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February 28, 2011

Tom Monaghan's "invaluable" Cardinal Bevilacqua accused by grand jury of covering up sexual abuse of children

UNITED STATES
Renew America

By Marielena Montesino de Stuart

Benedict XVI must surround himself with holy men, morally capable of acting as ecclesiastical officials.

A Special Report

Dangerous Impostors

AVE MARIA, Florida- Following a long and painful investigation of the sexual abuse of children in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, a Grand Jury has issued a final report stating that they have no doubt that Cardinal Bevilacqua's "knowing and deliberate actions during his tenure as Archbishop also endangered thousands of children in the Philadelphia Archdiocese." This endangerment included vulnerable and poor immigrant children from the Hmong community — an alarming fact, considering Bevilacqua's experience, having served as Director of the Migration and Refugee Office in the Diocese of Brooklyn.

Cardinal BevilacquaCardinal Bevilacqua is one of America's best known Roman Catholic Cardinals. He is also considered to be one of the most notorious protectors of dangerous sexual predators, in the history of the Catholic Church in America.

This "prince of the Church" served as Archbishop of Philadelphia from 1987-2003, after having served as Bishop of the Diocese of Pittsburgh from 1983-1987.

Bevilacqua arrived in Pennsylvania from his native New York, after serving in various positions under Bishop Mugavero, culminating with his appointment in 1980 as Auxiliary Bishop of the Diocese of Brooklyn.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:07 PM

Accused priest worked in Pearsall in 1986

SAN ANTONIO (TX)
Express News

By Abe Levy
alevy@express-news.net

Updated 06:26 p.m., Monday, February 28, 2011

The Archdiocese of San Antonio revealed in an online posting Sunday that Father Theo Clerx worked in a fourth parish during his ministry in the area.

The statement by San Antonio Archbishop Gustavo Garcia-Siller was in response to an Express-News story the day before about Clerx, who is accused in a lawsuit against the archdiocese of sexually abusing four sisters, including raping one of them when she was a young altar server at St. John Berchmans Catholic Church in the early 1990s.

A parish directory showed Clerx worked there and at St. Jude in San Antonio and St. Joseph's in Devine. In the online notice on its Web site, the archdiocese said he also worked at Immaculate Heart of Mary Church in Pearsall in 1986.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:01 PM

Lawsuit by Mexican claiming clergy sex abuse can be heard in U.S., federal judge rules

LOS ANGELES (CA)
Los Angeles Times

February 28, 2011

A federal judge in Los Angeles ruled Monday that a Mexican man who claims he was the victim of sexual abuse by a priest and a church conspiracy to conceal it can bring his lawsuit in U.S. federal court.

The ruling by U.S. District Judge Josephine S. Tucker was the first clergy sex abuse case to gain a foothold in federal court under a little-used law that allows foreigners to bring human rights abuse claims here when the courts in their homeland have failed to provide relief.

The Alien Tort Claims Act of 1789 was designed to provide a forum for resolving claims of "cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment," and the abuses alleged by the Mexican plaintiff are covered by the statute, the judge ruled.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:55 PM

Official Statement Concerning Lawsuit Involving Accusations of Sexual Misconduct with a Minor by Rev. Theo Clerx

SAN ANTONIO (TX)
Office of Communication, Archdiocese of San Antonio

February 27, 2011

[See also Clerx's assignment record at BishopAccountability.org.]

Consistent with its policy, The Archdiocese of San Antonio cannot comment on the facts surrounding a recent lawsuit filed concerning allegations of sexual misconduct with a minor by Father Theo Clerx, a member of the religious order, the Congregation of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, (also referred to as the CICM’s). Now that the lawsuit has been filed, we believe that the courtroom is the best place for a proper airing of all the facts involved in this case. Father Clerx, now deceased, served as a priest in the Archdiocese of San Antonio beginning in 1959 through 1992. During that time the CICM’s also assigned him to service in the Dominican Republic and Belgium. While in the Archdiocese of San Antonio Clerx worked in the following parishes:

- St. Augusta Church(Now St. Jude) in San Antonio – 1959‐1966
- Immaculate Heart of Mary Church in Pearsall, TX‐1986
- St. Joseph’s Church in Devine, TX‐1986‐1987
- St. John Berchmans Church in San Antonio‐1988‐1992

Archbishop Gustavo Garcia‐Siller, assuring the community of his commitment to the safety of our children, reiterated his solid dedication to the goals of the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young people: “Be assured of my deeply felt belief that we must continue to pray for the healing of anyone who is the victim of abuse. I pledge my commitment to join with all of our people, as we work toward making all Catholic institutions in the archdiocese places of safety, love and peace. Our Office of Victim Assistance and Safe Environment, in cooperation with parents, parishioners and school personnel have trained literally thousands of children and adults with age appropriate information to arm them against sexual abuse of our children.”

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 4:47 PM

The Church and Its Abuse

UNITED STATES
Skinner's Notes

“He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but he whoso confesseth and forshaketh them shall have mercy.” Proverbs 28:113

“The sins of the common, untutored people are nothing in comparison with the sins that are committed by great and high persons that are in spiritual and temporal offices.”
Luther, Table Talk

Stories about members of the Catholic clergy abusing children continue to appear in the press. A Sunday’s New York Time Magazine article (February 13, 2011) featured a report by Russell Shorto, “The Irish Affliction,” detailing the sexual abuse (I believe more accurate terms are “sexual assault” and “rape.”) of children perpetrated by priests throughout Ireland.

Besides the thousands of cases in Ireland, which makes that country only second to the US in the number of cases, Shorto cites reports of clergy sexual abuse in Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands, Britain, Italy, Spain, France, Malta, Switzerland, Austria, Mexico, New Zealand, Canada, Kenya, the Philippines, and Australia. Though this list might seem shockingly long, it does not report all the countries that have experienced abuse by Catholic clergy.

More tales of horror will, no doubt, surface in the future (See Washington Post, L.A. Cardinal’s legacy tainted by priest abuse.” Saturday, February 26, 2011). But how many victims have remained silent over the years and how many victims from centuries past took the abuse they suffered silently to their graves?

One particularly disturbing story that has made its way into the news is that of Marie Collins. Collins told the curate of her parish about a priest who sexually abused her when she was thirteen. The curate listened to her ordeal and then informed her that she “may have tempted” the priest into “digitally raping” her.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:08 PM

US judge allows clergy abuse lawsuit to proceed against Los Angeles, Mexican cardinals

LOS ANGELES (CA)
Winnipeg Free Press

By: Gillian Flaccus, The Associated Press

Posted: 02/28/2011

LOS ANGELES, Calif. - A Mexico City man can proceed with a clergy abuse lawsuit filed in U.S. court against the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles, even though the alleged abuse occurred in Mexico and the priest and plaintiff are Mexican citizens, a federal judge has ruled.

U.S. District Judge Josephine Staton Tucker on Friday denied a motion from church attorneys who had sought dismissal of the case by arguing U.S. courts do not have jurisdiction.

Michael Hennigan, an attorney for the archdiocese, said the case has no merit and would ultimately be dismissed.

Plaintiff attorney Jeff Anderson filed the claim under the Alien Tort Claims Act, a law enacted by the U.S. Congress in 1789.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:01 PM

Groundbreaking Federal Court Decision: Catholic Church Officials Subject to Alien Tort Statut

CALIFORNIA
Jeff Anderson & Associates

(Los Angeles, CA) In a groundbreaking decision, a Federal judge in California today denied a motion by attorneys for the Catholic Church to dismiss a lawsuit based on a unique international law against two Cardinals and a priest for their roles in the sexual abuse of a Mexican man as a boy in 1997, saying the plaintiff has sufficiently plead rape and sexual abuse of children as “…cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment” and crimes against humanity.

The case, filed in April, 2010 by attorneys Jeff Anderson and Anthony DeMarco, named as defendants American Cardinal Roger Mahony. the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Los Angeles and Cardinal Norberto Rivera and Father Nicholas Aguilar Rivera of the Diocese of Tehuacan in Mexico.

Using the international law-based Alien Tort Statute ("ATS"), a Mexican man, identified in the lawsuit as “Juan Doe I” alleges that, in 1997 , when he was twelve-years old, he was sexually abused by Fr. Aguilar and that this abuse occurred because the other Defendants' conspired to conceal the previous widespread sexual abuse of children committed by Fr. Aguilar.

A Defining Moment for Child Protection: Federal Judge Allows Alien Tort Case to Proceed

CALIFORNIA
Jeff Anderson & Associates

Sarah Odegaard | 1:26 PM

The U.S. District Court for the Central District of California issued an unprecedented opinion today allowing our client’s case using the Alien Tort Statute to go forward. You can find the entire text of the opinion on our site. In denying Defendant Cardinal Roger Mahony’s and the Archdiocese of Los Angeles’ motion to dismiss for lack of subject matter jurisdiction, the Court permitted Plaintiff’s case, brought under the Alien Tort Statute, to move forward. This groundbreaking decision allows Plaintiff to bring his lawsuit under a little known federal law, the Alien Tort Statute, which permits aliens to sue in United States federal court for torts committed in violation of customary international law.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:24 PM

Catholic college fires gay teacher

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

February 27, 2011|By Bonnie L. Cook, Inquirer Staff Writer

In a move that infuriated some students, Chestnut Hill College abruptly terminated the teaching contract of an adjunct professor, saying his 15-year relationship with another man defied Roman Catholic Church teachings.

The Rev. James St. George, 45, of Lansdale, was due to teach two courses - world religions, and theology and justice - starting Tuesday at the Catholic college in Northwest Philadelphia.

That all changed Feb. 18 when the priest, who is pastor at St. Miriam Catholic Apostolic Church in Blue Bell, received a terse note from the school saying his services were no longer needed. He was floored.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:20 PM

Judge: Mexican man can file clergy suit in US

LOS ANGELES (CA)
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

The Associated Press

LOS ANGELES — A federal judge won't dismiss a lawsuit filed against the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles by a Mexican national using a law enacted in 1789.

U.S. District Judge Josephine Staton Tucker on Friday denied a dismissal motion by church attorneys who argued that U.S. courts did not have jurisdiction.

The lawsuit uses the 222-year-old Alien Tort Claims Act to sue recently retired Los Angeles Cardinal Roger Mahony and his Mexican counterpart on behalf of a Mexico City man who claims he was abused in Mexico by a Mexican priest.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:17 PM

Changes in Pennsylvania law open door to charges of sex abuse by Philadelphia clergy

PENNSYLVANIA
Philadelphia Inquirer

By David O'Reilly
Inquirer Staff Writer

Investigating clergy sex abuse in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Philadelphia was an exercise in frustration for the 2005 grand jury.

It identified 63 current and former priests credibly accused of molesting minors and lambasted the hierarchy for an "immoral cover-up" of the alleged crimes.

Yet no one was indicted.

The reason: Pennsylvania's statute of limitations had expired on assaults dating back to the 1960s, '70s, and '80s. "We surely would have charged them," the hamstrung panel wrote, "if we could have."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:09 PM

Order Denying Motion in Juan Doe I v. Cardinal Mahony et al.

LOS ANGELES (CA)
United States District Court: Central District of California

Filed February 25, 2011

[See other Aguilar documents.]

On April 20, 2010, Plaintiff Juan Doe 1, a Mexican national, filed suit against American Defendants Cardinal Roger Mahony and the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Los Angeles ("Archdiocese of Los Angeles") and Mexican Defendants Cardinal Norberto Rivera, Father Nicholas Aguilar Rivera ("Fr. Aguilar"), and the Diocese of Tehuacan pursuant to the Alien Tort Statute ("ATS"). Plaintiff alleges that, in 1997 , when he was twelve-years old, he was sexually abused by Aguilar. Plaintiff alleges that this abuse occurred because the other Defendants' conspired to conceal the previous widespread sexual abuse of children committed by Fr. Aguilar.

Based on this incident, Plaintiff asserts ten causes of action: (1) rape and other sexual abuse; (2) crimes against humanity; (3) torture; (4) cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment; (5) civil conspiracy; (6) intentional infliction of emotional distress; (7) negligence against Cardinal Rivera and the Diocese of Tehuacan; (8) negligent supervision/failure to warn against Cardinal Rivera and the Diocese of Tehuacan; (9) negligence against Cardinal Mahony and the Archdiocese of Los Angeles; and (10) negligent failure to warn against Cardinal Mahony and the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. (See generally First Amended Complaint, "FAC," Doc. 10.) Plaintiff alleges that Cardinal Rivera and the Diocese of Tehuacan supervised, protected, and facilitated Father Aguilar's actions in Mexico, and that Cardinal Mahony and Archdiocese of Los Angeles aided Father Rivera in avoiding detection by authorities during the time that he worked in Los Angeles in 1987 and in eventually fleeing to Mexico.

Defendants Mahony and Archdiocese of Los Angeles filed a Motion to Dismiss pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(1) for lack of subject matter jurisdiction (Doc. 24). Plaintiff opposed the Motion (Doc. 25), and Defendants replied (29). Having read the papers, heard oral argument, and taken the matter under submission, the Court DENIES Defendants' Motion to Dismiss for lack of subject matter jurisdiction.
. . .

Since July 27, 1970, Fr. Aguilar has been an ordained Catholic Priest. (FAC ¶ 15.) From then until 1987, Fr. Aguilar was a priest for the Diocese of Tehuacan, Mexico, and a parish priest of San Sebastian Parish in Cuacnopalan, Mexico. (Id. ¶ 15-16.) During that time, Defendant Cardinal Rivera, then the Bishop of Tehuacan, had reason to believe that Fr. Aguilar had sexually abused young boys. (Id. ¶ 18.)

On January 27,1987, Cardinal Rivera wrote to Cardinal Mahony, then Archbishop of Los Angeles, and recommended that Fr. Aguilar work as a priest in Los Angeles. (Id. ¶ 19.) In his letter, Rivera informed Mahony and the Archdiocese that Fr. Aguilar was seeking to relocate to California for "family and health reasons." (Id.) Around February 1987, Rivera transferred Fr. Aguilar to the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.

On March 16, 1987, Mahony assigned Fr. Aguilar to be the associate pastor at Our Lady of Guadalupe Church in Los Angeles. On March 23, 1987, Rivera sent Mahony a confidential letter that, according to Rivera, "provided a summary of Aguilar's homosexual problems," including the sexual abuse of minors while serving as a priest in Mexico. (Id. ¶ 23) On May 18, 1987, Mahony assigned Fr. Aguilar to serve as the associate pastor at St. Agatha in Los Angeles. (Id. ¶ 24.)

In December 1987, two altar boys from Our Lady of Guadalupe informed their mother that Fr. Aguilar molested them. (Id. ¶ 25.) The mother then reported this abuse to Fr. Bill McClean, pastor of Our Lady of Guadalupe. (Id. ¶ 26.) Sister Renee, the Principal of Our Lady of Guadalupe, was also informed that Fr. Aguilar was molesting children. (Id. ¶ 29.) On January 8, 1988, the Archdiocese of Los Angeles was notified that Fr. Aguilar was molesting children in Los Angeles. (Id. ¶ 32.)

On January 8, 1988, Fr. McClean informed Monsignor Thomas Curry, the Vicar for Clergy for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, of Fr. Aguilar's alleged sexual abuse. (Id.¶ 33.) The next day, Monsignor Curry confronted Fr. Aguilar about the allegations, at which time Fr. Aguilar informed Curry that he would be returning to Mexico. (Id. ¶ 36.) Monsignor Curry did not notify law enforcement of Fr. Aguilar's intent to leave the country or of his alleged sexual abuse. (Id.) On the evening of January 9, 1988, a relative of Fr. Aguilar took him to Tijuana. (Id. ¶ 37.)

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 1:38 PM

Tony Jones: Woman busted for preaching at local Catholic Church

MINNESOTA
MinnPost

Apparently not just anyone, at least in the Catholic Church. But it’s actually a little more arcane than that.

A Catholic parish not far from my house did the unthinkable a few weeks ago and allowed a woman to preach. It seems that the problem is not that she’s a woman, but that she’s not ordained. Of course, being a woman in the Catholic Church means that, by definition, she cannot be ordained and therefore, de facto, she cannot preach.

Someone from the parish reported this horrendous sin to the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis (yes, the Catholics are the only people around here who list St. Paul before Minneapolis). The StarTribune reports:

Before long, the vicar general of the archdiocese was paying a call to St. Edward’s pastor, the Rev. Mike Tegeder, and reminding him that the rules of Vatican II have changed. Lay people, even someone with a master’s degree in theology from St. Paul Seminary like this woman, can’t give homilies anymore. That job can be done only by priests.

Well, that’s not exactly true.

They can give homilies, but only after the Eucharist. Before the Eucharist, only homilies by priests. After Eucharist, any old layperson can preach.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:17 PM

Priest cleared of sexual allegations returns to church

BATON ROUGE (LA)
WAFB

[with video]

By Kiran Chawla

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Father Tom Duhe is back as pastor of St. Thomas More Catholic Church after the bishop cleared him of sexual allegations brought against him.

Hundreds of parishioners held a celebration Sunday to welcome back their pastor.

"We are just happy to have him back," said Leigh Pitchford. "We truly love having him back," added Dana Hebert.

Duhe presided over a special mass on Tuesday, but Sunday marked his official return to the church.

"They're happy and I am happy to be back with them," Duhe said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:13 PM

Elior Chen sentenced to 24 years in jail

ISRAEL
YNet

Aviad Glickman

Self-proclaimed rabbi Elior Chen, who was convicted of severely abusing children in Jerusalem, was sentenced Monday to 24 years in prison.

The Jerusalem District Court also ordered Chen to pay NIS 700,000 ($192,000) in damages to his victims.

Judge Yoram Noam wrote in the verdict that "the crimes Chen committed were committed together with others – group members – who congregated in his shadow and worshipped him. The defendant employed a reign of terror over the children which included violence, contempt, and degradation."

"The personal circumstances of the defendant, as well as his wife and children's place of residence abroad, are pushed aside before the public interest in a severe penalty," the judge wrote of his sentence.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:04 PM

Openly Gay Religion Professor Fired by Pennsylvania Catholic College

UNITED STATES
Bilgrimage

William D. Lindsey

Back last spring when Marquette University rescinded a job offer to out lesbian scholar Jodi O'Brien, a national conversation about how LGBT employees and students are treated at Catholic universities in the U.S. developed. In response to that conversation, the conservative publication Wall Street Journal published an essay which implied that Catholic universities are welcoming places for those who are gay, and which stated that openly gay or lesbian administrators hold positions of prominence in some of these universities.

Every scrap of evidence I run across indicates the opposite: that there is a serious problem with institutionalized, systemic bias against openly gay and lesbian faculty, staff, administrators, and students at a large percentage of Catholic colleges and universities in the U.S. And that one can, in fact, still be fired at these institutions solely because one is gay.

And that is precisely what has just happened at Chestnut Hill College in Pennsylvania, where a partnered gay priest of the Old Catholic Apostolic church, Jim St. George, who was an adjunct religion professor recently found himself terminated. Because he's gay.

As Scott Jaschik notes at Inside Higher Education, St. George had been teaching at Chestnut Hill for some time and was not merely a popular professor but was considered an outstanding one. The college also knew when they hired him that he was both gay and a priest in the Old Catholic church. And then here's what happened: last week, a lay Catholic in the Philadelphia archdiocese, one James Pepper, sent an email to Cardinal Justin Rigali identifying St. George as "a heretic" and claiming that it was "scandalous" for an openly gay heretic to be teaching at a Catholic school.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:52 AM

You Have to Hear This . . .

UNITED STATES
Bilgrimage

William D. Lindsey

You just have to hear Joelle Casteix of SNAP talking about Father Martin O'Loghlen's case to John Kobylt and Kenneth Chiampou at KFI AM 640's (southern California) "John and Ken Show." The link is at Patrick Wall's blog (with a hat tip to the wonderful Abuse Tracker site).

If I were pope--and I have an inkling I may not ever be, so please don't hold your breath contemplating that horrid possibility--I think I'd put every bishop in the world in a room and have him listen to this interview. Over and over. Non-stop. For, oh, about 10 days.

I'd offer bread and water as the bishops listen. I'm not utterly cruel.

And, in particular, I'd have the contingent who want to say that this is, for pete's sake, just a story about a lonely, sad, repressed priest kissing a teenaged girl listen for 20 days non-stop. Sipping water and chewing bread as they listen.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:49 AM

Supporters Raise Clergy Sex Abuse Awareness

CORPUS CHRISTI (TX)
KZTV

CORPUS CHRISTI - This afternoon after mass, clergy sex abuse victims and supporters handed out flyers to raise awareness about sex crimes.

It happened at the Corpus Christi Cathedral around noon. As parishioners left mass, the supporters, who claim to be victims of clergy sex abuse, were walking up and down the sidewalk talking to people about clergy sex crimes.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:43 AM

College Yanks Courses by Gay Priest

PENNSYLVANIA
Inside Higher Ed

February 28, 2011
Chestnut Hill College, a Roman Catholic institution, last week told a gay priest who had been a popular adjunct there for several semesters that he was no longer welcome to teach the two religion courses he had been offered for the term starting this week.

The college acted shortly after a Philadelphia man sent a letter to the archdiocese complaining that Chestnut Hill was employing Rev. James St. George, the gay priest. Father St. George actually has no problem reconciling his sexuality (and a long-term partner) with his faith, as he is part of the Old Catholic Apostolic Church of the Americas, which split from the Roman Catholic Church in the 1870s over a number of issues. Today it practices many Catholic rituals and shares some Catholic theology, but also permits priests to be married or gay.

After several days of discussion of the case last week in Philadelphia area publications, Sister Carol Jean Vale, president of the college, issued a statement in which she objected to reports that Father St. George has been fired, saying instead that she was trying to "clarify the conditions of our college's decision not to issue a new part-time teaching contract to Jim St. George."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:55 AM

Cardinal Mahony hands over the reins of L.A. Archdiocese

LOS ANGELES (CA)
LA Daily News

By Susan Abram, Staff Writer

More than 4,000 churchgoers sang a heartfelt "Happy Birthday," to Cardinal Roger Mahony on Sunday, just minutes after he officially stepped down from leading the largest Roman Catholic Archdiocese in the nation to transfer his pastoral leadership to Los Angeles' first Latino archbishop.

The birthday wishes inside downtown's overflowing Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels came during an historic Mass service that officially marked the Cardinal's retirement and the installation of Archbishop Jose H. Gomez. Mahony, who turned 75 on Sunday, kept the ceremony of transition lighthearted in spirit yet steeped in ancient traditions.

After a brief homily, Mahony offered Gomez his grand wooden chair known officially as a cathedra, crafted out of pieces of wood from all over the world to symbolize Los Angeles' diversity. From this cathedra, which sits near the altar, a bishop must fulfill his role of sanctity, teaching, and governing, Mahony said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:15 AM

Elm Grove priest removed from ministry amidst molestation allegations

ELM GROVE (WI)
Fox 6

[with video]

Brandon Cruz
FOX6 Reporter

WITI-TV, ELM GROVE —
An Elm Grove priest has been removed from his ministry. This after allegations that he sexually molested a minor at a different ministry in the 1970's.

Parishioners at St. Mary's Visitation Catholic Church in Elm Grove were leaving mass moments after receiving a letter that tells them one of their priests, Father Laurin J. Wenig, was removed.

Father Wenig is being accused of molesting a minor in the 1970's at a different church, and now he's being removed from his position while the abuse claim is investigated.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:09 AM

Organization Looking For People Sexually Abused By Clergy

SPRINGFIELD (MO)
KTTS

Sunday, February 27, 2011
Members of the "survivors network of those abused by priests" stood outside the catholic diocese in Springfield this weekend with a call for help. A predator priest, Father Thomas J. O'Brien, worked at a Springfield church in the 1950s and could have abused some people. A spokesman hopes the area catholic bishop will aggressively look for victims that were hurt. More than 2 dozen lawsuits have been filed against the priest and another was added recently.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:03 AM

Cardinal Roger Mahony passes leadership of L.A. Archdiocese to Jose Gomez

LOS ANGELES (CA)
Los Angeles Times

By Mitchell Landsberg, Los Angeles Times

February 28, 2011

Cardinal Roger Mahony walked slowly across the sanctuary of the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels, leaning softly on his shepherd's staff as he completed one of his last public acts as archbishop of Los Angeles. Passing the altar on one side and his assembled bishops on the other, he finally reached the man who was taking over his position as head of the nation's largest Roman Catholic archdiocese.

Mahony handed the crooked staff, known as a crosier, to Archbishop Jose Gomez, symbolizing one of the most ancient traditions of the church, the transfer of authority from one bishop to another.

"It makes me want to cry," whispered Yolie Ramos to her husband, Manny. The Ramoses were seated in the transept to the right of the altar, among about 3,500 Catholic faithful who packed the cathedral on Sunday for the first of two Masses that ceremonially passed the staff.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:59 AM

Two Milwaukee priests removed from ministry for credible reports of child sex abuse

WISCONSIN
Voice from the Desert

Statement by John Pilmaier, SNAP Wisconsin Director
CONTACT: 414.336.8575

Today it has been confirmed by the Archdiocese of Milwaukee that two priests have been removed from ministry for credible reports of child sexual assault ...

The first priest is Fr. Laurin Wenig, pastor of St. Mary’s Visitation in Elm Grove. The second has not been named by the archbishop, but he is a priest that was in ministry somewhere in the archdiocese, but officially listed as “retired.” By not releasing his name and the details of his offense or offenses, the archdiocese puts every “retired” priest under unwarranted suspicion.

Astonishingly, not only was Archbishop Jerome Listecki not in attendance at St. Mary’s today to make the devastating announcement himself to parishioners, he allowed Wenig to distribute a letter denying the allegations. Listecki gave no explanation to baffled parishioners of the policies and procedures of an investigation, and personally explain and take full responsibility for the drastic step of officially and publically removing Wenig from ministry.

So much for the newly humbled archbishop, who has come to the federal court asking for bankruptcy protection, saying that the archdiocese deserves such protection because of his commitment to transparency and accountability.

Listecki commands a vast and expensive communications network, consisting of several hired spokespersons, a newspaper, a local television and radio show, websites, hundreds of parishes with weekly bulletins and pulpits. If Listecki were truly committed to openness and transparency concerning reports of child sexual abuse he has more than enough communication outlets at his disposal to make that happen. Instead Listecki has decided to maintain the system of secrecy or confusion, which has become a permanent intractable fixture of this archdiocese, whenever reports of sexual abuse by priests arise.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:52 AM

The priesthood

UNITED STATES
Renew America

By Fr Peter Joseph

(Introductory note by Eamonn Keane)

As widely reported in the media, 144 Catholic theologians from Germany, Austria and Switzerland published an open letter on February 3, 2011 in which they called on the hierarchy of the Catholic Church to change its teaching and discipline on various matters. In calling for greater inclusiveness in the Church, they suggested that women can enter the ranks of the ordained priesthood and said that the Church should not "shut out people who live in love, loyalty and mutual support as same-sex couples or remarried divorced people."

The first point to make in response to the remarks by the German-speaking theologians reported above is that the Catholic Church does not "shut out" same-sex couples or the divorced and remarried from its ranks. It does however take Jesus' admonition to avoid sin seriously and calls on those in a state of objectively grave sin not to receive the Eucharist. The first reason it does this is because the Catholic Church takes Sacred Scripture seriously in that it condemns both adulterous and homosexual acts as gravely immoral. The second reason it does so is because the choice to live in an adulterous or active homosexual relationship has a public dimension and may be the occasion of scandal to others. Having said this, the Church simultaneously encourages people in such situations to continue to participate in the rest of the Church's life and to have frequent recourse to the mercy of God in the Sacrament of Penance.

The program for Church reform advocated by the German-speaking theologians referred to above is expressive of a failure to discern what may be called the "marital symbolism" stamped on our human nature in God's good creation of man as 'male and female' and the implications of this real symbolism for the sacramental doctrine and life of the Catholic Church. This failure has given rise amongst so-called 'progressive' Catholics to a litany of objections to certain aspects of the Church's teaching , particularly its teaching on sexuality and marriage, as well as its doctrine on a male-only ministerial priesthood and its prohibition against the reception of the Eucharist by the divorced and remarried. It is striking that we will often be able to predict what a Catholic theologian will hold on all of these matters once we know what he or she holds on any one of them. Why is this so?

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:42 AM

Elm Grove Priest Removed After Sexual Abuse Allegation

ELM GROVE (WI)
WISN

[with video]

ELM GROVE, Wis. -- Milwaukee investigators are looking into whether an Elm Grove priest sexually molested a minor more than three decades ago.

The Archdiocese of Milwaukee said someone came forward to their victim assistance program alleging that they were sexually molested by Father Laurin Wenig in the 1970s at a local church.

Wenig sent a letter to parishioners at St. Mary's Visitation, where he was most recently working, denying the allegation and informing them of his departure.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:39 AM

Wis. priest removed after sexual abuse allegation

WISCONSIN
Chippewa Herald

An Elm Grove priest has left active ministry while authorities investigate whether he molested a child in the 1970s.

Spokesman Jerry Topczewski tells the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel the allegation was made to the Archdiocese of Milwaukee last week and turned over to the district attorney's office. If no charges are filed, he says, the archdiocese will conduct its own investigation.

WTMJ-TV reports the Rev. Laurin J. Wenig denied the allegation in a letter to parishioners at St. Mary's Visitation Catholic Church Saturday. He says he supports church policies for handling such situations, as difficult as they are for him personally.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:36 AM

Kenya: Sex Abuse Bishop Was Quietly Retired

KENYA
allAfrica

[2009 story the bishop's on retirement]

Daily Nation

Walter Menya and Giuseppe Liguori
27 February 2011

Nairobi — A Missionary order has pledged to cooperate with the authorities in investigations into a bishop who left Kenya after being accused of sexual abuse.

Responding to questions by the Nation into the circumstances surrounding the retirement and departure of Ngong Catholic Bishop Cornelius Schilder, the General Superior of the St Joseph's Missionary Society Rev Anthony Chantry replied:

"With regard to recent allegations that have been made in the Kenyan Press, our Society will cooperate with any civil enquiry which may be initiated in the best interests of safeguarding children and vulnerable adults."

The Archbishop of Nairobi John Cardinal Njue, who has been directly responsible for administering the Ngong Diocese since Bishop Schilder left, said he did not know the reasons behind the 2009 departure.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:29 AM

February 27, 2011

Time to Drag Sextortion into the Light

UNITED NATIONAL
IPS

By Cléo Fatoorehchi

UNITED NATIONS, Feb 27, 2011 (IPS) - In their 2010 book "Half the Sky", Pulitzer Prize-winners Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn write about a disturbing but not uncommon problem in Southern Africa - male teachers who trade good grades for sex with students.

The authors note that "half of Tanzanian women, and nearly half of Ugandan women, say they were abused by male teachers."

There's a word for this – "sextortion".

The main characteristic of sextortion cases is that they involve a perpetrator in a position of influence or authority, Joan Winship, executive director of the International Association of Women Judges (IAWJ), told IPS.

This includes teachers, but also policemen, priests or employers, for example.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:10 PM

Cardinal O’Malley Does Ireland Mea Culpa, But Did Anything Change?

UNITED STATES
Lez Get Real

02/27/11-by Bridgette P. LaVictoire
Dublin Archbishop Diarmuid Martin called the service a “first step” towards healing the problems of the Catholic Church in Ireland where Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley washed the feet of Irish abuse victims. The two presided over a “Liturgy of Lament and Repentance” for the sexual abuse of children within the Catholic Church. The problem is that the first step never seems to be followed by a second, or third, or fourth, or fifth.

O’Malley is the archbishop of Boston, which was the epicenter of the sex abuse scandal. He is in Ireland to lead a cover up- er- review of the response to the sexual abuse of children by priests. O’Malley stated at the service held at St. Mary’s Pro-Cathedral in Dublin that he and his aids had heard a great deal of painful testimony from the victims and their families. Still, he felt hopeful for the future.

O’Malley stated:

“Today’s service, which survivors so generously assisted in planning and are participating in, gives testimony to the longing of so many to rebuild and renew this Archdiocese and the Church throughout Ireland. Just as the Irish people persevered and preserved the faith when it was endangered, and carried it to many other countries, the commitment to sustain the faith provides the opportunity for the hard lessons of the crisis to benefit the Church, in our quest to do penance for the sins of the past and to do everything possible to protect children in the present and in the future.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:08 PM

Elm Grove priest removed from ministry denies allegation that he molested child in 1970s

MILWAUKEE (WI)
Fox 6

MILWAUKEE (AP) — An Elm Grove priest has left active ministry while authorities investigate whether he molested a child in the 1970s.

Spokesman Jerry Topczewski tells the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel the allegation was made to the Archdiocese of Milwaukee last week and turned over to the district attorney's office. If no charges are filed, he says, the archdiocese will conduct its own investigation.

WTMJ-TV reports the Rev. Laurin J. Wenig denied the allegation in a letter to parishioners at St. Mary's Visitation Catholic Church Saturday. He says he supports church policies for handling such situations, as difficult as they are for him personally.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:02 PM

Cardinal Rigali Avoids Prison ... For Now!

UNITED STATES
Catholica (Australia)

Clerical abuse campaigner Richard Sipe has sent us this new assessment of the renewed state of the clerical abuse scandal in the United States following the release last month of the second lengthy Philadelphia Grand Jury investigation into the sexual abuse of minors in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia by archdiocesan clergy and employees. Mr Sipe concludes that the prosecution of a higher level official in the Church grows closer and the abuse scandal for the institution is far from over in the United States.

Cardinal Rigali Avoids Prison ... For Now!

by A.W. Richard Sipe

On January 21, 2011 the Philadelphia Grand Jury under District Attorney R. Seth Williams issued a Report on sexual abuse by Roman Catholic priests.[1] The entire text (124 pages) is included in the attached PDF which you can download or view HERE. It is the finest, clearest, and most complete account of the pattern and practice of the Catholic Church in dealing with priests who abuse minors and their victims. If you want to know the real dynamics of the Catholic clerical system read this report.[2]

In short: the Grand Jury released what has been termed a "sordid" (in content) report on clergy sex abuse. This led to the arrest of a Catholic schoolteacher and three archdiocesan priests on rape, indecent sexual assault and other criminal charges:

Fr. Charles Engelhardt, 64, an Oblate of St. Francis de Sales, is accused of orally sodomizing and molesting a 10-year-old altar boy in 1998 in the sacristy at St. Jerome Parish in Northeast Philadelphia.
Fr. Edward Avery, 68, an Archdiocesan priest who was defrocked in 2006, is charged with the same offenses against the same boy. And this boy's sixth-grade teacher at St. Jerome School, 48-year-old Bernard Shero, is accused of orally and anally sodomizing the then-11-year-old in the back of the teacher's car.
Fr. James Brennan, 47, an Archdiocesan priest, is accused of forcing his penis into the buttocks of a 14-year-old former parishioner when he was in the priest's bed. At the time, the summer of 1996, Father Brennan was on leave from Cardinal O'Hara High School. In 1997, he was returned to active ministry and assigned to St. Jerome Parish.
Importantly, Monsignor William Lynn, former Vicar for clergy is charged with endangering the welfare of children for allowing the priests work.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:53 PM

Trying to Cope with the News from Philadelphia

ARIZONA
Voice from the Desert

Frank Douglas

February 27, 2011

The news from Philadelphia about four priests being indicted for child rape and child endangerment is more than very, very sad. It’s depressing. Maybe even clinically depressing for some of us. Cardinal Rigali’s super-defensive, inane statement on YouTube about the sordid mess in his archdiocese was truly pathetic.

Here are some of the things I’m doing to try to cope and maintain my mental health in the wake of all this.

Going to the movies. Last week I went to the movies and saw The King’s Speech. I thought it was great. I recommend it highly. It was the first time I was in a movie theatre since I had my stroke in December 2008. I really got into it and lost myself in it. For 2 hours, I didn’t think about Philly, or my blog, or Send the Bishops a Message. Today I plan to go to the same neighborhood theatre and see True Grit. Tonight I plan to see the Oscars on TV, a show that I try not to miss.

Spending money. A couple of days ago I went to Best Buy and bought a new Samsung HD TV to replace my 25-year-old Sony. I bought a Blue Ray DVD player, too. A couple of hours ago I paid five large bills. There’s nothing like spending money to relieve stress. The problem is you relieve one stress with another: knowing you have to pay all that money back. There is one saving grace, though. I have the comfort of knowing none of that money went to the pope or Cardinal Rigali or any other bishop.

Cuddling with the dog. I find that having our 12-year-old toy poodle Pierre on my lap and exchanging human-canine love touches calms me down and seems to make Pierre happy.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:49 PM

Corporal punishment at St. Aug is morally troubling, New Orleans archbishop says

NEW ORLEANS (LA)
The Times-Picayune

By Bruce Nolan, The Times-Picayune

Forty-five years ago, as a student at Cor Jesu High School in the mid-1960s, young Greg Aymond occasionally saw an angry teacher suddenly cuff a student, or shove him hard in the chest. It never happened to him, Aymond said, nor does the memory of faculty discipline meted out to teen boys in those days particularly trouble the man who later became the archbishop of New Orleans.

That said, as Archbishop Gregory Aymond, now 61, confronts Catholic schools' last vestige of formal physical punishment -- this at St. Augustine High School, one of the jewels of Catholic education, he is clear:

"I do not believe the teachings of the Catholic Church as we interpret them in 2011 condone corporal punishment.

"It's hard for me to imagine in any way, shape or form, Jesus using a paddle," he said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:59 AM

SNAP reaches out to victims of clergy abuse

SPRINGFIELD (MO)
News-Leader

Written by
Linda Leicht

David Clohessy drove to Springfield from his home in the St. Louis area to stand alone in the cold in front of the Catholic Center in Springfield with a small sign that simply read, "SNAP."

Clohessy, director of Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, had a simple goal -- to alert anyone who may have had contact with Thomas J. O'Brien in the early 1950s when O'Brien was a priest at St. Agnes Cathedral.

O'Brien, who faces several lawsuits in Kansas City -- the most recent one filed this month, has been accused of sexually abusing minors while serving as a parish priest. He retired in 2002 as a monsignor.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:56 AM

Missbrauch: Pfarrer muss nicht vor den Richter

DEUTSCHLAND
Nordbayern

FÜRTH/GROSSHABERSDORF - Mit den jetzt erhobenen Vorwürfen gegen einen katholischen Fürther Pfarrer zieht der Missbrauchsskandal innerhalb der Kirche weitere Kreise. Im vergangenen Jahr wurde der Seelsorger von Großhabersdorf-Dietenhofen des Amtes enthoben, weil er sich an Kindern und Jugendlichen vergangen haben soll. Doch alle strafrechtlichen Verfahren wurden eingestellt.

Der heute 62-jährige Priester, der im Jahr 2004 in die Doppelgemeinde Großhabersdorf-Dietenhofen (Kreis Fürth/Kreis Ansbach) kam, ist an einen anderen Ort außerhalb des Bistums Eichstätt gezogen. Sein Arbeitgeber hat ihn in den vorzeitigen Ruhestand versetzt. Ihm ist jeglicher Dienst seelsorgerischer Art untersagt, betont ein Sprecher der Diözese. Weitere Konsequenzen könne man nicht ziehen.

Seit die bayerischen Bischöfe vor einem Jahr im fränkischen Vierzehnheiligen neue Leitlinien im Umgang mit Fällen von sexuellem Missbrauch erlassen haben, müssen die Bistümer bei jedem Verdacht dieser Art die Staatsanwaltschaft einschalten.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:45 AM

Das Erzbistum rechtfertigt sein Vorgehen

DEUTSCHLAND
Nordbayern

FÜRTH/BAMBERG - Das Erzbistum Bamberg hat nach dem Bekanntwerden eines weiteren Missbrauchsvorwurfs gegen den inzwischen des Amtes enthobenen katholischen Pfarrer in Fürth sein Verhalten verteidigt.

2008 sei bei der Staatsanwaltschaft Bamberg eine Anzeige wegen sexueller Nötigung eingegangen, teilte das Bistum am Freitag mit und bestätigte damit einen Bericht unserer Zeitung. Weil die mögliche Tat bereits verjährt war, seien die Ermittlungen jedoch eingestellt worden.

Nach Schilderung des Erzbistums war diesbezüglich bereits 2001 ein anonymer Hinweis im Ordinariat eingegangen. Ein Pfadfinder habe den Priester beschuldigt, sich ihm elf Jahre zuvor sexuell genähert zu haben. 2003 sei man darüber informiert worden, dass sich das mutmaßliche Opfer und der Pfarrer über einen Täter-Opfer-Ausgleich geeinigt hätten. Der Mann habe erklärt, dass er gegen den Priester keine weiteren Vorwürfe mehr erheben werde. 2008 erstattete er dennoch Anzeige wegen sexueller Nötigung.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:39 AM

Swedish Catholic Church confirms child abuse

SWEDEN
Radio Sweden

The Catholic Church in Sweden has now confirmed that between 1940 and 1970, three priests sexually abused children, reports news agency TT.

One of the priests molested two boys, reports TT. Another of the priests abused a girl for up to four years in connection with her confessions. The third priest molested two sisters, while at the same time, carrying on relations with the mother.

The information comes from an internal investigation into four complaints, according to a press release from the Catholic Bishop's office.

"To do violence against a minor is an awful crime that causes a lifetime of suffering. To me, there is no statute of limitations for child abuse," wrote Anders Arborelius, the Bishop of Stockholm's Catholic diocese.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:35 AM

Priests in Sweden join the ranks of paedophiles

SWEDEN
The Local

The Catholic Church of Sweden confirms three priests are believed to have sexually abused children over the span of 30 years.

It is reported that the paedophile priests, one of whom is dead, sexually abused a collective of five children between 1940 and 1970, thus falling under that statute of limitation.

Stockholm Bishop Anders Arborelius said Saturday there could "be no redemption" for the three.

One priest molested two boys, another abused a girl for four years before she complained.

The third priest molested two girls, who were sisters, while in a relationship with their mother.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:33 AM

Elm Grove priest removed after molestation claim made

ELM GROVE (WI)
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

By Annysa Johnson of the Journal Sentinel
Feb. 26, 2011

An Elm Grove priest has been removed from active ministry while authorities investigate an allegation that he sexually molested a minor in the 1970s.

Father Laurin J. Wenig, who denied the allegation, announced the move in a letter to parishioners at St. Mary's Visitation Catholic Church on Saturday.

The allegation was made to the Archdiocese of Milwaukee's Victim Assistance office last week and turned over to the Milwaukee County district attorney's office to determine whether charges should be filed. If not, the archdiocese will mount its own investigation, said spokesman Jerry Topczewski.

The sex abuse claim is among a number of old allegations to emerge in recent weeks, likely in response to the archdiocese's filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in January. Bankruptcy acts as a last call for claims against a debtor.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:22 AM

Goodnight, Roger: Joelle Casteix discusses Predator Priest Martin O’Loghlen on KFI 640 AM

CALIFORNIA
Patrick J. Wall

[audio presentation]

On John and Ken, KFI AM 640: Joelle Casteix discusses predator priest Martin O’Loghen, the admitted sex offender that Cardinal Roger Mahony appointed to the Sex Abuse Advisory Board.

Goodnight, Roger. Thanks for nothing.

This interview originally aired on Thursday, February 24, 2011.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:17 AM

We are sorry

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
The Catholic Standard & Times

We are sorry.

We, the Church, are the lay men, women and children; the religious who pray for us and work with us; the deacons, priests and bishops who lead us and bring us the divine graces of the Catholic sacramental system.

We, the Church, are sorry for the sexual abuse suffered by our brothers and sisters when they were young people at the hands of the Church’s clergymen and teachers. The Church is sorry for the sins and crimes of some members against other members. The Church begs forgiveness of our brothers and sisters, and of almighty God.

“We are sorry” are three words nearly as powerful as “I forgive you” or “I love you.” In each case, though, words are not enough. They must be accompanied by action.

It took the nationwide clergy sexual abuse scandal of 2002 and Philadelphia grand jury investigations in 2005 and just this month to prompt action in the Archdiocese and in every diocese in the United States. Those actions helped to train tens of thousands of parents and adults locally who work with children to spot signs of potential abuse, and prevent it from happening. Other actions set up ways to care for and compensate adult victims of abuse, and to remove from ministry and/or employment credibly accused Church personnel.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:13 AM

Philadelphia Archdiocese apologizes in an editorial for sex abuse

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia, grappling anew with sexual-abuse allegations and charges of a church cover-up, apologized to parishioners this week in its newspaper.

"We are sorry," read the editorial published Thursday in the Catholic Standard & Times. "We, the Church, are sorry for the sexual abuse suffered by our brothers and sisters when they were young people at the hands of the Church's clergymen and teachers.

"The Church is sorry for the sins and crimes of some members against other members," the editorial said. "The Church begs forgiveness of our brothers and sisters, and of Almighty God."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:09 AM

Church handled complaints poorly

TEXAS
San Antonio Express-News

Express-News Editorial Board
Published 12:00 a.m., Sunday, February 27, 2011

If John Fiala had been a teacher or a police officer, there’s almost no chance he could have amassed a lengthy list of accusations of impropriety with children and still held a job. People entrusted with positions of authority are held to strict standards of accountability — as they should be.

Fiala, however, was a priest. As Express-News staff writer Abe Levy reported, the actions of church leaders allowed him to continue serving in parishes over two decades, beginning in the 1980s, filled with complaints about highly inappropriate behavior with boys and defiance of parental demands that he cease contact with their children.

Kansas authorities arrested Fiala in September as a fugitive from Texas on a four-count indictment, including aggravated sexual assault. Texas Rangers and Department of Public Safety troopers re-arrested Fiala in November on two more charges of sexually assaulting a teenage boy and one charge of soliciting someone to murder his accuser.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:05 AM

How a nation lost its way and nobody shouted stop

IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

And Another Thing
Last Sunday the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Dublin, Dr Dairmuid Martin, prostrated himself at the altar in Dublin's Pro-Cathedral in an act of contrition for the victims of clerical sexual abuse.

With Boston's Cardinal Sean O'Malley, one of the senior clergy sent by the Vatican to Ireland to help clear up the Irish mess, he washed the feet of several victims.

Doubtless both men were sincere but they were accused by some of taking part in yet another 'stunt' by the Catholic Church. People were asking why an act of contrition should be carried out in front of the television cameras. Why not do so privately and tell the world about it afterwards?

Whatever the motives of Dr Martin, who has been an honourable Catholic figure during the prolonged clerical sexual scandal, his act of contrition was also symbolic of the economic mess in which the Irish nation finds itself.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:02 AM

Church confirms 3 pedophilia priests

SWEDEN
Press TV (Iran)

Sweden's Roman Catholic Church has confirmed that three of its priests have carried out acts of pedophilia, as sex scandals and allegations of high-level cover-ups continue to rock the church.

The pedophile clergymen cannot be prosecuted as they are covered by the statute of limitations, AFP reported on Saturday.

According to the report, the crimes took place between 1940 and 1970.

The church opened a probe in April 2010 into allegations that four priests had committed pedophile acts.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:59 AM

A Web of Porn: Ex-Modesto youth pastor makes admission

CALIFORNIA
Sacramento Bee

By Sue Nowicki
snowicki@modbee.com
Published: Sunday, Feb. 27, 2011

Jason Ulven, a former Modesto youth pastor, was downloading a pornographic video on his computer at work when he had to leave it to go to the weekly pastoral staff prayer meeting.

While he was gone, his administrative assistant went into Ulven's office to use the computer and was shocked by what he saw.

The assistant, who had been on the job for only a couple of weeks, didn't confront Ulven, but did tell the Rev. Mark Krieger, Modesto Covenant's senior pastor. A day or two later, when he was called into Krieger's office, Ulven downplayed the incident. After all, even his wife had caught just a glimpse of his secret life over the past 15 years, and the lies went deep.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:56 AM

Jolting news for clergy abuse victim

MASSACHUSETTS
Boston Globe

By Joan Vennochi
Globe Columnist / February 27, 2011

CARDINAL SEAN O’Malley is washing the feet of Irish victims of clergy sexual abuse, a gesture of humility and penance offered on behalf of Pope Benedict XVI. But it takes more than symbolism to wash away terrible memories.

Last week, Jim Higgins received a call that brought his back.

Father James F. Talbot — a Jesuit priest who molested him when he was a teenager — is about to get out of prison, he was told by the Massachusetts Department of Corrections. The target release date is March 18. Talbot is asking to serve a three-year probation period in an out-of-state treatment facility.

Talbot will be free in a way his victims never will be, said Higgins, 55, who now lives in Florida.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:47 AM

Elm Grove Priest Steps Aside Amid Allegations

ELM GROVE (WI)
Today's TMJ

By Michele Fiore
ELM GROVE -- Sexual abuse allegations have surfaced against a priest.

Reverend Laurin Wenig is voluntarily stepping aside from his duties at St. Mary's Visitation Parish, while the Milwaukee Archdiocese investigates a claim, dating back abut 35 years.

Wenig is denying the allegations. According to a letter distributed at mass Saturday, the case is being referred to the authorities for initial investigation.

(The following is a letter to parishioners dated February 26, 2011)

Dear People of St. Mary's Visitation Parish,

It is with deep and personal sadness that the following news is being conveyed to you this weekend by Deacon David Zimprich, an official with the Archdiocese of Milwaukee.

Last week, someone made an allegation of sexual abuse against me, dating back to a parish where I served over three and a half decades ago.

I absolutely deny this claim. I share this information with you because, as your pastor, I want to be honest and forthright about what is happening.

As your pastor, I want you to understand what is now taking place.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:43 AM

Retired Episcopal priest removed amid abuse charges

MARBLEHEAD (MA)
Boston Globe

By Vivian Ho
Globe Correspondent / February 27, 2011

A retired Episcopal priest from Marblehead was removed from the priesthood this month after the church learned of allegations that he had abused a minor in 1974, the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts said.

The allegations against Franklin E. Huntress Jr., 77, were brought to the bishop’s office in October, said the Rev. Canon Mally Lloyd. Upon further investigation, the diocese discovered he was arrested in 1994 on accusations of sexually abusing a minor when he was serving in England. Huntress resigned before he could be subjected to a church trial, and Bishop M. Thomas Shaw, Society of St. John the Evangelist, officially removed him Feb. 11, according to the diocese.

“When something like this comes up, my heart sinks,’’ Lloyd said. “There is no good outcome of this, for anyone. The alleged abuse happened almost 30 years ago and someone had been walking around carrying that since then. Then for the congregations that have often received wonderful pastoral care from the perpetrator, it is very devastating to realize that clergy is human with all the human flaws that affect the rest of us.’’

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:38 AM

Abuse crisis shadows L.A. Cardinal legacy

LOS ANGELES (CA)
USA Today

By Cathy Lynn Grossman, USA TODAY

Builder of a new cathedral, a massive statement of Catholic influence in the heart of Los Angeles...

Those achievements might have dominated coverage of the retirement of Cardinal Roger Mahony this week as archbishop of the city.

But "tainted legacy" appears in the headline or the heart of every story as Mahony's 25-year-record is skewed by the Catholic clergy sexual abuse scandal.

