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July 31, 2011

The US Congress And The Debt Ceiling; The Roman Catholic Church And Predator Priests

UNITED STATES
Voice from the Desert

By Frank Douglas

July 31, 2011

AS I write this, the members of Congress, whom the citizens of the United States elected, are having an extremely tough time coming to a legislative solution on the debt ceiling.

American voters gripe endlessly about cowardly, self-serving politicians, but voters are quick to overlook their own role in legislative impasses that keep the nation from resolving festering problems such as immigration, the long-term stability of Medicare, and now, the debt ceiling.

However, the overwhelming majority of senators and representatives do what their constituents want them to do. Or, more to the point, they respond to people in their districts who bother to vote. Nothing is dearer to politicians than re-election, and most have a keen sense of when they are straying into dangerous waters.

In much the same way, many Catholics gripe about the unelected, unmarried male leaders of their church allowing predator priests to remain in ministry and prey on innocent children, not permitting women to be priests, and a host of other festering issues.

Both US Congress members and Catholic Church leaders are the objects of scorn of many of their constituents.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:38 PM

Clergy 'appalled' at handling of abuse

IRELAND
The Irish Times

PATSY McGARRY, Religious Affairs Correspondent

PRIESTS, RELIGIOUS and bishops are among those appalled by what they have learned about “the wrongdoing of some priests”, Archbishop Michael Neary of Tuam said yesterday.

It was “understandable that many good and faithful Catholics experience distress and discouragement after the revelations of the mishandling of abuse cases”, he said. The archbishop was speaking during a Mass he celebrated at the top of Croagh Patrick in Mayo yesterday morning as the “Reek Sunday” climb was under way.

Mayo Mountain Rescue estimated up to 20,000 people took part in foggy conditions. About 120 rescue personnel were on duty, with a spokesman saying up to 50 people had been treated for minor ailments by mid-afternoon. There were no serious incidents.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:35 PM

Ireland: the Church/State torment continues

IRELAND
Spero News

By Michael Kirke

This silly posturing by the Irish Government on the Cloyne Report is an embarrassment to everyone in Ireland. It has succeeded, and in particular the Taoiseach (Prime Minister), Enda Kenny, has succeeded, in his over-the-top rhetoric in parliament, in turning a local tragedy into a full-blown international diplomatic brouhaha.

Mr Kenny was scathing in his reaction to a report which had accused the Catholic Church of mishandling abuse allegations against 19 clerics in the diocese of Cloyne. On July 20 he told the Dail, the lower house of parliament:

"Because for the first time in Ireland, a report into child sexual abuse exposes an attempt by the Holy See to frustrate an inquiry in a sovereign, democratic republic as little as three years ago, not three decades ago. And in doing so, the Cloyne report excavates the dysfunction, disconnection, elitism, the narcissism, that dominate the culture of the Vatican to this day. The rape and torture of children were downplayed or 'managed' to uphold instead the primacy of the institution, its power, standing and 'reputation'."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:32 PM

Executions this week in Arizona, Texas and Georgia

UNITED STATES
World Socialist Web Site

By Kate Randall
23 July 2011

Three men were sent to their deaths this week, one each in the states of Arizona, Texas and Georgia. Twenty-nine people have been executed so far this year in the US. Since the US Supreme Court reinstated capital punishment in 1976, 1,263 individuals have been put to death across the country. Currently, 32 US states carry out the death penalty, a barbaric practice that has been outlawed in the vast majority of industrialized nations. ...

Arizona

Thomas West, 52, was executed in Arizona on Tuesday, July 19. West was sentenced to death for the July 1987 murder of Donald Bortle in Tucson, whom he brutalized after breaking into the man’s trailer to steal stereo equipment.

At West’s clemency hearing last week at the Eyman prison in Florence, Arizona, relatives, lawyers and psychologists argued that his sentence be commuted to life in prison because he suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder due to physical and sexual abuse as a child.

In a letter arguing for clemency, Catholic Bishop Jerry Kicanas of the Diocese of Tucson noted that “there is a good likelihood that Mr. West was abused, not just by one perpetrator, but probably three times by three different individuals: a special education teacher, a neighbor, and possibly a priest.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:08 PM

Even the Bishop Couldn't Save Thomas West

ARIZONA
Tucson Weekly

Posted by Mari Herreras on Tue, Jul 19, 2011

Pleas for clemency, even from Bishop Jerry Kicanas of the Diocese of Tucson, were not successful in preventing the execution of death row inmate Thomas West.

According to reports, West was executed this morning for the 1987 murder of Donald Bortle in a trailer near Tucson. West reportedly skipped his last meal Monday night and calmly met with his lawyers this morning before his execution.

"When the curtains opened, he gestured to his lawyers - some of the execution's witnesses thought he was flashing a peace sign.

He had no last words. As the warden read the death warrant, West closed his eyes and never reopened them.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:58 PM

Never again can the Catholic Church be allowed to undermine Ireland's laws

IRELAND
Irish Independent

Despite all that has happened, there is still no sign of any humility at the Vatican, writes Ivor Roberts

Sunday July 31 2011

HISTORIC events crowd on top of each other in Ireland. After the queen's visit only a few weeks ago, we now have a confrontation between Ireland and the Vatican which, from the British side of the Irish Sea, seems scarcely conceivable. It is momentous enough to register not just in the press here in Britain but in the International Herald Tribune and a full-page spread in the leading Swiss paper the Neue Zurcher Zeitung.

The images of a clerical society in Ireland where, to use Enda Kenny's colourful phrase, "the swish of the soutane" counts for more than the injunctions of civil society are hard-wired into British consciousness. Many years ago, my tutor at Oxford told me he had left his teaching post at TCD with the greatest reluctance because he couldn't put up with living in a theocracy ruled by the then Archbishop of Dublin, John Charles McQuaid.

I thought he was exaggerating. But no doubt McQuaid would have excommunicated the current Taoiseach if he were alive today. It is a measure of how far Ireland has come, both socially and culturally, that the Taoiseach was greeted by a standing ovation when delivering the MacGill lecture in honour of John Hume a week ago.

The diplomatic kerfuffle prompted by the Vatican's decision to recall the papal nuncio for consultations may seem arcane, even trifling. Yet it is virtually unprecedented for states which are not in a state of at least cold war to resort to such actions.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:27 PM

Ireland and the Church

IRELAND
The Ottawa Citizen

By David Warren, The Ottawa Citizen
July 31, 2011

As the Irish taoiseach or prime minister put it this week, relations between church and state in Ireland will never be the same.

Actually, they will continue to be the same, for from the beginning the Irish constitution separated them, and while it invokes the Trinity and so forth, the Catholic Church there has never enjoyed the established status of, say the Church of England in England, except once upon a time in the hearts of the people.

Enda Kenny (the taoiseach in question) was building on the impact of the Cloyne Report, the latest and biggest in a series of official inquiries into sexual scandal in the diocese of Cloyne. It goes beyond allegations that (at current count) 11 of the many hundred priests were guilty of molesting children, to allege that, even quite recently, members of the hierarchy were trying to downplay and cover it up, to protect the Church's reputation. It also found police responses sometimes inadequate.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:24 PM

Timeline of events affecting FLDS sect

ARIZONA
The Arizona Republic

Key events affecting Colorado City, Ariz., and Hildale, Utah, since attorneys general in the two states began investigating accusations of child sexual assault, fraud, tax evasion, civil-rights violations and other alleged crimes in 2002 by members of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints:

2003: Warren Jeffs, the church prophet, delivers a sermon in Colorado City claiming God told him there is no such thing as underage marriage and that evil government will attempt to intervene as young girls are wed to older men. The FLDS Church buys land in Schleicher County, Texas, and begins relocating members to Yearning for Zion Ranch.

2004: Jeffs excommunicates about 20 FLDS men, stripping them of wives and homes.

2005: Jeffs is among at least 10 FLDS men indicted in Arizona and Utah. He is charged with sexual misconduct with a minor and rape as an accomplice after orchestrating the marriage of a 14-year-old girl to her adult cousin. Several men are convicted. Jeffs flees and is placed on the FBI's most-wanted list.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:03 AM

Colorado City still FLDS stronghold

ARIZONA
Tucson Citizen

by Dennis Wagner on Jul. 31, 2011, under Arizona Republic News

COLORADO CITY – Joseph Jessop, a patriarch of polygamy, grunts as his hoe uproots weeds from a tomato patch in the heart of this religious commune along the Arizona Strip.

The 89-year-old allows that much has changed in the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints since 2002, when authorities launched an enforcement campaign to stop child marriages and other crimes.

More than a dozen churchmen have been imprisoned for taking teenage brides, and their prophet, Warren Jeffs, is on trial in Texas on charges of bigamy and sexual assault of two underage children he allegedly married.

Most of the town’s homes, businesses and properties, once held by a church-controlled trust, are now overseen by a court-appointed fiduciary.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:59 AM

KIAH COLLIER: Jeffs' rambling provides courtroom theater

SAN ANGELO (TX)
San Angelo Standard-Times

By Kiah Collier

SAN ANGELO, Texas — We all expected Warren Jeffs' trial to be interesting. What we didn't expect was for it to get so interesting so fast.

On Thursday, the first big bomb dropped. Jeffs fired his seasoned, high-profile defense team and delivered a mostly incoherent 30-minute speech in which he asked for more time to prepare the "pure defense" he said his attorneys could not provide.

Jeffs firing his attorneys was surprising, but not necessarily an unexpected move: He has fired several attorneys before, delaying the trial for about three years.

As The Salt Lake Tribune has been reporting, Jeffs has been telling his followers that he would never go to trial, that the prison walls would fall down around him. Because of this — and the reviling proclamation he delivered in court on Friday in which he (or rather, God) threatened the "counties of prosecutorial zeal with sickness and death" — I think it's safe to say Jeffs genuinely believes he is above the law.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:56 AM

Harrisburg diocese: Catholic church in Lower Windsor 'not authentic'

YORK (PA)
York Daily Record

By MELISSA NANN BURKE
Daily Record/Sunday News
Updated: 07/30/2011

York, PA - An independent Catholic chapel has opened in Lower Windsor Township under the leadership of a felon barred from public ministry by the Roman Catholic Church.
Shortly after the Rev. Virgil Bradley Tetherow celebrated his first Mass at the chapel July 17, diocesan officials warned that the congregation is not recognized by the Catholic Church.

"An organization calling itself 'Saint Michael the Archangel Roman Catholic Church' has been advertising in York County, claiming to offer Catholic sacraments to the Diocese of Harrisburg," officials wrote in a memo to parishioners.

"Notice is hereby given that this is not an authentic Catholic parish," and Tetherow "does not possess faculties to celebrate sacraments licitly within the Catholic Church."

Six years ago, the Diocese of Scranton placed Tetherow, known as Father Gabriel, on leave after allegations involving the downloading of child pornography onto a rectory computer. In 2005, police in Monroe County charged Tetherow with 10 counts of possessing child pornography and 10 counts of criminal use of a communication facility, according to court records.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:55 AM

Priest removed from ministry

VIRGINIA
The Catholic Virginian

The following statement from the Office of the Bishop was read to parishioners of St. John, Dinwiddie, concerning Msgr. Joseph Pham, parochial vicar, at the two Masses of July 9-10:

This week the Diocese received a letter accusing Monsignor Joseph Pham of sexual abuse of a minor. The incident took place over 30 years ago when he was in college.

As required by the Charter for the Protection of Children and our Diocesan Safe Environment Regulations, the Diocese investigated the allegation to determine if it is credible.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:52 AM

RICK SMITH: Trial has captivating moments

SAN ANGELO (TX)
San Angelo Standard-Times

By Rick Smith

Posted July 30, 2011

SAN ANGELO, Texas — When I finally got over to the Tom Green County Courthouse midmorning Friday, Warren Jeffs' trial was well under way.

A prosecutor stood center stage, asking a witness about evidence seized from the Yearning for Zion Ranch near Eldorado. I felt as if I'd walked in during the middle of a movie.

I would not want to be a courtroom news reporter. Trials often feel long and tedious. They're packed with all kinds of painstaking details that are easy to get wrong. Court reporters have to pay close attention to everything that happens and hand-write dozens, hundreds, maybe thousands of pages of notes, depending on the length of the trial. (No recorders, laptops or cellphones allowed.)

Because a real reporter was there to cover the trial, I played tourist Friday, gawking at the beautiful courtroom. (Courtroom A, upstairs, looks a little like a Greek temple with good carpet.)

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:47 AM

Catholic church's Plymouth 'youth protector' had child porn

UNITED KINGDOM
This is Plymouth

A CHURCH worker whose job was to protect young people from abuse had thousands of indecent pictures of children, a court heard.

Married father-of-four Christopher Jarvis, aged 49, advised the Roman Catholic Church in Plymouth how to keep youngsters safe but had more than 4,000 pornographic images of children, Plymouth Magistrates' Court was told.

Jarvis, who worked for the Catholic Diocese for nearly nine years, was caught when he uploaded five indecent images on to a social networking site.

Jarvis, of Salisbury Road, St Judes, admitted 12 counts of making, possessing and distributing indecent images.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:45 AM

Church child protection chief caught with 4,000 child porn pictures

UNITED KINGDOM
Sunday Mirror

by Geoffrey Lakeman, Sunday Mirror 31/07/2011

A child protection official for the Catholic Church has been caught with 4,000 pictures of child porn.

Father-of-four Christopher Jarvis was arrested after uploading pictures of children being abused to a website.

Married Jarvis, 49, a former social worker, was employed by the church following sex scandals about pervert priests.

His job was to monitor church groups to ensure paedophiles did not gain access to children in the church’s congregations.

But he was caught by police in March with more than 4,000 child porn images on his home computer and his work laptop.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:41 AM

Behold a new Catholic paradigm

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

George Weigel
is distinguished senior fellow of Washington's Ethics and Public Policy Center

When Pope Benedict XVI appointed Charles J. Chaput as the new archbishop of Philadelphia on July 19, the usual suspects were trotted out to say the usual things that the usual suspects say.

Thus, David Clohessy of SNAP, the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests, continued his nine-year rant against the Catholic Church by pronouncing Chaput's record on abuse (which virtually everyone else finds admirable) "dismal." But then, Clohessy would likely have found Chaput's 19th-century predecessor in Philadelphia, St. John Neumann, "dismal," because if you're the New York Times' go-to guy for anti-Catholic-hierarchy, sexual-abuse sound bites, that's what you say. As for the Rev. Thomas Reese, the former editor of America magazine made his priorities clear in fretting to The Inquirer that Chaput would "be a real pain in the neck for the Democratic Party." (Bob Casey the Less, you have been warned!)

Just about every story on the Chaput appointment identified the archbishop as a conservative (because he believes and teaches as true what the Catholic Church believes and teaches to be true); just about every story contended that Chaput was a tough guy when it came to holding Catholic politicians accountable for their votes on abortion and the nature of marriage (while completely missing the fact that Chaput had consistently made genuinely public arguments, not uniquely Catholic theological claims, about the inalienable right to life and marriage rightly understood); and of course every story emphasized abuse, abuse, abuse (as if this were the only reality of Catholic life in America).

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:29 AM

Warren Jeffs' Behavior 'Morally indefensible': Former FLDS Spokesperson

UNITED STATES
International Business Times

A former Fundamentalist Church of Latter-day Saints spokesperson left his position earlier this year after evidence gathered from a 2008 compound raid forced him to conclude that Warren Jeffs was "morally indefensible," the Salt Lake Tribune has reported.

"I don't believe that any members of the church would condone what Warren was doing in secret," Willie R. Jessop told the newspaper. "The challenge they have is coming to grips with the reality that was brought about by the raid."

Jeffs, the leader and self proclaimed "prophet" of FLDS, is charged with sexually assaulting two underage girls he took as "spiritual wives."

After refusing to speak for the early part of Friday's court proceedings, Jeffs abruptly launched into a threatening sermon just as as a state Child Protective Services worker was beginning to testify about one of the girls Jeffs is accused of forcing into sexual activity.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:26 AM

Fallen televangelists find afterlife on the Internet

CANADA
The Vancouver Sun

By Shannon Proudfoot, Postmedia News
July 30, 2011

In their heyday of the 1970s and 80s, televangelists like Jimmy Swaggart and Jim Bakker drew in hundreds of thousands of worshippers and millions of dollars before scandal and corruption gutted individual ministries and then the entire genre.

Now, however, the Internet has made it easy and inexpensive to distribute video sermons around the world, breathing new life into virtual ministries and even providing a second act for a few infamous televangelists, a Canadian researcher says.

"They see the technology as a God-given opportunity to spread the message," says Denis Bekkering, a PhD candidate in the joint program in religious studies at Wilfrid Laurier University of Waterloo, Ont. "So when new technology such as radio or television — or in this case, Internet video — arises, these groups are often eager to employ them as tools for that purpose."

He coined the term "intervangelism" for this new breed of tech-enabled ministry, and his research is published in an upcoming issue of the Journal of Religion and Popular Culture.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:19 AM

Inquirer copy of Bevilacqua testimony only one now public

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

[For the full testimony of Cardinal Anthony J. Bevilacqua, go to: www.philly.com/testimony]

[BishopAccountability.org: Cardinal Bevilacqua's Testimony in Searchable PDFs]

By Nancy Phillips and Craig R. McCoy
Inquirer Staff Writers

The Inquirer on Friday posted on the website Philly.com the full testimony of Cardinal Anthony J. Bevilacqua before a grand jury investigating sexual abuse in the local Catholic church.

The cardinal's testimony is contained there in separate documents for his appearances before the panel in 2003 and 2004. The testimony was referred to in the grand jury's 2005 report. (Click here to read the documents.)

Last week, prosecutors made Bevilacqua's testimony part of the public court file in the criminal case against Msgr. William J. Lynn, a top administrator who handled archdiocesean abuse cases for the cardinal. Lynn is charged with conspiracy and child endangerment for allegedly enabling abusive priests. He has pleaded not guilty.

In their case against Lynn, prosecutors - in a rare move - filed grand-jury testimony, including that of Bevilacqua, in Common Pleas Court on July 22.

The Inquirer made copies of the cardinal's testimony before the courthouse closed that day. The newspaper published a story about the testimony Sunday.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:16 AM

Monsignor who led clergy office to stand trial for abuse conspiracy

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

By David O'Reilly
Inquirer Staff Writer

Clearing the way for what will be a landmark sex-abuse case, a judge ruled Friday that Msgr. William J. Lynn, former head of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia's clergy office, must stand trial on a charge of conspiracy to endanger the welfare of children.

Lynn, 60, is the highest-ranking member of a Roman Catholic diocese in the United States ever to face criminal prosecution over allegedly enabling and protecting abusive clergy.

The Philadelphia District Attorney's Office contends that Lynn recommended the assignments of priests he knew were accused of inappropriate behavior with minors, and helped them keep their histories secret. Lynn served as clergy secretary, primarily for Cardinal Anthony J. Bevilacqua, from 1992 to 2004.

Common Pleas Court Judge Lillian Ransom also ruled Friday that Lynn would stand trial alongside three current or former priests and an ex-teacher charged with sexually assaulting two boys, then 10 and 14, in the 1990s.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:10 AM

Canadian search warrant for Maltese priest remains open

MALTA/CANADA
The Malta Independent

Fr Godwin Scerri, who is wanted in Canada on charges of sexual abuse and who is entangled in another high profile case of alleged sexual abuse at St Joseph’s Home in Malta, is one of 22 priests who have faced prison, probation or lawsuits in the London Diocese of Ontario, Canada.

In April 2010, the Ontario Provincial Police resurrected the case against Fr Scerri, who was charged in June 1993 for sexually abusing minors between 1983 and 1987 when he served at St William’s Church in Emeryville. He had fled to his native Malta and search and arrest warrants remain open in his respect in Canada.

And while the Ontario police are hoping to be able to extradite Fr Scerri, ongoing proceedings in Malta in relation to the St Joseph’s Home case are hindering such efforts.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:08 AM

'This whole argument ... is ludicrous': Illinois high court rejects Diocese's appeal in sex case

BELLEVILLE (IL)
Belleville News-Democrat

BY GEORGE PAWLACZYK - News-Democrat

BELLEVILLE -- The Illinois Supreme Court for the second time has denied a request by the Catholic Diocese of Belleville to hear an appeal of a St. Clair County Court jury verdict awarding $5 million to a former altar boy jurors found was sexually abused by a priest.

The only remaining avenue for appeal is to the U.S. Supreme Court, but only if a constitutional question can be raised.

St. Louis attorney David Wells filed the motion on behalf of the diocese asking the state appeals court to reconsider its original denial on May 25 on grounds that the award threatened the religious freedom of Illinois residents.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:04 AM

Diocese of Phoenix to Post List of Abusive Clergy on Website

PHOENIX (AZ)
U.S. Politics Today

July 31, 2011

The Diocese of Phoenix has recently announced that it intends to list the names of clergymen or church officials who have been the subject of credible sexual abuse allegations on its newly designed website.

July 31, 2011 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Victims of sexual abuse often feel like there is no place for them to turn. It can be even worse if the abuser is someone that people look up to, someone who is supposed to be a pillar of the community. Allegations of abuse turn into a battle of credibility, and unfortunately the victim's story is often viewed with skepticism. Having to relive the incident time and time again is too traumatic, and the victim decides to live with the secret.

All too frequently, this type of scenario has been present in Catholic Churches throughout the world. The church has faced several high-profile lawsuits where its priests have been accused of sexually abusing children.

Many of the lawsuits against the church concern the fact that the priests were not removed from contact with children after credible allegations of abuse were submitted. Often, the priest was moved out of a particular region to a different congregation, thereby allowing the abusive behavior to continue in other locations.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:59 AM

Colum Kenny: Law may let priests off the hook, but morality does not

IRELAND
Irish Independent

Sunday July 31 2011

Confession and redemption are big words. They are about the dark side of human nature, and about hoping that people can change.

So should Irish priests be sent to jail for up to five years if they fail to report to the gardai anything said in confession that indicates that an arrestable offence has been committed against a child or vulnerable adult? That is what the Government now appears to be proposing. And it has met resistance.

Archbishop Gianfranco Girotti, "regent" of the Vatican's Apostolic Penitentiary, has reportedly said, "Ireland can approve all of the legal plans that it desires but it must know the church will never subject itself to the obligation of denouncing the confessor to civil authorities. Confession is a private matter that allows penitents to mend their ways and purify themselves."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:56 AM

July 30, 2011

Catholic Group Based in Chicago Leads Protest Against Church

CHICAGO (IL)
The New York Times

By DIRK JOHNSON
Published: July 30, 2011

It’s a long way from the Vatican to Roscoe Village, but a group based in that North Side neighborhood is leading a high-profile protest among American priests that challenges the Roman Catholic Church’s ban on ordination of women.

The group, Call to Action, an organization for reform-minded Catholics, has collected signatures of more than 150 priests — including 8 in Chicago — on a petition defending a liberal priest, the Rev. Roy Bourgeois, who is being threatened with dismissal for his public support for ordaining women. In an increasingly conservative church, the rebellion has been hailed as a remarkable moment for liberals in the church.

“We just got on the phones and started telling priests, ‘We’ve got to support Father Roy,’ ” said Nicole Sotelo, 33, a leader of Call to Action, which bills itself as the nation’s largest organization for reform-minded Catholics.

The Rev. Bill Kenneally, who lives in the Beverly neighborhood on the South Side, is among the protesters. Father Kenneally, the 75-year-old retired pastor of St. Gertrude’s Church and volunteer at St. Barnabas Church, said he “and a majority of priests, truthfully” do not agree with the church’s “vapid reasoning” for excluding women.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:42 PM

Víctimas de Fernando Karadima presentan decálogo para evitar abusos sexuales

CHILE
Emol

SANTIAGO.- Un decálogo para prevenir y detectar el abuso sexual en menores presentó hoy sábado la Fundación Para La Confianza, creada por los denunciantes del ex párroco de El Bosque, Fernando Karadima.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:39 PM

SACERDOTE SE SUICIDIO TRAS DENUNCIA ABUSO SEXUAL

CHILE
ANSA Latina

SANTIAGO DE CHILE, 30 (ANSA) - El párroco de Santa Clara, Rodrigo Allendes, fue encontrado hoy muerto en el interior del recinto eclesial en la comuna La Cisterna, sector popular al sur de Santiago. La policía civil de Investigaciones no descarta la hipótesis de un suicidio del sacerdote, de 42 años, quien fue hallado hoy colgando de una viga de la parroquia. En la tarde del viernes, la familia de un joven de 19 años concurrió hasta la fiscalía de la zona sur a denunciar un caso de presunto abuso sexual en contra del párroco, que era muy querido en el sector por la feligresía.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:17 PM

Germans quit church during 2010 sex scandal

GERMANY
Yahoo! News

By JUERGEN BAETZ - Associated Press

BERLIN (AP) — The number of people leaving the Roman Catholic Church in Germany jumped by nearly 50 percent in 2010 as an abuse scandal widened, new data showed Friday.
Some 181,000 people quit their memberships last year, up from 124,000 in 2009, official numbers released by Germany's Roman Catholic Church showed.

Deaths and people turning away from the church heavily outnumbered baptisms, which reached a record low, putting one of the world's wealthiest and most influential Catholic Churches further in decline.

Over the past twenty years, the number of members of Germany's Roman Catholic Church has fallen from 28.3 million to 24.6 million or 30.2 percent of the country's population in 2010, the data showed.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:14 PM

Hallan muerto a cura al que joven había acusado ...

CHILE
La Informacion

Un sacerdote chileno, al que un joven de 19 años había acusado por presuntos abusos sexuales en su contra, fue hallado hoy muerto en una iglesia del distrito de La Cisterna, en Santiago de Chile, informaron fuentes eclesiásticas y policiales.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:26 PM

Germans leaving Catholic Church following abuse scandals

GERMANY
Digital Journal

Following the child abuse scandal that rocked the Catholic Church across Germany, a record 180,000 German Catholics are said to have left their church for good in 2010.

50,000 more Catholics cancelled their church membership last year than in 2009 representing an increase of 40 percent, according to published data 24 of Germany's 27 Catholic dioceses as reported by Deutsche Welle.

Germany's largest diocese of Cologne, was hard hit, experiencing the biggest drop in membership ever last year while a number of dioceses in deeply Catholic Bavaria saw up to 70 percent more people leaving the church than the previous year.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:23 PM

Abuse report will not delay Irish Eucharistic Congress

IRELAND
Catholic News Agency

By Katherine Veik

Dublin, Ireland, Jul 30, 2011 / 07:10 am (CNA).- Ireland's 2012 International Eucharistic Congress will continue as planned, from June 10-17, despite calls to postpone the event following the recently released Cloyne Report on clerical abuse.

“It is especially important for people in times of challenge or crisis that they can gather in solidarity and rediscover their essential truths,” said Father Kevin Doran, secretary general of the Eucharistic Congress, on July 29.

He told CNA that “Catholics are no different in this regard” and the Eucharistic Congress will “support that need” within the Church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:01 PM

Monsignor, priests to face trial in US

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Press TV (Iran)

Clearing the way for what will be a landmark sex-abuse case, a judge ruled Friday that Monsignor William J. Lynn, former head of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia's clergy office, must stand trial on a charge of conspiracy to endanger the welfare of children. Philly.com

Lynn, 60, is the highest-ranking member of a Roman Catholic diocese in the United States ever to face criminal prosecution over allegedly enabling and protecting abusive clergy. Philly.com

HIGHLIGHTS
Judge Lillian Ransom denied most of the pretrial requests made by Monsignor Lynn, two current priests, a former priest and a former Catholic schoolteacher. The men wanted their cases to be tried separately and asked for many of the charges against them to be dismissed. Usatoday.com

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:58 PM

Sexual Abuse Allegations Against U.S. Theravada Sangha

UNITED STATES
The Bearing Witness Blog

The Chicago Tribune has a major investigative feature story on sexual abuse allegations in American Theravada temples serving ethnic Asian communities. The reporter, Megan Twohey, says “A Tribune review of sexual abuse cases involving several Theravada Buddhist temples found minimal accountability and lax oversight of monks accused of preying on vulnerable targets.”

In short, monks have been able to skip out of facing charges simply by moving to another temple. This is possible because they are viewed as free agents, not answerable to a higher ecclesiastical authority. If a temple asks a monk to leave, once he is gone the monks remaining in a temple probably would not know where he went and cannot help law enforcement find him.

The feature focuses on a Chicago-area monk who allegedly molested at least two adolescent girls and impregnated one of them. The monk confessed to fondling the girls, but not to sexual intercourse. The temple sent a letter to the family saying the matter was “resolved” and the monk had been sent back to Thailand, although in fact he only got as far as another temple in California, where he has access to more adolescent girls.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:09 PM

Ex-FLDS member: Warren Jeffs "partially crazy"

SAN ANGELO (TX)
CBS News

(CBS News) The trial of polygamist leader Warren Jeffs has taken another strange turn. Jeffs stunned the courtroom by abruptly breaking his silence Friday.

After sitting silently during his sexual assault trial, CBS News Correspondent Hattie Kauffman reported, Jeffs suddenly sprang out of his seat Friday to make an objection - an objection that went on for 50 minutes and ended with a threat.

On "The Early Show," Elissa Wall, a former member of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and Jeffs' compound, said she's not surprised by Jeffs' outburst.

Wall said, "I couldn't expect anything less from such an irrational, honestly, partially crazy leader as I knew him." ...

She said, "He really does believe he is God, and I really do think that he believes that he is better than everyone else. And even in his statements to the judge about him wanting to have a pure defense I don't know if he thinks he did anything wrong. Therefore he just wants to defend his religion and status as the god-like figure of the religion."

When asked what kind of man and religious figure Jeffs is, Wall responded, "I was exposed to him my entire life and he really did display a lot of narcissistic behavior. People have to understand, he was groomed at such a tender age to become the leader and to become the god-like figure within this closed community. So he really did grow up with a lot of idealistic beliefs about himself and about his power over the community. As far as how he treated the people, we all feared him greatly and he demanded very much complete obedience and absolute respect."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:05 PM

Ire-land.

IRELAND
dotCommonweal

[with video]

July 30, 2011
Posted by Grant Gallicho

Last week, in an impassioned speech delivered form the floor of the Irish parliament, Prime Minister Enda Kenny offered some hard sayings about the Vatican’s handling of clergy sexual abuse in Ireland. Kenny said that the recent report on the scandal in Cloyne “excavates the dysfunction, disconnection, elitism, the narcissism that dominate the culture of the Vatican to this day.” So much for Joyce’s “Ireland, my only love, where God and Caesar are hand in glove.”

The Cloyne report examines the diocese’s handling of abuse allegations between January 1, 1996, the year Irish bishops established procedures for dealing with abuse claims, and February 1, 2009 — well after the institutional church came to realize the gravity of such crimes. According to the report, two-thirds of allegations during that period were not forwarded to the police, as required by the Irish bishops’ own ‘96 guidelines.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:57 AM

Fury over Rabbi Eli Feldman's view on child sex

AUSTRALIA
The Sunday Telegraph

Jesse Phillips From: The Sunday Telegraph July 31, 2011

A HIGH-profile Jewish leader is fighting calls for his resignation after he urged rabbis to deal with allegations of child abuse themselves rather than report it to police.

Rabbi Yosef Feldman, president of the Rabbinical Council of NSW and based at the Southern Sydney Synagogue, has sparked outrage after emailing other rabbis to say it should be up to them to decide whether a paedophile should be reported.

The rabbi also said that, where possible, allegations of abuse should be dealt with outside the legal system.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:54 AM

Top rabbi fighting to save position

AUSTRALIA
Sydney Morning Herald

Tim Barlass
July 31, 2011

A SENIOR Sydney rabbi is refusing to resign from the state's Jewish religious authority over comments he made suggesting that sexual abuse cases should be handled within the community and not by police, claiming they did not represent his ''official'' view.

Rabbi Yosef Feldman, the president of the Rabbinical Council of NSW, has been under pressure to resign after making the comments in a series of emails to fellow rabbis last week.

Last night, his brother, Rabbi Eli Feldman, said that, while he does not deny sending the emails, which were leaked to The Australian Jewish News, the contents ''do not reflect his official position'' and he ''is a strong advocate of police intervention in cases of paedophilia''.

''He was just conjecturing,'' Rabbi Eli Feldman told The Sun-Herald.
The comments by Rabbi Feldman echo an edict given by Pope John Paul II in the 1980s that reports of sexual abuse by Catholic clergy be handled in Rome by then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:51 AM

Irish papal nuncio now goes to Prague; SNAP objects

IRELAND
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

Statement by Peter Isely of Milwaukee, national board member of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (414-429-7259, peterisely@yahoo.com)

The Irish Times is reporting that the former Irish papal nuncio, who refused to help government investigators looking at clergy sex crimes and cover ups, has reportedly been transferred to Prague.

If this is true, it’s terribly distressing.

If this is true, Pope Benedict is sending a clear signal to church officials across the globe: “If you stonewall secular authorities and keep clergy sex crimes and cover ups covered up, I’ll protect you.”

Benedict should, of course, do just the reverse: he should severely discipline Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza. If the pope would do this, here’s the message church officials across the globe would get; “If you ignore secular officials and conceal crimes, you will be harshly punished.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:43 AM

Discipline 'hateful' priest, SNAP says to bishops

IRELAND
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, SNAPdorris@gmail.com, +1-314-503-0003)

The priest who compared Irish leader Enda Kenny to AdolfHitler presents the nation’s Catholic hierarchy a stark choice.

Irish bishops can act irresponsibly, and respond with only words. Or they can act responsibly, and respond with harsh discipline.

They can pretend to lead, using unconvincing words. Or they can actually lead, using convincing deeds.

They can do little or nothing, and signal their employees that making hateful remarks about those who criticize church officials is OK. Or they can take decisive action, and signal their employees that making hateful remarks wont’ be tolerated.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:40 AM

Victims blast Cardinal's on-going secrecy regarding predators

BOSTON (MA)
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)

Why must it always fall to victims to expose dangerous child molesting clerics?

It's been almost a full decade since Cardinal O'Malley and his colleagues pledged to be "open and transparent" about pedophile priests. It's been nearly 2.5 years since O'Malley promised to disclose the names of child molesting clerics. Yet still we keep learning about predators from other sources- despite O'Malley, instead of from O'Malley.

If ever there's an archdiocese that should have 'come clean' with the identities of sex offender staff, it would be Boston. It speaks volumes that even in the original 'epicenter' of this continuing crisis, the top Catholic official is still being secretive and reckless.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:36 AM

Victims applaud judge in Philly priests’ case

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

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

We are grateful that Judge Ransom has seen through the largely bogus claims of church defense lawyers. And we’re glad that a jury will see evidence that these clerics acted together to commit and conceal child sex crimes.

The Catholic church isn’t some loosely-knit hippie commune. It’s a rigid, secretive, tightly-knit institution. So when crimes happen, it’s disingenuous for church officials to pretend that everyone involved is disconnected from one another.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:31 AM

SNAP urges German Catholics to speak out against sex abuse scandal

GERMANY
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, SNAPdorris@gmail.com, +1-314-503-0003)

We understand and sympathize with the millions of Catholics who are justifiably distraught by the church hierarchy’s continuing cover up of clergy sex crimes. At the same time, however, we desperately hope that the Catholics who are leaving the church will take active steps to help better protect the vulnerable and heal the wounded.

Specifically, we urge current and former German church members – and employees – to share anything they know or suspect about child sex crimes and cover ups with police and prosecutors. We also urge them to personally and directly reach out to any one they know or believe may have been molested, offer them encouragement and support, and urge them to contact law enforcement, no matter when the wrongdoing happened.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:29 AM

Man raised in Bahamas reportedly involved in Bishop Long sex scandal

BAHAMAS
The Tribune

Published On:Friday, July 29, 2011
AN Atlanta-based man reportedly raised in the Bahamas has emerged as the fifth accuser in the sex scandal surrounding American religious leader Bishop Eddie Long, according to news reports in the US.

Fox 5, out of Atlanta, reported that a seven week investigation led them to a 22-year-old aspiring male singer said to be at the centre of the gay sex scandal. The news station claimed that while the singer never filed a lawsuit against Bishop Long, he was involved in settlement talks stemming from allegations of sexual misconduct by the well-known bishop.

The news station reported that the young man met the bishop years ago when he visited his New Birth Missionary Baptist Church in Atlanta while a college student in Florida. The report also claims that the young Bahamian man has a tattoo of the bishop's name inked on his wrist.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:51 AM

Warren Jeffs breaks silence, delivers 'message' to court

TEXAS
Abilene Reporter News

By Matthew Waller mwaller@gosanangelo.com 325-659-8263
Posted July 29, 2011

The court was barely able to get Warren Jeffs to say anything when he chose to represent himself Thursday. On Friday, the court could scarcely keep him quiet.

Jeffs said nothing and made no objections for about an hour into the morning proceedings Friday, the fifth day of his trial on charges of sexual assault of a child. But when the prosecution moved to admit a document sacred to the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, the 10,000 member, polygamy-sanctioning group that he leads, Jeffs shot up from his defense table and objected.

"You are now touching that which is sacred," Jeffs said, standing alone at the defense table. "Thus on these grounds we call upon this court to render justice before sacred trust is trampled upon."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:43 AM

Evidence in Warren Jeffs' Texas trial being sought by Utah authorities

TEXAS/UTAH
Fox 13

Ben Winslow
Fox13Now.com
9:05 p.m. MDT, July 29, 2011

SALT LAKE CITY—
Texas authorities have seized hundreds of boxes of evidence from the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Some of that evidence is being used by prosecutors in FLDS leader Warren Jeffs' trial on child sex assault.

Fox 13 News has learned Utah prosecutors also want to see the massive collection of evidence -- to see if there is any sign of criminal activity by Jeffs or other FLDS members.

"We've been trying for 11 years to get evidence from these guys," Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff said Friday. "We were down (in Hildale) trying to serve search warrants for church records in 2001 and facing troubles with that."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:39 AM

Call for inquiry into school paedophile ring

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

[with video]

Police investigating a paedophile network at a Catholic boys school at Ballarat, in Victoria's west, say up to 30 students have committed suicide since being abused.

Detective Sergeant Kevin Carson has spent the past decade investigating complaints against the former principal of St Alipius Catholic boys school, Brother Robert Best.

This week Best faced a pre-sentencing hearing after being convicted of sexually abusing 11 boys at three different schools between 1969 and 1988.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:37 AM

Link: Cardinal Bevilacqua's grand jury testimony

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Allentown Morning Call

The Philadelphia Inquirer obtained the full testimony of Cardinal Anthony J. Bevilacqua before the grand jury investigating sexual abuse in the Catholic church. Read the story and link to the testimony here.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:28 AM

Sect Leader Warns Of 'Death' To 'Those Who Prosecute The Church

SAN ANGELO (TX)
WCTI

SAN ANGELO, Texas (CNN) -- A Texas judge warned Warren Jeffs against calling "for the jury's destruction" shortly after the polygamous sect leader said Friday during his sexual assault trial that those who prosecuted his church would face "sickness and death."

The comments that precipitated the warning to Jeffs, who has been granted the right to represent himself, occurred around midday after Judge Barbara Walther had sent the jury out of the San Angelo courtroom.

"I, the Lord God of heaven, ask the courts to cease the prosecution of my holy ways," Jeffs said. "There will be a judgment against all those who prosecute the church. ... I shall let all people know of your unjust ways. I will bring sickness and death. Let this cease."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:26 AM

Inquirer copy of Bevilacqua testimony only one now public

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

[For the full testimony of Cardinal Anthony J. Bevilacqua, go to: www.philly.com/testimony]

[BishopAccountability.org: Cardinal Bevilacqua's Testimony in Searchable PDFs]

By Nancy Phillips and Craig R. McCoy
Inquirer Staff Writers

The Inquirer on Friday posted on the website Philly.com the full testimony of Cardinal Anthony J. Bevilacqua before a grand jury investigating sexual abuse in the local Catholic church.
The cardinal's testimony is contained there in separate documents for his appearances before the panel in 2003 and 2004. The testimony was referred to in the grand jury's 2005 report.

Last week, prosecutors made Bevilacqua's testimony part of the public court file in the criminal case against Msgr. William J. Lynn, a top administrator who handled archdiocesean abuse cases for the cardinal. Lynn is charged with conspiracy and child endangerment for allegedly enabling abusive priests. He has pleaded not guilty.

In their case against Lynn, prosecutors - in a rare move - filed grand-jury testimony, including that of Bevilacqua, in Common Pleas Court on July 22.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:21 AM

Catholic church weighs up response to criticism from Ireland

ROME
The Guardian (United Kingdom)

John Hooper in Rome
guardian.co.uk, Friday 29 July 2011

Next month, as every year since he was chosen to lead the world's Roman Catholics, the scholarly Pope Benedict XVI will preside at a meeting of his Schülerkreis — a group of his former doctoral students.

This year, the issue for debate in the pontifical summer palace, overlooking a volcanic lake near Rome, is the one he was elected to tackle: how to reverse the galloping secularisation of Catholicism's European homeland.

The discussion could scarcely be more timely, coming in the midst of a crisis in relations between the Holy See and Ireland, a country where, until a few years ago, official defiance of Rome was unthinkable.

The reaction in the Vatican to Enda Kenny's impassioned denunciation on 20 July has been one of astonishment. But, as the Holy See's temporary recall of its ambassador, or nuncio, five days later showed, it is also laced with indignation.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:18 AM

Archbishop Charles Chaput's bigger pulpit

UNITED STATES
Los Angeles Times

July 30, 2011
The new Roman Catholic archbishop of Philadelphia seems to owe his appointment primarily to his perceived ability to move the archdiocese beyond a prolonged sexual abuse scandal. But the accession of Archbishop Charles Chaput also elevates the hierarchy's most forceful advocate of holding Catholic politicians to account for "anti-Catholic" positions. With a larger pulpit, Chaput's voice will be amplified in the 2012 presidential campaign.

Recent years have seen a rise in efforts by Catholic prelates to criticize politicians whose positions, especially on abortion, conflict with the church's. A common sanction is a declaration that a politician not take Holy Communion, a suggestion Chaput made to Joe Biden in 2008.

Demanding that Catholic politicians in effect vote the church's way is not the preserve of conservative Catholics. Earlier this year, a group of liberal Catholics effectively accused House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio), who had been named commencement speaker at Georgetown University, of being a faithless Catholic. Referring to Republican budgets that Boehner had supported, the critics wrote: "Mr. Speaker, your voting record is at variance from one of the church's most ancient moral teachings."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:16 AM

Priest hits back at senator's abuse claim

IRELAND
Irish Independent

By Louise Hogan
Saturday July 30 2011

A PRIEST named in the Seanad as a suspected child abuser has broken his silence to protest his innocence.

Fr Donncha Mac Carthaigh also hit out at Senator Mark Daly, who earlier this week used parliamentary privilege to publicly name the member of the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart order. Mr Daly alleged the order failed to fulfil child-safety guidelines to keep priests suspected of child abuse away from young people.

In his first public statement, Fr Mac Carthaigh last night said he had never been convicted of an offence in the courts. He claimed Mr Daly abused parliamentary privilege -- which protects members from any legal repercussions -- to name an "innocent person".

Fr Mac Carthaigh also strenuously denied his sibling had been involved in investigating an allegation of sexual abuse lodged against him.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:13 AM

Dinwiddie priest removed from post

VIRGINIA
Richmond Times-Dispatch

By: RANDY HALLMAN | Richmond Times-Dispatch
Published: July 30, 2011

A priest for a Dinwiddie parish has been removed from his ministry as the result of an accusation of sexual abuse of a minor, according to a report in this week's edition of The Catholic Virginian.

The newspaper's July 25 edition reported that a statement — read to St. John, Dinwiddie parishioners during Masses of July 9 and 10 — informed them that Monsignor Joseph Pham had been removed from the ministry after the Office of the Bishop received a letter accusing him of the abuse.

The statement said the abuse took place more than 30 years ago when Pham was in college.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:09 AM

Vatican to issue 'strong' Cloyne report response

IRELAND
Irish Independent

By John Cooney
Saturday July 30 2011

THE papal nuncio is set to deliver a strong response to the Cloyne Report before the end of August, rebuffing the Taoiseach's accusation the Vatican undermined child protection guidelines.

Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza will present the Vatican's response to Foreign Minister Eamon Gilmore.

The choice of Archbishop Leanza as the intermediary with the Government signals the Holy See's confidence in his diplomatic professionalism.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:06 AM

Abuse survivor battled secretive church for 26 years

IRELAND
Irish Independent

By Breda Heffernan
Saturday July 30 2011

IT was the courage of abuse victim and now campaigner Marie Collins in insisting rapist Fr Paul McGennis be brought to justice that helped expose how the Dublin Archdiocese protected its paedophile priests.

Church figures knew as early as 1960 that McGennis was abusing children. But he was still serving as a parish priest in Dublin 35 years later when Ms Collins went to the church authorities for a second time to report her abuser.

McGennis is the last of the 102 Dublin diocesan priests investigated by the Murphy Commission to face justice.

However, victims have insisted his jailing does not draw a line under the church's cover-up of abusive priests.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:03 AM

Justice finally catches up with disgraced paedophile priest (81)

IRELAND
Irish Independent

By Breda Heffernan
Saturday July 30 2011

HE knew that, as a priest, his word would never be questioned and this allowed him to continue abusing children for more than 30 years.

Serial sex abuser Fr Paul McGennis (81) was yesterday jailed for two years for the indecent assault of a young parishioner in the early 1980s.

The now 42-year-old woman, who was aged just 11 when the abuse began, was in court to see the disgraced priest sentenced. She had requested that he be publicly named.

The Circuit Criminal Court heard how her life had been torn apart by the abuse, which took place almost every fortnight in the bedroom of the parish house and in a waiting room over a period of four years.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:59 AM

Monsignor who led clergy office to stand trial for abuse conspiracy

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

By David O'Reilly
Inquirer Staff Writer

Clearing the way for what will be a landmark sex-abuse case, a judge ruled Friday that Msgr. William J. Lynn, former head of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia's clergy office, must stand trial on a charge of conspiracy to endanger the welfare of children.

Lynn, 60, is the highest-ranking member of a Roman Catholic diocese in the United States ever to face criminal prosecution over allegedly enabling and protecting abusive clergy.

The Philadelphia District Attorney's Office contends that Lynn recommended the assignments of priests he knew were accused of inappropriate behavior with minors, and helped them keep their histories secret. Lynn served as clergy secretary, primarily for Cardinal Anthony J. Bevilacqua, from 1992 to 2004.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:56 AM

5 defendants will be tried together in child sex case

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Daily News

BY MENSAH M. DEAN
Philadelphia Daily News
deanm@phillynews.com 215-854-5949

THE FIVE DEFENDANTS in the Philadelphia Catholic church sex scandal will be tried together, a judge ruled yesterday.

During the case's final pretrial hearing, Common Pleas Judge Lillian Ransom denied the defendants' requests for separate trials and most of their motions to dismiss conspiracy charges.

Ransom also denied a motion by the attorney for Monsignor William Lynn that would have allowed the state Superior Court to determine if the endangering-the-welfare-of-children statute applied to Lynn.

Thomas A. Bergstrom, Lynn's attorney, argued that it did not because Lynn's job had not required him to supervise children.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:53 AM

Cardinal Bevilacqua's Testimony in Searchable PDFs

WALTHAM (MA)
BishopAccountability.org

On 7/29/11, the Philadelphia Inquirer posted the Bevilacqua testimony that it had obtained on 7/22/11, before the documents were sealed. BishopAccountability.org has re-processed the Bevilacqua testimony to make it searchable, and we provide it here in three download options: a single large PDF file; three medium-sized files; and a separate file for each day of testimony.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 1:24 AM

Statement by Taoiseach Enda Kenny on the Dáil Motion on the Cloyne Report

WALTHAM (MA)
BishopAccountability.org

By Taoiseach Enda Kenny

July 20, 2011

The text of this historic speech, as delivered by the Taoiseach of the Republic of Ireland, differs from the versions posted on the Taoiseach's website and published elsewhere. Below we provide our transcript of the speech as it was spoken and streamed on YouTube by RTÉ. This is the authoritative text, exactly as it was delivered by Taoiseach Enda Kenny before Dáil Éireann. There are dozens of differences between the speech as it was delivered and the speech as it has been transcribed and quoted elsewhere. Most importantly, the much-quoted attribution of "narcissism" to the Vatican was not in the speech as delivered.

