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June 23, 2018

Chile se vuelve referente en lucha contra abusos y eleva presión al Papa

CHILE
La Tercera

June 23, 2018

[Google Translation: Chile becomes a benchmark in the fight against abuse and elevates pressure on the Pope]

By Juan Paulo Iglesias

Activistas lanzaron campaña para exigir al Papa a actuar en el resto del mundo con la misma decisión que en Chile. “La iglesia chilena no es única”, asegura a La Tercera Anne Barret Doyle, fundadora de Bishop Accountability.

“Mientras todos están mirando Chile, el arzobispo Wilson de Australia fue condenado en una corte criminal por cubrir abusos (será sentenciado el 3 de julio). Se retiró de su diócesis por el momento, pero no ha renunciado y no ha sido removido por el Papa. ¿Por qué?”. El tuit de Marie Collins, la activista contra los abusos sexuales en el clero que renunció a la Comisión Pontifica para la Protección de Menores, reiteró el jueves pasado un llamado que se ha repetido en redes sociales y en el que han insistido diversas organización contra los abusos: que las señales dadas por el Papa Francisco en el caso chileno se extiendan a otras partes del mundo. Por ello, varios promotores de la lucha contra la pedofilia en la iglesia están aprovechando lo que la agencia The Associated Press califica como “el momentum” de la crisis de abusos chilena para impulsar una respuesta global del Vaticano.

[Google Translation: Activists launched a campaign to demand the Pope to act in the rest of the world with the same decision as in Chile. "The Chilean church is not unique," assures Anne Barret Doyle, founder of Bishop Accountability.

"While everyone is looking at Chile, Archbishop Wilson of Australia was convicted in a criminal court for covering abuses (he will be sentenced on July 3). He retired from his diocese for the time being, but has not resigned and has not been removed by the Pope. Why?". The tweet of Marie Collins, the activist against sexual abuse in the clergy who resigned from the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors, reiterated last Thursday a call that has been repeated in social networks and in which various organizations have insisted against the abuses: that the signals given by Pope Francisco in the Chilean case spread to other parts of the world. For this reason, several promoters of the fight against pedophilia in the church are taking advantage of what The Associated Press agency describes as "the momentum" of the crisis of Chilean abuses to promote a global response from the Vatican.]

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 1:36 PM

U.S. Media: For the Sake of Our Children, Stop Enabling Pope Francis and Tell the Truth

UNITED STATES
The Open Tabernacle (blog)

June 23, 2018

By Betty Clermont

* On June 19, Archbishop Charles Scicluna, described as Pope Francis’ “top expert” on sex abuse, said, in effect, that his report on clerical sex abuse in Chile would remain secret. His plan for “healing” and “reconciliation” in Chile was rejected by victims of ecclesial sex abuse.

* On May 20, Pope Francis announced he was elevating Archbishop Luis Ladaria Ferrer to cardinal. The pope had already promoted Ladaria as head of the Vatican department that handles sex abuse claims. Ladaria had previously served as second in command. In April, a French court set a date for Ladaria’s trial. He is accused of covering up a child sex abuse scandal. Far worse, after Ladaria covered up for Fr. Gianni Trotta, the priest sexually assaulted an 11-year-old and there are nine other alleged cases of sex abuse against boys that occurred in 2014.

* On May 5, Guam Archbishop Anthony Apuron was given a place of honor at an event attended by Pope Francis. Apuron is accused of rape and sexual assault of minors. In February, Pope Francis had greeted Apuron “with affection” and “privately giving him a few words of encouragement.” Pope Francis removed Apuron in 2016, meaning he found the charges to be credible, but the archbishop has always remained a free man, retaining his title, income and honors.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 1:32 PM

AP: Ex-Priest Who Abused Child Allowed Access to Chicago Schools

CHICAGO (IL)
Associated Press via Channel 5 News, Chicago

June 22, 2018

By Michael Tarm

Chicago Public Schools correspondence provided to The Associated Press shows that the nation's third-largest school district gave a former Roman Catholic priest access to its schools for months despite knowing he was forced to leave the priesthood for sexually abusing a boy of 6 when he was around 15.

Only after the victim and the AP asked why the district let former cleric Bruce Wellems enter schools as part of alternative-schooling programs he oversees, did the nation's third-largest school district recently ban him.

Criticism that the district hasn't done enough to protect 370,000 students at nearly 650 schools from sexual misconduct intensified after a June 8 article in the Chicago Tribune, which reported CPS didn't adequately vet its own employees and cited scores of alleged cases of sexual abuse by staffers. Illinois lawmakers held hearings on the issue this week.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:47 AM

The Catholic Church turned its back on Father Glen Walsh, says his brother

NEWCASTLE (AUSTRALIA)
Newcastle Herald

June 23, 2018

By Joanne McCarthy

Glen Walsh was the whistleblower Catholic priest who died alone in a Newcastle church building in November, only weeks before he was due to give damning evidence at the trial of Archbishop Philip Wilson.

He took his own life, aged 55 – a priest who paid a devastating price for reporting Hunter paedophile priest Jim Fletcher to police in 2004, while the archbishop kept silent about what he knew.

“The church turned its back on Glen,” said his brother, John, only weeks after Wilson was convicted in Newcastle for concealing Fletcher’s crimes, in a case that made headlines around the world.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:43 AM

Vatican diplomat admits he possessed child abuse images

VATICAN CITY
Reuters via The Guardian

June 23, 2018

Monsignor Carlo Alberto Capella tells court he developed ‘morbid’ desire

A Catholic priest who worked as a diplomat at the Vatican’s embassy in Washington has admitted at the start of his trial that he had possessed images of child sexual abuse while based in the US.

Monsignor Carlo Alberto Capella, who was arrested in the Vatican in April after he had been recalled, told the court in the Vatican that he had developed a “morbid” desire after he arrived in the US to take up the diplomatic post in 2016. “It was never part of my priestly life before,” he told the court, adding that he was unhappy at the embassy in Washington.

In August 2017, the US state department notified the Holy See of a possible violation of laws relating to images of sexual abuse of children by a member of the diplomatic corps of the Holy See accredited to Washington.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:40 AM

NSW government reforms sentencing laws on child sexual abuse

NEW SOUTH WALES (AUSTRALIA)
ABC (Australian Broadcasting Corporation) Radio

June 23, 2018

By Emily Bourke on AM

[AUDIO]

The New South Wales government has created new laws around sentencing and the criminal justice process in cases of child sexual abuse.

There will be tougher penalties for those who fail to report or protect against child abuse, and possible life sentences for abusers.

And legal loopholes that have made it hard for survivors to sue institutions will be closed off.

But the government is not moving on the vexed issue of breaking the Catholic seal of the confessional, saying it requires a national response.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:37 AM

Pa. court indefinitely blocks release of clergy sex abuse report

HARRISBURG (PA)
Catholic News Agency/EWTN

June 22, 2018

By Mary Rezac

The release of a Grand Jury report detailing cases of clerical sex abuse in six of the eight Catholic dioceses in Pennsylvania has been blocked by the state’s Supreme Court for unspecified reasons.

The court released the unsigned order June 20, but did not state which individuals or groups had applied for the stay or the reason behind the application. It also does not state for how long the stay applies or when the report could be published in the future.

“And now, this 20th day of June, 2018, the Applications for Stay are granted. The Honorable Norman A. Krumenacker, III, and the Office of the Attorney General are enjoined from releasing Report No. 1 of the 40th Statewide Investigating Grand Jury pending further order of this Court,” the order, issued by the state’s Supreme Court, reads. Krumenacker is a Cambria County judge who has overseen the Grand Jury proceedings.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:33 AM

WDSU Investigates: Victim of alleged sexual abuse by Catholic church deacon speaks out

NEW ORLEANS (LA)
WDSU-TV

June 22, 2018

By Travers Mackel

[VIDEO]

A victim of alleged sexual abuse by a member of the clergy is speaking out to WDSU Investigates.

His comments come after the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New Orleans gave him a high six-figure settlement. The man's lawyer said there could be more victims.

The victim and his lawyer now want the Orleans Parish District Attorney's Office to look into a criminal prosecution.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:30 AM

Secrecy shrouds Indian Church's sex abuse procedures

NEW DELHI (INDIA)
UCANews.com via La Croix International

June 23, 2018

Guide produced in 2015 with Vatican approval was circulated only among bishops and major superiors of religious congregations

The Indian Church's effort to deal with clergy sexual abuse cases continues to be entangled in confusion and obscurity as guidelines bishops produced three years ago remain out of reach to Catholics.

Archbishop Leo Cornelio of Bhopal confirmed that the Catholic Bishops' Conference of India had produced a guide to dealing with allegations of clergy abusing children.

"It is not meant for public consumption. It is for bishops to address the exceptional aberration of sexual abuse of children by a member of the clergy," said the archbishop.

The bishops' conference published a guide on sexual harassment in the workplace in September 2017 after it was drawn up two years earlier. It reiterated the church's policy to maintain "zero tolerance" of sexual abuse of children and women.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:24 AM

June 22, 2018

The Latest: Bonds will pay for $500M Nassar settlement

EAST LANSING (MI)
The Associated Press

June 22, 2018

The Latest from a meeting of Michigan State University's governing board on how it will handle a $500 million settlement with victims of sports doctor Larry Nassar (all times local):

10:45 a.m.

Michigan State University will sell bonds to pay for a $500 million settlement with hundreds of women and girls who said they were sexually assaulted by former sports doctor Larry Nassar.

Trustees approved the plan Friday after rejecting calls to fire interim President John Engler for unflattering emails that disparaged victims and their lawyers. Engler apologized Thursday for suggesting Rachael Denhollander was getting a kickback from her attorney for her steady criticism of the school.

Michigan State is freezing salaries for top administrative and leadership roles and raising faculty salaries by 1.5 percent instead of the typical 2.5 percent. Engler also is counting on payments from insurance companies.

Tuition will be higher for most students in fall, but Engler says the new revenue won't help cover the Nassar settlement.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:15 PM

5 anti-trafficking activists gang-raped in India, police say

NEW DELHI (INDIA)
CNN

June 22, 2018

By Manveena Suri

Five female anti-trafficking activists were gang-raped in the eastern Indian state of Jharkhand, police said Friday, the same region where two teens were raped and then set on fire last month.

The latest incident took place on Tuesday afternoon in Kochang village in Khunti district, a tribal area in the state, according to Amol Homkar, deputy inspector general of police in Jharkhand's capital, Ranchi.
The five women and three men were performing a street play on the issue of human trafficking when a group of armed men on bikes disrupted the performance.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:14 PM

5 female activists gang-raped at gunpoint, Indian police say

NEW DELHI (INDIA)
CBS NEWS

June 22, 2018

By Arshad R. Zargar

Five female activists working for an organization backed by a Christian missionary group were gang-raped at gunpoint in the eastern Indian state of Jharkhand this week, police said on Friday. The women were accompanied by four men and two nuns as they performed a street play to raise awareness of human trafficking in the Khunti district on Tuesday when at least six armed men attacked them.

They attackers beat the male members of the team and forced the five women into a car, took them to a nearby forest and raped them for three hours before releasing them, police officials have told CBS News.

"We have taken the statement of the victims," Homkar Amol Venukant, Deputy Inspector General of Police in Ranchi, the state capital of Jarkhand, told CBS News on Friday. The victims told officers that the attackers "filmed the act on their mobile phones," and threatened to publish the videos on the internet if the crime was reported.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:12 PM

Former UW student sentenced to 3 years for assaults

MADISON (WI)
The Associated Press

June 21, 2018

A judge on Thursday sentenced a former University of Wisconsin-Madison student to three years in prison for sexually assaulting three female students and choking or stalking two others.

Dane County Circuit Judge Stephen Ehlke also sentenced Alec Cook, 22, of Minnesota to eight years of extended supervision once he's released from prison. Cook pleaded guilty to the charges in February.

Prosecutors were seeking 19 years behind bars, while defense attorneys sought probation with the possibility of jail time.

Ehlke said he had to give Cook credit for having no criminal record, no bail violations and sparing the victims a trial. The judge said he hoped that the end of criminal proceedings against Cook would "give closure" to the victims, the Wisconsin State Journal reported .

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:05 PM

Victims React to Court Ruling Blocking Release of Report into Clergy Sex Abuse

ERIE (PA)
Erie News Now

June 21, 2018

Victims react to court ruling delaying public release of grand jury report on clergy sex abuse.

Abuse victims today reacting to yesterday's court ruling delaying the release of that grand jury report into clergy sex abuse.

The panel investigated Erie and five other Catholic Dioceses around the state.

Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro launched the investigating in 2016 and had planned to make the results public next week.

The court ruling blocked that release.

Victims today told us they are confident Shapiro will keep fighting to make the massive report public.

And they think ultimately the public will learn about the abuse they suffered.

But in the meantime, the decision has been difficult to accept.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:03 PM

FORMER PRIEST ALLEGEDLY MOLESTED AND RAPED GIRL FOR YEARS AFTER SHE WENT TO HIM FOR CONFESSION

EL PASO (TX)
Oxygen

June 22, 2018

By Jon Silman

Former Priest Miguel Luna allegedly molested an 8-year-old girl during confession, telling her not to say anything because what happens in confession, stays there.

A former Texas priest has been accused of molesting and raping a female altar server for years — with the alleged abuse starting in confession.

Miguel Luna, 68, was arrested June 11 on charges of aggravated sexual abuse of a child, according to court documents cited by KVIA-TV in El Paso.

Luna was arrested after the victim, now 34, decided to come forward. The abuse allegedly began when the victim was 8. Luna was taking a confessional with the victim and then start "kissing her passionately," court documents said.

He would tell the little girl "remember this is confession, so whatever happens here stays in here," according to the complaint.

By the time the girl turned 10, he was touching her breasts, according to KVIA-TV. When she turned 12, he allegedly raped her. The girl said she felt pain and bled after it happened, according to court documents.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:01 PM

Kansas priest revoked of rank after investigation of child sexual abuse allegations

KANSAS CITY (KS)
The Associated Press

June 21, 2018

A Kansas priest has been revoked of his rank years after an investigation into multiple child sexual abuse allegations against him.

The Kansas City Star reports that Archbishop Joseph Naumann issued a decree in December removing the Reverand John Wisner from the clergy. The decree was announced May 25th.

The Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas says it suspended Wisner from active ministry in 2012 after receiving many allegations he sexually abused minors decades ago. The archdiocese says an internal investigation found the allegations credible.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:58 PM

Release of 'blistering' priest sex abuse report blocked

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
The Philadelphia Tribune

June 22, 208

By Tim Darragh

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court on Wednesday blocked the expected release of a massive report examining sexual abuse and misconduct by priests in six Pennsylvania dioceses, including Scranton and Allentown.

The state’s high court issued an order barring Cambria County Judge Norman Krumenacker, who supervised the grand jury that heard testimony over two years, and Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro from releasing the report until further order.

The court’s order does not indicate who sought to block release of the report, but it indicates the court received more than one application for a stay.

Representatives from both the Diocese of Scranton and Diocese of Allentown said those institutions were not among petitioners who moved to block the report.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:55 PM

Kansas priest defrocked after child sex abuse allegations

KANSAS CITY (KS)
The Associated Press

June 22, 2018

A Kansas priest has been revoked of his rank years after an investigation into multiple child sexual abuse allegations against him.

The Kansas City Star reports that Archbishop Joseph Naumann issued a decree in December removing the Rev. John Wisner from the clergy. The decree was announced May 25.

The Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas says it suspended Wisner from active ministry in 2012 after receiving many allegations he sexually abused minors decades ago. The archdiocese says an internal investigation found the allegations credible.

Wisner has denied the allegations. The archdiocese says it notified law enforcement, but Wisner was never criminally charged in relation to the allegations.

The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests criticized the archdiocese on Wednesday for taking so long to announce Wisner's defrocking.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:53 PM

National register proposed for clergy to ease safeguarding concerns

ENGLAND
Church Times

June 22, 2018

By Hattie Williams

ALL Church of England clergy will be required by canon law to submit their name and ministerial authority to a new national register, assuming that the General Synod follows the recommendations of the National Safeguarding Steering Group (NSSG).

The group’s report, published on Friday, will be debated by the Synod when it meets in York next month.

The report also calls for a new policy on granting and renewing Permission To Officiate (PTO), a review of the Clergy Discipline Measure (CDM), and new requirements to “strengthen suitability and selection” of candidates for all forms of ministry.

The report has been produced by the NSSG in response to safeguarding failures, concerns, and recommendations highlighted during the public hearing conducted by the Independent Inquiry into Child Sex Abuse (ICSA) in March. The hearing used the diocese of Chichester as a case-study to investigate the extent to which the Anglican Church had failed to protect children from sexual abuse.

The inquiry established that there is no public national database for the clergy besides Crockford’s Clerical Directory, which is incomplete since clerics can elect not to appear in it. Also, records of clerics with current or expired PTO, criminal records, and other concerns kept on file by dioceses tend to be incomplete, lost, ignored, or blighted by poor record-keeping.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:51 PM

NSW child abuse laws pass, clergy exempt

AUSTRALIA
Australian Associated Press

June 21, 2018

By Tom Rabe

New laws that could see people jailed for failing to report child sex abuse have passed NSW parliament but religious clergy remain exempt.

The bill passed the NSW upper house late on Wednesday night strengthening state laws surrounding child sex abuse - but Greens MP David Shoebridge said the legislation doesn't go far enough.

The new laws provide an exemption for lawyers, health professionals and religious clergy, unless the attorney-general provides special permission to prosecute.

Mr Shoebridge moved an amendment in the Legislative Council to scrap exemptions for church figures but neither the coalition nor Labor supported it.

"When it comes to the confessional the coalition and Labor both put the interests of the church ahead of the safety of children," Mr Shoebridge said in a statement after the bill was passed.

Despite upper house Nationals not voting for Mr Shoebridge's amendment, their party voted last week to introduce such measures at its annual general conference in Cowra.

Police minister and former Nationals leader Troy Grant said he thought the amendment to expose priests to the laws could garner support from his colleagues.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:50 PM

Clergy sex abuse report could be delayed months; here's why the legal process is complex

HARRISBURG (PA)
Penn Live

June 21, 2018

By Ivey DeJesus

This report has been updated to clarify information on the unidentified and unindicted individuals.

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court was clear and succinct on Wednesday when it barred the release of a long-awaited statewide grand jury report into clergy sex abuse.

The court's four-sentence order offered no explanation as to why the court made the decision; what, if any, vote count was taken; nor did it give indication as to whether the order signals that the court will hear future arguments on the matter.

The seemingly abridged order simply blocked the Office of the Attorney General and the Cambria County Court of Common Pleas judge overseeing the grand jury from releasing the findings of the probe. The order may have been blunt, but it was within the strictest bounds of the law.

"The mantra here is that grand juries are secret and that's the problem," said Nicholas Ressetar, chief law clerk with the Harrisburg-based law firm Costopoulos, Foster & Fields. "Their dilemma is, 'How could we become more transparent without giving up the names of the individuals or institutions making these claims?' It's a dilemma really."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:49 PM

Advocate fears for safety, welfare of victims after court blocks release of clergy sex abuse report

ALLENTOWN (PA)
Penn Live

June 20, 2018

By Ivey DeJesus

Rep. Mark Rozzi on Wednesday expressed concern for the safety and welfare of victims after a state high court blocked the release of a report that would have exposed predators across six Catholic dioceses in Pennsylvania.

Rozzi, who himself at 13 was sexually molested by his priest, said he was deeply troubled that victims would be devastated by the news and act out that desperation.

"We must make sure they are protected and that they are not going to hurt themselves," said Rozzi, who minutes after news broke about the court order received text messages and phone calls from victims. "I want them to know this fight is not over by any means and I will use every resource available to continue to fight to seek justice."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:47 PM

NSW looks to reforms in response to child sex abuse royal commission

AUSTRALIA
The Sydney Morning Herald

June 23, 2018

By Lisa Visentin

The NSW government will pursue extensive reforms as it adopts hundreds of recommendations from the royal commission into child sex abuse, but it has not endorsed new laws to force priests to break the confessional seal.

In a lengthy report released on Saturday, the NSW government formally responded to every recommendation made by the commission, accepting 336 recommendations outright or in principle, and leaving 14 "subject to further consideration".

In the report, the NSW government acknowledged the survivors of institutional abuse "and the impact of past failures of governments to protect them".

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:46 PM

Grand jury secrecy hides reason for Supreme Court order barring release of priest sex abuse report

ALLENTOWN (PA)
Of The Morning Call

June 21, 2018

By Steve Esack and Tim Darragh

Two paragraphs, 63 words.

That’s all it took for the Pennsylvania Supreme Court to halt the pending publication of a lengthy grand jury report detailing decades of child sex abuse claims and possible cover-ups in six Catholic dioceses.

The high court’s majority decision, issued Wednesday, could be unprecedented under the state’s grand jury law, which is revered by prosecutors for its investigative power, decried by some defense lawyers as unconstitutional overreach and the subject of separate judicial and legislative reviews.

But the reasoning behind the justices’ decision is unknown.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:43 PM

Canonist says Guam church has more options with sanctioned priest

GUAM
KUAM News

June 22, 2018

By Krystal Paco

He's not your typical man on the run...he's a priest. Father Adrian Cristobal was given a deadline to report back to Guam last Friday in light of clergy sexual abuse allegations against him. Though he's been sanctioned by the Archdiocese of Agana and forbidden from acting as a priest in public, is this a strong enough message?

Apparently he's in no hurry home. "It's no different from any criminal mind. People don't generally want to face the music for the crimes they have committed," said advocate, former priest, and canonist Patrick J. Wall, referring to Father Cristobal. Wall is no stranger to the scenario, having been part of investigations involving priests who abandoned their posts, some as a result of clergy sexual abuse allegations.

"We had a abbot in England who was actually charged with child sexual abuse and he just failed to report to his hearing. And so he was on the run for almost six years. INTERPOL finally found him in Kosovo," he explained. And so then he was just recently convicted this past year for child sexual abuse., so it does happen."

Since April, Father Adrian has been named in three clergy sexual abuse lawsuits in the District Court of Guam. The former Barrigada altar boys are only identified by their initials to protect their privacy. L.J.C., J.C.C., and J.E. all allege they were sexually molested by the priest in the 1990s. J.C.C., however, alleges the abuse spanned over a 15-year period - and only came to an end in 2013.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:39 PM

‘We’re Coming for Them’: Survivors Demand Release of 884-Page Pennsylvania Clergy Sex Abuse Report

ALLENTOWN (PA)
The Daily Beast

June 22, 2018

By Victoria Albert

A court just muzzled the ‘damaging’ findings on decades of Catholic clerical abuse. But it’s not over. ‘We are coming for them,’ says a state rep who was raped by a priest at 13.

Mark Rozzi thought he was days away from justice, or at least the beginning of it.

It started when he was 13, and a priest at his school in Hyde Park, Pennsylvania, started grooming him. For months, the Rev. Edward Graff talked with Rozzi about sex, gave him alcohol, and showed him pornography. Then, one fateful day, he raped him in a rectory shower.

Rozzi didn’t report his abuse for 26 years. But he later learned that during that period, Graff was transferred multiple times between parishes, and allegedly abused children in Texas, too. In 2002, Graff was arrested on child-abuse charges after facing dozens of accusations, The Washington Post reports. He later died in jail.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:37 PM

At 125th year, activist church St. Agatha has emerged from clergy sex abuse pain

CHICAGO (IL)
Chicago-Times

June 22, 2018

By Maudlyne Ihejirika

The Rev. Larry Dowling still remembers when he got the call from Cardinal Francis George asking him to consider serving as pastor of St. Agatha’s Church in North Lawndale.

It was 2007, and St. Agatha’s was in agony. The church at 3151 W. Douglas was at the center of the clergy sex abuse scandal rocking the Chicago Archdiocese, with its former pastor, the Rev. Daniel J. McCormack, accused — and later convicted — of abusing five boys.

“When I got off the phone, the scripture that came to mind was Jesus on the seashore with Peter, saying, ‘Do you love me?’ And Peter saying, ‘Yes. Yes. Yes.’ Jesus said, ‘Well if you really love me, I may take you where you don’t really want to go,'” said Dowling, who was then in his 10th year as pastor at St. Denis Church in Ashburn.

“I said, ‘But I still have some things I can accomplish here. I’m comfortable.’ What I heard back was, ‘I didn’t call you to be comfortable.'”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:34 PM

Our View: Praise to Shapiro, judge, for seeking abuse report’s release

WILKES-BARRE (PA)
Times Leader

June 21, 2018

We respect the sanctity of the American judicial system, including the necessary secrecy of grand jury proceedings.

That doesn’t prevent us from feeling grossly disappointed in the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s order Wednesday indefinitely holding up the release of a grand jury report into the handling of sexual abuse claims involving six of the eight Roman Catholic dioceses across the state, including the Scranton Diocese.

The report is expected to reveal details of widespread abuse and efforts to conceal it and protect clergy by officials within and outside the church.

The court’s two-paragraph order did not reveal who had filed petitions blocking release of the report, only that those petitions had been granted.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:30 AM

Sex abuse survivor releases book about attacks suffered in care

NEW ZEALAND
Stuff.co.nz

June 22, 2018

By Joel Ineson

Darryl Smith says the abuse started on his first night at Marylands – a Christchurch school for children with learning difficulties – in 1971.

Woken from his sleep, the 6 year old was called to a Order of St John of God brother's office late in the evening and told one of the men responsible for his care wanted to speak about his grandmother. Instead, the man raped him.

The abuse continued over the course of a year and came from other members of the order and older students, Smith said. He eventually told his parents what happened.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:28 AM

Pope talks about China, migration, sex abuse, women

FRANCE
La Croix

June 22, 2018

What resolves things is acceptance, study, prudence, says Francis

Pope Francis in a new one-on-one interview with Philip Pullella, head of Reuters’ Rome bureau has spoken on various issues such as the Holy See’s talks with China, the position of women within the church, migration, populism, Chile’s clerical sex abuse crisis and reform of the Roman Curia.

On talks with China

Pope Francis said he was optimistic about the outcome of normalization talks with the Chinese authorities while at the same time acknowledging that dialogue “is a risk” but still preferred it to “the certain defeat” of not dialoguing with Beijing.

Here is some of what Francis said on the subject.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:26 AM

Victim advocates, lawyers outraged by court's halt of clergy abuse report

HARRISBURG (PA)
WHTM

June 21, 2018

By Priscilla Liguori

Victim advocates and lawyers are outraged after the Pennsylvania Supreme Court blocked the release of a clergy sexual abuse report.

State Rep. Mark Rozzi says he felt like he was punched in the gut after hearing the announcement.

Rozzi was abused by a priest when he was a child and says he wants both the church and victims to know that the fight for transparency isn't over.

"The abuse is still being covered up, and their lawyers are still fighting their dirty battles for them," said Rozzi.

Money and power are the reasons Rozzi believes the court indefinitely blocked the report. The court said it was granting anonymous requests.

"When you have all the bishops in this investigation come out and say they support the release of the grand jury but there's somebody else standing behind them ... it draws grave concern," said Rozzi.

The report was supposed to examine decades of abuse in six Roman Catholic dioceses.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:25 AM

MOHLER: SOUTHERN BAPTISTS CHURCHES MUST BE ‘FIRST REFUGE’ FOR ABUSE VICTIMS

LOUISVILLE (KY)
SBTS Communications

June 21, 2018

Southern Baptists should not “circle the wagons” amid recent controversies, but instead must become “the first refuge for anyone who is seeking help,” argued R. Albert Mohler Jr. during a recent discussion about the future of the Southern Baptist Convention. He referenced a months-long slew of firings and resignations within Southern Baptist entities, most for reasons of moral or ethical failure.

Mohler said the way forward for the denomination is to lean into the truth and not try to hide or bury these “humiliations.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:24 AM

Sir Roger Singleton: Church should 'emphasise prevention' [Video]

ENGLAND
BBC News

June 22, 2018

The Church of England should take preventative measures to ensure "unsuitable" people do not get into positions of trust, according to Sir Roger Singleton.

Singleton, who carried out a review into how abuse allegations were reported, told Today that the Church needs "improved guidance" on reporting allegations.

His report is due next month and is expected to be highly critical of how the Church recorded past allegations of abuse.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:23 AM

Michigan State president John Engler apologizes for email attacking Nassar survivor

LANSING (MI)
Detroit Free Press

June 21, 2018

By David Jesse

Michigan State University President John Engler has issued a statement apologizing for an April email in which he attacked a Larry Nassar survivor.

In the email, Engler said Rachael Denhollander, the first person to publicly accuse Nassar of sexual assault, was taking kickbacks from the trial attorneys involved in suing MSU.

Michigan State’s board of trustees will address a plan Friday to pay a $500 million settlement to Nassar’s victims, a meeting that comes amid calls for the school’s interim president to resign over recent comments about some of the women and girls the former sports doctor sexually assaulted.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:05 AM

'They're protecting sexual predators in God's name!' Charlie Pickering slams the Catholic Church for refusing to report confessions of child sex abuse

AUSTRALIA
Daily Mail Australia

June 20, 2018

By Ekin Karasin

Charlie Pickering has criticised the Catholic Church for refusing to adhere to a new law requiring priests to report confessions of child sex abuse.

Adelaide's acting Archbishop Greg O'Kelly said last week that confessionals are 'sacred' and this cannot be changed.

Charlie hit back at the controversial decision on his ABC show The Weekly on Wednesday, claiming the church was 'protecting predators in God's name'.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:03 AM

Abilene church daycare worker indicted for Continuous Sexual Abuse of a Child

ABILENE (TX)
KTAB/KRBC

June 21, 2018

By Erica Garner

An Abilene church daycare worker accused of sexually assaulting multiple children has been indicted.

Benjamin Roberts, 25, was indicted for Continuous Sexual Abuse of a Child Thursday after at least 8 child victims were identified during an investigation that began when child pornography was found at Roberts' home in April.

Roberts was employed at the Wylie Baptist Church Early Childhood Development Center when he was initially arrested for Indecency with a Child and Possession of Child Pornography and was terminated once he was formally charged.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:02 AM

Michigan State board to consider payout to Nassar victims

LANSING (MI)
The Associated Press

June 22, 2018

By Alice Yin

Michigan State’s board of trustees will address a plan Friday to pay a $500 million settlement to Larry Nassar’s victims, a meeting that comes amid calls for the school’s interim president to resign over recent comments about some of the women and girls the former sports doctor sexually assaulted.

Although the board appears to lack the votes to oust John Engler from his interim perch, the public meeting likely will be heavily attended by people who are fed up with Engler and want him gone. The primary focus of the meeting is the school’s budget, along with the settlement plan.

Some 150 of Nassar’s victims have joined a public crusade to force Engler out of the interim job. Last week, two university trustees also signaled they could call a vote during a board meeting Friday on whether to fire him.

Engler apologized Thursday for his April email exchange suggesting gymnast Rachael Denhollander probably received a “kickback” from her plaintiff’s attorney.

“I didn’t give it the consideration it warranted,” Engler said in a statement. “That was a big mistake. I was wrong. I apologize.”

Trustee board chairman Brian Breslin called Engler’s apology “appropriate and appreciated by a majority of the board.” One of the two trustees who turned on Engler, Dianne Byrum, said she is glad he apologized and hopes he learned from it. But Brian Mosallam, the first trustee to demand that Engler step down, said in a tweet Thursday that the apology “is too little too late.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:01 AM

Michigan State president apologizes for 'kickback' comments

LANSING (MI)
The Associated Press

June 21, 2018

By Alice Yin

Michigan State University's interim president apologized Thursday for an email remark about one of the gymnasts sexually abused by ex-sports doctor Larry Nassar, the latest sign of turbulence for the former governor tasked with steering the school out of the burgeoning scandal.

John Engler's apology came more than a week after the public disclosure of his email exchange from April suggesting Rachael Denhollander probably received a "kickback" from her plaintiff's attorney.

"I didn't give it the consideration it warranted," Engler said in a statement Thursday. "That was a big mistake. I was wrong. I apologize."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:00 AM

LDS church adopting new guidelines for youth interviews

SALT LAKE CITY (UT)
FOX13

June 20, 2018

By David Wells and Kiersten Nunez

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will begin using new guidelines for bishops and other leaders in interviewing youth members.

The guidelines issued Wednesday to LDS church bishops, branch presidents and counselors in bishoprics and branch presidencies include a "Protecting Against Misunderstandings" section, in which interviews with children, youth and women are addressed.

"When a member of a bishopric or stake presidency or another assigned leader meets with a child, youth, or woman, he or she should ask a parent or another adult to be in an adjoining room, foyer, or hall. If the person being interviewed desires, another adult may be invited to be present during the interview. Leaders should avoid all circumstances that could be misunderstood," the "Protecting Against Misunderstandings" guideline says.

The guidelines also outline the key matters for discussion in interviews with youth, including priesthood ordination, seminary, missionary service and temple-related topics.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:57 AM

AG's Office: MSU 'wrongfully withholding' documents and impeding inquiry of Nassar matter

LANSING (MI)
Lansing State Journal

June 20, 2018

By Matt Mencarini

The special prosecutor investigating sexual misconduct at Michigan State University in the wake of the Larry Nassar scandal has accused MSU’s lawyers of interfering with his investigation by withholding documents and last week told the university he will seek a search warrant.

The move followed two months of increasingly terse letters between William Forsyth, who is leading the investigation for the Michigan Attorney General’s Office, and Robert Young Jr., the university’s new general counsel and former Michigan Supreme Court Justice.

Forsyth told Young in a June 15 letter that he also will request a judge or an appointed third party to review the documents and determine what is protected by attorney client privilege and work product doctrine.

MSU's Board of Trustees requested the AG's investigation in late January, amid two sentencing hearings for Nassar, the former MSU and USA Gymnastics doctor who sexually abused hundreds of women and girls. Attorney General Bill Schuette then announced that Forsyth, a retired Kent County prosecutor, would lead the investigation. Although the board sought an independent inquiry into the handling of the Nassar matter, Schuette's office said it would investigate sexual misconduct at the university.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:55 AM

Church of England 'botched' 2010 sexual abuse inquiry

ENGLAND
The Guardian

June 22, 2018

Negative aspects downplayed to limit reputational damage, former Barnado’s chief finds

The Church of England “botched” an inquiry into historical allegations of sexual abuse, the former head of a children’s charity has found.

Sir Roger Singleton, the former chief executive of Barnado’s, reviewed the church’s own Past Cases Review from 2010. He said the report did not give a comprehensive picture of the problem and that those conducting the inquiry had refused to speak to some survivors.

Singleton said the church “downplayed negative aspects” of the PCR’s findings in public statements to avoid damaging the reputation of the institution and the then archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams.

But Singleton, whose report will be published in the coming weeks, said he found no evidence of a deliberate attempt to mislead or that anyone broke the law.

The PCR examined more than 40,000 case files relating to allegations of abuse dating back to the 1950s and concluded that just 13 cases of alleged child sexual abuse required formal action.

After survivors complained that the report was inadequate, Singleton was commissioned to carry out an independent review of how it was conducted. He told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme that it had been “botched in three ways”.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:49 AM

Church of England's 2010 abuse inquiry was 'flawed' and 'failed'

ENGLAND
BBC News
June 22, 2018

By Donna Birrell & Alex Strangwayes-Booth & Steve Swann

The Church of England "botched" its investigation into alleged cases of abuse, a report's author has said.

Sir Roger Singleton, who reviewed the Church's "flawed" 2010 investigation, said it "failed to give a complete picture" of the abuse.

But Sir Roger, whose report is due out next month, said he found "no evidence of a planned deliberate attempt to mislead".

The Church has outlined four steps for improvement.

They include the creation of an independently-chaired panel featuring survivors which will look at options to redress past cases, an independent ombudsman to review how complaints are handled and a strengthening of the clergy recruitment process.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:48 AM

Cardinal McCarrick suspended from public duties after sex abuse allegation

WASHINGTON (DC)
NBC Nightly News

June 20, 2018

McCarrick was suspended after an allegation that he abused a teenager 47 years ago was found to be credible and substantiated. Church officials also revealed two past sexual misconduct settlements involving McCarrick.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:47 AM

June 21, 2018

Lawsuits allege fraud, conspiracy in insolvency of St. Joseph Health Services of Rhode Island plan

PROVIDENCE (RI)
Pension & Investments

June 20, 2018

By Hazel Bradford

Class-action lawsuits on behalf of participants in the insolvent St. Joseph Health Services of Rhode Island Retirement Plan were filed in state and federal courts in Rhode Island.

The 2,700 participants in the plan learned in August 2017 when it was placed into receivership that the plan had been inadequately funded for years, according to the lawsuit filed on behalf of Stephen Del Sesto, the receiver for the pension fund.