It dominates Rachel Zoll's Associated Press story and makes off with the bulk of the Los Angeles Times coverage. They detail years of battling victims and their lawyers until the Archdiocese of Los Angeles was forced by courts to release damaging documents of pedophiles protected, even promoted, and shuffled from one unknowing parish to another. Finally, the archdiocese wound up paying $660 million in settlements to 500 victims.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:35 AM

Mahony Turns Over Archdiocese To Jose Gomez

LOS ANGELES (CA)
My Fox LA

Los Angeles - Cardinal Roger Mahony turns 75 today and, as church rules dictate, he will turn over the reins of the Los Angeles Archdiocese, a flock of some 5 million that he has overseen for 25 years, to Archbishop Jose Gomez.

Gomez and Mahony will preside jointly over symbolic ceremonies of transition at downtown's Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels during Masses celebrated in English at 10 a.m. and in Spanish at 12:30 p.m.

Gomez, 59, who was born in Mexico, became an American citizen while serving the Roman Catholic Church in Texas as a priest for the conservative Catholic organization Opus Dei, a group he says he no longer associates with. He arrived in Los Angeles from San Antonio in May.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:32 AM

February 26, 2011

Cardinal Roger Mahony To Pass Leadership To Archbishop Jose Gomez

LOS ANGELES (CA)
Beverly Hills Courier

(CNS) Posted Saturday February 26, 2011

After 25 years of service, Cardinal Roger Mahony will transfer leadership of the Los Angeles Archdiocese, the nation's most populous, to Archbishop Jose Gomez on Sunday.

Gomez and Mahony will preside jointly over symbolic ceremonies of transition at downtown's Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels at 10 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.

Sunday is Mahony's 75th birthday, the traditional time for a Catholic archbishop to retire.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:02 PM

Woman claiming abuse by S.A. priest

SAN ANTONIO (TX)
Express-News

By Abe Levy
alevy@express-news.net

Updated 08:30 a.m., Saturday, February 26, 2011

A woman has sued the Archdiocese of San Antonio, accusing her former priest of raping her repeatedly when she was as young as 10.

The priest, Father Theo A. Clerx, died seven years ago. He was pastor of St. John Berchmans Catholic Church on the Southwest Side and a close family friend who groomed her and her sisters with gifts before the abuse began, said Rosio Castro, now 29.

Castro, who was an altar server at Clerx's church, said the abuse started with groping at age 9 and continued for nearly three more years with rapes at least twice a month, leading her to suicide attempts, drug addiction and jail time.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:35 PM

LA Catholic leader Cardinal Roger Mahony steps aside

LOS ANGELES (CA)
KPCV

Cardinal Roger Mahony is spending his final days as leader of the Roman Catholic archdiocese of Los Angeles. He steps down Sunday – the day he turns 75. KPCC reviews the record of the man some observers call the most powerful Catholic prelate in the United States.

Some 26 years ago, Roger Mahony became the first Los Angeles native to head its Catholic archdiocese.

He was born in Hollywood, but he began his priesthood in the Fresno area – a region he chose so he could minister to immigrant farm workers. Former Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan – who became friends with Mahony in his early days as archbishop - says the Fresno days influenced his mission in LA.

"He had refused to go to a debutante ball because his whole interests were in poor farm workers and immigrants," says Riordan. "I talked him into it - in effect becoming close to the rich in Los Angeles because they’re the ones that can help him solve the problems of the poor." ...

But if some observers emphasize Mahony’s immigrants’ rights activism, others maintain that history will hold him responsible for mishandling the sexual abuse cases that came to light on his watch.

Joelle Casteix of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests was a victim of sexual abuse by a lay person when she studied at Mater Dei High School in Orange County. That’s outside the LA Archdiocese, but she says Mahony’s reputation on the issue crosses such boundaries.

"His number one legacy will be the children who were sexually abused at the hands of priests that he knew about, that he covered up for and that he enabled to continue to molest kids over and over again," she says.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:24 PM

Group blasts Corpus Christi bishop over predator

CORPUS CHRISTI (TX)
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

WHAT
As parishioners leave mass, clergy sex abuse victims and their supporters will hand out fliers urging them to ask current and former church employees and members with information about clergy sex crimes to come forward, get help, and call police, & protect kids

They will also publicly urge the Corpus Christi bishop to;
-- post on his website the proven, admitted and credibly accused predator clergy, and
-- personally visit parishes where predators have worked prodding victims to call police and prosecutors so wrongdoers can be jailed and wrongdoing can be prevented.

They will also blast Corpus Christi Catholic officials for not doing more to find and comfort others molested by a notorious child molesting cleric who now faces criminal charges

WHEN
Sunday, Feb. 27 at 12:15 p.m.

WHERE
On the sidewalk outside the Corpus Christi Cathedral, 505 Upper Broadway in Corpus Christi TX

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:30 AM

UPDATE: College says it acted independently to fire Jim St. George when it learned he was gay

PENNSYLVANIA
Chestnut Hill Local

by Pete Mazzaccaro

Late Friday night, Chestnut Hill College President Carol Jean Vale released a statement explaining the college’s decision to fire Father Jim St. George. The openly gay priest who has taught theology courses at the school since January 2010 learned he was fired late last week. See our story here.

In her statement, Vale confirms that the St. George’s sexual orientation was the reason he was terminated. It was, she writes, incompatible with the college’s Roman Catholic principles. She also states that the decision to fire St. George was not the result of pressure from the Archdiocese of Philadelphia or a letter from attorney James Pepper, but rather revelatory statements made by St. George on his personal blog.

According to Vale, the college did not know when it hired St. George anything about his sexual orientation or that he belonged to St. Miriam Church in Blue Bell, a church affiliated with the Old Catholic Apostolic Church of America, which allows its priests to be gay, straight, celibate or married.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:46 AM

Catholic College Fires Openly Gay Priest

PENNSYLVANIA
My Fox Philadelphia

A beloved Chestnut Hill College professor is out of a job tonight.

The school is a private Roman Catholic institution and it say it didn’t know Father James St. George was gay when he was hired to teach.

Father St. George says he was fully vetted when he was hired and he's wondering whether a letter from a local lawyer may have done him in. ...

Father St. George is part of the Old Catholic Church Of The Americas, a faction that broke away from the Vatican back in 1870. In his church, priests are allowed to marry and be gay. ...

His firing coincides with an email sent to Philadelphia Cardinal Justin Rigali and the college from James Pepper, a local lawyer who called the priest a "heretic."

"I serve as a trauma chaplain, I help broken people. I run a parish, a small parish in Blue Bell, take care of people who have no hope. I teach kids how to become better adults," Father St. George said.

"A school that is supposed to teach religious understanding is not even being tolerant."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:00 AM

LA cardinal's legacy tainted by priest abuse

LOS ANGELES (CA)
Monterey Herald

By GILLIAN FLACCUS and RACHEL ZOLL Associated Press
Posted: 02/26/2011

LOS ANGELES—Roman Catholic Cardinal Roger Mahony will retire Sunday after more than a quarter-century at the helm of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.

Mahony is retiring as leader of the nation's largest archdiocese on his 75th birthday and will be succeeded by Archbishop Jose Gomez.

Mahony says he will campaign for comprehensive immigration reform in his retirement.

The cardinal has been a vocal advocate for immigrants during his career.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:58 AM

„Kerk ontbeert bij misbruik 1-1-2-gevoel”

NEDERLAND
Reformatorisch Dagblad

Elke gemeente wil de brand die ontstaat bij seksueel misbruik in de kerk het liefst zo snel mogelijk doven. Maar als ze niet zorgvuldig handelt, maakt ze zich later mogelijk te schande voor de rechter.

Het ene na het andere misbruikschandaal in de Rooms-Katholieke Kerk kwam vorig jaar aan het licht. Wat begon met de melding van een enkel geval, mondde uit in een stroom van honderden klachten.

De vraag hoe te handelen als het gaat om seksueel misbruik stond de afgelopen weken –toeval of niet– bij verschillende protestantse kerken op de synodeagenda.

De Gereformeerde Gemeenten besloten tijdens de laatste synodezitting, eind januari, te gaan onderzoeken of er een protocol moet komen voor ambtsdragers. Het boekje ”Verantwoord ambtelijk handelen in moeilijke pastorale relaties”, dat in 2002 verscheen, biedt onvoldoende handvatten voor het omgaan met seksueel misbruik in de kerk.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:50 AM

Ex-priest waives hearing in theft of $400,000 in donations

PENNSYLVANIA
Reading Eagle

Jason A. Kahl
Reading Eagle

A former Roman Catholic priest who was pastor at a Reading church waived a preliminary hearing Friday on charges he stole more than $400,000 donated to the parish, authorities said.

Richard Nachajski, 64, of York remains free to await further action in Berks County Court.

Nachajski, charged with theft, forgery and related offenses, waived the preliminary hearing before District Judge Stuart D. Kennedy in Reading.

According to Berks County detectives:

Nachajski was pastor of St. Anthony of Padua Roman Catholic Church, Millmont, from 1992 until 2009, when he was granted a leave of absence for personal reasons.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:43 AM

Apology in Diocese newspaper has Philadelphia Catholics talking

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Newsworks

By Elizabeth Fiedler

An apology printed in the official newspaper of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, has Catholics talking, including mass-goers at the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul in Philadelphia today.

The apology printed in The Catholic Standard and Times says while the Catholic Church is struggling to deal with the problem of sexual abuse of minors, youth sports organizations, public schools, community groups and other faith communities all report incidents of abuse. And yet few have been forced to look as extensively at the abuse perpetrated within their organizations or to enact broad policies to prevent it, it reads.

Those words didn't sit well with 57 year old Philip Kellenbenz, a lifelong Catholic from Northeast Philadelphia.

"That's just a crutch that they want to lean on," said Kellenbenz. "That's an excuse. They ought to fall on their knees and say thank God almighty that there by the grace of God goes I - 'cause what if they were the ones being abused? It wouldn't be such a pretty thing. It wouldn't be such an easy thing to pass off with these petty excuses."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:39 AM

DSCC attacks Brown on abuse revelation

MASSACHUSETTS
Politico

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee is circulating a number of clips to reporters suggesting that Sen. Scott Brown's (R-Mass.) revelations of sexual abuse as a child is either a political stunt or a hypocritical move in the light of his endorsement of a congressional candidate who was accused of insensitivity to sexual assault -- including this column by the editor of a Cape Cod website:

Many have questioned how Brown could let a pedophile run free instead of stopping what could be a serial molester who may now have been at it for upwards of 40 years. Among the “believers” are many who are appalled that a U.S. senator would throw a literary grenade at a respected Christian summer camp and not disclose a name so that Cape officials can pursue the attacker and defend their reputation.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:37 AM

Generations lost

CANADA
The Globe and Mail

REVIEWED BY MAGGIE de VRIES

‘To the memory of the Native youth who have taken their lives as a result of the Indian residential school experiences of their parents and of the parents of their parents before them.” With these words, James Bartleman dedicates his debut novel As Long as the Rivers Flow, which explores the consequences of Canada’s residential school system through several generations. It is a story that we all need to hear.

As Long as the Rivers Flow, by James Bartleman, Knopf Canada, 244 pages, $29.95

In 1962, Martha is 6 when a float plane comes to her home in the Cat Lake First Nation in northern Ontario, and takes her away to the school on James Bay where she is to spend the next 10 years of her life. There she is abused by nuns – including a First Nations nun who is herself a victim of the residential school system – and sexually abused by a priest.

Back at home in her late teens and twenties, Martha succumbs to alcoholism, her son is apprehended and her daughter is taken in by Martha’s mother when Martha leaves to rebuild her life in the big city. A dozen years later, Martha’s mother’s death draws Martha back to Cat Lake, where the abuses, now many years in the past, surface, and her life unravels again.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:33 AM

Allegations prompt RCMP investigation into Bountiful

CANADA
CTV

The Canadian Press
Date: Friday Feb. 25, 2011

VANCOUVER — The Mounties are investigating allegations that two 12-year-old girls and a 13-year-old from Bountiful, B.C., were taken to the United States by their parents to marry a polygamous leader four times their age.

The man, Warren Jeffs, is now in jail facing child sex assault and bigamy charges.

The RCMP's renewed criminal investigation involves a total of nine teenage girls -- eight from Bountiful and one from the United States -- whose marriages are detailed in documents submitted in a B.C. court case examining Canada's polygamy law.

The records, filed in court since last week, stem from the 2008 raid of a polygamous compound in Texas and outline marriages between 2004 and 2006.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:29 AM

Pondering class-action lawsuit for the 'forgotten' victims

CANADA
Kamloops This Week

By Jeremy Deutsch - Kamloops This Week

They may be the forgotten individuals of the national tragedy that was the native residential-school policy in Canada.

They are known as "day scholars", First Nations members who attended residential schools during the day, but went home to their families at night.

However, they have been said to have suffered the same abuses as their counterparts who lived in the schools.

Now, several native bands from throughout the province have come together to look at legal options to get compensation for day scholars, which could include a class-action lawsuit against the federal and provincial governments.

The bands are hoping to put pressure on government to address the issue in the same way it did with residential-school survivors.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:27 AM

Tim Rutten: Cardinal Mahony and the city he shaped

LOS ANGELES (CA)
Los Angeles Times

Times columnist Tim Rutten chats with Cardinal Roger Mahony on his tenure as head of what is now America's largest Roman Catholic diocese.

By Tim Rutten

February 26, 2011

When the social and political history of Los Angeles in the late 20th century comes to be written, it's likely that two men will stand out as fundamentally transformative leaders. One will be Tom Bradley, the five-term mayor who changed the city's politics and realigned its economic course; the other will be Cardinal Roger Mahony, the Hollywood-born prelate who has led what is now America's largest Roman Catholic diocese as archbishop for the last quarter-century, a post from which he will retire Sunday on his 75th birthday, as church law requires.

When Mahony returned to Los Angeles as archbishop in 1985, he inherited a sprawling archdiocese that was, internally, in disarray. Some of that was the lingering legacy of Cardinal James Francis McIntyre, whose ultra-reactionary temperament colored his views of both politics and the reforms of the Second Vatican Council. Some was the legacy of Mahony's immediate predecessor, Cardinal Timothy Manning, who, though beloved for his spirituality, was an indifferent administrator who often appeared puzzled by popular culture and left his see all but bankrupt. ...

Regarding the clerical abuse scandal, Mahony recognized that the crisis could not be complete until he began meeting with the victims. When he did, "I realized the absolute devastation, the long-lasting devastation, these victims had suffered…. I had no idea how deeply and permanently it affected people until I met with the victims."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:22 AM

Judy Jones on Radio KION

UNITED STATES
Sound Cloud

[audio presentation]

Judy Jones interview on Radio KION 1460AM Salinas, CA. Mark Carbonaro Show. SNAP Midwest Associate Director Judy Block Jones discusses the Catholic clergy abuse scandal and the allegations against local priest Fr. Fitz-Henry, Feb. 21, 2011.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:16 AM

Brooklyn ‘Rabbi’ Accused Of Molesting Girl Since She Was 12

NEW YORK
CBS New York

By Pablo Guzmán, CBS 2 News

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – A father was convinced his 16-year-old daughter was having a relationship with a 17-year-old boy, so the father set up a hidden camera in the house. What he recorded shocked him — what he saw the daughter doing to please the young man.

They are Orthodox Jews, in Brooklyn. The father had already taken the daughter to seek counseling with Rabbi Nechemya Weberman in years past. Just as he had taken her older sister. It is a common practice in the community for a respected person to be a counselor, or serve as a therapist. Weberman is affiliated, police said, with Brooklyn’s United Talmudic Community, a yeshiva.

Now, the father went to the Brooklyn DA’s office with the tape, and Rabbi Weberman. The Brooklyn DA’s office has set up special channels of communication to bridge cultural gaps that might be beneficial to both sides. However, the more that investigators talked to the parties involved — especially when they spoke with them separately — the more that there were questions which indicated something was not right. Around Feb. 16, the girl told a counselor at school that the rabbi has been raping her for years. The counselor reported it, and when the investigators talked to her again, she claimed there were at least 16 incidents at 263 Classon Avenue, in the Clinton Hill section of Brooklyn, which serves as Weberman’s home and office. It is where the counseling sessions took place. The girl told investigators it began in 2007, when she was 12; and continued through 2010.

Detectives assembled sufficient preliminary evidence to start a case; and arrested Weberman on Wednesday. He was brought to Brooklyn Criminal Court that night, and told he was being charged with rape, endangering the welfare of a child, sexual abuse, sexual misconduct against a child, and engaging in a criminal sexual act.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:50 AM

SNAP's Isely Explains How Personal Pain Spurred Him To Action

WISCONSIN
WSN

[with video]

[See also Dear Archbishop: A survivor of sex abuse replies, by Peter Isely, Milwaukee Journal, November 15, 1992; and Capuchins dragging feet on sex abuse inquiry, ex-student says, by Marie Rohde, Milwaukee Journal, December 27, 1992.]

MOUNT CALVARY, Wis. -- He's a survivor of clergy sex abuse and the face of the movement to hold the Catholic Church in Milwaukee accountable. But what pushed Peter Isely into this role? And where is his organization headed next?

To understand why Isely is as passionate as he is, you have to go to rural Fond du Lac County. There, sitting on a hill in Mount Calvary, is St. Lawrence Seminary. Even now, seeing that school takes 50-year-old Peter Isely back to when he was 13.

"You'd see that sign for St. Lawrence and make that turn," Isely said, "and your heart would just go in your stomach. Because you were being brought back to your tormentor."

Isely grew up 20 minutes away from St. Lawrence in Fond du Lac. He was one of eight children. Their father died when Isely was a baby, so they were raised by their mother, a devout Catholic.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:44 AM

Web Extra: Has Peter Isely Been Good Or Bad For Catholic Church?

WISCONSIN
WSN

[video presentation]

Dr. William Thorn, chairman of Marquette University's Journalism Department, has studied the media and the Catholic Church. He responds to the question of has Peter Isely been good or bad for the Catholic Church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:41 AM

Benedict, Basil for Modern Times

UNITED STATES
National Catholic Register

by FRANKLIN FREEMAN 02/26/2011

POPE BENEDICT XVI AND THE SEXUAL ABUSE CRISIS
Working for Reform and Renewal
By Gregory Erlandson and Matthew Bunson
Our Sunday Visitor, 2010
208 pages, $12.95
To order: osv.com
(800) 348-2440

In Pope Benedict XVI and the Sexual Abuse Crisis, Gregory Erlandson, publisher of Our Sunday Visitor, and Matthew Bunson, editor of The Catholic Almanac, examine this grievous old sin that has lacerated the Catholic Church and has been the subject of much media attention in America and Europe.

As the authors remind us, St. Basil of Caesarea (d. 379) spoke out on this issue, in terms as harsh as any modern critic.

“He wrote that any priest or monk found guilty of sexually molesting young boys should not only be removed from the clerical state but should also face physical punishments, such as public flogging and incarceration for six months — after which they were to undergo long and prayer-filled penances under the stern supervision of spiritual authorities,” they write. “Above all, Basil urged, the priest or monk so convicted should never be permitted contact with, or have access to, young boys or men.”

Erlandson and Bunson set themselves the task of writing an overview of the crisis and how Pope Benedict XVI has reacted to it. While the media have excoriated Benedict for not always “defrocking” clerical abusers immediately, Erlandson and Bunson show that, after an initial period of tending to downplay the crisis, he came to a deeper understanding of the issue and that “he has evolved into a historic advocate for the reform and the renewal of the Church, and he understands the significance of the struggle.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:32 AM

Grand Jury Prompts Philadelphia Response

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
America Magazine

A new grand jury report has reopened the raw wound of the sexual abuse of children by members of the clergy and personnel in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and compelled new measures from Cardinal Justin Rigali. Three archdiocesan priests and one lay teacher have been charged with rape, assault and other felonies related to the abuse of children. Msgr. William J. Lynn, 60, pastor of St. Joseph Parish in Downingtown, was charged on two counts of endangering the welfare of a child by mishandling allegations of abuse. He is believed to be the only high-ranking diocesan official indicted under a criminal statute in the United States on charges related to the sexual abuse scandal that came to light in 2002.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:28 AM

The mythology of a scandal

UNITED STATES
philly.com

After nearly a decade of sexual- abuse revelations about Catholic clergy members, several harmful misconceptions persist.

By Thomas G. Plante
Philadelphia is the latest of dozens of cities in the United States and abroad to see more revelations of sexual abuse by Catholic priests, as well as ensuing cover-ups by the church. Every perpetrator of this abuse deserves condemnation, and every victim deserves justice. But many Americans remain remarkably misinformed about the problem, particularly the extent to which it's endemic to the church.

Here are five of the most common untrue or unsubstantiated claims about sexual abuse in the church:

Catholic priests are more likely to be abusers. In fact, according to the best available data, including a comprehensive 2004 report by the John Jay College of Criminal Justice, 4 percent of Catholic clergy members in the United States sexually victimized minors from 1950 to 2002. There's no credible published evidence that corresponding rates of abuse are significantly lower among clergy from other faith traditions or among men in general.

Government and other reports show that during similar periods of time, 5 to 7 percent of public-school teachers committed such abuse. And 4 percent is certainly lower than the proportion of the general male population classified as sex offenders.

The sexual-abuse problem is due to celibacy. If members of the Catholic clergy aren't more likely than other clergy members or men in general to be sex offenders, why should celibacy be the smoking gun? Certainly, most sex offenders are not celibate clergy members. In fact, most are married or in other relationships.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:24 AM

Sullivan County trial of former priest moving forward

TENNESSEE
TriCities

KINGSPORT, Tenn. --
UPDATE

After the hearing, supporters of Warren Tucker, the alleged victim, held signs outside of the courthouse. Annette Alix is one of several people offering support for Tucker.

"Many families aren't as supportive as they should be and as the mother of an abuse victim, I know what the victim goes through and what family members go through," Alix said.

As it stands, Casey is set to go to trial in Sullivan County on April 11.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:20 AM

Former Priest Headed Back To Court

TENNESSEE
WCYB

By Leslie Almaroad

SULLIVAN COUNTY, Tenn. -- A Sullivan County judge says the statute of limitations does not apply in a case against a former Kingsport priest.

William Casey is charged with Sexual Misconduct and Aggravated Rape against a young boy.

Authorities say the abuse took place between 1978 and 1980.

For that reason, defense attorneys for Casey asked the judge to dismiss the charges, saying the statute of limitations had expired.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:17 AM

Former E. Tenn. priest to go on trial April 11

TENNESSEE
WRCB

Associated Press - February 25, 2011

BLOUNTVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - A former East Tennessee Roman Catholic priest accused of sexually abusing a teenager more than three decades ago is set to go to trial April 11.

Seventy-6-year-old William Casey is charged with three counts, including criminal sexual conduct and aggravated rape involving a minor, in Sullivan County.

According to WBIR-TV, a pretrial hearing was set Friday for March 14.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:15 AM

Cullen rebuts story from pulpit

ALLENTOWN (PA)
The Morning Call

By Peter Hall and Matt Assad, OF THE MORNING CALL

February 26, 2011

The Allentown Catholic Diocese has distanced itself from comments retired Bishop Edward Cullen made at a confirmation this week, when he said a newspaper article was false in stating he helped protect a Philadelphia area priest who later was charged with raping an altar boy.

Speaking at the end of the confirmation Tuesday at St. Anne Church in Bethlehem, Cullen said an article in The Morning Call on Sunday based on a Philadelphia grand jury report represented the latest example of what he described as the newspaper's longstanding bias against Catholics, according to several who attended the ceremony.

An aunt of one of the eighth-graders being confirmed said Cullen referred to The Morning Call's initials and he said they really stand for "to mortify Catholics."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:12 AM

Priest, 77, is removed after abuse allegations

MARBLEHEAD (MA)
The Salem News

By Paul Leighton
Staff writer The Salem News Sat Feb 26, 2011

MARBLEHEAD — A retired Episcopal priest from Marblehead has been removed from the priesthood after a church investigation into allegations that he abused children in separate incidents 20 years apart.

Franklin E. Huntress Jr., 77, voluntarily resigned rather than face a church trial conducted by officials of the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts, a diocese official said. Bishop Thomas Shaw officially removed Huntress from the priesthood on Feb. 11.

Church members at St. Michael's in Marblehead and Church of the Holy Name in Swampscott, where Huntress has served in his retirement, were notified of the decision after church services this month.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:08 AM

February 25, 2011

the dragnet draws tighter

UNITED STATES
Catholic Culture

By Phil Lawler | February 25, 2011

Last week the Philadelphia archdiocese removed a prominent priest from ministry because...

Wait! It's not what you think!

During the past decade hundreds of American priests have been suspended because of accusations that they molested children. But Msgr. William Lynn faces no such charges. His suspension is an important new development in the Church's response to the sex-abuse scandal.

Msgr. Lynn was placed on administrative leave after a Pennsylvania grand jury report accused him of deliberately protecting abusive priests, helping them to escape both criminal prosecution and ecclesiastical discipline. He has not been accused of harming children himself, yet he has been indicted on two counts of endangering the welfare of a child.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:34 PM

Former Kingsport priest seeks dismissal of sex abuse charges

TENNESSEE
Times-News

By Kacie Breeding

Published February 25th, 2011

A former Kingsport priest accused of sexually abusing a boy more than 30 years ago is seeking to have his charges dismissed.

William "Bill" Casey, 76, 740 Shakerag Road, Greeneville, is charged with first-degree sexual conduct and two counts of aggravated rape. The charges stem from allegations that he sexually abused a boy shortly after becoming priest of St. Dominic's Catholic Church in Kingsport in the 1970s.

Earlier this month, defense attorney Rick Spivey filed a motion asking the judge to dismiss the charges. In the motion, Spivey cites several reasons why he believes continued prosecution would violate Casey's constitutional rights, as guaranteed by state and federal law.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:30 PM

MC’s Bruce publishes book about Voice of the Faithful

TENNESSEE
The Daily Times

From Maryville College

Dr. Tricia C. Bruce, assistant professor of sociology at Maryville College, has recently published “Faithful Revolution: How Voice of the Faithful is Changing the Church.”

A book launch and signing will be held from 5-6 p.m. March 3 in the Clayton Center for the Arts’ William Baxter Lee III Grand Foyer. The book will be available for purchase during the event.

Bruce, whose research interests include the sociology of religion, Catholic identity, social movements and organizations, gives an in-depth look at the development of Voice of the Faithful, a national movement of lay Catholics that mobilized in response to the crisis of child abuse by clergy in the Catholic Church.

The abuse scandal in the Catholic Church gained national attention after the Boston Globe published a series of reports in January 2002 that revealed widespread allegations of child sexual abuse by Catholic clergy in Boston and the efforts of the church to cover it up.

“It was not only about the abuse of children by clergy, but also the transferring of abusive priests from parish to parish, so it was perceived by some as institutional complicity, meaning the church was not helping to prevent it — in fact, they were actually doing things that made it worse,” Bruce said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:26 PM

Evangelical pastor charged with sex offenses

UNITED KINGDOM
Channel 4

[with video]

Channel 4 News learns that the head of a London-based evangelical church with 3,000 congregation members has been charged with indecent assault on a child under 16.

The pastor of a global evangelical movement based in the UK has been charged with sex offences against former members of his congregation.

Dr Albert Odulele who runs Glory House International in London is to appear in court next week. One charge alleges indecent assault of a child under the age of 16.

Dr Odulele, who is 47 years old, is a major figure in the word of evangelism. His church, based in east London, says it has a congregation of 3,000, but he has many more followers around the world through appearances at international evangelic conferences, on religious TV programmes and videos on YouTube.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:21 PM

Senators pass 13 bills, await Adelup action

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

By Erin Thompson • Pacific Daily News • February 26, 2011

With Gov. Eddie Calvo not returning from Washington, D.C., until March 6, it's unclear whether he or acting Gov. Ray Tenorio will take action on 13 newly passed bills.

The governor's office has 10 working days after the date of transmittal to take action on the bills, which include several controversial measures.

Troy Torres, spokesman for the office of the governor, said until the administration had time to review the final copies of the bills, it would be premature to comment on what, if any, action the governor would take on the bills. As of 6:30 last night, the administration's legal counsel and legislative review commission had yet to receive the measures, Torres said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:48 PM

Archdiocese pushes for Calvo veto

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

By Erin Thompson • Pacific Daily News • February 26, 2011

The Archdiocese of Agana is "hopeful" that Gov. Eddie Calvo will veto a bill opening up the two-year window for civil claims of past sex abuse, according to a press release issued by the Archdiocese yesterday.

"Bill 34, which was passed by the Guam Legislature yesterday, does nothing to protect our children. Unlike Bill 33, which the Archdiocese supports because it may prevent future abuse,

Bill 34 is focused only on the past," the press release from the Archdiocese stated.

Senators passed two bills on sex abuse during a voting session on Thursday. Bill 33, introduced by Vice Speaker Benjamin Cruz, will eliminate the statute of limitations on sex crimes committed against those under the age of majority, if signed into law. Under Guam law the age of majority is 18. The window for prosecuting cases of sexual abuse is three years after the age of majority, or 21. The legislation passed unanimously with 15 votes.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:46 PM

April Trial Date Set for Man Charged With Beating Los Gatos Priest

CALIFORNIA
Los Gatos Patch

By Sheila Sanchez

A Santa Clara County Superior Court judge set an April 4 trial date Tuesday afternoon for a man accused of beating a priest at the Los Gatos Sacred Heart Jesuit Center last year.

William Lynch was also arraigned on one count of felony assault with the intent to cause great bodily injury in front of Judge Philip Pennypacker in Dept. 24 of the San Jose Hall of Justice.

Santa Clara County Deputy District Attorney Vicki Gemetti, who is prosecuting the case, said it's probably unlikely that the trial will begin on the set date.

No pretrial motions are expected to be filed, Gemetti added.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:36 PM

Former priest remanded on child porn charges

IRELAND
Irish Examiner

Friday, February 25, 2011

A defrocked priest accused of possession of thousands of pornographic images of children, was remanded on continuing bail today pending directions from the DPP.

Oliver O'Grady (aged 65), with an address at a hostel, on Charlemont Street, in Dublin 2, had been arrested on December 10 last.

At his fourth appearance at Dublin District Court today, Judge Cormac Dunne remanded the defendant to appear again on March 25 next.

Earlier in the case, Detective Garda Johanna Doyle of the National Bureau of Criminal Investigation had said that further charges were being contemplated.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:04 PM

BIAS MARKS PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Catholic League

February 25, 2011

Catholic League president Bill Donohue accuses the Philadelphia Inquirer of bias:

The sexual abuse of minors is unfortunately a social problem, especially in homes where live-in boyfriends and step-fathers reside. It is also a serious problem in the public schools. Nowhere is it less of a problem today than in the Catholic Church. To wit: in the last five years we have data for, the number of credible accusations made against over 40,000 priests averaged 8.6; the figure for 2009 was six. Can any institution sport a record that is proportionately more impressive?

This is important because a February 17 editorial in the Philadelphia Inquirer on the subject of the sexual abuse of minors never mentions any of this. Instead, it singles out the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. Here's the backdrop. After failing to nail a single priest in a 2005 grand jury investigation—which never focused on any other institution but the Catholic Church—a second was convened. It came up way short of what those who lobbied for it wanted. Then the Inquirer editorial appears, calling on the Archdiocese to make public its files on accused priests; it also calls on lawmakers to make it easier for past alleged victims to sue.

The editorial's dishonesty is remarkable. It does not call for any other institution to make public its files on accused employees; nor does it call for lawmakers to make it easier for alleged victims of public school teachers to sue. In a despicable act of bias, it singles out the Archdiocese and gives every other institution a pass. An op-ed I submitted on this subject to the newspaper was rejected, and that is why we sent it to the more than 200 pastors in the Philadelphia Archdiocese [click here to read it].

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:55 PM

The Essay: Holy disorder

AUSTRALIA
Sydney Morning Herald

Chris McGillion and John O'Carroll
February 26, 2011

IN June, Pope Benedict brought to a close the Year of the Priest he had declared 12 months earlier by inviting every available priest from the more than 400,000 worldwide to attend a special gathering in Rome. For three days a small army of priests bivouacked in and around the Vatican, attending Masses, testimonials, prayer meetings and conferences designed to celebrate their vocation and renew their commitment to serving Christ and his church.

The gathering culminated in a spectacular Mass in St Peter's Square for an estimated 15,000 priests – the largest Mass ever concelebrated in that arena. Speaking of his "joy for the sacrament of the priesthood," Benedict oversaw waves of cassocks rising and kneeling in perfect unison during the celebration. Never before had there been a display of clericalism on this scale and to all outward appearances it showed a priesthood firmly united in fidelity to the Pope and his curia.

The reality, however, is somewhat different.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:57 AM

Rev. Romano J. Ferraro—Assignment Record

UNITED STATES
BishopAccountability.org

Summary of Case: Ferraro was arrested on 4/1/02 for repeatedly raping a boy 1973-80 in Billerica MA, starting when the boy was 7 years old. Ferraro was convicted on 5/7/04, when a jury found him guilty of child rape and guilty on three counts of indecent assault and battery against a child under 14. He was sentenced on 5/20/04 to life in prison. Ferraro was a childhood friend of the boy's father and molested the child during annual Christmas visits. The victim had come forward to authorities in late 2001, and it was possible to prosecute because the SOL clock, which precluded bringing charges six years or more after a crime is committed, had stopped with Ferraro out of state. Ferraro denied the charge but admitted at the trial that he was a pedophile predator who had abused perhaps dozens of boys. He also stated that he knew he was a pedophile by 1955, 5 years before his ordination. Earliest abuse alleged in civil suits was 1964-68 but previous assignments suggest earlier problems. Then he was in Key West FL as Navy chaplain 1968-71 in the Miami archdiocese; was dishonorably discharged; and was sued 1/06 for FL abuse. Reassigned, he allegedly abused in the Brooklyn, Rockville Centre, St. Louis, and Metuchen dioceses. A St. Louis man who alleged abuse by Ferraro committed suicide in 2006 after a long struggle with depression. Ferraro was suspended in 1988 after an allegation, but the Brooklyn diocese apparently knew much earlier (see discussion below).

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:06 AM

Harrisburg priest named auxiliary bishop of Pittsburgh

PITTSBURGH (PA)
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Friday, February 25, 2011
By Ann Rodgers, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

A Harrisburg priest who guided American seminarians in Rome has been appointed auxiliary bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh.

The Rev, William WaltersheidThe Vatican at 6 a.m. Pittsburgh time announced the appointment of the Rev, William Waltersheid, 54. He will assist Bishop David Zubik, who has been debilitated with back problems, with sacramental duties and other duties assigned by Bishop Zubik.

Bishop-elect Waltersheid, who serves as secretary for clergy and consecrated life in the Diocese of Harrisburg, is a former psychiatric nurse who was ordained a priest in 1992. He is a former vice rector of the North American College in Rome, where seminarians from the United States live and study for the priesthood.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:49 AM

Philadelphia: Ground Zero for Catholic Bishops

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Patheos

Survivors can now see that the tide is turning and many rank and file Catholics now comprehend the depth and the scope of what the Philadelphia Archdiocese has done.

By Marci A. Hamilton, February 25, 2011

Unless you've been living under a rock (and I hope you are not), you must have heard about the Philadelphia Grand Jury Report that was issued earlier in February and that detailed the persistent efforts by the Philadelphia Roman Catholic Archdiocese to hide child sex abuse. I talked about it in my last column.

The Report ended with suggested criminal charges against the highest-ranking diocesan official yet, Monsignor Lynn. In what appeared to be a slow-motion response, the Archdiocese finally relieved him of his duties this week. How long does it take an American bishop to figure out that a higher-up charged with the crime of the endangerment of children should be placed on "administrative leave"? Lots longer than it should!

I was one of three attorneys who filed a lawsuit against the Archdiocese, Cardinal Rigali, and Cardinal Bevilacqua soon after the Report on behalf of a victim of two different priests at two different Catholic schools in the Philadelphia area. As the complaint details, he asked the Archdiocese for assistance and they promptly asked him to sign a document that says he "prohibits" the Archdiocese from going to the authorities.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:45 AM

Victims of clergy sex abuse protest

LOS ANGELES (CA)
Contra Costa Times

By Rick Orlov, Staff Writer
Posted: 02/24/2011

With Cardinal Roger Mahony retiring this weekend, a small group of survivors of sex abuse by Catholic priests staged a demonstration Thursday in front of the downtown cathedral, demanding that he open the church's abuse files.

The group of about a half-dozen victims also called attention to a new lawsuit filed against the Salesian Society of the Catholic Church for an alleged case of abuse at a school in Bellflower 18 years ago.

"Cardinal Mahony leaves this weekend and the one thing he could do to possibly clean up his legacy is to release all his files on child abuse cases," said Joelle Casteix, a Southern California regional director for Surviving Network of Abuse by Priests.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:40 AM

„Pater zegt niet wat er werkelijk is gebeurd”

NEDERLAND
Reformatorisch Dagblad

WIJCHEN (ANP) – De advocaat van een 34-jarig slachtoffer van seksueel misbruik door een pater in Terneuzen gaat kijken of de desbetreffende pater zich juridisch gezien schuldig heeft gemaakt aan meineed. Dat zei advocaat Martin de Witte woensdag in reactie op de verklaring van pater Jan N. in het voorlopige getuigenverhoor voor de rechtbank van Middelburg.

De pater gaf tijdens dat verhoor, dat om gezondheidsredenen van de 88-jarige man in Wijchen plaatsvond, toe dat hij meerdere jongens in Terneuzen en Rijswijk seksueel heeft misbruikt. Hij ontkende echter met klem dat het om verkrachting ging. „Toch hebben wij drie cliënten die zeggen te zijn verkracht door de pater”, aldus De Witte.

Ook zei De WItte het te betreuren dat de pater nooit zijn excuses heeft betuigd aan het inmiddels 34-jarige slachtoffer die hem nu heeft aangeklaagd „Binnen de kerk zijn ze meer begaan met de daders dan met de slachtoffers.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:37 AM

Pater Jan N. geeft misbruik toe en ontkent drogeren

NEDERLAND
Trouw

Pater Jan N. geeft toe dat hij in de jaren tachtig verschillende minderjarige jongens seksueel heeft misbruikt. Hij ontkent dat hij ze heeft gedrogeerd en daarna verkracht.

Dat heeft de 88-jarige salesianer woensdag verklaard tegen de rechtbank in Middelburg in een voorlopig getuigenverhoor over een misbruikzaak binnen de Rooms-Katholieke Kerk.

De zaak is aangespannen door een 34-jarige man die als kind misbruikt werd door N.. Via een getuigenverhoor van kardinaal Simonis en anderen wil het slachtoffer vaststellen of een eis tot smartegeld kans van slagen heeft.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:30 AM

The language of clerical sex abuse and cover up

UNITED STATES
Voice from the Desert

Frank Douglas

February 25, 2011

A recent Philadelphia Inquirer commentary written by a retired priest recognizes the docility of the response of Philadelphia-area Roman Catholics to the recent indictments of three priests for rapes of two boys ages 10 and 14 and of a priest in a supervisory position for child endangerment.

The author is spot on about Catholic docility. In Philadelphia, like elsewhere in the United States, there is no widespread, sustained, take-it-to-the-streets anger about priests raping 10- and 14-year-old boys. There is no strong anger like we have recently seen in Cairo, Libya, Tunisia, Yemen, and the state capitol of Wisconsin. That kind of anger flows from something vital to the average person, namely a better quality of life or a fatter government retirement check, not something inconsequential, like the rape of the neighbor’s 10-year-old boy.

The Inquirer commentary is on the surface learned and sophisticated, but with further analysis is wimpy, effeminate, and tame. In other words it’s clerical. It uses limp language, indicating it was written by a priest who lacks cajones, which the clerical formation process is designed to suppress or eliminate. The author doesn’t use direct, everyday, no-bullshit language that conveys the depth of the real problem. This kind of learned but lukewarm writing is what one would expect from commentary by a retired priest in a “family newspaper,” where the use of direct, even vulgar language that conveys tough truth is verboten. The Philadelphia Inquirer is, one must remember, a mainstream American newspaper whose primary objective is to maximize profits by selling products and services to mainstream Americans. The Inquirer is not Bill Maher on HBO or Kathy Griffin on Bravo or YouTube.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:26 AM

As Mahony retires, focus turns to Gomez

LOS ANGELES (CA)
The Press-Telegram

In recent weeks, the Sunday morning masses celebrated by Cardinal Roger Mahony at the downtown cathedral have drawn larger crowds, heavily populated by the poor and undocumented of Los Angeles.

Those two constituencies, after all, make up the centerpiece of his quarter-century legacy as the leader of the Los Angeles Archdiocese - a post he will officially turn over Sunday as his 75th birthday forces his retirement.

In those years, the archbishop marched with Cesar Chavez, championed immigrant rights and called for changes in immigration policy.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:21 AM

Sekteleider regeert vanuit gevangenis

VERENIGDE STATEN
Kerknieuws

De Amerikaan Warren Jeffs (foto), leider van de Fundamentele Kerk van Jezus Christus van de Heiligen der Laatste Dagen (FLDS), zit al enkele jaren in de gevangenis maar leidt sinds kort weer zijn sekte, vanuit zijn cel. Dat meldt CNN.

Jeffs was jarenlang één van de meest gezochte Amerikanen, voornamelijk omdat hij met zijn sekte bigamie promoot en vanwege zijn huwelijken met minderjarigen. In 2007 werd Jeffs gearresteerd en veroordeeld door de staat Utah wegens betrokkenheid bij verkrachting. Door een juridische fout kwam hij echter weer vrij. De sekteleider werd toen overgeleverd aan de staat Texas die hem aanklaagde vanwege zijn meerdere huwelijken. Hij kan tot levenslang worden veroordeeld.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:17 AM

Léonard: 'Nooit gezegd dat AIDS een straf van God is'

BELGIE
De Standaard

"Het is nodig dat alles aan het licht komt. We waren destijds te veel begaan met het imago van de Kerk en te weinig met het leed van de slachtoffers." Dat zegt mgr. Léonard in een interview met Kerk & Leven over het seksueel misbruik in de Kerk.

De commissie Adriaenssens verrichtte volgens de aartsbisschop uitstekend werk "maar als men ons voortdurend verwijt er een parallelle justitie op na te houden, maakt men het ons onmogelijk slachtoffers te begeleiden, ook al is dat altijd spiritueel. Het enige wat we nog kunnen doen, is in elk bisdom een groep mensen bijeenbrengen die naar de slachtoffers luistert en hen helpt".

In het interview blikt mgr. Léonard terug op het afgelopen jaar waarin hij werd onthaald als nieuwe aartsbisschop. "Het enthousiasme waarmee ik werd verwelkomd, was onvergetelijk en bemoedigend", zegt mgr. Léonard daarover.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:14 AM

Priest Group Wants Diocese To Pay Victim

BELLEVILLE (IL)
WSIL

WSIL -- A regional group of priests is telling the Belleville Catholic Diocese, which serves southern Illinois, to pay up. The Diocese appealed a $5,000,000 sex abuse ruling last week to the Illinois Supreme Court. In court records the diocese claims it doesn't have the responsibility to warn parishioners of a priest accused of sexually abusing children.

Thursday the Southern Illinois Association of Priests called that a "disastrous policy," one that doesn't make common moral sense. At issue is a 2008 ruling involving a former southern Illinois man. James Wisniewski of Champaign was awarded five million dollars in 2008. An appellate court upheld that ruling last month. He claims Father Raymond Kownacki abused him for five years at a church in Salem when Wisniewski was only 13.

"It's very rare for Catholic priests to have the courage to publicly disagree with the Bishops," said David Clohessy, National Director of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:11 AM

Walter Brooks: Scott Brown’s Falling Star

MASSACHUSETTS
Providence Journal

SOUTH DENNIS, MASS.

Cape Codders were saddened last week by Sen. Scott Brown’s (R.-Mass.) claim that he was molested at a local summer camp. Camp Good News, in the Forestdale section of Sandwich, has confirmed that Brown attended the camp and has reached out to the senator repeatedly in hopes of unmasking his alleged assailant. The senator refuses to name his molester.

Subsequent media reports and blog comments received at www.CapeCodToday.com show locals squaring off on two sides of the issue, both of which are unfortunate for the senator.

On one side are those who believe Brown’s story but are troubled by his refusal to name the long-haired, tie-die-wearing “hippie” who the senator alleges approached him whilst the young Brown was in a camp rest room with his pants down and whose advances sent him screaming from the building.

Many have questioned how Brown could let a pedophile run free instead of stopping what could be a serial molester who may now have been at it for upwards of 40 years. Among the “believers” are many who are appalled that a U.S. senator would throw a literary grenade at a respected Christian summer camp and not disclose a name so that Cape officials can pursue the attacker and defend their reputation.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:07 AM

OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS

VATICAN CITY
Vatican Information Service

VATICAN CITY, 25 FEB 2011 (VIS) - The Holy Father: ...

- Appointed Fr. William J. Waltersheid of the clergy of the diocese of Harrisburg, U.S.A., vicar for clergy and religious life, as auxiliary of the diocese of Pittsburgh (area 9,722, population 1,963,000, Catholics 803,000, priests 482, permanent deacons 42, religious 1,316), U.S.A. The bishop-elect was born in Ashland, U.S.A. in 1956 and ordained a priest in 1992.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:56 AM

Priests lose faith in their church

AUSTRALIA
Sydney Morning Herald

Leesha McKenny RELIGIOUS AFFAIRS
February 26, 2011

ONE priest said he learnt more about God from Alcoholics Anonymous meetings than the Catholic Church. Another compared the fervour of World Youth Day to the Hitler Youth.

And a 47-year-old, whose only ambition had been to be a priest, said: ''Given the state of the church today, I look forward to the night when I go to sleep and just don't wake up again."

Such were the varied, often frank and sometimes bleak views of Australia's Catholic clergy revealed in an anonymous survey.

The Charles Sturt University academics Chris McGillion and John O'Carroll approached 1550 active and 160 retired priests for their views on their lives and their church, and 542 took part in the written survey.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:52 AM

Pittsburgh Getting New Auxiliary Bishop In April

PITTSBURGH (PA)
WPXI

PITTSBURGH -- Pope Benedict XVI has appointed a priest from Harrisburg to be the new auxiliary bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh.

The Rev. William Waltersheid will be ordained a bishop on the Monday after Easter, April 25, at St. Paul Cathedral in Pittsburgh.

The 54-year-old priest was born in Ashland and has been secretary for clergy and consecrated lift in the Harrisburg diocese since June 2006. He was ordained a priest in that diocese in July 1992.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:49 AM

Church: We’re Sorry, We Guess

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Weekly

Here’s something new:

The church has apologized! No, not specific priests, and not to their rape and torture victims. No, not the specific Cardinals and/or Bishops who covered it up. No, not the pope. But the Catholic Standard and Times, the official newspaper of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia – which once in a while, like in this case, breaks news – has published a letter of apology. Yeah, we were surprised, too. But then we read the whole thing.

“We are sorry…We, the Church, are sorry for the sexual abuse suffered by our brothers and sisters when they were young people at the hands of the Church’s clergymen and teachers. The Church is sorry for the sins and crimes of some members against other members. The Church begs forgiveness of our brothers and sisters, and of almighty God…” begins the letter.

According to Philly Confidential (Standard and Times’ website isn’t working for some reason), the apology is unsigned and begins taking on a ‘There are a lot of pedophiles out there, and they’re all bad! Why does everyone always blame us!? How dare Pennsylvania try to lift the statute of limitations on ’sexual abuse’ cases!’

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:47 AM

Va. House clears bill extending time for sex assault victims to sue

VIRGINIA
Washington Post

By Fredrick Kunkle

The House on Thursday agreed to give victims of childhood sexual assault more time to sue their abusers, clearing the way for final passage of one of the more combative issues of the session.

The compromise would allow victims to file a lawsuit up to 20 years after the event, after the victim turns 18 years old, or after the abuse has come to light, such as through a recovered memory. The current statute of limitations sets a two-year limit.

Del. David B. Albo (R-Fairfax) urged passage of the modified bill, saying it represented a difficult compromise after an emotionally charged debate. Several adult victims of sexual abuse traveled to the General Assembly to lobby for the measure, sharing poignant stories about emotional scars inflicted decades ago by abuse from clergy, police officers and other adults whom they had trusted.

But some lawmakers and organizations, including the Catholic Church, expressed reservations about extending the deadline too far. They said it would be difficult and unfair for organizations to defend against allegations that happened long in the past. They also expressed concern that tangled memories about a distant event and an absence of witnesses or other evidence could make it easier for an innocent person to be wrongly accused.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:44 AM

Archdiocese critical of sex crimes bill's passage

GUAM
KUAM

by Sabrina Salas Matanane

Guam - The Archdiocese of Hagatna has issued a statement in response the Guam Legislature's passage of Bill 34. The measure was staunchly opposed by the Archdiocese because it feels it targets the Catholic Church. The measure, which passed by a vote of 9-6, would open a two-year window for victims of child sex crimes to file a civil action against their perpetrator.

According to a statement from Archdiocese Spokesperson Deacon Jeff Barcinas, Bill 34 does nothing to protect our children. Barcinas stated, "Unlike Bill 33, which the Archdiocese supports because it may prevent future abuse, Bill 34 is focused only on the past."

He went on to state the legislation, even as amended, is "a flawed bill which is vague and may result in unintended consequences. Although lifting the statute of limitations in extreme cases of criminal behavior like murder or the sexual abuse of children is warranted, such actions should only be done with great care and prudence." It goes on to state that Archbishop Anthony Sablan Apuron has spoken to a number of senators about the Archdiocese's concerns "and also shared the Church's view with the Governor's office." They are hopeful that Governor Eddie Calvo will veto the bill.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:41 AM

Finally, LAT on Mahony’s ‘mixed legacy’

LOS ANGELES (CA)
GetReligion

Posted by Brad A. Greenberg

As I mentioned Tuesday night, I had been waiting 12 months for the Los Angeles Times to write the postscript on Cardinal Roger Mahony’s troubled 25-year tenure atop the largest Roman Catholic diocese in the country.

Here it is, appearing during Mahony’s last week on the job. And it’s pretty good.

Opening with the great detail that Mahony was once the leading American candidate to replace Pope John Paul II (a darkhorse, but still on Vatican watchers’ radars), it then delivers this most-apt nut:

A lot had happened in the intervening decade.

Mahony, who retires in the coming week as head of the Los Angeles Archdiocese, leaves a legacy that church historians will puzzle over for years. Once a shining star — perhaps the shining star — of the American church, his reputation suffered from his handling of a devastating sexual abuse scandal that shattered the lives and trust of many Catholics and led to the largest civil settlement by any archdiocese, a staggering $660million.

Yet such were Mahony’s strengths that he remains respected, even beloved, by many in his flock who see him as fiercely devoted to social justice, willing to fight for progressive reforms in the church and motivated by a lifelong passion for easing the burdens faced by Latino immigrants. He also kept the archdiocese from financial collapse after the sex abuse settlement, an achievement that required tough and sometimes unpopular decisions.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:37 AM

Cardinal O'Malley joins Irish Church in public gesture of contrition

IRELAND
The Pilot

By Sarah Mac Donald Pilot Correspondent

Posted: 2/25/2011

Publicly atoning for the Church's failures is "an important element of asking the forgiveness of those who have been harmed by priests and bishops," Cardinal Seán P. O'Malley told survivors of clerical abuse at a Liturgy of Lament and Repentance in Dublin Feb. 20.