After our accurate transcript, we provide the versions of the speech that were posted on the Taoiseach's website and published by the Irish Times, and at the bottom of this webpage, we provide a "tracked" version of the speech, showing how the Taoiseach's posted version differed from the spoken version. On another webpage, we provide the speech as it was transcribed on the Dáil's website. The Dáil's version also includes transcripts of the debate by Deputies in the Dáil.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 1:18 AM

Bishops Accused of Abuse

WALTHAM (MA)
BishopAccountability.org

Updated on 7/29/11

In the sexual abuse crisis, attention has focused on priests who have sexually abused children; the problem of bishops and major superiors who abuse has not received systematic scrutiny. Yet a bishop who is guilty of child abuse, or who has other violations of celibacy to conceal, has compromised his role in the formation of his priests and in assigning them properly. Bishops who sexually abuse seminarians, as Anthony J. O'Connell has admitted doing, may establish a generational pattern of clergy abuse. The following list includes 22 U.S. bishops who have been publicly accused of sexually abusing minors. We have also provided a preliminary list of 9 bishops accused of sexual misconduct in other countries.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 1:14 AM

July 29, 2011

Collins's determination helped end church cover-up of decades

IRELAND
The Irish Times

BACKGROUND: McGennis’s activities first came to the attention of the Dublin archdiocese in 1960, writes PATSY McGARRY Religious Affairs Correspondent

THE JAILING of Paul McGennis yesterday was a further landmark in the campaign over many dark years by Marie Collins.

Her determination helped pull down a cover-up by Dublin’s Catholic archdiocese that had gone on for decades. This man had blighted the lives of children.

The Murphy commission concluded “there is no doubt that Collins, in her often lonely campaign to show the archdiocese how it had erred in its handling of child sexual abuse cases, was instrumental in changing the archdiocese’s understanding and handling of these cases . . .”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:56 PM

Order to query ex-pupils on abuse claims

IRELAND
Irish Examiner

By Claire O’Sullivan

Saturday, July 30, 2011

SENIOR members of the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart intend to interview former pupils and teachers at a Co Cork boarding school as part of its efforts to tackle ongoing allegations of sexual abuse by a former principal.

A letter from the outgoing Provincial Superior, Patrick Courtney, seen by the Irish Examiner, states that the incoming Provincial Superior, Fr Joseph McGee, will visit Coláiste an Chroí Naofa in Carraig na bhFear, 12km from Cork city, in September to begin a process where he "will personally contact and interview past and present members of staff and past pupils".

"Fr McGee will request details of any incident of abuse which may have come to the attention of these individuals during their time at the school," the letter says.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:53 PM

Vatican response on Cloyne due within weeks

VATICAN CITY
The Irish Times

PADDY AGNEW

VATICAN SOURCES have suggested the Holy See’s formal reply to the Government on the Cloyne report could come towards the middle of next month.

The reply may be sent before Pope Benedict XVI travels to Madrid for the World Youth Day celebrations, which run from August 16th to 23rd.

The reply was initially scheduled for delivery next week but in the wake of the Taoiseach’s outspoken criticism of the Vatican in the Dáil and the subsequent recall to Rome of the papal nuncio in Ireland, Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, it has been decided more time is needed.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:51 PM

Two years in jail for priest over 'torture' of sex abuse

IRELAND
The Irish Times

A PRIEST who apologised to his victim in court for the “torture” of sexual abuse he subjected her to as a young girl has received a six-year sentence, with the final four years suspended.

Judge Desmond Hogan commented that Paul McGennis (81) had been in a position of trust and “must have known that his word would never be questioned”.

He described the offences as “an exercise in control of a young girl through deceit and the basest of motives, namely selfish and uncaring sexual gratification”.

McGennis, of Holy Cross Diocesan Centre, Clonliffe Road, Dublin 3, pleaded guilty to eight sample counts of indecent assault on the female at two locations in the city between June 1980 and May 1984.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:48 PM

Ireland’s rift with Vatican deepens over child sex abuse reports

IRELAND/VATICAN CITY
Public Radio International

[with audio]

The Catholic Church's cover-up of child sex abuse cases may have tarnished relations between Ireland and the Vatican forever.

Story from Here and Now. Listent to audio above for full report.

The pope's envoy to Dublin has been recalled to Rome this week after the recent publication of the Cloyne Report earlier this month. The report details 19 additional child sex abuse allegations by clerical members of the Catholic Church from the Diocese of Cloyne amidst an ongoing worldwide scandal of sexual abuse and misconduct. Most of the cases in the Cloyne report were never reported to the police.

The report has inspired a wave of anger among the Irish people. In a chilling speech, Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny condemned the Church for letting the abuse cases slip by unpunished.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:45 PM

Cardinal Bevilacqua's grand jury testimony posted online

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

By Nancy Phillips and Craig R. McCoy
INQUIRER STAFF WRITERS

[Read the Cardinal's grand jury testimony]

The Inquirer on Friday posted on its website, Philly.com, the full testimony of Cardinal Anthony J. Bevilacqua before the grand jury investigating sexual abuse in the Catholic church.

To read it, go to: www.philly.com/testimony

There, the cardinal's testimony is contained in 10 separate documents, one for each of his appearances before the panel in 2003 and 2004. The testimony was referred to in the Grand Jury's 2005 report. Bevilacqua has never been charged with a crime.

Last week, prosecutors made Bevilacqua's testimony part of the public court file in the criminal case against Msgr. William Lynn, a top administrator who handled the Archdiocese abuse cases for the cardinal. Lynn is charged with conspiracy and child endangerment for allegedly enabling abusive priests. He has pleaded not guilty. ...

On Friday, Lynn's lawyers sought to prevent The Inquirer from posting the grand jury testimony.

The lawyers, Thomas A. Bergstrom and Jeffrey M. Lindy, said Bevilacqua's testimony would not be admissible at trial because the cardinal, now 88 and suffering from cancer and dementia, could not be cross-examined about it. In a letter to the judge, they argued that making the testimony public was "prejudicial to [Lynn's] right to a fair trial by an impartial jury."

Amy B. Ginensky, a lawyer for The Inquirer, countered that Lynn's request amounted to an "unconstitutional prior restraint." In a letter to the judge, she noted that courts have routinely held that the public has a right of access to court records. ...

Terence McKiernan, president of bishopaccountability.org, which tracks clergy abuse across the globe, called the judge's decision a "a grave error."

He said the documents were "essential evidence" in the criminal case against Lynn, the first member of the Catholic church hierarchy in the nation to be charged with child endangerment.

Moreover, he said, the documents "are of deep and immediate public interest, not only for the United States, but for Ireland, Belgium, Germany, and everywhere that a conspiracy of the Catholic hierarchy is suspected.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:35 PM

Jeffs breaks silence, delivers 'message' to court

SAN ANGELO (TX)
San Angelo Standard-Times

By Matthew Waller

Posted July 29, 2011

SAN ANGELO, Texas — The court was barely able to get Warren Jeffs to say anything when he chose to represent himself Thursday. On Friday, the court could scarcely keep him quiet.

Jeffs said nothing and made no objections for about an hour into the morning proceedings Friday, the fifth day of his trial on charges of sexual assault of a child. But when the prosecution moved to admit a document sacred to the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, the 10,000 member, polygamy-sanctioning group that he leads, Jeffs shot up from his defense table and objected.

"You are now touching that which is sacred," Jeffs said, standing alone at the defense table. "Thus on these grounds we call upon this court to render justice before sacred trust is trampled upon."

It was the beginning of an impassioned speech that lasted nearly an hour. Jeffs waved his hands as he repeatedly stressed his need for more time to prepare a defense, gave a slight history of the FLDS, and argued that polygamy should be protected as freedom of religion.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:05 PM

Warren Jeffs delivers threatening statement from God

TEXAS
The Salt Lake Tribune

By lindsay whitehurst

The Salt Lake Tribune
First published Jul 29 2011

San Angelo, Texas • Accused child-bride rapist and self-styled polygamist prophet Warren Jeffs — who is representing himself at trial in a West Texas courtroom — on Friday afternoon delivered a threatening statement from God, saying those who are prosecuting him will face "sickness and death."

"I will wrest your power. I shall judge you. I shall let all people’s know your unjust ways," Jeffs told the court. "I will send a scourge upon the counties of prosecutorial zeal that to be humbled by sickness and death." ...

The statement came after an FBI agent was testifying about a list of Jeffs family records.

Jeffs started by interrupting the testimony by talking and making objections, prompting District Judge Barbara Walther to send out the jury.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:01 PM

Polygamous sect leader touts religious freedom at sexual assault trial

SAN ANGELO (TX)
CNN

San Angelo, Texas (CNN) -- Polygamist sect leader Warren Jeffs ended his self-imposed silence at his sexual assault trial Friday, repeatedly interrupting prosecutors and launching into a diatribe on religious freedom while acting as his own one-man defense team.

The defendant is charged with two counts of sexual assault on a child and one count of bigamy stemming from a 2008 raid on a ranch near Eldorado, Texas, run by his church, the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. This month's trial addresses the first two counts, as Jeffs is expected to be tried later on the bigamy charge.

Several people took the stand Friday in San Angelo, Texas, including a doctor who conducted DNA tests on one of Jeffs' alleged sexual assault victims and her baby; a Texas child protective services agent who took part in the raid; and an FBI agent who took various items from the ranch.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:56 PM

Current Papal Nuncio will respond to Cloyne

IRELAND/VATICAN CITY
RTE News

It is understood that the Papal Nuncio, Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, intends to personally present the Vatican's response to the Government's criticisms arising from the Cloyne Report.

Taoiseach Enda Kenny has accused the Vatican of encouraging bishops not to report alleged clerical child sex abusers to the gardaí and health authorities.

Doubts about whether Archbishop Leanza would personally present the Vatican's eagerly anticipated reply to Foreign Minister Gilmore arose following Monday's recall of the Nuncio to Rome for consultations about the row between the Holy See and the Government.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:43 PM

Vatican to respond to Cloyne report next month

IRELAND
TV3

The Vatican's formal response to Government concerns over the Cloyne Report is expected by the end of next month - in line with a Government request

The Papal Nuncio to Ireland Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, who was recalled to the Vatican earlier this week is due to return to present the response.

Earlier this week the Vatican recalled its representative to Ireland for consultations on the Cloyne Report and it's certain that this will be one of Leanza's last actions before he is transferred to the Czech Republic.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:40 PM

Archbishop denies alleged Taoiseach meeting

IRELAND
The Irish Catholic

Michael Kelly

Dublin’s Archbishop Diarmuid Martin has issued a brief statement pointing out that he has only met Taoiseach Enda Kenny once – seven years ago.

The statement is aimed at ‘clarifying’ an article in Phoenix magazine. The article in question suggests that the archbishop has held recent meetings with the Taoiseach. Presumably the author is trying to infer that Dr Martin was somehow involved in Enda Kenny’s speech attacking the Vatican.

The archbishop is having none of it! Here’s his statement:

“Following the publication of an article on page three of this week’s Phoenix magazine, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin wishes to make a number of clarifications on the record; particularly as this magazine is a weekly publication and serious errors could go unchecked for that length of time and, as has happened in the past, be reprinted elsewhere.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:03 PM

Statement of clarification on behalf of Archbishop Martin

IRELAND
Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Dublin

Following the publication of an article on page three of this week’s Phoenix magazine, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin wishes to make a number of clarifications on the record; particularly as this magazine is a weekly publication and serious errors could go unchecked for that length of time and, as has happened in the past, be reprinted elsewhere.

There are unsubstantiated conjectures in the article among them the contention that Archbishop Martin and the Taoiseach Enda Kenny have had private meetings this year; this error of fact is flagged with the lines “it is reasonable to assume” and “not is it unreasonable to suggest”…

Archbishop Martin had one meeting with Mr. Kenny 7 years ago, shortly after his appointment as Archbishop of Dublin. Since then Archbishop Martin has neither requested nor had any other meetings with Mr. Kenny either in opposition or as Taoiseach.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:59 PM

Dublin's archbishop denies meeting with Kenny on abuse

IRELAND
Catholic Culture

Archbishop Diarmuid Martin of Dublin has categorically denied a report in the Phoenix magazine that he has held regular private meetings with Irish prime minister Enda Kenny. The Phoenix report implied that the archbishop might have influenced Kenny's angry speech attacking the Vatican.

In fact, Archbishop Martin said, he has not met with Kenny since becoming Archbishop of Dublin; their only private meeting occurred 7 years ago. The archbishop added that he has only written one note to the Taoiseach, shortly after Kenny rose to that office in March.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:55 PM

Catholic church weighs up response to criticism from Ireland

ROME
The Guardian

John Hooper in Rome
guardian.co.uk, Friday 29 July 2011

Next month, as every year since he was chosen to lead the world's Roman Catholics, the scholarly Pope Benedict XVI will preside at a meeting of his Schülerkreis — a group of his former doctoral students.

This year, the issue for debate in the pontifical summer palace, overlooking a volcanic lake near Rome, is the one he was elected to tackle: how to reverse the galloping secularisation of Catholicism's European homeland.

The discussion could scarcely be more timely, coming in the midst of a crisis in relations between the Holy See and Ireland, a country where, until a few years ago, official defiance of Rome was unthinkable.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:52 PM

The Vatican response to the child abuse row in Ireland looks like repentance-lite

UNITED KINGDOM
The Guardian

George Pitcher
guardian.co.uk, Friday 29 July 2011

Bob Diamond, the Barclays chief executive who awards himself and his top colleagues multimillion-pound bonuses even as the banking sector faces its worst crisis in living memory, famously told a parliamentary committee that the "time for remorse and apology" is over. But it's not only bankers – or MPs, come to that – who believe that there is an expiry date on contrition.

My own Church of England is full of those on opposite sides of the debates over women and homosexual clergy who have decided that the time for saying sorry is long past and that now the moment has arrived to play hardball, and those they hurt had better get used to it.

But the trophy for limited-edition repentance this past week must go to the Roman Catholic church, which withdrew its papal nuncio from Ireland in a huff after the taoiseach, Enda Kenny, said that the Vatican's response to the republic's clerical child sex abuse crisis was characterised by "dysfunction, disconnection and narcissism".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:48 PM

Vatican accuses Enda Kenny of attacking the Church to divert attention from euro crisis

IRELAND/VATICAN CITY
The Telegraph (United Kingdom)

Vatican officials have accused Enda Kenny, Ireland's prime minister, of diverting attention away from the Irish euro crisis by attacking the Roman Catholic Church over its covering up of sex abuse.

Giuseppe Leanza, the Vatican's envoy to Ireland, was posted to Prague on Friday, just days after he was recalled to Rome amid a row between the Vatican and Irish government over the sexual abuse of children by priests.

A report into the Irish diocese of Cloyne earlier this month criticised how the church handled hundreds of cases of sexual abuse of children by priests going back over decades.

The findings shocked Ireland, a deeply Catholic country, and prompted Mr Kenny to launch an unprecedented attack on "dysfunction, disconnection, elitism and narcissism" at the Vatican.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:45 PM

Mass goers walk out

IRELAND
Kilkenny People

Published on Friday 29 July 2011

A NUMBER of Massgoers walked out of church during Mass on Saturday evening when a priest described the Minister of Justice as‘Jewish and non practising’.

Fr Eddie Conway preached at three Masses at the Black Abbey over the weekend. One Massgoer contacted the Kilkenny People to express his digust at the content of the priest’s sermon.

“At the start of his sermon he said that the church had been in the news over the sex abuse scandals and that it had been a bad week for the church. He said that the scandal was a bad thing but that there was a bigger agenda that would become obvious in the next short while. He said that the agenda was been set by people who have a vested interest against the church including the Minister for Justice, Alan Shatter, who he described as Jewish and non practising and an athesist Minister and that child sex abuse was been used to get at the church. He said that the sex abuse scandal was bad but that there was a lot more going on. I was digusted by his remarks. They were bizarre and off the wall. I was not having any of it so I walked out and brought my children with me,” he said. He added that at least two other adults also walked out.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:17 PM

Vatican row over sex abuse scandal reveals emergence of a new Ireland

IRELAND/ROME
The Guardian (United States)

Henry McDonald in Dublin and John Hooper in Rome
guardian.co.uk, Friday 29 July 2011

When Ireland's prime minister, Enda Kenny, dared to attack the Vatican's role in the alleged cover-up of child abuse, he unleashed an unprecedented row between the Catholic church and the Irish state, with Rome recalling its ambassador to Dublin, and one priest even comparing Kenny to Adolf Hitler.

But Kenny's speech last week has also won him thousands of letters of support, and revealed how – after centuries in which the Catholic church was a dominant force in Irish society – the influence of Rome has dwindled, leaving a country that is now more tolerant and secular than at any time in its history.

"It was a monumental moment. Here was a man who is a practising Catholic and yet he was prepared to say these things," said Ciara McGrattan, the deputy editor of Gay Community News.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:13 PM

Roxbury priest gets prison time for stealing $200,000 from his parish

NEW JERSAY
Daily Record

Suicidal and recovering from alcohol abuse, the former pastor of St. Therese Roman Catholic Church in Succasunna was sentenced today to five years in prison for stealing $200,000 from the parish.

After the Rev. Joseph Davis, now 65, fell under suspicion for theft last year, he tried to commit suicide and was in a coma for seven days. He has spent the past 16 months undergoing treatment for depression and suicidal thoughts at a mental health facility in Pennsylvania that is run by the Catholic church.

Davis, pastor of St. Therese for 24 years and a priest for 39 years, pleaded guilty in May in state Superior Court, Morristown, to stealing $200,000 from the parish over a 20-year period though authorities believe the theft is larger.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:10 PM

Judge Won't Sever Cases in Archdiocese Sex-Abuse Scandal

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Courthouse News Service

By REUBEN KRAMER
PHILADELPHIA (CN) - Five men facing charges in an unprecedented criminal sex-abuse case involving the Philadelphia Archdiocese will all be tried at the same time, a judge ruled Friday, denying motions to sever.

Attorneys for Monsignor William Lynn, 60, wanted their client tried separately from his four co-defendants, arguing that Lynn "is in an entirely different position."

Unlike those defendants, Lynn is not accused of raping a minor.

Lynn, a portly man with a ruddy, pitted face and large jowls, rested his finger on pursed lips while his legal team argued his case.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:05 PM

Macht stelt kerk in staat misbruik toe te dekken

NEDERLAND
Trouw

De samenleving negeert de macht van de kerken. Een club als Greenpeace zou niet wegkomen met zo'n omvangrijk schandaal.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:58 PM

Meer uittredingen dan dopen bij Duitse RK-Kerk

DUITSLAND
Parool (Nederland)

Voor het eerst zijn er in Duitsland in een jaar meer mensen uit de Rooms-Katholieke Kerk getreden dan er door de doop zijn bijgekomen. Volgens cijfers, die vandaag op internet werden gepubliceerd, zijn er in 2010 170.000 mensen in de Duitse Rooms-Katholieke Kerk gedoopt. Er traden 181.193 mensen uit. 11.000 mensen traden tot de kerk toe.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:55 PM

Judge: Try Philadelphia Priests, Official Together

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
NPR

by The Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA July 29, 2011

A monsignor who is the only U.S. church official ever charged with transferring pedophile priests to unsuspecting parishes will be tried alongside four priests accused of rape, a judge ruled Friday.

Common Pleas Judge Lillian Ransom denied most of the pretrial requests made by Monsignor William Lynn, two current priests, a former priest and a former Catholic schoolteacher. The men wanted their cases to be tried separately and asked for many of the charges against them to be dismissed. ...

David Clohessy of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, a victim advocacy group, praised the judge's actions.

"The Catholic church isn't some loosely-knit hippie commune. It's a rigid, secretive, tightly-knit institution," he said in a written statement. "So when crimes happen, it's disingenuous for church officials to pretend that everyone involved is disconnected from one another."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:31 PM

BISHOPACCOUNTABILITY IS ANTI-PRIEST

BOSTON (MA)
Catholic League

July 29, 2011

Catholic League president Bill Donohue sent the following letter today to Dr. Mary Jane Doherty, a Regis College professor who heads the Boston Review Board; a copy was also sent to Cardinal Sean O'Malley:

I read the letter you received from BishopAccountability urging you, in your capacity as Chairperson of the Boston Review Board, to disclose the names of accused priests in the Boston Archdiocese, all of whom are reportedly dead. I am urging you not to do so. This issue has nothing to do with "healing"; rather, it has to do with politics.

In recent years, the due process rights of Roman Catholic priests have been trashed with regularity, but this demand represents a new low. BishopAccountability is so thoroughly biased against the constitutional rights of priests that it has the audacity to point fingers at the Boston Review Board because it objects to the Board's finding that 45 percent of the cases that were initially reviewed were found wanting. Had you found 100 percent of the cases meritorious, you would have been congratulated. This proves, beyond a doubt, that BishopAccountability has an agenda that reaches far beyond simply maintaining archives.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:26 PM

Judge rejects motion for separate trials in Philadelphia church sexual abuse case

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Newsworks

By Elizabeth Fiedler

A judge in Philadelphia has ruled that the defendants in a Catholic Church sexual abuse scandal case will be tried together--not separately.

Common Pleas Judge Lillian Ransom rejected a request from defense lawyers and ruled that the five defendants--Monsignor William Lynn, two priests, a former priest and a former Catholic school teacher--will stand trial together.

Lynn is the only U.S. church official ever charged criminally in the sex-abuse scandal for transferring alleged sexual abusers to unsuspecting parishes. At least a dozen supporters hugged and greeted him after the court appearance. Some were in tears. None were willing to be interviewed. Lynn, who was placed on administrative leave, was once a high-ranking archdiocesean official. Until he was charged, he was the parish priest at Saint Joseph's in Downingtown.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:19 PM

Monsignor, other clerics to stand trial together

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

By David O’Reilly
Inquirer Staff Writer

Monsignor William Lynn, former head of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia's Office for Clergy, and three other current or former priests were ordered Friday to stand trial together for conspiracy to endanger the welfare of children.

Philadelphia Common Pleas Court Judge Lillian Ransom denied defense motions to throw out the conspiracy charges against Lynn and the other defendants in the high profile case involving sexual assaults on two boys in the 1990s.

Revs. Charles Engelhardt, 64, and Edward Avery, 68, and Bernard Shero, 47, a former 6th grade teacher at St. Jerome's School in Northeast Philadelphia, were charged earlier this year the rape and sexually assault of a 10-year-old boy in 2000.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:29 PM

Judge: Try church sex scandal defendants together

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Stamford Advocate

JOANN LOVIGLIO, Associated Press
Updated 12:07 p.m., Friday, July 29, 2011

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A Philadelphia judge has ruled that the five defendants charged in a sex-abuse scandal at the city's Roman Catholic archdiocese will stand trial together.

Common Pleas Judge Lillian Ransom denied most of the pretrial requests made Friday by Monsignor William Lynn, two current priests, a former priest and a former Catholic school teacher.

Lynn is the only U.S. church official ever charged in the sex-abuse scandal for allegedly transferring predator priests to unsuspecting parishes. The other four are charged with raping boys in their care.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:26 PM

Vatican critics smell blood in the water, and remembering Sambi

VATICAN CITY
National Catholic Reporter

by John L Allen Jr on Jul. 29, 2011 All Things Catholic

If it wasn't clear already, recent events have conclusively driven home the following observation: Right now, people with a beef against the Vatican smell blood in the water.

Consider what we've seen in just the last 10 days:

•On Monday the Vatican recalled its ambassador in Ireland for consultations, following a blistering July 20 attack from Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny against the "dysfunction, disconnection and elitism, the narcissism, which dominates the culture of the Vatican to this day." Kenny was reacting to a recent government report on the Cloyne diocese, which found that allegations of sexual abuse were being mishandled as recently as 2009. Some in Ireland have floated the idea of extending criminal liability for failure to report abuse even to the sacrament of confession.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:21 PM

Almost 50 percent more Germans quit ...

GERMANY
Washington Post

By Associated Press, Updated: Friday, July 29

BERLIN — The number of people leaving the Roman Catholic Church in Germany jumped by nearly 50 percent in 2010 as an abuse scandal widened, new data showed Friday.

Some 181,000 people quit their memberships last year, up from 124,000 in 2009, official numbers released by Germany’s Roman Catholic Church showed.

Deaths and people turning away from the church heavily outnumbered baptisms, which reached a record low, putting one of the world’s wealthiest and most influential Catholic Churches further in decline.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:17 PM

Best's victims push for parliamentary inquiry

AUSTRALIA
The Courier

30 Jul, 2011

BALLARAT victims of Christian Brother Robert Charles Best are pushing for a parliamentary inquiry into his and other Catholic priests and brothers sexual misconduct, in a move that has been welcomed by Ballarat East MP Geoff Howard.

The Courier understands there are at least four victims who are pushing for the inquiry.

Mr Howard said, based on his current knowledge of what happened, he was in support of a parliamentary inquiry into the time Best was a teacher at St Alipius Christian Brothers School in the 1960s and 70s. However, he said he would need to look into it more closely. “I am in favour of pursuing a parliamentary inquiry on face value,” Mr Howard said.

“I am interested to follow up on the issue to see whether an inquiry is the best way of pursuing the matter. It’s a matter of following up on the best way to resolve the issue to support these people who have been violated.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:42 AM

Cop calls for probe into abuse at Catholic primary school

AUSTRALIA
Herald Sun

A POLICE officer investigating a series of sexual assaults at a Catholic boys school in Ballarat has called for a parliamentary inquiry into the church's handling of the abuse.

Detective Sgt Kevin Carson, of Ballarat police, told the ABC's 7.30 last night that up to 30 students had committed suicide since being abused at St Alipius primary school.

Sgt Carson's call came ahead of the sentencing of the school's former principal, Brother Robert Best, who has been found guilty of 21 counts against eight victims between 1969 and 1988.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:39 AM

Sex abuse led to 26 suicides says policeman

AUSTRALIA
The Age

Nick McKenzie and Richard Baker
July 30, 2011

AS MANY as 26 Victorians have committed suicide after being abused by two notorious paedophile clergymen, according to information gathered by a senior Victorian detective.

In interviews with a university researcher, Detective Sergeant Kevin Carson of the Ballarat Crimes Investigation Unit has revealed that during his investigations into Father Gerald Risdale and Christian Brother Robert Best - which led to both being convicted - he discovered that up to 24 young men had killed themselves in the years after they were abused by one or both of the men.

Detective Carson has recently learned of two more suicides, bringing his count to 26.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:37 AM

All Roads Lead to Accountability

UNITED STATES
Verdict

JULY 28, 2011 MARCI A. HAMILTON

There was a time when Ireland was politically and constitutionally united with the Roman Catholic Holy See. The priest sex-abuse cases, though, have driven such a wedge between the two sovereigns that Ireland’s Prime Minister, Enda Kenny, angrily denounced the Vatican for its brazen failures to abide by civil law and basic standards of decency.

In this column, I’ll explain and applaud both Kenny’s speech, and the work of another fine thinker and writer on this issue, Jason Berry.

Kenny’s Denunciation of the Vatican’s Contemporary Culture

Kenny minced no words when he referred to the “dysfunction, disconnection and elitism that dominate the culture of the Vatican to this day.” But what was most striking about his speech was that he laid down the gauntlet of accountability: He told the Vatican that the Church, its clergy, and hierarchy are governed by the civil law of Ireland.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:23 AM

Vatican to replace Papal Nuncio in Dublin in conciliatory move

IRELAND
Irish Central

By CATHAL DERVAN, IrishCentral.com Staff Writer

Published Friday, July 29, 2011

The Vatican has made a first move towards restoring relationships with Ireland and transferred Papal Nuncio Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza to the Czech Republic.

Leanza is seen as damaged after the Cloyne report crisis over sex abuse was allowed to occur on his watch and ineptly handled.

The Holy See had recalled Archbishop Leanza to Rome on Monday to discuss the Cloyne Report into clerical sexual abuse in the Cork diocese.

Leanza was summonsed back to the Vatican in the wake of severe criticism from Irish PM Enda Kenny of the Church’s failure to report child sex abuse claims in Cloyne to the state authorities.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:31 AM

Debate: Is there any hope for Catholic Ireland?

IRELAND
The Catholic Herald (United Kingdom)

Many Irish Catholics are furious with the Church. The prime minister, Enda Kenny, says he has received “thousands” of messages of support for his outburst against the Vatican last week. His government wants to limit the seal of Confession. Vocations are at an all-time low. Priests face widespread anger.

The latest tide of hostility is down to the Cloyne Report – a devastating indictment of the Church’s handling of abuse allegations as recently as 2008.

What can be done? The Pope has apologised; the Church is being subjected to a Visitation; several bishops have resigned. There are calls for the number of dioceses to be cut, and for many more bishops to stand down. But will that lead to renewal?

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:28 AM

Vatican recalls envoy to Ireland amid uproar

VATICAN CITY
The Advertiser

VATICAN CITY— The Vatican made the rare move of recalling its ambassador to Ireland on Monday following accusations that the Holy See sabotaged efforts by Catholic bishops to report clerical sex abuse cases to police.

Foreign Minister Eamon Gilmore had summoned papal ambassador Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza two weeks ago and demanded an official response from the Vatican. The Vatican has said it will issue one at the "opportune time" but has not done so yet.

The Vatican acknowledged that the recall of an ambsssador was a measure rarely adopted by the Holy See, underlining the "seriousness of the situation."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:25 AM

Hearing for Philly church officials in abuse case

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
The Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A court hearing Friday in Philadelphia could determine if criminal charges will stick in the indictment of a Roman Catholic church official charged with conspiracy and child-endangerment for his handling of priest transfers.

Sixty-year-old Monsignor William Lynn is the only U.S. church official ever charged in the sex-abuse scandal for allegedly transferring predator priests to unsuspecting parishes, endangering yet more children.

Lynn's attorneys say that he had no children in his care, so he can't be charged with endangering them.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:13 AM

The Heron's Nest: Another day in court for archdiocese

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Daily Times

By Phil Heron, editor@delcotimes.com

Look for the latest chapter in the sex scandal that continues to dog the Archdiocese of Philadelphia to play out in court today.

The Rev. Monsignor William Lynn, two priests and a former priest, all of whom face criminal charges connected to the most recent grand jury investigation, face a pre-trial hearing.

But there could be fireworks over last weekend’s publication of secret grand jury testimony.

After excerpts appeared in the Inquirer on Sunday, a judge hastily halted any further release of the information.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:10 AM

What's good for the Pope is good for the PB

UNITED STATES
Episcopal Cafe

As reported in The Telegraph,
Figures from the [National Catholic Safeguarding Commission for England and Wales] showed that cases involving 103 victims of alleged abuse were reported in 2010, compared with 52 victims’ cases in 2009. There were 18 people who alleged that they were abused during the course of 2010, the same number as during the previous year.

Baroness Scotland [, chair of the commission,] said the fact that the Pope had met abuse victims during his visit to Britain last year and had spoken strongly about the scandal had encouraged more people to speak out.

It's good practice: if you take the problem of sex abuse in the church seriously, then you encourage people to speak out.

Our Presiding Bishop knows good practice; she's been a leader. That's why we remain flummoxed as to why she has had nothing to say about her role, while Bishop of Nevada, of receiving as a priest a man who had admitted to inappropriate touching. The one case turns out to have been in the public record, so it was in the man's interest to reveal it. It turns out there were many more earlier instances of inappropriate sexual behavior by the man. Two current civil suits against the Catholic Church allege a psychological test by a Catholic institution showed he was prone to continue the behavior, and the results of this test was made available to the Episcopal Diocese of Nevada.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:08 AM

Attorney General dismisses sexual abuse case against Dutch bishop

NETHERLANDS
Radio Netherlands

The Attorney General in the Netherlands has decided not to open an inquiry into the alleged sexual abuse of a Kenyan youth by a Dutch bishop. The information given to the Attorney General is deemed insufficient for a judicial inquiry.

The allegations were brought to the attention of the Attorney General after the alleged victim appeared in various media saying a Dutch bishop had sexually abused him as an adolescent during the 1990s in Kenya. The police then conducted an investigation based on this information. However, to open a judicial inquiry the Attorney General requires more substantial information, including a complaint filed by the victim, together with the nature of the sexual abuse, the date the incident and the age of the victim.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:05 AM

Priest faces another lawsuit

MISSOURI
St. Joseph News-Press

A fourth lawsuit has been filed against a priest removed by the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph in June.

David Tate, 52, filed a suit against the diocese and Rev. Michael Tierney, claiming the priest molested Mr. Tate at a home and a hotel swimming pool in Kansas City. The alleged abuse occurred in 1971 and 1972, when Mr. Tate was 12 and 13.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:29 AM

Priest unmasked in Seanad lies low as abuse storm grows

IRELAND
Irish Independent

By David Forsythe and John Cooney
Friday July 29 2011

THE priest at the centre of the latest child abuse allegations in Cloyne was lying low yesterday as the senator who publicly named him again blasted his religious order.

Fr Donncha Mac Carthaigh was named under Seanad privilege by Senator Mark Daly as a suspected child abuser.

According to Mr Daly the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart order is not following its own child safety guidelines designed to keep priests suspected of child abuse away from children.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:26 AM

Abuse victims receive closure

WILMINGTON (DE)
The News Journal

Written by
BETH MILLER
The News Journal

WILMINGTON -- The long, painful negotiation between the Catholic Diocese of Wilmington and about 150 survivors of clergy sexual abuse ended Thursday in U.S. Bankruptcy Court, where a judge confirmed the diocese's reorganization plan, including a $77.4 million settlement with those survivors.

The court order signed by Judge Christopher Sontchi will release the diocese and all of its parishes from further litigation in the mountain of lawsuits filed from 2007 to 2009, after the money changes hands. On Sontchi's order, a 60-day clock was set in motion, after which the diocese will transfer the money to a settlement trust and checks will be cut for the abuse survivors, some of whom were abused by priests decades ago.

"Justice has been served for all the victims," said Ray Donahue of Wilmington, who was 12 years old when he was repeatedly raped by the Rev. Leonard Mackiewicz in 1967. Mackiewicz died in 1994.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:23 AM

Priest jailed for abusing girl in 1980s

IRELAND
RTE News

An 81-year-old priest has been jailed for two years for sexually abusing a young girl in the early 1980s.

Paul McGennis pleaded guilty to eight sample charges of indecently assaulting the girl at two locations in Dublin between June 1980 and May 1984.

The abuse began when she was around 11 years old. McGennis has previous convictions for indecent assault.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:20 AM

Cork Priest named in Senate as suspected child abuser keeps low profile

IRELAND
Irish Central

By CATHAL DERVAN, IrishCentral.com Staff Writer

Published Friday, July 29, 2011

The Cork Priest outed in the Irish Senate as a suspected child abuser has gone to ground in the wake of huge publicity.

His order, the Sacred Heart Missionaries, has apologized to anyone who had been abused by members of the order and appealed to people to report any such instances to police.

Fr Donncha Mac Carthaigh was named in the Seanad, the upper house of the Irish parliament, by Senator Mark Daly.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:18 AM

Priest jailed over Dublin abuse

IRELAND
The Irish Times

A priest (81) has been sentenced to jail today for sexually abusing a woman in Dublin in the 1980s.

Paul McGennis, of Holy Cross Diocesan Centre, Clonliffe Road, Dublin 3, pleaded guilty to eight sample counts of indecent assault on the female at two locations in the city on dates between June 1980 and May 1984.

He was this morning sentenced to six years in prison, with four years of that suspended due to his age and health, the guilty plea entered, and a financial contribution he made to his victim. McGennis was sentenced to two years for lesser charges, but both sentences are to run concurrently.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:15 AM

Victims confront sadistic pedophile

AUSTRALIA
Otago Daily Times

Serial paedophile and Christian Brother, Robert Charles Best was described this week by some of his many victims as a mentally deranged sadist with the instincts of a jungle predator.

At Best's pre-sentence hearing, the men who were young boys when Best repeatedly assaulted them bravely put their horrors into words, telling a Victorian court how their lives had been destroyed by the man who was supposed to be guiding them through their childhood.

"This bastard robbed me of a normal life and the simple pleasures that come with it," one victim said.

Another told him he was an evil coward.

"And above all else, you are guilty," he said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:13 AM

Papal Nuncio reassigned to Czech Republic

IRELAND
RTE News

The Papal Nuncio to Ireland, Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, who has been reassigned to the Czech Republic, is expected to return to Ireland before taking up his new posting.

It was announced on Monday that Archbishop Leanza had returned to the Vatican after being recalled for consultations on the Cloyne Report.

The Department of Foreign Affairs had been made aware of plans to reassign Archbishop Leanza before the current controversy over the Cloyne report.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:10 AM

Erin Go Bonkers

IRELAND
National Review

George Weigel

While America’s attention has been absorbed in recent weeks by domestic affairs, something quite remarkable has become unmistakably clear across the Atlantic: Ireland — where the constitution begins, “In the name of the Most Holy Trinity” — has become the most stridently anti-Catholic country in the Western world.

Its Taoiseach (prime minister), Enda Kenny, recently took to the floor of the Dáil to denounce the Vatican as a house of “dysfunction, disconnection, elitism . . . [and] narcissism” and to commit an act of calumny against Pope Benedict XVI, accusing him of being a party to the coverup of the “rape and torture of children.” Ireland’s attorney general plans to introduce a new law that threatens priests with five-year jail sentences if they do not violate the seal of confession when pedophilia is confessed. Polls indicate considerable support among Irish voters for such an unprecedented violation of religious freedom, and the Irish press has indulged its anti-Church phobias with virtually no restraint.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:07 AM

'Take priests to football matches or out for a glass of wine so they don't become paedophiles', says Baroness Scotland

UNITED KINGDOM
Daily Mail

By ROB COOPER
Last updated at 12:03 PM on 29th July 2011

Churchgoers should take priests out for a glass of wine or to football matches so they aren't tempted to become paedophiles, Baroness Scotland has said in an astonishing outburst.

The former Labour minister said that many priests have a 'fairly lonely existence' and need to mix more with their parishioners on a social basis.

The child protection expert, claimed that church leaders end up becoming abusers because they are 'isolated', the Daily Telegraph reported.

Baroness Scotland who is the chairman of the National Catholic Safeguarding Commission set-up to handle abuse claims, said paedophilia within the church should not be a taboo subject.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:03 AM

Priest jailed 2 years for sexual abuse

IRELAND
Newstalk

An 81-year-old priest named in the Murphy Report has been jailed for 2 years for sexually abusing a girl 30 years ago.

Paul McGennis of Holy Cross Diocesan Centre in Clonliffe Road pleaded guilty to 8 sample counts of indecent assault at two locations in Dublin on dates between 1980 and 1984.

The 81-year-old priest kept his head bowed and his eyes closed throughout the court appearance.

At his last hearing Mr. McGennis apologised to his victim for putting her through ‘torture’.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:00 AM

Bishop Eddie Long's Fifth Accuser Takes to Facebook During Settlement Talks | Centino Kemp

ATLANTA (GA)
Fox 5

FOX 5 I-Team exclusive report

By DALE RUSSELL/myfoxatlanta

ATLANTA, Ga. - Sources tell FOX 5’s I-Team that the mysterious fifth accuser in the Bishop Eddie Long sexual misconduct scandal can’t talk about the case because he’s part of the secret settlement. But he can make music. Senior I-Team reporter Dale Russell tracked what Centino Kemp wrote about during those settlement talks.

In the lyrics to his music and the writings on Facebook and Twitter, Centino Kemp, 22, shows a range of emotions-- from anger and bitterness to sexual provocation, and at times a flamboyant sense of humor.

When people find his songs on YouTube or iTunes, what will color their listening is that as the I-Team uncovered, Centino Kemp was involved in the Bishop Eddie Long sexual misconduct settlement talks.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:55 AM

Sex abuse scandals and the secularisation of sin

UNITED KINGDOM
The Guardian

Massimo Franco
guardian.co.uk, Friday 29 July 2011

Last week the Irish taoiseach, Enda Kenny, openly criticised the Vatican for what he said were attempts to frustrate the Cloyne inquiry into child abuse, thereby launching a row between Ireland and the Vatican that led to the Vatican recalling its Irish ambassador. But why are the governments of historically papist countries suddenly at war with the Holy See?

The reason behind this is wider historical shift, namely our changing view of the nature of sin. Acts such as child abuse that were once, just 20 years ago, perceived as terrible sin that needed be hidden and treated secretly, are nowadays valued as what they actually are: disgusting violations of the law.

This is the symptom of a major cultural change. During the cold war, the Vatican was considered the moral arm of western values and, to some extent, a part of the anti-communist security system. The need to shield Europe from the Soviet Union granted the Catholic church indulgence from civil authorities for the behaviour of some of its members and priests. The fact that many communist regimes actively persecuted religion, and tried to defame Catholic priests and bishops as paedophiles, to some extent gave political justification to such indulgences.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:48 AM

Time for Penitence

IRELAND
The Irish Catholic

Date:
28 Jul 2011

The time for hollow apologies is over

Historians, in time, will judge the rights and wrongs of the Taoiseach's speech. For now, it is diplomats who will have to repair the strained but important relationship between the Holy See and the Irish State.

Hopefully, the recalled Nuncio will help the Vatican understand that Taoiseach Enda Kenny's speech, despite misquotes and harsh intemperate language, captured the anger of a generation that has been badly let down by an institutional Catholicism peculiar to Ireland.

''Le catholicisme du type Irlandais'' in many ways betrayed 14 centuries of unbroken and life-giving Christian tradition. Instead of fond memories of a nurturing Church, most remember an arrogant authoritarian Irish Church and a privileged clerical caste that obsessed over sexuality and hell fire and neglected the tender compassion of Christ.

What wasn't narrowly viewed as pure and holy for Church or State was expelled from sight, whether it was young unmarried mothers to a Magdalene home or books burnt or plays banned. There was a symbiotic relationship between the newly emerging Irish State and Catholic idealism. All would be nice and pure in our new Catholic idyll. Those who said otherwise were ignored or not believed. While this Church is very much in the past, the memories of the abuse of power remain and many are estranged from the Church now because of lingering hurt.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:43 AM

Catholic newspaper applauds Taoiseach’s Vatican speech

IRELAND
The Journal

A CATHOLIC PUBLICATION has said that Taoiseach Enda Kenny’s speech about the Vatican “captured the anger of a generation”.

The Irish Catholic has its front page entirely dedicated to an editorial on the speech this week, in which it states that “the time for hollow apologies is over”.

The editorial, titled Time for Penitence, states that “most remember an arrogant authoritarian Irish church and a privileged clerical caste that obsessed over sexuality and hell fire and neglected the tender compassion of Christ”.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:40 AM

Legal eagles offer aid on child abuse

AUSTRALIA
The Australian Jewish News

THE lawyer who extracted more than $800,000 in damages from the Anglican Church after a student at an Anglican school was abused, has offered to help Jewish victims of child abuse.

While no cases have been filed within the Jewish community, Stephen Roche, a partner at Shine Lawyers, and Jewish human rights lawyer George Newhouse (pictured), have joined forces to “support the victims of sexual abuse … in St Kilda’s Jewish community”.

With criminal investigations underway on suspected Jewish child abusers, Newhouse told The AJN he was willing to help victims assess other legal options.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:37 AM

Polygamist sect leader fires lawyers ...

SAN ANGELO (TX)
Washington Post

By Associated Press, Updated: Friday, July 29

SAN ANGELO, Texas — Warren Jeffs’ sexual assault trial got off to a frenzied start, largely because the polygamist sect leader insisted on representing himself, then sat mute and seemingly oblivious to everything going on in court around him.

Without any objections from Jeffs, who declined to make an opening statement, prosecutors moved at breakneck speed Thursday on the trial’s first day, calling five witnesses. They also told jurors they have an audio recording of the 55-year-old defendant raping a 12-year-old girl and DNA evidence showing he impregnated a 15-year-old.

Jeffs is the ecclesiastical head of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, a radical offshoot of mainstream Mormonism that believes polygamy is the key to exaltation in heaven. Followers see him as a prophet who can speak for God on Earth.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:33 AM

Archbishop Pietro Sambi, Vatican Envoy, Dies at 73

UNITED STATES
The New York Times

By PAUL VITELLO
Published: July 29, 2011

Archbishop Pietro Sambi, a career Vatican diplomat who represented the Roman Catholic Church for more than four decades in diplomatically delicate postings around the globe and served as the papal ambassador to the United States since 2005, died on Wednesday in Baltimore. He was 73.

The cause was complications of lung surgery he underwent two weeks ago, Vatican Radio said.

Archbishop Sambi, a gregarious, silver-haired Italian priest fluent in English, French and Spanish, was one of Pope Benedict XVI’s first appointments after Benedict succeeded Pope John Paul II in 2005.

In 2008, when the new pope made his first trip to the United States, Archbishop Sambi became the point man in defending the pope’s controversial decision not to visit Boston, the nexus of the sexual abuse crisis among priests in the United States. Abuse victims and Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley of Boston were urging a visit, but church officials privately feared there was too much danger of public protests.

At the same time, Archbishop Sambi helped arrange a private meeting between a select group of victims and the pope at the official papal ambassador’s residence in Washington a few days before the end of his trip. One victim at the meeting was said to have told the pope that he needed to do more about the “cancer in your flock.”

Jason Berry, an author who was one of the first journalists to report on sexual abuse in the church, said Archbishop Sambi’s sensitivity to the needs of ordinary people had made him a rare Vatican prelate. In his recent book on church finances, “Render Unto Rome,” Mr. Berry portrayed the archbishop as one of the few high-ranking church officials in the United States who had tried to stop dioceses from closing parishes to pay for sexual abuse court settlements.

But Terence McKiernan, president of BishopAccountability.org, which archives documents from the abuse scandal, said that in recent years Archbishop Sambi had lobbied the Vatican behind the scenes to appoint a number of bishops whom the group considers hostile to victims’ rights.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:29 AM

July 28, 2011

Prosecutors: Polygamist leader's sex assault on girl is on audio tape

TEXAS
MSNBC

SAN ANTONIO — Prosecutors said they have an audio tape of polygamist leader Warren Jeffs sexually assaulting a 12-year-old child, The Salt Lake Tribune reported on its website Thursday.

The revelation came during opening statements on Jeffs' trial on child sexual assault charges.

The prosecutor also said DNA evidence would prove that Jeffs fathered a child with a 15-year-old girl, the Tribune reported.

Earlier Thursday, Jeffs threw the trial into disarray when he fired his defense lawyers and demanded the right to represent himself, which the judge then granted.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:34 PM

Priest’s brother investigated sex abuse claims

IRELAND
Irish Examiner

By Claire O’Sullivan

Friday, July 29, 2011

THE first complaint of sexual abuse against the former principal of Carrignavar College and Cork GAA selector, Fr Donncha Mac Cárthaigh, was investigated by his brother, who was then the head of his order in Ireland.

The complaint was lodged against Fr Donncha in 1986. In his statement to the Seanad, using Dáil privilege, Senator Mark Daly revealed how this initial inquiry was headed by his brother, the then provincial superior of the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart, Fr Ciarán Mac Cárthaigh.

No suggestion has been made of impropriety on the part of Fr Ciarán.

Within a number of years of the complaint, Fr Donncha had stepped aside "under a cloud" from his post as principal, and was installed by the order as a career and guidance counsellor, where he had further access to children.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:50 PM

Catholic Church sex abuse allegations double in one year

UNITED KINGDOM
Telegraph

Churchgoers should take Roman Catholic priests to watch football matches or invite them for a glass of wine to stop them becoming emotionally “isolated” and turning into paedophiles, the Church’s child protection chief has suggested.

By Tim Ross, Religious Affairs Editor

Baroness Scotland, chair of the National Catholic Safeguarding Commission for England and Wales, said the fact that some priests lived “a fairly lonely existence” may have been a factor contributing to the sexual abuse scandal.

Her comments came as figures showed that the number of victims alleging they were abused by Catholic priests and other members of the religious community had doubled in a year.

