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November 30, 2017

Why do state laws put an expiration date on sex crimes?

UNITED STATES
PBS News Hour

November 28, 2017

By Laura Santhanam

On April 27, 2016, former U.S. house speaker Dennis Hastert was convicted of breaking banking law, but crimes to which he confessed in court — sexually abusing multiple high school boys in Illinois while he served as their wrestling coach nearly four decades ago — would never be prosecuted. Their statutes of limitations had expired.

A year later, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan declared the state had removed the criminal statute of limitation for sexual assault, aggravated sexual assault and aggravated sexual abuse against children. She credited Illinois’ passage of that legislation with the “powerful and courageous testimony of survivors,” many of them speaking publicly for the first time after years of silence, anger and shame.

“Tragically, there are millions of people whose childhoods are tarnished by sexual assault and sexual abuse,” Madigan said in an email to the NewsHour. “For decades they struggle to come to terms with the terrible impacts these crimes have on their lives – including the troubling fact that very few of the perpetrators are held accountable.”

In recent weeks, high-profile and long-buried stories of sexual assault and harassment have cropped up across the country. Since Oct. 5, when the New York Times published its investigation into allegations of sexual harassment against Hollywood film producer and executive Harvey Weinstein, dozens of women and men have come forward with their own stories about sexual misconduct by other powerful men, from Roy Moore, Alabama’s Republican candidate for U.S. Senate, to Charlie Rose, a long-time broadcast news host for PBS and CBS News.

But after they share their stories, what legal standing do victims of sexual harassment and assault have to pursue those accusations in court? That depends in large part on the statutes of limitations that apply in their state.

Nationwide, one out of three women said they have been sexually harassed or abused at work, according to a recent poll from the PBS NewsHour, NPR and Marist Poll. But according to 2016 federal data from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, which monitors reports of unwelcome sexual advances at the workplace, 6,914 incidents of sexual harassment were filed that year. Many more cases go unreported.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 5:18 PM

Nuovo terremoto in Vaticano, si dimette vice direttore generale

ITALY
Rai News

November 30, 2017

[Google Translate: The umpteenth earthquake that makes the Vatican tremble with its epicenter of the IOR, has erupted following investigations by the Vatican Gendarmerie. What emerged forced Giulio Mattietti, added by the General Manager, to resign from his position. He was appointed in November 2015 together with the general manager. But exactly two years after his entry, a dismissal with expulsion (some gendarmes would have accompanied him across the border) puts an end to Mattietti's experience.]

Le dimissioni sarebbero scattate in seguito a un'indagine della gendarmeria vaticana

L’ennesimo terremoto che fa tremare il Vaticano con epicentro lo Ior, è scoppiato a seguito di indagini della Gendarmeria vaticana. Quanto emerso ha costretto Giulio Mattietti, aggiunto del Direttore Generale, a dimettersi dal suo incarico. Era stato nominato nel novembre 2015 insieme al direttore generale. Ma esattamente a due anni dal suo ingresso, un licenziamento con espulsione (alcuni gendarmi lo avrebbero accompagnato oltre confine) pone fine all'esperienza di Mattietti. Della decisione non si conoscono i motivi ma ci sarebbe stato anche un altro analogo provvedimento a carico di un dipendente dell'istituto. Intanto continuano a circolare voci su Jean-Baptiste de Franssu, il presidente che dovrebbe lasciare come effetto domino per il forzato allontanamento del prefetto della Segreteria per l'economia, George Pell. Secondo la rivista Formiche se la passano male tutti gli uomini vicini al cardinale australiano e al revisore generale Libero Milone, allontanato anche lui in modo plateale e drammatico dalla Gendarmeria. Milone era un'altra creatura del cardinale australiano George Pell i cui enormi poteri, Francesco aveva via via ridimensionato fino all'aspettativa che gli ha concesso Papa Francesco perché potesse tornare in Australia a difendersi da infamanti accuse di pedofilia.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 5:15 PM

L’inchiesta sul preseminario in Vaticano, lezioni sospese per l’ex vicario giudiziale della Diocesi di Como

ITALY
Espansione TV News

November 29, 2017

By Anna Campaniello

[Google Translate: The former judicial vicar of the Diocese of Como, Fr Andrea Stabellini, involved precisely for this role in the service of the transmission of Italy1 The Hyenas on alleged abuses to presbyter Saint Pius X, in the Vatican, temporarily suspended teaching in the seminary in Como but also in Rome and Lugano. For the Diocese it is a personal decision of the priest, who would have asked for a break just in light of the tensions and difficulties related to the affair.]

L’ex vicario giudiziale della Diocesi di Como, don Andrea Stabellini, coinvolto proprio per questo suo ruolo nel servizio della trasmissione di Italia1 Le Iene sui presunti abusi al preseminario San Pio X, in Vaticano, ha temporaneamente sospeso l’insegnamento in seminario a Como ma anche a Roma e a Lugano. Per la Diocesi si tratta di una decisione personale del sacerdote, che avrebbe chiesto una pausa proprio alla luce delle tensioni e delle difficoltà legate alla vicenda.

Don Andrea ha di fatto puntato il dito contro l’ex vescovo di Como monsignor Diego Coletti, dicendo che il presule gli aveva chiesto di non dar luogo a procedere con gli accertamenti sui presunti abusi, sui quali invece il vicario giudiziale avrebbe voluto fare altri approfondimenti.
Dopo i recenti servizi delle Iene, il Vaticano ha comunicato di aver riaperto il caso e disposto nuovi accertamenti.

L’ex vicario, che insegna diritto canonico in seminario ma anche all’università a Lugano e a Roma, al momento ha sospeso tutte le lezioni, a tempo indeterminato. La Diocesi di Como precisa tramite l’ufficio stampa che si tratta appunto di una scelta personale del sacerdote e non di una decisione imposta da altri. Nel servizio delle Iene, è stata messa in onda anche una serie di dichiarazioni che don Andrea ha rilasciato quando gli era stato assicurato che le telecamere erano spente e proprio in questa parte del colloquio ci sono le dichiarazioni che puntano il dito contro l’ex vescovo Diego Coletti.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 5:11 PM

VENARIA - Don Ilario Rolle condannato anche in appello per pedofilia

ITALY
Quotidiano Venaria

November 29, 2017

[Google Translate: The Court of Appeal has reduced the sentence from 3 years and 8 months to 2 years for the former parish priest of Santa Gianna Beretta Molla di Venaria.]

La Corte d'Appello ha ridotto la pena da 3 anni e 8 mesi a 2 anni per l'ex parroco della Santa Gianna Beretta Molla di Venaria.

Nuova condanna per pedofilia, questa volta in appello, per don Ilario Rolle, ex parroco della Santa Gianna Beretta Molla di Venaria.

L’ex prete che da sempre combatte la pedofilia - dando vita anche al famoso filtro per internet davide.it - ha ricevuto una condanna a due anni per una storia del 2007, quando don Rolle venne accusato da un ragazzino di 12 anni di averlo baciato ripetutamente, sulla guancia e sulla nuca, durante un campo estivo in montagna.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:57 PM

Celebrated missionary in Quebec abused Innu girls, inquiry hears

QUEBEC (CANADA)
The Toronto Star

November 29, 2017

By Allan Woods

Father Alexis Joveneau was celebrated for his work over four decades among the Innu of northern Quebec, but a string of women now say he groped and abused them as girls.MONTREAL—For most of his adult life and for decades after his death Father Alexis Joveneau was regarded as a religious superstar in Quebec.

But the national inquiry into murdered and missing Indigenous women has heard from several witnesses who said they were sexually abused over several years by the priest.

In the predominately Innu community of La Romaine, Que., Joveneau was celebrated, respected, and considered by many to be “Jesus in person,” as one witness recounted. He left a much different impression on his victims.

“He mistreated us. He abused us,” said Noelle Mark, 57, who described being touched inappropriately by Joveneau between the ages of about nine and 15.

She was one of two women Wednesday who described going to church for confession and being forced to sit on the priest’s knee and endure his inappropriate touches, rather than kneeling.

“He would stick his tongue in my ear. I remember that for a long time,” Mark said. “I hated that smell—his breath. I smell it now.”

The Belgian-born priest was ordained in 1951 and requested he be sent to Canada with the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, an international religious order. He arrived in Quebec’s rugged north coast of the St. Lawrence River and spent nearly four decades living and working among the Innu people until his sudden death in 1992.

It was noted upon his death that Joveneau was fluent in Innu-aimun, the Innu language, and dedicated much of his time to safeguarding the language and translating educational and religious books for Innu readers.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:55 PM

Diane W. Mufson: Will revelations stop sexual abuse by powerful men?

WILLIAMSON (WV)
Williamson Daily News

November 30, 2017

By Diane W. Mufson

Following the revelation of many instances of sexual abuse and harassment from males in powerful positions, Americans seem surprised and ask, "How could this happen and why didn't people know about it?" The answer is simple. This is as old as time and many people knew about it.

Powerful people, often synonymous with men with wealth and high political, religious or business status, have clout and control. Most were and still are immune from negative repercussions regarding their actions. Often the recipients of the abuse were punished or blamed. So today's question is this: With all the well-known sexual abusers and harassers being publicly identified, will this age-old practice stop?

In the past year or two, some of the biggest names in media, theater, politics and high places have been identified as sexual abusers or sexual harassers. Until recently, most weren't a bit worried as that's been the status quo for eons.

So, why now? Some suggest that last winter's Women's March in Washington led women to feel that they actually had a voice; others point to the rise of women in business and elected offices. Many women claim that electing a president who was recorded saying that when you are powerful you can do almost anything you want, including grabbing women sexually, put women on notice that it was their job to take control of their lives. Social media and large numbers of victims speaking out have had a major impact.

Women also can be sexual abusers. The most publicized cases usually involve young female teachers and adolescent male students. This is obviously wrong, but the frequency of these situations pales in comparison to powerful males taking advantage of females. Same-sex sexual abuse, as exemplified by Kevin Spacey, and same-sex child sexual abuse, exemplified by Penn State's Jerry Sandusky and some clergy as well, are also nothing new.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:52 PM

Andrew Soper trial: Jury deliberating case of abbot accused of abusing boys at Ealing school

LONDON (ENGLAND)
Get West London

November 30, 2017

By Aine Fox and Emily Pennink

The jury is out after a two-month trial into alleged sexual abuse at St Benedict's School, Ealing

A former abbot at Ealing Abbey accused of abusing boys while working at a school in Ealing is awaiting the verdict in his trial at the Old Bailey.

Andrew Soper was headmaster and senior priest at St Benedict's School, a fee-paying independent school in Ealing, and he stands accused of abusing 10 boys there during the 1970s and 80s.

Now aged 74, Mr Soper denies 19 offences of indecent assault and buggery against the boys, who claim they were subjected to sexual touching and beatings with a cane.

Prosecutors said the school had a history of "both violence and sexual abuse" by the adults in charge, describing it as "sadly prevalent".

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:38 PM

Lawsuit: priest paid boys $1 for swimming naked

GUAM
The Guam Daily Post

November 30, 2017

By Mindy Aguon

A former Guam resident who now lives in North Carolina has filed a lawsuit alleging he and other Boy Scouts were paid to swim naked and be sexually abused by a priest in the mid-1970s.

B.G., 58, who used his initials to protect his identity, filed a lawsuit in the District Court of Guam against the Archdiocese of Agana, the Boy Scouts of America and retired priest, Louis Brouillard.

The complaint states that B.G. joined the Agana Boy Scouts troop when he was 14 and participated in various Boy Scout activities when Brouillard served as a scoutmaster and was also a priest for the Agana Archdiocese.

Brouillard allegedly swam completely naked and routinely instructed B.G. and the other boys to remove their clothes as the priest would grope and touch their private parts while they were swimming, the lawsuit states.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:27 PM

Retired priest removed from clerical state

ST. PAUL AND MINNEAPOLIS (MN)
The Catholic Spirit

November 29, 2017

By Maria Wiering

Richard Jeub, a priest of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis since 1966, has been dispensed from the clerical state, according to a Nov. 29 statement from the archdiocese.

Jeub, 77, retired in 2002, but he has been prohibited from ministry since that year, following a credible accusation of sexual abuse of a minor.

Jeub served as an associate priest at St. Joseph, Hopkins, 1966-1967; Our Lady of Grace, Edina, 1967-1970; St. Mark, St. Paul, 1970-1976: Christ the King, Minneapolis, 1976-1978; Sacred Heart, Robbinsdale, 1996-1997; Sacred Heart/St. Lawrence, Faribault, 1997-2000; and St. Rose of Lima, Roseville, 2000-2002.

He ministered as a hospital chaplain at Methodist Hospital in St. Louis Park and Fairview Southdale Hospital in Edina from 1978 to 1982.

Jeub’s longest assignment was from 1981 to 1990 as pastor of St. Kevin in south Minneapolis, which merged with nearby Church of the Resurrection in 1991 to form Our Lady of Peace. His assignment history has been posted since 2014 at the archdiocese’s website in a list of priests who have been credibly accused of sexual abuse of a minor.

Commonly referred to as “laicization,” dispensation from the clerical state is an action of the pope. Men who have been dismissed from the clerical state may not present themselves as priests.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:25 PM

Abuse inquiry: Orphanage boy 'molested in toilet cubicle'

SCOTLAND
BBC News

November 30, 2017

A former resident of a Catholic orphanage has told how he was dragged into a toilet cubicle and sexually abused.

The boy was under the age of 10 when the male staff member subjected him to the ordeal.

The man, now in his 60s, has told the Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry that life at Smyllum Park Orphanage in Lanark was "like a concentration camp".

The witness lived at Smyllum Park in the 1950s.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:23 PM

Australian archbishop charged with abuse cover-up diagnosed with Alzheimer’s

AUSTRALIA
Crux

November 30, 2017

An Australian archbishop facing charges over allegedly covering up a case of clerical sexual abuse has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.

The trial of Archbishop Philip Wilson of Adelaide was due to begin on Tuesday in Newcastle. He is charged with concealing information about an abuse case from the 1970s.

The court accepted a defense motion to adjourn the case, until a neuropsychologist could assess the archbishop.

Information given to the judge said the “memory part of the brain” was not working properly, and Wilson had suffered a “loss of brain matter.”

In addition, the archbishop suffers from type-2 diabetes, hypertension, and ischemic heart disease.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:21 PM

CATHOLIC CHURCH PRIESTS RAPED CHILDREN IN PHILADELPHIA, BUT THE WRONG PEOPLE WENT TO JAIL

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Newsweek

November 30, 2017

By Ralph Cipriano

It took a near-death experience to convince retired Philadelphia police detective Joe Walsh that he couldn’t keep quiet anymore about what he knew.

It was June 11, 2015, just another sunny day down at the Jersey Shore, when Walsh suddenly felt severe pain in his jaw. An old Army buddy noticed the color had drained from Walsh’s face, told him “Sit down!” and called 911.

In the ambulance, a paramedic asked Walsh if he liked the T-shirt he was wearing. “Not particularly,” Walsh replied. “That’s good,” the paramedic said, before he cut it off with scissors. “He hooked me up [to a monitor], and that’s all I remember,” Walsh says. “Everything went white.”When he came to minutes later, Walsh heard an emergency medical technician say, “Come on, Joe, keep breathing.” Then he heard the paramedic say that when he woke up, he was going to think he’d been kicked in the chest by a horse.

During that ambulance ride, Walsh’s heart stopped beating for two and a half minutes; it took two jolts from a defibrillator to get it going again.The ambulance raced to the Cape May Court House Armory, so Walsh could be flown by helicopter to a nearby hospital for emergency surgery. Doctors there implanted two stents in the left coronary artery and gave Walsh morphine for the pain in his chest.As he recovered from his heart attack, he endured two painful back operations. And while he dealt with all his physical pain, Walsh realized something else was bothering him: his conscience.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:09 PM

Breaking the Silence on Sexual Abuse in Omaha

OMAHA (NE)
KETV

November 29, 2017

By Waverle Monroe

A 24/7 crisis hotline that has seen more people come forward to share their stories.

Omaha, Neb. —
A day that never ends,

"Catholic Charities Domestic Violence Services, how may I help you?"

A 24/7 crisis hotline that has seen more people come forward to share their stories.

"I saw that for our 24/7 hotline, we've seen a 40 percent increase from last year to this year," said Catholic Charities Domestic Violence Services Supervisor, Rachel Gifford, "and then in our shelter, we've got a 15 percent increase."

Gifford said those statistics are rising month-to-month.

Seeing the effects of the rise is Nebraska Sexual Assault and Abuse Prevention President, and sexual abuse survivor herself, Ren Drincic.

"It's really interesting because ever since #MeToo, the hashtag campaign started, that's really when the influx began," Drincic said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:05 PM

North Carolina man files $10M clergy sex abuse suit

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

November 30, 2017

By Haidee V Eugenio

A former Guam resident now living in North Carolina said he quit the Boy Scouts of America in the 1970s after he could no longer handle the pain, humiliation and embarrassment that Father Louis Brouillard inflicted on him, according to a lawsuit filed Thursday in federal court.

The plaintiff, identified in court documents only as B.G., to protect his privacy, said in his lawsuit that Brouillard sexually abused and molested him during the time he served as a Boy Scout, around 1973 or 1974. He was about 14 or 15 years old then.

Now 58, B.G. said he joined the Agana Boy Scout or the Agana Troop. Brouillard was a scout master for the Boy Scouts.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:41 PM

Matt Lauer scandal: There may be as many as 8 victims, Lauer breaks his silence

NEW YORK (NY)
USA Today

November 30, 2017

By Erin Jensen

One day after Matt Lauer was fired for inappropriate sexual behavior at work, additional details are emerging about the the former NBC host's conduct.

Lauer, 59, who co-anchored Today for more than 20 years, has also broken his silence and released a statement Wednesday.

NBC News' Stephanie Gosk says there are as many as eight victims

Gosk appeared on Megyn Kelly Today Thursday fielding questions from the host about her Lauer investigation. Gosk said that are as many as eight accusers, though tallying is difficult as the accounts have been anonymous.

Several accusers told Variety “they complained to executives at the network about Lauer’s behavior, which fell on deaf ears.” NBC has denied this telling NBC News “current NBC News management was never made aware.”

After Kelly brought up the report of sexual assault from The New York Times, Gosk said the New York City Police Department and police departments in Long Island have been contacted and she is unaware of any open criminal investigations for Lauer.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:19 PM

Priest who asked students about porn reassigned, will lead Mass on Sunday

OMAHA (NE)
Omaha World-Herald

November 24, 2017

By Michael Kelly

The young Catholic priest who was moved out of a parish for his questions of seventh- and eighth-graders during confession has been reassigned under the guidance of a veteran pastor.

The Rev. Nicholas Mishek will lead the 9 a.m. Mass Sunday at St. Frances Cabrini Church south of downtown. Out of the public eye, he has lived at the rectory there for at least a month, said the Rev. Damian Zuerlein, pastor.

“He is young and inexperienced,” Zuerlein said, “and is trying to learn from this and move forward.”

According to letters to be read at weekend Masses at St. Frances Cabrini and at St. Robert Bellarmine, Mishek’s former parish, the Omaha Archdiocese after outside psychological evaluations found him suitable to return to the ministry.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:16 PM

Filmava i bambini mentre li violentava: prete a processo in provincia di Foggia

ITALY
Fanpage.it Cronaca Italiana

November 29, 2017

By Davide Falcioni

[Google Translate: Three children, two of 15 and one in 16, reported yesterday in the classrooms before the judges the sexual abuse suffered until some years ago by former priest Giovanni Trotta, 56, who at the time was a trainee of those young people in a youth football team in the province of Foggia.]

Don Giovanni Trotta, 56 anni, è imputato per violenza sessuale aggravata, produzione e diffusione di materiale pedopornografico e adescamento di minori.

Tre ragazzini, due di 15 anni e uno di 16, hanno raccontato ieri in aula, di fronte ai giudici, gli abusi sessuali subiti fino a qualche anno fa dall'ex sacerdote Giovanni Trotta, 56enne che all'epoca dei fatti era allenatore di quei giovani in una squadra di calcio giovanile della provincia di Foggia.

Nel processo che si sta svolgendo dinanzi al Tribunale di Foggia, il prete è imputato per violenza sessuale aggravata, produzione e diffusione di materiale pedopornografico e adescamento di minori. I tre minorenni sono stati chiamati a testimoniare sugli abusi subiti. Replicando alle domande dei pubblici ministeri baresi, competenti su Foggia per il reato di pedopornografia, che hanno coordinato le indagini, Simona Filoni e Domenico Minardi, i tre hanno confermato ogni particolare, dalle foto nudi scattate a casa del sacerdote agli atti sessuali a quali erano sottoposti, mimando gesti e raccontando episodi. Hanno chiesto che i loro genitori potessero restare fuori dall'aula e, per ore, tra lacrime e imbarazzo, hanno ricordato quei momenti.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:07 PM

Teacher who confessed to abusing boys in US found working in Essex school

ESSEX (UK)
The Guardian

November 23, 2017

By Robert Booth

Stephen Jackson, 72, was fired from Tendring technology college in September after police were alerted to catalogue of historical allegations in California

A teacher who has faced multiple allegations of child sexual abuse in the US and confessed to molesting schoolboys has been uncovered working in a secondary school in Essex, the Guardian can reveal.

Stephen Jackson, 72, taught English to 11- to 13-year-olds at Tendring technology college this term despite previously confessing to police in California that he engaged in sexual acts with children.

It has also emerged that he previously worked for two years at a school in south London without being discovered.

Jackson joined the staff of the 2,000-pupil Tendring college, in Frinton-on-Sea, in June this year. However, he was fired after a fortnight of lessons this term after Essex police raised concerns, having received “intelligence concerning a teacher working in the Tendring area”.

He is believed to have left the country, possibly travelling to Venezuela.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:00 PM

The Health 202: Science puts sexual aggressors squarely on the hook for their misdeeds

UNITED STATES
The Washington Post

November 28, 2017

By Paige Winfield Cunningham

The science is in: Men who engage in sexual misconduct really can help themselves.

Despite the excuses you might hear from leaders in the political, entertainment and media worlds who are accused of sexually harassing women (and some men) — a list that seems to grow daily — advances in brain imaging have recently revealed that these kinds of behaviors are simply not addictive in the same way drugs or alcohol might be.

Here’s how researchers identify when a behavior is addictive: When that behavior starts lighting up the part of the brain connected to need instead of pleasure. That’s what occurs in the brains of people struggling with substance abuse. But the same thing doesn’t occur in people who say they have sexual urges they can't control, researchers said.

“Now that we start to look at the brains of people and see what is going on, [sex addiction] doesn’t fit the criteria of a mental disorder,” Joye Swan, psychology chair at Woodbury University, told me.

Psychologists have become so convinced of this that most of the leading scientific bodies have recently released papers or statements saying that what is called “sex addiction” isn’t actually an addiction. Last year, the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists said there’s insufficient evidence to support classifying sex addiction as a mental health disorder. In 2012, the American Psychiatric Association removed “sex addiction” from DSM-5, the handbook of mental health disorders.

The science is something to keep in mind in the #MeToo era, as more and more women have the courage to speak up about their experiences with rampant harassment and misconduct -- and the cultural stigma begins shifting from the victims to the alleged instigators.

There’s an increasingly crowded stage of powerful men facing such charges — most recently Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.), who yesterday took to the mics to claim he doesn’t recall instances where four women say he touched them inappropriately — but also Rep. John Conyers Jr. (D-Mich.) (the latest charge is here), comedian Louis C.K., media figures Mark Halperin and Charlie Rose, actor Kevin Spacey and many others. President Trump has also been accused of sexual misconduct by 13 women.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:54 PM

November 29, 2017

Star Wars helped fight director Nicholas Harrison survive the Dark Side of child abuse

VANCOUVER (CANADA)
Georgia Straight

November 29th, 2017

By Janet Smith

When Nicholas Harrison was nine years old, he saw Star Wars—a movie that didn’t just change his life but, as he puts it, saved it. He’d been invited to his first birthday party, to watch Smokey and the Bandit with some other boys, and started wandering between the theatres of the multiplex. Something caught his attention on one of the big screens: two robots were walking across a sand dune, and one said, “We were made to suffer. It seems to be our lot in life.”

The words struck a nerve in the boy, who had endured more suffering than any child should ever have to face—almost five straight years of unspeakable physical and sexual abuse by the teachers, nuns, and priests at his Catholic elementary school.

Later, another line hit him just as hard: the elderly Obi Wan Kenobi telling the evil Darth Vader “If you strike me down, I shall become more powerful than you can possibly imagine.”

“Seeing this old man go up against Darth Vader: it was amazing to me, having this courage,” Harrison recalls, sitting with the Straight in a West Broadway coffee shop. “So I had to go back and watch it all the way through with my dad. It gave me hope that this small group of misfits could win against an organization like the Empire. The Empire has order and discipline—it even has black robes…”

The preteen Harrison figured that if he could just use the Force, he would be able to protect himself. “I wanted to know more about what that Jedi was; I kept going back to ‘What was this Jedi?’”

Harrison would follow that dream into adulthood, becoming as close to a modern-day Jedi as might be possible on 21st-century Earth. In his youth, he began studying martial arts. He would go on to pursue kendo, the Japanese martial art that inspired Star Wars’ light-sabre battles, even fighting professionally on the British kendo team. He would become a fight director, working for companies like Vancouver Opera and Bard on the Beach, as well as an actor and a stuntman. “A lot of people say ‘How did you become a fight director?’ ” he says. “And I’m always like, ‘Do you want the short or the long version?’ ”

It’s a story of survival and hope that he turned into his doctoral thesis at UBC. And now, at the encouragement of some of his theatre colleagues, finally into a one-man show—How Star Wars Saved My Life.

A father of two, and a teacher with his PhD, Harrison has put his world strongly back together, but when he talks about the secrets he carried with him in childhood, the raw emotion is, understandably, still near the surface.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 5:25 PM

For evangelicals, sin is redeemable — but can that allow sex offenders to dodge their actions?

UNITED STATES
VOX

November 29, 2017

By Tara Isabella Burton

Many of Roy Moore’s evangelical supporters see alleged “sins of the past” as no longer relevant.

Onetime Alabama Senate frontrunner (and longtime Christian theocrat) Roy Moore has managed to hold onto his evangelical base, despite being embroiled in allegations of sexual misconduct with at least eight teenage girls when he was in his 30s. Several major evangelical figures, including Jerry Falwell Jr., and Franklin Graham, both of whom serve on Donald Trump’s unofficial evangelical advisory council, have spoken in support of Moore, and, according to the latest Fox News poll, 65 percent of white evangelicals in Alabama still plan to vote for him.

Why?

Evangelical support for Moore is based on a variety of factors. There are those who think that the allegations against Moore are the result of a political smear campaign, or — worse — that diabolical “forces of evil” are attempting to push God out of government, in this case by muddling a staunch Christian politician’s chances of winning a Senate seat. There are those who think that “courting” a teenage girl just isn’t that big a deal. There are those who believe the good Moore can do in office — like working to ban abortion — outweigh the bad in his personal life.

But, perhaps most importantly, an alarmingly common evangelical approach to sexual misconduct — and misconduct more generally — is deeply rooted in theological concepts of sin, redemption, and forgiveness that make it easy to dissociate a wrongdoing individual from his past misdeeds on the grounds that he has already been “forgiven.”

When it comes to the allegations against Moore, this narrative has been pervasive among evangelical supporters. In line with the aforementioned Fox News poll, Dottie Finch, a Moore supporter interviewed by CNN shortly after the allegations came out, took this view: “And if it has happened, I believe the good Lord has forgiven him and he has the right to continue to prove himself.” An Alabama retiree and Moore supporter quoted by the Huffington Post took a similar tack: “And if he had done it, it doesn’t matter in God’s eyes because he’d have been forgiven.” Kenneth Frost, a Baptist deacon, agreed, telling the Los Angeles Times, “I have to forgive him, just like God forgave me.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 5:23 PM

Caldey Island abuse inquiry call by Darren Millar AM

CALDEY ISLAND (WALES)
BBC News

November 29, 2017

There has been a new call for an independent inquiry into historical abuse on Caldey Island to be launched.

Eleven women claimed they were abused by Father Thaddeus Kotik when they were children. He died in 1992.

Welsh Conservatives children's spokesman, Darren Millar, said the Welsh Government should instigate an investigation.

But he was told during Wednesday's plenary in the Senedd that a police investigation was under way.

A support group has also called for an inquiry.

It comes after allegations of abuse against Kotik were made to the Pembrokeshire island's abbey in 1990, but were not passed on to police.

Officers were told about the abuse in 2014 and 2016, but could not prosecute as the monk had died.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 5:20 PM

Pupils ‘not protected from abuse’ at Ampleforth

ENGLAND
ITV News

November 29, 2017

Several former pupils at a prestigious Catholic boarding school in North Yorkshire have told an inquiry that they were not protected from sexual abuse at the hands of priests and teachers.

The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse has heard there were 40 alleged perpetrators of abuse at Ampleforth College near Thirsk between 1953 and 2016.

A former pupil sexually abused by music teacher Dara De Cogan between 2007 and 2010 told the hearing in London that child protection at the school was “very poor.”

The victim said he was physically inappropriate with her in front of other staff and it was widely known they spent a great deal of time alone together during many evenings, but nothing was done.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 5:19 PM

Catholic nuns 'sexually abused boy and beat friend, 6, to death for playing with match'

ENGLAND
Mirror

November 28, 2017

By Hilary Duncanson and Lucinda Cameron

A six-year-old boy died 10 days after he was beaten by a nun at an orphanage, a child abuse inquiry has heard.

A witness, who cannot be named, told the inquiry his friend was kicked on the body and head by the Catholic sister.

He was giving evidence at the Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry which began a new phase of hearings in Edinburgh on Tuesday.

It is hearing evidence about institutions run by the Daughters of Charity of St Vincent de Paul, which has issued an apology to anyone abused in their care.

The man said he was sexually abused by a nun and another member of staff and beaten for bedwetting and not eating his food at Smyllum Park orphanage in Lanark, Lanarkshire.

The witness entered the orphanage in 1959 when he was aged around two.

A witness has told an inquiry how he was abused at Smyllum Park orphanage in Lankarkshire, Scotland, in the 1960s

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 5:16 PM

Child abuse inquiry: Boy 'abused' by head of Catholic school

ENGLAND
BBC News

November 29, 2017

A head teacher of a Catholic boarding school invited a young pupil into his study and then
sexually abused him, the inquiry into child abuse has heard.

The hearing heard the boy was told to pretend to go to bed in his dorm at Ampleforth College, in North Yorkshire, and then to get up and go to his study.

Two other ex-pupils also talked about being abused and beaten at the school.

The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse is currently examining abuse in the Roman Catholic Church.

The Church is one of 13 public organisations being scrutinised by the public inquiry, which is being headed by Prof Alexis Jay.

The third day of hearings into allegations involving the Church examined abuse at Ampleforth College, a private school run by Benedictine monks.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 5:14 PM

Therapy for sexual misconduct? There’s no evidence to back it up

UNITED STATES
New York Times

November 28, 2017

By Benedict Carey

The recent surge in accusations of sexual harassment and assault has prompted some admitted offenders to seek professional help for the emotional or personality distortions that underlie their behavior.

“My journey now will be to learn about myself and conquer my demons,” the producer Harvey Weinstein said in a statement in October. The actor Kevin Spacey announced that he would be “taking the time necessary to seek evaluation and treatment.”

Whatever mix of damage control and contrition they represent, pledges like these suggest that there are standard treatments for perpetrators of sexual offenses. In fact, no such standard treatments exist, experts say. Even the notion of “sexual addiction” as a stand-alone diagnosis is in dispute.

“There are no evidence-based programs I know of for the sort of men who have been in the news recently,” said Vaile Wright, director of research and special projects at the American Psychological Association.

That doesn’t mean that these men cannot change their ways with professional help.

The evidence that talk therapy and medication can curb sexual misconduct is modest at best, and virtually all of it comes from treating severe disorders, like pedophilia and exhibitionism, experts said — powerful urges that cannot be turned off.

Still, there is reason to think that these therapeutic approaches can be adapted to treatment of the men accused of offenses ranging from unwanted attention to rape.

“You’re really looking at two categories of people,” said Rory Reid, an assistant professor of psychiatry at UCLA, who has a clinical practice focusing on sexual problems.

“One is what I call sexually compulsive behavior. The other is reserved for people committing nonconsensual acts — sex offenders.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:39 PM

#ChurchToo: Online movement highlighting sexual abuse in religious communities

FARGO (ND)
Valley News Live

November 28, 2017

By Melanie Palmer

FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live) - The #MeToo campaign is now spreading to your church. A new social media hashtag is aiming to bring attention to sexual assault in religious communities. It's called #ChurchToo.

People are speaking out about their experiences, but an area church is working to prevent these incidents before they even happen.

Twitter is at it again. Except this time, users are hoping to raise awareness on what they call, a hidden crime. It's sexual assault at church, and the numbers show that people between the ages of 12 and 34 are at the highest risk of being raped or sexually assaulted.

"85% of the people who do abuse are actually known by the victim. We tend to think, it won't happen here because we know everybody but that's not the case," says Bethel Church Senior Associate Pastor, Gary Siefers.

We tried contacting a rash of churches in the F-M area. Many of them didn't want to talk, they say it's a tricky subject. But at Bethel Church in Fargo, staff members work hard to ensure no incidents like these happen.

"We do background checks on volunteers and check references through an application process. For the staff, we have training on how to recognize abuse and not put themselves in a situation where that might happen," says Siefers.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:34 PM

Ex-priest who was fired from Cheverus, went to prison faces new sex charges in Maine

PORTLAND (ME)
Press Herald

November 28, 2017

By Dennis Hoey

An indictment unsealed Tuesday alleges that James Talbot engaged in a sexual act with a minor in Freeport nearly 20 years ago.

A former Jesuit priest who taught and coached at Cheverus High School for nearly two decades before being fired in 1998 is scheduled to be arraigned in Portland on charges he sexually assaulted a minor in Freeport nearly 20 years ago.

A grand jury indictment dated Nov. 9 and obtained by the Press Herald on Tuesday identifies the priest as 80-year-old James Francis Talbot of Dittmer, Missouri.

The indictment charges Talbot with gross sexual assault, a Class A offense, and with unlawful sexual contact, a Class C offense.

The indictment alleges that Talbot engaged in a sexual act with a minor and subjected the minor, who was 8 or 9 years old at the time, to sexual contact on or between May 1, 1997, and June 14, 1998.

The indictment said the alleged crimes took place in Freeport, but offered no information about a specific location, Talbot’s relationship to the minor, or why Talbot was in Freeport. It also was not clear why the charges are being brought now or whether this is the first time Talbot has been charged in Maine.

According to Maine statute of limitations, a prosecution for incest, unlawful sexual contact, sexual abuse of a minor, rape or gross sexual assault may be commenced at any time if the victim was not 16 at the time of the alleged crime.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:28 PM

RITUALIZED ABUSE CASE RESUMING

SANDPOINT (ID)
Priest River Times

November 29, 2017

By Keith Kinnaird

SANDPOINT — Criminal proceedings are resuming against a Bonner County man accused of ritualized and sexual abuse.

A preliminary hearing in the case against Dana Andrew Furtney is set for Dec. 6, court records show.

Furtney is charged with lewd and lascivious conduct, sexual battery of child involving lewd conduct and ritualized abuse.

The case against Furtney was put on hold earlier this fall when questions were raised about his capacity to understand the proceedings and assist in his own defense.

Chief Deputy Public Defender Susie Jensen moved for the mental health evaluation because Furtney’s strongly held spiritual beliefs, his belief that he has a personal relationship with God and that his actions were guided by God’s will, court records indicate.

Furtney, however, has now been deemed fit to proceed in the criminal case, court records show. He remains held at the Bonner County Jail in lieu of $500,000 bail.

Furtney, 48, is accused of sexually battering a girl in 2013 and 2014, when she was 16 years old. He’s also accused of engaging in lewd conduct with a 14-year-old girl during the same time frame and engaging in ritualized abuse by forcing a boy to consume feces and urine when he was between the ages of 11-12 years old.

The allegations against Furtney, also known as Andrew Furtney, emerged last month, after some of the alleged victims had relocated to Ohio, according to court documents.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:25 PM

Called in house for oblation, priest rapes woman

PATIALA (INDIA)
The Times of India

November 29, 2017

By Bharat Khanna

PATIALA: Police here have booked a priest for raping a 38 year old woman in her house while performing the oblation. The victim woman in her statement to the police had alleged that priest was called in house by her husband to offer the prayers and bring out a solution for the problems being faced by the family including the financial crisis and repeated fever to the victim.

She told the police that accused priest Vinay Sharma of Deep Nagar in city assured her husband of solution to their problems with his religious and occult practices. The priest send victim's husband outside home to bring some commodities required for the oblation while he send the children on roof of the house. Now finding her alone in the house the accused Vinay Sharma allegedly raped her and threatened her to kill her children if she revealed anything to anybody.

Police claimed that victim claimed that she was raped next day again by the priest who reached their house to collect his Rs 65000 fees for oblation and other practices.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:22 PM

Former Salesian College, Rupertswood, principal Frank Klep to stand trial

VICTORIA (AUSTRALIA)
Herald Sun

November 29, 2017

By Shannon Deery

A FORMER school principal of one of Victoria’s most infamous Catholic colleges will fight charges of molesting students.

Former priest Frank Klep, 74, is charged with sexually assaulting three students of Salesian College, Rupertswood, at Sunbury during the 1970s and 1980s.

He was this week committed to stand trial but is fighting all charges.

Mr Klep’s lawyer Antony Trood told the County Court on Wednesday Mr Klep denied some of the charges and could rely on an alibi in relation to others.

“Immigration records are being sought to see if Mr Klep was indeed in the country at the relevant time,” he said.

It is alleged all the assaults took place at the college while Mr Klep was a priest and teacher.

Students of the school say a sickening club of paedophiles roamed its grand halls and manned its dormitories for more than four decades between the 1950s and 1990s.

In 2004, the Australian chapter of the Salesians, the world’s second largest Catholic order, was engulfed in scandal after it was alleged local superiors knowingly moved priests accused of sexual assaults across international and state borders to evade authorities.

The order denied that they moved Mr Klep to Samoa after investigations into sex assault allegations first surfaced.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:20 PM

SNAP issues apology to priest and St. Louis Archdiocese

ST. LOUIS (MO)
National Catholic Reporter

November 28, 2017

By Brian Roewe

The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests issued an apology Monday to a St. Louis priest and the St. Louis Archdiocese "for any false or inaccurate statements" made in relation to sexual abuse allegations brought against the priest that courts have found false.

The apology was part of a settlement reached in October between SNAP and Fr. Xiu Hui "Joseph" Jiang, who in 2015 brought a civil rights suit against the abuse victims advocacy group and the parents of a boy who accused him of sexual abuse.

That allegation, made in 2014, was the second against Jiang, following one made by a teenage girl in 2012 accusing him of improper contact. Each accusation led to criminal charges and civil suits against the priest. In both instances, the criminal charges were dropped and the civil suits ruled in Jiang's favor.

In the apology, released by the St. Louis Archdiocese, SNAP said that false claims of clergy sexual abuse do occur, and that neither of its leaders named in the suit, former executive director David Clohessy and current executive director Barbara Dorris, had personal knowledge of complaints against Jiang.

"SNAP acknowledges that false claims of clergy sexual abuse injure those clerics falsely accused and the Roman Catholic Church. SNAP apologizes for any false or inaccurate statements related to the complaints against Fr. Joseph Jiang that it or its representatives made which in any way disparaged Fr. Joseph Jiang, Archbishop Robert J. Carlson, Monsignor Joseph D. Pins and the Archdiocese of St. Louis," the statement read.

Dorris told NCR that SNAP still maintains it did not make false statements about Jiang.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:17 PM

Ex-priest fired from Maine school accused of assaulting minor

BANGOR (ME)
Bangor Daily News

November 29, 2017

By Callie Ferguson

A former Catholic priest who was fired from Cheverus High School in Portland in 1998 and served time for molesting boys in Massachusetts was indicted this month for sexually assaulting a minor in Freeport 20 years ago.

James F. Talbot, 80, has been charged with one count of gross sexual sexual assault with a minor under the age of 14, and one count of unlawful sexual contact with a minor under the age of 14.

The allegations against Talbot have been known to the Portland community for some time, after the Boston Globe’s Spotlight team brought the alleged molestation to light in an the early 2000s investigation of sex abuse inside the Catholic Church.

Talbot already has served time for assaulting teenage boys while he was their wrestling coach at Boston College High School, according to the Patriot Ledger. He was released in 2011 after serving six years of a five- to seven-year sentence, according to the paper.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:14 PM

Beauty and the Priest: Former priest going on trial for 1960 cold case

EDINBURG (TX)
CW39

November 28, 2017

By Tammy Feldstein

EDINBURG, Texas - After 57 years, the murder of a south Texas beauty queen may finally be solved.

The accused? The priest who heard her last confession.

Jury selection will begin for the trial of former Priest John Feit, 85.

Fifty Seven years ago Feit was a visiting member of the clergy at Sacred Heart Church in Mc Allen, where 25-year-old Irene Garza was last seen alive.

The young school teacher was well-known in the Lower Rio Grande Valley and lived down the street from Sacred Heart with her parents where she went to confession every Saturday.

On Easter weekend in 1960, Garza went to church and never came home. More than 500 members of the community helped police search for Garza. First, they found her shoe, then her purse and days later they found her body floating in a canal. Garza's autopsy revealed had been raped and beaten.

Police also found a clue; a small slide projector near her body that belonged to Feit.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:12 PM

Ex-priest accused of murdering beauty queen after she went to confession almost 60 years ago finally headed to trial

HOUSTON (TX)
New York Daily News

November 27, 2017

By Minyvonne Burke

A former Catholic priest who has long been considered a suspect in the 1960 murder of a Texas beauty queen will stand trial.

John Bernard Feit, 84, was indicted on murder charges in February 2016 in the death of 25-year-old Irene Garza.

Garza, a schoolteacher and Miss All South Texas Sweetheart 1958, vanished in April 1960 after visiting Sacred Heart Catholic Church in McAllen for confession during Holy Week.

Her body was found in a canal five days after she disappeared. An autopsy revealed that she had been raped while unconscious and then beaten and suffocated, according to CBS.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:09 PM

Livermore Priest Under Investigation for Alleged Inappropriate Behavior

LIVERMORE (CA)
NBC Bay Area

November 27, 2017

Father Van Dinh, a pastor of St. Michael Parish in Livermore, has been placed on administrative leave until the police investigation is completed

A Livermore priest is under investigation after being accused of inappropriate behavior, authorities said Monday.

Father Van Dinh, a pastor of St. Michael Parish in Livermore, has been placed on administrative leave until the police investigation is completed, according to the Diocese of Oakland.

In a statement provided Monday, the Diocese of Oakland said it considers all allegations of clergy misconduct serious. The allegation against Dinh does not involve a minor, but did fall within the protocol for clergy conduct, according to the Diocese of Oakland.

No other information was immediately available.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:07 PM

NBC fires Matt Lauer for 'inappropriate sexual behavior'

UNITED STATES
Yahoo News

November 29, 2017

By Dylan Stableford

Matt Lauer, a veteran journalist and co-host of the “Today” show, was terminated by NBC on Wednesday for what the network called “inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace.”

Savannah Guthrie, Lauer’s “Today” show co-host, made the announcement to viewers on the air at the top of Wednesday’s show.

“This is a sad morning here at ‘Today’ and at NBC News,” Guthrie said before reading a memo that had been sent by NBC chairman Andy Lack to staffers before the show went on the air.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:04 PM

Priests must violate Seal of Confessional, inquiry told

LONDON (ENGLAND)
Catholic Herald

November 28, 2017

An Inquiry into child sex abuse heard that priests should be forced to reveal Confessions in such cases

British priests should be compelled to break the Seal of the Confessional in cases of child abuse, lawyers have told a national inquiry.

Solicitor David Enright, representing former pupils at a Comboni missionary school, said it was a problem that “matters revealed in Confession, including child abuse, cannot be used in governance”.

“One can’t think of a more serious obstacle embedded in the law of the Catholic Church to achieving child protection.”

He added: “The Catholic Church is so opaque, so disparate, so full of separate bodies who are not subject to any authority that it is difficult to see how reform can be made to provide good governance and introduce acceptable standards of child protection.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:03 PM

MISSOURI PRIEST RECEIVES APOLOGY OVER FALSE CLAIMS OF SEXUAL ABUSE

ST. LOUIS (MO)
ChurchMilitant.com

November 28, 2017

By Alexander Slavsky

Apology ends five-year battle for priest

ST. LOUIS, Mo. (ChurchMilitant.com) - After a years-long battle, a priest of the archdiocese of St. Louis is receiving an apology from a group that falsely accused him of sex abuse.

On Monday, Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP), an advocacy group for victims of clerical abuse, apologized to the archdiocese of St. Louis and the Fr. Joseph Jiang:

The SNAP defendants never want to see anyone falsely accused of a crime. Admittedly, false reports of clergy sexual abuse do occur. The SNAP defendants have no personal knowledge as to the complaints against Fr. Joseph Jiang and acknowledge that all matters and claims against Fr. Jiang have either been dismissed or adjudicated in favor of Fr. Jiang. SNAP acknowledges that false claims of clergy sexual abuse injure those clerics falsely accused and the Roman Catholic Church. SNAP apologizes for any false or inaccurate statements related to the complaints against Fr. Joseph Jiang that it or its representatiives made which in any way disparaged Fr. Joseph Jiang, Archbishop Robert J. Carlson, Monsignor Joseph D. Pins and the Archdiocese of St. Louis.

Father Jiang settled a federal lawsuit against SNAP and the parents of an accuser in St. Louis last month. Court filings in the U.S. District Court in St. Louis reveal that both parties had "reached an agreement in principle." The judge therefore dismissed the priest's lawsuit claiming he was falsely accused and arrested after a mishandled police investigation.

SNAP confirmed Monday that the apology was included in a settlement in Jiang's lawsuit, whose case was dismissed on November 21.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:01 PM

For Mormon women, saying #MeToo presents a particular challenge

DRAPER (UTAH)
The Guardian

November 29, 2017

by Andrea Smardon

Sexual abuse survivors say notions of modesty and patriarchal authority make speaking out difficult: ‘There’s a lot of pressure to forgive and to not rock the boat’

When Carol was eight years old, she was baptized in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, otherwise known as the Mormon church. But she refused to stand up in front of the congregation and bear her testimony – to make a declaration about how she knew that God, the Heavenly Father, loved her.

Her father punished her by raping her.

Carol only remembered this years later, in her 20s, while working with a therapist who specialized in childhood trauma. She gradually came to realize that she had been abused since she was a very young child. Her father justified sexual abuse by using an example from the Bible.

“He told me that Mary was impregnated by God the Father. That’s why Mary had to have sex with God,” Carol said.

Now, at age 56, Carol (not her real name) has watched her Facebook feed fill up with messages of women saying #metoo. She thought these very small words held huge stories. As she read others’ experiences, she decided to write her own post.

“It’s almost impossible to describe how heinous this crime is, especially when perpetrated against a child. There’s a reason we call these crimes ‘unspeakable’ … I have no sweeping answer about how to stop the violence. But I have this voice. And I was born to tell the truth,” her post read.

Telling the truth about sexual abuse is hard for anyone, but it has particular challenges in the conservative, Mormon community of Utah where Carol was raised for most of her life and where she now lives. Carol, who identifies as a Mormon feminist, sees a parallel with powerful men in Hollywood and those in the Mormon church.

“It’s men in power taking advantage of their positions of authority,” she said. “In the LDS church or any patriarchal religious community, it’s even more condensed and insulated, and there’s a lot of pressure to forgive and to not rock the boat.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:57 PM

Child abuse inquiry: Pair 'abused and beaten' at Catholic school

ENGLAND
BBC News

November 29, 2017

Two ex-pupils at a Catholic boarding school have told the inquiry into child abuse they were sexually abused by a priest and beaten in the school chapel.

They said they were sexually abused at Ampleforth College, in North Yorkshire, by a monk and Father Piers Grant-Ferris - who was jailed for abuse in 2006.

The unnamed monk treated boys at the school "disgracefully", one man said.

The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse is currently examining abuse in the Roman Catholic Church.

The Church is one of 13 public organisations being scrutinised by the public inquiry, which is being headed by Prof Alexis Jay.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:55 PM

Police go public on Cornerstone pastor case

BERMUDA
The Royal Gazette

November 29, 2017

By Sarah Lagan

A leading police officer has been assigned to deal with complaints of inappropriate sexual conduct by a former pastor amid concerns witnesses are reluctant to come forward.

Yesterday, police said they were aware of allegations circulating on social media about a former clergy member at Cornerstone Bible Fellowship.

However, they said no formal complaints had been received, meaning it is not possible for them to launch an investigation.

Detective Inspector Mark Clarke, of the Vulnerable Persons Unit, has now been made the single point of contact for the matter, to give assurance to potential victims and witnesses.

Police reminded members of the public of their duty to report such information.

A spokesman said: “The Bermuda Police Service is aware of allegations circulating on social media about past inappropriate sexual conduct of a former Cornerstone Bible Fellowship clergy member.

“To date, no criminal complaints have been made to the BPS.

“We would like to remind the public that formal complaints are required by law in order for the police to investigate such allegations. Online statements and social media posts do not qualify as formal complaints.

“We appreciate that this is a sensitive subject and that witnesses and victims are sometimes reluctant to come forward.

“Accordingly, we have established a single point of contact so that complainants can be assured that they will be treated with dignity and that their investigation will be conducted in strict confidence.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:37 PM

Trial date set for Feb. 5 for priest in child pornography case

LAFAYETTE (LA)
The Advertiser

November 27, 2017

By Ken Stickney

The Rev. F. David Broussard, charged 16 months ago with 500 counts of possession of child pornography, may yet get his day in court.

But it didn't happen Monday in 16th Judicial District Court in St. Martin Parish, where he was scheduled to appear before Judge Vincent J. Borne. And it won't happen until at least Feb. 5, which is when attorneys have agreed to try the felony case.

Broussard's name was called in court simply as "Felix Broussard," but he did not appear before the judge after court officials scoured the courtroom to see if the defendant was present to stand. Court officials initially were uncertain why Broussard was absent.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:33 PM

Sexual abuse and vanishing babies in Pakuashipi

QUEBEC (CANADA)
APTN News

November 29, 2017

By Tom Fennario

Agnes Poker is a mother many times over and at Tuesday’s hearings of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls (MMIWG) she testified about the children she has lost.

“I had eight children in all, four in the tent, four in the hospital,” she told the commissioners. “If all of my children had been born in the tent, everything would have gone well for me, because then I would have seen them die with my own eyes.”

Poker was referring to how in the early 70s children in her Innu community of Pakuashipi would be airlifted from to Blanc Sablon, Que., near the northeastern border with Labrador.

Twice they did not survive

“I speak often to my lost children,” she said. “I would like to know where my two children are laid to rest. Every time I go to Blanc Sablon I go to the cemetery to try to find my children.”

But Poker said she doesn’t even know where her children are buried.

She testified that the hospital also refused to let her arrange or attend any funeral.

“This summer we went to an archaeological dig [in Blanc Sablon], and we said ‘if you find any children bones let us know’,” said Poker.

Christine Lalo, also from Pakuashipi, had a similar experience with the health services in Blanc Sablon.

“When they died we were never given an autopsy report, only many years later we went back and only then did we find out what happened,” Lalo testified.

Tuesday afternoon’s testimony also touched on other difficult subjects that plagued the Innu territory 1,200 km northeast of Montreal.

Topics included a forced relocation of the community and a priest who was a sexual predator.

“We were at the church and I went to confession and I had to kneel before him on the ground and often the priest would invite us to sit on his lap and often he would say ‘I’m your father’ and I would try to give my confession, but when you’re young you don’t have much to say,” said Mary Mark, who chose to be sworn in by an eagle feather as opposed to a bible.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:30 PM

Indigenous women allege priest abused them, and likely others

QUEBEC (CANADA)
CBC News

November 29, 2017

By Julia Page

Women made accusations during testimony at Quebec MMIWG hearings

Two women from Innu communities on Quebec's Lower North Shore say they were abused by a missionary more than 40 years ago, and that there are likely more victims.

The revelations came out during testimony at the national inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls (MMIWG) on Tuesday.

The hearings began in Whitehorse in May, and proceedings have taken place in British Columbia, Manitoba, Nova Scotia, Alberta and Saskatchewan so far. Hearings are scheduled for Thunder Bay, Ont., and Ranklin Inlet, Nunavut, next month, and Yellowknife in the new year.

Alexis Joveneau was a Belgian missionary working in Innu communities. He died in 1992 in the town of La Romaine, also known as Unman Shipu.

Mary Mark was living in Pakua Shipu, one of the last communities on the Saint Lawrence coast before the Labrador border, when she says she was first abused by Joveneau.

She said Joveneau asked her to sit on his lap and started touching her chest when she was at confessional.

"I am sure I wasn't the only one to live that kind of things; there were others," Mark said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:23 PM

November 28, 2017

Adelaide Archbishop Philip Wilson misses trial opening after having pacemaker installed, court hears

NEWCASTLE (AUSTRALIA)
The Advertiser

November 28, 2017

By Andrew Hough,

SOUTH Australia’s Catholic Archbishop Philip Wilson has been diagnosed with early-stage Alzheimer’s disease, on the eve of his landmark trial for allegedly concealing child sex abuse.

The Archbishop of Adelaide, 67, was due to begin the trial on Tuesday at Newcastle Local Court, charged with covering up sex abuse within the Catholic Church but he did not appear because of health problems, the court heard.

On Tuesday morning, the court heard he had a pacemaker installed last week amid concerns about his ailing health and that there are worries about his “cognitive capacities”.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:52 PM

Don’t Dismiss Abuse: People Matter More than Institutions and We Must Protect the Vulnerable and not the Abusers

UNITED STATES
Christianity Today

November 28, 2017

By Ed Stetzer

No more prioritizing institutional protection over individual needs

Unless we’ve been hiding in a box, most of us have started noticing a trend in our twitter feeds and daily news headlines: sexual harassment and assault have been running rampant. And it is far beyond Hollywood and Harvey Weinstein, though he seemed to open the floodgates.
It’s also happening in our nation’s halls of power.

The latest, Congressman John Conyers, is a member of the Democratic Party who chose to step down from his seat on the House Judiciary Committee after being accused of sexually harassing a female member of his staff several years ago.

It’s evident that partisan politics simply don’t matter here. When it comes to the mistreatment of women, men on both sides of the aisle are to blame. Women are trying to speak out against these abuses, but certain politicians seem eager to make this about party allegiance instead of victim protection.

This Sunday on NBC’s Meet the Press, House Minority leader Nancy Pelosi discounted the accusers in a widely-panned interview—an interview from which she quickly backtracked. But in the moment, instead of speaking out against sexual harassment, she decided to remark on the importance of due process and to pay compliments to Congressman Conyers, a member of her party, for all he’s done over the years to “protect women.”

Yes, it’s true. Unfortunately.

And if this sounds familiar, that’s because it is.

Many remember that after Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore was recently accused of child sexual assault, some (even most) Republicans were quick to condemn his alleged behavior. For that I am thankful.

President Trump recently came to his defense, repeatedly arguing to reporters that Moore was denying all the accusations. He also made a conscious effort to point out that the Senate does not need another “liberal person” like Moore’s opponent, Doug Jones, in office. And it appears that many voters may be swayed by this argument that the most important issue in play is holding onto majority control.

But that’s missing the point of this moment. It’s not about who is in the Senate. It’s about serious allegations that are credible.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:47 PM

Anglican pastors' wives in Australia open up about spousal abuse

AUSTRALIA
Christian Daily

November 28, 2017

By Lorraine Caballero

Anglican pastors' wives are breaking their silence on spousal abuse and have started to open up about their bad experiences with their clergy husbands with the help of a private online support group in New South Wales.

Some of the women who experienced spousal abuse at the hands of their priest husbands were part of the Moore Theological College in Sydney. When they opened up about their problem, they said several members of the clergy gave them support while others turned a blind eye on their plight, Patheos noted in a blog entry.

In addition, the blog pointed to the Anglican Church's extreme interpretation of Ephesians 5:22-24, a passage which instructs wives to submit to their husbands as their leader. However, the part that came after - which tells husbands to love their wives - was often left out.

Just last week, ABC reported that the hashtag #ChurchToo proliferated on social media after poet Emily Joy and religious trauma researcher Hannah Paasch started it to give abused women an avenue where they could share their experiences. The trend was sparked by the series of revelations of sexual abuse in Hollywood and in Washington.

Using the said hashtag, one woman shared on Twitter that her mother was one of the women who experienced spousal abuse and yet their pastor only gave them a green prayer cloth to be inserted in their husbands' pillows as a way to solve domestic violence. Another victim said she left a fundamental church after she was advised to stay in her abusive marriage.

Paasch told ABC News that she hoped the #ChurchToo trend they started would cause a "cultural and theological upheaval." She said abuse within the church continues to happen because of racist and misogynistic teaching, and because the people who were supposed to protect the victims have ignored the women's stories.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:45 PM

LOWELL GRISHAM: Abuse destroys trust

UNITED STATES
Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette

November 28, 2017

By Lowell Grisham

Systems often struggle to recognize misdeeds of the powerful

Our human relationships function within complex webs of power and dependency grounded in trust.

When I am sick, I go to my doctor. I trust him. I trust the power of his training and expertise. I also trust that he intends to serve my best interest to guard my health. In that regard, I am dependent upon him.

When my doctor has a spiritual anxiety or perplexity, he reaches out to me. I am his priest. He trusts me and my training and the symbolic power of ordination that I carry. He trusts that I intentionally serve his best interests to guard his spiritual well-being. In that sense, he is dependent upon me.

All of us entrust other people with power. We have a right to expect them to exercise that power for good. We are dependent upon them to do so. We willingly make ourselves vulnerable to their power.