At the time, plan administrators asked the Rhode Island Supreme Court to approve immediate 40% across-the-board benefit cuts. The cuts have not yet been approved.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:08 PM

Bishop Cantú responds to sexual abuse lawsuit naming Las Cruces parish

LAS CRUCES (NM)
Sun-News

June 20, 2018

The Diocese of Las Cruces responded on Wednesday to a lawsuit filed against the Diocese of El Paso alleging sexual abuse of a minor 40 years ago by Father Joaquin Resma when he was a priest at Our Lady of Health parish in Las Cruces. Resma died in 1983.

Until the creation of the Diocese of Las Cruces in 1982, the church was under the jurisdiction of the El Paso diocese. Both the diocese and the church are named in the lawsuit, filed by a Las Cruces man who is not named in the lawsuit in order to protect the accuser.

The Diocese of Las Cruces, serving Catholics in 10 New Mexico counties, is not named in the lawsuit. However, in a media release on Wednesday, Bishop Oscar Cantú pledged that "the diocese will cooperate with the legal process as needed," adding, "We hold all victims of abuse in our prayers, that they might find healing and peace."

The diocese also encouraged victims who have not yet reported their abuse to contact the diocese victims' assistance coordinator Margarita Williams at 575-523-7577 or by email at MWilliams@RCDLC.org. It stated that victims may report confidentially or have their case reported to law enforcement.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:07 PM

Could Diocese of Providence Declare Bankruptcy — Now Facing Exposure to Tens of Millions

PROVIDENCE (RI)
GoLocalProv

June 21, 2018

The very idea that the Diocese of Providence could file for bankruptcy seems absurd as it historically has been one of the most influential and wealthy institutions in Rhode Island. If it did file for bankruptcy it would not be the first Diocese in the United States to file for bankruptcy to avoid financial claims.

Today, the Diocese of Providence is facing a massive lawsuit by the receiver for the St. Joseph pension fund — a lawsuit that alleges, in part, that Bishop Thomas Tobin and other top Diocesan leaders perpetrated a massive fraud. If the lawsuit is proven to be true then the Catholic Church will have major exposure. The pension fund is underfunded by an estimated $118 million and the 2,700 plus plan members face an uncertain financial future and the potential of as much as 40 percent cuts to their benefits.

The lawsuit crafted by Max Wistow, the attorney who recovered more than $60 million in the 38 Studios case, names not just the Diocese of Providence, but 15 other defendants as well.

Tobin did not respond to questions for this article.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:05 PM

The scandal of Cardinal Theodore McCarrick and why no major media outed him

WASHINGTON (DC)
GetReligion

June 21, 2018

By Julia Duin

On Election Day 2008, I was not following the historic election of Barack Obama to the presidency.

Instead, I was meeting up with a priest. At the time, I was religion editor for the Washington Times.

The documents he gave me were sensational. At first I thought it was about a priest who’d been forced out of the priesthood because he’d been caught fondling two teen-aged boys. Then I read why the priest had done this. In layman’s terms: He said he was an emotional and spiritual mess after having been sexually assaulted in 1987 by none less than then-Newark Archbishop Theodore McCarrick.

Now, perhaps many of you have read yesterday’s news about McCarrick, who went on to become cardinal for the see of Washington, D.C., a most prestigious post. This UPI story describes the bare-bones of the matter:

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:04 PM

Cardinal Theodore McCarrick removed from ministry after teen sex abuse claim

WASHINGTON (DC)
NBC News

June 20, 2018

By Elizabeth Chuck and Tracy Connor

Church officials also reveal past allegations of sexual misconduct with adults.

Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, the former head of the Archdiocese of Washington, has been removed from public ministry by the Vatican following a "credible and substantiated" allegation of sexual abuse involving a teenager from nearly 50 years ago.

As the move was announced, Roman Catholic Church officials in New Jersey revealed that McCarrick, 87, also had been accused of sexual misconduct by adults three times in the past. Two of those accusations resulted in secret settlements, officials said.

In a written statement, McCarrick said he was "shocked" when he learned of the allegation involving a minor some months ago and supported a thorough investigation by the police and the Archdiocese of New York, where he was working as a priest when the abuse allegedly occurred.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:13 PM

Duterte: I respect the Catholic Church

MANILA (PHILIPPINES)
ABS-CBN News

June 20 2018

By Dharel Placido

President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday insisted that he respects the Catholic Church and its leaders, even as he continued linking some clergy members to alleged illicit affairs.

Critics have been saying that Duterte’s tirades against priests and the Catholic Church have emboldened killers of 3 Catholic priests slain in the last 6 months.

The President has denied persecuting the clergy and said he cannot order their killings.

“Wala kaming policy na galit kami sa pari, nothing of the sort. As a matter of fact, nirerespeto ko ang Simbahan,” he said in a speech in Mandurriao district, Iloilo City.

“Sa totoo lang hindi ko kayang magpatay ng pari, pati na babae at bata.”

(We don’t have a policy against priests, nothing of the sort. As a matter of fact, I respect the Church. The truth is, I cannot order the killing of priests, women and children.)

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:12 PM

Washington, D.C., Roman Catholic Archbishop Removed Over 'Credible' Allegations of Sexually Abusing a Teenager

NEW YORK (NY)
TIME

June 20, 2018

By Michael R. Sisak

Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, the retired Roman Catholic archbishop of Washington, D.C., has been removed from public ministry and faces further punishment over “credible” allegations that he sexually abused a teenager while a priest in New York more than 40 years ago, the church announced Wednesday.

Pope Francis ordered the 87-year-old cardinal’s removal pending further action that could end in his expulsion from the priesthood. A church panel determined that a former altar boy’s allegations that McCarrick fondled him during preparations for Christmas Mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in 1971 and 1972 were “credible and substantiated.”

McCarrick, the Washington archbishop from 2000 to 2006, is one of the highest-ranking U.S. church officials accused in a sexual abuse scandal that has seen thousands of priests implicated. The church also acknowledged that it had made previously undisclosed legal settlements with adults who accused McCarrick of sexual misconduct decades ago.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:11 PM

Former priest sexually abused girl for years, including during confession, court documents show

EL PASO (TX)
New York Daily News

June 21, 2018

By David Boroff

A former priest in Texas accused of sexually abusing and raping a girl for years started by molesting her during confession, authorities say.

Miguel Luna, who served at 12 different locations in El Paso, started abusing the alter server when she was 8 by "kissing her passionately" when she was supposed to be privately admitting her sins, according to the El Paso Times.

"The victim recalled the defendant (Luna) telling her 'remember this is confession, so whatever happens here stays in here,'" according to the complaint obtained by the newspaper.

The 68-year-old Luna was arrested earlier this month for aggravated sexual assault of a child.

The church was not named in the charges, but Luna was with 12 different parishes after being ordained in 1982, according to KVIA.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:09 PM

Diocese of Buffalo priest will not be charged following investigation

BUFFALO (NY)
WIVB

June 20, 2018

By Evan Anstey

It's not clear who it is, but the Erie County District Attorney's Office says a priest accused of improper behavior will not face charges.

According to the DA's office, a priest within the Diocese of Buffalo had been under investigation. He was accused of inappropriate behavior within the past year.

"The alleged actions by the priest, whose identity will not be disclosed, did not rise to the level of criminal conduct," the DA's office wrote.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:06 PM

With church sex-abuse report looming, lawmaker pushes for victim rights

HARRISBURG (PA)
WITF

June 20, 2018

By Lindsay Lazarski

Later this month, state Attorney General Josh Shapiro is expected to release findings from a two-year grand jury investigation into widespread sexual abuse and cover-up within six Catholic dioceses across the state.

In anticipation of this report, state Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, is pushing to end the statute of limitations on child sex abuse cases and give victims abused long ago another chance to file a claim against their perpetrators.

Under current state law, victims of child sexual abuse have until they are 30 years old to file a civil case, and until they are 50 years old to file a criminal case. Rozzi says that's not enough time.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:49 PM

Sacred Hearts priest in Chile investigated for sexual abuse

SANTIAGO (CHILE)
Catholic News Agency

June 20, 2018

The Chilean province of the Congregation of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary reported Monday that a preliminary investigation is underway on Father Juan Andrés Peretiatkowicz Valdés, accused of sexual abuse and the abuse of power.

According to a June 18 statement, the case involves accusations of acts which “allegedly began at the end of the 1980s.” According to the congregation the priest has had no pastoral responsibilities for five years for health reasons.

“We express our will and commitment to thoroughly and rigorously investigate these acts and resolutely fight against the culture of abuse and cover up,” the congregation stated.

Provincial Superior René Cabezón Yáñez received the information in early May and “immediately began a preliminary investigation.”

The congregation welcomes this investigation “as a desperate cry in search of truth and justice which obliges us as Church to leave behind the poor and overdue job of listening. We believe this is the only way of reparation for those who have been violated or abused.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:48 PM

Pope reaffirms women can’t be priests, says Church has ‘woken up’ on sex abuse

ROME
CRUX

June 20, 2018

By Inés San Martín

In a wide-ranging interview in which he spoke about the ongoing migrant crisis in the United States, Pope Francis also touched on issues such as female ordination, the ongoing Vatican talks with China and the clerical sexual abuse scandals in Chile.

The conversation between Francis and a journalist from British news agency Reuters took place on Sunday afternoon, and sections of it were published on Wednesday. Reuters also provided a transcript of portions of the interview to Vatican journalists.

Clerical sexual abuse scandals and the Chilean case

“I don’t like talking about this now, but I must say this,” Francis told journalist Philip Pullela. “Go to the statistics. The great majority of the abuses take place in the family environment and in the neighborhoods, the neighbors, the families, then in the gym, the pools, the schools and also in the Church, but some can say the [priests] are few, but even if it was only one [priest] it’d be tragic because that priest has the duty to take that person to God and has destroyed the path to God.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:47 PM

State Supreme Court Blocks Release of Catholic Church Sex Abuse Investigation

HARRISBURG (PA)
WNEP

June 20, 2018

By Bill Michlowski

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has blocked the planned release of a report by the state attorney general allegedly detailing decades of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church.

The two-year investigation by Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro included hundreds of cases from six Catholic dioceses, including Allentown and Scranton.

The report was set to be released this week, but the state Supreme Court issued a stay on the release Wednesday in order to consider legal challenges to releasing the report.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:45 PM

'Women are seen as liars, men as victims': Olivia Munn on Brett Ratner and the importance of #MeToo

UNITED STATES
Yahoo Celebrity

June 20, 2018

By Taryn Ryder

Olivia Munn has no regrets about publicly taking on Brett Ratner. Last fall, she was one of six women to come forward to accuse the director of sexual harassment or misconduct in a report by the Los Angeles Times. (Ratner has denied all allegations.)

“Initially, I didn’t publicly call [Brett] out. I wrote a book where I discussed him anonymously,” she reflected in an interview in the Spring/Summer ’18 issue of Rogue magazine. In her 2010 book Suck It, Wonder Woman! The Misadventures of a Hollywood Geek, Munn told a story about an unnamed director who masturbated in front of her on the set of a film in 2004.

The Six star continued, “A year later, [Brett] named himself and went on to lie about me. A few days after that, he was on the Howard Stern show publicly apologizing for lying, saying he was sorry. Yet, two years after that moment, he gets a $450 million licensing deal with Warner Bros.”

Munn’s memory is correct. In 2011, Ratner went on Attack of the Show! and alleged that the two had slept together. “I used to date Olivia Munn, I will be honest with everybody here,” he boasted. “I banged her a few times … but I forgot her … I get it. She’s bitter.” A few days later, Ratner apologized on The Howard Stern Show, saying he “felt horrible” for lying because they were friendly and he had made the actress look like “a whore.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:44 PM

Olivia Munn has no regrets about drawing 'a line in the sand' over sexual harassment in Hollywood

UNITED STATES
Daily Mail

June 20, 2018

Last November, she was one of six women who came forward to accuse director Brett Ratner of sexual harassment.

And in a new interview with Rogue magazine, actress Olivia Munn says she has no regrets about speaking out publicly.

'Where is the line? If you don’t draw a line in the sand and say, ‘I’m not gonna work with these people,’ then it’s going to continue,' she said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:43 PM

Lawsuit Says Former Senate President Stan Rosenberg Knew Husband Was A Risk

BOSTON (MA)
The Associated Press

June 20, 2018

By Steve LeBlanc

A civil lawsuit is alleging former Senate President Stan Rosenberg knew his estranged husband Bryon Hefner posed a risk to individuals at the Massachusetts Statehouse and Rosenberg and Hefner had an agreement or understanding allowing Hefner access to those individuals.

The lawsuit, which names both men, was filed in Suffolk Superior Court on Friday on behalf of an unnamed plaintiff who said Hefner grabbed his genitals without consent on more than one occasion.

The suit alleges the plaintiff suffered ongoing emotional distress and physical harm, including "depression, anxiety, muscle tension, gastrointestinal distress and impaired sleep."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:39 PM

Church: Cardinal McCarrick Is A Molester

WASHINGTON (DC)
The American Conservative

June 20, 2018

By Rod Dreher

This has been a very long time coming:

Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, the Archbishop Emeritus of Washington, D.C., has been removed from public ministry after a credible allegation he abused a teen 50 years ago while serving as a priest in New York Archdiocese.

Innocence? I believe McCarrick is lying, and that he knows he is lying. I have been waiting for this story to break since 2002.

Back then, I received a tip from a priest who had gone on his own dime to Rome, along with a group of prominent US Catholic laymen, to meet with an official for the Roman Curial congregation that names bishops. It had been rumored at the time that Theodore McCarrick, the Archbishop of Newark, was going to be moved to Washington, DC, and to be made a cardinal. This group traveled to Rome to warn the Vatican that McCarrick was a sexual harrasser of seminarians. The story this priest shared with me was that McCarrick had a habit of compelling seminarians to share his bed for cuddling. These allegations did not involve sexual molestation, but were clearly about unwanted sexual harassment. To refuse the archbishop’s bedtime entreaties would be to risk your future as a priest, I was told.

Rome was informed by these laymen — whose number included professionally distinguished Catholics in a position to understand the kind of harm this would cause –that McCarrick was sexually exploiting these seminarians, but it did no good. McCarrick received his appointment to the Washington archdiocese in 2000.

In early 2002, though, the priest who tipped me off wouldn’t go on the record. It would have meant the end of his priesthood, quite possibly. He gave me the name of a couple of medical figures who had been on the same journey. I called one, who confirmed it, but wouldn’t go on the record. I called the other, who gasped when I said it out loud, and who said, “If that were true, then I wouldn’t confirm it for the same reason Noah’s sons covered their father in his drunkenness.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:30 PM

Pa. Supreme Court delays results of investigation into sex abuse at local dioceses

HARRISBURG (PA)
WPXI

June 20, 2018

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court is holding up the public release of a major grand jury report on priest abuse in six Roman Catholic dioceses across the state..

“Just moments ago, the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania accepted legal challenges to the issuing of a grand jury report detailing widespread sexual abuse within the Catholic Church. In an unsealed order, the Supreme Court has issued a stay of proceedings to review and decide those challenges,” Attorney General Josh Shapiro said. “My legal team and I will continue fighting tirelessly to make sure the victims of this abuse are able to tell their stories and the findings of this investigation are made public to the people of Pennsylvania.”

The Supreme Court agreed to hear challenges to releasing the grand jury report, which is what is putting the public release on hold.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:01 AM

Churches urged to support survivors of sexual abuse

DALLAS (TX)
Baptist Standard

June 20, 2018

By Isa Torres

The #MeToo Movement brought to light issues of sexual abuse the church should have addressed long ago, the leader of a workshop at the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship general assembly insisted.

“Hollywood has done a better job confronting abuse than the church,” said Pam Durso, executive director of Baptist Women in Ministry.

The #MeToo Movement—started in 2006 by Tarana Burke—only recently was expanded to include #ChurchToo. Durso pointed to that long delay as evidence of churches’ inattention to sexual abuse, when they should have taken the lead.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:26 AM

Duterte claims respect for church, attacks priests again

MANILA (PHILIPPINES)
UCA News

June 21, 2018

Philippine president's tirades against clergy prompted series of clerymen murders, critics say

Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte has hit back at critics and claimed he respects the Catholic Church despite his tirades against bishops and priests whom he has repeatedly accused of corruption and illicit affairs with women.

Rights activists and church groups say the president's verbal attacks against church leaders have emboldened some people to attack members of the clergy in recent months.

Duterte denied persecuting priests this week, saying that his administration "does not have a policy against priests" and he could not order the killing of church leaders.

"As a matter of fact, I respect the church," the president said in a speech in Iloilo province on June 20. "The truth is, I cannot order the killing of priests, women, and children," he said.

While the president was speaking in the town of Cabatuan, church bells tolled as part of a daily symbolic protest against drug-related killings in the country.

Hearing the bells, Duterte stopped talking and waited for the ringing to stop.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:24 AM

DA says Buffalo priest was "creepy" but not criminal

BUFFALO (NY)
WKBW

June 20, 2018

By Charlie Specht

Will recommend diocese keep him away from kids

Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn Jr. said Wednesday that a Buffalo priest acted "creepy" in touching a young girl in January.

But Flynn said the behavior of the priest does not rise to the level of criminality and so the priest -- who he refused to identify -- will not face criminal charges.

"While his conduct wasn’t criminal, I would say that to me his conduct is creepy," Flynn said, adding that he believed the priest was retired but still saying Mass in various parishes.

The alleged victim told someone at her school about the priest's contact, which Flynn said was alleged to have involved “some sort of touching,” he said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:15 AM

Kerala priest remanded over fraud charges

KERALA (INDIA)
Gulf Times

June 20 2018

By Ashraf Padanna/Thiruvananthapuram

A court in Kerala yesterday remanded in custody a Catholic priest accused of cheating farmers availing of bank loans.

The police arrested Fr Thomas Peelianickal on Tuesday on complaints by six farmers who claimed he and other officials of the NGO he heads cheated them of their money disbursed by banks.

The priest is the executive director of the Kuttanad Vikasana Samithy (KVS) or the society for the development of Kuttanad, under the Changanassery archdiocese.

The police accuse them of forging signatures of farmers to avail loans for collective farming. It was claimed that the farmers only became aware of the fraud after they started receiving repayment default notices.

Others linked to the fraud, including Rojo Joseph, a leader of the ruling coalition partner Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), are absconding since the police booked them three months ago.

For the past many years, the KVS has been working among the farmers of Kuttanad, an area that witnessed many suicides after the agrarian crisis, promoting self-help initiatives and environmental conservation.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:12 AM

Kerala priest Fr Thomas Peelianickal arrested in Kuttanad agri loan scam

KERALA (INDIA)
The News Minute

June 20, 2018

Peelianickal is accused in six cases of loan fraud out of which Kerala HC had earlier granted him anticipatory bail in two cases.

Father Thomas Peelianickal who is the executive director of the Kuttanad Vikasana Samithi (KVS) office in Alappuzha, was arrested on Tuesday in connection with an agriculture loan scam in Kuttanad.

The District crime branch team led by Dy SP Vijayakumaran Nair arrested him.

Police said that as per complaints received by them, Peelianickal had availed loans on behalf of farmers’ self-help groups by allegedly forging documents of several farmers.

He is accused in six cases of loan fraud out of which Kerala High Court had earlier granted him anticipatory bail in two cases.

Peelianickal’s arrest was recorded at the CB office in Alappuzha on Tuesday evening and he will be produced before Ramankari Judicial First Class Magistrate Court on Wednesday.

Nair told The Times of India that 14 cases have been registered related to agriculture loan fraud. “As per the evidence we collected, Peelianickal is now accused in only six cases. The investigation is progressing and Peelianickal may become accused in more cases in coming days,” the investigation team said.

Veliyanad Block panchayat member and NCP leader Rojo Joseph is the main accused in the case but he is absconding.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:10 AM

HISTORIC FIRST: ARCHBISHOP FACES PRISON TIME FOR SEX ABUSE COVER-UP

NEWCASTLE (AUSTRALIA)
Church Militant

June 20, 2018

By David Nussman

Australia's Abp. Philip Wilson may be world's highest-ranking cleric to be jailed for failing to report abuse

An archbishop in Australia will likely be facing prison time after a judge found him guilty of covering up child sex abuse, making him the world's highest-ranking Catholic clergy to be sentenced over abuse allegations.

Archbishop Philip Wilson of Adelaide was brought to trial for allegations of failing to report a sexually abusive priest in the late 1970s. He was found guilty in a Newcastle court on May 22. In a hearing Tuesday, Newcastle Magistrate Robert Stone announced he would sentence Abp. Wilson on July 3.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:07 AM

KZN Churches Call On Communities To Say No To Femicide And Children Abuse

SOUTH AFRICA
The Daily Vox

June 21, 2018

By Lizeka Maduna

Following a public outcry over violence and femicide, KwaZulu-Natal churches have called on all communities to stand together and say no to the scourge and other persistent social ills including substance abuse.

EThekwini Community Church’s Bishop Vusi Dube said that religious groups believed that unity and prayers could help overcome the societal ills.

“As the church, we strongly believe that prayer is an invitation for divine intervention as our society battles social ills including rampant abuse of substances; all forms of violence in communities, random murders of women and children, as well as the raping of women and children,” he said.

EThekwini Community Church through a campaign,called ‘One Nation One Voice’ which is set to be launched in September, has worked with Isolezwe Newspaper in a campaign called ‘Sekwanele’.

This new campaign came in the wake of Zolile Khumalo’s death, a twenty-one-year old student from Mangosuthu University of Technology who was shot death at a residence; where numerous women who died through femicide were remembered.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:05 AM

Diamondbacks manager 'insanely proud' of wife for coming forward with priest-abuse claim

PHOENIX (AZ)
Arizona Republic

June 19, 2018

By Jerod MacDonald-Evoy

Arizona Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo said he has long been aware that his wife was abused by a Catholic priest as a child in the 1990s and is "insanely proud of her for stepping up and telling her story."

Kristen Lovullo's claims of abuse first appeared in a report this week by the Buffalo News. After other misconduct claims about the Rev. Dennis Fronczak surfaced, she contacted the outlet and said she was repeatedly fondled by the priest in New York decades ago, when she was 9 to 12 years old.

Torey Lovullo told The Arizona Republic: "Those are hard things to do (coming forward). I’m walking on this side of it with her and I see the challenges that victims go through.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:03 AM

KCK priest is defrocked years after investigation into sexual abuse allegations

KANSAS CITY (MO)
The Kansas City Star

June 20, 2018

By Judy L. Thomas

A priest in the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas has been defrocked years after an investigation into multiple allegations of sexual abuse.

The Rev. John H. Wisner was returned to the lay state, or laicized, by a decree issued by Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann, according to an announcement published May 25 in The Leaven, the archdiocesan newspaper. Naumann issued the decree on Dec. 21, the announcement said, and it was affirmed by the Vatican's Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith on March 2.

The archdiocese said it had received multiple allegations of sexual abuse of minors against Wisner starting in May 2012. He was immediately suspended from active ministry and law enforcement was notified, the archdiocese said. An investigation by the archdiocese found the allegations to be credible, it said, and in November 2012, archdiocesan officials sent the results to the Vatican.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:01 AM

Affidavit: Ex-Priest Assaulted Victim During Confession

EL PASO (TX)
KTSM

June 20, 2018

By Andra Litton

The criminal complaint affidavit against a former Catholic Priest accused of sexually assaulting an underage parishioner for seven years was released to KTSM on Wednesday.

Miguel Luna, 68, is charged with one count of Aggravated Sexual Assault of a Child. According to court documents, the alleged victim was interviewed by El Paso Police on October 20, 2017 in reference to the allegations against Father Luna.

The victim, now 36, served as an altar-server at local churches in El Paso when she met Luna. She told investigators that Luna began kissing and sexually abusing her at age 8 during confessions.

She recalled Luna telling her "remember this confession, so whatever happens in here stays in here," according to court documents.

The affidavit goes on to say that when the girl turned 12, Luna's sexual abuse escalated. The victim in the case reported to police that the abuse continued until she turned 17.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:59 AM

5 priests who were prosecuted for child sexual crimes

BUFFALO (NY)
The Buffalo News

June 20, 2018

By Jay Tokasz

Only five of the more than 60 priests who served in the Diocese of Buffalo and have been linked to allegations of sex crimes involving children have actually been charged with crimes.

Prosecuted were:

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:57 AM

Pa. Supreme Court blocks release of grand jury report into clergy sex abuse

HARRISBURG (PA)
The Inquirer

June 20, 2018

By Angela Couloumbis & Liz Navratil

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has agreed to indefinitely block the release of a grand jury report detailing decades of clergy sex abuse in six of the state’s eight Roman Catholic dioceses.

In a two-paragraph order made public Wednesday, the state’s highest court said it granted requests from unnamed individuals or institutions to prevent the public release of the much-anticipated report.

“The Honorable Norman A. Krumenacker, III, and the Office of the Attorney General are enjoined from releasing Report No. 1 of the 40th Statewide Investigating Grand Jury pending further order of this Court,” it read, citing the Cambria County judge who has overseen the panel’s work.

The order — unsigned and released in the name of the entire court — throws into question the results of a sweeping probe that spanned at least two years and could implicate hundreds of clergy and other officials across the state.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:33 AM

Supreme Court delays release of grand jury report on alleged sex abuse in Catholic dioceses

HARRISBURG (NJ)
The Herald

June 20, 2018

By Melissa Klaric

The grand jury report on sexual abuse within the Catholic Church will not be made public as soon as expected.

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court issued a court order about 5:30 p.m. Wednesday delaying the public release of the 900-page-plus report expected to reveal detailed testimony from victims.

The Most Rev. Lawrence T. Persico, bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Erie, said neither he nor any diocesan official sought a stay of the publication of the grand jury report.

"And thus, (we) cannot comment on the merits of the legal arguments of others," Persico said. "As demonstrated from the recent revisions to our Policy for the Protection of Children, we are committed to transparency."

Furthermore, Bishop Persico said the diocese anxiously awaits the Supreme Court's decision on the matter.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:31 AM

The 11-year-old girl divorcing her 38-year-old husband

KHARTOUM (SUDAN)
CNN

June 21, 2018

By Nima Elbagir and Eliza Mackintosh

Editors Note: CNN is committed to covering gender inequality wherever it occurs in the world. This story is part of As Equals, a year-long series.

Amal is 11 years old and seeking a divorce.

The young Sudanese girl was in elementary school when a 38-year-old man asked for her hand in marriage.

Her father accepted the proposal, and Amal (not her real name) was immediately wed.

In Sudan, child marriage has been woven into the fabric of the country's culture, driven by tradition and poverty. More than a third of girls there are married before their 18th birthday, according to a 2017 UNICEF report, and 12% are wed before they reach 15. Under the country's 1991 Personal Status Law of Muslims, children can marry when they reach "maturity," which is only 10 years old. It's the lowest legal age of marriage in Africa.

Noura in her own words: Teen who killed rapist husband shares her story

The recent case of Sudanese teenager Noura Hussein, sentenced to death earlier this year for killing her husband as he tried to rape her, has focused attention on child marriage in Sudan. Now 19, Noura was just 15 when she was forced to marry a man more than twice her age.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:28 AM

Mormons post questions asked during youth interviews

SALT LAKE CITY (UT)
The Associated Press

June 20, 2018

By Brady Mccombs

The Mormon church for the first time Wednesday posted the list of questions lay leaders are supposed to ask youth during closed door, one-on-one interviews that have come under scrutiny because sexual questions sometimes arise.

Only one of the questions seems directed at finding out about a young Mormon's sex life: "Do you live the law of chastity?"

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints posted the 13 questions that were previously only sent to local leaders along with updated guidelines and a letter from church President Russell M. Nelson encouraging the leaders to share the questions with children and parents before the interviews.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:26 AM

APNewsBreak: Schools mum on ties to doc in sex abuse inquiry

COLUMBUS (OH)
The Associated Press

June 21, 2018

By Kantele Franko and Collin Binkley

A now-dead doctor accused of sexual misconduct by former student athletes at Ohio State University said he acted as a team physician at other universities, most of which won't say if they are reviewing those connections or whether any concerns were raised about him.

Ohio State employment records reviewed by The Associated Press indicate Richard Strauss worked at five schools in the decade between leaving the Navy as a submarine medicine instructor and joining the university in Columbus in 1978.

Strauss researched, taught or practiced medicine at Harvard University, Rutgers University, the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Washington and the University of Hawaii, according to his resume.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:18 AM

Pa. Supreme Court blocks release of priest sex abuse report

ALLENTOWN (PA)
The Morning Call

June 20, 2018

By Tim Darragh and Steve Esack

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court on Wednesday blocked the expected release of a massive report examining sexual abuse and misconduct by priests in six Pennsylvania dioceses, including Allentown.

The state’s high court issued an order barring Cambria County Judge Norman Krumenacker, who supervised the grand jury that heard testimony over two years, and Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro from releasing the report until further order.

The court’s order does not indicate who sought to block release of the report but it indicates the court received more than one application for a stay.

Matt Kerr, spokesman for the Allentown Diocese, said the diocese was not one of the petitioners that moved to block the report.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:16 AM

June 20, 2018

Rev. Robert F. Bower– Assignment History

ERIE (PA)
BishopAccountability.org

Summary of Case: Robert F. Bower was ordained in 1959 for the Diocese of Erie. He was chaplain at Gannon College and at a monastery for women religious in Erie for several years, followed by many years in campus ministry at Edinboro State College as chaplain, Associate Director and then Director. During 1992-1997 Gannon was Administrator of St. Anthony's parish in Cambridge Springs.

In March 1999 Bowers was arrested on charges of possession of child pornography. Police were alerted by a computer repair shop employee who discovered them while working on Bower's computer. The pornography was allegedly downloaded between June 1996 and December 1998, and included images of a man sodomizing a five-year-old boy. Bower was placed on leave by the diocese, sent to counseling, then allowed limited ministry during the investigation. Bishop Trautman said he believed Bower's explanation that he had received the images accidentally; state police said that Bower admitted to obtaining them. The charges were dropped in 2001 on a technicality. Bower resumed full ministry, including at the Edinboro Newman Center and as a supply priest for the diocese.

In April 2002, after the Erie Times-News published a report about his 1999 arrest, Bower resigned. Per the article, in 1982 a secretary at the Newman Center in Edinboro and two other women went to Bishop Murphy with concerns that Bower was receiving gay pornography in the mail. The former secretary said she was fired two days later. Trautman wrote in a letter to the editor that the women's claims were "outrageous" and lacked proof. The three filed a defamation lawsuit against the diocese and bishops Trautman and Murphy in May 2003.

Bower's name was included on the diocese's April 6, 2018 list of credibly accused priests, lay employees and volunteers. It noted that Bower was 'forbiddn to function as a priest.'

Ordained: 1959

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:46 PM

Dozens of Portland students protest university’s silence over sexual assault allegations

PORTLAND (OR)
ThinkProgress

June 19, 2018

By Elham Khatami

"It is so difficult walking around, knowing there’s somebody out there who ... violated you that deeply.”

Five months after she first reported her sexual abuse to Portland State University’s Office of the Dean of Student Life, Tess Carter says she has not yet heard anything about possible action the school will take against the student and fellow member of the school’s International Socialist Organization who allegedly assaulted her.

According to the Oregonian, Carter and dozens of other PSU students have been protesting the university’s silence for weeks, demanding that the university discipline the student who has been accused by multiple women of emotional abuse and sexual assault over the past year and a half. In the latest protest, which took place last week, the group presented a petition with close to 3,500 signatures to the university’s vice president of enrollment management and student affairs, Jim Fraire.

“It is so difficult walking around, knowing there’s somebody out there who would be so violent to you and violated you that deeply,” Carter, who is not a PSU student, but is a member of PSU’s International Socialist Organization, told The Portland Mercury last week.

PSU’s Office of the Dean of Student Life informed Carter in January 2018 that they would respond within 60 days, but she said she did not receive a formal response when the 60-day timeframe came to an end. According to the Mercury, campus officials cited the Education Department’s loose restrictions when it comes to responding to sexual assault allegations. The Department last year rescinded Obama-era guidance that suggested a 60-day timeframe for a prompt sexual assault investigation, replacing it with “no fixed time frame.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:12 PM

Texas A&M swimmer found responsible of sexual assault files Title IX lawsuit against university

COLLEGE STATION (TX)
Sports Day

June 20, 2018

By Ben Baby

A Texas A&M men's swimmer found responsible for sexual assault by the university has filed a Title IX lawsuit against the school, according to a report.

Austin Van Overdam submitted a federal lawsuit against the university, citing "disparate treatment based on sex," according to court records. The suit, which was filed in the Southern District of Texas, states that Van Overdam is requesting a jury trial.

The news was first reported by the Bryan College-Station Eagle.

In June 2017, Van Overdam was found responsible of sexual misconduct by A&M's conduct panel, according to documents the accuser shared on her Twitter account. Van Overdam, who graduated from Houston Langham Creek before swimming at Arizona during his freshman year, redshirted the 2016-17 season, according to the school's website.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:09 PM

Ohio State closes sexual-assault center, fires 4 after complaints

COLUMBUS (OH)
The Columbus Dispatch

June 19, 2018

By Jennifer Smola

Ohio State University will permanently close its Sexual Civility and Empowerment unit amid concerns that it failed to properly report students’ sexual-assault complaints and that some victims were told they were lying or suffering from delusions.

The university also is eliminating four positions that fell under the unit, known as SCE, and terminating those employees.

A team of independent auditors is helping to review SCE files to ensure Ohio State has fulfilled its obligations to report certain offenses to law enforcement, federal regulators and other authorities, according to the university.

Documents obtained by The Dispatch through a public records request detail a variety of complaints about Ohio State’s SCE and its leadership.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:07 PM

Larry Nassar survivors are right: Michigan State president John Engler must go

LANSING (MI)
USA TODAY

June 20, 2018

By Nancy Armour

Michigan State still doesn’t get it.

A university that aided and abetted Larry Nassar and his horrific crimes for the better part of two decades doesn’t get to be indignant or question the women whose lives were shattered. It doesn’t get to play the aggrieved party, be it in public statements or private emails.

And it sure as hell doesn’t get to defend and protect a leader who has dragged the school even further into the abyss when his sole job was to find a way out of it.

More than 130 survivors sent Michigan State’s governing board a letter Tuesday calling for the ouster – voluntary or otherwise – of interim President John Engler. They shouldn’t have had to ask.

Criticism of Engler has grown since last week, when The Chronicle of Higher Education published an email in which the former governor of Michigan suggested that Rachael Denhollander was getting “kickbacks” from trial attorneys. Denhollander was the first woman to publicly accuse Nassar of abuse, telling her story to The Indianapolis Star in the fall of 2016.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:06 PM

Chris Hardwick’s Hard Times: The Silence From Those in His Orbit Is Deafening

UNITED STATES
The Wrap

June 19, 2018

By Reid Nakamura and Jon Levine

When Chris Hardwick was accused of controlling behavior, emotional manipulation and sexual abuse by his ex-girlfriend Chloe Dykstra last week, the silence from those in his orbit was deafening.

Dykstra described a man who could be controlling and manipulative as he gained more and more success as the host of AMC shows and Comic-Con panels, as well as his own multimedia empire, Nerdist. One former employee said her accusations rang true, and that Hardwick was prone to loud confrontations with employees.

“Nobody’s surprised. Everyone can think back to incidents with Chris that line up with something in that story,” the former employee said. “You don’t see anybody saying ‘That’s not the Chris Hardwick I know,’ because that is the Chris Hardwick most people know.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:00 PM

Catholic cardinal in Washington accused of sex abuse

WASHINGTON (DC)
Reuters

June 20, 2018

The Vatican has asked retired Washington, D.C., Archbishop Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, to cease public ministry after finding he was credibly accused of sexually abusing a teenager almost 50 years ago, the archdiocese and McCarrick said on Wednesday.

McCarrick is among the highest-ranking of the more than 6,700 U.S. Roman Catholic clerics to be accused of sexually abusing children since the church’s sex abuse scandal broke in 2002, according to BishopAccountability.org, a private group that tracks the allegations.

McCarrick, 87, was accused of sexually abusing a teenager when he was a priest in New York, he said in a statement. He said he was innocent, but an investigation by the Church found the allegations to be credible and substantiated, the archdiocese said in a statement.

“The Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, at the direction of our Holy Father, Pope Francis, has instructed Cardinal McCarrick that he is to refrain from any public ministry or activity until a definite decision is made,” the archdiocese said. McCarrick said he would follow the Vatican’s instruction.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:59 PM

Rosenberg sued over spouse’s conduct

BOSTON (MA)
The Associated Press

June 19, 2018

By Steve LeBlanc

A civil lawsuit is alleging former Senate President Stan Rosenberg knew his estranged husband Bryon Hefner posed a risk to individuals at the Massachusetts Statehouse and Rosenberg and Hefner had an agreement or understanding allowing Hefner access to those individuals.

The lawsuit, which names both men, was filed in Suffolk Superior Court on Friday on behalf of an unnamed plaintiff who said Hefner grabbed his genitals without consent on more than one occasion.