The commission welcomed the rise as a sign that victims felt more comfortable coming forward to report their cases, partly as a result of last year’s visit to Britain by Pope Benedict XVI, who met abuse survivors.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:45 PM

Papal visit prompts new response in abuse reporting

UNITED KINGDOM
Vatican Radio

[with audio]

Making the Church a safe place for children in the UK: that’s the focus of the third annual report of the National Catholic Safeguarding Commission which was made public on Thursday. The report details many positive developments in the safeguarding ministry in England and Wales, but it also recognises there is no room for complacency in dealing with survivors of abuse by priests or other members of the Church.

The report notes that following Pope Benedict’s visit to Britain in September last year, there was a threefold increase in the number of victims who felt able to come forward and report cases of sexual abuse that took place several decades ago. During his four day visit, the Pope met with both survivors and members of the national safeguarding commission, telling them ‘it is deplorable that children have suffered abuse at the hands of some priests and religious.’

In an introduction to the report, the commission's chair, Baroness Patricia Scotland, said she is aware there was "still much to do” and the Church needs to work on developing "a more sensitive and pastoral response to the victims and survivors of abuse”. A former British Attorney General, Baroness Scotland is well known for her success in reducing the cases of domestic violence in the UK. Philippa Hitchen asked her if she believes that protection of children has now become a top priority for the Catholic Church there…

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:42 PM

Mass. group discloses new names of accused priests

BOSTON (MA)
Boston Globe

By Jay Lindsay
Associated Press / July 28, 2011

[See also the letter to the chairperson of the Boston Archdiocesan Review Board, with links to the complaints and other documents.]

BOSTON—A watchdog group frustrated that Boston Cardinal Sean O'Malley hasn't released a promised list of suspected pedophile priests disclosed the names Thursday of nine previously unnamed suspected abusers.

The group, BishopAccountability.org, also sent a letter to the head of a powerful lay advisory committee urging her to pressure O'Malley to release the list, saying it was a matter of public safety and healing for victims.

O'Malley broke a vow of greater transparency "with no explanation or apology," said the letter to Mary Jane Doherty, chair of archdiocese's review board.

"How many reported priests' names is he keeping from the public? Dozens? Scores? A hundred? This is a silence of epic proportions -- irresponsible, immoral, and dangerous," read the letter from BishopAccountability's co-directors, Anne Barrett Doyle and Terence McKiernan. "Because the archbishop will not break his silence, we are asking you to break yours." ...

The new names disclosed by BishopAccountability were accused in Boston-area cases between 1951 and 1980. Each resulted in a settlement with the archdiocese, according to attorney Carmen Durso, who brought the claims. All nine men are believed to be dead.

BishopAccountability.org, which tracks clergy sex abuse cases nationally, discovered the newly disclosed names while reviewing two publicly filed lawsuits brought by Durso, one from 2002 and the other from 2007. The priests' names include Donald McGurrin, Alphonse B. Jansonis, Charles F. Dewey, Benedict Mawn, Septimo Basso and John J. Gallagher. Three other religious order brothers' full names weren't given in the complaint: Brother Leonard Xavier and Brother Albert, both Marists, and Brother Cuthbert, a Xaverian.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:37 PM

Irish priest apologizes for linking Kenny's speech to Hitler's

IRELAND
Catholic Culture

An Irish Catholic priest has been forced to apologize for a newsletter in which he compared an anti-Vatican speech by prime minister (Taoiseach) Enda Kenny to a speech by Adolf Hitler.

In a short essay lamenting the Taoiseach's speech, Father Thomas Daly had told his parishioners in Drogheda: "The last European leader to make such a blistering attack on the Pope was the ruthless German dictator Adolf Hitler." That sentence touched of howls of protest, and Father Daly apologized for "the headline and for the misunderstandings that might have arisen out of it."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:17 PM

Geen vervolging oud-bisschop

NEDERLAND/KENIA
NOS

Een Nederlandse oud-bisschop die beschuldigd werd van het misbruiken van een jongen in Kenia wordt niet vervolgd.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:49 PM

Bishop "pleased" by Bankruptcy Court approval of Diocese reorganization plan

DELAWARE
WDEL

The bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Wilmington says he's pleased that a federal bankruptcy court has OK'd the Diocese's reorganization plan.

In a statement, Francis Malooly said Thursday he feels the Diocese has now reached its goals of helping priest sex abuse victims recover while enabling the Diocese to meet financial obligations to its lay employees and creditors.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:45 PM

Dispute reveals contrasting perceptions of Benedict's role in Rome

VATICAN CITY
The Irish Times

Senior Vatican figures hoist the drawbridge when it comes to criticism of the Pope, writes PADDY AGNEW

IT IS NOW clear that the one section of the Taoiseach’s attack on the Vatican in the Dáil last week that has thoroughly annoyed the Holy See is that passage in his speech where Mr Kenny quotes Pope Benedict – then Cardinal Ratzinger – in a 1990 Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) document.

Towards the end of his speech, the Taoiseach talks about “two pieces of legislation” with regard to protecting “the sacred space of childhood” that his Government intended to promote.

At this point, he quotes Ratzinger, saying: “Standards of conduct appropriate to civil society or the workings of a democracy cannot be purely and simply applied to the church.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:42 PM

Sex scandals: Before golden silence turns consent

NIGERIA
Daily Independent

By Innoccnt Anoruo

When one considers the hoard of allegations bordering on sexual immorality against Catholic priests, who took the oath of celibacy, thoughts of whether there is a sort of curse on the priesthood coming from the pit of hell readily comes to mind.

Has anybody wondered why it should be Catholic priests? Is nobody reading any perceptive meaning to this development?

To me, some enemies of celibacy or Catholic Church are trying to pull down the Church (which of course is not possible). Otherwise what concerns a non-Catholic with a cross Catholic priests decided to carry for the sake of Christ? I know that the Church does not force anybody to go into priesthood; it’s a matter of choice.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:38 PM

Archbishop Blasts Magazine Over 'Agenda-driven Travesty of Salacious Innuendo Masquerading as Journalism'

PHILADLEPHIA (PA)
NewsBusters

By Dave Pierre | July 28, 2011

This past month, Philadelphia magazine published what can only described as a vulgar, unfair, and reckless piece of yellow journalism designed to shock readers and lambaste the Catholic Church. Utilizing anonymous and discredited sources, writer Robert Huber authored a lengthy article seeking to portray the Church as a callous cabal that is oblivious to the pain of child sex abuse.

Enter Donna Farrell, Director of the Office of Communications of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

Following the publication of the article, Ms. Farrell issued the following statement:

Unfortunately for Philadelphia magazine readers looking for honest, in-depth reporting, this piece is an agenda-driven travesty of salacious innuendo masquerading as journalism. It is built almost entirely on unsubstantiated comments recklessly offered by unattributed sources that Mr. Huber is all-too-ready to accept as fact.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:53 PM

Mass. group discloses new names of accused priests, pushes O'Malley for full list

BOSTON (MA)
The Republic

JAY LINDSAY Associated Press
First Posted: July 28, 2011

BOSTON — A watchdog group frustrated that Cardinal Sean O'Malley hasn't released a promised list of suspected pedophile priests in Boston is disclosing the names of nine previously unnamed alleged abusers, all believed to be deceased.

Meanwhile, the group BishopAccountability.org on Thursday urged the head of a powerful lay advisory committee, the archdiocese's review board, to pressure O'Malley to act.

In March 2009, O'Malley wrote he was considering improving policy on releasing information about accused clergy. The archdiocese said Thursday it's made "substantial progress" on what it called an "important undertaking," but did not indicate when the list might be released.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:48 PM

Church's condoning of evil goes way back

IRELAND
The Irish Times

VINCENT BROWNE

THE “DYSFUNCTION, disconnection and elitism” which Enda Kenny said “dominates the culture of the Vatican to this day” did not start with the investigation into clerical sex abuse in the Cloyne diocese.

It has been the defining characteristic of the Catholic Church throughout history and abuses of an even greater scale than clerical child sex abuse have been a feature of that history throughout most of its existence.

The Catholic Church has been an advocate for slavery, for the subjugation of people in Africa, North and South America and Asia, for acts bordering on genocide and for the most appalling cruelties.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:44 PM

Tragedy In Borough Park Puts Shomrim Under Scrutiny

NEW YORK
The Jewish Week

Hella Winston

Special to The Jewish Week

As the Borough Park community struggles with the brutal murder of 8-year-old Leiby Kletzky, and as more information surfaces about the history and emotional state of his accused killer, the tragedy is shining a light on the neighborhood watch groups that operate within the strictly Orthodox communities — and the largely under-the-surface tensions between these groups and the NYPD.

Those tensions became more apparent in recent days as sources in the community and the NYPD expressed frustration with how the Shomrim (Hebrew for “guardians”) operate – however well intentioned – with little accountability, sometimes hindering the work of the police.

The heartbreaking outcome in the Leiby case is seen by some in these circles as a dramatic case in point.

The Shomrim, who respond to calls about everything from vandalism to missing persons, domestic violence and sexual abuse, are highly respected in their communities. While they don’t have the power to make arrests, they tend to be trusted more than police in these tight-knit communities, as they have a reputation for responding quickly to calls and taking care of their own.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:39 PM

Rabbi Kamenetsky's Unfortunate Comments

UNITED STATES
Washington Jewish Week

By Phil Jacobs
Editor

Several years ago, over 500 people jammed into an Orthodox synagogue to hear the wisdom of "experts" on the topics of sexual abuse, spousal abuse and trauma.

The dynamic in the sanctuary created an energy of tension that could be cut with a knife. Many of us in the room looked around to see who else was there. Many familiar faces, neighbors, people from all over the Orthodox community, that's who.

We were told to write down any questions we might have for the Q&A session that would follow. First, however, came a time consuming speech from the rabbinic head of the va'ad. It was 15 minutes of wasted time.

Then came a very meaningful speech from Dr. David Pelcovitz, a specialist in the area of trauma therapy.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:36 PM

Cops Or No Cops? Rabbi David Zwiebel On Reporting Child Sexual Abuse

UNITED STATES
Failed Messiah

The executive vice president of Agudath Israel of America tried to explain Agudah's position – which he calls the position of the "gedolei haposkim" – on reporting child sexual abuse.

Here's the skinny on what Rabbi Zwiebel says is the halakhic position on reporting child sexual abuse to police or CPS:

1. We need either to have witnessed the abuse take place or have raglayim l'davar, a responsable or credible suspicion, that the abuse took place before we can call police or CPS.

2. If you did not witness the abuse taking place but only have a suspicion, however strong, that it happened, you must consult with a rabbi muvhak, a senior rabbi with expertise in this issue.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:33 PM

New sex abuse lawsuit filed against priest

KANSAS CITY (MO)
The Kansas City Star

By JUDY L. THOMAS The Kansas City Star

Another lawsuit alleging sexual abuse has been filed against a Kansas City priest who was removed from his duties in June for what the diocese called credible accusations of misconduct with minors.

The lawsuit, filed in Jackson County Circuit Court today by David Tate of Kansas City, accuses the Rev. Michael Tierney of sexually abusing Tate at the home of Tierney’s mother and at a hotel swimming pool in Kansas City in the early 1970s when Tate was 12 years old. It says the Kansas City-St. Joseph diocese knew of Tierney’s misconduct with children and covered it up.

The lawsuit, which seeks unspecified monetary damages, was the third to be filed against Tierney since last fall. It names Tierney, Bishop Robert Finn and the diocese as defendants.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:25 PM

Vatican nuncio to Ireland moving to Czech Republic

IRELAND/CZECH REPUBLIC
BBC News

The Vatican's nuncio to Ireland is to be transferred to the Czech Republic.

The Pope recalled Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza following criticism of the Catholic Church by the Taoiseach Enda Kenny.

The remarks followed the publication of the Cloyne report into the church's mishandling of cases of clerical sex abuse in County Cork.

In a blistering attack, Mr Kenny accused the church of putting its reputation ahead of child rape victims.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:05 PM

Catholics sounding off about recent scandal in online survey

KANSAS CITY (MO)
NBC Action News

By: Beth Vaughn

KANSAS CITY, Missouri - When Father Shawn Ratigan was arrested in May, shock consumed Catholics and non-Catholics alike.

Six months before being taken into custody, the Diocese of Kansas City St. Joseph said questionable pictures were found on his computer. The next day, Ratigan attempted to commit suicide. Then, Bishop Robert Finn reassigned him to an abbey where he wouldn’t have access to children.

There was immediate outcry from the public over how the Diocese handled the allegations.

Now, there’s a place for people to sound off anonymously.

Jeff Weis was born and raised in the Diocese of Kansas City – St. Joseph. He is a devout Catholic who was concerned that the sentiment of fellow faithful followers and Kansas Citians wasn’t being heard.

So, he created a questionnaire, which can be found at www.finnsurvey.info .

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:44 PM

Another Man Files Sexual Suit Against Fmr. Priest Michael Tierney

KANSAS CITY (MO)
Fox 4 News

Kathy Quinn, FOX 4 News
Sarah Clark, FOX 4 News

KANSAS CITY, Mo.—
Another man has come forward and filed suit against former Catholic Priest Michael Tierney. David Tate claims Tierney sexual abused him 40 years ago.

Tierney had been the priest for Christ the King Church in Kansas City, Missouri until Bishop Robert Finn removed him on June 2 after credible reports of sexual misconduct with minors in the 70s and 80s came to light.

Tierney has a total of four suits filed against him. The latest, filed by Tate, alleges that Tierney molested Tate when he was 12 and 13 years old. According to court documents, Tierney molested Tate at a pool and at a home between 1971 and 1972. Tate was a student at St. Elizabeth School during the time of the alleged abuse. Tierney was the associate priest of St. Elizabeth Church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:06 PM

Delaware Catholic Diocese Wins Leave to Pay Abuse Victims, End Bankruptcy

DELAWARE
Bloomberg

By Steven Church - Jul 28, 2011

The Catholic Diocese of Wilmington, Delaware, won court permission to pay people who were sexually abused by priests $77.4 million to win protection from future lawsuits and end its bankruptcy case.

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Christopher Sontchi in Wilmington said today that he would approve the diocese’s reorganization plan after lawyers for the church and the victims work out the final wording of a court order he can sign.

The plan was designed to compensate about 150 abuse victims whose molestation claims stretch back to the 1960s and to impose an outside review of all church policies, from the education of its priests to how it runs its schools. Sontchi will hold a hearing later this afternoon where he said he will sign an order approving the reorganization plan, assuming the final changes don’t contradict any of the rulings he has made in the case.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:07 PM

Church and state

IRELAND
The Economist

WHEN the Vatican recalled its envoy in Dublin, Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, on July 25th it marked a low point in diplomatic relations between Ireland and the Holy See. The papal nuncio’s sudden departure came after an outspoken attack by the Irish taoiseach (prime minister), Enda Kenny, on Rome’s interference in Irish affairs. Mr Kenny accused the Vatican of undermining the work of an official inquiry into clerics’ sexual abuse of children in a Catholic diocese, Cloyne.

Over a 13-year period to 2009, most of the 19 alleged cases of child abuse by priests in Cloyne were not reported to the civil authorities. The Cloyne inquiry report, Ireland’s fourth investigation into child sexual abuse by clerics, laid most of the blame on the bishop of Cloyne, John Magee, who resigned in March 2010 (he had been private secretary to three popes). The report found that Bishop Magee had misled an earlier inquiry and failed to implement child-protection procedures set up by Irish bishops in 1996. The Vatican dismissed these procedures as “merely a study document” and, the report claimed, was “entirely unhelpful” to any bishops who wanted to implement them. Last year Pope Benedict XVI apologised to victims of sexual abuse by members of the clergy.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:04 PM

Bankruptcy judge set to approve Catholic diocese's abuse settlement today

WILMINGTON (DE)
The News Journal

Written by
BETH MILLER
The News Journal

WILMINGTON — After a 90-minute hearing to resolve last-minute issues this morning, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Christopher Sontchi said he will confirm the Catholic Diocese of Wilmington’s reorganization plan, which includes a $77.4 million settlement with about 150 survivors of clergy sexual abuse.

In final rulings, Sontchi noted that the court’s restriction on pension and benefit payments to the abuser priests related to the diocese’s civil authority.

“The definition of claim says ‘right to payment,’” he said, “and that means legal right to payment…. So there is no legal right to any payment and that in fact would be the debtor’s choice – not to pay these, to terminate the pensions. I’m going to make them do it. I think it’s the right thing to do and the only way the debtor can be operating in good faith.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:58 PM

Safeguarding: Annual Report to be Released

UNITED KINGDOM
The Catholic Church of England and Wales

Press Release from the Catholic Safeguarding Advisory Service (CSAS)

The third Annual Report outlining the work of the National Catholic Safeguarding Commission and the Catholic Safeguarding Advisory Service is being launched on 28 July 2011. This Report highlights the many positive developments in the safeguarding ministry in the Catholic Church in England and Wales whilst acknowledging there is no room for complacency. This is particularly true in relation to the Church’s response to survivors of abuse.

The NCSC is both challenged and heartened by the fact that last year and, in particular, following the Pope’s visit more people have felt confident enough to come forward to report incidents of abuse in the hope of finding some kind of reconciliation and closure. Working to provide a safe and encouraging framework to support survivors is a top priority for the NCSC.

NCSC DEVELOPMENTS 2010–11

During the last year the NCSC has been working to achieve its 3 strategic priorities:

• Developing a more appropriate response to survivors

• Monitoring safeguarding practice through a national audit process.

• Organising and hosting the Anglophone Safeguarding Conference in Rome, June 2011.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:34 AM

Safeguarding: Annual Report 2010-11

UNITED KINGDOM
The Catholic Church of England and Wales

[with audio and links to the full report]

At a press conference in London today to launch the National Catholic Safeguarding Commission’s third annual report, the Chair of the NCSC, Baroness Patricia Scotland said:

"The third report highlights the many positive developments in the safeguarding ministry in the Catholic Church in England and Wales, whilst also acknowledging that there is no room for complacency and indeed there is much still to do. This is particularly true in response to the Church’s response to survivors of abuse and the NCSC is both challenged and heartened by the fact that in particular following the Pope’s Visit more people have felt confident enough to come forward to report incidents of abuse in the hope of finding some kind of reconciliation and closure and working to provide a safe and encouraging framework to support survivors is the top priority for the NCSC."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:30 AM

Priest apologises for likening Irish PM to Hitler over attack on Vatican

IRELAND
The Guardian (United Kingdom)

Henry McDonald
guardian.co.uk, Thursday 28 July 2011

A Catholic priest in the Irish Republic has been forced to apologise for comparing the country's prime minister to Adolf Hitler because the taoiseach had dared to criticise the Vatican.

Father Thomas Daly issued the apology on Thursday after he likened Enda Kenny's denunciation of the Vatican's handling of clerical child sex abuse scandals in the republic to one of Hitler's speeches.

In a leaflet titled Heil Herr Kenny given to members of the Togher parish in Drogheda, County Louth, the priest wrote that the last European leader to issue such a blistering attack on the pope "was the ruthless German dictator Adolf Hitler".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:19 AM

Victims challenge new Philly archbishop to read reports

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

Statement by Peter Isely of Milwaukee, national board member of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (414-429-7259, peterisely@yahoo.com)

The Philadelphia grand jury reports are the only independent look at clergy sex crimes and cover ups in the US in the last six years. So we were disappointed to learn that Philly’s new Catholic archbishop admits he hasn’t read either report, despite attorney Charlie Gallagher’s attempt to hand-deliver the first report in the fall of 2006.

Chaput’s deliberate decision to stay uninformed eerily reminds us of Bevilacqua’s sworn testimony that he assumed that his predecessor correctly handled dozens and dozens of child molesting clerics.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:29 AM

US victims urge Vatican to warn Italians about predator priest

ITALY
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Executive Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (+1-314-566-9790, SNAPClohessy@aol.com)

A notorious US predator priest who was recently defrocked now lives in Italy and reportedly met with a top Vatican official, Msgr. Charles Scicluna.

He is Fr. Dino Cinel, who has admitted to molesting several underage boys in New Orleans in the 1980s. Cinel made over 160 hours of pornographic videotapes from these encounters.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:26 AM

New UK report on clergy sex abuse; SNAP responds

UNITED KINGDOM
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)

We are grateful that more suffering survivors are stepping forward. We hope they will continue to do so. Staying silent helps no one. It’s a tempting but dangerous strategy. Only by stepping forward, exposing wrongdoers, and calling police, can we begin to heal ourselves and protect others.

We urge victims to contact independent sources of support. And we beg them to call police officials, not church officials. Often, when a victim contacts a Catholic employee, the cover up intensifies and records are destroyed, victims are threatened, whistleblowers are discredited, witnesses are intimidated, alibis are fabricated, and the truth is even more subtly and shrewdly hidden.

It is painful to read in this report (p. 16) that “further work” must be done toward “determining what would be an appropriate pastoral response” to the abuse and cover up crisis. Catholic officials have had centuries to do this, and it’s not rocket science.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:24 AM

Clergy sex victims call for investigation

FRANCE
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

What:
At a news conference, clergy sex abuse victims will publicly urge
--the French government to launch a thorough, formal investigation into clergy sex crimes and cover ups in the nation’s Catholic dioceses, like Irish secular authorities have done, and
-- the French Catholic hierarchy to let the public know, for the sake of children’s safety, where two predator priests are now living.

The victims will also announce that, in September in Paris, they are holding two events:
-- a confidential self-help support group meeting for victims & their loved-ones, and
-- an open public forum at which citizens and Catholics can voice their concerns about the church’s on-going clergy sex abuse and cover up crisis, and discuss ways to individuals can better protect the vulnerable and heal the wounded.

When:
Thursday, July 28, 1:30 p.m.

Where:
63 Rue de Richelieu, Paris, FR, 75002

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:21 AM

Church has not learned from past mistakes

IRELAND
Fingal Independent

By John MANNING

Wednesday July 27 2011

A SURVIVOR of clerical abuse from Swords says he believes children are no safer now than when he was abused at the hands of a paedophile priest more than 30 years ago..

The depressing assessment of just how little the Church has learned from the abuses of the past comes from Bernard, a victim of paedophile priest Fr James McNamee who featured in the Murphy Report on clerical abuse in Dublin. Bernard's comments come after the release of the Cloyne Report which showed abuses continuing at the hands of paedophile clergy up to 2005 and despite recent Government attempts to grasp the nettle, he believes children are no more protected now than he was more than 30 years ago

'The Cloyne Report mirrors the Murphy Report and if the Government is serious about tackling this then there has to be a concerted effort by every Government department to deal with it,' Bernard told the Fingal Independent. A PARISH Priest in Rush has strongly criticised Catholic hierarchy for what he called their ' abysmal and inexcusable failure' in dealing with the horrors revealed in the latest report on child sexual abuse in the church. In some of the strongest local comments made by any member of the church on the issue, Fr Kieran Coghlan rounded on the Irish hierarchy and even the Vatican itself for their ' mishandling' of the child abuse scandals that continue to rock the foundations of the church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:18 AM

Ireland: Report into the handling of clerical sexual abuse ...

IRELAND
Startpagina

[Updated]

Compiled by drs. Pieter Schultz (information professional / content curator, web editor and religion researcher)

TABLE OF CONTENTS

(1) The Cloyne Report
•The long awaited report
•Background / inquiries / history of abuse
•Office of the Minister for Children

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:13 AM

Waar blijft antwoord van Vaticaan op Ierse beschuldigingen?

IERLAND
RKnieuws (Nederland)

UTRECHT (RKnieuws.net) - De Ierse regering wacht nu al twee weken op een officiële reactie van het Vaticaan op het pedofilierapport over het bisdom Cloyne. Paus Benedictus XVI heeft wel de nuntius uit Dublin teruggeroepen voor overleg maar een antwoord is nog steeds niet geformuleerd. Het blijkt een pijnlijke bevalling te zullen worden en het is nu al de vraag of Ierland met het antwoord van het Vaticaan vrede zal nemen.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:05 AM

Connecticut priest's arrest warrant remains sealed

CONNECTICUT
Record-Journal

A Superior Court judge has sealed the arrest warrant for a Berlin priest facing obscenity charges.
The New Britain Herald reports that prosecutor Christian Watson asked for the file to be sealed, arguing in court Tuesday that releasing it to the public could jeopardize the public safety of witnesses.

The Rev. Michael Miller, a 41-year-old Franciscan friar who has served as a priest at St. Paul's Church in Berlin for five years, was arrested on July 12 and charged with five counts of risk of injury to a child and one count of attempted obscenity.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:25 AM

Vatican's US envoy dies following lung surgery

VATICAN CITY
The Associated Press

VATICAN CITY (AP) — The papal ambassador to the United States Archbishop Pietro Sambi, who helped bring about a meeting between Pope Benedict XVI and clerical sex abuse victims three years ago, has died in a U.S. hospital, the Vatican said Thursday.

Sambi, 73, died Wednesday in Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore where he had been placed on assisted ventilation. He had undergone surgery two weeks ago and was readmiited to the hospital following post-operative complications.

The Italian prelate had served as papal representative in Washington since 2006, one of Pope Benedict XVI's first major appointees. Previous posts in the Vatican's diplomatic corps included Israel and Indonesia.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:21 AM

Catholic priest in Nashville indicted in sex case

NASHVILLE (TN)
Greenwich Time

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A priest at a Catholic church in Nashville has been indicted on three counts of sexual battery.

Police said Wednesday that 52-year-old Luis Garcia-Barreto of Our Lady of Guadalupe Church is accused of groping and inappropriately touching a 49-year-old female employee at the church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:18 AM

Police: Suspect in La. priest's death confessed

MISSISSIPPI
Westport News

BAY ST. LOUIS, Miss. (AP) — A Mississippi police investigator has testified Jeremy Wayne Manieri confessed that he shot a Louisiana priest when he awoke after passing out and found the priest fondling him.

The testimony came during a probation violation hearing Wednesday where Hancock County Circuit Judge John Gargiulo sentenced Manieri, a convicted sex offender, to five years for not reporting to his probation officer and committing a crime.

Manieri has been held in the Marion County jail on $2 million bond after being charged in the slaying of the Rev. Edward Everitt, a Hammond, La., Catholic priest.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:15 AM

‘Heil Herr Kenny’: Parish priest compares Taoiseach to Hitler

IRELAND
The Journal

ENDA KENNY HAS been compared to Adolf Hitler in a Mass bulletin issued by a parish priest.

The weekend parish newsletter in Togher, Co Louth was responding to the Taoiseach’s stinging criticisms of the Vatican last week. In an article headlined “Heil Herr Kenny!” Fr Thomas Daly wrote: “The last European leader to make such a blistering attack on the Pope was the ruthless German dictator Adolf Hitler.”

According to the Drogheda Independent, it also suggested there was now a “No Pope here” policy in Ireland and compared it to loyalist areas in the North, adding: “Perhaps we might try and find a way to build new bridges with the “Shankhill Road people” (sic).

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:13 AM

Investigator: Suspected killer says he was molested by priest, smoked marijuana with him before firing fatal shots

MISSISSIPPI
Sun Herald

By DONNA HARRIS - dharris@sunherald.com

BAY ST. LOUIS -- A murder suspect and convicted sex offender says he woke up after smoking marijuana with the Rev. Ed Everitt to find the Catholic priest’s head in his lap and being fondled. Less than half an hour later, he says, he fired the shots that ended the man’s life.

Waveland police investigator Eddie Peterson testified today at the probation hearing for Jeremy Manieri that the suspect’s recorded statement to Polk County, Fla., authorities gives a detailed account of what led up to Everitt’s death earlier this month.

Manieri told Florida investigators on July 12, the day after Everitt’s body was found at a Waveland beach house used as a retreat by the Hammond, La., priest, that Everitt picked him up July 10, they ate lunch at Silver Slipper Casino and then went to a convenience store and bought rolling papers before returning to the South Beach Boulevard home.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:10 AM

Judge orders arrest warrant for Berlin priest sealed for 3 weeks

CONNECTICUT
The Republic

NEW BRITAIN, Conn. — A Superior Court judge has sealed the arrest warrant for a Berlin priest facing obscenity charges.

The New Britain Herald reports that prosecutor Christian Watson asked for the file to be sealed, arguing in court Tuesday that releasing it to the public could jeopardize the public safety of witnesses.

The Rev. Michael Miller, a 41-year-old Franciscan friar who has served as a priest at St. Paul's Church in Berlin for five years, was arrested on July 12 and charged with five counts of risk of injury to a child and one count of attempted obscenity.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:07 AM

Rabbi ‘should step down’

AUSTRALIA
The Australian Jewish News

SYDNEY’S top rabbi has been urged to resign after he said it should be up to rabbis to decide whether allegations of child abuse should be reported to police.

In a series of emails that contradicted the recommendations from other rabbinical authorities around Australia in the wake of claims of abuse at Melbourne’s Yeshivah College, Rabbinical Council of NSW (RCNSW) president Rabbi Yosef Feldman outlined his views to fellow members of the rabbinate.

Among his assertions were that anyone who reported a paedophile would be responsible if the paedophile was raped in prison.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:04 AM

Synagogues disassociate from Rabbi Feldman’s statements

AUSTRALIA
J-Wire

A Jewish media report today stated that Rabbi Yossi Feldman called for the handling of sexual abuse cases to be carried out within the community and not to be brought to secular law. The Council of Orthodox Synagogues has disassociated itself from Rabbi Feldman’s views.

In a statement released today COSA states:

“The Council of Orthodox Synagogues of Australia (“COSA”) unequivocally disassociates itself from the views expressed by Rabbi Yossi Feldman concerning the reporting of sexual offenders to the police, as mentioned in the Australian Jewish News (July 28 edition).

Furthermore COSA wholeheartedly endorses the position recently enunciated by the Organisation of Rabbis of Australia (“ORA”) and its affiliates as to the positive obligation, according to both halachic and secular law, to report any such offences to the authorities.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:01 AM

Vatican feels righteous wrath of Irish Catholics

IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

Thursday, 28 July 2011

As the relationship between the state and Church falls to an all-time low in the Republic, Alf McCreary looks at the consequences of the row

The row came to a head last week when an angry Taoiseach Enda Kenny accused Rome of frustrating the Cloyne inquiry into the clerical sex abuse of children in the Co Cork diocese. The report accused the Newry-born Bishop of Cloyne, Dr John Magee, and the Vatican, of a cover-up in the handling of sex abuse allegations.

In a remarkably frank speech Enda Kenny told the Dail that the Cloyne Report "excavates the dysfunction, disconnection, elitism and the narcissism that dominates the culture of the Vatican to this day". He also alleged that "the rape and torture of children were downgraded, or 'managed', to uphold instead, the primacy of the institution, its power, standing and reputation''.

The row took a new downturn when the Vatican recalled its Papal Nuncio Guiseppe Leanza to Rome this week to discuss the impact of the Cloyne Report.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:58 AM

Members of Bishop Long's Church React to Report

GEORGIA
My Fox Atlanta

[with video]

By JULIA HARDING/myfoxatlanta

ATLANTA - Members of Bishop Eddie Long's church spoke out on the new developments concerning a fifth accuser.

As hundreds of people drove off the New Birth campus, many did not want to talk about Bishop Eddie Long and the fifth accuser in the sexual misconduct case. But those who did talk say they support their pastor.

"That doesn't matter to me. I know who he is and it's just talk. He's a good spiritual dad. So that's all I can say," said one supporter.

One woman said "Bishop Long is a man of god. People are trying to tear him down in all kinds of ways. I don't believe the first one and I don't believe him now."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:52 AM

Victim to sue Brother Best

AUSTRALIA
The Courier

BY PAT NOLAN

VICTIMS of sexual abuse at the hands of Robert Charles Best during his time in Ballarat will sue the disgraced Christian brother after he is sentenced next month.

The victims also plan to separately sue the Christian Brothers and are also considering whether to file a case against the state government if it is deemed to have been some way responsible for their mistreatment.

Barrister for the 11 men who were abused by Best as young boys, Dr Vivian Waller, said although she was not sure exactly how many of the 11 attended St Alipius, there was “definitely at least one”.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:49 AM

For the Nuncio, A "Super" Sendoff

UNITED STATES
Whispers in the Loggia

As multiple late reports have it, the domestic funeral rites for Archbishop Pietro Sambi are said to be set for the late "Super-Nuncio's" liturgical home-base -- Washington's Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception -- on Transfiguration Day: Saturday, 6 August, at 2pm.

As ever -- and, indeed, as if the last fortnight hasn't already been dramatic enough for the Stateside church -- more to come.

In the meantime, though, as the man from Jerusalem (via Rimini) has, by all accounts, cast a broad swath across the American Catholic landscape over his five years as The Pope's Man on these shores, this readership's Sambi stories are more than welcome, from every side, in these pages' inbox, with an eye to at least some being run over the week to come, in remembrance and gratitude alike.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:46 AM

Cork priest accused of child abuse named in Senate

IRELAND
Irish Central

By
CATHAL DERVAN,
IrishCentral.com Staff Writer

A Cork priest at the centre of child sex allegations has been named and shamed in the upper house of the Irish parliament during a debate on the Cloyne Report.

Fr Donncha Mac Cartaigh was named under Senate privilege by Senator Mark Daly.
He told the Senate that six men and a woman had lodged allegations of sexual abuse against Mac Cartaigh between 1986 and 2008.

Senator Daly also accused the Sacred Heart Missionaries of repeatedly putting children at risk by allowing Mac Cartaigh to train underage county football teams after the allegations were made.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:39 AM

Pietro Sambi, Vatican ambassador, dies at 73

WASHINGTON (DC)
Washington Post

By Justin Jouvenal

Archbishop Pietro Sambi, the papal ambassador to the United States since 2005, died Wednesday night apparently from complications related to lung surgery, according to Vatican Radio and Catholic News Service. He was 73.

Sambi, who was based in Washington and had a long diplomatic career in the church, had been put on ventilation following lung surgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore two weeks ago.

As apostolic nuncio for the United States, Sambi served dual roles as a leader in the church and a representative to the government. During Pope Benedict’s 2008 trip to the United States, Sambi accompanied the pontiff and hosted him in Washington, where Benedict met with five victims of clergy sex abuse, according to Catholic News Service.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:34 AM

Prayers for the late Apostolic nuncio to the US

UNITED STATES
Scottish Catholic Observer

The Catholic community is mourning the death last night of the Papal nuncio to the US following complications after surgery.

Two weeks after ‘delicate lung surgery,’ Archbishop Pietro Sambi (above), 73, had to be readmitted to Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore where his breathing was assisted by a ventilator, according to the nunciature. His family had travelled to the US to be with him and asked bishops, priests and lay faithful for their prayers.

Archbishop Sambi, who was based in Washington, began serving as Apostolic nuncio to the US in 2005. During Pope Benedict XVI’s 2008 trip to the United States, the archbishop accompanied the pontiff and hosted him in Washington, where the Pope met with five victims of clergy sex abuse

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:31 AM

Vatican’s US envoy dies following lung surgery

UNITED STATES
Las Vegas Sun

The Associated Press

Thursday, July 28, 2011

The papal ambassador to the United States Archbishop Pietro Sambi, who helped bring about a meeting between Pope Benedict XVI and clerical sex abuse victims three years ago, has died in a U.S. hospital, the Vatican said Thursday.

Sambi, 73, died Wednesday in Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore where he had been placed on assisted ventilation. He had undergone surgery two weeks ago and was readmiited to the hospital following post-operative complications.

The Italian prelate had served as papal representative in Washington since 2006, one of Pope Benedict XVI's first major appointees. Previous posts in the Vatican's diplomatic corps included Israel and Indonesia.

In his Washington assignment, Sambi helped arrange a meeting between abuse victims and Benedict, one of the highlights of the pope's 2008 visit to the United States.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:28 AM

Judge thwarts Jeffs again, allows evidence

SAN ANGELO (TX)
San Angelo Standard-Times

By Matthew Waller

Posted July 27, 2011

SAN ANGELO, Texas — Proceedings are blazing by in the trial of Warren Jeffs, with 51st District Judge Barbara Walther ruling Wednesday against an evidence challenge from the defense and telling attorneys to be ready for opening statements today.

Jeffs' attorneys sought to prevent the evidence obtained in the April 2008 raid on the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints Yearning for Zion Ranch from being admitted in the trial.

Jeffs faces two counts of sexual assault of a child, much of the prosecution's case being based on trailer loads of documents, electronic files and other material seized in the raid.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:25 AM

Heil-y Offensive: Taoiseach compared to Hitler by Louth church

IRELAND
JOE

A week after his damning Vatican speech in the Dail, churchgoers in Togher, Co.Louth, read a parish newspaper containing the headline ‘Heil Herr Kenny’.

According to The Sun, the Sunday pamphlet was a fierce riposte to Enda’s powerful condemnation of the Vatican in the wake of the Cloyne Report into sexual abuse by members of the clergy. A choice quote from the newsletter include the following:

“The last European leader to make such a blistering attack on the Pope was the ruthless German dictator Adolf Hitler.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:22 AM

Child sexual abuse charges dropped for killer

OREGON
The Register-Guard

By Karen McCowan
The Register-Guard

Published: (Thursday, Jul 28, 2011

A judge has dismissed child sexual abuse charges against a Lowell man convicted this year of murdering his wife’s ex-­husband inside a Jehovah’s Witnesses Kingdom Hall in May 2010.

Robert Riley Gonzales, 35, must serve at least 25 years of a life prison term after pleading guilty in February to fatally shooting Ken Mort, 47, at the Kingdom Hall in Lowell. He also must serve an additional seven years before even being considered for parole after pleading guilty to four counts of kidnapping for forcing Mort and three other church elders back into the church at gunpoint before the murder.

At Gonzales’ sentencing hearing on Feb. 24, defense attorney William Ray said the murder arose from his client’s frustration over what Ray called unfounded allegations that Gonzales had sexually abused a teenage girl.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:20 AM

Opening statements set in trial for Warren Jeffs

SAN ANGELO (TX)
ABC 13

SAN ANGELO, TX -- Polygamist sect leader Warren Jeffs' much-anticipated Texas trial begins in earnest Thursday, with prosecutors claiming he sexually assaulted girls he manipulated girls into "spiritual marriage," and defense attorneys countering that their client's religious freedoms were trampled.

Opening arguments are scheduled for Thursday, immediately following a hearing on whether evidence recovered when Jeffs was arrested after a 2006 traffic stop along a Nevada highway can be presented to jurors during the trial.

The 55-year-old Jeffs, head of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, is charged with sexually assaulting two girls, one under 17, one age 12. If convicted, he could go to prison for life. The charges stem from a 2008 police raid on a remote church compound.

Jeffs is also scheduled to go to trial for bigamy in October. His sect is a radical offshoot of mainstream Mormonism that believes polygamy brings exaltation in heaven. It has more than 10,000 members nationwide, and his high-powered defense team is being financed by an FLDS land trust believed to be worth more than $110 million.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:17 AM

Church child abuse allegations rise

UNITED KINGDOM
Belfast Telegraph

Thursday, 28 July 2011

Allegations of abuse of children and young people received by the Roman Catholic Church in England and Wales rose last year, according to a new report.

There were 83 allegations of abuse relating to 103 victims and 92 alleged abusers in 2010, according to the annual report of the National Catholic Safeguarding Commission (NCSC).

Of the 103 victims, 18 were alleged to have been abused in the current year, compared to 18 of the 52 victims in 2009 who reported they were abused that year.

The allegations of abuse from the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s rose from 20 in 2009 to 63 last year.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:14 AM

Ordaining Female Catholic Priests

UNITED STATES
WBUR

Jacki Lyden in for Tom Ashbrook

Catholics in America and Europe and beyond defying the Vatican and ordaining women priests. We hear the condemnations and the amens.

The issue of female ordination has beset the Roman Catholic church for decades. But increasingly, the Vatican is facing a revolt on the issue, even as it cracks down.

On three continents: Europe, Australia and America, outspoken Catholic priests are defying this strict Vatican tenet. In the U.S., a longstanding American is this one more test for Holy See.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:11 AM

Progress in bankruptcy case

WILMINGTON (DE)
The News Journal

Written by
BETH MILLER
The News Journal

WILMINGTON -- The problems that two weeks ago appeared most threatening to the Catholic Diocese of Wilmington's bankruptcy case appear to be resolved.

In a hearing Wednesday before U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge Christopher Sontchi, attorneys for most survivors of clergy sexual abuse said their clients will release the diocese and parishes from any further litigation after the plan is approved, meeting one of the terms of the $77.4 million settlement agreement reached earlier this year.

Diocese attorneys, in turn, agreed to comply with Sontchi's ruling two weeks ago, prohibiting formal "sustenance" payments and benefits to any living priests named in the scores of lawsuits that prompted the diocese to seek Chapter 11 protection in October 2009.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:09 AM

Watershed moment in Church-State relations

IRELAND
The Meath Chronicle

by Ken Davis

Editorial

The unprecedented criticism of the Vatican over the extent to which it has interfered in the Irish judicial system delivered by Taoiseach Enda Kenny last week has certainly hit home with Rome as the aftershocks of the Cloyne Report continue to reverberate throughout the country and beyond.

Relations between Ireland and the Vatican have certainly seen a sharp cooling over the weekend with the recalling of the papal nuncio back to Rome, a rarely used measure by the Holy See. It is a move that move underlines the dramatic change in the previously warm relations between the two states since Irish independence.

Mr Kenny's words were uncompromising in their withering condemnation of the Vatican over its reservations about mandatory reporting of child sexual abuse. He has challenged Rome to explain its role in covering up sex offences by priests and has pressed it for a swift response to accusations that it had encouraged bishops to ignore child-protection guidelines adopted by the Irish bishops in 1996 that included mandatory reporting of abuse to the civil authorities.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:06 AM

Accused priest allowed to train youths

IRELAND
Irish Examiner

By Claire O’Sullivan and Cormac O’Keeffe

Thursday, July 28, 2011

A CORK-BASED priest was training under-age county teams and was a selector of the minor county football team, even though sex abuse allegations had been made against him years earlier.

Speaking using Seanad privilege during a debate on the Cloyne report, Senator Mark Daly accused the Sacred Heart Missionaries of repeatedly putting children at risk by not properly supervising the former school principal and allowing him access to minors.

Meanwhile, the Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission (GSOC) is likely to launch a full investigation after examining the Cloyne report.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:04 AM

'We Kept Quiet about Sexual Abuse for Too Long'

GERMANY
Spiegel

Jesuit priest Klaus Mertes, the director of Berlin's Canisius College, sent shock waves through the German Catholic Church in January 2010 when he exposed systematic sexual abuse at the elite school. In a SPIEGEL interview, he talks about the Church's response to the abuse scandal and his anger at the Vatican.

SPIEGEL: Father Mertes, a year and a half after you disclosed the sexual abuse of schoolchildren in Berlin, the Catholic bishops have now begun a dialogue with churchgoers in the western German city of Mannheim. Isn't this initiative well overdue?

Mertes: The glass is always half full or half empty. I think it's a good thing that the dialogue has begun.

SPIEGEL: What's the point of such conversations when people like Cologne Archbishop Joachim Meisner, a leading conservative figure in the German Church, don't even show up?

Mertes: That sounds like a defeatist question to me. It would be wonderful if the pope were to say a few encouraging words about the dialogue process in the near future.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:00 AM

Order whose priest is named in Seanad as abuse accused says it brought claims to gardai

IRELAND
The Journal

THE RELIGIOUS ORDER who had a member named in the Seanad as being an alleged child abuser has said that it was in “full compliance” with child safeguarding procedures.

Senator Mark Daly of Fianna Fáil used his parliamentary privilege yesterday to name the priest from the Sacred Heart Missionaries yesterday. The senator said that the cleric had been reported to gardai in seven allegations of abuse between 1986 and 2008 but that the DPP had not pursued a criminal case against him. The Irish Independent and the Examiner name the priest this morning, while the Irish Times does not.

Speaking to TheJournal.ie today, Senator Daly said that he had spoken to the Sacred Heart Missionaries in relation to safeguarding children in this particular case. The Sacred Heart Missionaries wrote to Rome last year to have the priest laicised and removed him from religious duties. However, said Daly, the priest has still been going on Church-related trips. The senator said:

The issue here is that this man has gone to Fatima, breaching the Order’s own directives that he not. He went to Rome at Easter and they didn’t know about that either.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:56 AM

July 27, 2011

Why is Vatican so miffed at reaction to Cloyne report?

IRELAND
The Irish Times

PATSY McGARRY

OPINION : SO, ROME is miffed at “excessive reactions” in Ireland following publication of the Cloyne report. This State has spent millions unearthing what has been available to Rome all along. In October 2005, there was the Ferns report, costs to date: €2.3 million.

In May 2009, the Ryan report, estimated costs to date: at least €126 million. In November 2009, the Dublin report: costs to date €3.6 million. In July 2011, the Cloyne report: costs to date €1.9 million. Total costs so far of the four statutory inquiries? €133.8 million, with more to come.

None of this would have been necessary had the Catholic Church here and in Rome co-operated fully in establishing the truth. Instead, those that could be were dragged, kicking and screaming, into disclosing what they desperately wanted to keep hidden. So, in Ferns, abuse files on five further priests which should have been presented to the inquiry remained unavailable until an accidental discovery in the summer of 2005 – when the Ferns draft report was already completed. A “regrettable error on the part of the diocese . . .” said apostolic administrator to Ferns diocese, canon lawyer, barrister-at-law and Dublin auxiliary bishop Eamon Walsh. Four years later, Rome declined his resignation.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:56 PM

Papal nuncio Prague move

IRELAND
The Irish Times

MARY FITZGERALD

Papal nuncio Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza is to shortly take up a posting in Prague, the Czech embassy has confirmed.

Archbishop Leanza, who has been at the centre of the fallout from the Cloyne report, was due to finish his posting in Ireland this summer. He was appointed papal nuncio to Ireland in February 2008, and arrived in Dublin that April. The Czech embassy in Dublin confirmed yesterday that diplomatic consent for his posting to Prague has already been given by the Czech authorities.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:53 PM

Priest named in connection with child molestation

IRELAND
The Irish Times

JIMMY WALSH

SEANAD REPORT: A FIANNA FÁIL member was told by the chair that he was going down a dangerous route by naming a priest allegedly connected to child molestation.

Fianna Fáil Senator Mark Daly said despite seven cases being reported to four different Garda stations between 1986 and 2008 in relation to a priest, the Director of Public Prosecutions had declined to pursue a criminal prosecution.

Senator Daly said a religious order had, however, settled a civil case in relation to this priest before it was brought to court.

There had been a failure, he said, to enforce restrictions placed upon the priest, who had had been required to inform his community of his movements.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:27 PM

Pope's UK visit prompts increase in sex abuse allegations against church

UNITED KINGDOM
The Guardian

Riazat Butt
The Guardian, Thursday 28 July 2011

Pope Benedict XVI's visit to Britain last year led to more reports of sexual abuse allegations, finds the National Catholic Safeguarding Commission, the body set up to improve the church's response to abuse claims.

Publicity surrounding the pope's four-day tour, in addition to his statements on the paedophile priest scandal, saw the numbers of abuse allegations rise in 2010 from 20 a year to 63.

The commission, which was established in 2008, said the three-fold jump concerned incidents from the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s.

In its annual report the NCSC also revealed that 37 clergy have been laicised, or dismissed from the clerical state, since 2001. Of these, 23 were diocesan priests and 14 were members of religious orders.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:21 PM

Behind the anti-Vatican campaign in Ireland (analysis)

IRELAND
Catholic Culture

July 27, 2011

Time magazine carries a remarkably tendentious and inaccurate report on the tensions between the Catholic Church and the Irish government, concluding with the triumphant announcement that “the days of the Vatican’s undue influence over the Irish are over.”

The influence of the Church is judged “undue,” presumably, because Time does not welcome it. But notice, too, that Time focuses on the influence of the Vatican, not the Catholic hierarchy in Ireland. That pattern is evident from the opening sentence of the report: “Ireland has long been the model of a loyal Catholic state, an ask-no-questions adherent to the Vatican’s word.”

