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November 30, 2016

Argentina: 2 Priests Arrested for Allegedly Abusing Children

ARGENTINA
New York Times

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
NOV. 30, 2016

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina — Two Roman Catholic priests have been arrested on suspicion of sexually and physically abusing at least eight children at a school for youths with hearing disabilities, Argentine authorities say.

The priests are Nicolas Corradi, 82, and Horacio Corbacho, 55. Three other men who worked at the school in northeastern Argentina were also arrested this week. The suspects have not yet commented publicly about the allegations.

The government of Mendoza province has suspended classes at the Antonio Provolo Institute, the school for children with hearing impairment. It has also banned faculty and staff from having any contact with students.

The Mendoza archbishop's office expressed solidarity with the victims and said it is cooperating with authorities.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:31 PM

Trial begins for retired Council Bluffs priest who's accused of invading students' privacy by looking at their genitals

IOWA
World-Herald

By Mike Bell / World-Herald News Service

COUNCIL BLUFFS — The trial of the Rev. Paul Monahan began Tuesday, with the retired Council Bluffs priest and former principal of St. Albert facing five counts of invasion of privacy after allegedly looking at high school students' genitals in a public restroom.

Authorities allege that Monahan, 83, would stand next to students while they were using the urinal during a track meet at Treynor High School on April 4.

Monahan was suspended July 8 from all public ministries, according to the Diocese of Des Moines, pending the outcome of his case.

During court proceedings, Assistant Iowa Attorney General Doug Hammerand brought several of the students to the stand.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:28 PM

Twin Cities archdiocese's bankruptcy costs approach $12 million

MINNESOTA
Minnesota Public Radio

Martin Moylan · Nov 30, 2016

A federal judge next Thursday will consider millions of dollars more in payments to attorneys and other professionals working on the bankruptcy of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis.

The latest requests for fees and expenses total $4.5 million. If the requests are granted, that would bring the tab for legal and related professional service costs for the bankruptcy to about $12 million.

The archdiocese is responsible not only for payment of its attorneys but also those representing creditors.

The archdiocese filed for bankruptcy nearly two years ago. The church's most recent reorganization plan would provide $130 million in compensation to clergy abuse victims.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:24 PM

Catholic priests arrested for sexually abusing 30 disabled children

ARGENTINA
Punch

The Argentine authorities have arrested two Catholic priests for forcing children at a school for the hearing impaired to have oral sex with each other, officials said Wednesday.

The scandal at the Provolo Institute in the western city of Mendoza erupted when a mother went to the authorities to report that her son was being forced into sexual acts with other pupils during school hours as the priests and staff watched.

The victims ranged in age from 10 to 12 years old.

Investigators said they had corroborated the report in interviews with some 30 pupils.

The priests, aged 55 and 82, were charged with aggravated sexual abuse along with two employees.

“The children said (the accused) would take them to a place called ‘God’s little house’ inside the institute, where they would put them and watch them,” prosecutor Fabricio Sidoti said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:22 PM

Nach Missbrauch in St. Nikolai: Betroffener äußert sich

DEUTSCHLAND
SZ/LZ

[Protestant Superintendent Kurt Eckels is said to have abused a 14-year-old 50 years ago.]

In einer persönlichen Erklärung, die wir ungekürzt veröffentlichen, bezieht der damals betroffene Jürgen Kothy Stellung zum Missbrauchsfall im Jahr 1965. Dieser ist im Mai 2016 vom Kirchenkreis Grafschaft Schaumburg öffentlich gemacht und aufgearbeitet worden. Der mittlerweile verstorbene damalige Superintendent Kurt Eckels soll den damals 14-Jährigen im Pfarrhaus der St.-Nikolai-Kirche sexuell missbraucht haben. Die Nennung seines Namens ist von Kothy explizit gewünscht, normalerweise würde unsere Zeitung dies nicht tun.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:33 PM

Bischöfe entschuldigen sich bei Opfern sexueller Gewalt

SUDAFRIKA
Deutschland Fund

[South Africa's top Catholic Bishop Brislin has apologized to the victims of sexual abuse.]

Südafrikas oberster Bischof Brislin hat sich bei den Opfern von sexuellem Missbrauch entschuldigt.

In einem Offenen Brief gestand der Vorsitzende der Südafrikanischen Bischofskonferenz in Kapstadt Fehler bei der Aufarbeitung ein. Die Bischöfe hätten es versäumt, auf entsprechende Hinweise von Missbrauch durch Familienmitglieder, Mitbürger und innerhalb der Kirche zu hören. Priester seien so zu Mittätern geworden.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:29 PM

Quiénes son los curas presos por violaciones a niños sordos en Luján

ARGENTINA
Mendoza Post

[Catholic priests arrested for sexually abusing 30 disabled children - Punch]

por Ricardo Montacuto

Violaciones. Abusos espantosos con acceso carnal. Sodomía en los baños y las habitaciones. Sexo oral con niños muy probablemente durante años, en la soledad y la oscuridad de los fines de semana -especialmente- o cuando menos gente había en la casa. Las historias de chicos abusados en el Instituto Antonio Próvolo para Niños Sordos de Mendoza pueden ser decenas, y apenas si se conoce la punta del iceberg. Casos evitables, además: Uno de los curas detenidos arrastra denuncias de abuso sexual a niños sordos desde 1984, en Verona. Y su caso fue presentado por una red de víctimas en Washington, el año pasado. Sin embargo, el cura estaba trabajando en Mendoza, con decenas de niños y niñas indefensos y a su disposición.

La historia, espantosa, fue develada por el POST el sábado por la noche, y trata de abusos sexuales a niños y niñas sordo mudos, internos del Instituto Próvolo, un colegio católico con internado ubicado en Luján de Cuyo. Los imputados por ahora son tres. Un cura italiano de 82 años de edad radicado en la Argentina, llamado Nicola Corradi (“El padre Nicolás”), otro sacerdote de 56 años llamado Horacio Corbacho, y un tercer individuo del que aún no está claro si es interno o empleado del Instituto, pero que también es una persona hipoacúsica. Los tres hombres están detenidos preventivamente en una comisaría de Carrodilla, donde el fiscal Fabricio Sidoti -el mismo del caso Ayelén Arroyo- está tomando las declaraciones. Podría haber un cuarto detenido, empleado también del Instituto, aunque este dato no fue confirmado.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:26 PM

Don Inzoli abusava dei ragazzini anche durante le confessioni, giutificando la pedofilia con la Bibbia

ITALIA
Rete L'Abuso

[Don Inzoli abused kids even during confessions.]

L'ostruzionismo del Vaticano è stata la principale ancora di salvezza per don Inzoli, un sacerdote che toccava i ragazzini anche durante le confessioni e tentava di convincerli della “bontà” delle sue molestie sessuali citando la Bibbia e sostenendo che la storia di Abramo e Isacco era la prova di come quello fosse il volere di Dio.

Ai tempi tra i massimi dirigenti di Comunione e Liberazione, tornò alla ribalta delle cronache quando venne avvisato tra le autorità ad comizio anti-gay organizzato da Regione Lombardia per volere di Roberto Maroni e l’immancabile assessore Cappellini.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:20 PM

Courage begets courage in Memphis: another survivor of sex abuse at Immanuel Baptist Church tells her story

TENNESSEE
Watch Keep

Karen’s Story

I was manipulated and controlled by my abuser for nearly 2 years. I just recently realized that I've continued to allow him to manipulate me by keeping quiet since then. That's one reason I must get the truth out. He can control me no longer. Last week I filed an official police report, and now I tell my story.

My family helped found Immanuel Baptist Church in Germantown when I was in 8th grade. Near the end of my freshman year, Jim, a volunteer youth worker who was married, began to endear himself to me as a friend/mentor/encourager/confidante. Over the following months, he fostered a sense that he was the only one I could really trust. It was during this time that he began to also turn the "friendship" into more of a "relationship." His physical/sexual pursuit followed quickly. This also continued to escalate, and Jim forcibly raped me. I was falsely burdened with guilt and shame but felt I had nowhere to turn. The "relationship" continued off and on for about another year and a half. He would say things to me like, "If you tell anyone, I'll deny it all." and, "No one will believe you, or they'll say you wanted it." Jim was super skilled at knowing how to keep me under his thumb. After many attempts of trying to escape and him reeling me back in, I finally was able to make a permanent break from him. I told no one during the entire 2 years.

Fast forward about 3 years to my sophomore year of college when I began to make really bad relationship choices and got pregnant. {Let me pause right there. At this point, I seemed to choose guys I knew I couldn't trust, because I knew exactly what to expect from them.} When I told my parents that I was pregnant, the events from when I was 15 & 16 came out too. My dad spoke with police, and it was determined that the statute of limitations had passed on my case. He then spoke with Scott Payne, pastor of the church, and I met with him to give more details about what had happened. Payne set up a meeting with Jim and two men in leadership at the church to confront him. He denied it all. All 3 of those confronting Jim told my dad that they couldn't tell if Jim was telling the truth or not. He agreed to leave the church and nothing else was done.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:18 PM

The verdict is in

AUSTRALIA
Manny Waks

The Australian Jewish News
Editorial
1 December 2016

​TWENTY-ONE months after the community was left shell-shocked by the revelations at the Royal Commission, the final report from last February’s hearings has now been released.

While most of the information came out during the course of the Royal Commission, the findings of the three independent commissioners with no links or associations to the community should not be overlooked.

The findings are based on evidence and testimony provided by rabbis, communal leaders, victims and others. In Melbourne, they found that the leadership failed and we believe it is now time for the final clean-out of the “old guard” – those in senior positions when children were abused, and victims and their families were re-victimised.

As the report states: “The leadership [since 2011] did not create an environment conducive to the communication of information about child sexual abuse. If anything, the mixed messages were likely to have produced inaction. If the Yeshivah Melbourne, the Committee of Management and Rabbi [Zvi Hirsch] Telsner had shown leadership, survivors of sexual abuse and their families and supporters might have received a very different response from the members of the Yeshivah Melbourne community.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:15 PM

'RED HATS' WHO CHALLENGED POPE COULD BE STRIPPED OF RANK OF CARDINAL

VATICAN CITY
The Tablet (UK)

30 November 2016 | by Christopher Lamb

Senior Vatican lawyer says four cardinals who questioned Amoris Laetitia have caused a 'grave scandal' in Catholic church

The four cardinals who have publicly challenged Pope Francis' family life document could lose their red hats, according to a senior Church lawyer. Mgr Pio Vito Pinto, who leads the Vatican's appeal court, says the prelates have caused “grave scandal” by calling into question the Pope’s faithfulness to Catholic doctrine.

Four cardinals, including prominent Francis critic Raymond Burke, want the Pope to clarify his text, “Amoris Laetitia”, which opens the way for divorced and remarried Catholics to receive communion. They vociferously oppose such a move believing it sanctions sexual relations outside of marriage and have submitted a series of questions - known as Dubia - which require a yes or no answer from Francis.

But speaking to Spanish website “Religión Confidencial" Pinto said: “What Church do these cardinals defend? The Pope is faithful to the doctrine of Christ.”

“What they [the cardinals] have done is a very grave scandal, which could even lead the Holy Father to take away their red hats, as it’s happened already in some other times in the Church.” ...

Stripping a cardinal of their position is not, as Pinto points out, without precedent. Last year the Pope ordered that Cardinal Keith O’Brien, the former Archbishop of St Andrews and Edinburgh, should lose his privileges after he was accused of sexual misconduct against some of his priests.

And in 1927 French Jesuit Louis Billot handed back his red hat after a row with Pius X over the cardinal’s support for the conservative French movement Action Française.

So far Francis has refused to respond to the four cardinals' questions but has given interviews arguing those who preach a rigid, black and white version of Catholicism are motivated by psychological rather than theological motives. He also suggested they watch the film “Babette’s Feast” where followers of a strict, joyless version of Christianity are transformed by a good meal.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:24 PM

Cardinal apologizes to man who brought abuse claim in '88

PENNSYLVANIA
Yahoo! News

PITTSBURGH (AP) — A former Roman Catholic bishop of Pittsburgh who now heads the Washington archdiocese has apologized for initially voicing doubts about a seminarian's claims in 1988 that as a young boy he had been sexually abused by a priest.

Cardinal Donald Wuerl says Tim Bendig, who is now a businessman, "told the truth about a priest who was a terrible danger to children and without his action that priest might have continued in the ministry."

"Telling that truth helped all of us to become a better church," Wuerl said in an interview Nov. 23 in the church newspaper in Washington, the Catholic Standard.

Bendig, who lives near Pittsburgh, told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that he had asked church officials to affirm his account amid continuing efforts by some online to discredit him. The cardinal's apology also comes as state prosecutors are investigating how the Pittsburgh Diocese and others across Pennsylvania handled abuse claims going back decades.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:21 PM

Hindu Priest in Sacramento Arrested for Allegedly Killing His Lover’s Husband

CALIFORNIA
India West

The Sacramento, Calif., Indian American community is buzzing about the arrest of Hindu priest Raghua Sharma, who was allegedly involved in killing his lover’s husband.

Ashok Kumar, 60, a resident of Sacramento, was found dead around 11:22 p.m. on Aug. 12, at a home in the 8000 block of Grandstaff Drive, when police responded to a call reporting a burglary in progress.

The Sacramento Bee reported that when the police arrived they found a woman outside the home and a man unresponsive on the floor inside the home. The Sacramento Fire Department arrived and pronounced the man dead. Police said at the time the woman, who was the victim’s wife, told officers that she did not get a good look at the intruder, but investigators did not believe it was a random incident.

The investigators continued the search for suspects, and a month later arrested Kumar’s wife, Rohini Kumar, 53; Tiwan Greenwade, 37; and Vicky Rainone, 47. Following a detailed investigation, the Fiji-born Sharma, 58, was arrested on Oct. 20. Police have not released a motive for the murder, but members of the Hindu American community said Kumar’s wife Rohini was having an affair with Sharma.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:06 PM

PA--Victims respond to “self-serving” abuse apology

PENNSYLVANIA
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

For immediate release: Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2016

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, 314 645 5915 home, davidgclohessy@gmail.com)

Today, the former head of the Pittsburgh Catholic diocese has written another page in his long, shrewd and depressingly semi-successful campaign to pose as a “reformer” on the church abuse and cover up crisis with his self-serving apology to a brave abuse survivor.

[PIttsburgh Post-Gazette]

Decades late, Cardinal Donald Wuerl, now of Washington DC, has apologized to Tim Bendig who was sexually assaulted by a recently-deceased former Pittsburgh priest. We’re highly suspicious of Wuerl’s timing and motives. We believe Wuerl is really seeking to burnish his image and diminish the harm caused to Catholic officials by current investigations by law enforcement into bishops across Pennsylvania and how they have responded and are responding to clergy sex abuse and cover up crisis. We also suspect that Wuerl is posturing in case Washington DC’s City Council ever re-considers suspending the District’s predator-friendly statute of limitations (by appearing to be more sensitive to victims.)

We are sad but not surprised that Wuerl admits one widely-known and proven predator priest was, in fact, a predator. But it’s important to remember that there are at least 47 publicly accused child molesting Catholic clerics in the Pittsburgh diocese and 27 more in the Washington archdiocese. (See BishopAccountability.org) What’s Wuerl doing to make sure that some of them are prosecuted and that none of them are now around kids?

More than nearly any other bishop (except maybe Cardinal Tim Dolan in New York and Cardinal Roger Mahony in Los Angeles), Wuerl has long been at the forefront of spinning his callous and irresponsible moves in child sex cases as somehow positive. We have long wished, and we wish now more than ever, he’d focus more on protecting of kids and their families rather than protecting himself and his peers.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:04 PM

Assignment Record– Rev. Norman L. Heil

OHIO
BIshopAccountability.org

Summary of Case: Norman L. Heil was ordained for the Archdiocese of Cincinnati in 1963. He had a very short career, assisting at St. Michael's in Sharonville and then St. John the Evangelist in Deer Park. By 1966 he had transferred to a Bismarck, North Dakota parish, while still a Cincinnati priest. He left the priesthood by 1967. At some point he moved to California. He died in 1988 at age 51.

In 2004 a woman sued the archdiocese, claiming Heil impregnated her in 1965 when she was 16 years-old. She said he would drive her home from youth group gatherings at St. John's in Deer Park, which is when he made sexual overtures. Further, he would hear her confessions and absolve her from her "sin" of pre-marital sex. When she became pregnant, Heil's accuser claimed the church sent her away and Heil and a nun pressured her into giving up the baby and to keeping its parentage secret. They were said to have told her that if she did not give up the baby, she would be cast out of the church and the baby would not be baptized.

The lawsuit was unsuccessful due to the statute of limitations.

Born: April 11, 1937
Ordained: 1963
Died: July 31, 1988

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:02 PM

Israeli Rabbi Uses Ethiopians, Sudanese Infants for Circumcision Training, Report Shows

ISRAEL
Haaretz

The investigation by Israel's new broadcaster captured mentor, Rabbi Eliyahu Asulin, saying on camera that the poorer strata of the population are 'cannon fodder.'

Inexperienced students of circumcision have been practicing their skills on the babies of the poorest of Israeli society – Ethiopian and Sudanese families – often claiming to be fully-qualified mohels (Jewish ritual circumcisers,) according to a new investigation.

The investigation was conducted by Kan, Israel's new public broadcasting corporation.

According to the investigation, the initiates are students of Rabbi Eliyahu Asulin of Hadera, a rabbinate-approved mohel with over 30 years' experience, who is paid thousands of dollars by the students to teach them the trade.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:58 PM

Rabbi exposed for running a circumcision racket in Israel

ISRAEL
The Freethinker

Rabbi Eliyahu Asulin, of Hadera, above, is being paid thousands by students wanting to become official mohels (circumcisers) and are being sent unsupervised to mutilate Ethiopian and Somalian infants.

According to this report, an investigation conducted by Kan, Israel’s new public broadcasting corporation, revealed that Asulin’s totally inexperienced students are conducting circumcisions among poor families, without accompanying them himself.

He described the young victims as being like “cannon fodder”.

Asulin, a rabbinate-approved mohel with over 30 years’ experience, explained to a Kan investigative journalist that he first instructs the students to make business cards describing their profession as “Mohel.” Then he tells them to distribute their cards at nurseries and post-natal clinics.

In a recording Asulin says:

I’ll lodge a mohel certificate in your name with the rabbinate. That will already give you a year’s head start.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:56 PM

Woman sues school chaplain over alleged sex abuse

IRELAND
Irish Independent

Tim Healy
PUBLISHED
30/11/2016

A woman who claims she was sexually abused by a school chaplain over a three year period has launched a High Court action for damages.

The 28-year-old woman alleges the abuse began when she was a Transition Year student.

"He exploited her continually and regularly", Jack Fitzgerald SC, for the woman, said.

"His attitude to the claim and what she says happened is that none of it ever happened," counsel said.

The woman has sued the priest as well as the school in the South East and the local bishop.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:54 PM

JCCV Statement on Royal Commission Report

AUSTRALIA
JCCV

30 November 2016

The Jewish Community Council of Victoria (JCCV) welcomes the report published yesterday by the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse focusing on the responses of Yeshivah Melbourne and Yeshiva Bondi. The findings in the report are no great surprise but nevertheless are highly disturbing and distressing.

All community organisations, community leaders and community members must be committed to the protection, health and safety of our children as the number one priority of the community. Victims must be respected, listened to and supported. Our institutions must be safe for our children, without exception.

JCCV President Jennifer Huppert stated, “The inaction, lack of reporting and absence of support for victims described in the Report is totally unacceptable. We all expect our community leaders and rabbis to set an example, and that includes protecting the vulnerable, supporting the victimised and having zero tolerance for child sexual abuse.”

Professionals and volunteers working with or around children must be appropriately trained, community organisations must have child protection policies and procedures in place, and religious leaders must reinforce the messages of protecting children, reporting incidents to authorities and supporting victims.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:26 AM

KY--Victims applaud conviction of KY predator priest

KENTUCKY
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

For immediate release: Tuesday, Nov. 29, 2016

Victims group applauds conviction of predator priest
For 30 years, cleric headed a camp for children in Kentucky
SNAP: “We suspect there are other witnesses, whistleblowers & victims”
Staying “trapped in silence” helps no one, victims say, & “endangers kids,” group stresses
Others who “saw, suspected or suffered abuse” should “come forward” with info, victims plead

A Louisville priest who was accused of molesting two children and spent 30 years running a camp for kids has been found guilty in his first trial. He still awaits a second trial by a second alleged victim after the judge ruled to split the cases, even though both men say they were abused at the same camp. A support group for victims is praising those who helped prosecute the priest and begging others who “may have seen, suspected or suffered his crimes or church cover ups” to come forward.

“We’ve talked with two of Fr. Joseph Hemmerle’s victims,” said David Clohessy, director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests. “One of them, Michael Norris, we know well. He is an extraordinarily kind, credible, courageous and compassionate man. And we are grateful that he overcame fear, confusion, shame and self-blame, stood up for himself and others, warned tens of thousands parents about a dangerous cleric and has made it harder for Fr. Hemmerle to hurt other children. We are very, very proud of Michael.”

Fr. Hemmerle was suspended twice – in 2002 and again in 2014 - by Louisville archdiocesan officials because of credible abuse reports.

Assistant Commonwealth Attorney Jeremy Logsdon (270 287 0034) of Leitchfield handled the case. (For more information about the criminal cases: Constance K. Miller (46th JC) ckmiller@prosecutors.ky.gov)

“At least two brave victims came forward reporting Fr. Hemmerle’s crimes. They deserve our gratitude. Their courage has made kids safer,” said Clohessy. “But we firmly believe that there are others with information or suspicions about Fr. Hemmerle. Those individuals should summon the strength to step up and call police or prosecutors right away.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:43 AM

Yeshivah continues to cause victims to suffer

AUSTRALIA
Manny Waks

30/11/2016

​The damning report released yesterday by the Royal Commission into Yeshivah includes findings that 'the responses of leadership groups to the adverse experiences of survivors and their families ranged from inaction to enabling those adverse experiences.’.

It is truly extraordinary and ironic that on the same day the findings have come out, the Yeshivah leadership invited David Werdiger to host an event on its premises as part of an election process brought about by the Royal Commission and intended as a response to the horrific failures of the Yeshivah leadership to act against those who have been part of the attacks against victims and their families for seeking justice in relation to their abuse. Such attacks, from many quarters, have included the use of anonymous blogs, the spreading of vicious lies against victims and their families, and general intimidation. Werdiger is scheduled to host another similar event tonight.

Those who have read my book will be aware of the role Werdiger has played in my personal suffering. Another victim has also alleged his personal and family’s suffering as a result of Werdiger, and has even sought the court’s intervention against Werdiger in connection with his alleged conduct.

Werdiger has written the following to me:

‘Zev, on the other hand, will now be branded a pedophile for life when more likely he's just harmless & messed up [as opposed to David Cyprys]'

Zev is Velvel Serebryanski. Velvel sexually abused me several times inside the Yeshivah Centre Synagogue and at another synagogue. I was around 11-12 years old. I have also spoken directly to another one of Velvel’s alleged victims, and I understand through another victim advocate that there is at least one other alleged victim. Neither is ready at this stage to go through a court case. Velvel is also the cousin of Werdiger.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:41 AM

Legal fees are a barrier to justice for sex abuse victims, inquiry hears

UNITED KINGDOM
The Guardian

Owen Bowcott Legal affairs correspondent

Victims of abuse are finding it increasingly difficult to bring claims for compensation to court because of cuts to legal aid and high legal fees, the inquiry into child sexual abuse has heard.

In its first public seminar, the independent inquiry chaired by Prof Alexis Jay was also told that proposals to introduce a fixed costs regime could add a further barrier to justice.

Luke Daniels, a solicitor with the firm Irwin Mitchell, said it now costs £10,000 to issue a claim. Some cases were later dropped because the costs involved were deemed by the Legal Aid Agency to be disproportionate to any likely future award.

Peter Garsden, a solicitor with Simpson Millar and president of the Association of Child Abuse Lawyers, said legal aid had been cut back heavily. “People who go through abuse cases are generally unable to work,” he said, “and from the lower income thresholds.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:26 AM

Editorial: Challenges for the new bishop

FLORIDA
Tampa Bay Times

The newly named bishop for the Roman Catholic Diocese of St. Petersburg will soon head an institution that spans all of Tampa Bay. Gregory L. Parkes will take over for the retiring Bishop Robert Lynch in January, leading nearly a half-million Catholics throughout Pinellas, Hillsborough, Pasco, Hernando and Citrus counties. He is a fresh face assuming an important role as a moral and spiritual leader during a time of political upheaval both inside and outside the Catholic Church.

The appointment is something of a welcome back for Parkes, currently the bishop of the Diocese of Pensacola-Tallahassee. A Florida State University graduate, Parkes was a banker in Tampa before joining the priesthood 17 years ago. Over daily prayers at Christ the King Catholic Church in Tampa, he realized his calling, left his career and went to seminary armed with considerable life experience. At 6-foot-8, Parkes is an imposing presence but known for his gentle demeanor.

He has plenty to emulate from the tenure of Lynch, who is retiring after 20 years as bishop. Lynch avoided being dogmatic. He has allowed, under the progressive influence of Pope Francis, some breathing room around sensitive topics such as marriage annulments, and he wrote a humble blog post acknowledging the church's role in ostracizing gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people. He has emphasized the importance of forging bonds with other faiths, personified by his close friendship with Rabbi Jacob Luski of St. Petersburg's Congregation B'nai Israel. ...

Parkes will have to contend with the remnants of the church's worldwide priest sexual abuse scandal. The scandal cast an immediate pall on his announcement as bishop, with an abuse survivors' group criticizing his handling of a priest accused of sexual assault in 2013. Parkes should work to continue the healing and rebuilding of trust eroded by the scandal and take care to handle any new allegations with utmost integrity.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:23 AM

Cardinal Wuerl apologizes to Pittsburgh victim of sex abuse

PENNSYLVANIA
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

November 30, 2016

By Peter Smith / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

In his first year as the Roman Catholic bishop of Pittsburgh in 1988, Donald Wuerl publicly voiced doubts about a lawsuit filed by a former seminarian who claimed that when he was a boy, a priest had sexually abused him for years.

Despite the skepticism, now-Cardinal Wuerl did send the priest off for a psychiatric evaluation. The bishop became convinced soon enough that the allegations against the Rev. Anthony Cipolla were credible. He prevented the priest from returning to the ministry even through a high-stakes legal battle with the Vatican in the 1990s.

Now Cardinal Wuerl, the archbishop of Washington, is paying tribute to Tim Bendig, the abuse survivor who filed that initial lawsuit, apologizing for his initial doubts and saying he helped protect other children and reform the church.

Abuse survivors such as Mr. Bendig call on church leaders to “uphold our own moral teaching,” Cardinal Wuerl said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:21 AM

Bishop Michael Kennedy will not move Loud Fence Ribbons

AUSTRALIA
Armidale Express

Rachel Baxter
@rachelbaxter_

30 Nov 2016

Bishop Michael Kennedy has announced the church will not relocate Loud Fence ribbons at the Armidale Catholic Cathedral.

The decision comes after an online petition, started by sexual abuse victim Phil Wright, received hundreds of signatures to protest the move.

“These plans will no longer proceed,” Mr Kennedy said.

“Having now heard more of the concerns of abuse survivors, parishioners, and members of the Loud Fence movement it is clear to me that to proceed with my announced plans for a memorial and for moving the ribbons may cause further hurt rather than alleviating it.”

Loud Fence advocate, Robyn Knight said she was “pleased that he has listened to the community response”.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:19 AM

The JCCV issues Child Safe Policy

AUSTRALIA
J-Wire

November 30, 2016 by David Marlow

The Jewish Community Council of Victoria (JCCV) welcomes the report published yesterday by the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse focusing on the responses of Yeshivah Melbourne and Yeshiva Bondi. The findings in the report are no great surprise but nevertheless are highly disturbing and distressing.

All community organisations, community leaders and community members must be committed to the protection, health and safety of our children as the number one priority of the community. Victims must be respected, listened to and supported. Our institutions must be safe for our children, without exception.

JCCV President Jennifer Huppert stated, “The inaction, lack of reporting and absence of support for victims described in the Report is totally unacceptable. We all expect our community leaders and rabbis to set an example, and that includes protecting the vulnerable, supporting the victimised and having zero tolerance for child sexual abuse.”

Professionals and volunteers working with or around children must be appropriately trained, community organisations must have child protection policies and procedures in place, and religious leaders must reinforce the messages of protecting children, reporting incidents to authorities and supporting victims.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:22 AM

Penalty reform urged for NSW sex offenders

AUSTRALIA
9 News

By AAP

NSW's chief prosecutor has signalled a desire for reforms that would see those convicted of historical child sex crimes punished in line with tougher modern standards.

NSW Director of Public Prosecutions Lloyd Babb SC told the child abuse royal commission legislative change in sentencing historical child sex offences was desirable.

"In my view, there isn't a logic in applying past sentencing standards to offending where the only reason the offending hasn't come forward is through a lack of earlier complaint," he told the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse on Wednesday.

Mr Babb said when sentencing standards had changed over time it was a clear indication that the courts had determined the old sentencing patterns were wrong.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:21 AM

Royal Commission – the rabbis call on named to stand down

AUSTRALIA
J-Wire

November 30, 2016 by J-Wire Staff

The Executive of the Rabbinical Council of Australia and New Zealand (RCANZ), The Rabbinical Council of New South Wales (RCNSW) and the Rabbinical Council of Victoria (RCV) have expressed their deep distress by the contents of the report by the Royal Commission into child sexual abuse at Yeshiva Bondi and Yeshivah Melbourne.Royal-Commission290In a joint statement the rabbis said: “Child sexual abuse has caused unimaginable suffering to the victims in our community, and RCANZ, RCNSW and RCV and their members are totally committed to removing this scourge from our community and from our institutions. We offer our deepest sympathies to the victims and commit ourselves to learning from the failures of the past.

As the Royal Commission has made clear, child sexual abuse was allowed to continue because of actions and inaction by some rabbis and community leaders. Victims were not always believed or supported, adding to the trauma.

We restate a ruling that has been made many times before, that Jewish law requires all allegations of child sexual abuse to be reported immediately to the police and other relevant government authorities. We encourage all professionals working in the Jewish community whose work brings them into any contact with young people to receive specific and detailed training in child protection. We urge all synagogues and schools in our community to ensure proper governance procedures to oversee the work of their staff, to ensure that failings are identified and corrected.

We call on those who have been identified in the report as not fulfilling their legal obligations to protect children to stand down from their public positions. We believe that those who denigrated or undermined the victims have lost their moral right to serve as leaders in our communities. The Rabbinate must demonstrate that Judaism and the Jewish community will not tolerate child sexual abuse and those who perpetrate it, and must support those who have suffered.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:19 AM

Australia's top rabbis urge Yeshivah leaders who failed abuse survivors to step down

AUSTRALIA
The Guardian

Christopher Knaus

Australia’s most senior orthodox rabbis have called on Jewish leaders who failed child abuse survivors to stand down from their public positions.

The rabbinical councils of Australia and New Zealand, New South Wales, and Victoria issued a joint statement on Wednesday in response to the royal commission’s damning findings against Yeshivah communities in Melbourne and Sydney.

The royal commission found the two insular, ultraorthodox Chabad-Lubavitch communities discouraged the reporting of child abuse, failed to act when complaints were made, and treated survivors and their families as outcasts.

The three rabbinical councils said they were “deeply distressed” by the contents of the report, and acknowledged the abuse had caused “unimaginable suffering” to survivors.

The councils called on leaders who had denigrated or undermined victims to stand down from their positions, saying they had “lost their right to serve in our communities”.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:16 AM

Rabbis call for heads to roll at Yeshivah in wake of child sex abuse scandals

AUSTRALIA
Sydney Morning Herald

Timna Jacks

Australia's most powerful coalition of rabbis has for first time called for heads to roll at Yeshivah institutions, after damning findings in the royal commission exposed that child abuse was ignored and enabled by its leaders.

Executives at the Rabbinical Council of Australia and New Zealand, the Rabbinical Council of Victoria and the Rabbinical Council of New South Wales, have joined forces to take the strongest position to date on the need for reform in the community, which has been rocked by wide-ranging child abuse scandals.

The senior rabbinate called on leaders who intimidated victims to vacate their positions, claiming they have "lost their moral right to serve as leaders in our communities".

"We call on those who have been identified in the report as not fulfilling their legal obligations to protect children to stand down from their public positions," read the statement, released on Wednesday.

"We believe that those who denigrated or undermined the victims have lost their moral right to serve as leaders in our communities.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:14 AM

Leaders should quit over abuse: rabbis

AUSTRALIA
The Australian

Australian Associated PressNovember 30, 2016

The leaders of Sydney and Melbourne's Orthodox Jewish communities who failed to protect children from being abused should stand down, rabbis say.

The child abuse royal commission has found leaders of Yeshivah Melbourne and Yeshiva Bondi failed to act on reports of abuse.

The peak body of the Australasian rabbinate said child sexual abuse was allowed to continue because of actions or inaction by some rabbis and community leaders, while victims were not always believed or supported.

Those who the royal commission had identified as not fulfilling their legal obligations to protect children should stand down from their public positions, the rabbinical councils of Australia and New Zealand, NSW and Victoria said in a joint statement on Wednesday.

"We believe that those who denigrated or undermined the victims have lost their moral right to serve as leaders in our communities.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:12 AM

Woman accuses Albuquerque Bishop of sexual abuse

NEW MEXICO
KRQE

By Gabrielle Burkhart
Published: November 29, 2016

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – A Bishop who leads the Albuquerque chapter of one of the largest nationwide churches is accused of being a predator.

A woman claims he seduced her when she was a teen, then sexually abused her, and recently came onto her 6-year-old daughter.

Bishop James L’Keith Jones of the Church of God in Christ, or COGIC, has been preaching in Albuquerque for years. But there may be a sinister side to the Bishop that Kimberly Pollard wants the public to know about.

Pollard claims her eyes were opened after Jones called her 6-year-old daughter “sexy” in a video message back in February.

It’s now part of a $12.2 million civil lawsuit the now-Texas woman has brought against the Bishop and his church that centers around a series of personal video messages exchanged between Pollard and Jones.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:10 AM

The Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry has played down security breaches and says confidential information was not at risk

SCOTLAND
Herald Scotland

Stephen Naysmith

Representatives of the Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry have rejected claims that security lapses have undermined its work.

After a newspaper reported that a door at the inquiry had been left unlocked, potentially allowing access to confidential files, a spokesman denied there had been any risk of access to such files, adding that "rigorous security measures" were always in place.

Reports also stated that details of data protection errors had been sent to the Information Commissioners Office (ICO), including one in which a letter about evidence given by an abuse victim was sent to the wrong address and another in which confidential information was sent to a former panel member, even though he had left the inquiry team.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:07 AM

Mazenod College suspends teacher who hypnotised students

AUSTRALIA
The Age

Henrietta Cook

A Catholic boys school has suspended a teacher after he hypnotised students and allegedly asked one boy to touch himself.

The incident occurred at Mazenod College in Mulgrave and is now at the centre of a police investigation.

The school's principal, Father Christian Fini, revealed in a letter to parents on Monday that "a teacher was using hypnosis techniques on students".

He said the school was speaking to year 10 and 11 students and their families.

"The matter continues to be investigated by authorities beyond the school community," he said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:05 AM

Eviction fears raised 
for priest’s parents

SCOTLAND
Motherwell Times

The elderly parents of a Roman Catholic priest at the centre of legal action could be evicted from their home, it was claimed this week.

It’s the latest twist in a saga that began when Fr Matthew Despard was suspended after writing a book making allegations of sexual misconduct within the church.

Supporters of the priest say his parents, Dickie and Cathie, could be forced out of the North Motherwell home they have lived in for many years if the latest court action brought against him is successful.

They are angry that Bishop Joseph Toal, Bishop of Motherwell, is due to visit St Bernadette’s Church, where the couple are well-respected parishioners, on Sunday, just a day before the legal action is raised at Hamilton Sheriff Court.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:02 AM

Archbishop Byrnes tells Guam "I belong to you"

GUAM
KUAM

Updated: Nov 30, 2016

By Krystal Paco

History has been made. Hundreds of the island's faithful gathered for a morning prayer service to welcome and celebrate newly-appointed Archbishop Michael Byrnes. While he's scheduled to make his permanent move to Guam in January, the new leader of the island's Catholic faithful is visiting for the next few weeks to get acquainted with his new island home.

The arrival of Guam's new archbishop appears to already be closing the gap that has divided the local Catholic church for years. On Wednesday morning, just minutes before a Prayer for the Beginning of the Episcopal Ministry of Coadjutor Archbishop Michael Jude Byrnes service, dozens of members of the Neocatechumenal Way gathered in song to welcome him.

Hailing from Detroit, Michigan, Archbishop Byrnes was appointed to the Archdiocese of Agana on October 31. He was given full authority over the pastoral life of the local church, relieving Archbishop Anthony Apuron. Acting as Guam's interim archbishop since June, apostolic administrator Archbishop Savio Hon Tai Fai provided opening remarks for today's prayer service.

"Pope Francis is confident that Archbishop Michael will promote the healing of the archdiocese," he said, "and the building of bridges for a deeper ecclesial union that everyone desires."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:59 AM

New accusation of sexual abuse filed against church

GUAM
KUAM

Updated: Nov 30, 2016

By Sabrina Salas Matanane

One more case was filed alleging child molestation by local clergy, as the latest person to come forward is Norman J.D. Aguon. The 56-year -old man now lives in Oregon but previously lived in Malojloj during his childhood years. He alleges that between 1969 through 1973 starting when he was 13 years old he was an altar boy at San Isidro Church in Malojloj, where Father Louis Brouillard was the priest.

Like other he alleged that at the Carmelite monastery the priest would walk around naked and molested him on multiple occasions.

The latest case follows ten previously filed against local clergy. Walter Denton, Roland Sondia, Roy Quintanilla, and the Estate of Joseph Sonny Quinata alleged they are victims of sexual molestation by then Mt. Carmel Priest Anthony Apuron. Paul Joseph Borja alleges he was abused by the now-deceased priest of the Chalan Pago Church Fr. Antonio Cruz, and Leo Tudela, Bruce Diaz, Vicente Perez, Vicente San Nicolas and Anthony Vegafria allege they were repeatedly sexually molested by Fr. Louis Brouillard where they served as altar boys and boy scouts in Mangilao, Barrigada and Malojloj.

A canonical trial is underway by the Vatican for Apuron who maintains his innocence while Fr. Louis Brouillard confessed he sexually molested boys while he served as a priest and scout master on Guam in the 1940's through the 1970's. Court documents state Fr. Brouillard told the head of the Catholic Church at the time about what he'd done, but Bishop Baumgartner allegedly told him to do prayers as penance.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:56 AM

Victims advocate: Altoona-Johnstown diocese 'retrenching' in wake of abuse report

PENNSYLVANIA
Tribune-Democrat

By Dave Sutor
dsutor@tribdem.com

An alleged victim of child sexual abuse, who came forward shortly after a grand jury report was released that accused the Roman Catholic Diocese of Altoona–Johnstown of orchestrating a decades-long coverup of pedophilia within its ranks, now finds himself at odds with the diocese over a proposed settlement.

The now 34-year-old man claims he was abused by Brother Stephen Baker from approximately 1996 to 1998 ,when both were at what was then called Bishop McCort High School in Johnstown.

Robert Hoatson, co-founder of Road to Recovery, a support group for victims, said a settlement offer has been made by the diocese and Third Order Regular, Province of the Immaculate Conception, which assigned Baker to Bishop McCort. But Hoatson described the amount as “peanuts.”

Mitchell Garabedian, a Boston-based lawyer who represents the accuser, said, “The diocese and the Franciscans are re-victimizing my client.”

He accused the diocese of acting in an “extremely non-pastoral way.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:52 AM

Louisville priest found guilty of inappropriate touching

KENTUCKY
WAVE

[with video]

By Charles Gazaway, Digital Content Producer

BRANDENBURG, KY (WAVE) - The verdict against a Louisville priest on trial for allegations of indecent or immoral practice was returned Tuesday.

After a two-day trial, a Meade County jury returned the verdict against Fr. Joseph Hemmerle after less than two hours of deliberation.

Hemmerle was facing two counts of indecent or immoral practice. The jury found Hemmerle not guilty on one charge of engaging in a sexual act and guilty on a count of inappropriate touching.

Hemmerle was director and camp counselor for Camp Tall Trees in Meade County for 30 years. He has also served as a parish priest and a teacher at Trinity High School.

The first sexual abuse allegations were brought against Hemmerle in 2001 by Michael Norris, but Hemmerle was not charged and was only reassigned by an internal investigation by the church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:50 AM

Jury recommends 7 year sentence for priest convicted of sex abuse

KENTUCKY
WHAS

BRANDENBURG, Ky. (AP) -- A jury has recommended a seven-year sentence for a Louisville priest convicted of sexual abuse.

The Rev. Joseph Hemmerle was convicted Tuesday of indecent or immoral practices with a child under 15 at his Catholic summer camp in the 1970s.

The 74-year-old priest testified Tuesday during a trial in Meade County that he would occasionally apply calamine lotion to the genitals of child campers, with their permission. But he testified that he never abused the alleged victim, Michael Norris.

Norris said when he was 10 years old, Hemmerle stood him on a stool with no clothes and sexually abused him in Hemmerle's personal cabin.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:48 AM

November 29, 2016

Rabbinic Council of Australia and New Zealand public statement in response to the Royal Commission Report

AUSTRALIA
Manny Waks

30 November 2016

​Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse: Report of Case Study No. 22. The response of Yeshiva Bondi and Yeshivah Melbourne to allegations of child sexual abuse made against people associated with those institutions

The Executive of the Rabbinical Council of Australia and New Zealand (RCANZ), The Rabbinical Council of New South Wales (RCNSW) and the Rabbinical Council of Victoria (RCV) are grateful for yesterday’s report by the Royal Commission into child sexual abuse at Yeshiva Bondi and Yeshivah Melbourne, and deeply distressed by its contents.

Child sexual abuse has caused unimaginable suffering to the victims in our community, and RCANZ, RCNSW and RCV and their members are totally committed to removing this scourge from our community and from our institutions. We offer our deepest sympathies to the victims and commit ourselves to learning from the failures of the past.

As the Royal Commission has made clear, child sexual abuse was allowed to continue because of actions and inaction by some rabbis and community leaders. Victims were not always believed or supported, adding to the trauma.

We restate a ruling that has been made many times before, that Jewish law requires all allegations of child sexual abuse to be reported immediately to the police and other relevant government authorities. We encourage all professionals working in the Jewish community whose work brings them into any contact with young people to receive specific and detailed training in child protection. We urge all synagogues and schools in our community to ensure proper governance procedures to oversee the work of their staff, to ensure that failings are identified and corrected.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:54 PM

Priest convicted of indecent practices with child under 15

KENTUCKY
SFGate

Dylan Lovan, Associated Press Tuesday, November 29, 2016

BRANDENBURG, Ky. (AP) — A Louisville priest was convicted Tuesday of sexually abusing a boy at a summer camp he used to run but was found not guilty on a second count of the same charge.
The Rev. Joseph Hemmerle was found guilty of one count of indecent or immoral practices with a child under 15. Jurors cleared him of the second count.

Jurors in the Meade County trial deliberated for two hours before returning the verdict, then began considering a sentence. Hemmerle faces up to 10 years in prison.

Hemmerle, 74, was charged with committing sexual abuse at his Catholic summer camp in the 1970s. He testified Tuesday that he would sometimes apply calamine lotion to the genitals of child campers, with their permission, but he denied abusing his accuser.

Hemmerle said from the witness stand that he never abused the alleged victim, Michael Norris. The county was the site of Camp Tall Trees, a summer camp Hemmerle ran for three decades beginning in the 1970s.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:35 PM

Man settles De La Salle Rubane House sex abuse claim case for £22,000

NORTHERN IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

By Alan Erwin
PUBLISHED
29/11/2016

A man allegedly subjected to sexual abuse at a Co Down children's home more than 50 years ago is to receive £22,500 to settle his legal action.

The 66-year-old claims he suffered a serious psychiatric injury due to his treatment as a boy staying at Rubane House in Kircubbin.

He sued the De La Salle religious order who ran the home, seeking damages for a "serious and persistent" alleged campaign.

It was confirmed at the High Court in Belfast on Tuesday that his lawsuit has seen resolved.

Solicitor Claire McKeegan of KRW Law, representing the plaintiff, announced a settlement for the sum of £22,500.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:30 PM

Louisville priest found guilty of sexually abusing child at Meade County camp

KENTUCKY
WDRB

Updated: Nov 29, 2016

By Katrina Helmer

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A Louisville priest accused of abusing a boy at camp was found guilty Tuesday of sexually abusing a child in the 1970s.

The jury came back around 5 p.m. Tuesday after deliberating for about two hours.

The victim said in court this week that Fr. Hemmerle inappropriately touched him when he was at a camp in Meade County and that instead of treating his poison ivy like the priest promised, Fr. Hemmerle abused him alone in the priest's cabin.

Fr. Hemmerle denied it ever happened, and all the defense's witnesses say it never could have happened.

The defense brought seven witnesses to the stand Tuesday, including a priest who worked with Fr. Hemmerle at Camp Tall Trees along with five former campers and counselors and Fr. Hemmerle himself.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:32 PM

Convicted sex offender Father Ron Léger granted bail

CANADA
CBC News

Convicted sex offender Father Ron Léger has been granted bail after being arrested on additional charges.

Judge Cynthia Devine ruled he could be released from custody on a $1,000 bond and a $10,000 surety provided by Clerics of Saint Viator.

The former head of Holy Family Parish priest and founder of Teen Stop Jeunesse, Léger had been in custody since his arrest on additional sexual assault charges in October.

In 2015, he was convicted of sexual offences against three males and was later handed a two year sentence. The charges date back to a series of incidents that occurred between 1984 and 2004.

In October he was arrested after four more men came forward alleging sexual abuse. Léger now faces 8 new charges of sexual assault.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:30 PM

Jury weighs priest's fate in molestation case

KENTUCKY
Courier-Journal

Chris Kenning , @ckenning_cj November 29, 2016

After Louisville Catholic priest Joseph Hemmerle took the stand Tuesday to deny that he’d sexually abused a young boy at a summer camp in the 1970s, a Meade County jury at 3 p.m. began considering his fate following a two-day trial.

Hemmerle, 74, faces two counts of immoral or indecent practices after being indicted in 2014 on charges of sex abuse and sodomy. If found guilty, he could get up to 20 years in prison.

Michael Norris, 53, of Texas, testified on Monday that at Camp Tall Trees near Otter Creek Park in 1973, Hemmerle told him to report to his cabin one night to treat poison ivy. Norris said Hemmerle told him to strip and stand on a stool for treatment before touching him sexually with his hands and mouth.

He alerted the archdiocese and Kentucky State Police in 2001, but no charges were brought until a second accuser from the camp came forward in 2014. That case will be heard separately in April of 2017.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:28 PM

Priest says he touched camper's genitals, but denies abuse

KENTUCKY
Daily News

By DYLAN LOVAN Associated Press

BRANDENBURG, Ky. (AP) — A Louisville priest charged with committing sexual abuse at his Catholic summer camp in the 1970s testified Tuesday that he would sometimes apply calamine lotion to the genitals of child campers, with their permission, but he denied abusing his accuser.

The Rev. Joseph Hemmerle said from the witness stand during a trial in Meade County that he never abused the alleged victim, Michal Norris. The county was the site of Camp Tall Trees, a summer camp Hemmerle ran for three decades beginning in the 1970s.

Norris said when he was 10 years old, Hemmerle stood him on a stool with no clothes and sexually abused him in Hemmerle's personal cabin. Norris testified he went to the priest for poison ivy treatment.

The 74-year-old Hemmerle testified that he didn't remember Norris at the camp, but "there's no doubt in my mind" that Norris was not abused by him.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:26 PM

Diaspora pedophiles increasingly use Israel as ‘a haven,’ activists charge

ISRAEL
Times of Israel

BY MELANIE LIDMAN November 28, 2016

The text message came in Hebrew and English. “A warning to the citizens of Israel: JCW [Jewish Community Watch, an organization that monitors child sex abuse] has received credible information that [redacted] has plans to return to Israel in early November, with intentions of moving to the Ramot neighborhood of Jerusalem. The authorities in Israel have been notified, as well as local community leaders.”

The text message, sent to thousands of people on the JCW update list, raced through Jerusalem’s Ramot neighborhood. According to New York’s sex offender registry, the person in question is a Level 2 sex offender, at moderate risk of reoffending. The message continued with more background and allegations against the immigrant offender.

“In 2007, [redacted] had escaped to Israel through Canada in an effort to evade arrest from the police in New York. He was formally charged in absentia with 8 counts of deviate sexual intercourse with two 13-year-old minors on the same day his aliyah status was approved. Months later [redacted] was extradited back to NY where he was convicted in 2009 and served time until his release in February 2012. Currently [redacted] still holds Israeli citizenship under the alias [redacted].”

According to Shana Aronson, the Israel operations coordinator for Jewish Community Watch, the text message is a public service.

“People have a right, after they serve their time, to live their life,” said Aronson. “But the community has a right to know who they are. They shouldn’t be vilified any more than is necessary to protect the community. But nothing is more devastating than a repeat offender. It’s infuriating. It could have been prevented.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:22 PM

HEAD OF VATICAN COURT: CDL. BURKE COULD BE STRIPPED OF RED HAT

SPAIN
Church Militant

by Christine Niles, M.St. (Oxon.), J.D. • ChurchMilitant.com • November 29, 2016

Accuses Burke of causing "grave scandal"

The Dean of the Roman Rota, the Vatican's top canonical court overseeing marriage, is issuing an ominous warning to Cdl. Raymond Burke that he may be stripped of his cardinalate for allegedly causing "grave scandal."

Speaking Tuesday at a lecture at the Ecclesiastical University of San Damaso in Madrid, Abp. Pio Vito Pinto asked, "What Church are these cardinals defending? The Pope is faithful to the doctrines of Christ."

"What they have done is a very serious scandal that could even lead the Holy Father to remove their cardinalate, as has already happened in previous times in the Church," he added.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:43 PM

Who Is Bishop Parkes and How Will He Treat Our Children?

FLORIDA
Legal Examiner

Posted by Joseph H. Saunders
November 29, 2016

In a somewhat surprising announcement, Pope Francis announced yesterday that Bishop Gregory Parkes of Pensacola-Tallahassee will be the new bishop of St. Petersburg. Parkes will be installed as the fifth bishop of the local diocese since its founding in 1968 on January 4, 2017 in St. Petersburg.

In any transition of power, many questions arise in terms of how will the new authority figure govern? What changes will be made? What will be his priorities? As a child abuse advocate and a priest abuse lawyer, I wonder how he will handle abuse allegations. Will he be transparent and deal with sexual abuse survivors in a compassionate and just manner? At this point, I don’t have the answers to any of these questions and his short tenure in Pensacola-Tallahassee provides few indicators as to how he will govern in the much larger Diocese of St. Petersburg. However, we may glean a few thoughts about the bishop from a review of his past. In this post, I’ll attempt to go beyond the local news headlines to reveal what we might expect from this bishop in terms of leadership style, temperament, and communication style. While I am not Catholic, my years as a trial lawyer and taking the depositions of bishops and priests has given me insight into their beliefs, attitudes, and leadership styles.

First of all, anyone who is named a bishop today is skilled in the art of church politics. Priests who become bishops today are not mavericks. They are company men who are taught to tow the company line in terms of doctrine and operational procedures. They climbed the ecclesiastical ladder by forging the right friendships and allegiances with powerful men. They know the system and how it works. Typically, they will hold an advanced degree from a pontifical university in Rome and have spent just enough time in a parish setting to be able to say they have engaged in pastoral work.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:59 PM

Child abuse royal commission: Rabbi inaction failed abuse victims within Yeshiva community

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

By Sarah Farnsworth

The royal commission has delivered its findings into child abuse at Jewish institutions in Melbourne and Sydney, saying that abuse victims were let down by rabbis and their "confused" adherence to the Jewish law Mesirah, leaving them vulnerable to paedophiles.

The commission found many of the lead rabbis at Yeshiva Melbourne and Yeshiva Bondi, as well as synagogues and schools in Sydney and Melbourne followed "a pattern of total inaction" that was wholly inadequate.

The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse's findings vindicate whistle blower Manny Waks, who first exposed abuse within the strictly orthodox and insular sect.

Three commissioners found a "marked absence of supportive leadership for survivors of abuse" and the incorrect application of Jewish law left those who spoke out criticised and isolated.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:41 PM

Looking back with Hon

GUAM
Guam Daily Post

Neil Pang | Post News Staff

"I learned that we need to have more pastoral concern and compassion for those wounded by the church. ... Fundamentally, I feel that most of them still have great love for the church. They protest in order to purify the church." – Archbishop Savio Hon Tai Fai, apostolic administrator of the Archdiocese of Agana

After nearly six months of serving as the apostolic administrator of the Archdiocese of Agana, Archbishop Savio Hon Tai Fai is scheduled to depart Guam and return to his office in Rome sometime tomorrow. But before bidding his final farewells, Hon sat down with the Post to talk about his time serving the local Catholic faithful.

Hon was named apostolic administrator sede plena (when a bishop's see is vacant) for the Archdiocese of Agana by the Vatican on June 6 following an announcement that Pope Francis had relieved Archbishop Anthony Apuron of his duties and appointed an interim administrator for the archdiocese.