The suit alleges the plaintiff suffered ongoing emotional distress and physical harm, including “depression, anxiety, muscle tension, gastrointestinal distress and impaired sleep.”

Attempts to reach Rosenberg, a Democrat who resigned from the Legislature in May, were unsuccessful on Tuesday. Hefner’s lawyer didn’t immediately return a request for comment.

In one case, the plaintiff said that during a ride in Rosenberg’s car in April 2016, Hefner grabbed his genitals over his clothes as Rosenberg rode in the front passenger seat and the two rode in the back seat.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:32 PM

Accuser says Stanley Rosenberg conspired in estranged husband's alleged sex assault

BOSTON (MA)
Boston Herald

June 20, 2018

By Laurel J. Sweet

Ex-Senate President Stanley C. Rosenberg and his estranged husband are being targeted for damages in a civil lawsuit by a former Beacon Hill legislative aide who says Bryon Hefner sexually abused him — twice in Rosenberg’s presence, and once at the couple’s North End condo.

The explosive 16-page lawsuit was filed in Suffolk Superior Court by attorney Mitchell Garabedian on behalf of “John Doe.”

Doe’s true identity was immediately impounded by Judge Debra A. Squires-Lee. He is identified only as a resident of Middlesex County who worked as a legislative aide for the House of Representatives.

“The court finds that irreparable and immediate harm may result absent an ex-parte order of impoundment,” Squires-Lee ruled. The seal could be lifted Monday depending on the outcome of a hearing today on whether it warrants extension.

The allegations against Hefner in the civil suit mirror those of one of four men who’ve criminally accused Hefner of sexual abuse. Garabedian declined to say yesterday if it’s the same person.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:28 PM

Has #MeToo changed men? Guys respond to the movement and how they feel about masculinity

UNITED STATES
Good Morning America

June 20, 2018

By Nicole Pelletiere

A year after survivors catapulted #MeToo into a global movement by sharing personal accounts of sexual assault, men are now reflecting on the movement and what it means to them.

In a recent SurveyMonkey poll, FiveThirtyEight, a site that focuses on opinion poll analysis, politics, economics, and sports blogging, surveyed 1,615 adult males. The outlet collaborated with Death, Sex & Money from WNYC Studios-- a podcast that features intimate conversations with celebrities and listeners about money, relationships, family, and career.

The participants of the survey were asked how they felt about #MeToo as well as the subject of masculinity.

Here's what they said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:25 PM

SAGINAW TO OUST LITURGY DIRECTOR ACCUSED OF COVERING UP SEX ABUSE

SAGINAW (MI)
ChurchMilitant.com

June 17, 2018

By Christine Niles, M.St. (Oxon.), J.D.

Fr. James Bessert alleged to be active homosexual

Only weeks after the abrupt suspension of a deacon over an alleged complaint of sex abuse, sources confirm the diocese of Saginaw, Michigan is removing the director of liturgy from his post — a reported homosexual accused of covering up sexual assault.

Although the diocese has kept the news quiet, multiple reliable sources have confirmed that Fr. James Bessert, director of liturgy in Saginaw, is being removed from his post, making way for Sr. Esther Mary Nickel, RSM, who will replace him.

Bessert, a prominent chancery official, has had his name taken off of the online staff directory for the Office of Liturgy. Church Militant also received news that the Vatican has been involved behind the scenes, and that high-ranking officials in Rome are aware of the ongoing scandals in Saginaw and have placed pressure on Bp. Joseph Cistone to remove various priests.

Bessert has claimed he is "on vacation," although still in Saginaw.

Bessert is linked to Deacon Jerome Green, abruptly suspended in May only days before his priestly ordination. Inside sources confirm it's an "open secret" that Bessert and Green have been in a homosexual relationship for years. Neither has publicly addressed the allegations, nor have they responded to Church Militant's queries.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:06 PM

Retired Catholic archbishop McCarrick quits amid abuse allegations

NEWARK (NJ)
UPI

June 20, 2018

By Sara Shayanian

Retired Catholic Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, the former archbishop of Newark, New Jersey, and Washington, D.C., announced he was stepping down from the ministry Wednesday amid allegations of sexual abuse.

In a statement, the Archdiocese of New York said the Vatican secretary of state, at the direction of Pope Francis, asked McCarrick to step down from the ministry.

The allegations against McCarrick stem from the abuse of a teenager nearly 50 years ago, while the former archbishop was a priest of the Archdiocese of New York.

"This archdiocese, while saddened and shocked, asks prayers for all involved, and renews its apology to all victims abused by priests," the archdiocese said.

Although McCarrick said he has "no recollection" of the case and was "shocked" by the report, he accepted the pope's request to no longer publicly exercise his priestly ministry.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:05 PM

Archbishop convicted of concealing child sex abuse should spared jail time, lawyers argue

AUSTRALIA
Australian Broadcasting Corporation

June 19, 2018

By Nancy Notzon

Catholic Archbishop Philip Wilson will be sentenced next month for concealing historical child sex abuse after a magistrate reserved his decision at a hearing today.

The Adelaide Archbishop's lawyers presented several reports from various doctors detailing his medical conditions including diabetes, heart disease and a mild neurological cognitive disorder, which could possibly be Alzheimer's.

They told the Newcastle Local Court that prison time would exacerbate his deteriorating health and that he could be targeted in prison.

Quoting a report from endocrinologist Dr David Torpy, Mr Temby said incarceration would have a major effect on Wilson's health and "may even threaten his survival".

In a landmark magistrate-only trial in May, Wilson was found guilty of covering up abuse by priest James Fletcher in the New South Wales Hunter region in the 1970s.

He is the world's most senior Catholic to be convicted of the offence.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:11 PM

Ohio State University Closes Sexual Assault Unit; Cites Mismanagement

COLUMBUS (OH)
Reuters

June 20, 2018

By Gina Cherelus

Ohio State University this week shut down its center dedicated to handling complaints of sexual assault after officials discovered that the service was not properly managing victim reports, school officials said.

The university launched its comprehensive prevention effort to combat sexual misconduct in 2015, at a time of intense public focus on sex assault on U.S. college campuses. Its move to shut down the program comes as the #MeToo movement has intensified focus on sexual harassment and assault in many spheres of American life.

A review conducted by an external law firm revealed that the campus Sexual Civility and Empowerment unit did not properly document and report information about some sexual assault complaints by students, Chris Davey, a spokesman for the university, said in a statement on Tuesday.

A representative for the university did not immediately respond to a request for additional comment on Wednesday.

The program had received national attention in 2015, when then-Vice President Joe Biden visited the school to highlight responses to what the White House termed an epidemic of sex assault on U.S. college campuses.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:19 PM

Cardinal removed from public ministry after sex abuse allegation

WASHINGTON (DC)
CNN

June 20, 2018

By Daniel Burke

Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, who led the Archdiocese of Washington and was a political force in the nation's capital, said on Wednesday that he has been removed from public ministry by the Vatican because of a decades-old allegation of sexual abuse.

As a cardinal, McCarrick is one of the highest-ranking American leaders in the Catholic Church to be removed from ministry because of sex abuse charges. He maintains his innocence.

"While I have absolutely no recollection of this reported abuse, and believe in my innocence, I am sorry for the pain the person who brought the charges has gone through, as well as for the scandal such charges cause our people," McCarrick said in a statement.

The Archdiocese of New York, which led the investigation, said it would not release specific details about the allegation to protect the victim's privacy. But the archdiocese said a review board composed of jurists, law enforcement experts, parents, psychologists, a priest, and a religious sister found the allegations against McCarrick to be "credible and substantiated."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:17 PM

Ex-NJ Catholic Church Leader McCarrick Ousted For Sex Allegations

NEWARK (NJ)
Newark Patch

June 20, 2018

By Tom Davis

The sexual misconduct alleged against Cardinal Theodore McCarrick resulted in settlements involving a teen.

A former Catholic church leader in New Jersey has been removed from the ministry in the wake of sexual abuse allegations involving a teen.

Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, the former Archbishop of Newark, the founding Bishop of Metuchen and Archbishop Emeritus of Washington, D.C., has been removed from the ministry after allegations that he abused a teen 50 years ago came to light, church leaders announced Wednesday. The alleged sexual misconduct resulted in settlements.

McCarrick, 87, said in his statement that he doesn't recall the abuse but he accepted his removal: "While I have absolutely no recollection of this reported abuse, and believe in my innocence, I am sorry for the pain the person who brought the charges has gone through, as well as for the scandal such charges cause our people," he said.

McCarrick said he was advised by the Archbishop of New York, Cardinal Timothy Dolan, that an allegation of sexual abuse of a teenager from 47 years ago had been made against him. At that time, he was a priest of the Archdiocese of New York.

"While shocked by the report, and while maintaining my innocence, I considered it essential that the charges be reported to the police, thoroughly investigated by an independent agency, and given to the Review Board of the Archdiocese of New York. I fully cooperated in the process," he said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:12 PM

Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, former Newark Archbishop, removed from ministry over past sex abuse allegations

NEWARK (NJ)
NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

June 20, 2018

By Kelly Heyboer and Ted Sherman

Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, the former Archbishop of Newark and Archbishop Emeritus of Washington, D.C., has been removed from public ministry in the wake of allegations that he abused a teen 50 years ago while serving as a priest in the New York Archdiocese.

McCarrick, who accepted the decision, is one of the highest-ranking American leaders in the Catholic Church to be removed from ministry over sex abuse charges.

The allegations against him have been deemed "credible and substantiated" by Vatican officials, McCarrick acknowledged in a statement. However, the veteran cardinal said he does not remember the incident from a half-century ago, and believes he is innocent.

News of McCarrick's removal came as church officials in New Jersey separately revealed for the first time that the cardinal had previously been accused of sexual misconduct with three adults during his time in the state.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:11 PM

Catholic Cardinal in Washington Accused of Sex Abuse

WASHINGTON (DC)
Reuters

June 20, 2018

The Vatican has asked the retired archbishop of Washington, D.C., Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, to cease public ministry after finding he was credibly accused of sexually abusing a teenager almost 50 years ago, the archdiocese and McCarrick said Wednesday.

McCarrick is among the highest-ranking of the more than 6,700 U.S. Roman Catholic clerics to be accused of sexually abusing children since the church's sex abuse scandal broke in 2002, according to BishopAccountability.org, a private group that tracks the allegations.

McCarrick, 87, was accused of sexually abusing a teenager when he was a priest in New York, he said in a statement. He said that he was innocent, but an investigation by the Church found the allegations to be credible and substantiated, the archdiocese said in a statement.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:10 PM

Exclusive: Pope Says He Could Accept More Resignations Over Chile Sex Abuse

VATICAN CITY
Reuters

June 20, 2018

By Philip Pullella

Pope Francis has said he could accept the resignations of more Chilean bishops following a sexual abuse scandal that has shattered the credibility of the Roman Catholic Church in the South American country.

The pope has already accepted the resignations of three bishops, and all Chile's remaining bishops have offered to resign after allegations that the abuse, including of children, was covered up.

The scandal was "the work of the spirit of evil," the pope told Reuters in an interview at his residence in the Vatican.

Asked whether he would accept more resignations, the pontiff said: "Maybe some."

"I still have to accept the resignations of two (bishops) who have exceeded the age limit. But maybe there's someone else whose resignation I will accept. In one case, I asked that he be given the accusations in order to give him the possibility to defend himself against the accusations and then we will see," he said.

Chilean Cardinal Francisco Javier Errázuriz Ossa, one of nine cardinals from around the world appointed by the pope to serve as his special advisers, has been accused by abuse survivors of discrediting victims and not investigating their cases. He has denied any wrongdoing.

Asked whether Errázuriz's position was at risk on the C-9, the pope said: "The C-9 is not an honor, it's a job. I do not want to get into the game of cutting heads and seeking scapegoats."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:08 PM

Statement of Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin, C.Ss.R., Regarding the Archdiocese of New York’s Announcement of a Credible and Substantiated Allegation of the Abuse of a Minor by Cardinal Theodore McCarrick

NEWARK (NJ)
Archdiocese of Newark

June 20, 2018

By Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin

I recognize that the people of our Archdiocese meet the announcement by the Archdiocese of New York of a credible and substantiated claim of abuse of a minor by Cardinal McCarrick with a range of emotions. I am thinking particularly of those who have experienced the trauma of sexual abuse by clergy - whose lives have been impacted tragically by abuse. To those survivors, their families and loved ones, I offer my sincere apologies and my commitment of prayer and action to support you in your healing.

The Archdiocese of Newark has never received an accusation that Cardinal McCarrick abused a minor. In the past, there have been allegations that he engaged in sexual behavior with adults. This Archdiocese and the Diocese of Metuchen received three allegations of sexual misconduct with adults decades ago; two of these allegations resulted in settlements.

Cardinal McCarrick served this Archdiocese for almost fifteen years. No doubt many of you developed strong relationships with him and appreciate the impact of his service. Those feelings are likely hard to reconcile with the news of a credible and substantiated claim of abuse of a minor. While Cardinal McCarrick maintains his innocence and the canonical process continues, we must put first the serious nature of this matter with respect and support for the process aimed at hearing victims and finding truth.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:06 PM

Statements Regarding Cardinal Theodore McCarrick

WASHINGTON (DC)
Archdiocese of Washington

June 20, 2018

[Includes biography of Cardinal McCarrick.]

Statement by Cardinal Theodore McCarrick

Some months ago, I was advised by the Archbishop of New York, Cardinal Timothy Dolan, that an allegation of sexual abuse of a teenager from almost fifty-years ago had been made against me. At that time I was a priest of the Archdiocese of New York.

While shocked by the report, and while maintaining my innocence, I considered it essential that the charges be reported to the police, thoroughly investigated by an independent agency, and given to the Review Board of the Archdiocese of New York. I fully cooperated in the process.

My sadness was deepened when I was informed that the allegations had been determined credible and substantiated.

In obedience I accept the decision of The Holy See, that I no longer exercise any public ministry.

I realize this painful development will shock my many friends, family members, and people I have been honored to serve in my sixty-years as a priest.

While I have absolutely no recollection of this reported abuse, and believe in my innocence, I am sorry for the pain the person who brought the charges has gone through, as well as for the scandal such charges cause our people.

Statement by the Archdiocese of Washington

Sometime ago, an allegation that falls under the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People was made against Cardinal McCarrick when he served as a priest in the Archdiocese of New York.

The Holy See, which has exclusive authority in the oversight of a cardinal, delegated Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York to investigate the allegation, engaging the review board of the Archdiocese of New York.

In the end the review board found the allegations credible and substantiated.

The Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, at the direction of our Holy Father, Pope Francis, has instructed Cardinal McCarrick that he is to refrain from any public ministry or activity until a definite decision is made.

Cardinal McCarrick, while maintaining his innocence, has accepted the decision.

While saddened and shocked, this archdiocese awaits the final outcome of the canonical process and in the meantime asks for prayers for all involved.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 10:24 AM

Statement of Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Archbishop of New York

NEW YORK CITY (NY)
Archdiocese of New York

June 20, 2018

By Cardinal Timothy Dolan

The Archdiocese of New York, along with every other diocese in the country, has long encouraged those who as minors suffered sexual abuse by a priest to come forward with such reports.

As he himself announced earlier this morning, a report has come to the archdiocese alleging abuse from almost forty-five years ago by the now retired Archbishop of Washington, Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, who, at the time of the reported offense was a priest here in the Archdiocese of New York. This was the first such report of a violation of the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People ever made against him of which the archdiocese was aware.

Carefully following the process detailed by the Charter of the American bishops, this allegation was turned over to law enforcement officials, and was then thoroughly investigated by an independent forensic agency. Cardinal McCarrick was advised of the charge, and, while maintaining his innocence, fully cooperated in the investigation. The Holy See was alerted as well, and encouraged us to continue the process.

Again according to our public protocol, the results of the investigation were then given to the Archdiocesan Review Board, a seasoned group of professionals including jurists, law enforcement experts, parents, psychologists, a priest, and a religious sister.

The review board found the allegations credible and substantiated.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 9:58 AM

Cardinal Theodore McCarrick alleged to have sexually abused minor 47 years ago

BRIDGEWATER (NJ)
Courier News/My Central New Jersey

June 20, 2018

By Paul C. Grzella

Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, the retired archbishop of Washington who also served as the Archbishop of Newark and the founding Bishop of Metuchen, is alleged to have sexually abused a minor 47 years ago when he was a priest in the Archdiocese of New York, church officials announced this morning.

As a result of the allegations, called "credible and substantiated" by church officials, the cardinal is stepping down from active ministry.

"While I have absolutely no recollection of this reported abuse, and believe in my innocence, I am sorry for the pain the person who brought the charges has gone through, as well as for the scandal such charges cause our people," McCarrick said in a statement this morning.

He is the believed to be the first cardinal to step down from active ministry for sexually abusing a minor.

According to a statement from the Archdiocese of New York, the allegations were reviewed by an independent board and were found to be credible and substantiated. The Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, at the direction of Pope Francis, has instructed McCarrick, the now retired Archbishop of Washington, that he is no longer to exercise publicly his priestly ministry, according to the statement.

"Cardinal McCarrick, while maintaining his innocence, has accepted the decision," Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Archbishop of New York, said in the statement.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 9:53 AM

Chilean law enforcement question Vatican sex abuse envoy at airport

SANTIAGO (CHILE)
Reuters

June 19, 2018

By Aislinn Laing and Dave Sherwood

Chilean prosecutors said on Tuesday they questioned the Vatican’s top sex abuse investigator as he prepared to fly out of the country following a fact-finding and reconciliation mission ordered by the Pope.

Raúl Guzmán, a prosecutor based in the capital Santiago, said he “interrogated” Archbishop Charles Scicluna of Malta in the police station at Santiago airport in relation to an abuse case involving 25 Marist brothers and 30 alleged victims.

“We arranged an interview with Charles Scicluna that took place in the offices of the investigative police in the airport before his flight,” he told journalists.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 8:09 AM

Body of priest is exhumed to establish whether he fathered a child decades ago

TEWKSBURY (MA)
The Boston Globe

June 19, 2018

By Michael Rezendes

For 25 years, Jim Graham has tried to prove he is the son of a deceased Catholic priest who grew up in Lowell and graduated from Boston College.

He pulled old adoption records that mention his “alleged father.” He leaned on leaked documents from a friendly priest and petitioned Catholic leaders all the way to Rome, to no avail.

The quest continued Monday afternoon in a Catholic cemetery in Tewksbury, as a backhoe turned up earth on the Rev. Thomas Sullivan’s grave and promised to provide answers once and for all.

“We missed a lot, the two of us,” Graham said, fighting back tears after the exhumation. “Didn’t have much opportunity for father and son.”

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 8:08 AM

Calls for Vatican to sack Adelaide Catholic Archbishop Philip Wilson

NEW SOUTH WALES (AUSTRALIA)
9News (nine.com.au)

June 19, 2018

By Kim Robertson

Adelaide Archbishop pleads to avoid prison

Lawyers for Adelaide's Catholic Archbishop have pleaded for him not to be sent to prison, for concealing child sex abuse.

They say he's at risk of falling gravely-ill behind bars, or being attacked by other inmates.

But prosecutors and victims insist Philip Wilson has shown no remorse, and deserves little mercy.

Archbishop Philip Wilson stayed silent as he arrived to face justice at the Newcastle Local Court.

But inside his Defence lawyers pleaded with a Magistrate to spare the Catholic Archbishop jail, arguing he was so ill, he might not survive prison time.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 8:00 AM

Indian Catholic priest on trial for sex abuse

KERALA (INDIA)
La Croix International

June 19, 2018

By T.K. Devasia, Kochi

He was charged with rape after a schoolgirl gave birth at a church-run hospital

A Catholic priest in India who was arrested more than a year ago on charges of raping and impregnating a 17-year-old schoolgirl, is to stand trial.

Father Robin Vadakkancherry of Mananthavady Diocese was parish priest of St. Sebastian's Church in Kottiyoor at the time of the alleged offense.

The 49-year-old priest was arrested and placed in custody in February 2017 after the girl gave birth to a boy.

His diocese, part of the Syro-Malabar Church, suspended him following his arrest.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:56 AM

Australian prelate: Laity could have prevented ‘catastrophic’ abuse crisis

ROME
Crux

June 20, 2018

By Inés San Martín, John L. Allen Jr, and Christopher White

Arguably, few people in Australia can say they are more on the front lines in picking up the pieces after the recently concluded Royal Commission into Institutional Sexual Abuse that was highly critical of the Catholic Church than Archbishop Mark Coleridge, elected as president of the country’s bishops’ conference last month.

Despite the challenges, which also include trials of two of Australia’s most renowned clerics, Archbishop Philip Wilson in Adelaide and Cardinal George Pell, the Vatican’s finance czar, Coleridge is convinced that when it comes to fighting clerical sexual abuse, a “change in culture” is needed and is already in motion.

“There’s absolutely no room for complacency, but there is room for encouragement,” Coleridge told Crux on Monday in Rome.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:38 AM

Church against abuse laws on confession

TASMANIA
SBS NEWS

June 20, 2018

Australia's Catholic bishops have written to the prime minister opposing laws requiring priests to break the seal of confession to reveal child sexual abuse.

Catholic priests in Tasmania will report child sexual abuse to police but not if it has been revealed during confession.

Australia's Catholic bishops are rejecting moves to force priests to break the seal of confession to reveal child abuse, with the South Australian church declaring its priests will defy new mandatory reporting laws in that state.

The Tasmanian government also plans to extend mandatory reporting to include information disclosed in a religious confession.

The Catholic Archbishop of Hobart Julian Porteous backs mandatory reporting but not when it means breaking church law that requires priests to uphold the seal of confession.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:33 AM

June 19, 2018

Nassar victims urge Michigan State board to fire Engler

LANSING (MI)
The Associated Press

June 19, 2018

By Alice Yin

A letter signed by at least 120 sexual abuse victims of former sports doctor Larry Nassar on Tuesday urged Michigan State University's governing board to oust interim president John Engler, saying he has reinforced a "culture of abuse" at the school.

The women and girls issued their joint statement three days before the board of trustees' next meeting and after a week in which demands for Engler's resignation reached a fever pitch.

Engler, who served as the state's Republican governor from 1991 through 2002, has resisted pressure to step down. He took over on an interim basis in February after the previous president resigned amid fallout from the Nassar scandal. Media outlets last week reported that he sent emails to another university official in April criticizing lawyers for Nassar's sexual assault victims and suggesting the first woman to go public with her accusations was probably getting a "kickback" from her attorney.

Among the 123 survivors who signed the letter are Olympic gymnastics gold medalist Aly Raisman, and Rachael Denhollander, a former gymnast who has been one of the most vocal critics of Engler.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:35 PM

State child abuse investigator charged with assaulting teen

ST. JOHNS (MI)
The Associated Press

June 18, 2018

A state child abuse and neglect investigator has been charged with sexually assaulting a teenager.

The Lansing State Journal reports 34-year-old Daniel William Hulings of Bath Township is free on bond after being arraigned June 7 on seven counts of third-degree criminal sexual conduct in Clinton County District Court.

Jennifer Kuiper-Weise, an attorney for Hulings, tells the Lansing State Journal her client has pleaded not guilty "and we believe he will be exonerated."

Court records show the victim said she had sexual contact with Hulings on numerous occasions over a period of more than a year beginning when she was 16.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:34 PM

Vatican envoy in Chile says up to Pope to release sex abuse report

SANTIAGO (CHILE)
Reuters

June 19, 2018

By Aislinn Laing and Dave Sherwood

The Vatican envoy who was sent to Chile to gather evidence of sex abuse in the Roman Catholic Church said it would be up to Pope Francis to decide on whether to release the report of their findings to the country’s civil authorities.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:25 PM

Abuse in the church: Its trauma aired by panel at SBC

DALLAS (TX)
Baptist Press

June 19, 2018

By Karen L. Willoughby

The pastor of an Austin, Texas, Southern Baptist church "finds I'm spending more time in preparation than ever before" for his Sunday morning sermons.
Matt Carter, pastor of preaching and vision at Austin Stone Community Church in Austin, Texas, said in a CP Stage panel discussion prior to the SBC annual meeting in Dallas that he weighs his words to make sure they do not send the wrong message to the potential 25 percent of the women in the church who have suffered abuse in their lifetime.

"I'm consistently filtering what I'm saying through the eyes of a woman who has been abused," said Carter, who took the church's entire staff through a week-long training earlier this year to be able to say to all women, "You are safe here."

The 20-minute panel discussion on Sexual Abuse in the Church in the SBC exhibit hall covered a victim's trauma; the churches' response; and how to prepare children for potential situations without scaring them.

The SBC's Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission President Russell Moore, teacher and author Beth Moore and moderators Jonathan Howe and Amy Whitfield filled out the panel.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:19 PM

Rev. David V. Dobrowolski– Assignment History

ERIE (PA)
BishopAccountability.org

Summary of Case: David Dobrowolski was a priest of the Diocese of Erie, ordained in 1969. He was an assistant in an Erie parish until 1972, when he joined the staff of Kennedy Christian High School in Sharon. While there he may have resided briefly at a West Middlesex parish, moving in 1973 to St. Adalbert's in Farrell. In 1978 Dobrowolski was assigned as chaplain to the Harborcreek School for Boys, which was a treatment facility for 'troubled juveniles,' ages 10-18. He remained there until his death in December 1985.

Dobrowolski's name was included on the diocese's list released April 6, 2018 of priests, lay employees and volunteers accused of sexually abusing minors. The allegations against Dobrowolski were noted to have been reported after his death.

Ordained: 1969
Died: December 28, 1985

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:55 PM

EXCLUSIVE: Roman Catholic Bishop Of Providence, Hospital Operators Accused in Pension Lawsuit

PROVIDENCE (RI)
Rhode Island Public Radio

June 19, 2018

By Lynn Arditi

The Roman Catholic Bishop of Providence and hospital operator Prospect Chartercare, LLC are among the defendants accused of conspiracy and fraud in two class-action lawsuits filed late Monday.

The suits filed in state and federal courts accuse Bishop Thomas Tobin and hospital operators of deliberately underfunding St. Joseph Health Services’s pension plan and then lying about the plan’s financial condition to beneficiaries.

The plan -- which covers at least 2,700 current and former employees of Our Lady of Fatima Hospital -- was left with no source of revenue when the Fatima hospital was sold in 2014 to Prospect Charter, the local arm of the California-based for profit Prospect Medical Holdings. The pension plan is currently in receivership, a form of bankrupty.

The pension was set up as a "church plan,'' which meant it was not federally insured and did not have the same funding requirements as plans covered under the federal Employee Retirement Security Act, or ERISA. The federal lawsuit, however, says the plan did not qualify as a much plan at least since 2009, meaning the plan's operators would have been required to meet specific funding thresholds.

The suit, which asks for unspecified damages, names more than a dozen defendants, including the for-profit Californian-based parent of CharterCare, prospect Medical Holdings, Inc; Roger Williams Medical Center, LLC, The Rhode Island Community Foundation and the Angell Pension Group, Inc.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:18 PM

Another Buffalo Diocesan priest accused of abuse

BUFFALO (NY)
Spectrum Local News

June 18, 2018

By Katie Gibas

Judith Burns-Quinn has been working with victims of priest sex abuse in Western New York for 22 years.

"It's easily Boston West," she said.

Mitchell Garabedian, the attorney for victims of the Boston Diocese, backed up that statement.

"Given the amount of secrecy within the Diocese of Buffalo and the amount of names of pedophile priests being released, I think is fairly accurate. The amount of abuse has been devastating,” he said.

The latest name to come out is Father Dennis Fronczak, who was at St. Stephen's Church on Grand Island in the ‘90s, St. Joseph's Church in Holland in the ‘00s and most recently at Lancaster's Our Lady of Pompeii.

A spokesperson for the Diocese says Fronczak was removed from ministry in 2015, and “information regarding complaints, including some from his time at the parishes of St. Stephen and St. Joseph, was sent to the Vatican. The matter is now the subject of pending canon law proceedings.”

Victims' advocates are rekindling their cry for the Diocese to release all documents related to credible abuse allegations and for the bishop to step down.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:17 PM

Lawsuit alleges El Paso Diocese did not protect alleged sexual abused victim

EL PASO (TX)
KFOX14/CBS4

June 18, 2018

By Jamel Valencia

A victim who alleges abuse by a priest is suing the El Paso Diocese.

The lawsuit alleges the Rev. Joaquin Resma sexually abused an altar boy in 1978 at Our Lady of Health Parish in Las Cruces.

Documents state that at the time of the alleged incident, El Paso Diocese was in charge of the parishes in southern New Mexico, including Our Lady of Health Parish.

Attorneys for the victim claims the El Paso Diocese failed to protect their client.

Resma is accused of sexually abusing the victim on multiple occasions.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:11 PM

Australian bishop to be sentenced next month for cover-up

NEWCASTLE (AUSTRALIA)
The Associated Press

June 19, 2018

A prosecutor told an Australian court on Tuesday that the most senior Roman Catholic cleric in the world to be convicted of covering up child sex abuse must be jailed to send a message that such institutional cover-ups will no longer be tolerated.

Newcastle Magistrate Robert Stone said he would sentence Adelaide Archbishop Philip Wilson on July 3.

Stone last month found Wilson guilty in the Newcastle Local Court of failing to report to police the repeated abuse of two altar boys by a pedophile priest in the Hunter Valley region north of Sydney during the 1970s. Wilson faces a potential maximum sentence of two years in prison.

The conviction is another step toward holding the church to account for a global abuse crisis that has also engulfed Pope Francis' financial minister, Australian Cardinal George Pell. Some lawyers said they expect many more clerics to be charged in Australia as a result of Wilson's test case.

Prosecutor Gareth Harrison told a hearing Tuesday to determine an appropriate sentence that there was a "breach of trust" between the vulnerable teen, who — along with another altar boy — came forward in 1976 with allegations against a priest who later died in prison.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:03 PM

Australia must realise: priests will never break the seal of the confessional

AUSTRALIA
Catholic Herald

June 18, 2018

By Fr Alexander Lucie-Smith

If the Australian state wants to make martyrs over the seal, it will find plenty of candidates

The saga about mandatory reporting of child abuse in Australia, where it seems that the law will now compel priests to break the seal of confession, carries on.

It must give the virtue-signalers amongst Australia’s legislators great pleasure to say that the Catholic Church is not above the law, but this legislation will hardly help the protection of children. It will simply mean that no one who has abused anyone, or been tempted to do so, will ever dare to discuss the matter with a priest, still less confess to the sin in the sacrament of reconciliation.

Moreover, one Australian priest has a very good point: “The only way they [the states] would be able to see whether the law was being observed or not is to try and entrap priests.”

Quite so. Will the agents of law enforcement in Australia now pose as penitents and enter confessionals with tape recorders in the hope that of finding a priest who does not report child abuse? Such things have been done before, though in a different context. It is by no means impossible that this might happen, as it is hard to see otherwise how any arrests could ever be made.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:00 PM

Australian priests ‘willing to go to jail’ rather than break confessional seal

CANBERRA (AUSTRALIA)
Catholic News Agency

June 18, 2018

As Australian states and territories pass and consider laws requiring priests to break the seal of confession to report cases of child sex abuse, Catholic priests are saying they would go to jail rather than violate the seal.

“The state will be requiring us as Catholic priests to commit as what we regard as the most serious crime and I’m not willing to do that,” said Father Michael Whelan, a parish priest at St. Patrick’s Church in Sydney, according to local news.

Whelan added that he, along with other priests, would be “willing to go to jail” rather than break the seal of confession. When asked if the Church was above the law, Whelan said “absolutely not” and remarked he would only be protecting religious freedom.

“…when the state tries to intervene on our religious freedom, undermine the essence of what it means to be a Catholic, we will resist,” he said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:58 AM

Queensland government to set up task force after reviewing Royal Commission recommendations

QUEENSLAND (AUSTRALIA)
The Catholic Leader

June 19, 2018

By Mark Bowling

THE Queensland Government is to set up a Truth, Healing and Reconciliation task force after accepting more than half of the recommendations of the Royal Commission into child sexual abuse.

The government has accepted or “accepted in principle” 244 of the 409 Royal Commission recommendations, and says a task force will be set up within months to carry them out.

The move builds on the state’s opt-in to the national redress scheme for survivors of child sexual abuse.

The taskforce will support government efforts to make “attitudinal and cultural change” recommended by the Royal Commission, and will administer a grants program for events and memorials to acknowledge past harms and to remind the community of the need to protect children.

“Queensland is fully committed to ensuring Queensland Government institutions are child safe, and to supporting and encouraging community and non-government institutions to actively become child safe,” a 121-page state government response to the Royal Commission said.

On 26 key recommendations to the Catholic Church the Queensland government describes as “noted” Royal Commission recommendations, but does not specifically endorse them.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:56 AM

Abuse redress scheme clears parliament

AUSTRALIA
SBS News

June 18, 2018

Legislation establishing the national redress scheme for child sexual abuse survivors has passed parliament.

The $3.8 billion national redress scheme for child sexual abuse survivors has passed federal parliament, despite concerns it doesn't go far enough.

The scheme is set to be operational on July 1 after Labor, the Greens and crossbenchers agreed not to delay the passage of legislation through the Senate.

The bill passed the upper house on Tuesday afternoon, after senators debated the scheme late into Monday night.

Victorian independent Senator Derryn Hinch angrily accused the government of "double-crossing" the parliamentary committee into the scheme he chaired.

He expressed surprise the maximum payout was in line with the Catholic Church's push for $150,000 rather than the $200,000 recommended by the child abuse royal commission.

"I've been unable to find out not only who suggested the 150K, but also who lobbied for it and who signed off on it," Senator Hinch told parliament.

He demanded to know how the figure was arrived at.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:55 AM

Southern Baptists mull what’s next on confronting, preventing abuse

DALLAS (TX)
Religion News Service

June 15, 2018

By Adelle M. Banks

The sermons, the hymn singing and the floor debates of the Southern Baptists’ annual meeting have concluded, but a key question remains: How will the denomination address the issues of sexual and physical abuse that loomed over the proceedings?

At this week’s (June 12-13) meeting, there was a sense that the nation’s largest Protestant denomination has only started down a long road toward an answer after months of scandals. Days before the Southern Baptists arrived here, Paige Patterson, an architect of the faith group’s conservative turn in the 1980s, was ousted from the presidency of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary after reports arose of his mishandling rape allegations by students. Other former luminaries have been accused of abuse or left positions unexpectedly due to immoral behavior.

The alleged untoward behavior by Southern Baptist leaders forced many of the messengers, as delegates to this meeting are called, to grapple with how to rein in abuse while respecting the autonomy of the convention’s local churches. One step that the messengers took was to pass a nonbinding statement that suggested that “church and ministry leaders have an obligation to implement policies and practices that protect against and confront any form of abuse.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:52 AM

ERLC: New initiatives on women, abuse

CARY (NC)
Baptist Press

June 18 2018

By Tom Strode

Russell Moore announced new initiatives on women and abuse during the report of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC) Wednesday (June 13) at the annual meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC).

Moore, the ERLC’s president, said the entity will convene a women’s summit as a major part of its work in the year ahead. He also told messengers the ERLC is partnering with LifeWay Research in commissioning a full-scale study on the extent of abuse in churches.

The announcement of the initiatives followed months of what Moore described as “horrible, horrible revelations” of sexual abuse and assault. Those disclosures of abuse and misconduct by male leaders in churches and the secular world have rocked Southern Baptists, other evangelicals and the wider culture.

The ERLC will gather women from across the SBC and the evangelical world “to think through ways to enhance our ministries and invest in our churches,” Moore told messengers. “There should not be one inch of toleration for the abuse or mistreatment of women or others within our churches, and if we care about human dignity, we must be clear about that.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:49 AM

Breaking confession seal may not help prevent abuse, say bishops

NEW ZEALAND
Radio NZ

June 19, 2018

By Phil Pennington

New Zealand Catholic Bishops say there is no evidence that breaking the seal of confession would keep children safer.

Australian states are moving to prosecute priests who don't report confessions of child sex abuse, despite opposition from the church.

"Confession is often not understood," the New Zealand Catholic Bishops Conference said in a statement to RNZ today.

"In many cases the one making a confession remains unidentified. In any case, as has been said by members of the Church in Australia, we note that there is no evidence to suggest that abolition of the seal of confession would genuinely make environments safer for children."

Catholics are regulated by canon law, which states that the "sacramental seal is inviolable; therefore it is absolutely forbidden for a confessor to betray in any way a penitent in words or in any manner and for any reason".

A priest who breaks the seal of confession is subject to the Church's toughest penalty, automatic excommunication, and only the Pope can reverse that.

The bishops conference said it was considering how its Australian counterpart was responding to the Royal Commission's recommendations and noted it had set up an implementation advisory group.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:46 AM

The Archbishop Philip Wilson case

AUSTRALIA
AAP via 9news

June 19, 2018

ARCHBISHOP PHILIP WILSON'S TRIAL:

WHO

Archbishop of Adelaide Philip Wilson, 67, is the most senior Catholic official in the world to be charged with covering up child sex abuse.