During an emotional service at St Mary's Pro Cathedral in the heart of the Irish capital, Cardinal O'Malley, who was appointed by Pope Benedict XVI to oversee the visitation to Ireland's largest Catholic diocese, told the packed church, "On behalf of the Holy Father, I ask forgiveness for the sexual abuse of children perpetrated by priests, and the past failures of the Church's hierarchy here and in Rome, and the failure to respond appropriately to the problem of sexual abuse."

He reminded the congregation that Jesus was always on the side of the victim, bringing compassion and mercy.

Cardinal O'Malley, who referred in his reflection to his family's roots in the west of Ireland, added, "We want to be part of a Church that puts survivors, the victims of abuse first, ahead of self-interest, reputation and institutional needs."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:35 AM

SNAP statement regarding Archdiocese of Philadelphia

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

Statement by David Clohessy Executive Director 314566 9790 SNAPclohessy@aol.com

Apologies are appropriate after a crisis. The Philadelphia clergy sex abuse and cover up crisis is far from over. A Catholic district attorney and an impartial grand jury found that there are roughly 34 credibly accused child molesting clerics around kids in Philadelphia right now. "Job one" must be ousting and "outing" those predators, so that children are safer.

During a crisis, the top priority is the protection of the vulnerable, not the restoration of "trust."

The Philadelphia church hierarchy is half right: "Youth sports organizations, public schools, community groups and other faith communities all report incidents of abuse." Catholic officials conveniently neglect to mention, however, that in none of these other organization are widespread, callous cover ups of child sex crimes so clearly documented. Catholic staff often try to get us to focus on the “bad apple” predators and ignore the complicit bishops who often enable and conceal the predators’ crimes.

Archdiocesan officials whine that “Few have been forced to look as extensively at the horror of child sexual abuse perpetrated within their organizations . . .” This is a sad effort by corrupt officials to try and posture as "victims."

There should, of course, be more examination of abuse and cover up in every institution. But there’s a reason that “few have been forced to look as extensively at the horror of child sexual abuse,” as the church. It’s because few institutions, if any, have so severely hurt so many for so long through so many devastating crimes and duplicitous cover ups.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:12 AM

VA lawmakers extend SOL: SNAP Responds

VIRGINIA
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

Statement by Barbara Blaine of Chicago, president of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (312-399-4747, SNAPblaine@gmail.com)

We are grateful that Virginia lawmakers are making the state safer for kids by enabling crime victims to expose predators in court. We hope the Governor understands that this kind of reform is a cost effective way to prevent crimes and protect children, and signs the measure promptly

We're sad that a few top Catholic officials opposed this sorely-needed reform but appreciate the courageous victims and compassionate lawmakers who supported this law.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:08 AM

Va. extends sexual abuse suit deadline to 20 years

VIRGINIA
Delmarva.com

Written by
BOB LEWIS
AP Political Writer

RICHMOND — The time limit for sexual abuse victims to sue their attackers would be extended from two years to 20 years under legislation the General Assembly passed on Thursday.

The measure, which evoked tearful and wrenching stories from victims testifying in legislative committees, passed unopposed and with little debate in a group of uncontested bills. It now heads to the governor’s desk.

Criminal charges can still be filed against sexual predators for the rest of their lives.

The 20-year limit for civil lawsuits begins either when the victim turns 18 or, in the case of repressed memories, from when he or she realizes the abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:05 AM

Cardinal Roger Mahony's era is ending, but not his advocacy

LOS ANGELES (CA)
Los Angeles Daily News

By Tony Castro, Staff Writer
Posted: 02/24/2011

In recent weeks, the Sunday morning masses celebrated by Cardinal Roger Mahony at the downtown cathedral have drawn larger-than-usual crowds, heavily populated by the poor and undocumented of Los Angeles. | See photo gallery.

Those two constituencies, after all, make up the centerpiece of his quarter-century legacy as the leader of the Los Angeles Archdiocese - a post he will officially turn over Sunday as his 75th birthday forces his retirement.

In those years, the archbishop marched with Cesar Ch vez, championed immigrant rights and called for changes in the country's immigration policy.

But Mahony's legacy was tarnished by the clerical abuse scandal involving more than 500 victims and a record $660 million settlement. He also was accused of failing to report abusive priests to civil authorities and keeping them working in parishes without informing parishioners.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:01 AM

Belleville priest group wants diocese to pay up in abuse case

BELLEVILLE (IL)
KMOV

by Jim Suhr
The Associated Press
Posted on February 25, 2011

ST. LOUIS (AP) -- A southwestern Illinois diocese's urging that the state's highest court throw out a $5 million jury award in an alleged priest abuse case drew rebukes Thursday from a regional priests' group and a victims' advocacy organization, both of which urged the diocese to pay up.

The Diocese of Belleville last week asked the Illinois Supreme Court for the relief from the 2008 jury verdict, insisting it is not responsible for telling parishioners about sexual misconduct involving priests including the Rev. Raymond Kownacki, the clergyman at the center of the questioned award.

Calling that legal stance "disastrous," the Southern Illinois Association of Priests insisted Thursday the position violates the diocese's child-protection policy, "common moral sense, and the inherent right of everyone to protect themselves from sexual predators."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:59 AM

Group urges Belleville Diocese not to appeal abuse verdict

BELLEVILLE (IL)
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

BY NICHOLAS J.C. PISTOR • npistor@post-dispatch.com > 314-340-8265

BELLEVILLE • A small group of Catholic activists gathered outside the Belleville Diocese on Thursday and asked the church to stop appealing a $5 million sex-abuse court verdict.

A jury awarded $5 million in 2008 to a former altar boy who claimed sexual abuse by a priest. The diocese filed an appeal with the Illinois Supreme Court earlier this month challenging the verdict, even though a lower appeals court had upheld the award.

"We certainly don't like our church taking the low moral ground," said Les Himstedt, a former priest and member of the Southern Illinois Association of Priests.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:55 AM

Court rejects sex abuse suit against priest

SPRINGFIELD (IL)
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

By Kevin McDermott • kmcdermott@post-dispatch.com > 217-782-4912

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. - The Illinois Supreme Court on Thursday threw out a lawsuit from a former student who claims he was sexually abused by Belleville-area priest Kenneth Roberts 25 years ago, saying the plaintiff waited too long to file the suit after confronting his memories.

The decision leaves intact a 2003 state law that allows a plaintiff five years to file suit after discovering emotional injuries from previous abuse, through recovered memories or other events. But the court found that St. Louis County firefighter Christopher Amenn, of O'Fallon, Ill., wasn't entitled to that five-year window, because his discovery of the effects of the alleged abuse came before the 2003 law was in effect.

"I'm disappointed. Not for myself, but for the children," Amenn told the Post-Dispatch Thursday. "They're taking a step backward ... allowing predators to hide behind a statute of limitations."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:51 AM

SNAP: Bishop Braxton fails to act on sex abuse charge

BELLEVILLE (IL)
News-Democrat

BY GEORGE PAWLACZYK - News-Democrat

BELLEVILLE -- Bishop Edward Braxton failed to remove a veteran Catholic priest from ministry weeks after receiving "credible evidence" that the cleric sexually molested a minor years ago, a leader of a support group for people abused by the clergy said Thursday.

"He has known about this for weeks, if not months, and has not acted," said David Clohessy, a director of the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests during a news conference outside the Belleville Diocese chancery office.

"It is the duty of the church to protect children of the diocese, and that is not happening," he said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:46 AM

February 24, 2011

Former priest faces extradition to Ireland

SAN FRANCISCO (CA)
Oakland Tribune

Peter Hegarty
Staff Writer

A federal judge has ruled that a former Catholic priest who investigators tracked down living in Alameda should be extradited to his native Ireland to face charges that he sexually assaulted six boys between 1973 and 1981.

Patrick Joseph McCabe, 75, is expected to appeal the ruling, which was handed down Tuesday in San Francisco by U.S. Magistrate Nandor Vadas.

Irish officials say McCabe admitted to investigators in 2007 that he was attracted to young boys dressed in uniforms and ties and that he gained "satisfaction" from embracing them.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:13 PM

Repeal statute of limitations on child sex abuse

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

By Gerhard Schwab • February 25, 2011

As a social work professor and as a Catholic Christian, I strongly support legislative efforts to remove the statute of limitation for the prosecution of sexual child abuse.

Social sciences have created strong evidence that victims of sex crimes who are under the age of the majority rarely are equipped to report their abuses to the appropriate public authorities within the given time periods of legal statutes of limitations.

We also know from several social sciences that the emotional pain of being sexually abused will never simply "go away." Victims only can learn to live with and manage the painful memories related to the sex crimes during their childhood and youth. Throughout their entire lifespans, victims of sex crimes may re-experience the pains of their abuses whenever events in their environments break the locks of psychological defense mechanisms -- such as suppression into subconscious levels of awareness.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:07 PM

Guest editorial | The painful process of restoring trust

UNITED STATES
St. Louis Review

A 2005 Philadelphia grand jury report blasting the Church in Philadelphia with sordid details of hundreds of cases of sexual assault of minors by clergy in that archdiocese was bad enough at that time. Catholics there may well remember the shock and outrage over horrific stories of violations of children by some priests. Many people at that time felt their trust as Catholics — trust in priests, trust in the hierarchy that governs the archdiocese — had been shaken.

For most people, the pain and bitterness eased over time. They supported the good priests that served them so well. And some measure of solace was found in the knowledge that the archdiocese was taking steps to protect children above any other consideration. That thawing of hard feelings proved to be a temporary respite.

With the release of a new grand jury investigation last week and, for the first time, criminal indictments against alleged abusers and a former archdiocesan official, Catholics have plunged again into the pain and disillusionment. Yet somehow it feels worse this time.

That's because Catholics were assured that the archdiocese had taken steps to care for victims, to investigate and remove abusive priests and to train adults and children to be aware of the signs of potential sexual abuse and thereby prevent it. These were, in addition to their positive contributions to confronting and ending this cancer in society, confidence-building measures for the Catholic faithful.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:02 PM

Bishop fails to act on latest allegations of abuse by diocesan priest, advocacy group alleges

BELLEVILLE (IL)
News-Democrat

BY GEORGE PAWLACZYK NEWS-DEMOCRAT

BELLEVILLE -- Bishop Edward Braxton has not removed a veteran priest from ministry weeks after receiving "credible evidence" that the cleric sexually molested a minor years ago, a leader of a support group for persons abused by the clergy said Thursday.

"He has known about this for weeks, if not months and has not acted," said David Clohessy, a director of the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests (SNAP) during a press conference outside the chancery office.

"It is the duty of the church to protect children of the diocese and that is not happening," he said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:57 PM

CARDINAL TIM DOLAN & BISHOP RICHARD STIKA PANNED

UNITED STATES
Berger's Beat

It’s been a tough month for several Catholic bishops who hail from our town. New York Archbishop Tim Dolan is accused of “hiding” millions in the Milwaukee archdiocese to keep the funds from going to clergy sex abuse victims involved in litigation. A Texas newspaper reports that Omaha Archbishop George Lucas, who headed Kenrick-Glennon Seminary here, kept silent for months last year after receiving a report of suspected child sex abuse by a priest. This week, Knoxville Bishop Richard Stika, who oversaw clergy sex cases for years, is criticized in a Louisville newspaper. Victims and advocates are blasting Bishop Edward Braxton for appealing a 2008 jury verdict in a clergy sex case to the Illinois Supreme Court.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:54 PM

Retired Minister Held on Porn Charges

GEORGIA
My Fox Atlanta

By MYFOXATLANTA STAFF/myfoxatlanta

SYMRNA, Ga. - An FBI official in Atlanta says that a retired minister from Smyrna has been arrested on child porn charges.

Stephen Emmett of the FBI says Albert Turnell, 71, was arrested with the assistance of the Smyrna Police Department at his Smyrna home without incident Thursday morning.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:45 PM

Former Smyrna Minister Arrested on Child Porn Charges

GEORGIA
Smyrna-Vinings Patch

By Hunt Archbold

A former pastor at the First United Methodist Church of Smyrna was arrested Thursday morning on federal child pornography charges.

Albert Turnell Jr., 71, was arrested at his home without incident according to a FBI spokesman. The retired minister, who has also led congregations in Marietta, Calhoun and Colbert, was charged with possession and distribution of child pornography.

Steve Lyle, senior pastor at Smyrna First UMC, declined comment when contacted by Patch.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:42 PM

Retired Pastor Faces Child Porn Charges

GEORGIA
WSB

By Veronica Waters @ February 24, 2011 (WSB Radio)

A retired minister is under arrest on child pornography charges.

FBI Special Agent Stephen Emmett tells WSB 71-year-old Albert Turnell, Jr. was arrested Thursday morning on charges of possession and distribution of child porn. Emmett says Turnell "came to law enforcement's attention over the Internet" and was taken into custody at his Smyrna home.

"It's our understanding that [Mr. Turnell] is an important figure for that community," says Emmett. "It is all the more distressful to see these types of charges for such an individual."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:39 PM

Retired Cobb minister facing child porn charges

GEORGIA
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

By Mike Morris
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

A retired minister and high-ranking United Methodist Church official was arrested Thursday morning at his home in Smyrna on federal child pornography charges.

FBI spokesman Stephen Emmett said Albert Turnell Jr., 71, was arrested without incident and charged with possession and distribution of child pornography.

Turnell, former pastor of the First United Methodist Church of Smyrna, has also led congregations in Marietta, Calhoun, Dalton and Colbert, and has served as a district superintendent for the United Methodist Church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:36 PM

Victims urge Belleville bishop to oust cleric

BELLEVILLE (IL)
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

WHAT
At a sidewalk news conference, clergy sex abuse victims will urge
-- Belleville’s Catholic bishop to suspend a diocesan priest who has been quietly (not publicly) accused of molesting a child, and
-- tell the public where all his pedophile priests are now living, and
-- drop his appeal of a $5 million jury verdict to the Illinois Supreme Court.

WHEN
TODAY, Thursday, Feb. 24, 1:00 p.m.

WHERE
Outside the Belleville Diocese headquarters (‘chancery’), 222 South 3rd Street in Belleville

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:02 PM

New clergy sex abuse & cover up lawsuit is filed

LOS ANGELES (CA)
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

WHAT
Holding signs and childhood photos at a sidewalk news conference, clergy sex abuse will
-- disclose and discuss a new civil child sex abuse and cover up lawsuit against a priest who has never been publicly accused before,
-- blast his supervisors who lead a controversial, abuse ridden religious order, and
-- urge anyone who may have seen, suspected or suffered his crimes to call police immediately.

They will also prod LA Cardinal Roger Mahony, who retires soon, one more time, to aggressively seek out others who have been hurt by this predator by personally going to the school where the crimes happened and begging victims and witnesses to call the police.

WHEN
TODAY, Thursday, Feb. 24 at 1:15 p. m.

WHERE
On the sidewalk outside the Cathedral of the Angels, 555 W. Temple (at Hill) Los Angeles

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:58 PM

Confession of man accused of killing Chatham priest is admissible, judge rules

NEW JERSEY
The Star-Ledger

By Ben Horowitz/The Star-Ledger

CHATHAM — The prosecution may use Jose Feliciano’s confession to killing the Rev. Edward Hinds as evidence in his trial, a Superior Court judge ruled today.

In the audio- and video-recorded confession, played in court two weeks ago, the former custodian at St. Patrick Church in Chatham said he repeatedly stabbed the former parish priest on Oct. 22, 2009 after Hinds threatened to fire him for ending a four-year sexual affair.

Judge Thomas Manahan, sitting in Morristown, issued a written decision declaring all of Feliciano’s statements admissible in the interrogations conducted by an investigator at Morristown Memorial Hospital two days after the slaying.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:56 PM

Va extends sexual abuse suit deadline to 20 years

VIRGINIA
Washington Examiner

By: BOB LEWIS 02/24/11
AP Political Writer

The General Assembly has given final passage to legislation extending from two years to 20 the time allowed for sexual abuse victims to sue their attackers.

The measure, which evoked victims' tearful and wrenching testimony before legislative committees, passed Thursday in a group of uncontested bills with little debate.

The bill doesn't affect the lifetime limit for criminal prosecutions of sexual predators.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:53 PM

Judge Rules Confession Can Be Used at Trial

NEW JERSEY
Chatham Patch

By Laura Silvius

Jose Feliciano's confession to Capt. Jeffrey Paul of the Morris County Prosecutor's Office can be used against him at trial, a judge ruled Thursday.

The Hon. Thomas V. Manahan, sitting in Morristown, submitted a written decision in the hearing Thursday morning in which he said, "The interrogations were not, in this court’s view, overbearing or overreaching and did not create the compelling atmosphere which falls under the protection of Miranda."

Morris County Prosecutor Robert Bianchi said, “We are obviously satisfied with the Court’s decision and now look forward to trying this case before a jury as quickly as is possible.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:51 PM

Judge says confession admissible in NJ priest slay trial

NEW JERSEY
WPFO

(2011-02-24)
(Reuters) -
NEW YORK (Reuters) - A New Jersey judge ruled on Thursday that the confession of a church janitor accused of killing a local priest can be admitted as evidence in his murder trial.

Defense attorneys for Jose Feliciano, 65, of Easton, Pennsylvania, had sought to have his confession thrown out because they said he had been misled into thinking his family would be taken care of if he confessed to the crime.

Feliciano is charged with murder and robbery in the October 22, 2009 stabbing death of Rev. Edward Hinds at St. Patrick's Church in Chatham, New Jersey.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:49 PM

Priest group wants diocese to pay up in abuse case

BELLEVILLE (Il)
WAND

Associated Press - February 24, 2011

BELLEVILLE, Ill. (AP) - A southwestern Illinois diocese's request that the state's highest court overturn a $5 million jury award to a former altar boy in an alleged priest-abuse case is drawing a rebuke from a regional priests' group.

The Southern Illinois Association of Priests believes the Diocese of Belleville should pay the 2008 award to James Wisniewski, now of Champaign.

The diocese appealed to the Illinois Supreme Court last week, more than a month after a state appellate court upheld the verdict in Wisniewski's favor.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:40 PM

Va extends sexual abuse suit deadline to 20 years

VIRGINIA
WRIC

Associated Press - February 24, 2011

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Legislation extending from two years to 20 the time allowed for sexual abuse victims to sue their attackers has won final passage.

The measure, which evoked tearful and wrenching testimony from victims before legislative committees, passed Thursday in a group of uncontested bills with little debate.

The bill doesn't affect the lifetime limit for criminal prosecutions of sexual predators.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:31 PM

Session chock-full of controversial topics

GUAM
KUAM

by Lannie Walker

Guam - Controversial topics such as shark finning, animal abuse, and sexual abuse were at the center of legislation voted on by Guam senators today. Senators of the 31st Legislature made quick business on 10 bills this afternoon.

Bill 34, authored by Senator B.J. Cruz, extends the time a person could bring a civil case for sexual abuse was passed on a vote of 9 to 6. Six other bills passed by unanimous vote, including Bill 55 to authorize the Guam Memorial Hospital to contract vendor services; bill 44, to prohibit the possession, selling and trading of shark fins; Bill 9, to strengthen the penalties for animal cruelty on Guam; Bill 58, an act relative to administrative leave for volunteer sign language and foreign language interpreters; Bill 33, which will repeal the statute of limitation for the prosecution of a sex crime involving a victim who is under the age of the majority; and Bill 41, to amend Guam code related to bullying, cyberbulling and sexting.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:19 PM

How to really reform the Phila. Archdiocese

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philly.com

By Barbara Blaine
Heard enough about sex crimes and cover-ups in the Philadelphia Archdiocese? OK, let's move beyond the disclosures of recklessness, callousness, deceit, and betrayal in the recent grand jury report.

Let's look instead at Cardinal Justin Rigali's responses to the revelations. One is positive. The others are questionable at best.

Though belatedly and begrudgingly, Rigali has suspended three of the 37 clerics whom the district attorney and grand jurors alleged to be working in local parishes despite credible accusations of child molestation. Obviously, that's helpful.

Beyond that, however, Rigali's response becomes far less convincing.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:18 PM

Do more: Restore language so that grossly negligent institutions can be sued

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Yesterday, senators passed two bills that will offer more protection and justice to the victims of child sexual abuse.

Bill 33 would eliminate the statute of limitations on child sexual abuse. Bill 34 would open a two-year window in which the survivors of child sex abuse could file civil claims against the perpetrators, even if the statute of limitations has passed.

Vice Speaker Benjamin Cruz said the bills were needed because the system was flawed; it made those who committed sexual abuse -- not the victims of abuse -- the priority.

Cruz noted that for most survivors of child sexual abuse, it takes many years before they are able to come forward with what happened to them. For many, that means the statute of limitations on the crime has expired and they are left without legal recourse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:08 PM

Bills aimed at sexual abuse passed

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

By Erin Thompson • Pacific Daily News • February 25, 2011

Two bills aimed at holding perpetrators of sexual abuse accountable passed in the 31st Guam Legislature yesterday, after three days of occasionally contentious discussion among senators on the issue.

Passed unanimously with 15 votes, Bill 33, introduced by Vice Speaker Benjamin Cruz, will eliminate the statute of limitations on sex crimes committed against those under the age of majority, if signed into law. Under Guam law the age of majority is 18. The window for prosecuting cases of sexual abuse is three years after the age of majority, or 21.
A second, more controversial bill allowing for civil claims for past sex abuse passed with only nine votes -- even after an all-day floor debate and the addition of several amendments to the bill earlier in the week.

Also introduced by Cruz, Bill 34 will allow for a two-year window for past victims of childhood sexual abuse to file civil claims in the Superior Court of Guam, if signed into law.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:05 PM

Yakima priest suspended in child sex case, SNAP responds

YAKIMA (WA)
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, SNAPclohessy@aol.com)

Once again, a Catholic priest fails to call 911 about a child sex abuse report.

Once again, a Yakima priest says nothing about a child sex abuse case and Yakima’s bishop says nothin too, until contacted by the media.

Those repeated promises by Catholic officials to put the safety of kids first and to be “open” about child sex cases are clearly just insincere public relations gestures.

We call on Bishop Carlos Sevilla to send a strong signal by severely disciplining Fr. Milich. No matter what Sevilla’s hand-picked panel may or may not recommend, Milich clearly violated his civic and moral duty, and for months, enabled a credibly accused child molesting cleric to be near kids. This kind of callousness and recklessness by Catholic employees will never stop unless it is severely punished.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:56 AM

Priest charged with embezzling parish funds

DELAWARE
The News Journal

WILMINGTON — The pastor of two Roman Catholic churches has been indicted by a New Castle County grand jury for stealing over $350,000 and trying to cover his tracks by making false entries on the churches' records.

Rev. Cornelius J. Breslin, the pastor of both St. Mary of the Immaculate Conception and St. Patrick, turned himself in at the New Castle County Courthouse this morning.

The indictment comes after a five-month investigation by the Delaware Attorney General’s office after it received a report about suspicious financial activity by the priest from officials with the Roman Catholic Diocese of Wilmington.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:33 AM

The Catholic Church Says No

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
The Philly Post

ROBERT HUBER

There is no way out. Not in this life. That’s what I kept hearing. Again and again. Maybe this was worse, over time, worse even than what someone so important did to them. Afterward, their church offered them nothing. Their church simply said no.

Art was a Vietnam vet, he was in law enforcement for 38 years. His son was sexually abused by a priest, the principal of his school. Art went to the diocese. The only thing he cared about was his son, who they broke and he wanted fixed. They wanted his son to go away for 50 thousand dollars, to sign off on never suing. Art’s son killed himself with a drug overdose.

Barbara turned on Channel 3 a few days ago, and there he was: the priest who molested her 45 years ago. His name is Joseph DiGregorio. She says she told Cardinal Regali about him in 2005. A review board recommended a “safety plan” for Father DiGregorio, which means he would be shielded from potential victims, then later decided there was “insufficient conclusive evidence” that he was a person who would do what Barbara said he did. She said that back when she was 16, DiGregorio kissed her, took her bra off, and lay on top of her in his car.

There are no restrictions on the father’s priestly duties, and there he was, on TV, and in the newspaper, calling what Barbara said made up.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:28 AM

Victim who is SNAP Minnesota State Leader and NSAC Co-founder to speak to National Guard

MINNESOTA
National Survivor Advocates Coalition

The Minnesota head of a Chicago-based international support group and a co-founder of a national victims advocacy group will speak Thursday to members of the Minnesota National Guard about male on male sexual violence.

Bob Schwiderski of the self-help organization SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAPnetwork.org), and National Survivor Advocates Coalition (NSAC) has been asked to assist the Minnesota National Guard by speaking about male-on-male sexual trauma with the officials and members of the Victim Advocate program of the Minnesota Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Program (SAPR). The event is tomorrow, Thursday, at 2:45 PM. at the 133rd Airlift Wing, 631 Minuteman Dr. St. Paul, MN.

The purpose of the Minnesota National Guard’s Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Program (SAPR) is to reinforce the commitment of the Department of Defense in eliminating incidents of sexual assault within the military through a comprehensive policy that centers on awareness, prevention, training, education, and victim advocacy for not only Service Members, but their families as well

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:20 AM

Molested in Massachusetts - Part One

MASSACHUSETTS
Cape Cod Today

Special to CapeCodTODAY by Chris London, Esq.

NYC writer excoriates Scott Brown: Camp Good News, an independent, non-denominational, non-profit Christian summer camp for boys and girls ages 6-15, is in the news for reasons which make me and some of my close personal friends who were former campers there sad, uncomfortable and perhaps even a little angry. And it is not because the legendary camp recently celebrated its 75th anniversary. U.S. Senator Scott Brown of Massachusetts and former male model, publicly proclaimed on the eve of the release of his memoir, “Against All Odds: My Life of Hardship, Fast Breaks, and Second Chances”, that he was molested as a child at a camp on Cape Cod, while officials at Camp Good News on Snake Pond in Sandwich confirmed that Senator Brown was a camper there.

Emancipating his inner Oprah

I will leave it to journalists to question the authenticity of Scott Brown’s timely proclamation, and whether his coming forward was anything more than ‘pathetic plea for publicity.’ To be clear Scott Brown did not run to authorities to unmask an alleged sexual predator, he and his handlers ran to Harper Collins in a political re-branding effort. Furthermore, if you ask me, his rather vivid description of his assailant almost sounds like some made up fantasy profile or caricature of a conservative’s view of a rather liberal looking predator; that is circa the first Nixon Administration. Is this perhaps maybe an attempt by a RINO Senator in Democrat lands to shore up votes on the left by ‘emancipating his [inner] Oprah’, well in advance of his re-election effort or the launch of a Presidential campaign?

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:15 AM

Suffer the little children

KENTUCKY
Leo Weekly

By Jonathan Meador

And they brought young children to Him, that He should touch them: and His disciples rebuked those that brought them. But when Jesus saw it, He was much displeased, and said unto them, Suffer the little children to come unto Me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God.

Mark 10:13-14

As the sun rose on Thursday, Feb. 3, 2011, David M. Jarboe Jr. stepped into the parking lot of downtown Owensboro’s Blessed Mother Catholic Church. A few blocks from the Ohio River, Blessed Mother is a flat, ranch-style structure featuring just one church-like fixture: a small, white spire in its central narthex, pointing to the sky. The resulting architecture makes it a bit unorthodox-looking for a Catholic church — no flying buttresses, stone gargoyles or giant stained-glass windows — but it fits right in with the surrounding neighborhood of modest one-story homes.

It’s impossible to know what Jarboe was thinking, gun in hand, on that frigid morning, but according to multiple news reports, we are able to make an educated guess. The former Owensboro Catholic High School football player had posted a six-page note on his Facebook page earlier that morning alleging that he had been the victim of sexual abuse at the hands of parish priests when he was a child.

“Let my life be a testimony,” Jarboe wrote. “The abuse of this church is real. Let it be known. It doesn’t make you a non-believer. It doesn’t jeopardize your fate. It’s the right thing to do. Religion is not a bad thing. But destroying free thought is. However, never once will I ever agree with the molestation of children. And never once will I agree with an institution that chooses to not acknowledge it … I hope this message will save at least one child from the pain and torment that I have gone through. A child is precious to God, and using your authority as a church official to take advantage of someone is one of the foulest things imaginable. Perhaps your parents don’t see, perhaps those you know don’t see, know that God sees. And God never forgets.

“So farewell,” the note concluded. “I have loved, I have lived, I have finally forgiven, I have no regrets. I am finally at peace.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:10 AM

Sex Abuse Charges Put Catholic Prosecutor Front and Center

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Beliefnet

By ELIZABETH EVANS
c. 2011 Religion News Service

PHILADELPHIA (RNS) For Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams, leading the sex abuse prosecution that has roiled this city's Catholic community is not an attack on the church in which he was raised, and to which he remains deeply committed.

But the Philadelphia native says he is determined to bring to justice the "evil" clergy his office accuses of harming children.

Earlier this month (Feb. 10), Williams announced criminal charges against three priests and a parochial school teacher for allegedly raping boys in the late 1990s. In addition, Monsignor William Lynn, the archdiocese's former secretary of clergy, was charged with endangering the welfare of a child because he allegedly transferred abusive priests without warning schools and parishes. All four clergy have been suspended by the archdiocese. ...

Terence McKiernan, who tracks abuse cases nationally as the head of the website Bishopaccountability.org, commends Williams in prosecuting the abuse cases "aggressively."

McKiernan said that "it's got to make people uneasy that he's got that strong relationship with Rigali," but that Williams is "breaking new ground" in going after not only allegedly abusive clergy, but also the monsignor who supervised them.

Any church leader who had a role in handling the cases of clergy who were found guilty of abuse is going to feel chilled by that move, said McKiernan. "Taking that step is evidence that he's serious ... having started, he will finish the job."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:06 AM

Rabbi charged as perv

NEW YORK
New York Post

By REUVEN BLAU and KEVIN FASICK

A prominent Brooklyn rabbi was charged yesterday with molesting a 12-year-old girl over three years, authorities said.

Nechemya Weberman, 52, of Williamsburg, pleaded innocent at his arraignment last night. Authorities said the shocking sex abuse, took place from 2007 until 2010.

The alleged victim -- who was being counseled by the rabbi, a source said -- is now 16. The source said her parents contacted police.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:53 AM

NYC Rabbi Accused Of Molesting Child

NEW YORK
CBS New York

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — A New York City rabbi has been charged with molesting a 12-year-old girl over three years.

Nechemya Weberman pleaded innocent at his arraignment Wednesday night to charges of criminal sex act, rape, endangering the welfare of a child and sexual abuse.

His lawyer, George Farkas, denied the charges. He said the 52-year-old Brooklyn rabbi has counseled troubled families in the past.

Authorities said the alleged abuse occurred from 2007 to 2010.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:44 AM

Ronnie Polaneczky: Why did Catholic school fire 'best professor'?

PENNSYLVANIA
Philadelphia Daily News

By Ronnie Polaneczky
Philadelphia Daily News
Daily News Columnist

YOU NEVER know what you'll find in your inbox.

Last Thursday, a Daily News reader named James Pepper forwarded to me an e-mail he'd sent a few hours earlier to Philadelphia Archdiocese Cardinal Justin Rigali.

The e-mail was about Father Jim St. George, pastor of St. Miriam, a Blue Bell church that I wrote about in my column that day.

St. Miriam is part of the Old Catholic Apostolic Church of America, a denomination in which priests are permitted to be male or female, gay or straight, celibate or married.

Pepper told Rigali that he found it "scandalous" that Father Jim, "an openly gay 'priest' " leading "a reformed Catholic church'" was teaching "theology" courses at Chestnut Hill College. Since Father Jim was "quite plainly a heretic," Pepper wrote, he should not be teaching theology at the school, because it is run by the Roman Catholic Sisters of St. Joseph.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:41 AM

"Pedofielen zijn geen perverten"

BELGIE
Vandaag

“Pedofielen zijn geen perverten. Seksuele perversie is zelfs de minst gestelde diagnose bij pedofielen. Deze mensen lijden aan heel verschillende psychiatrische ziektes, net zoals alle andere patiënten”. Dat zei UCL-professor Christophe Adam, die als therapeut onderzoek deed naar de behandelbaarheid van pedofielen. Hij werd vandaag als getuige gehoord in de Kamercommissie Seksueel Misbruik.

Volgens Adam wordt het risico op hervallen bij pedofielen “schromelijk overschat”. Uit buitenlandse onderzoeken blijkt volgens Adam dat het zelfs veel lager is dan het hervalpercentage bij andere criminele feiten.

"De wetenschappers Hanson en Buissière stelden op basis van meerdere studies over de evolutie van in totaal 20.000 seksuele delinquenten in 2004 vast, dat na vijf jaar slechts 13,4% van de seksuele delinquenten is hervallen, na 20 jaar gaat het om 27%. Tegenover 70% van dieven en overvallers. En nog recenter Frans onderzoek uit 2007 wijst uit dat gemiddeld 41% van alle vrijgelaten veroordeelden na vijf jaar opnieuw werd opgesloten voor een misdrijf. Bij pedofielen is dat percentage 11%, bij dieven zonder geweld 65%". Weinig recidive dus. En nog: "Ook bij incest vader-dochter is de recidive erg beperkt".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:35 AM

Priester wurde Vater

SCHWEIZ
Tages-Anzeiger

Pius Blättler, Pfarrer von Affoltern am Albis, hat sich gegen sein Amt und für die Familie entschieden. Er will in Zukunft nur noch für seinen Sohn da sein.

Am kommenden Sonntag wird Pius Blättler (43) seinen Abschiedsgottesdienst halten. Danach will er sein Amt als Pfarradministrator in Affoltern am Albis niederlegen, weil er Vater eines Jungen geworden ist. «Mein Sohn braucht mich mehr», erklärt er seinen Entscheid.

Die Mutter des Kindes lernte Blättler bereits Ende der 90er-Jahre kennen. «Sie war Kinderärztin und machte in der Schweiz eine Weiterbildung zur Homöopathin», schildert er die Anfänge seiner Beziehung zur Armenierin gegenüber dem «Blick». Die Beziehung dauerte auch an, als die Frau wieder in ihre Heimat zurückkehrte und Blättler 2002 zum Priester geweiht wurde.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:31 AM

Sex abuse bill moves forward

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

By Erin Thompson • Pacific Daily News • February 24, 2011

Senators yesterday voted to move a bill that would open a two-year window for victims of past child sexual abuse to file suit in the Superior Court of Guam.

Bill 34, introduced by Vice Speaker Benjamin Cruz, would give an opportunity for those who experienced child sexual abuse on Guam to file civil suit in court.

The move means the bill can be voted on as soon as today.

The bill is the second piece of legislation introduced by Cruz dealing with the issue of sex abuse. He also introduced Bill 33, which would eliminate the statute of limitations on crimes involving sexual abuse. Bill 33 was discussed in session earlier in the week and could also be up for a vote today

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:23 AM

Former camper says Adventists knew of sex abuse

OREGON
Miami Herald

By NIGEL DUARA
Associated Press
PORTLAND, Ore. -- A former member of an Oregon youth camping group run by the Seventh-day Adventist Church has sued the church and its worldwide headquarters, claiming he suffered sexual abuse before and after informing church authorities.

The man, who was not identified in a complaint filed Wednesday in Multnomah County Circuit Court, is seeking $5.25 million from the church.

According to the lawsuit, the man was part of the church's Pathfinder Club in Junction City in 1975 when a counselor sexually assaulted him. The man says he informed church authorities but stayed in the program.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:21 AM

SESSION: Debate Over Amendments to Bill 34 ...

GUAM
Pacific News Center

Guam - Vice Speaker B.J. Cruz's Bill 34 was placed on the Legislative agenda today [Wednesday] and it was the subject of debate all morning at the Session Hall. Various Senators have been offering amendments to strengthen protections against false accusations.

Yesterday, Senator Cruz questioned why the measure had been left off the legislative agenda this week.

On the K-57 Breakfast Show this morning [Wednesday], Rules Committee Chair Rory Respico said that no motion was made to put the bill on the agenda. Respico made that motion this morning and the bill was placed on the agenda.

Bill 34 lifts the statute of limitations on civil suits against the perpetrators of sex crimes against minors.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:13 AM

Jeffs Restored As Head Of FLDS, Despite Legal Troubles

UNITED STATES
NPR

by Howard Berkes

He may be sitting in a Texas prison, but Warren Jeffs has officially resumed control of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (FLDS), the nation's largest polygamist group.

A document filed with the Utah Department of Commerce names Jeffs as president and "corporation sole" of the FLDS faith. "Corporation sole" is a phrase often used to give corporate authority to an individual leader of a religious group. The document is at the bottom of this post.

In a letter that accompanies the document, Jeffs says that he was "called and sustained as the President" of the FLDS Church. The faithful believe that their "president and prophet" is "called" to the position in a process that is divinely inspired. Other leaders and members then "sustain" that calling.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:11 AM

Lane County man sues ...

OREGON
The Oregonian

By Lara Takenaga, The Oregonian

A Lane County man filed a $5.25 million lawsuit Wednesday in Portland against the Seventh-day Adventist Church and its international conference for alleged sexual abuse by a former Junction City youth group leader.

The 49-year-old man, referred to as C.B. in court documents, claims Les Bovee abused him multiple times over several months in 1975. He is suing for sexual battery of a child, intentional infliction of emotional distress and negligence in Multnomah County Circuit Court.

His attorneys, Peter Janci and Steve Crew, said C.B. was 12 or 13 when the abuse began and that the boy told a church official after the first incident. Crew said the church investigated, but Bovee, now 66, was allowed to continue working with the Pathfinder Club, a coed Seventh-day Adventist organization similar to Scouting groups.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:01 AM

Jailed polygamist retakes control of church

UNITED STATES
CNN

(CNN) -- Polygamist leader Warren Jeffs is once again running the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints -- this time from a jail cell, sources tell CNN.

Jeffs gave up control of the splinter sect that advocates plural marriages, including marriages that involve girls under 18, after he was convicted in 2007 of rape as accomplice. That conviction was overturned last year. Jeffs is currently awaiting trial in Texas on sexual assault and bigamy charges.

Sources within the church tell CNN that the man who replaced Jeffs as business head of the church, Wendell Nielsen, has resigned and that Jeffs has signed documents retaking control of FLDS.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:59 AM

Judge forms task force to address sex abuse in Plain community

PENNSYLVANIA
Lancaster Online

By CINDY STAUFFER, Staff Writer

It was a difficult case for everyone.

A father and son, Jonathan and Melvin Smucker of Martic Township, both were charged last year with sexually abusing young girls.

The men and their victims all were members of the Amish community.

The victims said they did not want to pursue the case unless they were assured the men would not go to prison.

Lancaster County Judge Dennis Reinaker recently sentenced the two men to probation. But the judge felt he had to do more to help victims like the ones in the case.

Reinaker has formed a Plain community task force, which will meet for the first time next week, to address concerns about sexual abuse within Amish and Old Order Mennonite communities.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:56 AM

OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS

VATICAN CITY
Vatican Information Service

VATICAN CITY, 22 FEB 2011 (VIS) - The Holy Father: ...

- Appointed Fr. Jean Kockerois of the clergy of the archdiocese of Mechelen-Brussels, Belgium, dean of Brussels-south; Fr. Jean-Luc Hudsyn of the clergy of the archdiocese of Mechelen-Brussels, episcopal vicar for Brabante Vallone, and Fr. Leon Lemmens of the clergy of Hasselt, Belgium, official of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches, as auxiliaries of the archdiocese of Mechelen-Brussels (area 3,635, population 2,524,000, Catholics 1,615,000, priests 1,909, permanent deacons 90, religious 3,761). Bishop-elect Kockerois was born in Brecht, Belgium in 1957 and ordained a priest in 1993. Bishop-elect Hudsyn was born in Uccle, Belgium in 1947 and ordained a priest in 1972. Bishop-elect Lemmens was born in Boorsem, Belgium in 1954 and ordained a priest in 1977.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:54 AM

For Belgian Church rocked by scandal, three new auxiliary bishops

VATICAN CITY
Catholic News Agency

Rome, Italy, Feb 24, 2011 / 12:55 am (CNA).- Pope Benedict XVI has appointed three new auxiliary bishops to assist Archbishop Andre-Joseph Leonard of Mechelen-Brussels.

Msgrs. Jean-Luc Hudsyn, Jean Kockerols and Leon Lemmens were appointed Feb. 22.

The Belgian Church has been rocked by clerical abuse scandals in recent years.

Archbishop Leonard was appointed in Jan. 2010 in part in response to the scandals, which occurred under Cardinal Godfried Danneels, now retired. Archbishop Leonard was called by some the "Belgian Ratzinger" for his no-tolerance policy on sexual abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:51 AM

Church sued over 1975 sexual abuse allegation

OREGON
The Register-Guard

By Jack Moran
The Register-Guard

Published: Thursday, Feb 24, 2011

Attorneys on Tuesday filed a civil lawsuit seeking $5 million on behalf of a man who claims to have been molested in Lane County as a child by a Seventh-day Adventist Church youth group leader from Veneta who faced similar accusations involving young boys more than 30 years ago.

The lawsuit, filed in Multnomah County Circuit Court, alleges that church officials failed to take action after the then-13-year-old victim told them in 1975 that he had been sexually abused by Les Bovee, who supervised a “Pathfinder Club” youth program offered through Junction City’s Seventh-day Adventist Church.

The boy attended the church with his family and alleges in the lawsuit that Bovee abused him during Pathfinder Club events.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:48 AM

Former Santa Rosa Diocese priest to appeal extradition to Ireland

CALIFORNIA
The Press Democrat

By GUY KOVNER
THE PRESS DEMOCRAT

An attorney for former Irish priest Patrick McCabe said Wednesday he will appeal a federal magistrate’s order sending the 75-year-old child molest suspect back to Ireland to face charges there.

News reports of McCabe’s arrest last year in Alameda County prompted civil lawsuits by four men who alleged that McCabe molested them while he was serving in a Eureka parish in 1983 and 1984.

The lawsuits accuse the Santa Rosa Catholic diocese of fraud and negligence for failing to disclose sex abuse claims against McCabe dating from 1973 to 1981 in the Dublin, Ireland archdiocese.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:44 AM

When Churches Attack!!!

PENNSYLVANIA
National Catholic Register

by Matthew Archbold Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia has recently seen a string of indictments from a grand jury report relating to the seemingly endless sex abuse scandal. To be sure, it is a sad time for the Catholic Church in Philadelphia leaving many Catholics confused and saddened.

But there are some who see the Church’s problems as an opportunity. One church just outside Philadelphia seems to be taking advantage of this issue for their own gain in a pretty creepy manner. The Philadelphia Daily News highlights that a “reformed Catholic church” is using the sex abuse crisis to their advantage by running advertisements saying you should drop that old Catholic Church and come to their NEW AND IMPROVED “CATHOLIC” CHURCH because they don’t have any sex abuse!!

Seriously. That’s really what they’re saying.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:42 AM

Retired Allentown Bishop Edward Cullen plays role in Philadelphia grand jury report on abusive priests

PENNSYLVANIA
The Express-Times

Thursday, February 24, 2011

By JIM DEEGAN
The Express-Times

Retired Allentown Bishop Edward Cullen played a role in deceiving parishioners about a priest accused of molesting an altar boy at a Philadelphia parish 18 years ago, according to a Philadelphia grand jury report.

Cullen, who retired as bishop of Allentown in May 2009, was vicar for administration to Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua in Philadelphia before becoming Allentown Diocese bishop in 1998.

In 1993, Cullen issued a memo to another Philadelphia Archdiocese administrator, Monsignor William Lynn, saying parishioners of St. Therese of the Child Jesus parish in Philadelphia should be told the Rev. Edward Avery was resigning as pastor for health reasons, the grand jury report says.

In fact, Avery had been accused of sexual abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:40 AM

Former Catholic priest ordered to return to Ireland to face abuse charges

IRELAND
The Journal

AN EX-PRIEST is to be extradited to Ireland from California to face sexual abuse charges.

Patrick Joseph McCabe (74) denies the charges, which relate to the sexual abuse of young boys in the 1970s and 1980s.

Judge Nandor Vadas ruled in court in Alameda, California, that McCabe should be sent to Ireland to face the charges, the Irish Times reports.

McCabe faces nine counts related to alleged assaults between 1973 and 1981. For the majority of those years he was working as a curate at the Pro-Cathedral on Marlborough Street in Dublin.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:35 AM

Priest charged in sex abuse stayed in parish for 2 years

PENNSYLVANIA
Daily Times

By PATTI MENGERS
pmengers@delcotimes.com

A 64-year-old Roman Catholic priest who is among four men charged with sexually abusing boys in parishes in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia was still on-site at another parish almost two years after archdiocesan officials ordered him to leave that parish.

As a result of a Philadelphia grand jury investigation, the Rev. Charles Engelhardt, a member of the Oblates of St. Francis DeSales, was charged on Feb. 10 with sexually assaulting a fifth-grade altar boy at St. Jerome parish in Philadelphia in 1999.

Archdiocesan officials said they received an allegation of abuse against Engelhardt, Jan. 30, 2009 and immediately turned the allegation over to the Philadelphia District Attorney. That same day they ordered Engelhardt to leave his residence at Resurrection of Our Lord parish in northeast Philadelphia where he was parochial vicar, an assistant to the pastor, said Donna Farrell, director of communications for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. The parish includes a school with pre-kindergarten through eighth grade.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:33 AM

Editorial: Faith restored at Our Lady of Charity

PENNSYLVANIA
Daily Times

These are trying times for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. Once again the church finds itself under a very public microscope.

The festering problem of priest sexual abuse once again has put the church in the crosshairs of public controversy. Several priests now face criminal charges of sexual abuse in a presentment handed up by a Philadelphia grand jury.

And for the first time, maybe in the nation, a high-ranking church official faces charges in connection with the cases.

The Rev. Monsignor William Lynn is not charged with abuse. Instead he is facing two counts of endangering the welfare of a child. The grand jury came to the conclusion that Lynn knew about the problem priests and did not take the necessary steps to stop them. More, it indicates that instead Lynn carried out policies of the archdiocese that seemed more interested in protecting priests and the church than the rights of child victims.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:23 AM

February 23, 2011

Sex Scandal Rocks Catholic Mission….Reverend Father Exposes Reverend Father In Court

SIERRA LEONE
Standard Times Press News

Posted by PAT KAWA AND FAYIA AMARA on Feb 23, 2011

The Bo Magistrate Court presided over by Mr. Mohammed Momoh Jah Stevens became a scene of attraction last Tuesday 22nd February 2011. It was jam packed with all colours of spectators including journalists and lawyers when the suspended Catholic Priest Samuel Von Tucker formerly of the St. Mary’s Parish, Kailahun District dragged Major Superintendent Rev. Fr. Augustine Berewa to court for allegedly publishing false and defamatory materials against him on the internet.

The Head of the Holy Ghost Order of the Catholic Church, Sierra Leone Chapter, Rev. Fr. Augustine Berewa appeared on a six- count- indictment including defamatory libel was sued by the suspended Rev. Fr. Samuel Von Tucker Parish and three others, following a suspension order.

In the letter of suspension written by the Head of the Holy Ghost Order of the Catholic Mission in Sierra Leone, Rev. Fr. Augustine Berewa he had accused Rev. Fr. Tucker of behaving contrary to the Catholic doctrine by allegedly committing the offence of pedophilia, misappropriation of funds meant for construction of water wells, disobedience and the purchase of a Benz car, which Rev. Fr. Tucker has been laying claims on as the property of his brother in-law, James Pessima who had earlier on sued Fr.Berewa to court for libel.

The matter was filed at the Magistrate Court by Lawyer Samuel Taylor on behalf of his client, who is Complainant Rev. Fr. Samuel von Tucker. The allegation left many members of the Catholic Mission and observers in a state of surprise and disbelief.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:47 PM

Ex-priest to face charges in Ireland

IRELAND
The Irish Times

EOIN REYNOLDS in California

A US federal judge has ordered a former Catholic priest to return to Ireland to face charges that he sexually abused young boys in the 1970s and early 1980s.

Patrick Joseph McCabe (74) has denied the charges and fought extradition on the grounds that the alleged offences had passed the statute of limitations in the US.

Sitting in Alameda, California, Judge Nandor Vadas ruled that the US statute of limitations had no bearing on the extradition request and ordered Mr McCabe to be sent to Ireland to face the charges.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:05 PM

Retired priest nearing trial for allegedly embezzling from local churches

VIRGINIA
WVEC

by Sula Kim
13NEWS / WVEC.com
Posted on February 23, 2011

VIRGINIA BEACH – A trial is just a few weeks away for a priest accused of embezzling thousands of dollars from two local churches.

Father Joseph Hai-Nguyen, 65, served at the Our Lady of Vietnam in Hampton and Our Lady of Lavang in Norfolk for eight years. He retired in October 2010 and moved to Texas.

That’s when an auditor hired by the Richmond Diocese found irregularities in the accounting. Hai-Nguyen was arrested in October, extradited back to Norfolk, and later released on bond.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:29 PM

N.J. priest Terence O. McAlinden’s sexual abuses still being investigated by Trenton Diocese

NEW JERSEY
Newsroom Jersey

BY ALICIA CRUZ
NEWJERSEYNEWSROOM.COM

Surrounded by a host of family and friends, three New Jersey men held a news conference Monday outside St. Theresa's on Radio Road in Little Egg Harbor, denouncing a priest they say sexually abused them beginning in 1980.

Many of the supporters held signs that read things like, "Defrock McAlinden," "It's All Coming Out," "Children Must Have a Voice," "I Am A Survivor of Clergy Sexual Abuse and "Protect Your Children," according to the Asbury Park Press.

The men, Chris Naples, of Bass River, Patrick Newcombe a former Point Pleasant resident and Bob Markulic of White Township organized the conference at St. Theresa Roman Catholic Church in Little Egg Harbor, where the priest was removed in 2007 after allegations surfaced.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:27 PM

Priest from Canada indicted on sexual assault charges

HAWAII
Star-Advertiser

An Oahu grand jury returned an indictment this morning charging a visiting priest from Canada with kidnapping and sexual assault.

The indictment charges the Rev. Bothdan Borowic with kidnapping and two counts of fourth-degree sexual assault. Fourth-degree sexual assault involves exposure or sexual contact.

Borowic, 56, remains in custody unable to post $75,000 bail.

The alleged crimes happened Feb. 14 on the grounds of Holy Trinity Church in Kuliouou. A 55-year-old woman told police Borowic held her against her will and sexually assaulted her.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:24 PM

Madison priest sentenced on theft, fraud charges

MILWAUKEE (WI)
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

By Annysa Johnson of the Journal Sentinel
Feb. 23, 2011

A Madison priest has been sentenced to six months in the county jail on theft and fraud charges linked to an alleged investment scheme believed to have netted hundreds of thousands of dollars from the priest's friends, family and former congregation.

Father Thomas Marr, who served two decades at St. Bernard Catholic Church in Watertown, apologized in court Tuesday, saying he hurt people "terribly, though totally unintentionally."

Marr, 66, had admitted stealing from parish accounts and borrowing money from dozens of individuals without telling them he was investing it with a parishioner who claimed to have worked as a consultant in Nigeria.