Think of all the people whom we trust and the critical roles they fill in our lives: professionals like doctors, clergy and lawyers; caretakers and advisers; police officers, firefighters and military personnel; teachers, therapists, coaches, judges and elected officials. The list is long. Every part of society is interconnected by relationships of trust between those with particular power and authority and those who depend upon the faithful exercise of their trust.

When people who are in positions of power and trust abuse their positions and victimize the vulnerable, they damage the whole fabric of society. They destroy trust. Without trust and trustworthiness, community unravels.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:41 PM

Listen Up: There Is a Solution to the Sex Abuse and Harassment Epidemic Unfolding Before Your Eyes—And You Will Be Surprised at Who Must Step Up to Succeed

UNITED STATES
Verdict Justia

November 22, 2017

By Marci A. Hamilton

The list keeps growing of powerful men accused of sexual abuse, assault, or harassment. In historical order, just to name the headliners, Bill Clinton, Fr. Paul Shanley, Jerry Sandusky, Bill Cosby, Donald Trump, Harvey Weinstein, Roy Moore, Al Franken, John Conyers, and Charlie Rose have all faced accusations of this nature. Thank God. This is the moment that will change history, because the “kings” of our culture are being brought to the public square and revealed for what they are–craven abusers of power.

There has been intense media coverage but surprisingly little if any attention paid to the experts on sex abuse, assault and harassment, who could inject facts into the discourse. There is actually a science of child sex abuse and sex assault. Instead, there has been a lot of hand-wringing by those who do not labor in this vineyard, and over-politicization of the issues to the point that you can’t see what you need to see. When a cable news show staffs its “panel of experts” to discuss these cases solely with political reporters and pundits, they are missing the mark. Let’s start by putting some facts about sexual misconduct on the table.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:27 PM

Prete comasco accusato di abusi sessuali, la Curia: “Fare luce con determinazione”

ITALY
QuiBrianza News

November 24, 2017

[Google Translate: COMO - There continues to be a debate in the city of the comasco priest, destined for a community of the area, accused of sexual abuse in the Vatican in the pre-seminary of St. Pius X for the damage of the Pope's clerics.]

COMO – Si continua a discutere in città del sacerdote comasco, destinato a una comunità del territorio, accusato di abusi sessuali in Vaticano nel pre-seminario San Pio X ai danni dei chierichetti del Papa.

Una vicenda che, dopo alcuni anni di silenzio, era stata risollevata da “Le Iene”, che avevano intervistato anche Monsignor Oscar Cantoni, Vescovo di Como, al quale era spettato il compito di ordinare sacerdote il ragazzo.

Il clamore mediatico aveva portato il Vaticano a prendere posizione con una nota, così come lo stesso Monsignor Cantoni aveva pubblicato una lettera aperta ai fedeli per parlare della vicenda.

Ora è ancora la stessa Curia a tornare sull’argomento con una nuova presa di posizione finita sul sito ufficiale della diocesi. Uno scritto in cui si spiega che “i presunti fatti, denunciati a mezzo lettera nel 2013, in seguito agli accertamenti conclusi nel 2014 da parte di tutte le competenti sedi ecclesiastiche, erano stati ritenuti infondati e tutte le valutazioni sulla personalità del seminarista erano risultate positive. Tra la documentazione prodotta non risultava alcun parere negativo da parte delle persone a conoscenza della vicenda”.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:22 PM

More Than 180 Women Have Reported Sexual Assaults at Massage Envy

UNITED STATES
BuzzFeed

November 26, 2017

By Katie J.M. Baker

Across the US, people go to Massage Envy spas in search of a soothing, affordable escape. More than 180 people say what they got instead was sexual assault. But the billion-dollar company says that’s not its problem to solve. A BuzzFeed News investigation.

On May 2, 2015, Susan Ingram lay facedown in the dark at her local Massage Envy in West Chester, Pennsylvania, one of the franchise’s nearly 1,200 spas nationwide. It was her seventh session with James Deiter, a massage therapist whom the spa had enthusiastically recommended. By now, Ingram trusted Deiter, and she closed her eyes and relaxed as he worked her muscles. Then, without warning, Deiter ground his erect penis against Ingram’s body. He groped her breasts. He put his fingers in and out of her vagina.

Ingram lay there, frozen in fear and disbelief, until the session was over. After driving home sobbing, she called the spa to report the sexual assault. She was shocked when the manager refused to interrupt the session Deiter was having with a female client, Ingram said, or to connect Ingram with the spa’s owner.

“I said to her, ‘Nicole, he stuck his fingers in my vagina less than an hour ago,’” she later recounted in court. She begged the manager to get Deiter’s client out of the massage room immediately. “She said she could not do that, and she invited me in to talk about my services,” Ingram added.

Frustrated, Ingram called the police, who interviewed Deiter that afternoon. He quickly admitted to assaulting not just Ingram but other Massage Envy clients as well. “I need help,” he confessed. The next year, Deiter pleaded guilty to sexually molesting a total of nine women while working at Massage Envy from fall 2014 to spring 2015.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:09 PM

SNAP apologizes to accused priest as part of settlement

ST. LOUIS (MO)
The Associated Press

November 27, 2017

ST. LOUIS – A support group for victims of clergy abuse has apologized to a Roman Catholic priest who sued after child molestation charges against him were dropped and jurors in a separate lawsuit concerning the allegations sided with the China-born priest.

The Archdiocese of St. Louis on Monday disclosed the apology from the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, or SNAP.

"SNAP acknowledges that false claims of clergy sexual abuse injure those clerics falsely accused and the Roman Catholic Church," the group said. The group added that it apologized for "any false or inaccurate statements" related to the accusations against the Rev. Xiu Hui "Joseph" Jiang that "in any way disparaged" him, the archbishop and other archdiocese officials.

SNAP publicized accusations against Jiang after he was criminally charged in 2013 on accusations that he molested a 16-year-old eastern Missouri girl under a blanket. In an unrelated case two years later, he was charged in St. Louis on allegations that he abused a 13-year-old boy in a bathroom at the Cathedral Basilica elementary school. Charges in both cases were dropped without explanation.

The female accuser sued Jiang, but jurors sided with the priest in April. Jiang then sued the mother of the male accuser, along with SNAP and St. Louis police. SNAP was accused of defamation, while police were accused of botching the investigation.

SNAP confirmed Monday that the apology was included in a settlement in Jiang's lawsuit. Court records show the case was dismissed on Nov. 21, but no details about the settlement, including possible money damages, were included in the records.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:01 PM

Why priests can’t break the seal of confession, despite UK lawyers’ recommendation

LONDON (ENGLAND)
CNA/EWTN News

November 27, 2017

By Mary Rezac

Lawyers in the United Kingdom have recommended that mandatory reporting laws apply to priests in the confessional, in order to curb incidents of child sexual abuse.

The recommendation came during an investigation of Benedictine abbeys and their associated schools, after numerous victims came forward alleging clergy at the schools had committed acts of child sexual abuse.

Richard Scorer, a representative with the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA), said during a hearing that mandatory reporting laws should apply even to information bound by the seal of confession.

“A mandatory reporting law would have changed their behaviour,” Scorer said, according to The Guardian. “At Downside Abbey, abuse was discovered but not reported, and abusers were left to free to abuse again and great harm was done to victims.”

“The Catholic Church purports to be a moral beacon for others around it yet these clerical sex abuse cases profoundly undermine it … Why has the temptation to cover up abuse been particularly acute in organisations forming part of the Roman Catholic church?”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:58 AM

Philip Wilson: Adelaide Archbishop accused of covering up child sexual abuse has trial delayed

AUSTRALIA
Australian Broadcasting Corporation

November 28, 2017

By Giselle Wakatama and Kerrin Thomas

Australia's most senior Catholic Archbishop accused of covering up child sexual abuse has had his trial delayed because of medical issues.

Philip Wilson, the Archbishop of Adelaide, was due to front Newcastle Local Court today, but had a pacemaker fitted six days ago and remains in South Australia.

He was arrested two and a half years ago, and has tried, and failed, three times to permanently stay proceedings.

However, Archbishop Wilson's barrister Stephen Odgers today said his client was keen to have his day in court.

"I'm confident that the advice I've received is that one week is OK and he will be able to fly up here on Wednesday afternoon," Mr Odgers told the court.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:55 AM

Indian church guidelines tackle workplace sexual abuse

NEW DELHI (INDIA)
National Catholic Reporter

November 28, 2017

By Jose Kavi

NEW DELHI — Catholic dioceses and religious congregations in India are in the process of implementing a set of guidelines that the bishops' conference required when it released its sexual harassment policy for the workplace two months ago.

A 60-day checkpoint for setting up diocesan and congregation committees as the first stop for sexual harassment complaints passed on Nov. 14 without much progress, but response has also been slow to similar directives in a 2013 national law.

The "CBCI Guidelines to Deal with Sexual Harassment at Workplace" were released Sept. 14 by the Catholic Bishops' Conference of India amid demands from church groups for a policy to rein in increasing sexual abuse cases involving priests.

Though the 28-page document, which took two years to prepare, steers clear of mentioning priests, those demanding action against clergy abuse still find it a welcome step by the Indian church.

Astrid Lobo Gajiwala, a laywoman theologian and a founder and member of the Indian Christian Women's Movement, said publication of the much-awaited guidelines is a "cause of celebration" as the document fills "a critical lacuna in the church."

Gajiwala was among more than 100 theologians, women religious, priests and feminists who wrote to the bishops on March 22, a month after a Catholic priest was arrested for allegedly raping and impregnating a minor girl, his parishioner, in Kerala, southern India.

The new document sends "a strong message that the bishops mean business when it comes to zero tolerance of violence against women that they advocate in their Gender Policy," Gajiwala told NCR. She was referring to the "Gender Policy of the Catholic Church," which the Indian bishops' conference published in 2010.

Yet the sensitivity of the topic was evident in that bishops responsible for the policy deferred comment to a female secretary of the conference's Council for Women.

What the bishops have done in the new guidelines is to draw heavily from a 2013 national law on the same matter but also extend it to men and transgender people as possible victims of abuse.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:24 AM

'He was a monster': Alleged victim of priest Camille Leger explains why he's suing church

NEW BRUNSWICK (CANADA)
CBC News

November 28, 2017

By Gabrielle Fahmy

At least 32 civil suits before courts against Leger, and lawyer thinks they're ‘tip of the iceberg'

An alleged victim of priest Camille Leger says he chose to sue the Moncton archdiocese because the amount he was offered in the church-sponsored conciliation process couldn't compensate for the abuse that began when he was six.

Jean-Paul Melanson is one of at least 32 men who have filed civil lawsuits targeting Leger, since the church hired retired judge Michel Bastarache to lead an extensive and confidential conciliation process from 2012 to 2014.

"He was a monster for me now," said Melanson. "If you look at that, he was not a person. He was not normal at all."

Many of Leger's victims received compensation through that process, although the exact number is being kept confidential.

Some estimate the Cap Pelé priest could have abused hundreds of boys between 1957 and 1980, the years he served at the Sainte-Thérèse-d'Avila parish.

Now 51, Melanson took part in many church activities in the 1970s. He was an altar boy and a boy scout, both supervised by Leger. He said the children were aware of Leger's behaviour.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:21 AM

Opinion: #MeToo in Israel's ultra-Orthodox World

ISRAEL
Haaretz

November 24, 2017

By Esti Shoshan

Sharing these stories of rape and sexual molestation in Haredi circles is to help all the other victims, so that they know they are not alone or to blame

“The guy who attacked me sexually a number of times when I was 11 years old is a married ultra-Orthodox man. I was dressed with extreme modesty. After my bat mitzvah I visited them on Shabbat, and he asked his wife to go to bed and leave me with him. She shouted, ‘She’s a bat mitzvah! You can’t touch her anymore!’

“And why is it impossible to tell and to complain? Ninth-grade girls in a Bais Yaakov school can answer that. The homeroom teacher told them about a student who was attacked in the street and stayed home for a few days to recover. She went to visit her and told her, ‘It’s your fault!’ The student defended herself, after all she observes all the rules and wears very thick stockings. The teacher answered her, ‘Yes, but there’s something about you!’”

That’s what Racheli Bass, a married ultra-Orthodox woman and mother of three who provides emotional therapy and assistance to victims of sexual assault, writes me.

Not everyone is as courageous as Racheli, who agreed to reveal her horrible story. Women I turned to, who I knew had been attacked, said that it’s better to keep quiet, that they aren’t emotionally prepared for exposure. But here are a few real stories and statements – in some the identifying details have been changed at the request of the victims to preserve their safety and privacy – in response to an op-ed by Israel Cohen (“Learn from the ultra-Orthodox how to stop sexual harassment,” Haaretz.com, November 14) that denies the injustices, sexual attacks and harassment in Haredi society, and extols the policy of separation to prevent such behavior.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:16 AM

Opinion: No, Gender Segregation Doesn’t Prevent Sexual Abuse

ISRAEL
Haaretz

November 16, 2017

By Rivka Neriya-Ben Shahar

The numbers show that there’s no link between how women and men dress and any harm done to them. Such abuse occurs at every level of society, among Jews, Muslims and Christians

In his piece responding to Rafi Walden’s op-ed in which Walden opposes gender segregation, Israel Cohen suggests that secular Israelis have a lot to learn about respect for women from the ultra-Orthodox, or Haredi, community.

“At a time when more and more incidents of sexual harassment in various forms are coming to light, along with damning testimonies about men exploiting their positions of authority against women, the Haredi approach that insists on gender separation appears to make all the more sense,” Cohen writes. “The most efficient way to avoid a repeat of such grave occurrences is simply to prevent unnecessary mingling of the sexes.”

What a perfect solution! We’ll entirely divide society – women here, men there. We’ll dress everyone modestly and solve all our problems. After all, everyone knows that in ultra-Orthodox society, as in other religious communities, separation and modesty totally prevent sexual harassment and abuse.

Cohen adds: “The Haredi approach has proved itself. There are fewer cases of harassment and thus fewer complaints arising from the mingling of the sexes, which is avoided from the start.”

Is he relying on reported data? Has he spoken to young children, adolescents or men and women who’ve suffered sexual abuse or harassment inside or outside the Haredi community? Has he read the shocking testimony posted on the Lo Tishtok Facebook page, which provides a forum on sexual abuse in the Haredi community?

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:07 AM

Forty’ abusers at Catholic school

ENGLAND
The Times

November 28 2017

By Andrew Norfolk

Forty monks and teachers have been accused of sexually abusing boys at a leading Roman Catholic school that allegedly became a “honeypot” for offenders, it was revealed yesterday.

Reports of child sex offences at Ampleforth College in North Yorkshire were disclosed yesterday at a public hearing of an inquiry into the handling of abuse allegations by the Catholic church.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:05 AM

Children at top Catholic schools 'still at risk of abuse' despite years of work to remove predators and improve safeguarding

ENGLAND
The Daily Mail

November 27, 2017

By Josh White

- An inquiry is examining prevalence of paedophilia among Benedictine monks
- Focusing on schools: Ampleforth in North Yorkshire and Downside in Somerset
- Rape to voyeuristic beatings was inflicted on school pupils, hearing was told

Pupils at Roman Catholic schools could still be at risk of sexual abuse despite years of efforts to remove predators and improve child safeguarding, an inquiry heard yesterday.

The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) has begun examining the prevalence of paedophilia among Benedictine monks and failures to protect young people.

It is focusing on offenders who targeted children at two famous Catholic public schools, Ampleforth in North Yorkshire and Downside in Somerset, over many decades.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:20 AM

November 27, 2017

Clergy sex abuse case ending in settlement

FLAGSTAFF (AZ)
Gallup Independent

November 20, 2017

By Elizabeth Hardin-Burrola

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — The clergy sex abuse lawsuit against the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament and St. Michael Indian School is being settled, according to the attorney for the woman who filed the suit.

“The agreement has been finalized and the parties are waiting for the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament and St. Michaels Indian School to fulfill their promises under the agreement,” Phoenix attorney Robert E. Pastor said in an email Wednesday.

The lawsuit, which was filed in Coconino County Superior Court in 2015, centered on the childhood sexual molestation of the plaintiff, who filed the lawsuit as Jane L.S. Doe to protect her anonymity. The plaintiff, a member of the Navajo Nation, said she was abused by Brother Mark Schornack, OFM, when she was a student at St. Michael Indian School and Schornack, a Franciscan friar, was her bus driver.

Doe, along with another Navajo woman, had also filed abuse claims naming Schornack as a perpetrator in the Diocese of Gallup’s bankruptcy case. Those claims were approved by officials with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court. In April 2017, the Gallup Diocese announced Schornack’s name had been added to the diocese’s list of credibly accused child sex abusers.

The Doe lawsuit began to move forward once the Diocese of Gallup’s bankruptcy case was officially closed earlier this year. Attorneys in the case met with a mediator Oct. 10, and they were scheduled to report their progress to Judge Dan Slayton in an upcoming hearing Dec. 11.

However, Peter C. Kelly II, the Phoenix attorney who represents the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament and St. Michael Indian School, filed a notice of settlement Oct. 27.

When contacted last week, Kelly and officials with the Sisters’ religious order declined to answer questions about the monetary settlement.

Pastor, however, said the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament had insisted the settlement provisions be kept confidential.

“Unfortunately, as a condition of this settlement,” he said, “St. Michaels Indian School and the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament required confidentiality.”

Pastor was asked if his client was satisfied with the settlement agreement.

“I do not believe victims of sexual abuse experience satisfaction when sexual abuse lawsuits are settled,” he said. “Nothing can ever be said or done to repair the scars caused by clergy sexual abuse. By resolving cases like this one, however, we hope it offers survivors of clergy sexual abuse some sense of closure and some sense of validation that the perpetrator is a confirmed sex offender who was allowed to prey upon innocent children.”

The Jane L.S. Doe case is believed to be the last clergy sex abuse lawsuit publicly filed against either the Diocese of Gallup or a Catholic entity operating within the Gallup Diocese.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:58 PM

Group therapy sessions for priests affected by church abuse scandals

IRELAND
The Times

November 27, 2017

By Nick Bramhill

Priests suffering from anxiety and stress caused by a string of abuse scandals in the Catholic Church will take part in a healing circle tomorrow.

At least ten priests from the Munster region will attend an initial group therapy session in Ovens, Co Cork. The Association of Catholic Priests, which organised the workshop, said that the event could be the first of many across the country if there was strong demand from members of the clergy.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:11 PM

Catholic church school pupils could still be at risk of abuse, inquiry told

ENGLAND
The Mail

November 27, 2017

Children at Roman Catholic church schools could still be "at risk" of sexual abuse despite years of efforts to root out predators, an inquiry has heard.

The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) is examining the prevalence of paedophilia in the English Benedictine Congregation and failures in protecting young people.

This will focus on offenders that targeted children at two Roman Catholic schools, Ampleforth in North Yorkshire and Downside in Somerset, over the course of many decades.

But although numerous inquiries have exposed the problem of child abuse within church institutions and a string of offenders convicted, lingering safety concerns could remain, it was heard.

Counsel to the inquiry Riel Karmy-Jones told a hearing at IICSA's headquarters in south London: "It may be that during the course of evidence and the submissions to come (that) there is some acceptance of failings, but reliance will be placed on changes that have been made over the years.

"But, as you will hear, concerns remain and you are likely to hear evidence that suggests safeguarding problems are still ongoing, in some instances, and with the inevitable result that children may remain at risk."

The Roman Catholic Church is one of 13 arms of public life being scrutinised for child safety failings by IICSA.

Turning a blind eye to paedophilia should be made a criminal offence so Church institutions are discouraged from hushing up scandals, a victims' lawyer said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:09 PM

End secrecy of confessionals 'to protect Catholic children'

ENGLAND
The Guardian

November 27, 2017

By Owen Bowcott

Child sexual abuse inquiry is told that not reporting suspected incidents should be a crime

Mandatory reporting of sexual misconduct and abolishing the secrecy of the priest’s confessional box are needed to protect children at Catholic schools, the national inquiry into child sexual abuse has been told.

At the opening of a three-week hearing into Benedictine schools, lawyers representing scores of victims have called for fundamental changes to the way the church handles complaints and deals with suspected offenders.

Richard Scorer, of the law firm Slater and Gordon, who represents 27 core participants at the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA), said the failure to make reporting suspected abuse a crime had allowed clerics to evade responsibility.

“A mandatory reporting law would have changed their behaviour,” Scorer told the hearing. “At Downside Abbey, abuse was discovered but not reported and abusers were left to free to abuse again and great harm was done to victims.

“The Catholic church purports to be a moral beacon for others around it yet these clerical sex abuse cases profoundly undermine it … Why has the temptation to cover up abuse been particularly acute in organisations forming part of the Roman Catholic church?”

David Enright, a solicitor at Howe and Co who represents more than a dozen former schoolboys from a Catholic Comboni missionary school – run by an order founded in Italy in the 1860s – said there were more than a million children attending Catholic-run educational institutions in the UK.

One former abuser at the Comboni school had not been punished but moved elsewhere after complaints and eventually became a Scouts commissioner in Uganda, Enright revealed. Removing the privileges of priestly confession would help change attitudes, he suggested.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:49 PM

2 Years On, Hebda Speaks About Work Done, Work Left to Do in Archdiocese

SAINT PAUL AND MINNEAPOLIS
KSTP-TV

November 26, 2017

By Bill Lunn

On a recent Sunday morning in Lakeville, parishioners at All Saints Catholic Church celebrated the church's 140th anniversary with a special guest: Archbishop Bernard Hebda. At the event, Hebda charmed the congregation with his self-effacing humor.

"It was pretty obvious I was going to have to adjust the microphone after the deacon," Hebda said, making fun of his shorter, rounder frame.

Hebda visits a new Church nearly every Sunday as part of his mission to reform the archdiocese. The Harvard-educated Hebda was chosen by the Vatican and installed as archbishop in 2016. He was tasked with healing wounds caused by the priest sex abuse scandal that forced the archdiocese into bankruptcy.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:42 PM

Trial begins for Catholic archbishop accused of protecting pedophile priest

AUSTRALIA
The Australian

November 28, 2017

By Sam Buckingham-Jones

The most senior Catholic cleric in the world to be charged with concealing the child-sex-abuse offences of another priest will face a two-week hearing starting today.

In what is seen as a test case for the potential prosecution of others accused of not disclosing such crimes, the Archbishop of Adelaide, Philip Edward Wilson, faces up to two years in jail if convicted of “concealing a serious indictable offence”.

It is alleged the 67-year-old had information he knew or believed about Hunter Valley priest James Fletcher that he failed to pass on to investigating police between April 22, 2004, when Fletcher was charged with child sex offences, and July 7, 2006, when Fletcher died in jail. Prosecutors say Archbishop Wilson, a former president of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference, knew Fletcher had abused a 10-year-old boy in 1971 but failed to notify police. He has denied the allegation.

Since he was charged in March 2015, Archbishop Wilson has made three attempts to have the charge against him dismissed or permanently stayed. In February last year, a magistrate refused to quash the allegations. Then in the NSW Supreme Court, Archbishop Wilson’s lawyers argued the evidence gathered by police was capable of establishing only that he had received the allegations — there was no evidence the Archbishop believed them, meaning he did not have the legal responsibility to report them to police.

Judge Monika Schmidt rejected that argument, saying she was “satisfied that the inferences capable of being drawn from all of that evidence, if accepted, include that the archbishop held the alleged belief.”

NSW Court of Appeal judges John Basten, Tony Meagher, and Chief Justice Tom Bathurst dismissed Archbishop Wilson’s attempt to challenge Justice Schmidt’s decision in June.

“I agree with the primary judge’s conclusion that the predicate offence which it is alleged Father Fletcher had committed was at all relevant times between 2004 and 2006 a ‘serious indictable offence’ for the purposes of the Crimes Act,” Justice Meagher wrote.

Archbishop Wilson initially stood aside in March 2015 but resumed his role early last year as the legal battle continued. He will be represented by barrister Stephen Odgers SC and Adelaide firm Iles Selley, while the prosecution will be managed by the NSW Department of Public Prosecutions.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:14 AM

Ruling delayed on custody conditions for ex-priest Daniel McCormack

CHICAGO
Chicago Sun Times

November 25, 2017

By Andy Grimm

A former Chicago priest convicted of molesting children will have to wait a little longer to see if he will be locked down indefinitely at a state facility for sex offenders.

The fate of Daniel McCormack was to be decided Monday. But Friday evening, the office of Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan said a decision has been delayed, though Monday’s hearing will go on. At that hearing, a new date for ruling on McCormack’s fate will be set.

McCormack already has served out a five-year sentence for molesting five boys at his West Side parish more than a decade ago, and has been held at a state facility for sex offenders in Rushville while awaiting a ruling on whether he could be released. Judge Dennis Porter ruled in September that McCormack was a “sexually violent person” who was likely to molest children again if released, and is set to decide whether McCormack will stay at Rushville.

A three-day bench trial in September featured testimony from psychologists who split on whether McCormack was a threat to harm children again. Making his ruling then, Porter did not seem inclined to let McCormack out of Rushville.

“I have to say, Mr. McCormack, that every one of those dynamic risk factors pushes you up the scale” as a likely offender, Porter said in September. “I have no reasonable doubt that you will engage in future acts of sexual violence.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:12 AM

Allegations of sexual abuse at Granby school subject of class-action lawsuit

GRANBY (CANADA)
CTV Montreal

November 26, 2017

By Lindsay Richardson

A judge has authorized a class action lawsuit against the College Mont Sacre Coeur in Granby.

The suit alleges the sexual abuse and mistreatment of more than 70 students at the school, by priests, over a span of 70 years.

When the law firm initially filed the request for class action, more alleged victims stepped forward.

The number of suspects has grown from one priest to 11, and the firm is hoping that more victims will step forward in the coming weeks.

Lawyer Robert Kugler alleges the instances of abuse can be traced back to the school’s founding in 1932, and may have continued until 2008, when the Brothers of the Sacred Heart ceased managing it.

Constructed in the midst of the Great Depression, College Mont Sacre Coeur's website boasts its intent, at the time, to be a "beacon of hope" for young boys and men looking to attend school and eventually join the clergy.

One of the victims, a man in his 50’s, endured sexual abuse on more than 300 occasions by a man working as a dormitory supervisor.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:08 AM

No admission: Inside story on Salvation Army sex abuse settlement

AUSTRALIA
The Sydney Morning Herald

November 26, 2017

By Richard Baker and Nick McKenzie

When Merrin Wake first met a legally-trained senior Salvation Army leader and the church's lawyer to report her alleged childhood sexual abuse by five men within the church, she went away feeling like she had not been believed.

Months later, after several more meetings in the Collins Street office of the Salvation Army's law firm, Ms Wake settled her case with a substantial out-of-court payment.

But the deed of release prepared by the Salvation Army's law firm made it clear the church was making no admissions by settling.

For Ms Wake, there would be no official acknowledgement of whether the Salvation Army accepted her allegations that from the age of three until her early teens she encountered abuse ranging from inappropriate touching to rape.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:04 AM

'We have a serious problem': Baptist Church apologises to domestic violence victims

AUSTRALIA
Australian Broadcasting Corporation

November 27, 2017

By Hayley Gleeson

The national body of the Baptist Church in Australia has formally apologised to victims of domestic violence who it says have been let down by churches' "ignorance" and "failure" to care for abused congregants.

As women begin to publicly tell their stories of domestic abuse for the first time, Baptist leaders have called for recognition "that we have a serious problem with domestic and sexual violence in churches", and momentum is growing for significant cultural change across Australian denominations.

On Monday, Common Grace, a group of 35,000 Australian Christians from different denominations, published an educational resource, called Safer, calling on the church to "collectively and loudly cry 'no more'".

In it they write: "In recent years, the Australian media has shone a spotlight on violence within the home. Communities have rallied to the cause.

"But many church members have not yet been able to wrestle with the idea that they are likely to have victims — and abusers — sitting next to them in Sunday services."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:00 AM

North Yorkshire Police gives evidence to church child sex abuse inquiry

ENGLAND
The Yorkshire Post

November 27, 2017

By Ben Barnett

North Yorkshire Police is due to give evidence to an independent inquiry into allegations of child sexual abuse in the Roman Catholic Church, which starts today.

The inquiry’s first public hearings are being held in London and will continue until December 15.

The inquiry seeks to assess how institutions and organisations in England and Wales have taken seriously their responsibility to protect children and the first case study will examine the English Benedictine Congregation which has been the subject of numerous allegations of child sexual abuse, including at schools run by the Congregation.

The hearings will examine the relationship between orders such as the Benedictines and the Catholic Church in England and Wales and consider how that relationship impacts on child protection.

It will also evaluate whether any failings identified within the English Benedictine Congregation, and within any other case studies identified as part of the investigation, are representative of wider failings within the Catholic Church.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:56 AM

The American Dream’s outcry against sexual violence

KENYA
Daily Nation

November 26, 2017

By Muthoni Thang'wa

In Summary
- Sex scandals, which involve inappropriate behaviour and sometimes sexual acts, are jumping out of every nook, crook and cranny in the glamorous world of entertainment and politics.
- Looking at the Kenyan situation, cases are reported across the board: Members of Parliament, priests, pastors, fathers, uncles, and jobless youth.
- In India, it was the case of Jyoti Singh, a medical student who died 13 days after a grievous attack in a bus.

Kenya recently celebrated the unprecedented entry of women governors onto the political scene.

Whereas this should have served as an indication that the world, and gender-assigned roles have changed dramatically, women still face numerous human rights challenges globally, as reported in the media.

There is a campaign going on, mainly in the United States, called #metoo. It involves women in various walks of life admitting that they have been raped or sexually harassed in the past.

In some ways, the reports paint a desperate situation in the way women are treated with regard to sexuality. Human rights advocates would have had the world believe that minorities and marginalised women in society are the most vulnerable in regard to sexual abuses.

The current campaign however, debunks this myth. Sex scandals, which involve inappropriate behaviour and sometimes sexual acts, are jumping out of every nook, crook and cranny in the glamorous world of entertainment and politics.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:53 AM

Catholic officials threaten legal action against former altar boys over sexual misconduct allegations

ITALY
The Christian Times

November 27, 2017

By Jardine Malado

Catholic officials in Italy are threatening to file criminal defamation charges against former altar boys after they accused an older seminarian of sexually assaulting them while living in the Vatican.

The Associated Press (AP) reported that the accusations involve a former seminarian who is now serving as a priest in the diocese of Como and a member of the Don Folci association, which runs the St. Pius X preseminary in a palazzo just steps away from where Pope Francis lives.

An ex-student, identified only as "Marco," claimed that the seminarian would come into his room at night demanding oral sex, beginning when was only 13 years old and continuing until he reached the age of 18.

In an interview with reporter Gaetano Pecoraro, Marco said that the seminarian was a year older than him and held a position of authority over other students.

Marco's roommate, Kamil Jarzembowski, claimed to have witnessed dozens of such incidents and had complained about them to seminary officials, before bringing it to the attention of cardinals, and ultimately Pope Francis in 2014.

Church officials said that the claims have been proven to be false following internal church investigations, although the boys in question were initially not interviewed.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:30 AM

November 26, 2017

Trial Starting for Ex-Priest, 84, for Woman's 1960 Killing

EDINBURG (TX)
Associated Press via US News and World Report

November 26, 2017

An 84-year-old former Catholic priest goes on trial this week for the slaying of a South Texas teacher and ex-beauty queen 57 years ago.

An 84-year-old former Catholic priest goes on trial this week for the slaying of a South Texas teacher and ex-beauty queen 57 years ago.

Jury selection is set to begin Monday in Hidalgo County in the case of John Feit, who's accused of the April 1960 beating and suffocation of 25-year-old Irene Garza. She was found dead in a canal five days after going to a McAllen church for confession.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 1:13 PM

All eyes on county as decades-old case finally set for trial: National media coverage underscores interest in ‘60s murder case

McALLEN (TX)
The Monitor

November 25, 2017

By Lorenzo Zazueta-Castro

Edinburg - The nearly 60-year saga in the death of a schoolteacher and beauty queen is expected to reach its conclusion by the end of the year as the former priest accused with her murder finally faces a jury.

This time around the hyper-local media coverage and focus will be accompanied by a national media presence, with outlets like CBS’ “48 Hours,” and CNN, expected to cover the trial gavel-to-gavel as jury selection begins tomorrow.

From the time the Hidalgo County District Attorney, who ran a campaign two years earlier in part on “getting justice” for the slain woman’s family, announced in February 2016 that a grand jury had declared there was enough evidence to charge former priest John Bernard Feit with the 1960 murder of Irene Garza, the media coverage of the decades-old case went into overdrive.

Such is expected as the beginning of Feit’s long-awaited trial is set to begin this week with jury selection and the beginning of opening arguments set for the end of the week.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 12:44 PM

In Australia, Anglican Pastors’ Wives Are Speaking Out Against Spousal Abuse

ENGELWOOD (CO)
Patheos

November 25, 2017

By Sarabeth Caplin

Leaving an abusive spouse is never easy, but it’s especially difficult when your abuser is an Anglican priest and divorce (for any reason) is condemned by your congregation.

Anglican women in Australia are starting to speak up about the abuse they’ve endured at the hands of their priest husbands, the lack of support they have faced in their communities, and their struggles to rebuild their lives. One “safe space” to share their stories is in an online support group:

Jane is part of a private online support group of Anglican clergy wives in New South Wales who were abused by their husbands.

What stunned them when they first met for dinner were two things. First, how many of them there were, and how common and continuing this problem seemed to be.

Several had been part of Moore Theological College in Sydney — the training seminary of the Anglican Diocese of Sydney — when their husbands studied to be priests. All had mixed experiences with the church after disclosing their abuse: some clergy had supported them and pleaded their cases, while others ignored them.

All had disappointing or bruising experiences with a senior church leader when they asked for help.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 7:29 AM

When Sexual Assault Victims Are Charged with Lying

NEW YORK (NY)
New York Times

November 24, 2017

By Ken Armstrong and T. Christian Miller

The women accusing the Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore of sexual misconduct have faced doubt and derision. Other women, who have alleged sexual assault or harassment by powerful men in Hollywood, Silicon Valley and elsewhere, have become targets for online abuse or had their careers threatened. Harvey Weinstein went so far as to hire ex-Mossad operatives to investigate the personal history of the actress Rose McGowan, to discourage her from publicly accusing him of rape.

There are many reasons for women to think twice about reporting sexual assault. But one potential consequence looms especially large: They may also be prosecuted.

This month, a retired police lieutenant in Memphis, Tenn., Cody Wilkerson, testified, as part of a lawsuit against the city, not only that police detectives sometimes neglected to investigate cases of sexual assault but also that he overheard the head of investigative services in the city’s police department say, on his first day in charge: “The first thing we need to do is start locking up more victims for false reporting.” It’s an alarming choice of priorities — and one that can backfire.

In 2015 we wrote an article for ProPublica and the Marshall Project about Marie, an 18-year-old who reported being raped in Lynnwood, Wash., by a man who broke into her apartment. (Marie is her middle name.) Police detectives treated small inconsistencies in her account — common among trauma victims — as major discrepancies. Instead of interviewing her as a victim, they interrogated her as a suspect. Under pressure, Marie eventually recanted — and was charged with false reporting, punishable by up to a year in jail. The court ordered her to pay $500 in court costs, get mental health counseling for her lying and go on supervised probation for one year. More than two years later, the police in Colorado arrested a serial rapist — and discovered a photograph proving he had raped Marie.

What happened to Marie seemed unthinkable. She was victimized twice — first raped, then prosecuted. But cases like hers can be found around the country. In 1997, a legally blind woman reported being raped at knife point in Madison, Wis. That same year, a pregnant 16-year-old reported being raped in New York City. In 2004, a 19-year-old reported being sexually assaulted at gunpoint in Cranberry Township, Pa.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 7:17 AM

Former Archbishop of Canterbury could face police probe into whether he broke the law by covering up for a paedophile bishop

LONDON (ENGLAND)
Daily Mail

November 25, 2017

By Jonathan Petre

The former Archbishop of Canterbury, Lord Carey, could face a police investigation into whether he broke the law by covering up for a paedophile bishop.

Officers are understood to be considering a formal inquiry to determine whether the former leader of the Church of England and other senior church officials should face criminal charges over their failure to pass on sex abuse complaints made against ex-bishop Peter Ball.

Such an investigation would be highly controversial and may involve 82-year-old Lord Carey being interviewed under caution.

Sources say police are collecting evidence and scrutinising a scathing Church of England report commissioned by the current Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby.

It concludes that senior church figures ‘colluded’ to protect Ball and says the decision by Lambeth Palace not to pass the complaints to police ‘must give rise to a perception of deliberate concealment’.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 7:11 AM

Court denies appeal of former high school priest in prison for sex abuse

ANN ARBOR (MI)
MLive

November 25, 2017

By Danielle Salisbury

Jackson MI - A former Lumen Christ High School priest and convicted child predator contends charges brought against him in 2015 were barred by the statute of limitations and should have been dismissed.

The Court of Appeals in November rejected this and other arguments, assuring James Rapp, barring a successful higher court appeal, will continue serving 20 to 40 years in prison for first- and second-degree criminal sexual conduct.

Rapp, now 77, was accused of molesting boys from Aug. 1, 1981 to Feb. 28, 1986 while he worked at the high school, serving as a teacher, maintenance supervisor and wrestling coach. He was not charged with any related offenses until decades later, in May 2015, which far exceeded the applicable six-year statute of limitations.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 7:07 AM

November 25, 2017

Jury Process Begins in Ex-Priest’s Cold-Case Murder Trial

PASADENA (CA)
Courthouse News Service

November 15, 2017

By Erik De La Garza

[Note: See also 57 Years After Young Teacher’s Murder, Former Priest Faces Trial, by Erik De La Garza]

Edinburg TX – Hundreds of potential jurors streamed through a South Texas courthouse auditorium Tuesday for the trial of a former Catholic priest charged with the 1960 murder of a local beauty queen, his former parishioner.

It’s been a long, slow road to trial for 84-year-old John Feit, whose cold-case murder trial has been delayed at least twice this year.

Feit emerged as the prime suspect in the Easter weekend rape and murder of McAllen schoolteacher Irene Garza in 1960, but was not charged until 56 years later, when a new district attorney launched a fresh investigation.

Feit’s attorneys on Monday asked Hidalgo County Judge Luis Singleterry to exclude Garza’s autopsy from trial because the two medical examiners who conducted it are not among the two dozen witnesses state prosecutors will call to testify.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 11:51 AM

Vatican investigating abuse at pre-seminary

KANSAS CITY (MO)
Catholic News Service via National Catholic Reporter

November 20, 2017

By Cindy Wooden

The Vatican announced it had launched a new investigation into reports about sexual abuse in a pre-seminary for young adolescents run by the Diocese of Como, Italy, but located inside the Vatican.

Greg Burke, Vatican spokesman, issued a statement Nov. 18 saying that beginning in 2013 when "some reports, anonymous and not," were made, staff of the St. Pius X Pre-Seminary and the bishop of Como both conducted investigations.

"Adequate confirmation was not found" regarding the allegations, which involved students and not staff. Some of the students already had left the pre-seminary when the first investigations were carried out, the statement said.

However, "in consideration of new elements that recently emerged, a new investigation is underway to shed full light on what really happened," the statement said.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 11:46 AM

Priest accused of sex abuse in UK also served in Cork

CORK (IRELAND)
The Examiner

November 25, 2017

By Noel Baker

A deceased priest who served for many years in Cork has been named as an alleged child sex abuser in the UK.

It is alleged that Fr Thomas Heley abused young boys in the Catholic parish of Ss Alban and Stephen in Hertfordshire in the late 1970s. The Irish Examiner has since been made aware of allegations of abuse against Fr Heley while he was in Cork, made not long before he moved to the UK.

A member of the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart, Fr Heley worked in Cork through the 50s and into the 70s. Last weekend the parish in St Albans published a notice on its website which stated: “we have received historic allegations, dating back several decades, that one of our priests based here in St Alban sexually abused some young people”. The notice did not name the priest but said the person against whom the allegations had been made had died several years ago and both the Hertfordshire Police and the Archdiocese had been informed of the allegations.

On Thursday the Herts Advertiser newspaper named Fr Thomas Heley as the alleged abuser, quoting one unnamed victim: “I feel I have not been able to lead the life that I could have had, which deeply saddens me and my family”. The mother of another victim was also quoted.

A Hertfordshire Police spokesperson confirmed it had received a third party report of alleged abuse. However, it said that since the suspect was deceased “there are no lawful lines of enquiry that we can pursue”.

In response to detailed questions from this paper, the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart confirmed that it had received allegations relating to Fr Heley’s time in the UK but did not respond to questions as to whether any allegations had ever been lodged with respect to his time serving in Cork.

The Irish Examiner has since been made aware of at least one case involving two boys and in which it is claimed the MSC was contacted about the allegations at the time by a parent.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 11:41 AM

New stance needed on sex abuse within IRA

LONDON (ENGLAND)
The Times

November 25 2017

By Liam Fay

Sinn Féin defended the covering up of rape claims; its new leaders must prove they are not guilty of double standards

Contrary to what many evidently believe, there is no guarantee that the international scandal about sexual abuse and harassment will result in lasting social change. The outing of abusers is a big leap forward — but advances are often followed by reversals.

In the worst scenario, the predicted shift in attitudes will turn out to be nothing more than a blip. If you want an illustration of the speed and ease with which this can happen, look no further than Sinn Féin, a party that closed ranks when confronted with uncomfortable truths about its recent past.

Only three years ago, Sinn Féin was at the centre of a storm over allegations of a systematic cover-up of sex crimes within what’s known as the republican family. Courageous survivors came forward with sickening accounts of child rape and molestation.

Many of the most heinous acts were perpetrated by IRA members, powerful and feared individuals who behaved as though a licence for sexual rampage was a perk of the job. The public was also presented with a woefully inadequate response by a republican leadership more committed to avoiding bad publicity than protecting children.

Today, many of Sinn Féin’s top brass behave as though the revelations of a few years ago never took place. The party’s representatives are particularly aggressive in their apparent determination to shoot down any public mention of the concerted suppression of sex crime allegations by republican leaders. Whenever a political opponent dares to raise the subject, Sinn Féin’s reaction ranges from merely belligerent to the downright hysterical.

Sexual abuse seems to have been rife within the republican movement for decades. Sexual abuse is, of course, a corrupting feature of life in all sectors of society but the trauma inflicted on victims was greatly exacerbated by the peculiar circumstances of the Troubles. Engagement of any kind with the RUC was forcefully discouraged within nationalist areas so sex crimes were seldom reported.

In keeping with the grotesque pretence that the IRA served as “protectors” of the Catholic community, the organisation’s commanders conducted their own investigations into abuse allegations. These “investigations” were actually exercises in concealment. Offenders were moved around or told to lie low. Survivors were intimidated into silence. Gerry Adams, who became Sinn Féin president in 1983, was familiar with the way things were. His late father, Gerry Adams Sr, subjected family members to emotional, physical and sexual abuse over many years.

The elder Adams had been a revered figure in republican circles since the 1940s. He died in 2003 and was buried with the IRA’s version of full military honours, including a coffin draped in the tricolour. Gerry Adams did not speak publicly about the abuse until 2009, when the media revealed that his brother was facing allegations. Liam Adams is serving a 16-year sentence for sexually assaulting his daughter Aine who waived her right to anonymity. The abuse was carried out between 1977 and 1983 when Aine was aged between four and nine.

We learnt a great deal more about the attitude of senior Sinn Féiners to sexual abuse in 2014 when Máiría Cahill went public on the BBC’s Spotlight programme. Ms Cahill, a member of a well-known republican family, told how she had been repeatedly raped during her teens by an IRA man. She also revealed details of the IRA’s investigation and the kangaroo court she was forced to attend, along with the rapist.

Ms Cahill was extremely critical of Gerry Adams’s handling of her allegations. She recalled meetings with the Sinn Féin president at which, she said, he gave her assurances that he subsequently failed to honour.

Mr Adams denied any suggestion that he conspired in a cover-up. Prominent Sinn Féin members, from north and south, queued up to express support for his position. “I believe Gerry,” they chanted, in disconcerting harmony.

The closing weeks of 2014 were a torrid time for the party, as pressure mounted over what its leaders knew. Mr Adams was accused of failing to provide to the authorities information about abusers. In response, he supplied a list naming 27 alleged sex offenders to the gardaí. By way of explaining how the list had come into his possession, he said it had been posted through the letterbox of his Belfast home by an anonymous caller.

Last weekend, at the Sinn Féin ard fheis, Mr Adams announced that he would not be contesting the next general election and would step down as party president early next year.

He did so with a jubilant speech which presented a typically sanitised account of the IRA’s role in the Northern Ireland conflict. The abuse scandals weren’t mentioned. Somewhat more surprising was the absence of any reference to these episodes in the ensuing TV and radio analysis of Mr Adams’s life and career. Already, it seems, the IRA and its abuse scandals have been reduced to a footnote.

Mary Lou McDonald, Sinn Féin’s deputy leader, is almost certain to become his successor. She has none of the baggage associated with armed republicanism and, for many, represents a clean break with the dark past embodied by Mr Adams. But, in order to fully vindicate this billing, she will have to distance herself from the toxic attitudes to sexual abuse that were also a trademark of former times.

Ms McDonald has made it clear that she does not condone the IRA’s involvement in kangaroo courts — but, at the height of the controversy over Ms Cahill’s allegations, she sought to justify the republican leadership’s behaviour on the grounds that it was operating in a divided society, without access to what she called “non-political policing”. Ms McDonald’s willingness to make such allowances stands in stark contrast to her trenchant and remorseless denunciations of others who have sought to play down or cover up sex crimes.

All of this leaves her vulnerable to accusations of double standards, especially in the current climate. It also demonstrates the extent to which, even with a new leader, Sinn Féin’s dark past will continue to cast a long shadow.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 11:36 AM

November 24, 2017

Ottawa-based priest suspended after being named in sex-abuse lawsuit

TORONTO (ONTARIO, CANADA)
Canadian Press, carried in the Toronto Star

November 23, 2017

By Sidhartha Banerjee

The lawsuit was filed on behalf of students who were allegedly abused while attending a Catholic boarding school in Quebec.

An Ottawa-based priest has been suspended after being named in a $2-million sex-abuse lawsuit filed on behalf of students who attended a Catholic boarding school in Quebec’s Eastern Townships.

The motion seeking permission for the class action to proceed was filed on behalf of those who were allegedly abused while attending Collège Servite, a school in Ayer’s Cliff that was previously run by members of the Servite Order.

The application still requires the authorization of a judge in Sherbrooke, Que.

The lead plaintiff in the case, an unnamed 57-year-old man identified in court documents as X, accuses Father Jacques Desgrandchamps of abusing him between 1973 and 1975.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 12:08 PM

Priest jailed for sexual abuse campaign on boy will be allowed to appeal conviction

LIVERPOOL (ENGLAND)
Liverpool Echo

November 22, 2017

A priest who was jailed for 17 years after he was convicted of a campaign of sexual abuse of a teenage boy today won the first stage of his fight to clear his name.

Michael Higginbottom, 74, allegedly subjected the boy to repeated sex assaults while he was working as a teacher at a seminary in Lancashire in the 1970s.

The Catholic clergyman was accused of abusing the youngster in his living quarters at St Joseph's College, in Upholland, near Skelmersdale.

He was convicted at Liverpool Crown Court of eight serious sex crimes in April and jailed for 17 years.

But Higginbottom, of West Farm Road, Walker, Newcastle, continues to claim innocence and was today granted the right to an appeal by the UK's top judge.

A Court of Appeal panel, led by lord chief justice, Lord Burnett, said Higginbottom has an "arguable" case that his convictions should be quashed.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 12:01 PM

Caldey Island monk abuse scandal grows as more alleged victims come forward

CARDIFF (WALES)
Wales Online

November 23, 2017

Police are investigating further reports of sexual abuse by a monk and another man on Caldey Island more than 30 years ago.

There have been several reports about offences committed by Father Thaddeus Kotik on the island off the Pembrokeshire coast between 1977 and 1987.

Court documents seen by The Guardian say Kotik committed offences against the six girls between 1972 and1987.

The women have now launched civil proceedings against the Cistercian order, claiming personal injuries.

Dyfed Powys Police say they have now received two further reports of non-recent sexual abuse.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 11:56 AM

Caldey abbot apologises over failure to report abuse allegations

LONDON (ENGLAND)
Catholic Herald

November 23, 2017

The abbot of Caldey has said he is “truly sorry” that allegations of child sexual abuse made against a monk were not passed on to police.

Daniel van Santvoort acknowledged that allegations made against Fr Thaddeus Kotik should have been reported to authorities, and apologised for any harm caused to alleged victims.

The monk, who died in 1992, allegedly abused at least nine children during the 1970s and 80s. He was a member of the Trappist community that is situated on the island of Caldey, off the coast of southern Wales.

Abbot van Santvoort said in a statement on the island’s Facebook page that the community felt “great sadness and regret”.

“Any allegations of child abuse should be reported to the appropriate authorities and investigated,” he said. “This clearly did not happen and we apologise.”

“The claimed abuses took place between 1971 and 1987. At this time, the present Caldey Abbey community was not on the island, a fact which exacerbated the difficulties of the claims,” he added.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 11:52 AM

Blackfriars Priory School to redesign 'suggestive' statue of saint and child after online ridicule

SYDNEY (AUSTRALIA)
ABC News

November 22, 2017

By Daniel Keane

An Adelaide Catholic school has covered up a statue of a religious icon after it created a stir on social media because of its apparently unintended suggestiveness.

The statue was recently installed at Blackfriars Priory School in Prospect and depicts a 16th century saint handing a bread loaf to a child's outstretched hand.

But, as numerous online commentators have pointed out, the effect is somewhat different.

In the past 12 years, at least two former Blackfriars teachers — Stephen John Stockdale-Hall and Ronald William Hopkins — have been jailed for sexually abusing students at the school.

On Wednesday the school said the design of its new statue looked fine on paper but acknowledged it could be interpreted in a more sinister way.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 11:44 AM

Rock, papers, sniggers: Unfortunate saint statue makes headlines around the world

ADELAIDE (SOUTH AUSTRALIA)
The Advertiser

November 23, 2017

By Erin Jones

[Note: See also the Facebook post by Simon Cobiac, the school's principal.]

It was made in Vietnam, pays homage to a Peruvian saint, and caused a storm in Adelaide.

Now the unfortunately “suggestive” statue of St Martin de Porres at Blackfriars Priory School is making headlines across the globe.

BBC News, The New York Post, Washington Post and The Guardian are among the international outlets to have picked up the story in The Advertiser this week.

Buzzfeed ran the headline: “This School Had To Get Rid Of A Statue Of A Saint Because … Just Take A Look”.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 11:33 AM

Blackfriars Priory School principal explains how awkward covered statue was bungled

ADELAIDE (SOUTH AUSTRALIA)
The Advertiser

November 22, 2017

By Erin Jones

An Adelaide Catholic school has been forced to cover and cordon off a new religious statue after raising eyebrows because of its unfortunate design.

The statue of St Martin de Porres — not St Dominic as originally believed — was unveiled by Blackfriars Priory School, at Prospect, late last week.

The sculpture showed St Martin de Porres handing a young boy a loaf of bread, which appears to have emerged from his cloak.

But the sculpture’s unintentionally provocative design has had unforeseen consequences and created a flurry of activity on social media, prompting the school to take swift action.

The Advertiser understands the school was forced to cover the statue with a black cloth after students took photos of it on Friday and by this week, it had been cordoned off.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 11:29 AM

#ChurchToo: abuse survivors speak out about harassment in their religious communities

WASHINGTON (DC)
Vox

November 22, 2017

By Tara Isabella Burton

The latest trending Twitter hashtag encourages Christians to come forward.

A woman who revealed her rape during a youth group prayer section, only to be asked if she’d repented.

Another who fled an abusive marriage, only to be told by her pastor to return home and “submit” to her husband’s will.

Another who, as a child, was told to “cover up” after a male classmate had been caught masturbating while looking at her.

Another who felt compelled to get an abortion lest her church community find out she’d been — in their eyes — impure.

These are just a few of the stories being told right now on Twitter using the hashtag #ChurchToo: a religious response to #MeToo: an outline outpouring of stories about sexual assault. Started by Twitter users Emily Joy, a spoken word poet and yoga teacher, and writer Hannah Paasch, the hashtag is designed as space for people who have suffered from the structural sexism they see as embedded in many church cultures to speak about their experiences.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 10:38 AM

Islamic schools in Pakistan plagued by cases of sex abuse

KEHRORE PAKKA (PAKISTAN)
Associated Press via Washington Post

November 21, 2017

By Kathy Gannon

[Note: This article contains additional text, not included in the CBS version of the article, which Abuse Tracker posted on November 21, 2017.]

There are more than 22,000 registered madrassas or Islamic schools in Pakistan. The students they teach are often among the country’s poorest, who receive food and an education for free.

Many more madrassas — small two- or three-room seminaries in villages throughout Pakistan — are unregistered, opened by a graduate of another madrassa, often without any education other than a proficiency in the Quran. They operate without scrutiny, ignored by the authorities, say residents living nearby. Parveen’s son, for example, went to an unregistered madrassa.

Madrassas are funded by wealthy business people, religious political parties and even donors from other countries, such as Saudi Arabia. The teachings of the madrassas are guided by schools of Islamic thought, such as Shiite and Sunni.

However, unlike the Catholic Church, which has a clear hierarchy topped by the Vatican, there is no central religious authority that governs madrassas. There is also no central body that investigates or responds to allegations in religious schools.

“Basic responsibility, when something happens, is with the head of the madrassa,” says Mufti Mohammed Naeem, the head of the sprawling Jamia Binoria madrassa in the city of Karachi.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 10:18 AM

Priest resigns after ‘historic complaint’ probe Monsignor Aidan Hamill Published

PORTADOWN (NORTHERN IRELAND)
Lurgan Mail

November 23, 2017

A top Lurgan priest has resigned from senior roles in the Diocese of Dromore after a probe into an ‘historic complaint’.

Bishop of Dromore, Most Reverend John McAreavey, revealed that Monsignor Aidan Hamill has resigned as Parish Priest of St Peter’s and St Paul’s Church.

Bishop McAreavey revealed the news in a statement read out at Masses in the parish last Sunday.

Monsignor Hamill had acted up in his capacity as Vicar General of the Diocese of Dromore as the administrator when Bishop McAreavey took a temporary break from his duties in 2012.

However this week Bishop McAreavey said: “An historical complaint was made against Monsignor Hamill, a priest of this diocese, in 2014. The Diocese of Dromore followed the National Child Safeguarding policies and procedures and the statutory authorities were informed.

“Monsignor Hamill voluntarily stepped down from active ministry pending the outcome of the investigation of the complaint. He cooperated fully with the investigations.

“The Church investigations have now concluded.

“Arising from the findings of those investigations, Monsignor Hamill has resigned as the Parish Priest of St Peter’s and St Paul’s, Lurgan and as Vicar General in the Diocese of Dromore.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 10:11 AM

Ex-USA Gymnastics doctor apologizes, pleads guilty to criminal sexual conduct

ATLANTA (GA)
CNN

November 22, 2017

By Nicole Chavez and Eric Levenson

Larry Nassar, the former acclaimed USA Gymnastics team doctor, pleaded guilty Wednesday to seven counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct and admitted in a Michigan court to using his position to sexually abuse underage girls.

Three of the charges applied to victims under 13, and three applied to victims 13 to 15 years old. Other charges were dismissed or reduced as part of a plea agreement. All 125 victims who reported assaults to Michigan State Police will be allowed to give victim impact statements at Nassar's sentencing in January, according to the plea deal.

* * *

"Make no mistake: This is an American tragedy," said attorney John Manley.

He particularly slammed Michigan State University and its administration, which was told repeatedly about Nassar's abuse and protected him, Manley said. He likened their approach to that of the Catholic Church during the abuse scandals, and he called for them to release an internal report investigating the allegations against Nassar.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 10:05 AM

Presentation High grads allege school covered up sexual abuse

SAN DIEGO (CA)
Mercury News

November 22 and November 23, 2017

By Tatiana Sanchez

Two former Presentation High School students on Wednesday alleged the prestigious Catholic girls school covered up sexual abuse reports against a longtime teacher for more than three decades and said many other students were victims of abuse over the course of several years.

Kathryn Leehane, who wrote about the experience in an Oct. 20 Washington Post article, and Cheryl Hodgin Marshall, whose Presentation classmate was allegedly abused by the same teacher, said at a law office that school officials ignored multiple reports about the now-deceased teacher sexually abusing students since the 1980s in order to protect the school’s image.

“The school had numerous opportunities to deal with him,” said Leehane, who claimed the teacher groped her and showed her pictures of a naked woman.

Leehane said school administrators didn’t respond to her initial letter in 1993 reporting the abuse and that the school’s response to a second letter she sent made her feel as though she was being intimidated to retract her report.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 9:58 AM

Archbishop's new appointment draws concerns

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

November 24, 2017

By Haidee V. Eugenio

One of Archbishop Michael Jude Byrnes' latest appointments is drawing concern from a group of Catholics, which claims Msgr. David C. Quitugua's alleged abuse of power as vicar general and judicial vicar under Archbishop Anthony S. Apuron makes him unworthy of holding any post in the chancery.

"(Quitugua) should be retired and removed from being a member of the clergy," Concerned Catholics of Guam President David Sablan said.

Byrnes appointed Quitugua to serve as associate judge for the Archdiocese of Agana effective Nov. 17.

An associate judge assists the church's judicial vicar in deciding cases within the archdiocese. Quitugua was a judicial vicar for the archdiocese's tribunal during Apuron's time.

* * *

"Quitugua and Adrian Cristobal, the vicar general and chancellor, respectively, under Apuron, were key henchmen in trying to have the Neocatechumenal Way take over our Archdiocese for their own personal gain," Sablan said. "They had no regard for their fellow clergy members who were not following the NCW."