WHAT

Wilson was accused of failing to report to police the repeated abuse of two altar boys by pedophile priest James Fletcher in the NSW Hunter region in the 1970s.

Fletcher was found guilty in December 2004 of nine counts of child sexual abuse.

One of the victims, Peter Creigh, expected Wilson - an assistant priest at the time - to take action after he told him Fletcher repeatedly abused him when he was 10 in 1971.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:40 AM

Kristen Lovullo, wife of Diamondbacks' manager, accuses priest of abuse in 1990s

ARIZONA
Arizona Republic

June 18, 2018

By Jerod MacDonald-Evoy

Correction & Clarifications: An earlier version of this article misstated the location of the parishes of St. Joseph and St. Stephen. Both are in New York.

Kristen Lovullo, wife of Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo, has accused a priest of fondling her when she was a child in New York in the 1990s, according to the Buffalo News.

The news outlet recently had written about Rev. Dennis Fronczak and why he was abruptly removed from his parish in Lancaster, New York, in 2015. The article said he was removed for inappropriate behavior. The Buffalo Diocese would not comment on the allegations, but told The Arizona Republic that the case remains under investigation, according to spokesman George Richert.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 5:51 AM

Southern Baptists and #MeToo: Advocates for church sex abuse victims push for reform

UNITED STATES
Salon.com

June 18, 2018

By Ashlie D. Stevens

A proposal for a church-wide registry of sexual abusers and harassers gets new life after a decade of dormancy

In 2008, The Nashville Scene published an article titled “What Would Jesus Say?” In it, journalist Elizabeth Ulrich wrote that churchgoers were asking for protection against clergy sex abuse, but the Nashville-based Southern Baptist Convention said “there was little it could do to fend for the flock."

At the time, the Southern Baptist Convention -- the world’s largest Baptist denomination with roughly 15 million members -- was under fire for several instances of sexual abuse within their member churches.

There was the 2007 case of Steven Haney, the Cordova, Tennessee-based pastor who was indicted on charges of rape and sexual battery by an authority figure after a 21-year-old man told police Haney had molested him over the course of five years; the man said Haney subjected him to “obedience tests” during which he was forced to perform various sex acts.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 5:46 AM

Wilson must be sacked and jailed: victims

AUSTRALIA
9News (nine.com.au)

June 19, 2018

The most senior Catholic official in the world to be convicted of concealing child sex crimes should be jailed by a NSW magistrate and sacked by the Pope, abuse victims say.

Adelaide Archbishop Philip Wilson stood aside but refused to resign after he was found guilty in May of failing to report to police the historical indecent assault of two altar boys.

The 67-year-old must wait two weeks to learn his fate but abuse survivor Peter Creigh says Wilson should be locked up to send a message to religious leaders that institutional cover-ups will no longer be tolerated.

Pedophile priest James Fletcher repeatedly abused Mr Creigh in the Hunter region during the 1970s but when the teen went to Wilson for help the clergyman did nothing.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 5:44 AM

June 18, 2018

Would-be Indian child bride fights back and helps others

UTTAR PRADESH (INDIA)
CNN

June 18, 2018

By Masuma Ahuja

Rajni Devi liked school and had big dreams. She was not going to end up like so many other girls in India: married off as a child bride.

Rajni was 14 years old when her mother told her she must get married, but she refused. She was determined to stay in school, and she wasn't ready to be a mother yet.

However, for a girl in rural India, it wasn't as simple as just saying no.

According to UNICEF, India has the highest number of child brides in the world, with about 17 million children between the ages of 10 and 19 in the country who are married.

This despite the fact that child marriage in India was officially outlawed in 2006. And earlier this year, in an attempt to protect child brides, India's Supreme Court ruled that sex with minors was considered rape.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:45 PM

Fr Tony McAleese ordained for the Diocese of Down and Connor

NORTHERN IRELAND
BBC News

June 18, 2018

A former catering manager has been ordained a Catholic priest for the Diocese of Down and Connor.

Fr Tony McAleese was ordained by Bishop Noel Treanor at a Mass in the Church of St Vincent de Paul on Sunday.

He is the first priest originally from Belfast's St Vincent de Paul parish to be ordained there in 50 years.

The 34-year-old is a native of the Ligoneil area in north Belfast and said it was a wonderful occasion.

He felt that his late mother would have been with him in spirit for his ordination, he said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:42 PM

Professor who outed pervy colleague resigns over school’s response

ROCHESTER (NY)
The Associated Press

June 16, 2018

A professor who was named one of Time magazine’s 2017 Persons of the Year for outing a colleague accused of sexual misconduct has resigned from the University of Rochester over the university’s handling of complaints against him.

Celeste Kidd said Friday that the university had not meaningfully responded to problems that she and several other faculty members raised in a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission last fall about T. Florian Jaeger, a professor of brain and cognitive sciences.

Jaeger was accused of flaunting sexual relationships with students, using uncomfortable sexual innuendo and holding off-site lab retreats that featured hot tubs and illegal drugs.

A special committee in January supported the university’s finding that Jaeger had not violated policy or law but called his behavior over several years since his arrival in 2007 unprofessional and offensive.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:41 PM

Was there a residential school near you? Find out with our interactive map

CANADA
CBC News

June 18, 2018

More than 130 schools were in operation across Canada

For more than 100 years, First Nations, Inuit and Métis children were taken from their families to attend residential schools, which were run by churches and funded by the federal government.

Students lost their language, culture and family bonds. The Truth and Reconciliation Commission's (TRC) final report said the residential school system amounted to "cultural genocide" against Indigenous people in Canada.

In 2008, the federal government formally apologized for the residential school system and other policies of assimilation.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:37 PM

Trainee priest claims he was victim of sexual abuse at religious college in Mirfield

LONDON (ENGLAND)
The Huddersfield Daily Examiner

June 14, 2018

By Martin Shaw

Peter Murray launches claim at the High Court in London over historical abuse

An author who says his whole adult life has been overshadowed by sexual abuse he suffered at a Mirfield religious school is now battling for compensation.

Peter Murray, 60, had ambitions to become a priest when he went to St Peter Claver College in the 1970s, London’s High Court heard.

But he now says he was subjected to a campaign of abuse at the hands of a teacher – the now-deceased Michael Riddle – when he was aged between 14 and 16.

And he is suing the religious order that ran the school – the Sons of the Sacred Heart of Jesus – for the destruction wrought on his childhood and adult life.

The order “neither admits nor denies” that he suffered abuse at Mr Riddle’s hands and is strongly disputing the value of Mr Murray’s claim.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:35 PM

Kauai man sentenced for child pornography, sex abuse

LIHUE (KAUAI, HAWAII)
Hawaii News Now

June 15, 2018

A Lihue man will spend 25 years behind bars after pleading guilty to numerous sexual offenses involving young children.

According to the Department of Justice, 38-year-old Michael Terui was sentenced Thursday on four counts of manufacturing child pornography.

The DOJ says Terui was an outreach resource for his father's church. Through that position in the ministry, officials say he lured dozens of kids during sleep overs and gatherings, and molested them.

He would entice the children with video games and movies. Once he earned their trust, the DOJ said he used hidden and handheld cameras to record sexual acts.

The DOJ says his victims ranged in age from 7 to 13 years old, and the abuse took place for more than a decade.

"Terui engaged in sex acts with the children, often while they were sleeping (or pretending to sleep)," the DOJ said in a news release.

Chief Judge Seabright called Terui's actions "shocking, abhorrent, callous, and devastating" at his sentencing. Seabright added that Terui's actions "left a trail of pain" and was the "worst type of breach of trust possible."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:32 PM

Catholic leaders 'willing to go to jail' to uphold seal of confession and not report child sex abuse

AUSTRALIA
Australian Broadcasting Corporation

June 15, 2018

By Katherine Gregory

Catholic priests have said they are not willing to break the seal of confession to report child sex abuse, and would rather go to jail than abide by the law.

South Australia has joined the ACT in moving ahead with laws to force Catholic priests to break the seal of confession, to report paedophiles to police.

Other states are still deliberating over whether or not they will adopt that recommendation from the royal commission.

But Catholic Church leaders have rejected the idea.

Father Michael Whelan, the parish priest in St Patrick's Church Hill in Sydney, said priests would not break the seal of confession.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:30 PM

Priest who confessed to abuse 1500 times ‘proves need for change’

AUSTRALIA
The New Daily

June 14, 2018

By Lucie Morris-Marr

A paedophile priest who admitted to child abuse on more than 1500 occasions but was just told to “pray more” should be a “prime example” for the Catholic Church to allow breaking the seal of confession, advocates have told The New Daily.

Father Michael McArdle made an affidavit in 2004 stating he had confessed 1500 times to molesting children to 30 different priests over a 25-year period.

After being forgiven 1500 times in face-to-face confessions with his fellow priests, the Queenslander was told merely to “go home and pray”.

A senior catholic figure, Archbishop Mark Coleridge, this week immediately rejected Malcolm Turnbull’s commitment to make it law across all states to break the seal of the confession to report abuse. His remarks have prompted campaigners to urge the church to “examine history” and abide to the change.

They say the example of McArdle shows the “vital need” for priests to be told by senior leaders they should report crimes to authorities.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:27 PM

Clergy abuse victims in Syracuse Diocese face deadline

SYRACUSE (NY)
WSKG

June 18, 2018

By Gabe Altieri

Monday is the deadline for some people abused as children by clergy in the Syracuse Roman Catholic Diocese to decide whether to participate in the diocese’s compensation program, or wait to see if state lawmakers pass a bill that would extend the statute of limitations, so they could sue later.

That bill is the Child Victims Act. Besides extending the statute of limitations for people abused as children to sue, it would also open a one-year window, so that those previously barred through the statute of limitations to bring their case to court could do so.

“But that’s not the law and so we’re stuck with what we have,” said Attorney Mike Reck, who represents victims in the Syracuse Diocese.

Under current law, people abused as children must sue by the time they’re 23. That means one of the only options many victims in Syracuse have is the compensation program, “which is a process that, while it’s not perfect, it does offer some accountability, some measure of justice, and it’s available now,” Reck said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:24 PM

Clergy abuse victims in Syracuse diocese have a decision to make

BINGHAMTON (NY)
The Innovation Trail

June 18, 2018

By Gabe Altieri

Some people abused as children by clergy in the Syracuse Roman Catholic Diocese must decide by June 18 whether to participate in the diocese's compensation program, or wait to see if state lawmakers pass a bill that would extend the statute of limitations, so they could sue later.

The Diocese of Syracuse includes the Binghamton and Cortland areas.
That bill is the Child Victims Act. Besides extending the statute of limitations for people abused as children to sue, it would also open a one-year window, so that those previously barred through the statute of limitations to bring their case to court could do so.

“But that’s not the law and so we’re stuck with what we have,” said Attorney Mike Reck, who represents victims in the Syracuse Diocese.

Under current law, people abused as children must sue by the time they’re 23. That means one of the only options many victims in Syracuse have is the compensation program, “which is a process that, while it’s not perfect, it does offer some accountability, some measure of justice, and it’s available now,” Reck said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:22 PM

Priest shielded from testifying in sexual abuse case

TALLAHASSEE (FL)
News 4 JAX

June 18, 2018

By Jim Saunders

Pointing to a state religious-freedom law, an appeals court has shielded a priest from testifying about his discussion with a teenage girl during the Catholic sacrament of confession about the girl being sexual abused.

The ruling Friday by a panel of the 5th District Court of Appeal in an Orange County case sided with priest Vincenzo Ronchi, who argued that the Catholic Church bars priests from disclosing any aspects of communications during confession -- more formally known as the sacrament of reconciliation -- and that disclosure could even lead to excommunication from the church.

Prosecutors subpoenaed Ronchi to testify in the case of Loren Tim Burton, who was charged last year with committing sexual offenses against a minor when she was 7 years old and 13 years old. The alleged victim, prosecutors said, told Ronzi during confession when she was 15 years old that she had been sexually abused.

The criminal investigation began after the alleged victim, at age 17, told her mother about the abuse, the appeals-court ruling said.

Orange County Circuit Judge John Marshall Kest ruled that Ronchi could be questioned about the limited issues of “the existence of the confession, the identity of the penitent (the alleged victim), and that the subject matter involved sexual abuse,” the appeals court ruling said. Kest’s ruling focused, at least in part, on a conversation that Ronchi had with the teen’s mother and a friend of the mother and whether that waived “privilege” that otherwise could keep the priest from being required to testify.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:20 PM

Pope met with brother of Chilean priest found guilty of abuse

VATICAN CITY
Catholic News Service

June 18, 2018

By Junno Arocho Esteves

The brother of Chilean Father Fernando Karadima called on his brother to ask forgiveness for the hurt inflicted on those he sexually abused.

“I would ask him to be humble. Fernando, ask for forgiveness. Not in silence to God or in your prayers. Do it publicly, that people hear that you ask forgiveness for the harm you have done to victims and to everyone,” Oscar Karadima said in an interview with Chilean newspaper La Tercera, published June 17.

“Fernando,” he continued, “you are a man who is going to die. How can you die in this way, as a proud person who doesn’t ask forgiveness? I ask you in the name of God and the most holy virgin who you always said you loved so much. I ask you in the name of my father, my mother, my two dead sisters.”

Oscar Karadima also revealed that he was among the group of priests and laypeople who met with Pope Francis June 2 and spoke to him about the suffering his family endured following the revelation that his brother was found guilty of sexual abuse.

“I spoke to him about Fernando; I told him what Fernando was like with his family, with us: He was an arrogant man, authoritarian, a man we were afraid of and that even my mother was afraid of him,” Oscar Karadima said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:19 PM

Rozzi: Child sex abuse is not just a Catholic problem

HARRISBURG (PA)
Office of State Rep. Mark Rozzi

June 18, 2018

Survivors, advocates rallied at state Capitol for statute of limitations reforms

State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, led a rally at the state Capitol last Tuesday to highlight the long overdue need for reform of Pennsylvania’s laws affecting victims of childhood sexual abuse.

The 40th Statewide Investigating Grand Jury Report based upon allegations of sexual abuse in six Catholic dioceses in Pennsylvania is expected to be released by the end of the month. The dioceses include Harrisburg, Greensburg, Allentown, Pittsburgh, Erie, and Scranton. Preceding its release, Rozzi called upon all Roman Catholic bishops to support reforms through Tuesday’s rally.

“Childhood sex abuse is a plague that has scourged this state and beyond,” Rozzi said. “The Bishops have the unique opportunity to demonstrate the church’s commitment to ending the culture of abuse and its systematic cover-up”.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:18 PM

Jury awards $1.1 million to Sonoma Valley boys home whistleblower

SONOMA (CA)
The Press Democrat

June 14, 2018

By Mary Callahan

A Sonoma County jury has awarded $1.1 million to the plaintiff in a whistleblower case against the Hanna Boys Center, finding the former clinical director was wrongly terminated for speaking up about bullying, drug use and other unaddressed concerns at the home for troubled boys.

Tim Norman, who worked as the center’s head of clinical care for 31 years before his November 2016 dismissal, said the verdict came as a huge relief after many years of stress and a three-week civil trial.

But Norman, 73, said he also was struck by the contrast between the speed with which the jury understood his plight and what he called the failure of the institution’s own trustees to respond to concerns with direct implications for client health and safety.

“That’s the thing that is very unclear in my mind,” Norman said. “They didn’t seem to be paying attention to their fiduciary responsibility. Because, they’re really in charge.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:15 PM

Mark Rozzi pitches another push for retroactive reform to child sex crimes

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Penn Live

Jun 12, 2018

By Ivey DeJesus

In all the years that Rep. Mark Rozzi has been fighting to reform state child sex crimes laws, he has excoriated the power brokers for the Roman Catholic Church for pushing back on any reform legislation.

On Tuesday, just weeks away from the release of the findings of a state probe into clergy sex abuse across Pennsylvania, Rozzi once again called for measures to expand the law, this time noting that: "Child sex abuse is not just a Catholic problem."

At a Capitol rally, Rozzi invited victims, survivors and relatives of victims from across the dark specter of child sex abuse to call on lawmakers and influential power brokers to get behind legislation that would expand the statute of limitations, giving past and future victims broader opportunities to seek legal recourse against predators.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:13 PM

Man sues scoutmaster who allegedly molested and raped him as a boy multiple times

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

June 14, 2018

By Jasmine Stole Weiss

A man identified only as E.G.W. in federal court documents filed a lawsuit on Thursday against the Boy Scouts of America and his former assistant scoutmaster, seeking $5 million in damages.

The man alleges his then-scoutmaster raped and molested him when he was an adolescent in the 1970s, according to the lawsuit.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:12 PM

Colorado public schools are paying millions to settle lawsuits when educators fail to report sex abuse of students, but those educators avoid legal consequences

DENVER( CO)
The Denver Post

June 15, 2018
Updated June 17, 2018

By Christopher N. Osher

The state’s mandatory reporting law is poorly understood and seldom enforced

The principal caught an incriminating sight when she walked by the classroom: The male math teacher was sitting provocatively close to the 13-year-old student perched on his desk wearing a short skirt. But the principal did nothing other than warn the teacher, after the student exited, to act more professionally.

Throughout the spring of 2011, rumors flew around the hallways at Rocky Heights Middle School in Highlands Ranch about the teacher, Richard “Rick” Johnson, and young girls. After Johnson plastered his office walls with photos of another eighth-grade girl he liked to hug, students talked about how he must be having sex with her. At least three students and two parents told school administrators that Johnson was cultivating an inappropriate relationship with the student, but the officials continued to sit on the information, according to documents in a federal lawsuit. Not until parents went to police was Johnson investigated, charged and convicted of raping a 14-year-old girl he began showering with affection the year before.

A key state law is supposed to defend Colorado’s vulnerable children in such instances. The law classifies school authorities, teachers, clergy and more than 40 other professions as “mandatory reporters,” who are required to alert police or child-protection workers to any suspected physical or sexual abuse of children.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:29 PM

Expect more 'lie, deny and cover-up': Ex-Philly DA pessimistic ahead of report on church

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Penn Live

June 14, 2018

By Ivey DeJesus

A little over 15 years ago, right after The Boston Globe published a bombshell investigation exposing decades of widespread sexual abuse of children at the hands of hundreds of priests in the Archdiocese of Boston, Lynne Abraham hit upon the notion that if it was happening there it was surely happening in her hometown.

Then Philadelphia's district attorney, Abraham launched what would become a legal benchmark in state history: She organized an investigation into child sexual abuse in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. It would be the longest-running investigation into clergy sex abuse and put Pennsylvania on the map of jurisdictions that most aggressively have gone after child sex predators.

Abraham dogged the investigation for several years, amassing a team of investigators numbering in the hundreds and subpoenaing church documents and officials from every rank - from the lowliest priest to the highest ranking cardinal.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:27 PM

Priest on the run

GUAM
KUAM News

June 18, 2018

By Krystal Paco

Father Adrian Cristobal had until the end of day last Friday to report to the Archdiocese of Agana. The no-show priest now faces sanctions by the Church. But, could also potentially face criminal charges.

Effective Saturday, June 16th, Father Adrian Cristobal is forbidden from acting as a priest in public. No wearing of the clerical garb, no celebrating mass, and no hearing confession. These sanctions were imposed by Archbishop Michael Byrnes who ordered Father Adrian return to Guam in light of three clergy sexual abuse lawsuits filed against him.

The former Chancellor had until the end of Friday to report to the Archdiocese of Agana. His last confirmed location was the Diocese of Phoenix, where he was reportedly studying canon law. The Concerned Catholics of Guam speculate the priest could be in hiding in the east coast.

CCOG President Dave Sablan told KUAM News, "I think Adrian is in New York somewhere or Newark, New Jersey, which is basically the headquarters for the Neocatechumenal Way." Sablan added, "We expected it. He is now a fugitive on the run."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:26 PM

Bishops OK directives, abuse charter revisions at spring meeting

FORT LAUDERDALE (FL)
Catholic News Service

June 18, 2018

New medical directives governing health care partnerships and revisions to the charter on the protection of young people were approved during the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' spring general assembly.

During their June 13-14 meeting, the bishops also approved what is described a "pastoral response" to Asian and Pacific Island Catholics and, after a long discussion, they decided to supplement their quadrennial document on Catholic participation in public life with a short letter, a video and other supplementary materials.

The meeting opened with a statement decrying Attorney General Jeff Sessions' decision that asylum seekers fleeing domestic or gang violence cannot find protection in the United States.

"At its core, asylum is an instrument to preserve the right to life," the bishops' statement said. They urged the nation's policymakers and courts "to respect and enhance, not erode, the potential of our asylum system to preserve and protect the right to life."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:25 PM

Former Utah primary teacher at LDS church branch accused of sexually abusing child

WEST JORDAN (UT)
KSL.com

June 17, 2018

By Linda Williams

Police arrested a West Jordan man accused of sexual abuse of an 8-year-old girl from his LDS Church congregation and authorities believe there may be more victims.

Sean Sund, 45, was arrested Thursday for investigation of five counts of aggravated sex abuse of a child. Sund had a position of trust over the girl because he was a Primary teacher in her LDS Church branch, police said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:24 PM

Paynter urges CBF to break sex abuse ‘culture of complicity’

DALLAS (TX)
Cooperative Baptist Fellowship

June 15, 2018

By Carrie McGuffin

Suzii Paynter challenged the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship to “break a culture of complicity” in regard to clergy sexual abuse.

#MeToo, #ChurchToo and clergy sexual abuse and misconduct were the focus when Paynter presented her executive coordinator’s report to the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship general assembly in Dallas.

‘Not an isolated incident’

She asked people in attendance to stand if they had any connection to incidents, victims or survivors of clergy sexual abuse and misconduct.

“Look around. This is not an isolated incident,” Paynter said, as nearly half of attendees.

“This is worth the honor and work of church leadership,” she said. “If you are a man in ministry, if you are a layperson in leadership in your church—don’t wait for women to demand training. Be proactive.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:13 PM

Mormon church knew of former Missionary Training Center leader’s past abuse history, says woman in new court filing

SALT LAKE CITY (UT)
The Associated Press

June 14, 2018

By Brady McCombs

A woman who says a former leader of the Mormon Missionary Training Center raped her in the 1980s accused church officials in a new court filing this week of knowing about the man’s previous sexual misconduct before he was appointed to the powerful position.

McKenna Denson’s attorneys allege in a court document filed Tuesday that Joseph L. Bishop disclosed to church leaders his “acts of sexual predation” while he was a mission president in Argentina in the late 1970s.

“Instead of informing McKenna of the truth about this self-proclaimed, lifelong sexual predator, defendants represented to McKenna, the public, and members of the church that defendant Bishop was a safe, honorable, and trustworthy leader,” Denson’s attorneys wrote.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:11 PM

Silence Is Not Spiritual: The Evangelical #MeToo Movement

DALLAS (TX)
The New Yorker

June 15, 2018

By Eliza Griswold

On Wednesday, as ten thousand members of the Southern Baptist Convention gathered outside the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center, in downtown Dallas, for the denomination’s annual conference, about two dozen women stood on faded grass nearby. They carried white banners with black-and-blue-lettered slogans, such as, “Calling Women to Preach Since the First Easter Morning,” and “I Can Call It Evil Because I Know What Goodness Is.” They were there to represent a protest movement, which includes such groups as #SilenceIsNotSpiritual and #ChurchToo, and has the potential to transform evangelicalism, by pressing churches to condemn domestic abuse, training pastors in caring for victims, and allowing women to assume positions of leadership. “God values women,” Ashley Easter, a protest organizer, told me.

Among the demonstrators was Autumn Miles, a thirty-seven-year-old evangelical leader and domestic-abuse survivor. Miles, who has a cascade of tousled hair that she describes as “fluorescent blond,” grew up as the daughter of a Southern Baptist pastor, in Terre Haute, Indiana. She married her high-school boyfriend when she was eighteen; after six years of physical and psychological abuse, she filed for divorce. Miles said that a panel of seven male elders at her family’s church called her in to explain her decision, instructing her father not to attend. “I know it might sound weird, but I could feel the presence of evil,” Miles said. They asked her to return to her abuser. She refused and left the church. When her father defended her, he was fired. Since then, Miles has told her story to many evangelical congregations, while speaking about the need to reform teachings on sexual and domestic abuse.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:09 PM

Lawsuit over decades-old abuse of Idaho scouts charges fraud by BSA, church; link to full story

BOISE (ID)
Idaho Press

June 17, 2018

By Betsy Z. Russell

Eight years after the Idaho Supreme Court dismissed their claim for damages against the Boy Scouts of America, three victims of decades-old childhood sexual abuse are once again seeking justice through Idaho’s legal system. To find it, they’ve launched a novel legal claim involving fraud. Attorneys debated it for hours in the U.S. District Court for the District of Idaho Friday afternoon. The lawsuit now has six plaintiffs; all say they were sexually abused by Boy Scout leaders in Idaho — many of them sponsored by the Mormon Church — between 1969 and 1983. You can read reporter Tommy Simmons' full story here from Saturday’s Idaho Press.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:06 PM

Letter: Leaving Catholic Church is not the right answer

BUFFALO (NY)
The Buffalo News

June 18, 2018

A recent letter implied that Catholics who are troubled by the priest sex abuse scandal rocking the Catholic Church should look to another faith to ease their minds and find comfort. I beg to differ.

If you want to leave the Catholic Church over this, or the fact that it doesn’t ordain women, go ahead and take the easy way out and leave. My faith means more to me than that and I would hope yours does, too.

That seems to be society’s way today; when things don’t go the way we want, we just pack up our bags and move on to something else. In this case, another religion. Is your faith that disposable? Mine isn’t.

Rather, those of us who are Catholic should stand by the one true Christian church. The church that started it all. Our founder was Jesus Christ, and as great as some of the other Christian religion founders were, none can claim its founder was greater than the Catholic Church’s.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:05 PM

'Cultural misunderstanding' says lawyer of LDS primary teacher accused of child sex abuse

SALT LAAKE CITY (UT)
KUTV

June 15, 2018

By RaeAnn Christensen

After a former LDS primary teacher was charged Friday morning with child sex abuse, his attorney claims it is merely a "cultural misunderstanding."

"He’s fighting it. He looks absolutely forward to clearing his name,” said Clayton Simms, a criminal defense attorney representing 45-year-old Sean David Sund.

Sund was charged with 5 felony counts of aggravated sexual abuse of a child.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:03 PM

Priests who don't report sex abuse confessions could be fined in Australia and changes could flow through to NZ

NEW ZEALAND
RNZ

June 17, 2018

By Phil Pennington

Some Catholic priests across the Tasman will soon be facing a $10,000 fine if someone confesses child sex abuse to them and they don't report it to the police.

Both South Australia and ACT have law changes coming to crack open the confessional.

It is expected that the confession-breaking laws could spread nationwide, as part of the federal government's recently released response to the Royal Commission into child sex abuse's recommendations.

An adviser to the Royal Commission, Professor Des Cahill, said the implications extended to New Zealand.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:00 PM

Florida appeals court shields priest from testifying in Orange County sexual abuse case

ORLANDO (FL)
Orlando Weekly

June 18, 2018

By Jim Saunders

Pointing to a state religious-freedom law, an appeals court has shielded a priest from testifying about his discussion with a teenage girl during the Catholic sacrament of confession about the girl being sexual abused.

The ruling Friday by a panel of the 5th District Court of Appeal in an Orange County case sided with priest Vincenzo Ronchi, who argued that the Catholic Church bars priests from disclosing any aspects of communications during confession —- more formally known as the sacrament of reconciliation —- and that disclosure could even lead to excommunication from the church.

Prosecutors subpoenaed Ronchi to testify in the case of Loren Tim Burton, who was charged last year with committing sexual offenses against a minor when she was 7 years old and 13 years old. The alleged victim, prosecutors said, told Ronzi during confession when she was 15 years old that she had been sexually abused.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:59 PM

Former LDS church primary teacher arrested for child sex abuse

WEST JORDAN (UT)
FOX13 News

June 15, 2018

By Ashton Edwards and Danica Lawrence

A former Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Primary teacher is facing child sex abuse charges in West Jordan.

Police arrested 45-year-old Sean David Sund Thursday night on five counts of aggravated child sexual abuse.

An 8-year-old victim told police Sund had regular sleepovers at his house for children, mostly from the LDS ward.

That is where she said Sund sexually abused her on multiple occasions.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:57 PM

Father Adrian fails to return to Guam by June 15 deadline

GUAM
Pacific News Center

June 16, 2018

By Jolene Toves

Father Adrian Cristobal has appearantly gone into hiding admist accusations that he sexually assaulted two individuals when they were minors.

The allegations of sexual abuse were filed against him in April and May of this year.

When the first allegation surfaced Father Adrian was listed as a priest on mission at the Archdiocese of Phoenix.

Following the the first sexual abuse complaint Archbishop Michael Byrnes issued the directive for him to return to island.

While Archbishop Brynes indicated that he had communicated with Father Adrian in April, the accused priest did not confirm that he would comply with the directive.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:56 PM

Brother of pedophile priest urges him to apologize to save his soul

ROME
Crux

June 18, 2018

By Inés San Martín

After an undisclosed meeting with Pope Francis on June 1, one of the younger brothers of Chile’s most notorious pedophile priest says he long ago lost any doubt regarding the guilt of Father Fernando Karadima, who’s been found guilty of multiple counts of abuse, and asked his brother to admit his crimes and apologize.

“I would ask for him to be humble,” said Óscar Karadima to the Chilean newspaper La Tercera.

“Fernando, ask for forgiveness. Not in silence to God, not in your prayers. Make it public, so that people hear you apologize for the hurt that you’ve caused to victims and everyone.”

“Fernando, you are a man who’s going to die. How do you dare to die like this, as a prideful man who doesn’t apologize?” Óscar Karadima said when asked what he’d tell his brother if he had the chance to speak with him again, something he said he hasn’t done since 2012, a year after the Vatican found Fernando guilty on several counts of sexual abuse and abuses of power and conscience.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:55 PM

Diocese of Palm Beach blasts priest, asks high court to reject lawsuit

PALM BEACH (FL)
Palm Beach Post

June 13, 2018

By Jane Musgrave

Describing Rev. John Gallagher as a disgruntled priest who falsely accused church leaders of trying to cover up sex abuse by a visiting cleric, the Diocese of Palm Beach on Wednesday urged the Florida Supreme Court not to revive the defamation lawsuit Gallagher filed against the church.
An appeals court was right in May when it threw out the Gallagher’s lawsuit, ruling that the First Amendment prohibits secular courts from meddling in religious affairs, said a team of lawyers from Coral Gables and Washington, D.C., that represent the diocese.

Under what is known as the ecclesiastical abstention doctrine, matters of clergy discipline are off-limits to secular courts, the West Palm Beach-based 4th District Court of Appeal ruled.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:53 PM

Papal envoy seeks forgiveness in divided Chilean diocese victimized by predator priest

OSORNO (CHILE)
The Associated Press

June 18, 2018

A papal emissary asked forgiveness Sunday from Roman Catholics in a region of Chile where people bitterly protested a now-resigned bishop who had once been a lieutenant of the country’s most notorious predator priest.

Archbishop Charles Scicluna said a Mass and told worshippers that “Pope Francis has given me the task of asking pardon from all of the faithful in the diocese of Osorno.”

The pope at one point had dismissed complaints against Bishop Juan Barros as “stupid.” But he switched course after ordering an investigation led by Scicluna and himself meeting with victims of abuse. A week ago, Francis accepted the resignation of Barrios and two other bishops.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:51 PM

Priest in Peter Tobin trial accused of raping 13-year-old

SCOTLAND
The Times

June 16, 2018

By Jeremy Watson

Police are investigating an allegation of historical child sex abuse against a priest linked to a murder trial.

Officers confirmed that they had received a complaint against Father Gerry Nugent, who died in 2010. BBC Scotland reported allegations from a 51-year-old woman who claimed that she was raped by Nugent when she was a teenager.

A spokeswoman for Police Scotland said: “We can confirm we have received a complaint and enquiries are ongoing.” The matter is a live investigation, she confirmed.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:48 PM

Allegations surface against Buffalo Diocese priest on leave since 2015

BUFFALO (NY)
The Buffalo News

June 17, 2018

By Jay Tokasz and Dan Herbeck

A Buffalo priest removed in 2015 from a Lancaster parish due to an allegation of inappropriate behavior with a child was the target of similar complaints decades ago at two other parishes.

A 37-year-old woman who is married to a Major League Baseball manager and now lives in Phoenix, Ariz., said the Rev. Dennis A. Fronczak repeatedly fondled her when she was 9 to 12 years old in the 1990s at St. Stephen parish school on Grand Island.

Kristen Lovullo, who grew up on Grand Island, said Fronczak would call her over to sit on his lap, amid the hubbub of students lining up for school dismissal. Then he would slip his hands underneath her skirt and run them up her legs, stopping just short of caressing her buttocks, she said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:37 PM

Bishop on priest's arrest: 'I pray the victim finds healing'

OPELOUSAS (LA)
The Daily Advertiser

June 14, 2018

The priest accused of sexually abusing a minor has turned himself in and confessed, authorities said.

The Rev. Michael Guidry, 75, surrendered Thursday morning at the St. Landry Parish jail and was charged with molestation of a juvenile or a person with a physical or mental disability and with contributing to the delinquency of a juvenile.

His bond was set at $21,500.

St. Landry Parish Sheriff Bobby J. Guidroz said his office opened the investigation when a male victim reported he had been sexually molested by Guidry.

According to the report, the alleged victim was 16 at the time of the assault, which occurred at the priest's home.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:32 PM

Trial starts in landmark sex case of Indian priest

KOCHI (INDIA)
UCANews

June 18, 2018

By T.K. Devasia

Father Robin Vadakkancherry was charged with rape after a schoolgirl gave birth at a church-run hospital in Kerala

A court in southern India is to start the trial of a Catholic priest, more than a year after he was arrested on charges of raping and impregnating a 17-year-old schoolgirl.

The court in Kannur district of Kerala will finalize the trial schedule on June 18. Kerala High Court has directed the court to complete the trial within six months, government pleader B.P. Sadanandan told ucanews.com.

Father Robin Vadakkancherry of Mananthavady Diocese was parish priest of St. Sebastian's Church in Kottiyoor at the time of the alleged offense.

The 49-year-old priest was arrested and placed in custody in February 2017 after the girl gave birth to a boy.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:20 PM

Serial killer trial priest 'raped schoolgirl 40 times'

SCOTLAND
BBC Scotland

June 15, 2018

By Lucy Adams

A disgraced Roman Catholic priest has been accused of raping a schoolgirl up to 40 times over a two-year period.

Father Gerry Nugent was shamed in 2007 when he admitted to a murder trial he had sex with student Angelika Kluk, a victim of serial killer Peter Tobin.

Police Scotland have now confirmed they are investigating historical allegations of child sexual abuse against the priest, who died in 2010.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:19 PM

Archbishop sanctions accused priest

GUAM
The Guam Daily Post

June 17, 2018

By Alana Chargualaf

Archbishop Michael Byrnes has imposed sanctions on Father Adrian Cristobal Saturday after the former chancellor's failure to report to the archdiocese by Friday.

"This action is taken as a result of the diocesan priest’s failure to obey repeated directives to return to Guam, following allegations of sexual abuse filed against him last April and May," the Archdiocese of Agana announced.

The sanctions further restrict Cristobal's abilities to act as a priest in public, which includes the wearing of clerical garb, the archdiocese stated.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:09 PM

Asian church’s turn in the abuse spotlight is here

JAPAN
La Croix International

June 18, 2018

By Father William Grimm, MM, Tokyo

The window of opportunity to deal with the problem before it becomes a major scandal is closing

Pope Francis accepted the resignations of three Chilean bishops in connection with the cover-up of sexual abuse by clergy in their country.

One bishop was the lightning rod for uproar among Chile’s Catholics because of accusations that as a priest he covered up abuse by a priest who was his mentor. The pope’s appointment of him as a bishop and his initial vehement defense of the man in the face of protests have been the low point of Francis’ papacy.

The other bishops whose resignations were accepted have already reached the episcopal retirement age of 75, so the pope’s having them step down is not going to satisfy critics who point out that cover-ups have been a systemic problem involving more than a handful of bishops.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:47 AM

Institutional abuse survivors urge senators to reject national redress scheme

AUSTRALIA
ABC (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

June 18, 2018

By Airlie Ward

Groups representing survivors of child sexual abuse say the Federal Government's redress scheme is fundamentally flawed and should be rejected by the Senate.

Beyond Abuse, and Survivors and Friends, have written an open letter to senators, who will begin debating the bill this afternoon, urging them to reject it in its current form.