Marr's attorney said Wednesday that the cleric was duped by parishioner Arthur W. Eith, a felon who remains under investigation by state and local authorities but has yet to be charged.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:22 PM

Pedophile priest fights extradition order to Ireland

UNITED STATES/IRELAND
Irish Central

By CATHY HAYES, IrishCentral.com Staff Writer

A federal magistrate in San Francisco has ordered that Roman Catholic priest, Patrick McCabe, be extradited to Ireland to face charges of sexual assault. It is claimed that he assaulted six boys in Ireland between 1973 and 1981.

McCabe's attorney, Robert Beles, plans to appeal to U.S. Magistrate Judge Nandor Vadas' extradition ruling. Although there is a statute of limitations on the prosecution of alleged sexual assaults in the U.S. there is none in Ireland.

Beles said: "There's no logic or decency for sending a man to a country for something this country cannot punish him for…We wouldn't send a person to Saudi Arabia if they were going to get stoned."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:16 PM

Samenvatting voorlopig getuigenverhoor pater

NEDERLAND
Rechtspraak

Middelburg, 23 februari 2011 – Onderstaand volgt een samenvatting van het proces verbaal van het besloten voorlopig getuigenverhoor van de pater.

De pater heeft verklaard dat hij zich heeft schuldig gemaakt aan seksueel misbruik tijdens zijn periode als directeur van een tehuis in Rijswijk en dat dat misbruik heeft geleid tot zijn ontslag. In strafrechtelijk opzicht is die zaak geëindigd met een voorwaardelijk sepot. Hij heeft over dat misbruik niet gesproken met functionarissen van het bisdom Rotterdam. Hij heeft zich toen een aantal jaren teruggetrokken in een tehuis in Leusden en is in die tijd door een psycholoog begeleid. In 1984 achtte hij zich in staat weer aan het werk te gaan en heeft toen gesproken met bisschop Ernst en een andere functionaris van het bisdom over een tewerkstelling als priester in Terneuzen. In dat gesprek is het misbruik in Rijswijk niet aan de orde geweest. Dat is ook niet later in Terneuzen zelf besproken.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:14 PM

Group Wants Cardinal Bevilacqua Probe

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
My Fox Philly

A group that represents children allegedly abused by Catholic priests wants two Grand Juries to investigate former Philadelphia archbishop Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua.

SNAP had released copies of memos it says shows Bevilacqua knew about abusing priests as far back as the 1970s.

It wants grand juries seated in two cities to hear evidence of what they say is a possible cover-up of clergy sex crimes. .

SNAP released memos from back in the 1970s and 1980s, which it says shows retired Cardinal Bevilacqua allegedly kept quiet about a sexually abusive priest.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:12 PM

Former Woodbridge pastor faces stalking charge

VIRGINIA
News & Messenger

By Joe Conroy
Published: February 23, 2011

DUMFRIES, Va. --
A former pastor was charged Saturday with stalking a Woodbridge 17-year-old, his second arrest on charges involving an underage girl.

Jason Roy Bolton, of 4817 Benecia Lane, is charged with stalking in connection with an incident Friday, Prince William County police spokesman Jonathan Perok said.

A former pastor at the Potomac Crest Baptist Church at 15418 Cardinal Drive in Woodbridge, the 33-year-old Bolton was charged in July with sodomy involving a 17-year-old girl after they allegedly had a consensual sexual relationship beginning early last year. Police said it is unclear if Friday’s victim is the same person.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:31 PM

Bangladesh: priest opposed cash settlement in rape case

BANGLADESH
Catholic Culture

February 23, 2011
A Catholic priest has denied reports that he helped to negotiate a cash settlement in a gang-rape case, enabling the perpetrators to escape prosecution in exchange for payment to the victim's family.

Father Bernard Tudu explained that he allowed the use of a parish hall for discussions after the rape, but disapproved of the resulting settlement. The rapists, who were wealthy men, paid the family of the 14-year-old girl who was raped. Father Tudu said that they should have faced criminal charges.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:48 PM

Salesian priest admits to child sex abuse

NETHERLANDS
Radio Netherlands

Salesian priest Jan Nelissen has admitted to sexually abusing several underage boys in a parish in the town of Terneuzen in the 1980s, but denied drugging and raping them. The 88-year-old priest made his statement during a preliminary hearing in the Middelburg court. One of the priest’s victims, identified only as Dave, is now suing the Breda diocese for damages, claiming the then bishop Huub Ernst must have known about Jan Nelissen’s history of child sex abuse.

In the 1970s, the accused was sacked as the director of a boarding school run by the Salesians of Don Bosco following accusations of child sex abuse. However, his history of child sex abuse was not discussed when the priest applied for a post as parish worker in Terneuzen. Neither then Bishop Huub Ernst nor the Terneuzen parish ever brought up the priest’s past.

In 1980, child sex abuse charges against Jan Nelissen were inexplicably dropped despite a confession. He became a priest in Terneuzen in 1984. Jan Nelissen was later convicted on charges of abusing at least five underage boys between 1987 and 1990.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:46 PM

Father John Fiala’s full story is now posted online

TEXAS
San Antonio Express-news

Posted on 02/23/2011 by alevy

Here’s my full story on Father John Fiala from last Sunday’s paper.

It summarizes and details his work history as a Catholic priest who began his career in Omaha and later was arrested in Texas on charges of raping a 16-year-old boy.

After the teen sued last year and after he was arrested on criminal charges for this accusation, he was re-arrested in Dallas County last November on a charge of trying to hire a hitman to kill the teen.

Among the new information in the story is an affidavit by an Omaha businessman, which I also posted among PDF documents used for the story. The man said he got a call from the Ralston Police Department in suburban Omaha in 1988 that his son was stopped by an officer at midnight with Fiala. The son was in the priest’s lap inside a car at a city park, according to the document.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:42 PM

The church and the priest

TEXAS
San Antonio Express-News

Abe Levy
Alevy@express-news.net, San Antonio Express-News
Updated 11:41 a.m., Wednesday, February 23, 2011

By the time Father John Fiala arrived at a West Texas parish in 2005, he had amassed a two-decade ministry record so troublesome that Catholic leaders were feuding over ways to wash their hands of him.

Parishioners in Nebraska had told him to stay away from their adolescent sons. A psychologist said he was narcissistic, naïve and displayed potentially harmful sexuality.

Catholic authorities said Fiala deceived them about his behavior, yet he was transferred from parish to parish. He was suspended and not allowed to work as a priest in Nebraska. He later was reinstated in Texas.

Documents obtained by the San Antonio Express-News reveal a rocky odyssey for a priest whose career began inconspicuously in the Midwest and collapsed with criminal charges and a lawsuit alleging the rape of a 16-year-old boy in Rocksprings.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:40 PM

Priest, 9 others arrested

BANGLADESH
The Daily Star

Anwar Ali, Rajshahi

Police yesterday arrested 10 people including a catholic priest, Father Bernard Tudu, for their involvement in the out-of-court settlement of rape of Serafina Mardi that led her to commit suicide at Godagari upazila here.

The other arrestees are indigenous community leaders Bishwanath Tudu, Sisti Tudu, Jotin Hendorm, Monir Murmu, Lobin Hendrom, Amin Murmu, Samuel Mardi and Poresh Murmu of Amtulipara village, and another Bishwanath Tudu of the neighbouring village.

Of them, Bishwanath Tudu of Amtulipara presided over the settlement, said Zakirul Islam, officer-in-charge of Godagari Police Station. Police were preparing to file a case at the time of filing this report at 10:00pm.

The deputy commissioner of Rajshahi ordered the arrest after visiting the area along with the superintendent of police in Rajshahi and the Godagari Upazila Nirbahi Officer.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:37 PM

Former Watertown priest ordered to jail

WISCONSIN
Daily Times

By Steve Sharp of the Daily Times staff
Wednesday, February 23, 2011

JEFFERSON - A former priest at St. Bernard's Catholic Church in Watertown was ordered Tuesday to serve seven years probation with nine months in jail after being found guilty in Jefferson County Circuit Court in December 2010 on one count each of theft in a business setting in excess of $10,000 and theft of more than $10,000 through false representation.

Thomas Marr, 66, now of Madison, will be permitted to serve the jail sentence in Dane County with Huber work release privileges. The first six months of the sentence will begin March 14 and after Marr completes the first three months in jail his time may revert to house arrest.

Jefferson County Circuit Court Judge J.R. Erwin on Tuesday accepted Marr's guilty pleas to the charges. The maximum penalty for each of Marr's counts was imprisonment not to exceed 10 years or a $10,000 fine, or both, relating to each count. Marr apologized Tuesday for the crimes.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:32 PM

The Black Mass Within Vatican Walls

UNITED STATES
Weekly Press

Thom Nickels
Contributing Editor

A recent U.S. Catholic bishops meeting in Baltimore made a claim that there were far too few active Catholic priests familiar with the rite of exorcism.

The old rite, as it turns out, has fallen into disuse, and it’s no wonder. The modern age has redefined evil along abstract lines. There may be evil thoughts and evil deeds like murdering newborns or slitting the throat of one’s grandmother, but to say that there are distinct evil entities who have influence over our lives has become the punch line of late night TV jokes.

It’s considered unsophisticated to talk about "Satan" or "Lucifer" as if they were "real" presences with authentic power. This is so despite the willingness of people to mention God as a force for "good." References to God garner no awkward glances.

Images (or the idea) of devils have always evoked special attention. Unlike werewolves or mythical Frankenstein monsters, the legacy of devils is not relegated to the realm of the mythical.

That’s why, when the U.S. bishops called for more priest exorcists, I thought of the film Rosemary’s Baby. The Polanski film of 1968 had as its theme secret rituals and ceremonies as well as a secret society of Satanists masquerading as contemporary humanists who would no more admit to a belief in Satan than they would Martians inhabiting the bodies of humans. Satan, it’s been said by saints and theologians, does not want people to believe in him, and therein lies his greatest power.

While the Catholic Church claims it needs more exorcists, according to Papal insider (and now deceased) Jesuit theologian, Malachi Martin, the Catholic Church may need an exorcist.

Martin, who died in 1996, says that at the height of the Second Vatican Council in Rome, there was a ceremony to enthrone Lucifer in the Vatican (and the Chair of Peter). The church in question, Saint Paul’s chapel within the Vatican walls, hosted a very different rite of Mass on January 29, 1963, just one week after the election of Pope Paul VI. (Years later, according to Fr. Martin, Pope Paul VI would write a note to his successor, John Paul II, and tell him of this ceremony.) Paul VI is also famous for his statement, "The smoke of Satan has entered the sanctuary."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:40 PM

SNAP: Letters say Bevilacqua sought to move sexually abusive priest

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

By David O’Reilly
INQUIRER STAFF WRITER

As an adviser to the bishop of Brooklyn, N.Y., in the early 1980s, then-Auxiliary Bishop Anthony J. Bevilacqua recommended that a sexually abusive priest wishing to return after treatment "seek an assignment outside the diocese," according to letters released Tuesday by an advocacy group.

The Rev. Roman Ferraro went on to the Diocese of Metuchen, N.J., in which he molested two young boys a few years later. The victims reached an out-of-court settlement with the diocese.

In 2004, Ferraro was convicted of child sexual assault for abusing a Massachusetts boy in the 1970s. Now 76, he is serving a life sentence.

"These documents raise the question of whether this was Bevilacqua's way of dealing with [abuser] priests" throughout his long career as a prelate, Barbara Blaine, national president of the Survivors' Network of Those Abused by Priests (SNAP), said at a news conference outside the Cathedral Basilica of SS. Peter and Paul.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:31 PM

‘Ik wil heel eerlijk zijn’

BELGIE
De Standaard

Monseigneur Luc Van Looy heeft op onze site een uur lang gechat met onze lezers. Meer dan honderd vragen werden er gesteld. De Gentse bisschop ging de moeilijke vragen niet uit de weg, al zullen de antwoorden niet iedereen hebben overtuigd.

Bijna 200 vragen beantwoorden in één uur, lukt niemand. Ook bisschop Van Looy niet. Aan het begin van de chat verontschuldigde hij er zich alvast voor dat hij vele vragenstellers zou moeten ontgoochelen. ‘Dit medium is voor mij nieuw: Bedankt alvast voor uw geduld.’ Monseigneur Van Looy beloofde wel ‘uw vragen au sérieux te nemen.’ ‘Maar ik weet niet of ik op alle vragen een afdoende antwoord zal kunnen geven. Wel wil ik heel eerlijk zijn.’

Die eerlijkheid zat bijvoorbeeld in de laatste zin van zijn opmerkingen over het verplichte celibaat: ‘Het celibaat is dus een totale gave aan Christus. Het is niet in de eerste plaats een kwestie van beschikbaarheid. Om het celibaat te beleven, heb ik nood aan een dagelijkse uitgebreide aanwezigheid bij Christus in gebed. Ook in het huwelijk geven partners zich totaal aan elkaar. In hun liefde zijn ze beeld van Gods liefde. Net zoals het celibaat gaat dit wellicht de ene dag al beter dan de andere...’

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:55 AM

Abuse Case Tests Ohel’s Adherence To Reporting Laws

NEW YORK
The Jewish Week

Hella Winston
Special To The Jewish Week

As the story of child sexual abuse in the Orthodox community has unfolded over the last several years, the issue of when, and even whether, to report such allegations to law enforcement has emerged as perhaps the most important and the most complicated.

One of the focal points of this debate — report to secular authorities or deal with the problem from inside the community — has become Ohel Children’s Home and Family Services, a social service agency based in Brooklyn. Ohel has earned high praise in the community for the services it provides for foster children. Its work dealing with sexual abusers, however, is much more controversial, with many advocates and observers accusing the agency of functioning in a way that does more to protect the reputation of the community than the safety of its children.

So when a distraught young haredi woman entered counseling at Ohel in 2008 and soon after revealed that she “may be” sexually abusing her own young son, her case would test Ohel — and its adherence to mandatory reporting laws — and expose the agency’s problematic role in this issue perhaps as never before.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:52 AM

Priest from Yakima suspended in California

WASHINGTON/CALIFORNIA
Yakima Herald-Republic

By Jane Gargas
Yakima Herald-Republic

YAKIMA, Wash. -- A priest from the Catholic Diocese of Yakima has been suspended from duties while on a long-term assignment in California.

The Rev. Nicholas Milich is being disciplined by the Diocese of Monterey, Calif., because he didn't report sex-abuse allegations made against another priest.

Milich has been working in Monterey for two years while on loan from the Yakima Diocese so he could be closer to his elderly parents who live in the area.

Locally, Milich, 62, served in Richland, at Holy Redeemer Church in Yakima and in Ephrata, which was his last assignment here.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:25 AM

Canadian priest charged with assault, kidnapping on Hawaiian vacation

CANADA/HAWAII
The Vancouver Sun

WINNIPEG — A Ukrainian Catholic priest from Winnipeg has been charged with sexual assault and kidnapping during a vacation in Hawaii.

A Honolulu Police Department spokesman confirmed Bothdan Borowic, 56, was arrested last Wednesday and charged with kidnapping and two counts of sexual assault in the third degree following allegations made by a 55-year-old woman.

Lawrence Huculak, archbishop for Ukrainian Catholic churches in Winnipeg, said he hasn't spoken to Borowic, who is the parish priest at the Holy Ghost Ukrainian Catholic Church and the Christ the King Ukrainian Catholic Church.

"It's quite a shock for us," he said. "Because the information's been coming to us piecemeal, that makes it even more difficult for us to get a correct understanding of what's at issue here."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:20 AM

Bevilacqua role with pedophile priest bared

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Daily News

By DAVID GAMBACORTA
Philadelphia Daily News
gambacd@phillynews.com 215-854-5994

Turns out the old saying is true - the devil really is in the details.

Decades-old evidence of a pedophile priest whose crimes were covered up by church leaders came to light yesterday in the form of long-buried memos from the Diocese of Brooklyn.

Two names figure prominently on the haunting pages from the past.

The first is Romano J. Ferraro, a former priest who is serving a life sentence in Massachusetts for raping a child there, and who had a well-documented penchant for abusing children in New York.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:15 AM

Bischof Fürst: Von USA lernen

DEUTSCHLAND/USA
Radio Vatikan

Bischof Gebhard Fürst will sich in den USA über den Umgang mit Missbrauchsfällen informieren. Er reiste am Montag zu einer einwöchigen Informationsreise nach Nordamerika. Außerdem möchte er als Medienbischof der Deutschen Bischofskonferenz mehr über aktuelle Entwicklungen bei der kirchlichen Öffentlichkeitsarbeit in den USA erfahren. Das teilte seine Pressestelle mit. An diesem Dienstag trifft Fürst Kardinal Timothy Dolan, den Erzbischof von New York, und Karen Terry vom „John Jay Institute for Criminal Justice“. Terry hat eine Studie zur Untersuchung der Fälle sexuellen Missbrauchs, den so genannten „John Jay Report“, verfasst. Die Ausarbeitung des Berichtes war 2002 von der amerikanischen Bischofskonferenz in Auftrag gegeben worden.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:13 AM

Bischof Fürst informiert sich in den USA

DEUTSCHLAND
Tagblatt

22.02.2011

Rottenburg. Außerdem möchte sich Fürst – als Medienbischof der Deutschen Bischofskonferenz – über aktuelle Entwicklungen bei der kirchlichen Öffentlichkeitsarbeit in den USA informieren, teilte seine Pressestelle mit.

Zur Delegation, die ihn begleitet, gehören Ex-Bundestagsabgeordneter Robert Antretter, der Vorsitzende der von Fürst berufenen Kommission sexueller Missbrauch, und Gabriele Gerlig, die den Diözesanrat in diesem Gremium vertritt. Auch Domkapitular Paul Hildebrand, der im Bonner Sekretariat der Bischofskonferenz den Bereich „Kirche und Gesellschaft“ leitet, sowie Michael Meyer von der Katholischen Fernseharbeit bei der Bischofskonferenz, reisen mit.

Am heutigen Dienstag trifft Fürst Kardinal Timothy Dolan, den Erzbischof von New York, und Karen Terry vom John Jay Institute for Criminal Justice. Terry hat den „John Jay Report“ verfasst, eine Studie zur Untersuchung der Fälle sexuellen Missbrauchs, die 2002 von der amerikanischen Bischofskonferenz in Auftrag gegeben worden war.

[summary]

Bishop Gebhard Furst yesterday flew to the United States where he wants to get advice on the experience of the American Catholic Church in dealing with cases of sexual abuse. As media bishop for the Germany Bishops Conference he wants information on current developments in the church's public relations in the United States.

The delegation accompanying him includes Robert Antretter, ex-parliament member and chairman of the bishop's commission on sexual abuse; Gabriele Gerlig, who represents the diocese; Canon Paul Hildebrand, who heads the Bonn secretariat of the Bishops Conference in the area of church and society; Michael Meyer of the Catholic television ministry of the Episcopal Conference.

The bishop will meet on Tuesday with Archbishop Timothy Dolan of New York and Karen Terry of the John Jay Institute for Criminal Justice. Ms. Terry was involved with the 2002 study on sexual abuse for the American bishop's conference.

In Washington, D.C., they will meet with Teresa Kettelkamp of the bishop's Office for Child and Youth Protection.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:02 AM

Vertrouwenscentra tegen meldplicht bij seksueel misbruik

BELGIE
Vandaag

21 februari, 18:06
De Vertrouwenscentra voor Kindermishandeling zijn tegen een meldingsplicht voor seksueel misbruik. Ze wijzen verder op het gevaar van minderjarige daders, die later pedofiel worden. Dat bleek zopas tijdens de hoorzittingen van de Kamercommissie Seksueel Misbruik in de Kerk.

Bij de zes Vlaamse Vertrouwenscentra voor Kindermishandeling werden in 2010 10.756 mishandelde kinderen gemeld. Dat zijn er 29 per dag. In 20% van die gevallen ging het om seksueel misbruik en binnen die laatste groep ging het in 65% van de dossiers over incest. Het aantal echte "vreemde" daders, die het slachtoffer niet kennen, is heel klein.

Stef Anthoni beklemtoonde dat we niet eenzijdig op seksueel misbruik mogen focussen. "Bij de meeste mishandelde kinderen zijn meerdere vormen va mishandeling aanwezig: seksueel,emotioneel, lichamelijk. De gevolgen van alle vormen van kindermishandeling zijn dan ook dezelfde."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:58 AM

Rottenburger Bischof reist in die USA

DEUTSCHLAND/NEW YORK
Sudwest Presse

Rottenburg/New York. Bei einer Reise in die USA will sich der württembergische Bischof Gebhard Fürst über die Aufarbeitung des Missbrauchsskandals in der katholischen Kirche informieren. Fürst reist an diesem Montag mit einer Delegation nach New York.

Dort trifft er eine Gruppe von Wissenschaftlern, die im Auftrag der amerikanischen Kirche den Skandal um sexuellen Kindesmissbrauch durch katholische Geistliche aufgearbeitet hat. Begleitet wird er unter anderem vom Vorsitzenden der Missbrauchskommission in der Diözese Rottenburg-Stuttgart, Robert Antretter. Einige Wochen nach der Reise will sich der Bischof dann auch noch einmal zu den Missbrauchsfällen in Württemberg äußern

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:52 AM

Die Missbrauchsbeauftragte ...

DEUTSCHLAND
Osnabrucker Zeitung

Osnabrück. Wie steht es um den Schutz der Kinder vor sexuellem Missbrauch? Was ist seit Beginn der jüngsten Enthüllungen bereits passiert, was ist noch zu tun? Die Missbrauchsbeauftragte der Bundesregierung, Christine Bergmann, zieht Bilanz.

Frau Bergmann, vor etwas mehr als einem Jahr lösten Berichte über sexuellen Missbrauch am Berliner Canisius-Kolleg eine Aufklärungswelle aus. Hat sich der Schutz der Kinder seither verbessert?

Es ist viel passiert. Die Öffentlichkeit ist stärker sensibilisiert, auch das Wissen über das Ausmaß von sexuellem Missbrauch ist heute sehr viel größer, und es wird häufig schneller reagiert. In Berlin gab es etwa einen Missbrauchsfall auf der Kinderintensivstation einer Klinik. Als eines der Opfer sich den Eltern offenbarte, haben diese den Fall sofort ernst genommen. Und die Klinik hat gar nicht erst versucht, etwas zu vertuschen. Früher gab es dagegen oft das Problem, dass Opfern nicht geglaubt worden ist.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:48 AM

Sex Abuse Survivor Commends Senator Scott Brown

MASSACHUSETTS
WGGB

By Ray Hershel

CHICOPEE Mass. (WGGB) --Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown's new book "Against All Odds" has hit the bookstores.

The book sheds new light on the senator's life growing up including revelations that he was sexually abused by a camp counselor at the age of 10.

Local sexual abuse survivors like Kathy Picard are commending Senator Brown for telling his story," I think it's wonderful that being a male he came forward first of all and for him in the high status he's at to be able to come forward it's going to help a lot of people," says Picard. ...

She says she'd like to see the Massachusetts Legislature pass a law removing the current 27-year statute of limitations on sexual abuse cases.

Picard says she would also like to see Massachusetts do what the state of Illinois did and that's to mandate school districts to educate students on sexual abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:44 AM

A bill to help sexual abuse victims is making its way through the General Assembly

VIRGINIA
WDBJ

[with video]

ROANOKE, Va. —
Monday night, the House Court Committee voted unamiously to increase the time victims can file a lawsuit against their attackers from 2 to 20-years.

It's news that has some victim rights groups rejoicing..

Two adult members of a victim rights group brought their message to Roanoke -after testifying in Richmond Monday night.

While they rather there be no statue of limitations - they're happy the bill has gotten support.

Mark McAllister and Becky Ianni are with SNAP - or ":Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:41 AM

The church allowed an offender to continue as a teacher

AUSTRALIA
Broken Rites

By a Broken Rites researcher

(Article updated 21 February 2011)

After a family complained about a sexually-abusive Catholic religious Brother (Peter Paul Van Ruth) in their son's school, the church allowed this offender to transfer to teach (as a lay person) in government schools, a court has been told. Later the offender was allowed to resume teaching (as a lay person) in the Catholic system, where he eventually rose to administrative positions.

In the Melbourne County Court on 21 February 2011, Peter Paul van Ruth (now residing in Adelaide) appeared for pre-sentence proceedings for offences that he committed in 1969 while he worked as a Catholic religious Brother at Salesian College "Rupertswood" (a secondary school at Sunbury, near Melbourne, in the state of Victoria).

This school was operated by the Salesians of Don Bosco religious order. "Rupertswood" then was a boys-only school, with boarders as well as day students. The boarders included many from distant communities.

Van Ruth, who is known by his middle name (Paul), was born on 5 July 1946. He was charged with indecent assaults against two boys, both aged 12. These were not necessarily the only boys who were touched by Brother Paul Van Ruth. These were the two who have spoken with the police.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:34 AM

Conference probes eight generations of residential school damage

CANADA
The Province

By Kevin Rollason, Postmedia News February 23, 2011

WINNIPEG — Several generations of aboriginal people had their language and culture stripped away by residential schools, but it has been the generations that came after them that have continued to live with the effects.

Now a three-day national conference and workshop in Winnipeg is examining at the impact on the children of the survivors of the residential school system and looking for ways to help them.

Manitoba Court of Queen's Bench Justice Murray Sinclair, chairman of the three-member federal Truth and Reconciliation Commission, says that because generations of children passed through the residential schools, which began in the 1870s, it will take a long time to change the negative effects.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:23 AM

Delaware lawsuit ...

NEW JERSEY/DELAWARE
Asbury Park Press

Written by
STEPHANIE LODER

LITTLE EGG HARBOR — A man whose 2007 sexual abuse lawsuit against the Diocese of Trenton was dismissed in New Jersey is pressing a second suit, filed in Delaware, alleging a diocesan priest took him across state lines as a juvenile to have sex.

In the Delaware suit, filed in April 2009, Chris Naples, 39, of Bass River, alleges abuse by the Rev. Terence O. McAlinden, a Catholic priest in the Diocese of Trenton, according to Thomas Crumplar, the victim's attorney. The Diocese of Trenton and St. Theresa Church here were named, but they were dismissed from the lawsuit, he said.

According to the Delaware lawsuit, Naples suffered at least 200 acts of sexual abuse, most in New Jersey but many on the beaches of Delaware on different dates from 1985 to 1996. The complaint states McAlinden was employed by the Diocese of Trenton as an active priest from 1967 until 2007.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:18 AM

Cambridge Group for Irish Studies, Magdalene College, Cambridge

IRELAND/UNITED KINGDOM
Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Dublin

“KEEPING THE SHOW ON THE ROAD”
Is this the future of the Irish Catholic Church?

Speaking Notes of
Most Rev. Diarmuid Martin
Archbishop of Dublin and Primate of Ireland
----------
Cambridge, 22ndh February 2011

At the time in which I received the invitation to this Conference I was holding meetings with the priests of the Archdiocese of Dublin about the challenges that they face and their priorities in ministry today. During the debate one priest, half seriously and half in jest, answered in candid terms: “The most we can do today is to keep the show on the road”. Hence the title of my talk.

It is not an easy task to be a priest in Ireland today. The numbers of priests are falling. There is more work to be done by priests who are getting older. The task of simply responding to the day-to-day demands of ministry leaves many priests with little time to take on new tasks and address radically new ways of life and ministry. There is a clear awareness that it is time for change; there is a willingness to change but the pressures of “keeping the show on the road” can be draining.

How is the Church in Ireland changing? In 2003 I was beginning really to enjoy my absorbing work as the Holy See’s diplomatic representative at the International Organizations in Geneva and looking forward to four or five more years in that mission. Suddenly I was asked to return to Dublin as future Archbishop. I remember, on that occasion, that Pope John Paul II asked me “how is it that secularisation came to Ireland so quickly?” My answer to that question was quite simple: “Your Holiness is wrong”, though my Vatican training did not allow me to express myself quite in those exact words. The Pope was wrong. Secularisation, whatever that means exactly, had been on the Irish radar screen for many years. It was not all negative but it was not an overnight wonder. It was there, but not recognised. It was there but the answer of the Irish Church was for far too long to keep the same show on the road, not noticing that there were problems with the show and that the road was changing.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:16 AM

Martin admits failing in efforts to reform church

IRELAND
Irish Independent

By John Cooney Religion Correspondent

Wednesday February 23 2011

ARCHBISHOP Diarmuid Martin has confessed that he is failing in his efforts to promote "radical change" in the Catholic Church.

Addressing a meeting yesterday in Cambridge, Dr Martin said he believed that the church in Ireland in many ways had already reached "the brink" of collapse.

In a lengthy and hard-hitting speech, he said the crisis facing the church is "real" and is a deep cultural problem that transcends the spate of clerical child abuse scandals and church cover-ups.

In spite of being acclaimed as the leading voice for reform in the church, Dr Martin, who took over in 2004 from the disgraced Cardinal Desmond Connell, dramatically revealed his personal frustrations and accepted that it might not be "his talent" to bring everyone with him.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:13 AM

SESSION UPDATE: Senators move sex abuse liability bill to voting file

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Pacific Daily News • February 23, 2011

After an all-day discussion, senators voted to move a bill that would open a two-year window for vicitims of past child sexual abuse to file suit in the Superior Court of Guam.

Bill 34, introduced by Vice Speaker Benjamin Cruz, would give an opportunity for those who had experienced child sexual abuse on Guam but whose claims had expired to file civil suit in court.

The bill is the second piece of legislation dealing with the issue of sex abuse introduced by Cruz. He also introduced Bill 33, which would eliminate the statute of limitation on crimes involving sexual abuse. The bill was discussed in session earlier in the week and moved to the voting file.

Bill 34, however, was met with both criticism and support from members of the Legislature during what turned into an all-day discussion.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:10 AM

Tact and tension: sexual abuse debated

GUAM
KUAM

by Sabrina Salas Matanane

Guam - Legislation opposed by the Archdiocese of Hagatna has the support of a majority of the island's senators in the 31st Guam Legislature. Bill 34 would essentially open a two-year window for survivors of child sexual abuse to bring civil claims against their perpetrators. Under Guam law, currently the statute of limitations is for two years after the alleged crime against the child is committed.

During the measure's public hearing, deacon and Archdiocese spokesperson Jeff Barcinas was the only individual to testify against the legislation, saying it targets the Catholic Church. During that same hearing Jonathon Diaz testified he was a victim of child sexual abuse by a member of the Catholic clergy on Guam.

Lawmakers on the floor balanced their comments with tact and tension. Senator Ben Pangelinan is a practicing Catholic, and said, "I still subscribe to the concept of sin and redemption and I think what we're trying to do with some of the legislations we're looking at is to help these people who have been harmed by the actions of the members of our church to help them find peace and redemption."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:06 AM

Roger Mahony leaves a mixed legacy

LOS ANGELES (CA)
Los Angeles Times

By Mitchell Landsberg, Los Angeles Times

February 23, 2011

In 1995, a book by a veteran Vatican-watcher took a crack at the ultimate Roman Catholic parlor game: Guessing the identity of the next pope. Only one North American made the list — a long shot, to be sure, but someone who seemed to represent the future of the Catholic Church in the United States.

That lone American was Cardinal Roger Mahony of Los Angeles.

By the time Pope John Paul II died 10 years later, Mahony was no longer being discussed as papabile — capable of becoming pope — not even as the longest of long shots.

A lot had happened in the intervening decade.

Mahony, who retires in the coming week as head of the Los Angeles Archdiocese, leaves a legacy that church historians will puzzle over for years. Once a shining star — perhaps the shining star — of the American church, his reputation suffered from his handling of a devastating sexual abuse scandal that shattered the lives and trust of many Catholics and led to the largest civil settlement by any archdiocese, a staggering $660million.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:58 AM

Delaware Child Victim's Act upheld

DELAWARE
The News Journal

[court decision]

Written by
SEAN O'SULLIVAN
The News Journal

The Delaware Supreme Court on Tuesday upheld as constitutional the 2007 Delaware Child Victim's Act -- which opened the door for dozens of sex abuse lawsuits.

The ruling came in the case of James Sheehan v. Oblates of St. Francis de Sales and Salesianum School, where the high court also revived Sheehan's claims against the religious order and the school, ruling the trial judge made a mistake in excluding some expert testimony about the effects of childhood sexual abuse.

"This is a tremendous victory for survivors of abuse everywhere," said Sheehan attorney Stephen J. Neuberger. "It upholds the wisdom of what the General Assembly did four years ago."

He noted that other states, such as Pennsylvania, are considering adopting laws similar to Delaware's Child Victim's Act, so this ruling could have national implications.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:54 AM

Diocese hopes for quick payout

CANADA
The Chronicle-Herald

By AARON BESWICK Truro Bureau
Wed, Feb 23

ANTIGONISH — The Diocese of Antigonish plans on paying off the $15.5-million settlement it reached with members of a class action over sexual abuse by clergy in less than two years.

According to an update recently posted on a diocesan website, the settlement will be paid in three instalments, the first on May 31, 2011, the next on Nov. 1, 2011, and the final payment on Nov. 1, 2012.

The settlement, certified by the Nova Scotia Supreme Court last year, covers dozens of people who claimed to have been sexually assaulted by a priest of the Catholic Episcopal Corp. of Antigonish since Jan. 1, 1950.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:52 AM

Roman Catholic Diocese of Middlesbrough can appeal abuse case payout ruling

UNITED KINGDOM
Evening Gazette

by Andy Passant, Evening Gazette
Feb 23 2011

JUSTICE for dozens of alleged child sex abuse victims from Teesside has been delayed once again.

The Supreme Court has allowed an appeal by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Middlesbrough, which faces a potential compensation bill running into millions of pounds.

The diocese hopes to overturn a Court of Appeal judgment which found it solely liable for the management of a children’s home at the centre of an abuse scandal.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:48 AM

Del. high court upholds child sex victims law

DELAWARE
Wall Street Journal

[court decision]

Associated Press
DOVER, Del. — A state law allowing alleged victims of child sexual abuse to file lawsuits even though the normal time for doing so had expired is constitutional and does not violate defendants' rights to prompt due process, the Delaware Supreme Court unanimously ruled Tuesday.

The 2007 law gave people a two-year window to file claims even though the period for suing the accused molesters, known as the statute of limitations, had passed. More than 175 lawsuits alleging past abuse were filed before the window closed.

In upholding the law, the court ordered a new trial for James Sheehan of Wilmington, whose lawsuit was the first filed under the Child Victims Act of 2007 to go to trial. The law is similar to legislation enacted in California and being considered in New York and Pennsylvania.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:41 AM

Ex-priest Patrick McCabe faces extradition order

SAN FRANCISCO (CA)
San Francisco Chronicle

Justin Berton, Chronicle Staff Writer

A federal magistrate in San Francisco on Tuesday ordered a former Roman Catholic priest extradited to his native Ireland to face charges that he sexually assaulted six boys from 1973 to 1981.

Patrick McCabe, 75, worked in churches throughout the Santa Rosa Diocese from 1983 until his forced resignation in 1987. He was living in an Alameda condominium when Irish police arrested him in July.

At least three former parishioners in Northern California have sued the Santa Rosa Diocese, claiming McCabe molested them.

Robert Beles, McCabe's attorney, said he would appeal U.S. Magistrate Judge Nandor Vadas' extradition ruling. Unlike U.S. laws that put a statute of limitations on the prosecution of alleged sexual assaults, Beles said, there are no time limits in Ireland.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:29 AM

Former priest indicted on sexual abuse charges

MARYLAND
Gazette

by Alex Ruoff | Staff Writer

Garrett David Orr, the former Georgetown Preparatory School teacher arrested on charges he molested two students while employed as a Jesuit priest there, was indicted by a Montgomery County grand jury Thursday.

Montgomery County State's Attorney's Office spokesman Seth Zucker said the indictment means Orr will be tried in Montgomery County Circuit Court. He faces four counts of third-degree sexual offense and two counts of child abuse.

Orr, 57, of Pittsburgh was charged with the crimes Jan. 25 after two former students separately contact Montgomery County police, and said Orr had molested them while living in the school's dormitory, located on the North Bethesda school's campus, according to court documents.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:24 AM

Archdiocese explains delay before action on indicted priest

DOWNINGTON (PA)
Daily Local News

By ERIC S. SMITH, Staff Writer

DOWNINGTOWN — The pastor at St. Joseph Church was placed on administrative leave eight days after he was indicted on two charges of endangering a minor.

Monsignor William Lynn was "away from the parish" immediately following the indictment, but last Friday he was officially placed on leave by Cardinal Justin Rigali, the archbishop of Philadelphia.

"Monsignor Lynn had taken some time away from the parish, and it was not until last week that he returned — therefore the action was taken last Friday," said Donna Farrell, spokeswoman for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

"Personnel changes like this take a bit of time as well. The archdiocese had to identify someone to provide for the pastoral care of the parish."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:22 AM

Decision in Sheehan v. Oblates of St. Francis de Sales

WILMINGTON (DE)
Supreme Court of the State of Delaware

February 22, 2011

James E. Sheehan filed a personal injury action under 10 Del. C. § 8145, the Child Victim’s Act, against several institutional defendants, including the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales and Salesianum School, for the alleged sexual abuse he suffered in 1962 by Father Francis Norris, a teacher at Salesianum. The Child Victim’s Act (CVA), enacted in 2007, abolished the civil statute of limitations for claims of childhood sexual abuse and created a two year window to allow victims of childhood sexual abuse to bring civil suits that the statute of limitations previously barred. After a jury trial, the jury found the Oblates, but not Salesianum, negligent under Section 8145. However, the jury did not find that the Oblates’ negligence had proximately caused Sheehan’s injuries.

Sheehan asserts that the trial judge committed numerous reversible errors. We reverse and remand for a new trial for two reasons: (1) because the trial judge failed to properly balance, on the record, the probative value of admitting the general causation expert against the unfair prejudice to Sheehan of excluding the testimony; and (2) because the trial judge erred by holding that Section 8145 does not revive intentional torts.

I. Facts and Procedural History

James E. Sheehan attended Salesianum School during 1961-1964. While Sheehan was a student at Salesianum, Father Francis Norris, a priest of the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales, was assigned to a teaching position at Salesianum. Sheehan alleges that one night in April 1962, during the spring of his sophomore year, Norris offered him a ride home after a basketball game and Norris forced him to engage in sexual masturbation in the car. Sheehan never reported the incident to the Oblates or to Salesianum. However, Sheehan testified that decades before he had any motive to lie, he told his family members about the sexual abuse.

Eyewitness testimony, as well as the Oblates’ own business records, demonstrated that the Oblates had prior notice that Norris was an alcoholic and had attempted suicide, and that the Oblates’ own doctors urged his immediate psychiatric hospitalization. Sheehan’s expert witness testified that in the 1960’s priest records used code words to refer to sexual abuse of a child. These code words included “health problems,” “depression,” “nervous breakdown,” and “alcoholism.” The expert also testified that alcoholism was not considered a scandal at the time because it was so prevalent in the religious communities of priests. Norris’ personnel file was filled with the words “health problems,” “depression,” and “alcoholism.” Shortly before his transfer to Salesianum, his file noted that it was preferable to remove him from his then current locality (New York) and out of direct contact with his present community.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 6:48 AM

February 22, 2011

Former priest faces extradition

UNITED STATES/IRELAND

A US federal judge has ordered a former priest to return to his native Ireland to face charges that he sexually abused young boys in the 1970s and early 1980s.

Patrick Joseph McCabe has denied the charges and fought extradition since surrendering to US authorities in July 2010, after Irish authorities charged him with nine counts of sexual abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:03 PM

Man reenters plea in priest's Los Gatos assault

CALIFORNIA
Mercury News

The Associated Press

SAN JOSE, Calif.—A Northern California man ordered to stand trial for assaulting a Catholic priest he has said molested him and his younger brother more than three decades ago has pleaded not guilty.

Will Lynch of San Francisco reentered his plea Tuesday to one felony count of assault for allegedly beating 65-year-old Jerold Lindner at a Jesuit retirement home in Las Gatos.

The 43-year-old Lynch also pleaded not guilty to the May attack in December, but needed to do so again because a Santa Clara Superior Court judge ruled this month that prosecutors had enough evidence for a trial.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:01 PM

Cleric guilty of sex attack on 12-year-old girl at temple

SCOTLAND
stv

A Sikh cleric has been convicted of a sex attack on a 12-year-old girl in his room at a temple.

Surinder Singh tried to kiss the youngster and touch her face and hands at the Guru Nanak Sikh Temple in Glasgow's west end on January 15 this year.

The 53 year-old also tried to put cashew nuts into her mouth. The girl said she felt "very dirty" after the incident.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:59 PM

Priest bailed over charges of sexually abusing girls in 1980s

IRELAND
The Irish Times

BARRY ROCHE, Southern Correspondent

A RETIRED priest was yesterday remanded on bail after he was charged with two counts of indecently assaulting two teenage girls while a priest in north Cork in the diocese of Cloyne some 30 years ago.

Fr Dan Duane (72), with an address at the Presbytery, Cecilstown, Mallow, was brought before the scheduled sitting of Mallow District Court yesterday where he was charged with indecently assaulting two teenage girls in Mallow between 1980 and 1983.

Det Garda Colman Murphy gave evidence of arrest, charge and caution. He told the court he arrested Fr Duane at Bowling Green in Mallow at 9.05am yesterday. When he put the two charges to Fr Duane after caution, he replied “No” to both.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:55 PM

Charges initiated against Pope for crimes against humanity

EUROPE
The Irish Times

[document sent to the International Criminal Court]

PATSY McGARRY, Religious Affairs Correspondent

TWO GERMAN lawyers have initiated charges against Pope Benedict XVI at the International Criminal Court, alleging crimes against humanity.

Christian Sailer and Gert-Joachim Hetzel, based at Marktheidenfeld in the Pope’s home state of Bavaria, last week submitted a 16,500-word document to the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court at the Hague, Dr Luis Moreno Ocampo.

Their charges concern “three worldwide crimes which until now have not been denounced . . . (as) the traditional reverence toward ‘ecclesiastical authority’ has clouded the sense of right and wrong”.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:49 PM

Lawyers Use Facebook to Pick Jurors

UNITED STATES
Newser

By Nick McMaster, Newser Staff

Posted Feb 22, 2011

(Newser) – Here's the latest way Facebook is changing life as we know it: Lawyers snooping for extra information on potential jurors have been looking them up on the site, the Wall Street Journal reports. "It's a waterfall of information, compared to the pinhole view you used to get," says one lawyer, who, while defending a priest on sex abuse charges, rooted around candidates' pages to get a sense of how devout they were.

The practice often works, because Facebook is "the place where people voice their opinions," says one jury consultant.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:44 PM

Downingtown priest put on administrative leave

DOWNINGTON (PA)
Daily Local News

By ERIC S. SMITH, Staff Writer

DOWNINGTOWN — The pastor at St. Joseph’s Church was placed on administrative leave eight days after he was indicted on two charges of endangering a minor.

Monsignor William Lynn was “away from the parish” immediately following the indictment, but last Friday he was officially placed on leave by Cardinal Justin Rigali, the archbishop of Philadelphia.

“Monsignor Lynn had taken some time away from the parish, and it was not until last week that he returned -- therefore the action was taken last Friday,” said Donna Farrell, spokeswoman for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:42 PM

Del. court upholds child victims law

DELAWARE
Delmarva.com

Written by
RANDALL CHASE
Associated Press

DOVER — The Delaware Supreme Court has upheld the constitutionality of a 2007 law that allowed victims of child sexual abuse to file lawsuits that otherwise would have been barred by the passage of time.

In an opinion issued Tuesday, the court said the law does not violate the due process rights of a religious order that has been sued by several alleged victims of priest sex abuse.

The court affirmed that the General Assembly has the authority to determine a statute of limitations, which is the amount of time given for someone to sue.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:38 PM

Judge orders priest sent to Ireland

SAN FRANCISCO (CA)
The Press-Enterprise

By PAUL ELIAS
The Associated Press

SAN FRANCISCO

A federal judge has ordered a former priest to return to his native Ireland to face charges that he sexually abused young boys in the 1970s and early '80s.

Patrick Joseph McCabe has denied the charges and fought extradition since surrendering to U.S. authorities in July 2010, after Irish authorities charged him with nine counts of sexual abuse.

Irish officials say McCabe admitted to investigators in 2007 that young boys dressed in uniforms and ties sexually aroused him. He further told them he obtained "satisfaction" from embracing young boys but denied abusing anyone.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:36 PM

Del. Supreme Court upholds Child Victim's Act

DELAWARE
The News Journal

Written by
SEAN O'SULLIVAN
The News Journal

The state Supreme Court has upheld the Delaware Child Victim’s Act as constitutional.

The ruling came late today in the case of James Sheehan v. Oblates of St. Francis De Sales and Salesianum School, where the high court sent the civil case back to Superior Court for a partial re-trial based on mistakes made during jury instructions.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:33 PM

Editorial: Abuse case shows Catholic Church has long way to go

CALIFORNIA
Hollister Free Lance

By The Free Lance Editorial Board

Although the Roman Catholic Church has taken significant steps toward curtailing sexual abuses among clergymen and making the investigatory process more open, the case involving a longtime Mission priest serves as yet another example showing there is a long way to go before it gains full trust from the public and its own declining membership.

As everyone knows by now, the Catholic Church has become all too synonymous with allegations of sexual abuse by priests. Inherently and unfortunately, the church had been known historically for covering up the allegations and routinely resolving in merely transferring the suspected culprits to other, unknowing parishes. It is paying the price in recent years, in the form of a seemingly endless stream of lawsuits and possible, irreparable damage to its reputation.

Church leadership, all the way to the top, has made many important strides in changing the culture of acceptance - that of looking the other way - toward claims of sexual abuses. At the same time, the church, and it appears the Diocese of Monterey in particular, have not done enough. The sobering reality is that it still comes with little surprise when abuse cases arise, such as the one involving Father Edward Fitz-Henry from the cherished Mission.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:15 PM

A docile tradition protects the church

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

By John P. McNamee

I'll start with Digby Baltzell, the quintessential WASP. He might have even created that acronym. His landmark book Puritan Boston and Quaker Philadelphia was critical of the Society of Friends, blaming it for the quiet, passive temper of our city.

Philadelphia's Protestant establishment lacked the passion of Puritan Boston, and it passed on that detachment to later-arriving ethnic communities, so that even my fellow Irish Philadelphians took on an uncharacteristic docility. In fact, it wasn't until generations after John "Honey Fitz" Fitzgerald in Boston and Jimmy Walker in New York that Philadelphia got an Irish mayor, and that was by accident (when City Council President James Tate took over upon the resignation of Richardson Dilworth).

But my lament is not about the Quakers or WASPs. It's for the local Catholic Church in the face of new and terrible revelations of pedophilia, denial, and concealment. A monsignor hangs out to dry, but the fault is more extensive and pervasive.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:11 PM

Documents: Bevilacqua tried to send abuser to another diocese

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

By David O’Reilly
INQUIRER STAFF WRITER

As an auxiliary bishop in the Diocese of Brooklyn, the Rev. Anthony Bevilacqua recommended decades ago that a sexually abusive priest who wanted to return to Brooklyn following treatment "seek an assignment outside the diocese," according to documents released today by an advocacy group.

"These documents raise the question of whether this was Bevilacqua's way of dealing with [abuser] priests when he was in Brooklyn and in Pittsburgh," said Barbara Blaine, president of the Survivors' Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP).

The letters concern the Rev. Romano J. Ferraro, starting in 1973 and continuing until 1983, shortly before Bevilacqua's relocation to the Diocese of Pittsburgh. Ferraro was convicted in 2004 of raping a seven-year-old boy. At his trial he admitted having abused many prepubescent boys.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:07 PM

While in Brooklyn, Bevilacqua tried to reassign abusive priest to another diocese

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Newsworks

February 22, 2011

By Shannon McDonald

Documents released today by the Survivors' Network of those Abused by Priests show former Philadelphia Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua tried to cover up priest abuse while he served as an auxiliary bishop in Brooklyn.

A report from the Inquirer says while in Brooklyn, Bevilacqua suggested a sexually abusive priest be relocated to another diocese. The priest was convicted in 2004 of raping a 7-year-old boy and admitted to assaulting many others between 1973 and 1983 before Bevilacqua recommended him for reassignment.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:04 PM

Retired priest charged with assault

IRELAND
The Irish Times

BARRY ROCHE, Southern Correspondent in Mallow

A 72-year-old retired priest has been remanded on bail after he was charged with two counts of indecently assaulting two teenage girls while serving as a priest in Diocese of Cloyne almost 30 years ago.

Fr Dan Duane, with an address at the Presbytery, Cecilstown, Mallow, was brought before a scheduled sitting of Mallow District Court this morning where he was charged with indecently assaulting two teenage girls at a location in Mallow between 1980 and 1983.

Det Garda Colman Murphy gave evidence of arrest, charge and caution and told the court that he arrested Fr Duane at Bowling Green in Mallow at 9.05am. When he put the two charges to Fr Duane after caution, Fr Duane replied “No” to both.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:28 PM

Priest facing indecent assault charges in Cork

IRELAND
RTE News

A retired priest has appeared at Mallow District Court charged with indecently assaulting two teenage girls in the town in the early 1980s.

Father Dan Duane, of the Presbytery, Cecilstown, Mallow, Co Cork, is alleged to have assaulted the girls while serving as a priest in Diocese of Cloyne.

Detective Garda Colman Murphy of Mallow Garda Station gave evidence of arrest, charge and caution and told the court that Father Duane replied 'no' when the two charges were put to him.

There was no garda objection to bail.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:26 PM

Sikh priest convicted of Glasgow temple sex attack

SCOTLAND
BBC News

A Sikh priest has been convicted of sexually assaulting a 12-year-old girl in his room at a temple in Glasgow's west end.

Surinder Singh tried to touch and kiss the youngster at the Guru Nanak Sikh Temple in Otago Street on 15 January.

The 53-year-old, who was visiting Scotland from India at the time, was found guilty after a trial at Glasgow Sheriff Court.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:22 PM

Chattanooga Youth Pastor Charged with Aggravated Statutory Rape

CHATTANOOGA (TN)
WDEF

A Chattanooga congregation is reeling after their Youth Pastor is charged with Aggravated Statutory Rape.

27 year old Ronnie Powe, Junior was arrested Tuesday night.

Chattanooga Police were investigating a suspicious car parked behind the old East Lake Middle School building.

Powe was in the car with a 15 year old boy he met on the internet.

He later admitted to sexual contact with that child.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:15 PM

Advocates Want More Years Added To Statute Of Limitations

VIRGINIA
CBS 6

[with video]

Wayne Covil
Senior Reporter

RICHMOND —

A final vote from the house should come down before Saturday. That's when the 2011 GA Session comes to an end.

February 21, 2011 11:32 PM

A former NFL player is telling his story to try and help lawmaker's changes to the child sex abuse statute of limitations.

Al Chesley was 49 years old when he decided to speak out for the very first time about what happened to him as a young teenager.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:12 PM

This Week In Holy Crimes

UNITED STATES
Joe. My God

Over the last seven days...