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 9:42 AM

November 23, 2017

Opinion: Putting truth into Truth and Reconciliation

KITCHENER (ONTARIO, CANADA)
The Record

November 23, 2017

By Peter Shawn Taylor

[Note: See the Truth and Reconciliation Final Report section on the death of Chanie Wenjack. See also The Lonely Death of Chanie Wenjack, by Ian Adams, Maclean's, February 1, 1967.]

Fifty-one years ago, he was a young boy who came to a tragic end.

Today he's a symbol for all that was wrong with this country's treatment of Indigenous people.

So why is the story of Chanie Wenjack so full of imaginative fabrication?

At age nine, Chanie, from Ogoki Post in northern Ontario, was sent to live at the former Cecilia Jeffrey Indian Residential School in Kenora in 1963. He was often homesick and on Oct. 19, 1966, he ran away with two other boys. They stayed at the cabin of the other boys' uncle before Chanie set out alone to walk home, unaware it was 600 kilometres away. His frozen body was found beside railway tracks. He was 12 years old.

These are the known facts, as explained at an inquest, in a 1967 Maclean's article that launched a national conversation on the morality of residential schools and the Truth and Reconciliation Commission's Final Report from 2015.

Taken on their own, these sources provide all the evidence necessary to argue against Canada's residential school policy. Regardless of the intentions of governments and churches in removing native children from their homes — and the policy was intended to improve their lives — the results were often discreditable, ignoble and fatal.

Since 2016, however, new and salacious details have been added to the short life of Chanie Wenjack.

"Secret Path" is a picture book and music album authored by the late Gord Downie, frontman of the Tragically Hip. "Wenjack" is a novella by Joseph Boyden. There's also a short Heritage Minute video by Historica Canada.

All three make the unsubstantiated claim that Chanie was sexually abused at Cecilia Jeffrey school. "Secret Path" and the Heritage Minute further appear to imply it was Roman Catholic priests who did the abusing.

Sexual abuse certainly did occur at residential schools in Canada, sometimes in Catholic-run schools.

But Cecilia Jeffrey was a Presbyterian residential school. It was run by a Cree/Saulteaux principal. And despite its name, it wasn't even a school. Chanie and the rest of the Indigenous children attended public school in Kenora with other children from town. Cecilia Jeffrey was merely a dormitory.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 1:33 PM

Cardinal George Pell's legal team requests documents from ABC journalist Louise Milligan, book publisher

SYDNEY (AUSTRALIA)
ABC News

November 23, 2017

By Karen Percy

Lawyers defending Cardinal George Pell on historical sexual offences have requested documents from ABC journalist Louise Milligan and Melbourne University Press relating to a book about the senior Catholic published last year.

The book written by Milligan called Cardinal: the Rise and Fall of George Pell was voluntarily removed from Victorian bookstores after Cardinal Pell was charged in July.

The request for documents was made during a hearing in the Melbourne Magistrates' Court today.

The 76-year-old is facing multiple charges of historical sexual offences involving multiple victims after an investigation by Victoria Police's SANO Taskforce.

Cardinal Pell has strenuously denied any wrongdoing.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 1:23 PM

First the Catholics, now the Anglicans have a sex abuse scandal

BRISBANE (AUSTRALIA)
60 Starts at 60

November 23, 2017

[Note: This article links to two ABC articles: 'Submit to your husbands': Women told to endure domestic violence in the name of God and Anglican Church offers formal apology to victims of domestic violence.]

We’re still reeling from the revelations about rampant child abuse within the Catholic Church. Now the Anglican Church looks like it has a sex scandal of its own, as the ABC has revealed in an in-depth story about the abuse women are suffering at the hands of their priest husbands.

The women shared their stories of sexual and physical abuse with the ABC, with some claiming that the church had known for decades that some of its ministers were spouse abusers, but had done very little about it.

One victim told the ABC that she was married to an Anglican priest who would demand sex and if she objected, would wait until she fell asleep before raping her – an abusive pattern that went on for years, she said.

“I actually went to him one night and said, ‘I need a break from our sexual relationship, I need to work through my issues and we need to work on our marriage’. He said, ‘I’m here for you, you have my support’,” the unnamed woman told the ABC. “And then he proceeded to rape me.”

The victims told the broadcaster that their husbands cited passages in the Bible about submission to justify their behaviour. The verse often cited was Ephesians 5:22-24, which says: “Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, just as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Saviour. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands”.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 1:16 PM

ASU prof resigns over past sex abuse

TEMPE (AZ)
East Valley Tribune

November 22, 2017

Jaime Lara, a professor of medieval and Renaissance studies at Arizona State University, resigned after it was discovered that he was a defrocked priest who had been accused of sexually abusing minors years ago.

The Dioceses of Brooklyn released a statement saying that Lara, who was ordained as the Rev. James Lara in 1973, was removed from active ministry in 1992. Other former priests were also named.

The disclosure appears to be the first time the diocese has formally acknowledged the names of priests laicized, or defrocked, for child sexual abuse. At least five people who say they were abused by Lara have applied for compensation.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 1:08 PM

N.B. Catholic Church says there may be no money left to compensate sex abuse victims

TORONTO (CANADA)
CBC Radio

The Current
with Anna Maria Tremonti

[Note: The radio interview that this article summarizes is well worth listening to. The transcript of the broadcast is also useful but error-prone.]

"It destroyed most of my youth."

"It was very hard trying to hide what was happening. And I also thought that I was the only one."

"As soon as someone opened the door, then it flooded out."

These are the words of a New Brunswick man, using the pseudonym Pierre, who alleges that Catholic priest Camille Leger sexually abused him for half a decade as a child.

Camille Leger is now deceased, but over 30 complaints were brought against him.

And almost every month for the past year, lawsuits have been filed against New Brunswick's Catholic Church by alleged victims seeking compensation for sexual abuse by priests.

The recent wave of allegations follows an earlier conciliation process that led to settlements with nearly 200 victims of sexual abuse by priests in New Brunswick.

{ Bastarache process: Michel Bastarche led a conciliation process that led to settlements with almost 200 victims of sexual abuse by priests in New Brunswick. Bastarache process by the numbers:
- Moncton: 109 victims; $10.6M awarded to victims;
- Bathurst: 90 victims; $5.5M awarded to victims }

There are now 56 alleged cases of sex abuse before the courts in the province involving the church — and Moncton Archbishop Valéry Vienneau told CBC News he is concerned they no longer have the money to compensate all the victims coming forward.

"That's ridiculous," Pierre tells The Current's Anna Maria Tremonti.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 12:25 PM

Ex-priest in NSW court over abuse claims

LOWER HUTT (NEW ZEALAND)
NZ City

November 23, 2017

A former priest extradited from New Zealand on Wednesday is expected to appear via audio-visual link in a Sydney court.

A former Catholic priest is expected to apply for bail in a Sydney court following his extradition from New Zealand on historical child sex charges.

The 58-year-old's matter was mentioned briefly in the city's Central Local Court on Wednesday afternoon.

He's been charged with sexual and indecent assaults in the late 1980s against seven males aged between 14 and 20.

He was originally arrested at his Hamilton home in New Zealand in late July after Sydney detectives received a referral in 2014 from the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

* * *

He's also requested his name be suppressed due to the nature of the allegations and "potential prejudice" in the event he is granted bail.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 10:19 AM

Retired Ottawa priest named in abuse lawsuit in Quebec

OTTAWA (CANADA)
Ottawa Citizen

November 22, 2017

By Andrew Duffy

An Ottawa priest has been named in a Quebec lawsuit that seeks almost $2 million in damages for sex assaults that allegedly occurred at a private Catholic boarding school.

Rev. Jacques Desgrandchamps, 85, a priest in the Servite Order, lives in residence at St. Anthony of Padua Church. He served as an assistant pastor at the Booth Street church until December 2016.

In a recently filed lawsuit, it’s alleged Desgrandchamps sexually abused a student at Notre-Dame des Servites Colleges, a private Catholic school, during the mid-1970s.

The anonymous plaintiff, now 57, attended the boarding school in Quebec’s Eastern Townships between 1973 and 1975.

He alleges that as a 12-year-old, he was invited to Desgrandchamps’ room in a separate wing of the school — a place off limits to students — where he was served alcohol and sexually abused. Repeated incidents of abuse continued for two years until the victim left the school, the lawsuit alleges.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 10:11 AM

Philippines to extradite ex-priest accused of abusing two North Dakota boys

BEMIDJI (MN)
Bemidji Pioneer

November 22, 2017

By Dave Olson

Fargo — A former Catholic priest who faces charges of sexually molesting two boys in North Dakota churches in the 1990s may soon be extradited to the U.S. to face those charges.

The Philippine government is preparing to extradite Fernando Laude Sayasaya, who was arrested over the weekend by police in the city of Calamba south of Manila, according to a CBS News report, which quoted Chief State Counsel Ricardo Paras.

"The apprehension of Fernando Sayasaya once again shows that the long arm of the law would reach all criminals," Paras said. "The suppression of crime is the concern not only of the state where it is committed but in any other state where the criminal may have escaped."

John Folda, bishop of the Fargo Diocese, issued a statement Wednesday, Nov. 22, in which he said the diocese had become aware of Sayasaya's pending extradition.

"We have full confidence in the judicial process to render a just decision on Mr. Sayasaya's case, and we pray for the healing of all involved," Folda said.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 10:07 AM

Catholic priest jailed for sex abuse granted right to appeal

LONDON (ENGLAND)
BBC News

November 22, 2017

A Catholic priest jailed for sexually abusing a teenage boy has been granted the right to appeal by a senior judge.

Michael Higginbottom, 74, from Newcastle, was found guilty of a series of sex assaults when he worked as a teacher at St Joseph's College, in Upholland, Lancashire, in the 1970s.

He was jailed for 17 years in April.

His lawyers told the Court of Appeal his convictions were unsafe due to an error in the trial judge's ruling on what evidence went before the jury.

Higginbottom, of West Farm Road, Walker, denied eight counts of sexually abusing the boy when he was aged between 13 and 14, but was convicted at Liverpool Crown Court.

During the trial the victim told jurors that "being left alone at Upholland" was "worse than death".

After hearing evidence from Higginbottom's lawyers, a Court of Appeal panel, led by Lord Chief Justice Lord Burnett along with Mr Justice Teare and Mr Justice Kerr, ruled there was an "arguable point" as to whether details of a fraud charge should have gone before the jury.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 10:02 AM

Priest convicted of sex abuse is given leave to appeal

WIGAN (LANCASHIRE, ENGLAND)
Wigan Today

November 23, 2017

By Peter Magill

A Catholic priest convicted of repeatedly abusing a teenage boy at a seminary in the Wigan area has been given leave to appeal by law lords.

Father Michael Higginbottom, 74, was jailed for 17 years in April after being found guilty of a catalogue of abuse concerning a boy, then aged 13 and 14, at St Joseph's College at Upholland in the 1970s.

Court of Appeal officials have now confirmed that Lord Chief Justice Lord Burnett, sitting with Mr Justice Teare and Mr Justice Kerr, have given leave to appeal, after it was reported that a previous fraud charge should not have been admitted into evidence.

No date has yet been fixed for the appeal, according to a court spokesman, and Higginbottom will remain in custody until the next hearing.

Higginbottom, who was convicted of eight sexual offences, was a teacher at St Joseph's, which trained young boys wanting to become priests.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 9:58 AM

St Albans priest posthumously accused of abuse by two victims

ST. ALBANS (HERTFORDSHIRE, ENGLAND)
The Herts Advertiser

November 23, 2017

By Fraser Whieldon

A dead Catholic priest has been accused of historic sexual abuse by two victims in St Albans.

Father Thomas Heley came to the Parish of Ss Alban & Stephens St Albans in 1977, and stayed there until his death in 1986, during which time it was alleged he abused young boys.

One victim said: “I have been seriously affected by the childhood sexual abuse I experienced.

“It’s had a crippling impact on my ability to sustain relationships, as I feel I cannot trust people or let people get too close.

“It has had a major impact on my relationship with my son, I have been unable to be the father I could have been.

“I have turned to alcohol as a coping strategy in order to block out the abuse, which in turn has led to me losing jobs and exhibiting destructive behaviours which has had a negative impact on those around me.

“It’s only recently I have felt able to disclose this abuse and I am currently struggling to process the emotions that this has bought to the forefront on my mind.

“I feel I have not been able to lead the life that I could have had, which deeply saddens me and my family.”

After contacting the parish, the victims were told several allegations had been against Fr Heley at his previous posting in Cork from 1999 onwards.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 9:47 AM

November 22, 2017

Opinion: New guardian angel protects us as we share #MeToo survivor stories

UNITED STATES
National Catholic Reporter

November 21, 2017

By Amy Morris-Young

On Sept. 24, when Barbara Blaine, founder and former president of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (or SNAP) died, it felt to me like an era of the safe telling of this story might be ending as well. Like many other Catholic families, ours has been influenced by past clergy abuse, and felt its reverberations through subsequent generations.

With Barbara Blaine gone, I worried that survivors might hold their stories tight, and keep those damaging secrets hidden, once again.

I am only guessing here, but it seems Barbara has continued her mission, from heaven.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:44 PM

Church's plea of poverty a poor excuse, victims' lawyer says

NEW BRUNSWICK (CANADA)
CBC News

November 21, 2017

By Harry Forestell

Lawyer for sex abuse victims says Catholic Church has 'financial depth'

The lawyer acting for victims of pedophile priests in the Archdiocese of Moncton is dismissing claims the church is running out of money.

Rob Talach is representing 26 people suing the church for failing to protect them from sexual abuse, in most cases at the hands of the now-deceased Rev. Camille Leger.

Recently Archbishop Valéry Vienneault told CBC News the archdiocese had essentially run out of money to compensate victims. The church spent $10.6 million on 109 claims between 2012 and 2014.

"We had money — the diocese had money, but doesn't anymore," Vienneau said.

But Talach claims the Roman Catholic church has financial depth and points to its substantial real estate assets as one potential source of cash.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:40 PM

Ex-Youth Pastor Pleads Guilty To Sexual Abuse Charges

COVINGTON (KY)
The Associated Press

November 21, 2017

COVINGTON, Ky. (AP) - A former youth pastor and school volunteer has admitted to sexually abusing a young girl.

The Kentucky Enquirer reports 56-year-old Joseph Niemeyer pleaded guilty Monday to four counts of first-degree sexual abuse and one count of first-degree sodomy, all against a girl younger than 12 years old.

New Banklick Baptist Church pastor Tim Cochran says Niemeyer and his wife worked as youth pastors at the church in Walton, about 80 miles northeast of Louisville. He also volunteered at Independence's Twenhofel Middle School.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:38 PM

Judge: Boy molested at Willow Creek church can seek extra damages

SOUTH BARRINGTON (IL)
Daily Herald

November 21, 2017

By Bob Susnjara

Volunteer at Willow Creek molested boy with special needs in 2013

A Cook County judge has allowed an attorney to seek additional financial damages in a lawsuit against Willow Creek Community Church in South Barrington on behalf of a special-needs boy who was molested there by an adult volunteer who admitted the sexual abuse.

Lawyer Kevin J. Golden's case on behalf of the now 13-year-old Fox Lake boy against the church and Robert Sobczak, the volunteer in question, began in Cook County circuit court in February 2014. His client has autism, ADHD and a chromosomal disorder called DiGeorge syndrome.

Golden said the case has dragged on long enough.

"The church has fought this from Day One and has not taken responsibility," he said. "We look forward to our day in court."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:35 PM

These "Church Too" Tweets Are A Powerful Reminder That Sexual Abuse Isn't Limited To Hollywood

UNITED STATES
Bustle

November 21, 2017

By Mehreen Kasana

In the wake of sexual misconduct allegations against film tycoon Harvey Weinstein (who has denied accusations of nonconsensual sex), actress Alyssa Milano invited women to share their own experiences using the hashtag "Me Too." It went, understandably, viral. Shortly after the hashtag took off, reports emerged that the original idea for "Me Too" came from activist Tarane Burke who started it as a grassroots movement to support people who had experienced sexual abuse. Now, another Twitter hashtag "Church Too" is up with survivors detailing sexual harassment and abuse in places of worship like churches.

The hashtag started on Tuesday and was described by one Twitter user in these words, "There's a hashtag on Twitter right now called #ChurchToo where people are sharing their stories of sexual harassment and abuse in religious (primarily Christian) settings. It's a sobering, powerful, disturbing read. Many thanks to the brave people sharing their stories." According to another user, the origin of #ChurchToo was traced to two women, writer Hannah Paasch and spoken word poet Emily Joy

Allegations of sexual abuse taking place in churches aren't new. Time and again, there have been media reports of misconduct and inappropriate behavior coming from priests and pastors. But hashtag "Church Too" gives the power and control over narration to the very people who have experienced such abuse. As of this moment, the hashtag has over 2,000 tweets and it seems like it will continue to grow.

Warning for people who may feel triggered by the hashtag as some of the content is disturbing.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:26 PM

PAY 'GREATEST ATTENTION' TO PROTECTION OF MINORS IN SEMINARIAN TRAINING

UNITED KINGDOM
The Tablet

November 22, 2017

By Sarah Mac Donald

'The main challenge is how to live a meaningful and committed celibate life in the priesthood'

A member of the Vatican’s Commission for the Protection of Minors has said seminaries must pay the “greatest attention” to the protection of minors and vulnerable persons in their formation programmes and mustn’t confine the matter to a one-off safeguarding lecture or workshop so that a box could be ticked.

In his address on ‘Formation in Safeguarding in Seminary and Religious Training’ at a symposium at the national seminary in Maynooth, Professor Hans Zollner of the Centre for Child Protection at Rome’s Gregorian University, said specific courses on the protection of minors must be included in seminaries’ programme of initial as well as ongoing formation.

The issue should not be something seminaries fear nor should it be confined to the area of sexuality, “it has to be part of our understanding of pastoral work,” he said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:22 PM

Filipino ex-priest faces US extradition on sex charges

MANILA (PHILIPPINES)
Agence France-Presse

November 22, 2017

A Filipino ex-priest is facing extradition to the US for allegedly sexually abusing minors there in the 1990s, authorities said on Wednesday.

Fernando Sayasaya, 53, was tracked down by police in a province outside Manila on Sunday nearly two decades after he fled the US and went into hiding in the Philippines.

He was accused of molesting two boys in the state of North Dakota where he worked for the Catholic Church, police said.

He was put on administrative leave in 1998 following the allegations, but a US court only issued an arrest warrant for Sayasaya in 2002.

“He was charged of gross sexual imposition, that he (allegedly) made sexual contact on two young brothers who were aged under 15 at that time,” Chief State Counsel Ricardo Paras said.

Before fleeing the US, Sayasaya apparently told his superiors he wanted to spend Christmas in the Philippines but never returned, Paras added.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:19 PM

Philippines to extradite priest accused of molesting US boys

MANILA (PHILIPPINES)
The Associated Press

November 22, 2017

The Philippine government is preparing to extradite to the United States a recently arrested Filipino Catholic priest who faces charges of sexually molesting two boys in North Dakota churches in the 1990s, an official said Wednesday.

Chief State Counsel Ricardo Paras said Fernando Laude Sayasaya was arrested over the weekend by police in Calamba city in Laguna province south of Manila and will be flown back to the U.S., which sought his extradition under a treaty.

"The apprehension of Fernando Sayasaya once again shows that the long arm of the law would reach all criminals," Paras said. "The suppression of crime is the concern not only of the state where it is committed but in any other state where the criminal may have escaped."

Sayasaya is being detained at the National Bureau of Investigation in Manila and could not be reached for comment.

He was charged in a North Dakota court over alleged sexual advances toward two underage siblings from 1995 to 1998, including by separately touching and making them watch pornographic videos, in two North Dakota churches, according to Philippine Court of Appeals documents that cited a U.S. investigation.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:17 PM

Former Catholic priest to face court over alleged sexual assaults at a Dundas educational facility

AUSTRALIA
Parramatta Sun

November 22, 2017

By Meg Francis

A former Catholic priest will face court after being charged with the alleged historic sexual assault of seven youths at a Dundas educational facility.

His arrest comes after allegations of a series of assaults during the late 1980s were raised during the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

Police said the man, 58, was initially arrested at his Hamilton home in New Zealand on July 31 following a three-year investigation.

At about 7am on Wednesday, November 22, Rosehill police travelled to New Zealand and extradited the accused to Australia.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:13 PM

Olympic Gymnast Gabby Douglas Says Larry Nassar Sexually Abused Her Too

UNITED STATES
Huffington Post

November 21, 2017

By Carla Herreria

The gold medalist joins more than 100 women accusing the USA Gymnastics doctor.

Gabby Douglas revealed on Tuesday that she was also a victim of Larry Nassar, the former USA Gymnastics doctor who has been accused by more than 125 women and girls of sexual abuse.

This is the first time the Olympic gymnast has come forward with her own accusations of abuse. Douglas joins a growing number of gymnasts who have accused the 54-year-old doctor of sexually abusing them under the guise of medical treatment, including her Olympic teammates Aly Raisman and McKayla Maroney.

Douglas wrote vaguely of the abuse in a statement she posted to Instagram on Tuesday in which she apologizes for a tweet she wrote last week that suggested a woman who dressed “in a provocative/sexual way entices the wrong crowd.”

Douglas said that she wasn’t trying to victim-shame women.

“I didn’t view my comments as victim shaming because I know that no matter what you wear, it NEVER gives anyone the right to harass or abuse you,” the 21-year-old gymnast wrote.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:10 PM

Gabby Douglas opens up in Aly Raisman apology: I was abused, too

UNITED STATES
New York Post

November 21, 2017

By Hannah Withiam

Gabby Douglas added her name to the long list of female gymnasts who said they were victims of Dr. Larry Nassar’s sexual abuse in a post apologizing for her misguided comments last week.

In walking back her controversial response to Aly Raisman’s message on victim shaming — in which Douglas said women should dress “modestly” and not provoke the “wrong crowd” — the three-time Olympic gold medalist indirectly noted she too was sexually molested by Nassar over the years he worked for USA Gymnastics.

“I didn’t view my comments as victim shaming because I know that no matter what you wear, it NEVER gives anyone the right to harass or abuse you. It would be like saying that because of the leotards we wore, it was our fault that we were abused by Larry Nassar,” Douglas wrote on Instagram Tuesday.

“I didn’t publicly share my experiences as well as many other things because for years we were conditioned to stay silent and honestly some things were extremely painful. I wholeheartedly support my teammates for coming forward with what happened to them.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:05 PM

Shattered Faith, Part III: Getting help

ALBUQUERQUE (NM)
KOB 4

November 22, 2017

By Chris Ramirez

Editor's Note: This story is the second in a series called "Shattered Faith," in which KOB 4 Investigates examines the cases of three former Catholic priests in the Archdiocese of Santa Fe whose alleged widespread abuse of children decades ago not only went undealt with, but has contributed to what many mental health professionals call a mental health crisis for New Mexico.

The first story in this series, "A dangerous shuffle game," can be found here. The second part of this series, "The wide circle of silence," can be found here. Read on for the final part of "Shattered Faith."

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- It’s painful to talk about childhood sexual abuse, especially when the person who inflicted the pain is a member of the clergy. But talking about it, unpacking those emotions and memories, is important for the healing process. Many believe the hundreds, possibly thousands of acts of sexual acts perpetrated on children years ago have created a mental health crisis in New Mexico today.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:09 AM

Internet was ‘never meant for children’, says bishop

ENGLAND
Catholic Herald

November 21, 2017

by Susan Byron

It is for the Church to 'defend the dignity of children in the digital age,' Bishop Sherrington said

A bishop has warned that the internet poses “multiple dangers” to children, given its origins as a “system developed for adults”.

John Sherrington, Auxiliary Bishop of Westminster, referred to the World Congress on Child Dignity in the Digital Age, a convention held by the Vatican in October.

“It shows the Holy See is really concerned about the present situation, the way in which there are multiple dangers faced by children in the age of the internet,” he said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:07 AM

How Our Broken Justice System Led to a Sexual Harassment Crisis

UNITED STATES
New Republic

November 22, 2017

By David Dayen

A series of powerful men have been accused of serious crimes, with little legal accountability. Sound familiar?

Amid the latest wave of sexual harassment allegations, you might conclude, with some relief, that predators are finally being held accountable for long-repressed abuse. But while several men have lost their jobs, there’s been little accountability in a legal sense. Several cases reported in the media—from Harvey Weinstein to Kevin Spacey to Russell Simmons—would constitute crimes if proven, but thus far there haven’t been any indictments. In Weinstein’s case there have been reports of criminal investigations, but in general the #MeToo movement has played out in the press and on social media.

This makes many uncomfortable. Each story has its own particulars, but they all inspire demands for the same conclusion: effectively, banishment from the public square. Bill Maher warned against lumping in Al Franken’s alleged groping with Roy Moore’s alleged stalking of minors. The mantra to “believe women” bumps up against questionable accusations, such as assault allegations against Senator Richard Blumenthal that were made by what appears to be a Twitter bot. Social media doesn’t make allowances for legal concepts like the presumption of innocence, and it can justifiably lead to fears of mob rule or partisan exploitation.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:04 AM

After Lara revelations, Div School alumni call for investigation, reforms in letter to deans

NEW HAVEN (CT)
Yale Daily News

November 21, 2017

By Adelaide Feibel

In response to last week’s news of former Yale Divinity School and Institute of Sacred Music professor Jaime Lara’s history of sexual abuse as a priest, Divinity School alumni sent a letter with over 120 signatures to Dean of the Divinity School Greg Sterling and Dean of the Institute of Sacred Music Martin Jean, urging them to take concrete actions to foster a “just, hospitable and equitable” learning environment for students and a climate of accountability for faculty and staff.

The letter was distributed starting last Wednesday in what Katey Zeh DIV ’08, one of the letter’s authors, called “a grassroots effort.” By signing the letter, alumni pledged to withhold financial support from both the Divinity School and the Institute of Sacred Music until the administrations of the two institutions address the letter’s requests “in good faith.”

“While we and many other alumni benefitted from amazing educations and transformative experiences during our time on the Quad, we are disappointed by what this news reveals — unhealthy and toxic power dynamics that too frequently characterize faculty-student encounters and relationships at YDS and ISM,” the letter states.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:01 AM

Number of women accusing Catholic priest 'Father Pervert' of sex abuse now 30

QUEENS (NY)
New York Daily News

November 21, 2017

By Stephen Rex Brown

More than 30 victims now say they were abused by a Catholic priest known by students as “Father Pervert,” “The Pig” and “Lurch.”

Attorney Mitchell Garabedian says he is representing 34 women and one man who allege they were sexually abused by the Rev. Adam Prochaski between 1970 and 1994.

Prochaski, who was assigned to Holy Cross Parish in Maspeth, Queens, is no longer a priest. The victims were between the ages of 5 and 16 when they were allegedly abused.

“The sexual abuse of clients took place in the school, church, rectory next to school, in some clients’ homes and in Prochaski’s car,” Garabedian said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:55 AM

Priest who taught at Eastern Townships school responds to sex allegations levied in class action application

CANADA
CBC News

November 21, 2017

Father Jacques Desgrandchamps has been suspended from the weekly mass he gives in Ottawa

A priest who taught history at a Catholic boarding school in the Eastern Townships has been suspended after an application for a class-action lawsuit was filed alleging he sexually assaulted at least one of his students.

In the document, a 57-year-old man accuses the Collège Servite in Ayer's Cliff, Que. and the religious Servite Order community of turning a blind eye to the alleged abuse he was a victim of between 1973 and 1975, at the hands of Father Jacques Desgrandchamps.

The man was 12 at the time. He has chosen to remain anonymous, but his lawyer, Robert Kugler, says a class action lawsuit was chosen in order to allow other potential victims to come forward.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:52 AM

MINNESOTA ABUSE VICTIM CLAIMS BISHOP BULLIED HIM INTO SILENCE

CROOKSTON (MN)
ChurchMilitant

November 21, 2017

By David Nussman

Bishop denies allegations, made settlement to save money

CROOKSTON, Minn. (ChurchMilitant.com) - A practicing Catholic is accusing his diocese of trying to cover up priestly sex abuse.

Ron Vasek was on the way to becoming a permanent deacon in 2011 when he started opening up about his victimization as a child. The abuse incident occurred in 1971, but Vasek had mostly been quiet about it — as sex abuse victims often are — until his time in seminary training for the permanent diaconate.

In October 2015, Bp. Michael J. Hoeppner of Crookston, Minnesota met with Vasek privately and allegedly coerced him into pledging never to file a lawsuit about the abuse.

But in May this year, Vasek filed a civil suit against the diocese, accusing it of a cover-up. The seven charges in the ongoing civil suit fall under three claims: coercion, negligence and nuisance.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:50 AM

Former priest accused of abuse 'fled out of cowardice and stupidity'

LONDON (ENGLAND)
Press Association via Premier

November 22, 2017

A former Roman Catholic priest told jurors he fled to Kosovo out of "cowardice and stupidity" after being accused of abusing boys at a Catholic school.

Andrew Soper (also known as Father Laurence Soper) said his whole life had been "ruined" by the allegations over to his time as headmaster and senior priest at fee-paying St Benedict's School in Ealing, west London.

While on police bail over accusations dating back to the 1970s and 80s, Soper went on the run in Kosovo - but was extradited back to England face trial at the Old Bailey.

Ten former pupils have made allegations against him, including that he used the cane as a ruse to sexually assault and rape them.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:46 AM

2 former students allege sexual abuse at Presentation High School in San Jose

SAN JOSE (CA)
KGO-TV

November 22, 2017

By Matt Keller

SAN JOSE, Calif. (KGO) -- Two former high school students are coming forward with their allegations of sexual abuse at a prominent South Bay high school. They say Presentation High School in San Jose covered it up for more than three decades.

Kathryn Leehane and Cheryl Hodgin Marshall are asking for changes they say will protect students from sexual abuse. Leehane wrote an article for the Washington Post back in October on her alleged sexual abuse experience back in 1990 at the all-girls Catholic school. She says that has sparked other former or current students to come forward about their sexual abuse by teachers.

According to our media partner, the Mercury News, Presentation's principal, Mary Miller sent parents a letter about the allegations. She wrote, "These cases are being thoroughly investigated by the appropriate authorities and we will not be able to share the conclusions of these investigations because of privacy law, but we want you to know what is occurring to ensure rumors and false information do not make their way through the school community."

The former students will hold a press conference at 11 a.m.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:44 AM

EDITORIAL: Responding to sexual abuse will take years—and it should

UNITED STATES
American Magazine: The Jesuit Review

November 21, 2017

The Editors

The flood of revelations about sexual harassment and assault, whether in Washington or Hollywood, is unlikely to stop anytime soon. The walls of denial built up by position and self-protective ignorance have been breached. If the tragic revelations of the Catholic Church’s sex abuse crisis are any guide, the process of reckoning with problems that have been avoided for decades will itself take decades.

Neither the church as a whole nor the editors of this review are in a position to prescribe a comprehensive remedy for the systemic patterns of harassment, abuse and denial. But there are pitfalls to be avoided and small measures of hope to be encouraged, and the church’s experience has some lessons to offer.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:40 AM

Philippines to extradite priest accused of abuse in U.S.

MANILA (PHILLIPINES)
The Associated Press

November 22, 2017

MANILA -- The Philippine government is preparing to extradite to the United States a recently arrested Filipino Catholic priest who faces charges of sexually molesting two boys in North Dakota churches in the 1990s, an official said Wednesday.

Chief State Counsel Ricardo Paras said Fernando Laude Sayasaya was arrested over the weekend by police in Calamba city in Laguna province south of Manila and will be flown back to the U.S., which sought his extradition under a treaty.

"The apprehension of Fernando Sayasaya once again shows that the long arm of the law would reach all criminals," Paras said. "The suppression of crime is the concern not only of the state where it is committed but in any other state where the criminal may have escaped."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:37 AM

SEXUAL ABUSE BY TANTRIC MASSEURS: HOTLINE RECEIVES DOZENS OF REPORTS

NETHERLANDS
NLTimes.nl

November 22, 2017

By Janene Pieters

Masseur Helene Baayen and relationship-expert Caroline Franssen launched a hotline where women can report sexual abuse by tantric masseurs and 'intimacy coaches'. In a month and a half, 24 reports were received against nine masseurs, NOS reports.

Tantra is a spiritual movement in Buddhism and Hinduism that is mainly associated with sexuality in the west. The nine tantric masseurs mentioned in the reports - all of them men - claim that they can help women overcome emotional blockages and sexual trauma. NOS spoke to nine women who filed reports against them. According to the victims, instead of help, the masseurs used the opportunity to sexually abuse them. They unexpectedly switched from massaging to sexual acts, in some cases escalating to penetration. At least one masseur also engaged in long-term sexual relationships with vulnerable women who approached him for therapeutic reasons.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:35 AM

Three more women allege abuse by Caldey Island monk

CALDEY ISLAND (WALES)
The Guardian

November 21, 2017

By Amanda Gearing and Harriet Sherwood

Survivors’ organisation demands inquiry into allegations against Father Thaddeus Kotik, who died in 1992

Three more women have come forward to claim they were sexually abused by a Cistercian monk at Caldey Island abbey in the 1970s and 80s, as a survivors’ organisation demanded an inquiry into the allegations.

Macsas, an organisation that supports survivors of clerical abuse, said an inquiry was needed to establish the extent of the alleged abuse. Meanwhile the children’s commissioner for Wales has asked the abbey for information on its child protection procedures.

The commissioner, Sally Holland, said she wanted “to make sure that any child or young person visiting Caldey or its churches is safe”, and she had discussed the allegations with the Catholic Safeguarding Advisory Service, who did not respond to a request for comment.

The fresh claims follow the disclosure in the Guardian last week that six women had brought a civil claim against the Cistercian order on the island off the coast of Pembrokeshire, alleging they were sexually abused as children by one of its monks, Father Thaddeus Kotik, who died in 1992.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:29 AM

Advocates: College prof accused in sex case must go

ADRIAN (MI)
The Daily Telegram

November 21, 2017

By Dan Cherry

ADRIAN — Supporters of a woman who alleges sexual misconduct against her former high school instructor — now an Adrian College professor — three decades ago brought her message Monday to the college campus.

A dozen members of the public and the Red Light Initiative of Lenawee County — an organization formed to increase awareness of sexual assault, human trafficking and sexual exploitation of women and children in southeastern Michigan — held a vigil in front of the college to raise awareness and request the college dismiss one of its longtime employees, Thomas Hodgman.

Joelle Casteix alleges that as a 15-year-old student at a Catholic high school in California more than 30 years ago, Hodgman had a sexual relationship with her for approximately two years. A settlement in Casteix’s case and 92 others alleging abuse by priests and others throughout the Catholic diocese of Orange, California, eventually was reached. Hodgman was hired later by Adrian College.

In a statement dated Nov. 11, Adrian College reiterated it was made aware of the allegations against Hodgman in 2003 that included “inappropriate sexual activity during the mid- to late-1980s in the state of California.”

Adrian College stated it hired a law firm to investigate and confirmed the allegations.

“However,” the statement said, “to the best of our knowledge, the investigation further revealed that no criminal charges were filed and that Dr. Hodgman was never convicted of a crime. Additionally, we are not aware of any evidence that Dr. Hodgman engaged in any subsequent similar activity ... there was no evidence that Dr. Hodgman had engaged in any such conduct while at Adrian College” over the past 14 years.

The college’s statement also said Hodgman having tenure and being a member of the college’s faculty union prevents additional actions against him.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:22 AM

November 21, 2017

7. Fachtagung der Deutschen Bischofskonferenz zu Fragen sexuellen Missbrauchs

GERMANY
Deutschen Bischofskonferenz

November 16, 2017

[Google Translate: With a call to continue to follow the issue of sexual abuse closely, the 7th conference of the German Bishops' Conference on sexual abuse has come to an end today. Under the theme "'Irritated Systems' - The Impact (Suspicion) of Sexual Abuse on Affected 'Systems' and Possibilities of Qualified Assistance" were invited by Bishop Dr. Stephan Ackermann, commissioner for questions of sexual abuse in the church and for questions of the protection of children and young people, about 90 Vicars General, personnel managers and the Abuse and Prevention Commissioner of the German dioceses and religious communities in Cologne have come together.]

BISCHOF ACKERMANN: „WIR BRAUCHEN WEITERHIN ENGAGEMENT IN DER PRÄVENTION GEGEN SEXUELLE GEWALT“

Mit einem Aufruf das Thema sexueller Missbrauch weiterhin aufmerksam zu verfolgen, ist heute die 7. Fachtagung der Deutschen Bischofskonferenz zu Fragen sexuellen Missbrauchs zu Ende gegangen. Unter dem Thema „,Irritierte Systeme‘ – Die Auswirkungen (des Verdachts) von sexuellem Missbrauch auf die betroffenen ‚Systeme‘ und Möglichkeiten einer qualifizierten Hilfestellung“ waren auf Einladung von Bischof Dr. Stephan Ackermann, Beauftragter für Fragen des sexuellen Missbrauchs im kirchlichen Bereich und für Fragen des Kinder- und Jugendschutzes, rund 90 Generalvikare, Personalverantwortliche sowie die Missbrauchs- und Präventionsbeauftragten der deutschen Bistümer und Ordensgemeinschaften in Köln zusammengekommen.

„Wir dürfen nicht nachlassen in unserem Bemühen, die Aufmerksamkeit für das Thema wachzuhalten, insbesondere vor dem Hintergrund von Personalwechseln in den Bistümern. Auch neue Mitarbeiterinnen und Mitarbeiter – Bischöfe eingeschlossen – müssen sich ihrer Verantwortung für dieses Thema bewusst sein und weiterhin engagiert daran arbeiten, Kirche zu einem sicheren Raum für Kinder und Jugendliche zu machen“, sagte Bischof Ackermann.

Der emeritierte Sozialpsychologe Prof. Dr. Heiner Keupp, Mitglied der Unabhängigen Kommission zur Aufarbeitung sexuellen Kindesmissbrauchs, stellte die Frage nach der Tiefenwirkung von Präventionsinitiativen. „Schaffen diese Maßnahmen eine neue Kultur der Achtsamkeit, sind sie gelebte Wirklichkeit, die den Alltag in der Einrichtung bestimmen oder haben sie vor allem oder nur eine plakative Bedeutung nach außen?“ Gleichzeitig betonte Prof. Keupp: „Institutionen müssen sich ihrer Geschichte stellen und dafür Verantwortung übernehmen.“ Der Psychologe und Psychiater Prof. Dr. Frank Löhrer hob hervor, dass Intaktheit oder Irritation von Systemen in der Psychologie keine Gegensätze darstellten. „Eine gelingende Kommunikation ist in vielen Fällen ein geeignetes Mittel, um Irritationen erst gar nicht aufkommen zu lassen“, so Prof. Löhrer, der als Missbrauchsbeauftragter mehrerer Ordensgemeinschaften über jahrelange Erfahrungen im Bereich sexuellen Missbrauchs im kirchlichen Umfeld und der damit einhergehenden Irritation von Systemen verfügt.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 5:25 PM

AP: Sexual abuse rampant at Pakistan's Islamic schools

KEHRORE PAKKA (PAKISTAN)
The Associated Press

November 21, 2017

KEHRORE PAKKA, Pakistan -- Kausar Parveen struggles through tears as she remembers the blood-soaked pants of her 9-year-old son, raped by a religious cleric. Each time she begins to speak, she stops, swallows hard, wipes her tears and begins again.

The boy fidgets with his scarf and looks over at his mother.

"Did he touch you?' He nods. "Did he hurt you when he touched you?" ''Yes," he whispers.

"Did he rape you?" He buries his face in his scarf and nods yes.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 5:23 PM

Charlie Rose fired by CBS, and PBS drops his talk show over sexual harassment allegations

UNITED STATES
The Los Angeles Times

November 21, 2017

By Stephen Battaglio

Charlie Rose’s CBS News career came to an unceremonious end Tuesday when the network fired him over allegations of sexual harassment.

“A short time ago we terminated Charlie Rose’s employment with CBS News, effective immediately,” CBS News President David Rhodes wrote in a note to staff. “This followed the revelation yesterday of extremely disturbing and intolerable behavior said to have revolved around his PBS program. Despite Charlie’s important journalistic contribution to our news division, there is absolutely nothing more important, in this or any organization, than ensuring a safe, professional workplace — a supportive environment where people feel they can do their best work. We need to be such a place.”

PBS followed with an announcement that it no longer will distribute “Charlie Rose,” the nightly talk show hosted by Rose since 1991. Bloomberg, which also carried the show on its TV service, has also dropped it.

“In light of yesterday’s revelations, PBS has terminated its relationship with Charlie Rose and canceled distribution of his programs,” a PBS spokesperson said in a statement. “PBS expects all the producers we work with to provide a workplace where people feel safe and are treated with dignity and respect.”

Rose’s departure marks the downfall of one of television’s most venerable journalists and a major blow to CBS News, which enjoyed its greatest success ever in the morning thanks to “CBS This Morning,” which was built around Rose and his co-anchors, Gayle King and Norah O’Donnell, in 2012.

Rose’s serious demeanor and ability to engage a wide range of personalities in politics, the arts and business earned him respect and global recognition. He frequently jetted off to land interviews with world leaders.

“There is not a single person of note on the planet who does not know who he is,” said one CBS News executive who spoke on condition of anonymity. “His talent was so in the stratosphere.”

CBS had moved quickly Monday to suspend Rose, 75, after the Washington Post reported that day that eight women said they were subjected to inappropriate behavior while working with him. The story said Rose made unwanted sexual advances, appeared nude in their presence or groped them. His PBS talk show also was halted and there was no immediate update on the long-term status of the program.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 5:18 PM

Facing Second Accuser, Franken Sees His Once-Rising Star Dim

WASHINGTON (DC)
The New York Times

November 20, 2017

By Sheryl Gay Stolberg and Jonathan Martin

WASHINGTON — After making the transition from comedy to politics, Senator Al Franken, Democrat of Minnesota, positioned himself as a staunch defender of women’s rights. “Sexual harassment and violence are unacceptable,’’ he wrote on Twitter last month. “We must all do our part to listen, stand with and support survivors.’’

Now it is Mr. Franken who stands accused, and his uncompromising stance in support of “survivors” of harassment has left him few options but to apologize and try to weather the storm. On Monday, a second woman said the senator touched her inappropriately, telling CNN that he grabbed her rear end as her husband took a photo of the two of them at the Minnesota State Fair in 2010. Mr. Franken said that he did not remember the episode but that he was contrite nevertheless.

The disclosure — just days after Leeann Tweeden, a radio news anchor in California, accused Mr. Franken of forcibly kissing and groping her while he was working as a comedian in 2006 — complicates an already tenuous situation for Mr. Franken, making it more difficult for him to carry out his senatorial duties and raising questions about whether his political career can survive as he is likely to face an ethics investigation.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 5:15 PM

AUSTRALIA ROYAL COMMISSION ITEMISES A ‘NATIONAL TRAGEDY’

AUSTRALIA
The Tablet

November 21, 2017

By Mark Brolly

Sexual abuse of children has occurred in almost every type of institution in Australia where children lived or attended

Australia's Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse is to have a final public sitting in Sydney next month, on the eve of delivering its final report to Governor-General Sir Peter Cosgrove on 15 December, to thank the community for its support.

The CEO of the Catholic Church's Truth, Justice and Healing Council, Francis Sullivan, told a national meeting of Catholic secondary school principals in Adelaide that the final report – the delivery of which will mark the formal end of the Commission's work more than five years after then Prime Minister Julia Gillard announced its creation in November 2012 – was expected to comprise up to 17 volumes, at least three of which were expected to deal with the Catholic Church.

However, it is not clear when the report will be made public as that normally occurs only after tabling in Parliament, but none of Australia's federal or state legislatures is due to sit between 15 December and Christmas, the start of Australia's summer holidays. So the report may not be made public until early 2018.

Royal Commission Chair Justice Peter McClellan told a Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science seminar in Melbourne on 14 November that the sexual abuse of children has occurred in almost every type of institution where children lived or attended and that "it is not a case of a few 'rotten apples'".

"Society's major institutions have seriously failed," he said. "In many cases those failings have been exacerbated by a manifestly inadequate response to the abused person. The problems have been so widespread, and the nature of the abuse so heinous, that it is difficult to comprehend."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 5:11 PM

Guam gets $300K grant for sex offender registry management

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

November 20, 2017

By Jasmine Stole

The federal government awarded a $301,529 grant to the Guam Judicial Branch to improve the island’s sex offender registration system, according to a news release from Guam Del. Madeleine Z. Bordallo.

The funds will help the judiciary enhance sex offender registration and notification programs as part of an effort to protect the community from sex offenders with the use of the offender registry, the release stated.

Notification Act and will make Guam a safer place for our families to live,” Bordallo said.

The courts also will use the funds to implement guidelines for sex offender treatment, digitizing records and expanding the database.

Bordallo in the release said the grant provides critical federal assistant to Guam to monitor sex offenders.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:50 PM

Lawsuit: Brouillard, another priest sexually abused same altar boy

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

November 21, 2017

By Haidee V Eugenio

Father Louis Brouillard and another clergy member known only as "Priest Jim" allegedly conspired to sexually abuse the same altar boy at the Sinajana parish around 1975 to 1977, based on a $10 million lawsuit filed on Monday in Superior Court.

Brouillard also allegedly tried to rape the boy, but the boy told the priest he'd do anything to avoid being raped because of the pain, says the lawsuit filed by a plaintiff identified in Superior Court documents only as A.P.I. to protect his privacy.

While Brouillard is accused in nearly 90 clergy sex abuse lawsuits that also named the Archdiocese of Agana and the Boy Scouts of America as defendants, this is the first time that a clergy member identified only as "Priest Jim" is named in a case.

"On information and belief, Priest Jim was briefed by Brouillard that A.P.I. could be sexually abused and Priest Jim began to sexually abuse A.P.I. in a manner similar to Brouillard," the lawsuit says.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:46 PM

Clergy Sex Abuse Case Ends in Monetary Settlement

FLAGSTAFF (AZ)
The Associated Press

November 21, 2017

A clergy sex abuse lawsuit against the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament and an Arizona school has been settled.

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) — A clergy sex abuse lawsuit against the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament and an Arizona school has been settled.

The Gallup Independent reports Phoenix attorney Robert E. Pastor, who represents the woman who filed the suit, says "the agreement has been finalized."

The lawsuit, which was filed in Coconino County Superior Court in 2015, centered on the childhood sexual molestation of the plaintiff, who filed the lawsuit as Jane L.S. Doe.

The plaintiff, a member of the Navajo Nation, says she was abused by Brother Mark Schornack, OFM, when she was a student at St. Michael Indian School and Schornack, a Franciscan friar, was her bus driver.

Peter C. Kelly II, the Phoenix attorney representing the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament and the school, declined to comment on the settlement.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:44 PM

Opera Australia acts over child abuse case

SYDNEY (AUSTRALIA)
The Australian

November 22, 2017

By Ashleigh Wilson

The national opera has warned staff it has a zero-tolerance policy towards bullying and discrimination and called for any people with concerns to come forward after a former Opera Australia chorus member was charged with historic child-sex offences.

David Lewis will face a Sydney court on December 5 after being charged with four counts of aggravated indecent assault of a victim under the age of 16 and two counts of sexual intercourse with a person 14 or over and under 16.

The abuse allegedly occurred in the mid-1990s. The alleged victim was then 14, and a member of the company’s children’s chorus, while Lewis was in his mid-30s.

In a letter to staff yesterday, OA chief executive Rory Jeffes said the company was made aware of the allegations in July this year. He said the company was taking the matter seriously, and had been co-operating fully with police.

“Due to the nature of the charges Opera Australia took immediate action to stand David Lewis down and require that he stay away from the workplace,” Mr Jeffes said. “He has not participated in any company ­activity since then and he is no longer an employee of Opera Australia.”

Mr Jeffes said the company had no record of any previous ­allegations against Lewis.

“I remind everyone that the company has a zero-tolerance policy to bullying, discrimination and harassment in the workplace,” he wrote. “The emotional and physical safety of ­employees, contractors and the broader Opera Australia community is paramount and it is the responsibility of all of us to live by that standard and to raise any concerns.”

Mr Jeffes also reacted angrily to an unnamed employee quoted by Fairfax Media comparing the company with the Catholic Church.

“This presumably implies a similarity to the appalling revelations relating to child sexual abuse that have surfaced over ­recent times in that institution,” he wrote.

“As a comment by anyone, let alone an employee, this appears indefensible, disingenuous and frankly outrageous.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:42 PM

Singer David Lewis leaves Opera Australia after child sexual abuse charges

AUSTRALIA
Australian Associated Press in The Guardian

November 20, 2017

Allegations against 58-year-old tenor and longstanding member of nation’s top opera company date back to the 1990s

Distinguished tenor David Lewis has left Opera Australia after being charged with child sex offences involving a 14-year-old girl dating back to the 1990s.

The 58-year-old was charged in July with four counts of aggravated indecent assault of a victim under the age of 16 and two counts of sexual intercourse with a person aged between 14 and 16, a NSW Police spokeswoman said on Tuesday.

The alleged victim was a member of the children’s chorus in a performance, according to Sydney media reports.

Lewis, a longstanding Opera Australia member, is due to face Downing Centre local court on 5 December.

Opera Australia chief executive Rory Jeffes said the tenor was stood down in July after the company was made aware of the allegations. He took long service leave owing and then resigned in October.

“He has not participated in any company activity since July and he is no longer an employee of Opera Australia,” Jeffes said in a statement.

Lewis played the emperor in Opera Australia’s 2016 Sydney Harbour production of Turandot and earlier this year performed as Pedro in Two Weddings, One Bride.

Jeffes said the company had cooperated fully with police “and will continue to do so”.

The alleged incident was “deeply upsetting to everyone involved with Opera Australia”.

Jeffes said there was no record of assault allegations against Lewis being reported to the company.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:10 PM

Dubbo child sex predator still attends same church where he abused young girls

DUBBO (NSW, AUSTRALIA)
The Daily Telegraph

November 21, 2017

By Annabel Hennessy

A CHILD sex predator spared jail because a judge granted leniency for a series of bizarre reasons — such as his high cholesterol and sleeping problems — is still a member of the church where he abused young girls.

The Daily Telegraph can also reveal he is attending regular church conventions where he has access to hundreds of kids.

The revelations come after new calls were issued for an appeal into the sentence and the Director of Public Prosecution started the process to allow his two victims (one pictured at the time she was abused) to reveal their identities so they can speak out.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:00 PM

Former youth pastor pleads guilty to child sexual abuse charges

KENTON COUNTY (KY)
Cincinnati Enquirer

November 20, 2017

KENTON COUNTY, KY (FOX19) – A former youth pastor and school volunteer will spend at least 17 years behind bars after admitting guilt on charges of sexual abuse and sodomy of a minor.

Man arrested in rape was foster parent, youth leader
Joseph Niemeyer, 56, worked with youth at the Banklick Baptist Church in Walton until he was arrested in February 2016. He also volunteered at Twenhofel Middle School.

On Monday, Niemeyer pleaded guilty to four counts of first-degree sexual abuse and one count first-degree sodomy, all against a girl younger than 12.

Under the plea agreement, Niemeyer will have to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life. He could spend up to 20 years in jail and must serve 17 years before being parole eligible, according to Kenton County Prosecutor Rob Sanders.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:58 PM

Authorities investigating sexual abuse claim at private school in Shawano

SHAWANO (WI)
Green Bay Press Gazette

November 20, 2017

By Shelby Le Duc

SHAWANO - Law enforcement officials are investigating a claim of sexual abuse of children at a private school in Shawano.

George Lenzner, chief deputy with the Shawano County Sheriff's Office, said the department received an anonymous report last week accusing an employee of St. James Lutheran Church, School and Early Childcare Center of sexually abusing children at the school.

Timm Griffin, interim senior pastor at the church, said an employee has been placed on administrative leave. However, he added he would not discuss the sexual misconduct allegations and how they relate to the employee on leave.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:45 PM

Abuse fears scuttle Shalom high facility

TOWNSVILLE (AUSTRALIA)
Townsville Bulletin

November 19, 2017

By Sam Bidey

A TOWNSVILLE school under the microscope at a royal commission investigation into child sexual abuse will shut down its secondary and boarding education.

Shalom Christian College, currently a Prep to Year 12 school, will only accept primary students next year, cutting its enrolment by more than half and ceasing its role as an indigenous boarding school for the “welfare” of children.

The Uniting Church-owned and operated Condon school was heavily scrutinised as part of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

In November 2016, a former principal of Shalom, Christopher Shirley, told the royal commission that the school dealt with about 20 sexual assaults a year.

The mother of a girl who was allegedly gang raped at the age of 14 in 2006 told the royal commission the school had tried to cover up the attack.

Last year, Shalom Christian College principal Christopher England said he could not ­provide a safe environment for students in the boarding houses with the resource levels available.

Reverend David Baker, moderator of the Uniting Church in Queensland, said the primary school was only guaranteed to run in 2018, with the long-term future of the school uncertain.

“This decision has been based solely on the welfare and best interests of our students,” Rev Baker said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:43 PM

Childcare worker sexually abused three brothers via Sunshine Coast church

QUEENSLAND (AUSTRALIA)
Sunshine Coast Daily via The Courier Mail

November 20, 2017

By Chloe Lyons

USING the trust he gained from the church community, a man sexually abused three brothers over the course of eight years, often while their mother was in the house.

When Nazareth Te Taiari Tira, now 32, was confronted by the first brother he abused in 2006, he told the 13 year old he “loved him like a son”.

Just several days before in his family home, the teen had been woken by Tira lying down next to him on a futon and rubbing the inside of his leg near his groin.

The victim had to go downstairs and sleep in a separate room to get away from his abuser.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:41 PM

Priest of Lord Hanuman temple accused of sexual act, he says the photo is morphed

INDIA
Team Asianet Newsable

November 21, 2017

A photo of a priest of the historical Lord Hanumantha temple in a compromising position with a woman is going viral, bringing another person attached to the religious institute.

Vidyadasa Baba, a priest at Hanuman temple, which is also known as the birthplace of Lord Hanuman, has allegedly been caught in a compromising position with a woman.

Not only the photo but it is said that he had recorded a video of his sexual act, which is being fast circulated among the youths of Koppal.

He is a priest at Anjanadri Anegundi Parvatha temple.

As soon as the news broke, the Temple Trust has decided to ask Vidyadas to step down and served him a notice in this regard.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:38 PM

Group sues LDS Church, bishop and other members for allowing alleged sexual abuse

BERKELEY COUNTY (WV)
FOX 13

November 20, 2017

By Taylor Hartman

BERKELEY COUNTY, W.Va. – Several John Doe and Jane Doe complainants filed a lawsuit against the LDS Church, and several stake leaders Monday, saying they knowingly allowed an individual who had a history of sexual abuse near underage children.

According to a complaint filed with the Circuit Court of Berkeley County, twelve plaintiffs were suing for damages caused to them from sexual abuse while they were minors by Michael Jensen.

Jensen was sentenced to 35-75 years in prison in 2013 for first-degree sexual assault, after he allegedly abused several minors, while in a position of leadership and counsel to young church members.

The complaint logged numerous situations in which Jensen was put in a position of trust, and then allegedly sexually abused children. One victim was said to be four-years-old, when Jensen locked her in a room, and forced her to touch him inappropriately. Another victim was allegedly a two-year-old boy, who had “abrasions or burns” on his upper thighs and genitals after being babysat by Jensen.

According to those suing the church, Jensen’s parents, who were leaders at the stake, and other members knowingly put Jensen in a position of trust, despite having knowledge of past abuse.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:35 PM

New allegation against Franken, this time met with silence

ST. PAUL (MN)
The Associated Press

November 20, 2017

By Kyle Potter

A woman says Al Franken pulled her in tightly and put his hand on her buttocks in 2010 while posing for a picture at the Minnesota State Fair, the second allegation of improper conduct against the Democrat and first involving his time as a senator.

Lindsay Menz told CNN last week for a report broadcast Monday that the interaction with the Minnesota senator made her feel "gross." She said she immediately told her husband that Franken had "grabbed" her bottom and that she posted about it on Facebook.

Menz's story comes days after a Los Angeles broadcaster, Leeann Tweeden, accused Franken of forcibly kissing her during a 2006 USO tour. Franken already faced a Senate ethics investigation over Tweeden's allegation, but the Menz allegation is potentially more damaging for Franken because it would be behavior that occurred while he was in office.

Franken, a Democrat, told CNN he didn't remember taking the photo with Menz, but said in a statement to the network that he feels badly that she felt disrespected.

"I take thousands of photos at the state fair surrounded by hundreds of people, and I certainly don't remember taking this picture," Franken told CNN. "I feel badly that Ms. Menz came away from our interaction feeling disrespected."

Franken's office did not respond to repeated Associated Press messages seeking comment.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:09 AM

Sexual abuse is pervasive in Islamic schools in Pakistan

KEHRORE PAKKA (PAKISTAN)
The Associated Press

November 21, 2017

By Kathy Gannon

Kausar Parveen struggles through tears as she remembers the blood-soaked pants of her 9-year-old son, raped by a religious cleric. Each time she begins to speak, she stops, swallows hard, wipes her tears and begins again.

The boy had studied for a year at a nearby Islamic school in the town of Kehrore Pakka. In the blistering heat of late April, in the grimy two-room Islamic madrassa, he awoke one night to find his teacher lying beside him.

"I didn't move. I was afraid," he says.

The cleric lifted the boy's long tunic-style shirt over his head, and then pulled down his baggy pants.

"I was crying. He was hurting me. He shoved my shirt in my mouth," the boy says, using his scarf to show how the cleric tried to stifle his cries. He looks over at his mother.

"Did he touch you?'" He nods. "Did he hurt you when he touched you?" ''Yes," he whispers.

"Did he rape you?" He buries his face in his scarf and nods yes.

Parveen reaches over and grabs her son, pulling him toward her, cradling his head in her lap.

———

"INFESTED" WITH SEXUAL ABUSE

Sexual abuse is a pervasive and longstanding problem at madrassas in Pakistan, an AP investigation has found, from the sunbaked mud villages deep in its rural areas to the heart of its teeming cities. But in a culture where clerics are powerful and sexual abuse is a taboo subject, it is seldom discussed or even acknowledged in public.