All the states and territories, along with the Catholic Church, Scouts Australia, the Salvation Army, YMCA Australia and the Anglican Church, have committed to the redress scheme recommended by the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse to compensate people who were sexually abused in state institutions.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:44 AM

Bishop apologizes ahead of grand jury report

SCRANTON (PA)
The Times-Tribune

June 18, 2018

By Jon O'Connell

Bishop Joseph C. Bambera apologized Sunday to victims ahead of a grand jury report expected to detail child sexual abuse by Catholic priests and attempts to conceal it.

In a written message published in church bulletins, the bishop offered his “deepest apologies to the victims of such abuse, to their families, to the faithful of our Church and to everyone impacted by the behaviors described in this report.”

Diocesan officials provided the insert to all of its parishes to keep members informed of the impending release, spokesman Dan Gallagher said in an email.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:41 AM

June 17, 2018

Victim compensation in Ballarat soars as church pays out millions

BALLARAT (AUSTRALIA)
The Courier

June 18, 2018

By Leanne Younes

The Catholic Diocese of Ballarat has paid out more than $7.9 million in compensation to survivors of child sexual abuse and more than $1 million in pastoral support to abuse survivors to date.

Catholic Diocese of Ballarat business manager, Andrew Jirik said: “To date the Catholic Diocese of Ballarat (The Diocese) has paid directly to abuse survivors, compensation in excess of $7.9m and $1.4m in pastoral support.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 8:26 PM

Priests who don’t report sex abuse confessions could be fined

NEW ZEALAND
Radio New Zealand

June 17, 2018

By Phil Pennington

Some Catholic priests across the Tasman will soon be facing a $10,000 fine if someone confesses child sex abuse to them and they don't report it to the police.

Both South Australia and ACT have law changes coming to crack open the confessional.

It is expected that the confession-breaking laws could spread nationwide, as part of the federal government's recently released response to the Royal Commission into child sex abuse's recommendations.

An adviser to the Royal Commission, Professor Des Cahill, said the implications extended to New Zealand.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 8:13 PM

Pope Francis 'to meet sexual abuse victims' while in Dublin

IRELAND
Irish Central

June 17, 2018

By Freya Drohan

Pope Francis has a top priority during his Irish visit, according to The Archbishop of Dublin, Monsignor Diarmuid Martin.

Pope Francis will apparently meet victims who were sexually abused by members of the clergy when they were minors during his visit to Ireland at the end of August.

“The Pope will meet various groups”, Archbishop Martin reported to local members of press.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 2:57 PM

Bill Kenneally sex abuse survivors welcome terms for inquiry

IRELAND
Irish Times

June 17, 2018

Six men who pressed for commission of investigation are pleased at Flanagan proposals

A group of sex abuse survivors have welcomed the terms of reference announced by Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan for a commission of investigation into the handling of complaints against convicted Waterford sex abuser Bill Kenneally.

Jason Clancy, whose complaint in 2013 led to a Garda investigation into Kenneally’s abuse of 10 boys in the 1980s, said he and five other men who had pressed for a commission of investigation were very pleased with what the Minister had proposed.

“We are very happy with the terms of reference announced by Minister Flanagan – when we met him earlier this year, he and his officials presented us with terms of reference so we took them away and discussed them with our solicitor Darragh Mackin,” said Mr Clancy.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 10:05 AM

Papal investigators meet with laity, priests and religious of Osorno

OSORNO (CHILE)
Catholic News Agency via Crux

June 17, 2018

By Elise Harris

As part of their special mission to help bring healing to the troubled Chilean diocese of Osorno, Archbishop Charles Scicluna and Monsignor Jordi Bertomeu are holding several pastoral meetings this week which they say are aimed at listening.

Speaking to Chilean media at the airport after landing in Osorno, Scicluna said they came “to convey the special closeness of the pope to the beloved people of Osorno. We are going to have a lot of discussion and will listen to our brothers, which is the most important [task] for us.”

Similarly, Bertomeu said they are “happy to be here in Osorno,” and voiced hope that they would be able “to communicate the Holy Father’s request for forgiveness in peace, in concord and in harmony.”

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 9:54 AM

Paedophile priest Father Paul Moore 'poisoned my life'

SCOTLAND
BBC News

April 11, 2018

[Note from BA: This is an article from April that we mistakenly overlooked.]

A man who was sexually abused by Catholic priest Paul Moore when he was just five years old has said the ordeal "poisoned my life".

Andi Lavery, who was Moore's youngest victim, has given BBC Scotland permission to publish a picture of him which was taken in May 1977.

He said: "I was assaulted that day. Moore was present when the picture was taken."

Mr Lavery said the impact of the attacks was incalculable.

He has waived his right to anonymity and spoke out after Moore was jailed for nine years for sexually abusing him, two other children and a student priest

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 9:35 AM

Church sanctions Father Adrian Cristobal, who failed to return

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

June 16, 2018

By Dana M Williams

Archbishop Michael Byrnes has been placed sanctions on Father Adrian Cristobal, who has been accused in three sexual abuse cases and has failed to return to Guam as ordered.

Because of the abuse allegations, Cristobal already has been restricted from celebrating Mass publicly or hearing confession while the case is being reviewed, according to a statement from the Archdiocese of Agana.

"The sanctions imposed on Father Adrian further restrict his abilities to act as a priest in public, which includes the wearing of clerical garb," the statement said. "The sanctions will remain in place until such time that he obeys."

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 9:30 AM

St. Landry Sheriff: Priest accused of sexually abusing minor surrenders, confesses

ST. LANDRY PARISH (LOUISIANA)
Acadiana (LA) Advocate

June 14, 2018

By Ben Myers

The Lafayette Diocese priest accused of sexually abusing a teenager turned himself in Wednesday to the St. Landry Parish Sheriff’s Office, 10 days after the diocese publicly disclosed the allegation.

Michael Guidry, 75, confessed to assaulting the victim, who was 16 at the time, after serving the boy alcohol, according to the Sheriff’s Office. The abuse occurred at Guidry’s home in Morrow, authorities said.

Guidry was released after posting $21,500 bond, according to Maj. Eddie Thibodeaux. Guidry faces one count of molestation of a juvenile and one count of contributing to the delinquency of a juvenile.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 9:25 AM

Fr. Adrian Cristobal, accused of sex abuse in Guam, is missing after leaving Phoenix

PHOENIX (AZ)
Arizona Republic

June 15, 2018

By Jerod MacDonald-Evoy

Father Adrian Cristobal, who was on sabbatical in Phoenix until recently and is accused of sexually abusing two boys more than 20 years ago in Guam, has not returned to the island as ordered by the church.

Two men filed separate civil suits in federal court in Guam in April and May accusing Cristobal of sexual abuse.

Cristobal had arrived in Phoenix in December 2017 for sabbatical with a letter of good standing, the Phoenix Diocese said in a written statement to The Arizona Republic. He did not have an assignment and the Phoenix Diocese said it removed his faculties, or his ability to perform church sacraments, after the first suit was filed in April.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 9:02 AM

Trust grows with new archdiocese system to address clergy sex abuse

ST. PAUL (MN)
Minneapolis Star Tribune

June 16, 2018

By Jean Hopfensperger

New process subjects clergy abuse reports to prompt, tight scrutiny.

Tim O’Malley moved into a tiny, windowless office in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis in 2014 facing a daunting task: To overhaul the often secretive way it addressed child sex abuse by priests.

O’Malley, former head of the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, assembled a team of law enforcement leaders that scoured hundreds of abuse files from the past 60 years. They chased paper trails, interviewed witnesses, and laid the foundation for what is now seen as one of the nation’s most comprehensive archdiocesan child-protection systems.

That’s one of the most significant outcomes of the sex abuse scandal and the archdiocese’s bankruptcy. It recently reached a $210 million settlement with abuse victims. The constant spotlight on the archdiocese over the past four years injected pressures — and opportunities — to forge change, O’Malley said.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 8:55 AM

Priests say they won't break the seal of confession, but what does that mean?

AUSTRALIA
ABC (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

June 17, 2018

By Eugene Boisvert

Catholic priests say they will not abide new laws that mean clergy must report child abuse revealed to them in the confessional.

Both South Australia and the ACT will make the change to compel priests to give information from confession.

Here's a look at how confession works now, and whether a law could change the way the Catholic Church runs it.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 8:53 AM

Diocese pays out $7.9m to clergy child sexual abuse victims

BALLARAT (AUSTRALIA)
The Courier

June 16, 2018

The Catholic Diocese of Ballarat has paid out more than $7.9 million to compensation to survivors of child sexual abuse and more than $1 million in pastoral support to abuse survivors to date.

Catholic Diocese of Ballarat business manager, Andrew Jirik said: “To date the Catholic Diocese of Ballarat (The Diocese) has paid directly to abuse survivors, compensation in excess of $7.9m and $1.4m in pastoral support.”

“Notwithstanding the Commonwealth Redress Scheme is not yet in operation, the Diocese continues to work with claimant solicitors to progress outstanding claims and would continue to pay such amounts from its assets and insurance.”

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 8:48 AM

Explainer: What does the Catholic Church's teaching on homosexuality actually say?

IRELAND
TheJournal.ie

June 17, 2018

Archbishops launching the Papal visit were met with questions about LGBT members – but what’s the official position?

MANY OF THE questions for the two Archbishops launching the Pope’s official itinerary in Ireland this week focused on the Catholic Church’s stance on the LGBTQI community and whether people in same-sex relationships would be welcome at high-profile Church-run events later this summer.

Pope Francis will spend two full days in Ireland on 25 and 26 August this year to coincide with the Church’s week-long World Meeting of the Families. Half a million tickets are being made available for his mass at Dublin’s Phoenix Park.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 8:45 AM

Pa. report to document child sexual abuse, cover-ups in six Catholic dioceses

HARRISBURG (PA)
Philly.com

June 17, 2018

By Angela Couloumbis

For more than two years, dozens of victims have filed into a secret grand jury room in Pennsylvania, faced a group of strangers, and recounted how they were sexually abused as children by Catholic priests, their rapes and molestation buried by church leaders.

One, a former Erie priest who testified that he was molested when he was a teenager, called the experience cathartic. Another victim did not fare well after testifying. She attempted suicide and from her hospital bed implored the grand jurors to complete their investigation and make their findings public, according to a source who had been briefed on her account.

Later this month, state Attorney General Josh Shapiro is expected to release a landmark report by that grand jury that will detail, in stark and stomach-turning terms, decades of abuse and cover-ups in every Catholic diocese in the state except Philadelphia and Altoona-Johnstown, which have already undergone such scrutiny.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 8:41 AM

June 16, 2018

Religious Freedom and the Sanctity of the Confessional

FLORIDA
Reason.com [Blog]

June 15, 2018

By Eugene Volokh

The Florida Evidence Code apparently requires clergy to testify about confessions to them, if the penitent allows them to do so -- but Catholic doctrine forbids any such testimony, regardless of the penitent's wishes. Which should prevail?

To my knowledge, all American states have an evidentiary rule under which clergy can generally refuse to testify about confessions, if they believe such confessions to be confidential. (The confessions are often called "penitential communications," to stress that they need to be Catholic-style confessions.) But the Florida Evidence Code apparently treats this as primarily a right of the penitent; thus, if the penitent says she would like the clergy member to testify, the clergy member can be ordered to do so.

The Catholic Church, though, apparently takes a different view: It believes the clergy member cannot reveal things said in the confessional, regardless of whether the penitent wants them revealed. Here's how this played out in today's Florida Court of Appeals decision in Ronchi v. State.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 11:58 AM

Church must lift seal of confession to help protect children [OPINION]

AUSTRALIA
Sydney Morning Herald

June 16, 2018

By Chrissie Foster

This week we witnessed an historic moment. Our Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, announced he would implement 104 of the 122 recommendations from the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sex Abuse which relate to the Commonwealth.

During his announcement there was debate about the seal of confession being broken to report child sexual abuse.

The government is now considering the commission's recommendation that it be made an offence across all states and territories to fail to report that a child is at substantial risk of sexual abuse. If, pending discussions with the states, the laws are harmonised nationally, that would remove current protections to priests in the confessional and force them to report relevant information revealed in confession.

Almost immediately the Catholic Church took to the media, again reiterating their oppositions to such actions.

Because of their opposition to the government and the royal commission recommendations on this issue, I feel I must contribute by again reiterating what must be the perfect argument for the seal of confession to be broken for children.

The McArdle case is mind numbing. In Queensland in October 2003, Catholic priest Michael McArdle pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting generations of children.

In a sworn affidavit which he made public, McArdle stated he had confessed to sexually assaulting children 1500 times to 30 different priests over a 25-year period in face-to-face confessions.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 11:46 AM

Chile’s faith in the Catholic Church withers from child sex abuse revelations [VIDEO]

CHILE
PBS Newshour

June 15, 2018

[VIDEO]

Pope Francis announced this week he would accept the resignation of three Chilean bishops, in an ongoing scandal that has grown into a national crisis. Nearly 80 Catholic clergy across the country have been accused of sexually abusing minors over decades, and more have been implicated in the coverup. Jeffrey Brown reports from Santiago, Chile.

Read the Full Transcript

Judy Woodruff:

Now, an extraordinary crisis for the Catholic Church and test for the pope himself.

This week, Pope Francis announced that he would accept the resignation of three bishops in the South American country of Chile. Two days later, Chilean police made surprise raids on church offices.

It is all part of an ongoing child abuse scandal that began in 2010 and continues to reverberate across Latin America and beyond.

Jeffrey Brown reports from Santiago, Chile.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 6:36 AM

Catholic leaders 'willing to go to jail' to uphold seal of confession and not report child sex abuse

AUSTRALIA
ABC (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

June 16, 2016

By Katherine Gregory
Updated about 7 hours ago

Catholic priests have said they are not willing to break the seal of confession to report child sex abuse, and would rather go to jail than abide by the law.

South Australia has joined the ACT in moving ahead with laws to force Catholic priests to break the seal of confession, to report paedophiles to police.

Other states are still deliberating over whether or not they will adopt that recommendation from the royal commission.

But Catholic Church leaders have rejected the idea.

Father Michael Whelan, the parish priest in St Patrick's Church Hill in Sydney, said priests would not break the seal of confession.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 6:32 AM

Deputy Premier backs new laws to end confessional protection for pedophiles

NEW SOUTH WALES (AUSTRALIA)
Sydney Morning Herald

June 16, 2018

By Lisa Visentin

NSW Deputy Premier John Barilaro has declared the government has a responsibility to end the protection that the religious seal of confession affords to paedophiles.

Mr Barilaro defended the decision by the grassroots of the NSW National Party to support the introduction of new laws requiring priests to break the confessional seal and report to police admissions of child sex abuse heard during confession.

“We are custodians in parliament to make sure we put in place legislation that protects our children for the future,” Mr Barilaro said in response to a question from a grassroots member at the NSW Nationals state conference on Saturday.

“No institution or organisation should be ever exempt from taking responsibility or [permitted to hide] behind their own internal rules."

“We have an obligation to protect children and we need to do that, and no one is exempt from that,” he said.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 6:29 AM

June 15, 2018

American priest dismissed for sex abuse still in Bangladesh

DHAKA (BANGLADESH)
UCANews

June 15, 2018

By Rock Ronald Rozario and Stephan Uttom

Despite the Vatican judging allegations against William Christensen to be credible in 2010, he is still working with children

An American priest who was dismissed from the clergy by the Vatican after being accused of sexually abusing as many as 30 teenagers in Bangladesh is still in the country.

William Andrew Christensen, a priest in the Society of Mary, or Marianists, was removed from the priesthood in October 2010 after the Vatican judged allegations against him to be credible.

In January 2011, ucanews.com published a story quoting Catholic human rights activist Rosaline Costa, who claimed that Christensen used the Institute of Integrated Rural Development (IIRD), which he founded in Bogra district in 1987, as a front to sexually abuse at least 30 Muslim teenagers in rural Bangladesh.

He was accused of buying the silence of the youngsters, their parents and local political and community leaders.

Christensen was accused of abusing a pupil at a school in St. Louis, Missouri, before coming to Bangladesh but a lawsuit filed in 2002 collapsed when the complainant died.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:37 PM

Chicago Schools to Check Backgrounds of Thousands of Workers

CHICAGO (IL)
The Associated Press

June 15, 2018

The Chicago school district will run background checks on thousands of employees after a newspaper found that students had been sexually abused by workers with criminal records.

The Chicago school district will run background checks on thousands of employees after a newspaper found that students had been sexually abused by workers with criminal records.

Chicago Public Schools CEO Janice Jackson says the effort is "unprecedented." The district checks backgrounds of new teachers, volunteers and some others who work in schools, but someone who is already employed doesn't face the same scrutiny.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:35 PM

Michigan State Trustee Calls for Interim School President John Engler to Resign

DETROIT (MI)
The Associated Press

June 15, 2018

Michigan State University board trustee Brian Mosallam is asking interim school president John Engler to resign immediately.

Mosallam released a statement Friday morning, saying the crisis on campus related to Larry Nassar will not settle until Engler steps down.

According to emails, Engler has criticized lawyers who represent Nassar’s assault victims and suggested the first woman to go public with her accusations was probably getting a “kickback” from her attorney.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:33 PM

Trustees call for president of Michigan State University to resign

EAST LANSING (MI)
SFGate

June 15, 2018

By Larry Lage and Alice Yin

Two Michigan State University board trustees are calling for interim school President John Engler to resign, joining a chorus of sexual assault victims of disgraced former sports doctor Larry Nassar and top legislators who say the campus community cannot heal until Engler steps down.

“Unfortunately, and with great regret, John Engler’s tenure as interim president has continued the bleeding rather than stem it,” Brian Mosallam said in a statement Friday. “His misguided actions and comments have failed to re-establish trust and confidence in Michigan State.”

His disapproval was echoed by trustee Dianne Byrum a few hours later.

“The despicable and disparaging comments made about survivors by interim President John Engler are completely unacceptable,” she said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:31 PM

Michigan OKs Nassar-related laws to give victims time to sue

LANSING (MI)
The Associated Press

June 12, 2018

Michigan Lt. Gov. Brian Calley on Tuesday signed two bills inspired by the Larry Nassar scandal, including one giving childhood sexual abuse victims more time to sue.

The current cutoff to file a lawsuit in Michigan is generally a minor victim's 19th birthday, which critics say is out of step with other states and does not account for how many victims are afraid to report abuse or have suppressed it. Starting in three months, people who were sexually abused as children will be able to sue until their 28th birthdays or three years from when they realize they have been abused. Victims of Nassar, the imprisoned former sports doctor who worked for Michigan State University and USA Gymnastics, will get a 90-day window to sue retroactively.

As part of a $500 million settlement with Michigan State, his hundreds of accusers agreed to withdraw their support for legislation that would have eliminated the immunity defense in lawsuits for entities that are negligent in the hiring, supervision or training of employees, or if the governmental agencies knew or should have known and failed to report sexual misconduct to law enforcement.

Calley, who enacted the main bill in a private Capitol ceremony because Snyder was out of the state, also signed a measure giving prosecutors 15 years or until a victim's 28th birthday to file charges in second- and third-degree sexual conduct cases if the victim was younger than 18. The deadline currently is 10 years or a victim's 21st birthday, whichever is later.

Charges could be filed at any time if there were DNA evidence.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:29 PM

El enviado papal se reunió en dos días con 94 víctimas de abuso en Chile

CHILE
Agencias ABC.es

June 15, 2018

The papal envoy met in two days with 94 victims of abuse in Chile

El sacerdote español Jordi Bertomeu, uno de los enviados papales que llegó a Chile junto al arzobispo maltés Charles Scicluna, dijo hoy tras llegar a la sureña ciudad de Osorno que en dos días se reunieron con 94 víctimas de abusos sexuales en el interior del clero.

Tras el arribo de la comitiva papal ambos se dirigieron a las afueras de la Catedral San Mateo de Osorno, a 942 kilómetros al sur de Santiago, donde Bertomeu dijo a los periodistas que han llegado a esa zona para ponerse al servicio del pueblo.

El religioso español recalcó a la prensa que desde su llegada a Chile, el pasado martes, se reunieron con 94 víctimas de abusos sexuales al interior de la institución eclesiástica .

Frente a la fuerte división que existe al interior de la diócesis en la zona, especialmente en los fieles, Bertomeu reconoció que esto es normal, como ocurre en distintas instancias de la vida.

"Por eso nuestra misión es poder transmitir a la ciudadanía que el papa los quiere", y en ese sentido dijo que tienen pensado realizar una misa de reparación para los afectados.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:12 PM

Sentencias canónicas ejecutadas por el Arzobispo de Santiago

CHILE
Arzobispo de Santiago

June 1, 2018

Canonical judgments executed by the Archbishop of Santiago

En la homilía de cierre del X Sínodo, el 21 de mayo pasado, el cardenal Arzobispo de Santiago Ricardo Ezzati señaló que la Santa Sede le había confiado dar sentencias de seis casos durante su ministerio episcopal en Santiago.

Respecto del detalle de la información, estos son los casos respecto de los cuales ha dictado sentencia:

1. ALFREDO SOIZA-PIÑEYRO VEGA (Sacerdote secular). El Arzobispo decretó investigación previa en enero de 2012, la cual determinó que las actas y los antecedentes de la mencionada investigación debían ser enviados a la Congregación para la Doctrina de la Fe. Se le restringió el ejercicio de su ministerio sacerdotal hasta que la Santa Sede estableció su dimisión del estado clerical.

2. CRISTIÁN PRECHT BAÑADOS (Sacerdote secular). Condenado a cinco años de suspensión del ministerio sacerdotal. Actualmente sin ningún encargo pastoral y con decreto de una nueva investigación previa debido a las acusaciones de víctima del caso Maristas.

3. ROBERTO A. SALAZAR SOTO (Religioso). Su caso fue confiado al Arzobispo por la Congregación de la Doctrina de la fe. Concluyó con la dimisión de su Congregación y del estado clerical.

4. HÉCTOR VALDÉS VALDÉS (Religioso). Su caso fue confiado al Arzobispo por la Congregación para la Doctrina de la Fe. Concluyó con la dimisión de su Congregación y del estado clerical.

5. LUIS MOREL GUMUCIO (Religioso). Su caso fue asumido por el Arzobispo diocesano. Terminó con la suspensión del ministerio por decreto del Arzobispo. Al poco tiempo, falleció.

6. JOSÉ LUIS DÍAZ ATILANO (Religioso). Su caso fue confiado al Arzobispo por la Congregación de la Doctrina de la Fe. Dimitido de su Congregación y del estado clerical por decreto del Arzobispo de Santiago, interpuso recurso ante la Congregación para la Doctrina de la Fe.

Fuente: Comunicaciones Santiago

http://www.iglesiadesantiago.cl/

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:11 PM

El Vaticano y la justicia chilena unen fuerzas contra los curas pedófilos: allanan sedes de la Iglesia en Santiago

CHILE
Clarin

June 14, 2018

The Vatican and the Chilean justice join forces against the pedophile priests: they level the seats of the Church in Santiago

Enviados del Papa coincidieron en la necesidad de cooperar con el Estado en las investigaciones. Incautan documentos del Tribunal Eclesiástico de la capital.

Enviados del papa Francisco a Chile coincidieron este miércoles con el fiscal general del país en la "necesidad absoluta" de la cooperación entre la Iglesia y el Estado chileno para la investigación de abusos de menores por parte del clero. Hora antes, la policía allanaba la sede del Tribunal Eclesiástico de Santiago y del obispado de Rancagua e incautaba documentos.

La Justicia chilena se apoderó así de archivos eclesiásticos en busca de antecedentes tras las denuncias de abuso sexual a menores que remecen a la Iglesia católica en el país suramericano. Escándalo por el cual todos los obispos chilenos pusieron a disposición del papa su renuncia días atrás. El pontífice aceptó la dimisión de una de las figuras más polémicas del caso, el obispo de Osorno, Juan Barros, acusado de ocultar casos de pedofilia.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:07 PM

Ministerio Público hace histórica incautación en sedes de la Iglesia por casos de abuso

CHILE
La Tercera

June 15, 2018

By S. Vedoya, I. Toro, J. Matus y P. Moreno

Public Ministry makes historic seizure in church headquarters for cases of abuse

Fiscalía junto a Carabineros allanaron los obispados de Santiago y Rancagua, además del Tribunal Eclesiástico. En 1987, el entonces vicario Sergio Valech le negó fichas clínicas al exfiscal militar Torres Silva.

Cerca de las 11.00 de este miércoles un fuerte rumor comenzó a circular entre los asistentes al seminario de capacitación sobre prevención de abusos sexuales, organizado por la Conferencia Episcopal, en la Casa Central de la Universidad Católica. Entre los presentes se encontraban los enviados papales Charles Scicluna y Jordi Bertomeu, quienes iniciaban allí las actividades de su segundo día de misión en Chile. Llamados telefónicos y comentarios de pasillo alertaban que el Ministerio Público ingresaría a diversas dependencias de la Iglesia Católica en busca de información relacionada con investigaciones eclesiales sobre abusos cometidos por sacerdotes.

El mismo asombro se vivía a esa hora en la sede de la Conferencia Episcopal. Allí estaban el arzobispo de Santiago, cardenal Ricardo Ezzati, y el obispo auxiliar, Fernando Ramos, quienes también recibían mensajes y llamados de alerta sobre la situación.

Finalmente, el rumor se materializó. A las 11.19 horas se dio inicio a un operativo histórico para la Iglesia Católica chilena. El fiscal regional de Rancagua, Emiliano Arias, en compañía de efectivos del OS-9 de Carabineros subieron al séptimo piso de Catedral 1063, en Santiago, para allanar las dependencias del Tribunal Eclesiástico.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:03 PM

MSU's John Engler staying put despite calls for resignation

EAST LANSING (MI)
Detroit Free Press

June 15, 2018

By David Jesse

As two board members, several lawmakers and a host of Spartan students and alumni called for him to step down as Michigan State University's Interim President, John Engler said he's not going anywhere.

“I continue to look ahead," he said in a statement released in the hours following two of his bosses calling for his resignation. He did not directly address the calls for resignation in his statement.

"Whatever the tensions were before, we have successfully negotiated a settlement agreement — something that is fair and equitable to both sides, and that both sides agreed to. We are now committed to continuing our efforts to strengthen sexual misconduct prevention on and off campus and to respond promptly to and appropriately if prevention fails.

"I am looking forward to the Board of Trustee meeting next week where we will continue our progress and efforts to move forward. I believe actions matter, and that is how the success of our work will be determined.”

Michigan State University interim President John Engler must step aside immediately, board members Brian Mosallam and Dianne Byrum said Friday morning in separate statements.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:01 PM

Assignment Record– Rev. Michael G. Barletta

ERIE (PA)
BishopAccountability.org

Summary of Case: Michael G. Barletta was ordained in 1966 for the Diocese of Erie. He spent the bulk of his career as a high school teacher while residing in local parishes. Early on he was at Kennedy Christian High in Sharon, where he established a service club called the Teenage Action Club (TAC). He was transferred in the mid-1970s to Cathedral Prep, again establishing a TAC. Barletta was reportedly a charismatic, popular teacher, nicknamed "Barts," who would take some of his students on overnight trips, including to Toronto, Niagara Falls, and his camp at Punxsutawney.

In 1994 a man told Bishop Trautman that Barletta had molested him when he was a Prep student in the late 1970s-early 1980s. Trautman removed Barletta from the school within the year and transferred him from St. Luke's parish in Erie to St. Patrick/St. Hedwig's. He was assigned to work in the diocesan office of Catholic Charities and as chaplain to Holy Family Carmelite Monastery. Also at St. Patrick/St. Hedwig's during Barletta's time there were, among others, accused priests Thomas E. Smith and Leon T. Muroski, and retired Bishop Michael J. Murphy.

In the Spring of 2002 the man who reported Barletta to the diocese in 1994 and two other men approached Bishop Trautman, all three alleging sexual abuse by Barletta in the late 1970s-early 1980s when they were Cathedral Prep students. Barletta was finally removed from active ministry in 2003. He is not indexed in the Official Catholic Directory after 2002. He is noted in 2012 and 2017 news articles to have been living in Erie and functioning as a priest at his high school reunions.

Ordained: 1966

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:36 AM

OPINION | My father, the priest

BOSTON (MA)
Boston Globe

June 15, 2018

By James C. Graham

In 1993, during a meeting in Buffalo, N.Y., I learned that the man who had raised me was not my father and that the Rev. Thomas S. Sullivan, a priest from Lowell, likely was. After looking at the obituary and accompanying photo, there was no question in my mind that he was my father, since his facial features mirrored mine. But I never knew him, the result of a well-orchestrated scheme by the church to save its reputation during the conservative post-World War II era of the late ’40s.

Even though the revelation occurred nearly a half-century after my birth, I found the church was intent on disguising my origin; it stonewalled me for years. In my quest for transparency, I interviewed many of my father’s contemporaries from the Oblate order. They were shocked by my likeness to their old friend. However, in every case, they referred to my father as Tom Sullivan, never as “your father.”

Each meeting offered a bit of information about him; he was an eloquent speaker, an avid reader, a prolific writer, and witty. One priest asked, “Did you get the money for your education? We wanted to do the right thing.” When I said, “What money?” his facial expression twisted in anguish. At the end of a very revealing discussion, he offered this advice: “Forget the injustices of the past, you have good genes, get on with the rest of your life.” A few months later, I revisited the priest, who denied having said what he divulged in our first meeting.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:26 AM

'Upskirting' will become a criminal offense in the UK (updated)

UNITED KINGDOM
Engadget

June 15, 2018

By Steve Dent

Offenders will face up to two years in prison.

It will soon be a criminal offense in the UK to point a camera up a woman's skirt and take a photo (an act called "upskirting"), with offenders facing up to two years in jail. It's hard to believe, but there's no specific law on the books, so police have had trouble prosecuting the creeps that do it. The new legislation will be largely through the efforts of victim Gina Martin. She was upskirted at a music festival in London, and despite having photographic evidence, police said they were unable to act because the photos weren't considered graphic.

Afterwards, Martin started a petition that gained 104,000 signatures, including nearly 50,000 in the UK. That eventually caught the attention of Justice Secretary David Lidington, who got the ball rolling on the new legislation. The law will receive a second reading in the House of Commons today, after which it will specifically be illegal to "take a picture under a person's clothing without them knowing, with the intention of viewing their genitals or buttocks," according to the government.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:24 AM

Guam's archbishop, Anthony Apuron, appeals Vatican verdict on sex-abuse charges

HAGÅTÑA (GUAM)
Pacific Daily News

June 14, 2018

By Haidee Eugenio

Guam's controversial archbishop, removed from office in March and barred from living in the U.S. territory, has appealed a Vatican tribunal's ruling that found him guilty of "certain accusations" involving the sexual abuse of minors, the Archdiocese of Agaña said Thursday.

During the last week of April, Rome notified new Archbishop Michael Byrnes, tapped to replace Anthony S. Apuron on March 16, about Apuron's appeal, according to Tony Diaz, director of communications for the archdiocese.

Whether an appeal could result in reversal of the verdict "would be up to Rome," Diaz said.

Pope Francis placed Apuron on leave in June 2016 after former altar boys and their families accused the archbishop of sexually abusing children in the 1970s when he was a parish priest in the village of Agat.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:23 AM

Lawmakers: John Engler must step down from MSU presidency

EAST LANSING (MI)
Detroit Free Press

June 14, 2018

By David Jesse

Interim Michigan State University President John Engler must step down immediately from his position leading the university, a growing number of lawmakers, including U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow, said Thursday.

"The senator did not believe he was the right choice to lead MSU when he was appointed and doesn’t believe he is the right choice now," Stabenow spokesman Matt Williams said. Stabenow is an MSU alumna.

Also calling for Engler to step down were state Senate Judiciary Committee Chair Rick Jones, R-Grand Ledge, and state Sen. Margaret O'Brien, R-Portage.

Jones said he was at his daily breakfast with constituents at the Grand Ledge A&W Thursday morning when he saw a story about Engler claiming that Rachael Denhollander — the first person to publicly accuse Larry Nassar, a former MSU doctor, of sexually assaulting students — would likely get kickbacks from attorneys involved in lawsuits against the university.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:59 AM

Allison Mack's Alleged Sex Cult Nxivm Has Suspended Operations

UNITED STATES
Cinema Blend

June 14, 2018

By Will Ashton

Among the craziest stories of 2018 thus far is the nearly-unbelievable story of Allison Mack's involvement with Nxivm, an upstate New York group that recruited young women under the guise of self-empowerment and reportedly branded and brainwashed them. Mack was considered the most high-profile recruiter in the group, as she was the leader of its inner circle, NXIVM DOS, which is being reported as a sex cult. In April, the former Smallville actress was arrested by the FBI in Brooklyn for her high-level involvement. Since then, more information about Nxivm and Mack's disturbing involvement in the group have been revealed to the public. As this potentially damning information leaked, and with the group's leader Keith Raniere also arrested shortly before Mack, Nxivm officially suspended operations due to "extraordinary circumstances." That's putting it mildly, truth be told.

On Nxivm's website (as reported by E! News), the following message has been posted on their site, claiming all operations inside the group have been suspended due to the ongoing criminal trails and the severe allegations made against the group.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:58 AM

Exclusive: Retired justice's role in settlements between Diocese, alleged abuse victims

ROCHESTER (NY)
WHAM-TV

June 14, 2018

By Ginny Ryan

[VIDEO]

For victims who say they were abused by Catholic priests who were ordained or assigned in our area, the only recourse is to begin a process dictated by the Diocese of Rochester.

If they’re over the age of 23, as most of the victims are, state law does not allow for criminal charges or a civil suit.

A retired State Supreme Court justice will play a powerful role in these cases. He is both judge and jury.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 8:16 AM

New allegations surface against Rochester priests; Father Valenti takes leave [VIDEO]

ROCHESTER (NY)
RochesterFirst.com

June 14, 2018

By Wakisha Bailey and Howard Thompson

[VIDEO]

(WROC) - As more victims come forward, one of the people accusing local priests of sexual abuse is making a public demand for justice.

Carol DuPré says she was the victim of sexual misconduct by Father Stuart Hogan when she was a teenager.

Thursday morning, DuPré stood with Attorney Mitchell Garabedian, who is representing a number of victims, to speak with members of the media.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 8:12 AM

Lawyer: Number of alleged victims doubles in Rochester Diocese child sex abuse scandal [VIDEO]

ROCHESTER (NY)
WHEC-TV

June 15, 2018

[VIDEO]

A local priest has taken a leave of absence from his position following accusations of abusing children in a local church.

The Diocese says Father Thomas Valenti, one of eight priests recently named by a high-profile attorney, is taking personal time following the accusation.

The Diocese confirms Valenti “asked to be relieved of his duties at this time. He remains a pastoral administrator.” Valenti -- along with Eugene Emo and David Simon -- was previously named as alleged sexual abusers of children.

The Diocese found the 2003 claims unsubstantiated and say no other claims were ever made against him.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 8:10 AM

[OPINION] Australia's bishops still don't get it - things have changed

AUSTRALIA
Sydney Morning Herald

June 13, 2018

By Joanne McCarthy

Everything changed on December 15, 2017 when the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse presented its final report and recommendations to the Australian public.

It’s a shame Australia’s Catholic bishops missed the memo.

The royal commission exposed in sickening, staggering detail the church’s crimes against thousands of children in Australia alone, and its culpability as an organisation that protected criminals and facilitated those crimes.

But the bishops, in response, are acting as if nothing has happened. Sure, they’ve promised change. They’ve released pious statements. They’ve even used the words “humility” and “humbled” in the right context.

But with every move they make, with every step they don’t take, Australia’s bishops show they don’t understand that their relationship with Australians has changed. Has had to change.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:52 AM

No redress compensation for victims of horrific physical abuse, campaigner says

AUSTRALIA
Australian Broadcasting Corporation

June 15, 2018

By Iskhandar Razak

People who survived horrific child abuse in institutions will not get the justice and compensation they deserve under the national redress scheme because it only focuses on sexual crime, long-time campaigner Leonie Sheedy has said.

Victorian Attorney-General Martin Pakula announced the Andrews Government had committed up to $600 million to the redress scheme over the next decade for Victorian abuse survivors.

He said it was expected something in the order of 5,000 people were likely to come forward and seek compensation.

All the states and territories have committed to the redress scheme recommended by the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse to compensate people who were sexually abused in state institutions.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:44 AM

Oklahoma pastor proposes database to fight sexual abuse in churches

OKLAHOMA CITY (OK)
KOCO-TV

June 14, 2018

[VIDEO]

Emmanuel Enid reverend minister Wade Burleson wants to put an end to sexual abuse inside places of worship.

"When you hear the story of people who have been through abuse that involves ministers," Burleson said, "it breaks your heart."

While at the Southern Baptist convention this week, Burleson proposed a database that would warn churches if a potential employee has a dark past.

"It would include confessions, where there's no legal conviction," he said. "Possibly, including "possibly the credibly accused."