Washington: Pastor Dirk Jackson arrested for the rape of a 12 year-old girl.
Tennessee: Pastor Ronnie Powe charged with aggravated statutory rape.
Kentucky: Pastor Jerry Cannon charged with posting hundreds of child porn images to Facebook.
New York: Rabbi Milton Balkany sentenced to four years in $4M hedge fund extortion.
Minnesota: Father Christopher Wenthe charged with felony sexual abuse of female parishioner.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:10 PM

Slachtoffers willen verjaring seksueel misbruik niet verlengen

BELGIE
Vandaag

Daniël Martin, de voorzitter van het Nationaal Forum voor het Slachtofferbeleid, gaf zopas drie grote aanbevelingen mee aan de Kamercommissie Seksueel Misbruik in de Kerk.

Het Nationaal Forum vertegenwoordigt alle slachtofferorganisaties en behartigt hun belangen.

Welke aanbevelingen gaf hun voorzitter mee aan de Kamercommissie?

1. Verleng de verjaringstermijn niet. Die is nu al lang genoeg. Maar geef de slachtoffers wel de mogelijkheid om nog klacht in te dienen, ook als de feiten verjaard zijn. Het belangrijkste voor de slachtoffers is dat ze gehoord worden.

2. Er is géén nieuw centraal meldpunt voor seksueel misbruik in gezagsrelaties nodig. Er is nu hulpverlening genoeg op alle mogelijke niveaus. Maak de hulpverlening niet nog ondoorzichtiger.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:00 PM

Kingsport, TN Priest Accused of Child Sex Abuse

TENNESSEE
Injury Board

Chad Trammell
Attorney
(866) 735-1102 Ext 330

You are supposed to be able to trust your priest or other spiritual leader and lean on them for advice. Your priest is supposed to be available as a resource to guide you through difficult times. Your priest, however, is not supposed to be the cause of your difficult times. As has been the case in other states throughout the country, a former Kingsport, Tennessee priest, has turned that notion of trust upside down. So what exactly happened?

Charges of Sexual Misconduct
The former priest faces charges of first-degree sexual misconduct and two counts of aggravated rape in Blountville court. His hearing has been reset for later this month. The charges against the priest stem from allegations that he molested a boy shortly after starting as a priest at St. Dominic’s Catholic Church in Kingsport during the 1970s. The plaintiff alleges that the misconduct started when he was only 10 years old. And the abuse wasn’t an isolated incident. It lasted until the plaintiff was around 15 years old. There were allegedly more than 50 incidents. According to the plaintiff, the abuse occurred in the church rectory.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:55 PM

Philadelphia churches, schools respond to abuse scandal

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Yahoo!

Victoria Leigh Miller

While priest scandals are, unfortunately, nothing new for the Catholic Church, the past few weeks have brought the bad news closer to home, to the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

With the recent news that dozens of Philadelphia-area priests are under investigation for possible sexual abuse crimes, how are the church, local parochial schools and families handling the latest Catholic priest scandal?

Since the release of a scathing grand jury report earlier this month, Cardinal Justin Rigali has posted several announcements on the Archdiocese of Philadelphia website to address the issue of sexual abuse of children by Catholic priests.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:48 PM

Vertrouwenscentra tegen meldplicht bij seksueel misbruik

BELGIE
Vandaag

De Vertrouwenscentra voor Kindermishandeling zijn tegen een meldingsplicht voor seksueel misbruik. Ze wijzen verder op het gevaar van minderjarige daders, die later pedofiel worden. Dat bleek zopas tijdens de hoorzittingen van de Kamercommissie Seksueel Misbruik in de Kerk.

Bij de zes Vlaamse Vertrouwenscentra voor Kindermishandeling werden in 2010 10.756 mishandelde kinderen gemeld. Dat zijn er 29 per dag. In 20% van die gevallen ging het om seksueel misbruik en binnen die laatste groep ging het in 65% van de dossiers over incest. Het aantal echte "vreemde" daders, die het slachtoffer niet kennen, is heel klein.

Stef Anthoni beklemtoonde dat we niet eenzijdig op seksueel misbruik mogen focussen. "Bij de meeste mishandelde kinderen zijn meerdere vormen va mishandeling aanwezig: seksueel,emotioneel, lichamelijk. De gevolgen van alle vormen van kindermishandeling zijn dan ook dezelfde."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:56 AM

Ireland’s priests feel more positive about the church since the Apostolic Visitation

IRELAND
Irish Central

By DARA KELLY, IrishCentral.com Staff Writer

Recent dire warnings that the Catholic church in Ireland is "on the edge of collapse" have been dismissed by a new Irish association of Irish priests.

Father Tony Flannery, a founding member of the Association of Catholic Priests, told the press this week that he believes that the participants in Vatican appointed apostolic visitation to Ireland are "really listening" to the concerns of the clergy and the Irish people.

Father Flannery added that he believed that the visitors truly grasped "depth and urgency" of the crisis in Ireland caused by the revelations of decades of sexual abuse and cover-up.

Pope Benedict called for the visitation last year, in the aftermath of the sexual abuse crisis, naming top prelates to lead the review, including Cardinal Sean O’Malley of Boston.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:19 AM

Victims want two more church grand juries

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Voice from the Desert

WHAT
As parishioners leave mass, clergy sex abuse will hand them fliers urging them to help protect kids. And just beforehand – holding signs and childhood pictures – victims will release ten pages of long-secret internal church memos and records. The documents show a now-retired Philadelphia Cardinal quietly and deceptively transferring a known pedophile priest to unsuspecting parishes in two cities where he later molested again.

Victims will also publicly urge district attorneys in two cities to launch grand jury investigations into cover ups of clergy sex crimes where the now-retired Philadelphia Cardinal worked.

Their fliers urge Catholics to keep seeking out others who saw, suspected or suffered clergy sex crimes and prod them to call police and prosecutors so wrongdoers can be jailed and wrongdoing can be prevented.

WHEN
TODAY, Tuesday, Feb.22 at 12:15 p.m.

WHERE
On the sidewalk outside the Cathedral of SS. Peter and Paul, 18th Street & Benjamin Franklin Parkway in Philadelphia

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:17 AM

The Bishop’s Man

UNITED STATES
Patrick J. Wall

“Blessed is the flow of the River of Truth, which helps us was away the filth.” Old Jewish prayer

The February 2011 Philadelphia Grand Jury report sent shock waves through the Roman Catholic clerical culture. It was not because the sexual abuse of children was (again) being uncovered and publicly exposed, but instead because Vicars for Clergy and Vicar Generals could now be (and were) indicted for child endangerment as “The Bishop’s Man.”

The Bishop’s Man is the priest who confidentially carries out the will of his Bishop or Religious Superior. His duties can involve investigating complaints, replacing a perpetrator, sending the perpetrator to a Catholic-run predator treatment facility, or even functioning as the priest perpetrator’s aftercare supervisor. In the past, if the Bishop’s Man protected the Bishop by containing the scandal, he would someday be promoted. In return, the Bishop offered complete protection.

But this time-tested system was turned on its ear with Monsignor Lynn’s criminal indictment for his actions as Cardinal Bevilacqua’s Vicar.

In seminary spiritual training, many of us had to endure the lecture on the “Rule of Benedict”: “the first step of humility, then, is that a man keeps the fear of God (timor Dei) always before his eyes and never forgets it” (RB 7. 10)

For Vicars for Clergy the rule now reads: keep the fear of the prosecutor always before your eyes and never forget it.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:30 AM

Abuse victims, kin reach out to Brown

MASSACHUSETTS
Boston Globe

By Mark Arsenault and Shelley Murphy
Globe Staff / February 22, 2011

WASHINGTON — Senator Scott Brown said yesterday that hundreds of victims of sexual abuse or their families have reached out to him in recent days, in response to revelations in his new autobiography that he was molested by a summer camp counselor more than 40 years ago.

“I’ve received hundreds and hundreds of e-mails and phone calls and letters — my sister just texted me and said, ‘I have to let you listen to this voicemail from this man who said he was abused as a kid and how you helped him address the situation,’ ’’ Brown said in an interview. “That’s been very rewarding, to help people like that. Amen.’’

In his book, “Against All Odds,’’ which was released yesterday, the Republican senator from Massachusetts describes a hardscrabble upbringing punctuated by shoplifting sprees and beatings from abusive stepfathers. But the book’s most shocking revelation is Brown’s vivid description of being fondled by an adult male at a camp when he was 10 years old.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:27 AM

It’s deeds not words that begin true healing.

UNITED STATES
National Survivor Advocates Coalition

Paul F. Kellen

“We want to be part of a church that puts survivors, the victims of abuse, first – ahead of self-interest, reputation, and institutional needs,” O’Malley said.

It is unlikely that a third party will be present when a priest sexually abuses a child. So it is often a situation of he says she says. We face a choice between the safety of the child and the reputation of the priest. We need to give the benefit of the doubt to the child. This would appear to be the content of the Cardinal’s words.

But not his deeds. He has reinstated into parish ministry at least six men who were party to court actions, both criminal and civil, where the plaintiff has prevailed. Does this put children first?

“The first step towards any form of healing is to allow the truth to come out,” said Martin,…” Is Archbishop Martin only talking about Irish truth? Our Cardinal promised several years ago to publicly identify those who have been accused. We are still waiting. And we may well ask which accused will we hear about, the deceased accused, the credibly(according to O’Malley) accused, the falsely accused or what?

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:22 AM

Married German being ordained Catholic priest

GERMANY
San Luis Obispo Tribune

By The Associated Press
In a rare move that needed the pope's approval, a Lutheran convert is being ordained as a Catholic priest in Germany and is being allowed to remain married to his wife - who has already become a nun.

The Cologne archdiocese said 61-year-old Harm Klueting is to be ordained as a Catholic priest Tuesday. Pope Benedict XVI gave him a special permission to remain married to his wife Edeltraut Klueting, who became a Catholic Carmelite nun in 2004. The couple has two grown children.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:15 AM

Counting Catholics

VATICAN CITY
National Catholic Register

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — The number of Catholics in the world, the number of deacons, priests and bishops and the number of dioceses all increased in 2009, while the number of women in religious orders continued to decline, according to Vatican statistics.

At the end of 2009, the worldwide Catholic population increased by 15 million or 1.3%, slightly outpacing the global population growth rate, which was estimated at 1.1%, said a statement published Feb. 19 by the Vatican Press Office.

The statement reported a handful of the statistics contained in the 2011 Annuario Pontificio, a yearbook containing information about every Vatican office, every cardinal and bishop, every diocese and religious order in the world.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:13 AM

As Vatican probe nears end, officials see signs of repentance and renewal in Ireland

IRELAND
Catholic News Agency

February 2011

Dublin, Ireland, Feb 21, 2011 / 05:45 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Church officials in charge of the Vatican’s investigation of clerical abuse in Ireland are wrapping up their fact-finding missions.

The Archdiocese of Dublin on Feb. 21 hosted the latest of several penance services that have been held around the country to seek forgiveness from abuse victims.

Cardinal Sean O'Malley, who is overseeing the Vatican’s investigation there, joined with Dublin Archbishop Diarmuid Martin at St. Mary's Cathedral to lead a “liturgy of lament and repentance” for the abuse of children by priests and religious.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:10 AM

A powerful event

IRELAND
The Irish Times

FREQUENTLY AT religious services, whatever the faith or denomination, there can be a sense that the symbol has assumed greater significance for participants than the reality it represents. Yeats addressed this experience in the not dissimilar world of theatre. He recalled a period in his life when “Players and painted stage took all my love, / And not those things that they were emblems of”.

It was not like that in Dublin’s Pro-Cathedral on Sunday. There was little of the purely symbolic or emblematic in the liturgy of lament and repentance. It was a powerful and authentic event. The people celebrated were real and present and all are victims of clerical child sex abuse. Those most abject in emotion and gesture are among the most powerful figures in the Catholic Church, whether in Ireland or elsewhere.

But above all there was the stark, unequivocal language of raw truth. There was admission and guilt on the part of church authorities, who pleaded forgiveness “for the deaf ear, the blind eye and the hard heart” presented to the abused, and as spoken by Archbishop Diarmuid Martin in words prepared for him by victims themselves.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:07 AM

Va. bills agree on 20-year limit for suits on sexual abuse

VIRGINIA
The Virginian-Pilot

By Deirdre Fernandes
The Virginian-Pilot
February 22, 2011

RICHMOND

A House committee spent about two hours Monday wrestling with the emotionally and legally charged question of how long victims of sexual abuse should have to sue their alleged abusers. Committee members came to the same answer as their Senate counterparts: 20 years.

The proposed legislation, SB1145, would increase the statute of limitations on sexual-abuse lawsuits from the current two years.

The House and Senate versions of the legislation initially had different time limits. The Senate went with 20 years, while the House chose eight. Now, both bills contain the 20-year provision.

The vote came after several victims testified that it was well into adulthood that they were able to acknowledge and speak out about the abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:05 AM

Abuse Group Doubts Archdiocese Lawyer

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
My Fox Philly

[with video]

An abuse advocate group, SNAP, says a lawyer hired by the Philadelphia archdiocese may not be impartial.

The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests is questioning why the church hired a lawyer with close connections to the archdiocese to investigate 37 potential abuse cases.

Just last week Cardinal Justin Rigali suspended three priests named who were not charged in a recent grand jury report on sexual abuse.

At the same time he hired Gina Smith, a former assistant District Attorney who prosecuted numerous sexual abuse cases for two decades, to look into the cases of 37 priests mentioned in the grand jury report.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:01 AM

A losing tactic for a religion

BELLEVILLE (IL)
Belleville News-Democrat

The Belleville Catholic Diocese has spent years fighting the lawsuit filed by James Wisniewski, so it wasn't a surprise that it appealed the $5 million judgment in the case to the state Supreme Court.

Still, it is sad and embarrassing to see the diocese use an argument so at odds with the core message of the Catholic Church.

Wisniewski, 49, said he was sexually abused by the Rev. Raymond Kownacki for five years starting when he was a 13-year-old altar boy. Adults have a difficult time bringing lawsuits like this because of the statute of limitations. But a St. Clair County court allowed this case because the diocese covered up for years the fact that Kownacki had been accused of abusing other minors.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:58 AM

Two additional men say they were sexually abused by former priest

LITTLE EGG HARBOR (NJ)
Press of Atlantic City

By DONNA WEAVER, Staff Writer

LITTLE EGG HARBOR TOWNSHIP - With St. Theresa's Roman Catholic Church as the backdrop for a Monday afternoon press conference, two more men revealed for the first time in public that as children they were sexually abused by priest Terrence McAlinden.

The press conference was organized by Rev. Robert Hoatson, co-founder and president of Road to Recovery, Inc., a group that advocates and provides support to victims of clergy abuse.

The crowd of supporters and other victims of clergy abuse held signs saying they were survivors, "Defrock McALinden" and "Children Must Have a Voice".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:56 AM

Vatican: Popular Chilean priest is guilty of sexual abuse

CHILE
Catholic News Agency

Santiago, Chile, Feb 21, 2011 / 04:57 pm (CNA).- An investigation carried out by the Vatican concluded that the popular Chilean priest Fr. Fernando Karadima Farina is guilty of sexually abusing minors.

Archbishop Ricardo Ezzati of Santiago, Chile announced the results of the inquiry made by the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith on Feb. 17 at a press conference.

Fr. Karadima was accused by Dr. James Hamilton, journalist Juan Carlos Cruz, philosopher Jose Andres Murillo, and attorney Fernando Batlle, of committing sexual abuse in the 1990s. A civil case against the priest was closed in 2010, and officials are now looking at reopening it.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:48 AM

Former prosecutor to re-examine sex abuse claims against 37 priests

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
U.S. Catholic

By Matthew Gambino, Catholic News Service

PHILADELPHIA (CNS) -- The Catholic Church in Philadelphia has pledged a re-examination of the cases of 37 priests who a grand jury report says remain in active ministry despite credible allegations of sexual abuse of minors.

Three priests named in the report were immediately prohibited from publicly exercising their priestly ministry until the latest review is complete.

"Change begins with action," the Philadelphia Archdiocese said in a Feb. 16 statement. "The grand jury report makes it clear that for as much as the archdiocese has done to address child sexual abuse, there is still much to do."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:46 AM

3 men claim abuse from Trenton priest

LITTLE EGG HARBOR (NJ)
6 ABC

LITTLE EGG HARBOR, N.J. - February 21, 2011 (WPVI) -- Three men are claiming they were molested by a priest in the Trenton diocese.

Today, in Little Egg Harbor, they said an allegation of sexual abuse filed years ago against father Terence McAlinden is not the only one.

The diocese confirms that McAlinden was removed from his ministry duties in 2007.

Today, three men came forward claiming they, too, were sexually abused as youngsters by "Father Mac".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:44 AM

New Information on Priest Alleged Sexual Abuse

CALIFORNIA
KION

SALINAS, Calif- Attorney Vince Finaldi said the alleged sex abuse victim did move from Madonna Del Sasso to San Juan Bautista Misson for mass.But it wasn't because of Father. Fitz-Henry but for Latin Mass because he speaks Latin and joined the choir.

Finaldi said that his client met Fr. Fitz-Henry at Madonna Del Sasso back in 2005 and says he was abused by the father that same year. Finaldi says that at first his client forgave the priest because he had prayed for him and thought Fr. Fitz Henry had repented.

Fr. Fitz-Henry left Madonna Del Sasso in 2007 and returned to San Juan Bautista Misson. It is not clear exactly when the alleged victim went to San Juan Bautista Misson. However, Finaldi says his client came forward after Fr. Fitz-Henry allegedly started to make sexual comments to him.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:41 AM

Bill extending sex abuse suit limit clears hurdle

RICHMOND (VA)
NECN

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A bill to extend the amount of time victims of sexual abuse have to file lawsuits against their attackers and others who may have covered up the abuse cleared a major hurdle Monday.

The House Courts Committee voted unanimously to increase the time from two years to 20 years after about two hours of sometimes heated debate that lasted into the evening. The time limit begins either when the victim turns 18 or, in the case of repressed memories, from when he or she realizes the abuse.

The vote marked a major victory for victims and child advocates who faced off against the Catholic Church, a powerful lobbying force that has tried to keep the time limit low in the face of a priest sex scandal that resulted in numerous lawsuits nationwide. A final vote is expected in the House as early as Tuesday.

The original bill called for 25 years and supporters fought off attempts to change the time limit to eight years.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:36 AM

Ousted Trenton-area priest accused of molesting more boys

NEW JERSEY
The Trentonian

By SULAIMAN ABDUR-RAHMAN
Staff Writer

TRENTON — Father Terence O. McAlinden, who was ousted from the Diocese of Trenton’s ministry in 2007 on allegations he sexually abused a Catholic boy, is now being publicly accused of molesting at least two more boys several decades ago.

Patrick Newcombe, 43, of North Carolina and formerly of Ocean County, and The College of New Jersey alum Bob Markulic, 56, of Warren County, on Monday came forward with allegations they were abused by Father Mac.

Newcombe and Markulic announced their allegations in front of Saint Theresa’s Roman Catholic Church in Little Egg Harbor Township — a church that McAlinden helped build in a community that remains largely supportive of Father Mac despite him being evicted from the ministry.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:35 AM

Three pastors sexually assaulted them...

LITTLE EGG HARBOR (NJ)
My Central Jersey

Written by
STEPHANIE LODER
and PAULA SCULLY

LITTLE EGG HARBOR — Three men held a news conference Monday on the front lawn of St. Theresa Roman Catholic Church to accuse a former pastor of sexually assaulting them numerous times during their childhoods.

More than 20 people, some with signs, gathered at the church about 1 p.m. to listen to Chris Naples, Patrick Newcombe and Bob Markulic, who took turns talking about years of alleged abuse at the hands of the Rev. Terence O. McAlinden.

"I'm not going to stop at any length to see that you are defrocked and, if any laws permit, prosecuted. I spent many, many years in hell over this," the 43-year-old Newcombe said about the abuse that he said McAlinden started in 1980 and ended in 1985.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:31 AM

Two More Men Allege Catholic Priest Abused Them in Ocean County and Elsewhere

NEW JERSEY
Point Pleasant Patch

By Denise Di Stephan February 21, 2011

Two more men publicly accused Father Terence McAlinden, formerly of St. Theresa's Roman Catholic Church in Little Egg Harbor Township, of sexually abusing them when they were boys.

The accusations, from Patrick Newcombe, 43, and Robert Markulic, 56, were made on Monday afternoon, about three years after Chris Naples, 39, accused McAlinden of sexually abusing him.

All three men and the Rev. Robert Hoatson, a priest who runs the Road to Recovery program, which advocates for priest sex abuse victims, held a press conference outside St. Theresa's on Radio Road.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:26 AM

February 21, 2011

Former NFL player talks of childhood sexual assault in pushing Virginia victims bill

VIRGINIA
Washington Post

By Fredrick Kunkle
Advocates for childhood victims of sexual assault enlisted the help of a hard-hitting lobbyist on Monday to persuade lawmakers to expand the existing statute of limitations for civil lawsuits so that victims could sue their abusers long after the event.

With lawmakers unable to agree on whether to extend the statute of limitations to 25 years, eight years or a compromise between the two, advocates tapped former Philadelphia Eagles linebacker Al Chesley to help push for the longest period possible.

In a small press conference, Chesley, 53, who played with the Eagles in Superbowl XV against the Oakland Raiders and with the Pittsburgh Panthers' 1976 national championship team, shared his story of victimization as a boy at the hands of a D.C. police officer.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:19 PM

Abusive Empires Falling

UNITED STATES
Healing and Spirituality

Dr. Jaime Romo

The symbolism is abundantly rich. First the land of Pharaohs overthrow oppression. Then, throughout the region, in the land of kings, people revolt for their human rights. Barain, Iran, Libya, Algeria– each with its own process of finding voice and dealing with the resistance to change. Would that the next revolution be one of religious authority, the kingdoms of any churches, temples, mosques, synagogues, any institution that uses god to control or abuse. But no revolution, no matter how obviously needed, how right, is automatic.

The profound revolution that transpired in Egypt wasn’t the result of social media or technology alone. Facebook, however useful, would not have ignited social revolution if the critical mass and the abusive history and frustration had not been so pervasive and intolerable. People knew for years that they were suffering. People knew that they had gone along with an abusive and exploitive system for so long that they had enough. That’s why Facebook was useful and internet was a catalyst for change. So, do we really have to wait for another century before Catholics and Baptists and Jews and Buddhists and Muslims rise up against Religious Authority Sexual Abuse or other abuse of power?

The pattern seems to be that when people finally come forward to reveal abuse and heinous criminal behavior by religious authorities, faithful followers rush to their defense. Perhaps that is because, as Shelby Spong notes, the purpose of religion is to keep people comfortable. Therefore, a challenge to those who represent the institution, however incompetent, corrupt or abusive, is a threat to followers’ comfort that they fight to maintained.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:12 PM

San Juan parish gathers after priest claims go public

CALIFORNIA
Gilroy Dispatch

The church at the San Juan Bautista Mission held its first Sunday mass since a civil lawsuit was filed Feb. 15 in Monterey against the church's former pastor Rev. Edward Fitz-Henry, alleging he sexually abused a member of Salinas' Madonna Del Sasso Parish choir in 2005.

During this past Sunday's mass, the church asked parishioners to send a letter of their thoughts - positive or negative - about the former pastor, said a parishioner who asked to remain anonymous. Parishioners who spoke with the Dispatch after the mass expressed support for Fitz-Henry and that they believed he was innocent.

"I'm still surprised," Dina Salak said. "I don't believe the accusation - I just don't believe it."

The lawsuit filed recently alleges Fitz-Henry discussed sexual issues with the then 14-year-old victim that eventually escalated to sexual touching. The Monterey bishop, Richard Garcia, and Madonna Del Sasso Parish also are listed in the suit.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:19 PM

New allegations of priest sex abuse emerge against former Diocese of Trenton pastor

NEW JERSEY
The Times of Trenton

By Carmen Cusido/The Times

LITTLE EGG HARBOR TWP. -- New allegations of sex abuse by former Diocese of Trenton priest Terence McAlinden were made public today by two men, including one who said church officials told him not to go to authorities at the time.

McAlinden was removed in 2007 as a priest at St. Theresa Roman Catholic Church in Little Egg Harbor after previous sexual abuse allegations.

The latest disclosures by two men today who say they were abused by McAlinden were made during an afternoon press conference at St. Theresa's organized by the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests, or SNAP, and the Road to Recovery.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:16 PM

Three men accuse priest of sexual abuse in NJ

NEW JERSEY
Newsworks

February 21, 2011

By Shai Ben-Yaacov

As allegations of abuse rack the Philadelphia Archdiocese, three men of different generations are coming forward claiming they were abused by the same Trenton Diocese priest.

Chris Naples filed a lawsuit back in 2007 alleging Reverend Terrence McAlinden sexually abused him over the course of 10 years beginning in 1985. McAlinden was placed on administrative leave after the case was filed.

The lawsuit caught the eye of Patrick Newcomb, who says McAlinden abused him in the early 1980s. He settled with the diocese 20 years ago for an undisclosed amount, but says the diocese did little to prevent McAlinden from victimizing others.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:11 PM

Dublin Archbishop Washes Feet of Sex Abuse Victims

IRELAND
Politics Daily (United States)

David Gibson

Archbishop Diarmuid Martin of Dublin has been seen as a rare champion of reform and repentance in the Catholic hierarchy as the clergy sex abuse crisis has pushed the Irish church to the abyss, and he reinforced that reputation on Sunday by washing the feet of eight abuse victims during a service in the cathedral in the Irish capital.

Martin was joined by Cardinal Sean O'Malley of Boston, who has been spending time in Dublin as part of a Vatican team sent to assess the state of Catholicism in Ireland, which O'Malley reportedly planned to tell Pope Benedict XVI was "on the edge of collapse."

At the start of the 90-minute liturgy "of lament and repentance" Archbishop Martin and Cardinal O'Malley both prostrated themselves in silent prayer before the altar, the Irish Times reported.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:07 PM

Groundless Gossip

MILWAUKEE (WI)
Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Milwaukee

Most Reverend Timothy M. Dolan
Archbishop of New York

I owe it to all of you — both the Catholic and wider community — to be very clear about the ridiculous and groundless gossip spread about me by a tort lawyer named Jeff Anderson.

You may have heard this man claim that, when I was archbishop of Milwaukee, I “hid’ $130 million of archdiocesan funds so victims of clergy sexual abuse could not sue for it.

Malarkey! The Archdiocese of Milwaukee has an excellent record of fiscal integrity and transparency. I worked hard at that, and my successor, Archbishop Listecki, continues to do so. (By the way, you might also be interested to know that during my years as archbishop of Milwaukee, and with the generous service of many dedicated people, we established a mediation process that reached settlements with almost 200 victim survivors; that mediation process has been praised by the victim survivors who have participated in the process.)

In my seven years there, the meager resources of the archdiocese were under the vigilance of a sound and respected finance council, composed of prominent and respected business leaders from the financial community; annually we were audited; and each year there was complete, published financial disclosure. You can find the audited financial statements here. To claim that, given this rigorous supervision, an archbishop could have “hidden” $130 million, is beyond ridiculous.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:04 PM

Dolan, in online posting, derides fund-transfer claim

MILWAUKEE (WI)
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

By Annysa Johnson of the Journal Sentinel
Feb. 21, 2011

New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan derided as "beyond ridiculous" and "groundless gossip" a suggestion that he moved $130 million off the church books so it could not be used to finance clergy sex abuse settlements when he led the Archdiocese of Milwaukee, in a column posted on the local archdiocese website.

The column, which first appeared on the New York archdiocese website last week, is a response to a line of questioning by victims' attorney Jeffrey Anderson in a Feb. 11 hearing related to the Milwaukee Archdiocese's bankruptcy.

In that hearing, Anderson questioned the transfer of $130 million - $75 million in an investment account and $55 million in a cemetery account - off the archdiocese's books during Dolan's tenure, saying they followed crucial court rulings that opened the door for victims to sue in civil court.

A spokesman for Dolan declined to comment on the allegations on the day of the hearing.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:59 PM

Cardinal and Archbishop Wash the Feet of Abuse Victims

IRELAND
America Magazine

Posted at: Monday, February 21, 2011

Author: James Martin, S.J.

Irish Central reported today a dramatic scene in Dublin's St. Mary's Pro-Cathedral, part of the Vatican's visitation (that is, investigation) by Cardinal Sean O'Malley of Boston and Archbishop Timothy Dolan of New York of the troubled church in Ireland (H/t Dotcommonweal and Whispers):

In dramatic scenes, the archbishops of Dublin and Boston washed and dried the feet of eight victims of clerical abuse on Sunday in a Dublin cathedral. The archbishops invited five women and three men who were abused to come forward and have their feet washed. Several of them cried as Dublin Archbishop Diarmuid Martin and Cardinal Sean O’Malley of Boston kneeled and washed and dried their feet. Martin stated he was deeply sorry for what happened in his Dublin archdiocese. A report last year castigated his predecessors for their actions in covering up for pedophile priests. "For covering up crimes of abuse, and by so doing actually causing the sexual abuse of more children... we ask God's forgiveness," Martin told the congregation. "The archdiocese of Dublin will never be the same again. It will always bear this wound within it." "For them to get down on their knees, it was humbling," said Darren McGavin, 39, who was abused as a child. "I've found it hard to forgive, but today I found a small bit of closure." O’Malley stated that the washing of the feet was a gesture of atonement that was deeply yearned for by the victims. He had been sent to Ireland by the Vatican to seek to repair the deep chasm in the church over pedophile priests.

Earlier, Archbishop Martin and Cardinal O'Malley lay prostrate before the cathedral's main altar in another highly symbolic act, with the two men using the same gesture performed by the presider each year during the Good Friday liturgy, which serves as a sign of sinfulness and repentance. (The washing of the feet is performed at the Holy Thursday Mass, as another symbolic gesture of penance, and a sign of the humble foot-washing that Jesus himself did for his disciples at the Last Supper.) These kinds of ritual penances are necessary. Of course these are by no means the only penances that need to be done by church leaders; nor are such liturgical acts a substitute for real reform in the church or for real restitution to the victims; nor are such symbolic penances sufficient to end the scourge of sexual abuse in the church. Nor do they excuse the crimes of priests or exculpate those who covered them up. By no means.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:56 PM

Accused priest hires attorney for lawsuit

CALIFORNIA
Hollister Free Lance

[with video]

By Connor Ramey

The San Juan Bautista Mission priest accused of sexual misconduct has hired a new attorney in his civil lawsuit accusing him of sexual misconduct with a 14-year-old member of the Madonna Del Sasso Parish in Salinas in 2005.

The new attorney, San Juan Bautista's Daniel DeVries, will represent Edward Fitz-Henry in the civil case filed Tuesday in Monterey. A criminal investigation is under way by the Salinas Police Department, but no charges have been filed against Fitz-Henry. The priest does, though, already have a criminal attorney hired as well.

Fitz-Henry was suspended indefinitely after a church investigation discovered new information about a previous incident 19 years ago. The new information about a sexual relationship in Carmel 19 years ago was deemed "credible." The church is still investigating the credibility in the lawsuit accusations.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:52 PM

Priest Abuse Victims Urged To Speak Out

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
My Fox Philly

[with video]

PHILADELPHIA - The Philadelphia Archdiocese is in the middle of a scandal. On Sunday, the group Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, or SNAP, held two meetings in Center City to urge other victims out there to come forward.

The first meeting was for concerned Catholics and citizens. The second was a closed-door meeting for survivors of abuse. Members talked about how citizens and Catholics need to overcome fears and make reports to law enforcement when something is wrong.

A catholic school teacher and three priests were arrested earlier this month on charges that included allegedly molesting two young boys and endangering children.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:49 PM

Abuse settlement lifts financial burden from St. Elizabeth's

WILMINGTON (DE)
The News Journal

WILMINGTON -- As parishioner Flo Yezek laid out cakes and lemon squares before the 7 a.m. Mass on Sunday, she breathed a sigh of relief that St. Elizabeth Catholic Parish would be spared having to pay a $3 million jury award.

"It's a lot of money," said Yezek, thinking of the schools in her parish.

The high school and elementary school have 750 students and 80 employees.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:38 PM

Father O'Loghlen Story: Los Angeles Times Offers New Summary

LOS ANGELES (CA)
Bilgrimage

William D. Lindsey

In the preface to what I posted yesterday updating the story of Father Thomas Euteneuer, I noted that I intended to write a subsequent posting bringing readers up to date on the story of Father Martin O'Loghlen. What I'd like to draw attention to here is a very good piece published yesterday by journalist Steve Lopez in the Los Angeles Times. Lopez's article provides a thorough summary of the O'Loghlen story, and also contains some pieces of information new to me, which deserve commentary.

What's noteworthy in Lopez's article in particular is how it overturns several false claims that have circulated among those defending O'Loghlen in recent days--false claims made by Catholics who continue to be intent on characterizing survivors of clerical sexual abuse as enemies of the church telling lies and out to make money by attacking innocent priests. One such claim has to do with the astonishing choice of the Los Angeles archdiocese to put O'Loghlen on its review board for cases of sexual abuse--after the archdiocese knew of his molestation of a high-school girl, and after O'Loghlen himself had admitted this molestation.

As Lopez notes, when O'Loghlen was placed on the archdiocesan review board, the vicar of clergy for Los Angeles, Msgr. Richard Loomis, wrote him a letter thanking him for agreeing to serve on this board, and noting that he would bring "valuable insights to the work of the Board."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:33 PM

Stel uw vragen aan de Gentse bisschop Luc Van Looy

BELGIE
De Standaard

Zeventig procent van de Vlaamse pastoors zit inhoudelijk niet op dezelfde lijn als aartsbisschop. Ook is 73 procent tegen het verplichte celibaat. Dat blijkt uit een enquête die De Standaard bij de Vlaamse pastoors heeft georganiseerd.

De Kerk na de schande', zo heette het dossier afgelopen weekend in De Standaard. Hebt u nog vragen over de Kerk? Wij organiseren voor u een gesprek met de Gentse bisschop LUC VAN LOOY.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:29 PM

Marian devotion was a tactic for Father Fiala, records suggest

TEXAS
Express-News

Abe Levy

An interesting aspect to Father John Fiala’s ministry was his pattern of starting and leading groups of lay devotees to the Virgin Mary.

In Nebraska — and also when he was a priest in the Archdiocese of San Antonio, he led groups devoted to Our Lady of Fatima. He started chapters in connection with Legion of Mary and the World Apostolate of Fatima (also called the Blue Army) and other groups in the Marian movement community.

I incorrectly referred to one of these groups in my Sunday story about the embattled priest as being a Marianist group, when the accurate term was Marian. Marianist refers to the Society of Mary, the religious order based in St. Louis and has St. Mary’s University in San Antonio.

Fiala often took pilgrimages to holy sites where the Virgin Mary is believed to have appeared. He would lead these tours and also go on his own from time to time, bringing back rosaries and other special momentoes that he would give out. This in itself is not peculiar. Many priests do this, especially those with an inclination to the devotion of Mary.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:26 PM

Senators Barnes & Taijeron Reveal Past Abuse in Support of Bill 33

GUAM
Pacific News Center

Guam - Emotional testimony was heard on the floor of the Guam Legislature this morning as Senator Tina Muna Barnes and Mana Silva-Taijeron revealed that they have been victims of either sexual abuse or a sexual assault.

Vice Speaker B.J. Cruz's measure would repeal the statue of limitations for the prosecution of sex crimes involving victims under the age of 18.

Read Bill 33

The measure dominated debate on the floor this morning with Senator's Guthertz, Rodriquez and other speaking out in support of the measure.

But it was the emotional testimony of Senator's Muna-Barnes and Taijeron that stilled the Chamber.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:15 PM

Verheirateter Vater wird katholischer Priester

DEUTSCHLAND
an-online

Köln. Ein verheirateter Mann und Vater von zwei Kindern wird katholischer Priester.

Harm Klueting, Professor für Geschichte und katholische Theologie, erhält am Dienstag vom Kölner Erzbischof Joachim Kardinal Meisner die Priesterweihe. Dazu habe Papst Benedikt XVI. persönlich eine Ausnahmegenehmigung erteilt, sagte ein Sprecher des Erzbistums am Montag. Erst 2004 war der ehemalige Pastor Klueting vom evangelischen zum katholischen Glauben übergetreten.

Durch die päpstliche Ausnahme ist Klueting für die Dauer seiner bestehenden Ehe vom Zölibat entbunden. Dies sei zwar «ein seltener, aber kein unbekannter Vorgang», sagte der Sprecher. Eine derartige Ausnahme sei aber nur verheirateten Geistlichen anderer Konfessionen erlaubt, die zum Katholizismus überwechselten, teilte das Erzbistum.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:10 PM

Igloolik seeks counselling as priest faces charges

CANADA
CBC News

The Nunavut hamlet of Igloolik is seeking extra counselling services, now that a Catholic priest who once served in the community is facing decades-old sex charges against children there.

Eric Dejaeger's recent return to Nunavut to face 10 charges, which include indecent assault and buggery, has brought back painful memories in Igloolik, deputy mayor Paul Quassa told CBC News.

The charges were filed by six complainants — five men and one woman — who allege that they were sexually abused as children between 1978 and 1982, when Dejaeger was serving as a priest in the eastern Arctic hamlet.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:06 PM

Three men accusing former Ocean County pastor of sex abuse

NEW JERSEY
Asbury Park Press

LITTLE EGG HARBOR — More than 20 people are gathered on the lawn outside St. Theresa's Church on Radio Road for a news conference orchestrated by three men who claim they were sexually abused by the Rev. Terence McAlinden.

One of the men, identified as Patrick Newcombe, handed out a news release before the conference began that stated he was allegedly abused "as a child" by McAlinden.

The news conference is being held outside St. Theresa's Church because McAlinden, known as "Father Mac," had served as pastor before being removed.

In September 2007, then-Bishop John M. Smith removed McAlinden from his position and placed him on administrative leave after allegations were made by an unidentified man in his 30s, according to a previous statement from the Diocese of Trenton.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:02 PM

Irish archbishop repents for clergy sex abuse at service

IRELAND
National Catholic Reporter

Feb. 21, 2011
By Michael Kelly, Catholic News Service

DUBLIN -- Repenting for the crimes of priestly sex abuse does not mean that the Irish Catholic Church can return to business as usual, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin told abuse survivors during a Feb. 20 prayer service joined by an American cardinal.

However, seeking forgiveness can be an important step toward healing and overcoming the pain that survivors feel, he added as Cardinal Sean P. O'Malley of Boston listened during the "Liturgy of Lament and Repentance" at Dublin's Pro-Cathedral.

Both prelates offered apologies for the church's failure to respond to reports of abuse during the afternoon service attended by 1,000 survivors and their families and supporters.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:59 PM

The Mercure Verdict

MASSACHUSETTS
Western Massachusetts Catholics

When I read the newspaper this afternoon about the sentencing of Gary Mercure, a former associate pastor at Our Lady of the Annunciation in Queensbury who raped two boys in Massachusetts in the 1980s, I pulled out my pen and circled the remarks of the judge and the prosecutor who commented. Judge John Agostini said, “You’re not a priest. You’re no more than a common thug,” and First Assistant District Attorney Paul Caccaviello said “It is strongly suggested that he’s a predator who happened to wear priest’s clothing.”

I circled those responses because it reminded me of what the Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany has not said, that it has not from what I’ve seen taken jabs at Mercure, and judged him. I have to say, that’s commendable. And when I met Bishop Howard Hubbard of the Albany Diocese after he delivered a homily for the Queensbury parish to apologize for sexual abuse by clergy, I told him so.

So reads a recent post (presumably from reporter David Taube) posted on Feb. 17th, under Chapel Chat, a blog about local religious organizations sponsored by the Post-Star, an Albany area newspaper.

As a church-going Catholic I always find the aftermath of our scandals interesting.

Church officials rarely confront allegations of sexual misconduct head-on, and never publicly. When they cannot defuse them, they try to kill them with a long and stony silence. However, the silence is immediately broken if the allegations are proven. Suddenly, the officials can’t wait to put on a public display of hand-wringing. They express sadness and disappointment. Yet, they’re seldom judgmental toward the perpetrator, as Mr. Taube points out. These official acts of contrition are supported by a lay chorus in sackcloth and ashes. The crimes discovered in the glare of secular law are soon filtered through stained-glass to soft theological hues.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:55 PM

Archdiocese removes Monsignor Lynn

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

By JULIE SHAW
Philadelphia Daily News

shawj@phillynews.com 215-854-2592

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia announced today that Monsignor William Lynn - who was recently charged with child-endangerment offenses on allegations he covered up sexual abuse by other priests - was placed on administrative leave effective Friday.

Temporarily taking his place at St. Joseph Parish in Downingtown, Chester County, will be Monsignor Joseph McLoone, the pastor of St. Katharine Drexel Parish in Chester, Delaware County.

McLoone is the brother of Pat McLoone, the Daily News' managing editor.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:14 AM

Ierse aartsbisschop wast voeten van slachtoffers

IERLAND
HLN

De aartsbisschop van Dublin, Diarmuid Martin, heeft zondag tijdens een speciale mis de voeten gewassen van acht slachtoffers van (seksueel) misbruik in de Ierse katholieke kerk. Slachtoffers noemden het de meest duidelijke excuses van de kerk tot nu toe.

Het wassen van voeten is in de katholieke kerk een traditionele handeling om nederigheid uit te drukken. Darren McGavin (39) die als kind door een priester werd misbruikt, zei het moeilijk te vinden te vergeven. "Maar vandaag vond ik een klein stukje afsluiting.''

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:06 AM

Voortvluchtige priester uit Sinsin opgepakt en opgesloten

BELGIE
HLN

De veroordeelde priester José M. is gisterenavond door een politiepatrouille bij hem thuis in het Henegouwse Sinsin teruggevonden en opgepakt. De Belgisch-Mexicaanse geestelijke was dinsdag door de correctionele rechtbank van Dinant veroordeeld tot 3 jaar effectieve gevangenisstraf voor de verkrachting van een bejaarde zuster en aanranding van de eerbaarheid van drie jonge meisjes die zijn geloofsgemeenschap bezochten. De rechter had zijn onmiddellijke aanhouding bevolen, maar de man was sinds dinsdag spoorloos.

De priester werd opgepakt tijdens een nieuw bezoek van de politie aan zijn woonplaats. Hij bood geen weerstand. Omdat de gevangenis van Dinant al gesloten was op het ogenblik van zijn arrestatie, bracht hij de nacht door in een politiecel nadat het vonnis betekend was door een officier van de gerechtelijke politie.

Vanochtend werd de priester dan opgesloten in de gevangenis van Dinant. Hij wordt binnenkort verhoord om uitleg te geven over zijn verdwijning terwijl er een onmiddellijke arrestatie was uitgesproken.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:04 AM

Aantal ontdopingen is vertienvoudigd

BELGIE
De Standaard

BRUSSEL - Vorig jaar hebben tien keer meer Vlamingen zich uit het doopregister laten schrappen dan in 'normale' jaren. Dat blijkt uit een rondvraag bij de bisdommen.

Van onze redacteur

Een doopsel helemaal ongedaan maken, kan niet. Wat gebeurd is, is gebeurd. Wel is het mogelijk om in het doopregister te laten noteren dat je uit de Kerk bent gestapt. En precies dat hebben opvallend veel Vlamingen gedaan in 2010, het 'annus horribilis' van de Belgische Kerk. In de bisdommen Gent, Brugge en Hasselt was er in 2010 een vertienvoudiging. In Antwerpen was dat zelfs nog meer.

In het bisdom Brugge, dat 25 jaar door Roger Vangheluwe werd geleid, schommelde het jaarlijkse gemiddelde altijd tussen de 75 en 125. Vorige jaar waren dat er precies 1.001. Het Gentse bisdom heeft geen exacte jaarlijkse cijfers. 'We gaan uit van het een vertienvoudiging sinds de affaire-Vangheluwe', zegt woordvoerder Koen Vlaeminck. 'Voordien kregen we jaarlijks ongeveer 100 aanvragen. Het zal nu rond de 1.000 schommelen.'

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:56 AM

Criminal Charges against Dr. Joseph Ratzinger, Pope of the Roman Catholic Church on grounds of Crimes against Humanity According to Art. 7 ICC Statute

GERMANY

To the Prosecutor
The International Criminal Court
Dr. Luis Moreno Ocampo
Maanweg, 174
NL-2516 AB Den Haag ...

G r o u n d s

Introduction

The charges are directed against three worldwide crimes, which until now have not been denounced merely because they stemmed from an institution headed by the “highest dignitaries,” who appear to be far above criminal acts. The traditional reverence toward
“ecclesiastical authority” has clouded the sense of right and wrong.

If, by way of massive psychological pressure, a new religious group were to force its members to integrate their newborn into the group, in order to finance the latter itswhole life long and to orient itself in everything according to the directives of the group, it would be called a “sect.” It is possible the state would dissolve the group and punish the “sect leaders” on grounds of coercion and extortion, even more so, if the group would not tolerate anyone leaving, instead hindering this under threat of severest punishment, thus giving rise to serious emotional disturbances and impairment of the freedom of development in many of its members.

Under the same facts and circumstances, can this be any different merely because it concerns an organization that acts in the same way not only toward a few, but worldwide, calling itself the “Roman Catholic Church” and constantly referring to religious freedom, while setting “sect commissioners” onto those of different faith? It is not different, but people have simply become accustomed to it. However, since July 1, 2002, this inurement is no longer admissible. On this day, the statute for the International Criminal Court came into effect, making crimes against humanity a punishable offense.

If a coercive sect of the kind described above were widespread in present-day Africa and its members were forbidden the use of condoms under threat of severe punishment, transmission of the HIV-AIDS virus and the deaths caused by this would be attributed to the sect leaders, and charges would be brought against them. Can this be any different simply because the coercive sect calls itself a “church” and its head claims to be infallible?

If, in a worldwide coercive sect, hundreds of thousands of children were sexually abused and the crimes covered up and prosecution called off at the behest of the sect leader, this criminal organization and its leader would be put on trial. Can this be any different merely because this organization calls itself a “church” and the command to be silent about the crimes does not come from a mafia boss, but is pronounced by the pope? It is no different, but it is simply centuries of becoming inured to a pedophile priesthood and the power of its high priests. Since the statutory offense of crimes against humanity exists, this “looking the other way” is no longer admissible.

In the following, charges are brought against three crimes committed against humanity, for which Dr. Joseph Ratzinger, as former cardinal and present-day pope, is criminally liable:

1. the preservation and leadership of a worldwide totalitarian regime of coercion, which subjugates its members with terrifying and health-endangering threats,

2. the adherence to a fatal forbiddance of the use of condoms, even when the danger of HIV-AIDS infection exists, and

3. the establishment and maintenance of a worldwide system of cover-up of the sexual crimes committed by Catholic priests and their preferential treatment, which aids and abets ever new crimes.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:47 AM

NEWS UPDATE: Senators speak about personal experiences during discussions of sex abuse bill

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

During the ongoing discussion of Bill 33 on the floor of the Guam Legislature, Sen. Tina Muna Barnes gave emotional testimony in support of the sex abuse bill.

Introduced by Sen. Benjamin Cruz, the bill would eliminate the statute of limitations on child sexual abuse.

Sen. Barnes alluded to personal experiences with sexual abuse, and recalled her experiences working with other victims of sexual abuse as an investigator for the public defender.

Sen. Mana Silva Taijeron also stood to support the bill, citing her own experience as a victim of domestic violence.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:43 AM

Chester priest moved to Downingtown to take over for suspended clergyman

DOWNINGTON (PA)
Daily Local News

Published: Monday, February 21, 2011

The Rev. Joseph McLoone from Katharine Drexel in Chester will be replacing Monsignor William J. Lynn at St. Joseph Parish in Downingtown, church officials announced Sunday.

A former parochial vicar of St. Katharine of Siena Parish in the Wayne section of Radnor, Lynn was accused by a grand jury with endangering the welfare of children while he was responsible for investigating clerical sexual abuse from 1992 until 2004 under former Philadelphia Archbishop Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua.

Meanwhile, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP) was to host a candlelight vigil Sunday evening on the sidewalk outside the Catholic Cathedral of Ss. Peter & Paul in Philadelphia.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:38 AM

Vlaamse katholieken verlaten de kerkbanken

BELGIE
Katholiek Nederland

Hilversum (ANP/BELGA) 21 februari 2011 - Vorig jaar hebben tien keer meer Vlamingen zich uit het doopregister van de Rooms-Katholieke Kerk laten schrappen dan in andere jaren. Dat blijkt uit een rondvraag van de Vlaamse kranten De Standaard en Het Nieuwsblad die vandaag is gepubliceerd.

Vertienvoudiging
In de bisdommen Brugge, Gent en Hasselt was sprake van een vertienvoudiging in 2010 vergeleken met het jaar ervoor. Het bisdom Antwerpen spant de kroon. Daar waren er vorig jaar 2136 'ontdopingen', zoals de Vlamingen het noemen, tegen 139 in 2009.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:29 AM

PLNU Sued For Placing Child Molester With Family

CALIFORNIA
10 News

SAN DIEGO -- Point Loma Nazarene University, which is affiliated with Church of the Nazarene, is being sued by a brother and sister who claim the school placed a ministry student in their home who molested them nearly 30 years ago.

The girl was 6 and the boy 2 1/2 when they were allegedly molested, the Orange County Register reported Sunday.

They claim school officials knew the student had been convicted of child molestation, but did not tell the family, who lived in Berkeley at the time.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:26 AM

Point Loma Nazarene sued over molestations

POINT LOMA (CA)
Sign On San Diego

By Pat Flynn

Sunday, February 20, 2011

POINT LOMA — Point Loma Nazarene University officials placed a ministry student in the home of a Berkeley family almost 30 years ago without telling the family that the student had been convicted of child molestation, according to a lawsuit.

The student proceeded to molest the family’s 6-year-old daughter and 2-1/2- year-old son, the suit contends, while he lived with them as a summer pastoral intern.

An appellate court decision this month has cleared the way for the lawsuit, which seeks unspecified monetary compensation from Point Loma Nazarene and changes in its procedures, to go to trial in San Diego County Superior Court.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:23 AM

BELLA FIGURA (Fine appearance or good impression)

UNITED STATES
National Survivor Advocates Coalition

Each time a hierarch such as Cardinal Rigali of Philadelphia says to survivors of clergy abuse, with seeming remorse, “Our thoughts and prayers are with you.”…

Each time a hierarch says he will work with the district attorney’s office, but yet in the background fights with all of his power (and parishioner’s donations) to stop the progress of freeing up statute of limitations…

Each time government officials or police have deferred to the church officials for fear of placing themselves on the wrong side of this almighty power…

Each time a hierarch says he knows with certainty there are no more pedophile priests in his diocese…

Each time a diocese plays the bankruptcy/penniless card…

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:21 AM

An Open Letter to Philadelphia Cardinal Justin Rigali

UNITED STATES
Voice from the Desert

Frank Douglas

February 20, 2011

Dear Cardinal Rigali,

Given the problems on your plate I doubt that you’ll have the time to read this, but I thought I’d write anyway.

Here’s the way I see it from my perch on the top of a 16-foot saguaro cactus here in the beautiful Southern Arizona Desert (Bishop Jerry Kicanas’s turf): The jig is up, and maybe the gig is up.