It is even more seldom prosecuted. Police are often paid off not to pursue justice against clerics, victims' families say. And cases rarely make it past the courts, because Pakistan's legal system allows the victim's family to "forgive" the offender and accept what is often referred to as "blood money."

The AP found hundreds of cases of sexual abuse by clerics reported in the past decade, and officials suspect there are many more within a far-reaching system that teaches at least 2 million children in Pakistan. The investigation was based on police documents and dozens of interviews with victims, relatives, former and current ministers, aid groups and religious officials.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:07 AM

Girl Scouts warn parents about forcing kids to hug relatives for the holidays

UNITED STATES
Good Morning America

November 20, 2017

By Katie Kindelan

Girl Scouts of the USA issued a warning to parents this holiday season, asking them to think twice before forcing their daughters to hug relatives at gatherings.

“Think of it this way, telling your child that she owes someone a hug either just because she hasn’t seen this person in a while or because they gave her a gift can set the stage for her questioning whether she ‘owes’ another person any type of physical affection when they have bought her dinner or done something else seemingly nice for her later in life,” reads the post on the Girl Scouts’ website.

The organization’s missive to parents comes as allegations of sexual misconduct by men ring out from every industry, including Hollywood, politics and the media.

One in nine girls under the age of 18 experiences sexual abuse or assault at the hands of an adult, according to data shared by the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network (RAINN), an anti-sexual assault organization.

Past research also suggests that nearly one in three episodes of sexual abuse of a child is perpetrated by a family member.

The Girl Scouts' post encourages parents to offer their daughters ways to show gratitude that do not require physical contact, including "a smile, a high-five, or even an air kiss."

Dr. Janet Taylor, a psychiatrist based in New York City and Sarasota, Fla., said parents should be careful to not create "a mass hysteria about physical contact with loved ones," especially during the holiday season.

"As parents, we have to use common sense and also realize that it’s never too early to start a conversation about good touch and bad touch," said Taylor. "But also we don’t want to overstep our boundaries so our children are not afraid of who they should not be afraid of."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:03 AM

Why is sexual harassment so rife in the restaurant industry?

UNITED STATES

The Washington Post via The Independent
November 20, 2017

By Maura Judkis and Emily Heil

In interviews with dozens of women, a picture of rampant assault and pestering emerges. And not just by powerful chefs

If you're a woman, what makes a restaurant dangerous isn't the sharp knives or the hot griddle: It's an isolated area of the kitchen, like the dry storage pantry.

That's where Miranda Rosenfelt, 31, then a cook at a restaurant in Silver Spring, Maryland was headed one day seven years ago to help out with inventory, at the request of one of her direct supervisors, who she says had been harassing her for months. When she walked into the narrow basement room, far from the bustle of the kitchen, she turned around to find him “standing there with his pants on the floor, and his penis in his hands,” blocking her exit from the basement, she said.

“I felt cornered, and trapped, and scared, and what ended up happening was that he got me to perform oral sex, and it was horrible. And the whole time he was saying things like, 'Oh, I've always wanted to do this.'” Her instinct was “not to do anything, and wait for it to be over. Because that's what will make me the safest.”

Or maybe the dangerous place is the walk-in cooler. That's where chef Maya Rotman-Zaid, 36, says she was cornered once about 12 years ago, by a co-worker who tried to grope her. But after years of working in kitchens with handsy, misbehaving men, she had remembered an anecdote from Anthony Bourdain's Kitchen Confidential, in which the famous chef struck back after being grabbed repeatedly by a colleague.

“The guy tried to feel me up, and I stuck a fork in his leg,” she said. A friend she had confided in confirmed details of this story to The Washington Post. Although she doesn't think she broke his skin, he “screamed and ran out of there like it never happened. I mean, talk about embarrassing. But he never tried to touch me again.”

Women are vulnerable in just about every inch of a restaurant. Behind the bar. The hostess stands where patrons are greeted. Behind stoves and in front of dishwashers. From lewd comments to rape, sexual misconduct is, for many, simply part of the job.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:59 AM

Number of women accusing Catholic priest 'Father Pervert' of sex abuse now 30

QUEENS (NY)
New York Daily News

November 20, 2017

By Stephen Rex Brown

More than 30 victims now say they were abused by a Queens priest known by students as “Father Pervert,” “The Pig” and “Lurch.”

Attorney Mitchell Garabedian says he is representing 34 women and one man who allege they were sexually abused by the Rev. Adam Prochaski between 1970 and 1994.

Prochaski, who was assigned to Holy Cross Parish in Maspeth, Queens, is no longer a priest. The victims were between the ages of 5 and 16 when they were allegedly abused.

“The sexual abuse of clients took place in the school, church, rectory next to school, in some clients’ homes and in Prochaski’s car,” Garabedian said.

In September, the Daily News reported that 15 women had accused Prochaski of abuse when they were children.

A former teacher at Holy Cross, Linda Porcaro, said Prochaski’s nicknames were widely known.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:52 AM

November 20, 2017

OPINION:Reader: The elephant in the room

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

November 20, 2017

By Ricardo B. Eusebio, M.D., FACS

Hans Christian Anderson wrote a tale about an emperor who was deceived by two weavers claiming they could weave clothes of magical quality. They become invisible to anyone stupid. When the fake robes were ready, the townspeople and ministers were afraid to say that the emperor was naked, including the emperor himself, for fear of being called stupid. One child exclaimed, “The emperor is naked!”, breaking the spell.

This is apropos to our situation in Guam today where we are dealing with perceptions instead of facts. A bishop has been accused and deemed guilty without a trial. Anything associated to him (Neocatechumenal Way, seminary, Kamalen Karitat, Theological Institute) is guilty by default. Whoever questions this narrative is stupid.

What is the truth?

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 5:19 PM

Man sues Roman Catholic priest over childhool sexual assault allegations

MADISON (MO)
The Madison- St. Clair Record

November 20, 2017

By Lhalie Castillo

EDWARDSVILLE – A 55-year-old Missouri man alleges that he was sexually assaulted by a Roman Catholic priest in the 1970s in St. Louis.

Gary Klein filed a complaint on Nov. 15 in the Madison County Circuit Court against Dennis Zacheis, alleging assault and battery and negligence, among other counts.

According to the complaint, the plaintiff alleges he was sexually assaulted by Zacheis as a minor between 1975 and 1978 while the defendant was employed by the St. Margaret Mary Alacoque Catholic Church and the Archdiocese of St. Louis.

He claims memories of the alleged abuse were repressed and suppressed but he began to remember and recollect the events in 2016.

Klein alleges he has suffered and continues to suffer severe and permanent emotional distress, embarrassment, loss of self-esteem, humiliation and other injuries.

The plaintiff requests a trial by jury and seeks damages of more than $50,000, plus costs expended for this action.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 5:16 PM

SHOULD CATHOLIC CONFESSIONALS BE CONFIDENTIAL?

SANTA MONICA (CA)
World Religion News

November 19, 2017

By Kelly Frazier

IS THIS ALLOWING CRIMES TO GO UNPUNISHED?

The Catholic Church provides that it is the unconditional obligation of priests to keep whatever information is shared in a confessional totally confidential.

SACRAMENTAL SEAL

Any information that is shared to a priest under these confines cannot be disclosed thanks to the Seal of Confession. Roman Catholic canon law states that this seal cannot be violated.

In church practice, it is therefore forbidden for a priest to betray a person who confessed in whatever way or for whichever reason.

With cases like those of sexual crimes committed to children on the rise, however, there has been a clamor for these rules to change. In August, a commission that was set up to investigate child abuse cases in Australia came to the conclusion that criminal charges should be leveled against anyone who discovered such crimes but failed to report them to the authorities.

Writing in their report, the commission said that they believed that Catholic children have in confession disclosed information on sexual abuse inflicted upon them. They also stated that it confession was also a platform that has been used by clergy to purge their own guilt as a result of abusive behavior.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:33 PM

New York Times reporter suspended in harassment probe

NEW YORK (NY)
Associated Press

November 20, 2017

By David Bauder

NEW YORK (AP) — The New York Times says it has suspended White House reporter Glenn Thrush while it investigates charges that he made unwanted advances on young women while he worked as a reporter at Politico and the Times.

Laura McGann, a Politico colleague of Thrush's, wrote on Vox on Monday that Thrush kissed her and placed his hand on her thigh one night in a bar, after urging another person who had been sitting with them to leave.

The Times, in a statement, said "the alleged behavior is very concerning" and not in keeping with the Times' standards. The newspaper said it supports Thrush's decision to enter a substance abuse program. Thrush didn't immediately return a message seeking comment, but told Vox that he apologized to any woman who felt uncomfortable in his presence.

Thrush worked at Politico from 2009 to 2016, when he joined the Times. His visibility is such that he was portrayed on "Saturday Night Live" during its skits earlier this year about White House news conferences.

McGann, who was an editor at Politico, said the incident happened five years ago at a Virginia bar that was a hangout for Politico employees. The incident made her angry, even more so when she said Thrush spread stories blaming her.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:26 PM

‘PUBLIC RECORDS ARE COOL AGAIN’: THE ROLE OF INVESTIGATIVE JOURNALISM

BOSTON (MA)
News @ Northeastern (Northeastern University)

November 20, 2017

By Molly Callahan

In an era when newsrooms are shrinking, local and regional journalism is all but evaporating, and those in power continuously brandish established news organizations as “fake news,” resource-rich investigative journalism is harder and simultaneously more important than ever. So said a dozen journalists with numerous Pulitzer Prizes among them at a conference hosted by Northeastern’s School of Journalism last week.

The event—titled, “Is Trump Making Investigative Reporting Great Again?”—focused on the partisan and financial pressures on newsrooms across the country today.

“The halcyon days when newspapers were making money hand over foot are dying,” said Eric Umansky, deputy managing editor of ProPublica. “There’s an enormous deficit in the financial model of journalism, but there’s no less corruption, no fewer injustices out there.”

Umansky and Louise Kiernan, editor-in-chief of ProPublica Illinois, participated in the afternoon’s keynote panel, moderated by Jonathan Kaufman, director of the Northeastern School of Journalism. They joined the ranks of a host of other journalists representing radio, television, online, startup, and print news organizations throughout the country at the event held in the Cabral Center.

Umansky said journalism is increasingly scrambling for financial viability but is essential to a healthy democracy. Nearly everyone who spoke echoed this message, including Elizabeth Hudson, dean of the College of Arts, Media and Design, in her opening remarks.

Hudson recalled a conversation she’d had with Kaufman shortly after they’d both returned from living in foreign countries. “When you live outside America, you really understand how critical investigative journalism is for democracy,” she said. “I’m so pleased Northeastern and CAMD can provide this ecosystem for how to foster the skills in our students that will help create great newsrooms.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:11 PM

'A long and tortuous road': Catholic brother's guilty plea brings relief for victim, but not closure

MONTREAL (CANADA)
Montreal Gazette

November 20, 2017

By Jesse Feith

Following the guilty plea of a Catholic brother who sexually abused a minor at Collège Notre-Dame decades ago, the victim looks back at his life and what might need to come next.

After waiting seven years for the moment to come, he was anxious the night before. He kept his phone close and waited for the prosecutor’s call: surely, as had already happened so many times, there would be another delay.

But the call never came. So the next morning, he woke early and left for the Montreal courthouse.

He had barely slept and now his brain was racing throughout the hour-long drive. Was he wasting his time? He had gotten his hopes up before only to have them dashed by procedural delays and setbacks. Last spring, he was told it would all be over by September. Now it was November.

It was only once he was sitting in a cubicle at the Montreal courthouse last Tuesday that he realized the wait was finally over. First, there was a warning: the man who abused him so many years ago was in the courtroom next to him. Then, the Crown prosecutor opened the door.

“It’s time,” she told the victim.

On the morning of Nov. 14, Brother Olivain Leblanc, 75, of the Congrégation de Ste. Croix sat before a judge — his health too poor for him to stand — and pleaded guilty to one count of gross indecency for sexually abusing a 13-year-old student at Montreal’s Collège Notre-Dame. The acts, which included oral sex and sexual touching, occurred repeatedly between 1979 and 1981, it was said.

“It’s been a long and tortuous road,” the victim, a man in his early 50s whose name is covered under a publication ban, said a few days later, sipping a coffee while walking along a river.

For decades, he had tried to repress memories of what was done to him. But for the last seven years — the time that elapsed between his complaint to police and Leblanc’s guilty plea — he needed to keep them at surface level, knowing he could be called to testify at any given moment. The stress of it all could be debilitating.

“I was living in this void with no sense of direction,” he said. “I sacrificed seven years of my life because I knew what I was getting myself into. I knew, psychologically, it would be a war of attrition.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:05 PM

Vatican investigating abuse at pre-seminary

VATICAN CITY
Catholic News Service

November 20, 2017

By Cindy Wooden

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — The Vatican announced it had launched a new investigation into reports about sexual abuse in a pre-seminary for young adolescents run by the Diocese of Como, Italy, but located inside the Vatican.

Greg Burke, Vatican spokesman, issued a statement Nov. 18 saying that beginning in 2013 when “some reports, anonymous and not,” were made, staff of the St. Pius X Pre-Seminary and the bishop of Como both conducted investigations.

“Adequate confirmation was not found” regarding the allegations, which involved students and not staff. Some of the students already had left the pre-seminary when the first investigations were carried out, the statement said.

However, “in consideration of new elements that recently emerged, a new investigation is underway to shed full light on what really happened,” the statement said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:00 PM

Catholic Church’s stance on women alienates people, archbishop says

IRELAND
The Irish Times

November 16, 2017

By Patsy McGarry

Diarmuid Martin says gender issues a bigger factor in falling engagement than sex abuse

The low standing of women in the Catholic Church is the most significant reason for the feeling of alienation towards it in Ireland today, Archbishop of Dublin Diarmuid Martin has said.

“Next would be the ongoing effect of the scandals of child sexual abuse,” he said in an address on Thursday.

“I believe, in particular, that people have underestimated the effect of the scandals on young people.”

He added that young people’s “disgust at what happened is deep-rooted”.

Dr Martin said one of the most disappointing documents that he had read since becoming archbishop concerned a recent survey of young people in Dublin, conducted in preparation for the Synod of Bishops on Young People in Rome next year.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:58 PM

Jehovah’s Witness elder admits to sexual abuse of boy that was covered up by church

BUENA PARK(CA)
Raw Story

November 20, 2017

By Travis Gettys

A former Jehovah’s Witness church elder admitted to sexually assaulting one of his teenage students.

Jason Morris Gorski pleaded guilty last week in California to two counts of lewd acts with a minor, reported the OC Weekly.

The 44-year-old Gorski met the 13-year-old victim while teaching Southwestern Longview Private School in Long Beach, and while serving as an elder at the Jehovah’s Witness Kingdom Hall congregation in Cypress, which the boy also attended.

Prosecutors said Gorski sexually assaulted the boy in Buena Park between June 2007 and June 2008, and the boy reported the abuse to church leaders in 2009.

Church leaders required Gorski to step down as elder but allowed him to continue as an active member.

Gorski moved to Fort Mill, South Carolina, the following year and began attending another Jehovah’s Witness congregation in Charlotte, North Carolina.

He wasn’t arrested until June 2016, after the victim reported the abuse to police.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:55 PM

Shattered Faith Part II: The wide circle of silence [with video]

ALBUQUERQUE (NM)
KOB 4

November 20, 2017

By Chris Ramirez

Editor's Note: This story is the second in a series called "Shattered Faith," in which KOB 4 Investigates examines the cases of three former Catholic priests in the Archdiocese of Santa Fe whose alleged widespread abuse of children decades ago not only went undealt with, but has contributed to what many mental health professionals call a mental health crisis for New Mexico.

The first story in this series, "A dangerous shuffle game," can be found here. Read on for the second part of "Shattered Faith."

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – There is the crime. And then there is the cover-up.

When it comes to child sex abuse by priests, we know for years the church protected pedophile priests and worked to silence victims and their families. But keeping a secret for so long required help.

The documents that the KOB 4 Investigates Team fought to bring to the public light reveal the wide circle of silence that denied justice to our most vulnerable victims.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:48 PM

Sick Pilgrim’s Regress

WASHINGTON (DC)
The American Conservative

November 18, 2017

By Rod Dreher

Jonathan Ryan is a Catholic convert, writer, and co-founder of the Patheos blog titled Sick Pilgrim, which describes itself as “a space for the spiritually sick, and their fellow travelers, to rest a while.”

Ryan — whose full name is Jonathan Ryan Weyer — does not like The Benedict Option. He wrote a blog post earlier this year that wildly mischaracterized it — surprise! — and then climbed way up high on his soapbox:

We must incarnate in the world and be a part of its pain and redemption, even if it means we could lose our way from time to time. This all sounds dangerous. It most certainly is. But that’s the call of Christ–not a call to “protect Western Civilization” or “Christian culture,” but a call to risk it all for the sake of the redemption of the world. We must risk our children as we teach them to engage with sinners like themselves. We must risk our self respect, our reputations, and everything we hold dear.

This can’t be done via the Benedict Option. It’s not possible. Dreher’s ideas aren’t just bad, they’re dangerous to the soul–because they’ll keep us from our most important call as Christians, to Christ by loving others. When we avoid that call, we avoid the only possible way to transform ourselves and the culture around us: the radical love of Christ’s suffering.

Well. On another Patheos blog, Sick Pilgrim co-founder Jessica Mesman Griffith released a statement that begins like this:

This is my official statement. You should hear it from me. You’ve become like family to me. I can only say I’m sorry I didn’t speak out sooner as maybe it would have spared others some pain. #metoo indeed.

On Sunday, November 12, 2017, it came to my attention that there have been relationships between Jonathan Ryan, the co-founder of the Sick Pilgrim blog, and various women in the Sick Pilgrim online community–a community that had become, over the last year, a de facto support group for those recovering from spiritual abuse, in addition to a place for artists and writers to come together to discuss what inspires us and/or troubles us about the Catholic Church. (This Facebook community is a private group–one must request to join–but it’s not a secret. We have advertised it on the blog and on Facebook multiple times and invited anyone interested to send us a request to join.)

It quickly became apparent, upon investigation of these claims, that the relationships Jonathan had formed with several women he met through the blog and in the community had in fact been inappropriate, predatory and exploitative.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:44 PM

Letter to the Editor: Mob mentality persists even though Apuron awaits verdict

GUAM
The Guam Daily Post

November 20, 2017

By Dr. R.B. Eusebio

Hans Christian Anderson wrote a famous allegorical tale about a vain emperor who was deceived by two weavers claiming they could weave clothes possessing a magical quality: They became invisible to anyone stupid or unfit for their job. Realizing the obvious benefit this could yield him, the king commissioned these magical clothes to be made. The swindlers pretended to weave using an empty loom while stashing all the fine materials they were given. Everyone, including the emperor himself, acted as if the beautiful robes had indeed been woven, out of fear of appearing to be fools and losing their jobs. The naked emperor paraded through town with his invisible robe until an innocent child bravely pointed out that the emperor was indeed naked, exposing the deceptive spell the swindlers had cast on the people.

This tale seems particularly apropos to the situation of the Catholic Church on Guam. We have a bishop accused of child abuse but still awaiting the opportunity to clear his name. Meanwhile, anything even remotely connected to this bishop, from the Neocatechumenal Way to Kamalen Karitat to the Redemptoris Mater seminary and the San Luis de Vitores Theological Institute, seems to have been already declared guilty by association.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:20 PM

86 Alabama Baptist pastors sign letter against sex abuse

HUNTSVILLE (AL)
AL.com

November 18, 2017

By Greg Garrison

More than 85 pastors at Southern Baptist-affiliated churches in Alabama have signed a letter this week saying they denounce sexual abuse against women, although the letter does not mention U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore.

As of today there were at least 86 signees including the current president of the Alabama Baptist Convention and a past president of the state convention, though both and some other ministers expressed concerns earlier this week about whether the allegations against Moore are true.

Southern Baptists are the largest denomination in Alabama, with more than a million members affiliated through the Alabama Baptist State Convention.

Moore, a Southern Baptist who is a member of Gallant First Baptist Church, is a U.S. Senate candidate who is the subject of intense national conversation after allegations from several women that he targeted them for romantic and sexual advances when they were teenagers and he was a county prosecutor in his thirties.

"If he did it, we need to know that," said State Baptist President John Thweatt, pastor of First Baptist Church of Pell City. "We need to condemn it. If he didn't, then we need to know that too. There are probably some people who will believe him no matter what."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:17 PM

Sex abuse royal commission: Townsville Christian high school closing doors over safety concerns

AUSTRALIA
Australian Broadcasting Corporation

November 20, 2017

By David Chen

Shalom Christian College in Townsville is shutting down its secondary and boarding schools, saying it is in the "best interests of our students".

The north Queensland college was criticised during the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse for its handling of the sexual assault of a 14-year-old-girl in 2006.

The commission heard she was assaulted by four boys behind a classroom at the school, when the students were supposed to be in the boarding house.

The Uniting Church, which operates the school, told the royal commission it did not receive enough government funding to keep its students safe.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:14 PM

SILENT WITNESSES Jehovah’s Witness rape victims claim abuse was covered up because it would bring shame on the religion

ENGLAND
The Sun

November 20, 2017

By Felix Allen

Victims say the secretive organisation instructs members not to report crimes to the police

CHILDREN who were raped and abused by Jehovah's Witnesses were told by church elders not to report it because it would shame the religion, it is claimed.

Victims from across Britain have told the BBC how they were routinely abused - but it was hushed up by the secretive organisation.

One victim, Louise Palmer, said she was told reporting her rapist brother to police would "bring reproach on Jehovah".

The 41-year-old, formerly of Halesowen, West Mids, was born into the organisation along with her brother Richard Davenport, who started raping her when she was four. He is now in jail.

She said of the moment she went to elders: "I asked, 'what should I do? Do you report it to the police, do I report it to the police?'

"And their words were that they strongly advised me not to go to the police because it would bring reproach on Jehovah."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:11 PM

Victims 'told not to report' Jehovah's Witness child abuse

ENGLAND
BBC NEWS

November 20, 2017

Children who were sexually abused by Jehovah's Witnesses were allegedly told by the organisation not to report it.

Victims from across the UK told the BBC they were routinely abused and that the religion's own rules protected perpetrators.

One child abuse lawyer believes there could be thousands of victims across the country who have not come forward.

The organisation said it did not "shield" abusers and any suggestion of a cover-up was "absolutely false".

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:09 PM

Jehovah’s Witnesses deny sexual abuse within church was covered up

LONDON (UK)
The Independent

November 20, 2017

By Craig Simpson

Victims say they were told by elders not to report sexual abuse within Jehovah's Witness community

Alleged victims have claimed the church told them to keep quiet, with one saying she was told reporting it would “bring reproach on Jehovah”.

The BBC says it has spoken to members who described how the rules of the religion prevented proper reporting and protected perpetrators.

It has been alleged elders of the faith advised victims not to report abuse to police, and that no internal action was taken due to a “two-witness” rule.

This requires two witnesses for any sin committed in order for the elders of the faith to take any action.

In cases of sexual abuse, the presence of two witnesses is extremely rare.

Louise Palmer, 41, began being raped by her now-convicted brother Richard Davenport when she was just four years old.

Both were born into the Jehovah’s Witness community.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:06 PM

Decades of sexual abuse by church volunteer revealed

GAUTENG (SOUTH AFRICA)
IOL

November 20, 2017

By Zelda Venter

Pretoria - For decades, pastors at Hatfield Christian Church covered up the sexual abuse of several young girls by one of its youth leaders.
In the same week that the Constitutional Court deliberated on the statute of limitations on sexual abuse cases, George Donald, 67, was sentenced in the Pretoria Regional Court to a total of 11 years’ imprisonment, of which he has to serve an effective six years.

This was for raping his biological daughter, Marijke Donald, now Mwathi, over several years in the 1980s, as well as his foster daughter - who does not want to be named - for months while she lived with the family in Pretoria.

The rape and sexual abuse of Marijke, 40, started around the time she was 3 and ended when she was about 12.

Her foster sister, who was about 10 at the time, eventually told Marijke’s mother, who does not want to be identified. The mother turned to the church authorities for guidance.

Both parents received counselling and the advice of the church elders at the time was that they should pray and talk to each other.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:04 PM

Woman claims priest tried to kill her and child

NAIROBI (KENYA)
Daily Nation

November 18, 2017

By Kitavi Mutua

In Summary The priest contacted Ms Mutua, offering to start meeting the costs of raising the child who had now turned three years. Mother and child were found the following morning by villagers who alerted police.

Fresh details have emerged in a case in which a Catholic priest is accused of impregnating a high school student and attempting to kill her and the child.

This comes ahead of the next court appearance later this month.

Fr Japheth Mwove Kimanzi, who was in charge of Nuu Catholic Parish in Kitui County, is alleged to have taken advantage of the woman, then a 15-year-old Form One student, to defile her before attempting to murder her and the baby, a court was told.

DEFILE

The victim of the brutal attack, Veronica Musali Mutua, told Kitui Chief Magistrate Maryanne Murage that Fr Kimanzi enticed her using biscuits and pocket money.

Fr Kimanzi, who has since been ex-communicated from the church, has denied the two charges — attempted murder and causing grievous bodily harm. He is expected in court on November 22 where he will be put on his defence. He is out on a Sh100,000 bond.

In her chilling testimony before Ms Murage on July 13 this year, Ms Mutua, 23, said the priest lured her into an illicit relationship in 2011 while she was still a Form One student at Mwambiu Mixed Secondary School in Mwingi Sub-County.

“He started by giving pocket money and I thought he meant well. I trusted him because he was our priest and he would ask me to accompany him to visit families within our area as part of his evangelical work,” she told the court.

The relationship grew and the priest began sneaking into their home and spending the night with her whenever her parents were away, according to the woman.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:49 PM

Chrissie Foster says the Federal Government must implement all royal commission recommendations

AUSTRALIA
Newcastle Herald

November 17, 2017

By Joanne McCarthy

IT’S been a tough year at the end of several decades of tough years for Chrissie Foster, who campaigned for a royal commission into child sexual abuse after two of her daughters were raped by a Catholic priest.

Her husband, Anthony, died suddenly in June, a decade after the overdose death of one of their daughters who was five when she was raped.

But a speech by Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse chair Justice Peter McClellan on Tuesday cut through the grief and “hit home”, Mrs Foster said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:00 PM

Vaticano investiga possíveis relações sexuais entre menores em pré-seminário

ROME
Agencia EFE

November 18, 2017

[Google Translate: The Vatican announced on Saturday that it has opened an investigation into alleged sexual relations among minors in the pre-seminary of St. Pius X in the Holy See, which welcomes altar boys and possible new seminarians.]

Os relatos teriam ocorrido no pré-seminário São Pio X, na Santa Sé, que acolhe coroinhas e possíveis novos seminaristas.

O Vaticano informou neste sábado (18) que abriu uma investigação para apurar supostas relações sexuais mantidas entre menores no pré-seminário São Pío X, na Santa Sé, que acolhe coroinhas e possíveis novos seminaristas.

Mais cedo, a agência EFE havia divulgado que o caso se tratava de abusos a menores. A informação foi corrigida às 13h40 deste sábado.

O Vaticano disse em comunicado que "em consideração dos novos elementos surgidos recentemente está em curso uma nova investigação para que se lance toda a luz sobre o que realmente aconteceu".

O comunicado acrescenta que "como consequência de algumas denúncias, anônimas e não anônimas, desde 2013 foram efetuadas investigações em várias ocasiões".

"Os fatos denunciados, que datavam de anos anteriores e nos quais estariam envolvidos alunos coetâneos entre si, alguns dos quais já não estavam presentes no instituto no momento das investigações, não encontraram uma confirmação adequada", completa a nota.

O jornalista italiano Gianluigi Nuzzi apresentou neste mês um livro intitulado "Peccato originale" ("Pecado Original") no qual divulga o relato do jovem polonês Kamil Tadeusz Jarzembowski sobre supostos abusos cometidos nessa instituição.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:56 AM

November 19, 2017

Jehovah’s Witnesses’ tab for child sex abuse secrecy: $2M and counting

EMERYVILLE (CA)
Reveal/Center for Investigative Journalism

November 16, 2017

By Trey Bundy

The Jehovah’s Witnesses’ refusal to hand over internal documents detailing alleged child sexual abuse just got more expensive.

A California appeals court last week upheld an order for the religion to pay $4,000 for each day it does not turn over the documents. The tab currently stands at $2 million. The ruling stems from a case in San Diego, where Osbaldo Padron sued the Jehovah’s Witnesses for failing to warn congregants that a child abuser was in their midst.

Padron, a former Jehovah’s Witness, was sexually abused as a child by an adult member of his congregation named Gonzalo Campos. Campos confessed to sexually abusing seven children.

During that time, leaders at the Jehovah’s Witnesses world headquarters in New York – known as the Watchtower – knew that Campos had abused children, according to court documents. Yet they continued to promote him to higher positions of responsibility in his congregation and took no action to prevent further abuse, the documents show.

Reveal from The Center for Investigative Reporting reviewed multiple cases involving Campos as part of a larger investigation into the Watchtower’s institutional cover-up of child sex abuse in its congregations.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 3:29 PM

Priest accused of sex abuse now Newport psychologist

PROVIDENCE (RI)
Providence Journal

November 18, 2017

By Jacqueline Tempera

[Note: Includes links to Cunningham's assignment history, John CP Doe's complaint, and several defendant's pleadings in the John CJ Doe case.]

Rev. Christopher Cunningham, facing 2 civil lawsuits, practices at Seaside Psychological Services on Bellevue Avenue. He was licensed by the Rhode Island Department of Health in 2013, after working briefly in Pennsylvania.

A Roman Catholic priest accused of sexually abusing children in churches in Southern California in the 1990s and early 2000s is now working as a licensed psychologist in Newport.

The Rev. Christopher Cunningham, 55, is a practicing clinical psychologist at Seaside Psychological Services on Bellevue Avenue. He was licensed by the Rhode Island Department of Health in 2013, after working briefly in Pennsylvania.

He is also the subject of two civil lawsuits filed in the Superior Court of California in the District of Los Angeles. Two men — former parishioners now in their late 20s — say Cunningham sexually abused them when they were children — ages 10 to 13.

Both suits stem from Cunningham’s time as pastor of St. Louise De Marillac Catholic Church in Covina, California, from 2001 to 2003. But court filings depict a pattern of strange, predatory behavior at each of the five parishes where Cunningham worked in California, before he went back to school and became a psychologist in 2010.

One man, identified as “John CP Doe” says that when he was 10 to 11 years old, Cunningham “sexually molested” him. Cunningham worked as a priest at the church where the boy’s family worshiped, the man alleges in the suit filed May 25.

In a 2015 suit, a man identified as “John CJ Doe” says Cunningham molested him in 2001 and 2002 when he was 12 and 13 years old.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 3:17 PM

South Florida's Five Worst Religious Leaders, Including Accused Molester Bob Coy

MIAMI (FL)
Miami New Times

November 19, 2017

By Jerry Iannelli

Megachurches are often scams. Their owners and preachers become obscenely wealthy and don't have to pay taxes. And a remarkably huge percentage of megachurch leaders become ensnared in ethically dubious (at best) conduct: Ultra-rich Houston pastor Joel Osteen infamously neglected to open his megachurch to Hurricane Harvey victims for days after the storm hit earlier this year.

But Osteen pales in comparison to Florida megachurch figureheads such as Bob Coy, the former Fort Lauderdale religious leader. Coy resigned from his 25,000-member Calvary Chapel in 2014 after a sex-scandal, but the church continued in business. This week, New Times outed Coy an accused child molester.

Shady priests are part of South Florida's culture. Here's a rundown of some other major culprits, (from past New Times issues if not otherwise noted).

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 2:54 PM

In Denmark Convicted Priest Pedophile

TORONTO (ONTARIO, CANADA)
The Stopru

November 19, 2017

In Denmark the official decision of the court 47-year-old Church Minister was convicted for pedophilia and received 10 years of imprisonment. Danish radio station Danmarks Radio yesterday, 15 November, informed its listeners that a priest was convicted for his crimes.

For child abuse citizens who have made a priest in Denmark, he received 10 years in prison. According to the results of carried out quickly-investigative actions by law enforcement agencies in Denmark, found evidence that the priest for 10 years of his criminal activity was able to seduce one girl and 7 boys, and their acts of a sexual nature he captured with the help of video. The decision of the court of the priest is obliged to pay the victims compensation in the amount of 3.5 million rubles (370 000 DKK). Also the offender should not be alone with anyone under the age of majority.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 2:49 PM

"Hanno abusato di me in Vaticano. Molestie anche durante la Messa"

ROME (ITALY)
Il Giornale

November 13, 2017

By Alice Venturelli

[Note: See also the original half-hour TV report (in Italian).]

[Google translation: "They abused me in the Vatican. Harassment even during Mass"

An ex-cleric told the Hyenas sexual abuse suffered in the San Pio X presidency, in the Vatican

A Le Iene inquiry conducted by Gaetano Pecoraro and aired last night on Italy 1 showed new evidence about the vicissitudes of sexual abuse in the Vatican .

Some former young seminarians and clergymen of Pope Francis have reported sexual violence at the premises of the San Pio X presenter, just near Piazza San Pietro. A young Polish, Kamil, told that a teenager had decided to go to the Vatican and enter the seminar.

Kamil has become so witness to years of repeated violence against the sage roommate by a young seminary little bigger than them, who today became a priest. "I was scared, and so I was clumsy as I saw that rape, because he was the seminarian whom the rector trusted more. Then I decided to tell everything to our spiritual father because he was kept in the secret. He decided to investigate on behalf and eventually he was removed from his job and moved to 600 km away. "

According to Kamil, the alleged aggressor, he had a position of power within the seminary and also of St. Peter's Basilica: "He was not a normal seminarist because he enjoyed the rector 's best confidence . He was the one who chose what I was doing, what did he do my friend and so on."]

Un ex chierichetto ha raccontato alle Iene gli abusi sessuali subìte all'interno della sede del preseminario San Pio X, in Vaticano

Un'inchiesta de Le Iene condotta da Gaetano Pecoraro e andata in onda ieri sera su Italia 1 ha mostrato nuove testimonianze sulla vicenda degli abusi sessuali in Vaticano.

"Cacciato per aver denunciato"

Monsignor Radice: "Tutte falsità"

Alcuni ex giovani seminaristi e chierichetti di Papa Francesco hanno raccontato le violenze sessuali subìte all'interno della sede del preseminario San Pio X, proprio vicino a piazza San Pietro. Un giovane polacco, Kamil, ha raccontato che ancora adolescente aveva deciso di recarsi in Vaticano ed entrare nel preseminario.

Kamil è diventato così testimone di anni di ripetute violenze ai danni del sio compagno di stanza da parte di un giovane seminarista poco più grande di loro, diventato oggi sacerdote."Avevo paura e quindi restavo impietrito mentre vedevo quello stupro, anche perché lui era il seminarista di cui il rettore si fidava di più. Poi decisi di dire tutto al nostro padre spirituale, perché è tenuto al segreto. Lui decise di fare indagini per conto proprio e alla fine fu rimosso dal suo incarico e trasferito a 600 km di distanza".

Secondo Kamil, il presunto aggressore, aveva una posizione di potere all'interno del seminario e anche della basilica di San Pietro: "Non era un normale seminarista perché godeva della massima fiducia del rettore. Era lui che sceglieva cosa facevo io, cosa faceva il mio amico e così via".

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 2:36 PM

Comunicato della Diocesi

COMO (ITALY)
Diocese of Como Website

November 13, 2017

[Google translation: Statement of the Diocese

With this release, the Diocese of Como intends to comment on the service of the television broadcast "Le Iene", aired on Sunday, November 12, 2017 on Italy 1, titled: "They abused me in the Vatican".

Regarding the motives raised to a seminarist, now an incardinated priest in the Diocese of Como , it is considered that the following should be clarified.

The diocese, as already anticipated in writing to the editorial office of "Le Iene" and to the direction of Italy1, according to the elements in his possession, is concerned with the correctness of the evaluation of the suitability for the priesthood of the aforementioned seminarian, he completed his training course in Rome, which was positively evaluated by the authorities in this regard.

Accusations have already been investigated by the relevant ecclesiastical offices: the Canon Superiors have observed and evaluated the person and his conduct.

The Bishop of Como, having taken note of the outcome of this inquiry, of all the evaluations of the personality and the vocational journey of the seminarist, and after ritually fulfilling his / her duties, has ordered this young priest to preside.]

Con il presente comunicato la Diocesi di Como intende esprimere alcune osservazioni in relazione al servizio della trasmissione televisiva “Le Iene”, andato in onda domenica 12 novembre 2017 su Italia 1, avente quale titolo: “Hanno abusato di me in Vaticano”.

In merito ai rilievi mossi nei confronti di un seminarista, oggi sacerdote incardinato nella Diocesi di Como, si ritiene doveroso precisare quanto segue.

La Diocesi, come già anticipato in forma scritta alla redazione de “Le Iene” e alla direzione di Italia1, in base agli elementi in suo possesso, si attiene alla correttezza dell’iter di valutazione dell’idoneità al sacerdozio del suddetto seminarista, il quale ha compiuto a Roma il proprio percorso formativo, valutato positivamente dalle autorità a questo preposte.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 2:29 PM

Letter from Bishop Oscar Cantoni

COMO (ITALY)
Diocese of Como Website

November 18, 2017

By Bishop Oscar Cantoni

[Google translation: Members of the Church of God who are in Como and their Pastors

Dear friends,

great clamor and confusion have generated these various television and journalistic services around the spread of news, ambiguous behaviors attributable to our priest in the times of our the first years of his training. There was, on the one hand, so much sorrow and suffering and, on the other, some perplexity, depending on the interpretation of each one.

On the pages of the Weekly of the last issue, as in other newspapers, the Diocese wanted to clarify with determination and determination what was necessary to emphasize, from the established elements, of which so far is known.

I thank heartily that many priests, religious and lay people have expressed their close proximity and expressed their solidarity by acknowledging the brutal and aggressive methods with which certain television broadcasts have attempted to extort their statements from those concerned, manipulating them in order to consolidate their their thesis and to create a climate of suspicion on the whole Church.

As a shepherd of this Christian community I have the duty first to express a paternal solidarity with all those concerned with the case, from those who have told their experience to those who have already been judged, humiliated and bereaved themselves.]

Ai membri della Chiesa di Dio che è in Como e ai loro Pastori

Cari amici,

grande clamore e sconcerto hanno generato in questi giorni i vari servizi televisivi e giornalistici attorno alla diffusione di notizie, di comportamenti ambigui, attribuibili a un nostro sacerdote nel tempo dei primi anni della sua formazione. Ne è scaturita, da una parte, tanta tristezza e sofferenza e, dall'altra, anche qualche perplessità, a seconda dell'interpretazione di ciascuno.
Sulle pagine del Settimanale dello scorso numero, come su altre testate giornalistiche, la Diocesi ha voluto precisare con chiarezza e determinazione quanto era necessario sottolineare, a partire dagli elementi accertati, di cui finora si è a conoscenza.

Ringrazio di cuore quanti, sacerdoti, religiose e laici, hanno espresso la loro solidale vicinanza e manifestato la loro solidarietà, riconoscendo i metodi brutali e aggressivi con cui certe trasmissioni televisive hanno tentano di estorcere dagli interessati le loro dichiarazioni, manipolandole al fine di consolidare le proprie tesi e di generare un clima di sospetto sulla Chiesa intera.

Come pastore di questa Comunità cristiana ho il dovere innanzitutto di esprimere una paterna solidarietà verso tutti gli interessati al caso, da quanti hanno raccontato la loro esperienza, a quanti sono già stati di per sé giudicati, umiliati e incasellati.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 2:15 PM

Nuova indagine sul collegio dei «Chierichetti del Papa»

ROME (ITALY)
Avvenire

November 18, 2017

[Google translation: New investigation into the college of "Pope's Cheriots"

Today, the note of the Vatican Press Room: "Considering new elements that have emerged recently, a new investigation is under way to shed light on what really happened"

With regard to the event involving a former pupil of the "San Pio X" Presenter, who was later ordained a priest, the Holy See Press Office today stated on November 18 that "as a result of some reports, anonymous and not, from 2013 were carried out on several occasions by investigators both by the Presidents Superior and by the Bishop of Como, as the Educational Community belongs to his Diocese. The reported facts, dating back to the previous years and involving peer educators between some of whom were no longer present at the Institute at the time of the investigations, did not find a proper confirmation. Considering new elements that have emerged recently, a new investigation is in progress to make full light of what really happened. "

Below the previous Avvenire reconstruction of the story.

"Pope's Cheriots", accusations and denials

The new alleged sexual harassment scandal in the Vatican erupted after the service broadcast by the hyena that aired on Sunday, November 12. The director of the Holy See Press Office, Greg Burke, replied with a tweet: "Falsehood on the Vatican clerics: the Pope has never received a presumed victim, no witness." On the other hand, the note of the diocese of Como had recalled how the accusations against the alleged seminarian suspect, now a priest, were "already under investigation by the competent ecclesiastical sites" and apparently considered unfounded.]

Di oggi la nota della Sala Stampa Vaticana: "In considerazione di nuovi elementi recentemente emersi, è in corso una nuova indagine che faccia piena luce su quanto realmente accaduto"

In merito alla vicenda che vede coinvolto un ex alunno del Preseminario “San Pio X”, successivamente ordinato sacerdote, la Sala Stampa della Santa Sede ha precisato oggi 18 novembre che "a seguito di alcune segnalazioni, anonime e non, a partire dal 2013 furono compiute, a più riprese, delle indagini sia da parte dei Superiori del Preseminario sia da parte del Vescovo di Como, atteso che la Comunità degli educatori appartiene alla sua Diocesi. I fatti denunciati, che risalivano agli anni precedenti e che avrebbero coinvolto alunni coetanei tra loro, alcuni dei quali non più presenti nell’Istituto al momento degli accertamenti, non trovarono adeguata conferma. In considerazione di nuovi elementi recentemente emersi, è in corso una nuova indagine che faccia piena luce su quanto realmente accaduto".

Qui sotto la precedente ricostruzione di Avvenire della vicenda.

«Chierichetti del Papa», accuse e smentite

Il nuovo presunto scandalo delle molestie sessuali in Vaticano è scoppiato dopo il servizio trasmesso dalle Iene andata in onda domenica 12 novembre. Il direttore della Sala Stampa della Santa Sede, Greg Burke aveva replicato con un tweet: «Falsità sui chierichetti in Vaticano: il Papa non ha mai ricevuto presunta vittima, né alcun testimone». Dall’altra parte la nota della diocesi di Como, aveva ricordato come le accuse nei confronti del seminarista presunto molestatore, ora sacerdote, fossero «già state oggetto di accertamento da parte delle competenti sedi ecclesiastiche» ed evidentemente ritenute infondate.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 2:07 PM

Holy See Press Office Communiqué

VATICAN CITY
Holy See Press Office

November 18, 2017

With regard to the event involving a former pupil of the “Saint Pius X” Pre-seminary, subsequently ordained a priest, the following is stated.

Following various reports, both anonymous and otherwise, starting from 2013, several inquiries were carried out both by the Superiors of the Pre-seminary and by the Bishop of Como, as the Community of educators belongs to his diocese.

The events reported, which date back to previous years and would have involved several peers, some of whom were no longer present at the Institute at the time of the inquiries, do not find sufficient confirmation.

In view of the new elements that have recently emerged, a new investigation is underway, to shed full light on really happened.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 2:03 PM

Dyfed-Powys Police confirm Caldey Island sex abuse reports

LONDON (ENGLAND)
BBC

November 18, 2017

Dyfed-Powys Police has told BBC Wales it received reports of historical sexual abuse perpetrated by a monk on Caldey Island in the 1970s and 1980s.

The force investigated in 2014 and 2016 but could not prosecute as the monk, Father Thaddeus Kotik, died in 1992.

The Guardian newspaper has reported that Caldey Abbey has paid compensation to six women who were abused as children.

BBC Wales has attempted to contact Caldey Abbey in Pembrokeshire.

Court papers seen by The Guardian said Kotik carried out the abuse between 1972 and 1987 and the women, who were on holiday at the time, believe there may be many more victims.
Kotik worked in the abbey's dairy and befriended families who regularly visited the island.

After gaining the trust of parents he would babysit the children and sexually abuse them, the papers suggest.

The women, who are not identified, said the abbey knew about the offences and failed to report Kotik to the police.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 1:56 PM

Three women reveal monk on Caldey Island sexually abused them for decades

LONDON (ENGLAND)
International Business Times

November 18, 2017

By Nicole Rojas

The women sued Caldey Abbey for the abuse they suffered, requesting acknowledgement, an apology and compensation.

Three women have come forward to allege they were sexually abused by a monk living on Caldey Island, off the Welsh Coast at Tenby. The women claim Father Thaddeus Kotik sexually abused them as children during the 1970s and 1980s.

In August 2016, the women launched civil proceedings against the Cistercian order for personal injuries. The court documents claim Kotik abused six girls between 1972 and 1987 while at the Italianate Abbey of Our Lady and St Samson. However, the women believe there may be more victims.

Kotik, a former soldier with the Free Polish army during WWII, was ordained a priest in the order 1956. According to the Guardian, Kotik appears to have never been questioned by police and died in 1992.

According to court documents, Kotik befriended families who visited the island, as well as the farming families who lived there full time. He would give them handmade chocolates and produce to gain the trust of the families.

Kotik is said to have lured girls to places where he would not be detected, including a room near the abbey's dairy and in isolated rocky coves by the beach. While babysitting children, he allegedly would pull sleepy girls towards him and sexually assault them.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 1:50 PM

November 18, 2017

Abuse by priests is not due to celibacy, says Vatican expert

DUBLIN (IRELAND)
The Independent

November 18, 2017

By Sarah MacDonald

Celibacy cannot be blamed for clerical sex abuse because the average perpetrator does not commit the crime for up to 20 years after entering the priesthood, according to a top Vatican expert.

Professor Hans Zollner, a member of the Vatican's Commission for the Protection of Minors, said "celibacy as such is not the problem" because the average age of clerical paedophiles is 39. If were a problem, the age would be closer to that when priests take their vows, which is usually in their twenties.

The "biggest risk", he warned, was when "celibacy is not lived in an integrated way", and when priests are not given the support they need for their priesthood, which can lead to isolation, spiritual difficulties and even addictions.

Prof Zollner was giving an address to a symposium on the formation of Catholic priests at the national seminary in Maynooth, Co Kildare.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 3:40 PM

Vatican looks into alleged altar boy abuse

SYDNEY (AUSTRALIA)
Reuters via news.com.au

November 19, 2017

The Vatican is investigating reports a priest abused a dormitory mate when they were both altar boys and living in a residence at the St Pius X Institute.

The Vatican says it has opened an investigation into reports that a former teenage altar boy, who allegedly repeatedly forced a dormitory mate to have sex with him, went on to become a priest.

The allegations concerning the St Pius X Institute, known as a pre-seminary, were made in a recent book and in Italian television reports.

The pre-seminary is a residence inside the Vatican for altar boys who serve at masses in St Peter's Basilica mostly presided over by priests, bishops and cardinals. At times they also participate in papal liturgies.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 3:32 PM

Missbrauchsopfer von Fischingen: «Die Kirche ist mir eine Antwort schuldig»

THURGAU (SWITZERLAND)
Tagblatt

November 18, 2017

By Ida Sandl

[Google translation: Abuse victims of Fischingen: «The Church owes me an answer» His body suffers and so does the soul. The dark shadows of the past catch Walter Nowak again and again. Even after so many years and so far away, in Vienna, where he lives now. Nowak has publicized the abuse and ill-treatment in the children's home of the Fischingen Monastery. He lived from 1962 to 1972 in the children's home, it was a traumatic time.]

Sein Körper leidet und die Seele auch. Die dunklen Schatten der Vergangenheit holen Walter Nowak immer wieder ein. Selbst nach so vielen Jahren und so weit weg, in Wien, wo er jetzt lebt. Nowak hat den Missbrauch und die Misshandlungen im Kinderheim des Klosters Fischingen an die Öffentlichkeit gebracht. Er lebte von 1962 bis 1972 im Kinderheim, es sei eine traumatische Zeit gewesen.

Er fühlt sich nicht ernst genommen

Die alten Wunden sind wieder aufgerissen. Walter Nowak fühlt sich von der Katholischen Kirche nicht ernst genommen. «Ich bin für sie nach wie vor ein Mensch zweiter Klasse.» Drei Briefe hat er geschrieben. Zwei an die Schweizer Bischofskonferenz, ­einen an die Diözese Basel. Antwort habe er keine bekommen. Das nagt an ihm.

An die Diözese wandte sich Nowak, weil er vom Genugtuungsfonds für Opfer verjährter sexueller Übergriffe gehört hatte. In den eingeschriebenen Briefen an die Bischofskonferenz kritisiert er, dass die Kollekte des nationalen Kirchenopfertages im August 2015 für Missbrauchs­opfer verwendet wurde. Die Kirche solle für ihre Fehler gerade stehen und nicht die Gläubigen zur Kasse bitten, ist Nowak überzeugt. Den ersten Brief hat er im Sommer 2015 abgeschickt, den zweiten diesen Oktober. «Zumindest eine Antwort wäre mir die Kirche schuldig.»

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 8:29 AM

The priest who shattered my faith in the Catholic Church

DUBLIN (IRELAND)
Irish Times

November 18, 2017

By Professor Chris Fitzpatrick

[Note: See also the Murphy Report, Chapter 32 on Fr Dominic Savio Boland OFM Cap.]

Prof Chris Fitzpatrick, a Catholic, on how a revelation of sex abuse changed firmly held beliefs

Other than its also being a revelation of cataclysmic proportions, my road-to-Damascus moment was very different from St Paul’s. I was not on a horse, galloping along some dusty road in the Middle East. I was at a pre-Christmas drinks party in south Co Dublin. I was not a persecutor of Christians; I was one of them myself – a practising Catholic to boot. Nor was God the recriminating injured party on this occasion. (“Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?”) Instead it was the distressed voices of suffering children that I came to hear.

Unlike Saul, who changed his nom de guerre to Paul, I did not change mine; nor did I reinvent myself as a proselyte or epistle writer or even as a martyred saint. Unlike Paul, who, without a hint of concussion, was transformed into a believer and a follower, the faith I had tenaciously held, ever since my First Holy Communion, in the institutions of the Catholic Church was shattered in one fell swoop.

It was as if a stone had been hurled through the centre of my windscreen. I could no longer see where I was going. The curtain of the temple was torn in two, and the world was suddenly a much darker place.

Let me backtrack. A few weeks before the party, which took place in 2009, I happened to become involved in a conversation with some friends about the clerical sex abuse of children. In response to a general agreement that, sadly, no one would trust a priest (or any man, for that matter) to be alone with young children these days, I replied that I had the privilege, as a kid growing up in the Dublin of the 1960s and 1970s, of having come under the positive spiritual influence of a saintly cleric, a paragon of virtue, a man beyond reproach. Or so I thought.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 8:12 AM

Trial again postponed for Aurora priest accused of sex abuse of girls

AURORA (IL)
Beacon-News/Chicago Tribune

November 17, 2017

By Hannah Leone

The trial for an Aurora priest charged with sexually abusing girls at their Catholic church has been pushed back again, from November to February, while lawyers figure out whether the lead investigator on the case destroyed or withheld notes that could affect its outcome.

The investigator's resignation from the Kane County Child Advocacy Center has complicated legal proceedings involving his work, including that of Alfredo Pedraza Arias, a Colombia national whose lost his temporary religious worker visa after he was charged with sexually abusing two young girls at Sacred Heart Church in Aurora and one of the girls' homes between 2012 and 2014. Arias, 50, has pleaded not guilty to a five-count indictment.

Immigration officials first arrested Arias at the county's St. Charles courthouse while he was free on bond after a hearing in May; an immigration judge ordered him voluntarily deported in June; and prosecutors have sought a series of bail and custody orders in efforts to keep him here through trial. He's been back in the county jail since July 28.

Prosecutors were going to call the investigator as a witness but now aren't planning to, according to court filings.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 7:56 AM

November 17, 2017

Revealed: monk who abused children on 'crime free' Caldey Island for decades

CALDEY ISLAND (WALES)
The Guardian

November 17, 2017

By Amanda Gearing

Exclusive: Abuse by a monk who preyed on girls on a tiny island off the coast of Wales was covered up in the 70s and 80s

Summer holidays on Caldey Island were seemingly idyllic. The tiny island off the Welsh Coast at Tenby is a place of beauty and holiness, with bluebell woods, clifftop walks, tea gardens and picturesque beaches. Pilgrims come for religious retreat, staying in the island’s cottages, joining the monks in prayer at the imposing Italianate Abbey of Our Lady and St Samson.

In November last year Caldey Island’s reputation for quaint charm was shored up by reports of the “only crime in living memory” to be investigated by police – when a father hit his seven-year-old son for misbehaving in the chocolate shop. The father faced court and got a fine; the monks were reported to be “concerned” about the island’s “crime of the century”.

For Emily those news reports were like a “punch in the stomach”. Some of her earliest memories are of an altogether more serious crime: being sexually abused by one of the monks, a predator called Father Thaddeus Kotik.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:56 PM

#MeToo: Women Who Never Told Of Sexual Abuse Are Now Breaking The Silence

FALMOUTH (MA)
The Enterprise

November 17, 2017

By Karen B. Hunter

Editor's Note
Warning! This column is very disturbing. It is a collection of firsthand accounts of women who were victims of sexual harassment, abuse and rape along the lines of the #metoo movement. They are stories of encounters that upended lives, even devastated lives. Be prepared; it is not easy reading.

We asked volunteers to step forward through referrals. Some who stepped forwarded referred others. The victims are anonymous but they are women who live on the Upper Cape.

While the column gives accounts from women only and women are certainly more vulnerable, men are among victims, too. We received a letter not long ago from a man who as a college student was a member of the College Light Opera Company. A director at the time forcefully pressed himself on him for a sexual encounter and denied him a role he wanted when he refused the advances. We did not publish the letter because it names the perpetrator, and newspapers, unlike Facebook, must be concerned with libel laws. Another story involves a young man who was hitchhiking many years ago and was picked up by an older man who was drinking and talked of forcing sex on boys. He was dropped off before the incident escalated, but it had lasting impact nonetheless.

The incidents related on the next page range widely in the age of the victims, in details and in severity. There is no thread that might lead to any sort of solution or resolution. But, with hope, publishing the accounts will help them and others heal, raise awareness, and allow for greater understanding.

Women are posting messages on social media to show how commonplace sexual assault, harassment and exploitation are, using the hashtag #MeToo to express that they, too, have been victims.

In the wake of allegations of sexual misconduct toward women by Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, actress Alyssa Milano posted an invitation on her Twitter account asking women who have been sexually harassed or assaulted to type #MeToo.

Her intention, she said, was to reveal the extent of the problem and to shift the focus from the perpetrators to the victims.

Within weeks, millions of women around the world have said, MeToo—on social media, with friends and families, in articles, and behind microphones.

“I don’t know a single woman who can’t say ‘Me, too,’ ” said Meaghan E. Mort of Marstons Mills, who was among a group of female victims of sexual abuse who confronted Barnstable County Commissioner Ron Beaty at the commissioners’ meeting last week after he dismissed #MeToo as a “bunch of nonsense.”

Ms. Mort’s message, and the confrontation itself, spotlight the fact that stories of sexual harassment and abuse—and some people’s dismissive attitude toward them—are a painful fact of life.

“The most significant thing about this powerful movement is that it is bringing light to the extent of sexual violence, assault, and rape in our culture,” said Lysetta Hurge-Putnam, executive director of Independence House, a Cape Cod-based resource, counseling, and advocacy center that works to address and prevent domestic and sexual violence. “These women have kept their stories to themselves and kept secret. It is a personal, painful thing for most people. But we really need to hear, listen, and believe these stories.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:42 PM

#MeToo: Women Who Never Told Of Sexual Abuse Are Now Breaking The Silence

FALMOUTH (MA)
The Enterprise

November 17, 2017

By Karen B. Hunter

Editor's Note
Warning! This column is very disturbing. It is a collection of firsthand accounts of women who were victims of sexual harassment, abuse and rape along the lines of the #metoo movement. They are stories of encounters that upended lives, even devastated lives. Be prepared; it is not easy reading.

We asked volunteers to step forward through referrals. Some who stepped forwarded referred others. The victims are anonymous but they are women who live on the Upper Cape.

While the column gives accounts from women only and women are certainly more vulnerable, men are among victims, too. We received a letter not long ago from a man who as a college student was a member of the College Light Opera Company. A director at the time forcefully pressed himself on him for a sexual encounter and denied him a role he wanted when he refused the advances. We did not publish the letter because it names the perpetrator, and newspapers, unlike Facebook, must be concerned with libel laws. Another story involves a young man who was hitchhiking many years ago and was picked up by an older man who was drinking and talked of forcing sex on boys. He was dropped off before the incident escalated, but it had lasting impact nonetheless.

The incidents related on the next page range widely in the age of the victims, in details and in severity. There is no thread that might lead to any sort of solution or resolution. But, with hope, publishing the accounts will help them and others heal, raise awareness, and allow for greater understanding.

Women are posting messages on social media to show how commonplace sexual assault, harassment and exploitation are, using the hashtag #MeToo to express that they, too, have been victims.

In the wake of allegations of sexual misconduct toward women by Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, actress Alyssa Milano posted an invitation on her Twitter account asking women who have been sexually harassed or assaulted to type #MeToo.

Her intention, she said, was to reveal the extent of the problem and to shift the focus from the perpetrators to the victims.

Within weeks, millions of women around the world have said, MeToo—on social media, with friends and families, in articles, and behind microphones.

“I don’t know a single woman who can’t say ‘Me, too,’ ” said Meaghan E. Mort of Marstons Mills, who was among a group of female victims of sexual abuse who confronted Barnstable County Commissioner Ron Beaty at the commissioners’ meeting last week after he dismissed #MeToo as a “bunch of nonsense.”