That claim is obviously false; Ireland legalized contraception and divorce despite opposition from the Church, and is now in the process of dismantling a system of Church-run schools. Yet even a century ago, when the Catholic Church undoubtedly did exercise enormous influence over Irish political affairs, it was Ireland’s own hierarchy—not necessarily the Vatican—that wielded the power.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:58 PM

Kenny likened to Hitler in Mass leaflet

IRELAND
The Irish Times

MICHELLE O'KEEFFE

TAOISEACH ENDA Kenny has been likened to Adolf Hitler in a newsletter distributed to Massgoers in a Co Louth parish, following his criticism of the Vatican.

The newsletter, which was in the Church of St Columcille in Togher on Sunday, carried an article about Mr Kenny’s Dáil speech of last week under the headline: “Heil Herr Kenny”.

Referring to Mr Kenny’s criticisms of the Vatican’s handling of clerical sex abuse, the article stated: “The last European leader to make such a blistering attack on the Pope was the ruthless German dictator Adolf Hitler”.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:56 PM

Government seeks Vatican assurance over child protection

IRELAND
The Irish Times

MARIE O'HALLORAN and JAMIE SMYTH

THE GOVERNMENT wants an “absolute assurance” from the Vatican that it will fully comply with and implement its own guidelines in the area of childcare, Minister for Justice Alan Shatter has said.

He also said it was imperative that “where there’s a report that a child has been abused or where there’s a genuine concern that someone within the church is abusing children, that is reported to the civil authorities”.

He was speaking as he published the draft heads or introductory elements of legislation to place the vetting of persons working with children or vulnerable adults on a statutory basis.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:53 PM

Bishop Eddie Long Had Fifth Accuser in Sexual Misconduct Lawsuit

GEORGIA
My Fox Atlanta

[with video]

By DALE RUSSELL/myfoxatlanta

ATLANTA, Ga. - The FOX 5 I-Team has uncovered that there was a fifth accuser in the Bishop Eddie Long sexual misconduct case. He never filed a lawsuit and his name was kept a secret, but Centino Kemp's allegations of sexual misconduct against Bishop Long brought him front and center into the recent settlement negotiations.

Senior I-Team reporter Dale Russell has crisscrossed the city of Atlanta searching for the mysterious fifth young man. Centino Kemp, sometimes called Centinio, is young-- barely 22. We're told he met Bishop Long years ago. He has Long's name tattooed on his wrist, and he is currently recording songs written from the perspective of an angry lover.

For nearly two months, Russell searched all over Atlanta for Centino Kemp, and finally caught up with him leaving this small recording studio. He was happy to talk about his music. But he didn't want to talk about anything else.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:48 PM

Crusading Editor Who Brought Orthodox Sex Abuse to Light

UNITED STATES
Forward

By Lillian Swanson

A handshake was all it took to set Scott Rosenfelt, an accomplished filmmaker, on a journey to break the wall of secrecy protecting child sex abusers in the Orthodox Jewish community.

The way Rosenfelt tells it, a friend, Phil Jacobs, then executive editor of the Baltimore Jewish Times, was interviewing a sex abuse survivor in a coffee shop, when Jacobs introduced Rosenfelt to the survivor.

“Some new energy passed to me. I felt like I was shaking the hand of a shattered person,” Rosenfelt said June 29 at a screening of his film, “Standing Silent,” at the American Jewish Press Association conference in Dallas. From that moment on, Rosenfelt said, he had to make the film.

The 81-minute documentary, screening July 31 at the San Francisco Jewish Film Festival, is told mainly through the eyes of Jacobs, who has been on a years-long campaign to print the stories of those who allege they have been molested by rabbis in the Orthodox community. Jacobs, who was recently named the editor of the Washington Jewish Week, is hell bent on breaking the silence of an insular world that protects the molesters and shuns those who tell secular authorities. Recently, Agudath Israel of America reiterated its policy that one must consult a rabbi before reporting cases of sexual abuse to the police.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:59 PM

Profile of Jeffrey Anderson, specialist in lawsuits against Church

UNITED STATES
Catholic Culture

The "Superlawyers" site profiles Jeffrey Anderson, the Minnesota-based attorney who has won countless millions in judgments against the Catholic Church in sex-abuse cases. ...

A caution: A few overanxious Catholic bloggers have highlighted the article's report that "Anderson wants to depose Pope Benedict XVI." That quote is accurate, but the context is all-important. Anderson is saying that he wants to take the Pope's deposition--not that he wants to oust him from the papacy.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:54 PM

The Crusader

UNITED STATES
Super Lawyers

By Christy DeSmith

Jeff Anderson’s office might look like a museum, with its stained glass windows and vintage pulpit chairs. But the firm’s harried staff hardly resembles the hushed figures of the typical arts organization. Here, nobody pauses to admire the antiquities. They only stop to shout as Anderson speeds through.

“Nice article in The Philadelphia Inquirer this morning,” bellows John Wodele, a publicist on contract with Jeff Anderson & Associates.

Little surprise there. Anderson, the world’s pre-eminent counsel for survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic clergy, is a lightning rod for media coverage. Critics have admonished Anderson for being too cozy with the news media, since the attorney often hosts press conferences and leaks documents on abusive priests.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:48 PM

Enda Kenny is speaking for all of us

Irish Echo

By Gerry Adams

Clerical abuse is not a strictly Irish phenomenon. In recent years many thousands of victims in countries across the globe have spoken out against abuse and in search of justice.

There are striking similarities in the way in which abuse occurred and in the response of the Catholic Church hierarchy to it.

The first case to attract significant media coverage was that involving James Porter in the early 1990s in the Boston area. He was eventually convicted in 1993 of abusing over 100 boys and girls. The approach of the church authorities in dealing with him will be instantly recognizable to anyone watching the unfolding story of clerical abuse in Ireland.

Porter was moved from one parish to another after complaints of abuse were made against him. And the church hierarchy did not report his activities to the police and covered up his abuse of children.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:11 PM

Irish politician calls for Dublin Catholic conference to be postponed

IRELAND
The Guardian (United Kingdom)

Henry McDonald, Ireland correspondent
guardian.co.uk, Wednesday 27 July 2011

In another sign of worsening relations between Ireland and the Vatican a member of the ruling Fine Gael party has called for the postponement of an international Catholic conference in Dublin next year.

Senator Cáit Keane said the Eucharistic Congress, which is scheduled to be held in the capital's Phoenix Park in June, to be put off in the light of the row over the Vatican's attitude to clerical child sex abuse inquiries in the republic.

She said she backed suggestions from a group of rebel Catholic priests that one of the largest liturgical Catholic events be postponed.

Speaking in the Irish parliament, Keane said: "I support the Association of Catholic Priests in Ireland's request to postpone this event as I believe it is not an appropriate time for an event such as the Eucharistic Congress to take place in this country.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:09 PM

Former vicar in missing $500k probe

NEW ZEALAND
The Press

MICHELLE ROBINSON AND VICTORIA ROBINSON

An Anglican priest who served as a vicar in Christchurch, and who was the former lover of ex-Labour MP Tim Barnett, has resigned from his role as chief executive of AUT's business innovation centre in the face of "possible accounting discrepancies".

More than $500,000 is believed to be missing from the Government-funded Auckland University of Technology.

Rev Jonathan Kirkpatrick resigned in relation to "possible accounting discrepancies", AUT spokeswoman Barbara Bilcich said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:06 PM

Missing uni cash: priest quits job

NEW ZEALAND
New Zealand Herald

By Andrew Koubaridis and Jared Savage

A priest working as a senior executive at the Auckland University of Technology has resigned after "accounting discrepancies" involving hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Jonathan Kirkpatrick was chief executive of the AUT Business Innovation Centre and is now at the centre of a police complaint.

More than $500,000 is allegedly involved.

Mr Kirkpatrick is the former dean of St Paul's Cathedral in Dunedin and ex-partner of former Labour MP Tim Barnett.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:59 PM

Pa. man: 'Callous' church let 3 pedophiles rape me

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
The Sacramento Bee

By MARYCLAIRE DALE
Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA -- A Philadelphia man at the heart of a groundbreaking criminal case against the Philadelphia archdiocese has filed a related civil suit, charging that the church let two priests and a teacher serially rape him as a young altar boy.

The 23-year-old man accused the Roman Catholic church in Philadelphia of "callous indifference" to his suffering as a 10-year-old schoolboy.

The suit seeks at least $450,000 in damages from the archdiocese and other defendants. The Philadelphia Inquirer first reported Wednesday on the suit, filed this week by a man identified as "Billy" in a February grand jury report.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:56 PM

Upcoming diocesan report 'an honest appraisal' - bishop

IRELAND
The Westmeath Independent

Bishop of Ardagh and Clonmacnois Dr Colm O'Reilly has this week described a soon to be published report on child sexual abuse within the church in the diocese as an honest appraisal.

Dr O'Reilly confirmed he has seen a draft of the report. He said a number of cases are included in it, and he will be happy to let the public reach its own conclusion when it's published. A definite date for publication of the report has not yet been confirmed.

Parts of Westmeath fall into the Diocese of Ardagh and Clonmacnois, which also covers parts of Roscommon, Leitrim, Offaly, Cavan and Sligo and almost all of Longford. Dr O'Reilly has sat as Bishop of the diocese since being appointed in early 1983.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:46 PM

Commonwealth's Answer to Defendants' Omnibus Pretrial Motions

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
District Attorney R. Seth Williams
Assistant District Attorney Mariana Sorensen

July 22, 2011

[This response originally included at least ten appendices that provided transcripts and documents from the grand jury proceedings that resulted in the 2005 Philadelphia Grand Jury Report. The appendices included testimony of Cardinal Bevilacqua, Msgr. Lynn, Bishop Cullen, and Bishop Cistone. Appendix E contained documents from the archdiocesan files of Fr. Avery and Fr. Brennan. The appendices were contained in two boxes filed with the court. The Philadelphia Inquirer obtained the Bevilacqua portion of the appendix material on 7/22/11 and published a front-page article about the material on 7/24/11. The newspaper published a commentary on 7/27/11 that also quoted from the Bevilacqua material. But when the reporters went back to the courthouse on Monday 7/25/11, they were denied access. Later on Monday, Judge Lillian Ransom ordered the grand jury testimony sealed, although attorneys for the archdiocese and for the accused had not requested such action. For Judge Ransom's summary of her sealing order, see the docket. See also the Inquirer's 7/26/11 account of the denial of access. A hearing will be scheduled regarding the files.

The document filed on 7/22/11 contains a history of the case (pp. 2-5), a description of the significance of the documents now under seal (pp. 14-16, reproduced below), an analysis of the archdiocese's "common criminal scheme" and its effects on the victims (pp. 34ff), and a discussion of the overpaqlling evidence regarding the activities of Lynn, Avery, and Brennan (pp. 41 ff.).

We have redacted two victims' names from the document, as was done in the 2011 Presentment and Grand Jury Report.]

In the present case, when the crimes often involve agreeing to do nothing when action is called for to protect children - and when the co-conspirators worked for an organization that was systematically covering up evidence and producing documents using obscure language so that their true meaning could not be ascertained - the task is especially complex. The Commonwealth cannot point to merely a few pages in notes of testimony, or a handful of documents, to prove that the actions of Lynn and the priests in this case were part of a decades-long conspiracy that endangered children.

To understand Lynn's interactions with Avery and Brennan, a fact finder needs to look at the files of dozens of other priests whom Lynn supervised. What might look like an innocuous transfer, an accidental omission, or a mistake in judgment in a single case can only be understood as intentional when it is repeated over and over in the handling of other abusers in the priesthood.

The fact finder cannot fully comprehend the deliberate deception that Lynn and others employed to help sexual predators remain in assignments with access to children without reading the entire testimony of Archdiocese officials - including Lynn, Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua, Bishop Edward Cullen, and Bishop Joseph Cistone, - as they tried to explain their handling of known and admitted rapists and serial molesters. (Notes of their testimony before Grand Juries XVIII and XIX are included in this response as Appendices G, H, I, and J, and have been made available to defendants.) (Note 4: Notes of testimony cited in this response are included in Appendix F. They have been made available to defendants.) These are not witnesses who told the grand juries openly and honestly what they did and what they knew. There are no discreet passages in which they describe their common understanding that, rather than expose pedophiles or report them to police, they would instead choose to put parish children at risk. Their methods are revealed only in thousands of pages of documentary evidence - and in the church officials' dissembling, inconsistent, blameshifting, and evasive answers over numerous days of testimony.

Three grand juries spent over four years amassing the evidence that establishes the conspiracy between Lynn and the abusive priests he supervised. Judge Hughes reasonably found that repeating the evidence heard by the Grand Jury at a preliminary hearing, and then again at trial, would entail an enormous and unnecessary drain on judicial resources. Given that Judge Hughes's rulings have already established the law of the case, there is no reason for this Court to review all of the evidence of conspiracy. If it chooses to do so, however, the 2005 Grand Jury report and the presentment for this case detail the evidence that the Commonwealth relies on to support the charges. (Note 5: Attached to this memorandum are some of the documents from the Archdiocese's files on Avery and Brennan, which have been turned over to defense counsel (Appendix E). The 2005 Grand Jury report describes hundreds of similar documents for over a dozen priests who had similar interactions with Lynn.) [pp. 14-16]

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 12:07 PM

Irish take pride in fight with Vatican

IRELAND
GlobalPost

Conor O'Clery
July 27, 2011

DUBLIN, Ireland — The Vatican’s decision Monday to recall its nuncio from Ireland “for consultations” — a phrase often used in diplomacy to signify a deterioration in relations — is not being described by the Irish government as a hostile act. Nevertheless this rare step signifies a low point in relations between Rome and one of the world’s traditionally most fervent Roman Catholic nations.

The recall comes shortly after a watershed speech in the Irish parliament on July 21 by Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Enda Kenny, in which he castigated the “dysfunction, disconnection, elitism … the narcissism that dominate the culture of the Vatican to this day.” The prime minister was responding to the latest damning report on clerical abuse of children in Ireland, an investigation into the diocese of Cloyne which concluded that the Catholic Church was still not proactive in dealing with abuse in Ireland. Kenny's speech had a powerful impact, coming as it did from a middle class, practicing Catholic from the west of Ireland — the type of person who for decades has been the mainstay of the Catholic Church here.

And the Catholic Church has been a mainstay of political power in Ireland. This is the country where a former Labor Party leader, Brendan Corish, famously declared in 1968 that he was an Irishman second and a Catholic first and that he would accept without qualification “the direction of the Hierarchy with regard to Catholic social teaching.” Ireland was once described by Pope Paul VI as “the most Catholic country in the world.” But the present coalition government of Fine Gael and Labor, whose predecessors trembled at the prospect of a “belt from the crozier” if they incurred a bishop’s displeasure, is now drawing up child-protection legislation that could require a priest to report the confessions of a pedophile to the police.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:55 AM

Blind Faith and Child Sexual Abuse: Is Any Group Getting This Right?

UNITED STATES
The Huffington Post

Nicole Neroulias

The Catholic Church isn't the only denomination that has struggled with the concept of reporting accusations of child sexual abuse to the police, rather than trying to handle as much as possible internally in deference to ancient religious laws and the avoidance of scandal. Hasn't every religious group -- or secular organization that oversees children -- sinned at some level?

But just in case we needed a reminder, with a new press release from Agudath Israel of America, ultra-Orthodox Judaism seems to be jockeying for a close second in the "Seriously?! What about the children?!" department. The key excerpts:

Where there is "raglayim la'davar" (roughly, reason to believe) that a child has been abused or molested, the matter should be reported to the authorities...
However, where the circumstances of the case do not rise to the threshold level of raglayim la'davar, the matter should not be reported to the authorities. In the words of Rabbi Yosef Shalom Elyashiv, perhaps the most widely respected senior halachic authority in the world today, "I see no basis to permit" reporting "where there is no raglayim la'davar, but rather only 'eizeh dimyon' (roughly, some mere conjecture); if we were to permit it, not only would that not result in 'tikun ha'olam', it could lead to 'heres haolam' (destruction of the world)." ...

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:49 AM

A ground-level view of Catholic dissent sparked by crisis

MASSACHUSETTS
Boston Globe

July 26, 2011|By Arthur McCaffrey

NO CLOSURE:Catholic Practice and Boston’s Parish Shutdowns
By John C. Seitz
Harvard University, 322 pp., $39.95

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston has probably undergone more turmoil and transformation in the last 10 years than it had in the previous 100. In 2002 Boston became ground zero for disclosures of institutional criminality shorthanded as clergy child abuse. Facing financial pressures in the wake of lawsuits over allegations of misconduct by priests, newly installed Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley implemented in 2004 a program of downsizing to close more than 80 parishes around the archdiocese, sparking anguished protests by congregations.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:33 AM

Latest ferment shows German instinct to rebel

GERMANY
National Catholic Reporter

Jul. 27, 2011
By John L Allen Jr

Of late, a cycle of hand-wringing over Germany has sprouted in wonkish foreign affairs journals. Germany’s waffling on aid to embattled Euro-zone economies, its abstention from a Security Council vote on Libya, and a $2.5 billion deal to sell crowd-control tanks to Saudi Arabia despite widespread revulsion over images of Saudi tanks crushing protests in Bahrain have all set off alarms.

At bottom, the fear is that after a half-century of moving in concert with other Western powers, Germany may be reverting to historical form -- putting its own strategic and commercial interests first, however destabilizing for the rest of the world.

As it happens, it’s not just the foreign policy establishment fretting.

Catholicism, too, harbors a deep-seated fear of German exceptionalism, rooted not in memories of two 20th-century wars but rather the Protestant Reformation. There’s long been a sense that German-speaking Catholicism is susceptible to what the late Swiss theologian Hans Urs von Balthasar termed an “anti-Roman affect,” meaning, roughly, an instinct to rebel.

Expressions of that instinct can be found across a vast swath of Germany, Austria and Switzerland, but nowhere has it been more vocal or public in recent decades than Austria.

The latest eruption came in late June, when more than 250 Austrian priests, representing 15 percent of the country’s diocesan clergy, issued a public “Appeal to Disobedience.” It called for an end to clerical celibacy and for the ordination of women as priests. Led by a former vicar general of the Vienna archdiocese, the group also announced intentions to defy church law in several areas, including administering Communion to those who have divorced and remarried, and allowing women to deliver homilies at Mass.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:22 AM

Don Seppia - Accusato a Sestri, scagionato a Recco

ITALIA
Genova Oggi Notizie

Genova - Nessuna nuova accusa per don Riccardo Seppia dopo quelle della doppia inchiesta di Genova e Milano per violenza sessuale, pedofilia, induzione alla prostituzione minorile e cessione di stupefacenti.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:19 AM

Don Seppia, niente abusi a Recco gli ex ragazzi scagionano il prete

ITALIA
La Repubblica

di GIUSEPPE FILETTO

SCAGIONATO da una dozzina di ex parrocchiani, uomini tra i 30 ed i 35 anni, nell’86 però ragazzini che frequentavano la chiesa di Recco. Don Riccardo Seppia, il parroco accusato di pedofilia, violenza sessuale, induzione alla prostituzione minorile e cessione di droga quando era in servizio a Sestri, invece non avrebbe molestato alcuno di quei bambini di Recco.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:16 AM

Former priest doesn't lack for nerve: James Gill

LOUISIANA
The Times-Picayune

By James Gill

Dino Cinel can hardly have been the first criminal suspect to be advised in a call from America not to come back and face the music.

Such calls seldom come from archbishops, however. In Cinel's case it was Philip Hannan, then head of the Catholic church in New Orleans, on the other end of the line. Cinel, vacationing in Italy, was told to stay there because he had been in the habit of picking up young men for videotaped sex in the rectory at St. Rita's Church where he was a priest. That came out when a colleague happened upon his large collection of pornography, much of it featuring under-aged subjects.

Now, some 20 years later, Cinel is miffed at the Vatican's treatment of pedophile priests' victims. "The protection of the church is the exclusive interest, protection to be understood as denial of the facts, no accountability, and no help of any kind," he declares. Few can speak on that subject with greater authority than Cinel. But he risks appearing an ingrate.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:37 AM

Vatican must come clean on its dirty history

IRELAND
New Ross Standard

Tuesday July 26 2011
AFTER THE tumultuous events of the past fortnight, when the Catholic Church in Ireland was devastated first by the publication of the Cloyne Report and then by the unprecedented and thoroughly well deserved criticism of the Taoiseach, there can be no doubt that the church has a moral and social obligation to come clean on its history and handling of child abuse. This is not just for the sake of the church itself, but for the sake of the majority of Irish people who have put their faith in the institution and have seen that faith abused.

Last Wednesday marked a watershed in the history of church/ state relations in Ireland when Taoiseach Enda Kenny excoriated the Vatican over the way it has dealt with the church's shameful record of clerical child abuse. In a speech that has been welcomed by abuse victims and the population at large, Mr Kenny said the appalling revelations of abuse cover-ups contained in the Cloyne Report demonstrated the ' dysfunction, disconnection, elitism and narcissism that dominates the culture of the Vatican.'

Given the always deferential and very often subservient nature of the relationship between the Irish state and the Catholic church ever since we gained independence, these were extraordinary words and the Taoiseach's courage and conviction in making the ground-breaking statement has been recognised at home and around the world, and notably by some key figures within the church itself. The Vatican, which is reported to have been ' stung' by the Taoiseach's attack is now considering its response and we might well anticipate that when it comes it will be in very measured tones.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:30 AM

Rise in abuse victims seeking help

IRELAND
The Irish Times

CHARLIE TAYLOR

The number of people seeking counselling for childhood sexual abuse at the Dublin Rape Crisis centre rose by almost 5 per cent last year and is up by over 30 per cent since 2003, according to new figures.

The Dublin Rape Crisis Centre's 2010 annual report also shows an 8.5 per cent rise in calls to the organisation's helpline relating to adult rape.

Speaking at the launch of the annual report earlier today, chief executive Ellen O'Malley-Dunlop said that over half of clients attending therapy at the centre last year were dealing with issues of childhood sexual abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:28 AM

The Breakup: Why Ireland Is No Longer the Vatican's Loyal Follower

IRELAND
TIME

By Genevieve Carbery / Dublin Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Ireland has long been the model of a loyal Catholic state, an ask-no-questions adherent to the Vatican's word. But following more than 15 years of church child-abuse scandals and cover-ups, that seems to be changing. Today the relationship between the two is at an historic low, with the Holy See recalling its ambassador after Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny launched an unprecedented public attack on the institution's handling of child-abuse allegations.

In a rare and serious diplomatic move, the ambassador Papal Nuncio returned to Rome on Monday following what a Vatican spokesman described as the "excessive reaction" in Ireland to the government's latest report on clerical abuse. The spokesman was referring to a scathing speech Kenny gave on July 20, in which he berated the Vatican for its part in covering up child-abuse allegations against its clergy. The prime minister's speech accused the Vatican of "downplaying" the "rape and torture of children" to uphold its reputation, and spoke of the "dysfunction, disconnection and elitism, the narcissism that dominates the culture of the Vatican to this day."

The inquiry, which covered 1996 to 2009, found that although the Vatican had in place a policy, developed by Irish bishops in 1996, of reporting suspected cases of clerical child abuse to police, it undermined that policy by telling bishops in 1997 that it violates church law. While awaiting a response from the Vatican (another reason the ambassador was recalled, says the spokesman), Ireland has proposed new legislation to make it a crime not to report child sex abuse, even if the act is revealed in the secrecy of the confessional — a controversial break from church law. In his speech, Kenny drew a line in the sand in regards to Ireland's traditional status as a loyal Catholic state: "This is the Republic of Ireland 2011. A republic of laws, of rights and responsibilities; of proper civic order; where the delinquency and arrogance of a particular version, of a particular kind of "morality," will no longer be tolerated or ignored.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:47 AM

JUDGE WRONG TO SEAL GRAND JURY TESTIMONY IN CATHOLIC SEX ABUSE CASE

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Magazine

Paul Davies

The just-released grand jury testimony of Cardinal Anthony J. Bevilacqua shines a light on the warped thinking that has allowed the priest sexual abuse scandal to fester for decades, while victims are left to fend for themselves. A prosecutor asked Bevilacqua why he allowed a priest with a lengthy and disturbing record of sexual abuse to remain in active duty. Bevilacqua’s response: because a priest “has rights.”

Yes, your Eminence, but what about the kids?

Indeed, priests have rights and are presumed innocent just like any other citizen. There should be an impartial investigation. If charges are filed, they should receive a fair trial before a jury of their peers. But they do not have the right to sexually abuse kids; get moved from parish to parish; and not have to answer for their actions. And their bosses have no right to aid in the cover-up.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:44 AM

Man named in grand jury report files suit against archdiocese

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Newsworks

July 27, 2011
By Shannon McDonald

"Billy Doe" was 10 years old in 1999 when priests and a teacher from St. Jerome's parish in the Northeast allegedly sexually abused him. Now at 23, he's filed a suit against the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, naming former Cardinal Anthony Bevilaqua, Father Edward Avery, Father Charles Engelhardt, William Lynn and Bernard Shero.

Doe is one of the alleged abuse victims identified in a grand jury report released earlier this year, detailing reported incidents of sexual abuse and cover-ups by Avery, Englehardt, Shero, Lynn and an another priest, Father James Brennan.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:41 AM

Senators seek to amend motion over child protection measures

IRELAND
The Irish Times

JIMMY WALSH

SEANAD REPORT: SEVERAL SENATORS are seeking to amend a motion put forward by all parties and groups in the House calling on the Seanad to deplore the Vatican’s intervention “which contributed to the undermining of the child protection frameworks and guidelines of the Irish State and the Irish bishops”.

The motion, which will be debated today, asks the House to affirm its determination that the State will take all necessary measures to protect its children.

An amendment, in the names of Independents Ronan Mullen and Feargal Quinn and Fianna Fáil’s Jim Walsh and Labhrás Ó Murchú, seeks to delete the statement deploring the Vatican’s intervention and replace it with an expression of profound regret that the Vatican’s intervention in l997 had contributed to the undermining in the Cloyne diocese of the child protection frameworks and guidelines of the bishops.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:37 AM

Orphanage abuse victims sue

AUSTRALIA
Geelong Advertiser

Aleks Devic | July 27th, 2011

VICTIMS of sex abuse and physical torture at a Geelong orphanage have launched legal action against the State Government seeking millions of dollars in compensation.

The class action involves 14 male victims who were aged between 10 and 14 at the time of the abuse at Newtown's St Augustine's Orphanage in the 1960s.

Papers will be lodged in the Supreme Court soon and will allege the State Government failed to protect the children that were placed in its care as wards of the state.

It can also be revealed that sex predator and Christian brother Robert Charles Best will be sued after he is sentenced in August for 27 offences between the 1960s and 1980s at three different Victorian schools, including Geelong's St Joseph's College.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:34 AM

Marcial Maciel? "I Don't Know Him"

ROME
Chiesa

Exiled to the United States, the former first in command of the Legionaries of Christ, Luís Garza, says that he never knew anything about the private life of the founder. The surprise moves of the pontifical commissioner, Cardinal De Paolis. The names of the "dissidents"

by Sandro Magister

ROME, July 27, 2011 – The removal of Fr. Luís Garza Medina from the leadership of the Legionaries of Christ is the turning point that could change the future of this embattled congregation.

The news came unexpectedly in the middle of July, with a letter from the director general of the Legion, Álvaro Corcuera. Effective August 1, Garza will no longer be vicar general. He will move to New York as territorial director of the United States and Canada: a territory that is anything but friendly to him, one of those in which the Legion is most disabled, already abandoned by its best men, Frs. Richard Gill, Thomas Berg, Jonathan Morris and others, who have gone into service with the dioceses, and where even those who have stayed view the arrival of the new director more as an undeserved punishment than as support. Garza retains the role of supervising the consecrated virgins associated with the affiliated movement Regnum Christi, but only on a temporary basis, until the apostolic visit to investigate this movement – just recently concluded – has been translated by the Vatican authorities into practical decisions.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:24 AM

Orthodox groups clarify stance on reporting child abuse

UNITED STATES
The Jerusalem Post

By JTA
07/27/2011

Agudath Israel of America, Rabbinical Council of America come under fire after rabbi says abuse should be reported to rabbis, not police.

NEW YORK - Two Orthodox Jewish groups have released statements attempting to clarify their positions on reporting child abuse.

Agudath Israel of America and the Rabbinical Council of America were responding to what the former called “misleading claims about our stance on reporting suspected child abusers to law enforcement agencies.”

The statements come in the wake of criticism over comments by a leading American Orthodox rabbi, Shmuel Kamenetsky, that abuse should be reported to rabbis rather than police. Kamenetsky is the vice president of Agudah's Supreme Council of Rabbinic Sages.

Agudah in its statement referred to rabbinic arguments that authorities should be notified when a certain threshold of evidence is met, but “where the circumstances of the case do not rise to threshold level … the matter should not be reported to authorities.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:20 AM

Monica Yant Kinney: Cardinal's absurdist biblical debate before a grand jury

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

By Monica Yant Kinney
Inquirer Columnist

On the seventh day, God rested, exhausted from a week creating heaven, earth, man, and beast.
As for Cardinal Anthony J. Bevilacqua? The 80-year-old former spiritual leader of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia spent his seventh day of grand jury testimony engaging in an absurdist biblical debate.

At issue was Bevilacqua's defense of the indefensible. For 20 years, church leaders had allowed the Rev. Nicholas Cudemo to remain in ministry amid cries he was raping 10-year-old girls and luring high school students into sexual affairs.

Near day's end, prosecutor William Spade told Bevilacqua that the grand jurors remained convinced that "the rights and protection of the children of the archdiocese are taken less seriously than the rights and protection of the priests."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:17 AM

Philly archdiocese hit by another abuse suit

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
The Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A man whose grand jury testimony led to charges against a high-ranking official in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and other two priests has filed a civil suit against the church.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reports the suit filed Monday alleges the church knowingly assigned an abusive priest to his Northeast Philadelphia parish. The now 23-year-old plaintiff claims he was raped by that priest, a second priest and a Catholic school teacher.

The plaintiff's testimony was key to a grand jury's February recommendation of charges against Monsignor William Lynn, the former secretary for clergy; priests Charles Engelhardt and Edward Avery; and a former teacher.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:13 AM

Attorneys to argue about evidence in Warren Jeffs sexual assault trial

SAN ANGELO (TX)
CNN

[with video]

San Angelo, Texas (CNN) -- Attorneys are scheduled to be in court Wednesday to argue a motion to suppress evidence, a day after jury selection in the sexual assault trial of polygamous sect leader Warren Jeffs.

It's unclear when the jury of 10 women and two men will hear opening statements.

The jury selection Tuesday followed a full day of questioning. At one point, nearly half of 207 potential jurors raised their hands when asked by defense attorney Deric Walpole "if you do not presume my client to be innocent."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:08 AM

Aurora minister convicted of child sex assault

AURORA (CO)
The Denver Post

An Aurora minister has been found guilty of sexually assaulting a teenage girl in his congregation in 2008 and 2009.

On Monday, Isaac K. Aryee, 43, was convicted on one count of sexual assault on a child using force, one count of sexual assault on a child with a pattern of abuse and three counts of sexual assault on a child by a person in a position of trust, according to the Denver district attorney's office.
All counts are felonies.

The victim, born in Sierra Leone, was a member of Aryee's church, Praise Chapel International Ministries. The first assault occurred in 2008 when the girl was 14 years old. The assaults were reported to police in October 2009, when the victim's mother discovered she was pregnant.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:06 AM

Dnevnik Deems Church's Handling of Alleged Sexual Abuse Unpardonable

SLOVENIA
STA

Ljubljana, 27 July (STA) - The daily Dnevnik takes issue with the Slovenian Catholic Church over its claim that it does not report suspected sexual abuse by priests to the police because most of the victims who turn to the Church do not want to report the perpetrator but only want the Church to prevent further abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:02 AM

Jury chosen in trial for polygamist sect leader

SAN ANGELO (TX)
The News Tribune

BY WILL WEISSERT; ASSOCIATED PRESS
Published: 07/26/111

SAN ANGELO, Texas — Ten women and two men were selected to sit on the jury in the sexual assault trial of polygamist sect leader Warren Jeffs late Tuesday, after more than 100 potential jurors were excused for admitting they'd previously heard enough about his background to no longer presume him innocent.

An initial pool of 207 was on-hand for the second day of jury selection in the case of the ecclesiastical head of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, an offshoot of mainstream Mormonism that believes polygamy brings exaltation in heaven.

The 55-year-old Jeffs faces two counts of sexual assault of a child. If convicted, the maximum sentence for both is 119 years to life in prison. He will have a separate trial for bigamy in October.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:59 AM

Former British Baptist pastor sentenced for sexual abuse

UNITED STATES/UNITED KINGDOM
Associated Baptist Press

By Bob Allen
Tuesday, July 26, 2011

FAIRFAX, Va. (ABP) – A former British Baptist pastor was sentenced July 22 to eight years in prison for sexually abusing two boys while visiting a family friend in the United States.

Robert Dando, former senior minister at Worcester Park Baptist Church in suburban London, pleaded guilty last November to four counts of aggravated sexual battery of a victim under 13. The charges stemmed from allegations that he began fondling the boys when they were 7 and 8 and continued the abuse over the course of five years.

Dando was arrested last July in Oakton, Va., after one of the alleged victims came forward in December at age 21, and further investigation revealed similar allegations by a 17-year-old.

Dando, 47, will serve his sentence in the U.S. Since his arrest he has been held without bond at the Fairfax County Detention Center. He was originally scheduled for sentencing in January, but the hearing was postponed after his lawyer requested a psychiatric evaluation for his client.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:56 AM

Aurora Pastor Found Guilty Of Child Sex Assault

COLORADO
TheDenverChannel

AURORA, Colo. -- An Aurora minister accused of sexually assaulting a teenage girl in his congregation in 2008 and 2009 has been found guilty.

Isaac K. Aryee, 43, was convicted late Monday of sexual assault on a child using force, sexual assault on a child, pattern of abuse and three counts of sexual assault on a child by a person in a position of trust, all felonies.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:54 AM

Pastor convicted of sexually assaulting 14-year-old member of congregation

DENVER (CO)
9 News

Written by
Jeffrey Wolf

DENVER - An Aurora minister was convicted on Monday of sexually assaulting a teenager in his congregation.

Isaac K. Aryee, 43, was convicted of sexual assault on a child using force, sexual assault on a child, pattern of abuse and three counts of sexual assault on a child by a person in a position of trust.

The Denver District Attorney's office says the victim, who was born in Sierra Leone, was a member of Aryee's church, Praise Chapel International Ministries. The assaults began when the victim was 14 years old in 2008.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:51 AM

Ireland in seismic shock over continuing child sex abuse by priests

IRELAND
National Post (Canada)

Araminta Wordsworth Jul 26, 2011

Full Comment’s Araminta Wordsworth brings you a daily round-up of quality punditry from across the globe. Today: In language never used by an Irish government leader, Enda Kenny has accused the Vatican of covering up the rape and torture of children by priests in order to uphold its own power and reputation.

The Irish Prime Minister (Taoiseach in Gaelic) was speaking about the Cloyne Report, which found that John Magee — former Roman Catholic bishop of the rural diocese near Cork — lied when he claimed he was reporting all allegations of clerical child sexual abuse to police.

“The rape and torture of children were downplayed or ‘managed’ to uphold instead, the primacy of the institution, its power, standing and ‘reputation’,” Mr. Kenny said, adding, “For the first time in Ireland, a report into child sexual abuse exposes an attempt by the Holy See to frustrate an inquiry in a sovereign, democratic republic as little as three years ago, not three decades ago.”

The report has caused a sensation in Ireland, long considered a faithful daughter of the Church and with an over-cosy relationship between the Catholic hierarchy and the government.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:48 AM

Children’s Minister calls on Vatican for response

IRELAND
Newstalk

The Minister for Children Frances Fitzgerald says it is vital the Vatican give their response to the findings of the Cloyne Report as soon as possible.

The report found there were serious shortcomings on the part of the former Bishop John Magee and the Vatican itself in dealing with child sexual abuse allegations in the Cork diocese.

Earlier this week in an unprecedented move the Vatican recalled the Irish Papal Nuncio Guiseppe Leanza to Rome.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:46 AM

Rift Grows Between Ireland, Vatican Over Priest Abuse Allegations

IRELAND
PBS Newshour

[with video]

Transcript
GWEN IFILL: Finally tonight, the breach between the Vatican and one of the most Catholic countries in Europe, Ireland. It grew even wider yesterday after a dramatic move by Rome.

Ray Suarez has our story.

RAY SUAREZ: The Vatican's move to recall its ambassador, Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, was highly unusual. The archbishop was summoned back to the church's headquarters after the Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny sharply denounced the way the Vatican dealt with repeated child sex abuse scandals.

Ireland is 87 percent Catholic. In an attack on the church unprecedented for an Irish prime minister, Kenny told his Parliament, "The rape and torture of children were downplayed or managed to uphold instead the primacy of the institution in power, standing and reputation."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:42 AM

Plaintiff in criminal case against Philly archdiocese sues over alleged sex abuse

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

By David O'Reilly
Inquirer Staff Writer

One of two young men at the heart of a criminal rape and conspiracy case has sued the Archdiocese of Philadelphia in connection with his alleged sexual abuse as a 10-year-old altar boy in 1999.

Using the pseudonym "Billy Doe," the plaintiff, now 23, says church officials put him in harm's way by assigning a known abuser, the Rev. Edward Avery, to his parish, St. Jerome's in Northeast Philadelphia.

There he was raped and sodomized by Avery, another priest, and a teacher, according to the lawsuit filed Monday in Common Pleas Court.

His lawyers say church officials, including Cardinal Anthony J. Bevilacqua, exhibited "callous indifference to the safety and well-being of children" by ignoring a psychiatrist's recommendation that Avery not be given unsupervised access to children.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:38 AM

July 26, 2011

SNAPBelgium eist nieuw verregaand onderzoek naar seksueel misbruik in Kerk

BELGIE
HLN

SNAPBelgium, de Belgische afdeling van SNAP, het overleversnetwerk van slachtoffers van seksueel misbruik, eist van de Belgische overheid dat ze een nieuw en diepgaand onderzoek beveelt naar seksueel misbruik binnen de katholieke Kerk. Het parlementair onderzoek is voor SNAPBelgium slechts een eerste aanzet. "De Kerk houdt haar potjes nog steeds gedekt, blijft daders beschermen en slachtoffers intimideren", zegt voorzitster Lieve Halsberghe.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:35 PM

Is it time for the Irish church to break from the Vatican?

IRELAND
New Ross Standard

By with Gavin Duffy

Tuesday July 26 2011

IS IT time for all the good priests and bishops of Ireland, and there are many, to break from Rome and form an Irish controlled Catholic Church? Do we need a schism? Why can't there be an Irish church for Irish Catholics, controlled by Irish Bishops and answerable not to Rome but to the God Catholics profess faith in.

This new Irish Catholic church would step away from Rome until the Vatican proves itself to be competent, fair and just in its handling and reparation of the damage caused by clerical child abuse around the world. If Rome proved, in time, that it genuinely put victims before itself, in a truly Christian way, then, the Irish Schism would end.

Writing in this column last November, a full seven months before its publication, I revealed that the Justice Yvonne Murphy investigation into the Diocese of Cloyne and its handling of child sex abuse by its priests would be the most shocking yet.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:32 PM

Arrogant Vatican

IRELAND
Financial Times

No Irish prime minister has ever condemned the Vatican in language as blistering as that used last week by Enda Kenny. No prime minister was ever more justified in doing so.

Mr Kenny was commenting on a government report, published on July 13, which concluded that the Vatican had discouraged a thorough investigation into allegations of sexual abuse of children by priests in the diocese of Cloyne. As he told parliament, “the rape and torture of children were downplayed” to protect the power and reputation of the Catholic Church. Mr Kenny’s remarks carried weight because he is a practising Catholic, not a secular politician.

Now the Vatican, in high dudgeon, has withdrawn the papal nuncio to Ireland. Relations between the Holy See and Dublin have plunged to an all-time low. For a country where, as in Poland and Spain, Catholicism is the historical foundation stone of national identity, this may seem astonishing. But in truth the child abuse scandals long ago shattered the Vatican’s moral authority in Ireland.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:27 PM

Australian prelate questions forced-adoption claims

AUSTRALIA
Catholic Culture

An Australian prelate is questioning claims made in a senate inquiry that 150,000 single mothers were forced to give up their children for adoption between the 1950s and the 1970s. Archbishop Barry Hickey made his comments following an apology by the CEO of Catholic Health Australia.

Stating there was “little evidence” of the practice, the Archbishop of Perth said that “the Sisters of Mercy have said that it wasn't their policy to do that, but you can't control everybody I suppose.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:24 PM

Italy: blackmail scheme targets homosexual priests

ITALY
Catholic Culture

Italian police have arrested two men who allegedly blackmailed Catholic priests by threatening to disclose the priests’ homosexual activities.

Police say that the extortionists threatened at least a dozen priests in different parts of the country.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:20 PM

Rabbinical court opens sex abuse debate in orthodox community

CANADA
Canada.com

By Marian Scott, Postmedia News July 26, 2011

MONTREAL — A rabbinical court has brought the long-hidden issue of sexual abuse in Montreal's Orthodox Jewish community out into the open.

In an advisory issued at the start of the summer-camp season, the Beit Din, a religious court, told parents to teach children about inappropriate touching, whether it's by another child, a relative or an authority figure.

The written notice said parents should explain to children it's an obligation — not a sin — to tell a parent or rabbi if an incident occurs.

The move is a departure for a community that's been accused in the past of sweeping the sensitive topic of sexual abuse under the carpet.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:53 PM

BISHOP EDWARD BRAXTON’S BATTLE

BELLEVILLE (IL)
Berger's Beat

The latest edition of the independent Kansas City-based National Catholic Reporter says that members of the Belleville Association of Priests “recently released a list of 20 alleged instances of fiscal and authority abuses” by Bishop Edward Braxton. The piece by veteran church observer Robert McClory of Chicago, also claims that the diocesan annual appeal is down $500,000 from when Braxton took over in 2005.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:50 PM

Father Michael Hearing Pushed to 2 p.m

CONNECTICUT
Patch

By Robert Mayer

Television cameras and reporters showed up at Thomas Meskill Courthouse in New Britain to see St. Paul Church priest Michael Miller appear for the five felony counts of risk of injury to a minor.

The court opened at 10 a.m. but Miller was nowhere to be found. There was then an announcement that his case would be heard at 2 p.m.

St. Paul Church priest Father Michael Miller, who was arrested on five felony counts of risk of injury to a minor and a misdemeanor obscenity charge on July 12, is now scheduled to appear before the judge in court on today at 2 p.m.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:57 PM

Is Ireland divorcing from the Catholic Church?

IRELAND
The Telegraph (United Kingdom)

By Mary Kenny

Our Irish parents and grandparents would find astonishing the acidly anti-clerical views expressed in the Republic of Ireland today. The land that once called itself a foremost Catholic nation and most loyal ally of the Holy Father is awash with sentiments that seem to veer between Ulster Paisleyism and the Spanish republicanism of the 1930s.

One newspaper published a photograph of the Pope in full regalia, with “Persona Non Grata” superimposed on his image.

The airwaves are full of bitter remarks supporting Taoiseach Enda Kenny’s attack on the “disgraceful” Vatican, and recommending every anti-church measure from the dissolution of the monasteries to the expulsion of the Papal Nuncio and the severing of all links with the Holy See. (The recall of the Papal Nuncio this week marks the lowest point of relations between Ireland and Rome.)

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:54 PM

Archbishop of Goa summoned in Ribandar church case

INDIA
IBN

Panaji, Jul 26 (PTI) A local court has summoned Archbishop of Goa Filipe Neri Ferrao as a witness in a case pertaining to a tiff between a priest and a social worker.The Archbishop will have to be present in the court on August 2 to depose in the Ribandar Church case reported in year 2004.Social activist Aires Rodrigues is fighting the case against a priest Newton Fernandes who had filed a police complaint against the former for threatening him.Aires Rodrigues had claimed that the priest's outburst had stemmed from the fact that he was campaigning against him for allegedly molesting a 13-year-old girl.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:50 PM

SNAP Responds to Blocked Testimony in Priest Sex Abuse Case

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
NBC Philadelphia

Following Monday’s halt of the release of 1,200 pages of Cardinal Anthony J. Bevilacqua’s secret testimony relating to his handling of priest sex-abuse complaints, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priest (SNAP) are questioning claims that the former Philadelphia archbishop is too sick to face prosecution.

On Tuesday, SNAP released this statement regarding the testimony blocking:

“Time and time again, Catholic officials claim to be “open” about horrific clergy sex crimes and cover ups. Yet in court, they fight tooth and nail to keep their documents and depositions hidden.

Every time a judge is tempted to side with secrecy over transparency in cases like this, we hope they will remember that secrecy is a child predator’s best ally.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:34 AM

Berlin Priest to Face Judge for Endangering Minor

CONNECTICUT
NBC Connecticut

A Berlin priest will face a judge on Tuesday on charges that include risk of injury to a minor.

Fr. Michael Miller, of Saint Paul's Catholic Church, was suspended from the public ministry after he was arrested earlier this month.

A judge sealed the details of the case, but NBC Connecticut has learned that the accusations do not involve physical contact.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:31 AM

Victims blast archbishop over “secret defrocking”

LOUISIANA
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)

New Orleans Catholics should be outraged at Archbishop Gregory Aymond, who has kept silent for a year about the defrocking of a notorious predator priest.

Whatever happened to all those promises, repeatedly made by Catholic officials for the last decade, to be “open and transparent” about clergy sex crimes and cover ups?

How many other child molesting New Orleans clerics have been secretly defrocked while Vatican and New Orleans church staff keep silent about their crimes?

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:09 AM

Clergy sex victims blast Catholic officials

CONNECTICUT
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 (314-503-0003, snapdorris@gmail.com)

Once again, in a case involving the safety of kids, top Catholic officials are defending themselves on technicalities, not on the merits. Again, they’re exploiting every possible legal maneuver to prevent having to face tough questions before jurors in open court about how they deal with sexual misdeeds by clergy.

Catholic bishops can believe anything they want. They can’t, however, do anything they want, especially when their callous self-serving actions endanger kids.

When will Catholic officials stop claiming that children’s safety is “an internal matter?”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:06 AM

SNAP: Make amends, not apologies to forced adoption victims

AUSTRALIA
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

Statement by Steven Spaner, SNAP Australia Coordinator (SNAPspaner@gmail.com) and David Clohessy, SNAP Executive Director (+1-314-566-9790, SNAPclohessy@aol.com)

Apologies are cheap, easy and largely meaningless. If one is truly sorry, one makes amends. These 150,000 grieving women had at least 150,000 babies, some of whom were apparently exposed to the drugs that their mothers were given and are now reported to be linked to cancer. For sure these 150,000 children were exposed to the trauma experienced by their mothers. These 300,000 victims deserve tangible help now. Though the offenses may have been years ago, many of these mothers, we believe, are still suffering; many of these babies, now adults, may be suffering birth trauma or trauma from poor/abusive placements. There is no accounting of the fate of these children.

We find it very hard to believe that the head of Catholic Health Australia "became aware of the past practices after the ABC began its investigations." We strongly suspect that he and other church officials knew of this horror long ago but kept it hidden.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:04 AM

More Dirty Details in Hungarian Dirty Priest Scandal

HUNGARY
Pesticide

A new report has been filed with police in relation to the very dirty (and very Hungarian) dirty priest scandal we reported on back in April. According to index.hu, the report alleges that Gyula Wolf (right), former financial director of the Pécs diocese, had burned some incriminating documents, and threatened former bishop Mihály Mayer (left) in a further attempt to eliminate all evidence of wrongdoing.

The report also alleges that Wolf set himself to inherit a valuable house from a pensioner that had been receiving a Ft 90,000 (€334) monthly allowance from the church. Wolf's attorney said the deal in question served the interests of the diocese.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:59 AM

Diplomatic niceties don't fix the problem

IRELAND
Irish Independent

Tuesday July 26 2011

WITH relations between Ireland and the Holy See at their lowest point, the Vatican yesterday performed a neat diplomatic manoeuvre. It implied -- and more than implied -- a rebuke and a complaint, but left every option open.