I don’t think you can recover from the events of last week in which three of your priests were indicted for child rape and fourth indicted for child endangerment—not to mention the 37 additional priests in your archdiocese who are under investigation for child sex crimes of one sort or another.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:11 AM

NEWS UPDATE: 11:45 a.m. - Senators discuss sex abuse bill

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Pacific Daily News • February 21, 2011

During discussions on the floor of the Legislature this morning, Sen. Benjamin Cruz spoke to his colleagues in support of Bill 33, which would remove the statute of limitation for sex crimes involving victims under the age of the majority.

"It's absolutely nothing revolutionary. It absolutely cannot be seen as a vendetta against anybody," said Cruz.

Cruz said the bill, which is one of two regarding child sexual abuse that he introduced this session, is about social justice.

"It is something to try to get the victims in these cases justice," said Cruz.

Cruz also said he hoped his colleagues would help him introduce an amendment that would address the statute of limitation for sex crimes involving adults.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:54 AM

Bishops wash feet of abuse victims in bid for forgiveness

IRELAND
Irish Independent

By John Cooney Religion Correspondent

Monday February 21 2011

VICTIMS of paedophile clerics made their presence felt yesterday at a forgiveness service in Dublin's Pro-Cathedral where two senior Catholic Church clergymen washed the feet of eight victims.

Boston-based Cardinal Sean O'Malley and Archbishop Diarmuid Martin -- in "an act of humble service" -- washed the feet of "a representative group" of those affected by the sexual abuse of priests. The group included prominent victims Marie Collins and Christine Buckley.

On behalf of the Pope who asked him to conduct an external probe into the scandal-ridden Archdiocese of Dublin, Cardinal O'Malley asked for forgiveness for the horrendous abuse cases catalogued in the Murphy Report, and for the systematic cover-up by church authorities.

But the one hour-and-40-minute service was interrupted twice by two victims who walked on to the altar and spoke of their failure to receive justice.

Both men were allowed to have their say by Archbishop Martin, and their contributions were applauded by the congregation.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:40 AM

Archbishops appeal for forgiveness from clerical abuse victims

IRELAND
The Journal

IN AN “ACT OF HUMBLE SERVICE” yesterday, the Catholic Archbishop of Dublin Diarmuid Martin and the Catholic Archbishop of Boston Seán O’Malley washed the feet of a number of victims of clerical abuse.

Readings, including excerpts from the Murphy and Ryan reports, and were read by victims of clerical abuse and relatives at the service in Dublin’s Pro-Cathedral, the Independent reports.

At the service, Archbishop Martin said he apologised in his own name for “the insensitivity and even hurtful and nasty reactions that you have encountered”, adding:

I appeal to you to continue to speak out. There is still a long path to journey in honesty before we can truly merit forgiveness.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:34 AM

Dramatic scenes as Archbishops wash abuse victim’s feet

IRELAND
Irish Central

By PATRICK ROBERTS, IrishCentral.com Staff Writer

In dramatic scenes, the archbishops of Dublin and Boston washed and dried the feet of eight victims of clerical abuse on Sunday in a Dublin cathedral.

The archbishops invited five women and three men who were abused to come forward and have their feet washed. Several of them cried as Dublin Archbishop Diarmuid Martin and Cardinal Sean O’Malley of Boston kneeled and washed and dried their feet.

Martin stated he was deeply sorry for what happened in his Dublin archdiocese. A report last year castigated his predecessors for their actions in covering up for pedophile priests.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:30 AM

Church Finds Case Against Priest Not Proven – Restrictions Continued

MAINE
Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland

A Catholic Church appeal court has determined that the complaints of sexual abuse against Fr. Thomas Lee did not rise to the level of a canonical crime. In 2008, a court of first instance determined the reports of abuse against Fr. Lee, stemming from the early 1980s, did not rise to the level of a canonical crime and were not proven. An appeal of that decision by the Diocese of Portland was made in September of 2008 in order to be certain each piece of evidence was properly presented.

The appeal court confirmed the decision of the first tribunal* and also agreed with that court that Fr. Lee acted imprudently with minors. Based on that conduct, and circumstances surrounding this case, Bishop Richard Malone has decided to continue restrictions, namely, Fr. Lee will not be allowed any regular public ministry in the Church. Any possible exceptions will be evaluated by the bishop on a case-by-case basis.

83 year old Fr. Lee has been out of ministry since September of 2003.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:27 AM

Fixing the priesthood

AUSTRALIA
Eureka Street

Michael Kelly February 20, 2011

For several weeks in late January and early February, I spent a lot of time at the bedside of a strapping 19-year-old athlete who was unconscious after a swimming mishap at a resort in Thailand. He never regained consciousness and died as a result of multiple organ failure.

A great deal of my time was spent accompanying the boy's family though this agony. Eventually I returned to Australia with his body for the Requiem.

It was an exhausting experience.

The funeral attracted 2000 mourners. Most of them seemed to be younger than 20 — an age where death has no palpable reality to it and when the myth of indestructibility is alive and well. Here was its firm rebuttal: Our lives spin on sixpence, as the boy's mother told me during our watch in Bangkok.

After the ceremony, I scarpered. I couldn't take it any more and we still had the burial ahead. But as I fled, an old friend — a senior Federal politician with whom I've crossed swords on occasion — came up and gave me a hug.

'Mick, that was just the best: you did a wonderful job for Joe and his family,' said my generous friend.

He added: 'You've gone up in my estimation.'

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:24 AM

Words of pain, contrition in O’Malley’s Irish service

IRELAND
Boston Globe

By Lisa Wangsness
Globe Staff / February 21, 2011

DUBLIN — Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley of Boston and Archbishop Diarmuid Martin of Dublin lay prostrate before a bare altar as the packed cathedral watched in silence.

They listened as lectors read long sections of government reports detailing horrific abuse of children in Dublin parishes and church-run industrial schools.

Then O’Malley and Martin washed the feet of eight abuse victims. Several wept as Martin poured water from a large pitcher and O’Malley knelt and dried them with a white terry cloth towel.

“We want to be part of a church that puts survivors, the victims of abuse, first — ahead of self-interest, reputation, and institutional needs,’’ O’Malley said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:20 AM

Priest abuse victim accused of choking girlfriend

DELAWARE
The News Journal

Written by
SEAN O'SULLIVAN
The News Journal

WILMINGTON -- A man who last month settled his priest sexual abuse case against a parish in the Catholic Diocese of Wilmington for $1.7 million is now wanted by police in a domestic violence incident.

Joseph Curry, 40, of Townsend, was charged with strangling his girlfriend during an argument late Saturday.

According to New Castle County police, officers responded to a domestic dispute just after 11:30 p.m. in the Avonbridge community. A 43-year-old woman who identified herself as Curry's girlfriend told them she had been strangled by Curry after an argument.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:15 AM

Irish archbishop washes feet of sexual abuse victims in Dublin

IRELAND
Reuters

The archbishop of Dublin has washed the feet of victims of clerical abuse in one of the most visible acts of contrition for the systemic mistreatment of children that has shattered the Irish Catholic Church. Addressing hundreds of people packed into Dublin’s Pro-Cathedral on Sunday , Archbishop Diarmuid Martin then made what victims said was the most explicit apology to date for the role of the Church hierarchy in enabling the abuse.

A damning 2009 Irish government report on widespread child abuse by priests in the Dublin archdiocese between 1975 and 2004 said the Church in Ireland had “obsessively” concealed the abuse. The report said one priest admitted abusing more than 100 children. Another said he had abused children every two weeks for more than 25 years.

“For covering up crimes of abuse, and by so doing actually causing the sexual abuse of more children… we ask God’s forgiveness,” Martin told the congregation. “The archdiocese of Dublin will never be the same again. It will always bear this wound within it.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:13 AM

CDF orders prominent Chilean priest to life of prayer, penitence

CHILE
Catholic Culture

February 21, 2011
The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has found Father Fernando Karadima, one of Chile’s most prominent priests, guilty of sexual abuse. The 80-year-old priest, according to the congregation’s ruling, is subject to a “lifelong prohibition from the public exercise of any ministerial act, particularly confession and the spiritual guidance of any category of persons” and “retirement to a life of prayer and penitence, also in reparation to the victims of his abuses.”

A leader in the Catholic Action movement, Father Karadima, who helped train five of the nation’s bishops, was accused of abusing young men while hearing their confessions.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:10 AM

Ex-top Catholic official put on leave

PENNSYLVANIA
Bucks County Courier Times

By: STAFF AND WIRE REPORTS
Bucks County Courier Times
Monsignor William Lynn was accused in a grand jury indictment of endangering children in his role as secretary for clergy.

A former top Roman Catholic Church official in Philadelphia has been placed on administrative leave following charges of endangering children in connection with sexual abuse by priests.

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia said Sunday that parishioners at St. Joseph Parish in Downingtown were informed in weekend Masses that Monsignor William Lynn was placed on administrative leave Friday.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:06 AM

February 20, 2011

Parishioners Upset About Priest Allegation Announcement

CALIFORNIA
KION

SAN JUAN BAUTISTA, Calif - Parishioners at San Juan Bautista Mission are bothered by how they were given the news about the sexual abuse allegations against their priest, Father Edward Fitz-Henry. They say a lawyer stood up in mass last Sunday and announced it infront of everyone.

"Mass is supposed to be mass. You're supposed to come here for church. That wasn't called for," said Raymond Padilla who attends that parish. "It shouldn't happen like that. He was telling everybody. Even the kids!"

Other parishioners, however, think the direct approach was better.

"I think everyone finding out at the same time makes it a little bit better...It's a very emotionally charge subject, so by the time you hear about it...I just think it was like pulling off a band-aid quickly, so just do it," said Gloria Hennessy who also attends that parish.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:37 PM

Abuse victims protest at service

IRELAND
The Irish Times

PATSY McGARRY

YESTERDAY’S LITURGY of lament and repentance in Dublin’s Pro-Cathedral had its origin in a letter to The Irish Times on June 19th, 2009, following publication of the Ryan report the previous month.

Signed by 22 Catholics of the Dublin archdiocese, including three priests, its sentiments were repeated in a letter published in this newspaper on December 1st, 2009, following publication of the Murphy report in November. It was signed by the same 22 people.

The Ryan report dealt with the abuse and neglect of children in institutions from the 1930s to the 1970s, while the Murphy report concerned the handling of child sexual abuse cases involving priests of the Dublin archdiocese.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:24 PM

Forgiveness sought for 'sins' of clergy

IRELAND
The Irish Times

PATSY McGARRY, Religious Affairs Correspondent

THE CATHOLIC Archbishop of Dublin Diarmuid Martin and the Cardinal Archbishop of Boston Seán O’Malley yesterday washed the feet of a representative number of victims of clerical child sex abuse in “an act of humble service” at Dublin’s Pro-Cathedral.

At the beginning of a moving 90-minute liturgy “of lament and repentance”, prepared in the main by abuse victims themselves, Archbishop Martin and Cardinal O’Malley both prostrated themselves in silent prayer before the altar which was dominated by a large, bare, wooden cross, symbolising the cross of Jesus Christ.

Most of the readings, which included excerpts from the Ryan and Murphy reports, were by victims or relatives of abuse victims. A woman victim read from Matthew’s gospel about Jesus and children, and his words that “anyone who is the downfall of one of these little ones . . . would be better drowned in the depths of the sea.”

Among the eight people who had their feet washed were Marie Collins, abused as a child by Fr Paul McGenis, Darren McGavin whose abuse led to former priest Fr Tony Walsh being sentenced to 16 years imprisonment last December, and Christine Buckley who was abused in Dublin’s Goldenbridge orphanage.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:20 PM

Top Phila. Priest Suspended for Alleged Child Endangerment

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
NBC Philadelphia

By BARRY N. DIMA
Updated 5:51 PM EST, Sun, Feb 20, 2011

A former top Roman Catholic church official in Philadelphia has been placed on administrative leave following charges of endangering children in connection with sexual abuse by priests.

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia said Sunday that parishioners at Saint Joseph parish in Downingtown were informed in weekend Masses that Monsignor William Lynn, 60, was placed on administrative leave Friday.

Lynn was secretary of the clergy and a top archdiocese official from 1992 to 2004. He was accused in a scathing grand jury report of putting pedophiles in posts where they had contact with youngsters. Felony endangering charges were filed earlier this month, and Lynn was also named in a civil lawsuit last week.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:17 PM

Former Lehigh Valley Bishop Under Fire

PENNSYLVANIA
WFMZ

[with video]

ALLENTOWN, Pa. -- A former Allentown bishop has been named in a grand jury investigation of priests accused of molesting young boys.

Court documents accuse Bishop Edward Cullen of shielding another priest.

The grand jury says Cullen told the Cardinal of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia that Priest Edward Avery resigned from his parish due to a health issue.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:15 PM

In Dublin, the Three Silences

IRELAND
Whispers in the Loggia

Given the significance of today's Liturgy of Repentance in Dublin's St Mary's Pro-Cathedral -- and, indeed, the event's resonance with a fresh outbreak of related stories on these shores over recent days -- here below is the text of the reflection given at today's rite by the Irish capital's Archbishop Diarmuid Martin.

* * *

There are moments where silence and listening are more important than words and what we say.

What can I say to you who are victims of sexual abuse by priests of the Archdiocese of Dublin or by religious? I would not be honest and sincere if I were to say that I know what you have suffered. I may try to understand, but that suffering is yours. Only you know what it means to have been abused sexually or in some other way. I can try to imagine the horrors of being abused when just a child, helpless and innocent. I can try to imagine how this abuse has haunted your life until today and sadly may continue even for the rest of your lives.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:12 PM

20/2/2011 Reflections from Liturgy of Lament and repentance

IRELAND
Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Dublin

Reflections of Archbishop Martin at the Liturgy of Lament and repentance at St. Mary's Pro Cathedral , 20th February 2011

There are moments where silence and listening are more important than words and what we say.

What can I say to you who are victims of sexual abuse by priests of the Archdiocese of Dublin or by religious? I would not be honest and sincere if I were to say that I know what you have suffered. I may try to understand, but that suffering is yours. Only you know what it means to have been abused sexually or in some other way. I can try to imagine the horrors of being abused when just a child, helpless and innocent. I can try to imagine how this abuse has haunted your life until today and sadly may continue even for the rest of your lives.

I can recognise the humiliation you suffered, the assault on your dignity and self-esteem, the fear and anxiety, the isolation and abandonment you experienced. I can listen to you tell me about your nightmares, your frustrations and your longing for a closure which may never come. I can imagine your anger at not being believed and of seeing others being cared for while you were left on your own.

I can try to imagine all those experiences but I know that it is only you who have had that experience. Whatever I imagine, what you experienced must be a thousand times worse.

I can express my sorrow, my sense of the wrong that was done to you. I think of how you were not heard or not believed and not comforted and supported.

I can ask myself how did this happen in the Church of Jesus Christ where as we heard in the Gospel children are presented to us as signs of the kingdom. How did we not see you in your suffering and abandonment?

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:09 PM

Irish archbishop washes feet of abuse victims

IRELAND
Reuters

By Conor Humphries

DUBLIN | Sun Feb 20, 2011

DUBLIN (Reuters) - The archbishop of Dublin washed the feet of victims of clerical abuse on Sunday in one of the most visible acts of contrition for the systemic mistreatment of children that has shattered the Irish Catholic Church.

Addressing hundreds of people packed into Dublin's Pro-Cathedral, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin then made what victims said was the most explicit apology to date for the role of the Church hierarchy in enabling the abuse.

"For them to get down on their knees, it was humbling," said Darren McGavin, 39, who was abused as a child by a priest in his west Dublin parish. "I've found it hard to forgive, but today I found a small bit of closure."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:07 PM

Archbishop washes feet of Irish abuse victims

IRELAND
ABC News (Australia)

The archbishop of Dublin washed the feet of victims of clerical abuse on Sunday in one of the most visible acts of contrition for the systemic mistreatment of children that has shattered the Irish Catholic Church.

Addressing hundreds of people packed into Dublin's Pro-Cathedral, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin then made what victims said was the most explicit apology to date for the role of the church hierarchy in enabling the abuse.

"For them to get down on their knees, it was humbling," said Darren McGavin, 39, who was abused as a child by a priest in his west Dublin parish.

"I've found it hard to forgive, but today I found a small bit of closure."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:04 PM

Ex-top Catholic official in Philly placed on leave

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Washington Post

The Associated Press
Sunday, February 20, 2011

PHILADELPHIA -- A former top Roman Catholic church official in Philadelphia has been placed on administrative leave following charges of endangering children in connection with sexual abuse by priests.

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia said Sunday that parishioners at Saint Joseph parish in Downingtown were informed in weekend Masses that Monsignor William Lynn was placed on administrative leave Friday.

Lynn was secretary of the clergy and a top archdiocese official from 1992 to 2004. He was accused in a scathing grand jury report of putting pedophiles in posts where they had contact with youngsters. Felony endangering charges were filed earlier this month, and Lynn was also named in a civil lawsuit last week.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:12 PM

Cardinal O’Malley, in Ireland, washes feet of abuse victims

IRELAND
Boston Globe

By Lisa Wangsness, Globe Staff

DUBLIN -- Cardinal Sean P. O'Malley this afternoon washed the feet of Irish abuse victims as he presided alongside Dublin Archbishop Diarmuid Martin at a "Liturgy of Lament and Repentance" for sexual abuse in the Catholic Church.

O'Malley, the Roman Catholic archbishop of Boston, is in Ireland because he was appointed by Pope Benedict XVI to lead a review of the response to sexual abuse by the Archdiocese of Dublin. At today’s service, held in St. Mary’s Pro-Cathedral in Dublin, O’Malley said that he and his aides have heard a great deal of painful testimony from victims and their families, but they also see reason to hope for a better future.

"Today's service, which survivors so generously assisted in planning and are participating in, gives testimony to the longing of so many to rebuild and renew this Archdiocese and the Church throughout Ireland," O'Malley said. "Just as the Irish people persevered and preserved the faith when it was endangered, and carried it to many other countries, the commitment to sustain the faith provides the opportunity for the hard lessons of the crisis to benefit the Church, in our quest to do penance for the sins of the past and to do everything possible to protect children in the present and in the future."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:35 PM

Church ignored warnings about Fiala

TEXAS
Express-News

By Abe Levy/alevy@express-news.net
Published 12:35 a.m., Sunday, February 20, 2011

By the time Father John Fiala arrived at a West Texas parish in 2005, he had amassed a two-decade ministry record so troublesome that Catholic leaders were feuding over ways to wash their hands of him.

Parishioners in Nebraska had told him to stay away from their adolescent sons. A psychologist said he was narcissistic, naïve and displayed potentially harmful sexuality.

Catholic authorities said Fiala deceived them about his behavior, yet he was transferred from parish to parish. He was suspended and not allowed to work as a priest in Nebraska. He later was reinstated in Texas.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:53 PM

The Father Euteneuer Story: Parents of Victim Speak Out

UNITED STATES
Bilgrimage

William D. Lindsey

In the news the past two days: significant follow-up statements about two stories of clerical abuse re: which I've blogged a number of times recently. The first of these is a public statement made by the parents of the young woman whom Father Thomas Euteneuer has admitted abusing while ministering to her pastorally. The second is a thorough summary of the case of Father Martin O'Loghlen, with pointed questions about the role Cardinal Roger Mahony played in that case. I'll deal with these two updates in two separate postings.*

The public statement of the parents of the woman Euteneuer exploited is at Tom O'Toole's Fighting Irish blog. Again, a remarkable aspect of the Euteneuer story is that it broke and has been persistently pursued on right-wing Catholic websites. The family of the woman whom Euteneuer abused were once admirers of Euteneuer, as are others who have blown the whistle on his exploitation of at least one (and allegedly several more) women to whom he ministered.

One reason the Schadenfreude charge of those who want to shut down conversation about this case (and about clerical abuse in general) is so absurd is that it's not the Catholic liberals who keep pushing it. It's not the Catholic liberals, who are being slammed as shamefully joyous about the Euteneuer story, who insist on keeping the heat on Euteneuer. It's his own former friends and acquaintances that do so. And if they are insistent on speaking, then I think it behooves all of us to listen, since the religious and political right normally protect their own with great ferocity--until one of their own does something so heinous and so much in contravention of the principles of the religious-political right that those on the right finally speak out.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:40 PM

Repentence and renewal in Dublin

IRELAND
Vatican Radio

In Ireland, a liturgy of Lament and Repentance for the sexual abuse of children by priests and religious was held Sunday in St. Mary’s Pro-Cathedral Dublin, within the framework of the Apostolic Visitation of the Archdiocese as mandated by Pope Benedict XVI.

Presided over by Papal visitor Card. Sean O Malley of Boston and Archbishop Diarmuid Martin of Dublin, today’s’ is the last of the group, following December's Visitor-led penance in Tuam cathedral and last month's services in the archdioceses of Armagh

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:37 PM

OM wil contact met misbruikslachtoffers

NEDERLAND
Omroep Gelderland

[met video]

ARNHEM - Het Openbaar Ministerie wil via zeden-rechercheurs in contact komen met slachtoffers van seksueel misbruik binnen de katholieke kerk.

Het gaat om zeker zes van de zeven zaken die de commissie-Deetman bij het OM heeft neergelegd. Het is nog niet duidelijk of het hier ook gaat om misbruik binnen het Don Rua klooster in 's-Heerenberg. Volgens het OM is er nog te weinig bekend over de verschillende incidenten om tot vervolging over te gaan.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:26 AM

3 op 4 priesters tegen celibaat

BELGIE
Nieuws

[met video]

3 op 4 priesters in Vlaanderen vinden dat het celibaat moet worden afgeschaft. De meesten van hen vinden ook dat vrouwen priester moeten kunnen worden. Dat blijkt uit een enquête van de krant De Standaard.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:23 AM

Philadelphia protesters demand changes to curb sexual abuse by priests

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

By Jennifer Lin
Inquirer Staff Writer

The wind was fierce, but it was nothing compared with the anger stirring among the 30 or so Catholics who protested Saturday morning outside the Cathedral Basilica of SS. Peter and Paul, demanding change in the face of new allegations of sexual abuse by priests.

A grand jury has indicted three priests and a lay teacher on charges of sexual abuse of boys. The panel's report, released Feb. 10, also accused a high-ranking church official of shielding the alleged abusers.

The charges have left Catholics "hurt and bewildered and horrified," said Elly Kline, 58, of Bensalem, who brought her 5-year-old granddaughter, Maria Kline, to the rally.

"We're all talking about it, but it's finally time to come together to do something," Kline said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:20 AM

Boston cardinal assessing abuse response in Dublin

BOSTON (MA)
ABC 6

BOSTON (AP) - Boston Cardinal Sean P. O'Malley is in Ireland conducting a Vatican-commissioned assessment of the Archdiocese of Dublin's response to sexual abuse.

The cardinal also is helping to preside over a service of repentance that was partly written by abuse victims.

O'Malley has been praised for how he has handled abuse scandals, apologizing, leading liturgical rituals, settling lawsuits and changing policies. He led three dioceses racked by scandal.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:18 AM

Sept prêtres flamands sur dix contre le célibat

BELGIQUE
Lalibre

En avril 2010, l'évêque de Bruges a reconnu avoir abusé de son filleul durant une dizaine d'années et a démissionné. Quelque 475 personnes ont dans la foulée déclaré avoir été abusées par des prêtres durant leur jeunesse.

Sept prêtres flamands sur dix sont contre le célibat des prêtres, pour l'accès des femmes à la prêtrise et ne se considèrent pas sur la même ligne que le primat de Belgique André-Joseph Léonard, selon un sondage réalisé par le journal De Standaard auprès des prêtres du nord du pays.

Selon cette enquête réalisée entre fin décembre et fin janvier auprès de tous les prêtres de Flandre (nord de la Belgique) et à laquelle environ un tiers d'entre eux ont répondu, 73,3% jugent qu'il vaudrait mieux supprimer l'obligation de célibat pour les prêtres.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:06 AM

Mass to be held for clerical abuse victims today

IRELAND
Newstalk

A special Mass is to be held in Dublin this afternoon for victims of clerical abuse.

Archbishop Diarmuid Martin will lead the service at St Mary’s Pro-Cathedral Church, along with Cardinal Sean O’Malley, who has been appointed by the Vatican to look into how clerical sex abuse cases were handled.

It is called a Liturgy of Lament and Repentance and the senior clergymen will wash the feet of a group of people who suffered in various ways through abuse as an act of apology.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:35 AM

Archbishop Martin to lead service for victims of clerical abuse

IRELAND
Irish Examiner

Sunday, February 20, 2011

The Archbishop of Dublin, Diarmuid Martin will lead a special service at St Mary's Pro-Cathedral Church in the capital this afternoon for victims of clerical abuse.

A representative of the Pope, Cardinal Sean O'Malley, who has been appointed by the Vatican to look into how clerical sex abuse cases were handled, will also be presiding over the special liturgy.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:32 AM

Christian camp speaks out about Scott Brown allegations

SANDWICH (MA)
My Fox Boston

[with video]

(FOX 25 / MyFoxBoston.com) - Administrators from a camp that Senator Scott Brown attended as a young boy are speaking out. News broke earlier this week that the Senator was allegedly sexually abused by camp counselor at a Christian camp on Cape Cod.

Senator Brown has not named the camp but 'Camp Good News' confirms the Senator was a camper as a kid. Stephen Brooks, with the 75 year old camp, says his grandfather started the camp in the 1930's. It is intended to give children, five to fifteen, a spiritual outlet.

Brooks tells Fox 25 he has reached out to Senator Brown but has not heard from him to date. He says he is a big fan and supporter of the Senator and would like to follow his lead in moving forward.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:21 AM

Sandwich camp reaches out to Brown

SANDWICH (MA)
Cape Cod Times

By Cynthia Mccormick
cmccormick@capecodonline.com
February 20, 2011

Officials at a Cape camp attended by U.S. Sen. Scott Brown said they applaud his coming forward with revelations that he was abused as a child by a summer camp counselor.

"I think what he did was courageous," said Dr. Stephen W. Brooks, a Hyannis surgeon and assistant president at Camp Good News in Forestdale, which Brown attended as a child.

The Wrentham Republican wrote in a memoir being released Monday that he was sexually molested when he was 10 years old at a religious summer camp on Cape Cod.

Brown told Cape and Islands District Attorney Michael O'Keefe he doesn't want to seek criminal charges against his alleged assailant. Camp officials say they do not know the man's identity.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:19 AM

Beyond the "grave": A father's (and mother's) statement about Euteneuer and their gravely harmed daughter

UNITED STATES
Fighting Irish Thomas

Tom O'Toole

"It's difficult to continue to write about that man, and I can't say that I enjoy it. I would rather be writing about the Irish's [Notre Dame men's basketball] seven-game winning streak," I told the father of the woman whom Father Thomas Euteneuer admitted to abusing. "But since it is God who gave me the ability to write, and He who sends you to me in good faith asking to help you edit and publish a statement about Euteneuer and your daughter, I feel I have no choice." Later, after I had found out this man had graduated from USC, I thought perhaps that God might exempt me from this story, but while the Lord admitted this might be the case if the story concerned Fighting Irish football, my prejudice against the Trojans did not apply here. The statement of the parents reads as follows:

We are the parents of the young woman identified in the public statement of Tom Euteneuer regarding his admission of being in an "inappropriate relationship" in which he "violated the boundaries of chastity" but short of intercourse. We are writing anonymously to protect our daughter's identity; she has been strongly advised to focus on her spiritual and psychological healing at this time, and not subject herself to the further traumatization that publicity would incur. Our daughter's severe difficulties in healing are currently being exacerbated by both the vicious and demeaning statements on the blogs and columns of Euteneuer's adherents and the falsehoods and gross minimization contained in Euteneuer's own (and, to date, only) public mea culpa statement. And, while we agree with Euteneuer that it is nobody's business--save the Church, the victims (and their families), their doctors, and God--to know any further details of what happened (until or unless the victims later decide to file criminal charges against Euteneuer) we can also say our daughter is gravely hurt by the fact that Euteneuer did not personally apologize to her as implied in his statement, and strongly urge him to do so through his bishop.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:10 AM

Monica Yant Kinney: Catholic grand juror on civic duty

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

By Monica Yant Kinney
Inquirer Columnist

Jerry Corrento is a Catholic of contradictions.

The 63-year-old great-grandfather serves as a lector and eucharistic minister at St. Timothy's in Mayfair, but he would be an odd choice to collect the offering. He'll gladly help his parish fix the roof but is rescinding an $1,800 pledge to the Philadelphia Archdiocese's $200 million "Heritage of Faith - Vision of Hope" campaign until Cardinal Justin Rigali resigns and the church pays for crimes against children.

Corrento also serves on the parish evangelization committee, but he never asks why folks stray. He knows. Some Sundays, he can't even believe he's back.

An orphan raised in part at St. Joseph's House for Homeless Industrious Boys, Corrento abandoned his "smothering" faith after graduating from Roman Catholic High School.

He fought in Vietnam, fathered seven children, and worked for the state, helping veterans find jobs until - at his third wife's urging - he tiptoed back to church at age 55.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:02 AM

Report: Cullen shielded priest

PENNSYLVANIA
The Morning Call

By Matt Assad, OF THE MORNING CALL

Before he was bishop of Allentown, Monsignor Edward Cullen helped protect a Philadelphia area priest who went on to rape a 10-year-old altar boy, according to a two-year Philadelphia grand jury investigation.

The Rev. Edward Avery, who earlier this month was charged with raping an altar boy in 1998, was accused of molesting a boy in 1993. At that time, Cullen helped deceive parishioners by instructing a monsignor to tell the congregation that Avery was being removed for health reasons rather than for the accusation, the report says.

Avery later was assigned to St. Jerome in Philadelphia, where he allegedly was one of two priests and a schoolteacher who "passed around" the altar boy, according to the 124-page grand jury report

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:55 AM

Sex abuse ‘a lie’ — suspended priest

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
The Chronicle-Herald (Canada)

By The Associated Press
Sun, Feb 20

PHILADELPHIA — A suspended Philadelphia priest has taken to the airwaves to defend himself against allegations of child sex abuse, which he called "completely and totally a lie."

Joseph DiGregorio was one of three priests removed from the ministry while their cases are being reviewed by the Philadelphia archdiocese after they were named as child molestation suspects in a scathing grand jury report. The archdiocese also pledged to reopen complaints made against 34 other priests still on the job.

"I hope I’m not being made a fall guy," DiGregorio said Friday on radio station WPHT. "I hope the diocese would not do that."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:52 AM

Archbishop Martin to lead service for victims of clerical abuse

IRELAND
Breaking News

The Archbishop of Dublin, Diarmuid Martin will lead a special service at St Mary's Pro-Cathedral Church in the capital this afternoon for victims of clerical abuse.

A representative of the Pope, Cardinal Sean O'Malley, who has been appointed by the Vatican to look into how clerical sex abuse cases were handled, will also be presiding over the special liturgy.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:49 AM

"Guide Us, Lord. Amen."

UNITED STATES/IRELAND
Whispers in the Loggia

As the hometown clamor continues, its fallout threatening repercussions across the wider scene, it's worth noting that this Sunday likewise sees a climactic moment of the Apostolic Visitation to Ireland, mandated by B16 in the wake of the country's torrential revelations of clerical abuse and chancery cover-up.

In a liturgy designed "principally" by survivors, the Papal Visitor to Dublin, Boston's Cardinal Séan O'Malley OFM Cap., will join the capital's Archbishop Diarmuid Martin in washing the feet of several members of the community "who have suffered in various ways through abuse."

The act of repentance in Dublin's St Mary's Pro-Cathedral will take place in the context of the Services of Repentance which were called for by the Holy See in each of the beloved Isle's four provinces; today's is the last of the group, following December's Visitor-led penance in Tuam cathedral and last month's services in the archdioceses of Armagh and Cashel and Emly.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:46 AM

Girls married to U.S. polygamist: docs

CANADA/UNITED STATES
CBC News

Two sets of parents from Bountiful, B.C., drove their 12-year-old daughters across the U.S. border in 2005 to marry a 49-year-old fundamentalist Mormon leader, according to court documents.

The documents, filed Friday at B.C. Supreme Court by lawyers representing the provincial government, say a 13-year-old girl suffered the same fate one year earlier.

The man all three girls were forced to marry was Warren Jeffs, then 49, the proclaimed prophet of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

Jeffs is in custody in Texas, awaiting trial on charges of sexual abuse of minors and bigamy.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:43 AM

A senator's secret: A survivor speaks out from an unexpected place

MASSACHUSETTS
The Oregonian

By Susan Nielsen, The Oregonian

Scott Brown, a U.S. senator, waited 40 years to tell anyone he'd been sexually molested as a child. The Massachusetts Republican's recent decision to speak out will have two sure consequences, if his experience is like those of other victims who've faced the dragon and gone public.

He'll risk skepticism and ridicule. In fact, the backbiting already has begun, just a few days after the first news accounts of his disclosure. But he'll also shrink the stigma of sexual abuse a tiny bit more -- simply by showing that bad things can happen to anyone, including boys who grow up to be senators.

Brown discusses being sexually molested by a camp counselor and physically assaulted by a stepfather in an unsparing new memoir, which will be released Monday following an interview Sunday evening on "60 Minutes." In published excerpts, Brown portrays himself as let down by the adults closest to him, then saved by a few caring teachers and a judge. He found salvation in basketball and, eventually, law and politics.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:38 AM

Church’s song of sorrow has evolved and deepened

BOSTON (MA)/IRELAND
Boston Globe

By Lisa Wangsness
Globe Staff / February 20, 2011

A few days after the sexual abuse crisis exploded in the Archdiocese of Boston in January 2002, Cardinal Bernard F. Law read a statement of apology to journalists.

“Judgments were made,’’ he said, “regarding the assignment of John Geoghan which, in retrospect, were tragically incorrect.’’

As an expression of remorse, his remarks that day won mixed reviews, and ultimately Law’s many attempts at penitence were not enough — he resigned before the year was out.

Today in Dublin, nine years and an ocean away, Law’s successor will offer a far more elaborate expression of remorse for clerical crimes against children. Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley, who is in Ireland conducting a Vatican-commissioned assessment of the Archdiocese of Dublin’s response to sexual abuse, will help preside over a “service of lament and repentance,’’ written partly by abuse victims, at which he plans to wash the feet of survivors.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:36 AM

Paedophile ex-priest in marriage breakdown

IRELAND/SCOTLAND
Irish Independent

By MAEVE SHEEHAN

Sunday February 20 2011

BILL Carney, the ex-priest exposed as a notorious paedophile, is living out of a bed and breakfast since his wife divorced him.

The former priest has been moving between rented rooms after the proceedings concluded late last year. The couple ran a bed and breakfast in Scotland before he was named as a serial child abuser in the Murphy report.

He would have been entitled to up to half the proceeds of the business, which was put on the market for more than £600,000 (€712,000) in 2009 but sold for significantly less.

News of the divorce will interest the many victims of the former cleric, who was forced out of the priesthood for abusing children.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:31 AM

February 19, 2011

New chapter in church sex abuse scandal is written in Cardinal Roger Mahony's final weeks

LOS ANGELES (CA)
Los Angeles Times

By Steve Lopez

February 20, 2011

Cardinal Roger Mahony is down to his last week on the job, but my invitation to the going-away party must have been lost in the mail.

Before His Eminence passes the torch, I put in one last request for an interview, to no avail. That keeps my record intact, but it's a shame because I had several questions about the latest scandal at the archdiocese. This one involves a priest who admitted he was a molester but remained in ministry. The good reverend was even appointed, if you can believe this, to Mahony's sexual abuse advisory board.

The priest in question is the Rev. Martin O'Loghlen, who was abruptly dismissed Feb. 10 from his post at a parish in San Dimas. The next day, another clergyman lost his job. Mahony accepted the resignation of Msgr. Michael Meyers, who was vicar of clergy for the archdiocese and directly responsible for vetting priests who are assigned to parishes.

These events transpired after a member of the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests went to the New York Times with information about O'Loghlen's past, and the L.A. Times and other news organizations followed with stories. In reading those accounts, though, it wasn't clear to me exactly what Mahony might have known about O'Loghlen and when he knew it.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:50 PM

Plea agreement resolves Utah man's rape case

UTAH
The Seattle Times

By JENNIFER DOBNER
Associated Press

SALT LAKE CITY —
A Utah man loyal to polygamous sect leader Warren Jeffs resolved a rape charge by pleading guilty Friday to lesser crimes in exchange for a sentence of 30 days in jail and probation.

Allen Glade Steed, 29, entered the plea to two, third-degree felonies - participating in an illegal marriage and unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor.

Each charge carries a possible penalty of up to five years in prison. But in a deal with prosecutors, Steed will serve just 30 days in the Washington County Jail and three years of probation.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:07 PM

Besloten verhoor van pater in zedenzaak

NEDERLAND
Omroep Zeeland

TERNEUZEN – In de zaak rond seksueel misbruik in de Rooms Katholieke kerk in Terneuzen wordt woensdag achter gesloten deuren een pater Salesiaan gehoord in diens woonplaats, Wijchen.

Het verhoor van de pater volgt op eerdere verhoren van bijvoorbeeld kardinaal Simonis en oud-bisschop Ernst. De verhoren zijn het begin van een mogelijke procedure die de 34-jarige Dave uit Terneuzen wil beginnen om schadevergoeding te krijgen.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:04 PM

Church: Accusations against Maine priest unproven

PORTLAND (ME)
NECN

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — Maine's Roman Catholic Diocese says that sexual abuse complaints against a priest stemming from the 1980s have not been proven.

The Rev. Thomas Lee was removed from the ministry in 2004. At the time of the alleged abuse, he was serving a parish in Boothbay Harbor.

In 2008, a church tribunal consisting of three priests determined the accusations were not proven. Bishop Richard Malone appealed that decision.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:00 PM

This isn't about settling scores: Scott Brown won't prosecute camp counsellor who 'sexually abused him 40 years ago'

MASSACHUSETTS
Daily Mail (United Kingdom)

By Daily Mail Reporter

Senator Scott Brown is not going to press charges against the former summer camp counsellor he claims sexually abused him 40 years ago.

The Senator also refused to identify his alleged attacked to prosecutors.

Last night he said he did not reveal his torment 'to settle any scores' but to let people know they can overcome hardships.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:02 PM

Henry Briggs: Non-violent regime change

UNITED STATES
Main Line

By Henry Briggs

I learn a lot from reading newspapers on the internet.

Last week, for example, I followed protests from Tehran to Cairo, attempts at non-violent regime changes to create a better world for the protestors’ children. It worked better in Egypt than Bahrain, Libya, Algeria, Iran, et. al, where hundreds of protesters were killed, probably because the Egyptian military also manufactures everything from dishwashers to Jeeps; presumably they want to be nice to their customers.

I learned that an American, Gene Sharp (BA and MS for Ohio State and D. Phil from Oxford) inspired the non-violence strategy. Sharp has written numerous books on the subject, noting autocrats, religious or secular, derive power solely from obedience of their people; if people don’t obey, there is no power. He even details 198 steps for taking power back. These teachings (derived from Gandhi) were involved in democratizing parts of the Soviet Union, the Balkans, and now the Middle East.

Also last week I saw a Philly.com report about the grand jury’s indictment of Monsignor William Lynn for failing to protect children from sexual abuse. Lynn, who was head of the Philadelphia’s Archdiocese Office for Clergy from 1992 to 2004, allegedly knew that Rev. Charles Englehardt, Edward Avery, and Bernard Sher had raped and sexually assaulted a boy at St. Jerome’s School from 1998 (when he was 10) to 2000.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:56 PM

Second priest removed in Salinas sex-abuse case

MONTEREY (CA)
The Californian

Written by
sunita vijayan

The Diocese of Monterey announced Friday that a second priest has been stripped of religious duties — the latest fallout from allegations that a Central Coast clergyman sexually molested a teenager in Salinas.

Diocese spokesman Tom Riordan said church officials learned Thursday that the priest failed to notify proper authorities after he was approached in November or December by the alleged victim, who told him about his allegations against the Rev. Edward Fitz-Henry.

"The priest didn't report it to anyone," said Riordan, adding that the diocese's policies clearly state that allegations of this nature must be reported immediately to the appropriate authorities.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:23 AM

Visiting priest suspended by Monterey Diocese for failing to report abuse allegation

MONTEREY (CA)
Herald

By DONALD MURPHY
Herald Staff Writer
Posted: 02/19/2011

The Catholic Diocese of Monterey said it suspended a visiting priest Friday after learning he was told by a parishioner about possible sexual molestation by another priest and failed to report the accusation to the diocese or to civil authorities.

While investigating allegations of misconduct by the Rev. Edward Fitz-Henry, the diocese learned that Fitz-Henry's accuser had told the visiting priest about the alleged molestation as early as November or December, diocese spokesman Tom Riordan said.

The diocese previously said it first learned about the allegations against Fitz-Henry on Jan. 7, and suspended him the same day.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:20 AM

Declaración del Arzobispo de Santiago, Monseñor Ricardo Ezzati Andrello

CHILE
Documentos de Iglesia

Como Arzobispo de Santiago, pongo en conocimiento de la comunidad eclesial y de la opinión pública la resolución de la Congregación para la Doctrina de la Fe respecto de las acusaciones contra el sacerdote Fernando Karadima Fariña.

En julio de 2010, la Congregación para la Doctrina de la Fe inició el proceso penal administrativo, en conformidad al canon 1720 del Código de Derecho Canónico (CIC). El proceso ha concluido con la emanación de un Decreto, enviado por el S.E. el Prefecto de dicho Dicasterio, el cual me fue informado el pasado 16 de enero de 2011.

Las denuncias y los testimonios acerca de los comportamientos del sacerdote Fernando Karadima fueron recogidos por el Promotor de Justicia en la indagación previa, y por el Cardenal Francisco Javier Errázuriz. Estos fueron sucesivamente ampliados con otros testimonios. Todos los antecedentes fueron considerados por la Congregación para la Doctrina de la Fe.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:17 AM

FATHER JAMES CHEVEDDEN CASE ON NBC BAY AREA

CALIFORNIA
YouTube

This links to a video on the circumstances surrounding the death of Father James Chevenden.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:14 AM

Piden que un cura no sea trasladado

ARGENTINA
Diario Jornada

Gastre está convulsionada. Y es que el cura José Kindslhener, más conocido como el “padre Pepe”, será trasladado después de 13 años de misionar en parajes y pueblos de la meseta central.

El nuevo destino del sacerdote de 81 años es Junín de los Andes, por decisión de la Inspectoría Salesiana. La carta que lo notificó le llegó hace pocos días y ordena que el 13 de febrero el cura deberá irse a Neuquén.

La novedad tomó de sorpresa a las autoridades comunales, pero mucho más a los vecinos, que tienen por el padre Pepe un especial aprecio y cariño. En Gastre ya circula un petitorio que los habitantes elevarán a la Inspectoría Salesiana para que revea la medida. Lagunita Salada, Blancuntre, Chacay Oeste y El Mirasol son algunos de los parajes visitados estos años por el cura. Allí también prometen que “no dejarán que se lo lleven”. Su costumbre es visitar a los enfermos y compartir largas mateadas con los vecinos.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:12 AM

Acusan al “padre Pepe” de abusar de una discapacitada

ARGENTINA
Patagonico

El sacerdote José Kindslhener, más conocido como el “padre Pepe” fue denunciado de haber abusado sexualmente de una discapacitada en la localidad de Gastre. El grave hecho se habría registrado el martes de la semana pasada, cuando la Inspectoría Salesiana dispuso su traslado después de 13 años de misionar en parajes y pueblos de la meseta central de Chubut. El cura fue imputado por “abuso sexual agravado”.

El desgraciado suceso que tiene como protagonista al sacerdote de la congregación salesiana José Kindslhener, de 81 años, conmueve a Gastre y a la comunidad católica de Chubut. El padre Pepe fue imputado ayer de abuso sexual, sin acceso carnal, en perjuicio de una mujer discapacitada de 41 años, precisaron fuentes judiciales.

En horas del mediodía en los tribunales de Puerto Madryn se inició formalmente el proceso penal con la audiencia de apertura de investigación que presidió la jueza Marcela Pérez Bogado. De acuerdo a la investigación judicial, el presunto abuso se habría registrado el martes 8 de febrero en el Hospital Rural de Gastre.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:08 AM

VOTF RALLY AT LOGAN CIRCLE IN PHILLY TODAY, SAT FEB 19, AT 11:00 AM

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Voice from the Desert

Press Contacts: Nancy Mortimer O’Brien 610-825-0355, cell 484-904-6067
Charles McMahon 215-233-4414 cell 215-534-7481

VOTF schedules rally for Saturday, Feb. 19, 11 a.m. at Logan Circle in Philadelphia

The Voice of the Faithful of Greater Philadelphia encourages all who are outraged by the revelations in the recent Philadelphia Grand Jury report to join us in a rally on Logan Circle in Philadelphia on Saturday, Feb. 19, at 11 a.m.

Here we will begin to organize a campaign to open up the statute of limitations in order to give the victims a chance to tell their stories and actually get someone to hear them. We are releasing the following to the print and electronic media: We the Steering Committee of the Voice of the Faithful of Greater Philadelphia hereby express our revulsion and disgust with the
criminal behavior of Catholic clergy exposed in the presentment by the Philadelphia Grand Jury of January 21st. We call upon the State Legislature to proceed with all possible speed to remove the statute-of-limitations protection afforded the perpetrators of these crimes.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:00 AM

Affirmation of spirit after residential abuse

CANADA
Winnipeg Free Press

Reviewed by: Duncan McMonagle

As Long as the Rivers Flow
By James Bartleman
Knopf, 272 pages, $30

This Ontario-set story is a generous fictional take on a gruesome topic.

For nearly a century, Canadian churches and governments removed native children from their families and relocated them far away in residential schools designed to teach them Christianity and white culture.

Some of the schools inflicted appalling neglect and sexual and physical abuse on the children. Although the last of these schools were closed three decades ago, their effects live on in the shattered lives of the people involved and their descendants.

Today the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada is leading an effort to establish new relationships among those affected.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:54 AM

A fighter THEN, a fighter NOW

CANADA
Winnipeg Free Press

By: Bill Redekop

PEGUIS FIRST NATION -- Ray Mason was one of the first aboriginal people to campaign for compensation for former residential school students back in the 1980s.

When Mason got paid $140,000 last year from the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement, it was the end of a journey.

At the age of six, Mason was transported from Peguis First Nation all the way to a residential school in Birtle, north of Virden. "I didn't know where I was," he said.

He ran away and was captured three times. After one capture, he was stripped and his hands tied to the top bunk in the dormitory. The angry supervisor strapped him so hard that Mason was bleeding and twice blacked out. The supervisor's wife intervened, afraid he might kill the child.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:52 AM

Where are the children BURIED?

CANADA
Winnipeg Free Press

By: Alexandra Paul

Posted: 02/19/2011

No one knows how many children died in residential schools.

No one knows how many graves were dug for them.

And there is no peace without knowing.

Research at the Truth and Reconciliation Commission is underway to get a grip on the approximate number of missing children and unmarked graves at residential schools in Canada, including on the Prairies.

Justice Murray Sinclair, chairman of the three-member commission, said the tragedy of the missing children is a chapter that casts a deep shadow on the saga of residential schools.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:46 AM

Conference to explore residential school effects

CANADA
Winnipeg Free Press

By: Staff Writer

THE Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs is inviting all Manitobans, aboriginal and non-aboriginal, to a conference to explore the inter-generational effects of residential schools.

The Hidden Legacy, to run Feb. 22-24 at the Winnipeg Convention Centre, will help participants understand the impact of the Indian Residential Schools on children of survivors. It is the first national inter-generational conference and workshop, and admission is free.

Keynote speakers include: Eduardo Duran, "Healing the Soul Wound: Moving Beyond Trauma;" Dr. Gabor Mate, direct participation workshops; Elijah Harper, "Breaking the Silence/Breaking Barriers;" Dr. Lori Haskell, "Disrupted Attachments: A Social Context Trauma Framework and the Lives of Aboriginal Peoples in Canada;" and Joseph Pitawanakwat, "Traditional Medicine/Embracing Gifts."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:42 AM

Vlaamse priesters steunen Léonard niet meer

BELGIE
HLN

Er gaapt een kloof tussen de basis en de kerkhiërarchie. Dat blijkt uit een enquête van een Corelio-krant bij Vlaamse pastoors. Alle Vlaamse pastoors hebben tussen eind december en eind januari een vragenlijst gekregen. 248 van hen (of ongeveer eenderde) heeft de lijst ingevuld.

Bijna 70 procent van de pastoors zegt inhoudelijk niet op dezelfde lijn te zitten als Léonard. Naast de afwijzing van Léonard vallen ook de vooruitstrevende ideeën van de pastoors op, luidt het. Zo vindt 73,3 procent dat het celibaat maar beter afgeschaft kan worden en 68,7 procent wil vrouwen niet langer uitsluiten van het priesterambt.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:38 AM

Hooghe: Relevante enquête

BELGIE
Het Nieuwsblad

De resultaten van de enquête liggen in de lijn van buitenlands onderzoek, zegt de politicoloog Marc Hooghe (KU Leuven), die veel studiewerk over de Kerk doet.

Deze enquêteresultaten zijn gebaseerd op een rondvraag bij pastoors die De Standaard zelf heeft georganiseerd. Een onderzoeksbureau of universiteit was daar niet bij betrokken. Wat dan met de wetenschappelijkheid van dit initiatief? Marc Hooghe noemt de enquête in elk geval ‘bijzonder relevant’: ‘De resultaten geven een duidelijke richting aan.’

Kunnen we algemene conclusies trekken uit deze resultaten?

‘Van alle aangeschreven pastoors heeft 35 procent geantwoord. Dat is relatief goed, zeker als je het vergelijkt met soortgelijke onderzoeken. In het buitenland zijn ook al zulke enquêtes gehouden bij pastoors, en daar schommelt de responsgraad tussen 25 en 40 procent, dus dat zit wel goed

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:36 AM

Meerderheid van pastoors staat niet achter Léonard

BELGIE
De Standaard

Zeventig procent van de Vlaamse pastoors zit inhoudelijk niet op dezelfde lijn als aartsbisschop. Ook is 73 procent tegen het verplichte celibaat. Dat blijkt uit een enquête die De Standaard bij de Vlaamse pastoors heeft georganiseerd.

De Standaard legde een enquête voor aan 724 Nederlandstalige parochiepriesters. 248 van hen (34,6 procent) hebben geantwoord.

De enquête legt heel duidelijk een kloof bloot tussen de standpunten van aartsbisschop Léonard en de pastoors aan de basis. De meest opvallende resultaten zijn de afwijzende houding van de parochiepriesters tegenover de controversiële aartsbisschop en hun vooruitstrevende standpunten over celibaat en vrouwelijke priesters.

Vangheluwe

Verder peilde de enquête naar een eventueel ‘Vangheluwe-effect’ op het kerkbezoek. Maar een overgrote meerderheid van de priesters zegt dat ze het wekelijkse kerkbezoek noch het aantal doopsels, huwelijken en begrafenissen zag afnemen door de affaire.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:32 AM

'We're crushed,' says director of Cape camp where senator says he was molested

SANDWICH (MA)
South Coast Today

By CYNTHIA McCORMICK
cmccormick@capecodonline.com
February 18, 2011

SANDWICH — After U.S. Sen. Scott Brown publicly revealed he was molested as a child at a religious camp on Cape Cod, an official at Camp Good News on Snake Pond in Forestdale confirmed Thursday that Brown had attended there.