When asked if he felt he was prepared for the controversy that truly blossomed after his arrival, Hon stated he was not, but that he was able to tackle the problems facing the archdiocese with the help of local clergy and the laity.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:37 PM

NY--Group blasts Albany bishop over hunger strike

NEW YORK
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

For immediate release: Tuesday, Nov. 29, 2016

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, 314 645 5915 home, davidgclohessy@gmail.com)

We are sad but not surprised that Albany Bishop Edward Scharfenberger refuses to meet with two women who say they were abused by Catholic employees. More and more, bishops are acting like they acted before the church’s abuse and cover up crisis erupted in 2002 – as untouchable potentates, rather than as caring shepherds.

[News10]

[CBS6]

For crying out loud, how hard would it be for Scharfenberger to just sit down with these women? Why must he act like some high and mighty lord callously rebuffing a couple of serfs?

Or at least why won’t he explain how he’s become convinced that they’re somehow not credible?

We admire these brave, persistent women for exposing a bishop who apparently values his own comfort above the comfort of those who say they’ve been wounded.

No matter what church officials do or don’t do, we urge every single person who saw, suspected or suffered child sex crimes and cover ups in churches or institutions to protect kids by calling police, get help by calling therapists, expose wrongdoers by calling attorneys, and be comforted by calling support groups like ours. This is how kids will be safer, adults will recover, criminals will be prosecuted, cover ups will be deterred and the truth will surface.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:34 PM

Royal Commission lawyers deliver call to condemn church on abuse

AUSTRALIA
Mercury

PATRICK BILLINGS, Mercury
November 29, 2016

A FAR-REACHING paedophile ring, involving victims and predators from Tasmania, was active within an offshoot of the Anglican Church, Royal Commission lawyers have alleged in a damning submission.

Counsel assisting the commission Naomi Sharp has also recommended the actions of former Tasmanian Bishop Philip Newell be found to have helped cover up allegations against a serial paedophile priest.

The Anglican Diocese of Tasmania has rejected the proposed finding against Bishop Newell, who was the church’s Tasmanian bishop from 1982 until he retired in 2000.

Its lawyer Neil Clelland, QC, called on the commission to extend Bishop Newell a greater level of “understanding” which it had granted other church officials.

The landmark Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse held public hearings in Hobart earlier this year.

Under the microscope was the diocese and the Church of England Boys’ Society (CEBS) – a scout-like organisation connected to the Anglican Church.

One of Tasmania’s worst paedophiles Lou Daniels, a former Burnie archdeacon, was a prominent member of CEBS.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:57 PM

Milford woman, appearing on The Dr. Oz Show, gives sex assault victims hope

MASSACHUSETTS
Wicked Local Braintree

By Zachary Comeau
Daily News Staff

Barbara Hansen waited 40 years to tell her story of sexual assault and violence, but is now doing so on a global scale.

The Milford author of “Listen to the Cry of the Child: The Deafening Silence of Sexual Abuse,” now speaks about sexual abuse at the hands of her grandfather and later a pastor at a religious camp, all of which is detailed in her book.

Since 1999, Hansen has gone public about her story, which she kept under wraps for almost 40 years.

Just recently, she appeared on "The Dr. Oz Show" alongside 19 other victims of sexual and domestic violence.

The episode is scheduled to be aired Dec. 13, but Hansen has been telling her story in hopes that it will inspire others to eradicate the abuse in their lives.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:55 PM

The common denominator of Jewish sexual scandals

UNITED STATES
Heritage Florida Jewish News

By Richard A. Ries

At least five of the most notorious and sensational national sexual stories of the modern era belong to Jews: The Monica Lewinsky story of the 1990s; the quickly forgotten and tragic Chandra Levy affair in 2001; the duplicitous life of Governor Eliot Spitzer (who prosecuted prostitution rings, only to use them himself); the disturbing pedophilia of Jared Fogel, disgraced Subway pitchman, and now the libidinous Anthony Weiner once again creeping into national life.

To be sure, Jews have no monopoly on national or political sex scandals. Tiger Woods, we learned, was very much scoring off the links. Speaker Dennis Hastert was once third in line to the presidency, and then served time for predatory homosexual behavior on boys during his salad days as a wrestling coach in Illinois. And perhaps one of the more heart wrenching stories of recent times was the lurid details of disgraced Penn State football coach Jerry Sandusky, who will die in prison for rapes of children that went unreported for years.

But the typical American sexual scandal is neither the sexual excesses of a Tiger Woods nor the pedophilia of a Jerry Sandunsky. It is an extramarital affair between two consenting adults. This was true of North Carolinian Senator Jonathan Edwards, who fathered a child with a woman not his wife, and South Carolinian Governor Mark Sanford, who discovered that his soulmate was not his wife but rather a South American woman. This was true of General David Petraeus, who liked his biography so much he slept with his biographer, and this has been true of an array of political figures including the Reverend Jesse Jackson, Mayor Rudy Giuliani, Gary Hart, Speaker Newt Gingrich, and perhaps two dozen other congressional figures now of lesser name recognition. (Some of these figures were guilty of something Americans sometimes rightly find as ugly as adultery and that is hypocrisy: Gingrich was having an affair while calling for Bill Clinton’s ouster, and Jackson was having an affair while dispensing spiritual advice to Clinton when the Lewinsky news made headlines.)

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:53 PM

Gallup’s Bishop Wall apologizes, meets abuse survivors

NEW MEXICO
Gallup Independent

Published in the Gallup Independent, Gallup, N.M., Nov. 21, 2016

Healing prayers offered

By Elizabeth Hardin-Burrola
Independent correspondent
religion@gallupindependent.com

GALLUP – About three dozen people attended the Diocese of Gallup’s first healing service for survivors of clergy sexual abuse Saturday evening.

After the 35-minute service at Sacred Heart Cathedral, Bishop James S. Wall met privately with several abuse survivors and some of their family members.

The service was the first in a series of 36 healing services that will be held across the diocese over the next 15 months. As part of the Gallup Diocese’s Chapter 11 reorganization, Wall agreed to visit each operating Catholic parish or school in which sexual abuse occurred or where identified abusers served.

“I’d like to publicly apologize to you,” Wall told survivors attending the service. He added, “There was no excuse for what was done” to them as children.

“In the name of the church, I say to you this evening, I am sorry for all you have experienced,” Wall said. “Because of the criminal behavior of those you trusted, it was not your fault. It was not your fault.”

Wall also apologized on behalf of the church “for failing to minister to you in ways that were respectful of your human dignity.”

Wall spoke for about 10 minutes, with his homily centered on Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount and the Beatitudes found in the Gospel of Matthew. Wall reminded his listeners, “You are not alone in suffering. But Christ is there for you: to comfort you, to console you and to give you his peace.”

Wall concluded his remarks by saying he prayed that abuse survivors would find peace and healing. “Thank you for your courage to be with us tonight,” he said.

Concern for victims

Prudence Jones, an abuse survivor who lives in Gallup, attended the service with family members. Jones, who agreed to speak publicly, served on the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors in the Diocese of Gallup’s bankruptcy case. The committee represented the interests of individuals who filed sexual abuse claims against the diocese. Jones had both positive and negative reactions to the evening.

“It was very much a healing service in all aspects,” Jones said in a telephone interview after the service. “It was very meaningful.”

Jones said Wall met with her and her family members after the service and prayed with them, which she appreciated.

“I genuinely can see that Bishop Wall is concerned for the victims,” Jones said; however, she added, the actions of the diocese are sometimes contradictory. Specifically, she said, diocesan officials are not very open and transparent with the public.

Jones had mixed feelings about abuse survivors being directed to the Sacred Heart Family Center to meet with the bishop after the service. In one way, it was “singling us out in almost an isolation format,” she said, and in another way she felt her privacy was compromised by the number of people participating in other activities in the building.

Jones also expressed disappointment that Wall is not providing a forum open to the public for questions and comments during his visits to churches and schools in the diocese. That was part of her understanding, she said, of the non-monetary provisions in the diocese’s plan of reorganization.

Jones noted that when the church starts doing what it said it would do, “that builds trust.” Jones added she had hoped diocesan officials would have worked more with her and other committee members regarding the bishop’s visits.

An open door

Another abuse survivor, who asked that her name be withheld, had only positive responses to the healing service.

“It was actually quite powerful,” she said in a telephone interview Sunday. She said that during the service she suddenly had a deep understanding that many of the problems in her life were rooted in the sexual abuse she experienced. “I re-opened that door — that door that I shut as a victim,” she said. “I opened the door again because I had support from the bishop.”

The woman said because of the abuse, she had turned her back on the Catholic Church and didn’t raise her children with the experience of religion and spirituality. She said after attending Saturday’s service, she thinks she might be able to “heal enough to return to church.” Although she hadn’t expected to speak to the bishop after the service, the woman said she made the decision to talk with him.

“I respect that he’s trying to right a wrong,” she said. “He was definitely supportive.”

Prior to attending the healing service, the woman said she had a “me against them” attitude toward the church because she felt “they did this to me.” Now, she said, she has a different perspective toward Wall and his staff. “They have to clean up somebody else’s mess, and that must not be an easy job,” she said.

The next three healing services will be offered in Arizona parishes: Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament in Fort Defiance Nov. 29, Our Lady of Guadalupe in Holbrook Dec. 2 and St. Rita in Show Low Dec. 9.

Abuse survivors who would prefer to meet with the bishop in a different setting should contact Elizabeth Terrill, the victims’ assistance coordinator pro tem, at 505-906-7357.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:45 PM

Media Release: Victims welcome Royal Commission findings into Yeshivah

AUSTRALIA
Manny Waks

​29 November 2016

​On behalf of myself, my family and other victims and survivors of child sexual abuse, I welcome the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse's Report into the responses of Yeshiva Bondi and Yeshivah Melbourne to allegations of child sexual abuse and cover-ups made against people associated with those institutions.

Regarding Yeshivah Melbourne, the Report highlights the failures of the Yeshivah leadership, and in particular the late Rabbi Yitzchok Dovid Groner, which directly resulted in the sexual abuse of numerous children. It also confirms the abhorrent, hypocritical and irreligious way in which the Yeshivah Melbourne community, enabled and/or incited by the lay leadership and Rabbi Zvi Telsner (the son-in-law of Rabbi Groner), responded to victims of sexual abuse, their families and supporters.

It is particularly telling that on all contentious issues, the Commission preferred the evidence given by victims to that of the Yeshivah leadership.

Regrettably, in the year and a half which has transpired since the public hearing into Yeshivah, while there have been many positive developments, the response of the Centre has fallen well short of what ought reasonably to have occurred. It is clear that anybody who was involved in the religious or lay leadership of Yeshivah prior to the Royal Commission has no business being involved in its leadership today. Yet several of the Yeshivah leaders whose conduct was exposed by the Commission have been allowed to maintain their roles or standing within the community.

Now that the Report has formally confirmed the culpability of Yeshivah and its leadership, Yeshivah must immediately act to:

* suspend the ongoing performance of religious leadership functions by Rabbis Telsner, Abraham Glick and Meir-Shlomo Kluwgant on its premises or with its endorsement, including leading prayer services, delivering sermons/lectures and/or performing kosher slaughter or certification activities;

* stand down Rabbi Chaim-Tzvi Groner, the only Board Member who has failed to resign from the Board; and

* stand down Mrs Nechama Bendet, the former General Manager and Board member of Yehsivah who remains in a senior management position there.

On a personal note, as the Commission determined that my family became the secondary victims of the abuse I endured, Yeshivah and other guilty parties should offer them, at the very least, an unequivocal personal apology. As the Report notes, none has been forthcoming to date.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:48 AM

Catholic priest at centre of gay mafia row under pressure to quit church job

SCOTLAND
Daily Record

BY LYNN MCPHERSON

A Catholic priest at the centre of a gay mafia row is being pressurised to resign as parish priest after a three-year battle with the church.

Father Matthew Despard was sent a three-page letter from Bishop of Motherwell, Joseph Toal, calling for him to quit his post at St John Ogilvie’s Parish in Blantyre.

Father Despard wrote a book claiming that a “powerful gay mafia” was operating at the top of the Catholic Church in Scotland and was responsible for sexual ­bullying.

The Amazon-published book, Priesthood in Crisis, was later ­withdrawn from sale.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:39 AM

Submissions for public hearing into Church of England Boys’ Society published

AUSTRALIA
Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse

29 November, 2016

The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse has published the written submissions for the public hearing into the Church of England Boys’ Society and the Anglican Dioceses of Tasmania, Adelaide, Sydney and Brisbane on its website.

The public hearing was held in Hobart in January 2016 and inquired into the response of the Church of England Boys’ Society and the Anglican Dioceses of Tasmania, Adelaide, Sydney and Brisbane to allegations of child sexual abuse.

The public hearing also inquired into the systems, policies and procedures in place within the Church of England Boys’ Society and the Anglican Dioceses of Tasmania, Adelaide, Sydney and Brisbane in relation to:

* Youth camps and activities
* Raising and responding to concerns and complaints about child sexual abuse

The submissions can be found on the Case Study 36 page of the Royal Commission’s website.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:34 AM

Report released into Yeshiva Bondi and Yeshivah Melbourne

AUSTRALIA
Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse

29 November, 2016

The Royal Commission’s report into Case Study 22 – the response of Yeshiva Bondi and Yeshivah Melbourne to allegations of child sexual abuse made against people associated with those institutions – was released today.

The report follows a public hearing in February 2015 which inquired into the response of the Yeshivah Centre and the Yeshivah College in Melbourne to allegations of child sexual abuse made against David Cyprys, David Kramer and Aaron Kestecher. The hearing also inquired into the response of the Yeshiva Centre and the Yeshiva College Bondi to allegations of child sexual abuse made against Daniel Hayman.

The case study examined:

* The influence of Jewish (or ‘halachic’) law on the responses of the institutions to child sexual abuse allegations
* The experiences of survivors of child sexual abuse and their families and the community’s response to them
* The response of the leadership of Yeshiva Bondi and Yeshivah Melbourne to survivors of child sexual abuse
* The actions of perpetrators of child sexual abuse and how their connections to the institutions gave them an apparent power or authority
* The present approaches of Yeshivah Melbourne and Yeshiva Bondi to child sexual abuse

Four survivors of child sexual abuse perpetrated within the Yeshivah Melbourne and Yeshiva Bondi communities gave evidence detailing their experiences of sexual abuse and the impact that had on their lives.

The Royal Commission heard evidence that a Jewish law, known as mesirah, forbids a Jew from informing upon, or handing over another Jew to a secular authority (particularly where criminal conduct is alleged). Under Jewish law gossiping, or speaking negatively of another Jew, Jewish institution or place, is discouraged, even if what is said is objectively true.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:32 AM

Orthodox abuse victims ostracised: Inquiry

AUSTRALIA
Perth Now

Australian Associated Press
November 29, 2016

Victims of child sex abuse and their families were outcast from their Orthodox Jewish communities for reporting the attacks, a royal commission has found.

Leaders of the Yeshivah Melbourne and Yeshiva Bondi failed to act on reports of abuse and Jewish law, or halachic, strongly influenced the response and treatment of survivors, the Child Abuse Royal Commission says in its latest report.

Complaints were made to the head of Melbourne's Yeshivah Centre and the Yeshivah College rabbi Yitchok David Groner about convicted paedophile David Cyprys from the mid-1980s and rabbi David Kramer from the early-1990s.

"The evidence before us establishes that Rabbi Groner's response to reported incidents of child sexual abuse was wholly inadequate," the royal commission's report, released on Tuesday, says.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:25 AM

Child abuse unreported and 'enabled' at Yeshivah, Royal Commission finds

AUSTRALIA
The Age

Timna Jacks

Leaders at Yeshivah Melbourne and Yeshiva Bondi have been accused of failing to report child abuse to police and allowing paedophiles unfettered access to children, in strongly-worded findings of the royal commission.

Investigations into child sexual abuse at the religious Jewish institutions uncovered a "pattern" of inaction in responding to reports of abuse, according to findings released by the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse on Tuesday.

In the face of repeated reports of child abuse, leaders at the Orthodox centres - which operate as synagogues, schools and community hubs - assured victims they would act in defence of the victim, but no action was ultimately taken, the commission said.

"We were told that the responses of leadership groups to the adverse experiences of survivors and their families ranged from inaction to enabling those adverse experiences. The responses were perhaps in part to protect the reputations of individuals or the institutions concerned."

Four survivors of abuse and several rabbis and community leaders, gave evidence about the the scale of child abuse at Yeshivah Centre and the Yeshivah​ College in Melbourne and Yeshiva​ Centre and the Yeshiva College Bondi, in public hearings last year.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:23 AM

Jewish communities discouraged survivors from reporting child abuse, commission finds

AUSTRALIA
The Guardian

Christopher Knaus
Tuesday 29 November 2016

A strict adherence to Jewish law led two ultra-Orthodox communities to treat child abuse survivors as outcasts and discouraged them from contacting secular authorities, the royal commission has found.

On Tuesday the commission released its report on Yeshiva Bondi and Yeshivah Melbourne, two communities belonging to the Chabad-Lubavitch orthodox movement of Judaism.

Chabad communities imposed on their members a strict adherence to orthodox practices and laws, encouraging modesty and gender segregation, while discouraging contact with non-Jews or any discussion of sex, the commission found.

Rabbis were found to have discouraged members from coming forward about abuse and a number resigned during last year’s commission hearing.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:21 AM

Anger over blunder as nationwide child abuse HQ left open all night

SCOTLAND
Scottish Sun

Massive probe is being investigated over series of security gaffes that also saw victim's private letter detailing ordeal sent to wrong address

EXCLUSIVE

BY DOUGLAS WALKER 29th November 2016

THE national child abuse probe HQ was left open overnight in a security blunder.

Staff discovered an unlocked door at the Edinburgh site where highly sensitive information on victims is kept.

Survivors’ spokesman Andi Lavery branded it “shambolic”.

The gaffe emerged as it was revealed the massive nationwide child abuse is being investigated over a series of security blunders.

Bosses reported themselves to the Information Commissioner’s Officer following data protection breaches that survivors claim have been common for “a long time”.

One saw a victim’s private letter detailing their ordeal sent to the wrong address.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:18 AM

Several archbishops, bishops on Guam for Byrnes' first public events

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Haidee V Eugenio , heugenio@guampdn.com November 29, 2016

At least five other archbishops and bishops will join Catholics on Guam for newly-appointed Coadjutor Archbishop Michael Jude Byrnes’ first islandwide Mass Wednesday, at 10:30 a.m.

For 30 years, the island’s Catholic Church was led by Archbishop Anthony S. Apuron, until the Vatican placed him on leave on June 6. He now is going through a canonical trial in Rome over multiple allegations of sexual abuse of altar boys in the 1970s.

Byrnes was appointed as Apuron's successor, should Apuron resign, retire or be removed as archbishop.

“The first public Mass by a new archbishop is historic for Guam and the region,” said St. Jude Thaddeus Catholic Church parishioner and Sinajana Mayor Robert Hofmann, who personally welcomed most of the archbishops and bishops at the airport early Monday and Tuesday. “And to have archbishops and bishops from the region to join Guam for that is a very nice way to welcome Archbishop Byrnes.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:15 AM

Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse: Yeshivah Centre

AUSTRALIA
Courier-Mail

Shannon Deery, Herald Sun
November 29, 2016

MELBOURNE’s Yeshivah Centre has been slammed for covering up sexual abuse in a damning report handed down by the child abuse royal commission today.

The findings come almost two years after the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse started its probe into the orthodox Jewish community’s Melbourne and Bondi centres.

In its 112 page report the commission rejected key testimony given by some of the centre’s top officials and found the community had covered up child sex abuse over several decades.

It also found:

— VICTIMS and other members of the community were discouraged from reporting abuse,

— THERE was a marked absence of supportive leadership for survivors of child sexual abuse and their families, and

— THE leadership did not create an environment conducive to the communication of information about child sexual abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:12 AM

Police to testify at child sex abuse hearing

AUSTRALIA
Sky News

AAP

Senior police officers are expected to testify when a royal commission hearing into the criminal justice system's response to child sexual abuse resumes today.

The royal commission yesterday examined the case of Catholic brother Christopher Rafferty, who was acquitted of child sex crimes against a student of Goulburn catholic boarding school despite a judge being 'well satisfied' abuse occurred.

The commission heard Judge David Frearson said the evidence did not satisfy each particular incident that made up the six charges brought against Brother Rafferty.

- See more at: http://www.skynews.com.au/news/national/nsw/2016/11/29/police-to-testify-at-child-sex-abuse-hearing.html#sthash.OfvZpCIn.dpuf

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:09 AM

Sex abuse victims treated as 'outcasts': Royal Commission report on Jewish groups

AUSTRALIA
Sydney Morning Herald

Rachel Browne

Members of Australia's close-knit ultra-Orthodox Jewish community were discouraged from reporting child sexual abuse because they feared being cast out, a royal commission has found.

The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse released its report into Yeshiva Bondi and Yeshivah Melbourne on Tuesday, following a public hearing last year.

According to the report, survivors of child sexual abuse were treated as "outcasts after it had become known that they had reported their experiences of child sexual abuse to secular authorities."

"The royal commission found the evidence strongly suggested that ... some members of those communities were discouraged from reporting," the report stated.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:08 AM

Vatican unveils new website for Peter's Pence collection

VATICAN CITY
Independent Catholic News (UK)

The Vatican Secretariat of State has unveiled a new website dedicated to the Pope's charitable collection known as 'Peter's Pence'.The site went online yesterday and is currently available in English, Italian, and Spanish. A press statement said it would soon be translated into other languages.

Containing reflections from Pope Francis, the website offers the faithful another way to contribute to Peter's Pence, which is an annual collection held throughout the Catholic world on the Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul.

The funds raised for Peter's Pence go to the Holy Father, who distributes them for the necessities of the universal Church and as charity to those most in need.

Faithful throughout the world will now have the opportunity to "reflect on the significance of their acts and offer, also online, their concrete support for the works of mercy, Christian charity, peace, and aid to the Holy See", the press statement reads.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:04 AM

Colette Browne: Papal visit will remind us just how tangled Church and State still are

IRELAND
Irish Independent

Colette Browne Twitter

PUBLISHED
29/11/2016

The Ireland that Pope Francis visits in 2018 will be vastly different to the theocracy his predecessor John Paul II toured in 1979, but the Catholic Church's grip on education and healthcare remains as tightly clenched as before.

According to Taoiseach Enda Kenny, we're all friends again. After a brief spat in 2011, when Mr Kenny rightly eviscerated the Vatican for its wilful failure to adequately investigate decades of clerical child sexual abuse in this country, relations are now much improved.

"I explained [to Pope Francis] my own difficulties with the Church some years ago and was happy to confirm that Church-State relations are in better shape now than they were for very many years," said Mr Kenny, speaking after his 25-minute meeting with the Pontiff.
So, I suppose this means Mr Kenny no longer thinks "dysfunction, disconnection, elitism and narcissism" continue to "dominate the culture of the Vatican to this day".

Although, the opinion of some high-profile Irish priests who have been silenced by the Vatican, and whose plight Mr Kenny raised, may be different.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:59 AM

Ireland gets ready for first papal visit since 1979

IRELAND
The Guardian

Henry McDonald Ireland correspondent

In 1979, in the early days of his papacy, Pope John Paul II landed at Dublin airport and kissed the ground as he disembarked from an Aer Lingus Boeing 747 named the St Patrick.

Ireland was then a bastion of Roman Catholicism in which the church’s moral authority was unquestioned, divorce was banned and homosexuality illegal.

Over three days, more than 2.5 million people came to see the Polish pontiff. More than 1 million of them packed Phoenix Park in Dublin for an outdoor mass, and hundreds of thousands lined the streets to welcome him. At a liturgy in Killineer, near Drogheda, the pope prayed for an end to the Troubles: “On my knees, I beg you to turn away from the path of violence and return to the ways of peace.”

Ireland has had to wait almost four decades for another papal visit, and in that time much has changed. When Pope Francis arrives in 2018 for a trip announced by the Irish prime minister on Monday, he will find a republic where gay marriage is legal, the Troubles are over and the Catholic church has been damaged, perhaps irreparably, by a deluge of sexual abuse and exploitation scandals.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:54 AM

Women who claim to have been victims of sex abuse by Catholic priests begin hunger strike

NEW YORK
CBS 6

BY HUBERT WIGGINS MONDAY, NOVEMBER 28TH 2016

CAPITAL REGION -- Two women who claim they were once abused by employees of the Catholic Diocese of Albany marched on the sidewalk outside the headquarters of the Catholic Diocese of Albany on Monday. The women, who asked that their names not be published, are requesting to meet with Albany Bishop Edward Scharfenberger.

“I was molested, I was abused as a kid at a suburban parish in Albany County. I reported that to the Diocese about five years ago,” one woman said.

That woman provided her first name to CBS 6 so that we could ask the Diocese about what if any communication she has had with the Church regarding her abuse allegation. Mary DeTurris Poust, director of Communications for the Diocese of Albany, sent this statement to CBS 6: “The Diocese knows this individual well and is in possession of voluminous correspondence spanning several years. She reached out to us in the past regarding unsubstantiated allegations of abuse, and the Diocese provided her with support at that time, as we do for all individuals who bring forward allegations of sexual abuse. If this individual has additional information beyond what she previously provided to the Diocese, we would be happy to arrange a meeting with the Victim Assistance Coordinator as a first step.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:53 AM

How the Catholic Church in Australia aims to enhance anti-abuse efforts

AUSTRALIA
Headlines from the Catholic World

Sydney, Australia, Nov 29, 2016 / 12:08 am (CNA/EWTN News).- In Australia, the Catholic Church has established a new independent non-profit to protect children and vulnerable adults from abuse.

“Catholic bishops and religious leaders in Australia are determined to do all in their power to ensure that abuse, in any form, should never again occur in the Church,” said a Nov. 22 FAQ on the new company. “The setting of consistent national standards and auditing compliance with them is a key element in this.”

The creation of the non-profit company, Catholic Professional Standards Limited, was jointly announced by the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference and Catholic Religious Australia during the bishops’ plenary meeting with religious leaders at Mary MacKillop Place in Sydney, the Diocese of Hobart reports.

The company will develop, audit, and report on professional protection standards across Catholic entities, with a special focus on areas that currently lack standards.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:51 AM

Women claiming to be sexually abused holding hunger strike against Albany Diocese

NEW YORK
News 10

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – Two women are embarking on a hunger strike, foregoing food until they get a meeting with Bishop Edward Scharfenberger to settle their decades-old claims of sexual abuse by clergy.

One says she was a little girl when a priest in an Albany suburb molested her. The other calls herself vulnerable when she was abused and she says she’s traumatized by it to this day.

The victims are showing their faces, but are not releasing their names.

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany saying they won’t comment on the matter because the individual’s communications, demands, and threats to the Diocese have been designated as confidential.

They released this statement:

“The Diocese knows this individual well and is in possession of voluminous correspondence spanning several years. She reached out to us in the past regarding unsubstantiated allegations of abuse, and the Diocese provided her with support at that time, as we do for all individuals who bring forward allegations of sexual abuse. If this individual has additional information beyond what she previously provided to the Diocese, we would be happy to arrange a meeting with the Victim Assistance Coordinator as a first step.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:48 AM

Louisville priest's molestation trial begins

KENTUCKY
Courier-Journal

Chris Kenning , @ckenning_cj November 28, 2016

BRANDENBURG, Ky. — Michael Norris was a 10-year-old Catholic school student from Louisville in 1973 when he spent a week playing games and sleeping in cabins at Camp Tall Trees, a popular summer camp at Otter Creek Park run by the Archdiocese of Louisville.

It was there, Norris told a Meade County jury on Monday, that the Rev. Joseph Hemmerle, who ran the camp for 35 years, asked him one night to his cabin to treat a bad case of poison ivy.

Norris was told to strip and stand on a stool, while Hemmerle applied topical medicine and then used his hands and mouth to touch him sexually, he said, asking him if it felt good. Afterward, he was in shock: “God, what just happened? What is this?” he recalled thinking.

Norris, 53, didn’t tell anyone for years, he said, choking back tears on the witness stand — afraid he wouldn’t be believed. When he finally did as an adult in 2001, it didn’t result in charges until a second accuser came forward more than a decade later.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:47 AM

Kentucky priest on trial for alleged sex abuse at 1970s camp

KENTUCKY
WLKY

By Associated Press

BRANDENBURG, Ky. —
A Texas man testified that he was sexually abused at a summer youth camp in the 1970s by a Louisville Catholic priest who ordered him to strip off his clothes and stand naked on a stool.

Michael Norris testified at a trial in Meade County on Monday that the Rev. Joseph Hemmerle pledged to help Norris with a bad bout of poison ivy but sexually abused him instead. Norris says the incident happened in 1973 when he was a 10-year-old at Camp Tall Trees, about an hour outside Louisville.

Norris first accused Hemmerle of sexual abuse in a 2001 letter he wrote to Hemmerle and Louisville archdiocese officials. Norris lives in Houston but grew up in Louisville.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:45 AM

Royal commission into child sex abuse asked to accept account of Brisbane Archbishop Phillip Aspinall

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

The child sex abuse royal commission has been urged to find current Anglican Archbishop of Brisbane, Phillip Aspinall, had not been wrong in his response to abuse allegations three decades ago.

In January the inquiry heard a suggestion that he had known about a rector's abuse of another boy when they were youth group members in the 1980s.

Hobart hearings lasting over a week examined allegations of a multi-state paedophile ring operating within the Church of England Boys Society (CEBS).

The royal commission investigated the responses of CEBS and the Dioceses of Tasmania, Adelaide, Sydney and Brisbane to allegations of abuse — particularly against multiple known paedophiles involved with the youth group.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:43 AM

Church admits it failed to protect boys from paedophile priest Raymond Cheek

AUSTRALIA
Radio Australia

29 November 2016

Laura Gartry and Roxanne Taylor

The Anglican Church was aware of the inappropriate behaviour of a serial paedophile priest as far back as the early 2000s but failed to act, the Diocese of Bunbury admits.

The Anglican Church was aware of the inappropriate behaviour of a serial paedophile priest as far back as the early 2000s but failed to act, the Diocese of Bunbury has admitted.

Former Anglican priest Raymond Sydney Cheek was found guilty on Monday of sexually abusing five boys, including altar boys and boy scouts, over a 30-year period from 1955 to 1985.

Cheek will be sentenced in February next year.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:40 AM

November 28, 2016

Vatican trial underway for Guam archbishop, says new coadjutor

GUAM
National Catholic Reporter

Joshua J. McElwee | Nov. 28, 2016

A Guam archbishop accused of sexual abuse is now undergoing a Vatican canonical trial, the U.S. prelate Pope Francis appointed to take over leadership of his archdiocese said Monday.

"The trial has started," said Agana Coadjutor Archbishop Michael Byrnes, who was appointed in October to take over daily duties from Archbishop Anthony Apuron.

"It's been initiated," Byrnes continued. "The argument has been exchanged and now it's kind of like in the second phase of investigation, examination."

Byrnes, who had previously served as an auxiliary bishop in Detroit, spoke to reporters Monday just hours after arriving in Guam to take up his new position. His remarks were reported at length by Pacific Daily News.

The Vatican's main spokesman, Greg Burke, did not respond Monday to a request for comment on what Byrnes said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:57 PM

Victim testifies against Louisville priest on trial for sexual abuse allegations

KENTUCKY
WDRB

[with video]

Updated: Nov 28, 2016

By Katrina Helmer

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Fr. Joseph Hemmerle is facing nine counts of sexual abuse and sodomy, and in court Monday, the victim explained to the jury the moment he says his life changed forever.

A victim, who is now 53 years old and lives in Texas, relived what he claims was a nightmare at camp.

"He's sitting right there," the victim said, pointing at Fr. Hemmerle.

Fr. Hemmerle is accused of sexually abusing and sodomizing a 10-year-old boy in the 1970s at Tall Trees Camp in Meade County.

He helped run the camp for at least 30 years.

The victim told the jury that he had poison ivy at camp and that Fr. Hemmerle offered to treat it. But that's when the victim says Fr. Hemmerle abused him.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:54 PM

Can the child abuse inquiry retain the integrity it needs to survive?

UNITED KINGDOM
The Conversation

Donna Peach
Lecturer in Social Work, University of Salford

When the then home secretary Theresa May commissioned the enormously ambitious Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse in July 2014, victims and survivors of abuse had reason to hope that justice would be served. For decades, the sexual abuse of children in England and Wales was ignored or hidden and, some would argue, perpetuated by institutions meant to protect them. To many survivors, the inquiry is a chance to make good at last.

Investigating decades of alleged child sexual abuse, taking in a number of large institutions and potentially thousands of victims is an enormous task. Nobody can have thought it would be be easy – but the road so far seems rockier than anyone anticipated.

The inquiry is now under the stewardship of its fourth chair, Professor Alexis Jay. Over the years it has been dogged by resignations, acrimony and reports of misconduct by senior figures. Allegations of racism were reportedly levelled against its former chair, Dame Lowell Goddard, who is now refusing to testify to the committee about her resignation. There are also reports of an allegation of sexual assault against Ben Emmerson QC, who also resigned from the inquiry’s team. Both Goddard and Emmerson categorically deny the allegations against them.

Now it faces a new crisis: one of the major survivor groups involved, the Shirley Oaks Survivors Association (SOSA) has withdrawn its participation in what it termed a “contrived investigation”.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:52 PM

Gregory Parkes, new bishop of Diocese of St. Petersburg, heard call to priesthood at Tampa's Christ the King

FLORIDA
Tampa Bay Times

WAVENEY ANN MOORE, TIMES STAFF WRITER

ST. PETERSBURG — Tampa Bay's almost half-million Roman Catholics have a new leader.

Bishop Gregory L. Parkes, 52, head of the Pensacola-Tallahassee Diocese, and a former Tampa banker, will succeed Bishop Robert N. Lynch, who has led the Diocese of St. Petersburg for almost 21 years.

Parkes will be installed the fifth bishop of the diocese, which serves Catholics in Pinellas, Hillsborough, Hernando, Citrus and Pasco counties, on Jan. 4 at the Cathedral of St. Jude the Apostle.

The official announcement of Parkes' appointment came early Monday, but the new St. Petersburg bishop said he had been told by Pope Francis' representative in Washington, D.C., on Nov. 12.

Parkes, who has been a bishop for only four and a half years, said he was attending a fall meeting of American Catholic bishops in Baltimore when he heard the news. He said he immediately went to pray in the chapel set up for the group, thanking God for his goodness and asking for his help. He said he has always trusted that when God calls, he provides what is needed to fulfill his will.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:47 PM

MEDIA RELEASE – NOVEMBER 28, 2016

PENNSYLVANIA
Road to Recovery

The Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown, PA, and the Franciscan Friars Third Order Regular of Pennsylvania continue to disrespect a childhood sexual abuse victim of Br. Stephen P. Baker, TOR, a deceased serial pedophile and member of the Franciscan Friars Third Order Regular of Pennsylvania, who served in the Altoona-Johnstown Diocese, by not reasonably settling his claim

A childhood sexual abuse victim of Br. Stephen P. Baker, TOR, from Bishop Mc Cort High School, Johnstown, PA, is being re-victimized and prevented from healing by the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown, PA, and the Franciscan Friars Third Order Regular of Pennsylvania, because they are not acting reasonably in the settling of his claim

What
A press conference announcing that the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown, PA, and the Franciscan Friars Third Order Regular of Pennsylvania refuse to justly and fairly settle the claim of a childhood sexual abuse victim of Br. Stephen P. Baker, TOR, from Bishop Mc Cort High School, Johnstown, PA, causing the childhood sexual abuse victim to be re-victimized, prevented from healing, and feeling disrespected

When
Tuesday, November 29, 2016, at 11:30 am

Where
On the public sidewalk across from the front entrance of Bishop Mc Court High School, 25 Osborne Street, Johnstown, PA 15905

Who
Robert M. Hoatson, Ph.D., Co-founder and President of Road to Recovery, Inc., a non-profit charity based in New Jersey that assists victims of sexual abuse and their families, including several childhood sexual abuse victims of Br. Stephen P. Baker, TOR, in Michigan, Ohio, and Pennsylvania

Why
John Doe was a minor child attending Bishop Mc Cort High School in Johnstown, PA, when he met a serial pedophile, Br. Stephen P. Baker, TOR. From approximately 1996-1998, when he was approximately 15-17 years old and a student at Bishop Mc Cort High School, John Doe was repeatedly sexually abused by Br. Stephen P. Baker, TOR. Now, at age 34, John Doe has courageously come forward to report the sexual abuse that caused him great harm. He expected to receive a timely and fair response from the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown, PA, and the Franciscan Friars Third Order Regular of Pennsylvania. Instead, the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown and the Franciscan Friars Third Order Regular Pennsylvania have been unfair and unjust in settling John Doe’s claim, causing him to feel re-victimized, and disrespected, thus preventing him from healing. The Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown and the Franciscan Friars Third Order Regular of Pennsylvania will be called upon to settle John Doe’s claim in a timely, fair, and just manner, and allow “John Doe” to heal.

Contacts
Robert M. Hoatson, Ph.D., Road to Recovery, Inc. – 862-368-2800 – roberthoatson@gmail.com
Attorney Mitchell Garabedian, Boston, MA – 617-523-6250 – garabedianlaw@msn.com

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:46 PM

Archbishop Charles J. Chaput on vocations, elections, apostolic exhortations

PENNSYLVANIA
Catholic World Report

Jim Graves

Archbishop Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M. Cap., 72, was born in Concordia, Kansas, in 1944. He attended Catholic schools in the area before joining the Order of Friars Minor Capuchin, St. Augustine Province, in 1965.

He was ordained to the priesthood in 1970. He served as a teacher and pastor an in a variety of roles in his community. He was ordained Bishop of Rapid City, South Dakota, in 1988, and appointed Archbishop of Denver in 1997. Pope Benedict XVI appointed him Archbishop of Philadelphia on July 19, 2011, and he was installed as the 13th bishop and ninth archbishop of Philadelphia on September 8, 2011.

Archbishop Chaput recently corresponded with CWR about a number of topics, including specific challenges in Philadelphia, current controversies over “Amoris Laetitia”, and the recent U.S. Presidential election.

CWR: You’ve now been in Philadelphia five years. What were some of the most pressing challenges you recognized, and how have you met those challenges?

Archbishop Chaput: Starting in 2003 the Church in Philadelphia weathered nearly a decade of very tough clergy-abuse related issues. We’re still dealing with the aftermath. To his credit, my predecessor, Cardinal Justin Rigali, worked very hard to reach out to victims and restore confidence in the Church, but morale among our people and priests naturally suffered. There was a lot of confusion and anger. Rebuilding trust was a priority, and we’ve made some good progress. Philadelphia has a very faithful presbyterate, and I think that kept things together during the worst of the crisis.

The biggest surprise for me was the financial state of the archdiocese. It was very precarious, and our problems had nothing to do with paying lawyers or making abuse settlements. We were $300 million in debt. We had schools, ministries and parishes that had long since effectively died because of demographic changes, but we were keeping them open by covering their annual losses. And we’d been doing it for many years -- with the best of intentions, but at massive cost. Putting our finances in order was painful for everybody. We’re still not entirely “there.” But again, we’ve made very good progress.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:43 PM

Bamboozled: How Catholic hospitals get away with letting pensions go broke

NEW JERSEY
NJ.com

By Karin Price Mueller | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com
on November 28, 2016

Pensions have been on their way out for a long time.

They're expensive for employers, and they require lots of rule-following and reporting.

But the sponsors of pension funds run by Catholic hospitals have taken advantage of an IRS rule, which, in effect, gives zero protection to retirees if the pension goes bust.

The U.S. Supreme Court could decide as early as Monday whether it will consider such pension cases, impacting thousands of New Jerseyans who worked for St. Peter's University Hospital in New Brunswick and tens of thousands of Catholic hospital employees nationwide.

The decision could also affect another Catholic hospital pension that's months away from going belly up, Bamboozled has learned.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:13 PM

Tenth victim files sex abuse complaint

GUAM
Guam Daily Post

Neil Pang | Post News Staff

Shortly after Coadjutor Archbishop Michael Byrnes made his first public comments to local media, yet another victim of alleged child sexual abuse filed a complaint with the Superior Court of Guam.

Fifty-six-year-old Inarajan resident Anthony Vegafria filed his complaint yesterday shortly before 5 p.m. accusing Rev. Louis Brouillard of molesting him as a child when he was an altar boy at the Malojloj Parish in the early '70s.

Vegafria's complaint marks the fifth such complaint to be filed against Brouillard and is the second complaint that states the abuse took place at the former Carmelite Monastery in Malojloj.

Brouillard, 95, is a retired Roman Catholic priest who now resides in Minnesota. He has publicly admitted to sexually abusing boys under his care as both a parish priest and a scout master for the local chapter of the Boy Scouts of America, in both letters and a video statement.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:10 PM

New coadjutor archbishop pledges to bridge divides

GUAM
Guam Daily Post

Neil Pang | Post News Staff

During his first public address to local media, newly-appointed Coadjutor Archbishop Michael Byrnes said he was excited to take his first steps on Guam upon seeing the lights from his airplane vantage point early that morning.

Byrnes arrived on Guam around 1 a.m. Monday morning and, after a short respite, took to work immediately with a Mass of recollection with Catholic clergy at 11 a.m. and a press conference with local media.

Around 1 p.m., Byrnes greeted media representatives stating he felt it necessary that he come to Guam ahead of the official start of his ministry so he can come to better know his new home.

Byrnes is scheduled to remain on Guam for three weeks, after which he will return to Detroit until he makes the permanent transition to his new post as coadjutor archbishop for the Archdiocese of Agana.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:08 PM

Crown Office expects flood of new sexual offence cases

SCOTLAND
Scottish Legal News

The Crown Office is expecting a flood of new sexual offence cases associated with the ongoing Scottish Child Abuse inquiry as more victims come forward.

Catriona Dalrymple, procurator fiscal for police and engagement said that the courts can expect a spate of new cases: “We already deal with cases of historic and institutional abuse, but because of the ongoing Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry we may receive more of these cases or inquiries from survivors about their cases,” she said.

She explained that new training will be given to prosecutors to ensure they can “engage effectively with survivors”.

The Crown Office previously commissioned a video entitled Safe To Say telling the story of a man who was abused as a child after being taken into care and his fight for justice.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:04 PM

FL--Victims blast new Tampa/St. Pete Catholic bishop

FLORIDA
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

For immediate release: Monday, Nov. 28, 2016

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, 314 645 5915 home, davidgclohessy@gmail.com)

We are disappointed that Bishop Gregory Parkes of Pensacola-Tallahassee has been promoted to head Florida's second-largest market as the fifth bishop of St Petersburg. We disapprove of his handling of a 2013 predator priest case and see no signs that might indicate that he be any better than his predecessor in dealing with the church’s continuing child sex abuse and cover up crisis.

In 2013, Parkes waited five weeks before suspending an accused priest, Fr. Michael A. Cherup.

[BishopAccountability.org - letter]

[BishopAccountability.org]

Then, adding insult to injury, Parkes let Fr. Cherup deny the allegations in the parish bulletin, which only serves to deter other victims, witnesses and whistleblowers from speaking up, thus endangering more kids. It’s also a callous move that rubs even more salt into the already deep and still fresh wounds of victims.

Before leaving Tallahassee, Parkes should tell his flock where Fr. Cherup is now. If he’s unsupervised, Parkes should insist that he stay in a remote, secure, independently-run treatment center, so that kids can be safer and that he can get therapy.

(Cherup had worked at Cathedral of the Sacred Heart in Pensacola and St. Mary Parish in Fort Walton Beach.)

We hope Parkes will put a higher priority on the safety of kids and the healing of victims in his new post. Specifically, we urge him to permanently post on his diocesan website the names, photos and whereabouts of every child molesting St. Petersburg-Tampa cleric, whether alive or dead, diocesan or religious order, or admitted, proven or credibly accused. (About 30 US bishops have done this. It’s the bare minimum a bishop should do to protect the vulnerable and heal the wounded.)

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:00 PM

Pope Francis Appoints Bishop Gregory L. Parkes as Next Bishop of St. Petersburg

FLORIDA
Roman Catholic Diocese of St. Petersburg

November 28, 2016

With great joy we announce that His Holiness, Pope Francis, has appointed Most Reverend Bishop Gregory L. Parkes, Bishop of Pensacola-Tallahassee, Florida, as the fifth bishop of the Diocese of St. Petersburg, Florida! Bishop Parkes succeeds the retiring Bishop Robert N. Lynch, who has served as Bishop of St. Petersburg since his installation in 1996.

There will be a press conference introducing Bishop Parkes at 10:30 a.m. on November 28, 2016. The press conference will be broadcast live on diocesan radio station WBVM Spirit FM 90.5 (listen online at http://www.myspiritfm.com) and live video streamed on our website and Facebook page.

CLICK HERE TO WATCH THE LIVE VIDEO STREAM

“I am filled with joy that Pope Francis has appointed Bishop Parkes as the new Bishop of the Diocese of St. Petersburg. I invite the faithful of our diocese and of the Diocese of Pensacola-Tallahassee to join me in offering prayers of thanksgiving and to pray for Bishop Parkes as he transitions to shepherd the people of the Diocese of St. Petersburg,” Bishop Lynch said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:24 AM

Other Pontifical Acts, 28.11.2016

VATICAN CITY
Vatican Information Service - Bulletin

The Holy Father has appointed Bishop Gregory L. Parkes of Pensacola-Tallahassee, United States of America, as bishop of Saint Petersburg (area 8,228, population 3,009,838, Catholics 445,456, priests 330, permanent deacons 133, religious 330), United States of America. He succeeds Bishop Robert N. Lynch, whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same diocese was accepted by the Holy Father.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:22 AM

Taoiseach says Pope will visit Ireland in 2018

IRELAND
RTE News

Taoiseach Enda Kenny has said Pope Francis has confirmed he will travel to Ireland in August 2018.

It comes after Mr Kenny held a 23-minute meeting with the pope in the Vatican.

The meeting was requested following the invitation to the pope by the Irish Catholic Bishops' Conference to visit Ireland for the World Meeting of Families in two years' time.

The Taoiseach would not confirm or deny that he had raised the issue of Irish priests who had been silenced by the Vatican over their published views on issues such as the ordination of woman and priestly celibacy.

A reliable clerical source told RTÉ News that Mr Kenny was to raise the cases of six Irish priests who have been silenced by the Catholic Church. The source said the Taoiseach spoke to at least one of the priests concerned before departing for Rome.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:27 AM

Former priest guilty of altar boys sex abuse

AUSTRALIA
The West Australian

Shannon Hampton - The West Australian on November 28, 2016

A former WA Anglican priest has been found guilty of historic child sex offences against five boys dating back to the 1950s.

After facing a five-day District Court trial, a jury today found Raymond Sydney Cheek guilty of assaulting the boys, who are not known to each other, between 1955 and 1985.

Mr Cheek was convicted of two counts of indecently dealing with a child under age 14, two counts of indecent assault and one count of committing an act of gross indecency with a male person.

Four of the men came forward after news of Cheek being charged over an incident that occurred in Williams in 1985 became public.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:25 AM

Former Anglican priest Raymond Cheek convicted of child sex abuse

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

By Laura Gartry

A former Anglican priest has been found guilty of sexually abusing five boys over a 30-year period in Western Australia's south.

Raymond Sydney Cheek was found guilty of committing an act of gross indecency and two counts each of indecent assault and indecent dealings with a child between 1955 and 1985.

District Court judge Ronald Birmingham said Cheek "had a position of trust and was a respected member of the church … the impact on the victim was significant."

Abuse survivors and their supporters wept as the jury read out the verdicts.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:21 AM

New Guam bishop seeks healing after sex scandal

GUAM
Manila Times

HAGATNA, Guam: Guam’s new Catholic archbishop acknowledged Monday that “shocking” child sex allegations had damaged the Church’s standing in the Pacific territory, saying he wanted to promote healing.

Archbishop Michael Byrnes arrived in Guam early Monday and immediately set about meeting clerics to outline his plans in the wake of the scandal that has rocked the deeply religious island.

Byrnes’ predecessor, Archbishop Anthony Apuron, stands accused of molesting altar boys in the 1970s and is facing a canonical trial in Rome.

Byrnes said he understood there were strong feelings among Guam’s faithful towards Apuron, who has denied any wrongdoing.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:35 AM

Nine Guam priests with sex abuse allegations

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Haidee V Eugenio , heugenio@guampdn.com November 28, 2016

Another Guam law firm is reaching out to those who were sexually abused by clergy as children.

Gov. Eddie Calvo recently signed a law, lifting the statute of limitations on civil suits against those accused of sexually abusing children, as well as the institutions that supported them. The new law is in response to allegations by former altar boys who said they were sexually abused by Guam clergy decades ago. Among those accused was Archbishop Anthony Apuron, who was a parish priest in Agat in the 1970s.

The first Guam law firm to file lawsuits against the Archdiocese of Agana and its priests is Lujan & Wolff LLP, which has so far filed nine lawsuits on behalf of seven former altar boys and former Boy Scouts. Attorney David Lujan said more lawsuits will be filed in the weeks ahead, and the defendants include institutions other than the Catholic church.

Lujan's clients have alleged abuse by Apuron and former Guam priest Louis Brouillard, who has admitted to abusing altar boys decades ago.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:33 AM

Jehovah's Witnesses 'demonstrated a serious failure' to protect children: Royal Commission

AUSTRALIA
Sydney Morning Herald

Rachel Browne

The Jehovah's Witness Church in Australia failed to protect children in its care from sexual predators, a report has found.

The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse delivered its report into the organisation on Monday.

It stated that: "Children are not adequately protected from the risk of child sexual abuse in the Jehovah's Witness organisation and [the commission] does not believe the organisation responds adequately to allegations of child sexual abuse."

Survivors of sexual abuse within the church and senior church members appeared before a public hearing last year.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:28 AM

Child abuse survivor worries community 'fatigued' by issue

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

By David Marchese

A child abuse survivor says his biggest fear is that the momentum generated by the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse will dissipate, stopping any meaningful reform.

Peter Gogarty was abused by a Catholic priest in the New South Wales Hunter region as a child and now spends his time advocating for other survivors.

He will address a hearing of the royal commission beginning in Sydney today.

The hearing is examining issues raised in a consultation paper on criminal justice that has been prepared by the royal commission.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:26 AM

Child Sexual Abuse Royal Commission: Judge’s decision to acquit Catholic brother under fire

AUSTRALIA
Australian

November 28, 2016

DAN BOX
Crime reporterSydney
@DanBox10

An alleged child sex victim worries the man he says abused him will still have access to children after being acquitted despite a judge saying he was “well satisfied” the crimes had taken place.

The extraordinary verdict is being examined by the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse after being handed down in Sydney’s District Court in August of this year.

The alleged victim told the commission this morning that he was sexually abused by a Catholic brother, Christopher Rafferty, at St Patrick’s College in Goulburn, NSW, between 1984 and 1987.

The man, who cannot be named, subsequently attempted to commit suicide and eventually decided to report the alleged abuse to police, despite being told by his local Catholic priest not to do so, the commission heard.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:24 AM

Judge acquitted Catholic brother despite being ‘satisfied’ he had sexually abused schoolboy

AUSTRALIA
Herald Sun

Janet Fife Yeomans, The Daily Telegraph
November 27, 2016

A judge said he was “well satisfied” that a Catholic brother had sexually abused a boy at school - but then acquitted him of the abuse.

The extraordinary case in the NSW District Court is being examined by the royal commission into child sex abuse but while the victim and the crown prosecutor Lou Lungo will be giving evidence, Judge David Frearson is not being called as a witness.

No judges have been called to the long-running commission to explain their decisions while solicitors have been criticised for the way they have handled cases.

The decision not to call Judge Frearson was made despite the commission being told today that the case “raises a number of issues of importance to the royal commission’s work on criminal justice”.

“This prosecution raises the issue of whether a criminal justice response can be said to be reasonably available to condemn and punish child sexual abuse if an accused is acquitted in circumstances where the judge was ‘well satisfied’ that the accused sexually abused the complainant,” counsel assisting the commission Jeremy Kirk SC said today.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:21 AM

Victims caught in legal catch-22s after reporting sexual abuse to authorities

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

By Michelle Brown

The royal commission examining institutional responses to child sexual abuse has heard from survivors who were caught in a legal "catch-22s" after they reported their abusers.

outcomes for abuse victims, without prejudicing the right of the accused to a fair trial.

Two survivors told the inquiry they had spent years trying to forget the abuse they received at the hands of clergymen as children — before deciding to make complaints.

The inquiry heard this often prevented survivors from providing the courts with enough specific detail to satisfy the requirement for proof of an offence "beyond reasonable doubt".

The inquiry heard this often prevented survivors from providing the courts with enough specific detail to satisfy the requirement for proof of an offence "beyond reasonable doubt".

In one case described as "particularly striking" at the inquiry, a judge acquitted priest Christopher Rafferty of six counts of sexual abuse against a survivor codenamed FAB at St Patricks College, in Goulburn, between 1984 and 1987.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:18 AM

Another man says Father Brouillard molested him as a youth

GUAM
KUAM

Updated: Nov 28, 2016

By Sabrina Salas Matanane

The number of claims of sexual abuse by local clergy continues to grow. 56-year-old Anthony Vegafria is the latest victim to come forward and accuse Father Louis Broiullard of sexual molestation. He alleges that the abuse started when he was 12 years old and continued until he was 15. Court documents state that he was an altar boy at the San Isidro Church in Malojloj where Father Brouillard was a priest.

Vegafria alleges that while at the Carmelite monastery, Father Brouillard would walk around naked, smoking his pipe. in some instances he would expose his penis through the hole in his boxer shorts. Vegafria adds the priest would talk about pornography and on many occasions would give altar boys leftover wine from mass.

Aside from masturbation and oral copulation at the monastery, Vegafria who was also a boy scout alleges Father Brouillard would sexually molest him and other Boy Scouts during outings. Like others, he alleges that the Archdiocese of Agana at the time knew about the sexual abuse- but did nothing.