Normally the recall to base of an ambassador is regarded as marking a serious deterioration in relations between his masters and the host country. The same applies with even greater force to a papal nuncio, the representative of the Pope. Yesterday the Vatican took pains not to suggest that the recall of Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza signalled an outright breach.

It did so by stating that he had been called back for consultations on the Cloyne Report. Fair enough: the consultations are important, and no doubt the Papal Nuncio has much to contribute to them.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:53 AM

Kenny’s Vatican speech creates a stir

IRELAND
The Mayo News

Edwin McGreal

Enda Kenny’s speech last Wednesday criticising the role of the Vatican in the handling of abuse scandals in Ireland made news all over the world. Fall-out from the Cloyne Report, published earlier this month, combined with the Taoiseach’s speech last week has led to yesterday’s (Monday) decision by the Vatican to recall the Papal Nuncio to Ireland, Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, to Rome, the latest development in the saga.

The speech given by Enda Kenny has reverberated worldwide with the reaction largely positive.

The New York Times described it as a ‘rare denunciation of the Holy See’s influence in this predominantly Catholic country’ while in the UK, The Guardian said the following: ‘what makes the verbal sortie on the Vatican so groundbreaking is that it is a Fine Gael taoiseach, whose political base lies in the conservative west of Ireland, who has led from the front’.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:49 AM

John Cooney: Ball is back in Rome's court as politicians await papal response

IRELAND
Irish Independent

Tuesday July 26 2011

A FAST-moving game of 'Vatican roulette' switched dramatically to Rome yesterday after last week's unprecedented attack on the Catholic Church led by Taoiseach Enda Kenny, Tanaiste Eamon Gilmore and a unified self-proclaiming 'republican' Dail.

After taking the early morning Aer Lingus flight to Rome, Giuseppe Leanza, the Papal Nuncio to Ireland, was back inside the corridors of the Apostolic Palace. He had been recalled home on a summons.

Archbishop Leanza's rapid recall was ordered over the weekend by the Pope's prime minister, Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, after he was briefed of the attack by Mr Kenny.

Even though Cardinal Bertone was already enjoying his summer holidays in the Alps, he was stunned to hear how the Taoiseach last Wednesday accused the Holy See of frustrating the Cloyne investigation in a sovereign, democratic republic by undermining protection guidelines agreed by the Irish bishops in 1996.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:47 AM

THE shame and sorrow

NORTHERN IRELAND
Derry Journal

Trust in the Catholic Church has been “grievously damaged” by the shocking scale of clerical sex abuse and it will take a long time to re-build it, one of the Derry Diocese’s most senior priests has acknowledged.

Monsignor Eamon Martin, Vicar General for the Diocese of Derry, told Massgoers in Pennyburn at the weekend that he could “only hang my head in shame and sorrow” at ongoing revelations of clergy abusing children and church leaders covering up the abuse.

Mons. Martin said the findings of the recently published Cloyne Report - which showed how allegations of sex abuse by priests in Cork had been covered up - had been “deeply disturbing”.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:43 AM

Father Michael Scheduled To Appear In Court Tuesday

CONNECTICUT
Patch

By Robert Mayer

St. Paul Church priest Father Michael Miller, who was arrested on five felony counts of risk of injury to a minor and a misdemeanor obscenity charge on July 12, is scheduled to appear before a judge in court on Tuesday, July 26.

As part of an ongoing investigation, police served a warrant earlier this month on Miller, 41, pastor of Saint Paul’s Catholic Church in Kensington.

Miller was processed and released after posting a $150,000 bond. His case was ordered sealed by the court and no additional information has been released since then.

If it is up the prosecutor, it will stay that way.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:56 AM

Women called to the priesthood

CALIFORNIA
Ventura County Star

By Jean Cowden Moore
Posted July 25, 2011

Picture a Roman Catholic priest. He's male and celibate, right?

But a small group of women is trying to expand that definition of priesthood — a fundamental tenet of the Catholic Church — to include female and marriage.

They belong to an organization called Roman Catholic Womenpriests, an international group that ordains women as priests. And they include a local woman who feels herself drawn toward being a priest in the faith she loves.

"We're Roman Catholics, and it's our church," said Cindy Yoshitomi, 63, of Port Hueneme. "You can't get around that. We're starting this grass-roots movement. ... We're creating a space where these disillusioned Catholics can find community."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:53 AM

After being sexually assaulted over 30 years ago, Derek LaPointe speaks out

CANADA
Times & Transcript

by adam huras
Times & Transcript Staff

CAMPBELLTON - A victim of sexual assault is calling for more rehabilitation for sex offenders, citing jail sentences that are too short to curb illicit behavior.

Derek LaPointe, who has now broken his own silence after being sexually assaulted by a northern New Brunswick priest more than three decades ago, hopes to spur a chorus of victim's voices and in turn tougher laws.

"I have chosen to speak out in the hope that others who have been abused will gain courage and speak out as well," LaPointe said. "It may be wishful thinking, but I also hope that lawmakers will take notice and stiffen the laws."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:33 AM

Judge bars access to transcripts in priest sex abuse cases

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

By David O'Reilly, John P. Martin, and Craig R. McCoy
Inquirer Staff Writers

Three days after Philadelphia prosecutors publicly filed secret grand jury testimony by archdiocesan officials about priest sex abuse, a judge on Monday barred open access to the thousands of pages of transcripts.

Common Pleas Court Judge Lillian Ransom ordered that the documents "may not be released to anyone from the press or the general public." Her order is in effect until a hearing is held at some unspecified date. Until then, she ordered, "these records have been impounded by the court."

The District Attorney's Office on Friday introduced the material, from 2002 through 2004, into its case involving a former aide to Cardinal Anthony J. Bevilacqua. The Inquirer obtained copies of the former archbishop's voluminous testimony before the courthouse closed, and published a story about it Sunday.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:30 AM

Irish government stays firm on Catholic Church abuse vow

IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

By Fionnan Sheahan and Nick Pisa
Tuesday, 26 July 2011

The Irish government is sticking to its pledge to force priests to break the secrets of the confessional box and reveal abuse as tensions boiled over with the Vatican.

Relations between the Vatican and the Republic plunged to a new low as the Holy See's ambassador was recalled to Rome to discuss the fallout from the Cloyne Report.

On top of the diplomatic row, a senior Vatican official dismissed Dublin's plans to bring in a new law to compel priests to pass on details of abuse revealed in confession.

In the wake of Taoiseach Enda Kenny's scathing attack on the Vatican, Monsignor Giuseppe Leanza was summoned back to Rome so he could refer Pope Benedict XVI and senior Church officials to details of the damning report which accused the Catholic hierarchy of covering up for paedophile priests.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:27 AM

Vatican reacts to child abuse anger

IRELAND
Herald

By Brian Hutton
Tuesday July 26 2011

The Vatican has branded as "excessive" some reactions to a damning clerical child abuse inquiry after recalling the Pope's ambassador to Ireland.

Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, Papal Nuncio in Dublin, has already returned to Rome in a rare move ordered by the Holy See.

The recall comes just days after an unprecedented attack by Taoiseach Enda Kenny on the Catholic church hierarchy.

Vice-director of the Vatican press office Father Ciro Benedettini said it should be seen as a measure of the gravity of the fall-out over Ireland's response to the Cloyne report into the mishandling of paedophile priest allegations.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:25 AM

Church youth worker guilty of sexually abusing boys

UNITED KINGDOM
This is Bristol

A CHURCH youth worker who sexually abused two boys at his home has been jailed for two years.

Gilleon Prentice was involved with a youth group at Chelsea Baptist Church in Easton and would invite teenagers to his home for parties and molest them, Bristol Crown Court heard yesterday.

After Prentice left the role his victims, who cannot be named, made complaints to police. They were aged under 16 when the offences took place and are now adults.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:22 AM

For archbishop's camp, the church is the hierarchy

UNITED STATES
Philadelphia Daily News

By David J. O'Brien
Miracles do happen. Who would have believed anyone could topple Irish Catholicism? But masses of Irish Catholics no longer attend church, and those who do have lost confidence in their priests and bishops. The Irish people are finally disengaging the church from its control of education, social services, and public morality.

What brutal British occupiers could not accomplish over centuries, Ireland's bishops and their Vatican masters have brought about in little more than a decade.

Now those who run the Catholic Church have jeopardized another legendary center of Catholic solidarity: Philadelphia.

Cardinal Justin Rigali is retiring as Philadelphia's archbishop, disgraced by a second grand jury report documenting the hierarchy's cover-up of sexual abuse by priests. It was announced last week that his successor will be Archbishop Charles Chaput of Denver, one of America's most outspoken Catholic conservatives. The appointment shows that the Vatican accepts the strange idea that the church's problems in this country have come about because Catholics are too American - too tainted by America's "culture of death" - and because U.S. bishops and priests are too sensitive to what lay people and non-Catholics think.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:19 AM

Calls to probe Ulster’s child care home abuse

NORTHERN IRELAND
News Letter

Published on Tuesday 26 July 2011

Why has Stormont not yet started an inquiry into child abuse in Northern Ireland? SAM McBRIDE reports

STORMONT is under pressure to set up two investigations into child sex abuse by Catholic priests – and possibly others – in Northern Ireland.

Jim Wells, who is to take over as health minister in two years, warns that Northern Ireland has been “sleeping” about the level of abuse which has taken place north of the border.

Some of the stories which survivors of abuse have taken to MLAs in an attempt to convince them of the horrific nature of their suffering show that the abuse has been “much worse than even what was happening in the Republic”, the DUP MLA has told the News Letter.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:16 AM

Jury selection continues in Warren Jeffs sexual assault trial

TEXAS
CNN

(CNN) -- Jury selection enters a second day Tuesday in the sexual assault trial of polygamous sect leader Warren Jeffs.

Jeffs is charged with two counts of sexual assault on a child and one count of bigamy stemming from a 2008 raid on a ranch operated by his church.

Authorities raided the Yearning for Zion ranch near Eldorado, Texas, and removed 400 children who they feared had been sexually abused.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:13 AM

Ex-minister jailed for sex abuse

UNITED KINGDOM
Oxford Mail

A FORMER Bicester church leader has been jailed for eight years in the United States after admitting sexually abusing children.

The Rev Robert Dando is also being investigated by Thames Valley Police over “child protection issues”.

Former Oxfordshire magistrate Dando, 47, was a minister at Orchard Baptist Fellowship, which meets at Cooper School, Bicester, between 1995 and 2006.

He was also a governor at Kings Meadow School.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:11 AM

Cloyne Report on Abuse: Vatican Recalls Papal Nuncio to Ireland For Consultation

VATICAN CITY
Catholic Online

[with video]

By Kevin J. Jones
7/25/2011
Catholic News Agency (www.catholicnewsagency.com)

The Vatican has recalled its apostolic nuncio in Ireland to Rome for consultations after the release of the Cloyne Report on priests' abuse of minors in the Diocese of Cloyne. The recall is a sign of the Holy See's seriousness in addressing the issue, a Vatican spokesman said.

VATICAN CITY (CNA/EWTN News) - The Vatican has recalled its apostolic nuncio in Ireland to Rome for consultations after the release of the Cloyne Report on priests' abuse of minors in the Diocese of Cloyne. The recall is a sign of the Holy See's seriousness in addressing the issue, a Vatican spokesman said.

The recall of Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza shows the seriousness of the situation and the desire of the Holy See to deal with it "objectively and with determination," Fr. Ciro Benedettini, vice director of the Vatican Press Office, told journalists.

He said the recall shows the "surprise and regret regarding some excessive reactions."

Fr. Benedettini added that the nuncio's recall also should be seen as evidence of the Holy See's desire for a "serious and effective cooperation" in responding to the report.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:08 AM

Papal recall shows Vatican worried by the storm in Ireland

IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

By Alf McCreary
Tuesday, 26 July 2011

The recall of the Irish Papal Nuncio Guiseppe Leanza to Rome shows just how seriously the Vatican is taking the unprecedented outpouring of criticism from the Taoiseach Enda Kenny.

The recent Cloyne Report was deeply critical of serious shortcomings on the part of the Newry-born Bishop John Magee and the Vatican itself in dealing with child sexual abuse in the West Cork diocese.

Last week Enda Kenny, in a historic broadside, accused the Vatican of trying to frustrate the Cloyne inquiry "in a sovereign democratic republic" as recently as three years ago, despite the strict guidelines already in place.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:05 AM

Vatican Recalls Ireland Envoy After Dublin's Criticism

IRELAND
Wall Street Journal

By EAMON QUINN And STACY MEICHTRY

DUBLIN—The Vatican recalled its ambassador to Ireland on Monday in response to Irish government criticism that the Holy See had mishandled allegations of sexual abuse by priests.

The Vatican said the papal ambassador, Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, would return to Rome for "consultations" with its No. 2 official, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, on the political uproar that has emerged in the country, a Catholic stronghold.

Vatican deputy spokesman Rev. Ciro Benedettini said the ambassador had been recalled to help "prepare an official response from the Holy See to the Irish government." He described it as a rare measure that showed the "seriousness of the situation [and] the will of the Holy See to address it with objectivity and determination as well as a certain sense of surprise and regret for some excessive reactions."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:02 AM

Irish priest theologian: All Irish bishops appointed before 2003 should resign

IRELAND
LifeSite News

by Hilary White, Rome Correspondent

Mon Jul 25, 2011

DUBLIN, July 25, 2011 (http://www.lifesitenews.com/) - The Catholic Church in Ireland has been “without any leadership effectively for the last 15 years” said theologian and former student of Pope Benedict XVI. Fr. Vincent Twomey, emeritus professor of moral theology at Maynooth seminary, has called for every Irish bishop appointed before 2003 to resign, the Catholic Herald reports.

He told RTE radio that he is “incandescent with rage” over the revelations of “incompetence, inertia, and lies” in the recently published judicial review of cover-ups of abuse of young people in the Cloyne diocese. The report found that the fault lay with the refusal of Irish Church leaders to implement either their own national guidelines or the Vatican’s universal norms to protect young people.

The Cloyne Report put the blame squarely on the shoulders of the former bishop, John Magee, widely known for his strong “liberal” leanings. Each of the Irish bishops who have resigned over allegations of abuse and mismanagement have been representative of the radical liberal wing of the Catholic Church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:59 AM

Mental health disorders, child sex abuse and the Roman Catholic Church

UNITED KINGDOM
Mental Healthy

By Catherine Walker

Enda Kenny, Irish Prime Minister, has accused the Roman Catholic Church of attempting to hinder a probe into allegations of child sex-abuse by priests. As a result the Vatican has recalled its ambassador to Ireland.

The Irish government has called for a quick response from the Vatican over the church’s handling of allegations against 33 clerics of the sexual abuse of children. This is alleged to have taken place in the Cloyne diocese of southern Ireland between 1996 and 2009.

This, and many other similar news stories, is being circulated around the world, about alleged cases of child sex-abuse by Roman Catholic Priests.

A reader contacted Mental Healthy over the weekend with her own personal account of such abuse. She wishes to be known as Isabel Davies and in order to respect her wish to remain anonymous we will do so.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:57 AM

Dnevnik: Suspected Paedophile Priests Still in Contact with Children

SLOVENIA
STA

Ljubljana, 26 July (STA) - Two priests from the Archdiocese Of Ljubljana who are suspected of sexually abusing minors are still in contact with children in the course of their work, daily Dnevnik reports on Tuesday. Despite the reasonable cause for suspicion having been established, the archdiocese merely transferred the two priests to new posts.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:54 AM

July 25, 2011

Pope’s Irish representative recalled to Rome; SNAP responds

IRELAND
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)

The Pope’s representative in Ireland should be expelled, not recalled. Just a year and a half ago, Leanza refused to cooperate with Irish authorities who were investigating clergy sex crimes and cover ups, hiding behind the technicalities of formal diplomatic procedures, instead of acting responsibly and putting the safety of kids first.

He has still never adequately explained or been held responsible for his callous actions which, we suspect, were dictated by his supervisors at the Vatican.

The Pope should not officially respond to the Cloyne report until he is ready to announce specific, proven prevention steps that better protect kids. An “official response” that consists of just words would only add insult to injury.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:00 PM

Analysis: Catholic Church's power over the state has been broken

IRELAND
Scotsman

Published Date: 26 July 2011
By Peter Geoghegan

In 1950, Ireland's then minister for health, Dr Noel Browne, announced his intention to radically reform the former Free State's ailing health service. For the first time, maternity care for all mothers and healthcare for all children up to the age of 16 would be delivered free of charge.

Dr Browne's proposals met with fierce resistance, particularly from the Catholic Church, which characterised his scheme as "socialist" medicine and an intrusion by the state into the sanctity of the family.

Led by the all-powerful then Archbishop of Dublin, John Charles McQuaid, the Mother and Child scheme's opponents succeeded in destroying the bill, Dr Browne's political career and even the coalition government of the time.

The experience of Dr Browne was hardly unique: since the foundation of the state almost 90 years ago, the Catholic hierarchy has exerted unparalleled social and political control in Ireland.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:56 PM

State Supreme Court Says Former St. Hedwig Principal Can't Sue Archdiocese

CONNECTICUT
Patch

By Ronald DeRosa

A former principal at St. Hedwig School cannot sue the Archdiocese of Hartford on claims that she was wrongfully fired for not disciplining a student who alleged sexual remarks made by a priest in class, according to a Connecticut Supreme Court ruling made public Monday.

The high court overturned a Hartford Superior Court ruling, stating, according to previous cases, the state cannot interfere with a religious organization’s internal matters.

The case involved Patricia Dayner, a principal at the former Naugatuck Catholic School, who filed a lawsuit against the Archdiocese of Hartford and a former embattled pastor, the Rev. Stephen Bzdyra. Separately, Bzdyra has been on administrative leave from the St. Hedwig community, after being hit with a civil lawsuit in 2010 alleging he molested an alter server in the 1980s.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:44 PM

Suit alleges cover-up of 1980s sex abuse by local priest

NORTH CAROLINA
Charlotte Observer

By Tim Funk
tfunk@charlotteobserver.com

Posted: Monday, Jul. 25, 2011

A lawsuit filed Tuesday in Mecklenburg County Superior Court alleges that the Catholic Diocese of Charlotte covered up the sexual abuse of a teenager by one of its priests in the 1980s.

The suit alleges that then-Rev. Richard Farwell sexually abused the plaintiff, while he was 14 and 15 years old, on three occasions: in 1983, in the rectory at St. Ann Catholic Church in Charlotte; in 1984, while in a car near the Blue Ridge Parkway; and in 1984, at the rectory of Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Salisbury.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:41 PM

Church apology over 'forced adoptions' in Australia

AUSTRALIA
The Irish Times

PÁDRAIG COLLINS in Sydney

THE AUSTRALIAN Catholic Church issued an apology yesterday over what have been called “forced adoptions”.

It is thought more than 150,000 women had babies taken against their will in Australia between the 1950s and 1970s by churches and adoption agencies.

Psychiatrist Geoff Rickarby, who has treated many of the affected women, told ABC television it is a stain on Australia’s history.

“It sounds like some totalitarian country somewhere hundreds of years ago, but in fact it’s Australia only 35, 40 years ago,” Dr Rickarby said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:37 PM

Vatican decision to recall envoy not seen as hostile

IRELAND
The Irish Times

MARY FITZGERALD, Foreign Affairs Correspondent

THE DECISION by the Vatican to recall its envoy to Ireland for consultations in the wake of the Cloyne report is not being viewed as a hostile move by the Department of Foreign Affairs.

In a statement yesterday, Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs Eamon Gilmore said the decision to recall the papal nuncio, Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, was “a matter for the Holy See”.

“The Government is awaiting the response of the Holy See to the recent report into the Catholic Diocese of Cloyne, and it is to be expected that the Vatican would wish to consult in depth with the nuncio on its response,” said Mr Gilmore.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:34 PM

'Irish question' in Vatican now more political than spiritual

ROME
The Irish Times

ANALYSIS: This is hardly a declaration of war, but it is still an indication of Vatican annoyance with the Government, writes PADDY AGNEW in Rome

THE HOLY See’s decision to recall papal nuncio Giuseppe Leanza is a clear indication of the extent to which the Vatican has been both taken by surprise and highly annoyed by the Taoiseach’s unprecedented attack in the Dáil.

That the nuncio might be asked to return to Rome in the current circumstances is perfectly normal, but such an order would usually be done quietly and without fanfare. In this case, however, the Holy See announced the unprecedented “recall” in a communique, knowing all too well this would attract worldwide media attention.

This is hardly a declaration of war, a step that historically has often been preceded by the withdrawal of an ambassador, but it is still an indication of Vatican annoyance with the Government.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:32 PM

Government says onus on Vatican to respond to Kenny

IRELAND
The Irish Times

PATSY McGARRY, MARY FITZGERALD and HARRY McGEE

THE ONUS is now on the Vatican to respond to the Taoiseach’s speech of last Wednesday, a Government spokesman said last night. “The Taoiseach has said what he wanted to say. The ball is firmly in the Vatican’s court.”

It followed the Vatican announcement yesterday that the papal nuncio to Ireland, Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, was being recalled to Rome for consultations as it prepared a formal response to the Cloyne report, as requested by the Government.

The Vatican decision was not being viewed as a hostile act at the Department of Foreign Affairs last night. “This doesn’t appear to be the kind of recall that indicates displeasure,” said a source. “There isn’t a sense of hatches coming down or communication being blocked.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:29 PM

We have a chance to finally build a real republic with rights for all

IRELAND
Irish Examiner

By Fergus Finlay

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

"THIS is the Republic of Ireland 2011. A republic of laws, of rights and responsibilities; of proper civic order; where the delinquency and arrogance of a particular version, of a particular kind of "morality", will no longer be tolerated or ignored."

Those two sentences are taken from the Taoiseach’s speech in the Dáil during the week. As everyone knows, Enda Kenny spoke in response to the Cloyne Report, and it was reported around the world as a moment almost of revolution. The speech was one of condemnation, but also of assertion. In that sense, it could well represent a turning point in our history as a country.

It has of course been endlessly parsed and analysed. Those who wish to defend the Holy See have found fault with aspects of the speech. They’ve criticised it for selectivity and in some cases for inaccuracy. Volumes of Jesuitical skill have been employed to belittle the speech in a variety of ways – it represents a misreading of the Cloyne Report, it was selective in what it chose to condemn, all that sort of stuff. Some commentators have even pointed to the fact that Kenny is the longest-serving member of the Dáil and should have taken on the Vatican years ago. They seem to have forgotten that he is less than six months Taoiseach.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:26 PM

Jury selection begins in polygamist leader's Texas trial

TEXAS
Reuters

By Jim Forsyth

SAN ANGELO, Texas (Reuters) - Jury selection got underway in a Texas ranching community on Monday for the child sexual abuse trial of Warren Steed Jeffs, leader of a breakaway polygamist Mormon sect.

Jeffs, 55, is charged with sexual assault of a child and aggravated sexual assault of a child for entering into spiritual 'marriages' with two girls, ages 12 and 14, at the Yearning for Zion Ranch in Eldorado, Texas.

Jeffs is considered the spiritual leader of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, which has been condemned by the mainstream Mormon Church and is accused of promoting marriages between older men and girls.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:23 PM

Priest sentenced to probation for stealing from Garnerville parish to gamble

NEW YORK
The Journal News

NEW CITY - A former pastor of St. Gregory Barbarigo Church was sentenced today to five years probation for stealing $25,600 from the Garnerville parish for Internet gambling and other personal uses.

The Rev. Thomas Kreiser, 45, who led the parish from 2008-10, repaid the money and has been in a rehabilitation facility for gambling.

He pleaded guilty in June to fourth-degree grand larceny and faced a maximum of four years in prison on the felony charge.

During sentencing today before Rockland County Judge Charles Apotheker, Kreiser apologized to the Garnerville parishioners . He also thanked the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York for its support.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:34 PM

Priest who stole from NY parish gets probation

NEW YORK
Seattle Post-Intelligencer

NEW CITY, N.Y. (AP) — A 45-year-old Roman Catholic priest who admitted stealing $25,000 from his suburban New York parish has been sentenced to five years of probation.

The Rev. Thomas Kreiser had pleaded guilty to grand larceny and could have been sentenced to up to four years in prison.

Prosecutors said Monday that he has paid back the parish and voluntarily sought help for his gambling habit. The district attorney said Kreiser's probation includes mandatory treatment for gambling and substance abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:30 PM

Philly judge halts release of cardinal's grand jury testimony, filed to support criminal case

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
The Republic

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

PHILADELPHIA — A Philadelphia judge has halted the release of 1,200 pages of grand-jury testimony of a Roman Catholic cardinal relating to his handling of priest sex-abuse complaints.

Prosecutors say they filed Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua's secret testimony from 2003 to support criminal charges filed this year against a high-ranking church official.

Monsignor William Lynn is charged with conspiracy and child endangerment for allegedly transferring priest-predators without warning.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reported Sunday that Bevilacqua, the former archbishop, testified that accused priests "would not be able to function" if new parishes were warned of their backgrounds.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:10 PM

Background: Wisniewski v. Diocese of Belleville

BELLEVILLE (IL)
National Catholic Reporter

By Robert McClory

Robert McClory's news story about Belleville diocese's appeal of clergy sex abuse case is here, Braxton battles on against abuse case. Following is more details about the case and Fr. Raymond Kownacki's tenure in the Belleville, Ill., diocese.

Wisniewski v. Diocese of Belleville got virtually no press coverage when the trial was held in the circuit court of St. Clair County, Ill., in August 2008. Belleville is a largely rural diocese near St. Louis, and the public by then was tiring of clerical abuse stories.

But the trial still deserves notice, because of the huge award ($5 million) the jury gave the plaintiff, James Wisniewski, because it is only one among a handful of abuse claims against U.S. Catholic dioceses that have been allowed to go to trial, and because the Belleville bishop is still battling to overturn the verdict.

It's particularly important too because of the shocking admissions that emerged during the trial.

Wisniewski v. Belleville is "almost classic," said David Clohessy, director of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, or SNAP, who attended the trial. "The issues were so clear and the documentation was all there."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:06 PM

Irish PM Scathing Denunciation of Vatican

IRELAND
Religion Dispatches

Post by Anthea Butler

The Vatican has recalled the apostolic nuncio to Ireland, Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, for consultations after the release of the Cloyne Report and a scathing denunciation from the Prime Minister of Ireland. Prime Minister Enda Kenny’s scathing denunciation of the Vatican was aimed at the continued obfuscation of the Catholic Church in Ireland with regard to sexual abuse by priests. ...

When the Prime Minister of Ireland tears the church a new one, and implicates the Vatican in criminal activity, recalling the Apostolic Nuncio is a petty, inadequate response if it is not followed up with a direct answer for the materials outlined of the church’s failure in the Cloyne Report. In typical fashion, one of the points made by Fr. Ciro Benedettini of the Vatican Press Office shows the ridiculousness of the Vatican culture: “The recalling of the Nuncio, a measure rarely used by the Holy See, denotes the seriousness of the situation, and the desire of the Holy See to deal with it objectivity and with determination, as well as a certain note of surprise and regret regarding some excessive reactions.”

The Vatican and its inhabitants are living in a 15th century fantasy if they do not realize that respect for the institution in Europe and North America is at an all-time low. Prime Minister Enda’s remarks are not excessive; rather, the behavior of the Vatican is excessive in its continued jabs at any criticism of the church, while continuing to persecute the victims of sexual abuse. The institution is on its knees, and will continue to crumble if serious, concerted efforts are not made to stem the moral and financial collapse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:02 PM

Catholic Ireland's watershed moment

IRELAND
Eureka Street (Australia)

[with video]

The Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny surprised most people in Ireland, and further afield, by his hard-hitting statement in parliament on the report of the Commission of Investigation into the Catholic Diocese of Cloyne last week.

The surprise was that his main focus was not so much on the main Irish culprits criticised in the report (Bishop John Magee and his Vicar General, Monsignor Denis O'Callaghan, charged with investigating complaints of clerical child sexual abuse), but on the Vatican itself.

In undiplomatic language Kenny stated that the Report 'excavates the dysfunction, disconnection, elitism [and] narcissism ... that dominate the culture of the Vatican to this day ... The rape and torture of children were downplayed or 'managed' to uphold instead the primacy of the institution, its power, standing and 'reputation'.'

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:55 PM

Priest victims decry defrocking 'tokenism'

AUSTRALIA
Newcastle Herald

BY JOANNE MCCARTHY
26 Jul, 2011

THE Catholic Church has been accused of tokenism after defrocking notorious Hunter paedophile priest John Denham while failing to defrock other clergy child sex abusers.

"They get rid of the worst of the worst to make it look like they're cleaning up their act, but they're picking and choosing," said a Newcastle victim of Vince Ryan, who was jailed after sexually abusing 35 boys between 1972 and 1991, and released last year.

"I asked [Bishop] Michael Malone to defrock Ryan back when he was jailed [in 1996] and Malone said they wouldn't. So why did they do it with Denham?"

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:10 PM

Conn. court: church can't be sued by ex-principal

CONNECTICUT
Seattle Post-Intelligencer

DAVE COLLINS, Associated Press
Updated 10:46 a.m., Monday, July 25, 2011

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — The Connecticut Supreme Court has ruled that a former Catholic school principal cannot sue the Archdiocese of Hartford on claims she was wrongly fired for not retaliating against a student who complained about sexual remarks allegedly made by a priest.
The high court unanimously overturned a lower court ruling on Monday, saying state courts cannot intrude on religious institutions' right to decide internal matters.

The plaintiff is Patricia Dayner, former principal of St. Hedwig's School in Naugatuck. She said her contract was not renewed for the 2005-06 school year because she refused to retaliate against an eighth-grader who complained that the Rev. Stephen Bzdyra (BIZ'-der-ah) used sexually explicit language in a classroom.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:07 PM

Vatican recalls ambassador after Irish PM's comments on sex abuse row

IRELAND
The Guardian (United Kingdom)

Henry McDonald in Dublin
guardian.co.uk, Monday 25 July 2011

Relations between the Irish government and the Roman Catholic church reached a historic nadir on Monday when the Vatican recalled its ambassador to Dublin, claiming "excessive reactions" in the Republic to the clerical child sex abuse crisis.

The Vatican confirmed that papal nuncio, archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, was returning to Rome for discussions over a damning report published earlier this month that had accused the Catholic hierarchy of undermining the Irish church's own policy of reporting child abuse to the authorities.

His recall followed an unprecedented and blistering attack by the Irish prime minister, Enda Kenny, on the Vatican's role in the alleged cover-up of abuse in the County Cork diocese of Cloyne.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:37 PM

While Trumpeting 'Female Priests,' NYT's Goodstein Commits More Faulty Reporting on Catholic Church

UNITED STATES
The Media Report

When reporting stories concerning the Catholic Church, the New York Times' Laurie Goodstein has had a very troublesome track record with the facts. (For starters: 1, 2.)

Unfortunately, Goodstein's record only gets worse after another faulty and misleading front-page article (Sat., 7/23/11).

In attempting to trumpet the case for "female priests" in the Catholic Church, Goodstein and the Times profile a small number of dissident and ignorant Catholics who seek "change" in the 2,000-year-old institution. And in doing so, Goodstein misleads her readers in a number of ways:

1. Goodstein gives false the impression that the loopy Fr. Roy Bourgeois, a well-known dissenter and advocate for "womenpriests," has yet to be excommunicated from the Catholic Church. In fact, Bourgeois openly acknowledged to the Catholic News Service in 2009 that he had already been excommunicated on November 24, 2008, and that his order confirmed his excommunication. (Even Laurie's friends at the Boston Globe have recognized this.)

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:30 PM

Feliciano Rejects Plea Deal, Opts for Trial

CHATHAM (NJ)
Patch

By Michael Daigle

Jose Feliciano, the custodian at St. Patrick Roman Catholic Church accused in the 2009 stabbing death of Rev. Edward Hinds, rejected Monday a plea offer and said in Morristown Superior Court that he preferred to have a trial.

In doing so, Feliciano traded a possible 30-year-to-life sentence for one that could reach 75 years to life if he is convicted of felony murder, plus additional years for underlying charges.

Mostly nodding, and then speaking so softly that Superior Court Judge Thomas V. Manahan at a pre-trial conference asked Feliciano to speak up so he could be heard on the recording of the hearing, Feliciano said “yes” to a series of questions regarding the charges posed by the judge.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:27 PM

Pope recalls ambassador to Ireland ...

IRELAND
Daily Mail (United Kingdom)

By Daily Mail Reporter

The Vatican has recalled its ambassador to Ireland after severe criticism by the Irish parliament of the Church's role in covering up child sex abuse.

Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, the Apostolic Nuncio of Ireland, was summoned back to Rome to brief Pope Benedict XVI on details of the Cloyne report which accused the Vatican of covering up for paedophile priests.

Vatican chiefs have been left reeling since Irish prime minister Enda Kenny last week unleased his anger at the Holy See over the findings of the report.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:18 PM

Former St Joseph's student tells of sex monster torment

AUSTRALIA
Geelong Advertiser

Aleks Devic | July 26th, 2011

A FORMER St Joseph's College student sexually abused by a Christian brother at the Geelong school yesterday told his tormentor he was a "monster" and "sadistic predator" who ruined his life.

Robert Charles Best remained outwardly unfazed as his victims looked him in the eye at the County Court and detailed the impact of his "cruel" and "abhorrent" conduct at three schools in Geelong, Ballarat and Box Hill between the 1960s and 1980s.

Best hand-picked the victims he deemed most vulnerable, including a disabled boy, and inflicted sex acts upon them at school camps, swimming lessons, on the football field, in classrooms and his office.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:15 PM

Vatican recalls Ireland's apostolic nuncio for "consultations"

IRELAND
Rome Reports

[video]

Just days after Ireland's Prime Minister openly criticized the Vatican for its handling of sex abuse cases, the Vatican announced it's recalling Ireland's nuncio back to Rome for "consultations."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:12 PM

Video of Irish Leader’s Speech Attacking the Vatican

IRELAND
The New York Times

[video]

By ROBERT MACKEY

As my colleague Rachel Donadio reports, “the Vatican has recalled its ambassador to Ireland following the release of an Irish government report that the Vatican had discouraged efforts by bishops to report cases of sex abuse to the police.”

The report, released on July 13, found that clergy leaders in the rural Irish diocese of Cloyne did not act on complaints against 19 priests from 1996 to 2009. It also concluded that the Vatican had encouraged bishops to ignore child-protection guidelines that included the “mandatory reporting” of abuse to civil authorities. (The Times has posted the complete text of the report online.)

A brief Vatican statement explaining the decision to recall its ambassador noted, “in particular, the reactions that have followed” the release of the report.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:07 PM

What does the Papal Nuncio's recall mean?

IRELAND
BBC News

By Conor Spackman
BBC News

The Vatican's recall of its special envoy to Ireland has been described as almost unprecedented over the past century.

Experts say only anti-religious tumult has previously sparked a similar move, for example the return to Rome of the ambassador to China following that country's forced conversion to communism.

Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza's departure from Dublin may not be a flight from violent persecution but it is a response to the most significant political pressure on the Catholic church since the formation of the state.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:02 PM

Vatican recalls ambassador to Ireland amid child abuse scandal

IRELAND
Deutsche Welle

As tensions rise in Ireland over the Vatican's handling of a sex abuse situation there, the Holy See has recalled its ambassador to Dublin for talks on how to address the charges.

The Vatican took the rarely-seen step of recalling its ambassador in Ireland amid rising tensions with the Irish parliament over the church's role a child sex abuse cover-up.

Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, the Apostolic Nuncio of Ireland, was asked to report to the Vatican for consultations.

Ireland has grown increasingly upset with how the Catholic Church dealt with the sex abuse scandal in the country, saying the church did not do enough to address the claims of abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:59 PM

Vatican Recalls Its Ambassador to Ireland

IRELAND
Voice of America

[BishopAccountability.org: See also our page providing links to the Cloyne report, the 1996 policy that the report says was not supported by the Vatican, and other relevant materials.]

The Vatican has recalled its ambassador to Ireland, following the Irish parliament's severe criticism of the Roman Catholic Church's role in covering up child sex abuse.

A Vatican spokesman said Monday that Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza had been recalled from Dublin for consultations. The highly unusual step came after Ireland's parliament accused church officials of covering up the sexual abuse of children and allowing priests to ignore mandatory reporting guidelines.

Irish Foreign Minister Eamon Gilmore summoned Leanza two weeks ago to demand an official explanation from the Vatican. The Vatican has said it will issue a response at the “opportune time” but has not done so yet.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:50 PM

Braxton battles on against abuse suit

BELLEVILLE (IL)
National Catholic Reporter

Jul. 25, 2011
By Robert McClory

Bishop Edward Braxton took a big chance when he decided to let his diocese of Belleville, Ill., go to trial on charges of fraud and deceit regarding its mishandling of a serial, sex-abuser priest. He could have opted for an out-of-court settlement but the trial option apparently seemed to him a relatively safe gamble at the time.

After all, the plaintiff was a 47-year-old man, James Wisniewski, whose abuse had occurred 35 years before. This wasn’t a case of repressed and recovered memory. Wisniewski admitted he was always aware of the abuse he endured at the hands of Fr. Raymond Kownacki, but had spoken to nobody about it until 2002, when he filed suit against the diocese.

Surely, the statute of limitations alone would doom the plaintiff’s case, Braxton may have reasoned.

But Braxton lost his bet big time in August 2008 when a jury found the diocese guilty of “fraudulent concealment” and awarded Wisniewski $2.4 million in compensatory damages and an unexpected $2.6 million in punitive damages.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:46 PM

Vatican recalls envoy to Ireland

IRELAND
The Irish Times

The Vatican has recalled its envoy to Ireland following Taoiseach Enda Kenny's trenchant criticism of the Holy See’s role in covering up cases of clerical child sex abuse.

Deputy Vatican spokesman Father Ciro Benedettini said Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, the Apostolic Nuncio of Ireland, had been recalled from Dublin for consultations in the wake of the Cloyne report.

Fr Benedettini confirmed Dr Leanza had already arrived in Rome.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:16 AM

In aftermath of Irish report on abuse, Vatican recalls nuncio

VATICAN CITY
Catholic News Service

By Cindy Wooden
Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- In an exceptional move, the Vatican recalled its nuncio to Ireland so that he could participate in meetings aimed at drafting the Vatican's formal response to an Irish government report on clerical sex abuse.

Following the publication July 13 of the so-called Cloyne Report "and, particularly, after the reactions that followed, the secretary of state has recalled the apostolic nuncio in Ireland, Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, for consultations," the Vatican said in a statement July 25.

Passionist Father Ciro Benedettini, vice director of the Vatican press office, said recalling the nuncio "denotes the seriousness of the situation, the desire of the Holy See to face it with objectivity and determination, as well as a certain note of surprise and disappointment over some excessive reactions" to the report and its accusations against the Vatican.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:01 AM

Cloyne Report Reveals Failure in Ireland

IRELAND
America Magazine

An investigation of the Diocese of Cloyne, in Ireland, by a government judicial panel suggests a continuing failure of the Irish church to implement effectively its own child protection procedures. Much of the blame in the Cloyne Report was placed on Bishop John Magee who “took little or no active interest in the management of clerical child sex abuse until 2008.” Investigators say Bishop Magee lied to the government about turning over cases to civil authorities and was even involved himself in inappropriate behavior with a young seminarian.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:57 AM

Vatican recalls Papal Nuncio to Ireland -- PR suicide 101

IRELAND
Irish Central

by Daniel O'Carroll

The shocking decision from the Vatican to recall its accredited diplomatic representative to Ireland, 'Papal Nuncio' Giuseppe Lenza, is a decision which will only worsen the impact of the recent Cloyne Report fallout for the already badly damaged institution, and tarnish further their already sullied reputation in the eyes of its faithful.

The Vatican has now chosen to shun any possible opportunity to enter into dialogue over the serious allegations contained in the document, which were numerous, serious, and shocking, and shown that it prefers the sort of 'elitism' that Enda Kenny hit out at in the Dail -- now only available, apparently, in the sheltered haven of Rome -- to functioning like a normal sovereign authority and entering into bilateral discussions and owning up to what it did wrong.

The fact that the Vatican's withdrawal of its diplomat springs directly as a result of Kenny's milestone speech criticising it in the Dail - lauded from all corners and hailed as one of the greatest and most significant speeches in the history of the Irish state - is also childish in the extreme.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:54 AM

Vatican recalls ambassador to Ireland over child abuse report

IRELAND
The Telegraph (United Kingdom)

The Vatican was forced to recall its ambassador to Ireland on Monday after it was challenged to explain its role in covering up sex offences by priests as recently as 2005.

By Damien McElroy, Foreign Affairs Correspondent

Enda Kenny, the prime minister, last week issued forthright and personal criticism of Pope Benedict XVI following publication of the Cloyne report into cases of abuse in one Roman Catholic diocese.

Dublin has pressed the Vatican for a swift response to charges that its bishops suppressed or took no interest in reports of sexual abuse. The report, Mr Kenny said "excavates the dysfunction, the disconnection, the elitism that dominates the Vatican today".

Having initially called for an "objective" debate on the report, the Vatican on Monday moved to address Irish anger by recalling Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, the Papal Nuncio.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:51 AM

Brother Best victims tell of sex abuse trauma

AUSTRALIA
The Courier

‘‘A SADISTIC predator’’ is how a victim has described the Christian Brother who abused him along with multiple other boys at schools in three cities, including Ballarat, between 1969 and 1988.

Several of Robert Charles Best’s victims are also pursuing civil action against him for the pain and suffering he has caused and also plan to issue common law writs against organisations including the church and the schools involved.

In a victim impact statement read to the County Court yesterday, one man, now in his 30s, accused the Catholic Church of being complicit in the disgraced priest’s crimes.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:45 AM

Vaticaan roept nuntius in Ierland terug

VATICAANSTAD
De Telegraf (Nederland)

VATICAANSTAD - Het Vaticaan heeft de nuntius (diplomatieke vertegenwoordiger) in Ierland voor overleg teruggeroepen. Dat heeft Radio Vaticana maandag gemeld

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:42 AM

Vatican recalls envoy to Ireland amid uproar

VATICAN CITY
Al Jazeera

The Vatican has recalled its ambassador to Ireland following a report on the Catholic Church's handling of child abuse by priests that sparked government outrage.

Father Ciro Benedettini, a Vatican spokesman, said on Monday that Giuseppe Leanza, the archbishop and apostolic nuncio of Ireland, had been ordered to return from Dublin for consultations.

The Vatican acknowledged that the recall of an ambassador was a measure rarely adopted by the Holy See, underlining the "seriousness of the situation".

The principal aim was for direct discussions to prepare the Holy See's official response but the measure "does not exclude some degree of surprise and disappointment at certain excessive reactions", Benedettini told reporters.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:31 AM

Diocese, Parishioners Tussle over St. Adelbert's

NEW YORK
WNED

Mike Desmond (2011-07-25)

BUFFALO (WNED) - Saint Adelbert's Basilica is still slated to lose its shared priest in September but parishioners aren't giving up yet.

Yesterday, they held a polka Mass and reception as part of its 125th anniversary celebration and distributed lawn signs proclaiming "Save Saint Adelbert's."

"It's more than just a church. It's a family," said church trustee Lori DiNero.

"We want our family to keep going and keep continuing and thriving like it is now."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:43 AM

Pope recalls ambassador to Ireland after PM damns Vatican for covering up 'the rape and tortur

IRELAND
Daily Mail (United Kingdom)

By DAILY MAIL REPORTER

The Vatican has recalled its ambassador to Ireland after severe criticism by the Irish parliament of the Church's role in covering up child sex abuse.

Deputy Vatican spokesman Father Ciro Benedettini said Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, the Apostolic Nuncio of Ireland, had been recalled from Dublin for consultations.

The move follows accusations by Irish lawmakers that Catholic bishops flouted Irish law and were encouraged not to tell police about suspected paedophile priests.

Maurice Hayes: We can't let our real problems get lost in winning minor battles

IRELAND
Irish Independent

Monday July 25 2011
IT has been a good week for Enda Kenny and the Government: a roar of defiance at the Vatican, and, more substantially, the achievement of better terms from Brussels.

Both, in their different ways, are significant, but both represent the less important elements of the struggle of which they are a part.

A skirmish on the one hand, a battle on the other, may give immediate satisfaction and short-term relief, but neither means that a war has been won -- and they may well divert attention and energy from the pursuit of the more important prizes.

The Taoiseach's challenge to the Vatican had many of the characteristics of the All Blacks' pre-match haka: it irritates the opposition, it is widely applauded by supporters on the terraces, while others find it somewhat embarrassing and not a little over the top.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:26 AM

APOSTOLIC NUNCIO IN IRELAND RECALLED FOR CONSULTATIONS

VATICAN CITY
Vatican Information Service

VATICAN CITY, 25 JUL 2011 (VIS) - The Holy See Press Office issued the following declaration at midday today:

"Following the release on 13 July of the report by the Irish government commission of enquiry into allegations of abuse of minors by clergy in the diocese of Cloyne (the Cloyne Report), and in particular in the wake of the subsequent reactions, Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, apostolic nuncio in Ireland, has been recalled to Rome for consultations with the Secretariat of State".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:19 AM

Papal Nuncio recalled to Vatican

IRELAND
The Journal

Updated 13.34pm
THE PAPAL NUNCIO, the representative of the Pope in Ireland, has been recalled to the Vatican.

Vatican Radio reports that Giuseppe Leanza has been recalled. This follows criticism of the Vatican by the authors of the report into the Catholic Church’s handling of clerical sex abuse in the Cloyne diocese. Vatican Radio says that Leanza is to attend “consultations” in the Vatican to discuss the findings of the Cloyne report.

Fr Ciro Benedettini, vice-director of the Vatican Press Office, released further information just before lunchtime to say that the recall was “intended primarily” to allow for consultation with those working on the ground in Ireland “in order to prepare the official answer of the Holy See to the Irish Government” on the Cloyne report. He continued:

The recalling of the Nuncio, a measure rarely used by the Holy See, denotes the seriousness of the situation, and the desire of the Holy See to deal with it (with) objectivity and with determination, as well as a certain note of surprise and regret regarding some excessive reactions.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:15 AM

Vatican recalls envoy to Ireland after child abuse report

VATICAN CITY
Radio Netherlands

The Vatican said Monday it was recalling its representative in Ireland following a damning report on the Catholic Church's handling of cases of child abuse by priests that has sparked widespread anger.

"Apostolic Nuncio Giuseppe Leanza has been recalled for consultations" after the publication of the judicial report into the abuses in the diocese of Cloyne "and in particular due to the reactions to it," the Vatican said in a statement.

The publication of the Cloyne Report earlier this month triggered a blistering attack on the Vatican by Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny that was widely hailed.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:12 AM

Papal Nuncio recalled over abuse scandal

IRELAND
UTV

The Pope’s ambassador in Ireland has been recalled in the wake of an inquiry into clerical sex abuse within the Catholic Church.

The recent Cloyne report was highly critical of the Church's handling of child abuse claims in the Co Cork diocese.

It revealed that allegations of abuse by priests had been covered up, as recently as 2009.

Papal Nuncio Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, the Pope's envoy in Ireland, has been under severe pressure after the Irish Taoiseach Enda Kenny accused the Catholic Church of putting its reputation above the protection of children in an unprecedented speech in the Dáil.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:10 AM

Vatican hits out at 'excessive reactions' after Cloyne Report

VATICAN CITY
Breaking News

The Vatican has today expressed its "surprise and disappointment" at some responses to the Cloyne Report into clerical sex abuse.

The comment will be seen by many as a reference to Taoiseach Enda Kenny's recent Dáil speech, during which he condemned "the dysfunction, the disconnection, the elitism that dominates the Vatican today".

Vice-director of the Vatican press office, Father Ciro Benedettini, this afternoon confirmed that Papal Nuncio Archbishop Leanza has already arrived in Rome after being recalled for "consultations" on the Cloyne report.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:07 AM

Video: Magee brother says bishop is 'an easy target' in abuse furore

IRELAND
Irish Independent

By David Forsythe
Monday July 25 2011

A BROTHER of John Magee has said the former Bishop of Cloyne is an "easy target" for blame following the damning report into sex abuse in the diocese.