Jane Brooks, who serves as director at Camp Good News, said the Wrentham Republican attended her family's camp but she doesn't know whether the incident he described happened there and said they are "sick about" Brown's description of the abuse.

"He did go here," said Brooks, whose family has run the Christian non-denominational camp for generations. "We're crushed."

Asked whether Brown intends to contact the camp where the abuse took place, his spokesman, Colin Reed, said in an e-mail to the Cape Cod Times, "Senator Brown did not identify the camp in (his) book and he does not intend (to) do so now."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:28 AM

Cape Cod camp confirms Sen. Brown attended there as child

MASSACHUSETTS
Fox 25

(FOX 25 / MyFoxBoston.com) - A Christian summer camp down on the Cape says Senator Scott Brown was a camper there.

An official at Camp Good News on Snake Pond in Sandwich has confirmed Brown did attend their school back when he was a boy.

Brown revealed in his autobiography that he had been molested at a camp down on the Cape, but refused to elaborate on the event or name which camp the abuse allegedly occurred at.

Camp Good News' director, Jane Brooks, told the Cape Cod Times she is not sure if the abuse happened at her camp, but said workers at the non-denominational camp are “crushed” by Brown's account of his abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:26 AM

DA vows to help Scott Brown if he wants to pursue case against molester

MASSACHUSETTS
Boston Globe

By Shelley Murphy and John R. Ellement, Globe Staff

Law enforcement officials and operators of a Sandwich religious camp today vowed to help Senator Scott Brown if he wants to pursue possible criminal charges against a summer camp counselor who sexually assaulted him four decades ago when he was a child.

Cape and Islands District Attorney Michael O’Keefe said in a telephone interview that he has not spoken to Brown about launching a criminal investigation, but plans to contact the senator based on media reports that Brown reveals in his new autobiography that he was molested at a Cape Cod camp when he was 10.

“I will reach out to Senator Brown only for the purposes of ascertaining his feelings about the situation with respect to whether he wants to do anything further,’’ O'Keefe said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:24 AM

Scott Brown played down claims of victim

MASSACHUSETTS
Boston Herald

By Peter Gelzinis
Friday, February 18, 2011

It wasn’t Scott Brown, insurgent U.S. senator and GOP poster boy, who repeatedly urged the voters of the 10th Congressional District last fall to disregard the anguished claims of a sexual abuse victim named Lisa Allen.

It was Scott Brown, who we now discover was sexually assaulted as a child.

Even as Lisa Allen came forward to accuse former state rep and Wareham police officer Jeff Perry of doing nothing while a fellow cop sexually assaulted her eight years ago, Brown didn’t just ignore her, he pooh-poohed the story

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:20 AM

Locals split on Brown abuse claim

MASSACHUSETTS
The Daily Item

By David Liscio / The Daily Item

LYNN - U.S. Sen. Scott Brown's revelation that he was sexually abused as a boy while attending a Cape Cod summer camp is sparking wide ranging public opinions about the issue and his motivation for telling the story.

Local mental health experts say the book could prove helpful to those who have experienced similar abuse.

Brown's detractors suggest the senator was driven to publish his memoirs as a way to attract publicity as part of his 2012 re-election campaign strategy.

"It's a good thing when people come forward. People often are afraid they will be criticized that they're doing it for personal or political reasons," said Lori Berry, executive director of the Lynn Community Health Center.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:18 AM

OPINION: Brown’s abuse story has value beyond politics

MASSACHUSETTS
Enterprise

BROCKTON — Pundits can parse the announcement six ways to Sunday, but Sen. Scott Brown’s revelation that he was sexually abused as a boy first and foremost must be measured on what it can do to reduce the stigma that prevents many such victims from seeking the help they need.

The Massachusetts Republican is slated to appear on CBS news program “60 Minutes” Sunday to discuss his upcoming book, “Against All Odds.” On Wednesday, the network revealed that during the pre-recorded interview, Brown talked about “physical, psychological and sexual abuse” he suffered as a child.

He tells “60 Minutes” anchor Lesley Stahl that he was sexually abused as a child several times by a camp counselor on Cape Cod and was physically abused by a stepfather. Immediately the Internet was abuzz with discussions on the political implications of the announcement. Was the admission – or the use of such a high-profile venue to make it – part of some political calculus?

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:16 AM

Camp, DA reach out to Brown on abuse

MASSACHUSETTS
Boston Globe

By Shelley Murphy, John R. Ellement and Brian R. Ballou
Globe Staff / February 19, 2011

Law enforcement officials and operators of a Sandwich religious camp yesterday said they would help Senator Scott Brown if he wanted to pursue possible criminal charges against a summer camp counselor who he said sexually assaulted him four decades ago.

But in a statement released last night the Republican US senator from Massachusetts suggested that he is not likely to push for a criminal investigation.

“I wish I had said something 40 years ago when these events occurred, but I was scared and embarrassed.’’ Brown said. “I want to be clear that the reason I write about these incidents in my book is not to settle any scores, but to let people know they can overcome the obstacles and hardships they face in life.’’

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:13 AM

7 op de 10 Vlaamse pastoors tegen celibaat en Léonard

BELGIE
THALS

7 op de 10 Vlaamse pastoors kunnen zich niet vinden in het beleid van aartsbisschop André Léonard.

Dat blijkt uit een enquête van de krant De Standaard bij 248 pastoors. 7 op de 10 pastoors zijn ook tegen het celibaat.

De Standaard heeft alle 724 Vlaamse pastoors aangeschreven, maar slechts een derde van hen heeft ook effectief geantwoord. Van die 248 pastoors blijkt 69 procent zich niet te kunnen vinden in het beleid van aartsbisschop André Léonard. Ze zitten inhoudelijk niet op dezelfde lijn.

Toch hebben de pastoors niet massaal heimwee naar de vorige aartsbisschop, kardinaal Godfried Danneels. Minder dan de helft (44 procent) zegt heimwee te hebben naar het leiderschap van Danneels.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:10 AM

Accused Priest speaks out on radio

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
6 ABC

[with video]

John Rawlins

PHILADELPHIA - February 18, 2011 (WPVI) -- A priest in the Philadelphia Archdiocese speaks out after being suspended pending further investigation in the sex abuse scandal in the Philadelphia Catholic church.

Father Joseph DiGregorio went on the offensive on Friday, saying he is angry and intends to fight.

"Angry, very Angry, and I intend to fight these accusations with every legal means at my disposal," claims Father DiGregorio.

DiGregorio is one of three Priests suspended pending further reviews during the week by the Archdiocese.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:04 AM

Priest defends himself against sex allegations

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Newsworks

A priest suspended as part of the Philadelphia sex abuse scandal went on the defensive and denied any wrongdoing during a radio talk show today.

Appearing on WPHT with Dom Giordano, the Rev. Joseph DiGregorio flatly denied that he had groped a girl - identified only as Donna - in the late 1960s.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:01 AM

Suspended Philly priest goes on radio to defends himself

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Daily Times

PHILADELPHIA - One of the three priests suspended by the Archdiocese Of Philadelphia this week after their names popped in last week's grand jury report on child sex abuse is speaking out.

The Rev. Joseph DiGregorio went on a local radio station on Friday and even took calls from listeners as he tries to defend himself from allegations he says are not true.

DiGregorio is quite adamant that he's done nothing wrong. He appeared on Dom Giordano's show on The Big Talker WPHT 1210 AM with his attorney Greg Pagano and steadfastly defended himself, saying he hopes he's not being made the fall guy for the archdiocese.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:59 AM

Ex-pastor found guilty of sex with teen

WORCESTER (MA)
Telegram & Gazette

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

WORCESTER — The former pastor of a Leominster church was found guilty yesterday of having sex with a 14-year-old female parishioner.

A Worcester Superior Court jury deliberated for about 5-1/2 hours over two days before convicting the Rev. Angel Morales of two counts of child rape aggravated by age difference, a crime carrying a minimum mandatory sentence of 10 years’ imprisonment. Rev. Morales, the 32-year-old former pastor of the Casa de Restauracion church at 134 Spruce St., Leominster, was acquitted on a third count of aggravated child rape.

Judge Richard T. Tucker postponed sentencing until March 11. The judge ordered that Rev. Morales remain in custody without bail pending sentencing.

Rev. Morales showed no emotion as the verdicts were announced shortly after 2 p.m. The victim’s mother sobbed openly and embraced her husband.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:54 AM

Diocese: Second priest failed to divulge allegations

MONTEREY (CA)
Hollister Free Lance

[with video]

The Diocese of Monterey has indefinitely suspended a visiting priest it says failed to divulge that an accuser - who is alleging sexual misconduct by a San Juan Bautista clergyman - notified him months ago about the claims.

A diocese spokesman Friday confirmed that its own investigator Thursday revealed the unnamed priest was approached by the accuser in November or December and told about the allegation. That second priest is from another diocese, but has performed duties over the past two years in this one, said Tom Riordan, the diocese spokesman.

Riordan said the diocese is not naming the priest because he is not accused of sexual misconduct. He declined to confirm specifically whether that priest, who was helping in this region because he has been taking care of some family members in the area, has worked at parishes in San Benito County. He also noted, though, how the priest has worked in four counties here - while the diocese is made up of Monterey, Santa Cruz, San Benito, and San Luis Obispo counties. Riordan did say the Diocese of Monterey has informed the bishop where the priest is based.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:49 AM

Priest Removed in Sexual Abuse Case

CALIFORNIA
KION

There's a treatment facility in New Mexico which helps people recover from addictions, but it's not just any rehab clinic. It's one Central Coast News learned is designed for priests.

Father Edward Fitz-Henry, now accused of sexual abuse, spent time there back in 1992. Right now he's on administrative leave from his work at San Juan Bautista Mission while facing allegations about abusing a now 21-year old man back in 2005.

Since breaking this story we've learned more about Father Fitz-Henry and how the Church handles these types of situations.

Central Coast News asked the Diocese of Monterey how much it knows about Servants of the Paraclete and if Father Fitz-Henry was sent there for treatment almost 20 years ago.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:46 AM

Clergy abuse in Delaware: Oblates settle with two victims

WILMINGTON (DE)
The News Journal

Written by
SEAN O'SULLIVAN
The News Journal

WILMINGTON -- Two priest sexual-abuse cases -- which were not included in the $77 million settlement with the Roman Catholic Diocese of Wilmington -- were settled out of court for $700,000 each.

The civil suit, filed in 2008 by Anthony Kramedas and Christopher Mauro, both 41, of Wilmington, alleged the Rev. Dennis Killion molested them when they were students at Salesianum School in Wilmington in the mid-1980s. The case was set to go to trial next week in New Castle County Superior Court.

While the Wilmington Diocese settled with about 150 victims of priest sexual abuse earlier this month, some 40 lawsuits against four religious orders that operate schools in Delaware -- such as the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales, who run Salesianum -- were not part of the agreement and remain pending in state courts.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:38 AM

February 18, 2011

Clergy sex group to hold 2 Philly meetings

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

Leaders of a Chicago-based international support group will hold two meetings in Philadelphia on Sunday, in response to “lots of pain and frustration” from victims and church-goers stemming from what they call “recent revelations of on-going archdiocesan complicity in clergy sex cases.”

One is strictly for those who have been sexually assaulted by religious authority figures. The other is open to the public. The events are being organized by a self-help organization called SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAPnetwork.org).

Everyone – Catholics and non-Catholics – is welcome at a 4:00 p.m. event in the Constitution Room of the Crowne Plaza Hotel, 1800 Market St. (215-561-7500).

“Child predators rarely stop molesting. That’s especially true of highly educated and savvy ones like most pedophile priests,” said David Clohessy, director of SNAP. “So we hope Philly citizens and Catholics overcome their fears and tell law enforcement what they know and suspect about these credibly accused predators so that kids will be better protected.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:21 PM

Catholic officials hide priest’s sex crimes for 5 yrs; SNAP responds

MINNESOTA
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 862 7688 home, 314 503 0003 cell, SNAPdorris@gmail.com)

For five years, Twin Cities Catholic officials have hidden from police a cleric’s repeated and devastating abusive sex crimes against a vulnerable young woman who sought his help. (Even now, after the predatory priest has been charged with heinous crimes, the archdiocesan public relations staff calls them “incidents” and claims to regret any pain she “may have” endured.)

A priest repeatedly sexually exploits, and even sodomizes, a devout, vulnerable parishioner who suffered from childhood sexual abuse and bulimia. In a tragically familiar pattern, Catholic supervisors learn of the crimes, tell virtually no one for years, and transfer him to another parish where all but a handful of the flock are kept totally in the dark.

For years, bishops have misled parishioners about abusive priests, claiming that alleged new screening processes were helping to “weed out” sexually troubled seminarians. This predator, however, was ordained in 2003.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:17 PM

Suspended Philadelphia Priest Defends Himself

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
My Fox Philly

[with video]

One of the three priests suspended by the Archdiocese Of Philadelphia this week after their names popped in last week's grand jury report on child sex abuse is speaking out.

Father Joseph DiGregorio spoke out on a local radio station on Friday and even took calls from listeners as he tries to defend himself from allegations he says are not true.

DiGregorio is quite adamant that he's done nothing wrong. He appeared on Dom Giordano's show with his attorney Greg Pagano and steadfastly defended himself, saying he hopes he's not being made the fall guy for the archdiocese.

Father DiGregorio has not been charged criminally, but he is trying to clear the air about allegations he and another priest had allegedly sexually abused a young woman 40 years ago while he was stationed at our Lady Of Loreto Parish in Philadelphia.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:11 PM

Former Ohio Valley Priest Sentenced for Sexual Assault Against Child

FAIRFAX (VA)
WTRF

By Bob Westfall

FAIRFAX, Va. -- A local priest is sentenced for sexual assault in a Fairfax, Va. courtroom.
Father Felix Owino was sentenced Friday to five years, with all but nine months suspended. Owino was credited for the seven and a-half months he has been in custody.

According to the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests (SNAP), 44-year-old Owino entered a guilty plea to the aggravated sexual battery of an 11-year-old girl in Virginia Circuit Court in Fairfax County back in September.

SNAP had urged the judge to give Owino the longest sentence possible.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:09 PM

Vatican Rules Against Chilean Priest

CHILE
The New York Times

By ALEXEI BARRIONUEVO and PASCALE BONNEFOY
Published: February 18, 2011

SÃO PAULO — After an internal investigation, the Vatican found the Rev. Fernando Karadima guilty of sexually abusing minors in Chile and ordered him to retire to a “life of prayer and penitence,” the Archbishop of Santiago announced Friday.

The ruling, announced by Santiago Archbishop Ricardo Ezzati, said Father Karadima, 80, would be relocated to a place where he will have no contact with his former parishioners or “persons that have been spiritually guided by him.”

The accusations by former parishioners against Father Karadima last year stunned Chile, a conservative and predominantly Catholic nation unaccustomed to questioning its priests, especially one as revered as Father Karadima. He had trained five bishops and dozens of priests, acting as a spiritual leader and father figure for young men who later accused him of molesting them.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:07 PM

Priest appears in court on sex abuse charges

MINNESOTA
Star Tribune

By PAT PHEIFER, Star Tribune

The Rev. Christopher Wenthe, dressed in green khaki cargo pants and a button-down shirt, made a brief first appearance Friday afternoon in connection with charges that he engaged in sexual misconduct with a woman who had come to him for guidance.

Ramsey County District Court Judge Rosanne Nathanson ordered Wenthe, 46, to have no contact with the victim.

After the hearing, Wenthe's attorney Paul Engh said Wenthe will resign his position with the Delano Catholic Community but doesn't plan to resign from the priesthood.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:04 PM

Second priest removed from duties in Salinas sex abuse case

MONTEREY (CA)
The Californian

Written by
SUNITA VIJAYAN

The Diocese of Monterey revealed today that a second priest has been stripped of religious duties in relation to the case involving a former Salinas clergyman accused of sexually molesting a teenager.

Diocese spokesman Tom Riordan said it was revealed by their investigator Thursday that the priest, whose identity wasn’t disclosed, failed to notify the proper authorities after he was approached in November or December by the alleged victim who told him about being sexually molested by the Rev. Edward Fitz-Henry.

“The priest didn’t report it to anyone,” said Riordan, adding that their policies are clear in that these types of allegations must be reported to appropriate authorities immediately.

He said Bishop Richard Garcia has removed the priest’s capacities to perform duties including mass in the four counties, including Monterey, under the Diocese of Monterey. Riordan said the priest has been performing duties in the four counties for the past two years and is from another diocese.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:01 PM

Belleville Diocese was not responsible for warning about priest abuse; asks court to set aside $5 million verdict

BELLEVILLE (IL)
News-Democrat

BY GEORGE PAWLACZYK - News-Democrat

BELLEVILLE -- The Diocese of Belleville did not have a responsibility to warn parishioners after receiving complaints that one of its priests sexually abused children, according to a 26-page petition to the Illinois Supreme Court requesting that a $5 million verdict be set aside.

The document, filed Thursday by St. Louis attorney David Wells on behalf of the diocese, asks the seven-member high court to first agree to hear the case, and then to reverse the findings of a St. Clair County civil court jury in 2008, and a 2-1 decision last month by the Fifth Appellate Court in Mt. Vernon, upholding the jury verdict. Those findings awarded $5 million to now 49-year-old James Wisniewski of Champaign, who alleged he was sexually abused for five years beginning when he was a 13-year-old altar boy at St. Theresa's Parish in Belleville by the Rev. Raymond Kownacki.

Belleville attorney Mike Weilmuenster, who represents Wisniewski, stated that the contention that a diocese is not legally required to warn parishioners about priests who sexually abuse minors is "appalling."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:58 PM

UNEDITED: Statement by Judy Jones, SNAP Midwest Associate Director, On Owino's Sentence

WEST VIRGINIA
WTOV

Fr. Felix C. Owino was sentenced today to for 5 years, ALL suspended except for 9 months, of with he has already severed 71/2 months, so he only has 1 1/2 months left behind bars for molesting an 11 year old girl.

We applaud the little girl and her mother for calling the police and helping prosecutors get this child predator away from kids, although we are disappointed the judge did not sentence Owino for more time.

Now more than ever, we urge anyone else who has knowledge or has been abused by this priest to contact law enforcement so that kids can be safer.

Owino worked in four dioceses (Pittsburgh PA, Allentown PA, Manchester NH and Wheeling WV) and spent time at three Catholic colleges (Duquesne University, Magdalen College and Wheeling Jesuit College). His last assignment was pastor of St Paul's parish in Weirton, WV.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:15 PM

Former WV Priest Sentenced For Virginia Crime

WEST VIRGINIA
Metro News

Staff
Charleston

A Catholic priest who at one time worked in West Virginia received a suspended sentence Friday in a Virginia courtroom in a sex-related case.

Fr. Felix C. Owino was sentenced to five years and nine months in prison after a previous guilty to plea to aggravated sexual battery involving an 11-year-old girl.

The judge suspended five years of the sentence and ordered Owino to jail for nine months. He was given credit for the seven months he has already been in custody.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:13 PM

Priest Who Sexually Abused Girl Gets Suspended Sentence

WEST VIRGINIA
WTOV

A former local priest will serve less than two more months in jail for sexually assaulting a child in Virginia.

Rev. Felix Owino pleaded guilty in September to inappropriately touching an 11-year-old girl last year in Fairfax.

On Friday, Owino was sentenced to five years in prison, but everything was suspended except for nine months. Owino was granted credit for time served, and he has already been jailed for 7 1/2 months. So, he will remain in prison for 1 1/2 more months.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:03 PM

Priest accused of sexual misconduct served two area parishes

MINNESOTA
Post-Bulletin

Posted: Feb 18, 2011

A Twin Cities priest who once served at the Church of St. Michael in Pine Island and St. Paul's Catholic Church in Zumbrota has been accused of repeatedly engaging in sexual misconduct with a young Twin Cities woman who had come to him for guidance.

According to criminal charges, the Rev. Christopher Wenthe, 46, who has been serving as pastor of St. Peter's and St. Joseph's parishes in Delano, was charged Thursday in Ramsey County District Court with one count of third-degree criminal sexual conduct. He was jailed in lieu of $15,000 bail.

Wenthe was newly ordained and second in charge at Nativity Church in St. Paul when the alleged crime occurred, between Nov. 1, 2003, and Feb. 28, 2005. He left Nativity parish in June 2005, then held positions in Zumbrota, Pine Island and Stillwater before moving to Delano.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:49 PM

Vaticano declara culpable de abusos al sacerdote Fernando Karadima

CHILE
emol

SANTIAGO.- A cinco años de haberse iniciado la investigación eclesiástica en contra del sacerdote Fernando Karadima, el Vaticano resolvió que el ex párroco de la iglesia El Bosque, es culpable del delito de abuso sexual en contra de un menor y otras víctimas.

La resolución de la Congregación para la Doctrina de la Fe fue dada a conocer por el arzobispo de Santiago, Ricardo Ezzati, quien indicó que "sobre la base de las pruebas adquiridas, el reverendo Fernado Karadima Fariña es declarado culpable de los delitos mencionados en precedencia y, en modo particular, del delito de abuso de menor en contra de más víctimas".

En consideración a su edad, la Santa Sede decidió que Karadima debe retirarse a una vida de oración y penitencia, cuya residencia será definida por el arzobispado de Santiago "dentro o fuera de la diócesis de tal modo de evitar absolutamente el contacto con sus ex parroquianos, con miembros de la unión sacerdotal o con personas que se hayan dirigido espiritualmente con él", explicó Ezzati, quien añadió que eso "no quiere decir que el padre esté en una cárcel y que no tenga posibilidad de juntarse con otras personas".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:45 PM

Defensa de Karadima confía en que revertirá fallo del Vaticano basado en jurisprudencia

CHILE
emol

SANTIAGO.- El abogado Juan Pablo Bulnes quien representa al sacerdote Fernando Karadima Fariña en la arista eclesiástica que se siguió en su contra por abusos sexuales y que hoy lo declaró culpable de estos ilícitos, aseguró que prepararán una buena defensa para apelar y lograr que se declare la inocencia del ex párroco de El Bosque.

"El deseo del padre Karadima es acatar la decisión del tribunal eclesiástico y del arzobispo Ricardo Ezzati", expresó el jurista.

El experto en derecho canónico dijo a Radio Cooperativa que desde su punto de vista "el Vaticano tiene por objeto velar por la tranquilidad de la Iglesia en Chile y todo el mundo. A veces toma medidas muy duras en primera instancia para tranquilidad de la sociedad y para dar cuenta que hay transparencia de la Iglesia Católica y una justicia que opera"

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:43 PM

Karadima insiste en su inocencia y prepara apelación ante el Vaticano

CHILE
Nacion

El padre Fernando Karadima Fariña (80) insiste en que es inocente y estudia su apelación ante la Congregación para la Doctrina de la Fe, que lo declaró culpable del delito de abuso de menor.

Karadima tiene 60 días para presentar el recurso, pero este plazo está corriendo desde el 17 de enero pasado, fecha en que el arzobispo de Santiago, Ricardo Ezzati, le comunicó el fallo.

La iglesia y, obviamente, Karadima habían guardado estricto silencio en torno a la sentencia. Sin embargo, el acoso de los periodistas de CiperChile obligó a monseñor Ezzati a informar.

Reporteros de ese portal de investigación periodística mantienen un punto fijo de día y noche en el lugar de reclusión de Karadima, el convento de las Siervas de Jesús de la Caridad, en calle Bustamante. Era inminente que se conociera la sentencia

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:40 PM

Vatican: Chilean priest guilty of abusing minors

CHILE
Boston Globe

By Eva Vergara
February 18, 2011

SANTIAGO, Chile—A prominent Chilean priest whose sex abuse case was closed by a judge has been found guilty by the Vatican.

The Vatican's Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith says Fernando Karadima is guilty of abusing minors and "must retire to a life of prayer and penitence." Friday's statement from the Vatican means Karadima can't meet with his former parishioners or other priests.

Four men accused Karadima of sexually abusing them for years in a wealthy Santiago parish where he was a respected leader in Chile's Catholic church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:38 PM

Aartsbisschop gaat moeilijke vragen van leerlingen niet uit de weg

BELGIE
RKnieuws

PUURS (RKnieuws.net) - Aids, homoseksualiteit, het celibaat, pedofiele priesters, condoomgebruik, ... De reeks vragen die de leerlingen van het Sint-Jan Berchmansinstituut (Sjabi) in Puurs samenstelden voor het debat met André-Jozef Léonard was indrukwekkend. De aartsbisschop gaf ook duidelijke antwoorden, die niet altijd goed onthaald werden bij zijn jonge publiek. Het debat was een onderdeel van het tiendaagse bezoek van mgr. Léonard aan het dekenaat Klein-Brabant.

Sjabi ging akkoord met een bezoek van mgr. Léonard op één voorwaarde. "Wij zijn een school waar leerlingen vragen mogen stellen, en dat wilden we niet veranderen voor de aartsbisschop. Léonard ging hiermee akkoord, en de studenten van het vijfde middelbaar stelden samen een vragenlijst op. Daar zaten erg zware en gewaagde onderwerpen bij, maar censuur was geen optie", zegt moderator van het debat, Peter Van Hoeymissen.

Pedofilie binnen de kerk was één van de belangrijkste onderwerpen. "Het misbruik kon jaren geleden gebeuren, omdat de kerk toen té veel macht had. Intussen zijn we nederiger geworden. Het celibaat is niét de oorzaak, ook gehuwde mannen misbruiken immers kinderen. Misbruik door geestelijken is in proportie met andere misbruiken binnen de maatschappij", aldus Léonard.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:29 PM

Saint? John Paul II slept in peace at the Vatican knowing that Fr. Marcial Maciel plus thousands of pedophile priests were raping thousands of boys

UNITED STATES
John Paul II Millstone

Paris Arrow

The new saint? John Paul II will be the biggest pathological lie of Benedict XVI for the young generation of Catholics. As the millions of Arab youth knocked down the 30 year despot Mubarak - and Tunisia and more Arab countries to come – (without the help of John Paul II who the Vatican said toppled down communism) the Catholic youth of WYD should learn from their Arab counterpart that it is no longer the pathological lies of the Vatican that will set them free from all kinds of despots whether it is the despot Pope or religion or political despots. What kind of a numb and callous cold hearted conscience did John Paul II really have during his 26 years of pontificate as he trot the globe as John Paul II the Great to the chant of `JP2 we love you” by millions of WYD youth when he did absolutely NOTHING to save thousands of little boys from thousands of his JP2 Army of pedophiles-rapists-priests?

Archbishop Diarmuid Martin said that he now sleeps better at night knowing that the most notorious Irish pedophile priest Tony Walsh is in prison “and not walking the streets of Dublin”. Tony Walsh was caught and jailed and thus is no longer free to walk in the streets of Dublin and sodomize more boys. But John Paul II and Cardinal Ratizinger and the Opus Dei slept in peace at night at the Vatican palaces during the 26+ years papacy of John Paul II while hundreds of thousands of little boys across the United States of America, Ireland, Germany, across Europe and around the world were successively raped by the Priestly Sodomy of Biblical Proportions by thousands of pedophile priests hence are aptly called the John Paul II Pedophile Priests Army.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:25 PM

What would Mama do?

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Newsworks

February 18, 2011

By Jo Ann Allen

The fact that it took a grand jury report to force Philadelphia's Catholic hierarchy to do something publicly about alleged child sex abusers among the archdiocese's priests would have made my mama shake her head.

She would have sucked her teeth and said, "Lord, ain't that's a sin and a shame."

My mother was an extremely devout Roman Catholic. Not only did my brothers and I go to Mass on Sundays and every weekday morning before school, we also went to confession Saturday afternoons and attended Novenas to the Blessed Virgin Mary on Monday evenings.

The Allen Family was in church one way or another each day of the week.

While having the utmost respect for priests, nuns and others in religious life, Mama also knew they were just people.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:22 PM

Christine M. Flowers: What a load of bigoted hooey

UNITED STATES
Philadelphia Daily News

By Christine M. Flowers
Philadelphia Daily News

THESE ARE the facts:
Some rogue priests committed crimes against children, and were aided and abetted by administrators who tried to hide evidence of the acts. While it is difficult to ascertain the veracity of many specific claims of abuse, given that decades passed before the victims spoke out, and very few of these cases have actually made it to court, no honest Catholic can deny that children and adolescents were sexually abused.

But this is what we deduce from those facts:

The whole church is guilty, including generations of men whose only crime was to devote their lives to Christ and their parishioners.

The leap in logic is stunning, but not surprising when you consider who's making it, and who has a particular interest in perpetuating the myth of the pedophile priest.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:07 PM

After sex abuse cases, an accounting

UNITED STATES
Washington Post

Anthony Stevens-Arroyo

What would happen if the bishops called for a special collection to maintain the institution and no one gave a cent? The result, I think, would be like the tale of the Emperor's new set of clothes.

We face a future in which the different segments of the church have radically different priorities but not enough finances for all of them at the same time. There might have been a time when the laity had no choice but to finance every plan of every bishop, but that day is gone. Transparency in financial matters has replaced the practices of past generations when dioceses had anonymous donors willing to provide cold cash for emergencies. Even the use of real estate holdings and stock options to pay for diocesan needs are now required to observe sunshine laws.

In the ideal situation, we should be able to continue successfully managing church resources to benefit the works of Catholic America. Parishes that are wealthy continue to pay yearly quotas and congregations in need are supplemented from general funds. Moreover, although not always understood by people in the pews, government funding supplies 67% of the resources today for what falls under the umbrella of "Catholic Charities."

The climate for happy cooperation between bishops as managers and the laity as contributors, however, has been soured. The pedophilia scandal by clergy and the cover-up by diocesan personnel offices have resulted in huge payout in damages and court demands. Several dioceses have declared bankruptcy. The laity often balks at bundling all money together so that giving to specific needs like education or social services to Catholic youth programs allows diversion of the people's money to court related damages.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:12 AM

The Father Euteneuer Story and the Charge of Schadenfreude: Misplaced Attempts to Shut Down Conversation

UNITED STATES
Bilgrimage

William D. Lindsey

When I began blogging about the story (and here and here) of Human Life International's former director Father Thomas Euteneuer early in the month, I suggested that this story was not going to go away anytime soon, though there would be predictable attempts from predictable quarters to shut the conversation down. As I wrote in one of my postings about this story,

And I predict that this story isn't going to go away simply because the usual folks shout the usual slogans to try to stop the conversation. The goal of church officials and church organizations will, of course, be to keep the lid on the discussion and hope people will simply stop discussing this story when another case du jour comes along.

And if we've learned anything about the Catholic church in recent years, it's that another case is drearily predictable down the road. Meanwhile, there are aspects to this story--the extensive influence of Euteneuer and HLI, the high profile Euteneuer has had in the American Catholic church in recent years, the truly bizarre fixation on the demonic and exorcism, and the fact that revelations offered by Euteneuer's former friends and fellow travelers are driving the story--that make me think it will continue to be discussed for some time. No matter how much the apologists try to shut down the discussion.

In the last several days, both America's "In All Things" blog and Commonweal's blog have had lively discussions of the Euteneuer story. Among several fascinating aspects of both discussions has been this: in both discussions, Catholics with strong sympathies for the conservative political agenda Euteneuer promoted have tried to shut conversation down by claiming that those who want to talk about the Euteneuer are engaging in Schadenfreude.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:36 AM

CAPE TOWN: Anglo-Catholic Priest Defrocked Following Tribunal for Whistle Blowing Gay Activities

SOUTH AFRICA
Virtue Online

By David W. Virtue
www.virtueonline.org
February 18, 2011

A priest with the Anglican Church of Southern Africa has been defrocked by his bishop, Merwyn Castle, on the recommendation of an ecclesiastical tribunal because he brought "the church into scandal and disrepute". He did this by questioning the sexual standards of his church and bringing to light multiple cases of homosexual abuse by priests with young men going back to the 70s. Castle is the bishop of the Diocese of False Bay. The tribunal was chaired by Peter Lee, Bishop of the Diocese of Christ the King, near Johannesburg in Gauteng province.

The Rev. Clifford Felix, 55, an Anglo-Catholic, married with two children says there has been decades of sexual abuse in Anglican dioceses in Southern Africa. In 1975, a man whom he later learned was a priest abused him. "I wanted his name. I saw no future without forgiveness."

Fr. Felix said many of the young men who have been abused are now priests who have become champions of their abusers. They can now be found in the highest levels of the church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:33 AM

Camp Counselor Sen. Brown Says Sexually Abused Him Could Still Face Punishment

MASSACHUSETTS
CBS Boston

By Karen Anderson, WBZ-TV

BOSTON (CBS) – There is a possibility that the camp counselor who sexually abused Scott Brown when he was ten-years-old at a Cape Cod religious summer camp could still face criminal charges.

According to Attorney Mitchell Garabedian, who has represented hundreds of sexual abuse survivors, a survivor can file charges until the age of 25 for a report of sexual assault.

However, he says in Massachusetts there is an exception: For every day the perpetrator or the sexual abuser leaves the state, the statute is extended for a day. “So he left the state when Scott Brown was a certain age and he’s not come back, Scott Brown could file charges now.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:29 AM

1,000 names on Deetman's abuse list

NETHERLANDS
Radio Netherlands

Former cabinet minister Wim Deetman, who chairs the independent commission investigating abuse in Roman Catholic institutions, is appealing to victims and perpetrators of abuse to contact the commission. The commission will continue to collect reports until 4 April.

Mr Deetman has asked the Conference of Roman Catholic Bishops and the Conference of Dutch Clerics to help publicise the appeal.

He added that the commission currently has a list of around 1,000 victims and perpetrators, although it still has to be checked for duplications. Since March of last year, the commission has received more than 2,000 reports of sexual and physical abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:22 AM

Bisschoppen ondersteunen oproep Deetman

NEDERLAND
Kerknieuws

De Nederlandse Bisschoppenconferentie en de Konferentie Nederlandse Religieuzen (KNR) hebben kennis genomen van de oproep van de Commissie Deetman aan daders van seksueel misbruik van minderjarigen in de Katholieke Kerk in de periode 1945 tot 2010.

De bisschoppen en de religieuze oversten ondersteunen de oproep krachtig. Dat laten broeder Cees van Dam, voorzitter van de KNR en bisschop Gerard de Korte, binnen de Bisschoppenconferentie referent voor seksueel misbruik, in een reactie weten.

Het contact met daders acht de Commissie Deetman een noodzakelijk onderdeel om een completer beeld te krijgen van aard en omvang van het misbruik. De bisschoppen en religieuzen ondersteunen de oproep, niet alleen vanwege het onderzoek maar ook omwille van de slachtoffers en daders van seksueel misbruik. Veel slachtoffers hebben jaren met een groot geheim rondgelopen.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:17 AM

Deetman heeft lijst met duizend namen misbruikers

NEDERLAND
DePers

De commissie-Deetman beschikt over een lijst met circa duizend namen van daders van seksueel misbruik van minderjarigen binnen de katholieke kerk. Voorzitter van de commissie Wim Deetman roept de daders op zich te melden.

Deetman doet de oproep donderdagavond in een uitzending van het televisieprogramma Kruispunt. De commissie stelde de lijst samen op basis van de 2005 meldingen van seksueel misbruik en fysiek geweld die binnen zijn gekomen.

De voorzitter geeft aan dat de lijst nog moet worden gecontroleerd op dubbeltellingen. "Maar de lijst gaat richting de duizend daders." De commissie weet volgens Deetman om welke mensen het gaat.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:12 AM

Deetman vraagt daders misbruik zich te melden

NEDERLAND
Haarlems Dagblad

HILVERSUM - Oud-minister Wim Deetman, voorzitter van de onderzoekscommissie die het misbruik in katholieke instellingen onderzoekt, heeft donderdag daders van seksueel misbruik opgeroepen zich te melden bij de commissie. Zij kunnen zich tot 4 april melden. Hij vroeg de RKK Bisschoppenconferentie en de Konferentie Nederlandse Religieuzen (KNR) deze oproep in de eigen organisaties bekend te maken.

Deetman zei dat de commissie inmiddels beschikt over een lijst met daders. De lijst moet nog gecontroleerd worden op dubbeltellingen.

De commissie ontving vanaf maart vorig jaar in totaal ongeveer 2005 meldingen van seksueel en fysiek misbruik, voornamelijk van slachtoffers. ,,Daar zitten een paar daders tussen'', aldus Deetman bij de presentatie van het eerste rapport in december.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:10 AM

Priest, 56, accused of sex assault at church

HAWAII
Star-Advertiser

By Gordon Y.K. Pang

POSTED: 01:30 a.m. HST, Feb 18, 2011

The priest charged in connection with the alleged kidnapping and sexual assault on the grounds of an East Honolulu church arrived in Hawaii only two weeks ago.

The Rev. Bothdan Borowic, 56, was charged yesterday with kidnapping and two counts of fourth-degree sexual assault. He was being held in lieu of $75,000 bail.

The assault occurred in what is known as the Makai House, a former convent on the grounds of Holy Trinity Church, 5919 Kalanianaole Highway in Kuliouou.

The priest was to lead services for the St. Sophia's Ukrainian Greek Catholic Mission, said Patrick Downes, spokesman for the Catholic Diocese of Hawaii. The priest was staying at Makai House, which is at the back of Holy Trinity Church. St. Sophia's holds services daily in a small chapel of Makai House, Downes said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:15 AM

Deetman: 1000 namen op misbruiklijst

NEDERLAND
NOS

[Commissie van onderzoek naar seksueel misbruik in de Rooms-Katholieke Kerk]

[met video]

De commissie-Deetman heeft een lijst van 1000 mogelijke daders van seksueel misbruik binnen de Rooms-Katholieke Kerk. De lijst werd samengesteld op basis van de 2000 meldingen die bij de commissie zijn binnengekomen. De lijst moet nog gecontroleerd worden op dubbeltellingen.

Deetman roept de daders van misbruik op zich te melden. Dat kan nog tot 4 april. Hij heeft de rooms-katholieke Bisschoppenconferentie en de Konferentie Nederlandse Religieuzen (NKR) gevraagd de oproep te verspreiden.

Als de geestelijken zich melden, krijgen zij volgens Deetman zo de kans om in het reine te komen met hun verleden. Als ze zich niet melden, zal de commissie ze alsnog zelf benaderen.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:11 AM

Deetman doet oproep in Nieuwsuur

NEDERLAND
Kerknieuws

De voorzitter van de commissie-Deetman, de commissie het seksueel misbruik binnen de katholieke kerk onderzoekt, Wim Deetman, doet donderdagavond in het tv-programma Nieuwsuur een oproep. Deze oproep is speciaal gericht aan daders van seksueel misbruik binnen de katholieke kerk.

Zijn oproep is onderdeel van zijn grote onderzoek dat eind dit jaar moet leiden tot een alomvattend eindrapport. Eerder werd al een tussentijds advies gepubliceerd.

Bisschop Gerard de Korte, namens de bisschoppenconferentie, en Cees van Dam, namens alle ordes en congregaties van de KNR, de Konferentie Nederlandse Religieuzen, reageren in de uitzending op de oproep van Deetman.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:09 AM

In Grand Jury's Wake, "We Have Fallen Short"

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Whispers in the Loggia

Over the six days since a second Philadelphia grand jury released a damning report that charged four priests and alleged ongoing mismanagement of clergy sex-abuse cases by the city’s scandal-rocked archdiocese, the fallout has been viewed as a “nightmare,” a “meltdown” and “a shambles” just within the church’s ranks.

Now, though, a concerted clean-up effort has begun... and the crisis’ next stage could well end up becoming something more still.

A bloodbath.

Under the glare of a fury toward the church unparalleled in this heavily-Catholic region's living memory, Cardinal Justin Rigali has set the stage for an occurrence without precedent over the decade since revelations of abuse and cover-up began erupting in earnest on these shores. Earlier today, the Philadelphia prelate ordered an "immediate re-examination" of accusations against "as many as 37" priests who, according to the grand jury, have remained in public ministry into the present despite reports which its investigation deemed “substantial” after the archdiocese ruled them unsubstantiated.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:07 AM

Commissie van onderzoek naar seksueel misbruik in de Rooms-Katholieke Kerk

NEDERLAND

Geachte heer, geachte mevrouw,

Bij de commissie die seksueel misbruik van minderjarigen in de Rooms-Katholieke Kerk onderzoekt, hebben zich 2005 personen gemeld. In hun meldingen komt het misbruik van henzelf of van een van hun naasten aan de orde.

Deze meldingen bevatten dikwijls tal van bijzonderheden: over de aard van het misbruik en over de omstandigheden, maar ook over medeslachtoffers, over getuigen en over plegers. Als gevolg hiervan beschikt de commissie inmiddels ook over een lijst van plegers. Een aantal plegers heeft zich uit eigen beweging bij de commissie gemeld. Met het oog op de stand van het onderzoek komt de commissie nu graag in contact met plegers. Hierbij gaat het om personen die werkzaam zijn of zijn geweest in het kader van de Rooms- atholieke Kerk. Als voorzitter roep ik hen op zich bij de commissie te melden.

Dat plegers zich melden is van belang voor het onderzoek. Met behulp van gegevens die plegers verstrekken kan de commissie een completer beeld krijgen van de aard en omvang van seksueel misbruik, van de omstandigheden waaronder dit misbruik kon plaatsvinden en van de wijze waarop verantwoordelijken hebben gehandeld of hebben nagelaten dit te doen.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:01 AM

Philadelphia grand jury declares open season on pedophile priests

PHILADELPHIA
madmikesamerica

by Michael John Scott on Feb 18, 2011

The Catholic church is scrambling to continue “the works of Jesus Christ” and to make his name “known and loved.”

When it comes to the Catholic Church, however, “loved” takes on many meanings, especially when it comes to the thousands of children its hypocritical priests have sexually abused, some of which were driven to suicide, with others tormented for a lifetime with the memories of the horror perpetrated on them by these “representatives of Christ on earth.”

As it turns out, however, the criminal justice system is determined to make things right. They are determined to do what the Vatican has failed to do and that is to jail the white-collared destroyers of innocent young lives.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:53 AM

Papstgegner planen Großdemonstration

DEUTSCHLAND
Der Tagesspiegel

Wenn Benedikt XVI. im September Berlin besucht, wird es nicht nur Jubel geben. Papst-Gegner planen zahlreiche Aktionen, mit denen sie auf Missstände in der Kirche aufmerksam machen wollen.

Während zwischen dem Vatikan, der Bischofskonferenz und dem Berliner Erzbistum die Details des Papstbesuches am 22. und 23. September in Berlin verhandelt werden, formieren sich auch die Papst-Gegner. Sie wollen mindestens eine Groß-Demo veranstalten, Podiumsdiskussionen und zahlreiche kleinere Aktionen, unter anderem mit dem Papst als Pappmaché-Figur.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:50 AM

Deetman heeft al 1000 namen van daders misbruik

NEDERLAND
Volkskrant

HILVERSUM - Oud-minister Wim Deetman, voorzitter van de onderzoekscommissie die het misbruik in katholieke instellingen onderzoekt, heeft donderdag daders van seksueel misbruik opgeroepen zich te melden bij de commissie. Zij kunnen zich tot 4 april melden. Hij vroeg de RKK Bisschoppenconferentie en de Konferentie Nederlandse Religieuzen (KNR) deze oproep in de eigen organisaties bekend te maken.

Deetman zei dat de commissie inmiddels beschikt over een lange lijst met daders. De lijst moet nog gecontroleerd worden op dubbeltellingen. Volgens Deetman gaat de lijst richting duizend daders.

Deetman spreekt de daders aan op hun achtergrond en overtuiging: 'Gelet op de kerkelijke achtergrond van de plegers ga ik er vanuit dat zij ieder voor zich de behoefte hebben om in het reine te komen met hun slachtoffers, hun omgeving en zichzelf. Het is bovenal tegen deze achtergrond dat ik een klemmend beroep doe op de plegers om zich bij de commissie te melden.'

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:48 AM

'Vangheluwe zal België moeten verlaten'

BELGIE
De Standaard

Aartsbisschop André-Joseph Léonard vermoedt dat het Vaticaan de Brugse bisschop Roger Vangheluwe zal verplichten België te verlaten en zijn kerkelijke functies zal afnemen.

Léonard deed zijn uitspraak gisteren tijdens een onmoeting met leerlingen van een middelbare school in Puurs, schrijft Het Laatste Nieuws. Een beslissing is er echter nog niet.

Vangheluwe bekende in april vorig jaar dat hij jarenlang een neefje seksueel misbruikt. De bisschop verliet zijn bisdom en vond een tijdje onderdak in de abdij van Westvleteren. Onder druk van Léonard verliet hij die abdij en verbergt hij zich sindsdien in 'het verborgene'.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:45 AM

Roger Vangheluwe moet mogelijk het land uit, denkt Léonard

BELGIE
KW

Brugge - Volgens aartsbisschop André-Joseph Léonard bestaat de mogelijkheid dat de voormalige Brugse bisschop Roger Vangheluwe van Rome het bevel zal krijgen om het land te verlaten. Dat verklaarde de aartsbisschop tijdens een ontmoeting met leerlingen van een middelbare school in Puurs. Het nieuws staat vrijdag in Het Laatste Nieuws.

Daarnaast zou Vangheluwe ook al zijn kerkelijke functies kunnen verliezen. "Dat is in het kerkelijk recht een zeer zware straf", zei monseigneur Léonard daar nog over. De uitspraak van Léonard wijst er echter niet op dat er al duidelijkheid bestaat over de sanctie voor Vangheluwe. Die beslissing ligt immers volledig in handen van het Vaticaan.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:38 AM

What Happens When Churches Close

UNITED STATES
National Catholic Register

by CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE 02/17/2011

WASHINGTON (CNS) — In mixed rulings on parishioners’ appeals of parish closings in three U.S. dioceses, the Vatican Congregation for Clergy upheld parish mergers, but in some cases said the church buildings that were closed must be reopened and “used in some manner as determined by the bishop.”

The congregation’s rulings, affecting churches in the Dioceses of Springfield, Mass., Buffalo, N.Y., and Allentown, Pa., were handed down in December and January but only came to light in recent weeks.

In the Springfield Diocese, the results of church closing appeals were publicized by members of several parishes Feb. 15. A diocesan statement released a day later said Cardinal Mauro Piacenza, prefect of the congregation, apologized to Springfield Bishop Timothy McDonnell for “having failed to provide the diocese with these decisions in advance of their public release.”

Five parishes in the western Massachusetts diocese are involved in the ruling: St. Stanislaus Kostka in Adams; Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, St. George and St. Patrick, all in Chicopee; and Our Lady of Hope in Springfield.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:23 AM

Pastor admits he had intercourse with 14-year-old girl

WORCESTER (MA)
Telegram & Gazette

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

WORCESTER — The Rev. Angel Morales, the former pastor of a Pentecostal church in Leominster, admitted under questioning by police that he twice engaged in sexual intercourse with a 14-year-old female parishioner.

A videodtape of the Feb. 18, 2010, interview with Leominster Police Officers Thomas M. Cuddahy and Kimberly Whitelin was played for the jury yesterday at Rev. Morales’ Worcester Superior Court trial on three counts of child rape aggravated by age difference.

Jury deliberations in the case were scheduled to resume today.

Judge Richard T. Tucker instructed the jurors before the recorded interview with Rev. Morales was played by Assistant District Attorney Anthony J. Marotta yesterday.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:16 AM

Bishop Hubbard petitions Vatican to formally, permanently remove Gary Mercure from priesthood

NEW YORK
Troy Record

By Dave Canfield
The Record

After decades at area parishes, former priest Gary Mercure was removed from his priestly duties, convicted of multiple counts of child rape and, on Wednesday, sentenced to spend at least 20 years in a Massachusetts state prison.

The lone remaining possible punishment could come from none other than the highest leader of the Catholic faith: Pope Benedict XVI, who has the authority to laicize Mercure, an infrequent and irreversible action that formally removes him from the clergy by decree.

Hours before Berkshire County Superior Court Judge John Agostini sentenced Mercure to 20 to 25 years behind bars, Bishop Howard Hubbard said he would refer the case to the Vatican to seek that action.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:13 AM

Changes in diocesan pension plans reflect national trend

UNITED STATES
The Pilot

By Carol Zimmermann

Posted: 2/18/2011
WASHINGTON (CNS) -- A handful of dioceses and archdioceses across the country have announced plans to change or freeze pensions for lay employees, following a nationwide trend affecting state employees and workers for nonprofit groups and private corporations.

The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis announced a change in its pension plan for lay employees, effective in January. The archdiocese, which had previously offered a defined benefit pension plan for its more than 6,800 lay employees and retirees, has switched to a defined contribution plan where employers contribute a determined amount to the employee's tax deferred annuity account.

The former benefit plan was frozen, meaning that as of Jan.31, workers' pensions would not continue to increase in value. Instead, the archdiocese will contribute an amount equal to 2.5 percent of an employee's salary to the employee's account.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:10 AM

1,000 potential abusers on church abuse commission list

NETHERLANDS
Dutch News

Friday 18 February 2011

A list of 1,000 potential abusers has been drawn up by the government committee investigating the sexual abuse scandal within the Catholic church.

The list has been compiled on the basis of over 2,000 complaints from people who say they were abused by church officials since the 1950s.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:05 AM

Boys’ home abuse case set to continue

UNITED KINGDOM
Pocklington Post

THE long battle to win compensation for the children abused at St William’s Community Home, Market Weighton, could yet run for at least another 12 months, despite a court ruling finding the Middlesbrough Diocese liable for its management.

Judge Hawkesworth, QC’s, decision to grant leave to appeal against his judgement, which followed an exhaustive trawl through the complex management history of the home, is likely to mean more legal wrangling before lawyers go through a final total of 142 individual claims to finalise damages.

The Catholic Church has previously been accused of “prolonging the agony” of the victims by the claimants’ solicitor but the De La Salle Brotherhood will certainly feel vindicated in fighting its corner after being found to be free of liability by the judge.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:01 AM

Bishop Hubbard begins healing process

QUEENSBURY (NY)
WNYT

QUEENSBURY - It was in the town of Queensbury more than two decades ago where Father Gary Mercure persuaded two young boys to come with him on a Berkshire retreat. Now that Mercure has been convicted and sentenced for raping those alter boys, Bishop Howard Hubbard on Thursday night traveled to Queensbury intent on healing the community.

About 200 parishioners, priests, and lay people attended the Healing Prayer Service at Our Lady of the Annunciation in Queensbury just a day after their former spiritual leader Father Gary Mercure was sentenced to up to 25 years in prison by a Massachusetts judge.

Bishop Hubbard told the faithful that the diocese "Misunderstood, misapprehended, underestimated and failed to confront candidly the problem of sexual abuse of children.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:58 AM

Creditors file suits in Portland ...

OREGON
The Oregonian

By Lynne Terry, The Oregonian

Lawyers representing a group of people who accuse Jesuit priests of sexual abuse filed 37 lawsuits Thursday in the bankruptcy involving the region's Jesuits, asking for about $3.1 million.

The lawsuits, filed in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Portland, claim that the regional order paid out money to various entities before declaring bankruptcy two years ago and that that money should actually be part of the order's assets.