Ms. Mort’s message, and the confrontation itself, spotlight the fact that stories of sexual harassment and abuse—and some people’s dismissive attitude toward them—are a painful fact of life.

“The most significant thing about this powerful movement is that it is bringing light to the extent of sexual violence, assault, and rape in our culture,” said Lysetta Hurge-Putnam, executive director of Independence House, a Cape Cod-based resource, counseling, and advocacy center that works to address and prevent domestic and sexual violence. “These women have kept their stories to themselves and kept secret. It is a personal, painful thing for most people. But we really need to hear, listen, and believe these stories.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:42 PM

"Abusò di tre bambini della parrocchia". Definitiva la condanna per don Elice

ITALY
la Repubblica

November 16, 2017

[Google Translate: For four years he has abused three children in his parish. Everything began at the pilgrimage to Medjugorje. The little ones were 9.11 and 13 years old. The Court of Cassation has confirmed the condemnation of Fr Roberto Elice, six years and four months. Until November 2014, the priest was the parish priest of the Most Holy Assumption Church in via Perpignano. Heavy the controversy that he was moved, reiterated by the lawyer Antonella Arcoleo, who formed a civilian party representing one of the minors.]

Sei anni e quattro mesi di carcere. Una delle vittime si è costituita parte civile

Per quattro anni ha abusato di tre bambini della sua parrocchia. Tutto cominciò al pellegrinaggio a Medjugorje. I piccoli avevano 9,11 e 13 anni. La Corte di Cassazione ha confermato la condanna per don Roberto Elice, a sei anni e quattro mesi. Fino al novembre 2014, il sacerdote era il parroco della Chiesa Maria Santissima Assunta di via Perpignano. Pesante la contestazione che gli è stata mossa, ribadita dall'avvocato Antonella Arcoleo, che si è costituita parte civile in rappresentanza di uno dei minori.

Già nell’ottobre 2014, don Roberto aveva informato dei suoi problemi la Curia, il cardinale Paolo Romeo lo aveva subito sostituito, evidentemente cogliendo la gravità della situazione. Ma nessuna segnalazione, nessuna denuncia, è mai partita dal Palazzo Arcivescovile in direzione della procura, che già indagava sul sacerdote dal mese di aprile del 2014, da quando una donna, la mamma dei fratellini di 9 e 11 anni, aveva raccolto il drammatico racconto di uno di loro. Mesi difficili per i poliziotti della sezione minori della squadra mobile, che cercavano riscontri al racconto dei fratellini. Scavando nelle ferite di quella parrocchia, i poliziotti, dopo i due fratellini, hanno scoperto che pure un altro ragazzino aveva subito. Oggi è maggiorenne. La sua deposizione ha aperto un altro scenario drammatico. Don Roberto gli aveva regalato un telefonino per comprare il suo silenzio.

"Una scelta coraggiosa - dice l'avvocato Arcoleo - è stata quella dei genitori che si sono costituiti parte civile. Una scelta di grande forza, per arrivare alla verità".

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:35 PM

Senator Al Franken Kissed and Groped Me Without My Consent, And There’s Nothing Funny About It

LOS ANGELES (CA)
790 KABC

November 16, 2017

By Leeann Tweeden

In December of 2006, I embarked on my ninth USO Tour to entertain our troops, my eighth to the Middle East since the 9/11 attacks. My father served in Vietnam and my then-boyfriend (and now husband, Chris) is a pilot in the Air Force, so bringing a ‘little piece of home’ to service members stationed far away from their families was both my passion and my privilege.

Also on the trip were country music artists Darryl Worley, Mark Wills, Keni Thomas, and some cheerleaders from the Dallas Cowboys. The headliner was comedian and now-senator, Al Franken.

Franken had written some skits for the show and brought props and costumes to go along with them. Like many USO shows before and since, the skits were full of sexual innuendo geared toward a young, male audience.

As a TV host and sports broadcaster, as well as a model familiar to the audience from the covers of FHM, Maxim and Playboy, I was only expecting to emcee and introduce the acts, but Franken said he had written a part for me that he thought would be funny, and I agreed to play along.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:32 PM

Hartford Archdiocese Given Poor Grade For Financial Transparency

HARTFORD (CT)
Hartford Courant

November 16, 2017

By Ken Byron

A watchdog group has rated the Archdiocese of Hartford as one of the worst in the country for how much financial information it posts online in a just-released nationwide study of the Catholic Church.

The study, done by the international watchdog group Voice of the Faithful, said the archdiocese in Hartford did not do things that should be routine, like posting audited financial statements and information on the weekly collections that are a key source of church revenue. The study was done over the summer and covered 177 dioceses and archdioceses throughout the U.S. Voice of the Faithful, which focuses on the Catholic Church, announced the results of its survey on Thursday.

Hartford scored 17 points out of a possible 60 on a 10-question survey. That puts Hartford third from the bottom out of the 32 archdioceses in the survey, above Portland, Ore., and Mobile, Ala. The survey looked at dioceses as well. The Diocese of Bridgeport received a score of 55, and the Diocese of Norwich got a 19, according to an overview of the survey.

Archdiocese officials could not be reached for comment on Thursday. Voice of the Faithful spokesman Nick Ingala said there are easy fixes for a low score.

“It’s pretty simple,” Ingala said. “Most non-profits and corporations make financial statements readily available on their websites. That is what we would like to see archdioceses and dioceses do, and also publish guidelines for parish collections. Most of the church’s money comes from parishioners’ donations and they have a right to know where their money is going.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:29 PM

Why we still don't understand sex abuse

MENDHAM (NJ)
The Record

November 17, 2017

By Mike Kelly

His name was Jim and he was a victim of sexual abuse. I thought of him this week amid the continuing stream of revelations of all manner of sexual harassment and outright attacks by powerful men against younger women.

In most of the recent sexual abuse cases involving women, the revelations of what happened to them have been met with justifiable anger against the perpetrators and welcoming support for the victims. But hovering on the edge of this national discussion is a strangely persistent and creepy criticism: Why did it take the women so long to speak up?

This is why I thought of Jim.

Jim Kelly, who is not related to me, lived in Mendham and worked for a telecommunications firm. Before dawn, on a Sunday in October 2003, he left his home and drove to the railroad station in nearby Morristown. As a Hoboken-bound train rolled into the station around 5:15 a.m., Jim sat down on the tracks. He died instantly as the train rolled over him. He was 37.

Why Jim Kelly took his own life was hardly a mystery to those who knew him well. His family and friends said the answer was obvious. As a boy, Jim had been regularly abused by the Catholic pastor of his hometown parish, St. Joseph’s Church in Mendham. Jim never got over the enduring emotional pain that ultimately handcuffed his life.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:26 PM

Assignment History– Rev. Ronald Sam Gilardi, O.F.M. Cap.

UNITED STATES
BishopAccountability.org

Summary of Case: Ronald Sam Gilardi was ordained for the Capuchin Franciscans in 1988. He taught at St. Thomas More Prep - Marian High School in Hays, Kansas until 1996, which shared an address with the Capuchins' St. Bonaventure Friary. He resided there until 1995. In 1996 Gilardi was moved to Victoria, Kansas, where he was involved with the Capuchin Center for Spiritual Life and, from 1997-2000, he was the sole priest at St. Catharine's in Catharine, Kansas.

In June 2000 Gilardi was arrested after a report was filed that he had sexually abused a 14-year-old male St. Thomas More Prep - Marian High student in 1993-1994. The boy was a boarder from Texas. Charges included criminal sodomy and indecent liberties with a child. His victim said Gilardi plied him with tobacco, alcohol and pornography. Gilardi pleaded guilty to the indecent liberties charge; he was ordered to spend 32 months in a treatment facility, followed by five years' probation. His order sent him to the Vianney Renewal Center in Dittmer, Missouri.

As of November 2017 Gilardi appears to have been registered as a Missouri Sex Offender. His last known address is that of the RECON/Wounded Brothers Project in Robertsville, Missouri.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:42 PM

Dark Canyon: Examining NM’s problem with pedophile priests [with audio]

SANTA FE (NM)
KSFR

November 15, 2017

By Dave Marash

The role of a priest, in the Catholic Church and other religions is that of a mediator, a connector, a communicator of that state of grace known as the Holy Spirit that puts man in touch with God. He is a kind of religious middle man, if you will, between the laity, the ordinary believers of a Churchly congregation and God.

Thus, when a priest abuses members of his congregation, he is committing, simultaneously, 2 betrayals…first, of his sacred relationship to God and his Church, — a breach of faith, and second, of his human relationship to the person he has abused – a breach of trust.

Both of these betrayals seem especially heinous when the victim of abuse is a child.

Compounding these offenses against God and humanity is when a priest’s abuses are covered up by his superiors in the hierarchy of the Church.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:32 PM

Former pastor at Canby church accused of sexually abusing minor

CANBY (OR)
KATU 2

November 16th 2017

CANBY, Ore. – The former pastor at a Canby church is accused of sexually abusing an underage girl, court records show.

Lee Philip Wiegand was a pastor at First Baptist Church, however authorities say the abuse was not related to his time at the church.

A secret indictment filed earlier this month charges Wiegand of nine counts of second-degree sexual abuse. Wiegand was arrested and has since been released after posting bail.

The indictment claims that he abused a minor between October 2011 and October 2012.

Wiegand is expected to appear back in court next month for a case hearing.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:24 PM

Daughter of polygamist Warren Jeffs speaks out on her father's abuse [with audio]

CANADA
CBC Radio- The Current

November 16, 2017

By Anna Maria Tremonti
Produced by Julian Uzielli

Warning: Some of the content may be disturbing

Story transcript

Rachel Jeffs was her father's third child. He would go on to have 50 more.

Her father, Warren Jeffs, is the leader of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, also known as FLDS — a man believed by his followers to be a prophet.

"We were taught that the world was different than us," Rachel Jeffs told The Current's Anna Maria Tremonti.

The highly insular sect is a polygamist offshoot of the mainstream Mormon church. Outsiders aren't welcome in FLDS communities, where women wear pioneer-style dresses and men commonly take at least three wives.

'It was just going totally against what he had taught me.' - Rachel Jeffs

Obedience to her parents was paramount, followed by prayer and modest dress, according to Jeffs.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:12 PM

Catholic League: 'Al Franken Should Resign Immediately'

RESTON (VA)
CNS News

November 16, 2017

By Michael W. Chapman

(CNSNews.com) -- Commenting on breaking news and Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) admitting that he groped a woman who was sleeping and took a picture of his actions, Cathoic League President Bill Donohue said "Franken is an admitted molester" and he "should resign immediately."

"Senator Al Franken should resign immediately," said Donohue, adding, "There is no place in public office for sexual abusers."

"If Franken were an accused priest, he would be forced to step aside, pending an investigation," said Donohue. "Given that he is an admitted molester, he should resign."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:10 PM

Shattered Faith: A dangerous shuffle game

ALBUQUERQUE (NM)
KOB 4

November 17, 2017

By Chris Ramirez

Fighting for truth and transparency

By now, we know a lot about the priest abuse scandal that swept across the country. There are already countless news stories, big-budget motion pictures and thousands of legal settlements. So the question is, why keep fighting the Catholic Church for more information? Why does it still matter today?

In a three-part series we are calling Shattered Faith, we lay out why all this still matters. There are former priests walking the streets of New Mexico today who are responsible for victimizing dozens upon dozens of children. They have never been criminally charged and they have never faced prison time. In the time span of a few decades, clergymen preyed on more than a hundred children. Now as adults, their mental health has suffered. In fact, many mental health professionals believe the sheer number of adults dealing with childhood sexual trauma has put New Mexico into a mental health crisis.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:06 PM

THE HERALD'S OPINION: Child abuse 'greatest of personal violations'.

AUSTRALIA
The Newcastle Herald

November 17, 2017

After 57 public hearings across 444 sitting days, hearing from more than 1300 witnesses, the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse is a month away from drawing to a close.

The commission will sit for a final day on Thursday, December 14, a session its chief executive, Philip Reed, describes as a chance to thank the public for its continued support since the inquiry began in 2013. The commission will deliver its final report to the Governor-General the following day.

For the many thousands of Australians whose lives have been shattered by child abuse, the royal commission has been a welcome salve on wounds that have festered for years, and may never heal.

As the hearings continued, the chair of the commission, Peter McClellan, began to emerge as a figure of compassion and authority. Compassion when it came to victims gathering the courage to tell their stories. Authority when it came to those in the witness box having to explain their failings, or those of their organisations.

In a speech he gave in Melbourne on Tuesday, Justice McClellan described child abuse as “the greatest of personal violations”. The commission was contacted by 15,000 survivors or their families and received complaints about 4000 institutions. Clearly, the Australian experience was not one of “a few rotten apples”.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:01 PM

Catholic Church in $1bn plot to sell off Sydney’s cemeteries

SYDNEY (AUSTRALIA)
The Australian

November 15, 2017

By Brad Norington

All cemeteries across metropolitan Sydney could be up for sale, with a $1 billion privatisation proposal being considered by the NSW government that involves handing control to the Catholic Church.

Catholic Archbishop of Sydney Anthony Fisher has been an active supporter of the proposal advocated by an investment advisory firm, Fabrico, which claims “a commercial way of thinking” is needed to tackle a burial-space shortage on crown land in greater Sydney.

Under the sell-off plan, Sydney’s four cemetery trusts currently owned by the NSW government and operating on crown land would be consolidated into a new company and leased for 99 years to Fabrico.

Fabrico would then seek to sublease management of the combined cemeteries covering all religious faiths to the Catholic Metropolitan Cemeteries Trust, which currently manages Australia’s largest cemetery at Rookwood in Sydney’s west, and is controlled by Sydney’s Catholic Archdiocese.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:56 AM

Sins of omission – should Catholic confession always be confidential?

AUSTRALIA
The Guardian

November 15, 2017

By Aida Edemariam

Australian law may soon require priests to break the confidentiality of the confessional and report anything they hear about sexual abuse. Would it simply bring the practice into line with therapy or does it pose a mortal threat to a cherished sacrament?

There’s a story that is sometimes told, in refresher courses for priests who regularly take confession, that goes like this: when a well-known local criminal died, he was given a full Catholic funeral. The faithful were outraged – not only was he a sinner, he was a well-documented, public sinner. Don’t worry, said his son (who happened to be a Catholic priest), I heard his confession on his deathbed. At once, the son was hauled in by his bishop and ticked off – not for taking his father’s confession, but for talking about it. Everyone knew he meant well, said the bishop, but the seal of confession was sacrosanct: under no circumstances could it be revealed who had given confession to whom, and what it was about. If he had done the latter, he might even have been excommunicated.

In August, a commission investigating child abuse in the Catholic church of Australia recommended that any failure to report suspicions of child sex abuse to the authorities should result in criminal charges – even if the discovery was made within the seal of the confessional. “We are satisfied,” the commissioners wrote, “that confession is a forum where Catholic children have disclosed their sexual abuse and where clergy have disclosed their abusive behaviour in order to deal with their own guilt.” The archbishop of Melbourne’s reply was unequivocal: the seal could not be broken, and if that meant going to jail, well, so be it. In the US, in 2009, Rebecca Mayeux sued the Catholic Diocese of Baton Rouge and one of its priests for not doing anything about her confession, when she was a teenager, that she was being abused by a parishioner. The case is due to be heard in the first circuit court of appeal, but was dealt a blow in September when the Louisiana supreme court upheld the confidentiality of confession.

Confession occupies a curious place in the culture, especially from the point of view of non-Catholics: shadowy boxes and gabbled catechisms, Hail Marys and rosaries. It is often treated ironically – or, if not, as the life-or-death moral choice of Alfred Hitchcock’s 1953 film I Confess, in which a priest to whom a murderer has confessed ends up accused of the deed himself.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:50 AM

Irish priests advised on how to deal with being accused of sexual abuse

IRELAND
Irish Central

November 17, 2017

By Nick Bramhill

An organization which represents over 1,000 Catholic priests across Ireland, has given each member a memo of instructions to follow in the event of an allegation of sexual abuse being brought against them.

The set of guidelines were unveiled by the Association of Catholic Priests at their recent annual meeting, following growing concern within the group that some members who have been falsely accused in the past have not received the backing from their religious superiors.

The organization, which drew up the seven-step information card following earlier meetings with the National Board for Safeguarding Children in the Catholic Church in Ireland (NBSCCC), also spoke of its concern over what it sees as the “guilty until proven innocent” culture that has left many innocent priests traumatized.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:48 AM

Defrocked Priest Pleads Not Guilty to 31 Sex Abuse Charges

KENNEBUNKPORT (ME)
NECN

November 16, 2017

By Danielle Waugh

A former Massachusetts priest who spent a decade in prison for raping an altar boy has pleaded not guilty to 31 sex abuse charges in Maine.

Two men have accused Ronald Paquin of sexually abusing them at a trailer in Kennebunkport, Maine in the late 1980s. Both accusers were children at the time of the abuse.

Keith Townsend of Seabrook, New Hampshire, has identified himself as one of the accusers.

"I didn't know if people would believe a story as old as this, but all I could think of is, ‘how many more victims are going through what I'm going through?’" he said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:46 AM

Long Island abuse victims face Dec. 21 deadline for compensation

UNIONDALE (NY)
National Catholic Reporter

November 16, 2017

By Peter Feuerherd

UNIONDALE, N.Y. — Recounting the trail of sex abuse crimes that ended with Fr. Romano Ferraro in a Massachusetts prison serving a life sentence, representatives from the Minnesota-based Jeff Anderson & Associates law firm came to Long Island, New York, with a warning for victims delivered at a Nov. 15 press conference at the Marriott Hotel in Uniondale.

Those abused by Romano, they said, need to put in a claim for compensation by Dec. 21 to the Diocese of Brooklyn, New York, which ordained Romano in 1968.

Court documents show that Ferraro served not only in the Brooklyn Diocese but also in the Rockville Centre Diocese on Long Island. Records released at the press conference indicate that Ferraro also worked as a priest in New Jersey and Missouri, as well as in Florida and the Philippines, two places where he served as a naval chaplain.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:44 AM

Is Judge Moore an Abuser?

UNITED STATES
Times of Israel

November 15, 2017

By Michael J. Salamon

Dear Judge Moore,

I think you should avoid public life now. Some of your colleagues have suggested that you step aside. You would do well to heed them. I am not suggesting that you are guilty. I will leave that up to the members of your political party, your legal colleagues, and your religious community. However, there are certain things about your behaviors that I would like to highlight.
Do not bother suing the Washington Post. It will only cost a lot of wasted money. It is not in your best interest. If you go after the media, they will dig up even more dirt on you.

Pretending not to recall the names of malls and restaurants in your community where you hung out and sought out teenaged victims is also not advisable. You see, there are patterns that predators follow and you seem to fit some of them.

Abusers often have a script that they choose to perform from. They groom victims, select people they are familiar with either personally or by virtue of their lifestyle and personality and try to establish a good name for themselves in the community — it acts as a buffer against accusations. It’s almost like lying or massaging the truth as certain politicians are highly adapt at. But, you’re right, patterns are not so simple and many predators manage to get away with their heinous acts because of their overpowering images, rhetoric and bluster. In fact, when asked why they abused many sexual abusers simply say, “Because I could.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:42 AM

Man accused of historical sex offences

AUSTRALIA
Australian Associated Press

November 16th, 2017

By Jodie Stephens

A former employee at Parramatta Girls' Training School has been committed to trial over alleged historical sexual assaults against schoolgirls.

Frank John Valentine was last year charged with more than 30 offences from the 1970s including rape, assaulting a female and committing an act of indecency, and assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

Court documents show the 77-year-old was further charged about six months ago with another five historical offences against a male.

At Parramatta Local Court on Thursday, Magistrate Jennifer Giles committed Valentine to trial after he waived his right to a committal hearing.

He is scheduled to be arraigned in the NSW District Court on December 7.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:39 AM

November 16, 2017

OP-ED CONTRIBUTOR: Roy Moore Reminds Me of My Rabbi

UNITED STATES
The New York Times

November 15, 2017

By Bethany Mandel

In 2014, on Yom Kippur, the holiest day of the Jewish calendar, Rabbi Barry Freundel led the congregation of his Washington synagogue in pursuit of humble repentance before God. Ten days later, he was arrested and charged with dozens of counts of voyeurism. Ultimately, the rabbi was accused of having surreptitiously videotaped more than 150 women on hidden cameras in the bathroom of the mikvah, the ritual bath.

I was one of them.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:56 PM

What the Weinstein Effect Can Teach Us About Campus Sexual Assault

UNITED STATES
The New York Times

November 15, 2017

By Vanessa Grigoriadis

The outpouring of emotion over stories of sexual harassment in the workplace has been shocking and inspiring. After Harvey Weinstein’s sins were reported by The New York Times and The New Yorker, women (and men) in entertainment and a host of other industries have come forward with sickening tales of their own. The calls for greater accountability — meaning sustainable change beyond companies firing a handful of terrible, famous men — seem genuine.

This moment of clarifying anger is particularly impressive given the recent lack of respect paid to another type of victim, one who dominated the news directly before Mr. Weinstein’s fall from grace: the college sexual assault victim. Even as debate about sexual harassment at institutions as disparate as Fox News and Artforum rages on, we have entered a period of backlash regarding student-on-student sexual assault on campus.

About six years ago, colleges began offering better support and justice for victims, pushed in part by a grass-roots movement among students themselves. But in September, pundits across the political spectrum approved when the Education Department rolled back some Obama-era rules that had broadened protections for college sexual assault victims, ostensibly because they robbed accused students of their right to due process in campus courts. Obama’s rules were already pro forma at some colleges before his 2011 federal guidance, so I believe the backlash isn’t truly about government policy, but discomfort about the change in how students approach the problem of sexual assault today.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:51 PM

Kettler: 2 more men added to list of abusive clergy in Diocese of St. Cloud

Saint Cloud (MN)
SC Times

November 14, 2017

Bishop Donald Kettler of the Diocese of St. Cloud announced Tuesday that two names have been added to the list of clergy likely to have abused minors. Both men are deceased.

In a press release issued by the Diocese, Casimir Plakut and Augustine John Strub were named as religious order priests added by St. John's Abbey in Collegeville to its list of men "likely to have offended minors."

Plakut was ordained in 1938 and died in 1988. Strub was ordained in 1947 and died in 2015.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:17 PM

Schwank: End silence about sexual misconduct

HARRISBURG (PA)
Reading Eagle

November 16, 2017

By Beth Brelje

HARRISBURG - State Sen. Judy Schwank has offered legislation that she says will make it harder to keep sexual misconduct a secret in Pennsylvania.

The measure would make it illegal to silence victims with nondisclosure agreements to settle cases of sexual misconduct.

“For too long, sexual predators have hidden behind legal practices like nondisclosure agreements or settlements in which a victim agrees to not sue or discuss terms of a deal in exchange for a monetary settlement,” said Schwank, a Ruscombmanor Township Democrat. “If the agreement is violated, the other party can sue and seek damages from the victim.”

Her legislation would end this practice.

“Sexual predators should not be allowed to hide their secrets in the shadows of nondisclosure agreements, escaping justice because of their power, wealth or prestige,” Schwank said Wednesday during a news conference about the legislation at the state Capitol.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:05 PM

Ex-priest loses appeal over sexual assaults

DETROIT (MI)
The Associated Press

November 15, 2017

A former priest who says prosecutors waited too long to charge him with sexual abuse has lost his case at the Michigan appeals court.

James Rapp was sentenced to at least 20 years in prison for molesting students at Lumen Christi High School in Jackson in the 1980s. He was in prison in Oklahoma for similar crimes when he was charged in Michigan in 2015.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:44 PM

Accuser says Father Antonio Cruz molested him while visiting his parents

GUAM
Pacific News Center

November 15, 2017

By Janela Carrera

At the time of the alleged abuse, Father Antonio Cruz was a priest at the Chalan Pago Parish.

Guam – Another sexual abuse lawsuit has been filed in federal court, naming the late Father Antonio Cruz as the alleged perpetrator.

The alleged victim, L.J.G., who is now 58 years old, says Cruz sexually abused him at his house on several occasions when he was 15 years old.

Cruz was a friend of the family, according to the complaint, giving him access to the minor at the time.

This is 147th lawsuit to be filed agains the Archdiocese of Agana.

L.J.G. is seeking $5 million in damages.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:43 PM

Man accused of sexually assaulting children at Salvation Army church pleads guilty

CHARLESTON (SC)
ABC News 4

November 16th 2017

UPDATE | Armando Gonzalez pleaded guilty to 2 charges: lewd act w/ minor; criminal sexual conduct w/ minor 3rd degree.

-- This story is being updated --

Attorneys say a former Lowcountry Sunday school teacher is expected in court today. We’re told Armando Gonzalez will plead guilty to sexually abusing children.

The hearing was scheduled to begin at 9:30 a.m.

Police say Gonzalez sexually abused children in 2010 and 2015. They say he and his wife were involved with a Salvation Army child care center in West Ashley.

Attorneys for the victims argue Salvation Army employees didn’t perform a proper background check on Gonzalez. They say employees should have discovered a history of abuse and never let him in the door.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:19 PM

The Roy Moore controversy is a thorny issue for Alabama Baptists

HUNTSVILLE (AL)
Los Angeles Times

November 15, 2017

By Jenny Jarvie

When Kenneth Frost, a Baptist deacon, first heard that a woman had accused Roy Moore of sexual abuse, he was skeptical. Not only did the allegation stem from nearly 40 years ago, but Moore — a figure he admires and believes to be a man of God — denied the woman’s claims.

The 79-year-old Republican vowed to support Moore, whether or not he was guilty.

“I believe in innocent until proven guilty, but even if he’s guilty, I’ll back him all the way,” said Frost, a member of Macedonia Baptist Church in Ranburne, a town of about 400 in eastern Alabama. “I still feel he’s a Christian man — and nobody’s perfect.”

The thorny issue of Moore, the Republican U.S. Senate candidate who faces accusations of sexual assault weeks before voters go to the polls, was not on the agenda as hundreds of church leaders gathered at the Whitesburg Baptist Church here this week for the annual meeting of the Alabama Baptist State Convention.

Yet up and down corridors and inside meeting rooms, pastors and deacons grappled with what to make of the allegations from women who say Moore, 70, a Baptist and former chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, sexually assaulted or attempted a relationship with them when they were teenagers.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:14 PM

Ex-members of church urge overturning of court agreement

SPINDALE (NC)
The Associated Press

November 16, 2017

By Mitch Weiss and Holbrook Mohr

SPINDALE – Former members of a controversial Western North Carolina-based church want the state to take legal action to overturn a court-ordered compromise they say has crippled child abuse investigations involving the sect.

The former congregants of Word of Faith Fellowship also want Rutherford County child protection agency director John Carroll to resign, saying he pushed for the 2005 settlement and has failed to protect children from abusive practices inside the church.

The ex-members said they are sending letters urging action to North Carolina’s governor, attorney general and state and county child welfare officials.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:09 PM

Lawyers urge clergy abuse victims to come forward before deadline

LONG ISLAND (NY)
News 12 Long Island

November 15, 2017

KINGS PARK - Lawyers are asking anybody who may have been sexually abused by a Long Island priest to come forward.

Former Catholic priest Romano Ferraro is now a convicted serial pedophile.

"It is hard to hear this and know what he has done," says Marianne Helldorfer, a parishioner of St Joseph's Church in Kings Park, where Ferraro once served.

Attorneys who represent Ferraro's victims want to get the word out to others who may have been abused. That's because a monetary compensation program offered by the Brooklyn Diocese, where Ferraro was ordained, has a Dec. 21 deadline.

"It is vital that survivors here on Long Island, if they were abused by Father Ferraro...comply with the Diocese of Brooklyn guidelines," says attorney Michael Reck.

Ferraro served at St. Joseph's between 1975 and 1977. Two alleged victims have come forward, but attorneys believe there may be more.

"We believe there are many children that were abused and are suffering in silence," Reck says. "They are not alone and they do have rights."

Those fighting for the victims say that monetary compensation falls short. They say they want the church to admit there was a decadeslong cover-up to protect pedophile priests and want the names of the accused priests to be publicly released.

"The bottom line is secrets are kept," says Patrick Wall, a sex abuse victims advocate. "Secrets are kept in the archives of every diocese across the country."

Church officials released a statement saying in part, "We recognize that no amount of monetary compensation could ever erase or undo the grave harm suffered by survivors of child abuse."

Both the Diocese of Rockville Centre and Brooklyn are offering the compensation program.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:03 PM

Lawyers seek settlement in abuse suits against Guam archbishop

GUAM
USA Today Network

November 15, 2017

By Jerick Sablan

HAGÅTÑA, Guam — A settlement could be reached soon in four sexual abuse cases filed last year against Archbishop Anthony S. Apuron in Guam district court.

During a hearing Wednesday on a motion to dismiss the lawsuits, Apuron’s attorney, Jacqueline Terlaje, and attorneys representing the accusers asked Chief Judge Frances Tydingco-Gatewood to delay her decision until Dec. 31 to give them time to work on a possible settlement.

Former altar boys Walter Denton, Roy Quintanilla, Roland Sandia and the family of deceased former altar boy Joseph “Sonny” Quinata sued Apuron last fall, accusing him of molesting and/or raping the boys in the late 1970s, when he was a parish priest. All came forward in summer 2016 to make public accusations against Apuron, who has denied the allegations. (Sondia is an employee of the Pacific Daily News.)

Apuron was removed from the island in June 2016 to undergo a Vatican trial in connection with the accusations, but details of the trial or its outcome remain unknown.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:01 PM

Former Ayrshire priest faces historic sex abuse charges with allegations of attacks at schools and leisure centres

AYRSHIRE (SCOTLAND)
Ayrshire Post via Daily Record

November 16, 2017

Francis Moore, 82, of Largs, is charged with crimes against three boys between 1977 and 1981 in locations in South and North Ayrshire.

The trial of a retired priest accused of historical sex abuse will now take place next year.

Francis Moore, 82, of Largs, is charged with crimes against three boys between 1977 and 1981.

He also allegedly indecently assaulted a student priest between 1995 and 1996.

Moore had been due to stand trial next month.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:57 PM

OP-ED: Why do sex-abuse victims remain silent for decades? Look at firestorm greeting Moore accusers

LEXINGTON (KY)
Lexington Herald Leader

November 15, 2017

By Jane Chiles

I have read, watched and listened to the commentary concerning the allegations that have been swirling around Roy Moore, candidate for the U.S. Senate seat that was vacated when Sen. Jeff Sessions joined the Trump Cabinet as attorney general. I can no longer remain silent. I had been hopeful that we had evolved beyond the “destroy the victim” culture, but it is clear that we have not.

In 2002, a lengthy series of investigative articles were published in the Boston Globe, exposing the U.S. Catholic Church’s long history of sexual abuse of minors by priests. Ultimately, after months of stories validating this evil, the church was forced to confront its demons.

As a lifelong Roman Catholic who had spent the most recent 12 years of my life as the executive director of the Catholic Conference, handling public policy for the Catholic bishops in Kentucky, and raising three sons in the church, I am unable to fully describe how crushingly painful, shocking, disappointing and anger-generating this was for me.

But I was one of the lucky ones. I was able to arrive at a horrific train wreck and roll up my sleeves and do something about this. I was appointed to the first National Review Board in July of 2002, a board created by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:50 PM

NY sex abuse victims to push again for child victims' act

ALBANY (NY)
The Associated Press

November 16, 2017

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) Advocates for a bill in New York that would loosen the statute of limitations for molestation are hoping the national attention on sexual misconduct gives their cause fresh momentum.

The bill would have given victims more time to file civil lawsuits or seek criminal charges against their abusers. It also would create a one-year window for past victims to file civil suits.

Victims now have until they turn 23 to sue, but supporters say it often takes far longer for victims to report their abuse.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:47 PM

Catholic Church might be too broke to compensate sex abuse victims

NEW BRUNSWICK (CANADA)
CBC News

November 16, 2017

By Gabrielle Fahmy

56 lawsuits against Catholic priests currently in front of New Brunswick courts could cost millions

Dozens of new sexual abuse lawsuits involving priests from the Moncton archdiocese are threatening the financial viability of the church.

CBC News found at least 56 lawsuits against the Roman Catholic Church in New Brunswick that are still in front of the courts, and this despite an extensive conciliation process that was conducted a few years ago.

Between 2012 and 2014, the church hired retired judge Michel Bastarache to talk to victims confidentially.

The Moncton archdiocese ended up paying $10.6 million to 109 victims, and the diocese of Bathurst $5.5 million to 90 victims.

It's estimated victims received between $15,000 and $300,000, depending on the severity of the abuse, how old they were when it started, and how many years it lasted.

What followed were major cutbacks by the church.

In Moncton, diocesan staff was slashed by half, from 19 before 2013 to fewer than 10 now. Only two staff members were kept on full time.

The diocesan centre in Dieppe, which used to be the home of the archbishop, was sold.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:42 PM

Lawyer says he expects hundreds of new N.B. Catholic abuse lawsuits to emerge

NEW BRUNSWICK (CANADA)
The Globe and Mail

November 15, 2017

By Kevin Bissett

A lawyer representing dozens of alleged Catholic sex abuse victims in New Brunswick says he expects hundreds more complainants may emerge.

Robert Talach said he believes more people will seek compensation through the courts after a 2012 reconciliation process that saw 80 victims compensated, and that the actual number of victims in the province is in the hundreds.

"It's going to be shocking for people," he said Wednesday from his office in London, Ont.

"You are talking dozens of victims for each priest. These guys were left in the field operating and abusing for decades."

Talach said he believes that a CBC News estimate of 56 current lawsuits against the Catholic Church in the province is low, noting that he's handling about 32 involving the late Camille Leger alone.

Leger was a priest in Cap-Pele, N.B., between 1957 and 1980. He died in 1990 and his accusers only came forward after his death.

"I'm not surprised by that," said Talach. "People wait for a juncture in their life where they can deal with it. Sometimes people wait until their elderly, very Catholic parents pass away. There are triggers that are very individual to every person."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:40 PM

November 15, 2017

Are sex abuse claims against clergy beyond statute of limitations?

GUAM
Kuam News

November 15, 2017

By Krystal Paco

Is it too little too late? Chief Judge Frances Tydingco-Gatewood will have to decide if a 2016 law that lifted the statute of limitations on child sexual abuse cases covers all expired claims. The issue comes as defense for Archbishop Anthony Apuron motions for dismissal. At stake: the nearly 150 clergy sexual abuse lawsuits filed to date, both in the local and federal courts.

If the legislature intended to lift the civil statute of limitations for all child sexual abuse cases, they didn't do it right.

This according to Attorney Jacque Terlaje's reading of Public Law 33-187, the legislation that enabled the close to 150 clergy sexual abuse lawsuits filed in both the local and federal courts to date.

Terlaje represents Archbishop Anthony Apuron.

Though only four of the lawsuits name Apuron as an abuser, how Chief Judge Frances Tydingco-Gatewood rules in these cases impacts all the others.

Wednesday's hearing addressed defense's objection to Magistrate Judge Joaquin Manibusan's report and recommendation to deny defense's motion to dismiss.

Terlaje urged the Chief Judge to look at the law's language noting the legislature should've been more specific in their 2016 law if their intent was a 100-percent lift of the statute of limitations.

Terlaje stated "the law in front of the court only corrected the 2011 law."

That law, if you recall, opened a window for victims to file their claims, but provisions in that law kept anyone from filing.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:26 PM

Italian priest draws fire after victim-blaming rape survivor

ROME
CRUX

November 15, 2017

By Claire Giangravè

On Nov. 3, a 17-year-old girl went to the Maggiore Hospital in Bologna, in northern Italy, saying that she had been raped and robbed. The local parish priest, Father Lorenzo Guidotti, was quick to write a post on his private Facebook account saying that he has no pity for the young woman, who, in his view, was responsible for what happened to her.

ROME - While sexual assault allegations against people in positions of power gain momentum in the United States, recent events in Italy have highlighted an ongoing culture of victim-blaming, even at times by Church and government officials.

Italian actress and director Asia Argento, one of the first victims to speak up against award-winning Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, has now described dozens of instances of alleged sexual assault, and reportedly fled to Germany to escape the “climate of tension” and “victim-blaming” in her native country.

This is not the only time when some Italian citizens and media have shown a lack of empathy with victims of sexual assault who condemn their attackers, including a recent case with a parish priest who took to Twitter to criticize a rape victim.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:22 PM

Priest who molested students at Jackson Lumen Christi loses case at Court of Appeals

JACKSON (MI)
Associated Press

November 15, 2017

JACKSON, Mich. (AP) A former priest who says prosecutors waited too long to charge him with sexual abuse has lost his case at the Michigan appeals court.

James Rapp was sentenced to at least 20 years in prison for molesting students at Lumen Christi High School in Jackson in the 1980s. He was in prison in Oklahoma for similar crimes when he was charged in Michigan in 2015.

The appeals court says any statute of limitations was suspended when Rapp was locked up in Oklahoma. The 3-0 opinion was released Wednesday.

The 77-year-old Rapp pleaded no contest to criminal sexual conduct. Authorities say he coerced students into having sexual contact while working as a teacher and wrestling coach.

Rapp worked in six states before he was defrocked as a priest.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:20 PM

Ex-priest implicated in lawsuits dies

GUAM
The Guam Daily Post

November 15, 2017

By Mindy Aguon and John O'Connor

A former priest of the Archdiocese of Agana, defrocked and implicated in several sex abuse lawsuits, died on Tuesday.

Raymond F. Cepeda had been ill for many years, according to family members. He was 66 years old.

His death was mentioned in court by attorney Jacqueline Taitano-Terlaje during a hearing for sex abuse cases involving her client, suspended Archbishop Anthony Apuron, yesterday at the District Court of Guam.

Cepeda previously served as a priest at the San Vicente-San Roke Church in Barrigada and the Santa Barbara Church in Dededo.

He was laicized in 2009 for “serious allegations of abuse.”

Cepeda has been named in more than 10 cases of child sexual abuse from the 1980s and '90s.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:18 PM

Priest convicted of sexual abuse granted early parole

LOUISVILLE (KY)
WHAS 11

November 15, 2017

LOUISVILLE (WHAS11) -- A priest serving a 15-year-prison sentence for sexually abusing a teenage boy is getting out early.

James Schook has been granted early parole.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:15 PM

Anglican commission begins work to develop global safeguarding procedures

LONDON (ENGLAND)
Anglican Communion News Service (ACNS)

November 15, 2017

An international commission established to make the Churches of the Anglican Communion safe places for children, young people and vulnerable adults has begun its work. The Anglican Communion’s Safe Church Commission was established by the Anglican Consultative Council (ACC) at its meeting last year in Lusaka; in one of four resolutions on safeguarding.

The establishment of the commission was recommended by the Anglican Communion Safe Church Network – a global group of clergy and laity which “emerged out of a concern that a number of Anglican Provinces have seen highly publicised lapses in behaviour by some clergy and church workers with tragic consequences for those who have been abused.” The network, which was recognised by the ACC at its 2012 meeting in Auckland, “is a growing international group of people committed to the physical, emotional and spiritual welfare and safety of all people involved in churches throughout the Anglican Communion.”

While the network has an on-going brief to educate people about abuse and misconduct in churches, and to equip and support people working to make their churches safe, the commission has been given a specific time-sensitive task.

It will identify safeguarding policies and procedures currently in place within the Churches of the Communion; and develop new international guidelines in time for consideration by the Anglican Consultative Council at its next meeting in 2019. In its 2016 resolution establishing the commission, the ACC envisages that the guidelines will be implemented “as far as practicable” by each of the Communion’s provinces.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:11 PM

Cult leader's daughter opens up about child sexual abuse

UNITED STATES
CTV News

November 15, 2017

By Jeff Lagerquist

Warning: This story may contain details that some readers may find disturbing

Rachel Jeffs finds it hard to watch family videos of the life she left behind inside the
Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (FLDS) compound in Utah.

The reclusive breakaway polygamist sect of the Mormon Church from which she escaped in 2015 is totally isolated from the outside world, hidden behind six-foot concrete walls. Women are often married to men twice their age while still in their teens. Most husbands take several wives.
Jeffs’ trauma started much earlier. Her abuser was her father Warren, the church’s self-proclaimed prophet and leader, now serving a life sentence plus 20 years for child sexual abuse. He’s run the cult from his cell since 2011.

Jeffs is one of 53 children born to her father’s 78 wives.

In her vivid new memoir, Breaking Free, Jeffs details her years of sexual abuse at the hands of her cult-leader father and explains how she found the strength to escape with her five children to start a new, happier life.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:07 PM

Accused priest Cepeda dies at 66

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

November 15, 2017

By Jerick Sablan

Former Guam priest Raymond Cepeda, who is accused in 11 different lawsuits of sexually abusing children on island, died Tuesday, according to information provided at a hearing Wednesday morning in federal court.

Attorney Jacqueline Terlaje, who represents Archbishop Anthony Apuron in separate clergy abuse lawsuits, informed the court about Cepeda’s death during a hearing on the Apuron cases. She did not provide details about how or where Cepeda died.

Cepeda was 66, according to voter records.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:04 PM

Defrocked priest accused of sexual abuse dies

GUAM
Pacific News Center

November 15, 2017

By Janela Carrera

Guam – One of the defendants in the child sex abuse scandal has died. He is defrocked priest Raymond Cepeda.

Cepeda was previously a priest at Santa Barbara Catholic Church in Dededo. In 2009 he was laicized or defrocked amid allegations of sexual abuse.

Cepeda has also been named in a number of sex abuse lawsuits filed against the Archdiocese of Agana. As one of the few defendants living on Guam and still alive at the time the lawsuits were filed against him, Cepeda was served with court documents and was ordered to file an answer to the charges. Before he could do that, the cases were stayed pending mediation.

In the District Court of Guam, Cepeda was named a defendant in 10 sexual abuse lawsuits.

The archdiocese has released a statement saying Cepeda died Tuesday and that he had been ill for many years, adding “the archdiocese extends prayers and condolences to Cepeda’s family and friends.”

Cepeda was 66 years old.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:02 PM

The ‘gangster’ superior, the Irish priest and the wealthy widow

IRELAND
The Irish Times

November 11, 2017

By Colm Keena

Paradise Papers reveal an Irish priest’s key role in the finances of a rich Catholic order whose founder was a sex abuser

An Irish priest played a key role in offshore structures holding substantial assets belonging to the wealthy but secretive Catholic order the Legionaries of Christ, the Paradise Papers have revealed.

The Paradise Papers are 13.4 million leaked legal and other files showing tax avoidance and other financial activity across numerous businesses from 1950 to 2016. They have been published over the past week as part of a global investigation by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists.

Fr Anthony Bannon (70), a former Irish superior of the organisation, appears in the leaked files from the Appleby law firm alongside the Mexican founder of the order, the late Fr Marcial Maciel Degollado, as well as on the corporate registry in Panama.

Maciel, a long-time friend of Pope John Paul II, has been condemned as a serial sex abuser of seminarians in his cult-like order. He used his order’s money to buy influence in the Vatican, and usually travelled with tens of thousands of dollars in cash on his person.

He also fathered children by two women, and used false identities. One former member of the order, Dublin priest Fr Peter Byrne, tells The Irish Times that in his view Maciel was a “sociopath” and a “gangster”.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:57 PM

Founder of Florida's Biggest Megachurch Accused of Molesting a 4-Year-Old

CORAL SPRINGS (FL)
Miami New Times

November 14, 2017

By Tim Elfrink

The call came from California. A woman told Coral Springs Police she had recently learned something terrible: A South Florida man had molested her daughter for years. It began when the girl was just 4 years old.

An officer noted the information and called the victim, who was then a teenager. She confirmed the story in stomach-churning detail.

The man had forced her to perform oral sex, she said. He would regularly "finger and fondle her" genitals, make her touch his penis, and "dirty talk" to her. The abuse lasted until she was a teenager, she told the cop. She'd never even told her family about the crimes.

By the end of that harrowing call on August 20, 2015, police knew the accused predator was no ordinary suspect. His name was Bob Coy, and until the previous year, he'd been the most famous Evangelical pastor in Florida.

Over two decades, Coy had built a small storefront church into Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale, a 25,000-member powerhouse that packed Dolphin Stadium for Easter services while Coy hosted everyone from George W. Bush to Benjamin Netanyahu. With a sitcom dad's wholesome looks, a standup comedian's snappy timing, and an unlikely redemption tale of ditching a career managing Vegas strip clubs to find Jesus, Coy had become a Christian TV and radio superstar.

But then, in April 2014, he resigned in disgrace after admitting to multiple affairs and a pornography addiction. Coy shocked his flock and made national headlines by walking away from his ministry, selling his house, and divorcing his wife.

The sexual assault claims, which have never before been divulged, raise new questions about the pastor, his church, and the police who handled the case. Documents show that Coral Springs cops sat on the accusations for months before dropping the inquiry without even interviewing Coy. His attorneys, meanwhile, persuaded a judge with deep Republican ties to seal the ex-pastor's divorce file to protect Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale from scrutiny.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:43 PM

Man says priest, who was family friend, abused him at home

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

November 15, 2017

By Steve Limtiaco

A 58-year-old man has accused former Guam priest Antonio Cruz, who died more than 30 years ago, of sexually abusing him in 1974, according to a lawsuit filed Tuesday in the U.S. District Court of Guam.

The lawsuit, filed by a man identified only by the initials “L.J.G.” states Cruz was close friends with the man’s parents and visited the family weekly.

It is the 143rd lawsuit filed in federal or local court, accusing a clergy member or other person associated with the Catholic Church on Guam of sexual abuse.

It is the 10th lawsuit accusing Cruz of sexual abuse. If the allegations are true, Cruz abused boys on Guam for about 20 years, from 1957 to 1977. Cruz died in 1986.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:41 PM

How to Care for Abuse Survivors in Your Congregation

CAROL STREAM (IL)
Christianity Today

November 15, 2017

By Krispin Mayfield

Practical ways to care for the wounded.

Alex left home 10 years ago when he was 18 and hasn’t been to church since. When a friend at work mentioned going to church, Alex felt nagging guilt. Alex hoped that by attending church with his friend he might feel better about himself.

As a young boy, Alex was sexually abused by his uncle. When Alex told his parents about the abuse, they instructed him to “be a good Christian” and forgive his uncle. It’s been years since Alex has seen his uncle, but the shame left by the abuse remains and has made him feel disconnected.

Alex remembers his former pastor’s attempts at transparency during sermons. The pastor spoke about arguments with his wife on the way to church and failure to rest on Sabbath days. “If those are the darkest aspects of your life,” Alex thought, “you could never understand my experiences.”

While sitting in the church service with his coworker, Alex felt worse about himself. Everyone else seemed put together and healthy. “I’m broken and out of place,” Alex thought.

Alex’s experience is one of many stories about the aftermath of abuse and how attending church can be difficult for those who, like Alex, have endured trauma. No single statistic captures the ubiquity of abuse. The National Center for PTSD estimates that 7 to 8 percent of the general population will have Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) at some point. However, there are many people who do not neatly fit a PTSD diagnosis but have experienced what psychologists call “attachment trauma” and other forms of abuse or neglect. The National Center for Victims of Crime shares that 1 in 5 girls and 1 in 20 boys are victims of sexual abuse. The National Domestic Violence Hotline reports “Nearly 3 in 10 women (29%) and 1 in 10 men (10%) in the US have experienced rape, physical violence and/or stalking by a partner and report a related impact on their functioning.” The statistics do not consider rates of spiritual abuse, sexual harassment, verbal abuse, or other forms of maltreatment.

Given those statistics, how in the everyday aspects of church life can we care for survivors of trauma? How can church leaders convey welcome and belonging to survivors of abuse who show up to a Sunday service? There are a number of ways those things can be accomplished within the church.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:34 PM

Clergy abuse: Conflicting views on LI diocese’s compensation plan

LONG ISLAND (NY)
Newsday

November 14, 2017

By Bart Jones

Three men who say priests victimized them as children voice gratitude or skepticism — but want the Catholic Church to make records public.

The three men grew up on Long Island in devout Catholic families. They attended Catholic schools and were befriended by parish priests they say were revered by their parents and often were dinner guests in their homes.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:31 PM

Man sentenced for sex abuse involving 4-year-old girl at church

TOWSON (MD)
WBAL TV 11

November 14, 2017

A man who sexually abused a 4-year-old girl at a church will spend the next 18 years in prison.

Terrence Smalls, 27, had pleaded guilty to sexual abuse of a minor and was sentenced Tuesday to 25 years with all but 18 years suspended. He will be on five years of probation upon his release.

On Nov. 27, 2016, after service at the Church of Nativity in Timonium, a 4-year-old girl told her mother that Smalls, a volunteer in the daycare room of the church, had abused her in a bathroom during the church service.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:15 PM

56 lawsuits against Catholic Church that allege sexual abuse are before N.B. courts

NEW BRUNSWICK (CANADA)
CBC News

November 15, 2017

By Gabrielle Fahmy

Every month, new legal action is taken against the church in Moncton, Bathurst and Edmundston

Almost every month for a year, lawsuits have been filed against the Catholic Church in New Brunswick by alleged victims seeking compensation for sexual abuse by priests.

Many of the priests are dead, but that hasn't stopped the lawsuits in Moncton, Bathurst and Edmundston from piling up.

CBC News has found at least 56 lawsuits are still before the courts, despite an extensive conciliation process a few years ago.

At least 11 priests are targeted in the accusations, and one name appears far more often than others.

"It's very difficult to see all these new allegations coming in," said Moncton Archbishop Valéry Vienneau.

"We are going through a very difficult time. It certainly has not helped our credibility, as priests and as a church."

Thirty-two of the accusations are against one individual — Camille Leger.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:06 PM

Assignment History– Rev. John L. Abrams

UNITED STATES
BishopAccountability.org

Summary of Case: John L. Abrams was ordained for the Diocese of Brooklyn in 1951. He was an assistant priest at several consecutive parishes before being placed in charge in 1971 of St. Gregory's in Crown Heights for eight years, followed by three years as pastor of Sacred Heart in Bayside, Queens. In 1982 he was transferred to St. Patrick's in the Fort Hamilton neighborhood, where he assisted until 1988. During 1988-1989 Abrams was 'in residence' at St. Francis de Chantal. According to the Official Catholic Directory, he was 'Absent on Sick Leave' 1989-1997, after which he was 'Retired.'

At some point after the US Bishops' Conference in 2002, several men came forward to the diocese with allegations that Abrams had sexually abused them when they were boys during the late 1970s-early 1980s, while Abrams was pastor of Sacred Heart. The diocesan review board determined in 2007 that the allegations were credible. Abrams was barred from public ministry, and the matter was to be referred to the Vatican's Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:03 PM

November 14, 2017

For Native Americans Facing Sexual Assault, Justice Feels Out Of Reach [with audio]

ETHETE (WY)
National Public Radio (NPR)

November 14, 2017

By Melodie Edwards

One morning earlier this year, Northern Arapaho member Rose was sitting at the table with her 14-year-old daughter, Latoya.

"I told her to move her hair because she had her hair like this," said Rose, showing how Latoya pulled her hair over to hide her neck and cheek. "Because I noticed something ... she had marks, hickeys, just completely covering her, even almost on her face."

That's when Latoya told her mother that she had been forcibly kissed by a woman from another reservation who was six years older. (NPR is using only their middle names because they fear retaliation.)

"At that moment, I saw me in her," Rose said. She took a deep breath and this time there were tears in her voice. "And there was just nothing I could do for her except let her know, it's not your fault; it's OK; I'll protect you."

Rose wanted more than anything to protect her daughter because when she herself was 6, she too was molested by an older girl. Studies show that 1 in 3 Native American women is sexually assaulted in her life. But Rose wanted to stop that cycle of abuse.

According to a new poll by NPR, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, 36 percent of Native Americans living in majority-Native areas say they avoid calling the police because of a fear of discrimination. And nearly half say they or a family member feels he or she has been treated unfairly by the courts. But thanks to a recent law, a small number of tribes are creating their own court systems in hopes they will process cases faster and restore trust.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 5:11 PM

Church vows were ‘like putting a manhole over the sewer’

IRELAND
The Irish Times

November 13, 2017

By Patsy McGarry

Former Glenstal abbot says pandemic of child abuse and incest is a ‘religious problem’

Moralising will not help us understand the wave of sexual harassment and child abuse cases that have emerged nationally and internationally, says Mark Patrick Hederman, former abbot of the Benedictine monastery at Glenstal, Co Limerick.

Instead, he believes we must look at the human passions that connect people such as Harvey Weinstein and Tom Humphries.

“We’ve had three philosophers of the 20th century that decided there are only three basic energies that move us all. One is power, the other is sex, and the other is money.”

While this does not capture the full picture, “it’s a good beginning... The world goes round because of sex, said Freud; or money for Marx, and power for Nietzsche,” he says.

“The church had found that out in the Middle Ages and they said: ‘We’ll put three stops on those three things – poverty, chastity, and obedience.’ So they put vows over them. It was like putting a manhole over the sewer. It doesn’t work like that.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 5:08 PM

Sex Abuse Allegation Against Retired Priest — Former Pastor of St. Gertrude

ST. LOUIS (MO)
The Missourian

November 13, 2017

The Most Rev. Robert J. Carlson, Archbishop of St. Louis, reported he has received an allegation of sexual abuse of a minor against retired priest Rev. Dennis B. Zacheis.

The acts are alleged to have occurred while he was an associate pastor at St. Margaret Mary Alacoque Parish in Mehlville from 1975 to 1979. Father Zacheis denies the allegation.

Father Zacheis, known here locally as Father Dennis, served as pastor at St. Gertrude Parish in Krakow from 1994 to 2003.

Archbishop Carlson, in consultation with the Review Board of the Archdiocese of St. Louis, has decided for the sake of openness and transparency to make this known.

No details of the accusation were given and it’s unclear whether the accuser had involved the police.

Father Zacheis has been retired from ministry without priestly faculties since 2010, due to alleged irregularities in finances for which he was responsible as pastor of St. Anthony’s in Sullivan. He currently resides in a private residence.

In keeping with the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People, an announcement about this allegation has been made in the archdiocesan newspaper, The St. Louis Review, and in the parishes where Father Zacheis served.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 5:06 PM

'We carry negativity in our bodies': Therapy sessions for priests affected by abuse scandals

IRELAND
The Journal

November 14, 2017

The Association of Catholic Priests is launching therapy sessions for the mental wellbeing of priests.

AN IRISH PRIESTS group is launching therapy sessions for its members whose morale has been affected by sexual abuse scandals within the Catholic Church.

The Association of Catholic Priests will run its first Circle of Healing session in Cork on 28 November, as part of its move to help churchmen affected by the Church’s scandals, including those who have been wrongly accused of sexual abuse.

Father Tim Hazelwood, a spokesperson for the group of 1,000 priests, said the aim of the sessions is to help priests “process” and “explore their feelings around the sexual abuse scandals” and to provide support of those who have had to deal with years of negativity within the Church.

“The last 20 years were hugely traumatic for the lives of priests,” Father Hazelwood told TheJournal.ie.

He said that the lives of priests have changed drastically over the past number of years and the public’s attitude toward priests has shifted, leaving priests fearful “that people will say things to them or get aggressive towards them” if they wear their clerical clothes in public.

“On top of that, there have been so many sexual abuse scandals. There is all that negativity and no forum where priests can talk about it,” Father Hazelwood said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 5:03 PM

Italy church defends ordaining seminarian in gay sex probe

ROME
The Associated Press

November 14, 2017

An Italian diocese is defending its decision to ordain a seminarian accused in a book and an investigative TV report of having engaged in gay sex with a fellow teenager while both studied at the Vatican's youth seminary.

A statement Tuesday from the diocese of Como said church superiors had investigated claims against the seminarian and determined that he was worthy of being ordained a priest. It said church authorities in Rome had given him a "positive" evaluation, which factored into the decision to ordain him.

Italian journalist Gianluigi Nuzzi revealed the case of the unnamed seminarian in his new book "Original Sin." This weekend, investigative TV report "Le Iene" (The Hyenas) interviewed the subject of the seminarian's reported advances. He said the seminarian, who was a year older and had a position of authority over younger students, would come into his dorm at night demanding sex starting when he was 13 and continuing until he was 18.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 5:01 PM

Priest, female devotee arrested for raping student for two years

INDIA
Times of India

November 14, 2017

By Pradeep Gupta

Ulhasnagar: Vithalwadi police on Tuesday arrested a 40-year-old Sharon Fellowship Church priest and a 25-year-old female devotee for allegedly raping a Class X student for two years. Another devotee alerted the victim's mother that there was something amiss with the priest who had tried to touch her inappropriately and was suspected to have sexually assaulted her daughter.

On receiving a text message, the 15-year-old victim's mother took her daughter into confidence and checked the information. "My daughter broke down and revealed the ordeal that she had been facing for two years. She said the priest had threatened her and used to get physical with her after his accomplice, a devotee too, used to blackmail her and take her to his house, where both sexually assaulted my daughter," the victim's mother stated in her complaint.

A team led by senior inspector S J Shirsat and inspector Nandlal Khadkikar carried out a probe and arrested Geet Kumar Somnath Pillai alias Manikuttan alias Shreejit and Rosy (name changed), who served as a priest at the church in Vithalwadi. Police will record the statement of the woman who alerted the victim's mother too.

The minor has been visiting the church for three years along with her family to offer prayers. "She had met Rosy, who introduced her to Pillai, in February 2015. They got close and finally she took her to the accused's house, where the priest and devotee raped and committed unnatural sex with her," said a police officer.

Khadkikar said the team was also probing if the accused had committed similar offences with others. Shirsat said they are were recording statements and collecting evidence in the case.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:59 PM

Priest's child pornography case set for Nov. 27

LAFAYETTE (LA)
Daily Advertiser

November 14, 2017

By Ken Stickney

The Rev. F. David Broussard's trial date on child pornography charges remains set for Nov. 27, according to court officials and the office of the accused man's defense attorney.

Broussard is scheduled to appear before Judge Vincent J. Borne of St. Mary Parish in 16th Judicial District Court in St. Martinville.