Bishop Magee, who was singled out in the report for failing to follow church rules on reporting clerical sex abuse, has been missing since it was published, and is believed to be overseas.

His older brother -- who refused to give his first name yesterday -- is acting as caretaker of the parochial house in Mitchelstown, Co Cork, where Bishop Magee has lived until recently.

"He's not here at the moment but if he was I'm sure he would talk to you, but the man simply is not here at the moment," he told the Irish Independent.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:05 AM

Brother claims Bishop Magee is an easy target after Cloyne Report

IRELAND
Irish Central

By CATHAL DERVAN, IrishCentral.com Staff Writer

Published Monday, July 25, 2011

A brother of the disgraced former Archbishop of Cloyne has claimed that Dr John Magee is an easy target for blame after the damning report into clerical sex abuse in the Cork diocese.

The Irish Independent carries a lengthy interview with the Bishop’s brother in Monday’s edition.

The elderly man, who refused to give his name to the paper, is the caretaker of the parochial house in the North Cork town of Mitchelstown where Bishop Magee lived until the publication of the Cloyne Report.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:02 AM

Diplomatic row ensues between Dublin and Vatican over Cloyne report on sexual abuse

IRELAND
Spero News

By Martin Barillas

According to Vatican Radio, the Holy See has recalled its diplomatic representative to the Irish Republic following unprecedented official criticism of the Church. Monsignor Giuseppe Leanza, papal nuncio to Dublin, was called to consultations in Rome following severe criticism on the part of Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny over the Church's reponse to accusations of child abuse on the part of priests and other religious. Kenny accused the Church of putting its own reputation ahead of the welfare of children.

The so-called Cloyne Report detailed instances of abuse by clerics and female religious. The Catholic Diocese of Cloyne investigated how allegations against 19 priests were dealt with between 1996 and 2009. Published on July 13, the report found that Bishop John Magee falsely told the Irish government he was reporting all abuse allegations to authorities. Magee is himself one of the priests mentioned in the report. Magee was scored by the report over his handling of sexual abuse allegations, as well as an encounter he had with a 17-year-old postulant to the priesthood. Magee resigned his post in 2009. Both the Catholic Church and Bishop Magee have apologized. The leader of Ireland's Catholics, Cardinal Sean Brady, said it was another "dark day in the history of the response of church leaders to the cry of children abused by church personnel." "The findings of this report confirm that grave errors of judgement were made and serious failures of leadership occurred," he said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:58 AM

Vatican recalls Ireland envoy over child abuse report

IRELAND
ABC News (Australia)

The Vatican says it is recalling its representative in Ireland following a damning report on the Catholic Church's handling of cases of child abuse by priests that sparked widespread anger.

The publication of the Cloyne Report earlier this month triggered a blistering attack on the Vatican by Irish prime minister Enda Kenny that was widely hailed.

"Apostolic Nuncio Giuseppe Leanza has been recalled for consultations" after the publication of the judicial report into the abuses in the diocese of Cloyne "and in particular due to the reactions to it," the Vatican said in a statement.

In a debate in the lower house of parliament in predominantly Catholic Ireland, Mr Kenny said the Church's inability to deal with the cases showed a culture of "dysfunction, disconnection, elitism and narcissism" at the Vatican.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:56 AM

Vatican slams probe abuse reactions

IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

Monday, 25 July 2011

The Vatican has branded as "excessive" some reactions to a damning clerical child abuse inquiry after recalling the Pope's ambassador to Ireland.

Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, Papal Nuncio in Dublin, has already returned to Rome in a rare move ordered by the Holy See.

The recall comes just days after an unprecedented attack by Taoiseach Enda Kenny on the Catholic Church hierarchy.

Vice-director of the Vatican press office Father Ciro Benedettini said it should be seen as a measure of the gravity of the fall-out over Ireland's response to the Cloyne report into the mishandling of paedophile priest allegations.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:53 AM

Vatican Recalls Irish Ambassador

VATICAN CITY
Lez Get Real

By LGR News Staff
The Vatican has recalled its envoy to Ireland following accusations that the Vatican stymied efforts by Catholic bishops to report clerical sex abuse cases to Irish authorities.

A statement released this morning on the Vatican Web site and Vatican Radio , says that Leanza has now been recalled to Rome for “consultations.”
The press release states :

“Following the publication on 13 July, of the Irish government’s Commission of Inquiry Report into allegations of abuse of minors by clergy of the diocese of Cloyne, otherwise known as the ‘Cloyne Report’ and, in particular, the reactions that have followed, the Secretary of State has recalled the Apostolic Nuncio to Ireland, HE Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza for consultations”.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:38 AM

Vatican Recalls Irish Ambassador Amid Allegations on Sex-Abuse Reporting

IRELAND
Bloomberg

By Andrew Davis - Jul 25, 2011

The Vatican recalled its ambassador to Ireland after Prime Minister Enda Kenny accused the hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church of attempting to hinder a probe into allegations of child sex-abuse by priests.

After the publication of the so-called Cloyne report by the Irish government on July 13 “and in particular, given the reactions that followed it, the secretary of state has recalled the Papal Nuncio in Ireland, Giuseppe Leanza, for consultation,” the Vatican said in a statement on its website today.

The Irish government had asked for a quick response from the Vatican on the church’s handling of allegations against 33 clerics of sexual abuse of children in the Cloyne diocese in southern Ireland between 1996 and 2009. Kenny said on July 20 the report “exposes an attempt by the Holy See to frustrate” an investigation of sex crimes by Roman Catholic clergy.

The official report shows the “elitism, the narcissism that dominate the culture of the Vatican to this day,” Kenny told parliament in Dublin.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:35 AM

Victims of predator sex priest face him in court

AUSTRALIA
Herald Sun

Norrie Ross From: Herald Sun July 25, 2011

VICTIMS of a predator priest faced their abuser today to tell him how his sick serial sex attacks robbed them of their innocence, destroyed their childhood and dogged their adulthood.

"I stay up at night with the bastard on my mind and his hands on my body,'' a victim known as AB told the County Court.

Christian Brother Robert Charles Best, 70, appeared for a pre-sentence plea hearing for 21 offences against eight victims committed between 1969 and 1988 at Catholic schools in Ballarat, Geelong and Box Hill.

Victim AB said he was a "plaything'' for the Christian Brothers and said the Catholic Church's dogged defence of Best rubbed salt into his wounds.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:30 AM

Papal Nuncio recalled to Rome over Cloyne

IRELAND
Irish Independent

By Independent.ie Reporters
Monday July 25 2011

The Vatican has recalled its representative in Dublin in response to the damning report on the Catholic Church's handling of cases of child abuse by priests, Vatican Radio has reported.

Papal Nuncio Giuseppe Leanza is being called back to Rome for consultations over the Cloyne Report, which was published earlier this month.

Taoiseach Enda Kenny last week strongly criticised the Vatican for what he said was an attempt to frustrate the Cloyne inquiry, accusing it of downplaying the rape of children to protect its power and reputation.

Never before has a Taoiseach used such language in criticising the Catholic Church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:25 AM

Vatican Recalls Ambassador to Ireland Over Abuse Report

VATICAN CITY
The New York Times

By RACHEL DONADIO
Published: July 25, 2011

[See also our page providing links to the Cloyne report, the 1996 policy that the report says was not supported by the Vatican, and other relevant materials.]

ROME — In a deepening standoff, the Vatican has recalled its ambassador to Ireland following the release of an Irish government report that the Vatican had discouraged efforts by bishops to report cases of sex abuse to the police, the Holy See said Monday.

The Vatican’s decision to recall Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza follows the release on July 13 of the Cloyne Report, as it is known, which found that clergy in the rural Irish diocese of Cloyne did not act on complaints against 19 priests from 1996 to as recently as 2009. More damningly, it said that the Vatican had encouraged bishops to ignore child-protection guidelines adopted by Irish bishops in 1996 that included “mandatory reporting” of abuse to civil authorities.

A spokesman for the Vatican said that recalling a nunzio, the church’s equivalent of an ambassador, was a rare move that “denoted the seriousness of the situation,” as well the Holy See’s “will to deal with it with objectivity and determination.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:22 AM

Vatican recalls Irish ambassador

IRELAND
The Kerryman

Monday July 25 2011
The Vatican has recalled its ambassador to Ireland just days after an unprecedented attack by Taoiseach Enda Kenny on the Catholic Church hierarchy over clerical child sex abuse.

Vatican Radio reported that papal ambassador Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza has been recalled to Rome.

Two weeks ago, Foreign Affairs Minister Eamon Gilmore ordered Archbishop Leanza to get answers from the Vatican on damning allegations that it allowed priests to ignore mandatory reporting guidelines on suspected paedophiles.

The Pope's envoy was told to take a message to the Holy See that the Irish Government believes its conduct in clerical child abuse inquiries has been disgraceful and unacceptable.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:20 AM

Vatican recalls Ireland's Papal Nuncio

IRELAND
Irish Examiner

Monday, July 25, 2011

The Papal Nuncio has been recalled to Rome in the wake of the publication of the Cloyne report.

The report accused the Vatican of being "entirely unhelpful" to Irish bishops in their attempts to put proper child safeguarding procedures in place.

Taoiseach Enda Kenny made a strong speech in the Dáil last week condemning the response of the Vatican to the mismanagement and the implementation of child safety guidelines by Cloyne clerical authorities.

The Taoiseach said last night he had received 2,500 messages of support from around the world after his verbal attack on the Vatican.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:17 AM

Vatican recalls Irish papal envoy after Cloyne report

IRELAND
BBC News

The Vatican has recalled its special envoy in Ireland after a damning report on the Catholic Church's handling of child abuse by priests.

Vatican radio has reported that Papal Nuncio Giuseppe Leanza is being called back to Rome to discuss the impact of the recent Cloyne Report.

It showed how allegations of sex abuse by priests in Cork had been covered up.

The report led to angry condemnation of the Vatican by Prime Minister Enda Kenny in the Irish Parliament.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:09 AM

Vatican recalls envoy to Ireland amid abuse uproar

VATICAN CITY
The Associated Press

By VICTOR SIMPSON, Associated Press

VATICAN CITY (AP) — The Vatican made the rare move of recalling its ambassador to Ireland on Monday following accusations that the Holy See sabotaged efforts by Catholic bishops to report clerical sex abuse cases to police.

Foreign Minister Eamon Gilmore had summoned papal ambassador Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza two weeks ago and demanded an official response from the Vatican. The Vatican has said it will issue one at the "opportune time" but has not done so yet.

The Vatican acknowledged that the recall of an ambsssador was a measure rarely adopted by the Holy See, underlining the "seriousness of the situation."

The principal aim was for direct consultations to prepare the Holy See's official response but the measure "does not exclude some degree of surprise and disappointment at certain excessive reactions," said deputy spokesman the Rev. Ciro Benedettini, answering questions from reporters.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:06 AM

Vatican recalls envoy to Ireland

IRELAND
The Irish Times

The Vatican has recalled its envoy to Ireland following Taoiseach Enda Kenny's trenchant criticism of the Holy See’s role in covering up cases of clerical child sex abuse.

Deputy Vatican spokesman Father Ciro Benedettini said Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, the Apostolic Nuncio of Ireland, had been recalled from Dublin for consultations in the wake of the Cloyne report.

The office of the papal nunciature in Dublin could not be contacted for comment.

In language never used by an Irish leader, Mr Kenny last week accused the Vatican of downplaying the rape and torture of children in order to uphold its own power and reputation.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:03 AM

Vatican recalls envoy to Ireland after child abuse report

VATICAN CITY
AFP

VATICAN CITY — The Vatican has recalled its representative in Ireland following a damning report on the Catholic Church's handling of cases of child abuse by priests, Vatican radio reported on Monday.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:50 AM

Hugh Dallas settles 'Pope e-mail' case against SFA

SCOTLAND
BBC News

A referees chief who was sacked for sending a joke e-mail about the Pope and child abuse has settled with the Scottish Football Association (SFA).

Hugh Dallas was planning to sue the SFA for unfair dismissal at an employment tribunal in Glasgow this week.

The hearing was expected to last five days but officials confirmed that both parties had reached agreement.

Mr Dallas, 53, and four other SFA staff were sacked over the email. Three have since been given their jobs back.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:47 AM

Shock move as Pope Benedict recalls the papal nuncio from Ireland

IRELAND
Irish Central

By CATHAL DERVAN, IrishCentral.com Staff Writer

Published Monday, July 25, 2011

In a shock move the Vatican has recalled its Papal Nuncio Giuseppe Leanza, from Ireland after blistering criticism of its role in the Cloyne diocese cover up of sex abuse made by Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny.

The unprecedented move, announced by Vatican radio, ups the stakes in an unheard of stand- off between Irish civil authorities and the Vatican over the charge that the Vatican was complicit in the cover up of child rape in the Cloyne diocese.

The Vatican stated that Leanza was returning for discussions over the Cloyne report and gave no date as to when he would return. The Vatican diplomat in Ireland has always been the dean of the diplomatic corps, there, an acknowledgement of his importance.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:44 AM

Women To Be Paid Five Million Each in Compensation

ICELAND
Iceland Review

The three women who accused former bishop Ólafur Skúlason of sexual offenses will receive compensation of five million each from the National Church of Iceland; the current bishop of Iceland, Karl Sveinbjörnsson, signed the agreement on behalf of the church.

The church will pay the expenses that Sigrún Pálína Ingvarsdóttir has accrued throughout the years in her battle with the church; she was the first to accuse former bishop Ólafur Skúlason in 1996.

The agreement stating that the case has now been resolved was signed on Friday at Grensáskirkja church in Reykjavík, ruv.is reports.

“The emotional scars the years of battle have left cannot be repaired with any amount of money,” Sigrún Pálína Ingvarsdóttir told ruv.is last Thursday.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:41 AM

'He's a monster': victims vent fury at paedophile Christian Brother teacher

AUSTRALIA
The Age

Andrea Petrie
July 25, 2011

Victims of a Christian Brother who sexually abused 11 boys in his care at three Victorian schools, have spoken about the impact of the sexual assaults on their lives at his pre-sentence plea hearing.

Several of his victims are also pursuing civil action against him for the pain and suffering he has caused and also plan to issue common law writs against organisations including the church and the schools involved.

In a victim impact statement read to the County Court yesterday, one man, now in his 30s, also accused the Catholic Church of being complicit in the disgraced priest's crimes, which occurred between 1969 and 1988.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:38 AM

Seating jury first of many challenges in polygamist sect leader’s Texas sexual

SAN ANGELO (TX)
Washington Post

By Associated Press, Updated: Monday, July 25

SAN ANGELO, Texas — His followers call him a prophet who is God’s spokesman on Earth. Prosecutors say he’s a bigamist who sexually assaulted two underage girls he duped into “spiritual marriages.”

Whether he’s a holy man or a criminal, it’s hard to find many people who don’t have an opinion on Warren Jeffs in this remote, cotton-growing corner of West Texas oil and gas country.

That will be the key challenge when jury selection begins Monday in the case of the 55-year-old ecclesiastical head of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, an offshoot of the Mormon church that believes polygamy brings exaltation in heaven — and should be protected under U.S. religious freedoms.

“I would imagine that they would want to transfer it to the moon where you might have a chance that no one would have heard of it,” said Patrick Metze, a criminal law professor at Texas Tech University.

Christian Brother 'a sadistic predator'

AUSTRALIA
Sydney Morning Herald

AAP

A Christian Brother who pleaded guilty to horrendous, serial sex offences against boys he taught has been labelled a "mentally deranged sadist" and the Catholic Church accused of complicity in his crimes.

In an emotionally-charged pre-sentence hearing, victims of Robert Charles Best, 70, told a Melbourne court on Monday how he had destroyed their lives, their self worth and their families.

"He is a mentally deranged sadist .... a f***ing pervert and his Christianity doesn't mean a thing," one of his victims said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:33 AM

Papal Nuncio recalled to Rome for Cloyne talks

IRELAND
RTE News

The Vatican Press Office has confirmed that the Holy See has recalled its ambassador to Ireland following accusations by the Government that it had undermined child protection efforts by the Catholic hierarchy.

Deputy Vatican spokesman Father Ciro Benedettini said Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, the Apostolic Nuncio of Ireland, had been recalled from Dublin for consultations.

'The decision to recall the Papal Nuncio to the Vatican for consultations is a matter for the Holy See. The Government is awaiting the response of the Holy See to the recent report into the Catholic Diocese of Cloyne and it is to be expected that the Vatican would wish to consult in depth with the Nuncio on its response,' Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs Eamon Gilmore said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:31 AM

Bruce Arnold: So many wasted years but line has finally been drawn on abuse

IRELAND
Irish Independent

Monday July 25 2011
Enda Kenny's speech last Wednesday has been rightly praised for its dramatic challenges to the Pope and the Vatican over the hypocrisy of the Holy See in respect of child abuse in Ireland. Long overdue, it is no less commendable for that. The speech has also been dealt with, almost exclusively, in the context of Ireland's relationship with the Papacy on this issue.

The speech, however, represented, in addition, a breathtaking rearrangement of domestic politics. It is wrong to see it as belated. This administration, led by Mr Kenny, has been swift to define a new child abuse policy and a new set of aims.

In dealing with this aspect -- which in the long run will prove of greater importance than battling with the Vatican -- I am not playing down the importance of the changed and, one hopes, irreversible new relationship between Ireland and Rome. But in fairness to many politicians over the past decade, we have witnessed, in that period, two distinct approaches.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:28 AM

Texas Town Braces for Polygamist Leader's Trial

TEXAS
ABC News

[with video]

By WILL WEISSERT Associated Press
SAN ANGELO, Texas July 25, 2011 (AP)

His followers call him a prophet who is God's spokesman on Earth. Prosecutors say he's a bigamist who sexually assaulted two underage girls he duped into "spiritual marriages."

Whether he's a holy man or a criminal, it's hard to find many people who don't have an opinion on Warren Jeffs in this remote, cotton-growing corner of West Texas oil and gas country.

That will be the key challenge when jury selection begins Monday in the case of the 55-year-old ecclesiastical head of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, an offshoot of the Mormon church that believes polygamy brings exaltation in heaven — and should be protected under U.S. religious freedoms.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:26 AM

Vatican recalls Irish ambassador

IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

Monday, 25 July 2011

The Vatican has recalled its ambassador to Ireland just days after an unprecedented attack by Taoiseach Enda Kenny on the Catholic church hierarchy over clerical child sex abuse.

Vatican Radio reported that papal ambassador Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza has been recalled to Rome.

Two weeks ago, Foreign Affairs Minister Eamon Gilmore ordered Archbishop Leanza to get answers from the Vatican on damning allegations that it allowed priests to ignore mandatory reporting guidelines on suspected paedophiles.

The Pope's envoy was told to take a message to the Holy See that the Irish Government believes its conduct in clerical child abuse inquiries has been disgraceful and unacceptable.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:21 AM

DICHIARAZIONE DELLA SALA STAMPA DELLA SANTA SEDE

CITTA DEL VATICANO
Bolletino

In seguito alla pubblicazione, il 13 luglio scorso, del Rapporto della Commissione d’Inchiesta del Governo irlandese circa le accuse di abusi di minori da parte del clero della Diocesi di Cloyne, altrimenti conosciuto come Cloyne Report, e, in particolare, alle reazioni che ne sono seguite, la Segreteria di Stato ha richiamato per consultazioni il Nunzio Apostolico in Irlanda, S.E. Mons. Giuseppe Leanza.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:19 AM

Cloyne Report: recalling of Nuncio denotes seriousness of situation

VATICAN CITY
Vatican Radio

On Monday the Vatican Press Office released a statement announcing that the Apostolic Nuncio to Ireland, Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, has been recalled to Rome for consultations.

The press release states : “Following the publication on 13 July, of the Irish government’s Commission of Inquiry Report into allegations of abuse of minors by clergy of the diocese of Cloyne, otherwise known as the ‘Cloyne Report’ and, in particular, the reactions that have followed, the Secretary of State has recalled the Apostolic Nuncio to Ireland, HE Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza for consultations”.

In response to journalists questions, Fr. Ciro Benedettini, vice director of the Vatican Press Office outlined the following points:

- The recalling of the Nuncio is intended primarily to allow the Secretary of State and other Dicasteries involved to consult with those working on the ground in order to prepare the official answer of the Holy See to the Irish Government following the Cloyne Report.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:16 AM

Vatican recalls Irish ambassador over child sex abuse row

IRELAND
The Guardian (United Kingdom)

Henry McDonald
guardian.co.uk, Monday 25 July 2011

The Vatican has recalled its ambassador to Ireland after the publication of a devastating report criticising the church's handling of clerical sex abuse in county Cork.

Vatican Radio said the papal nuncio, Giuseppe Leanza, was being called back to Rome for consultations over the Cloyne report, which accused the church authorities, right up to the Vatican itself, of frustrating attempts by Irish police to investigate numerous complaints against priests relating to child sexual abuse.

The Irish prime minister, Enda Kenny, launched a blistering attack last week on the Vatican for what he said was an attempt to frustrate the Cloyne inquiry. He accused the Vatican of downplaying the rape of children in order to protect its power and reputation.

The Taoiseach said that since making that speech, he had been inundated with thousands of messages ofsupport. His Fine Gael party has traditionally been one of the two main parties protective of the power and privilege of the Catholic church in Ireland.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:14 AM

Child protection aims put doctors in dilemma

IRELAND
Irish Independent

Monday July 25 2011
Following the recent terrible revelations concerning child sexual abuse in the Cloyne diocese, showing a callous and reckless disregard for children who were being violated, and also for the Church's own guidelines on protecting children, there is incredulity and dismay among the public.

This includes the ordinary men and women of Ireland, Catholics in the pews and the priests of that diocese and further afield. Alan Shatter, Minister for Justice, and Francis Fitzgerald, Minister for Children, promptly indicated plans to introduce a "withholding information on crimes against children and vulnerable adults act" and to "put children first" on a statutory setting.

These bills will have an obvious impact on psychiatrists, in particular child psychiatrists, but also on the work of adult psychiatrists like myself.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:11 AM

Abuse-advocacy organization dismayed by new archbishop

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Daily Times

By FRANK OTTO
newsroom@delcotimes.com

PHILADELPHIA — Members of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, or SNAP, made it clear they are not happy with the pope’s selection of Archbishop Charles J. Chaput as the Archdiocese of Philadelphia’s new archbishop.

“After years of covering up abuse and protecting predator priests, we were pleased to see that Cardinal Rigali was finally resigning from the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. However, we could not be more displeased that his successor will be Charles J. Chaput, longtime archbishop of the Archdiocese in Denver,” Johanna Berrigan of Philadelphia SNAP stated in a release.

Along with other claims, SNAP accused Chaput of covering up and downplaying sexual abuse in Denver.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:09 AM

Vatican recalls Ireland envoy after abuse rebuke

VATICAN CITY
Reuters

By Philip Pullella
VATICAN CITY | Mon Jul 25, 2011

(Reuters) - The Vatican has recalled its ambassador in Ireland following severe criticism by the Irish parliament of the Church's role in covering up child sex abuse, a spokesman said on Monday.

Deputy Vatican spokesman Father Ciro Benedettini said Archbishop Giuseppe Leanza, the Apostolic Nuncio of Ireland, had been recalled from Dublin for consultations.

The move follows last week's unprecedented rebuke of the Holy See by the Irish parliament in the wake of a report which accused Church authorities of covering up the sexual abuse of children by priests as recently as 2009.

The highly unusual step by the Vatican reflects the heightened tensions over the issue following a wave of criticism in Ireland over its role in the child abuse scandal.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:05 AM

Catholic Church Denies Legal Responsibility For Sexual Abuse

UNITED KINGDOM
Care2

Victims of sexual abuse by priests will no longer be able to sue the Catholic church for damages if a landmark judgment rules that priests should not be considered as employees. Such a decision could have massive consequences for abuse victims.

Britain’s Channel 4 reports that the Roman Catholic Church took the unprecedented step of arguing in a court case earlier this month that it is not responsible for sexual abuse committed by its priests, arguing that the relationship between a Catholic priest and the bishop of the local diocese is not an employment relationship and therefore the diocese does not have vicarious liability.

Catholic Church Not Responsible For Priests’ Behavior?

The church has employed the argument in the past but this was the first time it had been used in open court, and a ruling in the church’s favor would set a legal precedent.

From The Observer:

The ruling is being made as part of a preliminary hearing into the case of “JGE”, who claims to have been sexually abused while a six-year-old resident at The Firs, a children’s home in Portsmouth run by an order of nuns, the English Province of Our Lady of Charity. “If we fail, it would mean that no other victims of Catholic priests would be able to be compensated,” said Tracey Emmott of Emmott Snell, a specialist in working with sexual abuse claims who is representing JGE.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:02 AM

If you tell anyone, I’ll kill you: Priest told sex abuse victim

AUSTRALIA
News One

Sydney, July 25 (IANS) Victims of sexual abuse by an Australian priest told a court Monday he robbed them of their innocence and destroyed their childhood. He even told one victim: ‘If you tell anyone what happened I’ll f****** kill you.’

Robert Charles Best, 70, appeared for a pre-sentence plea hearing for 21 offences against eight victims committed between 1969 and 1988 at Catholic schools in Ballarat, Geelong and Box Hill, the Herald Sun reported.

The victims told him how sick his serial sex attacks were.
‘I stay up at night with the bastard on my mind and his hands on my body,’ a victim known only as A.B. told the court.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:59 AM

New leader's job is to protect and heal archdiocese

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Pottstown Mercury

Cardinal Justin Rigali's announcement Tuesday that he is resigning his post as leader of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia's 1.5 million Roman Catholics could be interpreted as having several meanings.

The most obvious is that the archbishop of Philadelphia, who was ordained a priest 50 years ago, is now age 76 and entitled to retirement. His predecessor, Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua, who was Philadelphia's archbishop for 15 years, was 80 when Rigali took over the post on Oct. 7, 2003.

Another explanation circulating among his critics is that Rigali is resigning — or has been asked to resign by Pope Benedict XVI — because of his alleged mishandling of complaints about sexual abuse of children and adolescents by priests and archdiocesan employees.

In February, a former priest, two current priests and a lay teacher were arrested and charged with sexually abusing boys in archdiocesan churches or schools. An archdiocesan administrator, also a priest, was criminally charged for endangering the welfare of children by not protecting them from their alleged abusers. All five men have denied the allegations.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:57 AM

July 24, 2011

Taoiseach badly served by his speech writers

IRELAND
The Irish Times

OPINION: Enda Kenny defamed Rome and the Vatican, but at least now perhaps the State will get its act together on childcare, writes VINCENT TWOMEY

THE TAOISEACH delivered a powerful speech in the Dáil last week in response to the recently published report by the Murphy commission on the way those responsible for the governance of the diocese of Cloyne failed to deal with accusations of clerical sexual abuse.

It was supremely important that the pain and hurt of the victims be recognised by the State in the person of its first minister. No one but the victims can have even the slightest understanding of the emotional, spiritual, and even sometimes physical devastation caused by such heinous crimes committed by those who were ordained to make Jesus Christ present in our lives. Nothing human can ease that pain.

Yet, I sincerely hope the kind of recognition given by Enda Kenny will give some real solace to the survivors.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:43 PM

Ex-Catholic priest defrocked over sex abuse

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

The Bishop of the Maitland-Newcastle diocese, in the New South Wales Hunter Valley, says the removal of former priest John Denham from the ministry shows the Vatican is serious about addressing child sex abuse within the church.

Pope Benedict has issued a decree, dismissing Denham from the clerical state, meaning he can never again practise as a priest.

He is currently serving a 13-year prison term for abusing almost 40 boys aged between five and 16, from 1968 to 1986, many of them from St Pius High School at Adamstown.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:59 PM

Sex abuse action and the seal of confession

AUSTRALIA
Eureka Street

MICHAEL MULLINS JULY 24, 2011

Prompted by a resolve of the Irish Government to enact legislation aimed at breaching the seal of the confessional, Australian Senator Nick Xenophon threw a sectarian bomb on Thursday.

'There is no contest when it comes to protecting the innocence of a child or maintaining a religious practice,' he told reporters in Canberra. 'Why should someone be absolved of their sins ... when it comes to child abuse because they've got a pat on the back from their priest?'

There's no doubt that his bullish intervention was an affront to the Catholic Church and the principle of freedom of religion.

According to the Catholic understanding, confession is made to God through the priest, and so disclosing what is said in that conversation is to violate what is sacred. That is why Catholic priests would consider themselves bound to go to jail rather than obey an unjust law.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:24 PM

Pope defrocks paedophile priest John Denham

AUSTRALIA
Newcastle Herald

BY ALISON BRANLEY
25 Jul, 2011

POPE Benedict XVI has officially defrocked convicted paedophile priest John Denham.
Maitland Newcastle Diocese Bishop William Wright issued a statement yesterday saying that the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith had recently advised him that on May 20 this year Pope Benedict XVI decreed that John Denham was ‘‘dismissed from the clerical state’’.

‘‘Michael Malone, former Bishop of the Diocese of Newcastle-Maitland, recommended this action to the congregation,’’ he said. ‘‘I welcome the Holy Father’s decree.’’

John Denham was convicted of sexually abusing 39 boys aged five to 16 between 1968 and 1986 and was jailed for 13 years and 10 months.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:34 PM

Overriding church law

AUSTRALIA
Newcastle Herald

We shudder at any suggestion that sharia law over-rides Australian law, even when that sharia law applies only to Muslims, yet few people question the fact that Catholic church law over-rides Australian law. Indeed, we seem unconcerned that Australian law protects the superiority of Catholic church law!

The federal independent senator Nick Xenophon went directly to that protection when he called late last week for an end to the exemption of Catholic priests from Australia's laws for the mandatory reporting of child abuse. Senator Xenophon has followed the lead of Ireland's prime minister, Enda Kenny, who's announced that he will introduce legislation requiring Catholic priests to report to police child abuse disclosed in confession. Ireland has been rocked by widespread pedophilia among Catholic priests and the Catholic church's protection of that pedophilia, and over the past 15 years the people of the Hunter Valley, where I live, have been sickened by a series of disclosures of pedophilia in Catholic clergy and the diocese's tolerance of it.

How often did the Hunter priests Vince Ryan, Denis McAlinden, John Denham and others confess their sexual abuse of a child to a priest? How often were they then able to move onto their next victim free of guilt and free of fear of being reported to the police?

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:31 PM

Scientologists, Catholics and More Money Than God

UNITED STATES
The New York Times

INSIDE SCIENTOLOGY
The Story of America’s Most Secretive Religion
By Janet Reitman
444 pp. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. $28.

RENDER UNTO ROME
The Secret Life of Money in the Catholic Church
By Jason Berry
420 pp. Crown Publishers. $25.

By GARRY WILLS

Published: July 21, 2011

We do not need these books to tell us that money and religion make for a poisonous combination. But it is of some interest to see that ancient truth confirmed in both a church as relatively new as Scientology and one as ancient as Roman Catholicism. Even religious leaders develop a certain swagger when they know they are backed by bundles of cash. When a French court fined Scientology nearly a million dollars, one of its officials shrugged that off as “chump change.” And when the Vatican ran a deficit of nearly 2.4 million euros in 2007, an Italian journalist familiar with the church’s finances dismissed the debt as “chopped liver.” Chump change or chopped liver, both churches have bigger sums they can get to and use, and few outsiders are given a look at how they do it. These two books trace the cash source of theological confidence.

As Janet Reitman describes in “Inside Scientology,” Scientology did not begin as a religion, which its founder, L. Ron Hubbard came to consider his initial mistake. In 1950 Hubbard published his book “Dianetics,” which proposed a variant on the “mind cures” that have littered the American landscape through most of its history. He offered his followers a process of “auditing” that combined Freudian sessions with elements of his former career as a writer of science fiction. People being audited could relive their births, or test their future hopes on the E-meter, a kind of super lie detector that revealed “the anatomy of the human mind.” Mental health authorities, Reitman notes, were quick to condemn Hubbard’s claims as fraudulent. He did not, at this point, have the money to fight against such attacks, a situation he would spend the rest of his career correcting.

Hubbard’s failure to secure a strong financial base exposed him to a takeover of his concepts and properties. Barely two years after founding the movement, he lost Dianetics to a wealthy supporter named Don Purcell, who simply bought him out. To restart his project, he needed protection for it. He found that protection in religion. After all, one cannot buy out a religion. This “religion angle,” he wrote in 1953, is “a matter of practical business.” Being a church, Reitman writes, gave Scientology tax exemption, clerical status for his “ministers” (who wore Roman collars) and clerical exemption from the draft for these ministers. It also allowed him to rally even non-Scientologists to his defense against increasingly hostile government agencies, presenting any of his troubles as a persecution of religion, violating the separation of church and state. ...

The Catholic Church offers a very different picture, but one where money is even more important. Jason Berry, the reporter who broke several of the priest abuse scandals of recent times, finds the same pattern of deception, denial and subterfuge in the church’s handling of money as in its treatment of pedophiles. The Vatican comes to its high-handed way with money in an understandable fashion. In the Middle Ages, all authority was male and monarchical, so the pope became a king. His multiple realms had all the appurtenances of a medieval monarch — armies, prisons, spies, torturers, legal courts in papal service. The money flowed in from many sources — as conquest, as tribute from subordinate princes (secular and religious) or from the crops on farm lands held by the pope, who was not accountable to anyone for use of these funds. When normal sources did not satisfy papal ambition, clerical underlings invented new kinds of revenue — like the granting of time off in Purgatory for cash contributions during life (“indul­gences” for sale).

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:55 AM

Judgment may deny clerical sex abuse victims the right to sue Catholic Church

UNITED KINGDOM
Irish Central

By CATHAL DERVAN, IrishCentral.com Staff Writer

Published Sunday, July 24, 2011

The Catholic Church in Britain is attempting to force through a legal precedent which would deny victims of clerical sexual abuse the right to sue the church for damages. The Irish church may seek to follow.

If the landmark judgment in the UK’s High Court goes in favor of the Church, then victims of sexual abuse by priests will no longer be able to seek compensation from the Catholic Church.

A little publicized case in London’s High Court has heard lawyers for the Church claimed that it is not ‘vicariously’ liable” for the actions of its priests.

The argument has been utilized by the Church in the past but never in an open court and both lawyers and victims fear it will set a legal precedent with repercussions across the world.

Observers also claim the attempt to use the liability argument questions whether or not the Vatican is prepared to accept culpability for the sort of abuse outlined in the Cloyne Report.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:38 AM

Church and state are split over an irreconcilable difference

AUSTRALIA
Sydney Morning Herald

Laws that break the seal of Confession could be counter-productive for child protection, writes Bill Uren.

One can certainly share the sense of frustration and, indeed, quite patent anger and irritation of the Irish Prime Minister, Enda Kenny, in his recent criticisms of the Vatican. In the face of overwhelming evidence of sexual and physical abuse by clergy, religious and Catholic institutions in Ireland, the Vatican seems reluctant to accept its share of responsibility. It also seems unwilling to co-operate without reservations with the Irish government's proposals to prevent such abuse in future.

The most startling new measure in a system of mandatory reporting is the obligation for priests to violate the sanctity of the "sacramental seal" of Confession when a paedophile reveals that he or she has been involved in such activities. Senator Nick Xenophon has proposed a similar measure for Australia.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:32 AM

Eoghan Harris: Kenny speaks truth to papal power on behalf of people

IRELAND
Irish Independent

Sunday July 24 2011

But, hark! a voice like thunder spake,

The West's awake! the West's awake!

True, Enda Kenny did not speak with Thomas Davis's voice like thunder. But his words fell like a thunderbolt, followed by a forked lightning of illumination that lit up the Irish historical landscape, past and present, and showed us a far better future.

Like Bach's great Lutheran hymn Wachet Auf! (Sleepers Awake!), Kenny's speech called on the Roman Catholic officer class to wake from their sleep of the spirit. But it went on to warn them that if they cannot reform their religion, they must still live by the laws of the Irish Republic. Accordingly, its implications went far beyond the issue of child abuse which it formally addressed

Kenny's revolutionary speech was not simply a rebuke to the Vatican. It called for reform of the Roman Catholic Church, confirmed that Home Rule did not mean Rome rule, and returned the word "republic" to the Northern Protestants to whom it originally belonged. Like all great speeches it had good authority, slew a sacred cow, and spoke the truths that set us free.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:16 AM

State urges Vatican response on Cloyne

IRELAND
Irish Independent

By DANIEL McCONNELL Chief Reporter and JOHN DRENNAN

Sunday July 24 2011

The Vatican and the Papal Nuncio treated allegations of child abuse against Irish priests with "contemptuous disregard", Justice Minister Alan Shatter told the Sunday Independent yesterday.

Mr Shatter called on the Vatican to "respond rapidly" to the "appalling and horrific" findings of the Cloyne report.

"The Vatican must now sign up and fully support guidelines about the welfare and safety of children. There is no ambiguity on this from the Government's point of view," he added.

Following on from Taoiseach Enda Kenny's historic attack on the Vatican and the Papal Nuncio, Mr Shatter said the Government would be forced to act if a satisfactory response from Rome didn't come in a timely manner.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:13 AM

New beginning

‌PHILADLEPHIA (PA)
PhillyBurbs

Cardinal Justin Rigali, spiritual leader of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia since 2003, has been replaced, bringing to an end to a troubled tenure stained by the continuing scandal of proven and suspected child sex abuse by ordained priests.

Rigali, 76, submitted his resignation last year when he turned 75, as required by church law. But Pope Benedict XVI is just now acting on it. Only the Vatican can explain the timing, although Rigali’s connection with the arrest of several priests, his suspension of almost two dozen more and the allegations of widespread and systematic cover-up of predatory priests likely had very much to do with it.

The sex scandal didn’t originate during Rigali’s stay. A grand jury in 2005 said two former cardinals, Anthony Bevilacqua (1988-2003) and John Krol (1961-1988), both were aware that priests were abusing children but hid the crimes by shuffling the clerics among various parishes. Rigali, then, inherited the explosive revelation of abuse that had been kept secret for almost a half-century.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:10 AM

Decorated lawyers on Jeffs defense team

TEXAS
San Angelo Standard-Times

By Matthew Waller

SAN ANGELO, Texas — A host of high-powered attorneys from across Texas have been kept for Warren Jeffs' counsel, whether they want to be or not.

The head of the polygamy-sanctioning Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints has attorneys from Houston, Dallas, Fort Worth and McKinney helping him for his Monday trial, in which he is charged with two counts of sexual assault of a child.

Deric Walpole is the lead counsel for Jeffs. He is a lawyer out of McKinney, part of the firm Luce, Norhouse and Walpole. He was once voted "Trial Lawyer of the Year" by the Collin County Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, according to his law office. He has been listed as a Texas rising star for the past four years by "Super Lawyers" magazine.

He began representing Jeffs about three business days before the trial was scheduled to begin, submitting motions and paperwork at the last minute.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:06 AM

Prosecutor highly regarded

TEXAS
San Angelo Standard-Times

By Matthew Waller

SAN ANGELO, Texas — Throughout the prosecutions of seven men, members of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, the attorneys for the defense have changed, and the venue has changed, but between the bar and the judge's bench, the lead prosecutor remained the same.

Eric Nichols, the special prosecutor for the Texas attorney general, has kept a steely eye and his poised, shaved head directed toward the defense. His speech is methodical through most of his examinations of witnesses in trials, occasionally flaring angrily in final arguments. Occasionally he smiles bemusedly at arguments from the defense.

"It was one of the best jobs I ever had," Nichols said about working for the attorney general before returning to private practice.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:04 AM

Jeffs' trial set Monday

TEXAS
San Angelo Standard-Times

By Matthew Waller

SAN ANGELO, Texas — Warren Steed Jeffs was no stranger to Texas before he was named to the FBI's Ten Most Wanted Fugitives list in May 2006.

He was well-known to hundreds of members of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, a polygamous sect living on the Yearning for Zion Ranch about 45 miles south of San Angelo.

It was in Schleicher County, prosecutors allege, that Jeffs sexually assaulted two girls younger than 14 and 17, according to a grand jury indictment.

Those allegations, five years later, have put him in front of 51st District Judge Barbara Walther, who has sentenced seven of his fellow sect members to prison on similar charges.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:01 AM

Jeffs to join associates prosecuted by state

TEXAS
San Angelo Standard-Times

By Matthew Waller

SAN ANGELO, Texas — Starting Monday, polygamy-sanctioning sect leader Warren Jeffs will join the ranks of fellow members of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints who have been prosecuted by the state.

Jeffs will be on trial in two counts of sexual assault of a child.

Seven FLDS members have undergone criminal prosecution, with two having taken plea bargains and five having gone to trial.

Raymond Merril Jessop was the first FLDS member to go to trial in October 2009 in Eldorado. He was convicted of sexual assault of a child as a second-degree felony and sentenced to 10 years in prison and an $8,000 fine on Nov. 10, 2009.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:58 AM

Texas game warden got peak inside polygamist ranch

TEXAS
Canadian Business

ELDORADO, Texas (AP) — Before there was the police raid, the 439 children seized from mothers in frontier-style dresses and 19th century hairdos, and tails of underage sex and bigamy — there was a man from Utah with blood in the back of his pickup.

William B. Johnson was pulled over along a lonely stretch of West Texas highway in February 2004 for having an obstructed license plate and was asked about the blood-spattered bed of his white Ford. The Hildale, Utah-native said he'd been hunting, and reluctantly led Texas game warden Marco Alvizo onto a secretive religious compound to prove it.

It was authorities' first glimpse of the "Yearning For Zion" ranch, their first hint that members of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints — a radical offshoot of mainstream Mormonism that believes polygamy is the key to heaven — were in town. A raid four years later left the church's ecclesiastical head, Warren Jeffs, and 11 other sect members facing charges including sexual assault and bigamy. Jury selection in Jeffs' trial begins Monday.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:56 AM

Trial of FLDS cult Leader Warren Jeffs begins on Monday

TEXAS
God Discussion

[with video]

July 24, 2011 By John Thomas Didymus

The Texas trial of Warren Jeffs, polygamist leader of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints will begin 9.00 A.M. on Monday after delays by Warren Jeffs.

Jeffs constantly changed lawyers, a move prosecutors claim to be tactics to stall a trial that could end in a life sentence. District Judge Barbara Walther refused to allow the case to be further delayed after Jeff's last lawyer Deric Walpole asked to be given six months to prepare his defense. The FLDS case has generated over 1.7 billion pages of discovery material.

Warren Jeffs had first been arrested in August 2006, during a routine traffic stop on interstate 15, Nevada, after he was included on the list of FBI's Ten Most Wanted Fugitives. He was extradited to Utah, where he was found guilty in September 25, 2007, of two counts of being in accomplice to rape. He was sentenced to ten years in prison but his conviction was later overturned. However, in April 2008, on suspicions of physical and sexual abuse of minors, Texas Child Protective Services and Department of Public Safety officers served search and arrest warrants and in the course of search operation rescued about 439 minors who were placed under temporary custody of the Child Protective Services.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:51 AM

Ireland becoming a proper modern republic?

IRELAND
Worker's Liberty

If you’ve been following the news from Ireland you will be aware that the 26 counties are throwing off Rome rule and becoming a republic, a proper modern capitalist secular republic.

The latest investigation into child abuse in the Cloyne Diocese has revealed that the Vatican has been advising the Vicar General of the diocese that the joint State-Church guidelines on reporting sexual abuse are optional.

This is the third diocese to be exposed for systemic abuse.

The UN initiated an investigation into the “Magdelene Laundries” concentration camps for girls and young women who had babies out of wedlock, runaway domestic servants and young girls beyond parental control. Notoriously children and young women in all these categories in Ireland were quite often victims of rape by those in authority over them. These were institutions totally under the control of religious orders which inmates voluntarily entered for their protection. But if they left, the police arrested and returned them to the “homes”.

All this is the routine drip of revelations that have been coming out since the “Celtic Tiger” boom took off.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:48 AM

Catholic readers conflicted over coverage of clergy sex-abuse allegations

KANSAS CITY (MO)
The Kansas City Star

READERS’ REPRESENTATIVE

By DEREK DONOVAN
The Kansas City Star

“This news is emotionally depressing as a Catholic but important for us all to read,” a caller told me recently, referring to stories in The Kansas City Star about members of the clergy accused of sexual impropriety with minors. “I don’t want to say it isn’t news, but I guess I just wish it wasn’t.”

That’s an opinion I’ve heard often since allegations were made against the Revs. Michael Tierney and Shawn Ratigan. Almost every caller and emailer has self-identified as Catholic. “We’re the ones who have the most at stake here, after all,” one said. “I don’t really think people outside the church should have much say in it, other than law enforcement.”

After the news about Father Ratigan broke, almost every reader who contacted me urged The Star to stay on top of the story. The paper should “continue to be fearless in reporting on the (Catholic Church) scandals,” according to one. “They don’t let us say these things ourselves on Sundays.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:35 AM

Angered by abuse, Irish begin to confront Vatican

IRELAND
Boston Globe

By Shawn Pogatchnik
Associated Press / July 24, 2011

DUBLIN - From the pews and pulpits, Ireland’s Catholics are demanding that the Vatican finally acknowledge its oversight role in child abuse coverups.

It’s a revolution of sorts in Ireland, a nation founded on devotion to Roman Catholicism, where many now question the church’s role in a rapidly changing society. For decades Irish leaders let archbishops vet proposed laws, declared they were Catholics first and Irishmen second, and saw crossing the church as a surefire way to lose office.

No longer.

The Irish are broadly lauding last week’s thunderbolt from Prime Minister Enda Kenny, who denounced the Vatican’s role in the past 17 years of abuse scandals. He accused the Holy See of downplaying “the rape and torture of children’’ and hiding behind its status as a sovereign state with its own secrecy-obsessed canon laws.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:32 AM

Kevin Riordan: Out of step with Chaput; steeped in faith

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

By Kevin Riordan
Inquirer Columnist

The home movie flickers into focus on a sunny procession of bright white shirts.
It's 1961, and I'm a good Catholic boy, walking solemnly into church for my first Holy Communion.

I was reminded of that spiritual watershed last week as the faithful celebrated the selection of Denver Archbishop Charles Chaput to lead the church in Philadelphia.

"Philly is so blessed right now," a friend of a friend posted on Facebook.

"Get ready, Philadelphia," posted another.

Catholics are welcoming the prospect of new energy at the top after the sadly dispiriting reign of Archbishop Justin Rigali, so tired and tarnished by revelations that cover-ups of sexual abuse by priests continued on his watch.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:28 AM

Phila. Archdiocese fires finance officer over missing money

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

By Joseph Tanfani
Inquirer Staff Writer

The top financial officer of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia has been fired while authorities investigate how hundreds of thousands of dollars in church funds went missing.

Anita Guzzardi, recently appointed the archdiocese's chief financial officer, was escorted from church offices on July 14, a day after the Philadelphia District Attorney's Office informed church officials about its investigation, according to church spokeswoman Donna Farrell.

The church has hired lawyer Henry E. Hockeimer of Ballard Spahr and the accounting firm of Parente Beard to conduct an internal investigation, Farrell said. Guzzardi was fired Friday as a result of their preliminary findings.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:24 AM

Prosecutor grilled, Bevilacqua deflected, grand jury testimony from 2003 shows

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

By Nancy Phillips, Craig R. McCoy, Maria Panaritis, and David O'Reilly
Inquirer Staff Writers

Why, the prosecutor asked Cardinal Anthony J. Bevilacqua, had he permitted a priest with a long and sordid record of sexual abuse to remain in a parish ministry?

A priest "has rights," Bevilacqua replied. "If we tried to remove him, he could bring action."

Pressed a bit more, the cardinal said, "I don't recall all these details."

Assistant District Attorney Maureen McCartney kept pushing. The Rev. Nicholas Cudemo had been accused of raping and impregnating an 11-year-old girl and molesting another child in a confessional, assaulting eight victims in all.

"We're not talking about a roof leaking on a parish gym," she said.

"I know," Bevilacqua replied.