Burleson believes sexual predators are often able to hop from church to church while flying under the radar because law enforcement wasn't notified.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:40 AM

South Australian priests to defy confession laws

SOUTH AUSTRALIA (AUSTRALIA)
The Australian

June 15, 2018

By Michael Owen

Catholic priests in South Australia will defy new laws requiring them to report confessions of child sexual abuse.

Bishop Greg O’Kelly, the Acting Archbishop of Adelaide, said priests were bound by the sacred and not the secular, claiming the new law “doesn’t affect us”.

“We have an understanding of the seal of confession that is in the area of the sacred … politicians can change the law but we can’t change the nature of the confessional, which is a sacred encounter between a penitent and someone seeking forgiveness and a priest representing Christ,” Bishop O’Kelly told ABC radio.

“That does not change by the law of politicians.”

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:37 AM

'We can't change the nature of our sacred confessional': Church refuses to adhere to new law requiring priests to report confessions of child sex abuse

SOUTH AUSTRALIA (AUSTRALIA)
Australian Associated Press

June 15, 2018

* South Australian Catholic Church will refuse to report child abuse confessions
* Acting Archbishop of Adelaide Greg O'Kelly says confessional is sacred
* The new law will mean not reporting abuse will carry a maximum $10,000

The Catholic Church has says it will refuse report confessions of child sex abuse despite a law that requires priests to do so, defending the practice as 'sacred.'

The South Australian Catholic Church will not adhere to a change in law requiring priests to report confessions of child sex abuse, the Acting Archbishop of Adelaide says.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:31 AM

Eight Catholic priests accused of sex abuse: Which churches did they work for?

ROCHESTER (NY)
Rochester Democrat and Chronicle

June 14, 2018

By Meaghan M. McDermott

Attorney Mitchell Garabedian announced on June 6 that 15 men and two women have alleged they were sexually abused as children by eight priests assigned to parishes in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Rochester between 1950 and 1978.

Three of the accused priests have been publically identified in the past: Eugene Emo, David P. Simon and Francis H. Vogt. Emo and Simon were removed from their ministry and Vogt has since died.

Here are the priests identified by Garabedian and their assignment history within the Diocese of Rochester:

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:27 AM

June 14, 2018

Victim of alleged clergy sexual abuse seeks justice

ROCHESTER (NY)
WHEC 10

June 14, 2018

An alleged victim of clergy sexual abuse spoke out Thursday morning in a press conference at the Sacred Heart Cathedral in Rochester.

The alleged victim, Carol DuPre' says that the abuse she suffered occurred from 1962 and 1963 when she was between the ages of 15- and 16-years-old.

She would continue to say that at that time she would count the money after mass on Sunday which is where the alleged abuse at the hands of Father Stuart Hogan began.

"By coming out and talking about this I hope this will help how I am feeling on the inside which is healing," DuPre' explained.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:55 PM

Spencerport woman who says priest abused her as a child tells her story

ROCHESTER (NY)
Rochester Democrat and Chronicle

June 14, 2018

By Meaghan M. McDermott and Sean Lahman

A Spencerport woman who has accused a priest in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Rochester of sexual abuse shared her story Thursday morning on the steps of Sacred Heart Cathedral.

Carol DuPré is one of a group of accusers who say they were sexually abused by Rochester area priests when they were children. Mitchell Garabedian, a Boston attorney who has spent decades representing such victims, last week named eight priests from the diocese who 15 men and two women say abused them between 1950 and 1978.

DuPré said she was molested by Father G. Stuart Hogan when she was 15 and 16 years old in 1962 and 1963.

"It started after mass one Sunday when he asked me to go back to the rectory to help count the offering," she said. "It put me in a precarious position where he began the molestation, and that's all I want to talk about as far as details."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:53 PM

Declaración de prensa del Arzobispado de Santiago

SANTIAGO (CHILE)
Comunicaciones Santiago

June 13, 2018

Durante la mañana de este miércoles 13 de junio de 2018, el fiscal regional de O'Higgins, Sr. Emiliano Arias, junto con efectivos del OS-9 de Carabineros, presentaron al Arzobispado de Santiago una orden judicial de registro e incautación de antecedentes de parte de la Jueza de Garantía de Pichilemu (VI Región), Sra. Magistrado América Antonia Rojas, sobre un proceso de investigación de abusos presentado a la curia de Santiago.

La investigación del caso había sido enviada por la arquidiócesis el 31 de enero de 2018 a la Santa Sede.

El Arzobispado de Santiago entregó al Sr. fiscal toda la documentación solicitada, reiterando la disponibilidad de colaborar con la justicia civil, en todo lo que sea requerido.
Atentamente,

Arzobispado de Santiago de Chile

Fuente: Comunicaciones Santiago

http://www.iglesiadesantiago.cl

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:01 PM

Chile authorities raid sites linked to church sex abuse

CHILE
News Wires

June 14, 2018

Police on Wednesday seized church files in raids in Santiago and Rancagua, as the Catholic Church scrambled to try to put a better face on a sex abuse scandal that has rocked Chile.
The surprise operations came as Maltese archbishop Charles Scicluna and fellow papal envoy Jordi Bertomeu are visiting for a second time to take witness statements from victims of sexual abuse in the church and provide instruction to Chilean dioceses to respond adequately to any new complaints.

Prosecutor Emiliano Arias confirmed two "landmark" raids and said he was pleased with how they went. Precisely because church officials long were not subject to civilian authority in Chile, this marked a dramatic shift.

"This is not an investigation against the Catholic church," Arias said, but rather an investigation of reports of sex abuse by members of the church who abused minors.

Several members of the church hierarchy, including former bishop Juan Barros, are accused by victims of ignoring and covering up years of child abuse by Chilean pedophile priest Fernando Karadima during the 1980s and 1990s.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:21 AM

Pope's envoys in Chile to 'ask forgiveness' over sex abuse

SANTIAGO (CHILE)
Agence France-Presse

June 13, 2018

Maltese archbishop Charles Scicluna and fellow papal envoy Jordi Bertomeu will take witness statements from victims of sexual abuse within the Church

The Vatican's top abuse investigator arrived in Chile on Tuesday, June 12, a day after Pope Francis accepted the resignation of 3 bishops from the scandal-wracked Chilean Church.

Maltese archbishop Charles Scicluna and fellow papal envoy Jordi Bertomeu will take witness statements from victims of sexual abuse within the Church and provide instruction to Chilean dioceses to respond adequately to any new complaints.

"We have come to ask forgiveness" from the victims on behalf of Pope Francis, said Bertomeu as they arrived in Santiago.

The two investigators will meet Wednesday, June 13, with Canon law experts from Chilean dioceses who will provide "technical and legal assistance" in order to "provide adequate responses to each case of child sexual abuse committed by clerics or religious," Scicluna told reporters.

The two officials are due to travel to Osorno, the Catholic diocese led by Juan Barros, one of 3 bishops whose resignation Francis accepted following a child sex abuse scandal that has come to haunt his papacy.

Scicluna told reporters that the visit to Barros's diocese of Osorno aimed to "express the particular closeness of the pope to the diocese of Osorno and his beloved people."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:20 AM

Vatican's top sex abuse investigators promise action in Chile

SANTIAGO (CHILE)
Reuters

June 12, 2018

By Aislinn Laing

The Vatican’s top sex abuse investigators arrived in Chile on Tuesday saying they had orders from Pope Francis to ensure the Roman Catholic Church responds to “every case of sexual abuse of minors committed by clergymen” in the South American nation.

New abuse accusations have emerged in recent weeks against the Church in Chile, including allegations against the pope’s own Jesuit order. They follow the resignation of three bishops after an abuse and cover-up scandal that has damaged the Church’s reputation in the country.

“We are seeking to provide concrete technical and legal advice ... so that [the Church] can give a proper response to each case of sexual abuse,” Archbishop Charles Scicluna of Malta said at a news conference in Santiago.

The Church said it would name a delegate next Monday to be stationed in Santiago and receive accusations of abuse, part of a new effort to help victims seek quick justice on still-open cases, some of which go back decades.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:19 AM

My friend was accused of sexual assault — what do I do?

UNITED STATES
WHIMN

June 13, 2018

By Cleo Waters

It all started with a few missed calls and then a text message saying we had to meet up. He sounded calm on the phone but his need to see me seemed urgent, so we went out for lunch that day.

It was over a vegan meal my friend told me that a woman he’d worked with had accused him of sexual assault and the police were getting involved.

My first reaction was shock. How could this be? How could this man I know to be a funny, kind, sweet and wholly harmless human being be suspected of such a thing with a barely-adult woman.

He was distraught; not crying, but judging by the puffiness that filled the lines on his 30-something face, he’d done a lot of that already. He sounded embarrassed … devastated that his career might be on the line. But honestly, even as he insisted he’d acted “totally professionally” and the incident had been “taken out of context,” the exchange he described seemed questionable.

Now, let me quell your curiosity when I say that knowing the particular details of this incident isn’t necessary to underscore the fact that sexual misconduct on any level is unacceptable in the workplace, or anywhere else, for that matter. Unwelcome explicit comments (something that was alleged) and unwanted, gentle grazes (also alleged) aren’t okay.

In the current climate of #metoo and #timesup, it’s very easy to class men like Harvey Weinstein in the predator category — more than 80 women have come forward to accuse Weinstein of sexual misconduct, and over the years, the disgraced producer cultivated an infamous reputation as a bully, notorious even by Hollywood standards — but what to do when someone you know and trust is also accused of similar grievances? “Today” host Savannah Guthrie highlighted this dilemma when discussing her co-anchor Matt Lauer’s sacking after sexual misconduct allegations came to light and wondered aloud: “How do you reconcile your love for someone with the revelation that they have behaved badly?”

How indeed?

It was a question I grappled with during that lunch and well after it, because, as a woman who’s experienced sexual harassment myself, I fully embrace this necessary reckoning that’s seeing many men being held accountable for their usually unpunished antics. I’d be remiss not to acknowledge that the conversations going on right now in offices, schools and bedrooms about women feeling mistreated or threatened sexually are very different from the public discourse happening 10 years ago (or even discussions we were having 10 months ago).

That day, while my friend proclaimed his innocence — and I do believe that no harm was intended — I thought a line had been crossed. And I told him so.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:14 AM

Engler emails on Nassar case spark backlash

EAST LANSING (MI)
The Detroit News

June 13, 2018

By Kim Kozlowski

Michigan State University interim President John Engler faced blowback Wednesday after emails emerged in which he criticized lawyers for Larry Nassar’s assault victims and said the first gymnast to come forward in the scandal was probably getting a "kickback” from her attorney for "manipulating" other victims.

The comments from Engler, reported Wednesday by the Chronicle of Higher Education, generated outrage among Nassar's victims and their allies, including one MSU trustee who said it was time for Engler to take a long look at what he is doing to MSU as it works to move past the scandal.

"Interim President John Engler’s emails released today are completely unacceptable and tone deaf and he should publicly apologize immediately and denounce these insensitive comments," MSU Trustee Dianne Byrum said in a statement. "We need to be focused on culture change at MSU and allow the healing process to begin and statements like these from Interim President Engler and his advisors are hurtful, counterproductive and unnecessary.”

Trustee Brian Mosallam added that he was stunned by Engler's comments.

"I am extremely troubled and disappointed," Mosallam said. "The interim president's tone and conduct Is embarrassing. We are a university that should be showing compassion and contrition and he is doing the exact opposite."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:11 AM

Michigan State president disparaged lawyers, victim in email

EAST LANSING (MI)
The Associated Press

June 13, 2018

Michigan State University's interim president criticized lawyers who represent Larry Nassar's assault victims and suggested that the first woman to go public with her accusations was probably getting a "kickback" from her attorney, according to emails.

John Engler's remarks were made to another university official in April, a month before Michigan State agreed to a $500 million settlement with hundreds of women and girls who said they were sexually assaulted by Nassar, a campus sports doctor now serving decades in prison. The Chronicle of Higher Education and Detroit Free Press reported on the emails Wednesday.

Engler, a former Michigan governor, had an email exchange with Carol Viventi, a Michigan State vice president and special counsel. The emails followed allegations at a stormy public meeting that Engler was trying to pay off a woman without her lawyer's input.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:10 AM

MSU President Engler: Nassar survivor may get kickbacks from lawyers

EAST LANSING (MI)
Detroit Free Press

June 13, 2018

By David Jesse

Michigan State interim President John Engler, in a private email to a top adviser, accused a prominent survivor of former MSU doctor Larry Nassar — Rachael Denhollander — of likely getting kickbacks from the trial attorneys involved in lawsuits against the school.

In the same string of emails, Engler's top aide — Carol Viventi — accused MSU board member Brian Mossallam of not doing a good enough job of protecting Engler. The Free Press obtained the emails from a source within the Engler administration. The Chronicle of Higher Education first obtained the emails under a Freedom of Information Act request.

The emails drew swift response, including two calls questioning why Engler was still at the school.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:09 AM

Woman says Mormon church knew of her abuser's history

SALT LAKE CITY (UT)
Associated Press

June 13, 2018

By Brady McCombs

A woman who says a former Mormon missionary leader raped her in the 1980s accused church officials in a new court filing this week of knowing about the man's prior sexual misconduct before he was appointed to the powerful position.

McKenna Denson's attorneys allege in a court document filed Tuesday that Joseph L. Bishop disclosed to church leaders his "acts of sexual predation" while he was a mission president in Argentina in the late 1970s.

"Instead of informing McKenna of the truth about this self-proclaimed, lifelong sexual predator, defendants represented to McKenna, the public, and members of the church that defendant Bishop was a safe, honorable, and trustworthy leader," Denson's attorneys wrote.

Bishop, now 85, has denied raping Denson but acknowledged to police that he asked her to expose herself when he was president of the faith's Missionary Training Center in Provo, according to police documents. The role he held from 1983 to 1986 gave him authority over hundreds of young Mormons preparing to go on church missions.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:06 AM

Gayle King discusses her friendship with Charlie Rose, potential #MeToo backlash

UNITED STATES
GMA

June 13, 2018

By Luchina Fisher

Gayle King has not turned her back on her friend and former colleague Charlie Rose.

The "CBS This Morning" co-anchor, who worked alongside Rose for years before he was fired amid multiple allegations of sexual misconduct, spoke to The New York Times about her friendship with veteran journalist and why she sees a potential backlash to the #MeToo movement.

King said, for her, it's not a question of whether she has to reconcile her friendship with Rose and the things of which he is accused.

"I don’t feel as if I’ve had to reconcile my feelings," she told The New York Times. "I don’t believe in turning your back on a friend, even when a friend has done something you adamantly disagree with and you’re disappointed in. But I also know that you listen to women, and I don’t discount their stories, either."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:04 AM

Bangladeshi priest accused of sexual relations with women and girl

BANGLADESH
UCA News

June 13, 2018

By Stephan Uttom and Rock Ronald Rozario, Natore

Despite police finding that Father Walter Rozario had sex with women and an underage girl, the church has taken no action Bangladeshi priest accused of sexual relations with women and girl

The mysterious disappearance of a Bangladeshi priest just days before Pope Francis visited the country has taken a sinister new turn.

Police suspected Father Walter William Rozario had been kidnapped by radical Muslims when they found his abandoned motorbike and discovered that his mobile phone was switched off.

But their investigation revealed that the 41-year-old priest had allegedly been involved in a string of relationships with women and at least one girl under 18, the age of consent in Bangladesh.

"From our interrogation and findings, I can confirm that five women and an underage girl had illicit and physical relationships with the priest. One of those who admitted having an illicit affair with the priest was a girl aged 17 who was studying in college," Inspector Saikat Hasan of Boraigram police told ucanews.com.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 8:09 AM

Fiscalía realizó diligencias en Rancagua y Santiago en investigación por abusos en la Iglesia

CHILE
Cooperativa.cl

June 13, 2018

[Prosecutor's Office carried out proceedings in Rancagua and Santiago in investigation for abuses in the Church]

* Personal de Carabineros y Fiscalía llegaron hasta el obispado de Rancagua y dependencias del Arzobispado de Santiago.

* Se investigan conductas impropias de al menos 14 sacerdotes.

* Personal de Carabineros y la Fiscalía realizaron diversas diligencias simultáneas en la mañana de este miércoles en dependencias de la Diócesis de Rancagua y el Arzobispado de Santiago.

Las diligencias se iniciaron en el obispado de Rancagua, hasta donde llegaron efectivos del OS-9 de Carabineros y el fiscal Sergio Pérez con una orden de entrada y registro emitida por el Tribunal de Garantía de Pichilemu.

En paralelo, el fiscal Emiliano Arias llegó hasta el Tribunal Eclesiástico de Santiago para llevar a cabo otra serie de diligencias, oportunidad en la que comentó que "nadie está al margen de la ley".

Posteriormente, Arias se dirigió hacia el Arzobispado con el fin de avanzar en las indagatorias.

Arias apuntó que "hubo toda la colaboración en la entrega de los antecedentes que contaban en la orden judicial, se trata de mucha documentación incautada, tanto aquí como en Rancagua, en la que pretendo ahora abocarme de inmediato a poder analizar para poder decretar diligencias".

El persecutor remarcó que "lo que sí me gustaría aclarar desde ya es que yo no estoy investigando a la iglesia católica, yo estoy investigando a ciertas y determinadas personas naturales que han cometido delitos y que son parte de la iglesia católica".

**

[GOOGLE TRANSLATION: Prosecutor's Office carried out proceedings in Rancagua and Santiago in investigation for abuses in the Church

* Carabineros and Prosecutor personnel arrived at the bishopric of Rancagua and offices of the Archbishopric of Santiago.

* Inappropriate behaviors of at least 14 priests are investigated.

* Prosecutor's Office carried out proceedings in Rancagua and Santiago in investigation for abuses in the Church

Carabineros staff and the Prosecutor's Office carried out several simultaneous proceedings on the morning of this Wednesday in dependencies of the Diocese of Rancagua and the Archbishopric of Santiago .

The proceedings were initiated in the bishopric of Rancagua , to where troops arrived from the OS-9 of Carabineros and the public prosecutor Sergio Pérez with an order of entry and registration issued by the Guarantee Court of Pichilemu .

In parallel, the prosecutor Emiliano Arias came to the Ecclesiastical Court of Santiago to carry out another series of proceedings, an opportunity in which he commented that " no one is outside the law."

Later, Arias went to the Archdiocese in order to advance in the investigations.

Arias noted that " there was all the collaboration in the delivery of the background that counted in the court order, it is a lot of documentation seized , both here and in Rancagua , which I now intend to immediately address to analyze to be able to decree proceedings" .

The persecutor remarked that "what I would like to clarify right now is that I am not investigating the Catholic Church , I am investigating certain and certain natural persons who have committed crimes and who are part of the Catholic Church."]

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:52 AM

Chilean church offices raided as part of sex abuse probe

SANTIAGO (CHILE)
Associated Press

June 13, 2018

By Patricia Luna

Prosecutors seized documents in raids on Roman Catholic Church offices in two cities as part of an investigation into growing clergy sex abuse scandals, while Vatican investigators met with Chile’s attorney general to discuss cooperation in the civil and canonical probes.

The surprise raids Wednesday targeted the headquarters of Santiago’s Ecclesiastical Court and the diocese in Rancagua in the O’Higgins region, where 14 priests are accused of having had sexual relations with minors.

They came hours before two envoys sent by Pope Francis met with Chilean prosecutors, including Attorney General Jorge Abbott, to coordinate their response to scandals that have discredited Chile’s church and last month led all of its 30-plus active bishops to offer to resign over their collective guilt in failing to protect children from abusive priests.

“The commitment is to a greater collaboration between the institutions,” Abbott said, adding that church and civilian authorities are going to set up a system that will provide victims with the protections needed to come forward and freely lodge complaints.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:42 AM

Bangladesh wake-up call on sexual abuse for Asia's bishops

BANGLADESH
Global Pulse

The case of Father Walter Rozario bears all the hallmarks of denial, cover-up and silencing victims seen in the West

June 13, 2018

By Michael Kelly SJ, Bangkok

The investigation by ucanews.com into the disappearance of a priest from Bangladesh that uncovered evidence of sexual abuse follows a well-trodden path.

It's one that has been travelled in country after country for 30 years — in the United States, Canada, Ireland and Australia and now on full display in Chile.

It runs like this: there is a pattern of "grooming" where the sexual predator flatters and indulges his proposed victim into submission; advances are made by the predator on his target; fear and paralysis is the response of the target and often their families, and so often silence.

If church authorities are informed or learn of the events, there is puzzlement followed by inertia often with a failure to listen or take seriously the complaints about a cleric or religious; a pattern of cover-up where the predator is defended or worse still, they are moved to other parts of the diocese or the country or even out of the country; the circling forces of the police are at the extremes: they are either complicit with the powerful church or out to score a conviction at almost any cost.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:32 AM

June 13, 2018

Histórico: Fiscalía de O’Higgins inicia incautación de archivos eclesiásticos en Iglesia de Santiago y Rancagua por abusos sexuales a menores

CHILE
La Tercera

June 13, 2018

[Historical: O'Higgins Prosecutor's Office initiates confiscation of ecclesiastical archives in the Church of Santiago and Rancagua for sexual abuse of minors]

By Ivonne Toro

La medida incluye todas las acusaciones que llegaron desde 2007 a la fecha a congregación para la doctrina de la Fe y que recibieron sanciones canónicas como aquellas que constan en los archivos de la curia de la diócesis de Rancagua. En Santiago se requiere información específica sobre el ex canciller del Arzobispado de Santiago, Óscar Muñoz Toledo.

A esta hora el fiscal regional de Rancagua, Emiliano Arias, encabeza la incautación de documentos en dependencias del Tribunal Eclesiástico de calle Catedral en Santiago, el Arzobispado de Santiago y en paralelo, según pudo confirmar La Tercera PM otros persecutores del Ministerio Público se encuentra realizando la misma acción en el edificio de la Diócesis de Rancagua. Se trata de un proceso inédito que se vincula a las indagatorias que sigue Arias por presuntos abusos sexuales a menores por parte de miembros de la curia.

La información recabada por este medio apunta a que la Fiscalía ha solicitado a las reparticiones todas las investigaciones realizadas desde el año 2007 hasta hoy por parte de la Iglesia en que hubieran sido víctimas menores de edad de abusos sexuales u otros ilícitos por parte de los sacerdotes de las diócesis de Rancagua. También se incluye a religiosos que no son parte de esta repartición, pero que habrían cometido ilícitos en la zona.

[GOOGLE TRANSLATION:

Historical: O'Higgins Prosecutor's Office initiates confiscation of ecclesiastical archives in the Church of Santiago and Rancagua for sexual abuse of minors

The measure includes all the accusations that came from 2007 to the congregation date for the doctrine of the Faith and that received canonical sanctions like those that appear in the archives of the Curia of the Diocese of Rancagua. In Santiago, specific information is required about the former chancellor of the Archdiocese of Santiago, Óscar Muñoz Toledo.

At this time the regional prosecutor of Rancagua, Emiliano Arias, heads the seizure of documents in the Ecclesiastical Tribunal offices of Cathedral Street in Santiago, the Archbishopric of Santiago and in parallel, as he could confirm to La Tercera other prosecutors of the Public Ministry is making the same action in the building of the Diocese of Rancagua. It is an unpublished process that is linked to the investigations Arias follows for alleged sexual abuse of minors by members of the curia.

The information gathered through this means that the Office of the Prosecutor has requested all the investigations carried out from 2007 until today by the Church in which they have been victims of sexual abuse or other illicit acts by priests. of the Dioceses of Rancagua. It also includes religious who are not part of this division, but who would have committed crimes in the area.]

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 4:51 PM

Chile prosecutors raid Catholic Church offices amid sex abuse probe

SANTIAGO (CHILE)
Reuters

June 13, 2018

By Aislinn Laing and Dave Sherwood

Chilean police and prosecutors on Wednesday launched separate and unexpected raids on Roman Catholic Church offices to seize documents relating to mounting claims of sexual abuse and cover-up.

The raids came just hours before Vatican abuse investigators sent by Pope Francis met the country’s top prosecutor to discuss collaborating on civil and canonical probes.

Archbishop Charles Scicluna of Malta, a special envoy from the Vatican, told reporters that it was “very important” that Church and state work together to protect children alleged to have been abused by priests and clergymen.

“The canonical process should in no way impede the right of people to exercise their right to civil justice,” he said at a news conference in the capital Santiago.

Hours earlier, police and prosecutors raided the Church’s judicial office in Santiago, surprising Church leaders.

Jaime Ortiz de Lazcano, the Archbishop of Santiago’s legal advisor, said he was in a meeting with Scicluna when he was asked to go to a court hearing about the impending seizure of documents relating to an abuse case the Church had investigated in January.

“I was very surprised when they told me ‘Father, go to the court because there’s going to be a raid,’” he told reporters.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 4:47 PM

Berks lawmaker rallies for change in sexual abuse cases

HARRISBURG (PA)
WFMZ-TV

June 12, 2018

By Katiera Winfrey

Renewed push to follow report on church sex abuse

A Pennsylvania lawmaker from Berks County plans to renew his push to abolish the state's statute of limitations in sex abuse cases after the publication of a grand jury report on allegations of child sexual abuse within six Roman Catholic dioceses around the state.

Rep. Mark Rozzi, himself a victim of childhood sex abuse in the Allentown diocese, said Tuesday he's prepared to seek a vote in the state House of Representatives on legislation that carries provisions sought by victims.

Rozzi's efforts come ahead of the release of a grand jury report into sex abuse in the Catholic dioceses.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:13 PM

Push to nix Pennsylvania statute of limitations to follow church sex abuse report

HARRISBURG (PA)
The Associated Press

June 12, 2018

A renewed push for legislation to abolish Pennsylvania's statute of limitations in sex abuse cases will follow the publication of a sweeping grand jury report on allegations of child sexual abuse and cover-ups within six Roman Catholic dioceses around the state, a lawmaker said Tuesday.

Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, said he will be prepared to seek a vote in the state House of Representatives on legislation that carries provisions sought by victims.

The House two years ago overwhelmingly approved Rozzi's legislation to lift time limits for authorities to pursue charges of child sexual abuse and for those onetime child victims to sue their attackers and institutions that covered it up. Rozzi's bill also would have established a two-year window for victims to sue for damages if they are now older than the current legal age limit.

Currently, state law bars onetime child victims from suing for damages if they have turned 30 and bars authorities from filing criminal charges if the person making the claim of child sexual abuse has turned 50.

The Senate, however, rejected key provisions, including the two-year window. Rozzi, who has told of his rape as a 13-year-old boy by a Roman Catholic priest, said he is hoping the grand jury's report changes enough minds for his bill to pass the Senate this time.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:12 PM

Sexual abuse survivors seek Legislature’s help in holding abusers accountable

HARRISBURG (PA)
The Tribune-Democrat

June 13, 2018

By John Finnerty

Advocates rallied at the Capitol on Tuesday to call on state lawmakers to allow victims to seek justice for long-ago abuse ahead of an expected grand jury report examining the Catholic church’s handling of child sex abuse by priests across Pennsylvania.

Efforts to reform the statute of limitations law in the wake of child sex abuse scandals have been mired in controversy over whether possible reforms should to be made moving forward or include provisions to allow victims to seek justice for crimes that have already passed the statute of limitations.

The Senate last year approved Senate Bill 261, a measure that would have eliminated the statute of limitations for criminal prosecution of child sex crimes. But that measure only looked forward and offered no relief for victims of crimes that have already passed the statute of limitations.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:58 PM

Valedictorian gets mic cut off mid-speech. I hope we haven’t heard the last of her.

PETALUMA (CA)
Chicago Tribune

June 12, 2018

By Heidi Stevens

Lulabel Seitz, the valedictorian at Petaluma High School in Northern California, was plugging along nicely on her commencement address about overcoming obstacles and achieving dreams when suddenly her mic went dead.

“The class of 2018 has demonstrated time and time again that we may be a new generation, but we are not too young to speak up, to dream and to create change,” she told the crowd of graduates and their loved ones. “Which is why even when some people on this campus, those same people — ”

Cut!

She veered off-script around the four-minute mark, and administrators were having none of it. Students submitted their speeches for approval, principal David Stirrat told The Washington Post, and they were warned that if they deviated from the approved remarks, the microphone could be cut off.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:47 PM

MSU won't say whether any deans, top officials have been investigated for misconduct

EAST LANSING (MI)
Lansing State Journal

June 13, 2018

By Matt Mencarini

Michigan State University has refused to release records that would show whether any of its deans or top administrators have been the subject of misconduct investigations. MSU also failed to meet a statutory deadline in an appeal of that decision.

On May 4, the university denied the release of records relating to any open or closed university investigations of 38 of its top officials, including deans, some vice presidents and high-ranking athletic department staffers. The request covered Title IX investigations, which look into sexual misconduct and relationship violence, or any other internal inquiries.

The Lansing State Journal made the request under the state's Freedom of Information Act following the arrest of former dean William Strampel in March and the revelation that he had been subject of a Title IX investigation since December.

The university said that any closed investigations were denied as an unwarranted invasion of privacy. Any open investigations were denied as potentially interfering with ongoing law enforcement investigations and as an unwarranted invasion of privacy. MSU did not specify whether no such records exist for some of the 38 individuals.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:21 PM

Harvard Pilgrim CEO Eric Schultz Has Resigned Over Inappropriate Behavior

BOSTON (MA)
Boston Magazine

June 12, 2018

By Spencer Buell

"I made mistakes, and I’m truly sorry."

Eric Schultz, the CEO of Harvard Pilgrim Health Care, announced his resignation Tuesday, effective immediately, after behavior that was described as inappropriate.

“It’s with mixed emotions that I inform you that today will be my last day as CEO of Harvard Pilgrim Health Care and Chair of the Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation,” Schultz said in a resignation letter shared Tuesday. “Regrettably, I recently exhibited behavior that was inconsistent with my personal core values and the company’s core values and code of conduct. During the past eight years as your leader, I was committed to fostering a workplace culture that was inclusive, welcoming and rooted in integrity and respect. I made mistakes, and I’m truly sorry.”

The board of directors at the Boston-based health services company said in a statement it has accepted his resignation.

Neither Schultz nor Harvard Pilgrim has offered any more specifics.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:19 PM

The Boston Globe Has Dropped Its Lawsuit Against Hilary Sargent

BOSTON (MA)
Boston Magazine

June 11, 2018

By Spencer Buell

The Globe had filed an injunction to force Sargent, a former boston.com staffer, to turn over information.

The Boston Globe has decided to end its legal battle with Hilary Sargent, a former employee who shared saved text messages conversations on Twitter that appeared to show someone—whom she claimed to be the Globe‘s top editor—sending suggestive messages.

The outlet has dropped efforts to seek an injunction that would have forced Sargent, who was once an editor at the Globe-owned boston.com, to sit down for an official interview and hand over documents related to her allegations against editor Brian McGrory. In its announcement, the Globe cited statements from Sargent and her lawyer that an inappropriate text allegedly sent to her by McGrory was “more likely” sent after she was no longer an employee at the paper.

“After learning facts disclosed for the first time by Hilary Sargent … the Boston Globe believes that legal action is no longer necessary,” reads a statement released by the Globe. “Ms. Sargent has finally provided the information the Globe has requested from the start.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:17 PM

Guess Co-founder Accused of Harassment Steps Down

UNITED STATES
The Cut

June 13, 2018

By Sarah Spellings

Months after Guess models including Kate Upton accused co-founder Paul Marciano of “sexually and emotionally harassing women,” Marciano has stepped down from the company.

A four-month-long probe found that Marciano has “exercised poor judgment in his communications with models and photographers and in placing himself in situations in which plausible allegations of improper conduct could, and did, arise.” The company also said in a statement that Marciano had made “inappropriate comments and texts and unwanted advances including kissing and groping.”

Marciano’s brother was appointed chairman, and Marciano will remain on the board until January 30, 2019. He has not performed his daily duties since the beginning of the probe.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:12 PM

Women detail explosive allegations against USC gynecologist accused of sexual misconduct

LOS ANGELES (CA)
CBS NEWS

June 13, 2018

Another woman is detailing explosive allegations against a longtime gynecologist at the University of Southern California. She's joined 23 other women in an amended lawsuit, accusing Dr. George Tyndall of sexual misconduct including assaulting patients under the guise of medical treatment.

Tyndall is also feds probing whether USC concealed abuse allegations against school gynecologist. They're looking into more than 50 cases. Some former patients claim USC ignored complaints about the doctor for decades and covered up his alleged crimes, reports CBS News correspondent Jamie Yuccas.

Daniella Mohazab and Anika Narayanan both visited USC gynecologist Dr. George Tyndall in 2016.

"When we went into the examining room, he had me undress from the waist down and he watched me as I did that," Mohazab told Yuccas.

"He started asking me what race I was, relating to me how I looked like his wife," Mohazab added.

Narayanan said she had never been to a gynecologist before.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:09 PM

Southern Baptists condemn abuse and stand in support of victims

DALLAS (TX)
The Tennessean

June 12, 2018

By Holly Meyer

The Southern Baptist Convention condemned all forms of abuse and stood in support of victims on Tuesday evening.

The voting representatives from Southern Baptist churches across the nation passed a resolution addressing abusive behavior and how church leaders should respond to allegations. They are in Dallas this week for their annual denominational meeting.

"We call on all persons perpetrating and enabling abuse to repent and to confess their sin to Jesus Christ and to church authorities and to confess their crimes to civil authorities," the resolution reads.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:08 PM

Eminent biologist resigns over allegations of gender discrimination and sexual harassment

LA JOLLA (CA)
News Medical

June 13, 2018

By Dr Ananya Mandal, MD

Eminent biologist and cancer researcher Inder Verma has resigned from the Salk Institute for Biological Sciences in La Jolla, California according to an announcement made by the institute on the 11th of June 2018. This has followed the temporary suspension of Verma since 21st of April this year after several allegations of gender discrimination and sexual harassment from female scientists against him.

After receiving the complaints the Salk Institute had started an internal probe into the matter. Verma has since then repeatedly denied the allegations made against him. In a statement to the media he said, “I have never used my position at the Salk Institute to take advantage of others. I have also never engaged in any sort of intimate relationship with anyone affiliated with the Salk Institute. I have never inappropriately touched, nor have I made any sexually charged comments, to anyone affiliated with the Salk Institute. I have never allowed any offensive or sexually charged conversations, jokes, material, etc. to occur at the Salk Institute.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:55 PM

PM tells church to put child safety first

AUSTRALIA
Australian Associated Press

June 13, 2018

By Megan Neil

The Catholic Church maintains the seal of confession cannot be broken even to reveal child sexual abuse, despite Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull declaring children's safety must take priority.

Mr Turnbull has promised the federal government will put child safety first as he prepares an October 22 national apology to child sexual abuse survivors for the "shocking" crimes committed against them.

The government will set up a national office of child safety as it adopts the bulk of the recommendations of the five-year child abuse royal commission.

While Canberra has not rejected any recommendations, the controversial issue of extending mandatory reporting laws to include people in religious ministry remains in the hands of the states and territories.

Mr Turnbull had a clear message for the Catholic Church when it came to the seal of the confession: "The safety of children should always be put first."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:54 PM

Diocese of Canterbury issues confessional advice to priests

CANTERBURY (ENGLAND)
Kent Online

June 13, 2018

By Joe Wright

Church leaders have come under fire for advising priests to divulge the secrets of confession in special circumstances.

The Diocese of Canterbury, which covers Maidstone, Thanet and Ashford, has been accused of breaching canon law for telling clergy to inform the authorities should they fear for a person's safety.

The guidelines were drawn up after a local priest felt compromised when someone revealed details about ongoing abuse.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:52 PM

Catholics defend the secrecy of confession amid pressure over child abuse royal commission

AUSTRALIA
Australian Broadcasting Corporation

June 13, 2018

By Matthew Doran

The Catholic Church is holding firm against calls to lift the veil of secrecy on confession amid calls from victims and advocates to force priests to report alleged abusers.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull delivered the Federal Government's response to the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sex Abuse in Canberra on Wednesday.

Last year 122 recommendations were delivered to the government, including calls to throw out the sanctity of the confessional.

In a statement posted to YouTube, Australian Catholic Bishops Conference President, Archbishop Mark Coleridge dismissed those demands.

"The church doesn't want to protect criminals, it wants children to be safe from them," he said.

"And the church wants measures that really make environments safer for children.

"But there's nothing to suggest that legal abolition of the seal will help in that regard."

That has outraged advocates of abuse victims, who believe the church is simply trying to shield alleged abusers.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:29 PM

Former Bangladesh nun: Anti-sex abuse crusader

DHAKA (BANGLADESH)
UCANews

June 13, 2018

By Rock Ronald Rozario

Abuse is covered up not just by the church, but also by local Christian society, rights activist Rosaline Costa says

Bangladeshi human rights activist Rosaline Costa says reports of clergymen abusing women and children have been around Christendom for years.

