on the steps of Armagh cathedral, the spiritual home of Irish Christianity, Brady said: "It certainly wasn't an easy decision. I have listened to a lot of people, reflected as I said I would. I listened to survivors, to priests, to religious people up and down the length of this diocese and I have decided to continue in my present role, to play my part in this diocese.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:13 AM

Catholic Church Denies Female Priest a Catholic Burial

ILLINOIS
Chicago Breaking News

Produced by Susie An on Tuesday, May 18, 2010

A woman who challenged a Catholic ordination ban has died. The Catholic church will not allow her to be buried at a Catholic parish.

Janine Denomme was ordained a priest in April by a group called Roman Catholic Womenpriests. She had been battling cancer and yesterday she died in her Edgewater home.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:11 AM

New Bishop of Killaloe announced

IRELAND
The Irish Times

The Pope has formally accepted the resignation of Bishop of Killaloe Willie Walsh, it was announced today.

A statement from the Irish Bishops' Conference said Pope Bendict XVI had appointed the Rev Kieran O'Reilly as the new Bishop of Killaloe.

Bishop Walsh had already tendered his resignation, having passed the retirement age (75) stipulated by canon law. Three other bishops over 75 have also letters of resignation to Rome: the Bishop of Clogher Joseph Duffy, Auxiliary Bishop of Derry Francis Lagan, and Bishop of Ardagh and Clonmacnoise Colm O’Reilly.

Born in Cork in 1952, Fr O'Reilly joined the Society of African Missions in 1970 and was later ordained a priest in 1978. He then carried out two years of pastoral work in the Archdiocese of Monrovia, Liberia, before returning to Rome to complete his Biblical studies.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:08 AM

Victims' group criticises Cardinal's stance

IRELAND
The Irish Times

EOIN BURKE-KENNEDY

Victims’ group One in Four has expressed disappointment at Cardinal Seán Brady’s decision not to resign, saying his stance made it difficult to believe the Catholic Church in Ireland was committed to reforming itself.

Dr Brady has faced several calls to resign since it emerged he conducted an investigation into allegations of child sex abuse by Fr Brendan Smyth as far back as 1975.

By failing to report Brendan Smith to the authorities at the time he became aware of his sexually abusive behaviour, he allowed many other children to be sexually abused and their lives to be devastated, One in Four claimed today.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:04 AM

Survivors critical of Brady

IRELAND
TV3

18.05.10

A leading charity that supports men and women who have experienced sexual violence during childhood has said it is disappointed that Cardinal Sean Brady intends to stay on as head of the Catholic Church in Ireland.

The Cardinal, said in a statement last night that in the years that remain to him as Archbishop of Armagh, he hopes to engage with survivors of clerical abuse, to aid healing, repentance and renewal.

This morning ‘One in Four' director Maeve Lewis said that the cardinal's failure to report Brendan Smith to the authorities allowed many other children to be sexually abused.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:00 AM

Bolivian president asks pope to abolish priestly celibacy

VATICAN CITY
Calcutta Tube

Vatican City, May 18 (IANS/EFE) Pope Benedict XVI received Monday in the Vatican the president of Bolivia, Evo Morales, who sought the abolition of priestly celibacy and the admission of women to the priesthood.

After a 25-minute meeting, Morales with the help of an interpreter announced the handing over of a letter to the pontiff.

In the note, Morales described himself as a ‘member of the Catholic Church’ and proposed ‘the need to overcome the crisis in the church, which, as you said, is wounded and sinful’.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:58 AM

The Caseload Continues....

UNITED STATES
Whispers in the Loggia

While the bulk of Stateside chatter this Monday's been focused on the New York Times' year-in-the-making "hit" that wasn't on the archbishop of New York, what's arguably the more potent story has emerged from Australia, where decades-old claims of negligence against now-Archbishop Philip Wilson of Adelaide have seen the chair of the Oz bench placed under police investigation.

Closer to home, meanwhile, his 2002 cri de coeur for action having impressively made the rounds since its release last month, David Spotanski -- the Belleville chancellor whose impassioned 10-page memo to the then-president of the US bishops helped hone Wilton Gregory's acclaimed response to the scandals' Stateside outbreak -- has returned to the fray in an extended interview with BustedHalo's Bill McGarvey.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:52 AM

El Paso Catholics Stand By Vatican In Sex Scandal

EL PASO (TX)
KFOX

EL PASO, Texas -- The sound of church bells ringing at St. Pius church Monday afternoon brought a sense of calm and peace.

But an issue rumbling across the pews of Catholic churches is the priest sex scandal. In the latest twist, lawyers for the Vatican said bishops involved in U.S. sex abuse scandals were not Vatican employees.

The lawyers made the claims Monday, in hopes of dismissing a lawsuit over a sex abuse case in Kentucky, where a priest was accused of molesting three children.

“Yeah, it’s a lot of people saying, making comments,” said St. Pius church member Lupe Camacho. “I think when you have strong faith, you have to support your people.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:50 AM

John Cooney: Church needs 'forces' of child protection supremo

IRELAND
Irish Independent

By John Cooney

Tuesday May 18 2010

FOR the past week Archbishop Diarmuid Martin has caused many Catholics to scratch their heads about the "strong forces" not wanting the truth to emerge about the scale of clerical child abuse.

Some have even wondered if the archbishop knows the answer to this question.

Among them is Ian Elliott, the Catholic Church's child-protection supremo.

Mr Elliott wants the archbishop to tell him what he knows that he himself does not know.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:46 AM

Former Boonville priest extradited

MISSOURI
Columbia Daily Tribune

Monday, May 17, 2010

A former Boonville Catholic priest indicted last month on charges of sodomy and kidnapping has been extradited to the Cooper County Detention Center.

Gerald J. Howard, 65, of Bloomfield, N.J., was transferred from the Essex County Jail and is being held on a $1.5 million bond. The former priest arrived Friday at the Cooper County Detention Center, Sheriff Jerry Wolfe said.

Howard’s arrival continues the judicial process concerning three counts of forcible sodomy, three counts of attempted forcible sodomy and two counts of kidnapping stemming from alleged incidents involving three minors in the mid- to late 1980s. A Cooper County grand jury returned an indictment on the charges last month.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:40 AM

Should the Pope Resign?

UNITED STATES
Healing and Spirituality

Dr. Jaime Romo

Absolutely not. Here are five reasons.

There may be resignations by bishops who have been directly involved with abuse, or who have been negligent in ending abuse by those under their supervision. However, the pope needs to lead by example, badly or not, of how to rebuild his individual and collective capacity to promote healing and end abuse. He may not have enough time in his life to transform the lifetime of socialization and clerical enculturation to show an ability to respond to the problem of clericalism. Yet, he represents a role in a system that is centuries old and entrenched in many other patriarchic, misogynistic