Some of money went towards training priests and other funds were spent on faculty and student tuition at a time when abuse victims were seeking millions in dollars in damages against the order, said James Stang, a lawyer representing a creditor's committee that brought the lawsuits.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:55 AM

Twin Cities priest charged with sexually abusing woman

MINNESOTA
Star Tribune

By PAT PHEIFER, Star Tribune

Last update: February 17, 2011

The Rev. Christopher Wenthe was newly ordained and second in charge at Nativity Church in St. Paul, one of the wealthiest and most venerable Catholic parishes in the Twin Cities, when he allegedly repeatedly engaged in sexual misconduct with a young woman who had come to him for guidance, according to criminal charges.

Wenthe, 46, currently serving as pastor of St. Peter's and St. Joseph's parishes in Delano, was arrested and charged Thursday in Ramsey County District Court with one count of third-degree criminal sexual conduct. He was jailed in lieu of $15,000 bail. If convicted, he faces a likely sentence of four to almost five years in prison.

In a written statement, Dennis McGrath, communications director of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, said the archdiocese learned of "the matter" in September 2005. The woman was offered counseling and therapy, he said, adding that she was told she could go to police "but chose not to do so [then]."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:49 AM

Sexual abuse lawsuit filed against retired Catholic priest

KANSAS CITY (MO)
The Kansas City Star

By TONY RIZZO
The Kansas City Star

An unnamed Missouri man has filed a sexual abuse lawsuit against a retired Catholic priest and the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph.

The suit, filed in Jackson County District Court, alleges that Thomas J. O’Brien sexually abused the man when he was an 11-year-old student in St. Elizabeth Parish in Kansas City in the 1970s.

The suit contends that two other priests, who are not named as defendants, “parroted” some of O’Brien’s actions and made “lewd and inappropriate” comments in front of the boy.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:47 AM

St. Paul priest faces felony charge in sex case involving woman he counseled

MINNESOTA
Pioneer Press

By Emily Gurnon
egurnon@pioneerpress.com
Updated: 02/17/2011

A priest who served at Nativity of Our Lord Catholic Church in St. Paul has been charged with felony criminal sexual conduct involving a woman he counseled there from 2003 to 2005.

Christopher Thomas Wenthe, 46, was arrested Thursday and booked into the Ramsey County Jail, according to the county attorney and a sheriff's office spokesman.

The woman, who was in her early 20s at the time, told police Wenthe had counseled her about problems associated with her bulimia and sexual abuse she had suffered as a child, the criminal complaint said.

The meetings, including some in Wenthe's bedroom at the rectory, began to involve sexual contact, according to the complaint.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:44 AM

Lawsuits filed against Jesuits in Bankruptcy Court

PORTLAND (OR)
Washington Post

The Associated Press
Friday, February 18, 2011

PORTLAND, Ore. -- Attorneys representing a group of people who allege sexual abuse by Jesuit priests have filed 37 lawsuits in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Portland, seeking about $3.1 million.

The Oregonian reports that the lawsuits filed late Thursday contend that the order's Oregon Province paid money to various entities before filing for Chapter 11 protection two years ago, and the money actually should be considered part of the order's assets.

James Stang, a lawyer representing a creditor's committee that filed the lawsuits, told the newspaper that the suits do not contend the Jesuits were trying to protect their assets from abuse claims.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:40 AM

Parish not told priest never charged Our Lady Queen of Martyrs parishioners want public exoneration of Dempsey

NEW YORK
Your Nabe

By Joe Anuta
Thursday, February 17, 2011

No charges were ever filed against a popular Forest Hills priest who was investigated by federal officials last year amid allegations he looked at child pornography on the Internet, a spokeswoman for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement said.

An anonymous note about Monsignor Michael Dempsey was left Feb. 7 on a door of Our Lady Queen of Martyrs in Forest Hills, where he served from 1961 until 2010, according to a blog post by Forest Hills resident Christine Schott.

The note asked whether Dempsey was ever charged and, if not, whether Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio would notify the congregation, at 110-06 Queens Blvd., in the same manner the investigation was announced, according to Schott.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:34 AM

February 17, 2011

Yet another lawsuit alleging child abuse filed against Kansas City priests

KANSAS CITY (MO)
The Pitch

By Peter Rugg, Thu., Feb. 17 2011

If your priest was accused of molesting a kid, would you want him still serving?

​At this point, it feels like there are almost as many lawsuits in Missouri charging priests with child abuse as there are saints' days on the calendar.

The latest one to be filed brings up some familiar names to anyone who has followed the history of these allegations against Kansas City's Catholic leaders, naming Thomas O'Brien, Thomas Reardon and Michael Tierney. The lawsuit alleges that O'Brien exposed himself to and abused an 11-year-old boy, while Reardon and Tierney made advances to the boy. Even more disturbing -- O'Brien is allegedly still active in the diocese.

Both Reardon and O'Brien have long since been out of the priesthood. Tierney is listed on the Christ the King parish website under staff as the pastor.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:03 PM

Delano Catholic Priest Charged for Sexual Abuse

MINNESOTA
KSTP

A Catholic priest is charged with Criminal Sexual Conduct for having sex with a woman while he worked at Nativity Catholic Church in St. Paul.

According to authorities, Christopher Wenthe, 46, is charged with criminal sexual abuse that allegedly happened from late 2003 to 2005.

The alleged victim says she worked closely with Wenthe when she converted to the Catholic faith.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:57 PM

Priest from Delano charged with sexual abuse

MINNESOTA
KARE

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- A 46-year-old Delano man was charged Thursday in Ramsey County District Court with Third Degree Criminal Sexual Conduct.

A criminal complaint alleges Christopher Thomas Wenthe engaged in unlawful sexual relations with a woman who was receiving religious or spiritual advice and aid from him. ...

At the time, the complaint states, Wenthe was a priest working at Nativity Catholic Church in St. Paul.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:53 PM

Statement of the Archdiocese regarding Fr. Martin O'Loghlen

LOS ANGELES (CA)
The Tidings

On Feb. 10, a New York Times reporter called the Archdiocese of Los Angeles to inquire about the ministerial status of Father Martin P. O'Loghlen, a religious order priest of the Congregation of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus & Mary.

In consulting Archdiocesan records, the Archdiocese found a statement dated March 24, 2009 and signed by his Provincial Superior requesting that Father O'Loghlen be granted priestly faculties in the Archdiocese. Among the assurances made by the Provincial in the statement were that Father O'Loghlen "manifested no behavioral problems in the past that would indicate that he might deal with minors in an inappropriate manner"; and, that Father O'Loghlen had "never been involved in an incident or exhibited behavior which called into question his fitness or suitability for priestly ministry due to alcohol, substance abuse, sexual misconduct, financial irregularities, or other causes."

Based on the Provincial Superior's statement, the Archdiocese granted priestly faculties to Father O'Loghlen on July 17, 2009, assigning him as a resident at Holy Name of Mary Church in San Dimas.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:46 PM

Prosecutor: Chatham priest slaying suspect's recorded confession should be allowed in trial

CHATHAM
The Star-Ledger

By Ben Horowitz/The Star-Ledger

CHATHAM — Even though an investigator used a “ruse” to get Jose Feliciano to confess to killing a Chatham priest, the former church custodian’s statements should be allowed in his trial, a Morris County assistant prosecutor argued today.

Capt. Jeffrey Paul of the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office conducted the audio- and video-recorded interview with Feliciano at Morristown Memorial two days after the slaying. Paul told Feliciano he had a relative in the hospital, even though it wasn’t true. Paul testified he told Feliciano that so he would feel comfortable during the interview.

The conversation “was not something that would falsely put pressure on an individual to implicate himself,” said Assistant Prosecutor John McNamara Jr.

Feliciano’s attorney, public defender Neill Hamilton, is trying to get Feliciano’s confession thrown out on grounds he was tricked into making it.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:43 PM

Priests in Limbo

UNITED STATES
National Catholic Register

by JOAN FRAWLEY DESMOND 02/17/2011

Part II in a look at the problems facing falsely accused priests.

WASHINGTON — New allegations of clerical abuse have revived public outrage regarding weak oversight in U.S. chanceries, but there’s another related concern that worries priests: accused clerics denied due process by their own Church.

The explosive clergy sex abuse scandal and the U.S. hierarchy’s uphill struggle to regain credibility with the faithful and the public at large have resulted in pleas for forgiveness, promises of reform and financial settlements for thousands of victims.

But advocates for accused priests contend that the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishop’s “zero tolerance” policy has also spawned an unjust system that tramples on the rights of priests. In many cases, priests who have been found innocent remain barred from active ministry, while others who appeal their cases to the Vatican can be sidelined for years.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:36 PM

Priest Arrested In Kidnapping, Sex Assault Case

HAWAII
KITV

HONOLULU -- Honolulu police on Wednesday arrested a 56-year-old priest at an East Honolulu Church in connection with the sexual assault and kidnapping of a woman.

The incident happened at the Saint Sophia Ukrainian Greek Catholic Mission Sunday, police said. The priest, who is not from Hawaii, was visiting the church, they said.

A 55-year-old woman told authorities the priest held her against her will and sexually assaulted her.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:34 PM

A church's chance for redemption

PENNSYLVANIA
Philadelphia Inquirer

By Maureen Paul Turlish

Why isn't the Catholic hierarchy actively supporting legislation to protect Pennsylvania children?

Avoiding liability for sexual abuse on the grounds that the statute of limitations has expired is hardly a moral victory, but it's exactly what the church has done in Philadelphia and throughout Pennsylvania in recent years. Legislation to lift civil and criminal statutes of limitations would give victims of childhood sexual abuse the opportunity at long last to have their cases heard in court.

Most of the individuals mentioned in a 2005 grand-jury report on sexual abuse in the church, released under former District Attorney Lynne Abraham, could not be criminally or civilly prosecuted for their alleged crimes. Why? Because their enablers did not have the integrity to call the police, and the statute of limitations covering their alleged crimes ran out. In fact, the archdiocese issued a lengthy response to the report that was geared toward damage control and protecting the church at the expense of children.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:31 PM

Inquirer Editorial: No more excuses

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

Cardinal Justin Rigali said Wednesday that the Archdiocese of Philadelphia understands "the gravity of child sexual abuse." If so, there are a number of reforms the archdiocese should implement in the wake of the latest grand-jury report that alleges continued abuse of boys by priests and a cover-up by top church officials.

But history is not on the archdiocese's side. That is why state lawmakers must pass measures that help victims and force reluctant church authorities to see the light.

There can be no more window dressing and half-steps by the archdiocese, designed to quiet the masses. That was clearly the case after a grand-jury report in 2005 accused the archdiocese of allowing hundreds of sexual assaults against children to go unpunished, while protecting dozens of priests.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:28 PM

February 17, 2011 - Archdiocese To Provide For Public Comment During Consultation Phase On Future Use Of Seven Closed Churches

MASSACHUSETTS
Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston

February 17, 2011
Braintree, MA – The Archdiocese of Boston is conducting a consultation of the Catholic faithful who were parishioners at seven church buildings that were closed as part of a process that was initiated in 2004. The churches are St. James the Great, Wellesley; St. Therese, Everett; St. Jeanne D’Arc, Lowell; Star of the Sea, Quincy; Our Lady of Lourdes, Revere; St. Francis X. Cabrini, Scituate and Our Lady of Mount Carmel, East Boston.

Cardinal Seán P. O’Malley has requested this consultation about the future use of the buildings and the related properties. Specifically, the Cardinal is asking for comments on a possible “relegation to profane use” of these properties. This term is used in Church law for when a Church building is converted from sacred uses and will no longer be used for Catholic liturgical worship. Once a property has been relegated, any remaining sacred items are removed and the building can be sold and used in an appropriate and dignified manner.

This consultation gives an opportunity to the former parishioners of the seven Churches to give their input prior to any decision that the Cardinal may make. The consultation will last from February 18, 2011 to March 18, 2011.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:24 PM

Boston Archdiocese taking first steps toward selling contested closed parishes

MASSACHUSETTS
Boston Globe

By Jenna Russell, Globe Staff

In a first step toward ending its long struggle over parish closings, the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston today announced that it will solicit public comment on a plan to remove the sacred standing of seven closed churches, a change that under canon law would allow the buildings to be sold for other uses.

The churches, in East Boston, Everett, Lowell, Quincy, Revere, Scituate and Wellesley, have been in limbo for years, since the archdiocese ordered them closed and angry parishioners objected. Four of the parishes are occupied by protesters.

In response to appeals from parishioners, the Vatican has upheld the archdiocese's decision to close the parishes. But the parishioners are now asking the Vatican to intervene to prevent the archdiocese from declaring the church buildings no longer sacred -- a formal process the church calls "relegation to profane use.''

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:22 PM

Catholic Scandal

PENNSYLVANIA
Morning Call

Bill White

I have a good friend who is a devout Catholic. Every time I write about sexual abuse by priests and the church hierarchy’s institutional schemes to cover it up, he accuses me of being anti-Catholic.

Since my column today is about the latest grand jury report on sexual abuse within the Philadelphia Archdiocese, I expect another phone call from him. My answer will be the same I offered in today’s column and that I’ll offer in today’s blog: Read the grand jury report. You can do it here.

It’s 124 pages that should be a clarion call to Catholics and law enforcement authorities alike that nothing much has changed and that it won’t until these criminals — predator priests and their Catholic church leader accomplices — are sent to jail and church leaders start firing anyone responsible for allowing this to continue. And this report was tame compared to another grand jury’s 2005 report on the archdiocese. In the end, it made little difference.

In preparing today’s column, I spoke to David Clohessy, national director of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, both to get his take on what has happened in the Philadelphia Archdiocese and to confirm that this problem is not pecular to this region. I didn’t have space to fully report our conversation in my column, so I figured I would elaborate here, where space is no concern.

Is the local archdiocese atypical? He said, "I think they are atypical in that twice, independent professional law enforcement officials and impartial jurors have forcibly gained access to their files through subpoena and exposed the wrongdoing that is largely happening around the country." If people think the Philadelphia Archdiocese is unique, he noted, "The culture and structure of the church is nearly indentical across the country." This is not some loosely knit alliance of independent dioceses. This is a highly structured, hiearchical organization.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:14 PM

Repairing the broken church

UNITED STATES
National Catholic Reporter

by Phyllis Zagano on Feb. 16, 2011 Just Catholic

The heartbreak is that nobody in the Vatican seems to be in the dot-connecting business. No matter how many official reports or media exposés, no matter how many ad limina visits or episcopal memoirs, the bureaucracy just does not get it.

The Irish church is on the verge of total collapse. A third of the theologians in Germany are calling for reform. The US church suffers a scandal a day.

I am sick of it. You are too. Let’s talk.

But let me set some parameters. For starters, I don’t think there is anything wrong with vowed celibacy. Hundreds of thousands of men and women have lived contemplative or active lives dedicated to God and to the church -- the people of God. Many have lived in religious institutes and orders. Some have lived as consecrated virgins or as hermits.

Then there is the other celibacy, the celibacy required of most secular priests and all bishops in the Western church. That’s fine too, up to a point. Too many secular priests cannot hack it. Some are infantilized by its requirements.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:09 PM

Exorcist sex scandal raises questions on the Rite, and the Right

UNITED STATES
Commonweal

February 17, 2011, 11:50 am Posted by David Gibson

Father Thomas Euteneuer was the longtime head of Human Life International (HLI) who developed a reputation for blasting anyone he deemed insufficiently pro-life by his own exacting standards. (Reporting on the resignation of a friend of his, which I did when Scranton Bishop Martino stepped down, could also be sufficient to earn his ire, as Euteneuer characterized me as “anti-Catholic” and a “dishonest hack” with a “sick media mind.” That’s okay as I’ve been called far worse, and I was in good company in that Euteneuer included “many” American bishops in his condemnation. He also said Father Jim Martin should “hang up his collar” and Sean Hannity was a “heretic.” All in a day’s work.)

Euteneuer in recent years had also become a popular exorcist, flying around the country casting out demons. But in at least one case he also crossed sexual boundaries with a young woman. He resigned from HLI last August to wide praise from many Catholic conservatives and HLI itself. But lingering questions by some suspicious former fans of his and reporting by The Palm Beach Post (Euteneuer’s home diocese is in Palm Beach) finally shook out the truth last month. Or most of the truth, as there are apparent discrepancies between Euteneuer’s confession of a single lapse and allegations from several other women.

I have a write-up on the whole saga at PoliticsDaily.

Palm Beach Bishop Gerald Barbarito has told his priests that Euteneuer is “undergoing intensive evaluation and counseling” but said no decision had been made on when Euteneuer would return to ministry.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:52 PM

Irish priest says Vatican visitation offers hope

IRELAND
National Catholic Reporter

Feb. 17, 2011
By John L Allen Jr

Despite recent media reports suggesting that an American cardinal running a Vatican visitation sees the Catholic church in Ireland “on the edge of collapse,” the leader of a reform-minded group of Irish priests says the visitation has actually left him and other priests “far more positive” than they were just a few months ago.

Fr. Tony Flannery, a founding member of the Association of Catholic Priests launched last September, told NCR that his group’s experience is that the visitors are “really listening,” that they grasp the “depth and urgency” of the crisis in Ireland generated by revelations of decades of sexual abuse and cover-up, and that they have placed “no restrictions” on the conversation about reform.

Flannery spoke to NCR by phone Feb. 16.

Pope Benedict XVI called for an apostolic visitation of Ireland last year, in response to the sexual abuse crisis that has rocked the country. The process began in earnest in January and February of this year.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:50 PM

SNAP objects to Dolan's statement on false allegations

UNITED STATES
National Catholic Reporter

The following is a media statement from Survivor's Network for those Abused by Priests

SNAPnetwork.org

Dolan's false claims about false allegations

Also says his fellow bishops have “branded” innocent priests as child molesters

Statement by Peter Isely, SNAP Midwest Director (Milwaukee)
CONTACT: 414.429.7259

Archbishop Timothy Dolan of New York, who is the president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, has apparently not read a single report or yearly audit which he and his fellow bishops have paid over a million dollars to the John Jay College of Criminal Justice to conduct.

Astonishingly, Dolan, in a recent interview reported by John Allen in the National Catholic Reporter, said that his “perception” is that the majority of allegations against priests for child sexual assault are false. Dolan also said that the number of false allegations appear to be increasing each year. (link to story: http://ncronline.org/news/accountability/campaign-builds-rethinking-zero...

According to the yearly reports submitted to the US Catholic Bishops, Dolan could not be further from the facts. Indeed, according to the organization Dolan runs, the vast majority of child sex abuse report against priests are true and always have been.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:31 PM

SNAP's Peter Isely on Claims of Catholic Bishops' President Timothy Dolan That False Charges Against Priests Increasing

UNITED STATES
Bilgrimage

William D. Lindsey

Two interlocking stories today on the abuse front in the Catholic church, both demanding attention. The first--and more significant--statement depends on the second. The first article is a press release from Peter Isely of SNAP, the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests. Isely is the Midwest director of SNAP. Dennis Coday makes this press statement available at National Catholic Reporter. I haven't yet seen it at the SNAP site itself.

Isely is addressing statements made by the head of the U.S. Catholic Bishops' Conference, Timothy Dolan, in the second article to which I want to draw attention, which is also at the NCR site: an article by John Allen about a multi-pronged effort of a coalition of priests, bishops, and reactionary Catholic laypersons to try to call into question the decision of the Catholic hierarchy to respond--or at least give the appearance of responding--proactively to the abuse crisis in the Catholic church.

First, Peter Isely's article: it responds to a claim Timothy Dolan makes in a citation in John Allen's article, in which Dolan says that he has the "perception" that the majority of allegations of sexual abuse made against priests are false, and that false allegations are increasing. Readers will recall that I've been blogging about this diversionary tactic of reactionary Catholic apologists for the hierarchy since the new year began, when I noted that Los Angeles attorney Donald H. Steier had published a document claiming that the vast majority of abuse allegations against priests are false.

This began making the rounds of right-wing Catholic (and right-wing political) websites soon after Steier published the document on 2 January. In other words, it has all the appearances of being an opening salvo, for the new year, in a war designed to assist the bishops in continuing their cover-up of the abuse situation, as more and more information about the cover-up becomes public every day. Steier claims that most abuse claims are fueled by victims' desire to make a financial killing by suing the Catholic church--a constant meme of the Catholic right, and one that has recently appeared in a ranting and raving press release of Archbishop Dolan's pal Bill Donohue of the Catholic League. Donohue maintains that it is "unseemly" to ask if Archbishop Dolan, as the former bishop of Milwaukee, may have hidden some $75 million dollars prior to the Milwaukee diocese's declaration of bankruptcy. Donohue also insinuates that attorney Jeffrey Anderson's questions about where that money has gone are motivated by his own greed and by SNAP's desire to recoup revenues it supposedly lost last year.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:28 PM

Bavarian monastery to create compensation fund for sexual abuse victims

GERMANY
Deutsche Welle

A year after abuse allegations at a Catholic boarding school in Bavaria came to light, a report on the abuse has been presented and the school says it will establish a compensation fund for the victims.

The Bavarian monastery in the town of Ettal, one of many Catholic institutions at the center of a number of sexual abuse scandals in Germany, said on Thursday that it would create a 500,000-euro fund to compensate victims who were abused at its boarding school.

The fund would come from a sell-off of properties belonging to the monastery, which leading abbot Barnabas Bögle said "will not come easily, but it must be done."

"We must take the necessary steps to show that we are sorry," Bögle said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:26 PM

German Catholic school offers compensation for abuses

GERMANY
Monsters and Critics

Ettal, Germany - A Catholic boys' boarding school in Germany on Thursday offered ex-pupils financial compensation for physical and sexual abuse after a special investigator said their claims were true.

Ettal Abbey, a centuries-old Benedictine monastery in the Alps, is to set aside a fund of 500,000 euros (680,000 dollars) to pay up to 5,000 euros to each victim, depending on the gravity of the abuse.

Some sex abusers at the school are already dead, but police are investigating another former teacher. Most of the abuse happened so long ago that the statute of limitations prevents prosecution.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:23 PM

Priest Accused Of Sex Abuse; Lawsuit Filed

MONTEREY (CA)
KSBW

MONTEREY, Calif. -- A lawsuit was filed Wednesday against the Monterey County Catholic Diocese accusing a Salinas priest of sexual misconduct.

The civil lawsuit accuses Father Edward Fitz-Henry of abusing a 14-year-old boy seven years ago at the Madonna del Sasso Church. The charges include sexual harassment, sexual misconduct and inflicting emotional distress.

The alleged victim, who is now 21, said the sexual abuse took place when he was an altar boy and in the choir at Madonna del Sasso.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:21 PM

Child sex-abuse cases are lawyer's forté

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Daily News

By NATALIE POMPILIO & DANA DIFILIPPO
Philadelphia Daily News
pompiln@phillynews.com 215-854-2595

GINA MAISTO SMITH spent nearly 20 years as a Philadelphia assistant district attorney, prosecuting child sexual-assault cases. She trained prosecutors who work with child-abuse victims locally and nationally. She has advised institutions on how to handle these shocking crimes.

All of this, she said, has prepared her for her latest role: Re-examining the cases of dozens of priests accused of molesting children to determine if they should remain on the job.

"It's my belief that it's my life's work that has prepared me to take on this role with confidence," Smith, a partner with the Ballard Spahr law firm, said in an interview yesterday. "I will not look away from evidence of child abuse or the coverup of child abuse."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:18 PM

Pol’s ‘sending a message to many survivors’

MASSACHUSETTS
Boston Herald

By Margery Eagan
Thursday, February 17, 2011

U.S. Sen. Scott Brown is a political golden boy. Handsome, charming. Star power daughters and wife. Much to critics’ surprise, he’s hit almost all the right notes in Washington. He seems unflappable, reasonable, able to take the inevitable nasty hits.

He appears, in short, to be everything our stereotype of a child abuse survivor is not.

And yet Brown’s story of abuse mirrors the stories we’ve heard from scores of sexual abuse survivors right here in Boston — survivors many of us vilified, doubted and second-guessed.

Yesterday, when news broke of the sexual abuse Brown, at age 10, suffered at the hands of a camp counselor, he became a hero to many survivors and to a local attorney who’s represented hundreds of them — only to be vilified himself.

Brown said he never went to police or any authority. He said he never told anyone, even his mother. He recalled how his abuser threatened him: “If you tell anybody, you know, I’ll kill you. I will make sure that no one believes you.”

Said Brown, “When people find people like me at that young vulnerable age, who are basically lost, the thing that they have over you is, they make you believe that no one will believe you.”

Isn’t that exactly what adults abused by priests as children have said 10, 20, 30 years after the crime — only to be attacked. If it’s true, too many of us said, why did they wait to tell?

Brown waited 42 years. Few will be attacking him

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:15 AM

HOLY SEE BUDGET 2011: IMPROVEMENT AND UNCERTAINTY

VATICAN CITY
Vatican Information Service

VATICAN CITY, 17 FEB 2011 (VIS) - The Council of Cardinals for the Study of the Organisational and Economic Problems of the Holy See met in the Vatican on 15 and 16 February, under the presidency of Cardinal Secretary of State Tarcisio Bertone S.D.B.

Cardinal Velasio De Paolis C.S., president of the Prefecture for the Economic Affairs of the Holy See, outlined the Holy See's consolidated budget for 2011, as well as the consolidated budget of the Governorate of Vatican City State for the same year.

"The area of consolidation", reads a communique on the meeting, "concerns the offices of the Roman Curia, the Apostolic Camera, and the 'media' institutions of the Holy See: Vatican Radio, the Vatican Press, the 'Osservatore Romano', the Vatican Television Centre and the Vatican Publishing House.

"The Governorate, the administration of which is independent from the Holy See and from other institutions, supervises the economic requirements and territorial administration of the State, supplying the necessary support structures to the Apostolic See and its activities.

"The overall picture emerging from these budgets, though showing clear signs of improvement, is still marked by the uncertainty of the global economic system and by increased administrative costs. This is evident above all as regards the Holy See, which receives indispensable subsidisation from the free offerings of the faithful. The members of the council expressed their profound gratitude for the support people give, often anonymously, to the universal ministry of the Holy Father, and exhorted them to continue this good work.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:08 AM

New pedophile priest lawsuit is filed

KANSAS CITY (MO)
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

WHAT
At a sidewalk news conference, clergy sex abuse victims will disclose and discuss a new child sexual molestation and cover up lawsuit against a Kansas City Catholic priest and the diocese. It accuses
-- one priest of molesting one boy, and
-- two other priests of making lewd and sexually suggestive comments to him.

Victims will also
-- urge Kansas City’s bishop to suspend one of the clerics, who is believed to be in a parish now, and
-- beg anyone who saw, suspected or suffered crimes or misdeeds by any of the three priests to come forward.

WHEN:
Thursday, Feb. 17 at 11:15 PM

WHERE:
Outside the chancery (diocesan headquarters) at 300 East 36th Street, Kansas City, MO

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:02 AM

A Catholic priest scandal in Salinas opens old wounds.

CALIFORNIA
Monterey County Weekly

By Mary Duan
Thursday, February 17, 2011

I grew up on the South Side of Chicago in a neighborhood so Catholic that I don’t recall knowing anyone who wasn’t until I was well into my teens. My neighbors were Polish-Catholic, Irish-Catholic, Lithuanian-Catholic, Italian (the Catholic is implied there)… always an ethnicity attached, because we each had our own saints and feast days, but always the same religion. I knew about The Troubles before I knew about the Holocaust, and I believed WASPs were a stinging insect, not the exotic blond inhabitants of the Ivy League. Catholicism informed nearly every aspect of our daily lives: where we went to school, what we ate on Fridays, where you could find us on Sunday mornings, the markings on our foreheads one Wednesday a year.

It changed for me when I was 17.

I was working my regular fast food restaurant job on a Sunday night. Two guys not much older than me came in, drunk and funny, making fun of other customers, making fun of their surroundings. I took their order, laughed at their bad jokes, served their food and that was that.

Until I walked out into the parking lot to throw out the trash and one stood by while the other attacked me.

“C’mon baby, I just want to have some fun,” he said.

Fortunately, he was drunk and I grew up in a neighborhood where there was as much fighting as there was summer night games of kick-the-can. I was on the ground and kicked at him until he backed off. I ran back into the restaurant and my boss called the police.

And the police found the two men sitting inside the restaurant, finishing their meals.

As hysterical as I was, that’s when the real hysteria kicked in. The guy with the hands and “C’mon baby” started sobbing, “Please don’t arrest me, please don’t arrest me. We’re leaving for seminary in the morning.” ...

Since I refused to press charges, my mother sought the advice of our priest, who much to his credit told her, “I wouldn’t let him get away with this if I were you. You should report it to the seminary.”

We did. And that’s when the monsignor in charge of the Chicago area’s most prestigious training ground for future priests told me that despite the fact I had been wearing a brown polyester uniform, despite the fact the two men were complete strangers to me, I must have asked for it and enticed them to the parking lot because I laughed at their jokes. I smiled at them.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:45 AM

Priest arrested in sex assault of a woman on Sunday

HAWAII
Star-Advertiser

A 56-year-old priest of an East Oahu church was arrested today in connection with the sexual assault and kidnapping of a woman on Sunday.

The 55-year-old woman told police the priest held her against her will and sexually assaulted her about 1:55 p.m.

Officers arrested the priest about 1:30 p.m. today at his church, St. Sophia Ukrainian Greek Catholic Mission, at 5919 Kalanianaole Highway.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:41 AM

Local Priest Has Sentencing Date Set

WEST VIRGINIA
WTRF

WEIRTON -- A local priest accused of sexual assault has a sentencing hearing set for Friday.
Father Felix Owino will appear in court to be sentenced on February 18.

According to The Survivor’s Network of those Abused by Priests, or SNAP, Owino entered a guilty plea to the aggravated sexual battery of an 11-year-old girl in a Fairfax, Virginia Circuit Court in September.

SNAP is urging the judge to give Ownio the longest sentence possible.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:36 AM

The Bad Guys and the Good Guys

UNITED STATES
Patheos

By Marci A. Hamilton, February 17, 2011

If you have not read the 2011 Grand Jury Report on child sex abuse in the Philadelphia Archdiocese yet, and you happen to care about children, you need to sit down and read it right now: Report of the Grand Jury.

This bare-knuckles Report documents the Archdiocese's continuing victimization of children sexually abused by priests. Just read the "Overview" and you will see what I mean. There is one bad guy after another, and so much tragedy in the lives of the victims.

At the end, the Report urges Pennsylvania to pass legislation to eliminate the civil statute of limitations for two years so that all victims have a chance to come forward, even if the statute of limitations expired at one point. It is called "window" legislation, and was already enacted in California and Delaware. A New York Times editorial on Tuesday endorsed both the Report and the recommendation that States enact legislation to open the courthouse doors to child sex abuse victims.

At first, I thought I would write today about how such legislation typically has no chance, because the Catholic bishops pay their lobbyists the big bucks to kill such bills. Like vampires fear garlic, bishops live in terror of the truth that would flow from the untethered victims. But I changed my mind.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:30 AM

Philly priests suspended over pedophilia

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Times LIVE (South Africa)

The Philadelphia archdiocese has suspended three priests accused in a scathing grand jury report of being child molesters and has pledged to reopen complaints made against 34 others still on the job.

Joseph Gallagher, Stephen Perzan and Joseph DiGregorio are being removed from ministry while their cases are reviewed. Gallagher has no listed phone number; Perzan and DiGregorio haven’t returned messages.

A city grand jury last week charged four current or former priests and a teacher with raping boys in the 1990s or endangering children by covering up the crimes.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:25 AM

Teen tells of sex with pastor

WORCESTER (MA)
Telegram & Gazette

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

WORCESTER — The Rev. Angel Morales’ accuser took the witness stand yesterday afternoon and told a Worcester Superior Court jury that she and the former pastor of the church — which she and her family attended three times a week — had sex on three occasions when she was 14 years old.

The girl, now 15, testified that Rev. Morales, 32, of 1A Goddard St., Fitchburg, was pastor of the Casa de Restauracion church at 134 Spruce St., Leominster, when the sexual relations began. She said she and Rev. Morales, who is on trial on three counts of child rape aggravated by age difference, engaged in sexual intercourse once in her Leominster home and twice at the Motel 6 in Leominster in late 2009 and early 2010.

In his opening statement in the case, Assistant District Attorney Anthony J. Marotta said he expected the evidence to show that Rev. Morales admitted when questioned by police that he had sex with the underage girl.

“As you all know, the truth is often not as simple as it sometimes seems,” Rev. Morales’ lawyer, Leonard J. Staples, told the jury in his opening statement. Mr. Staples made reference to what he described as “inconsistent statements” by the teenager and reminded the jurors that the burden was on the prosecution to prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:19 AM

Salinas police investigate priest accused of sexual abuse

SALINAS (CA)
The Californian

Written by
SUNITA VIJAYAN AND LUIS CARLOS LOPEZ

A longtime Catholic priest on the Central Coast faces both a lawsuit and criminal probe into allegations he sexually assaulted a teenager several years ago in Salinas.

Police officer Lalo Villegas, spokesman for the Salinas Police Department, said officers are investigating whether the Rev. Edward Fitz-Henry sexually abused a teen at Madonna Del Sasso in late 2005 and early 2006.

The Diocese of Monterey, Villegas said, is cooperating fully. No arrest has been made in the case, which remains under investigation, he said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:15 AM

Springfield Diocese releases statement on church closing appeals

SPRINGFIELD (MA)
iobserve

Staff report

SPRINGFIELD – The Springfield Diocese has released an official statement on the results of church closing appeals that were publicized by members of several parishes yesterday.

The statement clarifies the decisions made by the Vatican’s Congregation for the Clergy regarding five parishes in three cities. The statement also notes that Cardinal Mauro Piacenza, prefect for the congregation, has apologized to Springfield Bishop Timothy A. McDonnell for failing to present the decisions to the diocese before their public release.

The complete text of the statement follows:

STATEMENT OF THE SPRINGFIELD DIOCESE ON CHURCH CLOSING APPEALS

The Diocese of Springfield has now received official notification on five appeals which were under consideration by the Congregation for the Clergy. These decisions involve St. Stanislaus Kostka Parish, Adams; Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Chicopee; St. George Parish, Chicopee; St. Patrick Parish, Chicopee; and Our Lady of Hope Parish, Springfield.

In the matter of Our Lady of Hope Parish, Springfield, the congregation has upheld the decision by Bishop Timothy A. McDonnell to amalgamate that parish into the new Mary, Mother of Hope Parish also in Springfield.

In the matter of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Parish, Chicopee, the congregation has upheld the decision by Bishop McDonnell both to amalgamate that parish into the Holy Name of Jesus Parish, Chicopee and allowed its closing as a place of worship. It should be noted that subsequently the bishop has allowed the Assumption Church to reopen temporarily while structural concerns at nearby Holy Name of Jesus Church are investigated. It is currently open as the place of worship for Holy Name of Jesus Parish.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:10 AM

Diocese: No services at St. Stan's

ADAMS (MA)
Berkshire Eagle

By Tony Dobrowolski, Berkshire Eagle Staff,

Thursday February 17, 2011
ADAMS -- The Vatican may have ordered the Diocese of Springfield to reopen St. Stanislaus Kostka Church, but the former house of worship will no longer function as a parish church, according to the diocese.

In a written statement released on Wednesday, the diocese stated that the Vatican's decision on Tuesday to reopen St. Stan's as a place of worship does not mean that the former church's parish will be re-established, adding that "any permitted use of the building will not be the same as when it was a parish church."

Diocese spokesman Mark E. Dupont did not return a telephone call seeking further explanation of the statement. Before the statement was released, Dupont said that with the exception of technical questions, the diocese would have no further comment.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:08 AM

Staff Editorial: Campus is silent on sexual assault within Catholic community

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
The Hawk

By The Hawk Staff

For decades instances of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church have been swept un- der the rug and ignored.

Now another accusation of four priests sexually assaulting children in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia has come about.

Instances of abuse have been reported for decades, and have been consistently regarded as taboo, particularly within the very institutions they most directly and pertinently affect. While the recent occurrences within the Archdiocese of Philadelphia have brought the problem to our backyard, we should not have been unaware of the seriousness of the situations until now.

Nonetheless, it is entirely shocking that the proximity of the occurrences has failed to rouse any response from Saint Joseph's University, a Catholic institution.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:04 AM

St. Stan's decision seen as divine intervention by saint expert

ADAMS (MA)
North Adams Transcript

By Jennifer Huberdeau

ADAMS -- For the Rev. Seraphim Michalenko, a world-renowned teacher of the message of the Divine Mercy and a leading expert on the of Saint Faustina Kowalski, the connections between a Vatican decree calling for the re-opening of St. Stanislaus Kostka Church and the sacred image of 'The Divine Mercy' seem to suggest a form of divine intervention.

"Today is the feast day of the Blessed Father Michael Sopocko, confessor of Saint Sister Faustina and the man who commissioned the original image of The Divine Mercy," Michalenko, 80, who recently retired as the head of the Shrine of the Divine Mercy in Stockbridge, said Tuesday, speaking from the pulpit of his home parish. "The Lord wants his divine mercy to be known. There is significance to the image of The Divine Mercy here, in this church. This image was the first image of The Divine Mercy to be publicly exhibited and enshrined in the entire western hemisphere."

The image, a painting of Jesus Christ with red and white light spreading from his chest, first came to the church in the mid-1940s. According to reports, it was to remain at the church until it could be transferred to its permanent home with the Marians of the Immaculate Conception, who were in the process of building their home at Eden Hill in Stockbridge -- known today as the Shrine of the Divine Mercy. The painting was never moved.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:00 AM

Diocese to St. Stan's: Forget the parish

ADAMS (MA)
North Adams Transcript

ADAMS - The Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfield says the future of St. Stanislaus Kostka Church won't be the same as "when it was a parish church."

The diocese this afternoon released its first statement with regard to the Vatican decree that it re-open St. Stanislaus Kostka Church as a place of worship. The church was closed in 2008 after three of the town's parishes were consolidated into one, and about 200 parishioners have held vigil since to keep it open.

In its decree, the Vatican's Congregation for the Clergy upheld Bishop Timothy A. McDonnell's decision to merge the Adams parishes, and today's statement from the diocese said, "It has to be stressed that the parish itself is not being re-established and that any permitted use of the building will not be the same as when it was a parish church."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:54 AM

Catholic Church Accused of Not Doing Enough Against Child Sex Abuse

MONTEREY (CA)
KION

MONTEREY, Calif- Four people held up signs in Monterey rallying against child sexual abuse after a man came forward claiming he was abused 7 years ago by Father Edward Fitz-Henry.

"I don't believe any real changes will happen in the catholic church until the pope himself opens up his secret files. Until they lose diplomatic immunity when it comes to child sexual abuse. Until the world is able to see what has gone on for the past 2,000 years to our kids," said Joelle Casteix, a victim of sexual abuse.

Today, at a protest outside the Diocese of Monterey, she said the latest allegations against Father Fitz-Henry are another example of the catholic church dragging its feet.

"The vatican reacts slowly, they still release secret documents that encourage bishops to cover up for child abusing clerics and we see it over and over again," said Casteix.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:50 AM

Retired Catholic priest named in sex-abuse suit

MIAMI (FL)
Miami Herald

BY JAWEED KALEEM
A retired Roman Catholic priest, who is in jail in Broward County awaiting trial on sexual-abuse charges and already named in 25 sex-abuse lawsuits, has been named in a new lawsuit.

In a complaint filed Wednesday in Miami-Dade County against the Archdiocese of Miami, a 29-year-old man identified only as ``John Doe No. 71’’ says the Rev. Neil Doherty, 68, repeatedly drugged and raped him in the early 1990s.

The lawsuit says the accuser was 8 years old when he met Doherty near his home at Keystone Trailer Park in Miami, where Doherty would don a priest’s collar and cruise the area in his car. The accuser was given drugs and abused “on more than 50 occasions” until he was 11.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:47 AM

Former priest and convicted sex offender resigns from church board

LOUISVILLE (KY)
WAVE

[with video]

By Maira Ansari

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - The Archdiocese of Louisville is taking a huge step admitting that a Louisville parish allowed a convicted rapist to serve on a volunteer board. On Feb. 15, we reported a new addition to a lawsuit against the church filed by a whistleblower. Those new developments have lead to a volunteer on a parish council, who is also a former priest, to resign.

Bruce Ewing, a former priest and a convicted sex offender, has been active on the parish council at St. Therese Church in Germantown until Feb. 15. SNAP, or the Survivors Network of hose Abused by Priests, are demanding answers for what they call an "irresponsible" move by the church.

"Catholic officials are notorious at keeping good records and it's ludicrous that they act like it's some complex process to find out who is or isn't on a parish council," said Louisville SNAP director Colleen Powell.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:46 AM

Victims and advocates praise Brown for going public about childhood

MASSACHUSETTS
Boston Globe

By Travis Andersen
Globe Staff / February 17, 2011

Victims of child sex abuse and their advocates yesterday praised Senator Scott Brown for going public with the abuse he suffered as a child at a summer camp and said they hope his acknowledgment will prompt elected officials to strengthen laws against predators, and convince more victims to come forward.

“Senator Brown’s decision to speak publicly about his own abuse helps lend a voice to survivors around the world,’’ said victim Gary Bergeron, 48, of Salem, N.H., in a phone interview.

Bergeron, who was abused as a middle school student by a Catholic priest in Lowell, said Brown’s admission comes after victims of priestly abuse blazed a trail in the Boston area in 2002, when the clergy abuse scandal first broke.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:44 AM

Archdiocese removes three priests

PENNSYLVANIA
Bucks County Courier Times

By: CHRIS ENGLISH
Bucks County Courier Times

Also, an attorney was hired to "re-examine" the findings of a recent grand jury report alleging new sex abuse cases. For many residents, these actions aren't enough.

Some local residents were somewhat encouraged by the latest round of steps taken by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia in response to a grand jury report alleging sexual abuse against children by several priests and a school teacher in the archdiocese.

However, a lot of anger remains over the situation in general.

On Wednesday, Cardinal Justin Rigali, head of the archdiocese, placed three priests named in the last week's grand jury report on administrative leave and announced that all cases of concern of the Philadelphia grand jury will be re-examined. The grand jury asserted that as many as 37 priests remained in active ministry with credible allegations of child sexual abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:40 AM

Alleged victim sues Diocese as Salinas police examine molestation reports.

CALIFORNIA
Monterey County Weekly

By Mary Duan, Sara Rubin
Thursday, February 17, 2011

The beloved pastor of the Old Mission San Juan Bautista church has been removed from his post as Salinas police investigate allegations that he repeatedly molested a teenage boy while head pastor at Madonna del Sasso church.


Meanwhile, the alleged victim has retained a Newport Beach-based law firm that specializes in clergy abuse claims, and filed suit on Tuesday against Fitz-Henry and the Diocese of Monterey in Monterey County Superior Court.


Police say the allegations against Rev. Edward Fitz-Henry don’t jibe with findings of an investigation commissioned by the Diocese of Monterey. The entire case has potential to throw church policy into conflict with the law, and further tarnish the Diocese’s reputation.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:38 AM

Ronnie Polaneczky: Columnist argues reformed Catholic church has the right idea

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Daily News

By Ronnie Polaneczky
Philadelphia Daily News
Daily News Columnist

I GET ALONG great with my boss, Gar Joseph. He's a smart, easygoing guy who lets me write about any topic that grabs my heart or boils my bile.

In the years he's been editing my column, we've never had a disagreement that wasn't resolved with more flexibility on his part or more elbow grease on mine.

That changed yesterday when we clashed so loudly, I'll bet the Broad Street vendors outside the newsroom heard our yelling.

At least we agreed on what started the fight: The Catholic Church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:35 AM

Church addresses abuse allegations

SALINAS (CA)
Monterey Herald

By LARRY PARSONS
Herald Staff Writer

A Catholic priest's suspension amid allegations that he molested a former altar boy at a S
Salinas church prompted criticism and a defense Wednesday of church officials' handling of the case.

A Diocese of Monterey spokesman said the diocese takes "any and all allegations of sexual misconduct very seriously" and immediately suspended the Rev. Edward Fitz-Henry in early January after first being apprised of the allegation against him.

But supporters of an advocacy group for people abused by clergy members called on the diocese to open its records on all priests and said a new civil suit filed by the former altar boy will be a means "to get to the truth."

"He is an extra-brave young man," said Joelle Casteix, regional director of Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, a national advocacy group also called SNAP.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:31 AM

Archbishop of Philadelphia orders investigation ...

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Daily Mail (United Kingdom)

By Daily Mail Reporter
Last updated at 11:58 AM on 17th February 2011

The archbishop of Philadelphia has said that as many as 37 priests in the Catholic Church will be investigated after they were identified in a grand jury report as 'remaining in active ministry' despite facing credible allegations of child sexual abuse.

Cardinal Justin Rigali also announced that three priests had been placed on administrative leave pending a review.

Speaking in a news release, Rigali added that these actions would build upon changes already announced by the church to deal with the victims of these crimes.
These will include hiring a victim services consultant and compliance officers, as well as a delegate for investigations.

'Sexual abuse of children is a crime. It is always wrong and gravely evil,' Rigali said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:27 AM

February 16, 2011

Archdiocese faces another suit alleging abuse by priest

MIAMI (FL)
Sun Sentinel

By Paula McMahon, Sun Sentinel

A Miami lawyer who specializes in civil lawsuits against pedophile priests filed a new case Wednesday against the Archdiocese of Miami, alleging former priest Neil Doherty molested a young boy on more than 50 occasions, starting in the late 1980s.

Jeffrey Herman has filed more than 20 such cases involving allegations against Doherty, of Lake Worth. He retired in 2002 after serving in the Catholic parishes of St Vincent's in Margate and St. Anthony's in Fort Lauderdale.

The archdiocese has denied any wrongdoing in its handling of Doherty.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:39 PM

Latest report on priest scandal shows church still has wrong priorities

PENNSYLVANIA
The Morning Call

Bill White

When you're caught doing something wrong, David Clohessy says, there are two choices.

Choice One is to stop doing it. Choice Two? Work even more diligently and shrewdly at concealing it.

Clohessy, national director of the national Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, says last week's damning grand jury report on the Philadelphia Archdiocese, the second in less than six years, demonstrates that the church hierarchy still is opting for Choice Two.

"It's so disheartening," he told me, "because arguably there is no archdiocese in America that has had more incentive to reform. Yet it has clearly changed so very little."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:37 PM

Former priest Gary Mercure sentenced to 20 to 25 years in prison for raping children

PITTSFIELD (MA)
The Saratogian

By DAVE CANFIELD
For The Saratogian

PITTSFIELD, Mass. – Calling him a “common thug” judge sentenced former Catholic priest and convicted child rapist Gary Mercure to 20 to 25 years in prison.

“You are not a priest you are nor more than a common thug,” said Judge John Agostini to the 62-year-old. “You injured them not with weapons but with the tools you were given to help them.”

Mercure did not give a statement but smiled as he exited the courtroom.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:35 PM

Sen. Brown Says He Was Abused by Camp Counselor as a Child

MASSACHUSETTS
Fox News

Sen. Scott Brown has revealed he was sexually abused by a camp counselor as a child.

The Massachusetts Republican, who rose to political stardom when he won the seat held by the late Ted Kennedy a year ago, is expected to discuss the childhood abuse in his book, "Against All Odds." ...

A Brown aide noted that when he was a state legislator, Brown worked on a number of bills to toughen sex-offender laws and strengthen protections for victims. He also proposes eliminating the statute of limitations for sexual abuse.

According to CBS, Brown explained in the interview that writing about the incidents felt cathartic. In the interview, he recalled how he also at one point wished he could have bought the house where he used to live with one abusive stepfather when it came up for sale -- so he could destroy it.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:29 PM

Sex abuse victims blast latest Rigali moves

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

Statement by Karen Polesir, SNAP Philadelphia Director (267 992 9463, karenpolesir@yahoo.com)

For the second time in week, Rigali hires a new lawyer and calls it ‘progress. It isn’t.

The first time, he hired a therapist/lawyer. Now he hires a defense lawyer. (Ms. Smith was a prosecutor initially but seems to have spent her recent years “guiding” institutions that face abuse charges and “managing misconduct allegations.” This hardly qualifies her as a ‘reformer.’)

Remember that the last time Rigali brought in a consultant, he ignored all 11 of her recommendations.

Rigali needs to fire, not hire, more staff. If the heads of complicit officials role, maybe other church staffers will start reporting, not concealing, child sex crimes. But rarely are any Catholic supervisors disciplined for ignoring or hiding child sex crimes, so many of them keep right on ignoring and hiding child sex crimes.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:27 PM

Priest gets up to 25 years in prison for child rapes

PITTSFIELD (MA)
Berkshire Eagle

By Conor Berry, Berkshire Eagle Staff

Wednesday February 16, 2011
This article has been updated since it was first posted at 2:46 p.m.

PITTSFIELD -- Calling Gary Mercure a "common thug" who committed evil acts while masquerading as a priest, Berkshire Superior Court Judge John A. Agostini today sentenced the former New York clergyman to up to 25 years in prison for raping two altar boys in the Berkshires in 1980s.

Agostini admonished Mercure before handing down what could essentially amount to a life sentence for the 62-year-old Troy, N.Y., man, who was permanently removed as a priest by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany, N.Y., but technically remains a priest in the eyes of the Vatican.

To that end, Albany Bishop Howard Hubbard today said the diocese will now forward Mercure's case to the Vatican, which is the only body with authority to laicize priests, returning them to the lay state and stripping them of all religious authority.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:44 PM

UPDATE: Mercure to spend 20 to 25 years behind bars

PITTSFIELD (MA)
Fox 23

UPDATE:

Former priest Gary Mercure will spend the next 20 to 25 years in a Massachusetts state prison for raping two young altar boys in the 1980s.

Mercure said nothing in court, as victim impact statements were read and Judge John Agostini told him he violated the tenets of his calling to abuse his young victims.

The two victims, now in their 30s, offered statements before the judge handed down sentence, one of them read by the prosecutor, the other voiced by the victim himself.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:42 PM

Ex-priest sentenced to 20-25 years

PITTSFIELD (MA)
WWLP

Robert Gebo
PITTSFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) - Gary Mercure, who served as a Roman Catholic priest in the 1980's, was sentenced Wednesday for raping two altar boys, one in in Great Barrington or Monterey and the other in New Ashford.

On February 10, a Berkshire Superior Court jury found Mercure guilty of three counts of forcible rape of a child and one count of indecent assault and battery of a child under 14.

Judge John Agostini sentenced Mercure to serve concurrent 20 to 25 year sentences at the Massachusetts Correctional Institution at Cedar Junction on the rape charges.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:38 PM

New allegation in Archdiocese of Louisville priest abuse scandal

LOUISVILLE (KY)
WDRB

[with video]

LOUISVILLE, KY. (WDRB Fox 41) -- A new allegation surfaced Wednesday in the priest abuse scandal that has rocked the Archdiocese of Louisville. As Colleen Powell of an activist group puts it, "This situation at Saint Therese is layer upon layer upon layer of mismanagement and deceit."

SNAP, The Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests, made the complaint in front of the Louisville Archdiocese headquarters. The group says former priest Bruce Ewing served on a Saint Therese parish advisory board after he was convicted in 2007 of raping a 15-year-old girl.

The group maintains that Ewing serving on the board violates church policies.