"In recent years the media has been very open in this respect and so many victims are coming out and even risking their lives with their claims," Costa said.

After ucanews.com reported the case of Bangladeshi priest Father William Walter Rozario, the former Maria Bambina nun answered the following questions about the situation in Bangladesh:

Do you find the case of Father Rozario significant?

I feel it is very significant in the context of Bangladesh. Our Catholic people are God-fearing and honor religious men and women in a special way. We have learned that religious people are the people of God and they commit themselves by taking the visible place of Jesus. But when such things happen, it is a shocking message to all Christians. In recent years, we have heard of similar cases in various dioceses and parishes.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:22 PM

Opinion: A Catholic Church child sex abuse bombshell is coming, and Pa. lawmakers had better be on the right side

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
The Inquirer

June 13, 2018

By Maria Panaritis

The warning Tuesday came from Catholic men in the Pennsylvania legislature.

Their names are Tom Murt of Montgomery County, Pat Harkins of Erie, and Mark Rozzi of Reading. They’re guys who go to church or, in Rozzi’s case at least, used to — until he was raped by a priest as a 13-year-old.

A bombshell is coming, they warned during a rally inside the Capitol in Harrisburg. And anyone working alongside them in this, the people’s hall of power, had better be on the right side of things when it does.

An investigative grand jury report into clergy abuse in six of the state’s eight Catholic dioceses may be days away from being made public. Rumored to be 884 pages long, it is expected to make stomachs turn, the product of more than two years’ worth of top-secret subpoenas and testimony led by a team in the Attorney General’s Office.

Let’s hope it shakes everyone to their core. Because lawmakers must be prodded toward justice, once and for all.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:10 PM

Owego priest, accused of child sex abuse, won't speak at priests' conference

OWEGO (NY)
Press Connects

June 13, 2018

By Katie Sullivan

Tioga County priest Rev. Thomas Valenti has asked to take time away from his pastoral duties, days after a Boston attorney named him as one of eight clergy members accused of sexually abusing children in the Diocese of Rochester between 1950 and 1978.

On Wednesday, Doug Mandelaro, director of stewardship and communications for the Diocese of Rochester, confirmed Valenti has asked "to be relieved of his pastoral duties at this time in order to address this matter."

Valenti currently serves as the parochial administrator at Blessed Trinity — that includes St. James Church in Waverly, St. John in Newark Valley and St. Margaret Mary in Apalachin — as well as St. Patrick's parish in Owego.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:09 PM

Vatican team returns to Chile to 'ask forgiveness' for clergy sex abuse, cover-ups

VATICAN CITY
Catholic News Service

June 13, 2018

Arriving on his second visit to Chile, Archbishop Charles Scicluna of Malta said his mission to the country is a sign of Pope Francis' closeness to the local church following devastating reports of sexual abuse and cover-ups by members of the clergy.

Speaking to journalists in Santiago June 12, the archbishop said his team's pastoral mission includes providing "concrete technical and legal assistance to the dioceses in Chile so they may give adequate responses to each case of sexual abuse of minors committed by clergy or religious."

Archbishop Scicluna, president of a board of review handling abuse cases within the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, and Father Jordi Bertomeu Farnos, an official of the doctrinal congregation, visited Santiago June 12-13 before going to Osorno June 14-17.

Pope Francis accepted the resignation of 61-year-old Bishop Juan Barros of Osorno, Chile, and two other Chilean bishops June 11. Bishop Barros' appointment as head of the Diocese of Osorno in January 2015 sparked protest because of the bishop's connection to Father Fernando Karadima, his former mentor. Father Karadima was sentenced to a life of prayer and penance by the Vatican after he was found guilty of sexually abusing boys.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:08 PM

Pope Francis is finally starting to get it

CHILE
The Washington Post

June 12, 2018

By Editorial Board

THE WORLD HAS heard it again and again — heartfelt, ringing pledges by Pope Francis and his predecessors that the Vatican, at long last, has gotten the message on the global epidemic of clerical sex abuse. These often have been followed by half-measures, equivocations, inertia and even outright contempt for accusers, who in most cases were victimized as children.

Now, five years into his papacy, there are signs, at last, that Pope Francis is starting to get it.

In an extraordinary move, he summoned all 34 of Chile’s bishops to the Vatican last month for an emergency summit and dressing-down, accusing them of collective responsibility for systematically ignoring and covering up for pedophile priests over decades. The pontiff included himself in the problem — “me first of all,” he wrote to the bishops — having in January summarily dismissed as “slander” credible accusations that a Chilean bishop, Juan Barros, whom he appointed in 2015 despite warnings by other prelates, was complicit in misdeeds by a notorious abusive priest.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:34 PM

The Latest: Protesters push for SBC to adopt reform measures

DALLAS (TX)
Associated Press

June 12, 2018

The Latest on the annual meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention in Dallas (all times local):

2:15 p.m.

About two dozen protesters gathered outside the annual meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention are pushing for three changes to church operations.

They say they want more inclusion of women’s voices in the SBC and a database to record and track those accused of misconduct. They also want seminarians and others trained on how to address domestic violence.

Carol Shelton of Fort Worth says domestic violence and sexual abuse have been given little attention because the victims are normally women.

Michael Maschenik, pastor of Unity Baptist Church near Macon, Georgia, counters that a database would be redundant from the ones kept by authorities. He says no one in the SBC supports or condones abusive behavior.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 8:43 AM

Australia PM will make national apology to sex abuse victims

SYDNEY (AUSTRALIA)
Associated Press

June 13, 2018

By Trevor Marshallsea

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull will deliver a national apology to child sex abuse victims as part of the government’s response to a long-running inquiry that heard allegations against government and private institutions and prominent individuals in five years of hearings.

The apology, to be delivered on Oct. 22 after public consultations, was announced Wednesday as Turnbull outlined his government’s formal reaction to the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. Its inquiry ended in December after taking evidence from leaders such as Vatican Cardinal George Pell, who is charged with committing historical sex abuses himself and was accused of failing to protect children.

Turnbull’s government will adopt 104 of the 122 recommendations the royal commission made to it, including establishing a national office for child safety and joining a redress payments program. The 18 other recommendations remain under consideration.

“It’s been harrowing work,” Turnbull told a news conference in Canberra. “Now that we’ve uncovered the shocking truth, we must do everything in our power to honor the bravery of the thousands of people who came forward.”

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 8:09 AM

[VIDEO] Advocates push for statute of limitations reform as grand jury report looms

HARRISBURG (PA)
Fox43-TV

June 12, 2018

Survivors of childhood sexual abuse and advocated rallied Tuesday, pushing for reforms of the commonwealth statute of limitation rules.

Currently in Pennsylvania, someone who was sexually abused before their eighteenth birthday has until they're 30-years old to file a civil suit.

The age limit for a person to bring forward a criminal case is 50-years old.

House Bill 612 proposes to eliminate the criminal statute of limitations while providing a two-year window of opportunity for anyone seeking a civil lawsuit after exceeding the age limit, with the burden of proof going on the accuser.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 8:06 AM

Fighting for the Rights of Abuse Victims

HARRISBURG (PA)
PALive.com (WBRE/WYOU-TV)

June 13, 2018

By Matt Heckel and Jayne Ann Bugda

[VIDEO]

The findings of a grand jury investigating allegations of sexual abuse by priests at six Catholic Dioceses in Pennsylvania is set to be released to the public later this month. On Tuesday there was a push at the state capitol to give victims more legal rights. Eyewitness News Harrisburg Reporter Matt Heckel has the story.

A bill in the house would lift time limits for when victims of sex abuse can sue their alleged abusers. On Tuesday, Victims and advocates filled the capitol to urge lawmakers to pass the bill.

"You learn to live with it. It's like a haunting," said Teresa Lancaster.

Not a day has gone by since Teresa Lancaster graduated from "Archbishop Keough High School" in Baltimore in the 1970’s that she doesn't think about the sexual abuse she and her classmates went through.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:57 AM

June 12, 2018

Will Southern Baptists do more than pass a resolution on #SBCToo sins and crimes?

NEW YORK (NY)
GetReligion

June 12, 2018

By Terry Mattingly

The 2018 Southern Baptist Convention is in session and, so far, the news out of Dallas has been pretty predictable. The big news, if you are into that civil-religion thing, is that Vice President Mike Pence will address the gathering tomorrow.

Baptist Press has a live blog here, with the status of resolutions and other votes, and an actual live-cam up is streaming here (and here on YouTube).There's lots going on at several hashtags, such as #SBC18, #SBC2018 and #SBCAM18. The official Twitter feed for the meeting is right here.

As I wrote yesterday, in a high-altitude overview post, I think the key to the meeting will be actions – not just resolutions – to change policies in seminaries linked to counseling and reports of domestic abuse. Also, watch for efforts to create some kind of SBC-endorsed clearing house collecting official reports of abuse by clergy and church leaders.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:53 PM

Massive Minnesota settlement a possible precedent in Pa. abuse cases

HARRISBURG (PA)
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

June 12, 2018

By Peter Smith

Advocates for sexual-abuse survivors are rebooting their effort on Tuesday in Harrisburg for legislation that would allow victims to sue over abuse that happened years or decades ago.

And if a recent settlement in Minnesota is any indication, the implications for such legislation could be huge for Pennsylvania’s Roman Catholic dioceses, which are facing the imminent release of a landmark grand jury report into 70 years of alleged sexual abuse and cover-up.

The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis on May 31 reached at $210 million settlement with about 450 victims of abuse by clergy and others associated with the church.

That followed the archdiocese’s 2015 bankruptcy filing, which itself followed an avalanche of lawsuits made possible by a 2013 Child Victim’s Act. That Minnesota law provided a three-year window in the statute of limitations that otherwise had barred lawsuits over long-ago abuse.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:47 PM

Push for Legislation to Follow Report on Church Sex Abuse

HARRISBURG (PA)
The Associated Press

June 12, 2018

By Marc Levy

A lawmaker plans to renew his push to abolish Pennsylvania's statute of limitations in sex abuse cases after the publication of a grand jury report on allegations of child sexual abuse within six Roman Catholic dioceses around the state.

A renewed push for legislation to abolish Pennsylvania's statute of limitations in sex abuse cases will follow the publication of a sweeping grand jury report on allegations of child sexual abuse within six Roman Catholic dioceses around the state, a lawmaker said Tuesday.

Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, said he will be prepared to seek a vote in the state House of Representatives on legislation that carries provisions sought by victims.

The House two years ago overwhelmingly approved Rozzi's legislation to lift time limits for authorities to pursue charges of child sexual abuse and for those onetime child victims to sue their attackers and institutions that covered it up. Rozzi's bill also would have created a two-year window for victims to sue for damages if they are now older than the current legal age limit.

Currently, state law bars onetime-child victims from suing for damages if they have turned 30 and it bars authorities from filing criminal charges if the person making the claim of child sexual abuse has turned 50.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:45 PM

Wave of scandals confront Southern Baptists

DALLAS (TX)
CNN

June 12, 2018

By Daniel Burke

First it was the pastor in Memphis, whose megachurch applauded when he confessed to having a sexual encounter with a teenager 20 years ago. He was later placed on leave.

Then the head of the Southern Baptist Convention's executive committee resigned, citing "a morally inappropriate relationship in the recent past."

And last month, Paige Patterson, 75, a revered figure in many Southern Baptist circles, was removed as president of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary amid accusations he had mishandled two separate cases where students came to him saying they had been raped.

Before those allegations came to light, Patterson had already been the subject of controversy. Audio and video recordings emerged online of Patterson making lewd remarks about a teenage girl, and counseling a woman in an abusive relationship not to divorce her husband, even when she showed up at church with two black eyes.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:41 PM

Pope Francis to face protests in Ireland over illegal church adoptions

IRELAND
The Irish Times

June 12, 2018

By Patsy McGarry

Survivors group says religious orders are ‘extorting the Government over past crimes’

The Coalition of Mother and Baby Home Survivors are planning to protest during the visit to Pope Francis to Ireland next August, founder member Paul Redmond has said.

“The fact of the matter is that the whole adoption machine was run by the church over the years and they cared little or nothing for the law of the land. As far as they were concerned they were doing God’s work, canon law superseded everything and they played hard and fast with the rules across the board,” he told a press conference in Dublin on Tuesday.

On Monday the survivors’ group met Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Katherine Zappone who “promised action and legislation by this autumn,” he said.

They would like to see “a Garda unit, properly resourced, proactively going after what evidence is left of the criminal behaviour that was involved, baby trafficking, child abduction, and all the rest of it in this country for generations. These were crimes, serious crimes,” he said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:33 PM

Education Department opens investigation into USC after gynecologist scandal

LOS ANGELES (CA)
The Washington Post

June 11, 2018

By Susan Svrluga

The U.S. Education Department is launching an investigation into the University of Southern California's handling of sexual harassment allegations against a former gynecologist at the school's student health clinic - and why complaints were not disclosed earlier.

Last month, the Los Angeles Times reported that the private research university had let gynecologist George Tyndall continue treating students despite complaints about his behavior. In the days after the story ran, hundreds of women came forward to report misconduct by Tyndall, who had been a physician there for more than 30 years. Many lawsuits were quickly filed claiming Tyndall sexually abused patients and that the university did not act on complaints. A spokesman for Manly, Stewart & Finaldi said that the firm has filed 20 lawsuits and that more will be forthcoming. The firm is representing more than 100 women.

Outrage over the allegations against the doctor, along with two previous scandals and the way the university's leadership handled them, led to the announcement last month that USC President C.L. Max Nikias would step down.

On Monday, the Education Department's Office for Civil Rights signaled its concern. It announced it would evaluate the university's response to reports of sexual harassment that were not fully investigated by the university until years later. The department said the university did not disclose those complaints about medical exams during an earlier investigation.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:55 PM

U.S. opens inquiry into gynecologist scandal at University of Southern California

LOS ANGELES (CA)
Reuters

June 12, 2018

By Steve Gorman

The U.S. Education Department has opened an investigation into how the University of Southern California handled complaints that a longtime campus health clinic gynecologist sexually harassed or abused his patients during pelvic examinations.

The agency’s Office for Civil Rights will examine USC’s response to reports of such misconduct by Dr. George Tyndall that date back to 1990 but were not fully investigated by the university until the spring of 2016, the department said in a statement.

“No student should ever endure sexual harassment or abuse while trying to pursue their education,” Education Secretary Betsy DeVos said in the statement.

The university has acknowledged failing to properly act on at least eight complaints that were lodged against Tyndall between 2000 and 2014 but were never brought to light until they were uncovered during the course of an inquiry USC finally opened in 2016.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:51 PM

Ex obispo Gonzalo Duarte también había sido acusado de encubridor: las denuncias de redes de sexo, drogas y poder en la Diócesis de Valparaíso

CHILE
Publimetro

June 11, 2018

Por Aton

Former Bishop Gonzalo Duarte had also been accused of cover-up: allegations of sex, drug and power networks in the Diocese of Valparaíso

El religioso había sido denunciado por un ex seminarista. Su salida fue aceptada por el Papa Francisco.

Además del ahora ex obispo de Osorno, Juan Barros, también el renunciado obispo de Valparaíso, Gonzalo Duarte, fue denunciado como encubridor de abusos sexuales por parte de miembros de la iglesia católica chilena.

El obispo evangélico y ex seminarista Mauricio Pulgar denunció redes de sexo, drogas y poder en la Diócesis de Valparaíso, y apuntó en contra del obispo Gonzalo Duarte por no creer en sus acusaciones.

EL 8 de junio pasado, en entrevista con CNN Chile, explicó que su denuncia apunta directamente contra el presbítero Humberto Enríquez, quien –según afirma- lo drogó y lo violó cuando estaba en la Diócesis de San Felipe.

"Él me drogó y yo no pude moverme (…) no me acuerdo de nada, salvo que empecé a sentir un jadeo y era que él estaba ejecutando la violación", contó el ex seminarista, y sostuvo que tiene un audio en el que "Humberto Enríquez confiesa la violación".

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:48 PM

Papa Francisco acepta la primera renuncia de un obispo chileno: Cristián Caro deja de ser arzobispo de Puerto Montt

CHILE
La Tercera

June 11, 2018

By Carla Pía Ruiz y Sebastián Rivas

Pope Francis accepts the first resignation of a Chilean bishop: Cristián Caro stops being archbishop of Puerto Montt

En un comunicado publicado esta madrugada, el propio prelado confirma en una declaración pública que el Pontífice aceptó su dimisión por motivos de edad y nombró un administrador apostólico en su reemplazo.

“Estando en Santiago para la reunión mensual de la Comisión Nacional de Catequesis, se ha dado a conocer la aceptación, por parte del Papa Francisco, de la renuncia que presenté, por razones de límite de edad, en febrero de 2018”. Así, en un comunicado fechado este lunes 11 de junio y publicado en el sitio web de la arquidiócesis, el arzobispo de Puerto Montt, Cristián Caro, confirmó su salida de la diócesis, la primera de un obispo chileno tras la polémica por el caso de Juan Barros y la convocatoria de la Conferencia Episcopal en pleno a Roma.

“Naturalmente que acepto con fe la decisión del Pastor universal, la cual llega en un momento crítico de la Iglesia en Chile, por la pérdida de la fuerza profética de la evangelización y la “cultura del abuso y el encubrimiento” (palabras del Papa) que ha causado daños a muchas personas y ha debilitado la credibilidad de la Iglesia”, agrega Caro en su declaración.

El del arzobispo de Puerto Montt era uno de los nombres señalados como posibles salidas, de acuerdo a fuentes eclesiásticas.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:46 PM

Juan Carlos Cruz: "Se van tres obispos corruptos y seguirán más"

CHILE
24Horas.cl TVN

June 11, 2018

Juan Carlos Cruz: "Three corrupt bishops are leaving and they will continue more"

La víctima del sacerdote pedófilo Fernando Karadima reaccionó ante la decisión del Papa de aceptar las renuncias de los obispos de Osorno, Puerto Montt y Valparaíso.

"Se van tres obispos corruptos y seguirán más", con estas palabras Juan Carlos Cruz, víctima del sacerdote pedófilo Fernando Karadima, reaccionó en las redes sociales tras conocerse la decisión del Papa Francisco de aceptar las renuncias de los obispos Juan Barros, Cristián Caro y Gonzalo Duarte.

"Empieza un nuevo día en la iglesia Católica de Chile! Se van tres obispos corruptos y seguirán más. Emocionante por tantos q han luchado para ver este día. La banda de obispos delincuentes episcopado_cl se empieza a desintegrar hoy!", escribió Cruz en su cuenta en Twitter.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:44 PM

Pope Accepts Resignation of Chilean Bishop Tied to Abuse Scandal

ROME
The New York Times

June 11, 2018

By Jason Horowitz

In January, Pope Francis deeply offended survivors of clerical abuse and threatened the reputation of his pontificate when he defended a Chilean bishop from the “calumny” of victims and said that he had refused the bishop’s offers of resignation.

On Monday, Pope Francis accepted the resignation of that bishop, Juan Barros of Osorno.

The resignation of Bishop Barros and of two other bishops in Chile is a remarkable reversal for Francis. Only months ago, the Chilean scandal represented an enormous threat to the pope’s credibility. Now, abuse victims and their advocates express hope that a new era is beginning in which bishops and the church hierarchy will be held accountable for covering up and ignoring abuse.

“Today begins a new day for the Catholic Church in Chile and hopefully the world,” Juan Carlos Cruz, a victim of the Rev. Fernando Karadima, one of Chile’s most notorious abusive priests, wrote on Twitter on Monday. The priest was a mentor of Bishop Barros, who Mr. Cruz says witnessed his abuse and did nothing.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:42 PM

Community speaks out after Owego priest is accused of sexual assault

OWEGO (NY)
WBNG

June 10, 2018

By Esperanza Gutierrez

A nonprofit organization, which aims to help victims of sexual abuse, is accusing eight Diocese of Rochester priests of sexually abusing children.

Attorney Mitchell Garabedian, based in Massachusetts, claims that from 1950 to 1978, 17 minors raging from age five to 18-years-old were sexually abused by eight different priests within the Diocese of Rochester.

Garabedian named Thomas Valenti, who served at St. Patrick's Church in Owego as one of them.

"It was a shock, sure," said Marty Murphy, of Owego. "I imagine everybody was shocked to hear this. He's done a lot with kids or children, through his ministry."

Father Valenti is the parochial administrator for Blessed Trinity Parish which is made up four churches, including St. Patrick's.

Lawyers claim the alleged sexual abuse took place years before Valenti came to St. Patrick's.

Garabedian claims Valenti abused a teen boy, beginning in 1975.

At the time Valenti worked at St. Mary's of the Lake Church in Ontario, New York.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:33 PM

UPDATE: Former El Paso priest accused of sexually assaulting minor

EL PASO (TX)
KFOX14

June 11, 2018

By Jessica Gonzalez

A former Catholic priest is accused of sexually abusing a minor, according to police.

Miguel Luna, 68, was arrested at his home on Keltner Avenue on Monday afternoon.

An investigation was launched after the alleged victim came forward saying Luna had sexually assaulted her for several years when she was a child.

The alleged abuse happened in the late '90s and stopped when she moved away.

Last August, we reported the sexual abuse allegations.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:31 PM

Bishop Harvey – Child Sexual Abuse is unacceptable

ST. GEORGE'S (GRENADA)
The New Today

June 11, 2018

Grenada’s Roman Catholic Bishop, Trinidad-born Clyde Harvey has expressed grave concerns over the rampant occurrence of Child Sexual Abuse in the country.

Making an appearance on a local radio station, Bishop Harvey said he is hopeful that Catholics are not involved but are exuding better morals than what is being displayed very often in the country with sexual abuse of children.

However, he said that while he holds out hope, he will not be fooled into thinking that members of the Catholic church are not involved in this depraved act.

According to Bishop Harvey, who this month is officially celebrating one year as Bishop of St. George’s in Grenada, the occurrence of Child Sexual Abuse is rather bothersome to him.

“One of the things that disturbed me greatly since I’ve come…people keep telling me the incidence of child sexual abuse is so high – that is totally unacceptable,” he said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:27 PM

Pope Francis launches purge on sex abuse scandal church in Chile

CHILE
The National

June 11, 2018

POPE Francis has accepted the resignation of the bishop at the centre of Chile’s clerical sex abuse scandal.

It comes as he launches the purge of a church that has lost its credibility in the country after accusations of abuse and a subsequent cover-up.

A Vatican statement said Francis had accepted the resignations of Bishop Juan Barros of Osorno, as well as Bishop Gonzalo Duarte of Valparaiso and Bishop Cristian Caro of Puerto Montt.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:26 PM

Former Coatbridge priest jailed for historic sex abuse dating back 50 years

UNITED KINGDOM
The Daily Record

June 12, 2018

By Airdrie And Coatbridge Advertiser

Perverted Father Michael Maher preyed on his 12-year-old victim at her home in 1968 and it continued for four years.

A vile former Coatbridge priest who was exposed as a pervert when his victim confronted him 50 years after he molested her has been jailed for six months.

Sick Father Michael Maher preyed on the girl at her home in 1968 when she was only 12 and he was 25.

The horrendous abuse continued for four years, including at his parish house in Coatbridge.

Maher, 74, was close friends with the girl’s parents and regularly called at their Lanarkshire home.

The victim, who is now 62, kept her terrifying ordeal secret for decades but told her husband after Maher had conducted mass for her parents’ wedding anniversary.

She contacted the priest by email in 2016 and Maher, who was then at St Isidore’s in Biggar, confessed his guilt.

Maher, now of Stobo in Peeblesshire, appeared at Hamilton Sheriff Court last week and admitted lewd and indecent behaviour towards the girl between 1968 and 1972.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:22 PM

Central figure in Chile’s priest abuse scandal ousted by Pope

VATICAN CITY
The Associated Press

June 11, 2018

By Nicole Winfield

Pope Francis accepted the resignations Monday of the bishop at the center of Chile’s clerical sex abuse scandal and two other priests, beginning a purge of the Catholic Church in a country where it had been damaged by an avalanche of abuse and cover-up accusations.

A Vatican statement said Francis had accepted the resignations of Bishop Juan Barros of Osorno, Bishop Gonzalo Duarte of Valparaiso and Bishop Cristian Caro of Puerto Montt. Francis named a temporary leader for each diocese.

Barros, 61, has been at the center of Chile’s growing scandal ever since Francis appointed him bishop of Osorno in 2015 over the objections of the local faithful, his own sex abuse prevention advisers and some of Chile’s other bishops. They questioned Barros’ suitability to lead given he had been a top lieutenant of Chile’s most notorious predator priest and had been accused by victims of witnessing and ignoring their abuse.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:19 PM

Lafayette bishop won't say whether he'll release names of accused priests; dozens of U.S. dioceses already do

LAFAYETTE (LA)
KATC ABC3

June 7, 2018

By Lanie Lee Cook

Dozens of Roman Catholic dioceses around the U.S. have released the names of priests who sexually abused minors, but the Diocese of Lafayette has so far opted against the practice — and the bishop has declined to say whether he plans to do so in the future.

The recent announcement of a sexual-abuse investigation into St. Landry Parish priest Michael Guidry has reignited calls to the Diocese of Lafayette — including from survivors of such sexual abuse — to release the names of abusive priests from the area.

Past Bishop Michael Jarrell said in 2004 the diocese paid more than $26 million in settlements to 123 victims of sexual abuse by 15 diocesan priests. Some of those names have been released through now-unsealed records from the diocese's lawsuit against its insurer — a case over how much the insurance company would pay for the claims. But the diocese has never disclosed the names on its own.

At a press conference last week announcing the Guidry investigation, Bishop Douglas Deshotel was asked whether he would commit to that release, but he wouldn't say one way or another.

“I don’t know. I’d have to find out who's dead, who's on the list, who's not a priest anymore...If I knew of someone who was, who had been credibly accused, should not be — will not be — serving as a priest in the diocese,” Deshotel said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:18 PM

POPE ACCEPTS RESIGNATION OF BISHOP HE INITIALLY DEFENDED IN SEX ABUSE SCANDAL

CHILE
Newsweek

June 11, 2018

By Jason Lemon

Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of three Chilean bishops at the center of a child sexual abuse scandal involving the South American country’s clergy.

The leader of the Roman Catholic Church accepted the resignation of Bishop Juan Barros as well as those of two others in Chile, Archbishop Cristián Caro Cordero of Puerto Montt and Bishop Gonzalo Duarte García de Cortázar of Valparaíso, the church announced on Monday.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:16 PM

Accused priest has until Friday to return to Guam

GUAM
KUAM News

June 11, 2018

By Krystal Paco

Former Chancellor, Father Adrian Cristobal, has until the end of the week to return to Guam or face sanctions by the Church. As we reported, Father Adrian stands three times accused of clergy sexual abuse.

Though he was reportedly sent to the Diocese of Phoenix to study canon law, the accusations prompted the Archdiocese of Agana to demand his return home and limit his faculties as a priest.

Specifically, he cannot celebrate mass or hear confession.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:15 PM

Beth Moore on sexual immorality vs. criminality: 'Both are sin. ... But one calls the police.'

DALLAS (TX)
The Tennessean

June 11, 2018

By Holly Meyer

Popular writer and Bible teacher Beth Moore says evangelicals must differentiate between sexual immorality and sexual criminality if they want the church to do better at addressing abuse.

"Both are sin and both demand repentance in order to be restored, but one calls the police," said Moore, the founder of Living Proof Ministries.

Christians cannot let guilt over their own personal sexual sins and temptations prevent them from reporting allegations, Moore said during a Monday afternoon panel in Dallas about responding to abuse in the church.

"None of us want to throw stones, but it keeps us from even responding to a criminal situation because we think, 'Listen, I've had my own sexual dysfunction,' " Moore said. "There is a long, long shot of difference between sexual immorality and sexual criminality that we have got to get straight."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:12 PM

Clergy-abuse case payout plan charted

ST. PAUL (MN)
The Associated Press

June 12, 2018

The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis has charted a financial plan to pay its share of the $210 million settlement with 450 clergy abuse victims that’s not covered by insurance.

The $40 million plan involves budget cuts, property sales and donations to help the church move forward from bankruptcy, Minnesota Public Radio reported.

The archdiocese filed for bankruptcy in 2015, two years after the Minnesota Legislature opened a three-year window that allowed people who had been sexually abused in the past to sue for damages. That resulted in hundreds of claims being filed against the archdiocese.

Most of the funding, roughly $170 million, will come from insurance carriers, said Thomas Abood, chairman of the Archdiocesan Finance Council and Reorganization Task Force. The archdiocese has committed to paying the remaining $40 million.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:11 PM

Church praised for proactive response on abuse but warned of complacency

NEW ORLEANS (LA)
Catholic News Service

June 12, 2018

By Peter Finney Jr.

Despite groundbreaking steps the U.S. Catholic Church has taken to prevent the sexual abuse of minors in the past 16 years, a potential "complacency" in following safety protocols could pose a challenge to those hard-won advances.

Francesco Cesareo, chairman of the National Review Board, shared that view with diocesan safe environment and victims' assistance coordinators attending the Child and Youth Protection Catholic Leadership Conference in New Orleans.

The 13-member lay board advises the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops on safe environment protocols for children in Catholic parishes, schools and organizations.

In his talk June 6, Cesareo that because a large percentage of abuse claims deal with incidents that happened many years and even decades ago, the issue may appear now to be less urgent.

"The church has responded very concretely to this question and very proactively, but one of the issues now is that because it is now historical -- you have newly ordained priests who were children when this broke out -- the urgency of it is not there," he said. "You have bishops who are new. They weren't there in 2002. The urgency is not there."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:08 PM

Clergy abuse survivors launch global bishop accountability effort

GENEVA
The Associated Press

June 12, 2018

Some of the most prominent figures in the fight against sexual abuse in the Catholic Church are joining forces in a new international effort to end abuse and the impunity of bishops and religious superiors who enable it.

The multinational initiative, End Clergy Abuse, was announced Thursday at a press conference in Geneva. One after another, more than a dozen members held up their national flags and denounced an individual bishop who had mishandled a case, from the Americas to Africa and Europe in between.

They demanded Pope Francis revise his ditched plan to create a Vatican tribunal to hold negligent bishops accountable, and vowed to help victims around the world find justice.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:07 PM

Wake-up Call: A historic summit, rally to fight child sex abuse and more

HARRISBURG (PA)
The Morning Call

June 12, 2018

By Steve Esack

Good morning!

The summit is over between President Donald Trump and North Korea's Kim Jong Un, with Trump saying he would freeze “war games” with South Korea, writes the Associated Press.

Rally to fight child sex abuse
State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, and other advocates seeking to end child sex abuse will hold a 3 p.m. news conference in the state Capitol.

The gathering comes as the attorney general’s office prepares to release the findings of a statewide grand jury investigation into child sex abuse and cover ups in six Catholic dioceses and supporters within local governments and communities.

Rozzi, who has spoken of his own childhood rape at the hands of a priest, will be joined by other victims who say they were abused by religious leaders in other denominations. Rozzi will be pushing for passage of a bill to lift time limits for when victims can sue their alleged abusers.

Rozzi, with the backing of a majority of Republican and Democratic lawmakers, pushed a similar bill through the House in 2016. It died in the Senate that year amid widespread opposition, especially from Sen. Stewart Greenleaf, R-Montgomery, who chairs the Senate Judiciary committee, which handles state legal issues.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 12:58 PM

Former Texas Catholic priest arrested in El Paso on sexual assault of a child charge

EL PASO (TX)
El Paso Times

June 11, 2018

By Daniel Borunda

El Paso police arrested a former Texas priest who, during an El Paso Catholic Diocese investigation last year, allegedly admitted to sexually abusing a child.

Miguel Luna, 68, was arrested Monday afternoon in front of his home in the 3500 block of Keltner Avenue in Northeast El Paso, police said. He was charged with aggravated sexual assault of a child, according to jail records.

Luna is being held on a $50,000 bond.

Police said the arrest came after a investigation by the Crimes Against Children Unit into allegations by a woman who said she was repeatedly sexually abused by Luna when she was a child. It is not clear if the woman is the same person who was part of the investigation by the diocese.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:49 AM

EPPD: Former Catholic Priest charged with sexual abuse of a child

EL PASO (TX)
KVIA-TV

June 11, 2018

El Paso Police arrested a former Catholic priest and charged him with sexual abuse of a minor allegedly committed while he was a priest.

Miguel Luna, 68, is charged with Aggravated Sexual Assault of a Child.

Detectives with the Department's Crimes Against Children unit conducted an investigation after the victim came forward and said the forme priest abused her as a child.

Police said the alleged assaults occurred over the span of several years in the early through late 90's and ended when the victim moved away.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:47 AM

Pope Francis to be briefed on institutional abuse ahead of Ireland visit

IRELAND
Irish Times

June 12, 2018

By Patsy McGarry

Gay families welcome at World Meeting of Families events in Dublin, says Primate

Pope Francis “will be briefed” before he arrives in Dublin about the abuse of women and children in Catholic-run institutions in Ireland, Archbishop of Dublin Diarmuid Martin has said.

“It’s a challenge for all of us in the Irish church to recognise the way people have been damaged, the way the church has been damaged,” Dr Martin said in Maynooth on Monday as he announced details of the pope’s visit to Ireland for the World Meeting of Families (WMoF).

“Certainly he will know when he comes to the Pro Cathedral in Dublin. Many people don’t know that but there’s a candle that has been burning there for years reminding people of the suffering that took place,” he said.

Pope Francis will visit Dublin’s Pro Cathedral at 3.30pm on Saturday, August 25th.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:44 AM

Pope Accepts Resignation of Chilean Bishop Tied to Abuse Scandal

ROME
The New York Times

June 11, 2018

By Jason Horowitz

[Leer en español]

In January, Pope Francis deeply offended survivors of clerical abuse and threatened the reputation of his pontificate when he defended a Chilean bishop from the “calumny” of victims and said that he had refused the bishop’s offers of resignation.

On Monday, Pope Francis accepted the resignation of that bishop, Juan Barros of Osorno.

The resignation of Bishop Barros and of two other bishops in Chile is a remarkable reversal for Francis. Only months ago, the Chilean scandal represented an enormous threat to the pope’s credibility. Now, abuse victims and their advocates express hope that a new era is beginning in which bishops and the church hierarchy will be held accountable for covering up and ignoring abuse.

“Today begins a new day for the Catholic Church in Chile and hopefully the world,” Juan Carlos Cruz, a victim of the Rev. Fernando Karadima, one of Chile’s most notorious abusive priests, wrote on Twitter on Monday. The priest was a mentor of Bishop Barros, who Mr. Cruz says witnessed his abuse and did nothing.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:35 AM

June 11, 2018

Pope Francis 'to meet Church abuse victims during summer visit to Ireland'

IRELAND
Irish Mirror

June 11, 2018

By Cate McCurry

Archbishop of Dublin Diarmuid Martin said victims and survivors of clerical abuse meeting the Pope are high on the list of priorities

Pope Francis will meet victims abused by the Church in hellhole institutions during his summer visit to Ireland, top clergymen have predicted.

Details of the Pontiff’s €20million, two-day trip were unveiled today - but he will not be venturing across the border into Northern Ireland.

Instead, hundreds of thousands of faithful will turn out to greet him at Knock in Co Mayo and in Dublin’s Phoenix Park.

Archbishop Eamon Martin said he is disappointed the Pope is not visiting Northern Ireland as the Catholic Church leader’s itinerary - along with plans for the World Meeting of Families - were announced.

He said: “We were really hoping this might be an opportunity and I think he really would love to come to Northern Ireland but I suppose the pressures of this particular event and all he wants to do for the World Meeting of the Families has overtaken that.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:32 PM

’Wij waren niet meer dan slaven’

The Netherlands
nrc.nl

May 22, 2018

By Joep Dohmen

'We were no more than slaves'

Slachtoffer dwangarbeid

Jo Keepers (76) is een van de 15.000 vrouwen die onbetaalde dwangarbeid heeft gedaan in katholieke “liefdesgestichten” in Nederland. Van het strijken in de wasserij hield ze artrose over.

Op 17 september 1948 haalde de politie mijn drie broers en mij thuis in Roosendaal op. Elk lustrum vier ik. Dan ga ik met een broer eten in een Grieks restaurant hier in de buurt. Het was thuis onhoudbaar met een vader die dronk en sloeg.”

Jo Keepers (76) en haar broers werden in veiligheid gebracht, en toch ook weer niet. Ze belandden in katholieke gestichten. In 1955 kwam Jo terecht bij de Zusters van de Goede Herder in Tilburg. „Ik was 14 jaar en had eigenlijk nog naar school moeten gaan. Maar daar was geen tijd voor. Ze hadden een industriële wasserij waar de meisjes en vrouwen verplicht moesten werken. Van ’s morgens tot ’s avonds.”