The latest cases add to the nine previously filed in court. Last Wednesday 63-year-old Paul Joseph Borja and 59-year-old Vicente San Nicolas came forward, alleging sexual molestation by local clergy. Borja alleged that while he was an altar boy at the Our Lady of Peace and Safe Journey Catholic Church in Chalan Pago, the now-deceased Father Antonio Cruz sexually molested him. Borja was 12 at the time.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:15 AM

Archbishop Michael Byrnes speaks on his first day on Guam

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Editor's Note: The Pacific Daily News plans to live stream the press conference on its Facebook page.​ This story will be updated live throughout the press conference.

Archbishop Michael J. Byrnes is scheduled to greet the island's media at 1 p.m. today at the Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral-Basilica conference center in Hagåtña.

Byrnes, the coadjutor of the archdiocese, arrived on Guam around 1 a.m. today. He has been named as the successor to Archbishop Anthony Apuron, should Apuron retire or be removed from office.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:07 AM

Archbishop Apuron's trial entering its second phase in Rome

GUAM
Pacific News Center

Written by Janela Carrera

Documents have been presented to as many as three judges who are overseeing Archbishop Apuron's canonical trial, according to Archbishop Byrnes.

Guam - Suspended Archbishop Anthony Apuron's canonical trial is already in its second phase, according to his replacement, Coadjutor Archbishop Michael Byrnes.

At a media conference today, Byrnes revealed that he's had the chance to meet with Apuron during a bishops conference in Baltimore a few weeks ago. He says the two had a cordial conversation and added that the two did not engage in any deep discussion.

"He came to a visit to speak with me. It was a very cordial, not real deep converation but just kind of exchanging our stories just; kind of getting to know each other. It was nice," said Byrnes.

Byrnes also talked about Apuron's canonical trial for which the ousted archbishop is facing multiple allegations of rape and sexual abuse dating back to the 1970s.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:05 AM

New archbishop arrives, prepares for permanent leadership

GUAM
Pacific News Center

Written by Janela Carrera

Coadjutor Archbishop Michael Jude Byrnes spent his morning meeting with local clergy members for a "morning of recollection."

Guam - It's an historic day for the catholic community as Coadjutor Archbishop Michael Jude Byrnes arrived guam this morning, welcomed by some dignitaries, including Governor Eddie Calvo.

But his arrival is marked by some troubling times within the catholic community as it prepares to face legal battles over decades of alleged sexual abuse, some from the former head of the church, Archbishop Anthony Aapuron. Byrnes arrived at 1 am and at 10 am he was already on his first task, meeting with local clergy.

"Mainly I joined them at benediction and then we had mass, celebrated mass together, which was, I was really grateful. That was my first encounter with my brother priests," said Byrnes.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:03 AM

Catholics welcome Archbishop Byrnes to Guam

GUAM
KUAM

Updated: Nov 28, 2016

By Krystal Paco

After decades of leadership under Archbishop Anthony Apuron, today marks a new chapter for the Archdiocese of Agana. Coadjutor Archbishop Michael Byrnes is on Guam and already getting to work meeting with the island's faithful.

Guam is a long way from his home in Detroit, Michigan. "When I saw the lights to the island, I said it's really there. I was excited," he shared with island media. "I'm happy to be here!"

On October 31, the Vatican appointed Bishop Michael J. Byrnes as coadjutor archbishop for the Archdiocese of Agana. Rather than wait until January when he's scheduled to make the permanent move to Guam, he touched-down on island early Monday morning for a three-week visit. "I just felt like it was important to come. If I'm going to be the guy, I want to meet you all. And also there's a sense of urgency just to know and we need to know each other. I don't want to be a mystery figure," he said.

The day was spent meeting with local clergy for a day of recollection followed by a meet and greet with the press where he expressed his vision for the local Catholic community. "Guam has been Catholic for a long time right, and right now the radiance of the jewel of faith has been covered a little bit by the controversies. And so let's polish it up that it can shine as the jewel of faith that it has been for so many years," he offered.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:01 AM

Hon returning to Rome

GUAM
KUAM

Updated: Nov 28, 2016

By Krystal Paco

While the island welcomes Archbishop Byrnes, apostolic administrator Archbishop Savio Hon Tai Fai will return to Rome. The Vatican assigned Archbishop Hon to Guam back in June as a temporary leader for the archdiocese amid allegations of molestation made against Archbishop Anthony Apuron.

Hon told KUAM News, "I like the words and also the deeds of Archbishop Byrnes - he used the term 'bridge'. Bridge means to cultivate more communion and more communication. So this my wish also to the people here."

Hon credits the local clergy, the religious and the lay faithful for all he was able to accomplish these last few months.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:59 AM

Byrnes: Apuron's canonical trial now ongoing

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Haidee V Eugenio , heugenio@guampdn.com November 28, 2016

Archbishop Anthony S. Apuron’s canonical trial at the Vatican has started, newly-arrived Coadjutor Archbishop Michael Jude Byrnes said Monday afternoon.

Apuron, 71, is the highest leader of the Catholic Church on Guam for 30 years.

The Vatican placed Apuron on leave on June 6, a few weeks after former altar boys started publicly accusing Apuron of sexually abusing or raping them when he was the parish priest at the Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in Agat in the 1970s.

“The trial has started. It’s been initiated, I know that much. The argument has been exchanged and now it’s kind of like in the second phase of investigation, examination,” Byrnes said during a news conference Monday afternoon in front of the Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral-Basilica in Hagatna.

Byrnes, who arrived on Guam at around 1 a.m. Monday, said the tribunal has been established and the Apuron trial proceeds, with more or less three judges on board.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:57 AM

November 27, 2016

New archbishop to hold press conference today

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Coadjutor Archbishop Michael Jude Byrnes arrived on Guam early this morning. He is scheduled to join the Catholic clergy in a day of recollection in the morning and hold a press conference in the afternoon.

Two islandwide public celebrations will be held by the Archdiocese of Agana on Wednesday. Byrnes will celebrate his first islandwide Mass with Archbishop Savio Hon Tai Fai and visiting bishops and priests, according to a statement by the archdiocese. Check out our story here for more information on Byrnes' welcoming Mass.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:06 PM

Church invites faithful to pray for Byrnes

GUAM
Guam Daily Post

The Archdiocese of Agana is opening a new chapter in its history and invites everyone to two islandwide celebrations Wednesday, Nov. 30, related to Archbishop Michael J. Byrnes, our new coadjutor archbishop.

Everyone is invited to a Prayer for the Beginning of the Episcopal Ministry of Coadjutor Archbishop Byrnes to take place 10:30 a.m. Wednesday at the Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral-Basilica.

Then, all are invited to the start of the Novena of Masses honoring Santa Marian Kamalen at 6 p.m. that same evening, also at the Cathedral-Basilica. Archbishop Byrnes will celebrate his first islandwide Mass here with Archbishop Savio Hon Tai Fai, SDB, visiting bishops and Guam priests.

The celebrations will culminate with the islandwide commemoration of the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception on Dec. 8, which includes the celebration of Santa Marian Kamalen and the close of the Golden Jubilee of the Archdiocese.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:02 PM

Archbishop Michael Byrnes arrives on Guam

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

[with video]

Haidee V Eugenio , heugenio@guampdn.com November 28, 2016

Coadjutor Archbishop Michael Jude Byrnes stepped foot on Guam for around 1 a.m. on Monday, marking a leadership milestone for the island’s Catholic church.

“When I saw the lights from the plane, I started getting excited,” the Vatican-sent Byrnes said minutes after emerging at 1:18 a.m. from the arrival area of the Antonio B. Won Pat International Airport.

After a long flight from Detroit, Michigan to Tokyo and then to Guam, Byrnes said he was exhausted and looked forward to a good night’s sleep.

But he has a big first day ahead of him, including joining the Catholic clergy in a day of recollection Monday morning and a press conference in the afternoon. When asked about his initial message to the people of Guam, he said, “I really look forward to meeting you."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:58 PM

Children not protected by Jehovah's: RC

AUSTRALIA
9 News

AAP

Children are not adequately protected from the risk of sexual abuse in the Jehovah's Witnesses, a royal commission has found.

The child abuse royal commission also said it does not consider the Jehovah's Witnesses to be an organisation that responds adequately to child sexual abuse.

The organisation relies on outdated policies and practices, including the two-witness rule that was devised more than 2000 years ago, the commission's report released on Monday said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:50 PM

Report into Jehovah’s Witness organisations released

AUSTRALIA
Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse

28 November, 2016

The Royal Commission’s report of Case Study 29: The response of the Jehovah’s Witnesses and Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of Australia Ltd to allegations of child sexual abuse was released today.

The report follows a public hearing held in Sydney in July and August 2015 which examined the experience of two survivors of child sexual abuse within the Jehovah’s Witness organisation, as well as the systems, policies and procedures in place within the organisation for raising, responding to and preventing child sexual abuse.

The Royal Commission heard from two survivor witnesses, 12 institutional witnesses and an expert engaged by the Jehovah’s Witness organisation who gave evidence about the organisation’s policies, procedures and practices.

It also examined evidence from case files held by the organisation which recorded allegations, reports or complaints of child sexual abuse by 1,006 members of the organisation.

The Royal Commission found children are not adequately protected from the risk of child sexual abuse in the Jehovah’s Witness organisation and does not believe the organisation responds adequately to allegations of child sexual abuse.

From the evidence presented, the Royal Commission considers the Jehovah’s Witness organisation relies on outdated policies and practices to respond to allegations of child sexual abuse which were not subject to ongoing and continuous review. Included in these was the organisation’s retention and continued application of policies such as the two-witness rule in cases of child sexual abuse which, the Royal Commission considered, showed a serious lack of understanding of the nature of child sexual abuse. It noted the rule, which the Jehovah’s Witness organisation relies on, and applies inflexibly even in the context of child sexual abuse, was devised more than 2,000 years ago.

The Royal Commission found the Jehovah’s Witness organisation’s internal disciplinary system for addressing complaints of child sexual abuse was not child or survivor focused. Survivors are offered little or no choice in how their complaint is addressed, sanctions are weak with little regard to the risk of the perpetrator re-offending.

Finally, the Royal Commission considered the organisation’s general practice of not reporting serious instances of child sexual abuse to police or authorities, demonstrated a serious failure on its part to provide for the safety and protection of children.

Read the full report.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:47 PM

Protest continues ahead of Byrnes' arrival

GUAM
Guam Daily Post

Neil Pang | Post News Staff

With new Coadjutor Archbishop Michael Byrnes set to arrive today, protests calling for church transparency and responsibility continued strong yesterday morning with the 50-some people who came out to form the weekly picket line outside the Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral-Basilica.

While demands from Catholic faith-based organizations have been met one by one, the protests have become ever more focused and centralized. Signs adorned with "Return RMS," "Hon - No More $$ for RMS" and "Moratorium on NCW" used to be hallmarks of the weekly protests, but have dwindled of late as the Archdiocese of Agana has taken steps to address concerns.

The latest effort by the church, the rescinding and annulment of the deed restriction placed on the property by Archbishop Anthony Apuron by Byrnes, has restricted the protest's message.

"Simply: Apuron Out," was the theme of yesterday's protest according to Laity Forward Movement spokeswoman Lou Klitzkie.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:22 PM

Guam church vows to curb sex abuse

GUAM
Marianas Variety

28 Nov 2016 Mar-Vic Cagurangan - For Variety

HAGÅTÑA — Amid mounting lawsuits filed by former altar boys against the clergy, the Archdiocese of Agana vows to prevent the recurrence of sex abuse by men of the cloth under its new leadership.

At the same time, the archdiocese urged all victims of clergy sexual abuse to seek counseling from a church-organized newly formed support group.

“The Archdiocese of Agana pledges to do all it can, under new leadership, to ensure that all people in our care, most especially our young and most vulnerable, thrive in a safe and loving environment fully protected from any harm,” the archdiocese said in a statement issued Sunday.

As of last week, a total of nine civil actions alleging sex abuse against minors have been filed in the Guam Superior Court against former Archbishop Anthony Apuron and Father Louis Brouillard, who served on Guam beginning in the 1950s having confessed last October to abusing altar boys on Guam decades ago.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:20 PM

Kentucky priest to stand trial on charges of sex abuse and sodomy

KENTUCKY
WDRB

[with video]

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A Kentucky priest will go on trial on Monday, almost 15 years after allegations emerged that he sexually abused a child.

Reverend Joseph Hemmerle faces charges of sexual abuse and sodomy. In 2001, a man accused the priest of molesting him when he was younger at a Catholic summer camp in Meade County back in the 1970's.

Hemmerle ran the boys summer camp there for decades.

In 2014, a second victim came forward, and that's when Hemmerle was indicted on the charges.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:09 AM

New Guam archbishop set to arrive Monday, Nov. 28

GUAM
Pacific News Center

Written by Janela Carrera

Archbishop Byrnes will say his first mass on November 30 at 6 pm.
Guam - Coadjutor Archbishop Michael Jude Byrnes is set to arrive next Monday and he's already got a busy schedule ahead of him.

In a release, the Archdiocese of Agana announced that upon his arrival, Byrnes will “join the catholic clergy of Guam in a day of recollection that morning.”

Next Wednesday, the incoming archbishop will appear at the Cathedral Basilica at 10:30 am for a prayer marking the beginning of his ministry on Guam. Later that evening, Archbishop Byrnes will say his first mass to honor Santa Marian Kamalen at 6 pm.

Archbishop Byrnes comes to Guam as Archbishop Anthony Apuron faces a canonical trial in Rome on allegations of sexual abuse.

Although next Monday will be his first time arriving on island, the coadjutor archbishop has already made significant changes within the archdiocese. Earlier this month he fired the board of directors of the Redemptoris Mater Seminary, abolished its board of guarantors and rescinded a controversial deed of restriction on the property, effectively returning the Yona seminary back to archdiocese control.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:06 AM

Protests outside Cathedral continue

GUAM
KUAM

Updated: Nov 26, 2016

By Sabrina Salas Matanane

Dozens of members of the Concerned Catholics of Guam and the Laity Forward Movement continue their Sunday pickets outside the Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral Basilica. This time, their message singular and uniformed calling for Archbishop Anthony Apuron to be defrocked.

According to CCOG Vice President Andrew Camacho, they won't stop until Apuron's title is removed. Their fear is that Apuron will return despite the Vatican's appointment of Coadjutor Archbishop Michael Byrnes and undo the recent actions taken to address their concerns in the local church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:42 AM

OUR VIEW: Community welcomes Byrnes' arrival, looks to heal

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

November 27, 2016

We welcome Archbishop Michael Byrnes as the new leader of the Catholic faithful on the island, and we hope that he can heal our fractured community and help us move forward.

Byrnes comes to us in a time of distress. Officially, he has been assigned here to assist Archbishop Anthony Apuron in running the Archdiocese of Agana, and to serve as Apuron’s successor. Apuron has made few public statements since being suspended in June. He may yet return as the leader of the church.

The community has been split by many controversies over the last few years. The most significant involve allegations that Apuron sexually abused altar boys while serving as the pastor of Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in Agat in the 1970s. Several former altar boys have stepped forward to share their stories. A canonical trial is being prepared in Rome, and there are civil lawsuits in the local court.

Then there is the matter of Redemptoris Mater Seminary in Yona.

The archdiocese purchased the former Accion hotel for $1.9 million, and an anonymous donor — later identified as the Carmelite sisters — stepped forward to pay off the loan, providing ownership free and clear. Years later, a request was made to transfer the property from the archdiocese to the seminary. When the archdiocese finance council opposed the transfer, Apuron dissolved the council. According to a report earlier this year, the seminary did not prepare priests for work in local parishes.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:37 AM

Anglican abuse complaint body leads way

AUSTRALIA
7 News

Megan Neil - AAP on November 27, 2016

The Anglican Diocese of Melbourne hopes the independent body it has set up to investigate sexual abuse complaints will be adopted by other Australian dioceses.

Chancellor Michael Shand QC said the new complaints body could serve as a model for other dioceses and potentially be used by organisations outside the Anglican Church.

The new approach has been adopted by Melbourne and Bendigo, and is being considered by the other Victorian dioceses of Wangaratta, Ballarat and Gippsland.

Mr Shand says it could potentially be adopted by many other Anglican Church of Australia dioceses, which are autonomous, as well as Anglican social welfare agencies and schools.

"We would hope that other agencies see merit in participating in the independent scheme," Mr Shand told AAP.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:33 AM

With an Estimated $17B in Assets, Pope Francis Creates a “Day of the Poor”

UNITED STATES
The Open Tabernacle: Here Comes Everybody

Posted on November 27, 2016 by Betty Clermont

The Vatican’s assets are estimated at $16-18 billion, its bureaucrats are still engaged in financial fraud, corruption and possible money laundering and most of the donations to the pope for charity are withheld from the poor.

On Nov. 20, Pope Francis created an annual observance for a “Day of the Poor.” In an interview broadcast that same evening, he declared, “One must always struggle for a poor Church for the poor, according to the Gospel.”

An April 2015 article in the Italian financial news, Il Sole 24 Ore, stated the assets – securities, commercial real estate and bank accounts – of all the Vatican departments and offices combined “by a conservative estimate” would be around 15-17 billion euro (approx. $16-18 billion). No outsider can be sure because Pope Francis hides almost all his fortune from any independent audits or disclosures.

The Vatican’s September 2016 ratification of the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) was dismissed as mere “window dressing” because the Holy See asserted it did not have to participate in any “mechanism or body to assist in the effective implementation of the Convention.” The UNCAC “covers a wide-range of corruption offences, including domestic and foreign bribery, embezzlement, trading in influence and money laundering.”

“As far as the Italian government is concerned, there is still a money laundering risk in the Vatican City State,” according to a May 2016 article. “Operations between the Vatican Bank (officially known as the Institute for Religious Works or IOR) and Italy’s banks have still not resumed fully,” referring to Vatican accounts frozen in Roman banks by the Italian government in 2010 for suspected money laundering.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:30 AM

Guam archbishop wants to help heal US territory

GUAM
Hawaii Tribune-Herald

By GRACE GARCES BORDALLO Associated Press

HAGATNA, Guam — The new leader of the Catholic church in Guam will meet with his brother priests as his first order of business on Monday as he attempts to heal this U.S. territory rocked by allegations of sexual abuse at the hands of clergy, even the current archbishop.

“I have been praying for those who have brought forward the allegations, who brought forward their own experience. I have great compassion for that,” Archbishop Michael Byrnes, 58, of Detroit told The Associated Press in a phone interview. “I’ve been praying for them.”

Byrnes has been sent by the Vatican to replace current Archbishop Anthony S. Apuron on an administrative basis. Apuron, 71, has been Guam’s highest Catholic leader for 30 years but faces a church trial over multiple allegations of sex abuse of altar boys in the 1970s. He denies the charges, and has not been criminally charged.

Byrnes said he had a conversation with Apuron and knows he is somewhere in the United States. “The tribunal investigation and trial of the archbishop has already begun,” Byrnes said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:24 AM

Former Prescott pastor charged with child molestation

ARIZONA
Daily Courier

By Scott OrrOriginally Published: November 26, 2016

Editor's note: Due to the sensitive issues raised in this story, the commenting feature has been disabled.

PRESCOTT – A minister in the Baptist church, who left the area 10 years ago, has been indicted on multiple counts accusing him of sexually molesting children in 1995, 1996, and 1998 to 2001 while he was pastor of a church in Prescott.

Thomas Jonathan Chantry, 46, faces five counts of molestation of a child, related to two minors, and three counts of aggravated assault on three separate minors as well.

One alleged victim, now an adult, came forward to Prescott Police and, according to a police report, when Chantry became a pastor at Miller Valley Baptist Church, Chantry told his parents that he wanted to tutor the victim, then “approximately 9 or 10 years old,” privately in his church office.

The parents consented, and the victim claims that, during his twice-weekly hourly meetings, Chantry would spank him, “grope him, rub him, and make him sit on his lap,” the report said.

The victim said that during a Christmas break during which he stayed at Chantry’s house, Chantry “began fondling him,” the report said, touching his private areas, and saying “he was making them feel better.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:21 AM

Fall of an archbishop; Byrnes set to arrive, steps in for Apuron

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Haidee V Eugenio and
Dana M Williams , Pacific Daily News

When Archbishop Michael Jude Byrnes arrives today, he will step into a fractured community of the faith.

Officially, he is coming to assist Archbishop Anthony Apuron in running the Archdiocese of Agana, and to serve as Apuron’s successor. But Apuron has been out of the public eye since June, when the Vatican suspended him and sent Archbishop Savio Hon Tai Fai to temporarily oversee the Guam church. Apuron faces what an archdiocese spokesman described as “credible accusations of child sexual abuse against him,” and a canonical trial is being prepared in Rome.

Prior to his departure, Apuron led the Catholic faithful here for 30 years. He positioned himself as a fierce defender of morality, local culture and tradition, and used his power as a spiritual leader to influence political decisions. He also argued against a law that would remove the statute of limitations for civil suits in child sex abuse cases, and he once wrote a letter to a judge urging leniency for a former altar boy who confessed to sexually abusing a 2-year-old.

Apuron still has loyal supporters. Many are, like Apuron, followers of the Neocatechumenal Way, an organization within the Catholic church that has been at odds with traditional Catholics on the island. The rift in the church began before the sex abuse allegations were made, and involved the Yona seminary, financial transparency and the removal of two popular priests. On an island where, by some estimates, 85 percent of the population is Catholic, the conflict has shaken religious traditions.

Son of Guam

In the 14 years since the Catholic priest sex abuse scandal was uncovered in Boston and spread to parishes across the country and around the world, abuse allegations on Guam remained secret. Until now.

Joelle Casteix, the western regional director of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, said the situation on Guam is unique for a couple of reasons. Based in Chicago, the group is the world’s oldest and largest network of clergy abuse survivors.

“What makes Guam different is that it’s the first place where lay Catholics have taken the lead to blow the lid off the scandal and demand change,” she said. Another difference is that the accused grew up in the community.

“Apuron is a hometown boy,” Casteix said. “It’s very hard for any faith community to think that one of their own — born and bred — could do such horrible things.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:19 AM

A pox in both their houses

AUSTRALIA
Perth Now

Claire Harvey, News Corp Australia Network
November 26, 2016

Anglicans like to think of themselves as a bit better than everyone else.

I should know. I’m an Anglican.

I went to an Anglican school. I’m well-used to the casual sectarian snobbery of many people who consider themselves Church of England, and I’ve spent a lifetime observing the way many Anglicans carry themselves in the firm belief that they are better, smarter and more sophisticated than others.

Actually, only Catholics. That’s all the Anglicans really care about. The other strands of Protestantism are regarded as uninteresting but essentially harmless. Who really cares if the odd little people down at the Uniting Church want to sit in a circle with a guitar? And the Seventh Day Adventists? They’re harmless, really.

But the Catholics. Ooh, the Catholics. Well, there’s far too many of them, for a start. All those children. And the carry-on about Mary. Really. Rosaries. Incense. All that carry-on. ...

Guess where else Anglicans think they’re better than the Catholics?

Paedophilia.

ill try any possible means to get children alone — even entering the ministry. (Pic: Supplied)
There has, I think, been a quiet and largely unspoken feeling among many Protestants that the abuse of children is a Catholic problem, probably created (or at least exacerbated) by the fact Catholic priests are supposed to be celibate.

The Royal Commission has proved that all wrong.

Now we know any institution where there was access to children was rich with paedophiles. The Scouts. Surf lifesaving. Orphanages. Boys’ camps. Charities. Churches of every kind. Schools of every kind.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:16 AM

UK Government accused of knowingly sending children to 'crook' institutions in Australia

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

By the National Reporting Team's Barbara Miller

The UK Government continued to send child migrants to Australian institutions despite knowing they were being mistreated, according to allegations in a submission lodged to the UK inquiry into institutional child sexual abuse.

David Hill, who in 1959, aged 12, was sent to Fairbridge Farm School in New South Wales, said "the British government knew that these institutions were crook and unfit for children".

Mr Hill said as a result of a 1956 British parliamentary fact-finding mission to Australia, a list was drawn up of homes that were deemed unfit to receive more migrant children.

The list of "Category A" homes encompassed institutions in all six states and included the Fairbridge Farm School at Molong.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:13 AM

Christine Flowers: When confronted by evil, we must speak out

PENNSYLVANIA
Daily Times

By Christine Flowers, Delaware County Daily Times
POSTED: 11/26/16

When the priest-abuse scandal became widely publicized about a decade or so ago, Catholics around the world began to denounce in the most passionate terms the literal breach of faith that had occurred in our church. There were denunciations from Catholic journalists, politicians, businesspeople, actors, artists, and the rank-and-file parishioner who walked away from the pews or demanded accountability from our bishops. And still, this was not enough for some. I wrote a number of articles critical of the church while, at the same time, making some demands of my own. I talked about the need for due process for accused priests, of a mandate of fairness when writing about those who had been labeled pedophiles for crimes that allegedly occurred decades ago, of the hypocrisy of those who turned a blind eye to the evil propensities of public school coaches and clerics of other faiths.

Balance in all things, as Aristotle would say.

It’s important for people of a particular group that has members accused of pernicious acts to stand up and disown them. If we don’t, we become complicit in those alleged crimes by the heavy weight of our silence. No Catholic can deny that sexual abuse occurred, and that it was widespread in certain cities and countries. No Catholic, however, should be forced to assume a communal burden of guilt for those aberrations.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:11 AM

Archbishop wanted controversial priest Father John Walshe to resign 'weeks ago'

AUSTRALIA
Brisbane Times

Timna Jacks Chris Vedelago

Catholic Archbishop Denis Hart called for Father John Walshe's resignation long before the controversial priest stepped down, a spokesman for the Melbourne archdiocese has confirmed.

Archbishop Hart had for weeks been pressuring Father Walshe to resign from his position as Mentone-Parkdale parish priest due to a "lack of unity in the parish", archdiocese spokesman Shane Healy said.

Mr Healy said the resignation, which was announced last week, followed a "long and complex process", but he would not elaborate on the reason for the delay.

"It was his [Archbishop Hart's] judgment that the parish was not running as it should," Mr Healy said at the weekend.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:07 AM

November 26, 2016

Louisville priest who ran summer camp faces sex abuse trial

KENTUCKY
Daily Progress

By DYLAN LOVAN

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — A Louisville priest is set to go on trial on sexual abuse charges nearly 15 years after allegations first surfaced from a man who said he was molested by the priest at a Catholic summer camp in the 1970s.

The Rev. Joseph Hemmerle will face sexual abuse and sodomy charges at the trial beginning Monday in Meade County, where he ran the boys summer camp for decades.

Hemmerle is facing another trial in April over similar abuse allegations from a second alleged victim who attended Camp Tall Trees as a child.

The first allegations against Hemmerle were brought by Michael Norris in a 2001 letter Norris wrote to Hemmerle and Louisville archdiocese officials. His letter was sent just months before a slew of plaintiffs sued the archdiocese, alleging sexual abuse by dozens of priests. The archdiocese settled a class action lawsuit with 243 plaintiffs in 2003 for more than $25 million, but Norris never joined the suit.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:39 PM

MEDIA RELEASE – NOVEMBER 26, 2016

NEW YORK
Road to Recovery

Cardinal Timothy Dolan’s financial compensation program for victims of sexual abuse by New York Archdiocesan clergy does not include victims of sexual abuse by nuns, religious brothers, lay employees and volunteers who serve or have served in the Archdiocese of New York

Nuns, religious brothers, lay employees and volunteers who sexually abused children in the Archdiocese of New York must be held accountable through the New York Archdiocesan sexual abuse compensation program so that all childhood sexual abuse victims in the Archdiocese of New York have the opportunity to heal

Two childhood victims of sexual abuse in the Archdiocese of New York, one by a religious sister (nun), and another by a Catholic high school lay teacher, will demand that their sexual abuse claims be included in the financial compensation program of the Archdiocese of New York

What
A demonstration and press conference demanding that Cardinal Timothy Dolan revise his financial compensation program for childhood victims of sexual abuse by Archdiocese of New York clergy to include childhood sexual abuse victims of nuns, religious brothers, lay employees and volunteers who serve or have served in the Archdiocese of New York

When
Sunday, November 27, 2016 from 10:30 am until Noon (Cardinal Dolan is the usual presider at the 10:15 am Mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral) – Press conference at 11:15 am

Where
On the public sidewalk outside St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Fifth Avenue between East 50th and East 51st Streets, New York, New York 10022

Who and Why
Cecilia Springer, an 85 year-old childhood sexual abuse victim of her high school Principal, Sr. Mary Andrew, S.U., at Notre Dame School, Manhattan, in 1945. She reported the sexual abuse by Sr. Mary Andrew, S.U., to officials of Notre Dame School and the Sisters of St. Ursula, who impolitely told her to take a hike. They have refused to help her.

Michael Meenan, who attended Fordham Prep School, the Bronx, in the 1980s and was sexually abused by a lay teacher of Fordham Prep, Fernand Beck, at a graduation party in Westchester County, New York. Michael Meenan reported the sexual abuse by the teacher to an official of the school, but that official did nothing about it. Recently, Michael Meenan met with lawyers and officials of Fordham Prep School, and they have yet to offer Michael any assistance.

Robert M. Hoatson, Ph.D., President of Road to Recovery, Inc., a non-profit charity based in New Jersey that assists victims of sexual abuse and their families, and a victim of sexual abuse by three Irish Christian Brothers in the Archdiocese of New York

Cecilia Springer and Michael Meenan will demand of Cardinal Timothy Dolan that he:

1) Include childhood sexual abuse victims of religious order men (priests, deacons, and brothers), religious order women (nuns), and all lay employees and volunteers who serve or have served in the Archdiocese of New York in the financial compensation program for sexual abuse victims sponsored by the Archdiocese of New York

2) Allow all childhood sexual abuse victims in the Archdiocese of New York to try to heal by being included in the Archdiocese of New York compensation program.

Contacts
Robert M. Hoatson, Ph.D., Road to Recovery, Inc. – 862-368-2800 – roberthoatson@gmail.com
Attorney Mitchell Garabedian, Boston, MA – 617-523-6250 – garabedianlaw@msn.com

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:36 PM

Catholic priest Father John Walshe resigns after sex abuse allegations

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

A Melbourne Catholic priest has resigned after allegations he sexually abused a trainee priest 30 years ago.

The ABC revealed that in 2012, the Catholic Church paid $75,000 in compensation to an 18-year-old former student priest, who alleged he was abused by Father John Walshe in 1982.

Father Walshe strenuously denied the abuse and said the relationship was consensual.

Parents from two schools in his parish in Melbourne's south-eastern suburbs, St John Vianney Primary School at Parkdale and St Patrick's Primary School, Mentone have been lobbying for his resignation all year saying they no longer trusted him.

In this week's parish bulletin, Father Walshe said it had been an immense honour serving the parish and his resignation would take effect on January 18.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:51 PM

Byrnes files complaint in Superior Court

GUAM
Guam Daily Post

Neil Pang | Post News Staff

While the newly appointed Coadjutor Archbishop Michael Byrnes is set to arrive on Guam next Monday, Nov. 28, he has already taken steps to address some concerns of the island's Catholic faithful.

Last week Wednesday, Nov. 16, Byrnes formally annulled the deed restriction placed on the Redemptoris Mater Seminary property in Yona, removing any doubt under whose patrimony the former Hotel Accion resides.

Additionally, Byrnes dissolved the RMS board of guarantors and restructured the board of directors to include only the archbishop of Agana.

Since then, Byrnes has additionally amended the articles of incorporation filed with the Department of Revenue and Taxation to no longer include verbiage specifying that RMS was a house of formation meant to "prepare men for the priesthood for the new evangelization following the life and itinerary of the Neocatechumenal Way," according to court documents.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:59 AM

Archbishop Listecki says the Church's mission goes on despite bankruptcy

WISCONSIN
WTMJ

Connor Swiney
Nov 26, 2016

Following lawsuits levied by those sexually abused by members of the Church, the Archdiocese of Milwaukee filed for bankruptcy in 2011. Despite their financial situation, Archbishop Jerome Listecki says the Church's mission goes on.

"Whatever we had, whether its ten cents or one hundred million dollars. This is our mission given by Christ," says Listecki.

Listecki says he's the first Archbishop of the Archdiocese to be in debt.

"You go into bankruptcy to be solvent. In order to make sure our obligations were fulfilled, we had to go into debt. We're more than glad to do that so that we can bring some type of closure to those who are victims" says Listecki.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:57 AM

Melbourne priest resigns after sex abuse allegations

AUSTRALIA
The New Daily

A Melbourne Catholic priest has resigned after allegations he sexually abused a trainee priest 30 years ago.

The ABC revealed that in 2012, the Catholic Church paid $75,000 in compensation to an 18-year-old former student priest, who alleged he was abused by Father John Walshe in 1982.

Father Walshe strenuously denied the abuse and said the relationship was consensual.

Parents from two schools in his parish in Melbourne’s south-eastern suburbs, St John Vianney Primary School at Parkdale and St Patrick’s Primary School, Mentone have been lobbying for his resignation all year saying they no longer trusted him.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:55 AM

Guam marks milestone when new archbishop arrives

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Haidee V Eugenio , heugenio@guampdn.com November 26, 2016

Guam’s Catholic Church marks a leadership milestone after 30 years when Coadjutor Archbishop Michael Jude Byrnes arrives on island Monday.

As coadjutor archbishop, Byrnes succeeds Archbishop Anthony S. Apuron, who has been the highest leader of the church since 1986 but was placed on leave by the Vatican on June 6. Apuron is facing a canonical trial over multiple allegations of sex abuse of altar boys when he was a parish priest in the 1970s.

Apuron, 71, still holds the title of archbishop but he has not been back on Guam since May.

Byrnes, 58, will reside in the episcopal residence, which Apuron has “vacated,” according to a sign at the entrance to the archdiocese’s chancery office in Hagåtña.

Pope Francis sent Archbishop Savio Hon Tai Fai as temporary administrator of the church on Guam in June, but made a more permanent leadership solution on Oct. 31 with Byrnes’ appointment.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:52 AM

Dear Brother O’Neill . . . a former Christian Brothers pupil writes

IRELAND
Irish Times

A reader writes an open letter to Br Hugh O’Neill, superior general of the Congregation of Christian Brothers, in Rome

Dear Superior General, – Only last year, in my late 50s, I woke up to the exact nature and general effects of abuse I suffered at the hands of two of your Christian Brothers here in Ireland before I was 12. One is dead, the other alive in Ireland and living a secular life outside your congregation.

Human memory is very complex, and such a lapse of time is not uncommon in cases of childhood abuse. Although I can assure you that my testimony is correct, perhaps it’s best that we immediately set aside any thoughts of court cases or lawyers.

I think we both understand too well how such thoughts exercise our worst fear reflexes, and how ineffective and expensive these processes can become. (I note with sadness that in May 2013 your congregation’s Australian province, at Victoria’s parliamentary inquiry into child abuse, admitted to hiring a private investigator to follow one of the victims. It spent nearly a million Australian dollars defending the perpetrator, plus hundreds of thousands to defend other members also accused of rape.)

There are other strategies to deal with these matters, ones that could bring about some desperately needed healing for all concerned.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:47 AM

Govt. keeping close eye on self-proclaimed Pope

GUYANA
Daily Herald

GEORGETOWN, Guyana--Guyana’s self-proclaimed Pope, Philbert London, and his Beacon Ministries Church are anxious to get past his embarrassing sex scandal, but the Government hints that the religious leader is not off the hook just yet.

At least three Government Ministers say they are scrutinising the incident.

Earlier this month, several pornographic photographs of London and various women made the rounds on social media.

One photograph showed a smiling London cuddled next to an unidentified woman, while another photograph had a man, believed to be him, naked and sprawled between two naked women.

London has since asked his congregation for forgiveness. Members readily agreed, embracing their leader.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:43 AM

Disgraced Ottawa priest accused of sexually assaulting yet another minor

CANADA
Ottawa Citizen

ANDREW DUFFY, OTTAWA CITIZEN

A retired Ottawa priest, who has admitted he suffered from a powerful attraction to adolescents as a young cleric, appeared in court Friday on historical sexual assault charges.

Rev. Barry McGrory, 82, faces two counts of gross indecency and two counts of indecent assault in connection with offences alleged to have occurred in the late 1960s. The charges are based on the Criminal Code as it existed at that time.

McGrory, who now lives in Toronto, was released on a $10,000 bond and ordered not to communicate with the victim, or take work that would put him in a position of trust with anyone under the age of 16.

His case was remanded to December.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:40 AM

How David Marr smeared George Pell

AUSTRALIA
Herald Sun

Andrew Bolt, Herald Sun
November 26, 2016

No journalist has tried harder than David Marr to smear Cardinal George Pell as a liar who covered up for pedophile priests and even enabled their crimes. The evidence against Pell is actually melting away.

Now Gerard Henderson exposes 13 of Marr's worst false claims, omissions and baseless smears. Please read it all.

Here are some highlights, so to speak, from Henderson's fact-checking of Marr's most comprehensive smear sheet on Pell - his extended essay The Prince – Faith, Abuse & George Pell (Black Inc, 2014):

The fact is that much of David Marr’s case against Cardinal Pell collapses when reference is made to evidence heard by the Royal Commission and to Counsel-Assisting’s submissions to the Royal Commission.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:37 AM

Rubbing salt into the wound for abuse victims

AUSTRALIA
Brisbane Times

Judy Courtin

When I think things cannot get worse for my institutional child sexual abuse clients – wham! – another round of trickery is thrust at already vulnerable victims by the highly legalistic and parsimonious hierarchy of the Catholic Church. Whilst feigning compassion, this hierarchy is nervously propelling unknown millions of dollars at lawyers to help them defend the indefensible and to conceal the truth.

The Archdiocese of Melbourne, hiding in the shadows until the federal government led the way with a national redress scheme, announced recently it would offer ex gratia payments to victims, including those who had previously engaged in their internal complaints process, the Melbourne Response. The cap would be doubled to $150,000.

Friday's announcement, frocked up to lure and exploit the misinformed and vulnerable, actually gazumped the repeatedly-promised and overdue release of a critically important independent review of George Pell's Melbourne Response by retired judge Donnell Ryan.

Although provided to the royal commission, this review will never be publicly viewed, including by those valiant people without whom this review would not exist. Archbishop Hart uses victims, who want this review, as a decoy as he falsely claims that publishing the Ryan Review will only re-traumatise them. The immoral art of ecclesiastical concealment endures.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:35 AM

Archdiocese promises to tend to flock

GUAM
KUAM

Updated: Nov 26, 2016

By Sabrina Salas Matanane

Following two new allegations of sexual abuse by clergy this week, the “Archdiocese of Agana pledges to do all it can, under new leadership, to ensure that all people in our care, most especially our young and most vulnerable, thrive in a safe and loving environment fully protected from any harm,” a press release stated.

On Wednesday, KUAM News first reported two new complaints were filed in the Superior Court of Guam. 63-year-old Paul Joseph Borja alleged that while he was an altar boy at the Our Lady of Peace and Safe Journey Catholic Church in Chalan Pago, Fr. Antonio Cruz sexually molested him. Borja was 12-years-old.

59-year-old Vicente T. San Nicolas also came forward. He alleged that when he was a teenager and an altar boy at San Isidro Church in Malojloj he was repeatedly molested by Fr. Louis Brouillard who was serving as the church’s priest. He alleged that the abuse occurred over a five year period. He described how Fr. Brouillard would walk around naked at the Carmelite Monastery where he lived. Court documents further stated that the priest would show him collections of various nude photos that he took of boys.

The two additional complaints bring the total to nine that have been filed against the church. One of those accused is Archbishop Anthony Apuron. Although Apuron has vehemently denied all the allegations made against him, Fr. Louis Brouillard confessed on video to molesting several boys while serving on Guam as a priest and a Scout Master for the Boy Scouts between the 1940s through the 1970s.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:32 AM

November 25, 2016

Church Secretary Sues Hackettstown Priest For Alleged Upskirt Photos: Reports

NEW JERSEY
Patch

By Anthony Locicero (Patch Staff) - November 25, 2016

A former Hackettstown church secretary is suing Gethsemane Lutheran Church and a retired pastor, whom she said made sexual comments towards her and took pictures of her chest and up her skirt, according to a report.

The woman, a Flanders resident who is married with children, sued both the church and Pastor Terrance Herzberg, 67, who retired early after his administrative assistant claimed he violated her privacy on June 27, the Daily Record reported.

That day, she wore a skirt to work and the pastor allegedly took pictures up her skirt, the Daily Record reported.

According to the Daily Record, the lawsuit alleges that the church violated the state's Law Against Discrimination.

The lawsuit further claims that the pastor's conduct interfered with the woman's job performance, the Daily Record reported.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:06 PM

Former Ottawa priest accused of sexually abusing teenage boy in late '60s

CANADA
CBC News

A former Ottawa priest has been accused of sexually assaulting a 15-year-old boy in the late '60s, and police believe there could be more victims.

Ottawa police began an investigation after receiving a complaint in September, the force said in a media release issued Friday.

William Barry McGrory, 82, has been charged with two counts of indecent assault on a male and two counts of gross indecency, which were Criminal Code offences in place at the time. He was expected to appear in court Friday.

McGrory currently lives in Toronto but used to be a priest with the Archdiocese of Ottawa.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:05 PM

Former Ottawa priest faces child sex assault charges

CANADA
Ottawa Start

BY OTTAWASTART STAFF · NOVEMBER 25, 2016

SHARE THIS

(press release)

(Ottawa) — Today, the Ottawa Police Service Sexual Assault and Child Abuse Section charged a former Ottawa area priest following an investigation into allegations of a historical sexual assault.

In September 2016, investigators received a complaint and commenced an investigation into allegations of sexual assault, in Ottawa in the late 1960s, involving a priest with the Archdiocese of Ottawa. The offences involved a boy who was 15 years old at the time.

William Barry McGRORY, 82 years old, of Toronto is charged with two counts of Indecent Assault on a male and two counts of Gross Indecency, as per Criminal Code charges existing at the time of the offences.

He is scheduled to appear in court today.
SACA investigators are concerned that there could be other victims.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Ottawa Police Service Sexual Assault and Child Abuse Unit at 613-236-1222, ext. 5944. Anonymous tips can be submitted by calling Crime Stoppers toll-free at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) or by downloading the Ottawa Police app.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:03 PM

Former priest charged with historical sexual assault of then-15-year-old boy

CANADA
CTV

The Canadian Press
Published Friday, November 25, 2016

OTTAWA -- A former priest is facing charges in Ottawa after an investigation into allegations of historical sexual assault.

Ottawa Police say they received a complaint in September and began investigating the allegations of incidents that occurred in the late 1960s.

Police say the allegations involved a priest with the Archdiocese of Ottawa and a boy who was 15 years old at the time.

They say William Barry McGrory, now 82 and living in Toronto, has been charged with two counts of indecent assault and two counts of gross indecency.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:00 PM

Diözese zahlt 7000 Euro für ein Missbrauchsopfer

DEUTSCHLAND
Main Post

[Diocese of Wurzburg pays 7000 euros to an abuse victim.]

Der Missbrauchsbeauftragte der Diözese Würzburg spricht von einem „Serientäter“. Dieser wurde vor 16 Jahren strafrechtlich wegen sexuellen Missbrauchs verurteilt. Im Juni 2015 reagierte auch die Kirche endgültig. Der damals bereits suspendierte Pfarrer W. wurde laisiert beziehungsweise aus dem Klerikerstand entlassen. Der Mann ist also kein Geistlicher mehr – auf höchste Anordnung von Papst Franziskus hin.

Anhänger des Ex-Pfarrers bezichtigen Opfer der Unglaubwürdigkeit

Es ist die Höchststrafe für einen Geistlichen. Anhänger von W. beurteilen den Fall anders: Sie bezichtigen Opfer der Unglaubwürdigkeit und betonen, dass sie W., der nach wie vor seine Unschuld beteuern würde, glauben.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:40 PM

Island anxiously anticipating arrival of Bishop Byrnes

GUAM
KUAM

Updated: Nov 25, 2016

By Sabrina Salas Matanane

After decades of leadership under Archbishop Anthony Apuron, Monday will mark a new chapter for the Archdiocese of Agana. Vatican-appointed coadjutor Bishop Michael Byrnes is scheduled to arrive that day where he'll hit the ground running meeting with local clergy that same morning.

Celebrations kick-off on Wednesday where the public is invited to a prayer for the beginning of the Episcopal Ministry of Coadjutor Archbishop set for 10:30am at the Dulce Nombre De Maria Cathedral Basilica followed by his first islandwide mass at 6pm. Celebrations will draw to a close on December 8 with the islandwide commemoration of the Solemnity of the Immaculate Concepcion, which includes the celebration of Santa Marian Kamalen and the close of the Golden Jubilee of the archdiocese.

Bishop Byrnes was appointed to the local archdiocese on October 31 amid several allegations of molestation made against Archbishop Apuron, who is anticipated to face a canonical trial in the Vatican.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:21 AM

Bullying and sexual assault allegations within national child sexual abuse inquiry not being 'taken seriously enough'

UNITED KINGDOM
ITV

Allegations of bullying and sexual assault at the headquarters of the national child abuse inquiry have not been taken seriously enough and the inquiry's response to these claims has been "inadequate", a Commons report has claimed.

A catalogue of problems has "seriously diminished" confidence in the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) and its ability to deliver on objectives in a "timely and effective way", MPs warned.

The Home Affairs Committee pointed out that experienced counsel have been departing from the probe at an "alarming rate".

Ben Emmerson QC, the most senior lawyer appointed to the inquiry resigned in September, following an allegation he had sexually assaulted a female "inquiry worker" in the lift at its offices. Mr Emmerson strenuously denied the claim.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:15 AM

Kiwi judge's refusal to provide evidence to UK sex abuse inquiry branded 'disgraceful'

NEW ZEALAND
Stuff

JOHN EDENS

A scathing report by a powerful parliamentary committee in the United Kingdom has described Kiwi judge Lowell Goddard's refusal to answer questions in person as "shameful" and "disgraceful".

Dame Goddard quit in August as head of the UK inquiry (IICSA) into cases of historical child sex abuse and, in early November, she effectively ruled out appearing in person before British MPs.

She was the subject of intense scrutiny during her tenure, hit out at "malicious defamatory attacks" by some media and said she was disappointed there was "no government defence of me in England" when she resigned.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:13 AM

Melbourne priest Father John Walshe resigns from Mentone-Parkdale parish

AUSTRALIA
The Age

Timna Jacks

Controversial Melbourne figure Father John Walshe has resigned from his position as parish priest in Melbourne's south east, following a parent-led campaign calling for him to step down.

In a bulletin leaked to Fairfax Media on Friday, Father Walsh announced he would be stepping down after nearly 25 years in the job.

The news was to be circulated at the Mentone-Parkdale parish mass on Saturday evening.

"I have this week, with the agreement of the archbishop, submitted my resignation from the office of parish priest of the Parish of Mentone-Parkdale," he said in the statement.

"This will take effect from 18 January 2017.

"I wanted to communicate this to you as soon as possible. When I leave early next year I will be four days short of having completed 25 years in the parish. It has been my immense honour to have been with you for this time." ...

The resignation comes after revelations Father Walshe was banned from ministering in Ireland for committing an act of sexual abuse, but was allowed to oversee two Catholic primary schools by the archbishop, who described the act as simply a "breach of his vow of celibacy".

Father Walshe came under fire last year after he testified on behalf of Cardinal George Pell at the sexual abuse royal commission, which was investigating claims then Bishop Pell tried to buy the silence of a victim of notorious paedophile Gerald Ridsdale in 1993.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:11 AM

Melb child sex abuse victims interim scheme

AUSTRALIA
Sky News

Child sexual abuse victims will receive compensation of up to $150,000 under an interim redress scheme set up by the Anglican Diocese of Melbourne.

The Melbourne diocese has decided to establish its own interim redress scheme, ahead of the federal government's proposed national system that begins in 2018 and any Victorian government model.

Chancellor Michael Shand QC said the scheme will operate as part of a new independent body investigating sexual abuse complaints.

The Melbourne diocese has followed the federal government in setting the maximum compensation payments for child abuse victims at $150,000 under the interim scheme, as well as providing counselling.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:06 AM

November 24, 2016

Former NZ High Court judge slammed by UK MPs in report

UNITED KINGDOM
TVNZ

[with video]

The New Zealand former head of the United Kingdom's inquiry into child sexual abuse has again been slammed by UK MPs and warned she'll be hauled in front of them if she ever steps foot in the country again.

Dame Lowell Goddard has been criticised for refusing to appear before a committee of MPs looking into the work of the troubled inquiry despite receiving almost $NZ840,500 a year in pay and allowances while she was its chair.

She resigned abruptly in August after just 18 months.

The Commons Home Affairs Committee report said Dame Lowell's failure to appear in front of it was "disgraceful".

"We regard this refusal as falling well below the standards we would expect of any public servant," it said in the report.

"Should Dame Lowell travel to the UK in the future, we would invoke parliamentary procedures to seek to summon her to give oral evidence."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:51 PM

Former child abuse inquiry chief Lowell Goddard 'disgraceful'

UNITED KINGDOM
Sky News

Dame Lowell Goddard's refusal to give evidence to MPs following her resignation as chairwoman of the inquiry into child sexual abuse was "disgraceful", a report has concluded.

The Home Affairs Committee has been reviewing the inquiry, which has been beset by problems since it was set up in 2014.

In its report, the committee said it would invoke its power to summon the New Zealand judge - who became the third inquiry chief to resign, if she returns to the UK.

Confidence in the inquiry's work had been "seriously diminished", the report found.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:49 PM

Lawsuit: Hackettstown priest aimed camera up woman's skirt

NEW JERSEY
Daily Record

Peggy Wright , @PeggyWrightDR November 24, 2016

A former secretary for Gethsemane Lutheran Church in Hackettstown has sued the church and now-retired pastor, alleging he frequently made sexually-charged comments to her and used a camera in June to take pictures of her chest and under her skirt.

The woman, a Flanders resident whose identity the Daily Record has elected to withhold, sued the church and former Pastor Terrance Herzberg, 67, who accelerated his planned retirement by departing shortly after his administrative assistant claimed that he violated her privacy on June 27.

The lawsuit, filed by attorney John F. McDonnell, was made public Wednesday in Superior Court, Morristown. It charges that the church violated the state's Law Against Discrimination and that Herzberg's conduct interfered with her job performance and "created an intimidating, hostile or offensive working environment." The complaint said that Herzberg's behavior constituted a "constructive discharge" of the woman's employment with the church because she could not work in that environment.

Interim church Pastor Rev. Richard Izzard said that Wednesday that he, the church and congregants are aware of the allegations and that Herzberg retired over the summer, sooner than he had planned.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:14 PM

Child Assault Prevention sessions announced for December

NEW JERSEY
Catholic Star Herald

The Office of Child and Youth Protection is announcing CAP (Child Assault Prevention) sessions. CAP is the safe environment training program for adults who have regular contact with minors.

Attendance is required in order to comply with the USCCB’s Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People. The policy of the Diocese of Camden is that adults will attend CAP once every five years.

CAP 1 teaches attendees to recognize child abuse and neglect and how to report to the proper authorities. CAP 1 is for new volunteers and employees.

CAP 2 is called CAP’s Bullying Prevention Program and is a workshop addressing bullying awareness and bullying prevention. Cyber-bullying is also presented.

CAP 3 is called Cyber-Empowerment and is a workshop which promotes adults understanding of cyber activity of youth while teaching them realistic ways to help children keep their own rights and guard the rights of others in the cyber-sphere. Please note if you are holding a (CAP 3) session you will need to provide the following: LCD Projector, Laptop, Screen and Speakers.

Each presentation is 90 minutes.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:22 PM

Mexico's Pontifical University opens child and youth protection centre

MEXICO
Catholic Register

BY DAVID AGREN, CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE
November 24, 2016

MEXICO CITY – When Father Daniel Portillo set about designing programs to protect children and address allegations of sexual abuse, he quickly encountered a core challenge in Mexico: an unwillingness to acknowledge the very existence of a problem with predatory priests.

"The first aspect to overcome is saying that this does not exist in Mexico. It exists. Pedophilia among priests exists," said Father Portillo, a professor at the Pontifical University of Mexico and the director of the newly formed Center for Investigation and Interdisciplinary Training for the Protection of Minors at the school.

"We were in denial, thinking and supposing that it didn't exist or it wasn't here or it was an American or Anglo-Saxon problem," Father Portillo said. "It's a problem hitting us at a global level."

Sex crimes committed by priests against children have caused scandals in Mexico and undercut the church's credibility.

That credibility was especially hurt by revelations that the Legionaries of Christ founder, Father Marciel Maciel, who was considered close with some in the Catholic hierarchy and the country's political and economic elites, sexually abused seminarians. The allegations of abuse made against Father Maciel stayed out of the press, while an advertising boycott was brought against a lone news outlet to report the scandal in the late 1990s.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:19 PM

Kardinal Schönborns Lügen…

OSTERREICH
Gegen Sexuelle Gewalt

[Cardinal Schönborn's lies ...]

Frau Nationalratspräsidentin Bures plante den Staatsakt „Geste der Verantwortung“ für ehemalige Heimkinder ursprünglich ohne Beisein der Kirche. Ein halbes Jahr ging es aber hinter den Kulissen hoch her, weil sich Kardinal Schönborn unbedingt als Staatsaktredner mit hineindrängen wollte.

Dort sagte er: „Ich bitte um Vergebung. „Wir haben vertuscht, wenn Missbrauch bekannt geworden ist, Leute versetzt und nicht abgesetzt. Ich bitte um Vergebung“. Er betonte, dass die Kirche wissentlich Täter versetzt hat.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:47 PM

Ex-Prior bestreitet neue Vorwürfe von Kindesmissbrauch

MALLORCA
Mallorca Zeitung

[Ex-Prior denies new allegations of child abuse.]