The Diocese of Lafayette priest, suspended from his duties after his July 2016 arrest, is accused of possessing more than 500 images of child sex abuse on his personal computer. A diocesan priest for more than two decades, he most recently was assigned to St. Bernard Roman Catholic Church in Breaux Bridge, where he also served as chancellor of the church school.

He remained free on $25,000 bond.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:56 PM

A Nun’s Unsolved Murder: Baltimore Cold Case Gets Hotter

BALTIMORE (MD)
The Crime Report

November 14, 2017

By Tom Nugent

The grisly story of a young Catholic nun’s murder—still unsolved—took a shocking new twist Monday night when a Baltimore television station quoted both witnesses and a police spokesperson in a news telecast which suggested that five additional murders (four of them involving teenagers) were linked to rampant sex abuse by both Catholic priests and local police during an 11-year period that began in 1970.

The story on WJZ-TV—the CBS outlet in Baltimore—marked the first time ever that a mainstream news organization has reported on a current police investigation of apparent connections between six different unsolved murders and Catholic Church/police sexual assaults in Baltimore.

While confirming the fact that Baltimore County cold case detectives are currently looking for connections between the unsolved killings and the sexual abuse, county police spokesperson Corporal Shawn Vinson told WJZ: “We’ll continue to try to look for any leads, any additional evidence that we can find.”

The groundbreaking news program on the six unsolved murders stemmed from recent disclosures unearthed during a local, 22-year-long reporting effort. Those findings were published in Inside Baltimore, an independent online newspaper last August.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:53 PM

Commentary: The larger problem of sexual abuse in evangelical circles

UNITED STATES
Chicago Tribune

November 14, 2017

By Kathryn Brightbill

We need to talk about the segment of American culture that probably doesn't think the allegations against Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore are particularly damning, the segment that will blanch at only two accusations in the Washington Post expose: He pursued a 14-year-old-girl without first getting her parents' permission, and he initiated sexual contact outside of marriage. That segment is evangelicalism. In that world, which Moore travels in and I grew up in, 14-year-old girls courting adult men isn't uncommon.

I use the phrase “14-year-old girls courting adult men,” rather than “adult men courting 14-year-old girls,” for a reason: Evangelicals routinely frame these relationships in those terms. That's how I was introduced to these relationships as a home-schooled teenager in the 1990s, and it's the language that my friends and I would use to discuss girls we knew who were in parent-sanctioned relationships with older men.

One popular courtship story that was told and retold in home-school circles during the 1990s was that of Matthew and Maranatha Chapman, who turned their history into a successful career promoting young marriage. Most audiences, however, didn't realize just how young the Chapmans had in mind until the site HomeschoolersAnonymous.org and the blogger Libby Anne revealed that Matthew was 27 and Maranatha was 15 when they married. Libby Anne also drew mainstream attention to Matthew Chapman's writings, in which he argued that parents should consider marriage for their daughters in their “middle-teens.” At that point the Chapmans stopped receiving quite so many speaking invitations.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:47 PM

Former Newcastle Anglican Dean Graeme Lawrence and the fall from grace

NEWCASTLE (AUSTRALIA)
Newcastle Herald

November 15, 2017

By Joanne McCarthy

GRAEME Lawrence was the charismatic 13th Anglican Dean of Newcastle who supported the Hunter through the 1989 earthquake, the 2005 Bali bombing and the 2007 floods, and was honoured for his work by a grateful community.

He declined to comment on Tuesday after police charged him with sexually assaulting a teenage boy, 15, in the early 1990s, following a referral in 2016 from the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

It marked another point in a fall from grace for the former Anglican priest that has included the public airing of sexual abuse allegations at a Newcastle Anglican disciplinary hearing in 2010, a failed Supreme Court appeal against its findings in 2011, his defrocking in 2012 and denial of child sex allegations during questioning at a royal commission public hearing in Newcastle in 2016.

Mr Lawrence, 75, was arrested at a Kotara home by Newcastle City Local Area Command Strike Force Arinya police at 8.30am on Tuesday and charged with four counts of aggravated sexual assault and aggravated indecent assault.

In a statement NSW Police said the charges related to “alleged sexual assaults upon a 15-year-old boy in the Hunter region during 1991”.

He was granted conditional bail to appear at Newcastle Local Court on December 7.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:45 PM

House arrest for Collège Notre-Dame pedophile priest

MONTREAL (CANADA)
Montreal Gazette

November 14, 2017

By Paul Cherry

Olivain Leblanc, 75, pleaded guilty to one count of gross indecency and apologized to the victim and his mother.

A priest who taught at Collège Notre-Dame decades ago and admitted on Tuesday to having sexually abused a teenage boy at the school has been sentenced to 15 months of house arrest.

Using a walker and unable to meet the usual Montreal courthouse requirement to stand, Olivain Leblanc, 75, sat while he pleaded guilty to one count of gross indecency.

Prosecutor Amélie Rivard explained that, between 1979 and 1981, the abuse involved oral sex and touching the student in a sexual manner when the victim was a young teenager. She also said the joint recommendation made on the sentence, along with defence lawyer Isabel Schurman, was agreed upon during a long facilitation process where negotiations where held before a different Quebec Court judge outside of a courtroom.

“Nothing can repair (the victim),” Rivard said while summarizing the difficulty the man went through after he was abused. In a story published in the Montreal Gazette in 2010, the victim said he lived a solitary life, wrestling with the psychological after-effects of what he experienced. He said he bounced from dead-end job to dead-end job while his former classmates went on to become engineers, lawyers and doctors.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:41 PM

Lawsuit: Abuse occurred at victim's home

GUAM
The Guam Daily Post

November 14, 2017

By Mindy Aguon

A 58-year-old man alleges a priest, who was a family friend, would often visit his home when he was a teen and sexually abuse him.

L.J.G., who used initials to protect his identity, filed a civil complaint in the District Court of Guam yesterday against the Archdiocese of Agana. The case alleges the victim was sexually abused in 1974 by Antonio C. Cruz, who was a priest at Our Lady of Peace and Safe Journey church in Chalan Pago.

The lawsuit alleges Cruz was close friends with L.J.G.'s parents and visited the boy's home on a weekly basis.

During those visits, documents state, Cruz sexually molested and abused L.J.G. who was 15 years old at the time.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:40 PM

Former Anglican Dean of Newcastle facing child sexual assault charges

AUSTRALIA
ABC Newcastle

November 14, 2017

By Liz Farquhar and Kerrin Thomas

The former Anglican Dean of Newcastle Graeme Lawrence has been arrested and charged with alleged sexual assaults on a 15-year-old boy.

The alleged offences occurred in the NSW Hunter region in 1991.

In 2016, police in Newcastle received a referral from the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, and Strike Force Arinya was formed to investigate.

Mr Lawrence was one of a number of current and former Anglican Church officials to give evidence at the royal commission hearing into the Anglican Church in Newcastle last year.

This morning, officers from the strike force arrested the 75-year-old former dean at his home in the Newcastle suburb of Kotara.

Mr Lawrence was taken to Waratah Police Station and charged with four counts of aggravated sexual assault and aggravated indecent assault.

He has been granted conditional bail to face Newcastle Local Court next month.

He was defrocked in 2012.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:37 PM

Child abuse royal commission chairman criticises police, church in speech ahead of report

AUSTRALIA
Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC)

November 13, 2017

By Danny Tran

Police forces failed in their duty to protect Australian children because they often refused to believe their complaints about sexual abuse, the royal commission's chairman says.

Child protection agencies also failed to listen to children, leaving them in situations of danger, Justice Peter McClellan said in some of his final remarks before the commission's final sitting.

The chairman of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse gave a speech in Melbourne this afternoon, critical of Australia's major social institutions for seriously failing to protect children from paedophiles.

"It is not a case of a few 'rotten apples'," he said.

"The problems have been so widespread, and the nature of the abuse so heinous, that it is difficult to comprehend.

"Across many decades many institutions failed our children. Our child protection, criminal and civil justice systems let them down.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:44 AM

Sexual Abuse Scandal in New York’s Mental Health System Similar to Catholic Church Sex Scandal

ALBANY (NY)
PR PR Health via The Daily Telescope

November 14, 2017

By Brad Bennett

Astronomical numbers of vulnerable victims fall prey to sexual abuse and rape in Governor Andrew Cuomo’s system and almost all reported criminal cases disappear
Governor Cuomo knows about these atrocities, he has protected most of the criminals involved and he has taken no significant actions to stop or prevent any of these sex crimes or criminal cover-ups.” — Michael Carey

ALBANY, NEW YORK, UNITED STATES, November 14, 2017 — Governor Andrew Cuomo took decisive actions following the award winning New York Times “Abused & Used” investigative reporting series to keep these horrific heinous crimes from the 911 call systems, local police and county elected prosecutors. The sole purpose of bypassing local authorities and courts is to cover-up crimes. Similar to the Catholic Church sex scandal where sexual predators were shuffled from parish to parish, this is exactly what New York State’s mental health care system is doing with predator caregivers https://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/04/04/sex-abuse-catholic-church_n_5085414.html. Instead of Catholic priests, it is sexual predators posing as caregivers working in a widely known unsafe system which is rampant with sexual abuse.

It’s all about power, control and the money and hardly anything about providing safe care and services for our most vulnerable. Almost every imaginable safety and abuse prevention measure still is not in place to protect people with disabilities in residential care facilities and group homes. Hiding and concealing information and documents from authorities and the general public is the key to this disgusting scheme and this also is what Governor Cuomo has chosen http://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/sdut-cuomos-office-tightly-controls-public-records-2014oct23-story.html.

The Criminal Conspiracy occurring surrounds the governor’s fraudulent Justice Center also hiding and concealing documents and evidence of sex crimes and many other types of crimes, including homicides, from local police so that criminal investigations in most cases will never happen. No 911 call, no tape of the reported crime, no police report, no independent medical report , no criminal investigation, then it didn’t happen is how New York State is operating under Governor Andrew Cuomo.

New York State documents also obtained through FOIL dating back to 2005 reveal that the New York State OMRDD/OPWDD system has a culture of sexual abuse, rape and cover-ups. Thousands of reported sex crimes committed against the disabled are never reported to local police or District Attorney’s and are disappearing within the system that former Attorney General Cuomo and now Governor Cuomo has protected with a vengeance http://www.einpresswire.com/article/414428414/cuomo-has-been-protecting-sexual-predators-for-over-a-decade?n=2 . State data, as well as this well known study found on the State of Massachusetts website titled, Prevalence of Violence, http://www.mass.gov/dppc/abuse-recognize/prevalence-of-violence.html point to possibly one third of developmentally disabled residents within Governor Cuomo’s OPWDD system are being sexually assaulted annually. In a system of 126,000 developmentally disabled children and adults, many of whom cannot speak to tell anyone anything, there are upwards of 43,000 victims every year. Try to wrap your mind around the scope of what I am bringing to your attention.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:34 AM

Renowned Arizona State medieval art professor is ousted after Catholic diocese revealed he had sexually abused minors decades ago while serving as a priest

TEMPE (AZ)
Daily Mail

November 13, 2017

By Snejana Farberov

- Jaime Lara resigned from ASU on Thursday, after Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn outed him as a disgraced former cleric

- Lara was ordained in 1973 and was in active ministry until 1992 when he was removed from the priesthood by the Vatican

- It was between 1979 and 1981 that Lara is accused of molesting three children ranging in age from 9 to 11 years old at St. Francis Xavier Church in Brooklyn

- Alleged vicitm Ricardo Gonzalez, now aged 48, told the New York Times Father Lara began molesting him when he was 11 years old

A well-respected research professor at Arizona State University has resigned after the Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn revealed last week that he had been defrocked more than 25 years ago for sexually abusing children.

University officials requested that Jaime Lara step down from his post after they learned of his history as a priest. His resignation was tendered Thursday, The Arizona Republic first reported.

Lara was ordained in 1973 and was in active ministry until 1992 when he was removed from the priesthood by the Vatican. The information was posted Wednesday on the diocese website along with the names of seven other former clerics who had been removed from priesthood.

It was between 1979 and 1981 that Lara is accused of sexually abusing three children ranging in age from 9 to 11 years old at St. Francis Xavier Church in Brooklyn, according to the victims’ attorney, Mitchell Garabedian.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:28 AM

Douthat: Defenders of the indefensible

UNITED STATES
Longview News Journal

November 14, 2017

By Ross Douthat

Lately we have been given an extended education in the different varieties of liberal pigs. There's the industrial-scale predator who buys indulgences from Planned Parenthood. And the male feminist who respects women so very much — especially when they're too drunk to resist him. And the Great Man of Letters creeping on his co-workers. And the let-it-all-hang-out artist who thinks it can't be assault if the only person you're touching is yourself.

But this past week our era of exposure has reminded us that cultural conservatism has its own distinctive swine.

So while we wait to see what becomes of Alabama Senate candidate and professional Christian Roy Moore, who is credibly alleged to have spent his 30s pursuing high school girls with the "I get older, they stay the same age" gusto of Matthew McConaughey's character in "Dazed and Confused," it's worth doing a quick typology of the predators that flourish among the godly and moralistic.

One type is what you might call the rotten patriarch. This is the man who depends on the trappings of spiritual or familial authority to exploit the young and weak, shame them into silence and preemptively discredit them.

The rotten patriarch might be anyone from a handsy pastor or a lecherous pillar of the community to the leader of a sect or religious order. And in the defenses of Moore from various Alabama Republicans you can see the way conservative impulses protect this kind of figure — both in the suggestion that a man of his religious reputation should be trusted over his accusers, and in the risible invocation of biblical examples to defend an older man's lust for a 14-year-old girl.

But there are other styles of predation that flourish within conservative communities. For instance, there is the burrower, the networker, the institutionalist — the predator who embeds himself within a hierarchical system that protects him because it wants to protect itself.

Many Catholic priests-abusers fit this pattern. Their clerical authority didn't always keep them from getting chased out of parishes. But they were networked with other predators who helped them skate through to the next assignment, and the larger ecclesiastical entity saw its own self-protection as more important than their punishment.

Then finally there is the serial repenter — the creep who relies on the promise of forgiveness to keep his place and his powers and his opportunities to prey again.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:20 AM

Government must not limit child abuse inquiry to state care, victim advocates and experts say

NEW ZEALAND
Stuff

November 14, 2017

By Joel Ineson

A senior member of the Catholic Church has thrown his support behind a strengthening bid for a royal commission into child abuse, but will not pledge the same from the institution as a whole.

Bill Kilgallon wants his own church – and all other faith-based institutions – to be included in the Government's inquiry into the abuse of children in state care before 1992.

The call comes as concern continues to mount that the Government's inquiry will miss the scale of historical child abuse in New Zealand if it limits its scope to state-affiliated or owned institutions.

An Australian Royal Commission into child abuse, considered by many to be a global benchmark, reported that 60 per cent of abuse happened in faith-based institutions.

"If they keep going down the track of just a state institution inquiry . . . it'll leave the majority of abuse out," Liz Tonks, a supporter of male sex abuse victims, said.

Sporting clubs have also been flagged by advocates as institutions that need to be included in an inquiry.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:18 AM

Former NSW priest charged with child abuse

AUSTRALIA
Australian Associated Press (AAP)

November 13, 2017

By Jamie McKinnell

A former Anglican priest has been charged with sexually assaulting a 15-year-old boy in the NSW Hunter region in the early 1990s.

Newcastle detectives began investigating the now 75-year-old in 2016 after a referral from the child sexual abuse royal commission.

Police say the man is a former "senior" priest who allegedly abused the boy in 1991.

He was arrested on Tuesday morning at a home in Kotara.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:15 AM

Could Murder Of Sister Cathy Be Connected To Other Killings?

BALTIMORE (MD)
CBS Baltimore

November 13, 2017

By Denise Koch

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Could a nearly 50-year-old secret be behind the murders of several Baltimore teenagers?

WJZ continues its investigation into the murder of young nun Sister Cathy, who was silenced right before she was about to blow the whistle on a powerful sex ring run by priests and police.

WJZ has learned that police are now looking into whether other unsolved murders could be connected.

Sister Cathy Cesnik’s decomposing body was found frozen in a ditch in Lansdowne in January 1970.

The murder of this popular nun has never been solved, and neither have the murders of five young people killed over the next decade.

Now, Baltimore County police are actively trying to determine whether the cases are linked.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:06 AM

November 13, 2017

Prosecutors will meet with son of former Boston TV anchor who accused actor Kevin Spacey of sexual assault

Nantucket (MA)
Mass Live

November 12, 2017

By Scott J. Croteau

The Cape and Islands district attorney will meet with the son of Heather Unruh after he accused actor Kevin Spacey of sexually assaulting him on Nantucket in 2016.

The Boston Globe reports the meeting will take place soon and District Attorney Michael O'Keefe wants all the information relevant to the alleged sexual assault.

In an announcement last week, former WCVB-TV news anchor Heather Unruh accused Spacey of sexually assaulting her then 18-year-old son at the Club Car bar in Nantucket in July 2016. Unruh's son worked as a busboy there.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:53 PM

Sex abuse prevention resources available at sbc.net

NASHVILLE (TN)
Baptist Press

November 13, 2017

By Diana Chandler

NASHVILLE (BP) -- While a growing international storm of sexual abuse allegations and revelations has swirled for more than a month, the Southern Baptist Convention has long encouraged churches to be proactive in preventing abuse, SBC resources show.

Spiritual leaders, churches and seminaries should model, exhort and teach the highest standards of moral and ministerial integrity, and churches should use legal resources and avenues to exclude sexual predators from leadership and influential positions including pastors and counselors, the SBC said as early as 2002.

"We call on our churches to discipline those guilty of any sexual abuse in obedience to Matthew 18:6-17 as well as to cooperate with civil authorities in the prosecution of those cases," the SBC said in its resolution that year On the Sexual Integrity of Ministers . "We pray for those who have been harmed as a result of sexual abuse and urge our churches to offer support, compassion, and biblical counseling to them and their families."

A Hollywood sexual abuse scandal that began in early October with accusations against movie mogul Harvey Weinstein revived a "Me Too" campaign birthed 10 years ago by activist Tarana Burke, according to Ebony.com, "to unify those who've been victimized by sexual violence." The revived campaign, widely attributed to Alyssa Milano and identified in social media as #MeToo, drew support from scores, some of whom alleged sexual abuse in church settings.

Living Proof Ministries Founder Beth Moore and Saddleback Church Cofounder Kay Warren are among Southern Baptists sharing personal stories at #MeToo.

Apart from the #MeToo campaign, a civil lawsuit alleging sexual abuse-related offenses against First Baptist Church of Columbia, S.C., was filed Oct. 10 in Richland County, S.C., Fifth Judicial Circuit Court, according to online court documents.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:50 PM

Former Massachusetts priest re-indicted on Maine sex abuse charges

PORTLAND (ME)
Portland Press Herald

November 13, 2017

By Edward D. Murphy

The abuse of boys allegedly took place in Kennebunk in the late-1980s

A York County grand jury has re-indicted a former priest from Massachusetts who is accused of repeatedly sexually abusing two boys he brought to Maine in the 1980s.

Ronald Paquin now faces 31 counts of sexual abuse in York County. He was originally indicted in February on 29 counts of sexual abuse for acts he allegedly committed in the mid- to late-1980s when he brought the boys to Maine for “short-term stays,” Kennebunk Police Chief Craig Sanford said at the time Paquin was charged. Sanford would not say where the alleged abuse occurred, other than to describe it as “a seasonal location,” or provide any other information on the charges.

Paquin, 74, has been held at the York County Jail since he was arrested and formally charged in February.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:47 PM

Sex abuse victims says priest forced boys to undress and take turns sitting on his lap

GUAM
Pacific News Center

November 13, 2017

By Janela Carrera

There are over 130 sex abuse lawsuit filed against the church so far.

Guam – The latest sex abuse lawsuit filed against the Archdiocese of Agana describes some of the routine practices of the alleged pedophiles against the victims.

The latest lawsuit comes from B.F. who names two individuals, Father Louis Brouillard and Boy Scout Leader Edward Pereira. B.F. says that he was not a member of the Boy Scouts or officially an altar server but often participated in their events and outings.

The sexual abuse began in the mid 1960s when B.F. was 10 years old. At the church rectory, B.F. alleges that Brouillard would instruct B.F. and his friends to take turns sitting on his lap with both priest and minors fully naked. According to the complaint, Brouillard would fondle the victims and force them to perform the same to him.

The victims says Pereira also sexually abused him by groping his private parts outside of his clothing.

B.F. is seeking $10 million in damages.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:13 PM

In scandal's wake, Guam's interim archbishop works to heal fractured church

GUAM
USA Today

November 12, 2017

By Haidee V Eugenio

HAGÅTÑA, Guam — A year since stepping into a fractured community of faith, Archbishop Michael Jude Byrnes continues to work on bringing people back to church pews with stronger faith than they had before.

There’s still brokenness but everything can be overcome, he said.

“I think we’ve begun,” Byrnes said about fixing that brokenness of the soul, given the betrayal of trust by spiritual leaders, based on more than 140 clergy sex abuse lawsuits filed against priests and others associated with the Catholic Church.

With his groups of advisers and people he has met along the way, Byrnes is leading efforts to rebuild trust in the church. He says hope and healing ultimately comes from one’s faith in God.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:12 PM

Ex-Members Say Church Uses Power, Lies to Keep Grip on Kids

SPINDALE (NC)
Associated Press

Nov. 13, 2017,

By Mitch Weiss and Holbrook Mohr

An Associated Press investigation has found that a secretive evangelical church has used positions of authority, deception and intimidation to bring children into the sect or keep them from leaving.

SPINDALE, North Carolina (AP) — As a court-appointed advocate for two foster boys, it was Nancy Burnette's job to ensure they were in good hands. So as part of her casework, she visited Word of Faith Fellowship, the evangelical church they attended with the couple seeking to adopt them.

What happened next haunts her: In the middle of the service, the chanting and singing suddenly stopped, Burnette said, and the fiery pastor pointed at Burnette, accusing her of being "wicked." ''You are here to cause strife!" she recalled Jane Whaley shouting, as she sensed congregants begin to converge upon her. "You don't think these kids are supposed to be here!"

Terrified, Burnette left, but not before promising the boys, ages 4 and almost 2, that she would return — a promise she ultimately could not keep.

"What I didn't know was how hard Word of Faith would fight — and the tactics they would use — to keep the kids," Burnette told The Associated Press.

That was not the only time Word of Faith Fellowship's leaders and members have used positions of authority, intimidation or deception to bring children into the church's folds or keep them from leaving — often at Whaley's behest, according to dozens of interviews and hundreds of pages of court records, police reports and social services documents obtained by the AP.

As a result, children have been introduced to sometimes violent church practices that run counter to the North Carolina laws designed to protect them, the AP found.

The state promotes "family preservation," designed to prevent the "unnecessary placement of children away from their families." But the AP found that some young congregants have been separated from their parents for up to a decade — bounced from family to family — as leaders strive to keep them in the church.

In addition, three single mothers told the AP that a longtime Word of Faith Fellowship member who was a county court clerk bypassed the foster system and eventually won permanent custody of their children, even though a judge called the clerk's conduct inappropriate. Two of the mothers said the clerk approached them and offered to temporarily keep the children while they served their jail time.

The AP interviewed a dozen former congregants who said they had personally witnessed the three children living with the clerk being subjected to intense screaming sessions called "blasting" aimed at casting out demons, or being held down, shaken or beaten.

Even as she battled desperately for her young son, one of the three women had told a judge that, if she could not have him, the boy would be better off in foster care due to the church's abusive nature.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:09 PM

North Carolina church accused of ‘kidnapping’ children with help from a county clerk

SPINDALE (NC)
Raw Story

November 13, 2017

By Sarah K. Burris

The Word of Faith Fellowship, a North Carolina church facing a slew of investigations, is now being accused of kidnapping the children of at least one mother.

According to the Associated Press, the church in Spindale, North Carolina, used its relationship with a social worker to take more than a dozen children from their families.

As a child advocate, Nancy Burnette was tasked with visiting the church to ensure two foster children were safe while a family was working to adopt them. Out of the blue, the pastor pointed to Burnette and accused her of being “wicked.”

″You are here to cause strife!” she recalled pastor Jane Whaley shouting during a fiery sermon. At that point she said she felt the church members converge upon her. “You don’t think these kids are supposed to be here!”

North Carolina’s social services laws cite “family preservation,” so as to prevent “unnecessary placement of children away from their families.” Yet, many children have been taken from their families and put into the custody of church members. Thus far, three single mothers have come forward to allege a county court clerk bypassed the foster system so that church members were able to obtain custody of their children, despite a judge calling the conduct inappropriate.

“What I didn’t know was how hard Word of Faith would fight — and the tactics they would use — to keep the kids,” Burnette said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:05 PM

Investigators face big hurdles in church child abuse cases

SPINDALE (NC)
Associated Press

November 13, 2017

By Mitch Weiss and Holbrook

SPINDALE, North Carolina – When Rutherford County's child protection agency seeks to investigate allegations of abuse at Word of Faith Fellowship, it runs smack into two major obstacles: a habitual lack of cooperation from church members and a court-ordered compromise that limits what can trigger an inquiry and how social workers can question minors.

Word of Faith has been investigated numerous times over the course of decades without serious consequences, in large part because church leader Jane Whaley orders congregants to lie to and mislead authorities, according to dozens of former followers interviewed by The Associated Press.

In 1995, for example, the State Bureau of Investigation interviewed Whaley, sect leaders and dozens of former members about abuse allegations. Investigators determined congregants — including children — had been mistreated, but the district attorney ultimately declined to prosecute, saying any case would be undermined by most victims' recalcitrance.

Whaley and a dozen church families sued the Rutherford County Department of Social Services in 2003, contending they were being targeted because of their religious beliefs. The agency settled the lawsuit two years later, agreeing to a list of stipulations dictating how it can investigate reports of child abuse.

Word of Faith received guarantees that abuse inquiries could no longer be solely based on objections to such core practices as "blasting," when congregants surround a church member and shriek for hours in an attempt to expel demons.

The agreement also placed limits on where social workers can interview children and barred them from asking questions about religious beliefs or practices.

And the church won the right to refuse to admit any child to its K-12 school whose parents do not consent to the use of corporal punishment.

Several experts who reviewed the stipulations at the Associated Press's request called the agreement highly unusual and spoke of a potential chilling effect on investigations.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:03 PM

Not So Cold Cases, After All

UNITED STATES
Inside Higher Ed

November 13, 2017

By Colleen Flaherty

What’s to be done about the numerous reports of faculty misconduct dating back years and even decades?

As more and more sexual harassment cases involving faculty members come to light, a significant share of them date back 10, 20 and even 30 years. The last few months have seen a series of high-profile cases in which the accused professors are now senior in age as well as status, retired or even deceased. While these so-called cold cases certainly pose practical challenges in terms of dwindling institutional memory and evidence, experts say institutions are often (if not always) eager to help right past wrongs -- and that they must.

“The deep question here is, ‘What is the purpose of making these allegations after so many years?’” said Michele Dauber, the Frederick I. Richman Professor of Law at Stanford University. “To a certain extent, it’s not unlike debates about Confederate memorials showing up in states that have never really been forced to come to terms with what they’ve done. It is wrong to say that people who were wronged by institutions in the past should simply let it go, with no acknowledgment of their suffering.”

Issues of moral responsibility are arguably more relevant and important in an educational setting, and indeed academic institutions have grappled with these parallel issues of legacy, Dauber said. “We really need to think about who we’re honoring … Seo-Young Chu is clearly owed an apology, at minimum.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:59 PM

Anglican priest charged over historical child sex abuse allegations

AUSTRALIA
Herald Sun

November 12, 2017

By Rebekah Cavanagh

A FORMER Anglican priest has been charged with multiple counts of indecent assault and gross indecency against two young girls.

Timothy Cohen, 63 has been charged with multiple counts of indecent assault and gross indecency in regional Victorian towns in the 1980s.

He is also accused of sexual penetration with one of the victims.

The Melbourne Magistrates Court heard on Friday that Cohen planned to contest the charges at a three-day hearing in April.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:57 PM

Archdiocese of St. Louis reports sexual abuse allegation against retired priest

ST. LOUIS (MO)
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

November 13, 2017

By Blythe Bernhard

A retired priest from St. Anthony's Catholic Church in Sullivan has been accused of sexually abusing a child in the late 1970s, the Archdiocese of St. Louis reported Monday.

Rev. Dennis B. Zacheis denies the allegations, according to the report.

Zacheis was assigned to St. Anthony's in 2005 and served at St. Alban Roe in Wildwood for the previous 17 months before resigning. The report does not note where Zacheis worked in the 1970s.

Zacheis retired in 2010 over alleged financial indiscretions while serving as pastor at St. Anthony’s. The Archidocese refunded $60,000 to the church for a budget shortfall. Zacheis spent church money on expenses related to his vacation home at the Lake of the Ozarks, according to an audit. Zacheis' lawyer at the time said the priest denied any wrongdoing.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:54 PM

In Israel, Australian Sisters Recount Alleged Sex Abuse by ultra-Orthodox Principal

ISRAEL
HAARETZ

November 13, 2017

By Dina Kraft

The three women seek the extradition of the headmistress whose lawyer says she's unfit to face trial. The sisters tell Haaretz about their experiences in a close-knit community back home

Growing up in an especially cloistered ultra-Orthodox home and community in Melbourne, Australia, the three sisters were required to have their books vetted by their school or parents. Any depictions of male-female interaction of any kind were whited out and taped over – even fairy tales.

Television and movies were prohibited. Even mail-order clothing catalogs weren't allowed into their home. They learned nothing about their own bodies or sex.

But they say the kind attention they received from their charismatic headmistress at their all-girls ultra-Orthodox school evolved into sexual abuse, assault and rape – as they told the Australian police. They say they didn’t even have the words to describe it; each kept her experiences to herself. They were unaware, they say, until years after the alleged abuse began, that all three had become the headmistress’ victims.

“We didn’t know what our bodies even were, we didn’t have biology lessons,” said Elly Sapper, 28, the youngest of the three sisters who have accused the headmistress, Malka Leifer. “Everything was taboo. You didn’t even know about getting your period. You didn’t know when someone touches your body it was wrong. She said that was love, so we believed her.”

Last week, Sapper and her sisters Nicole Meyer, 32, and Dassi Erlich, 30, spoke with Haaretz in Tel Aviv about the abuse they say took place between about 2001 and 2008.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:22 AM

Catholic priest Glen Walsh who was to give evidence in Archbishop Philip Wilson’s trial has died

AUSTRALIA
The Advertiser

November 11, 2017

By Andrew Dowdell

A CATHOLIC priest has died weeks before he was scheduled to give evidence in Adelaide Archbishop Philip Wilson’s trial for concealing child sex abuse.

Father Glen Walsh was a Hunter Valley priest and campaigner against child sex abuse within the Catholic Church.

He was due to appear as a prosecution witness later this month in Archbishop Wilson’s trial in New South Wales.

Archbishop Wilson is accused of concealing abuse committed by Hunter Valley paedophile priest Jim Fletcher in the 1970s.

He has denied the charges and is scheduled to face trial from November 27.

Father Walsh is being remembered as being one of the first to put the interests of abuse victims above those of his church as the magnitude of abuse emerged in recent years.

The NSW Coroner will hold an inquiry into his death but there are no suspicious circumstances and Father Walsh is believed to have taken his own life last Monday.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:18 AM

Ex-div school prof had history of sexual abuse

NEW HAVEN (CT)
Yale Daily News

November 13, 2017

By Britton O'Daly & Adelaide Feibel

Former Yale adjunct professor Jaime Lara, who taught at the Divinity School and the Institute for Sacred Music for over a decade, sexually abused minors when he served as a priest in the Catholic Church from 1973 until his removal in 1992, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn confirmed on Thursday.

In the 25 years since his removal from the church, which the diocese hid from the public until last week, Lara has become a renowned scholar of sacred art history, writing five books and winning prestigious awards and fellowships. He served as a professor of Christian art and architecture and chair of the program in religion and the arts at Yale from 1995 to 2009 and also taught at the University of Notre Dame and Columbia University. Since 2013, he has served as a research professor at Arizona State University in the Arizona Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies. After learning of Lara’s history of sexual abuse, Arizona State officials requested he resign, effective immediately, The Arizona Republic reported.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:56 AM

Ex-div school prof had history of sexual abuse

NEW HAVEN (CT)
Yale Daily News

November 13, 2017

By Britton O'Daly & Adelaide Feibel

Former Yale adjunct professor Jaime Lara, who taught at the Divinity School and the Institute for Sacred Music for over a decade, sexually abused minors when he served as a priest in the Catholic Church from 1973 until his removal in 1992, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn confirmed on Thursday.

In the 25 years since his removal from the church, which the diocese hid from the public until last week, Lara has become a renowned scholar of sacred art history, writing five books and winning prestigious awards and fellowships. He served as a professor of Christian art and architecture and chair of the program in religion and the arts at Yale from 1995 to 2009 and also taught at the University of Notre Dame and Columbia University. Since 2013, he has served as a research professor at Arizona State University in the Arizona Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies. After learning of Lara’s history of sexual abuse, Arizona State officials requested he resign, effective immediately, The Arizona Republic reported.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:56 AM

Diocese passes audit for safe environment

PORTLAND (ME)
Fiddlehead Focus

November 12, 2017

PORTLAND, Maine — An independent, on-site audit of safe environment procedures has found the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland in full compliance with the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People.

The on-site audit, which reviewed the period of July 1, 2016, to June 30, 2017, was conducted by StoneBridge Business Partners of Rochester, N.Y., said diocesan officials in a Nov. 8 press statement.

The Charter, which originated in 2002, calls for an effective response from the diocese to any report of sexual abuse by church personnel, background checks on all diocesan employees and volunteers who work regularly with minors, and other mandates for the protection of children.

Auditors found 100 percent of all diocesan employees and active clergy had had background checks. Auditors also reviewed the implementation of the Think First/Stay Safe Prevention Program for children in Catholic schools and religious education, and the implementation of the Protecting God’s Children Program for all those working and volunteering in the Diocese of Portland.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:53 AM

Priests given wallet-size help cards for handling abuse claims

IRELAND
The Irish Times

November 13, 2017

By Patsy McGarry

Bishops accused of ignoring church guidelines and denying priests’ rights

The Association of Catholic Priests (ACP) has issued a portable information card to assist priest’s faced with abuse allegations.

It was claimed at its annual meeting in Athlone last week that guidelines prepared for the handling of such cases by the church’s own child protection watchdog, its National Board for Safeguarding Children (NBSC), were not being followed by bishops and religious superiors.

The seven pointers on the information card, designed in a credit card size to fit handily in a wallet, “are in keeping with recommendations” by the NBSC, the ACP says.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:50 AM

Ex-teacher facing 99 sex abuse charges excused from court on account of his age

AUSTRALIA
The Age

November 13, 2017

By Amber Wilson

A former teacher and Catholic brother accused of 99 historical sex offences will be absent from a pre-trial committal hearing in Melbourne due to his age.

Lawrence Fitzpatrick, 90, appeared in the Melbourne Magistrates Court on Monday charged with abusing 18 victims, including children under 14, at Sale, Briagolong, Stratford and Rosedale between 1971 and 1977.

The court was told the Marist brother is unsteady on his feet, has recently fallen multiple times, suffers back pain, fatigue, confusion, and is hearing impaired.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:36 AM

November 12, 2017

Suspenden a sacerdote de Purén por denuncia de abuso sexual

CHILE
Biobiochile.cl

November 12, 2017

Publicado por Manuel Stuardo

La Información es de Carlos Martínez

[The bishop of the diocese of San José de Temuco, Héctor Vargas, has suspended a priest, Carlos Aedo Méndez, after receiving an allegation that Méndez sexually abused a minor 27 years ago.]

.Suspendido del ejercicio público como sacerdote, tras ser denunciado por el delito de abuso sexual, permanece el párroco de Purén.

La medida, asumida por el obispo de la Diócesis San José de Temuco, Héctor Vargas, deriva de una denuncia formal por abuso sexual que el 7 de octubre de este año fue recibida en la Vicaría Judicial del Obispado de Temuco.

Esta fue realizada por la persona afectada en contra del presbítero, Carlos Aedo Méndez, párroco de la Parroquia San Enrique de Purén, respecto de hechos ocurridos en Galvarino hace 27 años, cuando la presunta víctima era menor de edad.

Ahora, ante la denuncia acerca de esos mismos hechos, el obispo Vargas aplicó lo dispuesto por la Conferencia Episcopal de Chile, para este tipo de situaciones.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 10:10 PM

Assignment History– Rev. Chester John "Chet" Warren, o.s.f.s.

UNITED STATES
BishopAccountability.org

Summary of Case: Chester John "Chet Warren" was ordained for the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales in 1957. He was on staff at a boys' high school in Philadelphia until 1960, when he was assigned to his order's monastery in Toledo, Ohio. From 1963 to 1974 Warren was an assistant priest at Toledo's St. Pius X parish and school. In 1974 he was transferred to a Taylor, Michigan parish in the Archdiocese of Detroit, then was returned in 1978 to the Oblates' headquarters in Toledo. Warren resided during at least 1986-1992 at the St. Francis de Sales High School faculty house, while working as a chaplain at St. Vincent Medical Center.

In 1985 a young woman, Barbara Blaine, reported to the Oblates and later to the diocese that Warren had sexually abused her from the time she was a 13-year-old 7th-grader in 1969 at St. Pius X school, until she was a senior in high school. She said that the order told her that no one else had complained about Warren. In 1989 Blaine founded the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP). After she named Warren publicly in 1992, two women contacted her to say that they, too, had been sexually abused by the priest as girls; both said they reported the abuse to Warren's superiors in the early 1970s. By 2002 at least eight women had come forward with similar allegations. In 2003 a woman said she was abused by Warren as a preschooler in the context of ritual abuse involving a group of priests. In a 2005 press conference a nun stated that she was raped by Warren at age 6.

Warren was allowed to stay in ministry until 1992, just before he was named as a perpetrator by Barbara Blaine on national television. (Blaine had informed the Oblates that she was going to name him.) He was suspended, and later dismissed by his order. He was not laicized.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 9:59 PM

Activists want priest accused of sex abuse removed from church

NEW YORK (NY)
NY1 News

November 9, 2017

Attorneys are calling on Cardinal Dolan to remove a priest accused of sexually abusing two children in the Bronx.

Lawyers Helping Survivors of Child Sex Abuse held a press conference in Midtown Thursday asking Father Lawrence J. Quinn be removed from service at Our Lady Queen of Martyrs Church in Upper Manhattan.

He's accused of abusing children while assigned to Our Lady of Mercy in Fordham Heights between 1990 to 2001.

Attorneys for survivors of clergy sex abuse say the archdiocese needs to do more to protect children.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 3:32 PM

Priest who was to testify against archbishop has died

AUSTRALIA
Sunday Mail

November 11, 2017

By Andrew Dowdell

Catholic priest Glen Walsh who was to give evidence in Archbishop Philip Wilson’s trial has died

A Catholic priest has died weeks before he was scheduled to give evidence in Adelaide Archbishop Philip Wilson’s trial for concealing child sex abuse.

Father Glen Walsh was a Hunter Valley priest and campaigner against child sex abuse within the Catholic Church.

He was due to appear as a prosecution witness later this month in Archbishop Wilson’s trial in New South Wales.

Archbishop Wilson is accused of concealing abuse committed by Hunter Valley paedophile priest Jim Fletcher in the 1970s.

He has denied the charges and is scheduled to face trial from November 27.

Father Walsh is being remembered as being one of the first to put the interests of abuse victims above those of his church as the magnitude of abuse emerged in recent years.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 3:24 PM

Archbishop Martin accused of being ‘very negative’ about Church

IRELAND
Irish Times

November 12, 2017

By Patsy McGarry

‘No reconciliation’ with Dublin priests following his response to 2009 Murphy report

Archbishop Diarmuid Martin has been criticised for what a Dublin parish priest has called his negativity towards the Catholic Church in Ireland.

“It’s quite plain really,” said Fr Gregory O’Brien.

“He publishes statistics about 2 per cent (Sunday) Mass attendance when there are 1,000 people at Mass here and 1.2 million in the whole country. I don’t think it helps the morale of priests or people particularly”.

Fr O’Brien is parish priest at St Jude the Apostle in Willington, south Co Dublin. Archbishop Martin, he said, was “very negative, overly negative.”

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 3:16 PM

Child bride-related charges dropped against polygamist

UTAH
Salt Lake Tribune

November 11, 2017

By Nate Carlisle

Child bride-related charges dropped against polygamist; details of Mexico ranch killings emerge

Pennie Petersen says Orson William Black will be free within days unless sex-abuse charges are reinstated.

In this photo provided with a redaction by the law enforcement in the Mexican state of Chihuahua, Orson William Black, 56, stands while being detained Nov. 5, 2017. Black is a former member of the polygamous Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints who has been on the run from child sex abuse charges in Arizona since 2003. Courtesy Photo.

Arizona prosecutors eight months ago dropped charges against a polygamist who had allegedly married underage girls on the Utah line, said a woman who has been working for 14 years to bring the polygamist back from Mexico.

Following the slaying of three of his family members in Mexico, Orson William Black, 56, finally returned to the United States on Thursday and is being held at a detention center in El Paso, Texas. But the woman who has been pursuing him, Pennie Petersen, on Saturday said he’ll be free this time next week if the Arizona attorney general doesn’t reinstate the child sex-abuse charges.

“When he gets out of that jail cell in El Paso, if he thinks the heat is on him, he’s gone,” Petersen said in a phone interview.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 3:04 PM

Warren Jeffs' daughter speaks out about what she endured in his polygamist cult

UNITED STATES
Business Insider

November 11, 2017

By Michelle Mark

Rachel Jeffs, the daughter of polygamist cult leader Warren Jeffs, spoke out on "Megyn Kelly Today" about the sexual abuse she endured at her father's hands when she was a child.

Warren Jeffs is the self-described "prophet" of the FLDS Church, a Mormon fundamentalist cult that has been disavowed by mainstream Mormons.

He was convicted in 2011 of child sexual assault and is serving a life sentence, though he continues to control the church to this day.

Rachel Jeffs, who escaped the church in 2015, said her father began sexually abusing her when she was eight years old.

The daughter of the polygamist cult leader Warren Jeffs spoke out on "Megyn Kelly Today" about her upbringing as a member of the FLDS Church and the sexual abuse she suffered at the hands of her father when she was a child.

Rachel Jeffs, who also details the abuse in an upcoming book titled "Breaking Free," told Kelly in an interview that aired Friday that her father abused her "way more times than I can count," starting with an incident that occurred when she was eight years old.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 2:47 PM

I have a confession - the Catholic Church’s sins

IRELAND
Irish Central

November 12, 2017

By Cormac MacConnell

"We laity in the past placed ye on a pedestal that was far too high and uncomfortable for any mortal men."

By the time ye are reading this I will possibly be roasting eternally already in the hottest corner of hell for having dreadfully broken the centuries-old sacred tradition of the Seal of Confession of the Catholic Church.

Mighty priests and saints were burned at the stake in the past for refusing to break that seal, so this is a heavy moment indeed for all of us. Maybe ye should stop reading here at this point to not become even laterally complicit in MacConnell’s. Those of you who are devoutly Catholic should take this suggestion seriously.

Anyway, for those of you still here, the context is that I also was devoutly Catholic and a regular Mass-goer until about 25 years ago when the frightening tide of scandals attached to my church began to surface in turgid waves.

It was a shock here in holy Ireland, for example, when it was revealed that both Bishop Eamon Casey and Father Michael Cleary, the hierarchy’s brightest stars of the time, were biological fathers as well as priests sworn to celibacy. They were both good and charming men and that was a minor enough matter on the scale of things.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 10:46 AM

Arizona professor quits in wake of clergy sex abuse scandal

PHOENIX (AZ)
Associated Press via KVOA-TV

November 11, 2017

A research professor at Arizona State University has resigned after the Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn made public this week details about his removal from the priesthood years ago over cases of clergy sex abuse involving minors.

University officials requested that Jaime Lara resign after they learned of his history as a priest. His resignation was tendered Thursday, The Arizona Republic reported .

Lara could not be reached for comment Friday.

He was ordained in 1973 and was in active ministry until 1992 when he was removed from the priesthood by the Vatican. The information was posted Wednesday on the diocese website along with the names of other former clerics who had been defrocked.

It was between 1979 and 1981 that Lara is accused of sexually abusing three children ranging in age from 9 to 11 years old at St. Francis Xavier Church in Brooklyn, New York, according to the victims’ attorney, Mitchell Garabedian.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 10:43 AM

Embattled San Jose Catholic girls school places two teachers on leave

SAN JOSE (CA)
San Jose Mercury News

By Ethan Baron

November 11, 2017

Move comes the same week former Presentation High graduate publishes essay alleging she was sexually molested by now-deceased instructor

Two teachers were put on forced leave Friday at a Catholic girls high school that was already reeling from a high-profile claim that school officials kept a teacher on staff after he molested two students in 1990.

The Presentation High School teachers were placed on paid administrative leave after two students and a former student came forward earlier in the week with information regarding two separate, more recent situations — at least one of which was serious enough to warrant a call to police.

The statements to the school from the students and former student came three weeks after the Washington Post published an essay by Presentation High graduate Kathryn Leehane describing her frustration after she reported to school officials and police that a teacher had sexually molested her and another female student in 1990. The teacher, who was not named, remained at the school but has since died.

“Eventually, I lost hope for justice,” Leehane wrote.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 10:20 AM

A day in the life of Guam's archbishop

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

November 12, 2017

By Haidee V Eugenio

A more in-depth look into the life of Archbishop Michael Byrnes from his interview with Pacific Daily News reporter Haidee Eugenio on Oct. 27, 2017.

A year since stepping into a fractured community of faith, Archbishop Michael Jude Byrnes continues to work on bringing people back to church pews with stronger faith than they had before.

There’s still brokenness but everything can be overcome, he said.

“I think we’ve begun,” Byrnes said about fixing that brokenness of the soul, given the betrayal of trust by spiritual leaders, based on more than 140 clergy sex abuse lawsuits filed against priests and others associated with the Catholic Church.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 10:05 AM

November 11, 2017

Op-Ed: Roy Moore's alleged pursuit of a young girl is the symptom of a larger problem in evangelical circles

UNITED STATES
The Los Angeles Times

November 10, 2017

By Kathryn Brightbill

We need to talk about the segment of American culture that probably doesn’t think the allegations against Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore are particularly damning, the segment that will blanch at only two accusations in the Washington Post expose: He pursued a 14-year-old-girl without first getting her parents’ permission, and he initiated sexual contact outside of marriage. That segment is evangelicalism. In that world, which Moore travels in and I grew up in, 14-year-old girls courting adult men isn’t uncommon.

I use the phrase “14-year-old girls courting adult men,” rather than “adult men courting 14-year-old girls,” for a reason: Evangelicals routinely frame these relationships in those terms. That’s how I was introduced to these relationships as a home-schooled teenager in the 1990s, and it’s the language that my friends and I would use to discuss girls we knew who were in parent-sanctioned relationships with older men.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 6:13 PM

The Swine of Conservatism

UNITED STATES
The New York Times

November 11, 2017

By Ross Douthat

Lately we have been given an extended education in the different varieties of liberal pigs.

There’s the industrial-scale predator who buys indulgences from Planned Parenthood. And the male feminist who respects women so very much — especially when they’re too drunk to resist him. And the Great Man of Letters creeping on his co-workers. And the let-it-all-hang-out artist who thinks it can’t be assault if the only person you’re touching is yourself.

But this week our era of exposure has reminded us that cultural conservatism has its own distinctive swine.

So while we wait to see what becomes of Alabama Senate candidate and professional Christian Roy Moore, who is credibly alleged to have spent his thirties pursuing high school girls with the “I get older, they stay the same age” gusto of Matthew McConaughey’s character in “Dazed and Confused,” it’s worth doing a quick typology of the predators that flourish among the godly and moralistic and traditional.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 5:59 PM

ASU professor resigns amid Catholic Church child sexual-abuse scandal

ARIZONA
The Arizona Republic

By Jason Pohl

November 10, 2017

A renowned professor of medieval art history at Arizona State University was forced to resign Thursday after the Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn announced he had sexually abused minors decades ago while he was an East Coast priest.

Professor Jaime Lara was ordained in 1973 and was in active ministry until 1992 when he was laicized by the Vatican for sexually abusing children, the Diocese of Brooklyn confirmed Wednesday on its website.

Upon learning of his history as a priest, ASU officials on Thursday requested he resign from his role as a research professor from the university's Tempe campus, school officials confirmed to The Arizona Republic.

His resignation was tendered that same day and effective immediately.

The laicization, which prohibits Lara from carrying out priestly duties, was handed down by a decree from the Vatican office "authorized to deal with cases involving sexual abuse of minors by a cleric,'' the Diocese said.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 5:51 PM

Victim claims abuse on Manchester United trip

UNITED KINGDOM
BBC

November 10, 2017

By Reevel Alderson

A 61-year-old man from Glasgow has told the BBC he was sexually abused on a football trip to Manchester United in the late 1960s.

James, who wants to keep his anonymity, believes he was "trafficked" to English football clubs by the Marist Brothers, a Catholic order which ran his school.

He said he was repeatedly abused by the brothers at his primary school.

In a statement, Manchester United said it had found no information relating to the Marist Brothers in its review.

The Old Trafford club looked into historical abuse as part of the English FA's inquiry, led by barrister Clive Sheldon QC.

It is looking at the way clubs or the FA dealt with concerns over child sex abuse between 1970 and 2005.

However, James said he thought his abuse happened on a trip in 1969, when he was 12 or 13.
Initiation ceremony

The UK's National Crime Agency told the BBC it had concluded James was a victim of "modern slavery".

It is unusual for the agency to investigate such historical allegations.

James told the BBC he was in a group of "elite" young footballers who were selected by his school to take part in a tournament in Manchester.

The boys were taken to Old Trafford and the club's training ground, where they played matches and toured the stadium, the boot room and directors' offices.

James said he had visions of becoming a Manchester United player like his heroes George Best and Bobby Charlton but he said he was taken from the hostel where the boys were staying and sexually abused.

He said he did not know who abused him but he was taken outside as part of an "initiation ceremony".

"It was non-consensual sex," he said.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 5:39 PM

November 10, 2017

Assignment Record - Rev. Adam F. Prochaski

BROOKLYN (NY)
BishopAccountability.org

November 11, 2017

Summary of Case: Adam F. Prochaski was a priest of the Diocese of Brooklyn ordained in 1968. He spent his entire career at Holy Cross parish and school in Maspeth, Queens, which was established by and served the Polish community. Prochaski was an assistant priest unitl 1989, when he was named pastor. Prochaski left the parish in 1994 and, through 2002, was indexed in the Official Catholic Directory as "Absent on Leave" or "Absent on Sick Leave."

In September 2017 a former Holy Cross teacher, Linda Porcaro, stated publicly that in 1990 seven of her female students told her that Prochaski was sexually abusing them. Porcaro said she reported this to the school principal, whose response was to laugh and say that "everyone knew about Father P." Porcaro said she later told a new principal, who reported the allegations to the diocese, but that "not much was done." The diocese claimed that it first received allegations against Prochaski in 1994 and that he left the priesthood soon thereafter. The diocese denied responsibility for Prochaski after 1994, despite his having been indexed in the Directories through 2002.

By October 2017, twenty-three women had come forward with allegations that Prochaski sexually abused them when they were students at Holy Cross. The abuse allegedly occurred between 1972 and 1994, and was of girls ages 5 to 16. Many of the girls were Polish immigrants, brought to the U.S. via a special program run by Prochaski. Porcaro said that she had heard from "hundreds" of former students who said that the priest had abused them.

Prochaski reportedly went on to marry and to work as an addictions counselor.

The New York Police Department initiated an investigation. The statute of limitations for child sexual abuse in New York state prevents criminal or civil litigation after the alleged victim reaches age 23, with the exception of rape.

Ordained: 1968

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:50 PM

Rachel Jeffs, daughter of Warren Jeffs, describes abuse she endured in FLDS church

UNITED STATES
The Spectrum

November 10, 2017

By Emily Havens

For the first time, Rachel Jeffs appeared on national television to discuss what her life was like as the daughter of Warren Jeffs, the former FLDS prophet.

Rachel Jeffs' story will be shared on NBC's "Dateline" on Friday night. On Friday morning, Rachel Jeffs appeared on "Megyn Kelly TODAY" to answer questions about life inside the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, what it was like being a sister wife, and the abuse she endured from her own father when she was a child.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:45 PM

Brooklyn Diocese: ASU professor sexually abused children as a priest years ago

ARIZONA
The State Press

November 10, 2017

By Reilly Kneedler

The University asked for Lara's resignation Thursday and he is no longer with ASU

ASU research professor James "Jaime" Lara had his priesthood revoked by the Vatican in 1992 for sexually abusing children, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn said in a statement Thursday.

The University asked for his resignation Thursday in light of the announcement, according to an ASU official. Lara agreed to resign and is no longer associated with the University, according to a University statement.

“Jaime Lara is no longer affiliated with Arizona State University, effective Thursday,” the statement read.

The ASU official said the University found out about Lara’s history with the clergy when the diocese announced it on its website Thursday.

“We found out when the diocese posted it and somebody walked over to his office and said ‘You need to resign or we’re going to fire you,’” the official said. “And he said ‘OK, I’ll resign.’”

Lara did not respond to requests for comment.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:40 PM

Kansas priest removed from parish after hiking trip with children

WICHITA (KS)
The Wichita Eagle

November 10, 2017

By Stan Finger and Katherine Burgess

A Catholic priest has been removed from the pulpit after taking a hiking trip with parish children and no other adults.

The Rev. Andrew Seiler was removed from ministry at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Conway Springs last month after an Oct. 9 hiking trip, according to a letter from the diocese sent to parishioners Thursday and provided to The Eagle.

The letter said there were no allegations of abuse against Seiler and that “no harm was done to the children.” Being alone with a minor goes against behavioral boundaries set by the diocese.

A statement announcing Seiler’s leave was read at each of the Masses at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Conway Springs on the weekend of Oct. 14-15, and Seiler has not returned to the pulpit.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:10 PM

OPINION: Proposed archdiocese act a recipe for abuse

CANADA
The Chronicle Herald

November 10, 2017

By Tom Urbaniak

Last month, Bill 30 was introduced in the Nova Scotia House of Assembly. It was unanimously given second reading by MLAs after less than a minute of debate. This new Archdiocese of Halifax-Yarmouth Act is still before the standing committee on local and private bills, where it was rightly deferred for more consideration.

The implications are anything but local or private.

This proposed law would grant to Roman Catholic Archbishop Anthony Mancini regulatory powers that are currently held only by officials of the government. He would become, in effect, his own registrar of joint stock companies, with the unilateral power to create, dissolve, modify and completely control dozens of civil corporations.

The new act would also allow him to use provincial law, not just church law, to require parishes to “work collaboratively” with him on all matters.

I am a practising Catholic in the neighbouring Diocese of Antigonish. Our diocese, like so many others, was ravaged by sexual abuse of children by some priests. For decades, bishops covered up those crimes and transferred sexual predators from one unsuspecting parish to another.

This continued because the bishops claimed to have personal control over all personnel, accounts and property in the diocese. When finally faced with civil liability, they took money and property from the parishes, but kept the old, secretive structures going.

The parishes could not vet these priests or supervise them in any way. The bishop himself was answerable to no council and accounted to no lay people. There was no transparency.

In 2009, the then bishop, Raymond Lahey, was arrested in turn. He was eventually convicted and jailed for the possession of child pornography.

Mancini should be aware that the scandals were enabled by a system of no oversight or accountability. But now, he has asked the Nova Scotia House of Assembly to enshrine and protect that very sick system in the laws of the province.

MLAs should respectfully decline. They should allow the future parish corporations to have the same rights and responsibilities in law as any other corporations or societies in Nova Scotia. Their own bylaws could still reflect their Catholic identity and membership in the archdiocese.

On the surface, Bill 30 might appear to protect parishes by giving them their own civil incorporation to shield their assets in the event of crimes by the bishop and his priests in other parishes.

But this bill actually further disenfranchises parishioners and makes it virtually impossible for parishes to guard themselves against abuses.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:07 PM

The Bristlecone Project expected to help survivors come forward

NEW ZEALAND
Stuff

November 3, 2017

By Oliver Lewis

[Note: The Bristlecone Project exhibition runs from Monday, November 6 to April 1, 2018, at Canterbury Museum.]

An installation telling the stories of male survivors of sexual abuse is expected to help other men open up about their own trauma.

The Bristlecone Project exhibition, featuring black-and-white photographs of 24 New Zealand men abused in childhood, opens at Canterbury Museum on Monday.

"People have been trying to hide this for so long, and now it's going to be in the public's face," said Ken Clearwater, manager of the Male Survivors of Sexual Abuse Trust.

"We're taking the lid off a can of worms and throwing the lid away. We've been carrying this shame and guilt for so long, it's time people understand the damage it does."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:02 PM

Manhattan Priest Accused Of Abusing Two Boys In The 1990s

MANHATTAN (NY)
CBS (WCBS 880)

November 9, 2017

By Alex Silverman

NEW YORK (WCBS 880) — Two men are accusing an active upper Manhattan priest of abusing them decades ago, and calling on the archdiocese to keep him away from children.

Minnesota-based attorneys Patrick Noaker and Jessica Arbour who work for the group Lawyers Helping Survivors of Child Sex Abuse, say their clients, whom they did not name, filed claims with the archdiocese’s victim compensation program in September and October. They claim Fr. Lawrence Quinn abused them when he was assigned to a parish in the Bronx throughout the 1990s.

“One boy was an altar boy at Our Lady of Mercy, and the other was trying to become an altar boy,” Noaker said. One of the accusers was 5 years old when the alleged abuse began; the other was 12.

Quinn is now assigned to Our Lady Queen of Martyrs in Inwood, which has an elementary school on the property.