This exchange from the fall of 2003 is contained in more than 1,200 pages of secret grand jury testimony prosecutors filed in court late Friday as evidence in their pending criminal case against one of Bevilacqua's most trusted aides, Msgr. William Lynn.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:17 AM

July 23, 2011

Rapport seksueel misbruik zet relatie Ierland-Vaticaan onder druk

IERLAND
Trouw

Ierland, een van de katholiekste landen van Europa, heeft snoeiharde kritiek op het Vaticaan. De regering vindt dat het Vaticaan in de fout is gegaan bij de aanpak van seksueel misbruik van minderjarigen door geestelijken.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:31 PM

Buddhist monks walk away from sex-abuse cases

CHICAGO (IL)
Chicago Tribune

By Megan Twohey, Tribune reporter
July 24, 2011

The meeting took place at Wat Dhammaram, a cavernous Theravada Buddhist temple on the southwest edge of Chicago. A tearful 12-year-old told three monks how another monk had turned off the lights during a tutoring session, lifted her shirt and kissed and fondled her breasts while pressing against her, according to a lawsuit.

Shortly after that meeting, one of the monks sent a letter to the girl's family, saying the temple's monastic community had resolved the matter, the lawsuit says.

The "wrong doer had accepted what he had done," wrote P. Boonshoo Sriburin, and within days would "leave the temple permanently" by flying back to Thailand.

"We have done our best to restore the order," the letter said.

But 11 years later, the monk, Camnong Boa-Ubol, serves at a temple in California, where he says he interacts with children even as he faces a second claim, supported by DNA, that he impregnated a girl in the Chicago area.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:28 PM

Catholic church's plea could rule out damages for priests' abuse

UNITED KINGDOM
The Observer

Jamie Doward
The Observer, Sunday 24 July 2011

Victims of sexual abuse by priests will no longer be able to sue the Catholic church for damages if a landmark judgment rules that priests should not be considered as employees.

In a little publicised case heard this month at the high court, the church claimed that it is not "vicariously liable" for priests' actions. The church has employed the argument in the past but this was the first time it had been used in open court and a ruling in the church's favour would set a legal precedent.

The use of the defence raises further questions about the church's willingness to accept culpability for abuse. It follows a damning report into abuse at the diocese of Cloyne in Ireland which prompted the Irish president, Mary McAleese, to call on leaders of the church "to urgently reflect on how, by coherent and effective action, it can restore public trust and confidence in its stated objective of putting children first".

Those planning to bring claims in relation to the high court case expressed dismay. "As children, we weren't given an innocent, carefree and safe environment," said one. "We weren't given a peaceful structure in which to grow and develop normally. By some miracle, some of us are still here to voice the words of so many who can't. Only a small number of victims ever come forward. The full potential of who we could have been as adults has been stolen."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:39 PM

Joan Smith: Ireland squares up to the Vatican

UNITED KINGDOM/IRELAND
The Independent

Last autumn, as Pope Benedict XVI celebrated an outdoor mass in Hyde Park, I joined a march through London to protest against his visit to the UK. It was boisterous and good-natured, but I was struck by the presence of a number of elderly women who seemed to be marching on their own.

When we started up conversations, I discovered why they had come; speaking quietly, and often with Irish accents, they revealed that as children or young adults they had been victims of sexual abuse by Catholic priests.

The exposure of clerical abuse in the worldwide Catholic church has been going on for decades. Last week, another official report was published, exposing the church's failure to tell the authorities about allegations of sexual abuse in the Irish diocese of Cloyne, but the result was unexpected. Suddenly and without precedent, the Irish prime minister attacked the Vatican in terms that raised the prospect of his country one day becoming a secular republic. Speaking in the Irish parliament, Enda Kenny talked about "the rape and torture of children" and said the report exposed in Ireland "an attempt by the Holy See to frustrate an inquiry in a sovereign, democratic republic".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:36 PM

Ireland: Report into the handling of clerical sexual abuse ...

IRELAND
Polyamorie

[updated]

Compiled by drs. Pieter Schultz (information professional / content curator, web editor and religion researcher)

TABLE OF CONTENTS

(1) The Cloyne Report

The long awaited report
Background / inquiries / history of abuse
Office of the Minister for Children
(2) The Cloyne Report: in detail / findings

Roman Catholic Diocese of Cloyne
Cloyne Diocesan Safeguarding Children Committee
The National Board for the Safeguarding of Children in the Catholic Church (NBSCC)
Archbishop Clifford

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:58 PM

The End of Awe

IRELAND/UNITED KINGDOM
The New York Times

By MAUREEN DOWD
Published: July 23, 2011

WEDNESDAY found both the British prime minister and the Irish taoiseach passionately addressing their parliaments about the demystified lords of their universes.

Frantically distancing himself from the pope of Fleet Street, David Cameron sardonically assured riled-up lawmakers that he had never seen Rebekah Brooks in her PJs because he had not attended Gordon Brown’s wife’s slumber party at Chequers with Wendi Deng and Elisabeth Murdoch in 2008.

He conceded that he should not have ignored warnings from the palace and elsewhere against bringing a capo from the sulfurous Murdoch gang into his inner circle.

Across the Irish Sea in Dublin, Enda Kenny took on the actual pope, making a blazing speech about the Vatican’s unconscionable behavior in the pedophilia scandal.

After 17 years of revolting revelations, Kenny said the latest report on the Cloyne diocese in County Cork exposed “an attempt by the Holy See to frustrate an inquiry in a sovereign, democratic republic as little as three years ago, not three decades ago.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:53 PM

Rio Rancho's first mayor imprisoned

NEW MEXICO
KASA

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - The first mayor of Rio Rancho spent the night behind bars after being sentenced to nine years in prison for molesting a 7-year-old girl.

William Howden, 72, was sentenced Friday. ...

Howden, a former Episcopal priest, said in court he will carry the grief and shame of what he did for the rest of his life.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:03 PM

Disgraced ex-priest Dino Cinel takes his case to Vatican

UNITED STATES
The Times-Picayune

By Bruce Nolan, The Times-Picayune

Dino Cinel, the former Catholic priest whose cache of child pornography and videotaped sex with young men in an Uptown rectory shook New Orleans in 1991, is living in Italy and petitioning the Vatican for justice as a former sexual abuse victim himself.

After months of effort, he has found little or no help for victims there, Cinel recently told SNAP, the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests.

But SNAP has extended limited sympathy.

“We don’t doubt that Cinel was sexually abused as a youngster by a priest,” said spokesman David Clohessy. “But no one should lose sight of the fact that he’s a dangerous predator.”

Cinel told SNAP of his mission and shared a letter he said he wrote to Pope Benedict XVI describing his lack of success and his frustration with the Vatican justice system.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:21 PM

DEEPER AND DEEPER

MISSOURI
Midwest Conservative Journal

Missouri’s Conception Abbey is officially in serious trouble:

A second lawsuit has been filed against a northwest Missouri abbey alleging cover-up of sexual abuse by a former monk who directed its boys’ choir in the 1980s.

The lawsuit, filed against Conception Abbey by an Oregon man, claims that Bede Parry, a Benedictine monk, molested the plaintiff in the early 1980s when the plaintiff was a minor. At the time, Parry taught the boy piano lessons and led the Abbey Boy Choir of Conception Abbey.

The suit alleges the abbey knew Parry had sexually abused other students before abusing the plaintiff but kept it quiet. “He’s been dealing with this for a long time, and the memories started making it debilitating for him the last couple of years,” said Rebecca Randles, the attorney who filed the suit.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:15 AM

Diocese offers $50 million in cash for Crystal Cathedral

GARDEN GROVE (CA)
The Orange County Register

By DEEPA BHARATH and ANDREW GALVIN / THE ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER

GARDEN GROVE – The Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange County has made a $50 million cash offer for the 35-acre property that houses the iconic Crystal Cathedral and all its core buildings, officials said Friday.

The Catholic Church announced earlier this month that it is interested in buying the financially ailing Crystal Cathedral, which was founded by Robert H. Schuller, a minister from Iowa who began preaching atop a snack shack in the Orange drive-in 55 years ago.

The Catholic Church, which needs a newer, bigger sanctuary to accommodate more than 1.2 million members in Orange County, views the Crystal Cathedral as a blank canvas they can modify to suit their specific requirements. Buying the property also means that the Catholic Church would not have to undertake the construction of a large cathedral on property it owns in Santa Ana.

Alan H. Martin, a bankruptcy attorney representing the diocese, said the diocese will pay $50 million in cash within 30 days of the bankruptcy court's approval of the reorganization plan. But first, the plan has to be approved by the Crystal Cathedral Ministries Board and the Creditors Committee.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:12 AM

Corrections: July 23

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
The New York Times

An article on Tuesday about the impending retirement of Cardinal Justin Rigali, the Roman Catholic leader of Philadelphia, misstated his age and referred imprecisely to the process for retirement. The cardinal is 76, not 75. At age 75, bishops are required to offer their resignation and the pope can either accept it or allow them to continue to serve; 75 is not the “customary retirement age” for bishops. The article also misstated, in some editions, the name of the group to which Cardinal Rigali was elevated to in 2003. It is the College of Cardinals, not the House of Cardinals.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:09 AM

Ireland's example

CANADA/IRELAND
The Ottawa Citizen

BY JANICE KENNEDY, OTTAWA CITIZEN JULY 23, 2011

Good for Ireland. The traditionally Catholic country - still (wrongly) viewed in cliché as a devout nation of unquestioning churchgoers - has finally had it with empty words and vacuous apologies.

This week, in a unanimous parliamentary denunciation, Irish lawmakers blamed the Vatican for encouraging Irish bishops to not report suspected abusive priests to the police - thus defying Irish law and permitting the victimization to continue.

This is not a reference to ancient history, either. It was in 1996 that Irish bishops decided calling the cops on priestly abusers might be the right thing to do. And, it turns out, it was in 1996 that Rome nixed that notion. Since then, in this country that has been left reeling by the depth and breadth of the scandal's sickening revelations, the response from Rome has been largely a reliance on canon law - and, effectively, a vast criminal coverup.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:07 AM

In 3 Countries, Challenging the Vatican on Female Priests

UNITED STATES
The New York Times

By LAURIE GOODSTEIN
Published: July 22, 2011

More than 150 Roman Catholic priests in the United States have signed a statement in support of a fellow cleric who faces dismissal for participating in a ceremony that purported to ordain a woman as a priest, in defiance of church teaching.

The American priests’ action follows closely on the heels of a “Call to Disobedience” issued in Austria last month by more than 300 priests and deacons. They stunned their bishops with a seven-point pledge that includes actively promoting priesthood for women and married men, and reciting a public prayer for “church reform” in every Mass.

And in Australia, the National Council of Priests recently released a ringing defense of the bishop of Toowoomba, who had issued a pastoral letter saying that, facing a severe priest shortage, he would ordain women and married men “if Rome would allow it.” After an investigation, the Vatican forced him to resign.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:02 AM

Priest left legacy of pain

CANADA
The Windosr Star

BY TREVOR WILHELM, THE WINDSOR STAR JULY 23, 2011

Some will remember him as the pedophile priest who "opened the floodgates" of clergy abuse in North America.

Barry Glendinning, 77, a former priest defrocked for his years of abuse against minors, died July 14 in Toronto.

John Swales, one of Glendinning's many victims, said the death leaves him with conflicting emotions of love, sadness and anger for the man who forever changed his life.

"He's dead; what happens from here I'm not quite sure," said Swales, 52, one of the first sex abuse victims in North America to go public. "Higher powers will deal with that stuff. But his many, many victims will carry this. The Glendinning saga will continue until all of his victims are dead. We're going to take this to our own graves."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:00 AM

Sentencing delayed

CANADA
Provincial Journal

CAMPBELLTON - The sentencing of former Dalhousie priest Charles Picot found guilty in May of indecent assault arising from an incident that happened more than 30 years has been adjourned until Aug. 23. Judge Ronald LeBlanc said in Campbellton Provincial Court on Friday that he was altered in a conference call Thursday night that Picot's lawyer Gilles Lemieux was sick and unable to make it to court. Picot was convicted with committing the offence against John Derek Lapointe in August 1977 when the victim was a teenager. Picot had been a priest at St. Jean Baptiste Roman Catholic Church in Dalhousie.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:57 AM

O’Malley’s decision should end dispute over closing parishes

MASSACHUSETTS
Boston Globe

GLOBE EDITORIAL

THEY HAVE been praying for a miracle for more than six years. It didn’t happen, and now it’s time to face reality.

Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley is finally moving to sell six long-shuttered churches belonging to the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston. It’s a sad outcome for those committed to their old parish communities, but simple economics makes it inevitable.

The process started in 2004 and 2005, when the archdiocese reduced the number of parishes in response to financial problems, a shortage of priests, and falling attendance. Some outraged parishioners fought the closings, maintaining protest vigils at several churches and appealing O’Malley’s decision all the way to Rome. Last year, the Vatican rejected the appeals, and this month O’Malley announced he is removing the sacred standing of the church buildings. As he primes the buildings for sale and redevelopment, the cardinal is asking protesters to accept that it is time to move on.

And it is, despite the undeniable anguish of those losing their spiritual homes. All institutions, including churches and the leaders who run them, must adapt to changing times in order to survive.

In the 1960s, the 400 parishes and 1500 priests of the Archdiocese of Boston served some 2 million Catholics, including 150,000 children in parochial school. Today, there are 290 parishes and 700 priests, some 200 of whom are retired. While the population of Catholics is down only slightly - to 1.8 million - the number of children in parochial schools has dropped by more than two-thirds.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:53 AM

Valley paper criticized over pastor's column on spousal rape

ALASKA
Anchorage Daily News

The Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman has apologized to readers and says it will help organize a "community summit against sex crimes" after it published a column by a Wasilla pastor who contended that, from a biblical standpoint, a man cannot be accused of raping his wife if she resists his sexual approaches. Ron Hamman of Independent Baptist Church of Wasilla told The Frontiersman his "Religion Views" column stemmed from an accusation that Alaska pastors are covering up spousal rape. Hamman wrote in response:

The truth is that God has given to us physical needs we commonly refer to as a "sex drive," and he has designed for these to be met within the bounds of marriage. The trouble comes when one spouse or the other decides to exact retaliation against the other because of some offense and withholds him or herself from his or her mate. This is wickedness, and such is a violation of the spirit of marriage on the part of the withholder.

Thus, if these allegations of spousal rape are due to the wife withholding herself in attempt to control or punish her husband, she is out of line with God. And it doesn't matter how many laws are passed, it will just be another reason why God will not bless America.

In a followup conversation with The Frontiersman, Hamman agreed that a man who is, for example, drunk could be accused of "abuse" after beating his wife and forcing sex on her. If Hamman offered any further clarification of this distinction from what he originally wrote, The Frontiersman does not report it in its editorial, headlined "Rape is illegal and immoral."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:48 AM

Former mayor sentenced for sex abuse

NEW MEXICO
KOB

[with video]

By: Cristina Rodda, KOB Eyewitness News 4

Former Rio Rancho mayor and pastor William Howden apologized before he learned his sentence for sexually abusing a young girl. It was a very emotional and heart-wrenching day in the courtroom as Howden learned his fate Friday evening.

The girl's mother explained to the judge, "We've talked about angels protecting her since she was a baby. She then said, 'Well why did the angels have to let it happen to me?' This is what she said after that (the abuse)."

William Howden's victim was only seven-years-old when he sexually abused her. He showed her pornography on a computer while she sat on his lap. He sexually touched her and made her touch him.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:44 AM

Dissenters fired from Mvutjini controversial church

SWAZILAND
The Swazi Observer

By Ackel Zwane

A number of worshippers who were holding top positions have been kicked out of a Mvutjini controversial church for exposing rot that goes on at the institution of ‘worship’.

This follows reports in the last edition of this newspaper, where allegations of sexual abuses were revealed after a girl reported to the church mothers that she had been sexually abused by a pastor in the church.

Worshippers also revealed that there was drama during the Sunday sermon, where the lead pastor announced that someone had sprinkled salt granules where he was to stand while preaching.

He is said to have assured his followers that he would defeat the assault by the ‘forces of darkness’.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:41 AM

Mea culpa?

ROME
Irish Independent

Behind closed doors, an angry Pope protests his innocence. But critics say the evidence is damning. Gemma O'Doherty reports

Saturday July 23 2011

It was Good Friday in 2005, and pilgrims were making their way by candlelight through the Stations of the Cross in Rome. Across the murky waters of the River Tiber, Pope John Paul II lay dying in his private chapel, struggling for breath as he watched the Easter vigil by video link.

Prayers for the ceremony had been written by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, the hardline Bavarian academic who would replace him in the Vatican one month later.

As the faithful ventured through the flickering glow of the Colosseum, the contemplative sermon took an unexpected twist, sending shudders through the world's tiniest state.

"How much filth there is in the Church," the Cardinal decried, "and even among those who, in the priesthood, ought to belong entirely to Him."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:37 AM

Abuse victims struggle with mental health problems

CANADA
The Windsor Star

By Dave Battagello And Trevor Wilhelm, The Windsor Star July 23, 2011

Drug addiction, alcoholism and male prostitution.

For John Swales, a sex abuse victim of Barry Glendinning, the fallout was almost instant after the priest was arrested.

"It was immediate - the lifestyle change from being a 10-year-old boy ringing the bell as an altar boy, to having absolutely no spiritual or emotional or mental values," said Swales, 52, who was abused in the 1970s. "And yet plagued with the guilt of God.

"I shot off the charts. Immediately I was uncontrollable. The rules didn't apply."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:34 AM

Ex-clergyman links scandals to Vatican

CANADA
The Windsor Star

BY DAVE BATTAGELLO, THE WINDSOR STAR JULY 23, 2011

Patrick Wall was fed up being shuffled from parish to parish as the replacement after yet another priest would get busted for sexually abusing children or other indiscretions.

Then in 1997 the former college football player turned priest was told he was being sent to the Bahamas to oversee 10 wayward priests who had been exiled there by Rome following abuse allegations in the U.S.

"I remember sitting in my abbot's office," said Wall, then in his early 30s. "I had no exit plan, but there was no way I was going to live a celibate life and be a 'defence lawyer' for child sex abuse cases. That was my destiny if the church had its way.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:32 AM

Former Kingsport priest convicted of sexual abuse of altar boy to remain jailed until sentencing

TENNESSEE
Kingsport Times News

By Kacie Breeding

Published July 23rd, 2011

A judge has declined to grant a bond for a former Kingsport priest jailed immediately following his conviction on first-degree sexual misconduct and two counts of aggravated rape last Thursday in Sullivan County Criminal Court.

Following a bond hearing Friday afternoon, Judge Robert Montgomery ruled William Casey, 77, 740 Shakerag Road, Greeneville, will remain incarcerated until an Aug. 22 sentencing. Casey's attorney, Rick Spivey, indicated he would likely appeal the decision, and also expressed an intent to file a motion for new trial.


Casey's charges alleged he began to sexually abuse a young altar boy shortly after becoming priest of St. Dominic’s Catholic Church in Kingsport in the 1970s.


Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:29 AM

Priest urges clergy abuse reform

AUSTRALIA
Herald Sun

Hamish Heard From: Sunday Herald Sun July 24, 2011

A PRIEST in charge of one of Victoria's biggest parishes has broken ranks with the Catholic hierarchy to demand an overhaul of the way it deals with victims of clergy sex abuse.

Father Kevin Dillon has called for reforms such as scrapping the controversial Melbourne Response process, including its "heartless" $75,000 cap on compensation.

He said the process set up by former Archbishop George Pell in 1996 to investigate sexual abuse complaints and compensate victims should be replaced with a "transparent and independent" process outside the control of the Melbourne Archdiocese.

The priest at Geelong's St Mary's of the Angels Basilica, Fr Dillon said many of the 300-plus victims processed felt it was geared more towards preserving the church's reputation and finances than providing justice.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:26 AM

The Catholic seal of confession under siege in Ireland

IRELAND
National Post (Canada)

Charles Lewis Jul 23, 2011

In the Roman Catholic confessional, people can reveal their foulest crimes, most shameful sins and heinous future intents – and know their secrets will never be disclosed.

The sanctity of confession is so pervasive in popular culture – everything from the movie Moonstruck to the TV series Seinfeld – it can be easy to forget just how profound confession is meant to be.

For Catholics, it is a sacrament, an act in which God is not simply represented symbolically but actually takes part in bestowing grace and forgiveness on penitents. Unlike in almost any other religion, a priest who reveals what was said in confession – even if it saves someone from harm’s way – would almost certainly face swift excommunication.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:23 AM

Father's girls

CANADA
The Windsor Star

BY DAVE BATTAGELLO, THE WINDSOR STAR JULY 23, 2011

To the kids in the small town church youth group, Rev. Gabriele Del Bianco was a priest unlike any other.

The twenty-something clergyman was an intriguing character in the sleepy backwater that was 1980s Wallaceburg. Not much older than his young flock, he served as DJ at youth dances and cultivated a hip image behind the wheel of one of a series of sports cars he owned.

Under Father Gabe's guidance, the rectory became a place of refuge from the tumult of home for many at-risk girls, serving as a quiet place to study or work on youth group projects.

And he befriended them outside church, taking kids on visits to the Wonderland amusement park, quick trips to local fast food joints and overnight stays at cottages in Grand Bend.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:21 AM

July 22, 2011

Diocese of Orange offers $50 million in cash for the Crystal Cathedral

CALIFORNIA
Los Angeles Times

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange said Friday it has made a $50-million offer to buy the bankrupt Crystal Cathedral.

The cash proposal would allow the Garden Grove church to lease portions of the property for 36 months. At the end of the lease, the ministry would have to find a new location, with the help of the diocese. The lease for each building on the property would be negotiated separately.

"We wanted to be as flexible as possible given their situation," said Alan Martin, a bankruptcy attorney for the diocese.

The Crystal Cathedral, founded by the Rev. Robert H. Schuller and the home of the weekly “Hour of Power” broadcast, filed for bankruptcy in October, citing more than $50 million in debt.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:18 PM

The fearful Fathers

IRELAND
The Irish Times

KATHY SHERIDAN

Angry, isolated, paranoid and ageing, many of Ireland’s ‘ordinary’ Catholic priests feel failed and abandoned by the church hierarchy. But where were the ‘good priests’ when they were needed?

THE VOICEMAIL was succinct. “Why don’t you, Mister Hoban, f**k off back to Rome with your nuncio . . . Piss off back to Rome, you f**ked-up celibates.” There were more. “Keep away from my children, you bunch of perverts,” for example.

Fr Brendan Hoban transcribed these voicemails dutifully, along with other parish messages. He reveals the wording after some reluctance. His hesitancy is rooted in the same terror that has sent most priests deep into their parish bunkers this week, the terror of appearing to place the anguish of their own tattered, lonely souls above the suffering of the victims of clerical abuse.

So last week, when the Cloyne report was crashing into the public consciousness, Hoban, the 63-year-old parish priest of Ballina, Co Mayo, would have returned to the empty parochial house, heard the messages and told no one. Then he would have repaired to his icy livingroom, where the sleeping bag on the armchair and the little plug-in radiator bear testament to the mean summer temperature of the ugly, soulless house he calls home.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:50 PM

Diocese Agrees To Sell Lakefront Camp for $4.5M

VERMONT
WPTZ

COLCHESTER, Vt. -- The Roman Catholic Diocese of Burlington announced Friday it has agreed to sell its 26-acre property along the lakeshore in Malletts Bay to the Town of Colchester for $4.5 million.

At a news conference at the site, members of the Colchester Selectboard hailed the contract which said came after a year of "often difficult" negotiations with the Diocese.

"What a gorgeous property this is, and what an opportunity this is for the town of Colchester and its residents," Nadine Seibeck said in outlining terms of the deal.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:47 PM

Colchester agrees to buy camp parcel for $4.5 million, pending voter OK

VERMONT
Burlington Free Press

The Colchester Selectboard has agreed to buy Camp Holy Cross from the Roman Catholic Diocese of Burlington for $4.5 million, pending voter approval.

The 26 acre property, with 1,600 feet of sandy beach along Lake Champlain, had been used as a summer camp. The diocese put the property up for sale to help pay settlements to victims of sexual abuse by priests.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:43 PM

Fitzgerald says findings of report warrant 'urgent' Vatican response

IRELAND
The Irish Times

CÍAN NIHILL

MINISTER FOR CHILDREN: A RESPONSE from the Vatican to the Cloyne report is “urgently needed” according to Minister for Children Frances Fitzgerald.

Ms Fitzgerald said that the Government’s position was very clear in that it wanted a response from the Vatican on the findings in the Cloyne report.

“What is important is that there is clarity – we are asking for a response to the findings in Cloyne and we want to get that response. We see it as urgently needed.”

Ms Fitzgerald called the report’s findings – that the Vatican was unhelpful to those who wanted to implement a proper child protection framework – to be a “serious statement”, one which warranted a response.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:40 PM

Kenny reflected anger, says bishop

IRELAND
The Irish Times

PATSY McGARRY

TAOISEACH'S SPEECH: ANOTHER CATHOLIC bishop has come out in support of Enda Kenny’s uprecedented address to the Dáil on Wednesday in which he delivered a stinging attack on the Vatican.

Bishop of Down and Connor Noel Treanor told The Irish Times last night the Taoiseach had “accurately reflected the dismay and anger felt by many, many Catholics in Ireland”.

Bishop of the second largest Catholic diocese on the island, he added: “However, all of us, particularly political and religious leaders, have a responsibility now to take time to pause and reflect on the implications of the Cloyne report and the implications of the non-implementation of guidelines and principles to which we have all signed up.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:37 PM

Retired principal wants bishop to be prosecuted

IRELAND
The Irish Times

BARRY ROCHE, Southern Correspondent

COMPLAINT TO GARDAÍ: A RETIRED school principal who made a complaint to gardaí that Bishop of Cloyne John Magee should be prosecuted for endangering children has reiterated his call for prosecutions after reading the Commission of Investigation Report into the Catholic Diocese of Cloyne.

Eugene Riordan from Kanturk, Co Cork, said he was initially moved to complain to gardaí about Bishop Magee in 2009 after reading the National Board For Safeguarding Children in the Catholic Church report on child protection practices in Cloyne.

“In that report, Ian Elliott refers to the case of Fr B and notes that in diocesan files on the case it was clear that the diocesan policy was to give ‘minimal’ information to gardaí and ‘no information was to be volunteered in respect of any previous complaints about this priest’,” he said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:34 PM

Support body to be in place by end of year

IRELAND
The Irish Times

PATSY McGARRY

VICTIMS: A STATE agency that will provide compensation as well as support services to victims of abuse will be up and running by January, Minister for Education Ruairí Quinn said yesterday.

It is hoped legislation to set up the statutory fund to provide support for people abused as children in residential institutions will be enacted in the autumn, said Mr Quinn.

Speaking to victim support groups, representing people who had been in residential institutions as children, he also said the Government had decided to enact legislation to close the redress board and that the memorial to abuse victims, recommended in the Ryan report, “is to advance to competition stage”.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:31 PM

Orders have 'moral responsibility' over abuse costs

IRELAND
The Irish Times

PATSY McGARRY, Religious Affairs Correspondent

THE GOVERNMENT is “fully satisfied that it is entirely right and proper” that religious congregations pay half the costs of compensation to those abused in residential institutions for children.

Minister for Education Ruairí Quinn yesterday met 14 of 18 religious congregations who managed the reformatories, industrial schools and orphanages and who were investigated by the Ryan commission. “Putting it bluntly, I believe that there is a moral responsibility on your congregations to significantly augment your contributions,” he said.

To date, costs incurred by the State as a result of the abuse of children in the institutions are estimated at €1.36 billion. The Government is seeking a contribution of €680 million (50 per cent) towards this from the congregations. They have offered €374.5 million. Mr Quinn suggested in recent months that they make up the shortfall by signing over property to the State.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:28 PM

State will not 'wait forever' on Cloyne response

IRELAND
The Irish Times

PAUL CULLEN, Political Staff

VATICAN: MINISTER FOR Foreign Affairs Eamon Gilmore has said the Government wants the Vatican to respond to the report on clerical child sex abuse in the Cloyne diocese by the end of next month.

Mr Gilmore warned yesterday the Government was not going to “wait forever” for an official response it has sought from the Vatican.

He also responded forcefully to the remarks of Vatican spokesman Fr Federico Lombardi, who had appealed for “objectivity” in the debate on the report.

Mr Gilmore said there was objectivity in the discussion, and added that the report itself was very objective. “It laid across a lot of very objective facts. And the objective facts are children were abused in the care of the church. The objective fact is it was covered up and not reported.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:23 PM

Taoiseach's speech is a watershed in ties with Vatican

IRELAND
The Irish Times

NOEL WHELAN

THE REACTION to every speech is always in the ear of the hearer. Some will inevitably dismiss Enda Kenny’s remarks during Wednesday’s Dáil debate on the Cloyne report as a populist attack upon an increasingly unpopular institution or as being motivated by political rather than policy considerations. The speech has already been dismissed by some as a polemic rather than as a contribution to debate.

To do so is to miss the point. The purpose of Kenny’s speech was not to persuade or to debate, neither was it a comprehensive treatment of Government policy on church- State affairs, or on relations between Ireland and the Vatican.

What it was, above all else, was a clear statement of attitude. The new Government of Ireland has given notice that it is adopting a new and less deferential attitude to the Catholic Church and to the Vatican. That is a very healthy development.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:19 PM

Vatican did not try to obstruct abuse inquiry

IRELAND
The Irish Times

AS A well-written expression of the anger felt in contemporary Ireland about clerical sexual abuse, Enda Kenny’s speech is a masterpiece. Perhaps it took someone familiar with small-town and rural Ireland to capture the very particular torture of seeing a priest abuser continue to occupy a place of respect in a local community, writes BREDA O'BRIEN

Perhaps it took a practising Catholic to deliver sentences such as these: “Growing up, many of us in here learned we were part of a pilgrim church. Today, that church needs to be a penitent church. A church truly and deeply penitent for the horrors it perpetrated, hid and denied. In the name of God. But for the good of the institution.”

This, too, was powerful. “This report tells us a tale of a frankly brazen disregard for protecting children.”

Nor could it be said that he exonerated the State. He spoke of “children and young adults reduced to human wreckage. Raising questions and issues of serious import for State agencies.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:17 PM

Former Catholic priest Casey denied bond

TENNESSEE
TriCities

By Nate Morabito
Published: July 22, 2011

BLOUNTVILLE, Tenn. --
Former Catholic priest William Casey may not be a free man again for several years. Sullivan County Criminal Court Judge Robert Montgomery denied Casey’s request for bond Thursday.

The judge’s decision came just eight days after a jury found the 77 year old Greene County man guilty of first degree criminal sexual conduct and aggravated rape. The crimes, which date back more than 30 years, involved a teenage boy.

Since the former priest will likely not be eligible for probation, District Attorney Barry Staubus told the judge Casey could be considered “a flight risk.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:38 PM

Bond revoked for former ET priest in abuse case

TENNESSEE
News Sentinel

By News Sentinel staff

Posted July 22, 2011

BLOUNTVILLE — A Sullivan County judge Friday revoked the bond of a former East Tennessee priest convicted earlier this month of sexually abusing a teenage boy 30 years ago.

Circuit Court Judge Robert Montgomery ruled today that William Casey, 77, of Greeneville will be held in jail until an Aug. 22 sentencing hearing, Sullivan County District Attorney General Barry Staubus said.

Casey formerly had been a priest in Knoxville and elsewhere in East Tennessee. His crimes occurred shortly after becoming priest of St. Dominic's Catholic Church in Kingsport in the 1970s.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:34 PM

Former East TN priest in court for bond hearing

TENNESSEE
WBIR

A former East Tennessee priest was in court on Friday for a bond hearing after a jury found him guilty of three counts of sexual abuse earlier in the month.

Friday, a Sullivan County judge revoked 77-year-old William Casey's bond, which means he will stay in custody until sentencing which is set for August 22nd.

Due to the severity of the crime, Casey is not eligible for probation. The District Attorney requested he stay in custody because he could be a flight risk.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:00 PM

Vatican, News Corp. share self-destructive arrogance

The China Post (Taiwan)

The past few weeks have been difficult for the some of the world's most influential private organizations, with News Corp. ensnared in scandals that could signal the end of its media dominance in much of the English-speaking world. In addition, the scandals have led many to question the role of the media and the percentage of the media market that a single company should control.

However, there was another story that emerged late yesterday that could be equally significant. This story will undoubtedly receive far less attention than the one that has seen media-baron Rupert Murdoch get “pie” on his face at the UK Parliament. Still, this event resonates with the News Corp. debacle as it also involves an extremely powerful organization, and one considered among the most influential in human history: the Roman Catholic Church.

Yesterday, the prime minister of the Republic of Ireland Enda Kenny launched a ferocious attack on the Vatican. The leader of Ireland made the comments during a parliamentary session discussing the Cloyne Report, an investigation into allegations of child abuse in the Roman Catholic diocese of Cloyne, which covers much of Ireland's largest county, Cork, in the south of the country.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:02 PM

Irish analyst: Ireland's prime minister ignores important facts when criticizing the Vatican

IRELAND
Rome Report

[with video]

June 22, 2011. (Romereports.com) Since Ireland's Prime Minister publicly lashed out at the Vatican, criticism has been mounting against the Catholic Church. But one Irish journalist says not all facts are being considered.

David Quinn is an internationally known freelance reporter who covers religion. In an opinion article published in Ireland Independent newspaper, he says Prime Minister Enda Kenny's criticism was based on the Vatican of the late 1990's and not the Vatican of today.

The outcry came after the Cloyne report was made public. According to the report, in 1997 the apostolic nuncio at the time, wrote a letter to Irish Bishops, which said the Congregation for the Clergy had reservations on reporting alleged sex abuse cases to officials.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:59 PM

New names for pedophiles

AUSTRALIA
The Mercury

ANNE MATHER | July 23, 2011

AN advocate for abuse victims fears convicted sex offenders have been using a loophole in the law to change their names after release from prison.

Beyond Abuse spokesman Steve Fisher said yesterday it appeared a convicted Tasmanian pedophile had changed his identity since moving interstate.

Mr Fisher said former Anglican priest Garth Stephen Hawkins was now in South Australia and had allegedly changed his name by deed poll to "Robin Goodfellow".

Mr Fisher, who is one of Hawkins' victims, said convicted sex offenders were able to change their name under Tasmanian law up until only four weeks ago.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:56 PM

A Predator Priest

NEW MEXICO
Slate

By David Margolick
Posted Friday, July 22, 2011

This piece is adapted from Margolick's A Predator Priest, published today by Amazon as a Kindle Single. Buy it here.

Hard by the Santa Fe Railroad tracks on the outskirts of Belen, New Mexico, on a rutted gravel driveway flanked by scrubby brush and lonely cottonwoods, Tommy Deary's three youngest brothers walked side by side. They'd traveled a long way from Putnam, Connecticut, the small New England mill town where they'd grown up, the last three sons in a family of thirteen children, but no farther than the man they'd come to see. Thirty years earlier, in fact, at St. Mary's Church in Putnam, that man had briefly been one of the priests. Very briefly, but for longer than long enough.

Gene Michael Deary, age thirty, initially took the lead that day in March 1993, ignoring the "no trespassing" sign by the side of the road. John and Allen Deary, thirty-six and thirty-five at the time, were hesitant at first, but they soon caught up. They had to. They feared that if Father Bernard Bissonnette really lived in the house at the other end of that dusty path, their fiery kid brother might just go off and kill him.

In 1963 or thereabouts, when "pedophile" was barely part of the language and was not yet so frequently coupled with "priest," Tommy Deary had been an altar boy at St. Mary's, and Father Bissonnette had repeatedly molested him. For Bissonnette, it was nothing unusual: in his nearly fifty years as a pastor, "Father Barney" molested or attempted to molest countless such boys, homing in with preternatural skills on the most needy and trusting and vulnerable among them. The Church had tried perfunctorily to "cure" him, but for the most part it had simply moved him around, constantly presenting him with new and unsuspecting parents and their pubescent boys. Of all his victims, though, only the three Deary brothers had taken on the Church, overcome its indifference, then its disdain, then its obstructionism, and tracked down Father Bissonnette. And that made sense, because of all the boys Bissonnette had preyed upon, only Tommy Deary had gone on to kill himself.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:19 PM

Victims thank Taoiseach Enda Kenny

IRELAND
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

Statement by Barbara Blaine of Chicago, President of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (+1-312-399-4747, SNAPblaine@gmail.com)

No high ranking government official anywhere in the world has denounced atrocities committed by church officials as Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny has. We commend him for speaking out about how the Roman Catholic hierarchy has put “… the power and reputation of the Church ahead of child rape victims.” These are words of comfort to the thousands of survivors of abuse.

Mr. Kenny is the first government leader to demand accountability not only from his nation’s bishops but from the Vatican. We applaud his courage and we urge other world leaders to follow his example.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:38 PM

SNAP to Vatican: The “opportune time” to act is now

UNITED STATES
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

Statement by Barbara Dorris, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314-503-0003, SNAPdorris@gmail.com)

The Vatican must immediately take action that will protect children. The time is now. No need to wait for the Vatican’s opportune time.

In a statement yesterday the Vatican said they “would respond at the "opportune" time and place to a motion in the Irish parliament on Wednesday that rebuked the Holy See over allegations it helped cover up child abuse by its priests in Ireland.”

· This “opportune time” must come before more innocent children are raped and sodomized by members of the clergy.

· This “opportune time” must come in time to help victims of clergy abuse who have been suffering in guilt and self-blame for too many years.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:35 PM

Why the Irish government attacks the Catholic Church

UNITED STATES/IRELAND
Catholic Culture

By Phil Lawler | July 22, 2011

Any Catholic American who lived through the Long Lent of 2002 can sympathize with the beleaguered Catholics of Ireland today. Especially for someone like myself—a native Bostonian, who saw the sex-abuse scandal erupt from a ground-zero perspective—the scenes that are playing out now in Dublin look depressingly familiar.

In Ireland, as in Boston, a society that was until recently dominated by Catholic influence is now in full angry rebellion against the Church. Politicians who curried favor with the hierarchy just a few years ago now compete with each other to take the toughest public stand against the bishops and the Vatican. The media are in attack mode, ready to lash out at any sign of Catholic misconduct, and let subtle distinctions be damned. The public is angry—so angry, in fact, that a remarkable transformation has occurred: Queen Elizabeth is more welcome in today’s Ireland than Pope Benedict.

Catholicism dominated in Ireland much more fully, and far longer, than in Boston. So since the pendulum of public opinion swung, the results have even far more extreme. Politicians in Boston slapped aside Catholic objections to ratify same-sex marriage, but they have never (not yet, anyway) proposed legislation that would threaten a priest with prison if he refused to violate the confessional seal.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:31 PM

Report finds fewer priests celebrating more Masses at fewer parishes

UNITED STATES
The Pilot

By Nancy Frazier O'Brien

Posted: 7/22/2011
WASHINGTON (CNS) -- More U.S. Catholics are attending Masses at fewer parishes staffed by a rapidly declining corps of priests, according to a new report on "The Changing Face of U.S. Catholic Parishes."

Produced by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate for the Emerging Models of Pastoral Leadership project of five national Catholic ministerial organizations, the report documents what it calls the "supersizing" of U.S. Catholic parish life.

"Bigger parishes, more Masses and ministries in languages other than English are becoming the norm," said a news release on the report released July 18.

CARA found that the number of Catholic parishes has declined by 1,359 since the year 2000 to 17,784 in 2010, representing a 7.1 percent decrease. The 2010 number is roughly equal to the 17,637 U.S. parishes in 1965 and 1,836 fewer than the peak number of U.S. parishes in 1990.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:51 AM

STUDY DOCUMENTS "SUPERSIZING" OF CATHOLIC PARISH LIFE

UNITED STATES
Georgetown University:
Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate for the Emerging Models of Pastoral Leadership

[press release]

July 15, 2011: Washington, DC —In the last decade, the numbers of Catholic priests and Catholic parishes have declined in number, but the scale of parish life in the United States has expanded along with the nation's growing Catholic population. Bigger parishes, more Masses, and ministries in languages other than English are becoming the norm. This is one of many new findings from the Emerging Models of Pastoral Leadership project that will be released July 18, 2011 in the first report, The Changing Face of U.S. Catholic Parishes, from its ongoing landmark study of parish life. The report details the findings from the first phase of the study, a 2010 national survey of pastors and other parish leaders at 846 randomly selected U.S. parishes. The report will be available at: www.emergingmodels.org

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:42 AM

Despite critics, Catholic Church continues to grow

UNITED STATES
Spero News

By William Donohue

All we ever hear from the wild-eyed critics of the Catholic Church, including the dissidents within, is that the Church had better "get with it" and change its teachings on abortion, homosexuality and women's ordination. Yet it is precisely those religious institutions that are the most liberal on these issues—the mainline Protestant denominations—that are collapsing. Not so the Catholic Church. Indeed, its numbers are going north while the mainline denominations are going south.

The latest findings by the "Emerging Models of Pastoral Leadership" project, a collaborative effort with Georgetown University's Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate, are illuminating. In the last 40 years, the Catholic population has increased by 75 percent; it has grown by 50 percent since 1990. More important, Catholic attendance at Mass is up 15 percent since 2000. And in the last five years, contributions have increased by 14 percent. It is also important to note that there has been a 40 percent increase in Latinos in the Church over the past five years.

Shedding more light on the statistics is a study released a few months ago by the Pew Research Center's Forum on Religion. Its "Landscape Survey" found that of those Catholics who have left the Church, roughly half became unaffiliated while the other half became Protestant. Regarding the latter half, only 23 percent did so because of the Church's teachings on abortion and homosexuality; only 16 percent left because of the way women are treated. Importantly, two-thirds of these Catholics elected to join a Protestant evangelical church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:36 AM

“More Catholics and fewer parishes”

UNITED STATES
California Catholic Daily

In the last decade, the numbers of Catholic priests and Catholic parishes have declined in number, but the scale of parish life in the United States has expanded along with the nation’s growing Catholic population. Bigger parishes, more Masses, and ministries in languages other than English are becoming the norm. This is one of many new findings from the Emerging Models of Pastoral Leadership project released Monday in the first report, The Changing Face of U.S. Catholic Parishes, from its ongoing landmark study of parish life. The report details the findings from the first phase of the study, a 2010 national survey of pastors and other parish leaders at 846 randomly selected U.S. parishes.

The survey documents changes in parish life as the U.S. Catholic Church has downsized its number of parishes in recent years. In the last decade, through a combination of closing and mergers, U.S. Catholic Church leaders have reduced the number of parishes in the United States by 1,359 (a decline of 7.1 percent). In 2000, the Church had more than 19,000 parishes nationally and by decade’s end it had fewer than 17,800, almost the same number it had in 1965.

The survey shows that in the wake of these closures, the average number of registered households in U.S. parishes has grown to 1,168. A third of parishes now have more than 1,200 registered households. The percentage of parishes with 200 or fewer households dropped from 24 percent in 2000 to 15 percent in 2010. The survey results indicate that 40 percent of the increase in registered parishioners from 2005 to 2010 was among Hispanic/Latino(a) Catholics.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:33 AM

Jueza cerraría próximamente investigación contra sacerdote Karadima

CHILE
Radio Universidad de Chile

Satisfecha se mostró la ministra en visita del caso Karadima, Jessica González, por el avance de las diligencias, especialmente por el careo que se registró durante esta semana entre los denunciantes y el sacerdote acusado de abusos sexuales.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:30 AM

Priests 'can't hide abuse'

AUSTRALIA
The Age

Richard Willingham
July 22, 2011

CATHOLIC priests would be forced to report all admissions of child abuse during confession under a plan from the independent senator Nick Xenophon to make reporting child abuse mandatory.

Senator Xenophon's call was inspired by Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny, who launched an unprecedented attack on the Vatican this week for its failure to tackle child abuse in the church, accusing it of ''dysfunction, disconnection and elitism''.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:28 AM

Ballarat bishop says confession is sacred

AUSTRALIA
The Courier

TOM MCILROY
23 Jul, 2011

BALLARAT’S Catholic bishop has rejected calls to force priests to report admissions of child sexual abuse taken during confession, to police.

South Australian independent senator Nick Xenophon this week called for priests to be required to report all admissions of child abuse to police, breaching the confidence of a priest and his parishioner.

Bishop Peter Connors called on law makers to respect the sacrament of confession.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:25 AM

Newcomers Facing Traditionalists in a Tug-of-War Struggle

UNITED STATES
The Spiritual Herald

By Megan Larkin
WASHINGTON--A silent storm is brewing to put “the people” in church pulpits--women, lay members, minorities and other faithful—who find the church doors locked against them by traditionalists who want no “outsiders.”

Women priests denied the pulpit are in the forefront, and backed by some strong advocates.

“Something is bubbling now,” Suzanne Thiel, president of Roman Catholic Women Priests, told The Spiritual Herald. “We’re not going away and it seems to be snowballing and developing. We seem to be a thorn in their side.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:22 AM

When people who should protect children do not, we must take action - Cathedral Administrator

IRELAND
Donegal Democrat

Society had an obligation to remove any threat to the safety of the young and vulnerable, the Administrator of St. Eunan’s Cathedral in Letterkenny Fr. Eamonn Kelly told congregations at masses last weekend.

Welcoming the publication of the report into the handling of abuse by church and state in the Diocese of Cloyne, he said when people who should protect the child did not, they had to take action.

“The disgust of hurting a child is beyond words. It is a crime to rob innocence and to hurt the little ones. As adults we must provide a safe place for all children, in our church, in the school, in our places of recreation, in our home and in all areas of society, public and private. It is our duty. It is our responsibility. In this responsibility we must all be accountable.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:19 AM

Is this the end of Catholic Ireland?

IRELAND
New Statesman

Posted by Nelson Jones - 22 July 2011

Along with horror and disgust, it's possible to detect in the reaction to the scandal something approaching a sense of liberation.

Imagine a country whose police and politicians had for decades been in thrall to a foreign-owned multinational controlled by an autocratic octogenarian. For years, political leaders paid homage to the aged boss, believing his backing essential to their pursuit of power, as though he held a mystical sway over public opinion. The organisation claims to be working for the public good, yet some of its employees, it is now clear, have engaged in practices that the public naturally finds abhorrent.

Many of these crimes have been known about for years, and a few offenders have even been sent to jail. But senior executives have indulged in numerous cover-ups, obstructing justice and even colluding with corrupt police officers. At the very top, the leadership has claimed not to have known what was going on. Action has been limited mainly to belated apologies and expressions of regret, even as the scandal has spread to subsidiaries throughout the world. It won't wash. Riding the wave of public indignation, politicians are finally queuing up to denounce the very organisation whose approval they once abjectly sought. The prime minister himself has led the charge.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:16 AM

Is this the first step to Ireland becoming a secular Republic?

IRELAND
National Secular Society (United Kingdom)

[with video]

By Terry Sanderson

While Britain was distracted by the drama of the phone hacking revelations, in the Irish parliament something even more sensational was happening.

On Wednesday, as the parliament opened its debate on the Cloyne report into cover-up of child abuse by the Vatican, the Prime Minister Enda Kelly stood up and delivered a speech that could change Irish life forever.

The speech has pitted the state against the church in a way that would have been unimaginable only ten years ago.

Mr Kenny told the Dáil (the lower house of parliament): “Because for the first time in Ireland, a report into child sexual abuse exposes an attempt by the Holy See to frustrate an inquiry in a sovereign, democratic republic as little as three years ago, not three decades ago. And in doing so, the Cloyne report excavates the dysfunction, disconnection, elitism, the narcissism, that dominate the culture of the Vatican to this day... The rape and torture of children were downplayed or ‘managed’ to uphold instead the primacy of the institution, its power, standing and ‘reputation’.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:12 AM

Ireland's Prime Minister attacks Vatican over child abuse

IRELAND
Digital Journal

Catholicism’s leading newspaper says the Vatican has never been attacked “so virulently” by an Irish Prime Minister before Enda Kenny’s scathing assault over child abuse.

Prime Minister Kenny was commenting on the Cloyne Report, which looks at how allegations against clerics of child abuse were handled in the Cloyne diocese in County Cork.

“The rape and torture of children were downplayed or managed to uphold instead the primacy of the institution, its power, standing and reputation,” Kenny said earlier this week.