24.11.2016

Ein ehemaliger Vorsteher des Klosters Lluc hat vor Gericht die gegen ihn erhobenen Vorwürfe des sexuellen Missbrauchs an mehreren Internatsschülern kategorisch zurückgewiesen. Nachdem ein erstes Verfahren wegen Verjährung der mutmaßlichen Straftaten eingestellt worden war, musste sich der Priester am 10. November wegen eines weiteren Falls erstmals den Fragen der Richterin in Inca stellen, wie die MZ-Tageszeitung "Diario de Mallorca" am Donnerstag (24.11.) berichtet.

Die neuen Vorwürfe erheben die Eltern eines ehemaligen Internatsschülers im Kloster Lluc. In den Jahren 2012 und 2013 soll der damalige Prior des Klosters einen zu der Zeit siebenjährigen sowie zwei weitere Jungen in das Büro zitiert und an den Genitalien berührt haben. Die anderen beiden mutmaßlichen Opfer bestreiten die Vorfälle.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:45 PM

Australia’s new ‘top rabbi’

AUSTRALIA
Australian Jewish News

RABBI Yaakov Glasman of St Kilda Hebrew Congregation has become Australia’s new “top rabbi”.

He was elected as president of the Rabbinic Council of Australia and New Zealand (RCANZ) at its first annual general meeting in Sydney last week.

The body, representing more than 100 congregational rabbis, was established in the wake of last year’s Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, which saw the integrity of a number of senior spiritual leaders being questioned and led to calls for an overhaul of existing rabbinic structures, including the existing Organisation of Rabbis of Australasia.

According to Rabbi Glasman, the RCANZ aims to start afresh with new leaders and a determination to make sure rabbis are professional and accountable.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:41 PM

Two new complaints

GUAM
Guam Daily Post

Neil Pang | Post News Staff

With the filing of two more complaints Wednesday, the Archdiocese of Agana now faces a total of nine civil suits filed with the Superior Court of Guam that allege, among other things, child sexual abuse by priests of local parishes.

The first complaint, from 63-year-old Chalan Pago resident Paul Joseph Borja, stated that Borja was molested by a local parish priest when he was serving as an altar boy at the Our Lady of Peace and Safe Journey Catholic Church in 1965.

In court documents filed Wednesday, Borja alleges that the now-deceased Rev. Antonio C. Cruz, who served as a priest for the Chalan Pago Parish at the time, molested and abused him.

The allegations presented in the suit state that Rev. Cruz had obtained permission from Borja's mother for Borja to meet Cruz at his residence on the second floor of the Chalan Pago Parish. According to court documents, the events that transpired that night constituted sexual abuse that included Cruz performing oral copulation on the then-12-year-old Borja.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:41 PM

Rev. Brent Hawkes trial concludes with defence lawyer calling the case 'weird'

CANADA
Local Xpress

by: Ian Fairclough

Weird. That's how defence lawyer Clayton Ruby described the trial of Rev. Brent Hawkes during closing arguments in Kentville provincial court Wednesday.

“This is a weird case, and the evidence is weird,” he said, adding the weirdness will make it a proceeding that will be remembered years from now.

“There's a theme through my submissions, to watch for the weird case,” he said. “Because the weirdness tells you things that ordinary cases don't tell you.”

Ruby conceded that he didn't have the evidence to show the three Crown witnesses were lying, but “we do have an abundance of evidence that their testimony is unreliable.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:47 AM

Decision in Brent Hawkes sex assault trial put over til January

CANADA
Global News

Canadian Press

KENTVILLE, N.S. – Closing arguments were made today in the trial of a prominent Toronto pastor accused of performing sex acts on a teenage boy more than 40 years ago in Nova Scotia.

Brent Hawkes, a high-profile rights activist, has pleaded not guilty to charges of indecent assault and gross indecency.

The charges stem from events in the mid-1970s, when he was a teacher in his mid-20s in Nova Scotia’s Annapolis Valley.

The trial in Kentville, N.S., has heard emotional testimony from a middle-age man who said Hawkes led him down a hallway naked during a drunken get-together at his trailer and forced oral sex on him in a bedroom when he was about 16 years old.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:45 AM

Witness testimony 'unreliable,' Brent Hawkes’s lawyer tells trial

CANADA
The Globe and Mail

ALY THOMSON
KENTVILLE, N.S. — The Canadian Press
Published Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2016

Brent Hawkes’ lawyer told his gross indecency trial Wednesday that the evidence against the Toronto pastor is “weird,” but the prosecutor contended that doesn’t make it any less plausible.

Defence lawyer Clayton Ruby said in his closing argument that the entire case will be remembered as weird, amid “an abundance of evidence” that the testimony of the witnesses is unreliable.

“The weirdness tells you things that ordinary cases don’t tell you,” Ruby told provincial court Judge Alan Tufts in Kentville, N.S.

A middle-age man testified last week that Hawkes led him down a hallway naked during a drunken get-together at his trailer in Greenwood, N.S., in the mid-1970s, and forced oral sex on him in a bedroom when he was about 16 years old. Two other men have also testified they attended the get-together as teenagers, and one said he witnessed Hawkes performing oral sex on the complainant.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:43 AM

Defence argues Crown failed to make its case in Brent Hawkes trial

CANADA
Daily Xtra

Matthew DiMera

“This is a weird case, and the evidence is weird,” defence lawyer Clayton Ruby said today in his closing arguments in the Brent Hawkes sexual assault trial.

Hawkes, a longtime leader of Toronto’s gay community and recipient of the Order of Canada, is facing one charge of indecent assault and one charge of gross indecency for allegedly having oral sex with a 16-year-old more than 40 years ago in Kings County, NS, when he was a high school teacher.

“I have not got the evidence to show that the three witnesses are lying,” Ruby told provincial court Judge Alan Tufts. “But we do have an abundance of evidence that their testimony is unreliable.”

The Crown’s case against Hawkes is based almost entirely on eyewitness testimonies from three witnesses whose identities are protected under a publication ban.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:40 AM

Submissions to criminal justice consultation paper published

AUSTRALIA
Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse

24 November, 2016

The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse has published more than 70 submissions received from a range of individuals and organisations in response to its consultation paper on criminal justice issues.

The consultation paper was released on 5 September this year. It elicited responses from survivors, advocacy and support groups, legal practitioner representative bodies, Directors of Public Prosecutions, academics and governments.

Royal Commission CEO Philip Reed said the large number of submissions reflected the importance the community placed on improving the criminal justice system.

“The Royal Commission has long been aware of the need to better understand the contemporary response of the criminal justice system to institutional child sexual abuse and identify ways it can be made more effective,” Mr Reed said.

“These submissions will be instrumental in informing our final recommendations on criminal justice.”

The Royal Commission has invited a range of groups and individuals to speak to their submissions as part of a further Royal Commission public hearing on criminal justice issues, commencing on Monday 28 November.

The consultation paper covered issues such as joint trials, admissibility of an accused’s ‘bad character’ and matters such as police communication and their response to reporting of child sexual abuse, prosecution responses, delays and sentencing.

The consultation paper and its submissions form an important part of the Royal Commission’s wider work in criminal justice, which include an issues paper, public roundtables, research and a previous public hearing.

Read the submissions.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:32 AM

Abuse film to train prosecutors as abuse inquiry triggers court cases

SCOTLAND
Herald Scotland

Stephen Naysmith

Prosecutors are being trained to be more understanding of abuse and its victims ahead of a predicted flood of court cases related to the Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry.

The harrowing story of Andy Kershaw, who was subjected to brutality and abuse after being taken into care in England at the age of eight has been made into a film by the training consultancy Safe To Say.

The film, commissioned by the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS), will now form part of its staff training.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:29 AM

Church launch inquiry into handling of Bishop George Bell child abuse payout

UNITED KINGDOM
The Argus

Joel Adams , Reporter / Argus_JoelA

AN INQUIRY has been launched into the Church’s handling of a settlement paid to a woman who was abused as a child by the wartime Bishop of Chichester.

Liberal Democrat peer and QC Lord Carlile of Berriew has been named as the independent reviewer into the case, and his report is expected next summer.

However, there is no promise that the final review will be made available to the public.

The formal terms of reference insist: “ The Church of England will determine whether the full report can be sufficiently redacted or otherwise anonymised to enable its publication without risking disclosure of the complainant’s identity.”

In February The Argus exclusively told the victim’s story. She was sat on the bishop’s knee at the age of five and molested while being told it was a secret because God loved her.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:27 AM

Salesian College Sunbury to offer public apologies for sexual abuse of students

AUSTRALIA
Sunbury Leader

SUNBURY’S Salesian College will host a public apology to victims and loved ones affected by decades of historical sexual abuse there.

Australia-Pacific Province of the Salesians of Don Bosco provincial Father Greg Chambers will present the apology on December 8 to victims and their families in gardens in front of the Rupertswood Mansion, where a plaque will be placed on a “sorry stone”.

Years of abuse at the then boarding school at Rupertswood Mansion from the 1970s to ’90s has led to past priests being imprisoned, while other staff associated with the college at the time have been ordered to pay substantial compensation.

The dark history of Salesian College has again come to light with the ongoing Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

Salesian College principal Mark Brockhus said the apology and monument was a starting point in confronting the college’s past which had impacted on dozens of victims.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:23 AM

Federal government ‘dragging its heels’ on child abuse redress scheme

AUSTRALIA
The Guardian

Christopher Knaus

Anti-child abuse campaigners have urged federal and state governments to avoid playing political games with the national redress scheme, after Victoria said the federal government for “dragging its heels” and keeping survivors in the dark.

The council of Australian governments meeting early next month could be critical to the future of the national redress scheme, which was a core recommendation of the royal commission in September last year.

Social services minister Christian Porter announced the proposed $4.3 billion model of redress earlier this month, which allowed states, territories, and institutions to opt in or out. But most states and territories remain cautious and are yet to fully commit.

This week, NSW, Queensland, Victoria, and the ACT told Guardian Australia they were still waiting on further detail from the federal government on how the scheme would work.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:19 AM

Ex-Irish president Mary McAleese still keeping the faith despite her tortuous studying of canon law


IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

By Nicola Anderson
PUBLISHED
24/11/2016

Former Irish President Mary McAleese has described her doctorate study in canon law as "sleeping in the same bed as a python".

"You never finish it, you just get to the point where you have to abandon it," Mrs McAleese said.

She spent the last three years living the quiet life in convents and seminaries in the Vatican with a quip that her social life was "very active" given the 11pm curfew.

Her studies have "filled her head up with crap", the former President said. ...

Instead, she wants to look at the hierarchical structure of the Church, which she says is "not serving its purpose".

She slated the Vatican's recent threat to withdraw from the UN Convention on Children's Rights over its discomfort in being cross-examined on issues like child sexual abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:16 AM

MSP: GR pastor facing child sexual abuse charges

MICHIGAN
WOOD

[with video]

KENTWOOD, Mich. (WOOD) — A pastor at a Grand Rapids church was arrested after police say he tried to meet an 11-year-old girl for sex.

David Robert Diehl, 39, of Kentwood, was arraigned Wednesday on child sexually abusive activity and using a computer to commit a crime charges.

Diehl was arrested on Nov. 22 after he responded to an undercover officer’s post on Grand Rapids Craigslist, which warned about a poster offering “sex with daughters.”

Michigan State Police say Diehl is a pastor at Church on Fire in Grand Rapids.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:13 AM

Newcastle Anglican bishop says child abuse cover-up like 'religious protection racket'

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

By Anne Connolly

Bishop Greg Thompson says members of the Newcastle Anglican diocese acted like a Sopranos-style protection racket when it dealt with sex abuse complaints.

"What's particularly distinctive about the story of abuse in this diocese is the habituated protection of perpetrators and the undermining of survivors as they came forward. It was like a religious protection racket," Bishop Thompson told 7.30.

"You could call it like a religious Sopranos, people who pretended to be religious behaved appallingly. An organised crime against survivors."

The bishop also told how he was abused by two senior priests — including former bishop Ian Shevill — at an R-rated movie in the 1970s.

"The abuse was groping and touching and grooming me to see sexual assault as a normal thing, as an acceptable thing and as part of becoming a person in the church. That's how corrosive it was in that moment," he told 7.30.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:08 AM

Former altar boy’s defamation lawsuit now in hands of federal appellate court

MISSOURI
The Kansas City Star

BY JUDY L. THOMAS
jthomas@kcstar.com

A defamation lawsuit filed against a national Catholic organization by a former altar boy whose sexual abuse case was part of a $10 million settlement with the Kansas City-St. Joseph Diocese is now awaiting a federal appellate court ruling.

The lawsuit, originally filed by Jon David Couzens in Jackson County Circuit Court in 2013, named as defendants the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights; its president and CEO, Bill Donohue; the KC Catholic League; and two Kansas City men who were officers of the now-dissolved local organization.

Couzens alleged that Donohue published false statements about him in news releases, on the Catholic League’s website and in documents distributed to churches. The lawsuit also accused the defendants of inflicting emotional distress.

The Catholic League, which is based in New York City and describes itself as the nation’s largest Catholic civil rights organization, argued that the case belonged in federal court and was successful in its motion to move the lawsuit to U.S. District Court. That court dismissed the lawsuit last year, ruling that the material was first published in New York, where the one-year statute of limitations for defamation claims had expired. Missouri has a two-year statute of limitations.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:05 AM

Disabled St. Francois County man sues over sex abuse at Hawaiian Army facility

MISSOURI
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

By Robert Patrick St. Louis Post-Dispatch

ST. LOUIS • The mother of a mentally disabled St. Francois County man sued the United States in federal court here Tuesday, alleging that a priest had abused the man when he was 8 and living in Hawaii.

The lawsuit says that the Rev. Mark Matson worked for the U.S. military under a contract at Tripler Army Medical Center in Hawaii as a priest and religious teacher.

Matson was a Catholic priest who was a member of the Theatines religious order, based in Colorado. He was ordained in 1976.

The family of the alleged victim was stationed at Tripler at the time.

The suit says that Matson sexually assaulted the boy at least six times after Sunday services in 1997-98, raping and spanking him. The first time, he asked the boy if he wanted to see a magic trick, the suit says. Matson threatened the boy with hell if he told anyone what happened, and also told the boy that his parents knew and approved, the suit says.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:04 AM

The 'Anglican house is burning': bishop

AUSTRALIA
Mercury

Rebekah Ison, Australian Associated Press
November 24, 2016

An Anglican bishop says he's received warnings from parishioners that he is not safe in his own diocese after he revealed claims of his abuse as a young man by senior church clerics.

Newcastle bishop Greg Thompson said cathedral parishioners had turned their backs on him, and screws had been placed in his staff members' tyres.

He said the message was that he would face public harassment and public shame if he did not "follow what they want me to do," he told the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse on Thursday.

As bishop of a community plagued by systemic child sexual abuse over decades, he says a national church response is needed as he says the Anglican "house is burning".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:02 AM

Royal commission: Newcastle bishop told by priest sexual favours would further his career

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

By David Marchese

The Anglican bishop of Newcastle, Greg Thompson, has told a royal commission a priest said in the 1970s he would "get ahead" in the church if he offered sexual favours.

Bishop Thompson was the final witness of the child abuse royal commission's hearing into Newcastle's Anglican diocese that is investigating widespread abuse carried out over decades.

The current bishop began his evidence by outlining his childhood, breaking down at times when he recalled being sexually abused by two male boarders staying at his home in his early teens.

Bishop Thompson explained how he got to know a priest, Eric Barker, in Newcastle in the 1970s who began to assault him when he was 19.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:00 AM

November 23, 2016

Pee Dee area pastor arrested for indecent exposure

SOUTH CAROLINA
WBTW

By Kendall McGee
Published: November 22, 2016

HARTSVILLE, SC (WBTW) – Hartsville police say they have arrested a Bishopville pastor for indecent exposure after several reports of a “flasher” in areas near Coker College.

According to Lt. Mark Blair with Hartsville police, officers responded to Second Street near Coker College Saturday at 8 p.m. after receiving a call about a man exposing himself to a woman.

Police found the vehicle the victim described and spoke to the suspect, who later confessed to the crime and several other incidents in the area.

Incident reports from Hartsville police list multiple reports of a man in a white car exposing himself to women near Coker College.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:34 PM

Other Pontifical Acts, 23.11.2016

VATICAN CITY
Vatican Information Service - Bulletin

The Holy Father appointed:

Rev. Gerard W. Battersby and Rev. Robert J. Fisher as auxiliaries of the archdiocese of Detroit (area 10,104, population 4,266,416, Catholics 1,220,724, priests 605, permanent deacons 221, religious 1,068), United States of America.

Bishop-elect Battersby was born in 1960 in Detroit and was ordained a priest in 1998. He holds a licentiate in pastoral theology from the “Sacred Heart” seminary of Detroit, and is completing his doctoral studies in spiritual theology at the St. Thomas University, Rome. He has served as parish vicar and pastor of various parishes in Detroit, director of formation at the “Sacred Heart” major seminary, vicar forane and member of the presbyteral council. He is currently parish priest of St. Mary of Redford and vice-rector of the “Sacred Heart” major seminary of Detroit.

Bishop-elect Fisher was born in 1959 in Detroit and was ordained a priest in 1992. He holds a bachelor’s degree in management services from the University of Detroit and studied philosophy and completed his studies in theology at the “Sacred Heart” seminary of Detroit. He has served as parish vicar, director of priestly vocations for the archdiocese of Detroit, pastor of a number of parishes and member of the presbyteral council. He is currently pastor of the national Shrine of the Little Flower Basilica in Royal Oak.

Rev. Timothy Edward Freyer as auxiliary of the diocese of Orange in California (area 2,025, population 3,114,363, Catholics 1,536,438, priests 276, permanent deacons 219, religious 420), United States of America. The bishop-elect was born in 1963 in Los Angeles, United States of America, and was ordained a priest in 1989. He carried out his ecclesiastical studies in the “Saint John” Seminary, Camarillo. He has served as parish vicar in Los Alamitos, San Clemente and Laguna Beach, and parish priest in Fullerton and Anaheim. He is currently vicar for the clergy.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:26 PM

2 local priests named Catholic assistant bishops in Detroit

MICHIGAN
Detroit Free Press

Niraj Warikoo , Detroit Free Press November 23, 2016

Pope Francis has named two priests in metro Detroit to be auxiliary bishops, replacing a retiring bishop and an outgoing one.

The Archdiocese of Detroit, which has about 1.3 million Catholics in a six-country region in southeast Michigan, announced today that Rev. Gerard Battersby, 56, and Rev. Robert Fisher, 57, will be ordained in January as the archdiocese's 29th and 30th assistant bishops. Last year, Auxilary Bishop Francis Reiss retired and last month, Bishop Michael J. Byrnes was named to lead the archdiocese in Guam.

"All of us in the Archdiocese of Detroit are deeply grateful that Pope Francis has named Father Battersby and Father Fisher, two well-loved and respected priests in our archdiocese, to be auxiliary bishops in our local church,” Archbishop of Detroit Allen Vigneron, said in a statement released today by the Archdiocese. "Both of these new bishops bring a rich set of gifts and talents to the roles they will play in leading our community in our mission to share the Good News of Jesus."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:24 PM

Church with rapist leading worship postpones merger with second church facing sex abuse claims

TENNESSEE
Raw Story

DAVID EDWARDS
23 NOV 2016

Two Tennessee churches — both with current or former leaders connected to sexual abuse — have decided to restructure a merger in light of recent allegations.

Earlier this week, the Memphis Police Department confirmed that it was investigating a city of Memphis library employee, Christopher Carwile, after he was accused of sexually assaulting at least three children while working as a youth minister at the Church at Schilling Farms (formerly known as Immanuel Baptist Church) 18 years ago.

After learning that Carwile was working at the Memphis library, Michael Hansen, his brother Brooks and childhood friend Kenny Stubblefield came forward with sexual abuse allegations dating back to 1998. Carwile was placed on administrative by the library pending the outcome of the investigation.

Michael Hansen told the Commercial Appeal that the victims informed Schilling Farms Pastor Scott Payne about the assault. And although Payne fired Carwile at the time, Hansen said that the church refused to file a police report.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:21 PM

Newcastle child sex abuse study to finish

AUSTRALIA
9 News

AAP

Newcastle's Anglican bishop, who has gone public with his own alleged abuse at the hands of clergy, is expected to give evidence at the last day of a royal commission hearing into the diocese on Thursday.

The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse has previously heard Bishop Greg Thompson faces opposition from some prominent parishioners, who question timing of his abuse claims.

His expected evidence on Thursday will come the day after accused child sex abuser and former Dean of Newcastle Graeme Lawrence testified allegations against him were not true.

The royal commission heard he and his male partner sent cards to a teen, known as CKH, who alleges he first had three-way "sex" with the pair at 17 in the early 1980s.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:18 PM

Talking Point: Child sex abuse scheme fails on too many levels

AUSTRALIA
Mercury

CATRYNA BILYK, Mercury
November 23, 2016

LIKE many Tasmanians, I was shocked and appalled by evidence given at the Royal Commission into Institutional Child Sexual Abuse.

All abuse of children is horrendous, but it is particularly abhorrent for abuse to be committed by people entrusted with the care of those children.

I welcome the Turnbull Government’s decision to fund trauma counselling and other support, and to appoint an advisory committee of survivors and their supporters.

However, I have concerns about the Government’s proposed opt-in redress scheme. Under the proposed scheme, states, territories and institutions responsible for allowing child sexual abuse to take place can opt-in. This means if the institutions that perpetrated the abuse do not want to pay, they won’t have to. This is not good enough.

Leonie Sheedy from Care Leavers Australia Network (CLAN) described allowing the states to opt-in as a cop-out. We must do better.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:03 PM

Marist Brother abused boys in dorm: court

AUSTRALIA
news.com.au

Toby Mann
Australian Associated Press

A former Marist Brother accused of sexually abusing young boys at Catholic boarding schools was a strict disciplinarian who used violence on his alleged victims, a court has heard.

Brett O'Connor was a dormitory master at a school on Sydney's North Shore when he allegedly began indecently assaulting a 12-year-old boy under his charge and left his alleged victim frozen in fear in his bed, Sydney's District Court heard on Wednesday.

He has pleaded not guilty to 18 charges relating to the alleged abuse of three victims at two schools in the late 1980s, crown prosecutor David Patch said.

"The accused was a very strict disciplinarian and sometimes used violence on the boys," Mr Patch said.

One alleged victim was hit with a cricket bat, the court heard.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:54 PM

Former priest avoids jail a second time after abuse of niece aged six

IRELAND
Irish Independent

Ruaidhrí Giblin
PUBLISHED
23/11/2016

A former priest who sexually abused his niece more than 30 years ago has avoided jail for a second time, despite an appeal by prosecutors in a case described as "rare and exceptional".

The 60-year-old, whose details cannot be published to protect the victim's identity, had pleaded guilty to 12 counts of sexually assaulting his niece on dates in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

She was aged between six and 13 and he was in his 20s. He was given wholly suspended 18-month sentences by Judge Pat McCartan on March 1.

The Director of Public Prosecutions sought a review of the man's sentence on grounds that it was unduly lenient. However, the Court of Appeal found yesterday that the sentencing judge acted within his discretion.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:27 AM

Judge refuses to allow rebuttal evidence in Rev. Brent Hawkes trial

CANADA
Local Xpress

The Crown had wanted to bring forward witnesses who would say that Hawkes made alcohol available to students who visited his home, but says the defence seems to be suggesting that it was available.

While he lost an application Tuesday to bring forward rebuttal evidence, the Crown attorney in the Brent Hawkes trial says he thinks he was able to get his point across because of admissions the defence made during the application.

Bob Morrison had been attempting to have two former West Kings District High School students testify that Hawkes, who is accused of indecent assault and gross indecency against a student at the school when he was a teacher there in the mid-1970s, made alcohol available to them when they were at his home for gatherings.

Hawkes had testified during his Kentville provincial court trial that he didn't want students driving home drunk and didn't give students alcohol, but added that didn't mean they didn't sneak some booze at events at his home that were attended by students and teachers. He said he only gave alcohol to teachers.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:47 AM

Brent Hawkes’ lawyers concede teens drank alcohol at pastor’s home in ’70s

CANADA
Toronto Star

By ALY THOMSON
The Canadian Press
Tues., Nov. 22, 2016

KENTVILLE, N.S.—Brent Hawkes’ lawyers conceded Tuesday that teenagers drank alcohol at the Toronto pastor’s Nova Scotia trailer during the mid 1970s, much to the prosecutor’s surprise.

Crown lawyer Bob Morrison had intended to call rebuttal witnesses to testify that other students, and not only the three witnesses who testified last week at Hawkes’ gross indecency trial, drank alcohol at his Greenwood, N.S., home.

But the defence said they didn’t disagree with the Crown on that point, so there was no need to hear from the witnesses.

“It was a bit of a surprise,” Morrison said outside the Kentville, N.S., courtroom on Tuesday, the fifth day of the trial. “That’s not what I had recollected (Hawkes’) evidence was . . . but the defence did concede that yes, in fact, he was aware that was taking place.”

Morrison and defence lawyer Clayton Ruby will make closing arguments Wednesday in a case that has challenged the memory of witnesses as they recounted events that happened more than 40 years ago.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:45 AM

Claims process begins in residential schools settlement affecting people who attended schools in Cartwright, North West River, Makkovik, Nain and St. Anthony

CANADA
CNW

Claims process begins in residential schools settlement affecting people who attended schools in Cartwright, North West River, Makkovik, Nain and St. Anthony that were run by the International Grenfell Association or the Moravian Church, announces Koskie Minsky, LLP.

The Supreme Court of Newfoundland and Labrador authorized this notice.

This is not a solicitation from a lawyer.

ST. JOHN'S, NL, Nov. 22, 2016 /CNW/ - The $50 million settlement ("Settlement") between the Federal Government of Canada ("Canada") and former students of the Schools in Cartwright, North West River, Makkovik, Nain or St. Anthony run by the International Grenfell Association ("IGA") or the Moravian Church (the "Schools") has now been approved by the Supreme Court of Newfoundland and Labrador and the claims process has now started. The Supreme Court of Newfoundland and Labrador authorized this press release, and other forms of notice, as part of a notification program to inform former students about their legal rights in this class action settlement.

Former students sued Canada about the management and operation of the Schools and the harms and abuses committed against the children who attended them. The lawsuits claimed that Canada exposed former students to child abuse, neglect, and physical, emotional, psychological and sexual abuse. The Plaintiffs claimed that Canada did not protect students' physical and mental well-being even though it was its duty to do so.

The application to have these Schools added to the 2007 Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement ("IRSSA") was denied. These Schools are not considered eligible Indian Residential Schools in IRSSA, and former students were not able to get compensation for attendance or pursue abuse claims as part of the Individual Assessment Process in that settlement.

Instead, the claims for these Schools were litigated for almost nine years and the lawyers for the Plaintiffs began presenting their claims at the trial which started in September 2015 and was adjourned in February 2016 to allow for settlement discussions.

The representative former students and Canada then reached the $50 million Settlement that provides compensation for former students who attended. The Settlement has now been approved by the Supreme Court of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Unless they have previously removed themselves from the lawsuit, the Settlement is available for anyone who was alive as of November 23, 2006 and who attended the IGA or Moravian Schools in the following locations between the dates listed ("Class Members"):

i Cartwright - April 1, 1949 to June 30, 1964

ii Northwest River - April 1, 1949 to June 30, 1980

iii Nain - April 1, 1949 to June 30, 1973

iv Makkovik - April 1, 1949 to June 30, 1960

v St. Anthony - April 1, 1949 to June 30, 1979

The class action no longer includes claims for the "Family Class" (family members of the former students who attended the schools). These claims were discontinued at trial by a decision of the Court. There is no compensation available for the Family Class in this Settlement and any further claims are now barred.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:41 AM

Child abuse royal commission: defrocked Anglican dean denies leading group of paedophile priests

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

By David Marchese

A defrocked Anglican dean has vehemently denied at a royal commission hearing that he was the leader of a group of child abusers, but admitted he failed to act when he "suspected" a priest in his charge was having sex with a teenage boy.

The ex-dean of Newcastle, Graeme Lawrence, has returned to the witness box in Sydney after beginning his evidence last week when he was questioned intensely about the events leading up to his defrocking in 2012.

Mr Lawrence has been labelled one of the most influential priests in Newcastle's history, with a strong sphere of supporters that rallied behind him during his time as dean of the city from 1984 until 2008.

The former priest was questioned at the child abuse royal commission today about his time as a rector in Griffith, where a man known as CKH claims he was sexually abused by Mr Lawrence as a teenager.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:39 AM

Guam church’s ‘toxic environment’ turns more toxic

GUAM
Marianas Variety

23 Nov 2016 Mar-Vic Cagurangan - For Variety

HAGÅTÑA — Although the Archdiocese of Agana has officially taken over the Redemptoris Mater Serminary building from the Neocatecumental Way, the conflicting accounts of acquisition and ownership of the property have become a contest of who’s telling the truth.

Dr. Ricardo Eusebio, a former member of the recently abolished RMS board, said the ownership of the property has stirred confusion that was caused by a “gigantic mountain of lies.”

“There was no truth to the accusations by various organizations that the property was ‘given away’ to the Neocatecumental Way and alienated from the Archdiocese of Agana,” Eusebio said.

At a press conference on Monday, Eusebio also lambasted Mother Superior Dawn Marie, head of the Carmelite Order, who said last week the dispute over the Yona property and the sex scandals in the church have created a “toxic environment” that forced the Carmelite nuns to end their 50-year mission on Guam.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:35 AM

Guam's new bishop files documents in court

GUAM
KUAM

Updated: Nov 23, 2016

By Nestor Licanto

Archbishop Michael Byrnes is taking no chances in asserting his control over the Redemptoris Mater Seminary. He filed a complaint on November 18 in the superior court against any others who might try to claim ownership over the seminary.

The filings state it is meant to be an ancillary measure to protect and preserve the plaintiff - Archbishop Byrnes' - rights with regard to the Yona properties, and that any future claimants, including members of the Neocatechumenal Way, have no enforceable legal or equity interest. The ten-page complaint also lays-out the background of the seminary's purchase by the archdiocese, and seeks the court's recognition that Archbishop Byrnes has sole and exclusive legal title.

The court action follows document filings at land management last week in which Byrnes also asserted control over the seminary and removed the previous board made up of members from the Neocatechumenal Way.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:31 AM

Two new complaints accuse Guam clergy members of molestation

GUAM
KUAM

Updated: Nov 23, 2016

By Sabrina Salas Matanane

And now there are nine - two more complaints have been filed in the Superior Court of Guam involving allegations of molestation by local clergy.

63-year-old Paul Joseph Borja alleges when he was 12 he was an altar boy for the Our Lady of Peace and Safe Journey Catholic Church in Chalan Pago. He says Father Antonio Cruz, who is now deceased, sexually molested and abused him. He added that when he moved to California with his family in 1968 Fr. Cruz just happened to be visiting the state and his parents invited him to their house for dinner. Borja says he went for a walk with him during which Fr. Cruz allegedly gave him an envelope with $50 inside. He says he was under the impression that the priest was trying to buy his silence.

The next victim to come forward is 59-year-old Vicente T. San Nicolas. He alleges that when he was a teenager and an altar boy at San Isidro Catholic Church in Malojloj he was molested repeatedly by Fr. Louis Brouillard who was serving as a priest there. He alleges the sexual abuse occurred over a five year period. San Nicola alleges Fr. Brouillard would ask his parents' permission to stay the night at the Carmelite Monastery in Malojloj where the priest was living. He alleges Fr. Brouillard would walk around naked and would show him collections of various nude photos of minor boys that were taken by the priest.

Court document state that although he never spoke about it, he believes the priest also molested his now deceased brother who would also spend time at the convent. San Nicolas also alleged Fr. Brouillard also sexually molested him when he was a boy scout and the priest was a scout master.

Additionally San Nicolas alleges that he told a Deacon Jeff Barcinas about how he was victimized, but the deacon told him there was nothing we could do and the archdiocese has never taken any responsibility for Brouillard misconduct.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:28 AM

2 new sex abuse lawsuits filed against former priests

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Haidee V Eugenio , heugenio@guampdn.com November 23, 2016

Two new child sex abuse lawsuits, filed Wednesday afternoon, allege that deceased Catholic priest Antonio C. Cruz and former priest Louis Brouillard separately molested two former altar boys in the 1960s and 1970s.

Brouillard, the Archdiocese of Agana and as many as 50 other defendants are named in the latest batch of lawsuits, filed by attorney David Lujan, of the law firm Lujan & Wolff. Cruz, who died in 1986 at the age of 62, is not named as a defendant.

There are now a total of nine lawsuits filed against the church and clergy since a law was signed Sept. 23, lifting the civil statute of limitations for those accused of abusing children, as well as the institutions that supported them.

Paul Joseph Borja, now 63, alleges that Cruz sexually molested him at the Our Lady of Peace and Safe Journey Catholic Church in Chalan Pago when he was about 12, around the year 1965.

Borja, a resident of Chalan Pago, alleges that Cruz tried to buy his silence with $50 about three years later, or around 1968, when they met in California.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:23 AM

'God doesn't care for liars' said Anglican priest accused of molesting boys

AUSTRALIA
PerthNow

Elle Farcic, PerthNow
November 22, 2016

A FORMER Anglican priest accused of molesting five boys warned one of his victims to keep what had happened to himself because "God doesn't care for liars", a jury has been told.

Raymond Sydney Cheek is on trial in the District Court accused of assaulting the boys, who are not know to each other, between 1955 and 1985.

Four of the men came forward in recent years after news of Mr Cheek being charged over an incident that allegedly occurred in Williams in 1985 became public.

That victim claims Mr Cheek undressed him and rubbed his body against him when he was 15-years-old.

The next day, Mr Cheek allegedly told the boy he should keep what had happened to himself because God doesn't like liars.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:21 AM

WA priest told boy abuse was 'tradition'

AUSTRALIA
7 News

AAP on November 23, 2016

A former Anglican priest accused of sexually abusing five boys over a 30-year period told one complainant it was tradition for a priest to undress an altar boy, a Perth court has heard.

Raymond Sydney Cheek, 84, is on trial in the West Australian District Court charged with committing an act of gross indecency and two counts each of indecent assault and indecent dealings with a child between 1955 and 1985.

One complainant, 48, testified on Tuesday that he was an altar boy in 1976 when he was eight or nine, and remembered Cheek as a "large, red-faced man" aged in his 30s.

He said on his first day as an altar boy, Cheek stripped him naked, leaving only his shoes on, and placed a robe on him, touching his genitals with his hands and the tassels of the waist rope.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:19 AM

Anglican priest undressed, touched boy in South West town, WA court hears

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

By Emily Piesse

A man has told a Perth court he was repeatedly undressed and touched in the groin by an Anglican priest in the late 1970s, while going to church with his mother.

Retired priest Raymond Sydney Cheek, 84, has pleaded not guilty to five charges spanning 30 years, including indecent dealing with a child under 14 years.

The first charge related to an alleged offence on the Easter weekend of 1955.

One man, who attended church with his mother in a south-west WA town, claims he was undressed and touched by Cheek on multiple occasions beginning in the 1970s.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:18 AM

Lord Carlile named as independent reviewer in George Bell case

UNITED KINGDOM
Church of England

22 November 2016

Lord Carlile named as independent reviewer in George Bell case

Lord Carlile of Berriew has been named as the independent reviewer of the processes used in the Bishop George Bell case. The lessons learnt review, commissioned by the Church of England's National Safeguarding Team, in accordance with the House of Bishops' guidance on all complex cases, is expected to be completed by the end of the summer.

In 2015 the Bishop of Chichester issued a formal apology following the settlement of a legal civil claim regarding allegations of sexual abuse by Bishop Bell, who was Bishop of Chichester from 1929 until shortly before his death in 1958.

The aim of the review will be to look at the processes surrounding the allegations which were first brought in 1995 to the diocese of Chichester, with the same allegations brought again, this time to Lambeth Palace, in 2013. It will also consider the processes, including the commissioning of independent expert reports and archival and other investigations, which were used to inform the decision to settle the case, in order to learn lessons which can applied to the handling of similar safeguarding cases in future. The full Terms of Reference are set out below.

Lord Carlile CBE QC is a Member of the House of Lords, having served as a Liberal Democrat Member of Parliament from 1983-1997. He was the Independent Reviewer of Terrorism Legislation between 2001 and 2011. He has a strong interest in cyber-related issues especially regarding National Security. (see full biography below). An executive summary of the review will be published once Lord Carlile has completed his work.

The Bishop of Bath and Wells, Peter Hancock, the Church of England's lead bishop on safeguarding, said: "I am grateful to Lord Carlile for agreeing to undertake the review, which will take a detailed look into how the Church handled the George Bell case; as with all serious cases there are always lessons to be learnt. The Church of England takes all safeguarding issues very seriously and we will continue to listen to everyone affected in this case while we await the findings of the review. The diocese of Chichester continues to be in touch and offer support to the survivor known as Carol, who brought the allegations."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:16 AM

Top QC will review the Bishop George Bell case

UNITED KINGDOM
Chichester Observer

Lord Carlile of Berriew has been named as the independent reviewer of the processes used in the Bishop George Bell case.

Lord Carlile CBE QC will conduct the ‘lessons learnt review’, commissioned by the Church of England’s National Safeguarding Team, in accordance with the House of Bishops’ guidance on all complex cases, in June.

In 2015 the Bishop of Chichester issued a formal apology following the settlement of a legal civil claim regarding allegations of sexual abuse by Bishop Bell, who was Bishop of Chichester from 1929 until 1958.

In a statement the Church of England said: “The aim of the review will be to look at the processes surrounding the allegations which were first brought in 1995 to the diocese of Chichester, with the same allegations brought again, this time to Lambeth Palace, in 2013.

“It will also consider the processes, including the commissioning of independent expert reports and archival and other investigations, which were used to inform the decision to settle the case, in order to learn lessons which can applied to the handling of similar safeguarding cases in future.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:13 AM

Church of England appoints Lord Carlile to review George Bell claim

UNITED KINGDOM
The Guardian

Harriet Sherwood Religion correspondent

The Church of England has appointed Alex Carlile to conduct an independent review of its handling of a sexual abuse claim against George Bell, one of the church’s leading figures of the 20th century.

In September 2015, the church issued a formal apology when settling a civil claim against Bell, the former bishop of Chichester who died in 1958. The alleged abuse took place in the 1940s and 1950s.

The apology and payment of compensation to a woman, known as Carol, sparked protests by Bell’s supporters, who claimed the church had acted without sufficient evidence.

In setting out the review’s terms of reference on Tuesday, the church said it would examine the processes surrounding the allegations which were first brought in 1995 to the diocese of Chichester, and to Lambeth Palace in 2013.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:11 AM

Bishop George Bell case: Lord Carlile to lead review

UNITED KINGDOM
BBC News

An independent review into how the Church of England handled the case of a bishop accused of being a child abuser is to be led by Lord Carlile.

Last year the Church settled a civil claim over allegations of sexual abuse by the Bishop of Chichester, George Bell, in the late 1940s and early 1950s.

It apologised and paid compensation to a woman who said she was abused by him.

The review will look at how it handled the claims and the decision to settle.

'Neither damage nor salvage'

The "lessons learnt review", commissioned by the Church of England's National Safeguarding Team, is expected to be completed by the end of next summer.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:09 AM

Ex-terror reviewer Lord Carlile to re-examine Bishop Bell sex abuse decision

UNITED KINGDOM
Telegraph

John Bingham, religious affairs editor
23 NOVEMBER 2016

One of Britain's leading legal experts has been called in by the Church of England to assess whether it unfairly labelled a revered former bishop as a paedophile.

Lord Carlile of Berriew, the former Independent Reviewer of Terrorism Legislation, has been appointed to oversee a review of the case of Bishop George Bell the wartime Bishop of Chichester.

Bishop Bell, who served the diocese for 30 years until his death in 1958, is regarded by some as one of the great peacemakers of the 20th Century and had been granted the closest thing Anglicanism has to a saint’s day, an annual commemoration.

But last year the Church stunned Bishop Bell’s devotees by announcing that it had concluded on the “balance of probabilities” that he had sexually assaulted a child in the late 1940s and early 1950s.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:08 AM

Church appoints Lord Carlile to review George Bell claim

UNITED KINGDOM
ITV

Lord Carlile of Berriew has been named as the independent reviewer into the handling of the case of the late bishop George Bell, who was accused of being a child abuser.

The review, commissioned by the Church of England's National Safeguarding Team, is expected to be completed by the end of the summer.

Last year the Bishop of Chichester issued a formal apology following the settlement of a legal claim over allegations of sexual abuse by Bishop Bell, who was Bishop of Chichester from 1929 until shortly before his death in 1958.

The review will examine the processes surrounding the allegations which were first brought in 1995 to the Diocese of Chichester and again in 2013, this time to Lambeth Palace.

It will also consider the processes, including the commissioning of expert independent reports and archival and other investigations, which were used to inform the decision to settle the case.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:02 AM

Suggestive card to teen was 'fun': priest

AUSTRALIA
PerthNow

By Rebekah Ison, Australian Associated Press
November 23, 2016

A defrocked NSW Anglican priest says a card he sent an alleged sex abuse victim showing a man's penis and captioned "thank heavens for little boys" was meant to be a "fun thing".

Former Dean of Newcastle Cathedral Graeme Lawrence has also denied knowing the details of cards and letters sent by his boyfriend Greg Goyette, who talked to the alleged teen victim about lubricants and "educational" videos that he may find "edifying" in the early 1980s.

The sex abuse royal commission has heard the then-teenager, known as CKH, alleges ongoing sexual contact from the age of 17 with both Mr Goyette and Mr Lawrence, who was then rector of St Alban's at Griffith.

At 19, CKH received a card from Mr Lawrence captioned "thank heavens for little boys for little boys grow bigger every day".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:54 AM

November 22, 2016

MEDIA RELEASE – NOVEMBER 22, 2016

PENNSYLVANIA
Road to Recovery

The Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown, PA, and the Franciscan Friars Third Order Regular of Pennsylvania continue to disrespect a childhood sexual abuse victim of Br. Stephen P. Baker, TOR, a deceased serial pedophile and member of the Franciscan Friars Third Order Regular of Pennsylvania, who served in the Altoona-Johnstown Diocese, by not reasonably settling his claim

A childhood sexual abuse victim of Br. Stephen P. Baker, TOR, from Bishop Mc Cort High School, Johnstown, PA, is being re-victimized and prevented from healing by the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown, PA, and the Franciscan Friars Third Order Regular of Pennsylvania, because they are not acting reasonably in the settling of his claim

What
A press conference announcing that the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown, PA, and the Franciscan Friars Third Order Regular of Pennsylvania refuse to justly and fairly settle the claim of a childhood sexual abuse victim of Br. Stephen P. Baker, TOR, from Bishop Mc Cort High School, Johnstown, PA, causing the childhood sexual abuse victim to be re-victimized, feel disrespected, and prevented from healing

When
Wednesday, November 23, 2016 at 11:30 am

Where
In front of the headquarters of the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown, PA, 927 S. Logan Boulevard, Hollidaysburg, PA 16648 – 814-695-5579

Who
Robert M. Hoatson, Ph.D., Co-founder and President of Road to Recovery, Inc., a non-profit charity based in New Jersey that assists victims of sexual abuse and their families, including several childhood sexual abuse victims of Br. Stephen P. Baker, TOR, in Michigan, Ohio, and Pennsylvania

Why
John Doe was a minor child attending Bishop Mc Cort High School in Johnstown, PA, when he met a serial pedophile, Br. Stephen P. Baker, TOR. From approximately 1996-1998, when he was approximately 15-17 years old and a student at Bishop Mc Cort High School, John Doe was repeatedly sexually abused by Br. Stephen P. Baker, TOR. Now, at age 34, John Doe has courageously come forward to report the sexual abuse that caused him great harm. He expected to receive a timely and fair response from the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown, PA, and the Franciscan Friars Third Order Regular of Pennsylvania. Instead, the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown and the Franciscan Friars Third Order Regular Pennsylvania have been unfair and unjust in settling John Doe’s claim, causing him to feel re-victimized, and disrespected, thus preventing him from healing. The Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown and the Franciscan Friars Third Order Regular of Pennsylvania will be called upon to settle John Doe’s claim in a timely, fair, and just manner, and allow “John Doe” to heal.

Contacts
Robert M. Hoatson, Ph.D., Road to Recovery, Inc. – 862-368-2800 – roberthoatson@gmail.com
Attorney Mitchell Garabedian, Boston, MA – 617-523-6250 – garabedianlaw@msn.com

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:15 PM

Berland sentenced to 18 months in prison for sexual assault

ISRAEL
Jerusalem Post

The Jerusalem Magistrate's Court approved the plea bargain agreed by the State Attorney’s Jerusalem branch and Rabbi Eliezer Berland, in which the rabbi pleaded guilty to two counts of indecent assault.

Berland was sentenced to 18 months incarceration for his sexual attacks on two women, as well as his instructions to assault the husband of one of the women he sexually assaulted.

Following his sentencing, the rabbi apologized in court for his actions.

“For my deeds in the days of the Bible I would have been stoned and burned, but today laws are different – there are leniencies,” said Berland.

“I regret from the depths of my heart any harm of mine against a man or woman, that was caused directly or indirectly.”

Berland was also given a suspended sentence of 14 months and will have to pay two of his victims NIS 25,000 each and NIS 5,000 to the husband of the complainant who he ordered to be beaten by his followers.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:12 PM

Former priest spared jail for abuse for second time

IRELAND
Irish Times

A former priest who sexually abused his niece more than 30 years ago has avoided jail for a second time, despite an appeal by prosecutors in a case described as “rare and exceptional”.

The 60-year-old man, whose details cannot be published to protect the victim’s identity, had pleaded guilty to 12 counts of sexually assaulting his niece on dates between 1979 and 1985 when she was aged between six and 13 and he was in his 20s.

He was given wholly suspended 18 month sentences by Judge Pat McCartan on March 1st, 2016.

The Director of Public Prosecutions sought a review of the man’s sentence on grounds that it was unduly lenient. However, the Court of Appeal found on Tuesday the sentencing judge acted within his discretion.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:08 PM

Vatican--Two controversial prelates are “demoted;” Victims respond

UNITED STATES
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

For immediate release: Tuesday, Nov. 22, 2016

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, 314 645 5915 home, davidgclohessy@gmail.com)

Pope Francis is not re-appointing two controversial, highly visible prelates to a global church panel. We’re glad this is happening even though we likely disagree with the pontiff for the reasons.

[National Catholic Reporter]

Cardinal Raymond Burke and Cardinal George Pell will no longer be on the Rome-basedCongregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments. (Their terms have expired and Francis is not renewing them.) The two are among ex-members who reportedly “are known for preferring a more traditionalist practice of liturgy” than Francis, according to the National Catholic Reporter.

Burke, Pell and many other bishops across the world should be passed over for promotions, not given honors and in fact be temporarily suspended or permanently ousted because they’re ignored or hidden credible reports of abuse (Burke) or been credibly accused of abuse themselves (Pell).

We long to see the day when a high ranking Catholic official is defrocked, demoted, disciplined or even publicly denounced for endangering kids. There seem to be virtually no consequences for bishops who act recklessly, callously or deceitfully in sexual abuse and cover up cases.

No matter what church officials do or don’t do, we urge every single person who saw, suspected or suffered child sex crimes and cover ups in churches or institutions to protect kids by calling police, get help by calling therapists, expose wrongdoers by calling attorneys, and be comforted by calling support groups like ours. This is how kids will be safer, adults will recover, criminals will be prosecuted, cover ups will be deterred and the truth will surface.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:56 PM

Vatican confirms Francis did not renew terms of Burke, Pell on worship congregation

VATICAN CITY
National Catholic Reporter

Joshua J. McElwee | Nov. 22, 2016

VATICAN CITY
The Vatican office that handles affairs relating to the Catholic church's liturgical practices has confirmed that Pope Francis has decided not to renew the terms of several of its bishop-members, many of whom are known for preferring a more traditionalist practice of liturgy.

Francis had appointed 27 new bishops to serve as members of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments on Oct. 28. But the announcement of the appointments did not make clear whether the previous members’ terms had been renewed.

The congregation has now posted a full list of its current membership on its website. The list makes clear the pope did not renew the terms of 16 congregation members, including those of U.S. Cardinal Raymond Burke, Australian Cardinal George Pell, and the head of the Vatican’s Congregation for Bishops, Canadian Cardinal Marc Ouellet.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:19 PM

Zero tolerance for abuse: Pittsburgh Bishop Donald Wuerl’s approach to abuse survivors was, ‘I’m their bishop, and I need to respond to their pain’

PENNSYLVANIA
Catholic Standard

By Ann Rodgers, Special to the Standard
Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Victim-survivors who report childhood sexual abuse at the hand of clergy should not be criticized for pointing out times when Church leadership failed, according to Cardinal Donald Wuerl.

“They are the witnesses who call us to uphold our own moral teaching,” he said. “The survivors who came forward when sexual abuse was rarely spoken of in public triggered changes that protect children today.”

The cardinal also said, “Innocent people who gain public attention for coming forward should not be slandered because they did the right thing by seeking action against an abuser.”

He finds it troubling that a few online forums masquerading as victim-advocacy sites – with no apparent ties to any mainstream victim-advocacy organizations – attack some of the victim-survivors who had done the most to improve the Church’s response to allegations of child sexual abuse. In an effort to claim that then-Bishop Wuerl didn’t remove abusive priests, the sites try to discredit those who reported abuse in one of Pittsburgh’s best known cases: that of the late Anthony Cipolla.

Among those they malign is Tim Bendig, now 47, a former seminarian who sued the Diocese of Pittsburgh in 1988, reporting that then-Father Cipolla sexually abused him when he was 12 years old. Cipolla died earlier this year, maintaining his innocence.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:44 PM

Abuse inquiry 'is gagging the lawyers who resigned': New secrecy row after accusation staff were stopped from talking to MPs about why they quit

UNITED KINGDOM
Daily Mail

By REBECCA CAMBER and IAN DRURY FOR THE DAILY MAIL

The beleaguered child abuse inquiry faced a new secrecy row last night as it was accused of gagging lawyers from talking to MPs about why they have quit.

The Home Affairs Select Committee has requested written evidence from seven lawyers who have resigned from Britain’s biggest public inquiry.

But the Mail has learnt that the barristers have been prevented from speaking out under contractual rules. The inquiry has refused to waive legal privilege, which prevents all communications between a lawyer and their client from being disclosed without the permission of the client, which in this case is the inquiry.

According to a source, three out of four lawyers who have responded to the committee so far, say they cannot talk about their time there in detail due to legal privilege rules.

But one senior barrister Hugh Davies, QC, is said to be so frustrated that he has written a strongly-worded critique of its conduct and his views on how complaints by staff should have been handled.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:19 PM

Pressure grows on leader of sex abuse inquiry Professor Alexis Jay after lawyers voice concerns

UNITED KINGDOM
Evening Standard

Senior lawyers who quit the beleaguered public inquiry into historical child abuse have raised concerns about its leadership in letters to a Commons committee.

At least one of the four barristers has directly criticised Professor Alexis Jay’s handling of the suspension of Ben Emmerson QC, the former lead counsel, sources have disclosed.

Correspondence from Hugh Davies QC, ex-deputy counsel to the inquiry, said Professor Jay should have provided more information on why Mr Emmerson was suspended in September.

He resigned the next day, and as yet no reason has been given for his suspension.

However, Labour MP Lisa Nandy used Parliamentary privilege yesterday to say there has been a claim of sexual assault. Mr Emmerson denies the allegations, saying they are “categorically untrue”.

The letters are the latest set-back for the £100 million inquiry which has seen a raft of senior lawyers resign and Britain’s largest abuse victims organisation, the London-based Shirley Oaks Survivors Association (SOSA), pull out.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:17 PM

This is Theresa May's last chance to rescue the child abuse inquiry

UNITED KINGDOM
New Statesman

When is is a crisis not a crisis? After the departure of seven senior lawyers, three chairs, several survivors’ groups, £15m of public money, two years and little progress to show for it, Theresa May and her Home secretary are increasingly lone voices in their insistence that all is well on the child abuse inquiry that May, as Home secretary, rightly established in the wake of distressing revelations about Jimmy Savile.

It was always a daunting and complex task to shine a spotlight into institutions characterised by secrecy and cover up, where abusers were able to operate in plain sight without challenge or consequence. The inquiry spans decades, covers hundreds of institutions and relies on the accounts of many survivors who have struggled on for years without support. Now they must face the prospect of detailing abuse at the hands of the powerful, to the powerful. How to find a chair with the legal expertise and commitment to command the confidence of survivors, the public and the inquiry staff, a person with vast experience but without personal connections to the accused?

And yet it has been done. In Australia, a Royal Commission has begun to uncover the truth since it was set up in 2013. By contrast, the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse has been dogged by problems since the outset, losing its first two chairs within months because of connections to the accused, before being re-established on a statutory footing. The appointment of its third chair, Dame Lowell Goddard, was so rushed and confused that the Home Affairs Committee took the unusual step of releasing a report criticising May for potentially bringing “the whole process into disrepute”.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:16 PM

Child abuse inquiry 'crumbled' and 'impossible to fix'

UNITED KINGDOM
BBC News

[with video]

By Jake Morris
BBC Newsnight

The child sexual abuse inquiry has "crumbled" and may be impossible to fix, a leading barrister has said.

Michael Mansfield QC told the BBC the best way forward was to have separate chairs overseeing different areas.

The inquiry has been battling to keep the confidence of victims after losing its third chair, Dame Lowell Goddard, and a succession of senior lawyers.