“The archdiocese has done nothing to inform these parishioners that there may be a lone wolf in their midst,” Arbour said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:33 PM

Circle of Accusers Expands in Sexual Misconduct Investigation at Presentation High

SAN JOSE (CA)
NBC

November 9, 2017

By Vicky Nguyen and Michael Bott

The group of teachers and staff accused of sexually assaulting or harassing students at a Catholic high school for girls in San Jose is growing after an explosive essay published in the Washington Post last month described the sexual assault of two students by a former Spanish teacher nearly three decades ago.

Since Presentation High School graduate Kathryn Leehane published that essay, NBC Bay Area’s Investigative Unit has learned of accusations against several other teachers or staff members, including at least one that’s still employed at the school.

Several sources who spoke with NBC Bay Area also described reporting incidents of sexual misconduct they witnessed or learned of to school Principal Mary Miller, but they question whether those incidents were ever reported to authorities.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:30 PM

Raisman says she is victim of MSU doctor Nassar

UNITED STATES
The Detroit News

November 10, 2017

By Charles E. Ramirez

Six-time Olympic medal-winning gymnast Aly Raisman said she is also a victim of Larry Nassar, the former Michigan State University doctor accused of sexually assaulting more than 100 girls.

Raisman confirmed the abuse to TV news magazine "60 Minutes," which will broadcast the interview set to air Sunday, according to USA Today. The three-time gold medalist and captain of the 2012 and 2016 Olympic teams also describes it in her book, "Fierce," which will be released next week.

“I am angry. I'm really upset,” Raisman told "60 Minutes." “I see these young girls that come up to me, and they ask for pictures or autographs, whatever it is … I just want to create change so that they never, ever have to go through this.”

Her disclosure of the attack comes about a month after her teammate on the so-called "Fierce Five" gymnastics team, Olympic gold medalist McKayla Maroney she was sexually assaulted by Nassar when she was young.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:28 PM

Olympic gold medalist Aly Raisman says she was abused by Larry Nassar

UNITED STATES
ESPN

November 10, 2017

John Barr/The Associated Press

Aly Raisman, a six-time Olympic medalist and two-time national team captain, said she was sexually abused by former Michigan State and USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar, according to CBS' "60 Minutes."

Nassar already faces 22 counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct and could receive a sentence of life in prison.

Raisman told "60 Minutes," in an interview scheduled to air Sunday, that she spoke to FBI investigators after serving as national team captain at the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro. In the interview, Raisman said she didn't know why it took so long for allegations against Nassar to come forward.

"Why are we looking at why didn't the girls speak up? Why not look at what about the culture?" she said. "What did USA Gymnastics do, and Larry Nassar do, to manipulate these girls so much that they are so afraid to speak up?"

Now 23, Raisman told "60 Minutes" that she started seeing Nassar when she was 15. She details the abuse in her book "Fierce," which will be released on Nov. 14.

USA Gymnastics said in a statement Friday that Raisman sharing her personal experience took "great courage" and it is "appalled by the conduct of which Larry Nassar is accused."

Raisman, who was also captain of the team for the 2012 Games in London, is the second member of the "Fierce Five" U.S. women's gymnastics team -- and third Olympian overall -- to allege abuses by Nassar. Just last month, Raisman offered her support to McKayla Maroney after she alleged abuse by Nassar dating back to 2009, when she was just 13.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:24 PM

Olympic gold medalist Aly Raisman says she was abused by Larry Nassar

UNITED STATES
ESPN

November 10, 2017

John Barr/The Associated Press

Aly Raisman, a six-time Olympic medalist and two-time national team captain, said she was sexually abused by former Michigan State and USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar, according to CBS' "60 Minutes."

Nassar already faces 22 counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct and could receive a sentence of life in prison.

Raisman told "60 Minutes," in an interview scheduled to air Sunday, that she spoke to FBI investigators after serving as national team captain at the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro. In the interview, Raisman said she didn't know why it took so long for allegations against Nassar to come forward.

"Why are we looking at why didn't the girls speak up? Why not look at what about the culture?" she said. "What did USA Gymnastics do, and Larry Nassar do, to manipulate these girls so much that they are so afraid to speak up?"

Now 23, Raisman told "60 Minutes" that she started seeing Nassar when she was 15. She details the abuse in her book "Fierce," which will be released on Nov. 14.

USA Gymnastics said in a statement Friday that Raisman sharing her personal experience took "great courage" and it is "appalled by the conduct of which Larry Nassar is accused."

Raisman, who was also captain of the team for the 2012 Games in London, is the second member of the "Fierce Five" U.S. women's gymnastics team -- and third Olympian overall -- to allege abuses by Nassar. Just last month, Raisman offered her support to McKayla Maroney after she alleged abuse by Nassar dating back to 2009, when she was just 13.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:24 PM

Aly Raisman says she was sexually abused by U.S. national team doctor

UNITED STATES
CBS News

November 10, 2017

In an interview with 60 Minutes, the Olympic gold medalist says she spoke with FBI investigators after the Rio games

One of America's biggest Olympic stars has come forward to accuse the former U.S. women's gymnastics team doctor of sexual abuse. Aly Raisman, who won six medals, three of them gold, for the U.S. at the last two Olympic Summer Games, says she was sexually abused by Dr. Larry Nassar. Raisman tells her story to Dr. Jon LaPook for a 60 Minutes report to be broadcast Sunday, Nov. 12 at 7:00 p.m. ET/PT.

Raisman, 23, says she was first treated by Dr. Nassar when she was 15. She talks about her experiences in a new book called "Fierce." It's the story of a girl who dreamed of going to the Olympics, and how she realized her goal, but it also includes new insights into a scandal that goes to the highest level of Raisman's sport.

Dr. Nassar, who worked with the U.S. women's national gymnastics teams for more than two decades, is now in jail. He pleaded guilty to child pornography charges but not guilty to charges of sexual assault. More than 130 women, many of them former athletes, have filed civil lawsuits alleging that Nassar sexually abused them under the guise of treating them for hip, back, and other athletic injuries. Raisman tells 60 Minutes that after the Rio Olympics she spoke to FBI investigators about Dr. Nassar.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:28 PM

Inwood Priest Sexually Assaulted Children At Bronx Parish: Lawyer

INWOOD (NY)
Washington Heights Patch

November 9, 2017

By Brendan Krisel

A priest at Our Lady of Martyrs Church in Inwood allegedly molested two boys while serving at a parish in the Bronx.

INWOOD, NY — A catholic priest accused of molesting two boys at a Bronx church is now stationed at an Inwood parish, lawyers told Patch Thursday.

Two men have accused Lawrence Quinn of molesting them at Our Lady of Mercy Church in the Bronx, but the priest still serves the New York Archdiocese as a Parochial Vicar at Our Lady Queen of Martyrs Church in Inwood on Arden Street, the accusers' lawyer Patrick Noaker told Patch.

Quinn preyed on his first victim when he served as an altar boy at the Bronx church between 1990 and 1996, Noaker told Patch. The boy was between 5- and 11-years-old at the time of the abuse, the lawyer said. The second victim was between 12- and 14-years-old when Quinn molested him between 1999 and 2001, Noaker said. The boy was training to become an altar boy at the time of the assault, the lawyer told Patch.

Both men have filed claims against Quinn with the New York Archdiocese through its Independent Reconciliation and Compensation Program, but Quinn continues to serve the church to this day, Noaker told Patch.

"Protecting kids must be our first priority," Noaker said during a press conference in front of the archdiocese Manhattan headquarters Thursday. "It is extremely troubling that Father Lawrence Quinn is still serving in a parish after two survivors have come forward and alerted the Church with reports of his abuse."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:22 PM

Victim claims abuse on Manchester United trip

GLASGOW (SCOTLAND)
BBC Scotland

November 10, 2017

By Reevel Alderson

A 61-year-old man from Glasgow has told the BBC he was sexually abused on a football trip to Manchester United in the late 1960s.

James, who wants to keep his anonymity, believes he was "trafficked" to English football clubs by the Marist Brothers, a Catholic order which ran his school.

He said he was repeatedly abused by the brothers at his primary school.

In a statement, Manchester United said it had found no information relating to the Marist Brothers in its review.

The Old Trafford club looked into historical abuse as part of the English FA's inquiry, led by barrister Clive Sheldon QC.

It is looking at the way clubs or the FA dealt with concerns over child sex abuse between 1970 and 2005.

However, James said he thought his abuse happened on a trip in 1969, when he was 12 or 13.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:19 PM

Abuse allegation reported against retired priest

ST. LOUIS (MO)
St. Louis Review

November 09, 2017

The Archdiocese of St. Louis has received an allegation of sexual abuse of a minor against Father Dennis B. Zacheis. The acts are alleged to have occurred while he was an associate pastor at St. Margaret Mary Alacoque Parish in Mehlville from 1975 to 1979. Father Zacheis denies the allegation.

Archbishop Robert J. Carlson, in consultation with the Review Board of the archdiocese, made the allegation known for the sake of openness and transparency.

Father Zacheis retired from ministry without priestly faculties in 2010 due to alleged irregularities in finances for which he was responsible as pastor of St. Anthony in Sullivan. He currently resides in a private residence.

Father Zacheis served as associate pastor at St. Mary Magdalen Parish in south St. Louis from 1979-85, Christ, Prince of Peace in Manchester from 1985-88 and St. Matthias in Lemay from 1988-92. He was pastor of St. Gertrude Parish in Krakow from 1994-2003, St. Alban Roe in Wildwood from 2003-04 and St. Anthony in Sullivan from 2005-09.

As pastor of the parish in Sullivan, Father Zacheis also was known for a large number of new Catholics joining the faith in a town that is largely nonCatholic.

Anyone with reports of abuse of a minor involving a member of the clergy or other church personnel to contact Sandra Price, executive director of the Office of Child and Youth Protection, at (314) 792-7271, the Missouri Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline at (800) 392-3738 and/or law enforcement officials.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:17 PM

N.B. woman sues priest, Anglican church for damages over assaults

CANADA
Anglican Journal

November 9, 2017

By Joelle Kidd

A woman who claims a priest in the diocese of Fredericton tried to kill her is suing him, the Anglican Church of Canada, the diocese of Fredericton, and the Corporation of the Anglican Parish of St. Stephen (Christ Church Anglican), in St. Stephen, N.B.

Cynthia Mae Moore claims that she and the Rev. William Morton, who was rector at the Anglican Parish of St. Stephen, carried on an extra-marital affair between February 2012 and December 2015.

She alleges that on Nov. 24, 2015, while she was visiting Morton at his house, he threatened to skin her alive and scrape her breasts with a box cutter, according to a statement of claim filed with the Court of Queen’s Bench in Saint John, N.B., October 2.

After she left, Moore alleges that Morton came to her house and attempted to kill her. “He succeeded in cutting her breasts and abdomen with a box cutter,” the statement of claim reads.

Moore alleges that on December 8, 2015, Morton attacked her again and “attempted to kill her with a knife to her throat.”

According to the CBC, that same day, Morton was arrested and charged with two counts of assault with a weapon after “the St. Stephen RCMP received a 911 call about a disturbance involving a man and a woman, shortly before 1 a.m.” Morton, who pleaded not guilty to the charges, was ordered to undergo a 30-day psychiatric assessment. He later changed his pleas to guilty of both offences on August 23, 2016.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:54 AM

Lawsuit: Priest made boys walk from Agana to Mangilao for refusing to swim naked

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

November 10, 2017

By Haidee V Eugenio

Father Louis Brouillard, around 1964, allegedly made young boys walk from Agana Springs to Mangilao after they refused to swim naked, and subjected them to repeated sexual abuse at the Mangilao parish, according to a lawsuit filed Thursday in federal court.

A plaintiff, identified only as B.F. in court documents to protect his privacy, filed a $10 million clergy sex abuse lawsuit against the Archdiocese of Agana, the Boy Scouts of America, Brouillard and scout leader Edward Pereira, along with up to 50 others.

B.F., represented by attorney David Lujan, said he was about 10 to 11 years old when Brouillard, also a scout master, and Pereira, sexually abused and molested him.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:51 AM

New book alleges gay sex in Vatican dorm, shady banking involving Mother Teresa

ROME
The Associated Press

November 10, 2017

By Nicole Winfield

Gianluigi Nuzzi, one of the journalists charged by the Vatican in 2015 in the Vatileaks II case, has written a new book covering scandals in the Vatican. He alleges sexual abuse of a minor took place at a seminary within Vatican City, and that Mother Teresa's account at the Vatican Bank was so large, the institution would have defaulted if she removed the money.

ROME - The Italian journalist who was put on trial by the Vatican for publishing confidential documents has written a new book alleging a host of Catholic sins, including gay sex in the Vatican’s youth seminary.

Gianluigi Nuzzi’s Original Sin went on sale Thursday. At a news conference, Nuzzi said his lawyers had hand-delivered a copy to the Vatican’s criminal prosecutor, saying at least one of the seminarians was a minor at the time of the alleged escapades.

The Vatican didn’t immediately comment.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:48 AM

Vatican turned blind eye to sex abuse in teenage dorm, claims new book

ROME
International Business Times

November 10, 2017

By Isabelle Gerretsen

Pope Francis is facing mounting pressure to crack down on clerical sex abuse.

A new book contains bombshell allegations that priests sexually abused teenage boys at a youth seminary in the Vatican, claiming reports of abuse were stifled.

Original Sin, Italian journalist Gianluigi Nuzzi's latest book, includes the shocking claim that a man, who recently became a priest, sexually assaulted a 17-year-old boy in 2012.

The abuse reportedly took place at the Vatican's St. Pius X pre-seminary for middle- and high-schoolers, where many Catholic students are trained to become priests.

Kamil Tadeusz Jazembowski, the victim's roommate, told Nuzzi that the adult seminarian repeatedly visited their bedroom, where he had oral sex with the boy.

Jazembowski said his roommate "felt obliged to go along with it", describing the abuser as a man who exercised "a form of power and intimidation" over the students and imposed "bullying or sexual acts" on them.

When he raised his concerns with Vatican authorities, Jazembowski says he was told to leave the residence. The book reproduces a letter written by the Vatican's Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith to the ex-seminarian in 2014, which states that no sexual abuse of a minor had taken place and that the matter would be handed over to the Vatican's office for clergy.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:42 AM

My best mate at uni had a terrible secret. I only found out 30 years later

AUSTRALIA
Canberra Times

November 11, 2017

By Mark Dapin

Discovering his best mate from university was sexually abused as a child sends Mark Dapin on a quest for understanding.

I was drinking in a raucous, shallow bar at the Sydney Writers' Festival with my UK publisher, Ravi Mirchandani, when Ravi told me he planned to publish a memoir by an author from the northern English town of Accrington, Lancashire.

I felt slightly nauseous. My forearms goose-pimpled.

"Is it Graham?" I asked. Twice.

"Yes …" said Ravi, carefully.

"Am I in it?" I asked. Twice.

"No," said Ravi. "Is anyone with my name in it? Anyone who sounds like me?"

Ravi shook his head. I truly, deeply, viscerally did not want to be in Graham's book.

"I think I should tell you what it's about," said Ravi.

"It's the story of how Graham was sexually abused by his headmaster at school."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:40 AM

Call It What It Is: Child Sexual Abuse

UNITED STATES
Huffington Post

November 10, 2017

By Vicki Tidwell Palmer, LCSW

The recent allegations about a 1979 incident involving then 32-year old Alabama Assistant District Attorney Roy Moore illustrate, once again, that we are woefully misinformed and misguided about the reality of childhood sexual abuse and assault.

When an adult—whether a teacher, clergy member, coach, or in this case a prosecutor in a courthouse—initiates a sexual conversation or has sexual contact with a minor child, the incident is child sexual abuse, period.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:37 AM

Brooklyn Diocese Names 8 Priests Who Sexually Abused Children

BROOKLYN (NY)
The New York Times

November 9, 2017

By Sharon Otterman

Over the past 25 years, a university professor named Jaime Lara built an illustrious career in the academic world of sacred art history. He was a professor at Yale University for more than a decade, wrote five books and won more than a dozen prestigious awards and fellowships. Since 2013, he has been a professor of medieval and renaissance studies at Arizona State University.

But through his rise, Mr. Lara has kept a secret. On Thursday, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn revealed that 25 years ago, Mr. Lara, then known as the Rev. James Lara, was laicized by the Vatican for sexually abusing children.

The Brooklyn diocese hid Father Lara’s secret from the public, but quietly posted Mr. Lara’s name on its website on Thursday morning, confirming that he had been laicized, or defrocked, for the abuse. Later in the day, the diocese posted the names of seven more former priests who were defrocked for child sexual abuse offenses, in an effort to protect children who might come into contact with them.

The public posting was meant to partly answer victims and their advocates who have pleaded for decades for the publication of all of the names of priests credibly accused or defrocked for child sexual abuse, to prevent the abuse of additional children. About 15 dioceses around the country have published partial lists.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:46 AM

November 9, 2017

Ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses Are Crashing Kingdom Hall Meetings to Talk About Abuse

UNITED STATES
Patheos

November 9, 2017

By Hemant Mehta

Last year, an Australian commission found that the Jehovah’s Witnesses were turning a blind eye to serious problems within their ranks. The Royal Commission’s report said kids were not “adequately protected from the risk of sexual abuse” in the organization.

And just last month, in Canada, a $66 million class action lawsuit was filed against the Witnesses by victims who said the religious group not only failed to prevent abuse but didn’t do much even after it was reported.

Part of the problem is the Watchtower Society’s own policies, like the “Two-Witness rule,” which says church elders shouldn’t take seriously a victim’s account of abuse unless another person witnessed it… even though the only other person around may have been the abuser himself.

In many cases, the accused abusers aren’t disciplined in any meaningful way. Sometimes they remain in the organization, giving them an opportunity to strike again. It’s all too similar to the problems that have long plagued the Catholic Church.

You would think that members of the Jehovah’s Witnesses would be appalled by all this. That they would demand reforms from the inside. That at least some people would leave the religion in protest.

But, unlike the Catholic Church, Jehovah’s Witnesses really live in a bubble where they’re insulated from outside criticism. They’re taught to avoid critics. They’re told that ex-Witnesses are notoriously litigious. The policy of disfellowshipping says Witnesses shouldn’t have any interactions with ex-Witnesses, even if they’re family members.

That makes it very hard to let members know about the awful things being done by the Watchtower Society, what critics are saying about them, and why. It’s not like their church elders are going to talk about it. And like Donald Trump writing off all criticism of him as “fake news,” Witnesses are likely to think any lawsuits against their church are being filed by “enemies” trying to persecute them.

The problem isn’t that no one is telling them the truth. The problem is that Witnesses are predisposed not to listen to the critics.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:38 PM

New book alleges gay sex in Vatican dorm, shady banking

ROME
My Dayton Daily News

November 09, 2017

The Italian journalist who was put on trial by the Vatican for publishing confidential documents has written a new book alleging a host of Catholic sins, including gay sex in the Vatican's youth seminary.

Gianluigi Nuzzi's "Original Sin" went on sale Thursday. At a news conference, Nuzzi said his lawyers had hand-delivered a copy to the Vatican's criminal prosecutor, saying at least one of the seminarians was a minor at the time of the alleged escapades.

The Vatican didn't immediately comment.

The book reproduces documents from the Vatican's scandal-marred bank, showing multi-million-dollar accounts in the names of Popes Paul VI and John Paul II and their private secretaries. And it alleges that hidden powers in the Vatican were blocking the reforms of Pope Francis and his predecessor, Benedict XVI.

The book delves into the case of one of the Vatican's biggest mysteries, the 1983 disappearance of Emanuela Orlandi, the 15-year-old daughter of a Vatican employee.

And it gathers together years of exposes into the gay subculture of the Vatican. The new claims concern the Vatican's St. Pius X pre-seminary for middle and high schoolers who are considering a possible vocation to the priesthood.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:35 PM

Revered South Bay monsignor accused of covering up sex abuse

REDONDO BEACH (CA)
The Beach Reporter

November 9, 2017

By David Rosenfeld

For 22 years, until 2003, Monsignor Michael Lenihan led the congregation at St. Lawrence Martyr Catholic Church in South Redondo Beach where he continued to live until his death in 2011. By most accounts the Irish-born Lenihan was a revered spiritual leader.

Now, an attorney handling a child sex abuse case against former St. Lawrence priest Chris Cunningham claims Lenihan knew the priest was accused of sexual assault before Cunningham arrived at the Redondo Beach parish in 1998. The lawyer also said he has a witness prepared to testify that Lenihan was notified about the incident involving a child at St. Lawrence school before Cunningham was transferred to another parish in 2001 where he allegedly continued to molest young boys.

The St. Lawrence alleged victim was recently added to a 2015 case against Cunningham and the Archdiocese of Los Angeles for molestation reportedly committed at St. Louise de Marillac in Covina. That was Cunningham's next post after the Redondo Beach parish.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:33 PM

Vatileaks author on 'choirboy abuse'

ROME
ANSA

November 9, 2017

Alleges multiple cases at San Pio X preseminary

(ANSA) - Rome, November 9 - Vatileaks author Gianluigi Nuzzi has written a new book on Vatican secrets, Peccato Originale (Original Sin) on alleged sexual abuse of choirboys.

Nuzzi, whose earlier tomes Your Holiness and Via Crucis saw him tried and acquitted in the Vatileaks 1 and 2 trials, reveals more alleged financial chicanery and background to the Manuela Orlandi disappearance.

But his main focus is on alleged sex abuse in the San Pio X preseminary, where dioceses send middle-school boys aspiring to become priests, who serve as choirboys in St Peter's.

An ex-choirboy delivered a letter to Pope Francis in May, Nuzzi recounts.

But the first person to reveal abuses was Polish Kamil Tadeusz Jarzembowski, who entered the San Pio X at the age of 13, and in June 2014 sent various complaints to Church authorities.

He said he had witnessed at least 140 "sexual acts" on his underage roommate by an unidentified adult who later became a priest. The man had free access to the preseminary, was "well liked by various monsignori" and "able to exert a form of power and intimidation over the youngest seminarians".

Kamil reported the alleged abuse to various high-ranking cardinals, Nuzzi says, but no action was taken.

He then turned to the Secretariat of State and the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, which handles abuse cases, also without any results, except for being expelled from the seminary, Nuzzi says.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:30 PM

Abuse victims demand Royal Commission

DUNEDIN (NEW ZEALAND)
Otago Daily Times

November 9, 2017

By Tim Miller

A Dunedin survivor of sexual abuse says he and others like him are ready for a long fight for justice.

A resolution was passed in Christchurch yesterday at the South-South Institute conference, which is organised by the Male Survivors of Sexual Abuse Trust, asking the Government to commit to a Royal Commission or similar level of inquiry into the institutional abuse of children in New Zealand.

The resolution asks that any New Zealand inquiry be modelled on the Australian Royal Commission into institutional responses to child sexual abuse.

Dunedin man Darryl Smith was one of about 100 male survivors of sexual abuse who backed the call for an injury earlier this week.

Mr Smith spent more than a decade in state care, in New Zealand and Australia, beginning as a 7-year-old boy in the early 1970s.

Speaking yesterday, Mr Smith, who also gave evidence for the Australian Royal Commission, said survivors were aware it was just the start of a long journey for justice.

''We fought to get this far and we will keep fighting to keep this moving forward, not just for us but for future generations.''

Any inquiry needed to be full and comprehensive, or it would not be worth the time and effort, Mr Smith said.

Labour has promised to launch an inquiry into the historic abuse of children in state care.

National advocate for male survivors of sexual abuse Ken Clearwater will present the resolution to the Prime Minister.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:26 PM

Monk’s sex chat prompts immediate probe

THAILAND
Thai PBS

November 09, 2017

The dean monk in Wiengsa district of Nan province has appointed a fact finding committee to investigate after a post about a monk buying sex service with a boy went viral on the internet.

The dean monk Phra Khru Sirinantavit’s action came after a video clip showing a monk was chatting on Facebook with a boy about a sex deal. The boy agreed to meet the monk at the temple.

The monk was later located at a temple in Wiengsa district of Nan.

Phra Khru Sirinantavit said he would like to find out if the clip was posted by the monk himself or his Facebook was hacked and posted by the hacker.

If the monk posted the clip by himself , then he would be guilty for violating Buddhist disciplines and would be defrocked.

For the child sex abuse, the dean monk said it would be the action of the police to deal with him.

The Nan Office of National Buddhism director Sittha Moolhong said authorities are now trying to locate where the monk is attached to and will take action under the boundary of law.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:20 PM

Manhattan priest still on the job despite allegations of sexual abuse from two former altar boys

MANHATTAN (NY)
New York Daily News

November 9, 2017

By Aaron Showalter, Laura Dimon, and Larry McShane

A Manhattan parish priest remains on the job despite allegations from two former altar boys that he sexually abused the pair, an attorney charged Thursday.

The Rev. Lawrence Quinn targeted the boys in two separate incidents while in a Bronx parish where he spent nearly two decades, according to lawyer Patrick Noeker.

“Protecting kids must be our first priority,” said Noeker. “It is extremely troubling that Quinn is still serving in a parish after two survivors have come forward and alerted the church with reports of his abuse.”

The first incident, with an altar boy under the age of 11, allegedly occurred between 1990-96. The second happened between 1999-2001 and involved a 12-to-14-year-old victim, said Noeker.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:17 PM

Settlement reached with one insurer in Duluth diocese bankruptcy

DULUTH (MN)
Minn Post

November 9, 2017

Duluth Diocese bankruptcy update. The Duluth News Tribune reports: “One of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Duluth’s insurers will pay $8.95 million in a settlement that, if approved, will see a portion of the money go to child sexual abuse survivors in the organization’s bankruptcy case, according to St. Paul attorney Jeff Anderson. … The proposed settlement calls for Catholic Mutual Relief Society of America to contribute to the case, although an agreement is “contingent on confirmation of a consensual plan of reorganization agreed to by all parties, which is not imminent despite negotiations,” according to a news release from Anderson’s office Thursday.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:12 PM

Duluth diocese insurer puts up $9M for clergy abuse settlements

DULUTH (MN)
MPR News

November 9, 2017

By Martin Moylan

An insurer for the bankrupt Diocese of Duluth has agreed to provide $9 million that could help compensate clergy sexual abuse victims.

But other insurers and the diocese have yet to agree on what money they may provide to more than 100 victims. Josh Peck, one of the attorneys representing abuse survivors, said it's good to see the deal with an insurer but a resolution of the bankruptcy is not imminent.

"Well, we need the other insurers to step and participate," he said. "And there's a lot more negotiation and lot more work to be done on the case in general before we can get to a point where we have a consensual plan that everybody can agree to."

In a statement, the diocese said it the deal with the insurer, Catholic Mutual Relief Society of America, is a major step forward.

"The diocese has always wanted to provide compensation to victims in the most just way possible and to emerge from bankruptcy as soon as we can," the church said in the statement. "We know that compensation alone is not sufficient to address the pain caused by members of the clergy. Bishop Sirba and the clergy and faithful of the diocese continue to offer their prayers and support to all victims in hope of healing."

The diocese filed for bankruptcy about two years ago, after a jury ordered it to pay $5 million to a sexual abuse victim. The church said it could not pay that judgment and also possibly compensate other claimants.

The diocese has admitted to having credible accusations of sex abuse against some three dozen priests.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:10 PM

Diocese of Duluth insurer reaches $8.95 million settlement

DULUTH (MN)
Duluth News Tribune

November 9, 2017

One of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Duluth’s insurers will pay $8.95 million in a settlement that, if approved, will see a portion of the money go to child sexual abuse survivors in the organization’s bankruptcy case, according to St. Paul attorney Jeff Anderson.

The proposed settlement calls for Catholic Mutual Relief Society of America to contribute to the case, although an agreement is “contingent on confirmation of a consensual plan of reorganization agreed to by all parties, which is not imminent despite negotiations,” according to a news release from Anderson’s office Thursday.

“This is promising and there is hope but the key is getting the other insurance companies to step up and honor their obligations,” Anderson said.

A judge will consider the settlement at a Jan. 4 hearing.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:07 PM

Separan en San Juan al cura acusado en el Newman de inconducta con alumnos

SAN JUAN (ARGENTINA)
Tiempo de San Juan

November 7, 2017

[Google Translate: The school attended by President Macri and much of his entono, the prestigious Cardinal Newman, separated from his pastoral duties Fray Luis Lenzi, for "misconduct" with the students of the establishment.]

Es el padre Luis Lenzi hace más de 10 años trabaja en la comunidad dominica de San Juan.

El colegio al que asistió el presidente Macri y gran parte de su entono, el prestigioso Cardenal Newman, separó de sus tareas pastorales al Fray Luis Lenzi, por “inconducta” con los alumnos del establecimiento.

Tras la decisión del colegio porteño, la comunidad dominica de San Juan hizo lo propio, suspendiendo en sus funciones al cura, que hace más de 10 años que trabaja en la Provincia.

El director general del colegio, Luis Olivero, señaló a medios porteños que "siete personas del colegio lo vieron en diferentes situaciones cometiendo imprudencias con los chicos y por eso decidimos aplicar el protocolo que tenemos para estos casos”. Se refería al protocolo para lidiar con situaciones de abuso y que incluye la convocatoria de dos psicólogos e informar a la comisión directiva del colegio.

"Luego de haber tomado conocimiento de situaciones irregulares que tuvieron lugar en espacios abiertos y que fueron advertidas por personal del colegio, se ha decidido su apartamiento", dice el comunicado.

La repercusión en San Juan fue inmediata y la comunidad dominica emitió un comunicado en que precisa que “en cumplimiento de nuestras propias normas fray Luis Lenzi ha sido apartado preventivamente de toda tarea pastoral en relación con menores”.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:23 PM

Próvolo: piden más tiempo para seguir investigando los hechos

ARGENTINA
El Sol

November 9, 2017

By Melisa Stopansky

[Google Translate: The prosecution of sexual offenses requested an extension in the main case due to pending a series of studies, including a DNA to the accused.]

La fiscalía de delitos sexuales solicitó una prórroga en la causa principal por estar pendientes una serie de estudios, entre ellos, un ADN a los imputados.

La fiscalía de Delitos Sexuales abocada a pleno a la investigación de los abusos sexuales a una veintena de niños y adolescentes sordo mudos que ocurrían en el Instituto Próvolo de Luján de Cuyo, solicitó una prórroga a la Justicia de Garantías por estar pendientes una serie de estudios y pericias relevantes para el caso, además de varios testimonios en Cámara Gesell que se producirán esta semana de víctimas que siguen recordando y dando cuenta de las atrocidades que estuvieron ocultas por al menos una década.

Uno de los elementos claves, es el análisis del ADN de los seis imputados, entre los cuales se encuentran dos sacerdotes que administraban y dirigían el Instituto Próvolo. Se trata de Horacio Corbacho (56) y Nicola Corradi (82), ambos están detenidos y con prisión preventiva confirmada por un tribunal de alzada. También está detenida como partícipe la monja Kumico Kosaka, quien goza del beneficio de la prisión domiciliaria al igual que Corradi.

El pedido se hizo por el hallazgo de una bombacha de nena con restos de material genético de un hombre y que fue encontrada en una de las habitaciones del instituto.

Entre otras pericias, se aguarda el análisis de un negativo de fotos que podría tratarse de pornografía infantil ya que fue hallado en otra de las dependencias donde ocurrían los vejámenes.

Y el análisis a un CPU que también fue secuestrado en los allanamientos en los que podrían encontrarse elementos importantes para la investigación.

La prórroga quedará sujeta al análisis del cuatro juzgado de Garantías donde se otorgaron las prisiones preventivas a los imputados Corradi, Corbacho, Kosaka y a los empleados José Bordón, al administrativo José Luis Ojeda y al administrativo Armando Gómez.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:20 PM

Schwester Rosemarys Kampf

NIGERIA
Deutschlandfunk

November 8, 2017

By Katrin Gänsler

[Google Translate: Child abuse and incest are punishable in Nigeria, but hardly anyone indicates the deeds. The victims are stigmatized. The religious Rosemary Ukata tries to bring perpetrators to justice.]

Kindesmissbrauch und Inzest sind in Nigeria zwar strafbar, doch kaum jemand zeigt die Taten an. Die Opfer werden stigmatisiert. Die Ordensfrau Rosemary Ukata versucht, Täter vor Gericht zu bringen.

Ordensschwester Rosemary Ukata sitzt in einem winzigen Büro in Ogoja, einer Kleinstadt im Süden Nigerias. Von außen dringt der Straßenlärm herein. Immer wieder kommt jemand, der ihren Rat braucht. Die 59-Jährige, die aus dem Bundesstaat Abia im Südosten des Landes stammt, bleibt gelassen und freundlich, aber auch bestimmt. Besonders viel Zeit nimmt sie sich für Helen. Die junge Frau kann häufig nur stumm nicken, da ihr immer wieder die Tränen kommen. Schwester Rosemary fast Helens Geschichte zusammen:

"Helen ist eines der Vergewaltigungsopfer. Um genau zu sein, war es Inzest. Wir haben sie kennengelernt, weil ein Nachbar besorgt war. Er ist zu uns ins Büro gekommen und hat erzählt, dass das Mädchen vom Vater missbraucht worden ist. Dadurch ist es schwanger geworden."

Sexueller Missbrauch und Inzest sind in Nigeria strafbar. Doch meistens kommt es nicht einmal zu einer Anzeige. Genau das will die Ordensschwester, die 1999 das "Zentrum für Frauenstudien und Einmischung" – kurz CWSI – gegründet hat, ändern. In einem aktuellen Fall steht beispielsweise gerade ein Mann vor Gericht, der eine Dreijährige vergewaltigt hat. CWSI übernimmt die Prozesskosten.

Auch im Fall von Helen gingen die Mitarbeiter zur Polizei. Doch die Antwort war ernüchternd:

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:04 PM

El cura expulsado del colegio Cardenal Newman se defiende: "Todo es un enorme error"

ARGENTINA
Clarín

November 8, 2017

[Google Translate: The Dominican priest Luis Federico Lenzi, separated from his position at the Cardinal Newman School of San Isidro after having been found in "irregular situations" with students, said today through an audio on WhatsApp that what happened "is a huge mistake" .]

A través de un audio de WhatsApp, el fraile Luis Lenzi minimizó su separación del cargo. Lo acusan de haber sido encontrado en "situaciones irregulares" con alumnos.

El sacerdote dominico Luis Federico Lenzi, separado de su cargo en el colegio Cardenal Newman de San Isidro tras haber sido encontrado en "situaciones irregulares" con alumnos, dijo hoy a través de un audio de Whatsapp que lo ocurrido "es todo un enorme error".

La respuesta del cura, que es uno de los tres sacerdotes dominicos de ésa orden en San Juan, se conoció a través de un audio de Whatsapp enviado a la comunidad de la provincia cuyana y que esta mañana se viralizó.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:59 AM

Comienza el juicio por corrupción de menores contra el cura Ilarraz

ARGENTINA
Elentrerios

November 8, 2017

Diario Uno Entre Ríos

[Google Translate: On Monday the 13th, the trial of priest Justo José Ilarraz, accused of seven cases of corruption and abuse of minors when he was the prefect of discipline at the archdiocesan seminary of Our Lady of the Cenacle, between 1985 and 1993, began in the courts of Paraná. which were pupils children between 10 and 14 years. Although it is not defined, at the stage of the allegations, the prosecutor's office and the plaintiffs will demand more than 25 years in prison.]

El sacerdote fue acusado de siete hechos de abusos ocurridos dentro de seminario de Paraná. Tras siete años de investigación, finalmente el religioso se sentará en el banquillo de los acusados. La querella y Fiscalía pedirán más de 25 años.

El lunes 13 iniciará en los tribunales de Paraná, el juicio al cura Justo José Ilarraz, acusado por siete casos de corrupción y abuso de menores cuando ejercía como prefecto de disciplina en el seminario arquidiocesano Nuestra Señora del Cenáculo, entre 1985 y 1993, establecimiento en el que eran pupilos niños de entre 10 y 14 años. Si bien no está definido, en la etapa de los alegatos la fiscalía y las querellan van a reclamar penas superiores a los 25 años de cárcel.

Es un juicio lleno de polémicas y medidas dilatorias que derivaron en la intervención de toda la estructura judicial de la provincia de Entre Ríos, de Casación a nivel nacional y ahora se espera la definición de la Corte Suprema de Justicia para establecer si la causa está o no prescripta, tal cual sostiene la defensa del cura.

El debate será a puertas cerradas, y es el segundo que se sustancia a un religioso en Entre Ríos por abuso y corrupción de menores, ya que por la misma situación fue condenado a 25 años de prisión efectiva el cura Juan Diego Escobar Gaviria, de Nogoyá.

Al sacerdote, a quien se juzgará en la causa caratulada "Ilarraz, Justo José s/promoción a la corrupción agravada", se lo acusa de haber abusado de siete adolescentes, de entre 10 y 14 años, que cursaban el ciclo básico como pupilos en el seminario menor, un colegio orientado al sacerdocio.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:56 AM

El lunes comienza el juicio contra el cura Justo José Ilarraz por abuso y corrupción de menores

ARGENTINA
Analisis Digital

November 9, 2017

[Google Translate: Next Monday, November 13, the trial of priest Justo José Ilarraz, accused of seven cases of corruption and child abuse when he was prefect of discipline in the Archdiocesan Seminary "Our Lady of the Cenacle," will begin in the Courts of Paraná. 1985 and 1993, establishment in which children between 10 and 14 years old were pupils. Although it is not defined, it is estimated that at the stage of the allegations the prosecution and the complaints will demand penalties exceeding 25 years in prison.]

El próximo lunes 13 de noviembre se iniciará en los Tribunales de Paraná, el juicio al cura Justo José Ilarraz, acusado por siete casos de corrupción y abuso de menores cuando ejercía como prefecto de disciplina en el Seminario Arquidiocesano “Nuestra Señora del Cenáculo”, entre 1985 y 1993, establecimiento en el que eran pupilos niños de entre 10 y 14 años. Si bien no está definido, se estima que en la etapa de los alegatos la fiscalía y las querellas van a reclamar penas superiores a los 25 años de cárcel. El 13 de septiembre de 2012, la revista ANÁLISIS publicó en su portada la denuncia de los abusos de Ilarraz, lo que permitió actuar de oficio a la Procuración general y sumar a los pocos días los primeros dos testimonios de sus víctimas. Finalmente, tras cinco años de investigación, el sacerdote se sentará en el banquillo de los acusados. El debate será a puertas cerradas.
Es un juicio lleno de polémicas y medidas dilatorias que derivaron en la intervención de toda la estructura judicial de la provincia de Entre Ríos, de Casación a nivel nacional y ahora se espera la definición de la Corte Suprema de Justicia para establecer si la causa está o no prescripta, tal como sostiene la defensa del cura.

El debate será a puertas cerradas, y es el segundo que se sustancia a un religioso en Entre Ríos por abuso y corrupción de menores, ya que por la misma situación fue condenado a 25 años de prisión efectiva el cura Juan Diego Escobar Gaviria, de Lucas González.

Al sacerdote, a quien se juzgará en la causa caratulada "Ilarraz, Justo José s/Promoción a la corrupción agravada", se lo acusa de haber abusado de siete adolescentes, de entre 10 y 14 años, que cursaban el ciclo básico como pupilos en el seminario menor, un colegio orientado al sacerdocio.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:52 AM

Comienza el lunes el juicio al cura Ilarraz, acusado de abuso y corrupción de menores

ARGENTINA
El Litoral

November 8, 2017

[Google Translate: The Oral Court of Paraná will begin on Monday the trial of priest Justo José Ilarraz, accused of seven cases of corruption and abuse of minors when he was the prefect of discipline at the Archdiocesan Seminary Nuestra Señora del Cenáculo, between 1985 and 1993, establishment in which children between 10 and 14 years old were pupils.]

Telam

El Tribunal Oral de Paraná comenzará el lunes el juicio al cura Justo José Ilarraz, acusado por siete casos de corrupción y abuso de menores cuando ejercía como prefecto de disciplina en el Seminario Arquidiocesano Nuestra Señora del Cenáculo, entre 1985 y 1993, establecimiento en el que eran pupilos niños de entre 10 y 14 años.

El juicio, que comenzará a las 9 y será a puertas cerradas, será el segundo que se sustancia a un religioso en Entre Ríos por abuso y corrupción de menores, ya que por la misma causa fue condenado a 25 años de prisión efectiva el cura Juan Diego Escobar Gaviria, de Nogoyá.

Al sacerdote, a quien se juzgará en la causa caratulada ‘Ilarraz, Justo José s/promoción a la corrupción agravada‘, se lo acusa de haber abusado de siete adolescentes, de entre 10 y 14 años, que cursaban el ciclo básico como pupilos en el seminario Menor, un colegio orientado al sacerdocio.Ilarraz fue suspendido por la Igesia en 2012 para oficiar misas en público, pero antes, en 1993, el entonces arzobispo de Paraná, Monseñor Estanislao Esteban Karlic, lo autorizó para que viajara a Roma.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:48 AM

Comienza el lunes el juicio al cura Ilarraz, acusado de abuso y corrupción de menores

ARGENTINA
El Litoral

November 8, 2017

[Google Translate: The Oral Court of Paraná will begin on Monday the trial of priest Justo José Ilarraz, accused of seven cases of corruption and abuse of minors when he was the prefect of discipline at the Archdiocesan Seminary Nuestra Señora del Cenáculo, between 1985 and 1993, establishment in which children between 10 and 14 years old were pupils.]

Telam

El Tribunal Oral de Paraná comenzará el lunes el juicio al cura Justo José Ilarraz, acusado por siete casos de corrupción y abuso de menores cuando ejercía como prefecto de disciplina en el Seminario Arquidiocesano Nuestra Señora del Cenáculo, entre 1985 y 1993, establecimiento en el que eran pupilos niños de entre 10 y 14 años.

El juicio, que comenzará a las 9 y será a puertas cerradas, será el segundo que se sustancia a un religioso en Entre Ríos por abuso y corrupción de menores, ya que por la misma causa fue condenado a 25 años de prisión efectiva el cura Juan Diego Escobar Gaviria, de Nogoyá.

Al sacerdote, a quien se juzgará en la causa caratulada ‘Ilarraz, Justo José s/promoción a la corrupción agravada‘, se lo acusa de haber abusado de siete adolescentes, de entre 10 y 14 años, que cursaban el ciclo básico como pupilos en el seminario Menor, un colegio orientado al sacerdocio.Ilarraz fue suspendido por la Igesia en 2012 para oficiar misas en público, pero antes, en 1993, el entonces arzobispo de Paraná, Monseñor Estanislao Esteban Karlic, lo autorizó para que viajara a Roma.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:48 AM

Lawsuit: Priest, Boy Scout leader abused victim

GUAM
The Guam Daily Post

November 9, 2017

By Mindy Aguon

A Mangilao man alleges he was sexually abused by a priest and a Boy Scout leader 53 years ago.

In a lawsuit filed yesterday in the District Court of Guam, B.F., who used his initials to protect his identity, accused retired priest Louis Brouillard and Edward Pereira of sexually abusing him over a two-year period beginning in 1964.

The civil complaint filed against the Archdiocese of Agana, the Boy Scouts of America and Brouillard alleges that B.F. met Brouillard when he was serving as priest of the Mangilao parish and Pereira served as a Scout leader.

The boy was never officially an altar boy, although Brouillard allowed him to serve as a back-up altar server and participate in Boy Scout outings, the lawsuit states.

B.F. alleges the abuse occurred at the Mangilao rectory where Brouillard walked around naked, exposing himself to boys. The priest allegedly had the boys take turns sitting naked on his lap while he fondled them and forced them to perform sexual acts.

The alleged abuse continued during Boy Scout swimming outings. B.F. recalled that on two occasions while at Agana Springs, he and several of his friends refused to remove their clothes and Brouillard made them walk home to Mangilao.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:58 AM

Gympie man's child abuse horror story nears final chapter

AUSTRALIA
The Gympie Times

November 9, 2017

By Arthur Gorrie

Joe Kiernan was born into a real-life Stephen King horror story in 1960.

Stolen from his unmarried mother at birth, "because that's what they did then," he was sent to the infamous St Joseph's orphanage at Neerkol, near Rockhampton - an institution so evil its grounds include a memorial to the abused children who died there.

A Gympie survivor of unimaginable abuse, Mr Kiernan was able to smile at times yesterday as he told of his feelings, now the prosecutions have begun and the truth has come out at a Royal Commission.

"Some former residents don't want the buildings destroyed, but it's owned by other people now and they have a right to do what they want," Mr Kiernan said yesterday.

And he said the demolition crews might just find some gruesome reminders of the Neerkol horror story.

"So be it," Mr Kiernan said yesterday.

"They might find some bodies or bones.

"If they do and there are some without death certificates, it's back in the hands of the police."

Mr Kiernan is one of thousands of people who survived the care of church and state and who have now given evidence to the Child Abuse Royal Commission.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:55 AM

Married priests

PHILIPPINES
The Manila Standard

November 09, 2017

By Florencio Fianza

It is possible that in the not too distant future, we will be seeing married priests administering to the Roman Catholic faithful in this country.

Brazilian Claudio Cardinal Hummes, who is a friend of Pope Francis, requested the Pope to lift the ban on the ordination of married men specifically for Brazil which is the largest Roman Catholic country in the world.

The request is for the church to consider “vin probati,” the ordination of married men with proven great faith. Brazil, just like many other countries around the world, is suffering from a shortage of priests having only one priest per 10,000 faithful. It is thought that the ordination of married men might alleviate this acute problem.

This however, is not the only problem facing the Catholic Church today. There is the matter of sexual misconduct by priests which has caused tremendous damage to the prestige and reputation of the church as the guardian of faith and morals in the last couple of decades. At the moment, Australian Cardinal George Pell, formerly the third most powerful official in the Vatican, is undergoing criminal trial for child sexual abuse in his native country.

In the so-called Eastern Catholic Church, where priests are allowed to marry, the problem of sexual misconduct is not often heard of. Allowing priests to marry or ordaining married men with proven great faith might therefore go a long way in lessening this problem of the Catholic Church. It is like solving two huge problems with a single shot.

The issue of married priests has always been a contentious problem of the Church right from the very beginning. Right from the start, priests were allowed to marry. Seven popes in antiquity were in fact married starting with St Peter. The apostles were also married. But there were Church leaders who questioned not only the practicality of married priests but also whether marriage was damaging the purity of the church. Matters like married priests not sleeping with their wives the night before celebrating the holy mass started being required. Other subjects such as material things being evil and that a person cannot be married and be perfect at the same time started to take root in early Church teachings.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:53 AM

Sad truth on how companies respond to workplace sexual harassment

TORONTO (CANADA)
The Toronto Star

November 7, 2017

By Kelly Nolan

Instead of supporting lawyers who work to silence victims, workplaces should try evolving the culture from a patriarchal system of entitlement to one where women never have to be afraid.

As leader after leader falls from grace in the current sweep of sexual harassment and assault accusations, CEOs, chairs of the boards, human resources executives and corporate legal counsel are rushing into emergency meetings to assess their risk and build crisis communications strategies to “manage” the potential fallout.

What’s on the meeting agenda? Reviews of past nondisclosure agreements (NDAs), risk assessments on unresolved complaints from employees and disgruntled employees who have fled the company.

“What is our exposure on this?”

“How do we manage what we have hidden in our corporate closet?”

What should be on the agenda? How to create equity frameworks to ensure our employees are safe and free from harassment and the abuse of power. How to ensure transparency so the women on their team and their future recruits know their well-being trumps the “Trumps” in the office.

NDAs are the devil’s work. They silence victims, protect the employer from taking responsibility and secure a perfect environment for predators — and have done so for years. (Fox News ... say no more.)

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:50 AM

WHAT DO YOU ACTUALLY BELIEVE?: Committed Catholics no longer trust the hierarchy.

UNITED STATES
The Church Militant

November 9, 2017

TRANSCRIPT

Next week, the American bishops will gather for one of their twice-a-year meetings and discuss a bevy of topics. But as the bishops meet, out-in-the-pews, committed Catholics are becoming increasingly concerned about the direction the conference is taking as a whole. By committed Catholics, we mean Catholics who not only go to Mass on Sundays and Holy Days and have a devotional life but also have a very good understanding of the ruinous state the Church is in.

They are not looking at little things here and there and investing all their hope and common sense in these small things — laudable and joyful as they are. It is precisely the attitude and tone and direction of the bishops' conference that sucks the joy and hope out of these efforts, giving committed Catholics pause to think that they will suddenly be shut down or sidelined without any notice.

This has been the case with multiple little religious communities that have tried to form or homeschooling efforts on the part of concerned parents or distribution of faithful catechetical materials or various speakers not being allowed to present on church property and so forth. Add to this the wall of opposition to anything even closely resembling Tradition, and we aren't talking necessarily about the Latin Mass but attempts to get rid of abuses and liturgical overreaches that currently exist and are ignored or the near-refusal, however politely it may be framed, to allow any resurgence or restoration of Catholic identity as it relates to the political and cultural order, for example.

Tens of thousands, maybe even hundreds of thousands, of committed Catholics have simply grown to not trust the bishops when it comes to promotion of the authentic Catholic faith. In fact, those Catholics see many of the bishops more along the lines of being the actual problem, not just a hindrance. There is, simply stated, a mountain range of evidence pointing at the bishops collectively not caring about committed Catholics. It has not been for nothing that tens of thousands of committed Catholic parents will not let their children attend Catholic schools anymore for fear of losing the Faith. The same motive is behind thousands of Catholic families who Sunday after Sunday pile into vans and drive long distances to go to a reverent Mass, driving right past a number of other, more convenient parishes along the way. They simply don't trust the priests who are allowed by the bishop to continue in their ministry.

When you add to that climate the silence in the face of heresies, dissent, horrible catechesis, bowing to false ecumenism, which was on full display front and center during Revolt Day last week, and a host of other sins — the approval of all things gay and gay clergy, the anti-Catholic preaching that happens regularly at Catholic parishes, the promotion of a massively worldly agenda dressed up in spiritual rags — climate change, immigration, death penalty, community organizing, social justice warrior "collections," to name just a few. These are politically liberal, practically socialist positions that too many of the bishops like to baptize and pass off as somehow Catholic, and of course, the realization that many of these bishops were involved directly or indirectly with the gay clergy sex abuse scandal which has cost the Church in the U.S. nearly $4 billion.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:48 AM

United States: NYC Expands Sick Time Act To Offer Safe Time To Victims Of Sexual Abuse, Stalking, And Human Trafficking

NEW YORK
Mondaq

November 9, 2017

By Stephanie L. Aranyos
Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart

On November 6, 2017, Mayor de Blasio signed New York City Council legislation Int. 1313-2016 (also referred to as Int. 1313-A or the Earned Safe and Sick Time Act) into law, expanding the New York City Earned Sick Time Act. The new law will allow employees to take "safe" time related to family offense matters, sexual abuse, stalking, and human trafficking. The new law is set to take effect on or about Monday, May 7, 2018.

The New York City Earned Sick Time Act, which took effect on April 1, 2014, requires that New York City employers with 5 or more employees provide up to 40 hours of paid sick time to eligible employees in a calendar year. Employers with fewer than five employees must provide the equivalent of unpaid leave. While the safe time expansion does not expand the number of hours an employer is required to provide to employees, it significantly expands the permissible uses for safe/sick time.

Under the new law, employees will be permitted to take safe time if they are victims of a family offense matter, sexual offense, stalking, or human trafficking, or if a family member has been a victim of such crimes, in the following circumstances:

a. to obtain services from a domestic violence shelter, rape crisis center, or other shelter or services program for relief from a family offense matter, sexual offense, stalking, or human trafficking;
b. to participate in safety planning, temporarily or permanently relocate, or take other actions to increase the safety of the employee or employee's family members from future family offense matters, sexual offenses, stalking, or human trafficking;
c. to meet with a civil attorney or other social service provider to obtain information and advice on, and prepare for or participate in any criminal or civil proceeding, including but not limited to, matters related to a family offense matter, sexual offense, stalking, human trafficking, custody, visitation, matrimonial issues, orders of protection, immigration, housing, discrimination in employment, housing or consumer credit;
d. to file a complaint or domestic incident report with law enforcement;
e. to meet with a district attorney's office;
f. to enroll children in a new school; or
g. to take other actions necessary to maintain, improve, or restore the physical, psychological, or economic health or safety of the employee or the employee's family member or to protect those who associate or work with the employee."
Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:42 AM

Unruh’s complaint could anchor class-action

BOSTON
Boston Herald

November 09, 2017

By Chris Villani and Joe Dwinell

Heather Unruh’s complaint against Kevin Spacey could be the cornerstone of a class-action suit against the Hollywood star, similar to the cases filed against the Archdiocese of Boston during the clergy sex abuse scandal.

And such a sweeping civil action could cost the now-banished “House of Cards” actor millions, said Boston civil litigation lawyer Mark Itzkowitz.

“An award could be astronomical,” said Itzkowitz. “The fact that so many people are coming forward against Spacey lends credibility” to Unruh’s accusation.

The former Channel 5 anchor told reporters yesterday Spacey plied her underage son with alcohol in June 2016 at the Club Car restaurant on Nantucket. He then allegedly grabbed the then-18-year-old’s genitals, she said. Prosecutors said they have launched an investigation.

Attorney Mitchell Garabedian, who is representing Unruh’s son, said he is exploring taking civil action against the A-list actor.

Spacey’s career has been in a free fall, and he announced last week he is seeking treatment after actor Anthony Rapp said Spacey made an unwanted sexual advance at him during a party at Spacey’s home in the 1980s, when Spacey was 26 and Rapp was just 14.

Filmmaker Tony Montana and others have since come forth with similar allegations against the 58-year-old Spacey.

Hub attorney Carmen L. Durso said accusers lining up against Spacey makes a case against him that much stronger.

“If he has 10 victims, you could theoretically have all 10 victims testify at a civil trial,” Durso said. “It gives the jury a basis for believing the victim, buttressing the victim’s credibility in talking about something that other people agreed that person did before and was in a habit of doing.”

Durso said the key is showing a pattern of alleged criminal behavior.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:40 AM

Former Boston news anchor accuses Kevin Spacey of assaulting her son, then 18, last year

BOSTON
The Los Angeles Times

November 8, 2017

By Libby Hill

Authorities in the Cape and Islands District of Mass. have confirmed to the Los Angeles Times that a police investigation involving Kevin Spacey is underway following an allegation that he groped the teenage son of a former Boston TV news anchor.

At a Wednesday news conference in Boston, Heather Unruh alleged that the Oscar-winning actor assaulted her son last year when he was 18.

Unruh sat alongside lawyer Mitchell Garabedian and her teenage daughter as she shared the story that began unfolding with a tweet several weeks ago.

“The #weinsteinscandal has emboldened me,” Unruh tweeted on Oct. 13. “I was a Kevin Spacey fan until he assaulted a loved one. Time the dominoes fell.”

And the dominoes did begin to fall for Spacey. On Oct. 29, actor Anthony Rapp publicly alleged that Spacey made a sexual advance toward him in 1986, when Spacey was 26 and Rapp just 14.

Spacey said last week that he did not recall the incident with Rapp but apologized for the encounter. He also said he is seeking “evaluation and treatment.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:38 AM

Former TV Anchorwoman Accuses Kevin Spacey of Assaulting Her Son

BOSTON
The New York Times

November 8, 2017

By Katharine Q. Seelye

BOSTON — A longtime Boston television journalist on Wednesday accused Kevin Spacey of sexually assaulting her 18-year-old son in the summer of 2016 at a Nantucket bar.

At an emotional news conference, Heather Unruh, a former news anchor for WCVB, an ABC affiliate, said that the actor plied her son with “drink after drink” and then reached down his pants and grabbed his genitals. Her son had told Mr. Spacey that he was 21, she said, though he was only 18.

“But,” said Ms. Unruh, regardless of her son’s age, “Kevin Spacey had no right to sexually assault him. There was no consent.” She said she hoped the actor would go to jail.

Mr. Spacey and his spokesman did not immediately reply to email messages seeking comment on Wednesday.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:36 AM

November 8, 2017

The Register at 90: Forming and Informing Catholics With ‘Snap, Vigor and Courage’: A look back at our history in Catholic journalism

UNITED STATES
National Catholic Register

November 8, 2017

By Peter Jesserer Smith

When Soviet tanks rumbled into Lithuania in 1991, a pair of young journalists crossed the border — for the second time — to chronicle the death throes of the Soviet Union for the National Catholic Register.

Soviet dictator Josef Stalin once reputedly scoffed, “The Pope! How many divisions has he got?” when told Pope Pius XI wanted to see signs of encouragement for religion and Catholics in Russia. More than 50 years later, Joop Koopman and Jonathan Luxmoore were on assignment for the Register, crisscrossing in a secondhand Polonez, a Polish car with a cast-iron bumper that Luxmoore bought from a Belgian ambassador, sending back their firsthand accounts of watching the empire Stalin built crumble before St. John Paul II’s religious revolution.

“We were at the cutting-edge of political reform and change,” recalled Koopman, who went on to serve as the newspaper’s editor during the 1990s.

These and other stories of the past 90 years rest in the Register’s archives. But the fading pages of print also tell the story of a long line of men and women who served as custodians of a great mission to form, inform and challenge generations of Catholic readers to engage the world through the global lens of the Catholic faith.

From its very beginnings Nov. 8, 1927, up to its present day as a news service of the EWTN Global Catholic Network, the Register has left its mark on both its readers and the journalists who aspired to bring the best professional writing to its pages.

Denver Origins

The National Catholic Register was born out of the Denver Catholic Register, which began as an effort in 1905 to set the record straight for Colorado’s Catholics and had been overseen by Msgr. Matthew Smith since 1913. Msgr. Smith took over leadership of the Denver newspaper as a lay journalist, bringing to the paper professional journalistic standards. He had been a priest only four years when he launched the national edition of the Register in 1927.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:20 PM

Brothers abused by reverend

ENGLAND
The Argus

November 7, 2017

TWO brothers have described the moment they realised they were abused by the same man.

Phil and Gary Johnson were both abused by the Reverend Roy Cotton while they were members of the choir at St Andrew’s church in Eastbourne.

Cotton, who died in 2006, was never prosecuted, but the brothers’ case led to the prosecutions of several other clergy.