Kenny was responding to an investigation that found evidence of child abuse was being suppressed by a diocese in County Cork.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:09 AM

Vatican finally makes promise to respond to Cloyne report

IRELAND
Irish Central

By CATHAL DERVAN, IrishCentral.com Staff Writer

Published Friday, July 22, 2011

The Vatican has tried to calm a massive diplomatic row with the Irish government after stinging criticism from Prime Minister Enda Kenny.

The Irish leader slammed the Vatican in the wake of the controversial report into clerical sex abuse in the Cork diocese of Cloyne.

Kenny was critical of the Church’s failure to report child abuse claims to the State authorities and also rebuked unofficial comments made by Vatican spokesman Fr Federico Lombardi after the report was published.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:05 AM

Questions for Ahern over child abuse bill

IRELAND
Herald

By George McManus
Friday July 22 2011

BERTIE AHERN should be forced to explain why his government made a deal with the Church that taxpayers would pick up the bill for compensation to child abuse victims, say campaigners.

Survivors of clerical abuse have called for a special Dail inquiry into the 2002 deal that Mr Ahern and his then Education Minister Michael Woods agreed to, which left the taxpayer to pick up a ¤1bn compensation bill for the Catholic Church.

Mugged

Following the furore over the Cloyne Report's conclusions that Bishop John Magee and the Vatican hampered garda inquiries into alleged child abuse in the diocese, Irish Survivors of Child Abuse said it was now time for the Dail to shine light on the deal.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:03 AM

Priest D'Arcy faces spotlight from Miriam over Vatican cover-up

IRELAND
Herald

By Melanie Finn
Friday July 22 2011

High-profile cleric Fr Brian D'Arcy will be one of the guests on Miriam O'Callaghan's RTE chat show tomorrow night in what should make for emotional viewing.

And he will be trying to make sense of this week's historic turn of events in the wake of Taoiseach Enda Kenny's condemnation of the Vatican for trying to cover up the abuse of children, given the findings in the Cloyne report.

"He's someone who has a very interesting take on things, particularly in relation to the Church and where it stands today and he's someone who was abused himself," said a show source.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:00 AM

Kenosha Priest Gets 30 Days For Calls To Teens

KENOSHA (WI)
Channel 3000

KENOSHA, Wis. -- A Kenosha priest has been sentenced to 30 days in jail after he pleaded guilty to making sexually suggestive phone calls to two teenage girls.

The Rev. Michael Nowak was charged with two misdemeanor counts of unlawful use of a telephone. The 58-year-old was convicted Thursday.

A Kenosha News report said Nowak cried and apologized before he was sentenced. He said he knew he violated the trust of his church, his community, the girls and their families.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:43 AM

Kenosha Priest Sentenced For Suggestive Phone Calls

KENOSHA (WI)
WISN

KENOSHA, Wis. -- A Kenosha priest has been sentenced to 30 days in jail after he pleaded guilty to making sexually suggestive phone calls to two teenage girls.

The Rev. Michael Nowak was charged with two misdemeanor counts of unlawful use of a telephone. The 58-year-old was convicted Thursday.

A Kenosha News report says Nowak cried and apologized before he was sentenced. He said he knew he violated the trust of his church, his community, the girls and their families.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:36 AM

The Taoiseach has just got it wrong. ...

IRELAND
Catholic Herald (United Kingdom)

By WILLIAM ODDIE on Friday, 22 July 2011

As the Belfast Telegraph comments today: “The blistering attack by Taoiseach Enda Kenny on the Vatican in the wake of the disturbing Cloyne report on clerical child abuse was a seismic moment in the relationship between the state and the Catholic Church in the Republic. He pulled no punches in his comments which would have been unthinkable in an earlier era. But, even more worryingly for the Church, one of its most senior clerics, Dr Diarmuid Martin, Archbishop of Dublin, weighed in with more allegations of continuing cover-ups by elements in both the Vatican and Irish hierarchy.”

It should be noted, however, that Archbishop Martin indirectly confronts one of the most potentially damaging accusations in the Taioseach’s “blistering” speech, one to which Mr Kenny gave additional prominence by climactically ending on it: the accusation that as Cardinal Ratzinger he denied that the civil authorities had any part in dealing with crimes committed within the Church:

Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger said: ‘Standards of conduct appropriate to civil society or the workings of a democracy cannot be purely and simply applied to the Church.’

As the Holy See prepares its considered response to the Cloyne report, as Taoiseach, I am making it absolutely clear, that when it comes to the protection of the children of this state, the standards of conduct which the Church deems appropriate to itself, cannot and will not be applied to the workings of democracy and civil society in this republic.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:29 AM

Church admits it erred

CANADA
The Windsor Star

The London diocese admits it didn't properly deal with pedophile priests in the past, but defends the previous practice of shipping accused and convicted clergy to new churches without warning parishioners.

Vicar-General Rev. John Sharp said moving a priest to a new church, which often happened when victims or others complained, was seen as a "new opportunity" for them. "You don't necessarily want your past to be a block for you," said Sharp. "That's not an excuse but that's the reality of it with anything.

"Any of us at any work or field we might do, we might realize we have made poor choices and mistakes. We acknowledge that, we would hope the next place we would go to would take a different attitude, and we would not want to see our pasts come along with us."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:25 AM

Catholic child abuse scandals boil around the world

UNITED KINGDOM
National Secular Society

Another priest has been arrested In Germany — where the pope is due to make a controversial visit in September — and has admitted sexually abusing three boys over the past four years.

“There are three young boys that are suspected of being sexually abused by the priest as recently as 2007,” said police spokesman Joachim Grande in the north German town of Braunschweig. “The suspect has substantially admitted to the accusations during police examination.”

Investigators are also re-examining the 2006 death of a 25-year-old man at the priest’s apartment that was ruled a suicide, in the light of the suspected abuse, police said.

Police said they are looking into information that the 46-year-old priest, who is currently in custody, may have abused children as late as 2006. They have set up a special investigation commission called “Peccantia,” Latin for “sin”. The investigation had been running since early July, police said. The priest’s arrest had been planned for this week but police moved in on Saturday as he was about to go on a church-organised trip with minors.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:22 AM

The temptations of a Catholic celebrity – part one

UNITED STATES
Catholic News Agency

By Joe Tremblay

The scandal and uncertainty surrounding the once highly acclaimed preacher, Father John Corapi, still lingers in cyberspace and among casual conversations around kitchen tables.

As Catholics recall Corapi’s teachings that regularly aired on Catholic radio and EWTN, they often ask: How can a world-renouncing priest, faithful to Christ, devoted to the Blessed Virgin Mary, and obedient to the Magisterium of the Church, leave the priesthood? Especially with so many unanswered questions about his character and fidelity! Whatever the truth may be, the circumstances surrounding the investigation, the reports and Corapi’s response to it all, does not look good.

As God only allows evil- be it sin or misfortune -to exist for some greater good, it would be to our advantage to try to learn what that greater “good” might be for those of us who have been inspired by the message and witness of John Corapi (absent the title- Father), as he is now called. As a matter of fact, the lesson to be learned has a lot to do with becoming the victim of our own success; that is, the victim of a successful mission which God uses to fulfill the spiritual needs of many souls. With public recognition and human applause, we sometimes believe ourselves to be better than we really are. As such, we might be inclined to let down our guard and relax our spiritual defenses. But when a member of the clergy succumbs to this illusion, the consequences can be damaging.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:20 AM

Abuser tried to get work at under-age sporting events

IRELAND
Irish Independent

By Greg Harkin
Friday July 22 2011

CHILD abuser Michael Ferry offered to work with a voluntary ambulance service which provides first aid at underage sporting events, the Irish Independent has learnt.

School caretaker Ferry (55) -- jailed for 14 years this week for the rape of four boys -- approached the Order of Malta in the late 1990s offering to set up a branch of the organisation.

However, the ambulance service said last night the branch proposed by Ferry "never really got off the ground" and ceased to exist following his conviction in 2002 for sexually abusing a boy.

There is no suggestion Ferry abused anyone during his involvement with the Order of Malta.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:17 AM

Christine M. Flowers: Charles in charge

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Daily News

By Christine M. Flowers
Philadelphia Daily News

ONE of my favorite songs is Sam Cooke's mournful "A Change Is Gonna Come." The last lines are like an old spiritual:

There's been times that I thought
I wouldn't last for long
But now I think I'm able to carry on
It's been a long, long time coming
But I know a change is gonna come
Oh, yes it will
That's beautiful, but sad.

While sometimes necessary, change is not always a good thing. That's why conservatives are drawn to traditions and customs that defy trendy evolutions.

But when something is beginning to sour, when the parts don't work or you realize housecleaning is in order, change can be beneficial.

So when I learned that my ship had a new captain, I was ecstatic. That ship, made of old oak pews and iron crosses, is my beloved church. The captain is our new archbishop, Charles Chaput. From what I've heard, he's exactly the person to steer us away from the dangerous shoals and into calmer water.

But unlike the Catholics quoted this week in this paper and its sister, I differ on the direction we need so desperately to take.

In a column by the DN's Ronnie Polanezcky, Sister Maureen Turlish was quoted as saying, "There's the institutional church, and then there is the real church - the people."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:13 AM

FG TD wants Bishop to appear before Justice Committee

IRELAND
Breaking News

22/07/2011

Fine Gael TD Charlie Flanagan is calling on Bishop John Magee to answer questions raised by the Cloyne report in front of the Justice Committee.

Last night the Laois-Offaly Deputy revealed on Twitter that he had written to the Chair of the Committee, requesting Bishop Magee be invited to attend a meeting.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:11 AM

Timeline

IRELAND
The Irish Times

Tangled history

1925

The direction of the new Free State following independence in 1922 soon became clear and the cries of Unionists, North and South, in former decades that Home Rule meant Rome Rule was no longer seen as hysteria.

One of the foremost members of a minority church on this island to challenge this trend almost immediately was poet and Church of Ireland member WB Yeats. He was of that generation and indeed that denomination whose vision inspired Ireland’s independence movement.

On June 11th, 1925, Yeats attacked the direction the new State was then taking during an impassioned speech in the Senate, to which he had been appointed by the new Irish government.

The new Cumann na nGaedheal (forerunner of Fine Gael) government was attempting to ban divorce, then allowed under the new Free State constitution.

Yeats said: “I think it is tragic that within three years of this country gaining its independence we should be discussing a measure which a minority of this nation considers to be grossly oppressive.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:35 AM

Hopefully now integrity will take precedence

IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

Friday, 22 July 2011

Such words did not come from the mouth of some King Billy fanatic, but come from the political head of state in the Republic of Ireland, the Taoiseach, Mr Enda Kenny, whom I believe to be a devout, practising believer of the Roman Catholic faith.

Whilst I do not anticipate the destruction of the Vatican or the Roman Catholic faith, these revelations will undoubtedly, cause division amongst its flock.

However leaving this aside for a moment, we have turmoil in the media with equally, other obscene revelations, followed by alleged police corruption, not to mention covert, "back door" politics by political leaders and the influence of media moguls.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:32 AM

Minister demands Vatican response

IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

Friday, 22 July 2011

The Children's Minister has demanded that the Vatican should respond to the Cloyne Report on child clerical abuse within weeks.

Frances Fitzgerald said it would not be acceptable if the Vatican delayed in addressing the Government's concerns about child safety in the Catholic Church and Co Cork diocese.

The minister spoke out after the head of the Vatican press office said the Holy See will "respond in good time".

"The Tanaiste has asked the Vatican to respond urgently," said Ms Fitzgerald.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:29 AM

Cloyne report: Lombardi calls for objectivity

VATICAN CITY
Vatican Radio

Responding to questions from journalists regarding the situation in Ireland following the publication of the Cloyne Report, the Director of the Vatican Press Office, Fr Federico Lombardi, made the following statement:

As already said, I confirm that the Holy See will respond in good time to the questions posed by the Irish Government regarding the Report on the diocese of Cloyne. In any event, we hope the current discussion regarding these dramatic issues may proceed with due objectivity. In this way it can contribute to the cause we must all have most at heart: namely, the protection of children and young people and the renewal of a climate of trust and collaboration, both in the Church and society – something the Pope himself calls for in his Letter to the Catholics of Ireland.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:27 AM

Editor's Viewpoint: Seismic shock for Catholic Church

IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

Friday, 22 July 2011

The blistering attack by Taoiseach Enda Kenny on the Vatican in the wake of the disturbing Cloyne report on clerical child abuse was a seismic moment in the relationship between the state and the Catholic Church in the Republic.

He pulled no punches in his comments which would have been unthinkable in an earlier era.

But, even more worryingly for the church, one of its most senior clerics, Dr Diarmuid Martin, Archbishop of Dublin, weighed in with more allegations of continuing cover-ups by elements in both the Vatican and Irish hierarchy.

While the Vatican may regard the Taoiseach's attack as political expediency, the Archbishop's comments are potentially more damaging. Far from being repentant - as it constantly preaches to its faithful - the church is being accused of ignoring its duty of care to young people and trying to avoid both its moral and legal obligations. Self-protection rather than child-protection is still the ethos in some lofty ranks.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:23 AM

What's wrong with the Catholic Church?

UNITED STATES
Out in Jersey

Written by Toby Grace
Thursday, 21 July 2011

And how did It get that way? - a commentary.

Throughout early medieval history, the issue of "benefit of clergy" was a source of contention between church and state. This was the idea that members of the clergy were not subject to civil law but could only be tried in church courts. If the privilege had been restricted to fully ordained priests, they might have gotten away with it. However, true to its usual practice of taking every opportunity to expand its authority, the Catholic Church allowed the definition of "clergy" to grow to include almost anyone who could read and write, as long as they tonsured their hair (hastily if need be) and put on a robe.

The consequent undermining of civil authority became intolerable. It was this issue that led to the infamous murder of St. Thomas A'Becket, Archbishop of Canterbury, in 1170, by agents of King Henry II.

While largely discredited by the 18th Century, Benefit of Clergy was not formally eliminated in England until 1827. In the U.S., it was eliminated by act of Congress in 1790, though a few special privileges such as the sanctity of the confessional do remain in the law.

In a larger view, the controversy is but one aspect of the conflict between church and state authority that delineated much of the politics of the Middle Ages. It still is not fully resolved. The church has traditionally seen human society as a pyramid reflecting on Earth the hierarchy of Heaven. God is at the apex of the heavenly pyramid, so the Pope is at the apex of the earthly one. The royal dynasties of Europe tended to agree with the pyramid model but saw the king as being at the apex.

Some day a new King of England will be crowned. When that happens, pay attention to the ancient ritual of coronation and you will note the monarch is anointed with sacred oil, like a priest, and also like a priest, takes communion on the inside of the altar rail. This symbolizes the divine nature of kingship and makes the statement that the king embodies both civil and spiritual authority. Emphasizing this, the king is presented with two swords - the sword of justice and Curtana, the Sword of Mercy. On the other hand, the actual crown is placed on the king's head by the Archbishop, thus symbolizing the dispensation of the church.

On the European continent, the conflict is most evident in the violent struggle between Henry IV, the Holy Roman Emperor, and Pope Gregory VII. This battle for supremacy first led to Henry, in 1077, being forced to walk barefoot through the snow as a penitent, begging the Pope's forgiveness, but ultimately to the capture and sack of Rome by Henry's forces and the utter humiliation of Pope Gregory. This power struggle has continued in various forms throughout European history.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:20 AM

Archbishop Chaput and Clericalism

UNITED STATES
National Catholic Reporter

by Ken Briggs on Jul. 21, 2011 NCR Today

The new archbishop of Philadelphia can't complain that he didn't get to describe himself in most favorable terms in his lengthy interview in NCR.

It was his introduction to a wide audience and the portrait is glowing: smart as a whip, loving and humble, a brave spokesman for Catholic truth to dissenters who are, well, confused, without intending to be the least bit unkind.

He might be the one to put Humpty Dumpty together again in the Philadelphia archdiocese and otherwise reverse its fortunes, enchant the rest of the populace and exceed Benedict XVI's faith in him.

If it doesn't work out, however, the cause might be that he appears to carry too much of the baggage of clericalism.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:17 AM

Kevin Myers: Enda Kenny leads the Paisleyite lynch mob

IRELAND
Irish Independent

Friday July 22 2011

WHAT happens when the Taoiseach addresses the Dail like a particularly enraged caller to a phone-in radio programme? Do harmony, lucidity, thought, care and reason result?

Or does public life begin to resemble a mob in a market place? And if the speaker on the platform is sounding inflammatory, what exactly is happening at the back of the crowd, where young men appear to be gathering rocks?

The last person to use such unforgiving and disdainful language about the Vatican was Ian Paisley -- the old Paisley, mind, not the dottily babbling and cheery old grand-uncle that has emerged in recent years. Go back 40 years and you will find in the pages of 'The Protestant Telegraph' precisely the kind of vituperative talk that graced Enda Kenny's speech to the Dail on Wednesday. This now, from the leader of Fine Gael, the party which was once a political extension of the Catholic Church and which faithfully did its bidding: hence the Taoiseach's party and governmental predecessor, Liam Cosgrave, actually voting against his own government's bill to allow the sale of contraceptives.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:14 AM

Quinn to meet with church officials over €200m compensation-fund gap

IRELAND
Irish Independent

Friday July 22 2011

EDUCATION Minister Ruairi Quinn will meet with religious orders seeking more compensation for abuse victims today as State-church tensions continue to mount.

Mr Quinn is meeting with some of the religious orders involved in the controversial 2002 indemnity deal for abuse victims.

The minister wants the religious orders to turn over the ownership of schools in order to make up the massive €200m gap in their contribution to the fund.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:11 AM

Taoiseach's Dail speech grabs the headlines globally

IRELAND
Irish Independent

By Stephen O'Leary
Friday July 22 2011

THE image of Ireland, and in particular of our politicians, has taken a battering in the international media over the past 24 months.

Sporting and cultural successes have gone a long way towards improving this image, but our economic and political woes have remained the subject of headlines around the globe.

Talk of bailouts and bankers has dominated the news across the world.

When Enda Kenny stood up in the Dail on Wednesday to deliver a speech on the Cloyne Report, nobody anticipated either its content or the reaction to it -- both in Ireland and internationally.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:08 AM

Stunned Vatican prepares 'considered' response to Kenny's attack

IRELAND
Irish Independent

By Fionnan Sheahan, John Cooney and Kevin Keane

Friday July 22 2011

THE Vatican has been "stung" by Taoiseach Enda Kenny's unprecedented condemnation of the Holy See over its attempts to cover up sexual abuse in the diocese of Cloyne.

Well-placed sources in Rome revealed last night that senior prelates in the Roman Curia were working on a "considered response" to the Cloyne Report, as demanded by the Government.

"But clearly they have been stung by Taoiseach Enda Kenny's unprecedented cogent criticisms on Wednesday that they were steeped in a climate of 'narcissism'," one source told the Irish Independent.

The Vatican's retreat into silence came after the Pope's spokesman, Fr Federico Lombardi, inflamed the row on Tuesday when he said it was his personal opinion that there was nothing in the advice given by the papal nuncio in 1997 that would encourage bishops to break Irish laws.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:04 AM

Second lawsuit filed against Conception Abbey alleging cover-up over former monk

MISSOURI
The Kansas City Star

By JUDY L. THOMAS
The Kansas City Star

A second lawsuit has been filed against a northwest Missouri abbey alleging cover-up of sexual abuse by a former monk who directed its boys’ choir in the 1980s.

The lawsuit, filed against Conception Abbey by an Oregon man, claims that Bede Parry, a Benedictine monk, molested the plaintiff in the early 1980s when the plaintiff was a minor. At the time, Parry taught the boy piano lessons and led the Abbey Boy Choir of Conception Abbey.

The suit alleges the abbey knew Parry had sexually abused other students before abusing the plaintiff but kept it quiet. “He’s been dealing with this for a long time, and the memories started making it debilitating for him the last couple of years,” said Rebecca Randles, the attorney who filed the suit.

The plaintiff, who Randles said was 14 or 15 at the time, issued a statement saying the abuse left him feeling “outcast, worthless and helpless.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:01 AM

Sex victim of Catholic brother 'alienated'

AUSTRALIA
The Telegraph

A MAN molested by a Catholic brother who was counselling him as a sexual assault victim in the 1980s says he still feels alienated and has vivid memories of the abuse.

The victim, now in his 40s, also said he was not sure if he could trust professional help after suffering at the hands of William Stanley Irwin.

Earlier this year, a NSW District Court jury found the 55-year-old former Vincentian brother guilty of two counts of gross indecency on a male under the age of 18.

The victim told the jury he was 17 when Irwin took him on a road trip from Melbourne and sexually abused him when they stayed overnight at St Stanislaus College in Bathurst.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:59 AM

Priests faced prison, probation, lawsuits

CANADA
The Windsor Star

[22 priests, hundreds of victims]

BY TREVOR WILHELM, THE WINDSOR STAR JULY 22, 2011

Twenty two London diocese priests have been convicted, charged or sued for sexual abuse.

1. Rev. Barry Glendinning. In May 1974 Glendinning pleaded guilty to six counts of gross indecency involving children. He was given a suspended sentence and three years probation. He was also sued in 2006 for abuse at Our Lady of Guadalope parish in Windsor.

2. Rev. Robert Morrissey. In February 1993 he was sentenced to 18 months probation for attempted buggery, indecent assault and assault.

3. Rev. Michael Francis White. In January 1994 he pleaded guilty to one count of indecent assault against a young girl. He was given 18 months probation.

4. Rev. Gary Roy. In February 1998 he pleaded guilty to two counts of indecent assault against boys. He was sentenced to four months in jail.

5. Rev. John Stock. He pleaded guilty in January 1999 to gross indecency against a young boy and was sentenced to 12 months.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:54 AM

July 21, 2011

Church's role in McGahern sacking should have been 'wake up call'

IRELAND
The Irish Times

MARESE McDONAGH

THE CATHOLIC Church’s role in having John McGahern sacked from his teaching post in the mid-1960s should have been a “wake up call”, novelist Colm Tóibín suggested last night.

Speaking in Carrick on Shannon where he delivered the keynote address at the opening of the fifth John McGahern International Seminar and Summer School, Tóibín drew a parallel between McGahern’s experience at the hands of the church and more recent events highlighted in the Cloyne report.

“Here we are 45 years later still dealing with the same problem in the Cloyne report – the priest threatening not to sign the teacher’s pay cheque,” he said.

Tóibín said his late friend had been an iconic figure in two ways. Like Edna O’Brien, he had in his writings been “breaking glass” in addressing subjects about which others remained silent. But he had also been an artist and when he wrote about the pain experienced by children, he did so “not in polemic articles but in beautiful novels”, added Tóibín.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:46 PM

Dieptepunt relatie Ierland en Rome

IERLAND
Friesch Dagblad

Dublin De relatie tussen Ierland en het Vaticaan heeft een dieptepunt bereikt. Dat stellen politieke analisten naar aanleiding van recente uitspraken van de regering op het misbruikschandaal in Ierland. Vorige week werd een onderzoek van de Ierse regering openbaar naar seksueel misbruik door negentien geestelijken in het bisdom Cloyne.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:43 PM

België verlengt verjaringstermijn seksueel misbruik

BELGIE
Kerknieuws

De Belgische politiek heeft de verjaringstermijn van seksueel misbruik opgerekt van tien naar vijftien jaar. Zij neemt daarmee een advies over van de bijzondere commissie seksueel misbruik die naar aanleiding van het misbruik in de Rooms-Katholieke Kerk in het leven is geroepen.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:38 PM

International Reaction

IRELAND
The Irish Times

World Media On Kenny’s Attack

The Guardian

What makes the verbal sortie on the Vatican so groundbreaking is that it is a Fine Gael taoiseach, whose political base lies in the conservative west of Ireland, who has led from the front.

Daily Mail

The astonishing attack was the first time that Ireland’s parliament has publicly castigated the Vatican instead of local church leaders during the country’s 17 years of paedophile-priest scandals.

The Spectator

It would have been unthinkable even perhaps back in the 1990s for a leader of Fine Gael to go as far as take on the Vatican. But this is exactly what happened this week and it marks a significant, historic milestone on Ireland’s journey away from being a mono-Catholic state into a 21st European republic.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:34 PM

Ruined bishops may at least be a catalyst for change

IRELAND
The Irish Times

Like the drunk who insists that this time they really are on the wagon, Catholic Church protestations about dealing with clerical sex abuse of children cannot be believed, writes NIALL MULDOON

IN THE fallout from Judge Murphy’s report into how the diocese of Cloyne handled clerical child sex abuse allegations, we have heard a wide range of shocked, appalled and apologetic spokesmen for the hierarchy, who are at pains to point out that things are different now and that it will not happen again.

This fallout continues to amaze me. As national clinical director at Cari (Children at Risk in Ireland), I am regularly meeting children who have been traumatised by sexual abuse, and they consistently report that one of the biggest aids in their recovery is when their disclosure is accepted and believed by a positive and supportive adult.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:32 PM

Seal of confessional is already protected under Irish civil law

IRELAND
The Irish Times

The courts in Ireland and abroad have backed the right to religious freedom and in turn the right to keep confessions private, writes GERRY WHYTE

IN VIEW of the revelations of the Cloyne report, it is understandable that the Government should conclude that legislation is now needed to address the problem of concealment of child abuse by members of the clergy.

In particular, it has been indicated that such legislation will not permit Catholic priests to rely on that distinctive innovation of the old Irish Celtic church, the sacrament of Confession, as a defence to any charge of failing to report child abuse.

This move has been characterised by some as ensuring the civil law of the State will prevail over the canon law of the Roman Catholic Church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:29 PM

Taoiseach spoke for all states plagued by clerical abuse

IRELAND
The Irish Times

The Taoiseach’s speech is historic not just for Ireland – it is unprecedented in global terms and it is extremely welcome, writes TOM DOYLE

“... the Cloyne report excavates the dysfunction, disconnection, elitism... the narcissism that dominate the culture of the Vatican to this day”

THESE OR similar sentiments have been repeated time and time again by critics of the Vatican’s consistently inadequate response to the clergy sexual abuse nightmare over the past two decades.

What is utterly remarkable and undoubtedly an historic bombshell is that they were spoken by the prime minister of Ireland in the Irish parliament, the Dáil.

These were not the words of just any head of government. The words quoted above began an incredibly direct, realistic and challenging address by the head of the Government of Ireland, long considered to be the most Catholic country on the planet.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:26 PM

Kenny's speech historic and unprecedented in publicly calling Holy See to book

IRELAND
The Irish Times

Enda Kenny broke new ground in his message to the papacy but Irish-Vatican relations have been far from trouble-free, writes DERMOT KEOGH

HISTORIANS ARE professionally reluctant to use words and phrases like “unprecedented”, “turning point”, “watershed” etc to describe in the instant speeches or events which may appear very different when there is disclosure of all the sources. Distance and time need to elapse before the full import of a speech or event may properly be evaluated.

But, by all the rules of the historical profession, Taoiseach Enda Kenny did break new ground on Wednesday, letting it be known that there was only one Government in the Irish Republic and that there was only one law – the law of the State. Without putting a tooth in it, he spoke about the attempts by the Holy See to impede the workings of the State.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:24 PM

Church body not State agency uncovered Cloyne practices

IRELAND
The Irish Times

If any bishop or diocese ever again tries to hide child abuse, they should be exposed, writes IAN ELlIOTT

IT IS certainly true that Bishop Magee and his delegate, Msgr O’Callaghan, should never have been able to get away with incompetent and dangerous practice for as long as they did. However, the issue that now has to be addressed is how can we make sure that something similar can not happen again? How can we be sure that there is not another Cloyne in place today?

To find answers, we are going to have to recognise another truth, one that it is less popular to hold. The inadequate and dangerous practices that took place in the diocese of Cloyne were identified, reported on, and addressed by the church itself through the work of its own National Board for Safeguarding Children. This is acknowledged by the State’s Cloyne report.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:21 PM

Maybe it needs someone like the Taoiseach and words of the force that he used to get through to them

IRELAND
The Irish Times

Fr TONY FLANNERY

A PRIEST'S VIEW: PERSONALLY, I was happy with the Taoiseach’s statement on the Cloyne report. I presume not every member of our association was, but those who rang me about it were delighted.

Many of us priests are very frustrated with the way the Vatican conducts its business. To hear someone in the position of the Taoiseach speak so strongly, so eloquently, and with such dignity, in challenging the Vatican was good.

I know you could quibble with some of the points he made, and he could have acknowledged more fully all the progress that has been made towards better child protection systems in the Irish church. But the Vatican is a very entrenched institution, and it would appear increasingly to have an agenda of dismantling the progress of the Second Vatican Council, and returning to the authoritarianism of the Tridentine church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:18 PM

Vatican calls for 'objective' debate on Cloyne report

ROME
The Irish Times

PATSY McGARRY, PADDY AGNEW and PAUL CULLEN

A SENIOR Vatican spokesman has responded to the Taoiseach’s unprecedented criticisms of the Catholic Church following the Cloyne report by appealing for “objectivity” in the debate.

While the Vatican has still to deliver the formal response demanded of it by the Government to the report, Fr Federico Lombardi promised it would reply “at the opportune moment” to the questions raised.

In a statement issued late last night in Rome, he stated: “It is to be hoped that the ongoing debate on such dramatic issues can be carried out with the necessary objectivity so as to contribute to the matter which should most concern us all, namely the safety of children and of young people and the renewal of a climate of trust and collaboration to this end, in both the church and society, as wished for by the Pope in his letter to the Catholics of Ireland.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:16 PM

Knives will be out for the Irish government soon enough

IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

By David Quinn
Friday, 22 July 2011

The reaction of the Irish government to the Vatican's 1997 letter to the Irish bishops as outlined in the Cloyne Report has been one of almost complete hysteria.

Taoiseach Enda Kenny's statement to the Dail on Wednesday was delivered against this background.

In the sort of language normally associated with a Richard Dawkins or Ian Paisley, he accused the Vatican of "dysfunction, disconnection, elitism . . . narcissism" and effectively of not caring about the "rape and torture of children".

Among other things, Kenny's speechwriters included a wildly out-of-context quote from the then Cardinal Ratzinger.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:13 PM

Ulster child abuser taught sex education in Donegal school

IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

By Greg Harkin
Thursday, 21 July 2011

Paedophile Michael Ferry gave sex education and religion classes to teenagers before he was unmasked as a serial paedophile.

Ferry (55) - jailed for 14 years this week for the rape of four boys - worked as a substitute teacher at a Co Donegal secondary school, former pupils confirmed last night.

Students as young as 13 were given classes by the former seminarian at the Gweedore secondary school - Pobalscoil Gaoth Dobhair - in the 1980s.

It is understood there are no allegations against Ferry from his time working at the school.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:11 PM

Vatican 'stung' by Irish PM Enda Kenny's rebuke

IRELAND
The Irish Times

By Fionnan Sheahan
Friday, 22 July 2011

The Vatican has been "stung" by Irish premier Enda Kenny's unprecedented condemnation of the Holy See over its attempts to cover up sexual abuse in the diocese of Cloyne.

Well-placed sources in Rome last night revealed senior prelates in the Roman Curia were working on a "considered response" to the Cloyne report demanded by the Irish government.

"But clearly they have been stung by Taoiseach Enda Kenny's unprecedented cogent criticisms on Wednesday that they were steeped in a climate of 'narcissism'," one source said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:07 PM

Lack of ambassador should not hamper Vatican response

IRELAND
The Irish Times

PAUL CULLEN

DIPLOMACY: THE DEPARTMENT of Foreign Affairs says the Government’s demand for a response from the Vatican to the Cloyne report will not be hampered by the fact that Ireland currently has no ambassador to the Holy See.

The previous ambassador, Noel Fahey, retired last month, and Ireland’s interests in the Vatican are currently represented by Helena Kelleher, first secretary at the Embassy.

Mr Fahey would be replaced promptly in normal circumstances but because of the strained relations with the Vatican and the economic crisis, no action has yet been taken on an appointment.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:04 PM

Taoiseach was chief architect of broadside, say advisers

IRELAND
The Irish Times

MARY MINIHAN

THE SPEECH: TAOISEACH ENDA Kenny was the “chief architect” of his Dáil speech attacking the Vatican’s role in covering up clerical child sex abuse cases, but he was assisted by a small team of trusted advisers.

Those close to Mr Kenny were adamant the strongest passages came straight from his own pen, while acknowledging that his reference to “the gimlet eye of a canon lawyer” reflected the rhetoric of his long-time speechwriter Miriam O’Callaghan.

Ms O’Callaghan, a namesake of the RTÉ presenter, drafted Mr Kenny’s 2007 ardfheis speech, portions of which he re-used in March this year when speaking at the White House shamrock ceremony.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:02 PM

'Everything I wanted to hear for years,' says victim

IRELAND
The Irish Times

PATSY McGARRY

REACTION: REACTION FROM victims of clerical sex abuse and their representatives to the Taoiseach’s Wednesday Dáil address has been very positive.

Marie Collins, who was abused as a young girl by Fr Paul McGennis, said last night that “Enda Kenny’s excellent speech . . . said everything I have wanted to hear our Government say for many years”.

She said that “finally the message has been sent to the leaders of the Catholic Church, both in Ireland and the Vatican, that they must respect the people and the laws of this country. This must now be followed up with full implementation of the new child protection laws and a thorough investigation of all dioceses.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:59 PM

Vatican to reply 'at opportune moment' to Cloyne questions

VATICAN CITY
The Irish Times

PADDY AGNEW in Rome

VATICAN SPOKESMAN: SENIOR VATICAN spokesman Fr Federico Lombardi last night issued a statement in response to the burgeoning tensions between Ireland and the Holy See, following Taoiseach Enda Kenny’s forthright comments in the Dáil on Wednesday.

Expressing the hope his words might help calm the situation, he said: “I can confirm, as I have already said, that the Holy See will respond at the opportune moment to the questions raised by the Irish Government with regard to the Cloyne report.

“In any event, it is to be hoped that the ongoing debate on such dramatic issues can be carried out with the necessary objectivity so as to contribute to the matter which should most concern us all, namely the safety of children and of young people and the renewal of a climate of trust and collaboration to this end, in both the church and society, as wished for by the Pope in his letter to the Catholics of Ireland.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:51 PM

People's deep anger echoed in Kenny speech, says bishop

IRELAND
The Irish Times

PATSY McGARRY, Religious Affairs Correspondent

THE SPEECH by Taoiseach Enda Kenny to the Dáil on Wednesday “accurately reflects the deep anger of the people of Ireland at the contents of the Cloyne report and underlines the huge challenges ahead for the Catholic Church as a whole”, according to the Catholic Bishop of Dromore, Dr John McAreavey.

However, the Auxiliary Bishop of Armagh, Gerard Clifford, was “taken aback at the force and wide, sweeping nature of the Taoiseach’s address in the Dáil. I acknowledge the reason for the intensity of feeling expressed given the awful findings of the report.”

Fr Brendan Hoban of the Association of Catholic Priests said he did not think anyone could criticise as “factually incorrect” what Mr Kenny said. He reflected people’s “unease, disgust and anger” after Cloyne, Fr Hoban added.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:48 PM

Wrong to assume Holy See's only concern is upholding its reputation

ROME
The Irish Times

PADDY AGNEW

COMMENT: It would be also wrong to think Archbishop Martin is a lone voice in the pontifical wilderness

NOT LONG ago I had dinner with a middle-ranking Vatican figure, very familiar with Irish matters. Some days earlier, Archbishop of Dublin Dr Diarmuid Martin had appeared to criticise the Holy See when he had lamented the “slowness” of the apostolic visitation process.

Knowing that Archbishop Martin is a friend of mine, he asked me: “Why is your friend so strident on this question [clerical sex abuse]?” He then went on to tell me that, as far as he could understand, Archbishop Martin had gone “out of line” in urging the apostolic visitors to hurry up.

Simply, not the done thing.

Others in the Vatican, journalists and clerics alike, who also know of my friendship with the archbishop, often tell me: “I am sorry for that friend of yours but he can forget the red hat [being made cardinal] now”.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:45 PM

Unbekannter verprügelt Pfarrer im Gefängnis

DEUTSCHLAND
Spiegel

Salzgitter - Der unter Missbrauchsverdacht verhaftete Priester aus Salzgitter ist im Gefängnis von einem Unbekannten geschlagen worden. Dies teilte das Justizministerium mit. Vollzugsbeamte hatten den 46-Jährigen am Sonntag verstört in seiner Zelle in der Braunschweiger JVA gefunden.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:43 PM

Ecclesiastical and judicial incompetence in new abuse case in Germany

GERMANY
Catholic Church Conservation

WEDNESDAY, JULY 20, 2011

A Catholic priest from Salzgitter has confessed to molesting three minors. For several years, he had been forbidden contact with a young person. But recently he had not paid attention to the direct order from his diocese.

Salzgitter - Shortly before his arrest on abuse allegations, a Catholic priest from the Salzgitter violated a contact ban imposed by the diocese. The 46-year-old had again approached a teenager whose family in 2006 had demanded more distance from the cleric. The diocese confirmed that on Wednesday.

The priest had clearly broken the 2006 ban on contact. Neither then nor now, was there question of sexual abuse, the diocese spokesman said. For five years, the cleric had acted on the clear instructions of the church.

There were indications that the cleric had stayed in a bed with a boy in 2006 - the family of the accused protested. When the same family again in 2010 reported the incident four years earlier, the diocese put the matter to the prosecutor's office for examination. The iffice did not find any criminal act and stopped the investigation. According to a spokeswoman for the prosecutor's office in Hildesheim, the diocese had reported the facts, without mentioning the name of the priest.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:39 PM

Priester ignorierte Kontaktverbot zu Jugendlichem

DEUTSCHLAND
Spiegel

Salzgitter - Kurz vor seiner Verhaftung wegen Missbrauchsvorwürfen hat ein katholischer Priester aus Salzgitter ein Kontaktverbot des Bistums missachtet. Der 46-Jährige habe sich erneut einem Jugendlichen genähert, dessen Familie bereits 2006 mehr Distanz von dem Geistlichen verlangt hatte. Das bestätigte das Bistum am Mittwoch.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:36 PM

An Irish leader, at last, who speaks truth ...

IRELAND
Irish Central

by Niall O'Dowd

The stars have capsized in Ireland and Britain this week. In Britain the Wicked Witch, alias Rupert Murdoch, is dead and the populace is waking up to a new reality.

In Ireland the Prime Minister Enda Kenny gave the most courageous speech arguably in the country's history when he confronted the Vatican with the fallout from their benighted policy of covering up child sexual abuse.

This is a country remember, where until relatively recently the "special position of the Catholic Church" was enshrined in the constitution.

The speech titled 'This is a Republic not the Vatican" by The Irish Times castigated the Vatican for deciding that Ireland's civil laws did not extend to them.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:27 PM

Kenny’s poll ratings rise even before Vatican attack

IRELAND
Mayo Advertiser

By Colm Gannon

Taoiseach Enda Kenny saw his approval ratings rise by 16 points in an Irish Times/MRBI poll which was published yesterday. The Islandeady-native has seen his satisfaction rating as Fine Gael leader go from 37 points to 53 points since the last poll was taken in February. The publication of the poll which was taken of 1,000 voters across the country between last Friday and Monday came on the heels of the Taoiseach’s speech in the Dáil on Wednesday afternoon in relation to the Cloyne Report.

In an unprecedented attack on the Vatican, Kenny said that the Vatican’s attitude to the investigations that were being carried out in Cloyne was the “polar opposite of the radicalism, the humility and the compassion that the church had been founded on.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:23 PM

Ireland: abuse report leads to Church-State rift

IRELAND
Church Times (United Kingdom)

by Gregg Ryan, Ireland Correspondent

REVELATIONS of another scandal in the Irish Roman Catholic Church over the mishandling of child abuse by clerics have led to an angry response from the Irish government and the promise of new legislation that would send priests to prison for up to five years for non-disclosure of information to the civil authorities — even information gleaned from the confessional.

The new report, prepared by Ms Justice Yvonne Murphy, of the Irish High Court, relates to the diocese of Cloyne, County Cork. It involves allega­tions against several priests — some of whom are now dead — in the period 1996 to 2009, which were ignored even though the RC Church’s safeguarding policy was already in place.

It is critical of the former Bishop of Cloyne, Dr John Magee, and says that he misled the State’s Minister for Children and the Health Service Executive. The report found that Dr Magee handed over responsibility for the abuse issues to the then Vicar General of the diocese, Mgr Denis O’Callaghan, who is described as “uncommitted” to the safety guidelines.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:19 PM

Vatican silent as PM's attack on clerical abuse is praised

IRELAND
Scotman

By Peter Geoghegan
in Belfast

THE once-solid relationship between the Irish state and the Vatican was rocked yesterday as the Republic absorbed the shockwaves of an unprecedented attack on the Holy See's response to child sex abuse cases by Prime Minister Enda Kenny.

The Taoiseach's verbal broadside, accusing the Vatican of downplaying "the rape and torture of children" and hiding behind its status as a sovereign state with a secrecy-obsessed culture and canon laws, was echoed by widespread demands from Ireland's Catholics that the church leadership comes clean on 17 years of abuse scandals.

The power of the Catholic Church has long been one of the most salient aspects of Irish life. Accorded a special position in the 1937 Irish constitution, the Church and its clergy exercised significant social and political control from the early days of the country's independence in the 1920s right up to the boom years of the Celtic Tiger.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:16 PM

Vatican seeks objective debate on abuse after Irish rebuke

VATICAN CITY
Yahoo! News

By Philip Pullella | Reuters
VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - The Vatican called on Thursday for objective debate over a child sexual abuse scandal in Ireland after the Irish prime minister denounced the Holy See as dysfunctional and narcissistic.

The Vatican spokesman said the Vatican would respond at the "opportune" time and place to a motion in the Irish parliament on Wednesday that rebuked the Holy See over allegations it helped cover up child abuse by its priests in Ireland.

In the first such official rebuke of the Vatican by Ireland, the lower house of parliament passed a motion deploring the Holy See for "undermining child protection frameworks."

"We hope that the debate going on about such dramatic issues can develop with the necessary objectivity," spokesman Father Federico Lombardi said in a reference to criticism by Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:06 PM

A Lakota’s Faith and Betrayal

UNITED STATES
Indian Country

By Charles Trimble

July 21, 2011

I recently downloaded a list of Jesuits—priests, brothers and deacons—who have been accused of sexual abuse of children and, presumably, adult parishioners as well. The list is more than 130 names and gives the year of ordination, current status (accused, sued, settled or convicted) and the diocese in which each served at the time of the alleged or proven abuse. And this is only a partial list, for some Jesuit provinces in the U.S. are not yet included. The list does not include information as to whether the victims/accusers were Native American students in mission schools, although the location of some of the dioceses would indicate that it was likely not the case.

Although it is always good to see justice done, I do feel some pain at these revelations. It can be said that I was born a Catholic, for I was baptized within an hour of my birth by a man in our reservation community who was a Catechist (a layman who conducted Catholic prayer meetings—usually in Lakota—in the absence of a priest). My mother told me that I was convulsing at birth and it appeared that I would not live, so the Catechist was called to baptize me. The man happened to be my uncle, John Fast Wolf who, like the Lakota holy man Black Elk, was both a traditional holy man and a Catholic Catechist. I was raised Catholic by my mother, who was a very devout member of the Church. My father, who died when I was not yet 2 years old, was not a Catholic but respected my mother’s wish for all 13 of their children to be baptized, and the 11 of us who survived beyond childhood to be raised as Catholics.

But except for funeral services, I have not been in a church for many years. I am having my own personal crisis of faith, due in part to the exposition of the phenomenal numbers of predatory priests and the damage they have done and are doing to children and their families. And the damage they have done and are doing to people who want to believe, who want to have faith, and whose spiritual life is shaken by these rogue pastors.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:03 PM

22 priests, hundreds of victims

CANADA
The Windsor Star

By Trevor Wilhelm, The Windsor Star

When the terrified teen finally mustered enough courage to report the ongoing sexual abuse Father Barry inflicted on him, the priest he confided in shut the door in his face, flicked off the porch light and left him standing in darkness.

It had taken 15-year-old Richard Corbett a year to finally find the strength to tell his mom about what Windsor priest Barry Glendinning was doing to him. She dragged him down to the rectory.

“She was awful mad,” Corbett said during questioning for his civil lawsuit, which was launched four decades after the abuse. “We talked to Father Nouvion and basically he told us just to go home and pray. He turned the porch light off. Shut the door.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:00 PM

Expert Psychologist Looks at the John Jay Report

UNITED STATES
America Magazine

POSTED AT: THURSDAY, JULY 21, 2011
AUTHOR: JAMES MARTIN, S.J.

When the new John Jay report came out in May--lauded in some quarters and lambasted in others--I remember thinking, "I wonder what Mary Gail Frawley-O'Dea thinks about it." Frawley-O'Dea, a psychologist and author, is one of the country's leading experts on child abuse, and was the only psychologist invited to address the historic 2002 meeting of the U.S. bishops in Dallas. Her book Treating the Adult Survivor of Childhood Sexual Abuse: A Psychoanalytic Perspective, co-authored in 1994, has become a classic text. In 2007, her book Perversion of Power: Sexual Abuse in the Catholic Church, was published; that same year co-edited volume, Predatory Priests, Silenced Victims: The Sexual Abuse Crisis and the Catholic Church, was also released (Full disclosure: that last book was the result of a conference on sex abuse, in which I delivered a paper that became a chapter in her edited book.) In short, she's as much of an expert on the topic of child sexual abuse as anyone can be. So her comments on the John Jay Report on the "Causes and Contexts" of the crisis need to be taken seriously. She offers her analysis at NCR. Some of her conclusions:

It is troublesome to me that [Lead investigator Karen] Terry and her colleagues failed to qualify the limitations of the report or sufficiently use qualifying language. Much, not all, of the John Jay source material was data self-reported by bishops, priests and church-operated treatment centers. Self-reports in research are regularly viewed with skepticism because there is no way to validate the accuracy of what is being surveyed. Since we know from grand jury reports and lawsuits that dioceses and provincial officers have been derelict in sharing all that they know about the history of abuse in their domains, Terry should have expressed the potential limitations of self-reported data -- in any research and particularly in this study.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:55 PM

The Fall of Father Corapi: The Latest Episode of Scandal on The Network Gone Wrong

UNITED STATES
The Remnant

Christopher A. Ferrara POSTED: 7/20/11
REMNANT COLUMNIST, New Jersey

When I undertook the task of writing EWTN: A Network Gone Wrong, I knew I was in for a lot of outraged objections to the project. In the midst of the reigning ecclesial chaos, EWTN’s appalling brew of Catholicism and show business, the sacred and the profane, tradition and novelty, Gregorian chant and rock music, sober piety and charismatic hysteria, spiritual vignettes and sexuality-themed talk shows with parental warnings, has managed to establish itself as the gold standard of Catholic orthodoxy. That EWTN is now widely regarded as a bulwark of the Faith—indeed, the bulwark of the Faith in a Church in crisis—is yet another sign of what Lucia of Fatima repeatedly described as the diabolical disorientation of our time. And woe to anyone who points out the obvious: that a Pope like Saint Pius X would be reduced to apoplexy by a typical day of EWTN programming, which presents a post-conciliar “renewal” Pius X could not have imagined in his worst nightmares.

In the current ecclesial climate, to criticize EWTN is to suffer the consequences that attend any questioning of what common opinion has made into a sacred cow, even if one hastens to affirm (as I do) the sound elements in EWTN’s programming. The critic exposes himself to the easiest of demagogic cheap shots by those who are invested in the ecclesial status quo. For example, a certain “anarcho-capitalist traditionalist”—only in America!—whose views I have contested has defended his position by cloaking himself in EWTN’s mantle of respectability while demonizing me for “attacking EWTN.” Boo. Hiss.

The fall of Father John Corapi, however, prompts me to revisit the Network Gone Wrong in order to note why it has gone wrong. As I showed in my book, the essence of the problem with EWTN is this: Catholicism cannot safely be presented in the form of 24/7 cable television programming by a network—all Catholic, all the time. Any attempt to present our religion to the world in that way will inevitably produce the demotic corruptions necessary to stimulate the widespread popular interest without which massively expensive non-stop TV programming is impossible to sustain financially, especially when it depends on donations.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:05 PM