Mr Mansfield represented the families of victims in the Bloody Sunday inquiry and the Hillsborough inquest.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:13 PM

Mount Cashel victims wait for justice as case heads back to court in December

CANADA
CBC News

By Chris O'Neill-Yates, CBC News Posted: Nov 22, 2016

A 76-year-old former Mount Cashel resident is waiting for the outcome of a lawsuit against the Roman Catholic Episcopal Corporation of St. John's that was filed in 1999.

The man — who can be identified only as John Doe because of a publication ban — is one of 80 to 90 former residents suing the Roman Catholic Episcopal Corporation of St. John's for abuse dating back to the 1940s and 1950s.

Twenty-five years after the infamous Mount Cashel orphanage was torn down, John Doe recalls the helplessness he felt as a boy.

"You had no freedom, nowhere to go. They could do what they wanted to you with impunity," he said.

The man was a resident at Mount Cashel from 1948 to 1955. He said he was sexually and physically abused by four Christian Brothers and one lay person.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:39 AM

Vic institutions accountable for abuse

AUSTRALIA
SBS

22 NOV 2016

Organisations in Victoria will have to prove they took reasonable steps to protect children under their care from abuse in a move that will make it easier for victims to sue institutions for damages.

Victoria is the first state to introduce laws creating a duty of care for organisations so they can be held accountable for the abuse of children.

The onus of proof will be reversed so organisations have to prove they took reasonable precautions to prevent the abuse from happening, Victorian Attorney-General Martin Pakula said.

"We're strengthening our laws to better protect children and ensure that organisations can be held to account in the future, and we are continuing to work on a redress scheme for victims of historical child sexual abuse," he said in a statement.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:24 AM

New national Church response to importance of safeguarding

AUSTRALIA
Catholic Outlook

A new independent company to be established by the Catholic Church in Australia to develop, audit and report on compliance with professional standards to protect children and vulnerable people was announced today by Church leaders

Catholic Professional Standards (CPS) Limited represents a new national Church response to the importance of safeguarding vulnerable people. It will be responsible for setting the highest standards to ensure the safety of individuals involved with the Church at all levels and engaging with Catholic service providers.

CPS will:

* Develop new standards for the protection of children and vulnerable adults across Church entities, particularly in areas where there are no current relevant standards;
* Audit and report on the compliance of each Church authority against the new professional standards; and
* Provide education and training regarding the new standards.

The Australian Catholic Bishops Conference and Catholic Religious Australia, which represent more than 200 independent Catholic entities across Australia, made the joint announcement of the new company during the bishops’ plenary meeting with religious leaders at Mary MacKillop Place in Sydney on 22 November 2016.

Member representative of CPS and the President of Catholic Religious Australia, Sr Ruth Durick OSU, said the new entity sets a new standard for the Catholic Church in Australia.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:39 AM

Victim speaks to WREG after filing sexual abuse report against former church worker

TENNESSEE
WREG

[with video]

NOVEMBER 21, 2016, BY BRIDGET CHAPMAN

MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Three men are speaking out after they say a church worker sexually abused them in Collierville when they were teens.

One of them has filed a report and the two others said they're getting one filed now.

Kenny Stubblefield was only 16 years old when it happened, but he still remembers every detail of the night he said he was sexually assaulted by someone at his church.

"I'm just like eyes wide open," said Stubblefied. "By the next morning when the sun came up, I had to convince myself that it was my fault. I had to convince I'd done something to deserve it and I needed to stay quiet."

Less than a year later, he said he found out he wasn't alone.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:37 AM

Pastor indicted on 11 counts related to child sex abuse

GEORGIA
Golden Isles News

By WES WOLFE wwolfe@goldenisles.news

A Glynn County grand jury issued an 11-count indictment Thursday accusing the Rev. Kenneth Adkins of five counts of aggravated child molestation, three counts of child molestation, two counts of enticing a child for indecent purposes and one count of influencing a witness.

Adkins turned himself in to authorities at the Glynn County Detention Center the morning of Aug. 26 after police sought his arrest on child molestation charges.

His accuser, referred to in court by the initials A.J., is now 21 years old and went to an Army sexual assault counselor in April where prosecutors say he told of sexual acts performed on him and with him by Adkins when the alleged victim was 15 years old.

During a combative evidentiary hearing Sept. 9, Georgia Bureau of Investigation Special Agent James Feller went into graphic and specific detail of incidents between Adkins, A.J. and a girl referenced as T.V. that were associated with the ministry Adkins ran at the time on G Street.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:26 AM

Deacon Pat Rodgers, longtime archdiocese communications director, dies at 67

TEXAS
News4 SanAntonio

SAN ANTONIO - Deacon Pat Rodgers, longtime communications director of the archdiocese, has passed away on Monday.

He was 67.

Rodgers, who served nearly two decades in the archdiocesan Department of Communications before he retired in June, 2015, had suffered a heart attack on Nov. 18 before passing away at Nix Medical Center. ...

He was still in the Development Office in 2002 when the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) developed the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People, which required that each diocese have a person designated to work with the media in the area of sexual abuse. This, he explained, “was in the spirit of transparency in order that the community also be educated and protected.” Knowing of his 37 years in broadcasting, Msgr. Lawrence Stuebben, then vicar general, asked Rodgers if he would take on this new role, which expanded into being spokesperson for the archdiocese in other areas as well.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:22 AM

New Jersey Playbook

NEW JERSEY
Politico

Robert Hoatson, a former priest who founded a group that helps victims of sexual abuse, is seeking the Democratic nomination for governor. Hoatson announced last week. ““I am running for the Democratic nomination for Governor because New Jersey deserves ethical and moral leadership that has as its foundation, the truth. We need a Governor who will work for the people and not his own political advancement, a Governor who treats the citizenry with respect, and a Governor who is a wise steward of the people’s financial and social capital.” From Hoatson’s bio: “Robert Hoatson, Ph.D., has lobbied for years in the New Jersey state legislature for reform of statute of limitations laws regarding sexual abuse of children. He has acted as a whistleblower of numerous cases of sexual abuse against children throughout the State of New Jersey, and was an integral part of the uncovering of facts surrounding the Newark Archdiocesan cover-up of the Fr. Michael Fugee sexual abuse case. In his work with Road to Recovery, Inc., Dr. Hoatson has traveled the State of New Jersey, helping to heal victims of sexual abuse and their families and advocating for justice and fairness for all. Dr. Hoatson’s perseverance in holding the soon-to-be-replaced Archbishop of Newark, John Myers, accountable for his mishandling of cases of clergy sexual abuse.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:20 AM

Newcastle-Maitland Catholic Church sexual abuse case settles out of court

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

By Mazoe Ford

The Catholic Church has reached a confidential settlement with two sisters who say they were sexually abused by a priest in the Maitland-Newcastle diocese in the 1970s and 80s.

The sisters, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, said they were abused by Father Dennis McAlinden, who died in a nursing home in 2005 without ever being charged.

They were suing both the estate of the late Bishop Leo Clarke, who was in charge at the time of the alleged crimes, as well as the trustees of the Roman Catholic Church for the Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle.

But yesterday Justice Peter Garling urged the parties to settle the case outside court so the women would not "be unnecessarily put in distress".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:17 AM

Woman Claiming Sexual Abuse By Father Maskell Speaks Out

MARYLAND
CBS Baltimore

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — The accusations against Father Joseph Maskell, who served as the guidance counselor at Archbishop Keough High School, date back to the 1960s and 70s.

At least a dozen victims who claim they were sexually abused by Maskell have received settlements from the Archdiocese of Baltimore.

Donna Von Den Bosch, who says she suffered unspeakable abuse, got $40,000.

In 1970, when she was just 14 years old, Von Den Bosch was a bright, excited freshman at the school.

Just as her new life was beginning, it descended into hell.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:14 AM

November 21, 2016

Former head of child abuse inquiry sues Holyrood ministers

SCOTLAND
The Times

The former head of the Scottish inquiry into historic child abuse, who resigned in July, is to sue ministers.

Susan O’Brien, QC, resigned amid controversy, with John Swinney, the education secretary, later telling MSPs that he had been considering her removal from the post over claims of inappropriate comments about survivors.

The inquiry has been mired in problems since it was set up. Ms O’Brien’s resignation in the summer came shortly after Michael Lamb, a fellow panel member, stood down, blaming government interference.

Ms O’Brien has refused to comment on the nature of her action, which emerged after papers were lodged at the Court of Session.

The inquiry is dealing with hundreds of witnesses into claims of abuse in children’s homes dating back decades.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:14 PM

Crown wants to call rebuttal evidence in Hawkes sex assault trial

CANADA
Local Xpress

The Crown says it plans to call rebuttal evidence in the trial of Rev. Brent Hawkes, who is accused of indecent assault and gross indecency against a student at the school where he was teacher in the 1970s.

After the defence wrapped up its case Monday afternoon in Kentville provincial court, Crown attorney Bob Morrison told Judge Alan Tufts he wants to call two or three witnesses to testify on the issue of whether alcohol was served to students in Hawkes' home around the time of the alleged crimes.

The complainant and other Crown witnesses, who were students at West Kings District High School, testified that Hawkes had alcohol in his trailer and that it was offered to them on the night the complainant says Hawkes sexually assaulted him.

Hawkes testified that he never provided alcohol to students if they came to his home, although there was some there for teachers if there was a get-together with both students and teachers present.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:12 PM

Rev. Brent Hawkes trial hears testimony about fallibility of memories

CANADA
Toronto Star

By ALY THOMSON
The Canadian Press
Mon., Nov. 21, 2016

KENTVILLE, N.S.— Brent Hawkes’ gross indecency trial heard testimony Monday on the nature and fallibility of memory.

Timothy Moore, chair of the psychology department at York University’s Glendon College, told the judge that memories are by nature “constructive and reconstructive.”

Moore says people often recall events differently, and time “can alter or change or misdirect the nature of” memories.

“Memories can undergo a substantial amount of modification over time and the longer the time, the more opportunity for misinformation to occur,” he said in Kentville, N.S., provincial court.

Hawkes is accused of performing sex acts on a teenage boy more than 40 years ago when the Toronto pastor was a teacher in his mid-20s in Nova Scotia’s Annapolis Valley. Hawkes, a prominent rights activist, has denied the allegations and pleaded not guilty to indecent assault and gross indecency.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:10 PM

VIDEO: Toronto pastor’s indecency trial hears testimony about fallibility of memories

CANADA
Chronicle-Herald

KENTVILLE, N.S. — The Brent Hawkes trial is hearing testimony today on the nature and fallibility of memory.

Timothy Moore, chair of the psychology department at York University’s Glendon College, told the judge that memories are by nature “constructive and reconstructive.”

Moore says people often recall events differently, and time “can alter or change or misdirect the nature of” memories.

He says it is well-known liquor can impair memories, and an alcoholic blackout can lead to their fragmentation and to assumptions that could be conflated with actual memories.

Hawkes is accused of performing sex acts on a teenage boy more than 40 years ago when he was a teacher in his mid-20s in Nova Scotia’s Annapolis Valley.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:06 PM

GOVERNMENT BACKING FOR ALEXIS JAY TO STAY IN CHARGE OF CHILD ABUSE INQUIRY

UNITED KINGDOM
Care Appointments

Press Association

The Government has backed Professor Alexis Jay to lead the troubled child sex abuse inquiry amid growing calls by victims and MPs for her to go.

Labour MP Chuka Umunna has called for her to be removed while the Shirley Oaks Survivors Association (Sosa) quit the probe amid criticisms that Prof Jay is an "uninspiring leader".

But speaking during an urgent question in the Commons on the inquiry, Home Office minister Sarah Newton said: "I am confident, as is the Prime Minister, as is the Home Secretary, in the ability of Professor Jay to lead this inquiry."

Prof Jay became the fourth chairwoman to lead the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) after her predecessor Dame Lowell Goddard quit in August.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:45 PM

Amber Rudd told to 'get a grip' over child sex abuse inquiry

UNITED KINGDOM
Sky News

A Labour MP has criticised Home Secretary Amber Rudd for not appearing in the Commons to answer an urgent question on the national child sex abuse inquiry.

It was left to Home Office minister Sarah Newton to respond to a series of queries from Lisa Nandy, who accused Prime Minister Theresa May of hiding "behind a smokescreen of independence".

The inquiry into historical sex abuse allegations is now being led by its fourth chairwoman, Professor Alexis Jay, and a number of senior lawyers have quit recently.

Also, last week a group representing 600 victims of sexual abuse withdrew from the inquiry, branding it an "unpalatable circus".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:43 PM

Child sex abuse inquiry receives letters from four senior lawyers

UNITED KINGDOM
The Guardian

Alan Travis Home affairs editor
Monday 21 November 2016

The Commons home affairs committee is to hold talks on the future direction of the independent inquiry into child sex abuse after receiving letters detailing the concerns of four senior lawyers who have quit the inquest.

A Home Office minister tried to reassure MPs on Monday that Prof Alexis Jay remains the right person to chair the troubled inquiry after the latest round of resignations and defections of survivors’ groups.

The Commons home affairs committee, chaired by Labour’s Yvette Cooper, is to meet in private on Tuesday to discuss the future of an inquiry that is now on its fourth chair, after the resignation of 17 lawyers and the withdrawal of several survivors’ groups.

The MPs are expected to order the publication later this week of letters from four barristers – including Hugh Davies QC, ex-deputy lead counsel to the inquiry – detailing their concerns over the conduct and management of the inquiry during the recent crises.

One of the letters is reported to repeat the allegations made by a Labour MP, Lisa Nandy, who used parliamentary privilege to name the senior counsel to the inquiry, Ben Emmerson, QC, as the person accused of an alleged sexual assault at the inquiry’s London headquarters. It is believed to criticise the inquiry’s handling of the sexual assault allegation.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:41 PM

Pastor accused of child molestation indicted on 11 counts

GEORGIA
News4Jax

BRUNSWICK, Ga. - Pastor Ken Adkins, who was denied bond in September on child molestation charges, has been indicted on 11 counts by the Glynn County grand jury.

Adkins, 56, pastor of the Greater Dimensions Christian Fellowship, has been in the Glynn County Jail since Aug. 26, when he surrendered on charges resulting from allegations he molested a teenage boy in 2010.

Adkins is charged with three counts of child molestation, five counts of aggravated child molestation, two counts of enticing a child for indecent purposes and one count of influencing a witness.

Adkins' lawyer, Kevin Gough, has filed a new motion for bond and in reaction to the indictment said, "Having already demanded a speedy trial, and eager to clear his good name, Pastor Kenneth Adkins and his family look forward to his day in court.”

Adkins new bond hearing is set for Dec. 16.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:39 PM

St William's school sex abuse: Judge retires to consider claim

UNITED KINGDOM
BBC News

A judge has retired to consider a claim for compensation by five victims of sexual abuse at a Catholic school.

More than 200 men claim they were abused at St William's residential school in Market Weighton, East Yorkshire, between 1970 and 1991.

The De La Salle order, which ran the school, has apologised "unreservedly" for the abuse and the actions of its former principal.

James Carragher was jailed for sex offences against children at the home.

Solicitor David Greenwood, acting for those claiming compensation, said St William's was "the biggest single home where boys were abused" that he had seen.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:29 PM

Vicar resigns after admitting to historic sex acts with school girl

UNITED KINGDOM
Independent

Loulla-Mae Eleftheriou-Smith

The Rev Simon Sayers has been banned from being a minister for five years by the Bishop of London after admitting to initiating and engaging in two sexual acts with the teenager 20 years ago.

He has resigned his position of Rector of Warblington with Emsworth, Hampshire.

A Metropolitan police investigation into the incidents was carried out in 2015, after allegations of indecent assault had been reported to them. The sexual acts took place in the Islington area where Mr Sayers had been in a parish ministry in 1995.

A police investigation was carried out but no action was taken against Mr Sayers.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:27 PM

Emsworth church-goers walk out of service in show of support for banned reverend

UNITED KINGDOM
Chichester Observer

Parishioners and residents of Emsworth have expressed their wholehearted and loving support for Rev Simon Sayers and voiced their ‘immense sadness at his treatment by church authorities’.

Rev Simon Sayers resigned as rector of Warblington with Emsworth on Sunday, after the Bishop of Portsmouth’s announcement banning him for five years over an incident of sexual misconduct 20 years ago.

[Chichester Observer]

Many members of the congregation walked out of a church service in protest of the announcement. Emsworth resident and church choir member Leslie Grist, said: “Simon has served this parish and town wonderfully over the last 12 years.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:22 PM

Church-goers support vicar banned over 1995 sexual acts with teenager

UNITED KINGDOM
ITV

A number of parishioners in Emsworth and Warblington are supporting their vicar who has admitted having 'sexual contact' with a teenager more than 20 years ago.

Simon Sayers, of the Warblington with Emsworth parish, has resigned after church officials ruled he had engaged in conduct unbecoming a clergy person and abused his position of trust in the 1990s. He has been banned from ministry for five years.

The Metropolitan Police arrested the vicar in January 2015 after it was informed of alleged offences that took place in Islington when he was in parish ministry there in 1995. The police investigation led the Church of England to suspend Mr Sayers.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:21 PM

Vicar resigns after 'engaging in sexual acts' with London schoolgirl

UNITED KINGDOM
Evening Standard

A vicar has resigned from his post after an investigation found he had "engaged in sexual acts" with a schoolgirl.

Simon Sayers, rector at the Warblington with Emsworth parish in Hampshire, was arrested last year over an allegation of indecent assault in London in the 1990s.

The Metropolitan Police did not charge him, but a follow-up investigation by the church concluded that his behaviour with the teenager, a 16-year-old girl, abused his position of trust.

The disgraced rector has been banned from serving in the Church of England for five years.

Police arrested Mr Sayers in January 2015 after complaints were made about alleged offences that took place in the Islington area in 1995.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:18 PM

Church sets up independent standards body

AUSTRALIA
Sky News

An independent company will "name and shame" Catholic Church entities that fail to adhere to new national standards to protect children and vulnerable adults.

Catholic Professional Standards Ltd will hold the Catholic Church in Australia accountable as the church seeks to rebuild the trust destroyed by its handling of the widespread sexual abuse of children by priests and other clergy.

Among the church's many failures has been the lack of a whole system of accountability and clear, consistent and comprehensive national standards, Brisbane Archbishop Mark Coleridge says.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:44 PM

What the Legion Taught Me: How To Spot A Fake Catholic Personality Cult

UNITED STATES
Steel Magnificat

November 21, 2016 by Mary Pezzulo

When I was a teenager, for a couple of years, my mother forced me to attend meetings of the ECYD, the youth branch of Regnum Christi. Regnum Christi was the lay branch of the Legionaries of Christ, and the Legionaries of Christ had yet to be exposed as a cultlike organization founded by a voracious pedophile. At the time, all my mother knew was that the rich and conservative homeschoolers sent their daughters to ECYD meetings, so I was sent to the meetings as well even when I begged not to. After awhile, I came to see them as authorities.

Our leader was an excitable and fervent housewife whose fuschia lipstick exactly matched her window shutters, which exactly matched the impatiens growing in the garden out front. She taught full-blown heresy and alarmism on a grand scale. “You can’t see God,” she said. “If you ever saw God you would drop dead. You only ever see Jesus.” And just when I thought she’d misspoken when denying the divinity of Christ, she said the exact same thing again. She told us that our guardian angels were incapable of seeing anything except the face of God and our own activity, and if we didn’t pray to them daily they’d be lonely. She talked about Limbo as if it were settled teaching of the Church. She acted as though Protestants and people of other faiths were evil con artists only pretending to agree with Catholics on some points to be devious: “if they’re not with us, they’re against us!” She claimed that God would send us to hell for not working hard enough to harangue our friends to come to ECYD meetings.

Our leader was assisted by a housewife who used to lead ECYD meetings in Mexico and whose lipstick rarely matched anything; she taught us that it was disrespectful to pray in the bathroom. I stopped praying in the bathroom, even when my painful bowel condition left me crying in there for hours, for fear I’d offend God.

We also had guest teachers, mostly from Latin American countries, who had taken a solemn promise to wear expensive dresses and not pants in order to “bring back the dignity of woman.” They taught us that “Nuestro Padre,” the pedophile Father Marcial Maciel, personally approved everyone who joined the Legion and was best friends with the Pope. They explained that their organization was unique in the Church, in that it always went first to rich and powerful people rather than the poor. “Think what influence we’ll have!” I knew that this was the exact opposite of what Christ had chosen to do, and therefore the opposite of what the Church should do, but I kept my mouth shut so I wouldn’t catch it.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:37 PM

Eusebio: Nuns knew all along

GUAM
Guam Daily Post

Neil Pang | Post News Staff

Dr. Ricardo Eusebio, president of the "Catholic Families for Apuron" organization and a member of the Neocatechumenal Way, held a press conference yesterday in which he claimed that the use of the Yona property by the Redemptoris Mater Seminary had been securely established prior to the monetary donation made to the Archdiocese of Agana for the purchase of the former Hotel Accion.

Dr. Eusebio used the press conference to respond to claims made by the Mother Superior Dawn Marie last week and criticized her involvement in the issue.

“Yes, Mother Dawn Marie claims we live in a toxic environment,” Eusebio said. “It has been fueled, however, by her own desire to seek public attention and provide her rendition of the truth in regards to the seminary.”

Last week, Marie stated that she was responsible for making the phone call that resulted in the donation of the $2 million used to pay off the loan to the Bank of Guam that allowed the archdiocese to purchase the former Hotel Accion for the use by an educational institute for the formation of priests. In a surprising twist, Marie relayed an anecdote in which she claimed that Archbishop Anthony Apuron had asked the Carmelite prioress responsible for the donation to lie about the intended purpose of the $2 million in an effort to secure proof that the money had been intended for the purchase of the Yona property specifically for the building of the Redemptoris Mater Seminary - a seminary largely run by faculty who are members of the NCW.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:09 PM

Catholics’ concerns on sex abuse bill helped table it, archbishop writes

PENNSYLVANIA
Catholic Philly

By Matthew Gambino • Posted November 21, 2016

In a letter sent to all parishes of the Philadelphia Archdiocese, Archbishop Charles Chaput renewed attention on a Pennsylvania bill that he said would endanger many of the parishes, schools and charities of the state’s 3.2 million Catholics.

The letter was to be read at all Masses on the weekend of Nov. 19-20. (See a pdf of the letter in English and in Spanish.)

It outlined the provisions of House Bill 1947, which addresses provisions to protect children from sexual abuse.

“Unfortunately,” Archbishop Chaput wrote, “it also contained damaging language that would have allowed retroactive civil suits to be filed against religious and private institutions, while protecting public entities from the same kind of lawsuits for exactly the same kinds of sexual abuse.”

The bill passed overwhelmingly in the state House last spring. The Senate voted 49-0 for an amended version of the bill that removed the provision on retroactivity, “largely because of its incompatibility with our state constitution,” the archbishop wrote.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:06 PM

High Court freezes appointment of incoming IDF chief rabbi

ISRAEL
Jersusalem Post

The High Court of Justice froze the appointment of Rabbi Col. Eyal Karim to the position of IDF Chief Rabbi on Monday, and demanded to see a clear statement from the rabbi about his position on a contentious point of Jewish law.

The interim decision was issued in response to a petition by Meretz MKs against Karim’s nomination in July, who asked the court to halt the appointment owing to several statements and responses the rabbi had made on issues of Jewish law relating to the IDF and military service. Following the ruling, Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman backed Karim during a Yisrael Beytenu Knesset faction meeting saying that Karim was a “worthy” appointment to IDF chief rabbi. ...

In 2003, before Karim was serving in the IDF, he was asked on the national- religious news site and forum Kipa, in the context of an “Ask the Rabbi” column, how the Torah could condone the rape of non-Jewish women by Jewish soldiers during a time of war.

He explained the Torah’s rationale, but did not explicitly state that it is forbidden in modern times. This answer was seized upon by a blogger in 2012 and created a media stir at the time, with claims that Karim had given IDF soldiers sanction to rape women.

Karim then issued a clarification on Kipa stating explicitly that: “Obviously, the Torah never permitted the rape of women,” and saying that the Biblical verse in Deuteronomy about female captives was meant to prevent rape during war time.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:01 PM

Sex crimes trial of Toronto pastor Brent Hawkes hears from expert witness

CANADA
CBC News

The Brent Hawkes trial is hearing testimony today on the nature and fallibility of memory.

Timothy Moore, chair of the psychology department at York University's Glendon College, told the judge that memories are by nature "constructive and reconstructive."

Moore says people often recall events differently, and time "can alter or change or misdirect the nature of" memories.

He says it is well-known liquor can impair memories, and an alcoholic blackout can lead to their fragmentation and to assumptions that could be conflated with actual memories.

Hawkes is accused of performing sex acts on a teenage boy more than 40 years ago when he was a teacher in his mid-20s in Nova Scotia's Annapolis Valley.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:59 PM

Artist Abel Azcona cleared of blasphemy by a judge in Spain

SPAIN
The Freethinker (UK)

Last year performance artist Abel Azcona horrified Catholics in Pamplona, Spain, when he used 242 stolen consecrated hosts to spell out the the word ‘pederastia‘ at an exhibition he mounted in a city gallery to highlight the Church’s systematic rape of children.

According to this report, Azcona procured the Catholic crackers by pretending to receive Holy Communion at mass.

The exhibition also contained a series of photos titled “Amen”, which depict Azcona taking hosts during mass and placing them on the ground. This was meant to honour those who were kidnapped and killed under the three-decade dictatorship of Francisco Franco, which lasted until his death in 1975.

Christian Lawyers Association spokesperson Polonia Catellanos told the Catholic News Agency that the association has filed a lawsuit against Azcona for “an offence against religious sentiments and desecration”, which is outlawed under Articles 524 and 525 of the Spanish Penal Code.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:41 AM

DAVID FRANCE IN OUR TOWN

MISSOURI
Berger's Beat

November 19, 2016 11:16 am | Author: berger

Award-winning investigative reporter, author and filmmaker David France (best known for “Our Fathers,” about the Catholic abuse and cover up crisis), is coming to town. He’ll discuss his new book “How to Survive a Plague: The Inside Story of how Citizens and Science Tamed AIDS” at the St. Louis County Library on Dec. 2.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:40 AM

Eusebio attempts to debunk Mother Superior's statements

GUAM
KUAM

Updated: Nov 21, 2016

By Nestor Licanto

A former member of the Redemptoris Mater Seminary's board of directors has disputed the claims of a Carmelite nun who said Archbishop Anthhony Apuron asked them to lie about a $2 million gift to buy the seminary.

Dr. Ric Eusebio says Mother Superior Dawn Marie may have been misinformed when she said Archbishop Apuron asked them to confirm that the Carmelites knew the money would go specifically to a seminary for the Neocatechumenal Way. Dr. Eusebio produced email, which he says shows Mother Stella Maris, now diseased, did know from the start.

"You cannot say 'Redemptoris Mater Seminary' without saying the Neocatechumenal Way - is not involved because the vocations for the seminary mainly come from the Neocatechumenal Way," said the physician.

But Bishop Michael Byrnes last week dissolved the board, and asserted his control over the seminary. Dr. Eusebio says he knows of no plan for any lawsuit to stop what Bishop Byrnes has done. "He has all the jurisdiction, the authority, the everything," said Eusebio. "If he decides that he wants someone else that's up to him. But what we would hope is that we could have an audience with him so that we could explain what our position is."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:35 AM

Church members show support for pastor on trial

CANADA
Toronto Star

By JESSE MCLEAN
Investigative News reporter
Sun., Nov. 20, 2016

The pews of Toronto’s Metropolitan Community Church brimmed with silent support Sunday for its embattled pastor, currently on trial for the alleged sexual assault of a teenage boy in the 1970s.

More than a hundred people attended the morning masses at the Riverdale church, during which there was only a fleeting direct mention of Rev. Brent Hawkes’ trial, reminding congregants of the church’s listening groups if anyone felt the need to talk.

But after the service, those in attendance emphasized that their longtime pastor is in their prayers.

Rev. Deana Dudley said the church is handling the matter “the same way we deal with anything.

“We offer support, we offer prayer, we offer love, we offer acceptance,” she said.

“I know some people have been upset by what’s going on, so then we just do more of the same — we offer more love, more acceptance, more support, more prayer.”

Hawkes, who performed the country’s first same-sex marriage ceremonies, is the “cornerstone” of inclusivity and unconditional love that the church is known for, said congregant Ian Campbell.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:31 AM

A Follow Up on Carlebach and The Abuse He Committed

UNITED STATES
SOME PEOPLE LIVE MORE IN 20 YEARS…

NOVEMBER 20, 2016
ASHER LOVY

Two years ago, following a “Carlebach Shabbos” at my former shul, I wrote an article in which I described the conflict I felt hearing Carlebach being praised for his selflessness and kindness, while simultaneously aware of allegations that he had molested women. I left the article open ended, simply giving my two sides, and left it open for my readers to responded. And boy, did they. The responses flooded in; comments, emails, Facebook messages, even some in-person responses. They came in heavy, heated, and varied. It’s been two years, and I’ve had time to reflect more on the subject, discuss it with more people, and gain some perspective on the issue. Furthermore, since then I’ve spoken to quite a number of his victims, three of whom left comments on my original post. I’d like to address a few things.

Right off the bat, people challenged me on the ethics of sharing an article alleging that someone who is dead and cannot defend himself committed abuse that has never been proven in court. Many people have claimed it’s simply lashon hara, and therefore refuse to even listen. Setting aside whether or not those same people are as careful about the laws of lashon hara when the person under discussion is not one of the spiritual idols, I’ll take it at face value.

It is lashon hara. But one of the exceptions to the prohibitions against speaking lashon hara is when there’s a to’eles, a purpose. Most notably, if there’s a general purpose in the community knowing, if it will prevent some harm, then it is permitted to speak lashon hara. The benefits of discussing Carlebach’s crimes are twofold. First, it sends a message to the community that abusers will have to pay, in one way or another for their crimes, that death is not an escape from the damage caused by sexual abusers. It’s a powerful message to send because there are so many victims out there whose stories are kept hidden by coercion and fear, because the people who keep those secrets are terrified of what their families, their communities might say or do to them if they dare come forward. The more stories are made public, the more people come forward, the more victims will feel safe and secure in coming forward and telling their stories, exposing their abusers, and pursuing justice against them.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:26 AM

DOMINIC LAWSON: How petulance and paranoia will NEVER lead the chaotic abuse inquiry to the truth

UNITED KINGDOM
Daily Mail

By DOMINIC LAWSON FOR THE DAILY MAIL

Paranoia has set in at the top of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse. Over the weekend, its chairwoman, Alexis Jay, complained about the 'almost continual attacks' against it, going on to blame 'people who would like to see it fail because it suits their agenda not to want dark institutional failings brought into the light'.

She went on to rail against her inquiry's 'critics' — presumably newspapers such as the Mail which have, indeed, attacked the incompetence of a process which has so far spent over two years and £20 million without even starting its public hearings.

I can understand why Jay — the fourth head of an inquiry which has already chewed up and spat out three previous chairwomen — feels got at.

But she is deluded if she is insinuating that its media critics have 'an agenda' to protect 'dark institutional failings'. Let me reassure Professor Jay that papers such as the Mail have no agenda in this, other than a desire to report the facts, however inconvenient either to her or the Government.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:19 AM

Former RMS chair defends against Carmelite nun's assertions

GUAM
Pacific News Center

Written by Timothy Mchenry

Dr. Eusebio cites email communications between Apuron and another Carmelite nun, Mother Stella Maris which Eusebio says clearly stated the purpose of the $2 million gift.

Guam - Mother Prioress Dawn Marie's statements about the intention of a $2 million gift to the church is not entirely accurate, according to fired Redemptoris Mater Seminary board chairman Dr. Ricardo Eusebio.

Dr. Eusebio called for a press conference Monday to respond to Mother Dawn Marie's allegations that ousted Archbishop Anthony Apuron pressured her to lie about the intention of the $2 million gift that was donated to pay off the archdiocese's loan--a loan that was taken out to purchase the former Hotel Accion property.

Dr. Eusebio cites email communications between Apuron and another Carmelite nun, Mother Stella Maris which Eusebio says clearly stated the purpose of the $2 million gift.

"Yes, Mother Dawn Marie claims we live in a toxic environment. It has been fueled however, by her own desire to seek public attention and provide her rendition of the truth in regards to the seminary. She attempts to discredit Archbisop Apuron and deems him guilty in regards to sexual abuse allegations against him without a trial. My recollection of the truth is different from what she professed,” said Dr. Eusebio.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:17 AM

Church apologizes to new Apuron, Brouillard accusers

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Haidee V Eugenio , heugenio@guampdn.com November 21, 2016

The Catholic Church apologized and offers prayers to all victims of priest sex abuse after another batch of lawsuits, filed Thursday, by two former altar boys and the estate of a deceased former altar boy against Archbishop Anthony S. Apuron and former Guam priest Louis Brouillard.

The world’s largest network of clergy abuse survivors said the former altar boys are enormously brave by coming forward publicly to say they were abused by a priest.

“By doing this one simple thing, they are making it easier and safer for other victims to come forward and talk about abuse. They are making it easier for witnesses and whistleblowers to come forward and tell what they know. They are also telling children who are being abused right now that it is safe to report abuse and get help,” said Joelle Casteix, volunteer western regional director for the Illinois-based Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, or SNAP.

Vicente Guerrero Perez, 51, and Bruce A. Diaz, 47, in their separate complaints, said Brouillard sexually abused them between 1976 and 1980, when they served as altar boys and as members of the Boy Scouts of America.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:15 AM

Retta Dixon Home: Institutional sex abuse compensation case to enter Commonwealth mediation

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

Exclusive by Jane Bardon, National Reporting Team

Former residents of a church-run home for Indigenous Stolen Generation children in Darwin have moved a step closer to becoming the first group to gain compensation from the Federal Government after giving evidence to the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

Eighty-five Retta Dixon Home residents launched a class action in the Northern Territory Supreme Court in September 2015 to try to gain redress for years of horrific sexual and physical abuse.

The case has now been put on hold because the Commonwealth has agreed to go into mediation.

Bill Piper is the residents' solicitor.

"The Commonwealth have been proposing the mediation at this point, which is a very positive thing, because it's consistent with a party to an action that is acting in good faith and wanting to try and resolve it," he said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:11 AM

American cardinals want examination of conscience on polarization

ROME
Crux

Elise Harris November 20, 2016
CATHOLIC NEWS AGENCY

ROME - When Pope Francis spoke out sharply against the “virus of polarization,” three new American cardinals saw a chance for a serious examination of conscience.

“I thought it was very timely, what the Holy Father said,” Cardinal Joseph Tobin told journalists November 19.

He said that for him, the first thing to do in response is “to examine ourselves in the Church, to see whether we have unconsciously appropriated this virus” or somehow justified it “when it actually serves to divide.”

To do this, he said, could likely be considered “a resistance to the acts of the Holy Spirit.”

Tobin was among 17 priests and bishops who came to St. Peter’s Basilica from around the world to receive a red hat from Pope Francis Saturday during a special consistory set to coincide with the end of the Jubilee of Mercy.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:07 AM

Church wants abuse reporting laws changed

AUSTRALIA
9 News

AAP

The Catholic Church wants nationally consistent criminal laws covering reporting child sexual abuse, but does not believe institutions should be held criminally liable.

The child abuse royal commission is examining the criminal liability of third parties in reporting abuse as part of a broader criminal justice inquiry that will be the subject of a public hearing in Sydney from November 28.

The Catholic Church's Truth Justice and Healing Council argues there should be a new, nationally consistent criminal law relating to the reporting of child sexual abuse.

TJHC chief executive Francis Sullivan said the states do not have the same laws in this area.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:01 AM

Woman 'groped by top QC at child abuse probe HQ': Father of victim reveals she is distraught following the scandal and says 'For this to happen there of all places is astonishing'

UNITED KINGDOM
Daily Mail

By Rebecca Camber And Stephen Wright For The Daily Mail

The woman allegedly sexually assaulted at the headquarters of the child abuse inquiry by its top lawyer has been left distraught by the scandal, her father has revealed.

He said it had taken a huge toll on his daughter, threatening her future and financial security after the inquiry refused to investigate her allegations.

'She has had a brilliant job and this has been a real strain on her, financially too,' he added. 'My daughter will come out of this with honour.'

Ben Emmerson, QC, lead counsel to the inquiry, is facing an investigation by his own law firm into claims that he groped the woman at the office of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA). His lawyers say he 'categorically denies' the claim.

Now his alleged victim's father has made a dramatic intervention in the controversy that threatens to derail the £100million probe.

Speaking exclusively to the Daily Mail, he said: 'She has been very upset by this. She was down this weekend and she was quite depressed by it.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:56 AM

Bishop’s basics are good for Guam

MICHIGAN/GUAM
The Detroit News

Nicholas G. Hahn III, The Detroit News November 20, 2016

Some Catholics may think their church’s sex abuse crisis has subsided since the Boston Globe’s sensational 2002 reports.

They would be wrong.

Many of the allegations typically reach rectories of local parishes. Rarely do victims accuse archbishops of sexual abuse.

When altar boys in the Archdiocese of Agaña, Guam named Archbishop Anthony Apuron as their abuser during the 1960s and 1970s, the Vatican sent a temporary apostolic administrator to the Pacific island archdiocese.

Apuron has denied the allegations and, despite calls for him to be removed, refuses to retire five years ahead of schedule.

But Pope Francis won’t wait for an official investigation to conclude. Detroit’s own auxiliary Bishop Michael Byrnes was recently tapped as the archdiocese’s coadjutor bishop, and will take over all administrative and pastoral duties.

“There are a lot of challenges and troubles,” Byrnes recently told me, “but it’s not like they’re unfamiliar to Detroit.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:53 AM

Melbourne Response: Catholic Church's suppression of report fails abuse victims

AUSTRALIA
The Canberra Times

Chris Vedelago

Why does the Catholic Church continue to prefer playing public relations games over keeping its promises to victims of paedophile priests?

For more than two years, sexual abuse victims and their families have been waiting for the release of an independent investigation into the controversial Melbourne Response compensation scheme.

This report, completed by retired Federal Court judge Donnell Ryan, was supposed to put to the test long-running concerns about the fairness of a system that attempts to put a dollar value on the suffering of hundreds of victims of sexual abuse.

The victims were encouraged to come forward and tell their stories again. That was in August 2014. The review was completed in September 2015. It has, inexplicably, sat on the Archbishop's desk ever since.

On Friday, victims finally learnt that the church would not release the report. Nor the full list of its findings.

Despite the Archdiocese's repeated promises that it would be made public, the report has been suppressed.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:49 AM

Sexual assault trial of Toronto pastor resumes today in Kentville, N.S., court

CANADA
The Daily Courier

KENTVILLE, N.S. - An expert witness is expected to take the stand today in the trial of a prominent Toronto pastor accused of performing sex acts on a teenage boy more than 40 years ago in Nova Scotia.

Last week, Brent Hawkes denied the allegations of indecent assault and gross indecency in a courtroom in Kentville, N.S.

Hawkes told the court: "It's not true. It did not happen."

Last Tuesday, a man testified that Hawkes led him down a hallway during a drunken get-together at his trailer in Greenwood, N.S., and forced oral sex on him in a bedroom.

Hawkes, then a teacher in his mid-20s in the Annapolis Valley, told court Thursday it wasn't unusual for students and teachers to stop by his trailer, as they wanted to say goodbye before he moved to Toronto to work with a church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:47 AM

Catholic Church 'knew' about crimes of paedophile priest but did nothing for four decades, court hears

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

By Lucy Carter

A Supreme Court justice has ordered that lawyers for the Catholic Church and two women suing it over their alleged child sexual abuse attempt to settle the case outside court.

Two sisters, known for legal reasons as LG and MG, are suing both the estate of the late Maitland-Newcastle Bishop Leo Clarke — who was in charge at the time of the alleged crimes — as well as trustees of the Roman Catholic Church for the Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle.

The sisters were allegedly sexually abused by Father Denis McAlinden in the 1970s and 1980s.

McAlinden died in a nursing home in 2005 without ever having been charged in New South Wales.

A 2013 special commission of inquiry found he had a history of sexually abusing children over five decades, and may have abused more than 100 victims.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:44 AM

Pro-Apuron group slams Carmelite nuns over seminary

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

[with video]

Haidee V Eugenio, heugenio@guampdn.com November 21, 2016

Guam's Carmelite nuns last week said Archbishop Anthony Apuron asked them to lie about the reason for their $2 million donation to the local church, but a group of local Catholics defending Apuron said that's not possible.

Mother Superior Dawn Marie last week said Apuron asked the nuns to lie by saying their anonymous donation was purposely earmarked for the Redemptoris Mater Seminary and the Blessed Diego Luis de San Vitores Catholic Theological Institute for Oceania, which were run by the Neocatechumenal Way.

She said the Carmelites decided to leave Guam after 50 years because of the toxic environment, including the dispute over the seminary property and sex abuse allegations against Apuron.

Dr. Ricardo Eusebio, president of the I Familan Mangatoliku Siha Pari Si Apuron or Catholic Families for Apuron, on Monday said email exchanges between Apuron and the Carmelite nuns were clear that the donors were giving the $2 million for a seminary. Eusebio said the Redemptoris Mater Seminary was the only archdiocesan seminary on Guam at the time, and RMS’ relationship with the Neocatechumenal Way has been public, open and clear since the start.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:40 AM

November 20, 2016

Child abuse inquiry is hit by ANOTHER crisis as two more victim groups say they've lost confidence in Professor Alexis Jay's leadership

UNITED KINGDOM
Daily Mail

By MATT DATHAN, POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT FOR MAILONLINE

The troubled inquiry into child sex abuse was hit by a fresh crisis today after two more victim groups said they had lost confidence in its leadership.

They expressed concerns about Professor Alexis Jay, the fourth chair of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) and have demanded an emergency meeting with the inquiry's panel to discuss their work.

The Minister and Clergy Sexual Abuse Survivors (MACSAS) group said it wanted to 'to find out exactly where this is going, because none of us really know' as it said questioned Professor Jay's qualifications to lead the inquiry.

And the White Flowers Alba group, which also represents alleged victims of child abuse, warned that the crisis surrounding the inquiry was deterring key witnesses from speaking out.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:09 PM

The State Government plans to axe limitations that prevent historical child abuse victims from suing

AUSTRALIA
Mercury

PATRICK BILLINGS, Mercury
November 20, 2016

LEGAL obstacles that prevent victims of historical child abuse from suing will be abolished by the State Government, the Mercury can reveal.

At present victims generally have only three years from the time of abuse to commence court proceeding for damages.

In response to questions from The Mercury the State Government has revealed it will axe the limitation periods for victims of child abuse in line with recommendations from a Royal Commission into paedophilia.

“The government is taking action to abolish limitation periods in relation to civil claims for damages for victims of child sexual and physical abuse,” Attorney-General Vanessa Goodwin said.

“The drafting of new laws is currently underway … it is intended that the abolishment of the limitation period will apply retrospectively.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:46 PM

Protests continue strong

GUAM
Guam Daily Post

By Neil Pang | Post News Staff

With the issue of the Redemptoris Mater Seminary resolved by Coadjutor Michael Byrnes’ actions last week, members of the various Catholic lay organizations continued in their mission calling for accountability and transparency.

Laity Forward Movement organizer Lou Klitzkie told the Post in an email that more than 100 people showed up Sunday morning to protest outside the front doors of the Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral-Basilica in Hagåtña.

The protests, which have been going on since June of this year, have called attention to the main issues that many Catholic faithful have felt were not being properly addressed.

Dave Sablan, president of Concerned Catholics of Guam, explained that CCOG was primarily concerned with three things when they joined the weekly protests: the return of Rev. Paul Goffigan and Monsignor James Benavente to their respective posts, the return of the RMS Yona property to the Archdiocese of Agana and the removal of Archbishop Anthony Apuron from his office.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:14 PM

« En réparation de la profanation du corps vivant du Christ »

FRANCE
Eglise catholique a Lyon

["In reparation for the desecration of the living body of Christ"]

En ce vendredi 18 novembre 2016, en la Primatiale Saint-Jean, le cardinal Barbarin a célébré une Messe de réparation à l’intention des victimes de pédophilie de la part des membres du clergé. Voici le texte intégral qu’il a prononcé au seuil de cette célébration.

Primatiale Saint-Jean
Vendredi 18 novembre 2016

Frères et sœurs,

Nous voici arrivés au terme de l’Année de la Miséricorde.

Symboliquement, les portes du grand Jubilé se referment, mais la Miséricorde, elle, bien sûr, reste toujours offerte, à tous et à chacun. C’est la fin de l’année de la Miséricorde, mais ce n’est pas la fin de la Miséricorde. Elle demeure le résumé de notre foi, l’un des plus beaux noms de Dieu ; c’est le « cœur battant de l’Evangile », dit le Pape François. Comme le peuple élu et avec lui, l’Eglise a pour mission d’être une servante et d’annoncer au monde cette merveille.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:35 AM

« Moi, Philippe, évêque de Lyon, je demande pardon… »

FRANCE
La Croix

["I, Philip, bishop of Lyon, I apologize ..."]

Céline Hoyeau (à Lyon), le 19/11/2016

Entouré de plusieurs centaines de fidèles venus pour la clôture de l’Année de la miséricorde, le cardinal Barbarin a célébré vendredi 18 novembre une messe de réparation pour les victimes d’abus sexuels commis par des membres de l’Église. L’archevêque de Lyon s’est agenouillé pour demander pardon pour ses propres fautes et erreurs de gouvernance.

« Moi, Philippe, évêque de Lyon, je demande pardon… » A genoux devant la croix, sous les voûtes de la primatiale Saint-Jean, le cardinal Barbarin a fait acte de repentance publique, vendredi 18 novembre au soir, pour « tant de blessures, tant de silences et tant de phrases indignes », après les scandales de la pédophilie dans l’Église.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:33 AM

'It allowed him to prey on vulnerable children': Survivor and priest criticise church response to abuse

IRELAND
The Journal

KERRY LAWLESS WAS abused for about a year by Patrick O’Brien, a volunteer at St Patrick’s Cathedral in Dublin, who would pick him up at the bus stop to drive him to school, stopping often en route to carry out his horrendous crimes.

A teenager from Drimnagh in the 1980s, Lawless came forward and told his parents, the authorities and gardaí about the abuse.

O’Brien confessed, pleaded guilty and received a two-year suspended sentence in court.
However, he soon returned to St Patrick’s Cathedral where he took back up his senior volunteer position.

Earlier this month, O’Brien (now 76) was jailed for 13 years for the rape and molestation of 14 young boys over the course of 40 years.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:27 AM

[Update] Glare of the spotlight

UNITED STATES
WGCU

In this hour of Reveal, we’re going to revisit an Oscar-winning movie about The Boston Globe’s investigative team that exposed the Catholic Church sex abuse scandal: “Spotlight.” We’ll take you behind the scenes of that investigation, look at the legacy of the groundbreaking story and see how other journalists went on to expose more crimes by Catholic priests around the world.

First up, we tell you what happened after the “Spotlight” movie ended and how The Boston Globe continued to expose cover-ups in the Catholic Church.

In the second segment, Minnesota Public Radio exposes a priest abuse scandal in the Twin Cities, more than a decade after The Globe’s original investigation. Reporter Madeleine Baran spent two years looking into the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis and uncovered how the church had been making secret payments to known abusers while continuing to conceal clergy sexual abuse from the public.

And finally, GlobalPost reporter Will Carless takes us to Latin America on the trail of priests who fled the U.S. after being accused of sexually abusing children.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:21 AM

Tracking a Church paedophilia case from Dakar to Quebec

FRANCE
France 24

Enquête exclusive : Église et pédophilie, une affaire africaine

[with video]

Following a series of paedophilia scandals in the Catholic Church in recent years, FRANCE 24 reporters investigated the Brothers of the Sacred Heart, a Catholic religious community that has been sending missionaries to Africa for nearly a century. In Senegal we met with an alleged victim of abuse before tracking down the accused in Quebec.

Warning: Some of the language in this video report may be unsuitable for minors.

FRANCE 24 reporters contacted Souleymane in April through La Parole Libérée, a French association that helps victims of paedophilia. A Senegalese man now around 40 years of age, Souleymane told us his story but would not appear on camera.

He recounted his childhood in Kaolack, a large city southeast of the capital Dakar, and his education at the Pius XII college, run by the Canadian branch of the Brothers of the Sacred Heart.

Souleymane was 12 when one of the missionaries, a French teacher, first invited him after class to attend a private "sex education" lesson. Souleymane says he was abused for three years afterwards but did not dare tell anyone.

Hidden camera

In 2010 Souleymane says he contacted another member of the Brothers of the Sacred Heart who was teaching at the Pius XII college at the time and who still taught at a high school in Dakar. Souleymane affirms that he told him his painful story and learned that the man he accuses is apparently close to death and now living in Canada.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 11:08 AM

Pédophilie: le cardinal Barbarin a présenté ses excuses aux victimes

FRANCE
L'Express

[Pedophilia: Cardinal Barbarin has apologized to victims.]

Le cardinal Barbarin a fait pénitence au cours d'une messe de réparation, vendredi à Lyon. Il a demandé pardon aux victimes du père Preynat.

C'est un mea culpa. Le cardinal Barbarin a demandé pardon auprès des victimes pour les actes pédophiles commis dans son diocèse, lors d'une messe de réparation vendredi soir à Lyon. L'archevêque a aussi avoué ses propres fautes. "Ce soir je veux demander pardon devant Dieu et devant tout notre diocèse, de n'avoir pas pris les devants pour enquêter comme il aurait fallu dès qu'un premier témoignage m'était parvenu", a-t-il ainsi déclaré dans un reportage de France 3.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:14 AM

OUR VIEW: Byrnes' actions with seminary provide clarity

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Last week, Coadjutor Archbishop Michael J. Byrnes signed back the title of the Yona seminary to the Archdiocese of Agana.

We support this move. After years of division and pain in the church on Guam, this decision provides clarity for the church community and the opportunity to move forward and heal.

In 2002, the archdiocese used a $1.9 million loan to purchase the former 100-room Accion Hotel in Yona. The Carmelite nuns donated $2 million to pay off the loan, giving the archdiocese full title to the property, the building and its contents.

The seminary was “specifically designed to form presbyters for the ‘New Evangelization’ as understood by the Neocatechumenal Way,” according to a report issued in September by the archdiocese.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:28 AM

Victims’ groups turn on head of abuse inquiry

UNITED KINGDOM
The Sunday Times

James Lyons and James Gillespie
November 20 2016
The Sunday Times

Alexis Jay, the chairwoman of the inquiry into child sex abuse, was facing a fresh crisis this weekend after two more organisations expressed a lack of confidence in her, following the decision by one group to pull out altogether.

The Minister and Clergy Sexual Abuse Survivors (MACSAS) group is seeking an urgent meeting with the panel of the independent inquiry into child sexual abuse (IICSA) “to find out exactly where this is going, because none of us really know”.

Meanwhile, there are fresh concerns over a police investigation into child sex abuse allegations against the former prime minister Edward Heath.

Robert Buckland, the solicitor-general, is understood to have privately raised concerns with Angus Macpherson, Wiltshire’s police and crime commissioner, about the inquiry, which he regards as a costly “fishing expedition”.

The sense of crisis surrounding IICSA deepened last week when the Shirley Oaks Survivors’ Association announced that it was withdrawing from the process which had become a “stage-managed event [that] enables the guilty to wash their dirty hands”.

In response, Labour’s Chuka Umunna has called on Jay to resign.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:25 AM

Abuse inquiry chief on brink as lawyers who quit reveal all: Barristers set to lift the lid on toxic atmosphere including claims of bullying and harassment by top QC which were allegedly ignored by the chair

UNITED KINGDOM
Daily Mail

By MARTIN BECKFORD HOME AFFAIRS EDITOR FOR THE MAIL ON SUNDAY

The chairman of the troubled public inquiry into child abuse will come under increasing pressure this week as a string of lawyers finally reveal why they quit.

Professor Alexis Jay is set to be hit by damaging claims by barristers who have left the £100 million investigation that she knew there was a culture of bullying, harassment and even sexual assault but failed to act – then tried to cover it up.

None of the seven counsel who have left has publicly explained the full reasons for their departure.

And bosses of the Independent Inquiry Into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) sparked anger when they refused to tell MPs what had happened or why senior counsel Ben Emmerson QC had been suspended, placed under investigation, then allowed to leave the next day.

But now four of the lawyers have written to the Home Affairs Select Committee, which is looking into the chaos at the historical abuse probe, to give their version of events.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:23 AM

November 19, 2016

Chicago's archbishop Blase Cupich receives title of cardinal in Rome

VATICAN CITY
Chicago Tribune

Vikki Ortiz Healy
Chicago Tribune

Call him cardinal.

During a service at St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City on Saturday, Chicago's archbishop, Blase Cupich, received the red hat and title of a Roman Catholic cardinal, the church’s most prestigious title next to the papacy.

Dressed in red and white vestments, Cupich knelt before Pope Francis who then placed a four-cornered silk red biretta upon his head and a gold ring upon his right hand, signifying the elevation.

"Today each of you, dear brothers, is asked to cherish in your own heart, and in the heart is the Church, this summons to be merciful like the Father,” Francis told the new cardinals during the service called a consistory. “And to realize that "if something should rightly disturb us and trouble our consciences, it is the fact that so many of our brothers and sisters are living without strength, light and consolation born of friendship with Jesus Christ, without a community of faith to support them, without meaning and a goal in life.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:13 PM

Former Indianapolis archbishop inducted as Cardinal

INDIANA
TheIndyChannel

[with video]

Victoria T. Davis

INDIANAPOLIS – Former Indianapolis Archbishop Joseph Tobin was elevated to Cardinal status in Vatican City Saturday morning.

Tobin was named a Cardinal by the Pope in October.

Dozens of people from the Indianapolis Archdiocese made the trip to see Tobin become inducted. In all, 17 people were elevated to Cardinal status during the ceremony.