Theresa May, when she was Home Secretary, ordered a national inquiry into abuse cases by the clergy.

Phil Johnson said: “There was a story on the lunchtime news on the radio about an abusive vicar. I could see out of the corner of my eye that Gary froze. And the penny dropped in that moment.”

The brothers’ fight for justice ended 20 years ago, as they were told there were not enough independent witnesses to prosecute Cotton.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:16 PM

Harvey Weinstein’s not alone

UNITED STATES
Catholic News Service

November 7, 2017

By Greg Erlandson

Harvey Weinstein is a pig.

It’s not language I would normally use in a column, but the cascade of revelations about his treatment of women and men, most particularly his twisted and apparently constant sexual advances, demands a blunt assessment. The accusations that have toppled this modern-day film mogul make for disturbing reading every morning at the breakfast table.

The exposure of his predatory bullying in this age of predatory bullies has had at least a few benefits, however.

First, it has ignited an explosion of confessions on the part of women in the entertainment industry as well as other professions. I might say all professions. The #MeToo hashtag makes for harrowing reading, a rolling tide of upsetting, at times horrifying, anecdotes that can easily fill the reader with a deep despair for man’s inhumanity to woman.

While many of us make our way through our days without harassing or being harassed, it is clear that many of our sisters (and some of our brothers) are not so fortunate. That so many have felt it necessary to remain silent for so long speaks not just to fear of the abuser’s retaliation, but also to the fear that the rest of us will turn away.

As we Catholics have seen in the clergy sexual abuse crisis, this fear is not unfounded. Of course, we must be sensitive to the risk of false allegations, which is why we need due process, but not no process or a sham process.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:28 PM

15 Years Later, Josh Guimond’s Disappearance Still Unsolved

MINNEAPOLIS (MN)
CBS (WCCO)

November 7, 2017

By Liz Collin

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A student at a Minnesota Catholic college vanished in the middle of the night. This week marks 15 years since Josh Guimond went missing from St. John’s University.

A standout student, the 20-year-old had a bright future ahead. That all changed Nov. 9, 2002. Guimond’s disappearance would later face extra scrutiny, both for the clergy sex-abuse scandal and for the investigators assigned to the case.

A decade and a half later, WCCO’s Liz Collin went back to talk to a family still waiting for answers, the investigators trying to find them and to the friends who last saw Guimond before his trail went cold.

There is a certain Minnesota modesty when Brian Guimond describes his son — class president of his Maple Lake High School, voted most likely to succeed by his peers, planning for a future in politics and law.

“Oh yeah honor rolls and all that,” he said.

Raised Catholic, Brian made sure his son was in a pew each Sunday. Another reason Josh’s choice to attend St. John’s University made perfect sense. He was a junior in college and that November weekend of 2002 marked deer opener. Instead of taking part in the annual hunting tradition with dad, homework kept Josh in Collegeville.

We now know that Saturday night, Nov. 9, Josh met up with friends to play cards. The next day, his dad discovered Josh hadn’t been seen since.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:05 PM

El cura Grassi fue beneficiado con el "2x1"

ARGENTINA
El Patagónico

November 7, 2017

[Google Translate: The Criminal Chamber upheld the decision of the Criminal Oral Court 1 of Morón, which last April granted the benefit of "two for one" to the priest Julio César Grassi, sentenced to 15 years in prison for aggravated sexual abuse of minors and who will be imprisoned until 2026]

Lo confirmó la Cámara Penal. Con la reducción de la pena, estará preso hasta 2026.

La Cámara Penal ratificó el fallo del Tribunal Oral Criminal 1 de Morón, que en abril pasado concedió el beneficio del "dos por uno" al sacerdote Julio César Grassi, condenado a 15 años de prisión por abuso sexual agravado a menores y que estará preso hasta 2026.

El Tribunal Oral Criminal 1 de Morón, el mismo que lo sentenció en primera instancia, había realizado un cálculo de la pena a cumplir y determinado que a Grassi le restan cumplir aún nueve años, cuatro meses y 20 días de condena, por lo que estará detenido hasta el 10 de agosto de 2026.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:56 AM

Archivan definitivamente denuncia de abuso sexual contra sacerdote

PERU
Diario Correo

November 7, 2017

By Jorge Alberto

[Google Translate: The complaint against the priest of Huamanga - Ayacucho, Felix Pariona Huacre, for sexual abuse against a minor has been filed today for the second and final time.]

La menor que denunció el hecho no acudió al examen psicológico

La denuncia contra el sacerdote de Huamanga - Ayacucho, Felix Pariona Huacre, por abuso sexual en contra de una menor ha sido archivado hoy por segunda y definitiva vez.

El caso fue archivado por primera vez por la Segunda Fiscalía Provincial Penal Corporativa de Huamanga, a cargo del fiscal Nilo Paredes. Pero tras una revisión la Cuarta Fiscalía Superior Penal de Ayacucho revisó el caso y ordenó que este se reabra.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:54 AM

Habló el cura acusado de "situaciones irregulares" en el colegio Cardenal Newman: "No ha pasado nada grave"

ARGENTINA
Info Bae

November 8, 2017

[Google Translate: His name monopolized the public light of all the media in the country after the Cardenal Newman School, one of the most prestigious in Argentina, decided to dismiss him for "irregular situations" he had in the institution itself. However, the priest Luis Lenzi denied any type of accusation and affirmed that during his period in the entity "nothing serious happened".]

Luis Lenzi negó haber cometido cualquier tipo de abuso con los alumnos de la entidad y calificó el hecho como algo "confuso, triste y tan feo". En tanto, la Orden de Predicadores emitió un comunicado en el que condenó las acciones del cura en la institución educativa de San Isidro

Su nombre acaparó la luz pública de todos los medios del país después de que el colegio Cardenal Newman, uno de los más prestigiosos de la Argentina, decidiera despedirlo por "situaciones irregulares" que tuvo en la propia institución. Sin embargo, el cura Luis Lenzi negó cualquier tipo de acusación y afirmó que durante su período en la entidad "no pasó nada grave".

"No ha pasado nada grave y absolutamente nada con ningún chico de todo lo que se pueda pensar. Pero hay detalles prácticos de los que prefiero no hablar. No ha pasado nada grave para mí, pero espero que un poco se decante el momento", explicó el padre Lenzi en una conversación telefónica con el Diario de Cuyo.

Al margen de sus tareas en el Newman, Lenzi es uno de los tres frailes que integran la orden de los domínicos a cargo del colegio y de la iglesia de Santo Domingo en la provincia cuyana.

El escándalo explotó el lunes, cuando el propio Colegio Newman envió un comunicado a los padres de la institución en el que informaba sobre la decisión tomada.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:50 AM

Concedieron el "2 x 1" al cura Grassi y saldrá en libertad 21 meses antes

ARGENTINA
La Capital

November 8, 2017

[Google Translate: The Chamber of Criminal and Criminal Appeals of Morón granted the priest Julio César Grassi the benefit of the so-called "2 x 1 law" and recalculated his release in August 2026, instead of 2028, as was expected when He was convicted for abusing a minor.]

El religioso estará en prisión hasta agosto de 2026. La Cámara de Morón aplicó el beneficio para el tiempo en que estuvo preso sin condena firme

La Cámara de Apelaciones en lo Penal y Criminal de Morón le concedió al sacerdote Julio César Grassi el beneficio de la llamada "ley del 2 x 1" y recalculó su salida en libertad para agosto de 2026, en lugar de 2028, como estaba previsto cuando fue condenado por abusar de un menor.

De esta forma, la Cámara de Apelaciones confirmó el fallo de primera instancia del Tribunal en lo Criminal 1 de Morón y resolvió aplicar los beneficios de una ley que fue derogada por la Corte Suprema de Justicia de la Nación.

El sacerdote fue condenado a 15 años de prisión por abusar sexualmente del menor conocido como "Gabriel", a quien cuidaba en la Fundación Felices los Niños que dirigía el cura, en un proceso que duró 11 años, desde octubre de 2002, cuando el caso salió a la luz por una investigación televisiva.

Grassi estuvo en la cárcel desde el 23 de octubre al 21 de noviembre de 2002; luego bajo prisión domiciliaria entre el 7 de marzo de 2012 y el 31 de mayo de ese año y finalmente fue apresado otra vez el 23 de septiembre de 2013 hasta la actualidad, alojado en el penal de Campana

El cálculo de la pena de 15 años se tomaba a partir de esa última fecha, por lo que el cura tenía como data de su libertad el 2028.

Ahora, la Cámara de Apelaciones computó esos dos períodos en los que Grassi estuvo en prisión sin sentencia, aplicó la ley del dos por uno y la nueva fecha de salida es 2026, un año y nueve meses antes de lo previsto en la condena

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:47 AM

Rebajan condena a sacerdote acusado de abuso a menor

BUENOS AIRES (ARGENTINA)
Diario La Verdad

November 7, 2017

[Google Translate: The Argentine Justice today confirmed the reduction of the sentence, from 15 to 13 years, to a priest condemned for having abused a minor while running a foundation for poor children and adolescents.]

Buenos Aires, Argentina.- Rebajan condena a sacerdote acusado de abuso a menor.

La Justicia argentina confirmó hoy la rebaja de la pena, de 15 a 13 años, a un sacerdote condenado por haber abusado de un menor mientras dirigía una fundación para niños y adolescentes pobres.

La Cámara de Apelaciones en lo Penal y Criminal de Morón ratificó el beneficio que ya le había concedido otro tribunal de la misma localidad, al contar doble el año y nueve meses que el cura Julio César Grassi pasó en prisión domiciliaria o preventiva más allá del tiempo máximo establecido por la ley (dos años).

La decisión en primera instancia de aplicar el llamado “dos por uno”, tomada hace medio año, generó una fuerte polémica en Argentina y duras críticas de los denunciantes, tanto por la gravedad de los delitos como por el hecho de que este beneficio ya había sido anulado por la Corte Suprema del país.

Tras la confirmación de este fallo, el religioso saldrá de la cárcel en 2026 y no en 2028, como estaba previsto tras una condena a 15 años de cárcel.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:44 AM

Ayacucho: Arzobispado rechaza acusación de violación contra sacerdote

PERU
El Comercio

November 8, 2017

Redaccion EC

[Google Translate: Through a communiqué, the Metropolitan Archbishopric of Ayacucho rejected accusations of rape and undue touching against the priest of his jurisdiction Félix Pariona Huacre. The religious has been accused by a girl of initials ALL of sexually abusing her when she was between 15 and 17 years old.]

El religioso Félix Pariona, quien continúa oficiando misas, ha sido responsabilizado por una menor de abuso sexual

A través de un comunicado, el Arzobispado Metropolitano de Ayacucho rechazó las acusaciones de violación y tocamientos indebidos en contra del sacerdote de su jurisdicción Félix Pariona Huacre. El religioso ha sido acusado por una joven de iniciales A.L.L. de abusar sexualmente de ella cuando tenía entre 15 y 17 años.

De acuerdo al Arzobispado de Ayacucho, ellos han colaborado con las investigaciones del Ministerio Público, pero refieren que el caso se archivó por falta de pruebas el 20 de julio de 2017.

En la carta firmada por Monseñor Salvador Piñeiro, Arzobispo Metropolitano de Ayacucho, se detalla además que pese a que el caso se reabrió después por disposición del Fiscal Superior tras una queja de la defensa de la menor, ella no habría acudido al examen psicológico dispuesto dentro del plazo de 30 días de investigación.

"Tenemos la segunda disposición definitiva del archivamiento de fecha 7 de noviembre de 2017", indica el comunicado.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:41 AM

Ayacucho: caso de sacerdote acusado de violación fue archivado

PERU
America TV

November 7, 2017

[Google Translate: The Archbishop of Ayacucho issued a statement to inform the filing for the second time of the case of an alleged rape of a 15-year-old girl by a Catholic priest that occurred inside the Ayacucho seminary.]

Arzobispado informó que el Ministerio Público no encontró pruebas

El Arzobispado de Ayacucho emitió un comunicado para informar el archivamiento por segunda vez del caso de una presunta violación de una niña de 15 años por un sacerdote católico que habría ocurrido al interior del seminario de Ayacucho.

La organización informó que el Ministerio Público no halló más pruebas para determinar alguna culpabilidad de este sacerdote. Por este motivo, señalaron, este 7 de noviembre se determinó el archivamiento por segunda vez de este caso.

Sin embargo, el abogado de la menor ha indicado que esta no es la última instancia, ya que elevarán una queja de derecho de lo actuado ante el fiscal superior de Ayacucho en un plazo de 5 días.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:38 AM

Lewin: “Con Grassi no hay que bajar los brazos nunca, porque no se da por vencido”

ARGENTINA
Analisis Digital

November 8, 2017

[Google Translate: The renowned journalist Miriam Lewin, who led the investigation that revealed the abuses of priest Julio César Grassi, was not surprised by the determination of the justice to grant the benefit of 2x1 to the priest sentenced to 15 years in prison and assured that "coming from Grassi we know that you should never lower your arms "because" he does not give up ". In this regard, he affirmed that "the investigation that required the most efforts of journalists to support and protect witnesses and to cover them from the siege of reprisals was clearly that of Grassi." He also warned that "this is not going to end here" because "the next step will be to compute all that time that we consider absolute freedom but legally has the label of light prison as a prison completed, whereupon I would be released immediately. " In this context, he regretted feeling "again the bitter feeling that justice does not serve as a remedy". He asserted that "the wound of child sexual abuse is a permanently open wound, which does not stop bleeding" and claimed that "the Church clearly pronounces in these cases, so that eventually none of these pedophiles have ruined their lives. so many children that are concealed, protected and sustained by the Church. "]

Reclamó un pronunciamiento claro de la Iglesia contra los abusos

La reconocida periodista Miriam Lewin, quien encabezó la investigación que reveló los abusos del cura Julio César Grassi, no se manifestó sorprendida por la determinación de la justicia de otorgarle el beneficio del 2x1 al sacerdote condenado a 15 años de prisión y aseguró que “viniendo de Grassi sabemos que no hay que bajar los brazos nunca” porque “no se da por vencido”. En ese sentido, afirmó que “la investigación que más esfuerzos nos requirió a los periodistas para sostener y proteger a los testigos y para cubrirlos del asedio de las represalias fue claramente la de Grassi”. Además advirtió que “esto no va a terminar acá” ya que “el próximo paso será que le computen todo ese tiempo que consideramos de absoluta libertad pero que legalmente tiene la etiqueta de prisión morigerada como prisión cumplida, con lo cual saldría inmediatamente en libertad”. En este contexto, lamentó sentir “de nuevo la sensación amarga de que la justicia no sirve como reparación”. Aseveró que “la herida del abuso sexual infantil es una herida abierta permanentemente, que no deja de sangrar” y reclamó que “la Iglesia se pronuncie claramente en estos casos, para que finalmente no haya ninguno de estos pedófilos que le han arruinado la vida a tantos chicos que sean encubiertos, protegidos y sostenidos por la Iglesia”.

En declaraciones realizadas al programa A Quien Corresponda (Radio De la Plaza) Lewin sostuvo que “viniendo de Grassi sabemos que no hay que bajar los brazos nunca” y admitió: “Muchas veces me preguntan cuál fue la investigación en la que más represalias sufrieron los testigos, en las que me sentí más acosada o en peligro, y todos imaginan que sería la de los vuelos de la muerte o de corrupción policial o política, pero sin embargo la investigación que más esfuerzos nos requirió a los periodistas para sostener y proteger a los testigos y para cubrirlos del asedio de las represalias fue claramente la de Grassi”.

“Grassi nunca se da por vencido, jamás dejó de tener abogados de primera línea por más que no dieran la cara en algunas etapas del proceso y en este momento entendemos que lo está defendiendo Jorge Sandro, quien también asesoró en la defensa de Gregorio Ríos en el caso de Alfredo Yabrán. Y por eso creemos que esto no va a terminar acá”.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:34 AM

Echaron a un cura del Colegio Newman por "situaciones irregulares" con los alumnos

ARGENTINA
Todo Noticias

November 7, 2017

[Google Translate: The Newman School reported that it separated one of the priests who works in that educational institution from his position. Luis Lenzi will no longer work there because he was found in "irregular situations" with the students who attend class.]

El sacerdote Luis Lenzi tuvo conductas incorrectas con los chicos "en lugares abiertos".

El Colegio Newman informó que separó de su cargo a uno de los curas que trabaja en esa institución educativa. Luis Lenzi no trabajará más allí por haber sido encontrado en "situaciones irregulares" con los alumnos que asisten a clase.

El escueto comunicado del establecimiento educativo asegura que la escuela tomó la determinación luego de saber que esas situaciones "tuvieron lugar en espacios abiertos y que fueron advertidas por personal del colegio".

De acuerdo a lo que informó el diario Clarín, las razones que aduce el texto oficial no tienen que ver con casos de abuso sexual, sino con conductas incorrectas por su cargo de docente.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:31 AM

Woman sues Anglican Church after minister assaulted her with box cutter and knife

NEW BRUNSWICK (CANADA)
CBC News

November 08, 2017

By Bobbi-Jean MacKinnon

Cynthia Mae Moore seeks damages over 2 attacks by Rev. William Morton in St. Stephen in 2015

A New Brunswick woman who claims her former minister tried twice to kill her is suing him, the Anglican Church of Canada, the Anglican Diocese of Fredericton and the Anglican Parish of St. Stephen.

Cynthia Mae Moore, 60, claims she was in a nearly four-year extramarital affair with Rev. William Morton, her minister at Christ Church in St. Stephen, when he threatened to skin her alive and scraped her breasts with a box cutter.

The incident happened at Morton's St. Stephen home on Nov. 24, 2015, according to the notice of action and statement of claim, filed with the Court of Queen's Bench in Saint John.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:29 AM

Cracking the Stonewall on a Nun’s Murder: A Reporter’s Story

BALTIMORE (MD)
The Crime Report

November 8, 2017

By Tom Nugent

It was the kind of moment that an investigative reporter never forgets.

Harsh accusations were told to WJZ by many of [Father] Maskell’s victims. We have spoken with two of these women, and now a third is coming forward with a real bombshell. She told WJZ she was abused not only by Father Maskell, but also by police officers. . . .

It happened last February 27, when Baltimore’s CBS outlet, WJZ-TV, reported that local police were investigating credible reports of cops raping teenagers at a Catholic high school for girls in the city, back in the late 1960s and early 1970s.

But the shocking TV news report also marked a huge turning point in this investigative reporter’s 22-year effort to uncover the truth about the murder of a teaching nun, Sister Catherine Ann Cesnik, who had reportedly tried to blow the whistle on widespread sexual abuse of students at her high school in southwest Baltimore.

The February 27 news story was an unexpected development, for sure.

For the first time ever, a major television station in Baltimore was talking openly—live and on the air—about the possibility that the nun’s murder had been covered up by police officials for more than four decades because an open investigation might reveal that “several” local policemen had been engaged in the sexual abuse, along with several law-breaking Roman Catholic priests.

Until then, the story of the 22-year struggle to uncover and report the abuse—along with an alleged Church and police cover-up—had been a depressing chronicle of stonewalling, frustration and official indifference.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:12 AM

Church keeps sex abuse redress property

IRELAND
Irish Examiner

November 08, 2017

By Daniel McConnell

Six properties promised to the State by the Catholic Church in 2002 still remain outside full public ownership 15 years later, the Irish Examiner can reveal.

Documents obtained reveal a further 13 properties “handed over” in 2009, including the National Rehabilitation Hospital in Dublin, also continue to remain outside of the State’s control.

The Department of Education has been sharply criticised by the chairman and members of the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) for the “unacceptable delays” in transferring the properties over to the State.

The PAC is to bring the secretary general of the Department of Education, Seán Ó Foghlú, next week to seek answers from him over the failure to transfer the lands.

PAC chairman Sean Fleming, speaking to the Irish Examiner, said there has been a total “malaise” within the department.

“Clearly there has been an insufficient determination to wrap this matter up,” he said. “It is completely unacceptable to have these matters outstanding 15 years after agreements were reached.

“We will now hear evidence from Mr Ó Foghlú on this matter next week and the lack of progress will be top of the agenda.”

PAC member Catherine Murphy echoed Mr Fleming’s concerns, saying the delays are “astonishing”.

“The public deserves better than vague updates and an inability from the department to fully disclose their engagements with the congregations,” she said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:09 AM

San Jose Catholic school under fire for allegedly mishandling sexual abuse allegations decades ago

SAN JOSE (CA)
The Mercury News

November 7, 2017

By Tracey Kaplan

SAN JOSE — A private Catholic girls school in San Jose is grappling with accusations from a graduate who said a longtime teacher who has since died sexually molested her and another student decades ago but never was held accountable.

In an essay published in the Washington Post, Kathryn Leehane described her frustration after she reported to school officials and police that a teacher had sexually molested her and another student.

“The teacher remained at the school,” wrote Leehane, who did not name the teacher or the school. “Eventually, I lost hope for justice.”

The essay, titled “When the Legal System Fails Sexual Assault Victims, We Have To Find Our Own closure,” prompted graduates of the school Monday to circulate an online petition on change.org to Presentation High School. As of Tuesday afternoon, about 1,900 people had signed it.

The unnamed authors of the petition are demanding an independent investigation and a public apology. They also want officials who were told about the allegations but did not take appropriate action to face “consequences.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:06 AM

Irish group offers therapy for priests falsely accused of abuse

IRELAND
Catholic Herald

November 7, 2017

The Association of Catholic Priests say the sessions are in response to demand from members

Irish priests who have been falsely accused of sexually abusing children are being offered group therapy sessions in a bid to improve their mental health.

Ireland’s Association of Catholic Priests will run its first so-called “Circle of Healing” later in November in Cork, as part of an innovative new move to help innocent churchmen who have been affected by past abuse scandals.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:46 AM

AMPLEFORTH MONKS IN TRAINING BEFORE ABUSE INQUIRY PUBLIC HEARINGS

ENGLAND
The Tablet

November 8, 2017

By Bernadette Kehoe

Ampleforth has been rocked by a series of allegations linking priests to the abuse of boys

One of Britain’s leading Catholic schools, Ampleforth College, has revealed that some Benedictine monks there have received specialist training on how best to help victims and survivors of sexual abuse. In a statement ahead of its participation in the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) later this month, Ampleforth said the aim was “to be much more focussed on survivors of abuse.”

So far, four monks have undergone two days of intensive training with an external agency which was recruited for the task, with the aim of rolling it out further in the coming months. A spokeswoman told The Tablet: “We wanted to make sure the monks were able to listen and respond to abuse survivors in the most appropriate way possible and to better understand the journey of abuse survivors. “

One monk added : “The training was very helpful. It gave me a deeper insight into the likely feelings of those who have been abused and I feel it prepared me to be more sympathetic and helpful to survivors who contact us.” The spokeswoman conceded the Inquiry could be a trigger for people to come forward and a confidential independent telephone helpline has also been set up for victims.

Ampleforth has been rocked by a series of allegations linking priests to the abuse of boys. Since 1996 three monks and a lay teacher have been convicted of sex offences against more than 30 pupils dating back to the mid-1960s and up to the mid-1990s. Ampleforth’s statement expressed ‘sincere and heartfelt apologies to anyone who suffered abuse in our schools, monastery, parishes or other ministries.’

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:42 AM

Accusers describe abuse in court hearing for Italian ‘Archangel’

ROME
Crux

November 8, 2017

By Claire Giangravè

The preliminary hearing in a trial of the leader of a Catholic lay association, who is charged with the sexual abuse of at least six underage girls, took place Nov. 4 in southern Italy. Three of the alleged victims took to the stand to testify to their accounts of the abuses which the accused was able to perpetrate for the better part of forty years with no ecclesiastic or governmental oversight.

ROME - In a case that raises questions about how an association proclaiming itself Catholic and meeting in a parish could escape Church oversight for decades, a Nov. 4 preliminary hearing in a trial of the group’s leader on sexual abuse charges featured testimony from three of his alleged female victims.

Pietro Alfio , 73, has been under arrest since Aug. 2, when an investigation called ‘Operation 12 Apostles,’ conducted by police in Sicily, uncovered a deep web of political, ecclesiastic and judicial ties that allegedly allowed Capuana to carry on abuses within the lay-led ‘Culture and Environment Catholic Association,’ or ACCA.

The group is listed as a ‘civil association’ and has up to 5,000 followers, who still meet in the little-known municipality of Aci Bonacorsi, located inside the Diocese of Acireale on the Italian island of Sicily.

By all accounts, Capuana was a charismatic and charming personality, referred to as ‘Archangel’ by his disciples.

During the preliminary hearing, local reports say that Capuana, wearing blue trousers and a light-colored shirt, “dragged himself” into the courtroom, looking thin and weary and accompanied by four armed penitentiary guards.

The hearing was presided over by the magistrate in charge of preliminary investigations, Anna Maria Cristaldi, and took place behind closed doors.

Three girls, one of them still a minor, took to the stand to testify before the judge, accompanied by their lawyer Tommaso Tamburino. Capuana was not allowed to see the witnesses as he stood behind bars, with a wooden screen hiding the witnesses in order to protect their identity. After the hearing, the girls exited through a back door.

Capuana was silent though most of the hearing, except for the few times he muttered indignantly at the accusations before being reprimanded by the judge.

Though the hearing was secret, the pre-trial detention order for Capuana, obtained by Crux in collaboration with local media outlet Laspiapress, revealed the grisly details discovered during the police investigation, including wiretaps of conversations among the alleged perpetrators.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:38 AM

November 7, 2017

Correction: Prep School-Sexual Abuse story

CONCORD (NH)
The Associated Press

November 7, 2017

In a story Nov. 2 about a report on sexual misconduct at St. Paul's School in New Hampshire, The Associated Press erroneously reported when a former Episcopal priest pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a student. The priest pleaded guilty on May 15, not last week.

A corrected version of the story is below:

Report highlights pattern of sexual abuse at prep school

The rector of a prep school in New Hampshire says he is upset by accounts of sexual misconduct involving faculty that go back decades and the school's failure to protect students under its care

By Michael Casey

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — Over several decades, former faculty and staff at a prep school are accused of singling out students, plying them with alcohol and then attempting to kiss, fondle and commit other acts of sexual misconduct with them, according to a report released by the school late Wednesday.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:27 PM

Sacerdote de 96 años difundió “por error” pornografía infantil

GUATEMALA
La Prensa Libre

November 3, 2017

[Google Translate: A retired priest of 96 years will face 70 charges for possession and dissemination of child pornography, after being accused of distributing "by mistake" the material to other elders in the retirement home where he lived.]

Un sacerdote retirado y de 96 años enfrentará 70 cargos por posesión y difusión de pornografía infantil, luego de ser acusado de distribuir “por error” el material a otros ancianos en la casa de retiro donde vivía.

El caso lo revelaron esta semana las agencias de noticias RT y New York Post, que cuentan la historia del hombre, que en apariencia almacenaba los archivos pornográficos en su computadora “incluidas fotos de niñas de hasta ocho años de edad”.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:23 PM

I was raped by a CofE priest and I know the system's broken

ENGLAND
Christian Today

November 6, 2017

By Jayne Ozanne

It's one of the first lessons in life – bad things happen. Bad things happen to bad people, and bad things happen to good people. They can happen in 'dark and dangerous places', but they can also happen in places that are supposed to be 'safe' and full of light. Sadly, this often makes the impact of what has happened even more wounding, with devastating consequences on an individual's ability to trust.

The critical thing of course is – what happens afterwards? How do we respond? What should we do – Keep Calm and Carry On as 'normal' (or as near to it as we can pretend to be), or allow ourselves to be changed and altered by the experience, learning from it so that we ensure it doesn't happen again?

The Church of England appears to be extremely good at adopting the former – wartime – strategy. It just carries on carrying on. However, in doing so it becomes more and more like a Carry On film – a farcical comedy that stretches reality to breaking point and risks becoming the butt of too many jokes.

So, here's my bad thing: I was raped – by a priest. No matter that it happened over 25 years ago. It happened. I finally told someone – a bishop – last year, and was advised discreetly to drop the allegations. I'm sure it was with the best of intentions, but it was like a kick in the stomach, adding quite literally insult to injury.

It has caused me to reflect – not only on my reasons for staying quiet for so many years, but also on my experience in finally coming forward. Most importantly, however, it has made me consider what I would have ideally liked to have happened – how I would have liked to have been treated, and what might have helped me to speak out sooner. For that is the point of my disclosure – to help us reflect and change.

Obviously, the first thing I would have dearly loved would have been to have been taught – from an early age – that this sort of behaviour is completely unacceptable, out of order, and absolutely not my fault. The years of self-blame and shame were arguably the most damaging. These were the years where I carried this awful truth on my own, too ashamed to speak out, and too guilty about what I saw as my own complicity to call it for what it was – rape.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:21 PM

Irish association to offer sessions for priests falsely accused of abuse

DUBLIN (IRELAND)
Catholic News Service

November 6, 2017

By Nick Bramhill

DUBLIN (CNS) — Irish priests who have been falsely accused of sexually abusing children are being offered group therapy sessions in a bid to improve their mental health.

Ireland’s Association of Catholic Priests will run its first so-called “Circle of Healing” later in November in Cork, as part of an innovative new move to help innocent churchmen who have been affected by past abuse scandals.

Father Roy Donovan, a spokesman for the 1,000-strong priests’ group, said the purpose of the workshops was to not only “help heal the scars” of clergymen cleared of abuse allegations, but also to provide support to clerics who still felt traumatized or a sense of collective guilt over crimes carried out by the minority of pedophile priests in their fold.

“A lot of good, decent priests have been affected by the abuse carried out by other priests in the past,” he said. “They’ve suffered shock and a sense of shame over what’s happened, and that’s partly why we’re holding a circle of healing.”

He said the sessions were in response to demand from the group’s members.
“Hopefully, those who attend will find some benefit and, if it goes well, then it’s quite likely that we’ll hold regular circles of healing around the country,” he said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:20 PM

The Conspiracy of Inaction on Sexual Abuse and Harassment

UNITED STATES
The New York Times

November 5, 2017

By David Leonhardt

I caught the journalism bug in high school. I was fortunate to be a scholarship student at a rigorous New York private school with a weekly newspaper, and some of the older students I admired taught me the power that the written word could have.

When we complained verbally to teachers or administrators about a problem, they could ignore us. When we put our arguments in writing, they tended to pay attention. So we became teenage crusaders, inveighing against perceived injustices. Sometimes, the subjects were sophomoric (“censorship” of the talent show), but often they were serious (inequality, racism, South African divestment).

Three decades later, I look back on the experience with deep gratitude. I also look back with haunting regret.

For all of our crusading, we ignored the biggest story at the school. We were aware of the rumors — the teachers who made comments about girls’ bodies, the teacher suspiciously friendly with female students, the music teacher solicitous of male students.

But we never wrote about it. As best as I can remember, we didn’t even talk about writing about it. We didn’t know how. It seemed too dark, too uncertain.

In 2012, the truth came out. My school — Horace Mann — had tolerated sexual molestation for decades. Administrators whose most solemn responsibility was protecting children instead chose to look the other way and protect child abusers. The music teacher, a cultish figure named Johannes Somary, was the worst abuser during my time. One of his victims later committed suicide.

The current torrent of harassment revelations — following Jodi Kantor’s and Megan Twohey’s Times exposé of Harvey Weinstein — has caused me to think back on high school again, because every big case has had something in common with Horace Mann.

People knew.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:40 PM

El padre Grassi fue beneficiado por el 2X1

BUENOS AIRES (ARGENTINA)
El Intransigente

November 6, 2017

[Google Translate: The controversial benefit of the 2X1 , which was applied a few months ago to different genocides, was now applied in the case of priest Julio César Grassi , who is sentenced to 15 years in prison for aggravated sexual abuse of minors . Is that the Criminal Chamber ratified the decision of the Criminal Oral Court 1 of Morón , which, last April, granted this reduction of the sentence to the priest.]

La Cámara Penal ratificó el fallo del Tribunal Oral Criminal 1 de Morón, que, en abril pasado, le concedió esta reducción de la pena al sacerdote. De todas maneras, estará preso hasta el 10 de agosto de 2026

BUENOS AIRES (Redacción) - El polémico beneficio del 2X1, que hace algunos meses fue aplicado a diferentes genocidas, ahora se aplicó en el caso del cura Julio César Grassi, quien está condenado a 15 años de prisión por abuso sexual agravado a menores. Es que la Cámara Penal ratificó el fallo del Tribunal Oral Criminal 1 de Morón, que, en abril pasado, le concedió esta reducción de la pena al sacerdote.

A pesar de que aún estará preso hasta el 10 de agosto de 2026, dicho tribunal que lo había sentenciado en primera instancia, lo había beneficiado con el "dos por uno". Incluso, el TOC1 destacó que a Grassi todavía le restan cumplir nueve años, cuatro meses y 20 días de condena. De todas maneras, en el momento de la resolución, el cura ya había cumplido tres años, nueve meses y veinte días de su condena, lapso que se computa como "dos por uno" por ser cumplido antes de que la sentencia quede firme.

En tanto, el 21 de marzo pasado, la Corte Suprema de Justicia confirmó la condena a Grassi por "abuso sexual agravado por resultar sacerdote, encargado de la educación y de la guarda del menor víctima, reiterado, dos hechos, en concurso real entre sí, que a su vez concurren formalmente con corrupción de menores agravada". Con esta medida, la condena emitida en el 2009, que ya había sido confirmada por la Cámara de Casación y la Suprema Corte de la provincia de Buenos Aires, quedó firme.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:36 AM

Cura abusador: El beneficio del 2x1 a la condena del padre Grassi generó amplio rechazo

BUENOS ARIES (ARGENTINA)
Info Cielo

November 7, 2017

[Google Translate: The priest Julio César Grassi, condemned for aggravated sexual abuse to minors to 15 years of prison in 2009, received the benefit of 2x1. In this way, it will be released in 2026 and the indignation was immediate. The rejection of this resolution calls into question the actions of justice and the questioning of the Catholic Church reappear.]

En fallo dividido, la justicia ordenó reducir la pena al condenado por abuso sexual abusado. Había sido condenado a 15 años de prisión en 2009.

El cura Julio César Grassi, condenado por abuso sexual agravado a menores de edad a 15 años de prisión en el 2009, recibió el beneficio del 2x1. De este modo, saldrá en libertad en el 2026 y la indignación no se hizo esperar. El rechazo a esta resolución pone en tela de juicio al accionar de la justicia y los cuestionamientos a la iglesia católica afloran nuevamente.

El fallo fue dividido la Cámara Penal le concedió el beneficio al abusador luego de que su condena fuera confirmada por la Corte Suprema de Justicia de la Nación el 21 de marzo pasado.

Por este motivo, el cura violador permanecerá preso sólo hasta el año 2026 ya que cada año que pasó prisión sin condena firme se le computarán ahora como dos.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:16 AM

Silence on sexual violence makes church leaders complicit, say victim advocates

UNITED STATES
National Catholic Reporter

November 6, 2017

By Heidi Schlumpf

Sexual violence victims speak out, while church leaders remain quiet

Jessica Mesman Griffith was sitting outside her high school cafeteria, waiting for a ride home after dance team practice, when a janitor approached her with his penis exposed and started masturbating in front of her. She was 14 — and terrified.

About a year later, while hanging out with her girlfriends, each one started sharing stories of sexual assault or violence, by a babysitter, an uncle or their mom's boyfriend. That's when Griffith realized, "I'm a girl, and because I'm a girl, I'm not safe."

Griffith didn't share her own story about the janitor with those friends, in part because it seemed less severe than their revelations. But she never told anyone else about it either, because she was embarrassed and felt somehow responsible.

Only much later did Griffith realize that church teaching about sexuality may have contributed to her silence. Teachers and clergy at her Catholic grade school had only talked about sex in terms of sin, so she came to associate the two. When she was sexually harassed by the janitor, she felt sinful.

"It just felt so dirty and tainted," said Griffin, co-founder of the Catholic blog Sick Pilgrim and co-author of the spiritual memoir Strange Journey. "Just by witnessing it, I felt I was culpable. I was sure I did something wrong to provoke this."

Griffin is speaking out now, as reports of sexual harassment by Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein have prompted more victims to go public. Those revelations also spurred a social media campaign in which victims have used the hashtag #metoo to indicate their own experiences of sexual assault, harassment, rape or other sexual violence.

One in three women (and one in six men) have been victims of contact sexual violence at some point in their lifetimes, according to the government's National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey.

Yet Catholic Church leaders have been conspicuously quiet on the issue. This silence — combined with teachings and systems that contribute to a culture in which sexual violence against women is rampant — makes the church complicit, say theologians and those who work with victims. And given the church's own lack of accountability in response to clergy sexual abuse, its credibility on the issue is already damaged.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:23 AM

US bishops' new child protection program aims to create culture of mindfulness

WASHINGTON, D.C.
CNA/EWTN News

Nov 7, 2017

By Mary Rezac

Washington D.C., Nov 7, 2017 / 03:04 am (CNA/EWTN News).- After years of research, the U.S. bishops are rolling out a new training program that takes some of the best risk-management practices from other industries and applies them to child protection in the Church.

The new program, entitled “Creating a Culture of Protection and Healing,” is being piloted in several dioceses and will eventually be available to any diocese by request.

The principles of the program, which will add to the existing trainings and protections already in place, borrows tools and techniques of HROs (highly reliable organizations) from industries in the secular world that also frequently deal with high-risk situations, such as hospitals or airlines.

These HROs are in industries in which, when accidents do occur “it’s rather volatile, it costs lives,” Deacon Bernie Nojadera, executive director of the Secretariat of Child and Youth Protection for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, told CNA.

“For example in the airline industry when a plane crashes or something like that,” it can be very costly in terms of loss of life, he said.

“So the industry is looking at ways to make sure that even the lowest person on the chain of command - if they see something that’s untoward, they speak up, they say something, they report it. They know how and what to do when they come across a situation that could cause a problem in the future.”

That’s the same attitude and level of awareness that the bishops are hoping to create in dioceses who implement this new program, he said.

“We’re trying to create this mindfulness, a change in culture, so safe environments can be not only established but indeed maintained, because that’s the key. We have to constantly be on our toes, on our guard, with no room for complacency.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:21 AM

OPINION: Church caught in a hail of unfriendly fire

NOVA SCOTIA (CANADA)
The Catholic Register

November 6, 2017

The Catholic Church in Nova Scotia has recently been exposed to unfriendly fire.

It started when a Liberal cabinet minister introduced a bill to a committee of the legislature to allow the Archdiocese of Halifax-Yarmouth, one of only two dioceses in the province, to divest itself of assets and place them into sub-corporations controlled by individual parishes. The committee then deferred the bill.

The deferral came at the urgings of Halifax lawyer John McKiggan, who represents hundreds of sexual assault victims allegedly abused by priests.

The lawyer said reorganizing the archdiocese would make it more difficult for abuse victims to receive fair compensation for their injuries. He hinted that the reorganization was simply a way to hide assets in the event of future legal actions.

Premier Stephen McNeil lauded the committee for deferring the bill as the government reviews it to ensure no unintended consequences might ensue. But the suggestion that the archdiocese was trying to stow away assets drew the ire of the archdiocesan chancellor.

“First of all, under Church rules the bishop can’t do that,” Deacon Bob Britton told local media. “And if he did that, then the question would be: How much longer would he be the bishop?”

Britton said lawyers have told the Church that the courts have already determined that the archdiocese and individual parishes would be responsible for any future claims of sexual abuse.

“The unintended consequences that are alluded to are simply not there,” he said.

Nova Scotia’s other diocese — Antigonish — agreed to a $16-million settlement in 2012 to be paid to 125 confirmed and alleged victims of sexual abuse. The settlement forced the diocese to put about 150 properties up for sale and require more than 100 parishes to yield savings.

Britton said the intent of the new bill is to recognize in civil law what is already a Church reality — that each parish is a separate entity while still joined with the archdiocese.

“The claims of a kind of nefarious motives, I assure you, they are not there,” said Britton.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:17 AM

Anti-Abuse Video and Song, 'It's Not Okay' by Linda Newlin, Gains Traction

SANTA BARBARA (CA)
PR Newswire

Nov. 7, 2017

"It's Not Okay to abuse and use anyone," says singer/songwriter/author Linda Newlin in her new, provocative song and music video. The images and scenes depict all forms of abuse going on in our world and challenge the abusers who have hurt others and those who have been complicit by keeping quiet.

Newlin originally wrote the song and produced the video on the heels of the sexual abuse scandals perpetrated by the Catholic Church and the Boy Scouts but its message is just as relevant today. Just this weekend, Facebook was flooded with "Me Too" messages from tens of thousands of women speaking up about sexual harassment and abuse.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:14 AM

When politicians or clergy abuse, the institution doesn't need protection: it needs honesty

ENGLAND
Christian Today

November 7, 2017

By Florence Gildea

'I [...] was worried I would be blacklisted as untrustworthy. In Westminster, where power and loyalties are hard currency, I feared making enemies', wrote Jane Merrick as she explained why she did not report former defence secretary Michael Fallon's attempt to kiss her to the party whips.

Labour activist Bex Bailey was told by a senior party member not to report the fact that she was raped because it might damage her career. Other women who have come forward as victims of sexual assault or harassment in Westminster have found that officials have 'at best turned a blind eye and at worst actively covered it up'. Why is it that institutions are so reluctant to hold their members accountable for sexual assault?

It's a pattern we are becoming used to, that is even becoming normalised: someone (typically male) empowered with a sense of entitlement, acts towards another (typically female) as if he had the right to her body and then somehow passes the burden of shame and professional consequences on to the one they have assaulted. Unless, the abuser or those around them reassures the victim, they keep it to themselves. Otherwise, the one who has been betrayed is warned: you won't be trusted; you'll be letting the side down. It is not surprising that efforts to hush up sexual assault scar all political parties. Such is the cost of tribalism.

Both the UK's major political parties, I'm sure, wish perpetrators of sexual assault were only to be found on the opposite side of the Commons. All institutions, likewise, hope it is only Hollywood and Westminster where these incidents take place. Yet nothing could be further from the truth: a survey for the Young Women's Trust found one in eight large employers admit they are aware of sexual harassment that has gone unreported. More than half of women say they have experienced sexual harassment at work, according to research by the TUC.

We all want to be immune from wrongdoing ­­– just as much perhaps as we want to be immune from harm. It is surely the belief that we – whoever that 'we' is – are above such things that leads people to suggest that victims of sexual assault should not come forward. After all, we don't have a systemic problem: it's just a couple of bad apples. No need to make a fuss.

No wonder, then, that the Church has so often suppressed the truth of sexual assault in order to present itself as the representative of the Truth. If victims of sexual assault in Westminster can be asked to put party loyalty over their own needs, how much more can church leaders ask those in their care to prioritise God's public image.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:11 AM

Limerick priest helping heal scars of falsely accused colleagues

LIMERICK (IRELAND)
The Limerick Post

November 6, 2017

A COUNTY Limerick priest is extending a helping hand to his traumatised colleagues who have been falsely accused of sexually abusing children.

Caherconlish parish priest Fr Roy Donovan, who is spokesman for the 1,000 member Association of Catholic Priests (ACP), said that they are offering group therapy sessions to help innocent churchmen who have been affected by abuse scandals.

Fr Donovan said the purpose of the ‘circle of healing’ workshops is to not only ‘help heal the scars’ of clergymen cleared of allegations, but also to provide support to clerics who feel traumatised over crimes committed by ‘the small minority of paedophiles’ in their fold.

“A lot of good, decent priests have been affected by the abuse carried out by other priests in the past. They’ve been traumatised and left with a sense of shame over what’s happened, and that’s partly why we’re holding a circle of healing.

“We’re holding the first one in Cork later this month, and it follows a demand from our members. There’ll be 20 priests attending the first session and it will run for two hours. It will be very much like a group therapy session.

The APC has been advocating radical reform in the Church including the relaxation of celibacy rules and the ordination of women priests.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:07 AM

Polygamist with Utah connection and his 4 wives detained in Mexico murder investigation

MEXICO CITY
The Associated Press

November 6, 2017

By Mark Stevenson

Mexico City • Prosecutors in northern Mexico say they have detained wanted U.S. polygamist Orson William Black Jr. and his followers and are investigating whether Black was involved in the death of three American youths whose bodies were found at a ranch in September.

The arrest of Black on Sunday — along with four of his wives, a woman described as “a concubine” and about 20 Americans without proper documents — marks the end of the fundamentalist sect leader’s long, strange period on the lam.

Few thought the trail to finding him would end in bloodshed.

The prosecutors’ office in the border state of Chihuahua says Black, 56, was captured in an area largely populated by Mennonites and is under investigation for the deaths of three Americans aged 15, 19 and 23 on Sept. 10.

In keeping with Mexican legal practice, the office identified the victims by their first names — Robert W.B., Jesse L.B. and Michael B. — and suggested they may have all carried the last name Black.

Prosecutors did not say why Black was a suspect in the deaths, but suggested the victims may have been members of his religious group. Black was a member of polygamous The Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints but split from that group in the 1980s. The FLDS began after the mainstream Mormon church disavowed polygamy in 1890.
Black was charged in 2003 in Mohave County, Ariz., with two felony counts of conspiracy to commit sexual conduct with a minor and three felony counts of sexual conduct with a minor. Black fled before he could be prosecuted.

The Arizona Attorney General’s Office filed the charges and alleged Black married two girls underage. One of the counts, according to a 2003 article by the Phoenix New Times, refers to one of the children conceived by an underage brides was a boy born in December 1998 and named Robert William Black. It was unclear Monday whether he is one of the murder victims.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:04 AM

In this moment of crisis, the Church desperately needs good priests

ENGLAND
Catholic Herald

November 6, 2017

By Fr. Alexander Lucie-Smith

The Church needs renewal. Does it have the people who can bring it about?

Did you hear the first reading at Mass yesterday, the Thirty-First Sunday of the Year, cycle A? Here it is again, in case you missed it. It comes from the prophet Malachi.

I am a great king, says the Lord of Hosts, and my name is feared throughout the nations. And now, priests, this warning is for you. If you do not listen, if you do not find it in your heart to glorify my name, says the Lord of Hosts, I will send the curse on you and curse your very blessing. But you, you have strayed from the way; you have caused many to stumble by your teaching. You have destroyed the covenant of Levi, says the Lord of Hosts. And so I in my turn have made you contemptible and vile in the eyes of the whole people in repayment for the way you have not kept to my paths but have shown partiality in your administration.

Have we not all one Father? Did not one God create us? Why, then, do we break faith with one another, profaning the covenant of our ancestors?

These words are a nice reminder to us all that the words of the Bible are not just of their own time, but for all time; goodness knows what in particular the priests of Israel had done to arouse the prophet’s wrath, but the words resonate today for reasons we all know.

First of all, the child abuse scandal in the Catholic Church. This was caused by priests who “strayed from the way”, that did not keep to the Church’s teaching, a teaching they themselves were supposed not just to uphold but to teach and preach. If that wasn’t bad enough, the subsequent cover-up turned a bad situation into a full-blown crisis, because it revealed to the world, and to those of us in the Church, that the Church’s institutions were not working as they should have been. In other words, those charged with oversight were not overseeing things properly.

Most of the vilification for the child abuse crisis has fallen on the priests of the Church, largely because these are the only “officials” of the Church the general public meets, though there have been several high ranking clergy who have also been made “contemptible and vile in the eyes of the whole people”: one thinks, for example, of Cardinal Law of Boston, as well as the most unfair persecution, from some quarters, of Pope Benedict XVI. But on the whole, it is the priests, the men who are the daily point of contact with the public, who have had their collective reputation besmirched. That is something we priests have had to live with. But that is not really the most bitter fruit of the Church’s mismanagement: the real harm done is seen in the ruined lives of the abused and in the loss of faith by the laity.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:00 AM

November 6, 2017

As #MeToo harassment claims hit the Church of England, it’s an institution still steeped in sexism

BOSTON (MA)
The Conversation

November 6, 2017

The Church of England is the latest institution to be swept up in the #MeToo wave of disclosures about sexual abuse and harassment. As Rachel Trewick, the bishop of Gloucester told the Guardian, it’s dangerous to imagine that the “church is somehow an elite group of people” immune from the issue of harassment. In an interview with Channel 4 News, Jayne Ozanne, a senior lay member of the church, said she thought sexual harassment and abuse was widespread within the church.

My ongoing research into how women clergy negotiate their belonging in the Church of England suggests that the institution has a uniquely problematic relationship with sex and gender. The stories I’m hearing from women priests about everyday unhealthy and humiliating practices based on perceptions of gender are in many ways no different to the stories lots of other women might tell.

Yet, women clergy must also negotiate a system whose symbolism is dominated by men in their bid to belong within the institution – and access power. Life has not been easy for women in the church: a male saviour, sent by God with masculine names, a traditionally male priesthood, a male-oriented history, a creation myth that casts the woman as temptress, and the battles required to read Biblical text in a non-sexist way. The legacy of Christian culture is that men and women are constructed as different, in ways that hand power to men.

Women clergy are awake to the ways in which this plays out. As priests, they must slay the demons attached to the myth of being different-but-equal. Roles and attitudes expected of women that are hidden in “feminine” traits undermine their leadership and authority in subtle ways. For example, the way they look is constantly judged and evaluated. One woman recounted that she was told the feminine timbre of her voice made her inaudible.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:33 PM

Attorney: Priest gave sharp, unemotional answers on Guam child abuses

GUAM
USA Today Network

November 5, 2017

By Haidee V Eugenio

HAGÅTÑA, Guam — Former Guam priest Louis Brouillard did not show much emotion and remained fairly sharp mentally when he provided, over a four-day period, information about the "tragic circumstances that allowed him to have access to Guam's children for many years," according to one of the attorneys involved in more than 140 lawsuits accusing Brouillard of child sex abuse.

Brouillard's Oct. 31 to Nov. 3 deposition in Pine City, Minnesota, where he lives, brought together attorneys for most plaintiffs and defendants from different parts of the nation.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:31 PM

Twin Cities Archdiocese releases names of 19 men suspected of sexually abusing minors

ST. PAUL and MINNEAPOLIS (MN)
Star Tribune

November 4, 2017

By Karen Zamora

14 of the men have died; none who survives serves in any pastoral role.

The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis on Friday afternoon released the names of 19 deceased or former priests or members of religious orders against whom it now acknowledges “substantiated claims of sexual abuse of minors.”

Many of the names have long been in the public domain, released by their religious orders on their own lists of members credibly accused of abuse, named in victims’ lawsuits or on websites compiled by abuse survivors. But it appears to be the first time the archdiocese has released their names in relation to its own jurisdiction.

In a statement on the archdiocese’s website, Tim O’Malley, director of the archdiocese’s Office of Ministerial Standards and Safe Environment, wrote, “Eighteen of the men have been disclosed by their diocese or religious order based on alleged abuse outside of the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis, but had, at some point, served or spent time in this archdiocese. The other man served in the archdiocese until his death in the early 1960s and is being disclosed now based on recent interviews with victims/survivors who courageously came forward.”

Tom Halden, director of communications for the archdiocese, said late Friday that he had no comment beyond what the news release said.

Fourteen of the men on the new list have died. None who survives now serves in any pastoral capacity.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:29 PM

Archdiocese releases names of 19 clergy accused of sexual abuse of a minor

ST. PAUL and MINNEAPOLIS (MN)
Pioneer Press

November 3, 2017

By Deanna Weniger

The names of 19 men have been added to the growing list of abusers who at some point served or spent time in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis.

The statement, posted Friday on the archdiocese’s website, defined the men as those “who have substantiated claims of sexual abuse of a minor against them.”

All but one of the men committed the alleged abuse outside of the Twin Cities, but were included because they spent some time during their careers at the local diocese, the statement said.

One man, Vincent Worzalla, who died in 1962, was accused of abuse within the local diocese. He worked at Holy Cross in Minneapolis from 1915 to 1951 and at Holy Trinity in South St. Paul from 1951 until his death.

He is being disclosed now “based on recent interviews with victims/survivors who courageously came forward,” the statement said.

Some of the names on the list already had been released, due to prior litigation. Fourteen are deceased.

Those still living are James Moeglein, Dunstan Moorse, Michael Paquet, James Phillips and Thomas O’Brien.

The others listed are Cornelius Devenster, John Gleason, Othmar Hohmann, Paul Kabat, Thomas Meyer, Orville Munie, John Murphy, David Roney, Urban Schmitt, Michael Skoblik, Charles Stark, Emil Twardochleb and Pirmin Wendt.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:13 PM

Padre do Monte com uma filha agita comunidade católica

LISBON (PORTUGAL)
Diário de Notícias

November 5, 2017

By Élvio Passos

[Google Translate: Father Giselo Andrade assumed the paternity of a girl, born on August 18 of this year, in the parish of São Pedro, probably in the Dr. Nélio Mendonça Hospital. The fact that the parish priest of Monte had a daughter gave rise to a series of public statements and initiatives, some humorous in order to ask the bishop of Funchal to at least remove the priest from the duties for which he is appointed.]

Giselo Andrade quer continuar padre, mas pondera pôr o lugar à disposição da Diocese

O padre Giselo Andrade assumiu a paternidade de uma menina, nascida no dia 18 de Agosto deste ano, na freguesia de São Pedro, provavelmente, no Hospital Dr. Nélio Mendonça. O facto de o pároco do Monte ter uma filha deu azo a um conjunto de alegações e iniciativas públicas, algumas jocosas outras no sentido de pedir ao bispo do Funchal que, no mínimo, afastasse o sacerdote das funções para que está nomeado.

Perante as acusações e ainda sem a confirmação de que o padre tinha uma filha, no dia 27 de Outubro, o DIÁRIO pediu a Giselo Andrade que esclarecesse/comentasse as acusações, que lhe eram dirigidas, com incidência no facto de ter um filho e ter sido ‘obrigado’ a assumi-lo. Pedimos, igualmente, esclarecimentos sobre a administração da paróquia, sendo o padre acusado de ‘empregar’ a família e não prestar contas.

A resposta de Giselo Andrade, no mesmo dia, foi forte: “Relativamente aos factos alegados nego-os peremptoriamente sendo certo que me reserva ao direito de intentar queixa-crime contra os responsáveis por uma eventual publicação através da impressa ou de qualquer outro meio de divulgação.”

De facto, a pergunta do DIÁRIO falava em filho e o padre Giselo é pai de uma menina, podendo ser essa a interpretação do sacerdote, para negar o que é verdade. Na última sexta-feira, voltámos a tentar o contacto com o pároco do Monte para saber se mantinha o que dissera, uma semana antes, ou se gostaria de fazer outros esclarecimentos. Desta vez, não obtivemos resposta.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:09 PM

Examen psicológico practicado a víctima de violación es contundente

PERU
Jornada

November 6, 2017

[Google Translate: After several months of not having obtained any result, before the complaint filed with the Public Prosecutor for acts of rape against the priest Félix Pariona Huacre, the defense of the victim ALL released the result of the psychological report which states "(). .. The patient presents trauma of psychosexual origin due to sexual abuse and other alterations of a sexual nature produced during her childhood and adolescence ... () "]

Tras varios meses de no haber obtenido resultado alguno, ante la denuncia presentada al Ministerio Público por actos de violación sexual contra el sacerdote Félix Pariona Huacre, la defensa de la víctima A.L.L. dio a conocer el resultado del informe psicológico el cual señala “( )...La paciente presenta trauma de origen psicosexual producto de eventos de abuso sexual y otras alteraciones de índole sexual producidos durante su niñez y adolescencia... ( )”

Sin embargo, desde que se denunció el hecho en febrero de este año, la Segunda Fiscalía Corporativa de Huamanga a cargo del fiscal Nilo Paredes Chávez archivó el caso resolviendo que no existen indicios relevantes de la existencia del delito. Esta extraña decisión ha levantado oscuros vínculos entre dos instituciones (Ministerio Público y la Iglesia Católica).

Frente a esta resolución la defensa ha presentado la queja de derecho el cual ha sido declarado fundado en segunda instancia, por ese motivo se ha ampliado la investigación, lo cual amerita un nuevo pronunciamiento.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:05 PM

Escobar Gaviria: otro pedido de prisión

ARGENTINA
Diario del Sur Digital

November 6, 2017

[Google Translate: While awaiting the resolution of the cassation appeal filed for the annulment of the ruling that last September sentenced him to 25 years in prison, the priest Juan Diego Escobar Gaviria faces a new request for preventive detention in the context of another case of abuse and corruption of minors processed by the Fiscal Unit of Nogoyá.]

dos pedidos de prisión preventiva, una condena y un nuevo juicio próximo a iniciarse

Mientras aguarda que se resuelva el recurso de casación presentado para que se dicte la nulidad del fallo que en septiembre último lo condenó a 25 años de cárcel, el cura Juan Diego Escobar Gaviria se enfrenta a un nuevo pedido de prisión preventiva en el marco de otro caso de abuso y corrupción de menores que tramita la Unidad Fiscal de Nogoyá.


Así lo indicó a Entre Ríos Ahora el fiscal Federico Uriburu, de la Unidad Fiscal de Nogoyá, que ya tiene concluida la investigación penal preparatoria de la nueva denuncia por abuso que pesa sobre el cura, ya condenado por otros cuatro casos. El caso ya fue ventilado durante el juicio oral al que fue sometido el cura, en agosto pasado en Gualeguay.

Escobar Gaviria, que fue párroco de San Lucas Evangelista, de Lucas González, entre 2005 y 2016, enfrentó, en agosto último, un juicio oral y público por cuatro casos de abusos y corrupción de menores. El Tribunal de Juicios y Apelaciones de Gualeguay, que lo juzgó, lo halló culpable de los delitos de abusos y corrupción de menores, y lo condenó a 25 años de prisión. Aunque hasta tanto quede firme esa sentencia, decidió sostener la prisión preventiva que le dictó la Justicia el 21 de abril, y lo mantuvo preso en la Unidad Penal de Victoria, donde está ahora.

Durante el desarrollo de las audiencias, uno de los testigos que llevaron los fiscales Dardo Tórtul y Federico Uriburu contó de los abusos a los que lo sometía