Tobin served as archbishop of Indianapolis for four years and will soon become archbishop of Newark, NJ. He will be formally installed January 6,2016.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:11 PM

Blase Cupich, Archbishop of Chicago, Elevated to Cardinal

CHICAGO (IL)
WJBD

CHICAGO (AP) - The archbishop of Chicago, Blase Cupich, has been elevated to cardinal by the pope.

Cupich, who has led the Archdiocese of Chicago for two years, was one of 17 cardinals appointed Saturday In Vatican City by Pope Francis.

Cupich is the seventh cardinal to serve Chicago's archdiocese and its 2.4 million Catholics.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:09 PM

The Pope creates seventeen new cardinals: Jesus continues to call us and to send us to the “plain” where our people dwell, 19.11.2016

VATICAN CITY
Vatican Information Service - Bulletin

Titular churches and diaconates of the new cardinals, 19.11.2016

This morning in St. Peter’s Basilica the Holy Father celebrated an ordinary public consistory for the creation of seventeen new cardinals, to whom he imposed the biretta, consigned the ring and assigned the respective title or diaconate church.

At the beginning of the event, Archbishop Mario Zenari, apostolic nuncio in Syria and the first among the new cardinals, addressed a greeting and some words of gratitude to the Holy Father on behalf of them all.

The ceremony began with greetings, prayer and the reading of a passage from the Gospel according to St. Luke (6, 27-36), after which Pope Francis pronounced the following homily:

“The Gospel passage we have just heard (cf. Lk 6:27-36) is often referred to as the ‘Sermon on the Plain’. After choosing the Twelve, Jesus came down with his disciples to a great multitude of people who were waiting to hear him and to be healed. The call of the Apostles is linked to this ‘setting out’, descending to the plain to encounter the multitudes who, as the Gospel says, were ‘troubled’. Instead of keeping the Apostles at the top of the mountain, their being chosen leads them to the heart of the crowd; it sets them in the midst of those who are troubled, on the ‘plain’ of their daily lives. The Lord thus shows the Apostles, and ourselves, that the true heights are reached on the plain, while the plain reminds us that the heights are found in a gaze and above all in a call: ‘Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful’.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:33 AM

Pope Francis names 17 new cardinals of Roman Catholic Church

VATICAN CITY
BBC News

Pope Francis has named 17 new cardinals of the Roman Catholic Church from around the world, many of whom will help choose his successor.

The new cardinals come from five continents, and include the Vatican's envoy to Syria.

The range of backgrounds "represents a break with custom", said the BBC's David Willey in Rome.

Pope Francis has now chosen close to a third of the College of Cardinals who will ultimately pick who succeeds him.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 9:31 AM

Guam's Filipino community reacts to Apuron

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Haidee V Eugenio , heugenio@guampdn.com November 19, 2016

Multiple sex abuse allegations against priests and questionable church leadership decisions have fractured a deeply Catholic Guam, but some members of the island’s Filipino-American community say these challenges have made their faith stronger rather than weaker.

They also say an imminent leadership change bodes well for an even greater church.

“I learned about the church scandals and I also have questions in my mind about the archbishop. But those didn’t make me want to leave the church. If anything, they tested my faith in God and the church. My faith became stronger,” says Cynthia De Castro, a 60-year-old mother of three and a devout Catholic.

“When you know that the church is hurt, you don’t leave it. You help it heal,” she adds.

Some 85 percent of Guam’s estimated population of 162,742 is Roman Catholic. Filipinos and Filipino-Americans also make up about 26 percent of the island population.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:34 AM

People can sniff out greedy priests, Pope Francis says

VATICAN CITY
Pittsburgh Catholic

Saturday, November 19, 2016

By Cindy Wooden Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY — Catholics will forgive their priests for almost any weakness, but not for an exaggerated attachment to money or for mistreating parishioners, Pope Francis told 160 priests who work in Vatican nunciatures around the world.

"The people of God have a great nose" for sniffing out priests who serve the god of money more than God the father, he told the priests Nov. 18.

Celebrating Mass with them in the chapel of the Domus Sanctae Marthae, Pope Francis focused on the day's Gospel reading, which was St. Luke's account of Jesus throwing the money-changers out of the temple.

In the reading, Jesus accuses the merchants of turning the Lord's house into a "den of thieves."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:32 AM

Sex abuse inquiry ‘lurching from disaster to disaster’, says Yorkshire MP

UNITED KINGDOM
Yorkshire Post

MPs have questioned the leadership of the beleaguered national inquiry into child sexual abuse after one of the country’s largest victims’ groups announced it was withdrawing from what it described as “an “unpalatable circus”.

The Shirley Oaks Survivors Association (Sosa) yesterday delivered a blistering critique of the troubled investigation - describing it as a “stage-managed event” which has “lurched from crisis to crisis”.

Sarah Champion MP And there were calls for another change at the top of the inquiry, which is already on its fourth chairwoman, former social worker Professor Alexis Jay, the author of the 2014 report in Rotherham sex abuse.

Sosa represents victims affected by abuse at children’s homes run by Lambeth Council in south London. In a highly critical statement, it said: “Our decision to pull out of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) should have come with regret but we are sad to say the only emotion we feel is relief.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:28 AM

Abuse inquiry chief targets ‘dark institutional failings’

UNITEDKINGDOM
The Times

Sean O’Neill, Chief Reporter
November 19 2016
The Times

The chairwoman of the inquiry into historical sex abuse has hit back at critics and said that some forces did not want “dark institutional failings brought into the light”.

Writing in The Times, Alexis Jay said that the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) had a duty to shine a light on the failures that led to so many being abused and exploited.

Professor Jay, who was praised for her investigation into child sexual exploitation in Rotherham, added: “I have fought for this inquiry — for its independence, its reputation and its vital capacity to right a terrible wrong — since it opened, and I don’t intend to stop fighting for it now.”

Her vow to continue with the IICSA’s work followed the decision by one of the largest victims’ groups to withdraw from the inquiry process.

The Shirley Oaks Survivors Association, which represents hundreds of people abused in childhood in the care of Lambeth council in London, said that it had lost confidence in the inquiry after resignations and scandals.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:27 AM

Abuse inquiry chairwoman vows to push on with independent probe

UNITED KINGDOM
Daily Mail

A child sex abuse inquiry's fourth chairwoman has said some forces want to stop a light being shone on "dark institutional failings" after a victims' group quit the probe, branding it an "unpalatable circus".

Professor Alexis Jay vowed to push on with the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) after the Shirley Oaks Survivors Association (Sosa) and Labour MP Chuka Umunna called for her replacement.

Sosa delivered a blistering critique of IICSA - calling it a "stage-managed event" which has "lurched from crisis to crisis".

But Prof Jay, writing in The Times, said: "I have fought for this inquiry - for its independence, its reputation and its vital capacity to right a terrible wrong - since it opened, and I don't intend to stop fighting for it now.

"There are some people who would like to see us fail because it suits their agenda to not want dark institutional failings brought into the light.

"But shine that light we will, because there are many, many people in this country who spend every waking minute of every day living with the damage and the pain caused by child sexual abuse."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:25 AM

ABUSE PROBE SLAMMED AGAIN Labour MP Chuka Umunna calls on troubled child sex abuse inquiry chief to resign amid claims probe is ‘botched job’

UNITED KINGDOM
The Sun

BY MIKE SULLIVAN, CRIME EDITOR 18th November 2016

A TOP Labour MP called for the latest head of the child sex abuse inquiry to resign yesterday after a leading victims’ group called it a “botched job”.

Prof Alexis Jay is the fourth to lead the troubled national probe but is facing claims of a whitewash.

Shirley Oaks Survivors Association, representing those abused in Lambeth Council children’s homes in South London, withdrew its co-operation.

Labour’s Chuka Umunna also questioned whether Professor Jay could “command the confidence of the majority of survivors” because of her background in social work and lack of legal knowledge.

The Streatham MP told Radio 4’s programme that survivors were cynical about her because “many perpetrators” came from Professor Jay’s profession.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:23 AM

ROYAL COMMISSION: Assistant Newcastle bishop confirms three new child sex abuse allegations against clergy

AUSTRALIA
Newcastle Herald

IAN KIRKWOOD
18 Nov 2016

The Assistant Bishop of Newcastle, Peter Stuart, has told the commission of three more allegations of child sexual abuse against Anglican clergy.

Bishop Stuart, the assistant at Newcastle since 2009, made the disclosure at the end of a session of almost two hours in the witness stand on Friday morning.

Counsel assisting the commission, Naomi Sharp, had just taken Bishop Stuart through a section of evidence in which he had described supporters of Graeme Lawrence in Christ Church Cathedral as the most “difficult, intractable and hurtful” group of people he had ever met.

Bishop Stuart then explained how the cathedral’s parish council was sacked after prominent lay members of the congregation wrote to their now infamous letter to the commission in September, complaining about Newcastle Bishop Greg Thompson.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:20 AM

ROYAL COMMISSION: Defrocked former Anglican dean starts giving evidence

AUSTRALIA
Newcastle Herald

IAN KIRKWOOD
18 Nov 2016

THE defrocked former dean of Newcastle, Graeme Lawrence, has disputed almost all of the evidence given about him so far in a fortnight of sittings by the Royal Commission.

In a two-hour stint of evidence, he denied knowing anything about most of the child abuse cases in this hearing. He also denied an accusation that he “sexually interfered with” two male youths at a church camp in the mid-1990s. This had been raised with the bishop at the time, Roger Herft, in the closing minutes of the August block of hearings in Newcastle, when Reverend Herft denied “tipping off” Mr Lawrence about the allegation.

Mr Lawrence, who retired from the church with civic honours in 2008, only to be defrocked in disgrace in 2012, is regarded as the central figure in this inquiry and was the first person named in its terms of reference.

He was one of the clergy who allegedly abused a then-youth, code-named CKH, during the early 1980s, although he has not been charged with any criminal offence.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:18 AM

Teachers, police to hold meeting after Md. teacher faces new sex offenses

MARYLAND
WJLA

BY JOHN GONZALEZ/ABC7
FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 18TH 2016

MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Md. (ABC7) — Teachers and police will be holding a meeting at Montgomery County’s Cloverly Elementary School Monday evening after a teacher was arrested for a second time on Thursday.

John Vigna was a beloved teacher at the elementary school for over 20 years, but on Friday morning he was behind bars facing new charges.

The new charges include one count of sexual abuse of a minor and four counts of 3rd-degree sex offense. More alleged victims came forward, according to authorities. A woman in her twenties now claims that she was sexually assaulted when she was a student 15 years ago. And two juveniles reported separate incidents that occurred at Cloverly over the past two to three years.

Vigna was someone who would do scripture readings at a nearby church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:12 AM

Exclusive: FRANCE 24 pursues a Church paedophilia case from Dakar to Quebec

FRANCE
Global Herald

[with video]

Following a series of paedophilia scandals in the Catholic Church in recent years, FRANCE 24 reporters investigated the Brothers of the Sacred Heart, a Catholic religious community that has been sending missionaries to Africa for nearly a century. In Senegal we met with an alleged victim of abuse before tracking down the accused in Quebec.

Warning: Some of the language in this video report may be unsuitable for minors.

FRANCE 24 reporters contacted Souleymane in April through La Parole Libérée, a French association that helps victims of paedophilia. A Senegalese man now around 40 years of age, Souleymane told us his story but would not appear on camera.

He recounted his childhood in Kaolack, a large city southeast of the capital Dakar, and his education at the Pius XII college, run by the Canadian branch of the Brothers of the Sacred Heart.

Souleymane was 12 when one of the missionaries, a French teacher, first invited him after class to attend a private “sex education” lesson. Souleymane says he was abused for three years afterwards but did not dare tell anyone.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:09 AM

Management at St Patrick's Cathedral apologise to victims of child rapist Patrick O'Brien

IRELAND
Journal

ST PATRICK’S CATHEDRAL has this evening apologised to the victims of convicted child rapist Patrick O’Brien who molested children at the place of worship.

O’Brien was a lay worker at the cathedral and admitted to 48 sample counts of indecent assault, including various instances of anal penetration, and three counts of sexual assault of the boys between 1974 and 2013.

The abuse happened at numerous locations throughout the country.

O’Brien was jailed for 13 years earlier this month for the rape and molestation of 14 young boys over the course of 40 years.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:07 AM

St Patrick's Cathedral issues apology for 'failing' victims of abuser O'Brien

IRELAND
RTE News

The national Cathedral of the Church of Ireland, St Patrick's in Dublin, has apologised unreservedly for failing to care appropriately for victims of the serial child sexual abuser Patrick O'Brien.

In a statement issued this evening, the Cathedral also apologised for not providing the victims' families with the care and support which they needed and to which they were entitled.

Today's statement comes eight days after a 52-word statement from St Patrick's Cathedral in response to the sentencing of O'Brien to 13 years imprisonment for sexually abusing and raping 13 boys and abusing one other over a 40-year period in locations including the Cathedral where he was a treasurer of an independent fundraising committee.

Kerry Lawless who, as a 15-year-old pupil of the neighbouring St Patrick's Grammar School, helped secure O'Brien's conviction for abusing him in 1989.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:06 AM

Church of Ireland apologises to victims of child abuser

IRELAND
Irish Times

Mark Hilliard

The Church of Ireland has issued a further statement following the sentencing of abuser Patrick O’Brien, apologising “sincerely and unreservedly” to his victims.

On Friday, St Patrick’s Cathedral said it deeply regretted that children were sexually abused by Patrick O’Brien, who was a member of the congregation and treasurer of the independent fundraising body, the Friends of St Patrick’s Cathedral.

The cases of abuse that have been notified to the cathedral date from the period 1978 to 1989.
“The community here is shocked at the enormity of the crimes perpetrated by Patrick O’Brien.

These crimes against children have caused feelings of revulsion and immense sadness,” the statement said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:03 AM

Act on abuse redress: archbishop to govts

AUSTRALIA
SBS

Melbourne's Catholic Archbishop Denis Hart wants governments to back a redress scheme providing a level playing field for child sex abuse victims.

Archbishop Hart, victims' advocates and the states want specific details about how the federal government's planned Commonwealth redress scheme for survivors of institutional child sexual abuse will work, including how complaints will be assessed.

He has called on governments to support a national scheme, amid doubts that all states, territories, churches and charities will take part in the opt-in scheme and provide their share of restitution.

"I urge all governments to support a scheme that provides survivors with equal access and treatment no matter in which jurisdiction or institution the alleged abuse occurred," Archbishop Hart said.

The Melbourne archdiocese has doubled its maximum compensation payments to $150,000, in line with the cap under the national scheme.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:02 AM

Uruguayan Church hotline unearths dozens of abuse cases

URUGUAY
Crux

Austen Ivereigh November 18, 2016
CONTRIBUTING EDITOR

Back in April, the Uruguayan bishops set up a dedicated phone-line to allow victims of sex abuse by priests to step forward and make complaints. At their plenary meeting Wednesday, the bishops announced that as a result dozens of cases have come to light.
Share:

BUENOS AIRES - Four Uruguayan priests have been suspended for sexual abuse of minors following a Church-led investigation that has uncovered 44 accusations against 40 priests over 70 years.

The probe was ordered earlier this year by Cardinal Daniel Sturla, the Archbishop of Montevideo, following a three-part Uruguayan TV documentary series that claimed to reveal a cover-up in the Church.

The series, Santo y Seña, was inspired by the U.S. movie Spotlight, which tells the story of the journalistic exposé of clerical sex abuse in 2001.

In April the bishops created a dedicated phone line to allow people to step forward and make the accusations, promising that they would be investigated.

The bishops reported Wednesday that 44 cases have so far come to light, 18 of which referred to events more than 40 years ago, and 16 between 20 and 40 years ago.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:56 AM

Woman files sexual abuse suit against pastor

NEW MEXICO
Albuquerque Journal

By Olivier Uyttebrouck / Journal Staff Writer
Published: Friday, November 18th, 2016

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A Texas woman has filed a federal lawsuit alleging that she had been sexually abused since she was minor by an Albuquerque pastor who serves as a bishop in a large Pentecostal denomination, according to court records.

The woman, 37, of Lubbock also alleges that Bishop James L’Keith Jones, who leads the New Mexico jurisdiction of the Church of God in Christ, sent her 6-year-old daughter a video intended to groom the girl for sexual purposes, according to the civil lawsuit filed Oct. 31 in U.S. District Court, Northern District of Texas in Amarillo.

The lawsuit identifies Jones, the Memphis, Tenn.-based denomination and its board of bishops as defendants, seeking $12.2 million in damages on behalf of the woman and her child.

Jones, the denomination, and their attorneys did not respond to email and phone message requests for comment.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:54 AM

In revised Reorganization plan, archdiocese allocates more than $133M to victims

MINNESOTA
The Catholic Spirit

Jessica Trygstad | November 17, 2016

After months of negotiations with insurance carriers, the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis filed an amended plan for Reorganization Nov. 15 that increased compensation for victims of clergy sexual abuse to more than $133 million. A court-appointed mediator facilitated the negotiations.

In a press conference after filing the plan, Charles Rogers, an attorney with Briggs and Morgan representing the archdiocese, said it had reached settlements with 11 of the 13 insurance carriers involved in the bankruptcy proceedings; negotiations continue with the remaining two, which, if resolved, will add additional funds to the total settlement. He described the amended plan as “holistic” and producing the best possible insurance settlements given the circumstances.

“Our goal all along has been to promote healing, to bring forth good will and to express our good will in actions and not our words,” Rogers said.

In its initial plan filed in May, the archdiocese identified more than $65 million in assets to compensate victims/survivors, with the potential for that amount to grow as settlements were reached with insurers.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:52 AM

Cardinal-Elect De Kesel Brings Problematic Record on Handling Clergy Abuse Allegations

BELGIUM
National Catholic Register

The Belgian archbishop has drawn criticism for his handling as a local bishop of five separate sexual abuse files.

Edward Pentin

BRUSSELS, Belgium — Among the new cardinals to be elevated at Saturday’s consistory will be Archbishop Jozef De Kesel of Mechelen-Brussels.

Born in 1947 in Ghent, De Kesel was ordained in 1972 and served as a professor of theology and Christology, as well as formation director in Ghent and episcopal vicar for theological training and pastoral in the diocese. Pope St. John Paul II elevated him to the Belgian episcopate in 2002, appointing him auxiliary bishop in Brussels. Benedict XVI appointed him Bishop of Bruges in 2010.

But Cardinal-designate De Kesel enters the College of Cardinals with some substantial baggage, primarily in the area of handling clerical sex abuse cases during his time in Bruges.

His current spokesman in Brussels, Jeroen Moens, told the Register Nov. 8 that the archbishop did not “want to comment in detail” on five cases he has been criticized for mishandling. “He only wishes to state that all cases are handled according the policy of the Belgian bishops on the handling of sexual abuse cases and according to the suggestions and advice of experts working in commissions and contact points for sexual abuse cases,” the spokesman said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:50 AM

Musician Sean McCann appearing at Market Hall in Peterborough Nov. 26 to speak out about addiction, mental health

CANADA
Peterborough Examiner

By Jason Bain, The Peterborough Examiner
Saturday, November 19, 2016

Tackle your issues head-on before you no longer can, urges Great Big Sea co-founder Sean McCann, who himself used music to overcome his own problems.

The former band member, who will perform and speak Nov. 26 at Market Hall as the final stop in his 2016 Road to Recovery Tour, is celebrating his fifth year of sobriety thanks to using the notes as medicine, as his own personal therapy.

"I guarantee I wouldn't have been able to do it without my guitar," he said earlier this week prior to a show in Calgary.

The former alcoholic once blamed the former energetic folk rock band, which wrote many songs about drinking, for leading him down a self-destructive path and into hard times. But he soon learned he was to blame, not the pieces the Newfoundlanders sang.

"It wasn't bad at all. I was just singing the wrong song," he said, adding how performing and sharing his story is what has really given him a sense of purpose. "This is what has propelled me to this moment in life."

McCann has been outspoken about his struggle with addiction as his way to deal with the trauma of childhood sexual abuse by his parish priest while growing up in St. John's.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:47 AM

November 18, 2016

City of Memphis employee accused of sex abuse at church

TENNESSEE
Commercial Appeal

Yolanda Jones , yolanda.jones@commercialappeal.com November 18, 2016

A city of Memphis library employee has been placed on paid leave after an ongoing police investigation into allegations that he sexually assaulted children when he worked as an assistant youth minister at a Germantown church 18 years ago.

The employee, who has not been arrested or charged in the cases, was placed on paid administrative leave pending the investigation into the allegations, city officials said in an email earlier this week.

Memphis police spokesman Louis Brownlee confirmed that the department's sex crimes detectives are investigating.

"We do have an open investigation related to these allegations," Brownlee said. "As with any investigation, if there are additional victims who have not come forward to file a complaint with law enforcement or if there are any individuals who have information concerning these incidents, they should contact MPD at any precinct or report to the Sex Crimes Bureau located at 201 Poplar Avenue, 11th floor."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:52 PM

Fourth chairwoman of abuse inquiry comes under fire amid 'crisis' claims

UNITED KINGDOM
Daily Mail

By PRESS ASSOCIATION

A child sex abuse inquiry panel member has defended its fourth chairwoman after o ne of the largest victims' groups involved withdrew from the probe - branding it an "unpalatable circus".

Drusilla Sharpling insisted Professor Alexis Jay was "ideally" qualified for the job as t he Shirley Oaks Survivors Association (Sosa) and Labour MP Chuka Umunna called for her to be replaced.

Earlier, Sosa delivered a blistering critique of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) - describing it as a "stage-managed event" which has "lurched from crisis to crisis".

Sosa represents victims affected by abuse at children's homes run by Lambeth Council in south London.

It said it feared Prof Jay is "an uninspiring leader" and it does not believe she is the right person to uncover the truth behind allegations of historical abuse.

Downing Street and Home Secretary Amber Rudd have voiced their support and Ms Sharpling said Prof Jay's work exposing prolonged abuse in Rotherham meant she had the expertise needed.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:48 PM

Senior panel member defends head of child abuse inquiry

UNITED KINGDOM
BBC News

A panel member of the independent inquiry into child sex abuse has defended chairwoman Prof Alexis Jay as being "qualified for the job."

The Shirley Oaks Survivors Association, for 600 victims who lived in children's homes in London, is pulling out of the inquiry because of its leadership.

But Dru Sharpling said it would not prevent the inquiry from carrying on.

Labour MP Chuka Umunna has called for a new head, but Home Secretary Amber Rudd has backed Prof Jay's leadership.

The inquiry said its work would continue with "confidence and clarity", and Prime Minister Theresa May this week said she had absolute confidence in the inquiry's leadership.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:47 PM

Gefahr sexuellen Missbrauchs ist hoch

DEUTSCHLAND
N-TV

[Six years after emergency of the abuse scandal in Germany, those affected continue to regard a high risk of attacks on children and adolescents.]

2010 werden in der Katholischen Kirche Missbrauchsfälle in großem Ausmaß bekannt. Heute seien Kinder und Jugendliche nicht weniger in Gefahr, Opfer sexueller Gewalt zu werden, sagt der Betroffenenrat. Das betreffe viele Bereiche der Gesellschaft.

Sechs Jahre nach dem Bekanntwerden des Missbrauchsskandals in Deutschland halten Betroffene die Gefahr von Übergriffen auf Kinder und Jugendliche weiter für hoch. "Kindesmissbrauch ist weltweit ein Bestandteil gesellschaftlicher Strukturen", teilte der Betroffenenrat in Berlin mit. Familien seien ebenso betroffen wie Bildungseinrichtungen und religiöse Gemeinschaften.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:17 PM

Staatsakt für Missbrauchsopfer

OSTERREICH
katholisch

[The State and the Catholic Church in Austria have apologized to victims of abuse. Cardinal Christoph Schonborn said for too long the victims have been disccarded and disowned. The event was attended by 250 victims.]

Österreich | Wien - 18.11.2016

Mit einem Staatsakt haben Staat und katholische Kirche in Österreich bei Opfern von Missbrauch um Entschuldigung gebeten. Viel zu lange sei verharmlost, vertuscht, verleugnet und weggeschaut worden, sagte Kardinal Christoph Schönborn am Donnerstagabend im Parlament in Wien. "Ich bitte um Entschuldigung", so Schönborn an die Adresse der 250 Missbrauchs-Betroffenen, die bei der Veranstaltung zugegen waren. Wir haben in der Kirche wie auch im Staat zu lange weggeschaut. Wir haben vertuscht, wir haben, wenn Missbrauch bekannt geworden ist, Leute versetzt und nicht abgesetzt", so der Wiener Erzbischof. "Für diese Schuld der Kirche stehe ich heute vor ihnen und sage: Ich bitte um Vergebung."

Mit dem Staatsakt wollten Staat und Kirche eine gemeinsame "Geste der Verantwortung" für jenes Unrecht setzen, das Heimkinder in den vergangenen Jahrzehnten in staatlichen und kirchlichen Einrichtungen in Österreich erlitten haben. Das österreichische Fernsehen übertrug live. Bereits zuvor hatte Schönborn dazu gemahnt, das Thema Kindesmissbrauch nicht mehr zu verdrängen. Es sei wichtig, dass es aus dem öffentlichen Bewusstsein nie wieder verschwinde. "Und auch nicht aus dem Bewusstsein der Kirche".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:13 PM

Assignment Record– Rev. Michael S. McGrath

MISSOURI
BishopAccountability.org

Summary of Case: Michael S. McGrath was a St. Louis archdiocesan priest, ordained in 1975. He assisted in parishes in Florissant, Wentzville, Overland, Concord Village, Pagedale and Bridgeton. For a short while he was the lead priest in Jennings. McGrath also taught in several parish schools and at DuBourg High School.

In 1993 McGrath was placed on leave and sent for treatment for a year after the archdiocese received an allegation that, while he was a seminarian in 1973-1974, McGrath fondled a boy. He was returned to active ministry. In 1997 he was suspended again after a concerned priest reported that McGrath had taken a group of boys on a trip to New Orleans. The archdiocesan review board recommended the suspension, saying that McGrath was not using "common sense." McGrath found work driving buses for the city and for Greyhound.

In June 2003 a wrongful death suit was filed by the parents of a man who had recently committed suicide; the parents said McGrath sexually abused their son in the 1980s, beginning when the boy was a fourth-grader. The suicide occurred just after the man learned that the statute of limitations prevented him from filing criminal charges against the priest. This was the first of at least 21 lawsuits by people claiming abuse as children by McGrath. McGrath's modus operandi was reportedly to take children on outings in his van, such as getting ice-cream or attending baseball games. There were also overnight trips. He typically would allow children to help drive the van while they sat in or near his lap. Most allegations were of fondling; at least one was of forced oral copulation. McGrath's alleged victims were boys and girls. Two former female students of DuBourg High School separately reported that McGrath fondled them while they were sleeping during a trip in his van.

McGrath was laicized in 2005.

Ordained: 1975
Laicized: 2005

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:09 PM

Part 2: Dougherty plans to keep fighting for victims of child sex abuse

PENNSYLVANIA
WJAC

[with video]

Part 1: Johnstown man confronts past of sexual abuse by priest

BY MARTY RADOVANIC FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 18TH 2016

JOHNSTOWN - A state grand jury continues its investigation of child sex abuse within the Catholic Church.

Agents of the attorney general recently raided the offices of the diocese of Erie, collecting boxes of documents.

Whispers of abuse have been prevalent in the Catholic Church for years.

That whisper became a roar when the grand jury announced its findings of widespread abuse in the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown.

When the grand jury report was released in March, Shaun Dougherty says he knew it was time for him to go public, to make sure what happened to him would not happen to another child.

He reached out to a longtime friend, state Rep. Frank Burns, who in turn introduced him to Rep. Mark Rozzi, who says he had been molested by a priest as a child.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:06 PM

De-frocked dean thought police call was a ‘hoax’

AUSTRALIA
The Australian

November 19, 2016

DAN BOX
Crime reporterSydney
@DanBox10

The former dean of Newcastle’s Anglican cathedral has denied being questioned by the current Archbishop of Perth over reports that he sexually abused children during the late 1990s, a royal commission has heard.

Graeme Lawrence also told the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse yesterday that he took no action against another priest alleged to have abused children as he expected his then bishop, Roger Herft, to do so instead.

“I didn’t take any particular action. I left it to the diocesan bishop and the registrar to do those ­actions that were in their purview, not mine,” Mr Lawrence said.

Asked why he did not return a call in 2000 from a man identifying himself as a detective and asking about the priest, Mr Lawrence said he doubted the call was genuine, despite believing the victim had gone to police.

“Are you seriously suggesting in your evidence that this telephone call was some kind of hoax?” counsel assisting the commission Naomi Sharp asked.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:04 PM

Part 1: Johnstown man confronts past of sexual abuse by priest

PENNSYLVANIA
WJAC

Part 2: Dougherty plans to keep fighting for victims of child sex abuse

BY MARTY RADOVANIC FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 18TH 2016

JOHNSTOWN -- The sexual abuse scandal within the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown has been making headlines again after the release of a grand jury's findings on the case.

However, not many victims have come forward in an effort to move past that part of their lives.

But one man who said he was abused by his parish’s priest said he can’t keep quiet any longer.

Shaun Dougherty was born and raised in Johnstown with eight siblings.

Dougherty’s family belonged to the St. Clement parish in Upper Yodder Township, and St. Clement Church was a large part of the Doughertys' lives.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:01 PM

News Release: Abuse Survivors File Amended Bankruptcy Plan

MINNESOTA
Jeff Anderson & Associates

11/18/2016

Plan Exposes Unreasonable Insurance Companies

Committee Amended Disclosure Statement 11-17-2016
Committee Amended Plan of Reorganization 11-17-2016

(Minneapolis, MN) – The Creditors’ Committee in the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis bankruptcy case has filed an amended reorganization plan. The plan preserves the rights to over $1 billion in available insurance assets.

“Some of the major insurance companies in the Archdiocese bankruptcy case are refusing to pay what they owe, leaving the abuse survivors to suffer,” said Attorney Jeff Anderson. “Travelers, CNA and AIG are asking the court to allow them to pay pennies on the dollar when their insurance contracts require them to pay close to $1 billion. The survivors’ plan makes sure that these insurance companies don’t get away with these deceptive practices.”

On Wednesday, the Archdiocese filed an amended reorganization plan, again leaving behind sexual abuse survivors. The plan calls for the Archdiocese to contribute less than 1% of its assets. The plan also lets the insurance companies off-the-hook and significantly undervalues their exposure.

The original plan filed by the Creditors’ Committee in August was the first of its kind filed by sexual abuse survivors in any diocesan or religious order bankruptcy proceeding. Among other provisions, the proposed Creditors’ Committee plan calls for the immediate release of the investigative report concerning former Archbishop John Nienstedt, all communications with the Vatican Embassy and requests an end to all payments currently being made to priests credibly accused of sexually abusing children.

A hearing is scheduled for December 15, 2016, at 1:00PM in United States Bankruptcy Court to discuss the two plans.

Contact: Jeff Anderson: Cell: 612.817.8665 Office: 651.964.3458
Mike Finnegan: Cell: 612.205.5531 Office: 651.964.3458

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:58 PM

Pastor accused of sexual abuse to make court appearance after Thanksgiving

TEXAS
TXK Today

By Fernanda Hernandez - November 18, 2016

A Texarkana pastor accused of sexually abusing two girls he met through his work as a clergyman is scheduled to appear for arraignment on nine felonies and one misdemeanor the week after Thanksgiving.

David Wayne Farren, 41, was arrested twice in August on warrants accusing him of sexual misconduct. He is currently free on a total $40,000 bond.

Earlier this month a criminal information was signed by Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Connie Mitchell charging Farren with nine felonies and one misdemeanor. Counts one through seven allege Farren had sex with a minor, “and was in a position of trust or authority over the victim and used the position of trust or authority to engage in sexual intercourse or deviate sexual activity,” with the girl.

All seven counts of first-degree sexual assault allegedly occurred beginning in April 2013 and continuing through August 2013. Count eight alleges Farren engaged in sexual contact with the same girl beginning in April 2012 and continuing through August 2013.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:55 PM

Pope Francis dismisses critics of his teachings

VATICAN CITY
National Catholic Reporter

David Gibson Religion News Service | Nov. 18, 2016

Vatican City -- Pope Francis is firing back at foes of his efforts to make the Catholic church more open and pastoral in its ministry, telling an interviewer that “they are acting in bad faith to foment divisions.”

The pontiff’s lengthy interview in Avvenire, the official newspaper of the Italian hierarchy, was published Friday and followed days of news coverage of demands by four hard-line cardinals who have grave concerns about Francis’ approach.

The four say that focusing on ministering to people in their particular circumstances is eroding the church’s doctrinal absolutes and that Francis must dispel any ambiguities or face serious consequences.

The four critics, led by U.S. Cardinal Raymond Burke, a Rome-based prelate and longtime opponent of the pontiff’s policies, had written privately to Francis in September.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:57 PM

Diocese to begin services for sexual abuse survivors Saturday

NEW MEXICO
Gallup Independent

Published in the Gallup Independent, Gallup, N.M., Nov. 17, 2016

By Elizabeth Hardin-Burrola
Independent correspondent
religion@gallupindependent.com

GALLUP – Bishop James S. Wall, of the Diocese of Gallup, will offer his first healing service for clergy sexual abuse survivors Saturday at Sacred Heart Cathedral in Gallup.

The service, which is scheduled for 7 p.m. Saturday, is the first in a series of 36 scheduled healing services spanning a period of about 15 months. The services, designed to atone for clergy sexual abuse, resulted from the Gallup Diocese’s Chapter 11 plan of reorganization. As outlined in the plan’s non-monetary provisions, Wall agreed to visit each operating Catholic parish or school in which sexual abuse occurred or where identified abusers served.

Diocesan officials designed the healing services to meet the plan’s requirement to have those visits.

No public forum

Suzanne Hammons, spokeswoman for the Diocese, said the services will consist of hymns, readings from Scripture, a reflection from the bishop and prayer. Hammons said the services are expected to last approximately 30 minutes.

“After each healing service, Bishop Wall will be available to meet privately for discussion with survivors and their families – one-on-one, if they request it,” Hammons wrote in an email Tuesday. “They will be able to ask him questions and discuss any concerns they might have with him at that time.”

According to the non-monetary provisions, the bishop “shall provide a forum/ discussion during his visit to address questions and comments.”

Hammons said the forum/discussion time will be after the services and not open to the general public. Rather, she said, they will be reserved for the questions and comments from abuse survivors during the private meetings.

“This is, first and foremost, a time for the survivors, so there is a place for a forum and discussion, and during these visits, it is provided to those affected by abuse,” Hammons said. “The format of the visit has been carefully crafted after discussion with the survivors’ committee, and it also closely follows what many other Dioceses have done and reported as productive for fostering healing.”

Plaque installation

Hammons acknowledged the media and “probably some parishioners” were hoping that the forum for questions and answers would be part of the service. However, she said, having private space for survivors to meet with Wall was the priority of the diocese.

“Bishop Wall makes many, many visits to each parish and school, and is almost always available to meet the Catholics of these parishes and speak with them,” she said.

“This does not mean we wish to ignore the concerns of Catholic parishioners – on the contrary, we welcome them!” Hammons added. “As always, I try to give out many ways of contacting us for parishioners who do wish to get in touch and ask questions.”

In addition to requiring the bishop’s visits, the non-monetary provisions require the diocese to “prominently and visibly” install plaques at each Catholic parish and school stating: “This Parish (or school) is strongly committed to the emotional, physical, spiritual and moral wellbeing of all of its members. Abuse of any kind will not be tolerated.”

Hammons said every church and school should have received its plaque and be in the process of installing it.

Before the end of the year, three more healing services are scheduled to be offered in Arizona parishes: Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament in Fort Defiance Nov. 29, Our Lady of Guadalupe in Holbrook Dec. 2, and St. Rita in Show Low Dec. 9. The series of services at other parishes and schools will resume in January.

Abuse survivors who would prefer to meet with the bishop in a different setting should contact Elizabeth Terrill, the victims’ assistance coordinator pro tem, at 505-906-7357.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:54 PM

TN-- Victims want Mid-South preacher fired

TENNESSEE
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

For immediate release: Friday, Nov. 18, 2016

Victims want minister ousted
He admits not calling police in alleged abuse case
Still, he’s now with a regional Baptist group in TN
“This just encourages others to stay silent about abuse,” group says
Instead, SNAP wants church officials to “punish him and deter cover ups”
That’s how wrongdoing will be discouraged & victim will heal, support group maintains

A support group wants a Mid-South church organization to oust a Baptist minister who admits he didn’t call police when alleged child sex crimes were reported to him.

Leaders of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, are urging Mid-South Baptist Association in Tennessee to “denounce, discipline and publicly remove Rev. Scott Payne” from any posts in their organization.

In media interviews, Payne admits that he did not call police when he was confronted in the 1990s with allegations that Immanuel Baptist Church assistant youth pastor Chris Carwile had abused kids.

In recent news reports, several victims have come forward to tell their abuse stories and file police reports against Carwile. He’s worked recently at the main branch of the Memphis Public Library until he was suspended days ago.

SNAP contends that Payne’s actions are “a violation of common sense, common decency, pastoral responsibility and state law.”

“Rev. Payne should have no role or position in any church or religious body and should be drummed out of the ministry and never again given a position in which he might again ignore or hide child sexual abuse, either known or suspected,” David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP. “We hope law enforcement will investigate his actions - and inaction – and consider prosecuting him.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:49 PM

Catholic Bishops Doing a Happy Dance – For Now

UNITED STATES
The Open Tabernacle: Here Comes Everybody

Posted on November 17, 2016 by Betty Clermont

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), “looks forward to working with President-elect Trump to protect human life from its most vulnerable beginning, [a] commitment to domestic religious liberty, ensuring people of faith remain free to proclaim the truth about man and woman [anti-transgender dogwhistle], and the unique bond of marriage that they can form …. We are firm in our resolve that our brothers and sisters who are migrants and refugees can be humanely welcomed without sacrificing our security.”

Much of this echoes the Vatican’s statement that “points of dialogue” with Trump will include “internal [domestic] subjects such as religious freedom, Catholics’ commitment and attention to the most vulnerable bands of society.”

Martin R. Castro, chairman of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, recently stated: “The phrases ‘religious liberty’ and ‘religious freedom’ will stand for nothing except hypocrisy so long as they remain code words for discrimination, intolerance, racism, sexism, homophobia, Islamophobia, Christian supremacy or any form of intolerance.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:09 AM

New appointments signal little change for the Catholic Church in America

UNITED STATES
Church Militant

by Christine Niles, M.St. (Oxon.), J.D. • ChurchMilitant.com • November 17, 2016

The recent elections of various prelates to top positions at the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops means more of the same for American Catholics — which is to say, not much at all. Church Militant earlier reported on the election of Cdl. Daniel DiNardo as new head of the USCCB, who allowed the funeral Mass in his co-cathedral of a public organizer of Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast (the same affiliate caught on video trading in aborted baby parts) and open gay "marriage" advocate, and the next year allowed the funeral Mass of an openly gay man in a public "marriage" to his male partner.

The USCCB's newly elected vice president is Abp. Jose Gomez of Los Angeles, a man who has done little to clean up the mess left by his predecessor Cdl. Roger Mahony. Gomez oversees the gay and lesbian ministry in his archdiocese, which annually sponsors a gay pride Mass to coincide with the city's gay pride parade. The archdiocesan ministry openly promotes same-sex "marriage," health benefits for same-sex couples and gay-straight alliances in public schools, where children are indoctrinated in gay ideology.

Gomez also presides over the LA Religious Education Congress, notorious for its liturgical abuses, and which has offered transgender workshops where Church teaching on gender ideology is openly questioned. The Congress has also repeatedly invited Fr. Greg Boyle to speak, a dissident priest who is on public record supporting gay "marriage" and female ordination.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:04 AM

Fugitive rabbi convicted of sexual assault in plea deal

ISRAEL
Times of Israel

The Jerusalem Magistrate Court on Thursday convicted a prominent rabbi after he admitted to two counts of indecent acts and one case of assault in a plea deal with the prosecution.

Under the terms of the deal, Rabbi Eliezer Berland, 79, who was extradited to Israel to face the charges after three years on the run, was cleared of two other charges of indecent acts. His sentencing hearing will be held next week.

However, Channel 2 reported that he is likely to serve 18 months of jail time, including time served since his arrest in the summer.

Considered a cult-like leader to thousands of his followers from the Bratslav Hasidic sect, Berland fled Israel in 2013 amid allegations that he molested two female followers, one of them a minor.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:39 AM

Statement by Archdiocese of Agana on new allegations of abuse

GUAM
Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Agana

The Archdiocese of Agana extends prayers to all victims of sexual abuse by Guam clergy during these difficult times.

With Father Louis Brouillard, a priest who served on Guam beginning in the 1950s having confessed last October to abusing altar boys on Guam decades ago, we convey our deepest apologies to Mr. Vicente Perez and Mr. Bruce Diaz for the pain they have suffered. No words can truly ease the suffering victims of abuse have experienced.

We convey our prayers again for the late Joseph “Sonny” Quinata and for his family who came forward in the past with allegations of abuse against Archbishop Anthony Apuron while he was still a priest.

The Archdiocese of Agana takes the matter of sexual abuse by clergy very seriously. A Task Force for the Protection of Minors was formed in September and since October, has been visiting each of our Catholic schools conducting training of staff and faculty about the prevention of sexual abuse.

A new Victims Support Group has been meeting regularly to develop even more comprehensive outreach, support and counseling help for all victims who come forward. Meanwhile, our Sexual Abuse Response Coordinator (SARC) Deacon Leonard Stohr continues to reach out to victims and persons alleging abuse and can be reached at all hours at 727-7373.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:54 AM

Archdiocese offers prayers for victims

GUAM
KUAM

Updated: Nov 18, 2016

By Sabrina Salas Matanane

In response to the newest court filings alleging child sex abuse by Guam clergy, the Archdiocese of Agana extends prayer to all victims. On Thursday, three more complaints for damages were filed.

Bruce Diaz and Vicente Perez alleged they were molested by Father Louis Brouillard when they were altar boys in the Barrigada parish and while they were Boy Scouts, where he served as scoutmaster. The third case was filed by the estate of the late Joseph Quinata. His mother, Doris Concepcion, alleged he told her on his deathbed that he had been molested by Archbishop Anthony Apuron decades ago.

In a statement issued this afternoon, the archdiocese acknowledged that Father Brouillard confessed to the abuse and extended their deepest apologies to the victims. They additionally conveyed prayers to Quinata and his family.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:52 AM

Archdiocese thanks, apologizes to Carmelite nuns

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Haidee V Eugenio , heugenio@guampdn.com 5:15 p.m. ChST November 18, 2016

Archbishop Savio Hon Tai Fai and local organizations Concerned Catholics of Guam and Laity Forward Movement this week thanked the Carmelite sisters, dedicated to contemplation and prayer, for being a power station for Catholic church activities on Guam since 1966.

Carmelite Mother Superior Dawn Marie this week held a press conference, announcing the Carmelites decided to leave Guam after 50 years and move to California because of the "toxic environment" here, including the way Archbishop Anthony Apuron handled the Yona seminary and the sexual abuse allegations made against Apuron by former altar boys.

She said the Carmelites anonymously donated $2 million to purchase the seminary property for the Archdiocese of Agana, but said Apuron and others wanted the nuns to lie and say they intended their gift to be used for a seminary and theological institute controlled by the Neocatechumenal Way.

Hon expressed the Archdiocese of Agana’s sadness in seeing the nuns leave the island after 50 years, and apologized to them for having to experience a toxic environment.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:50 AM

OUR VIEW: Carmelite nuns contributed to island community; they will be missed

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Pacific Daily News , news@guampdn.com 5:14 p.m. ChST November 18, 2016

After 50 years, the Carmelite nuns have left Guam because of what Mother Superior Dawn Marie described as a “toxic environment” on the island. The nuns were behind the $2 million anonymous gift that was used to pay off the loan for the Accion Hotel, which was later converted to the Redemptoris Mater Seminary and the San Vitores Theological Institute of Oceania.

According to the mother superior, who is the last Carmelite nun here, they were also asked by Archbishop Anthony Apuron to lie about the donor’s intent for the gift.

The Carmelites’ website states that the order first arrived on Guam in 1966 from Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia. They are cloistered, which means they leave the monastery only for emergencies. They lead quiet lives of work and contemplative prayer.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:48 AM

American Elections, Bishops’ Edition. The Numbers and the Moves Backstage

ROME
Chiesa

The new president is one of the thirteen cardinals of the famous letter that infuriated the pope. The new vice-president is a member of Opus Dei. The defeat of the bishops favored by Bergoglio

by Sandro Magister

ROME, November 18, 2016 – Seven days after the election of Donald Trump to the presidency, the more than two hundred bishops of the United States also went to vote. To elect the one who will preside over them for the next three years.

A vote to which they came “as for a referendum on Pope Francis,” in the plain statement of John L. Allen, the top vaticanista in the United States.

And indeed it was a bit like this, even if the new president, Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo, immediately made a point of saying that it is “crazy” even to think that he is on the side of this pope, who is “doing some marvelous things for the Church.”

The fact is that when Francis visited the United States, in September of 2015, he ordered the bishops to change course and get into step with him.

Enough with “preaching complicated doctrines,” with the “harsh and divisive language,” with “making the cross a banner of worldly struggles.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:43 AM

Survivors’ anger at limited scope of abuse inquiry

SCOTLAND
The Times

Hamish Macdonell
November 18 2016
The Times

Survivors’ groups have reacted angrily after John Swinney announced only limited changes to Scotland’s child abuse inquiry.

The education secretary told MSPs that he would lift the three-year time bar which has prevented many survivors from launching civil actions against their alleged abusers.

But Mr Swinney said he would be failing the survivors of in-care abuse if he opened up the scope of the inquiry to include incidents at youth groups and day schools.

He also announced a consultation on compensation, disappointing those who wanted the minister to unveil a package of payments for those who have suffered.

Alan Draper, of the In Care Abuse Survivors group, accused Mr Swinney of “continuing to fail countless survivors”, claiming the lengthening process was starting to resemble legal proceedings from a Dickens novel.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:40 AM

Swinney is right to limit child abuse inquiry remit

SCOTLAND
Herald Scotland

Stephen Naysmith

THE Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry was set up to shine a light on the abuse of children in residential care provided by the state, or by charities and others acting on its behalf.

The inquiry’s job is straightforward: to acknowledge victims of the most horrendous breach of trust, and to attempt to learn from what happened so future children can be better protected.

But there has been an increasing clamour from groups representing child abuse survivors for the inquiry’s remit to be extended. It is unjust, they argue, that some children who were abused by adults in positions of power are not covered by the inquiry because that abuse was not carried out in the care of the state. This may seem unfair. But Education Secretary John Swinney is correct. Such cases cannot be covered by this inquiry.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:39 AM

Child sex abuse inquiry descends into further chaos as fourth chairwoman faces calls to be sacked

UNITED KINGDOM
Independent

Rob Merrick Deputy Political Editor @Rob_Merrick

The child sex abuse inquiry descended into further chaos today when a senior MP called for its fourth chairwoman to be sacked.

Labour’s Chuka Umunna spoke out after the largest victims' group, representing 600 victims who lived in London children's homes, quit the inquiry - calling it an “unpalatable circus”.

The Shirley Oaks Survivors Association said its members had voted “overwhelmingly” to pull out, warning it had no confidence in Alexis Jay, its fourth leader.

Many of the group’s abuse victims live in the South London constituency of Mr Umunna, a member of the Commons Home Affairs Select Committee, which recently quizzed Professor Jay.

Today, the Labour MP told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme that only the leadership of a judge, at High Court level or above, could rescue the inquiry.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:36 AM

Child abuse survivors' group withdraws from 'contrived' UK inquiry

UNITED KINGDOM
The Guardian

Damien Gayle

One of the biggest survivors’ groups involved in the independent inquiry into child sexual abuse is to formally withdraw from the investigation, denouncing it as a “botch job that needs a drastic overhaul if it is ever to achieve its initial objectives”.

The Shirley Oaks Survivors Association (Sosa), which represents people subjected to abuse at children’s homes run by Lambeth council in south London, described the inquiry as a “stage-managed event which has now been contrived in such a way that it enables the guilty to wash their dirty hands, whilst the establishment pats itself on the back”.

It is the latest setback for the inquiry, which is on its fourth chairwoman since it was established in 2014 and has had three people resign from its legal team.

On Friday morning, Chuka Ummuna, the Labour MP whose Streatham constituency is home to many Sosa members, said he had lost confidence in Prof Alexis Jay’s ability to chair the investigation and called for a judge “of high court standing or senior” to take the reins.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:34 AM

Victims’ group quits abuse inquiry branding it an ‘unpalatable circus’

UNITED KINGDOM
Evening Standard

KATE PROCTOR

The independent inquiry into historical child sex abuse was thrown into further turmoil today when the largest victims’ group withdrew, branding it an “unpalatable circus”.

The Shirley Oaks Survivors Association, which represents 600 victims of alleged sexual abuse, said it has lost confidence in the inquiry’s leadership. The group’s withdrawal is yet another blow for the inquiry, which is on its fourth chairwoman in just two years and has seen a number of senior lawyers resign in recent months.

The group represents former residents of children’s homes run by Lambeth council who claim they were abused by paedophiles over several decades. It said it believed the inquiry was a “botch job” and chair Professor Alexis Jay was the wrong person to lead it. Its representative, Raymond Stephenson, told the BBC’s Radio 4 Today programme the inquiry was “failing tragically” and “failing publicly”. He added: “They need to get rid of Alexis Jay, who has been parachuted in by the Home Office.

“She hasn’t done anything wrong, she’s just not the right person. We have to make a decision based on what we feel.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:32 AM

Go now! MP demands Alexis Jay QUITS as chair of government's embattled child sex abuse inquiry as victims withdraw support

UNITED KINGDOM
Daily Mail

By JAMES TAPSFIELD, POLITICAL EDITOR FOR MAILONLINE

Labour MP Chuka Umunna has demanded Professor Alexis Jay stand aside after the biggest victims' group withdrew their support.

The Shirley Oaks Survivors Association condemned the probe - set up by Theresa May when she was home secretary - for allowing the 'guilty to wash their dirty hands'.

The latest setback will fuel questions about the future of the inquiry, which has had four different chairs in just two years.

However, Downing Street insisted the Prime Minister still had full confidence in Professor Jay.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:30 AM

Abuse inquiry defended after victims' group quits

UNITED KINGDOM
BBC News

Home Secretary Amber Rudd has defended the independent inquiry into historical child sex abuse after the largest group of victims pulled out of the process.

The Shirley Oaks Survivors Association, for 600 victims who lived in children's homes in Lambeth, said it had no confidence in the inquiry's leadership.

Chuka Umunna MP said the inquiry chair, Prof Alexis Jay, should be replaced.

But Ms Rudd said: "We owe it to victims and survivors to get behind the inquiry, and its chair."

She said the inquiry had a "vital role to play in exposing the failure of public bodies and other major organisations to prevent child sexual abuse".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:26 AM

ROYAL COMMISSION: Graeme Lawrence gives his long-awaited evidence

AUSTRALIA
Newcastle Herald

IAN KIRKWOOD
18 Nov 2016

THE defrocked former Anglican dean of Newcastle, Graeme Lawrence, has begun his long-awaited stint of evidence before the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

Taking the stand under oath after the lunch break, an at-times combative Mr Lawrence was taken through his relationships – professional and social – with the other main Anglican figures named in this section of the commission’s investigations.

Having been mentioned so frequently during this inquiry, Mr Lawrence’s evidence was always going to be pivotal, and he clashed from early on with the counsel assisting the commission, Naomi Sharp.

Although he was forced by the revelation of documents to modify some of his early evidence, he insisted that while he was dean of Christ Church Cathedral from 1984 to 2008, he had only ever heard one allegation of an Anglican clergyman abusing children, that of priest CKC accused of abusing a person code-named CKA.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:20 AM

Court sentences Dublin cathedral volunteer for ‘prolific’ child abuse

IRELAND
Church Times (UK)

by Gregg Ryan, Ireland Correspondent
Posted: 18 Nov 2016

AN ELDERLY man who admitted to abusing young boys over a 40-year period, and who had undertaken volunteer work in St Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin, was sentenced on Thursday to 13 years in prison.

Patrick O’Brien, aged 76, of Knocklyon Road, Templeogue, on the south side of Dublin, was described as a “prolific child-molester”.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:14 AM

Melbourne Catholic abuse compo to double

AUSTRALIA
Cairns Post

Megan Neil, Australian Associated Press
November 18, 2016

Compensation payments to people sexually abused as children by Catholic clergy in the Melbourne archdiocese are expected to surpass $31 million after the church doubled the maximum available payout.

The compensation cap under the church's Melbourne Response scheme will rise from $75,000 to $150,000, putting it in line with the maximum payment under the federal government's planned commonwealth redress scheme.

Past payments to abuse survivors under the much-criticised Melbourne Response, set up in 1996 by then Melbourne archbishop Cardinal George Pell, will be topped up if the victim would have received a higher offer had the new system been in force when their compensation was determined.

Melbourne Archbishop Denis Hart said the $15 million the archdiocese had paid in compensation under the scheme was expected to rise to $31.7 million under the new system, which brings in changes recommended in a review by retired Federal Court judge Donnell Ryan QC.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:13 AM

ROYAL COMMISSION: Newcastle Anglican diocese worse than Adelaide or Tasmania for abuse

AUSTRALIA
Newcastle Herald

IAN KIRKWOOD
18 Nov 2016

NEWCASTLE’S assistant Anglican Bishop Peter Stuart has told the Royal Commission that Newcastle had more of a problem with clerical child sexual abuse than either Adelaide or Tasmania, where he had also worked.

Concluding his evidence to the Royal Commission, Bishop Stuart said Tasmania had developed a “culture of awareness and an arena of safety” and he did not think such a set-up had been in place in Newcastle.

Resuming after the morning adjournment, Bishop Stuart was asked about the congregation at St Stephens, Adamstown, where the defrocked former dean of Newcastle, Graeme Lawrence, has been worshipping in the congregation of Reverend Chris Bird.

Bishop Stuart said he had concerns about Mr Lawrence worshipping there.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:10 AM

Catholic church doubles maximum compensation for Melbourne abuse victims to $150,000

AUSTRALIA
The Guardian

Australian Associated Press

The Catholic church has doubled the maximum compensation payment to people sexually abused as children by clergy in the Melbourne archdiocese to $150,000.

Abuse survivors who have already received payments under the Melbourne Response can have their cases reviewed to determine if they are eligible for additional compensation.

The doubling of the compensation cap from 1 January 2017 puts it in line with the maximum payment under the federal government’s redress scheme starting in 2018.

On Friday Melbourne archbishop Denis Hart said the archdiocese was committed to a fair system of redress.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:08 AM

Abuse claims incorrect: ex-NSW priest

AUSTRALIA
7 News

Miranda Forster - AAP on November 18, 2016,

Former Anglican dean of Newcastle Graeme Lawrence says allegations he sexually abused children are "incorrect", and denies ever being asked about them by senior clergy despite documents that suggest he was.

Lawrence, now defrocked, appeared at the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse in Sydney on Friday.

He was taken to a 1995 letter from then-Bishop of Newcastle Roger Herft to youth camp leader Robert Wall, who has made a statement to the commission that two boys told him Lawrence sexually interfered with them.

"Mr Wall is absolutely incorrect," Lawrence said of the statement, and maintained he'd never been to a youth camp.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:05 AM

Child sex abuse inquiry crisis: New setback as victims' group quits 'unpalatable circus'

UNITED KINGDOM
Telegraph

Telegraph Reporters
18 NOVEMBER 2016

One of the biggest victims' groups involved in the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse has announced it is formally pulling out of the probe.

In the latest setback for the inquiry, set up by then home secretary Theresa May, the Shirley Oaks Survivors Association, described it as a "stage-managed event which has now been contrived in such a way that it enables the guilty to wash their dirty hands, whilst the establishment pats itself on the back".

The group, which represents people affected by abuse at children's homes run by Lambeth council in south London, said in a statement: "Having watched the IICSA unpalatable circus stumble and lurch from crisis to crisis with multiple resignations and claims of racial and sexual abuse thrown into the mix, it no longer matters whether we think the inquiry is just another stitch-up because it's clearly a botch job that needs a drastic overhaul if it is ever to achieve its initial objectives."
The announcement comes two days after it emerged that another senior lawyer at the inquiry, chaired by Professor Alexis Jay, had resigned.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:04 AM

VICTIMS GROUP WITHDRAWS FROM 'STAGE-MANAGED' AND 'CONTRIVED' CHILD ABUSE INQUIRY

UNITED KINGDOM
Care Appointments

Written by The Press Association

One of the biggest victims' groups involved in the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse has announced it is formally pulling out of the probe.

In the latest setback for the inquiry, set up by then home secretary Theresa May, the Shirley Oaks Survivors Association, described it as a "stage-managed event which has now been contrived in such a way that it enables the guilty to wash their dirty hands, whilst the establishment pats itself on the back".

The group, which represents people affected by abuse at children's homes run by Lambeth council in south London, said in a statement: "Having watched the IICSA unpalatable circus stumble and lurch from crisis to crisis with multiple resignations and claims of racial and sexual abuse thrown into the mix, it no longer matters whether we think the inquiry is just another stitch-up because it's clearly a botch job that needs a drastic overhaul if it is ever to achieve its initial objectives."

The announcement comes two days after it emerged that another senior lawyer at the inquiry had resigned.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:02 AM

Australia: Catholic Church doubles compensation cap for abuse victims

AUSTRALIA
Premier (UK)

Fri 18 Nov 2016
By Premier Journalist

Compensation pay outs to child abuse survivors are expected to cost the Catholic Church in Australia £18.4 million ($31million).

After a review, the church made the decision to raise the compensation cap for victims from £44,500 to £89,000 ($75,000 to $150,000).

After a series of allegations against the conduct of Catholic priests in the Australian city, the Archdiocese of Melbourne set up the Melbourne Response to investigate the accusations in 1996.

Complaints are assessed by an independent commissioner and referred on to a compensation panel.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:00 AM

The real-life ‘Spotlight’ journalist shares stories of his career

CONNECTICUT
Yale News

It was fear of a new boss that prompted longtime Boston Globe journalist Walter “Robbie” Robinson and his investigative team to get the ball rolling on its Pulitzer Prize-winning series about the Catholic church’s cover-up of sexual abuse by priests in the Boston archdiocese.

Robinson, now editor-at-large of the Boston Globe, led the newspaper’s investigative Spotlight team for seven years until 2006. In 2002, the team began the series of stories revealing that for years the church knew about and covered up sexual abuse in its ranks — sometimes with secret settlements with victims. The team’s investigative efforts were portrayed in the Academy Award-winning 2015 movie “Spotlight” (in which Michael Keaton played Robinson).

Robinson and other Boston Globe reporters reacted like “deer caught in the headlights” when their new boss, Marty Barron, asked his staff during his first news meeting with them about a lawsuit involving one priest, the journalist told the audience during a well-attended conversation with Dr. Richard Schottenfeld, head of Davenport College, in the college’s common room. The judge had put the records that the church provided the plaintiff under seal, and Barron asked the reporters what was being done to gain access to them.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:57 AM

Catholic Church doubles sex abuse compensation but suppresses independent report

AUSTRALIA
The Age

Chris Vedelago Cameron Houston

The Catholic Church has pledged to double potential compensation payments for child sex abuse survivors to $150,000 but has back-tracked on a promise to publicly release an independent review into its controversial Melbourne response victim compensation scheme.

The decision is expected to upset survivors, their families and victims advocates who have been waiting for more than a year for Archbishop of Melbourne Denis Hart to authorise the release of the report, some of whom contributed to its creation.

In 2014, retired Federal Court judge Donnell Ryan was commissioned to examine the operation of the Melbourne Response program following complaints about its fairness.

The report was handed more than a year ago to Archbishop Hart, who had pledged to release its findings.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:54 AM

Child abuse royal commission: Disgraced dean Graeme Lawrence interrogated

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

By David Marchese

A disgraced former Anglican dean facing allegations of child sexual abuse has emphatically denied any wrongdoing to a royal commission during a dramatic afternoon of questioning.

Graeme Lawrence has been one of the most anticipated witnesses at a child abuse royal commission hearing that is probing the response to widespread paedophile activity in the Newcastle diocese spanning several decades.

Mr Lawrence served as dean of Newcastle's Anglican cathedral from 1984 until 2008 and was defrocked in 2012 in the wake of abuse allegations levelled at him.

Counsel assisting the commission, Naomi Sharp, asked Mr Lawrence about whether he had had any involvement in handling allegations of child abuse in the diocese.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:52 AM

November 17, 2016

See No Evil, Hear No Evil, Speak No Evil

NEW YORK
Esquire

BY ERIC LEWIS NOV 17, 2016

During the summer of 1968, Robert and Pamela DiBenedetto spent four weeks at sleepaway camp in upstate New York. The siblings, twins from Brooklyn, were twelve years old, and their camps were on opposite sides of a lake. One morning, Pamela woke up in her cabin with a swollen arm, an injury that puzzled the camp nurse: Pamela had not fallen or tripped, been bitten or stung. At the end of the season, however, she learned that her brother had broken his arm across the lake the day her swelling began.

As a high school student at Fontbonne Hall, a Catholic girls' school in Bay Ridge, Pamela came to every football game at Poly Prep, the nearby boys' school where Robert and I were both students. Now sixty-one, she long ago took the last name, Romano, of her late husband. But when I saw her recently, she had the same bright green eyes and balletic grace that she had in her youth. She told me the story about her arm to illustrate the bond that she and her brother had shared until his death in 1984.

Robert had been two grades ahead of me at Poly Prep. A smart kid with wiry hair and glasses, he was always laughing at the center of a gang of football players. He wasn't big enough to play on the great teams of our era, but from ninth grade on, he served as a manager for the varsity squad. Known to everyone as DiBo, Robert had close friends among the players, and he took it upon himself to introduce new guys like me to the team, whether at school or at Short's, the dive bar where we hung out on the weekends. (A sign over the bar said STRICT PROOF OF AGE REQUIRED, which, we joked, meant you had to prove you had an age.)

After the twins' father died suddenly when they were in ninth grade, Robert was taken under the wing of Poly's head football coach, a squat colossus of a man named Philip Foglietta. Fat and muscular, Foglietta was around five foot five and weighed well over 250 pounds. From the moment he'd arrived at Poly Prep, in 1966, he had dominated the campus; players, students, and colleagues all saw him as the ultimate macho man. Those of us on the football team were desperate to please him, but we also feared his wrath, which often found expression in his unique dialect of Neapolitan Brooklynese. ("Gamine Gotz, Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!" was a favorite curse.) By 1972, when Foglietta took Poly to the Ivy Prep School league championship, he was widely regarded as one of the best high school football coaches in New York City.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:30 PM

Hawkes witness 'very emotional, very clear'

CANADA
Brampton Guardian

KENTVILLE, N.S. — His face streaked with tears, the middle-aged man put his head in his hands and breathed heavily.

Testifying about an alleged sexual encounter with Brent Hawkes as a teen more than 40 years ago, his face was red with emotion. The man declined suggestions, however, that he should take a break from the witness stand.

"I think this is as good as it's going to get," the man quietly said of his emotional state Tuesday.

It was his first day of testimony at the well-known Toronto pastor's trial on charges of indecent assault and gross indecency. The man, the complainant in the case, will return to the stand Thursday after an off-day Wednesday.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:26 PM

Defence again questions complainant's memory at Rev. Brent Hawkes' sex trial

CANADA
Local Express

by: Ian Fairclough

The trial of Rev. Brent Hawkes continued in Kentville provincial court Thursday morning, with defence lawyer Clayton Ruby again questioning the memory of a man who alleges that Hawkes sexually assaulted him in the 1970s.

Hawkes is charged with indecent assault and gross indecency for allegedly assaulting the man when he was a student at West Kings District High School in the 1970s.

He showed the man a document that indicated Hawkes wasn't a teacher when the man was in Grade 9, as he had testified. The man said he couldn't explain that.

"That's my memory," the man said of his assertion that he had Hawkes as a teacher.

"That's my point," Ruby replied.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:25 PM

Toronto pastor takes stand at his Nova Scotia sex-crimes trial

CANADA
Newstalk

Don Mitchell
November 17, 2016

The Toronto pastor accused of sexually assaulting a minor back in the ’70s took to the stand in a Nova Scotia courtroom on Thursday.

Brent Hawkes said there was no sexual activity at his then home, a trailer in the Annapolis Valley, during what a witness described as a drinking party.

Hawkes is facing charges of indecent assault and gross indecency.

Earlier in the trial, a witness testified that Hawkes had taken him to a bedroom in the trailer and performed sexual acts on him.

“I do not recall… walking (the complainant) down the hallway,” Hawkes said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:22 PM

Toronto pastor Brent Hawkes denies sex crimes at Nova Scotia trial

CANADA
CBC News

By Blair Rhodes, CBC News Posted: Nov 17, 2016

Two very different versions of what happened on a night some 40 years ago emerged Thursday as Toronto pastor Brent Hawkes and his accuser both testified in a Nova Scotia courtroom.

Hawkes, a prominent rights activist, is charged with gross indecency and indecent assault for incidents that allegedly occurred in the 1970s. His trial began Monday in provincial court in Kentville, N.S.

When asked by Crown Prosecutor Bob Morrison about the night in question, Hawkes was emphatic.

"It's not true," he told the court. "It did not happen."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:20 PM

Rev. Brent Hawkes says no sexual activity took place in his home on day in question

CANADA
Toronto Star

By ALY THOMSON
The Canadian Press
Thu., Nov. 17, 2016

KENTVILLE, N.S.—Prominent Toronto pastor Brent Hawkes appeared calm on the witness stand Thursday as he categorically denied that he performed sex acts on a teenage boy at his trailer in Nova Scotia in the mid-1970s.

“It’s not true. It did not happen,” Hawkes said in a hushed voice, shaking his head in the Kentville, N.S., courtroom.

On Tuesday, a man testified that Hawkes led him down a hallway during a drunken get-together at his trailer in Greenwood, N.S., and forced oral sex on him in a bedroom.

Hawkes, then a teacher in his mid-20s in the Annapolis Valley, said Thursday it wasn’t unusual for students and teachers to stop by his trailer, especially around that time, as they wanted to say goodbye before he moved to Toronto to work with a church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:17 PM

MEDIA RELEASE – NOVEMBER 17, 2016

NEW YORK
Road to Recovery

Clergy sexual abuse victim, Neal E. Gumpel, his wife, and supporters to demonstrate at Fordham University and Fordham Prep in the Bronx in the aftermath of a Business Insider article (http://www.businessinsider.com/catholic-church-sexual-abuse-victims-compensation-fund-2016-11) that told his story of sexual abuse by a Catholic Jesuit priest, Fr. Roy Alan Drake, SJ, a deceased Fordham Prep and Fordham University teacher and professor, who has been previously identified as a sexual abuser, and the refusal of the Northeast Province of the Society of Jesus (Jesuits), Fordham University, and Fordham Prep to fairly compensate him. After an investigation, Mr. Gumple was found to be credible by the Society of Jesus (Jesuits) with regard to his claim.

Business Insider, the largest business news site on the web, published an article during the week of November 14, 2016, entitled, “The Catholic Church has a plan to compensate sexual-abuse victims, but many will get nothing.” It described the compensation plan of the Archdiocese of New York which assists victims of clergy (Archdiocesan priests and deacons only) sexual abuse but does not include sexual abuse victims of religious order priests, sisters (nuns), brothers, deacons, and all lay Church employees who work or have worked in the Archdiocese of New York with the express consent of the Cardinal/Archbishop of New York.

Demonstrators will urge Fordham University and Fordham Prep students, faculty, administrators, and the general public to demand that Fordham University, Fordham Prep, and the Society of Jesus do the right thing by fairly and justly compensating sexual abuse victims of Jesuit priests, like Neal E. Gumpel, whose allegations of sexual abuse by Fr. Roy Alan Drake, SJ, have been found credible. In addition, Cardinal Timothy Dolan must demand of religious orders that they fairly and justly compensate sexual abuse victims of their members and lay employees or else they may not serve in the Archdiocese of New York

What and Why
A demonstration and leafleting alerting faculty, students, administrators, and the general public about the unfair and re-victimizing policy of the Archdiocese of New York to NOT include in its recently-announced compensation program for victims of Archdiocese of New York clergy, sexual abuse victims of religious order personnel, like Jesuits, who sexually abused children; and the unfair and re-victimizing policy of the Society of Jesus, Fordham University, and Fordham Prep NOT to compensate a sexual abuse victim of Fr. Roy Alan Drake, SJ, previously identified as a sexual abuser, Neal E. Gumpel, whose allegations have been found credible by the Society of Jesus, Fordham University, and Fordham Prep

When
Friday, November 18, 2016 from 11:00 am until 1:00 pm

Where
Outside the main gates of Fordham University and Fordham Prep, 400 Southern Boulevard, Bronx, NY (near the entrance of the New York Botanical Garden)

Who
Neal E. Gumpel, his wife, Helen, and Dr. Robert M. Hoatson, President of Road to Recovery, Inc., a non-profit charity based in New Jersey that assists victims of sexual abuse and their families

Contact
Robert M. Hoatson, Ph.D., Road to Recovery, Inc. - 862-368-2800 – roberthoatson@gmail.com
Attorney Mitchell Garabedian, Boston, MA – 617-523-6250 – garabedianlaw@msn.com

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:16 PM

John Swinney accused of letting down survivors of child abuse after refusing to extend remit of inquiry

SCOTLAND
Herald Scotland

Tom Gordon , Scottish Political Editor

JOHN SWINNEY has been accused of letting down the survivors of child abuse after refusing to extend the remit of the inquiry established by the Scottish Government into the issue.

The Education Secretary was criticised after he said he would not expand the independent Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry to cover day schools and youth groups.

The four year inquiry will focus on sexual, physical and emotional abuse in foster care, children’s homes, boarding schools and long-term hospital care.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:13 PM

Feiten verjaard: geen proces over seksueel misbruik in Waregems college

BELGIE
HLN

[The facts of sexual abuse in the College in Waregem, dozens of years ago, are barred. So says the Office of West Flanders, department Kortrijk. There is a claim made to dismiss the case. In March 2015 a complaint was filed with a civil action in the courts. That complaint was directed against four different parties within the Sacred Heart College. Some priest-teachers were accused of sexual offenses in the 70s and 80s.]

De feiten van seksueel misbruik in het College in Waregem, van tientallen jaar geleden, zijn verjaard. Dat zegt het parket van West-Vlaanderen, afdeling Kortrijk. Er is een vordering tot buitenvervolgingstelling opgesteld.

In maart 2015 werd een klacht met burgerlijke partijstelling ingediend bij het parket. Die klacht richtte zich tegen vier verschillende partijen binnen het Heilig-Hartcollege. Enkele priester-leraars werden beschuldigd van zedenfeiten in de jaren 70 en 80.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:12 PM

Tres curas católicos investigados por abuso sexual infantil

URUGUAY
MDZ

[Uruguay Three priests of the Catholic Church were charged with sexually assaulting several children. The cases were recorded in the province of Entre Ríos.]

Tres sacerdotes de la Iglesia Católica fueron imputados por atacar sexualmente a varios niños. Los casos se registraron en la provincia de Entre Ríos.

Según reveló Jorge Riani en diario La Nación, el caso que mayor repercusión generó fue el que involucra al cura Justo José Ilarraz, que dentro de poco tiempo irá a juicio, acusado de haber violado a seminaristas, menores de edad, entre 1984 y 1992.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:10 PM

Condenan a 6 años de cárcel a sacerdote paraguayo por abuso sexual en menores

PARGUAY
La Vanguardia

[A court in Asuncion condemned a priest to six years in prison for a crime of sexual abuse against two minors who helped him as altar servers, the Paraguayan prosecutor said Wednesday.]

Asunción, 15 nov (EFE).- Un tribunal de Asunción condenó a un sacerdote a seis años de prisión por un delito de abuso sexual contra dos menores de edad que le ayudaban como monaguillos, informó hoy la Fiscalía paraguaya.

Los hechos ocurrieron a finales de 2013 en una parroquia del barrio San Vicente de Asunción, cuando las víctimas tenían trece años de edad, de acuerdo con un comunicado de la Fiscalía.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:08 PM

Iglesia Católica Uruguaya separa a sacerdotes por abuso sexual

URUGUAY
Prensa Latina (Cuba)

[The Episcopal Conference of Uruguay announced today that four priests of its ministry were suspended for committing sexual abuse against minors.]

Montevideo, 16 nov (PL) La Conferencia Episcopal de Uruguay anunció hoy que cuatro sacerdotes de su ministerio fueron separados por cometer abusos sexuales contra menores.

Hoy queremos informar sobre los resultados del estudio que emprendimos para conocer 'con exactitud esta triste situación', y las medidas que hemos adoptado, señaló un comunicado publicado en su sitio web.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 4:06 PM

Belair-​​Messdiener berichtet wie er missbraucht wurde

LUXEMBURG
L'essentiel

[LUXEMBOURG - "It began with a kiss from the pastor" - a Luxembourgian said in court how a priest from Belair became abusive on a Taizé trip.]

LUXEMBURG – «Es begann mit einem Kuss vom Pastor» – ein Luxemburger Messdiener berichtet vor Gericht, wie ein Priester aus Belair auf einer Taizé-Fahrt zudringlich wurde.

Stille im Gerichtssaal in Luxemburg-Stadt: In einem Prozess um Missbrauchsvorwürfe gegen einen Luxemburger Pastor berichtet das mutmaßliche Opfer gestern, wie sich die Tat abgespielt haben soll. Die Aussage des inzwischen 22-Jährigen wurde per Video in den Saal gespielt, die Verhandlung fand öffentlich statt. Das berichtet RTL.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:40 PM

Rabbi Berland sentenced to 18 months in prison

ISRAEL
Arutz Sheva

Rabbi Eliezer Berland, who fled Israel after allegations of sexual misconduct against female followers came to light in 2012, will serve 18 months in prison for sexual abuse.

Berland, 79, is the founder of the Shuvu Banim yeshiva in the Old City of Jerusalem and was a prominent figure within the Breslov community. He managed to evade Israeli authorities until his capture in South Africa in late 2015. Rabbi Berland was finally returned to Israel in July, 2016.

According to a plea bargain agreement signed on Thursday, Berland will plead guilty to two charges of sexual assault against two of his female followers, and will be sentenced to 18 months imprisonment.

The nearly four months Berland has already served will be counted towards his jail term.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:30 PM

LDS Church Should Apologize for Indian Placement Program

UTAH
Daily Utah Chronicle

CONNOR RICHARDS on November 8, 2016

The Book of Mormon. You’ve probably heard of it. A holy book that contains the official beliefs and teachings of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, it is ultimately a narrative of an intense battle between good and evil, black and white. Literally. Translated by LDS founder and prophet Joseph Smith in the early 1800s, it tells the tale of two lost tribes of Israel — the Nephites and Lamanites — that left the holy land in 600 B.C. In traditional Mormon teachings, the Nephites are described as being noble, handsome and fair-skinned. The Lamanites, on the other hand, are portrayed as being brute, savage and dark-skinned.

You can guess who the good and bad guys in the story are.

The story goes that the Lamanites beat out their white and holy counterparts and claimed the Americas for their own. Thus, the origin of Native Americans, according to Mormon leaders and scholars.

One implication of this history is an inherent and intellectually inescapable belief that Native Americans, as well as other races cursed with “skin of blackness,” for that matter, are inferior to white folk. This is well-documented in Mormon and Utah history. It explains why black men were barred from holding the priesthood until 1978, as well as why black and interracial couples were disqualified from having their marriages sealed in the temple until that same year.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:28 PM

Why Several Native Americans Are Suing the Mormon Church

UNITED STATES
The Atlantic

LILLY FOWLER OCT 23, 2016

Native Americans who were part of a little-known Mormon program from 1947 to the mid-1990s share much of the same story. Year after year, missionaries or other members of the Church of Jesus-Christ of Latter-day Saints approached these families and invited their children into Mormon foster homes. As part of the Mormon Indian Student Placement Program, Native American children would live with Mormon families during the school year, an experience designed to “provide educational, spiritual, social, and cultural opportunities in non-Indian community life,” according to the Church. Typically, the Mormon foster families were white and financially stable. Native American children who weren’t already Mormon were baptized. And some of them now claim they were sexually abused.

“They knew there were things going on. They just turned around and closed their eyes to it,” said BN, a former participant of the program who has filed a sexual-abuse lawsuit against the LDS Church, and who remains anonymous in court documents, in an interview. So far, three sexual-abuse lawsuits involving four past participants have been filed in Navajo Nation District Court. No criminal charges have been brought against the defendants, who are also anonymous in all pleadings. The alleged victims include a brother and sister who were both in the program. The brother, referred to in court documents as RJ, claims in the lawsuit that he was not only sexually abused, but physically and emotionally abused, and forcibly had “his mouth washed out with soap whenever he spoke Navajo to the other placement children in the home,” according to court documents. A fourth lawsuit is pending, according to their lawyer, Craig Vernon.

The LDS Church maintains that the “plaintiffs’ allegations are just that—allegations,” according to David Jordan, its lawyer. While many of the perpetrators named in the suits are dead, “I can tell you that the surviving family members of the alleged abusers with whom we have been able to speak do not believe the allegations,” Jordan claimed. “I also want to emphasize that the Church would have had absolutely no motive to send a child back into an abusive environment if a report of improper conduct had been made by any of the plaintiffs.” The Church has not answered the allegations other than to challenge the jurisdiction of Navajo court, and has asked a federal judge to prevent the cases from going forward in tribal court.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:26 PM

John Swinney removes time bar limiting abuse survivors on court action

SCOTLAND
Scotsman

TOM PETERKIN

John Swinney is to remove a three year time bar which constrains the ability of child abuse victims to seek civil damages in court.

The Deputy First Minister published legislation to get rid of the time bar, which requires those who want to raise a personal injury action for damages to do so within three years of the date on which the injuries were sustained.

The current law means that child abuse survivors are usually required to raise civil action by the date of their 19th birthday – three years after they reach the age of 16.

Survivors have campaigned for the removal of the time bar while the Scottish Government has been working on its inquiry into historical abuse, chaired by Lady Smith.

The bar will be abolished under the forthcoming Limitation (Childhood Abuse) (Scotland) Bill, which will be the Scottish Government’s first piece of legislation of the 2016/17 parliamentary year.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:23 PM

Swinney: Abuse inquiry to focus only on children in care

SCOTLAND
STV

Aidan Kerr

The inquiry into child abuse in Scotland will only investigate incidents which took place against those who were not in the legal care of their parents, John Swinney has said.

In a statement to MSPs on Thursday, the education secretary said he has made the remit of the inquiry clearer to make sure there was no confusion over what the panel could investigate.

The inquiry, chaired by Lady Smith, will hear evidence of abuse carried out against children who were in long-term legal care of institutions and bodies.

If abuse against those individuals was carried out outside the institution but while they were still under their care, the inquiry will investigate it.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:22 PM

Carmelites: A Gift of God that Inspires

GUAM
Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Agana

Message by Archbishop Savio Hon Tai Fai, SDB

We all were saddened by the news that the Carmelite Sisters were to leave the Island. It was absolutely a very difficult move both for them and for the faithful on Guam. The Archdiocese has been so privileged to have them among us ever since 1966. With their dedication to contemplation and prayer, the Carmelite community has become a power station for Church activities.

To the beloved Carmelite Sisters, I have to apologize and to admit certain damages of the “toxic environment” they experienced. In the month of July, eight seminarians were asked by their bishops to return to their dioceses from the RMS. Before their departure, I met them one by one and started to better realize the complexity of the issues which gave rise to the so-called “toxic environment”.

The Sisters did not only assist the Archdiocese spiritually but also materially. We are now in a position to express our heartfelt gratitude publicly to you and your community, for it was through your effort that we received two million dollars to settle our big loan from the bank for the purchase of the Yona seminary property in view of the formation of future priests.

We appreciate the clarification made by Mother Dawn Marie this week regarding the genuine intent of the benefactor, which was unfortunately twisted by some people. The Sisters tried hard to tolerate it and to remain silent as much as possible. I personally knew of their suffering because as a Secretary working in the Holy See I was able to read those correspondences mentioned by the Mother Prioress and I respect their willingness to suffer in silence. However, silence in this case did not suffice, because things were getting worse to a point that the reputation of their community was at stake. I am glad that before her departure this week Mother Dawn Marie was able to reveal the truth in a limpid way.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:17 PM

Archbishop Hon apologizes to Carmelite Sisters

GUAM
KUAM

Updated: Nov 17, 2016

By Sabrina Salas Matanane

Archbishop Savio Hon Tai Fai is expressing his gratitude and issuing an apology to the Carmelite Sisters. This week, Mother Superior Dawn Marie of the Carmelite Sisters on Guam broke her silence about what happened several years ago as it related to the Archdiocese of Agana’s acquisition of the Redemptoris Mater Seminary in Yona. She also shared the reasons for the departure of the Carmelite Sisters from Guam. One month after celebrating 50 years on island, the Carmelite nuns packed up and moved to California because of what Mother Dawn described as a “toxic environment” surrounding the local church embroiled in controversy over allegations of child sex abuse and questions of ownership of the RMS property.

During a press conference held at the Carmelite’s home in Tamuning, Mother Dawn revealed that she was the one who was able to secure $2 million dollars from her Carmelite Sisters in the states to pay off a loan that was used by the Archdiocese of Agana to purchase the RMS property in Yona. The donor was supposed to be kept anonymous. Mother Dawn said Archbishop Apuron not only revealed that the Carmelite Sisters in the states were the benefactor but also years later he would write a letter asking that they say the donation was purposely earmarked for the RMS and the San Vitores Theological Institute of Oceania. Mother Dawn said they did not agree to do that because “that was completely untrue”. She told media that this was reported to the Vatican and to their attorneys, but the Carmelites decided to remain silent and not litigate the issue. That was until this week.

In a statement issued Thursday evening, Archbishop Hon said they were all saddened by the news that the Carmelite Sisters were to leave Guam. He also apologized and admitted to certain damages of the toxic environment that they experienced. “We appreciate the clarification made by Mother Dawn Marie this week regarding the genuine intent of the benefactor, which was unfortunately twisted by some people. The Sisters tried hard to tolerate it and to remain silent as much as possible. I personally knew of their suffering because as a Secretary working in the Holy See I was able to read those correspondences mentioned by the Mother Prioress and I respect their willingness to suffer in silence. However, silence in this case did not suffice, because things were getting worse to a point that the reputation of their community was at stake. I am glad that before her departure this week Mother Dawn Marie was able to reveal the truth in a limpid way,” Archbishop Hon stated in a press release.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:15 PM

Why does Connecticut lead the nation in disaffected Catholics?

CONNECTICUT
National Catholic Reporter

Peter Feuerherd | Nov. 17, 2016

If the late comic Rodney Dangerfield were a state, he might be Connecticut.

It doesn't get a lot of respect. Small in size (number 48 out of 50); with a name difficult to spell, it suffers from an identity crisis: is it a New York City suburb? Or a slice of New England with leanings towards Boston? Its baseball sympathies includes a mythical dividing line between Red Sox Nation and New York Yankeedom.

The state does lead the nation in per capita personal income. At the same time, its combination of affluent suburban towns mixed with struggling cities like Bridgeport and Hartford makes it number two in income inequality.

Now Connecticut can add another number one to its list: it is tops, according to a 2015 Pew study, in the percentage of baptized Catholics who no longer consider themselves Catholics (see page 143 of this study appendix).

According to Pew, the number of nones — those who respond that they do not consider themselves part of any religious tradition — is growing. Many of the nones are former Catholics. Nationwide, over a seven-year period from 2007 to 2014, self-identifying Catholics in the U.S. population fell from 23 to 20 percent. Connecticut leads with a 10 percent drop.

What's up with the Nutmeg State?

NCR asked prominent Connecticut Catholics and Mark Silk, a non-Catholic religion scholar and writer, to address reasons and suggest solutions.

First, the possible reasons:

The Pew study indicates that Catholics in Massachusetts, just behind Connecticut in this category, were hit hard by the Boston Archdiocese sex abuse scandals.

The fallout may well have infected bordering states as well. Boston is a media link for much of Connecticut.

Connecticut's three dioceses were not immune. When then Bridgeport Bishop Edward Egan's testimony in a priest sex abuse case was made public, many Catholics were outraged as he distanced himself from priest sex abusers, calling them independent contractors whom the church had little control over.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:14 PM

Archdiocese apologizes to nuns

GUAM
Guam Daily Post

John O'Connor | Post News Staff

On the heels of the relocation of the Order of the Discalced Carmelites from Guam to California, Archbishop Savio Hon Tai Fai – the apostolic administrator for the Archdiocese of Agana – has issued a statement expressing gratitude and apologizing to members of the sisterhood. Prior to her leaving, The Mother Superior Dawn Marie called for a press conference to explain the reason for the departure.

According to Marie, the decision to relocate came after a series of events that resulted in what she called a "toxic environment" that made it difficult for the nuns to continue in their way of life. Those events, she said, stemmed from the archdiocese's acquisition of the former Hotel Accion property in Yona and the subsequent establishment of the Redemptoris Mater Seminary and the formation of the Blessed Diego Luis de San Vitores Theological Institute (BDTI).

Marie revealed that she was the one who was able to secure about $2 million from another Carmelite monastery to purchase the Yona property, but that Archbishop Anthony Apuron violated her trust by asking the sisterhood to lie about the original purpose of the money.

Marie indicated that it was never her or the donor's desire that the property be used specifically for RMS, nor was it their wish that it be used for the establishment of BDTI and that, even as the issue grew in its controversy, she remained silent.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 3:12 PM

EMU hosts symposium by Catholic victims advocate Tom Doyle

VIRGINIA
Augusta Free Press

Capping a month-long series of events around the topic of healthy sexuality and sexual violence, EMU welcomed Father Tom Doyle, a Roman Catholic sexual abuse victim advocate, to campus Monday, Nov. 7. Doyle, a priest who has worked with abuse victims for more than three decades, was the keynote speaker and panel presenter for a symposium for EMU faculty and staff on institutional harms and healing in response to sexual violence. He also gave an evening lecture, open to the public, on the spiritual impact of sexual abuse in religious contexts, and gave a sermon at an Eastern Mennonite Seminary worship service.

The symposium and public lecture were organized and facilitated by Professor Carolyn Stauffer as part of her multi-year “Silent Violence” project. Her research, which began in 2015 with a grant from The JustPax Fund, has focused on how abused individuals in marginalized communities employ resilient strategies to survive, endure and sometimes escape their situations.

While the first year of the project focused on surfacing individual stories and the second year on community services, the third year has emphasized the role of institutions. In March 2016, Stauffer organized a community education forum with both preventative goals and healing through arts-based approaches. One of Stauffer’s research questions, which widened the investigative scope to communities and institutions, was “How are our ideologies or institutions complicit?”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:04 PM

TN--Predator priest passes, bishop is silent; Victims respond

KENTUCKY
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

For immediate release: Thursday, Nov. 17, 2016

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, 314 645 5915 home, davidgclohessy@gmail.com)

Lexington Catholic officials are being callous and secretive about the death of a predator priest. We hope they will reverse course and tell the public about his passing. And we hope his death will prompt others who may have seen, suspected or suffered his crimes – or crimes by other clerics- to come forward.

Fr. John B. Modica passed away a year ago. http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/nky/obituary.aspx?pid=176300773

As best we can tell, Kentucky Catholic officials did little or nothing to publicize this fact, putting their own comfort and convenience ahead of the pain of Fr. Modica’s victims. Shame on them.
We learned this news from an ex-nun in Kentucky (We also confirmed it on-line). That’s sad. Parents, parishioners and the public should have learned this from Lexington Bishop John Stowe. Why? Because a caring shepherd would do. And because that’s what the official US church abuse policy purportedly requires: “openness and transparency” in clergy sex abuse cases.

We are glad that Fr. Modica can no longer hurt kids. We’re glad too that his victims can hopefully sleep better at night knowing that he can’t assault any more children. More of them could sleep better, and could have done so months ago, had Bishop Stowe and his staff been honest.
We hope that all of Fr. Modica’s victims – whether hurt long ago or more recently - find the strength and courage to step forward, get help, expose wrongdoing and start healing. And we hope they find consolation.

Now that he’s passed on, we hope all Lexington Catholic officials will be more forthcoming about Fr. Modica’s crimes and about those who ignored, concealed and enabled them.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:02 PM

UT--Victims urge Mormon to “avoid delays” in abuse case

UTAH
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

For immediate release: Thursday, Nov. 17, 2016

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, 314 645 5915 home, davidgclohessy@gmail.com)

A Utah judge is letting an alleged abuse victim have his day in court in a Mormon-related child sex abuse and cover up case. We are relieved and thrilled. Now, we hope church officials will now cooperate fully and quickly so the full truth can be revealed about a troubling church program which involved tens of thousands of kids over more than a half century. http://www.sltrib.com/news/4596141-155/abuse-case-against-mormon-church-to

For the safety of kids and the healing of victims, they must resist the temptation to delay justice by trying to evade discovery, block depositions and exploit legal technicalities to keep the truth concealed while discouraging other victims from coming forward and exposing those who commit and conceal sexual violence.

We especially hope Thomas S. Monson, the high-ranking Mormon official, won’t fight his deposition. Monson is old and victims are hurting. Moving quickly to shed light on the Indian Student Placement Program may embarrass some Mormon staff. But it will also go far to deter future wrongdoing and console suffering victims.

We applaud Judge U.S. District Judge Robert Shelby for this common sense ruling. We especially applaud the four wounded individuals who have found the strength to hopefully turn something horrific into something positive. They are working to use their suffering to expose crimes and cover ups so that more crimes and cover ups can be prevented. For that, they deserve the gratitude of police, prosecutors, parents and the public in both Utah and Arizona.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:58 PM

Scottish child abuse inquiry remit will not be widened, announces John Swinney

SCOTLAND
Holyrood

Written by Tom Freeman on 17 November 2016

The Scottish child abuse inquiry will not widen its remit to include non-residential incidents of abuse, Deputy First Minister John Swinney has announced.

In a statement to the Scottish Parliament, Swinney said he had informed the chair Lady Anne Smith the only change to the remit would be to take into account abuse of children in care “wherever it occurred”.

The decision comes after survivor groups had called for children's' organisations, clubs and local parish churches to be included in the investigation.

However, Swinney said: “To set a remit which would in practice take many more years to conclude, we would be failing to respond to those survivors of in-care abuse who have taken us at our word – in Government and in Parliament – that we will learn from their experience and, by addressing the systematic failures that existed, ensure it can never happen again.”

He also announced the Scottish Government’s first legislation of the new parliamentary term, which will remove the three-year time limit that prevents childhood abuse survivors from seeking civil damages in court.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:50 PM

Retired priest pleads guilty in dating site scam targeting women

MASSACHUSETTS
Telegram & Gazette

By Scott O'Connell
Telegram & Gazette Staff

WORCESTER – A retired Catholic priest pleaded guilty in federal court Wednesday to a money laundering charge stemming from his involvement in an overseas scheme that allegedly defrauded women seeking companionship online.

The Rev. Thomas B. Fleming originally pleaded not guilty to 12 counts of money laundering included in an indictment against him last year. He signed a plea agreement with U.S. prosecutors on Monday, he told U.S. District Court Judge Timothy S. Hillman at his plea change hearing in U.S. District Court Wednesday.

According to an online record of the plea agreement, the recommendation is for the Rev. Fleming to be incarcerated for a period of time served, and pay $90,105 in restitution to five victims. The Rev. Fleming was held in custody for roughly three weeks following his arrest in Florida last July.

Rev. Fleming, 67, of Worcester, could have faced up to 20 years in prison and a $500,000 fine for each of the counts against him; per his plea agreement, he only pleaded guilty to the first count. His sentencing hearing is scheduled for Feb. 8.

According to Assistant U.S. Attorney David G. Tobin, Rev. Fleming helped orchestrate an online dating scheme for a person who identified himself to Rev. Fleming as a serviceman overseas. U.S. investigators believe that person was using a false identity, and was actually operating a scam in Nigeria.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:23 AM

Retired priest pleads guilty in online dating scam

MASSACHUSETTS
Boston Herald

Associated Press Thursday, November 17, 2016

WORCESTER, Mass. — A retired Roman Catholic priest has pleaded guilty to his role in an international online dating scam.

The Telegram & Gazette (http://bit.ly/2fYTwPm ) reports that the Rev. Thomas Fleming reached a deal with federal authorities in which he agreed to plead guilty to one count of money laundering.

Prosecutors say the 67-year-old Fleming helped orchestrate the scheme for a person who identified himself as a serviceman overseas. Investigators say that person was using a false identity.

Women who responded to the online ads were asked to send money, which prosecutors say moved through two bank accounts belonging to Fleming.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:20 AM

Breaking Through Power: Mitchell Garabedian on the Power of Tort Law to Break Through Secrecy

UNITED STATES
YouTube

Published on Nov 16, 2016

The Center for Study of Responsive Law held its second four-day conference on securing long-overdue democratic solutions in Washington, D.C. from September 26-28, 2016

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:15 AM

Who Gave You Permission? Manny Waks' story of being abused and then ostracised

AUSTRALIA
Sydney Morning Herald

Who Gave You Permission?

MANNY WAKS WITH MICHAEL VISONTAY

SCRIBE, $35

When Manny Waks told the leaders of his ultra-orthodox Jewish community in Melbourne about his experience of child sexual abuse by some of its members, he was shunned and ostracised. When his father stood up for him, Waks' family were cast out of the only world they had ever known. As a result, his parents now live in Israel and Waks and his family have fled to France. It is an extreme case of a story that has become familiar from the testimonies of those at the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse where the initial abuse is compounded by the failure of those in authority to acknowledge the problem. In this absorbing memoir, Waks tells how he became a "reluctant troublemaker", speaking out on behalf of those who fear to do so, and of the renewed sense of purpose this role has given him.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:12 AM

18 Claims Outstanding Involving Former Mount Cashel Residents

CANADA
VOCM

Eighteen claims of abuse involving former residents of Mount Cashel orphanage remain outstanding.

The news comes following a recent $750,000 dollar settlement reached between the provincial government and a former resident who, as a young child, reported alleged abuse to police back in 1975. The subsequent investigation helped to form the basis of the Hughes Inquiry.

The man's lawyer, Will Hiscock of Budden and Associates says more claims remain outstanding.

The recent settlement, which took six years to reach, came to light through a provincial government Order in Council.

The provincial government says there have been approximately 130 settlements involving allegations of abuse suffered at Mount Cashel, resulting in a total of about $29.2 million dollars.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:09 AM

Vaccine trials: Unravelling the drug trials scandal

IRELAND
Irish Examiner

By Conall Ó Fátharta
Irish Examiner Reporter

Since around 1997, investigators have been trying to get to the bottom of vaccine trials, writes Conall Ó Fátharta

THE current commission of investigation into mother-and-baby homes is the second State inquiry that will attempt to examine the issue of vaccine trials carried out on children in the homes.

Further revelations in the Irish Examiner this week showed that the files of vaccine trial victims in Bessborough mother-and-baby home were altered in 2002 — just weeks after the Commission to Inquire into Child Abuse sought discovery of records from the order running the home. The revelation will no doubt be examined as part of the latest inquiry.

The history of how and why large-scale vaccine trials were carried out on children in care in Ireland is still emerging, usually through media exposés.

The fact vaccine trials were carried out on children in mother-and-baby homes and other institutional settings first hit the headlines in the early 1990s.

Questions were raised in the Dáil on the subject but it wasn’t until 1997 that then health minister Brian Cowen gave assurances the matter would be examined.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:45 AM

IN--Notre Dame wins police records lawsuit filed by ESPN, SNAP responds

INDIANA
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

For immediate release: Wednesday, November 16, 2015

Statement by Melanie Jula Sakoda of Moraga, California, Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP), SNAP East Bay Director (925-708-6175, melanie.sakoda@gmail.com)

The Indiana Supreme Court has ruled that the University of Notre Dame's campus police department is not a "public agency" under Indiana law. The decision means that the school does not have to release information about investigations requested by sports media company ESPN.

[South Bend Tribune]

We here at SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, are concerned that this ruling will make it harder, not easier, to expose sex crimes committed on the campuses of private universities, and we hope that Indiana lawmakers will immediately get to work to close this loophole in the Access to Public Records law. College students will be safer if private schools cannot hide information about campus police investigations from the public.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:43 AM

Local I-Team: Cherokee Church Offers Victims Help Amid Mounting Claims Of Child Abuse

TENNESSEE
Local Memphis

[with video]

By Maria Hallas | mhallas@localmemphis.com

MEMPHIS, TN

New information in an a case of sex-abuse allegations at a local church against a man who now works for the Memphis city library. The victims say the abuse happened decades ago.

The three victims, Kenny Stubblefield, Michael Hansen, and Brooks Hansen, who came forward on camera Monday, say they've heard from eight people claiming Chris Carwile sexually assaulted them. Of those, six claim abuse while Carwile attended Cherokee Baptist Church.

"Since the story has been told on Channel 24 and on Facebook social media, things like that, we have had people reach out to us and say that, yes, they were abused by Chris Carwile after our abuse story," said Stubblefield.

Stubblefield claims eight people contacted him or brothers Michael and Brooks Hansen to claim Chris Carwile also abused them. Six of those victims say they were abused while Carwile attended Cherokee Baptist Church. The most recent allegation was in 2003. Stubblefield says none are ready to go on camera.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:41 AM

Public hearing into criminal justice issues and consultation paper

AUSTRALIA
Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse

17 November, 2016

The Royal Commission will hold a public hearing in Sydney commencing on Monday, 28 November 2016.

The scope and purpose of the public hearing is to inquire into:

1. Issues raised in the Royal Commission’s Consultation Paper on Criminal Justice.

2. The experience of a survivor of child sexual abuse in an institutional context in the criminal justice system in a recently concluded prosecution in New South Wales.

3. Any related matters.

The Royal Commission may invite selected individuals or organisations to speak to, or give evidence about, the submissions they have provided, however it is not proposed that leave to appear will be granted to these individuals or organisations, on the basis that they are speaking or giving evidence in this capacity.

It is not essential for others who give evidence in a hearing to apply for leave to appear – witnesses may give evidence without applying for leave.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:38 AM

Swinney to update MSPs on child abuse inquiry

SCOTLAND
BBC News

John Swinney is to update MSPs on issues relating to the independent inquiry into child abuse in Scotland.

A ministerial statement has been scheduled at Holyrood for the education secretary to address the chamber.

Mr Swinney recently told MSPs he had spoken to inquiry chairwoman Lady Smith about potentially expanding the remit of the inquiry.

A bill has been introduced at Holyrood removing any time bar on people seeking damages over childhood abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:35 AM

3 new sex abuse lawsuits filed against Archdiocese

GUAM
Pacific News Center

Written by Janela Carrera

Two of the claimants say former Guam priest, Father Louis Brouillard, forced the altar boys to perform "oral copulation."

Guam - More lawsuits have been filed against the Archdiocese of Agana for civil claims of sexual abuse, two of which involve "oral copulation."

This afternoon, Attorney David Lujan filed an additional three new complaints on behalf of his clients. The three are Bruce Diaz, Vicente Guerrero Perez and the Estate of Joseph Anthony Quinata. There are now a total of seven lawsuits filed against the church since the civil statute of limitations for filing sexual abuse claims was lifted.

Diaz and Perez both allege that they were sexually abused by former Guam priest Father Louis Brouillard while Quinata's mother claimed that her late son had revealed on his deathbed 11 years ago that Archbishop Anthony Apuron sexually molested him in the 1970s.

Three of the first four lawsuits were also filed against Apuron by Roland Sondia, Roy Quintanilla and Walter Denton, while the fourth lawsuit was filed by Leo Tudela against Brouillard.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:30 AM

Byrnes cuts seminary’s ties to Neocatechumenal Way

GUAM
Pacific News Center

Haidee V Eugenio , heugenio@guampdn.com November 17, 2016

When Coadjutor Archbishop Michael Jude Byrnes signed documents to regain full control of the Redemptoris Mater Seminary property in Yona, he also cut the seminary’s ties to the Neocatechumenal Way by, among other things, making sure the seminarians will be prepared for priesthood in accordance with the precepts of the Holy Roman Catholic faith.

Byrnes used his authority to take back control of the multimillion property that hosts the RMS and the Blessed Diego Luis de San Vitores Catholic Theological Institute for Oceania, both controlled by the Neocatechumenal Way.

The Neocatechumenal Way is an organization within the Catholic Church founded by Kiko Arguello in Spain in 1964 but its beliefs and practices conflict with Guam's Catholic faithful.

The Way, as it is also called, came to Guam in 1996 and Archbishop Anthony S. Apuron became one of its members.

“I guess you could say this is the start of the dismantling of the Neocatechumenal Way on Guam,” Concerned Catholics of Guam President David Sablan said Thursday. The group has opposed actions taken by Apuron in recent years, including his decision to deed the seminary to The Way, and has called for his removal. “One can see how the NCW has influenced Apuron and he allowed himself, as archbishop of Agana, to do the bidding of the hierarchy of the Neocatechumenal Way — Pius Sammut, the Gennarinis, Arguello. They destroyed the fabric of our church by creating a division between them and the rest of the Catholics.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:27 AM

3 more sex abuse lawsuits filed against Apuron, Brouillard, archdiocese

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Haidee V Eugenio , heugenio@guampdn.com November 17, 2016

Archbishop Anthony S. Apuron and former priest Louis Brouillard, along with the Archdiocese of Agana, face three new lawsuits alleging child sex abuse, which were filed Thursday afternoon by two former altar boys and by the estate of a deceased former altar boy.

The lawsuits are possible because of a recently passed Guam law that lifts the civil statute of limitations for those accused of abusing children, as well as the institutions that supported them.

Vicente Guerrero Perez, 51, and Bruce A. Diaz, 47, in their separate complaints, said Brouillard sexually abused them for about four years each, from 1976 to 1980, when they served as altar boys and as members of the Boy Scouts of America.

Brouillard, now 95 and living in Minnesota, also served as scoutmaster in the Guam chapter of the Boy Scouts. He was a priest on Guam from the late 1940s to 1981.

The late Joseph “Sonny” Quinata, through his estate administrator Mary Jane Quinata Cruz, also filed a separate lawsuit against Apuron, the archdiocese and up to 50 others.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:25 AM

Three more cases allege sex abuse by Guam clergy

GUAM
KUAM

Updated: Nov 17, 2016

By Sabrina Salas Matanane

Three more cases have been filed in the Superior Court of Guam related to child sex abuse allegations involving local clergy.

The total now stands at seven complaints for damages involving allegations of child sex abuse in the local catholic church filed by attorney David Lujan. Late Thursday afternoon Lujan filed three more cases.

Bruce Diaz alleges he was 8 years old when he was sexually molested multiple times by Fr. Louis Brouillard. Diaz alleges the abuse occurred while he was an altar boy at the catholic church in Barrigada and while he was a boy scout, where Broiullard was scout master. The abuse he alleged occurred over a four year period beginning in 1976.

Vicente Guerrero Perez is next to come forward. He alleges that when he was 11 years old he was sexually molested multiple times by Fr. Brouillard in the 1970's when he was an altar boy at the Barrigada Catholic Church and as a Boy scout. Additionally he alleges he had made an appointment with Archbishop Anthony Apruon in 2000 and told him about his years of abuse, but nothing was ever done.

As we reported Broiullard in October recorded a video confessing he abused dozens of boys on Guam when he served as a priest here from 1940's through the 1970's. Court documents stated he said he even told the head of the Catholic Church at the time about the abuse, but Bishop Apollinaris Baumgartner didn't do anything except tell him to do "prayers as penance".

As for the third case it was filed on behalf of Joseph "Sonny'" Quinata. Although he is deceased the plaintiff is identified as Mary Jane Quinata Cruz-- the administrator for his estate.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:04 AM

Hearing into handling of child abuse allegations against Lord Janner delayed

UNITED KINGDOM
The Guardian

Sandra Laville

A public hearing into allegations of child abuse against the late Lord Janner is to be put back to an undisclosed date, the national inquiry into institutional abuse has said.

The first public hearing to be held by the national abuse investigation was to be held in March next year and focus on the institutional responses to allegations made against Janner. But the chair, Prof Alexis Jay, having looked again at the case, and the pace of ongoing investigations by the police and the IPCC, decided the hearing had to be delayed to avoid prejudicing these inquiries.

The development came after news that another lawyer had left the national inquiry, which was set up in 2014 to examine institutional failings to investigate child abuse. Aileen McColgan, who was leading the inquiry’s investigation into abuse in the Anglican and Catholic churches, quit over concerns about the inquiry’s leadership, according to BBC Newsnight.

The latest departure led Yvette Cooper, the chair of the Commons home affairs select committee, to urge the inquiry to be more transparent, and said her committee would seek evidence from McColgan and other lawyers who have quit.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:02 AM

Anchorage man faces 28 charges related to child pornography, sexual abuse of 2 minors

ALASKA
KTVA

ANCHORAGE — An Anchorage man has been arrested for sexually abusing two young victims and possessing child pornography, according to the Anchorage Police Department.

Police announced the arrest of 56-year-old Bernard Droege on Wednesday. He faces 28 charges — eight counts of second-degree sexual abuse of a minor, 10 counts of unlawful exploitation of a minor and 10 counts of child pornography possession.

Police spokeswoman Renee Oistad said in a statement that the investigation into Droege began after the parent of one of the victims contacted the Office of Children’s Services to report a sexual assault in June. OCS then contacted police.

Droege volunteered as a volleyball coach at the Boys and Girls Club of Anchorage and worked weekends at the Holy Rosary Academy for maintenance and lawn care, according to Oistad.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:00 AM

Abuse case against Mormon church to continue in Navajo court; attorneys want LDS leader Monson to testify

UTAH
The Salt Lake Journal

By TOM HARVEY | The Salt Lake Tribune

Attorneys for four Navajos suing the LDS Church over alleged sexual abuse said Wednesday they intend to subpoena the faith's president, Thomas S. Monson, to testify about the former program that placed children in Mormon homes off the reservation during the school year.

The remarks came after a federal judge in Salt Lake City rejected a church argument that Navajo tribal courts do not have jurisdiction over three lawsuits alleging that the Utah-based religion is liable for damages resulting from sexual abuse to tribal members while they participated in the church's Indian Student Placement Program between 1965 and 1983.

U.S. District Judge Robert Shelby ruled that there was insufficient evidence to determine whether the tribal court was exercising proper jurisdiction over the lawsuits.

That ruling may clear the way for attorneys to subpoena Monson, the increasingly frail 89-year-old leader of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:58 AM

Judge refuses to move sex abuse suit out of Navajo court

UTAH
Arizona Daily Sun

By LINDSAY WHITEHURST Associated Press

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — A federal judge on Wednesday denied a Mormon church push to move a lawsuit claiming sexual abuse of Navajo children in a church-run foster program out of tribal court.

U.S. District Judge Robert Shelby ruled the church hasn't shown any compelling reasons why Navajo Nation courts should be blocked from considering the suit filed by four people who say the church didn't do enough to protect them from abuse when they were children.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints wanted the case moved to federal court in Salt Lake City because the allegations do not involve any abuse on tribal land.

Church officials didn't immediately respond to a message seeking comment.

Lawyers for the plaintiffs contended the case should stay in the Window Rock, Arizona-based court because decisions about where to put children in the now-defunct program had occurred on tribal land as did failures to act on reports of abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:56 AM

OUR VIEW: Church officials should adopt plan to address child sex abuse

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

As more individuals step forward with allegations of clergy sex abuse, and the possibility there may be others, we urge the Archdiocese of Agana to adopt a sensible plan to address the claims.

Church officials should consider the seven-point plan recommended by the Concerned Catholics of Guam.

The plan states:

* Petition the Guam Bar Association president to establish a lawyer referral service practice area for child sex abuse.

* Petition the Victims Advocate Reaching Out, Child Protective Services and the Healing Hearts Crisis Center to establish user-friendly procedures to provide help to child sexual abuse victims.

* Petition the Guam Legal Services Corp. to establish a victims of child sexual abuse contact office, which will be a central source for provision of information services available to victims.

* Establish a nonprofit foundation, whose board of directors shall be comprised of Catholic laymen with no interests in any of the Archdiocese of Agana’s affairs, and who are professionals in the area of financial trust management. The foundation would solicit, maintain, and disburse funds pursuant to its rules, to help victims achieve closure for their past ordeals.

* Petition the Guam Crime Stoppers to establish specific procedures to deal with child sexual abuse victims.

* Establish a board of visitors comprised of Catholic laymen having no financial interest in archdiocesan affairs. The board shall conduct inquiries into archdiocesan matters as are appropriate to ensure implementation of plans, agreements and compliance with the provisions of recommendations one through five.

* Commit funds collected through the Archdiocesan Annual Appeal to be allocated to the activities set forth in recommendations one through five.

The plan would go a long way toward preventing and detecting abuse as well as helping victims heal.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:53 AM

Brent Hawkes Trial: Alleged Victim Of Toronto Pastor Breaks Down At Sex Abuse Trial

CANADA
Huffington Post

By Aly Thomson, The Canadian Press

KENTVILLE, N.S. — His face streaked with tears, the middle-aged man put his head in his hands and breathed heavily.

Testifying about an alleged sexual encounter with Brent Hawkes as a teen more than 40 years ago, his face was red with emotion. The man declined suggestions, however, that he should take a break from the witness stand.

"I think this is as good as it's going to get," the man quietly said of his emotional state Tuesday.

It was his first day of testimony at the well-known Toronto pastor's trial on charges of indecent assault and gross indecency. The man, the complainant in the case, will return to the stand Thursday after an off-day Wednesday.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:50 AM

End Time Pastor Allegedly Impregnates a 17-year-old Girl in Ogun

NIGERIA
Nigeria Today

A 48-year-old pastor identified as Micheal Adeniran, has been ordered to be remanded in prison custody by an Abeokuta Chief Magistrates’ Court sitting on Wednesday for allegedly impregnating a 17-year-old girl.

According to a report by Vanguard, Inspector Kayode Emnmanuel, who is the prosecutor, told the court that the accused committed the offence in June at El-Bethel Church, Ita Aka, in Abeokuta, Ogun.

The prosecutor who disclosed further that the accused, a pastor at El- Bethel Church, sexually abused a teenage girl, which resulted into pregnancy, added that the pastor failed to take responsibility of the girl in the last six months of his impregnating her.

Emmanuel who revealed that the pastor who is facing a charge of sexual abuse, added that that the offence contravened Section 32 of the Child Rights Law of Ogun, 2006.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:48 AM

48-Year Old Pastor Arrested For Impregnating 17-Year Old Girl

NIGERIA
Information Nigeria

A 48-year old Pastor identified as Michael Adeniran has been arrested in Abeokuta for impregnating a 17- year old girl. The Pastor who heads the El- Bethel Church is facing a charge of sexual abuse has pleaded not guilty to the offence.

The magistrate presiding over his case ordered that he be remanded in Police custody while the case was adjourned to November 30, 2016.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:46 AM

Bishop says church morality compromised

AUSTRALIA
7 News

By Rebekah Ison, AAP Updated November 17, 2016

A former Newcastle bishop says the Anglican Church's morality has been compromised by child sex scandals and it should play no part in decisions to defrock priests.

Bishop Brian Farran on Thursday testified that he thought the church's professional standards process was too "in-house"'' and that decisions would be better made by an independent statutory body.

"I think really the morality of the church has been compromised," he told the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

"There has to be absolute transparency and it needs to move out ... of the church and into a body like that."

Bishop Farran has told the royal commission he felt that a group of influential parishioners were out to get him during the professional standards process that led to the defrocking of influential priest Graeme Lawrence in 2012.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:44 AM

Child abuse royal commission: Take power away from church, former bishop says

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

By David Marchese

A former Anglican bishop has told the child abuse royal commission the power to discipline clergy needs to be removed from the church because its morality "has been compromised".

Brian Farran held the position of bishop of Newcastle from 2005 until his retirement in 2012, and has been questioned about widespread abuse carried out in the diocese over several decades.

Bishop Farran told the commission of how he "agonised" over whether he should defrock his long time friend, the former Dean of Newcastle, Graeme Lawrence.

Mr Lawrence was ultimately defrocked in 2012, along with reverends Bruce Hoare and Andrew Duncan over what were described as "disturbing" allegations of abuse that allegedly occurred in the 1970s and 1980s.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:41 AM

Why nuns are silent about sexual abuse within the Catholic church in India: It's never taken serious

INDIA
First Post

By Maya Palit

"If it comes out, it will be like a tsunami," the nun Manju Kulapuram said, earlier this year, about the rampant sexual abuse of women by the men of the Catholic church in India. Evidently, Kulapuram was onto something — and it’s across denominations, nor confined just to the Catholic church. Unlike other work places, which in theory are meant to have set up mandatory internal complaints committees, there is no formal institution in place that addresses sexual abuse inflicted by members of the clergy.

On 14 November, a woman based in Kozhikode registered a police complaint about a parish priest in Nadakkavu St Mary’s English Church. She alleged that he sexually harassed her over email and messages after she contacted him with a request to pray for her daughter on her birthday in August. She complained to the bishop at the Malabar Diocese of the Church of South India, even showing him copies of the interactions with the priest, but was not taken seriously: the bishop said there were plenty of other churches in Kozhikode that she could attend. Although the priest was briefly transferred to Nilambur in September, he was back at Nadakkavu in just over a month. It was only after she contacted the police through Anweshi, a women’s counselling centre that a case was registered and the priest was charged under Section 509 (word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman).

Numerous cases have not made it that far. A 2016 report suggested that when higher-ups of the church are alerted to these incidents, they often choose to either ignore them or, at the most, transfer the perpetrator. Sr. Kulapuram says that a fellow nun was videotaped while bathing, by a seminarian, while they were both attending a seminar away from home; she was dissuaded from pursuing the legal route and told that she’d get justice from the church. This never materialised — the priest was sent to Rome to continue his theological studies, and the victim abandoned religious life altogether. A version of the familiar promotion-for-accused and demotion-for-victim model.

November 16, 2016

Priest convicted of sexual assault seeks bail

CANADA
CBC News

By Katie Nicholson, CBC News Posted: Nov 16, 2016

A priest convicted of sexual assault is seeking bail following his October arrest on eight new charges involving the alleged sexual abuse of four men.

Ron Léger had just been granted day parole when Winnipeg police took him into custody Oct. 19.

Léger was sentenced to two years in jail in February 2016 for sexually assaulting three men who were youths at the time the abuse began.

The new charges were laid after four more men came forward to police with similar allegations that they were abused after meeting the priest at a youth centre. Léger ran a number of teen drop-in centres from the 1970s to the mid-90s, including Teen Stop Jeunesse and Ron's Drop-in Centre.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:22 PM

Court unable to serve Apuron

GUAM
Guam Daily Post

John O'Connor | Post News Staff

While Archbishop Anthony Apuron has been implicated in civil suits filed by victims of alleged sexual abuse, it appears the Superior Court of Guam has been unable to actually serve him the summons to defend against the complaints.

According to documents provided to the Post, when a process server attempted to provide the summons to Apuron at his last known residence – the Episcopal Residence – he was simply met with a sign that stated Apuron vacated the premises. Documents stated that the archbishop was unable to be located and has not been served.

James Brooks, senior paralegal at Law Guam, told the Post that attorney David Lujan "will file a motion with (the) Superior Court for authorization to serve Apuron by publication."

Meanwhile, Rev. Jeffrey San Nicolas was able to accept service for the Archdiocese of Agana, which is implicated in civil suits filed by Roland Sondia, Walter Denton, Roy Quintanilla and Leo Tudela – all victims of alleged sexual abuse. Three of the men have named Apuron specifically but all four are represented by Lujan, who has indicated that additional suits from other victims will be coming in the following weeks.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:14 PM

Archdiocese appoints Kunkel as its top lawyer

CHICAGO (IL)
Daily Herald

Daily Herald report

The Archdiocese of Chicago has appointed William R. Kunkel as its general counsel.

Kunkel previously served as executive vice president-legal and general counsel of American Equity Investment Life Holding Company and as a partner at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP. He also serves on the board of directors of American Equity and as chairman of the board's Risk Committee.

"Bill's impressive background and reputation in the corporate sector is but one of his many assets; he is also a product of Catholic education in Chicago and has carried this foundation through his family life and considerable service to the community." Archbishop Blase J. Cupich said in a news release.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:12 PM

‘Reviled’ priests’ morale at all time low, conference hears

IRELAND
Irish Times

Patsy McGarry in Athlone

The diocesan priest in Ireland today was “often pitied, patronised, reviled, insulted, disrespected, ignored and resented,” Fr Brendan Hoban said at the Association of Catholic Priests (ACP) annual meeting in Athlone on Wednesday.

“A gale-force wind is now in our faces, it’s the middle of the second half and we’re 6-0 down,” said Fr Hoban, a co-founder of the association.

Priests were “the equivalent of Plymouth Argyle, struggling to stay in the third division.”

They were being bullied and were prone to depression with an increase in suicide rates over recent years, he added.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:09 PM

Priests accuse bishops of ‘trying to fob us off’

IRELAND
Irish Times

Patsy McGarry

Many priests at the well-attended annual general meeting of the Association of Catholic Priests (ACP) in Athlone on Wednesday expressed dissatisfaction with the response of the bishops to a meeting last May with a delegation from the association. The bishops were accused of “trying to fob us off”.

Fr Kevin Hegarty of Killala diocese said a letter sent to the ACP last month was “a marvellous illumination of the Seamus Heaney line ‘whatever you say, say nothing’.”

Mill Hill priest Fr Kevin Reynolds, now of Elphin diocese, said “the bishops do not and will not recognise the ACP as an existing reality. They don’t want their exclusive clerical club changed by an association representing 1,000 priests. They least they could do is respect us, acknowledge we exist and that we have something to say.”

Fr Tim Murphy of the Dublin archdiocese warned against a scattergun approach in dealing with the bishops and suggested that “we should go bald-headed for a synod of the Irish church.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:07 PM

Notre Dame wins police records lawsuit filed by ESPN

INDIANA
South Bend Tribune

By Margaret Fosmoe South Bend Tribune

The University of Notre Dame's campus police department is not a "public agency" under Indiana law and does not have to release information about investigations requested by sports media company ESPN, the Indiana Supreme Court has ruled in a widely watched case.

The ruling was released Wednesday afternoon.

The decision means Notre Dame and other private colleges in Indiana with professional police forces have no obligation to provide details of campus police reports and investigations.

City, county and other professional police forces must make such information available to the public under Indiana's Access to Public Records law.

ESPN in 2014 sought campus police records from Notre Dame Security Police for cases involving a list of student athletes. The university refused the request, citing its status as a private university, and the sports media company sued.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 5:17 PM

N.L. settles Mount Cashel abuse claim for $750K

CANADA
CBC News

By Rob Antle, CBC News Posted: Nov 16, 2016

The Newfoundland and Labrador government has agreed to pay $750,000 to settle a lawsuit related to the Mount Cashel orphanage, in the latest chapter of a grim story that began decades ago, but continues to have an impact today.

The province confirmed Wednesday morning it is the highest settlement to date for a case related to Mount Cashel.

The plaintiff, named only as John Doe in court documents, had accused the government of negligence.

John Doe alleged that he was sexually abused at the Christian Brothers-run orphanage, beginning more than four decades ago.

"His experiences, they were truly horrific," said John Doe's lawyer, Will Hiscock.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:54 PM

Australien: Kritik an Mahnmal für Missbrauchsopfer

AUSTRALIEN
religion@orf

[Surivors of sexual abuse have criticized plans for a memorial at a cathedral in the Armidale diocese.]

Die katholische Diözese von Armidale in Australien will mit einem Mahnmal an die Opfer sexuellen Missbrauchs erinnern. Missbrauchsopfer üben Kritik an der Entscheidung.

Das Mahnmal vor der Kathedrale Saints Mary & Joseph werde aus einer Statue der Gottesmutter Maria, einer Gebetsbank und bunten Schleifen der sogenannten „Loud Fence“-Bewegung bestehen, berichtete das australische Nachrichtenportal Cathnews am Dienstag.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:29 PM

PRIESTER HINTER GITTER

PARAGUAY
Cafe Paraguay

[The Catholic priest Estanislao Arévalos Pedrozo was sentenced to six years imprisonment after being declared guilty of the sexual abuse of two children. These children took part in the catechism classes in the parish "Espíritu Santo de San Vicente" in Asunción.]

DANIEL WIENS KEINE KOMMENTARE 15. NOVEMBER 2016

Der katholische Priester Estanislao Arévalos Pedrozo wurde zu sechs Jahren Gefängnis verurteilt, nachdem er als schuldig des sexuellen Missbrauchs von zwei Kindern erklärt wurde. Diese Kinder nahmen teil am Katechismus-Unterricht in der Pfarrei „Espíritu Santo de San Vicente“ in Asunción.

Während dem Gerichtsprozess offenbarten die Staatsanwältinnen Clara Ruiz und Cinthia Espínola, dass der Priester der katholischen Kirche seine Opfer schon im Jahr 2013 mehrmals missbraucht hat. Zu der Zeit waren die Minderjährigen 12 und 13 Jahre alt. Die jungen „Apostel“ nahmen gerade am Katechismusunterricht in der oben erwähnten Pfarrei teil.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:27 PM

TN--Victims urge outreach by church & library in alleged abuse case

TENNESSEE
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

For immediate release: Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2016

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, 314 645 5915 home, davidgclohessy@gmail.com)

The Memphis Public library has suspended a former youth minister who is accused of molesting at least three kids. That’s not enough.

[Local Memphis]

Police reports have been filed. An alleged child molester walks free. His reported victims are suffering. And other kids are at risk. So officials at the main public library downtown and the Church at Schilling Farms in Collierville (formerly Immanuel Baptist Church) must take aggressive steps to reach out to anyone else who may have seen, suspected or suffered crimes by Chris Carwile or cover ups by church officials.

Rev. Scott Payne admits he didn’t call police and now asks forgiveness. But forgiveness is premature. Payne must help police, prosecutors and Carwile’s victims first, by doing everything he can to help ensure that Carwile is successfully prosecuted. The same is true of current and former supervisors and colleagues of Carwile’s.

Church officials should make pulpit announcements, use church websites, post notices in church buildings and mail congregants (current and former) begging anyone with information or suspicions to come forward, get help, safeguard kids and call law enforcement.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:24 PM

GA--“Punish secretive church officials,” victims group says

GEORGIA
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

For immediate release, November 16, 2016

Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 503 0003 cell, bdorris@SNAPnetwork.org)

Atlanta area church officials admit they had a convicted child molester in their midst but kept this information from their flock. Now he’s hurt more kids. This is alarming. Heads must roll.

[11 Alive]

Mark Greer volunteered in youth ministry at Harvest Baptist Church in Acworth, despite being convicted in Tennessee for sexual battery.

Now, members of the congregation say their church didn't tell them about Greer’s past and want to know why they were kept them in the dark. The answer is both sad and simple: Church officials who hide abuse are never punished. So they keep doing it, because it’s easy and convenient and self-serving for them. Being brave enough to honor our civic and moral duty to call police is hard.

So three steps must be taken now.

We call on law enforcement officials to investigate church officials and see if any of them can be prosecuted for intimidating victims, threatening witnesses, destroying evidence, endangering kids, obstructing justice or similar charges.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:22 PM

Judge recuses herself from sex abuse case

GUAM
Guam Daily Post

John O'Connor | Post News Staff

Superior Court Judge Anita Sukola has recused herself from hearing a civil case filed by Leo Tudela against former Guam priest Rev. Louis Brouillard and the Archdiocese of Agana, stating that she was "closely related to several members of the Neocatechumenal Way, an organization within the Archdiocese of Hagåtña."

Sukola added that she is also a regular attendant in the Blessed Diego Luis de San Vitores Church in Tumon, which has exposed her to information regarding the case through prayers, announcements and petitions – specifically, a petition requesting that Governor Eddie Calvo veto Bill 326-33. That measure was ultimately enacted into law, lifting the statute of limitations in child sex abuse cases, allowing Tudela and others to bring civil suits against the church and their alleged abusers.

Moreover, Sukola stated that she knew Archbishop Anthony Apuron personally. The archbishop is implicated in other civil cases from victims of alleged sexual abuse. Tudela, now in his 70s, levied similar complaints against Brouillard.

Brouillard statement

But while Apuron has denied the allegations against him, Brouillard has publicly admitted to abusing boys in his ministry. Supplements to Tudela's suits include a written statement from Brouillard in which he admitted to abusing boys in the 1950s and that Bishop Apollinaris Baumgartner, the bishop of Guam at the time, and others in the church knew about the abuse.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 2:21 PM

USCCB and Pope Francis are singing from different hymnals

UNITED STATES
National Catholic Reporter

Michael Sean Winters | Nov. 16, 2016

Watching the USCCB meeting this week was frustrating. The conference seems stuck. At a time when the country desperately needs a strong moral voice, the united voice of the bishops is sidelined, fretting about things that don't matter and tepidly addressing the things that do. And, it was apparent to all that the concerns of Pope Francis are far from the concerns of the USCCB.

In his update to the body on the work of the ad hoc Committee on Religious Liberty, Archbishop William Lori said they were making a difference. Are they? The centerpiece of their campaign, the "Fortnight for Freedom," garners little attention. In the popular press, religious liberty is now usually accompanied by scare quotes. In the popular mind, the cause of religious liberty is linked to discrimination against gays and lesbians, and not without reason. If that will be the faultline for religious freedom litigation in the years ahead, I shudder at the prospects for religious freedom.

I heard almost no mention of the environment or Laudato Si' at the USCCB meeting. Think about that for a minute. The pope issues an encyclical, the only one he has issued so far, and it is dedicated to concern for the environment. And the bishops of the country that has caused more damage to the environment than any other are silent. How is this possible? If they fancy themselves to be pro-life, why are they so unconcerned with one of two threats, the other being nuclear proliferation, that could kill us all? Fighting abortion is a moral thing to do, to be sure, but it makes no sense to defend unborn life so the kids can grow up to live in an increasingly unlivable world. The bishops of other countries are not so reticent. Cardinal Charles Maung Bo of Myanmar gave a recent talk at the Pontifical Academy of Sciences in which he said, "Unless rich countries agree to reduce the global warming, more people will die. This to me is a criminal genocide, when the poor and the weak are exposed violent nature created by unrestricted use of fossil fuels by rich countries." Criminal genocide. And the U.S. bishops can't be bothered.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:09 PM

Child sex abuse inquiry: Labour calls on government to intervene

UNITED KINGDOM
BBC News

The government needs to intervene in the inquiry into child sexual abuse in England and Wales, after another of its lawyers resigned, Labour says.

Aileen McColgan quit amid concerns about the inquiry's leadership.

Labour said the inquiry was facing a "crisis of credibility" but the PM said she had "full confidence" in it.

Meanwhile, the IPCC has confirmed it is investigating officers involved in the Met Police's investigation into paedophile allegations against VIPs.

'Clearly not working'

The investigation was set up to examine whether public bodies, including the police, had failed in their duty to protect children from sexual abuse and to examine allegations of abuse involving "well-known people".

The inquiry has suffered a series of setbacks, including resignations of three chairwomen and senior lawyers.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:05 PM

NJ--Poker playing priest accused of child porn has court hearing

NEW JERSEY
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

For immediate release: Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2016

Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 503 0003 cell, bdorris@SNAPnetwork.org)

A Newark NJ Catholic priest faces child pornography charges and a court hearing this week. We hope he’s convicted. We call on Newark’s top Catholic official, Archbishop John Myers, to aggressively reach out to anyone who may have information or suspicions about his crimes.

And we hope this news prompts others who may have seen, suspected or suffered his crimes to call police so Fr. Kevin A. Gugliotta might be charged with and convicted on other offenses and be kept away from kids even longer.

[Asbury Park Press]

All too often, when child sex offenders are caught, their supervisors and colleagues clam up. But if kids are to be safer, everyone who saw, suspected or suffered child sex crimes must call law enforcement immediately. Those who hire or work with predators must do all they can to find others who have been assaulted and beg them to call law enforcement. This is especially true of Catholic bishops, who recruit, educate, ordain, hire, train and often transfer and cover up for predator priests. These bishops can’t wash their hands of these pedophiles just because they’ve been sent somewhere else or have moved somewhere else.

We hope that no one in the NJ Catholic hierarchy ignored or concealed Fr. Gugliotta’s alleged crimes. But we also hope police and prosecutors have investigated or will closely investigate this possibility. We also hope that officials Newark Catholic officials will find the courage to do what’s right – search for and help anyone else who is in pain because of Fr. Gugliotta.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 1:02 PM

Legal dispute stalls diocese’s exit from bankruptcy

NEW MEXICO
Gallup Independent

Published in the Gallup Independent, Gallup, N.M., Nov. 14, 2016

By Elizabeth Hardin-Burrola
Independent correspondent
religion@gallupindependent.com

GALLUP – Although the Diocese of Gallup’s Chapter 11 plan of reorganization was confirmed in June, its formal exit from U.S. Bankruptcy Court is being stalled because of a legal dispute between two other parties.

As a result of the dispute, the Gallup Diocese marked yet another anniversary in the bankruptcy court system Saturday. The diocese filed its Chapter 11 petition three years ago on Nov. 12, 2013.

The two parties in the dispute are the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament, the Pennsylvania religious order that founded St. Michael Indian School in St. Michaels, Arizona, and Phoenix attorney Robert E. Pastor, who filed a civil lawsuit in Arizona on behalf of a Navajo woman who claims she was sexually abused as a child at St. Michael Indian School by Brother Mark Schornack, a Franciscan friar. Schornack died in 2012.

The Diocese of Gallup, the Franciscans and St. Michael Mission Church have already entered into a settlement agreement with another Navajo woman for the abuse she was subjected to by Schornack at the St. Michael Parish. That settlement agreement was part of the diocese’s bankruptcy case and confirmation of its Chapter 11 reorganization. As a result, the Diocese of Gallup, the Franciscans and St. Michael’s Church are protected parties and not named as defendants in Pastor’s lawsuit.

However, the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament and St. Michael Indian School did not contribute any funds to the Diocese of Gallup’s settlement; therefore, they are not protected parties under the terms of the Chapter 11 plan of reorganization.

The dispute centers on a claim the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament filed against the Diocese of Gallup on May 9, 2016, related to Pastor’s lawsuit. In documents and brief court hearings, attorneys for the diocese have stated they are “sympathetic to the plight” of the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament, but they are asking U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge David T. Thuma to disallow the religious order’s claim.

Thuma has scheduled a final hearing on the matter Dec. 12. The deadline for Pastor to file a response with the court is Nov. 28, and the deadline for attorneys for the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament to file a reply is Dec. 9

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 12:25 PM

Ex-Priester soll Minderjährigen missbraucht haben

LUXEMBOURG
Journal

[After thousands of cases of sexual abuse in the churches of the USA and Ireland, there is a scandal in the Catholic Church of Luxembourg, which has now landed in court.]

Der 60-Jährige bestreitet die Vergewaltigungen

Nach tausenden Fällen von sexuellem Missbrauch in den Kirchen der USA und Irlands gibt es einen Skandal in der katholischen Kirche Luxemburgs, der nun vor Gericht gelandet ist. Es ist damit der bislang aktuellste Fall von sexuellem Missbrauch im Land, denn Fälle die Anfang 2010 bekannt wurden, lagen oft 30 Jahre und mehr zurück und sind verjährt. Auf der Anklagebank des Bezirksgerichts Luxemburg sitzt jetzt ein ehemaliger Pfarrer des katholischen Pfarrverbands Belair-Merl-Zessingen.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 10:12 AM

Victims Attorney On Compensation Plan

MINNESOTA
KDAL

by Dave Strandberg

MINNEAPOLIS, MN (MNN) - Victims’ attorney Jeff Anderson says a new plan by Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis still doesn’t do enough to compensate priest sex-abuse survivors, because church officials are hiding the truth about their ability to pay. Anderson says the plan, “instead of putting the survivors first, puts the archdiocese first and the insurance companies second, and then the survivors last in line.” Archdiocese attorney Charles Rogers responds there’s “no other asset that hasn’t been brought forward.”

Rogers says to go with another plan will put survivors in legal battles with insurance companies. He says “then there would be an assignment of rights of recovery under those policies, and all that would be ensured is years upon years of litigation.” Victims’ attorney Anderson responds, “The assertion that it will result in years and years of litigation will only be because it was the archdiocese that chooses not to tell the truth, to disclose their assets and to work with the survivors.”

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 8:00 AM

Concerned Catholics react to decision about seminary

GUAM
KUAM

Updated: Nov 16, 2016

By Isa Baza

After controversy in Guam's Catholic church stretched on for years over the Redemptoris Mater Seminary in Yona, the head of the Concerned Catholics of Guam group says he's cautious, but relieved, that the multimillion dollar property has finally been restored to the Archdiocese of Agana.

"Cautionary elation," said Dave Sablan of his feelings after yesterday's announcement at the Hagatna Cathedral. "I'm happy that Archbishop Byrnes has done what he did." However, Sablan, the head of the Concerned Catholics of Guam, says it's not over yet. He adds his organization will not rest until the documents are reviewed to ensure that two key aspects have been resolved - one of which is to remove the provision tying the seminary to the Neocatechumenal Way.

"And if he removed that provision, great. Secondly, I wanted to see how he removed the board of directors," he said.

Meanwhile on Tuesday Mother Superior Dawn Marie of the Carmelite Nuns in Guam also spoke out revealing that her order was asked to lie for Archbishop Anthony Apuron in an attempt to cover-up the misuse of the RMS. Mother Dawn told local media that she was able to secure the $2 million that was used to pay off a loan to purchase the Yona property.

"Mother Dawn Marie, a very courageous person to come out, and speak the truth of what was asked of her of her order of Carmelites to do," said Sablan.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:56 AM

Cardinal DiNardo Elected USCCB President Of U.S. Bishops, Archbishop Gomez Elected Vice President.

UNITED STATES
United States Conference of Catholic Bishops

November 15, 2016

BALTIMORE—Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo of Galveston-Houston, was elected president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) during today's annual fall General Assembly in Baltimore. Cardinal DiNardo has served as vice president of the USCCB since 2013. Archbishop Jose Gomez was elected as USCCB vice president.

Cardinal DiNardo and Archbishop Gomez are elected to three-year terms and succeed Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz of Louisville, Kentucky, and Cardinal DiNardo, respectively. The new president and vice president terms begin at the conclusion of the General Assembly on November 15.

Cardinal DiNardo was elected president on the first ballot with 113 votes. Archbishop Gomez was elected vice president on the third ballot by 131-84 in a runoff vote against Archbishop Gregory Aymond of New Orleans.

The president and vice president are elected by a simple majority from a slate of 10 nominees. If no president or vice president is chosen after the second round of voting, a third ballot is a run-off between the two bishops who received the most votes on the second ballot.

Cardinal DiNardo was born May 23, 1949, and ordained a priest of Pittsburgh on June 16, 1977. He previously served as bishop of Sioux City, Iowa, from 1998-2004 before being appointed to coadjutor bishop, then archbishop, of Galveston-Houston. Pope Benedict XVI named him a cardinal in 2007, making him the first cardinal from Texas. Archbishop Gomez was born December 26, 1951, in Monterrey, Mexico. He was ordained a priest on August 15, 1978. He was appointed auxiliary bishop of Denver in 2001, and in 2004, he was appointed archbishop of San Antonio. He was appointed coadjutor archbishop of Los Angeles in 2010, and was installed as archbishop of Los Angeles in 2011.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:49 AM

Bishops Vote On New USCCB/MRS Chairman, Extending Retirement Fund For Religious, Permanent Subcommittee On The Church In Africa, At General Assembly

UNITED STATES
United States Conference of Catholic Bishops

November 15, 2016

BALTIMORE—The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) voted on a new MRS chairman and approved several items, including, establishing a permanent Subcommittee on the Church in Africa and extending the Retirement Fund for Religious Appeal, during their annual Fall General Assembly in Baltimore, November 15.

In November 2015, Archbishop Gomez was elected to chair the USCCB Committee on Migration for a term beginning this week. Since his election as USCCB vice-president prevents him from assuming leadership of the committee, the bishops elected a new chairman. Bishop Joe S. Vasquez of Austin, Texas, was elected chairman of the Committee on Migration in a 109-91 vote over Archbishop John C. Wester.

The bishops voted 155 in favor, 8 against and 1 abstaining, to approve a 10-year extension of the Retirement Fund for Religious Appeal. This annual collection was initiated to address the profound deficit in retirement funding among religious congregations in the United States. The National Religious Retirement Office (NRRO) coordinates the collection and distributes the proceeds to religious communities in need.

The bishops also approved establishing a permanent Subcommittee on the Church in Africa. The proposal received a vote of 164-26-12. The USCCB's Subcommittee on the Church in Africa works as part of the Committee on National Collections. It administers the voluntary Solidarity Fund for the Church in Africa and allocates the revenue received as grants to African episcopal conferences and their regional associations in Africa for programs that support the growth of the Church, especially in the areas of leadership training, church administration, evangelization, communications, justice and peace.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:47 AM

Yakima bishop passed over for committee appointment

WASHINGTON
Yakima Herald

By Jane Gargas
jgargas@yakimaherald.com

Bishop Joseph Tyson of the Yakima Catholic Diocese has lost an election to chair a committee for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.

Instead, Bishop Timothy Doherty of Lafayette, Ind., is the new chairman-elect of the Committee on Protection of Children and Young People.

Elections were held Tuesday during the fall meeting of the national bishops’ conference in Baltimore.

Doherty received 128 votes to Tyson’s 86.

Cardinal Daniel DiNardo of Galveston-Houston, Texas, was elected president of the national bishop’s group, succeeding Archbishop Joseph Kurtz of Louisville, Ky. The bishops also chose the chairmen-elect of five committees and new members of the board of Catholic Relief Services.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:45 AM

Doubts over sexual abuse compensation plan as states stall

AUSTRALIA
Sydney Morning Herald

[with video]

Tom McIlroy

A national system to compensate victims of child sexual abuse looks to be in doubt as states and territories withhold their support amid questions about the efficacy of an opt-in redress scheme.

The federal government surprised some states with Social Services Minister Christian Porter's November 4 announcement of a $4.3 billion scheme, following a recommendation of the royal commission into child sexual abuse.

The government has announced a plan to give victims of institutional sexual abuse compensation and counselling. Courtesy ABC News 24.

No further details have been provided, leaving states including Western Australia and Victoria seeking answers and the development of some state schemes in limbo.

West Australian Premier Colin Barnett told Fairfax Media he'd had no consultation from the federal government, despite Mr Porter saying it would seek national co-operation and even force the ACT and Northern Territory governments to sign up.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:38 AM

Scots university graduate becomes latest senior lawyer to quit beleaguered child abuse inquiry

UNITED KINGDOM
Herald Scotland

Martin Williams , Senior News Reporter / @MWilliamsHT

A Scots university graduate is the latest to senior solictior to resign from the struggling national inquiry into child abuse.

It is understood that Aileen McColgan, has quit because of serious concerns over the leadership within The Independent Inquiry into Child Abuse set up by then Home Secretary Theresa May.

Originally from Derry, Northern Ireland, and holding degrees from Trinity College Cambridge and Edinburgh University, Ms McColgan was the barrister leading the inquiry's investigations into the Anglican and Catholic Church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:30 AM

PAEDO PROBE ROCKED Blow for shambolic £100m child sex abuse inquiry as ANOTHER top lawyer quits

UNITED KINGDOM
The Sun

BY FELIX ALLEN 15th November 2016

THE shambolic £100m probe into Establishment child sex abuse was rocked today by the resignation of ANOTHER senior lawyer.

Aileen McColgan – in charge of investigating paedophiles in the Anglican and Catholic Church – quit because of serious concerns over the inquiry’s leadership, BBC Newsnight reports.

The high-profile probe into VIP paedophiles in Westminster, councils, the Church and schools has been blighted by resignations and cover-up claims and is now on its fourth chairman.

It is understood barrister Ms McColgan, who is also a professor of law at King’s College London, had concerns over the competency of the inquiry’s leadership and the way it had responded to the earlier resignation of her colleagues.

Two other lawyers also reportedly plan to quit over similar worries, the BBC reports.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:27 AM

Another senior lawyer quits child abuse inquiry

UNITED KINGDOM
BBC News

By Jake Morris
BBC Newsnight

The Independent Inquiry into Child Abuse has been hit by the resignation of another senior lawyer.

BBC Newsnight understands that Aileen McColgan has quit because of serious concerns over the inquiry's leadership.

She was the barrister leading the inquiry's investigations into the Anglican and Catholic Churches.
The inquiry said that lawyers come and go according to their professional obligations - and a spokeswoman declined to "comment on specifics".

It is understood Aileen McColgan had concerns over the competency of the inquiry's leadership and the way it had previously responded to the resignation of lawyers instructed by it. As well as working on the inquiry, she is also a Professor of Law at King's College London.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:25 AM

Child sex abuse inquiry crisis: Another senior lawyer 'quits over leadership concerns'

UNITED KINGDOM
Telegraph

Another senior lawyer has reportedly quit the independent inquiry into child sexual abuse.

Aileen McColgan has resigned from the investigation due to concerns over its leadership, BBC Newsnight reported.

Ms McColgan, who is also a law professor at Kings' College London, was involved in the inquiry's investigations into the Anglican and Catholic Church.

Her reported departure follows senior counsel Ben Emmerson's resignation a day after he was suspended.

Mr Emmerson's junior colleague, Elizabeth Prochaska, also stood down.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:22 AM

Another top lawyer quits child sexual abuse inquiry

UNITED KINGDOM
The Guardian

Matthew Weaver

The troubled inquiry into historical child sexual abuse is facing further questions from MPs about its future after another senior lawyer resigned and two more are threatening to do so.

Aileen McColgan, who was leading the inquiry’s investigation into abuse in the Anglican and Catholic churches, quit over concerns about the inquiry’s leadership, according to BBC Newsnight.

Two other barristers have told the inquiry of their desire to leave over similar concerns, the programme reported. An inquiry spokeswoman refused to comment on McColgan’s departure.

Yvette Cooper, the chair of the House of Commons home affairs select committee, called on the inquiry to be more transparent and said her committee would be seeking evidence from McColgan about why she quit.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:20 AM

Amber Rudd 'still has confidence' in abuse probe despite another resignation

UNITED KINGDOM
Daily Mail

By PRESS ASSOCIATION

Home Secretary Amber Rudd has said she still has confidence in the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse despite the resignation of another senior lawyer.

Aileen McColgan, a law professor at Kings' College London involved in the inquiry's investigations into the Anglican and Catholic Church, reportedly quit due to concerns over the inquiry's leadership.

Her departure follows the resignation of the inquiry's senior counsel Ben Emmerson and his junior colleague, Elizabeth Prochaska.

The inquiry has also had four different chairwomen since it was set up in 2014.

Asked about the latest departure, Ms Rudd said: " Yes, I still have confidence in the inquiry."

Speaking at a policing conference in London, she said: "I saw the latest news on the inquiry today. I would say it is a matter for the inquiry.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:15 AM

Priest accused of abuse 'greatly loved'

AUSTRALIA
The Advertiser

Rebekah Ison, Australian Associated Press
November 16, 2016

A former Newcastle Anglican bishop says "vehement" supporters of a priest accused of abusing children were out to get him from the moment a professional standards probe began.

The abuse commission has heard a group of Newcastle parishioners are concerned about the process that led to the highly influential former Dean of Newcastle Graeme Lawrence being defrocked in 2012.

"They were out to get me," Bishop Brian Farran, who was the head of the diocese from 2005 to 2012 and oversaw the defrocking of Lawrence, said on Wednesday.

"I got this anonymous text ... saying, 'Have a great holiday. Come back and resign'.'"

The royal commission has previously heard Lawrence, who had been the second most senior priest in the diocese, faced allegations of abuse against numerous children.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:11 AM

Child abuse inquiry is plunged into further chaos after ANOTHER senior lawyer quits and two more barristers are poised to leave

UNITED KINGDOM
Daily Mail

By REBECCA CAMBER FOR THE DAILY MAIL

A law professor leading inquiries into child sexual abuse in the church became the latest to desert Britain’s biggest public inquiry last night.

Professor Aileen McColgan has quit the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) amid serious concerns about the competency of its fourth chair, Professor Alexis Jay.

The law professor at Kings College London who was the lead lawyer in the inquiry’s investigation into child abuse in the Anglican and Catholic Church is the seventh lawyer to leave.

Another two barristers are also poised to quit after telling the inquiry that they have no desire to work there any more, BBC Newsnight reported last night.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:07 AM

Child sex abuse inquiry hit by another lawyer resignation

UNITED KINGDOM
Sky News

The beleaguered child sex abuse inquiry has been hit by the resignation of another senior lawyer.

Aileen McColgan has reportedly resigned from the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse because of leadership concerns.

The inquiry is not on to its fourth chairwoman, Professor Alexis Jay, after Dame Lowell Goddard resigned at the end of the summer amid claims over her conduct, which she has denied.

Since then the inquiry's lead counsel Ben Emmerson QC has quit, days after he was suspended. His junior colleague Elizabeth Prochaska also left.

Ms McColgan was leading the inquiry's investigations into the Anglican and Catholic Church.

Speaking at a policing conference on Wednesday, Home Secretary Amber Rudd said: "I saw the latest news on the inquiry today. I would say it is a matter for the inquiry.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:05 AM

Mother Dawn says life was threatened after she dropped Apuron bombshell

GUAM
Pacific News Center

Written by Janela Carrera

Mother Dawn Marie Tuesday revealed that Archbishop Apuron asked the carmelite nuns to lie.

Guam - Mother Prioress Dawn Marie confirms that there was a plot against her life after she dropped a bombshell on Archbishop Anthony Apuron.

Mother Dawn Marie revealed yesterday that she, on behalf of the Carmelite Order, was the anonymous donor of $2 million dollars to the Archdiocese back in 2003. The purpose of the donation was to pay off a loan for the acquisition of the Yona property.

Mother Dawn Marie says Archbishop Apuron pressured the Carmelite Order to lie about the what the donation was intended for. The Carmelite Order, she notes, never intended for the seminary to be run as a seminary under the Neocatechumenal Way.

On News Talk K57's Mornings with Patti, Mother Dawn said she had received word that there is a credible threat against her life.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:03 AM

Archdiocese urged to consider 7-point plan to address child sexual abuse

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Haidee V Eugenio , heugenio@guampdn.com November 16, 2016

A group of Catholics seeking Archbishop Anthony S. Apuron’s removal over multiple sex abuse allegations and other leadership decisions they find questionable has recommended a seven-point plan to address child sexual abuse within the Archdiocese of Agana, including tapping the resources of other agencies on Guam.

The Concerned Catholics of Guam reached out to those who believe they are victims of clergy sex abuse, including those who have publicly accused Archbishop Anthony S. Apuron, who has not been charged with any crime, and former priest Louis Brouillard, who admitted to sexually abusing at least 20 minors when he was on Guam.

Andrew Camacho, vice president of the Concerned Catholics of Guam, said the group wants the archdiocese to provide every possible option and opportunity for survivors of child sexual abuse by members of the clergy and officials within the archdiocese and its organizations.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 7:01 AM

Witness testifies he saw leading gay activist minister sexually abusing boy

CANADA
LifeSite News

Pete Baklinski

KENTVILLE, Nova Scotia, November 14, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) — Rev. Brent Hawkes, Canada’s most celebrated homosexual activist minister, is in court for allegedly sexually abusing a 16-year-old boy in the 1970s.

The Court in Kentville heard the first witness testify that he saw Hawkes performing oral-genital actions on a teenage male at the pastor’s Nova Scotia home about 40 years ago.

Witness Douglas Aylward said he was 16 years old when a group of friends returned to Hawkes’ home after drinking at a local tavern. At one point, the minister pulled the teenager inside a small bathroom, told him he had been watching him and was “80 percent sure I was gay.”

“It was pretty uncomfortable," the witness said.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:59 AM

Magnolia pastor faces additional child sexual assault charges

TEXAS
Houston Chronicle

By Jay R. Jordan, jjordan@hcnonline.com Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Prosecutors filed additional child sexual assault charges against a Magnolia pastor accused of coercing a 16-year-old congregation member into sex on multiple occasions.

Body of Christ Church pastor Ronald Mitchell, 56, is now facing four second-degree felony counts of sexual assault of a child – one for every time prosecutors say Mitchell had sex with the underage girl over a four-month period from 2015 into 2016. He is facing up to 80 years in prison for those charges, but Montgomery County Sheriff's Office detectives believe there could be more victims.

"As the investigation goes on in any type of case and you learn additional facts and get information from victims and witnesses, we're able to potentially add additional charges as things progress," Assistant District Attorney Tyler Dunman said. "We've had people come forward, and we're still requesting people come forward with more information whether they're victims or witnesses."

Court documents show Mitchell had the girl staying with him at his church in the 40200 block of Garwood Court near Magnolia, telling the girl's mother that she needed to be "watched" and have "more supervision."

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:57 AM

Library worker accused of sexual abuse, suspended

TENNESSEE
WBRC

[with video]

By Sasha Jones

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) -
Allegations against a current Memphis Library worker have not only prompted a city and police investigation, but tied a Mid-South church to the case.

The City of Memphis has confirmed a current Memphis Public Library worker is on paid leave while they investigate previous allegations of sexual abuse.

Kenny Stubblefield says he suffered at the hands of Christopher Carwile.

He says it the reason he filed this Police Report with the City of Memphis, and why he is speaking out about the alleged abuse he says he suffered at the hands of Christopher Carwile.

What he told us, is what he says he told police.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:55 AM

Local I-Team: Victims Claim Church Covered Up Child Abuse

TENNESSEE
Local Memphis

[with video]

By Maria Hallas | mhallas@localmemphis.com
Published 11/15 2016

MEMPHIS, TN

New information tonight on an investigation the Local I-Team broke last night. Three men claim Memphis library worker Chris Carwile sexually abused them as teens nearly 20 years ago when he was an associate youth minister at Immanuel Baptist Church in Germantown.

Victims tell Local I-Team's Maria Hallas they believe they suffered lasting spiritual and emotional damage in the way the church responded to their claims.

"The coverup of the way the leadership of our church handled our situation created long lasting pain," says Kenny Stubblefield, one of the victims.

Boz Tchividjian a former prosecutor, grandson of Reverend Billy Graham, and victims' rights advocate said the three men's feelings are not unusual.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:52 AM

Reeling from abuse scandals, Guam welcomes new archbishop

GUAM
Crux

Associated Press
November 15, 2016

HAGATNAM, Guam - Guam is preparing a series of events in late November to welcome the man who could become its next archbishop.

Coadjutor Archbishop Michael Jude Byrnes will arrive from Detroit on Nov. 28 and be welcomed by Archbishop Savio Hon Tai Fai and other clergy members, the Archdiocese of Agana told The Pacific Daily News.

Hon was sent to Guam in June to temporarily replace current Archbishop Anthony S. Apuron on an administrative basis.

Apuron, 71, has been Guam’s highest Catholic leader for 30 years but faces a trial in Rome over multiple allegations of sex abuse of altar boys in the 1970s.

Byrnes, 58, will have the right to succeed Apuron if he resigns, retires or is removed. Byrnes was auxiliary bishop for the Archdiocese of Detroit before Pope Francis appointed him to the Guam post.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:51 AM

Evangelical preacher Gary Forbes admits sexually abusing two boys in the 1960s

AUSTRALIA
Newcastle Herald

DAN PROUDMAN
16 Nov 2016

FORMER Christian radio station boss and evangelical preacher Dr Gary Alexander Forbes has admitted to a court that he abused two brothers more than 20 years after first admitting his “sins” and 50 years after the abuse took place.

Forbes, 73, was committed on Wednesday to face Newcastle District Court for sentencing on three counts of assaulting a male and committing an act of indecency.

Agreed facts tendered during the committal proceedings said Forbes had abused one brother before moving onto his younger sibling when the older boy started in the workforce.

He had met them at a Christian gospel church in suburban Newcastle and had become friendly with the boys’ family.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:48 AM

'Toxic environment'

GUAM
Guam Daily Post

By Neil Pang | Post News Staff

The Mother Superior Dawn Marie of the Order of the Discalced Carmelites, an order of cloistered nuns dedicated to prayer, held a press briefing yesterday in which she explained why the sisterhood had left Guam.

After 50 years of prayer for the island's faithful, the Carmelite order celebrated their final mass on June 14 of this year and, the next day, left for their new home in California, Marie said yesterday.

Marie said she decided to hold the briefing in which she explained the reasons behind the move as an act of responsibility to the truth.

"Because we didn't have a hope for a viable future, that's the reason we had to move," she said.

As Marie tells it, the decision to relocate came after a series of events that eventually resulted in what she called a "toxic environment" that made it too difficult for the nuns to continue in their way of life. That series of events, she said, stemmed from the Archdiocese's acquisition of the former Hotel Accion property in Yona and the subsequent establishment of the Redemptoris Mater Seminary and the formation of the Blessed Diego Luis de San Vitores Theological Institute (BDTI).

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:46 AM

6 News Investigates: Who's paying for clergy abuse settlements?

PENNSYLVANIA
WJAC

BY KODY LEIBOWITZ TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 15TH 2016

HOLLIDAYSBURG -- It was reported for years that the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown paid for settlements and fees involving alleged clergy abuse through insurance and investment profits.

The Associated Press reported in May 2004 that "the diocese said it will continue discussions with various insurance companies to recover the cost" of a 21-person settlement that cost the diocese millions.

"To provide for immediate payment, however, it will use the surplus from the Mutual Aid Plan, the deposit and loan fund for parish savings accounts," wrote the AP. "None of the parish deposits [or] interests will be use, just the investment profits that are owned by the diocese, according to the diocese' news release."

The release came in 2004 after the diocese settled with 21 people who claimed sexual abuse at the hands of clergy for $3.7 million.

The diocese acknowledged "there were minors who have been harmed and are entitled to be compensated," in a released statement.

"The settlement," the statement at the time read reported on by the AP, "reflects our deep desire both to aid the healing of victims of clergy abuse and to not incur the inordinate financial burden of lengthy litigation."

Since the release of the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown grand jury report in March, 6 News Investigates began digging into past settlements of our local catholic church and looking into how the catholic church covers costs for child sex abuse allegations.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:44 AM

Dispute stops Gallup Diocese from exiting bankruptcy

NEW MEXICO
Santa Fe New Mexican

November 15, 2016

Associated Press |

GALLUP — A new legal dispute has stalled the final resolution of a bankruptcy case prompted by a sexual abuse case involving the Diocese of Gallup, lawyers say.

The dispute involves a new lawsuit filed by attorney Robert E. Pastor against the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament, a religious order that founded St. Michael Indian School in Arizona.

The suit claims a Navajo woman was sexually abused at the school by a Franciscan friar, The Gallup Independent reported.

The Gallup Diocese, the Franciscans and St. Michael Mission Church have already reached a settlement agreement with another Navajo woman related to abuse.

That settlement was part of the diocese’s bankruptcy case that was confirmed in June. As a result, the Diocese of Gallup, the Franciscans and St. Michael’s Church are protected parties and not named as defendants in Pastor’s lawsuit.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:42 AM

Doubts over sexual abuse compensation plan as states stall

AUSTRALIA
Gippsland Times

Tom McIlroy
16 Nov 2016

A national system to compensate victims of child sexual abuse looks to be in doubt as states and territories withhold their support amid questions about the efficacy of an opt-in redress scheme.

The federal government surprised some states with Social Services Minister Christian Porter's November 4 announcement of a $4.3 billion scheme, following a recommendation of the royal commission into child sexual abuse.

No further details have been provided, leaving states including Western Australia and Victoria seeking answers and the development of some state schemes in limbo.

West Australian Premier Colin Barnett told Fairfax Media he'd had no consultation from the federal government, despite Mr Porter saying it would seek national co-operation and even force the ACT and Northern Territory governments to sign up.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:39 AM

ROYAL COMMISSION: Anglican Newcastle hearings resume in Sydney

AUSTRALIA
Newcastle Herald

IAN KIRKWOOD
16 Nov 2016

A Newcastle solicitor and prominent lay member of the Anglican Diocese of Newcastle has defended his role in pushing against the current and former bishops of Newcastle, and justified his support for the defrocked cleric, Graeme Lawrence.

Robert Caddies, a parishioner at Christ Church Cathedral since 1987 and the holder of various lay positions, including diocesan solicitor from 1996 to 2005, was resuming evidence he began when the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse was adjourned at the end of August.

At that time, he was questioned about letters that he and others had signed in support of the former dean, who was defrocked in 2012 by the previous bishop of Newcastle, Brian Farran, who retired the same year.

Mr Caddies said evidence given by abuse survivor CKH against Mr Lawrence was “impressive and credible” but he still believed the former dean had been denied natural justice by the church.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:36 AM

Crimes of the Father review: Tom Keneally tackles abuse in the Catholic church

AUSTRALIA
Brisbane Times

Michael McGirr

FICTION
Crimes of the Father
TOM KENEALLY
VINTAGE, $32.99

There are a growing number of novels prepared to tell the story of paedophilia within various church communities, not least the Catholic Church. Few of them have needed to stray far from the grim facts. Andrew O'Hagan's Be Near Me and John Boyne's The Long History of Loneliness are just two examples. Both these books draw the line between good and bad clergy. But they also have solid reason to call into question an entire ecclesiastical culture. They are valuable books but they don't make comfortable reading.

Tom Keneally's new novel, Crimes of the Father, is the same but different. One distinction is the undeniable affection Keneally has for Catholicism, evident in the moving final paragraphs of this novel. This affection can be seen in a number of places in Keneally's work, including his memoir, Homebush Boy, one of the few kindly portrayals of the Christian Brothers in Australian Literature. At the same time, Keneally has visited clerical sexual abuse before, notably in An Angel in Australia.

Crimes of the Father is based in more recent church history. Much of it is set in 1996, an important year in the history of the awareness of sexual abuse in Australia, the year in which the Towards Healing process came into being. Here, a similar process is called In Compassion's Name.

A key case in Crimes of the Father concerns a Dr Devitt, whom the church seeks to deny access to an open legal process. Parts of this bring to mind the unfortunate case of Dr John Ellis. But this novel would be diminished if it were treated simply as a roman-a-clef. It is a work of grief at least as much as an account of the perversion of justice. Its interests are more profound than the law. The word Keneally uses in his introduction is "mourn".

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:29 AM

It takes a village to prevent institutional sexual abuse

AUSTRALIA
Brisbane Times

Toni Hassan

"It takes a village..." was perhaps Hillary Clinton's most memorable line. It was given a macabre twist in the Academy award-winning movie Spotlight, about the cover-up of sexual abuse by Catholic Church clergy in Boston. One of the actors observed that "if it takes a village to raise a child, it takes a village to abuse one".

We are about to learn more about the NSW "village" of Newcastle, in which an extraordinary number of respected citizens appear, through action or inaction, to have helped cover up allegations of sexual abuse.

Four years after, Julia Gillard announced the royal commission into institutional responses to abuse, the Anglican Bishop of Newcastle, Greg Thompson, will take the stand on Wednesday in Sydney when the commission reconvenes for case study 42. He has already given evidence privately, as perhaps the most senior clergyman to do so. He grew up in the Hunter Valley and was sexually abused while a student in Newcastle. After serving as a priest in many parts of Australia, including Canberra, he returned to Newcastle as bishop in 2014.

He says he was greeted by senior community figures keen to "groom" him. One legal figure recommended a system of internal reviews; an opportunity for the new bishop to "learn" but also, he realised, be potentially compromised. Thompson went straight to the police.

Within months he issued a formal apology to victims and announced he wouldn't live in the "house on the hill" traditionally occupied by the bishop, as the stately mansion had come to represent all that was wrong with religious power. It's since been sold.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:27 AM

Baltimore archdiocese pays settlements to a dozen people alleging abuse by late priest

MARYLAND
The Baltimore Sun

[with video]

Alison Knezevich
The Baltimore Sun

The Baltimore Archdiocese has paid a dozen settlements for allegations against a priest at Keough, now dead.

The Archdiocese of Baltimore has paid a series of settlements to people who allege they were sexually abused by a priest who worked at Archbishop Keough High School decades ago.

The payments stem from allegations of abuse by A. Joseph Maskell, who denied an initial accusation before he died in 2001.

Sheldon Jacobs, an attorney representing people who have alleged abuse by Maskell, said about a dozen have reached settlements within the past few months.

"There's no amount of money that could ever adequately compensate the survivors for what they've gone through," he said.

Sean Caine, a spokesman for the Baltimore archdiocese, confirmed that "settlements with victims of Joseph Maskell have been ongoing since at least 2011." He said he did not have information Monday on how much has been paid to the victims.

Posted by Kathy Shaw at 6:24 AM