Ze werkte op de afdeling waar het gewassen goed werd gestreken. De ouderwetse strijkboutjes stonden de hele dag op een groot fornuis. „Aan dat strijken heb ik artrose over gehouden. We moesten ook aan de mangel. Daar hebben we heel wat productie gemaakt. Kerkkleding, gesteven overhemden. Zoveel spul.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:29 PM

‘Om de tuin hing prikkeldraad’

The Netherlands
nrc.nl

May 22, 2018

By Joep Dohmen

'Around the garden hung barbed wire'

Slachtoffer dwangarbeid Zeker 15.000 vrouwen hebben onbetaalde dwangarbeid gedaan in katholieke “liefdesgestichten” in Nederland. Zo ook Margôt Verhagen (85), die verkracht werd door de rector van het gesticht.

Als kind had Margôt Verhagen (85) uit Den Haag pech. Veel pech. Haar vader overleed in de oorlog. In hun boerderij in Someren stierf in 1950 ook haar moeder. Ze liet zeven kinderen achter. Margôt was 17.

Een tante in Nijmegen ontfermde zich over haar. Maar al snel kwamen er twee politiemannen en een mevrouw van de kinderbescherming. Ze zouden haar ergens naartoe brengen waar ze het beter kreeg. Dat was Huize Larenstein, het gesticht van de Zusters van de Goede Herder in Velp. Zusters in een wit habijt met zwarte kap onthaalden haar. „Daarna was de liefde snel afgelopen.”

Margôt verbleef er van 1950 tot 1954. „Een verschrikkelijk tijd.” Het was elke dag hard werken. ’s Morgens 6 uur opstaan, naar de kerk en de eetzaal. Daarna werden de meisjes en vrouwen naar hun werk geloodst. Na het middageten riep het werk weer. Rond half zeven zaten ze opnieuw in de kerk. Na het avondeten en de recreatie was het om half negen bedtijd.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:27 PM

‘De wasserijen waren deel van de cultuur van die tijd’

THE NETHERLANDS
nrc.nl

May 22, 2018

By Joep Dohmen

'The laundries were part of the culture of that time'
Forced labour
After France, Belgium and Ireland, the Sisters of the Good Shepherd are now also under threat in the Netherlands.

Dwangarbeid

Na Frankrijk, België en Ierland zijn de Zusters van de Goede Herder nu ook in Nederland in opspraak.

Het heropvoeden van ontspoorde meisjes (‘gevallen vrouwen’) was het heilige doel van Mary Euphrasia. In de Franse stad Angers begon ze in 1829 de congregatie van de Zusters van Onze Lieve Vrouw van Liefde van de Goede Herder. Mary Euphrasia werd in 1940 zelf heilig verklaard.

Maar heropvoeden bleek al snel een ander woord voor uitbuiting. Al vanaf 1844 waren er in Frankrijk schandalen rond de nonnen, die duizenden kinderen en vrouwen opsloten. Ze moesten zonder enige betaling op industriële schaal naaiwerk doen en in wasserijen werken. De congregatie werd in 1888 veroordeeld voor het schenden van de arbeidswetten.

In 1903 moesten de nonnen in Frankrijk een schadevergoeding betalen. Zij hadden meisjes in hun gesticht in Nancy jarenlang zonder betaling en onder erbarmelijke omstandigheden te werk gesteld. Zelfs de bisschop van Nancy nam het voor de meisjes op, meldde de Zwolsche Courant: „De bisschop verklaarde voor de rechtbank, dat in het heele land geen werkgever zoo goddeloos is, zijn arbeiders en arbeidsters zoo uitzuigt, als de nonnen de meisjes behandelen, aan wie zij, daar het heet, een werk van liefdadigheid verrichten.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:23 PM

Pope accepts resignation of 3 Chilean bishops in sex abuse scandal

CHILE
AFP

June 11, 2018

Pope Francis accepted Monday the resignation of three Chilean bishops including the controversial Juan Barros following a child sex abuse scandal in Chile which has come to haunt his papacy.

The entire Chilean delegation of bishops tendered its resignation to the pope last month after a series of meetings at the Vatican.

Several members of the Chilean church hierarchy are accused by victims of ignoring and covering up child abuse by Chilean paedophile priest Fernando Karadima during the 1980s and 1990s.

Argentine-born Francis, whose decision was announced in a Vatican statement Monday, has said it must not happen again on his watch.

But the pontiff himself became mired in the scandal when, during a trip to Chile in January, he defended Barros who was accused of covering up Karadima's wrongdoing.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:21 PM

Faith-based organizations need sexual abuse prevention policies: Melissa Martin (Opinion)

CLEVELAND (OH)
cleveland.com

June 10, 2018

Guest Columnist Melissa Martin, Ph.D, is an author, columnist, educator, and therapist. She resides in Southern Ohio. www.melissamartinchildrensauthor.com.

The tragic story of the rape of Tamar, a young royal princess who was sexually violated by her half-brother and then betrayed by her powerful father, King David, can be found in the Old Testament.

The Bible neither covers up nor ignores sexual assault.

Around 25 years ago, when I practiced as a licensed and ordained minister, I listened as a speaker and former pastor related a gut-wrenching story that had happened in his church in Florida. Two teenage brothers volunteered to help in Sunday school and children's church. Allegedly, they sexually molested several children when they took them to the church bathroom. Members of the church were so devastated that they closed the church doors and put it up for sale.

Around this same time, a youth leader in the same denomination where I was a former member went to prison for having sexual relations with a minor, a girl in his youth group.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:18 PM

Pope removes Chile bishop accused of abuse cover up

ROME
Crux

June 11, 2018

By Inés San Martín

Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of a controversial Chilean bishop accused of covering up clerical sexual abuse, making it the first such accepted resignation since all the country’s bishops offered to step down in May.

The pontiff had appointed Bishop Juan Barros to the southern diocese of Osorno in 2015, causing uproar both among the locals and the victims of the country’s most infamous pedophile priest.

The Vatican announced Francis’s decision on Monday, and said Bishop Jorge Enrique Concha Cayuqueo, an auxiliary bishop from the capital Santiago, would serve as apostolic administrator of the diocese.

Two other bishops also had their resignations accepted: Archbishop Cristián Caro Cordero of Puerto Montt and Bishop Gonzalo Duarte García de Cortázar of Valparaíso.

Barros was only 61; the other two bishops were 75, the mandatory retirement age for bishops in the Church.

The removals come ahead of a pastoral visit by two papal investigators to Osorno to “advance the process of reparation and healing.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:16 PM

Archbishop Scicluna report: Pope begins purge in Chilean church over sex abuse scandal

CHILE
Malta Independent

June 11, 2018

Pope Francis accepted the resignation Monday of the bishop at the center of Chile's clerical sex abuse scandal and two others, launching a purge of a Catholic Church that has lost its credibility under an avalanche of accusations of abuse and cover-up.

A Vatican statement said Francis had accepted the resignations of Bishop Juan Barros of Osorno, Bishop Gonzalo Duarte of Valparaiso and Bishop Cristian Caro of Puerto Montt. Of the three, only the 61-year-old Barros is below the retirement age of 75.

Francis named temporary leaders for each of the dioceses.

Barros has been at the center of Chile's growing scandal ever since Francis appointed him bishop of Osorno in 2015 over the objections of the local faithful, his own sex abuse prevention advisers and some of Chile's other bishops. They questioned Barros' suitability to lead given he had been a top lieutenant of Chile's most notorious predator priest and had been accused by victims of witnessing and ignoring their abuse.

Barros denied the charge, but he joined 30 of Chile's other active bishops in offering their resignations to Francis at an extraordinary Vatican summit last month. Francis had summoned Chile's church leaders to Rome after realizing he had made "grave errors in judgment" about Barros, whom he had defended strongly during his troubled visit to Chile in January.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:14 PM

Combat self-assurance that has led to an abuse culture in the church

GENEVA
La Croix International

June 5, 2018

By Céline Hoyeau

It is necessary for bishops to undergo regular training on the rights of children, the dynamics of abusers, says co-founder of Ending Clergy Abuse network

Ending Clergy Abuse (ECA), the newly formed international network of groups fighting pedophilia in the church, is meeting for the first time in Geneva this week.

In a few days, one of the network’s founders, José Andrès Murillo, who was himself a victim of a former priest in Chile, will hand a letter to Pope Francis outlining a series of proposals for fighting abuse in the Church.

Céline Hoyeau for La Croix interviewed José Andrès Murillo.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:09 PM

The Catholic Church should not stand in the way of this vital reform

AUSTRALIA
The Canberra Times

June 12, 2018

By Michelle James

It is hard to know where to begin with Archbishop Christopher Prowse’s plea on behalf of the Catholic Church for the ACT government to preserve the seal of religious confession, even in instances where a child is being sexually abused ("Reporting scheme shouldn’t ignore Catholic community’s wish to be part of the solution", The Canberra Times, June 7, 2018).

Thankfully, the ACT Assembly wasn’t swayed as it voted last week to introduce Australia’s toughest new mandatory reporting laws, making it a leader in child safety. But there is no doubt the Catholic Church will never give up trying to stop the other states and territories from following the ACT’s lead and that is why the arguments of Archbishop Prowse, which seek to undermine the efficacy of these reforms, must be called out.

The Catholic Church has a shameful track record when it comes to acting on child sex abuse. Archbishop Prowse acknowledges that past and seeks to purport that the Church wants to be a part of the solution, but as an advocate for abuse survivors, all I see today is more of the same: a failure from the Church to act as the community expects in putting child safety first.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:06 PM

Two Rochester diocese priests accused of abuse had served in Dansville, Geneseo

ROCHESTER (NY)
The Daily News

June 11, 2018

Two of the eight priests from the Diocese of Rochester who were accused last week of sexually abusing children had assignments at churches in Dansville and Geneseo.

The priests were among eight who were ordained or assigned in the Diocese of Rochester during the past eight decades who were named at a Rochester news conference by Mitchell Garabedian, an attorney who represents several survivors of abuse in Rochester, and Robert Hoatson, president of Road to Recovery, a non-profit organization that helps victims of sexual abuse and their families.

Eugene Emo and David P. Simon had previously been acknowledged as alleged abusers by the Diocese of Rochester after the allegations of misconduct were reported by area media. Those reports did not note any specific allegations occurring in Dansville.

Emo, who was ordained in 1961, had been transferred repeatedly and was twice placed on administrative leave. He served at St. Mary’s in Dansville from 1968 to 1973. He was assigned to St. Mary’s Church, Geneseo, in June 1982, but by October 1982 had been moved to St. Francis DeSales, Geneva, according to a Feb. 16, 1996, story in the Democrat and Chronicle.

Emo was arrested in 1996 due to behavior with young boys and sent to a different parish, according to WHAM-TV, channel 13 in Rochester.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:04 PM

Here's what churchgoers are saying about sexual abuse claims against priest

OWEGO (NY)
Spectrum Local News

June 10, 2018

By Nicholas Phillips

Members of St. Patrick's Parish in Owego are reacting to the sexual abuse allegations against a local priest.

Thomas Valenti is one of eight priests accused of sexually abusing children in the Rochester Catholic Diocese. He now serves as a parochial administrator at Blessed Trinity, which includes St. Patrick's.

Valenti is accused of abusing a 15-year-old from 1975 to 1977. During that time, he was a deacon at St. Mary’s in Ontario, New York.

Some people who spoke with Spectrum News say the lawyer representing the victims in this case, Mitchell Garabedian, is digging up the past.

“I really believe he is just causing this issue. Most of the allegations that they dredged up are priests who have either long left the priesthood or are deceased,” said Susan Peterson, church member.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:03 PM

Ellis defence reforms: NSW to scrap legal loophole, opening up churches to being sued

NEW SOUTH WALES (AUSTRALIA)
Australian Broadcasting Corporation

June 10, 2018

By Angelique Lu and Rachael Jones

The 11-year battle to close a legal loophole in New South Wales that prevented abuse survivors from suing churches and other institutions is coming to an end.

Barriers preventing victims from seeking justice will be removed based on recommendations from the Royal Commission into Institutional Child Sex Abuse.

John Ellis, a former altar boy, had waited years before deciding to sue the Catholic Church for abuse he had suffered at the hands of a priest.

By the time he decided to take legal action in 2002, by this stage a lawyer himself, he had no-one to sue.

The priest responsible for the crimes had died, and the Archbishop of Sydney was not considered responsible for the actions of his predecessor.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:02 PM

For Nassar survivors, the agonizing search for answers and accountability continues

WASHINGTON (DC)
Think Progress

June 11, 2018

By Lindsay Gibbs

They're in it for the long haul, but at least they're in it together.

Last Tuesday afternoon, seven of the more than 330 women who were sexually assaulted by former Michigan State and USA Gymnastics (USAG) doctor Larry Nassar — now known as Inmate Nassar — sat in the front row of a cavernous hearing room in the Dirksen Senate Office Building in Washington, D.C., waiting to hear what former USA Gymnastics President and CEO Steve Penny had to say for himself.

Penny, who was appearing in front of the Senate Commerce Subcomittee under subpoena, led USAG during the largest sex abuse scandal in U.S. sports history. During his tenure, he filed complaints of sexual abuse away in his desk; waited five weeks to report credible allegations of sexual abuse against Nassar to the FBI; and allowed Nassar to publicly portray his departure from USA Gymnastics as a voluntary retirement, rather than a firing due to sexual abuse. Under outside pressure, Penny resigned from his position over a year ago — $1 million severance package in tow — and hadn’t been heard from since.

As you might imagine, the survivors had plenty of questions, as did the senators. But, instead of being forthcoming, Penny plead the fifth. Over and over again, until the senators dismissed him.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 3:00 PM

Parish wonders what happened to pastor removed from pulpit 3 years ago

BUFFALO (NY)
The Buffalo News

June 11, 2018

By Dan Herbeck and Jay Tokasz

Nearly three years ago, the Buffalo Diocese abruptly removed the Rev. Dennis A. Fronczak as pastor of Our Lady of Pompeii Church in Lancaster.

Nobody at the parish was told why.

A diocese representative announced Fronczak's departure at Masses at the church in October 2015, recalled Dick Wagner, 80, a long-time parishioner.

"He told us Father Dennis was going on administrative leave for an undetermined time. He didn’t say why," Wagner said. "There's been this dark cloud hanging over Father Dennis's head ever since that day…I don't think it's fair. Either tell us that he is guilty of something, or not guilty, but don't just leave the man hanging."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:54 PM

Former priest accused of sexually assaulting boy 30 years ago

NORTHERN IRELAND
The Irish Times

June 11, 2018

By Paul Higgins

A former priest has appeared in court in Co Down charged with sexually abusing a boy 30 years ago.

Standing in the dock of Downpatrick Magistrates Court, Daniel John Curran (68) confirmed his name and that he was aware of the charge against him.

Mr Curran, from Bryansford Avenue in Newcastle, is accused of indecently assaulting a male on a date unknown between August 16th, 1989 and August 18th, 1991.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:52 PM

Rise of secularisation fuelling violence and verbal abuse against Christian clergy

ENGLAND
The Telegraph

June 10, 2018

By Abigail Frymann Rouch and Olivia Rudgard

Growing secularisation is leading to an increase in violence and verbal abuse against Christian clergy, experts fear.

Priests told of experiences including discovering a witchcraft symbol sprayed on a church door and being followed home as academics launched a mass survey of priests to find out the scale of the problem.

There are also concerns that sex abuse scandals and a growing number of female clergy is contributing to a growth in threats and violence against priests.

Academics at Royal Holloway, University of London, are to survey around 7,000 Church of England clergy using £5,000 in funding from the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government.

The survey, which is to be circulated online this month, will ask clergy whether they have experienced verbal abuse, threats or physical violence in the last two years, and how often church property is damaged.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:48 PM

Priest in court accused of historical sex abuse

NORTHERN IRELAND
ITV News

June 11, 2018

By Paul Higgins

A paedophile former priest has appeared in court accused of historical sex abuse.

Standing in the dock of Downpatrick Magistrates’ Court on Monday, 68-year-old Daniel John Curran confirmed his name and that he was aware of the charge against him.

Curran, from Bryansford Avenue in Newcastle, is accused of indecently assaulting a male on a date unknown between 16 August 1989 and 18 August 1991.

None of the evidence surrounding the 30-year-old charges was opened in court in the short Preliminary Enquiry, the legal step necessary to move a case to the higher Crown Court, but a prosecuting lawyer submitted that the crown papers and witness statements formed the basis of a Prima Facie case against the former Catholic priest.

The court clerk told Curran that although not obliged to, he had the right to comment on the charge, five evidence to the PE or call witnesses on his behalf but that anyone giving evidence was liable to cross examination.

Curran declined the opportunity however, telling the court clerk simply “no” to each of the questions.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:47 PM

Results Of Statewide Priest Abuse In Pennsylvania Expected To Be Revealed Soon

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
CBS

June 11, 2018

The results of a lengthy investigation into priest abuse in the state of Pennsylvania could be released in just a few weeks.

A grand jury looked into six of the eight dioceses across the state.

The report is expected to reveal widespread sexual abuse and efforts to conceal and protect abusive priests.

Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro says he will address the findings by the end of this month.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:45 PM

Ex-priest Curran in court on historical sex abuse charge

IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

June 11, 2018

A former Northern Ireland priest has appeared in court accused of historical sex abuse.

Standing in the dock of Downpatrick Magistrates Court on Monday, June 11, 68-year-old Daniel John Curran confirmed his name and that he was aware of the charge against him.

Curran, from Bryansford Avenue in Newcastle, is accused of indecently assaulting a male on a date unknown between August 16, 1989 and August 18, 1991.

None of the evidence surrounding the 30-year-old charges was opened in court in the short Preliminary Enquiry, the legal step necessary to move a case to the higher Crown Court, but a prosecuting lawyer submitted that the crown papers and witness statements formed the basis of a Prima Facie case against him.

The court clerk told Curran that although not obliged to, he had the right to comment on the charge or call witnesses on his behalf but that anyone giving evidence was liable to cross examination.

Curran declined the opportunity however, telling the court clerk simply “no,” to each of the questions.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:44 PM

Francis accepts resignation of Chilean bishop at center of abuse scandal

ROME
National Catholic Reporter

June 11, 2018

By Joshua J. McElwee

Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of the Catholic bishop at the center of Chile's clergy sexual abuse crisis, in the first of what is expected to be a wave of firings to root out what the pontiff has termed a "culture of abuse and cover-up" in the country's church.

In a short note June 11, the Vatican said simply that Francis had accepted the resignation of Osorno Bishop Juan Barros Madrid, a controversial prelate who had been accused of covering up abuse by another priest in the 1980s and '90s.

At the same time, the pope accepted the resignations of two other Chilean prelates who had already reached the traditional retirement age of 75. Francis has named separate apostolic administrators to lead each of the three dioceses on a temporary basis.

Barros' resignation appears to wrap up one part of what has been an unusually tumultuous period in Francis' five-year papacy, which touched off during a January visit to Chile when the pontiff enraged abuse survivors and their advocates by calling the accusations against Barros "calumny."

The pope however made a sharp turnabout after the visit abroad, sending one of the church's most respected abuse investigators to Chile to look into the accusations against Osorno's bishop. In a letter to the country's bishops in April after receiving a 2,300-page report on the situation, Francis admitted making "serious mistakes" in his handling of sexual abuse cases in Chile.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:42 PM

Catholic bishop at center of Chilean priest sex abuse scandal resigns

VATICAN CITY
The Associated Press

June 11, 2018

By Nicole Winfield

Pope Francis accepted the resignation Monday of the bishop at the center of Chile’s clerical sex abuse scandal and two others, launching a purge of a Catholic Church that has lost its credibility under an avalanche of accusations of abuse and cover-up.

A Vatican statement said Francis had accepted the resignations of Bishop Juan Barros of Osorno, Bishop Gonzalo Duarte of Valparaiso and Bishop Cristian Caro of Puerto Montt. Of the three, only the 61-year-old Barros is below the retirement age of 75.

Francis named temporary leaders for each of the dioceses.

Barros has been at the center of Chile’s growing scandal ever since Francis appointed him bishop of Osorno in 2015 over the objections of the local faithful, his own sex abuse prevention advisers and some of Chile’s other bishops. They questioned Barros’ suitability to lead given he had been a top lieutenant of Chile’s most notorious predator priest and had been accused by victims of witnessing and ignoring their abuse.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:41 PM

Why this week could be pivotal for Southern Baptists to address treatment of women

UNITED STATES
The Tennessean

June 10, 2018

By Holly Meyer

The recent downfall of a Southern Baptist legend is pushing many in pulpits and pews to confront the mistreatment of women within the evangelical denomination.

They say members of the Southern Baptist Convention need to address the mistreatment when they gather early this week in Dallas for their big denominational meeting. This year's two-day event could prove to be a pivotal moment in Southern Baptist life given the recent ousting of Paige Patterson from a Texas seminary over his treatment of women.

The convention must take a clear stance against abuse and in support of women, said Randy Davis, the executive director of Tennessee Baptist Mission Board, which represents more than 3,200 Baptist churches in Tennessee and nearby states.

"There is no room for confusion in the matter of respecting and honoring women from all walks of life," Davis said. "It is biblical that we honor women."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:35 PM

Pope Francis will not visit Northern Ireland on Irish trip

DUBLIN (IRELAND)
Reuters

June 11, 2018

Reporting by Graham Fahy; Editing by Gareth Jones

Pope Francis will not visit British-ruled Northern Ireland this summer when he makes the first papal visit to Ireland in almost 40 years, the Vatican said on Monday.
Francis arrives in Dublin on August 25 for a two-day visit when the Irish capital hosts the 9th World Meeting of Families, a Roman Catholic event held every three years.

The visit comes after voters in Ireland overwhelmingly overturned one of the world's strictest bans on abortions in a referendum, despite opposition from the Catholic Church.

Senior clerics, including the Archbishop of Armagh and all-Ireland primate Eamon Martin, had been pressing for the inclusion of Northern Ireland on his itinerary as a contribution to the peace process.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:34 PM

How women led to the dramatic rise and fall of Southern Baptist leader Paige Patterson

UNITED STATES
The Washington Post

June 10, 2018

By Michelle Boorstein and Sarah Pulliam Bailey

Southern Baptists pride themselves on being independent, democratic, Average Joes who pick their own pastors, no pope telling them what to do. Their credo is "the priesthood of the believer," which means every Christian has access to God - no pecking order.

And then there is The Red Bishop.

Or "TRB," as the red-haired Paige Patterson was known (and sometimes as he himself signed documents) during his decades-long reign as one of the most powerful leaders in the history of the Southern Baptist Convention, a giant force in American evangelicalism.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:32 PM

This High School Valedictorian's Mic Was Cut Off When She Tried To Speak About Sexual Assault

PETALUMA (CA)
TIME

June 10, 2018

By Alix Langone

The valedictorian of a California high school said she had her microphone cut off by the school’s administration during her graduation speech as she started to speak about sexual assault.

Lulabel Seitz, 17, was giving her speech at Petaluma High School when she was abruptly cut off around four minutes into it.

At first, she talked about how her fellow classmates should feel proud for overcoming obstacles to graduate and pursue their dreams, and she said she never thought she would be the valedictorian as the daughter of parents who left high school early. She spoke about classmates persevering through the devastating wildfires in Northern California that destroyed some of their homes, and what it was like being in school during teacher strikes.

But when Seitz’ started to address the issue of sexual assault, specifically as she was about to say that some at the high school had silenced victims, her microphone was cut off.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:30 PM

As Southern Baptists meet in Dallas, generational shifts lead to a moment of #MeToo reckoning

UNITED STATES
Dallas News

June 10, 2018

By Charles Scudder

Growing up in the 1960s, Ted Elmore considered the turmoil that roiled a generation to be a spiritual cry for help.

Now a prayer strategist for the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention, he sees growing pains of another sort.

As the national organization prepares to gather in Dallas for its annual meeting this week, the #MeToo movement has made its presence felt firsthand among Baptists.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:28 PM

Klein’s challenger wants sexual harassment probe made public

ALBANY (NY)
New York Post

June 10, 2018

By Anna Sanders

Bronx state Sen. Jeff Klein’s Democratic challenger wants Albany to make public the status of a probe into allegations the lawmaker forcibly kissed a staffer.

Alessandra Biaggi called on Republican and Democratic legislators to amend state law to allow the Joint Commission on Public Ethics (JCOPE) to be transparent about the status of its investigations.

Former policy analyst Erica Vladimir told the Huffington Post five months ago that she stopped working for Klein after he “shoved his tongue” down her throat at an Albany bar on March 31, 2015.

Klein denied the allegations. His lawyer said in mid-January the case was being investigated by JCOPE.

But JCOPE is barred from commenting on anything that may or may not be under investigation, or if it has completed a probe or decided not to investigate at all. Only a substantiated allegation would be made public eventually.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:26 PM

Report on Pa. priest abuse to be most exhaustive

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
The Associated Press

June 10, 2018

By Claudia Lauer,

The results of a lengthy probe into the handling of sexual abuse claims by Roman Catholic dioceses throughout Pennsylvania, which victim advocates say will be the biggest and most exhaustive ever by a U.S. state, could be made public within weeks.

A statewide grand jury spent nearly two years looking into the abuse scandal, and Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro has said he plans to address the panel’s findings by the end of June.

The grand jury investigated six of the state’s eight dioceses, which collectively minister to more than 1.7 million Catholics. The report is expected to reveal details of widespread abuse and efforts to conceal and protect abusive priests.

A judge’s ruling last week gave the first real details of an investigation that started in July 2016. Judge Norman Krumenacker rejected an effort to delay the report’s release or allow people named in the report to challenge parts of it before its release.

Krumenacker, a Cambria County judge who has been overseeing the grand jury, wrote in his opinion that the investigative body had heard from dozens of witnesses and reviewed over a half million pages of internal documents from diocesan archives. The investigation involved allegations of child sexual abuse, failure of church structures to report it to law enforcement and obstruction of justice by people “associated with the Roman Catholic Church, local public officials and community leaders,” he said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:24 PM

#MeToo crisis jolts Southern Baptists ahead of key gathering

UNITED STATES
The Associated Press

June 9, 2018

By David Crary

The Southern Baptists are facing their own #MeToo crisis as the biggest Protestant denomination in the U.S. heads into its annual meeting next week.

A series of sexual misconduct cases has prompted the Southern Baptist Convention's socially conservative, all-male leadership to seek forgiveness for the ill treatment of women and vow to combat it. Hoping for more than rhetoric, women and some male allies plan a protest rally in Dallas when the two-day meeting opens on Tuesday.

"The past two months have been tough for our convention," SBC President Steve Gaines wrote this week. "I believe God has allowed all of this to happen to drive us to our knees."

Illustrating the SBC's predicament, the central figure in the most prominent of the #MeToo cases, Paige Patterson, had been scheduled to deliver the featured sermon at the gathering. However, Patterson withdrew from that role Friday, heeding a request from Gaines and other leaders.

Patterson was recently dismissed as president of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Texas because of his response to two rape allegations made years apart by students.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:23 PM

ACT confession law has legal complexities

AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY (AUSTRALIA)
Australian Associated Press via news.com.au

June 11, 2018

By Karen Sweeney

The ACT says a new law aimed at forcing priests to report child sexual abuse admissions hearing in confession is about putting children first.

Priests in the ACT [Australian Capital Territory] will be legally required to report any admissions of child sexual abuse they hear during the Catholic sacrament of confession.

The ACT Legislative Assembly on Friday passed legislation requiring priests to break the seal of confession and report abusers.

But there will be a nine-month wait before the law is enforced as the government works through "legal complexities" of the bill, which clashes with Canon Law governing the Catholic Church.

Under Canon Law, priests are forbidden from revealing what they hear in confession.

Territory Attorney-General Gordon Ramsay, a former Uniting Church minister, says the government knows there are significant complexities.

"We believe that the primary response must be for the protection of children," he told ABC radio.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:41 AM

Pennsylvania abuse survivor calls on Pope Francis to intervene

PENNSYLVANIA
The Guardian

June 11, 2018

By Stephanie Kirchgaessner in Rome

State attorney general to release 884-page report detailing decades of sexual abuse and cover-ups by the church

Mark Rozzi can remember the feeling of the tall grass brushing against his bare legs on the day he and a close friend desperately ran out of the rectory in Hyde Park, Pennsylvania.

Rozzi, who was 13 at the time, had just been raped by his priest, the Rev Edward Graff, and remembers thinking in that moment, as he ran through a field, that he would take his terrible new secret to his grave.

When he got home and was peppered with questions by his mother – a Sicilian from Messina who sensed something was wrong – he lied and said Graff had dropped his towel in front of the boys. He did not tell her about the things he came to understand as an adult – that Graff had groomed him for months, by secretly talking to him about sex, plying him with alcohol and showing him pornography. It had all culminated in his vicious rape by Graff in a shower, where Rozzi can still recall staring at the tiles and wondering if he should stay or run.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:38 AM

Archdiocese needs $40M for sex abuse settlement. Here's where it's looking

ST. PAUL (MN)
Minnesota Public Radio

June 11, 2018

By Tom Scheck

The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis is crafting a plan that leans on budget cuts, property sales and the generosity of Catholics to help the church emerge from bankruptcy and move beyond a clergy sex abuse scandal that has plagued it for years.

The archdiocese has committed to pay $40 million of the historic $210 million settlement with clergy abuse survivors that isn't covered by insurance.

Officials on Friday shared the basics of their proposed payment plan with MPR News. Other details were gleaned from interviews and a review of court documents. The archdiocese hopes to present its final proposal to the bankruptcy judge within the next month.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:32 AM

Pope begins purge in Chilean church over sex abuse scandal

VATICAN CITY
Associated Press

June 11, 2018

By Nicole Winfield

Pope Francis accepted the resignation Monday of the bishop at the center of Chile’s clerical sex abuse scandal and two others, launching a purge of a Catholic Church that has lost its credibility under an avalanche of accusations of abuse and cover-up.

A Vatican statement said Francis had accepted the resignations of Bishop Juan Barros of Osorno, Bishop Gonzalo Duarte of Valparaiso and Bishop Cristian Caro of Puerto Montt. Of the three, only the 61-year-old Barros is below the retirement age of 75.

Francis named temporary leaders for each of the dioceses.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:29 AM

Resignations and Appointments, 11.06.2018

VATICAN CITY
Holy See Press Office

June 11, 2018

Resignation of archbishop of Puerto Montt, Chile, and appointment of apostolic administrator sede vacante et ad nutum Sanctae Sedis of the same archdiocese

Resignation of bishop of Valparaíso, Chile, and appointment of apostolic administrator sede vacante et ad nutum Sanctae Sedis of the same diocese

Resignation of bishop of Osorno, Chile, and appointment of apostolic administrator sede vacante et ad nutum Sanctae Sedis of the same diocese

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:26 AM

Pope accepts resignation of three bishops over Chile sexual abuse scandal

VATICAN CITY
Reuters via The Guardian

June 11, 2018

Pontiff vows that victims of Father Fernando Karadimo would ‘never again’ be ignored

In an unprecedented move, all Chile’s 34 bishops offered to resign last month after attending a crisis meeting with Francis over allegations that sexual abuse in the country’s Catholic church had been covered up.

It was not immediately clear if Monday’s development meant the pope would reject the resignations of the other 31 bishops.

Besides Barros, the pope also agreed to the departures of Cristián Caro Cordero, bishop of Puerto Montt, and Gonzalo Duarte García de Cortázar, bishop of Valparaiso.

Church administrators were appointed to run all three diocese.

Francis has promised Chilean Catholics affected by sexual abuse that “never again” would the church ignore them or the cover-up of abuse in their country.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 7:22 AM

June 10, 2018

Australia state makes it easier for abuse victims to sue churches

AUSTRALIA
Crux

June 10, 2018

By Crux Staff

Survivors of clerical abuse in the Australian state of New South Wales will be able to directly sue churches under proposed legal changes announced on Sunday.

Mark Speakman, the attorney general, said the new legislation was in response to Australia’s royal commission into institutional abuse.

New South Wales is Australia’s most populous state, and the home of the country’s largest city, Sydney.

“These reforms will provide access to new avenues to allow survivors to pursue compensation, so they can focus on recovering and moving forward with their lives,” Speakman said during a press conference, according to the AAP.

Under current law, priests and lay volunteers are not considered employees of churches. Moreover, churches’ assets are held in trust, and Australia’s courts have held that the trustees of a trust cannot be held responsible for the actions of the conduct of those working for the trust.

This makes it difficult for victims to sue for damages.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 3:03 PM

Some of the newly accused priests served in Finger Lakes area parishes

GENEVA (NY)
Finger Lakes (NY) Times

June 10, 2018

By David L. Shaw

Eight Catholic priests in the Diocese of Rochester, several of whom served in Finger Lakes parishes, are being accused of sexually abusing children by a group called Road to Recovery.

Attorney Mitchell Garabedian of Boston made the allegations in Rochester Wednesday.

The Law Offices of Mitchell Garabedian did the groundbreaking work in the Boston clergy sexual abuse cases that were the subject of the acclaimed movie “Spotlight.” It involved bringing to justice a number of priests and other sexual abusers, as well as their employers, including the Archdiocese of Boston.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 3:01 PM

Iglesia suspende a sacerdote acusado de pedofilia en Cuenca

CUENCA (ECUADOR)
Unidad Digital de EcuadorTV

May 30, 2018

[Church suspends priest accused of pedophilia in Cuenca]

[See an overview of this case in our summary about Archbishop Luis Gerardo Cabrera Herrera, O.F.M. of Guayaquil, Ecuador in our webpage Current Bishops Accused of Mishandling Abuse Cases]

El sacerdote acusado de pedofilia en Cuenca no podrá ejercer sus labores religiosas mientras duren las investigaciones en su contra. Así lo informó la noche de este miércoles 30 de mayo la Arquidiócesis de la ciudad.

El cura César C.M., de 91 años, sólo podrá realizar la eucaristía con máximo la presencia de una persona. El religioso ha sido denunciado por al menos cinco víctimas, a las que habría agredido sexualmente hace 45 años, cuando fue rector de una institución educativa.

La Arquidiócesis le pide que también se “abstenga de hacer declaraciones en público”. Además, la Iglesia solicita que acate las disposiciones emitidas, dentro de este caso que causa repercusión en el Ecuador.

[Google Translation: Church suspends priest accused of pedophilia in Cuenca

The priest accused of pedophilia in Cuenca will not be able to exercise his religious duties while the investigations against him last. This was announced on the night of this Wednesday, May 30, the Archdiocese of the city.

César CM, 91 years old, can only perform the Eucharist with the maximum presence of one person. The religious has been denounced by at least five victims , whom he had sexually assaulted 45 years ago, when he was rector of an educational institution.

The archdiocese asks him to also "refrain from making statements in public." In addition, the Church requests that it comply with the provisions issued, within this case that causes repercussions in Ecuador.]

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 2:52 PM

Otro sacerdote acusado de pederastia es suspendido por el Vaticano

LINARES (CHILE)
Agence France-Presse

June 6, 2018

[Another priest accused of pedophilia is suspended by the Vatican]

El caso es un nuevo escándalo sexual para la Iglesia chilena, cuyos obispos renunciaron en forma masiva ante el Papa Francisco en Roma.

El sacerdote chileno Ramón Iturra, de Constitución, fue suspendido este miércoles por el Vaticano luego de haber sido denunciado el año pasado por abusos sexuales a un menor cometidos entre 1987 y 1988, informó un comunicado de la Iglesia.

La Santa Sede declaró verosímil la denuncia realizada en contra del presbítero Iturra y ordenó "la medida cautelar que es la prohibición de ejercer públicamente el Ministerio Sacerdotal, hasta la sentencia definitiva", indicó un comunicado de la Diócesis de Linares.

Iturra fue acusado por Cristián Alcaíno, exacólito de la parroquia de Constitución, de haberlo abusado sexualmente cuando tenía 11 años. Alcaíno comunicó el hecho a la Diócesis de Linares que, según el obispo Tomislav Koljatic, fue dada a conocer al Vaticano en junio del año pasado.

[Google Translation: Another priest accused of pedophilia is suspended by the Vatican

The case is a new sexual scandal for the Chilean Church, whose bishops resigned en masse before Pope Francis in Rome.

Chilean priest Ramón Iturra, of Constitución, was suspended on Wednesday by the Vatican after being denounced last year for sexual abuse of a minor committed between 1987 and 1988, a statement from the Church said.

The Holy See declared credible the denunciation made against the priest Iturra and ordered "the precautionary measure that is the prohibition to publicly exercise the Priestly Ministry, until the final sentence," said a statement from the Diocese of Linares.

Iturra was accused by Cristián Alcaíno, an ex-patron of the Constitución parish, of having sexually abused him when he was 11 years old. Alcaino communicated the fact to the Diocese of Linares that, according to Bishop Tomislav Koljatic, was made known to the Vatican in June of last year.]

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 2:47 PM

Ex seminarista confiesa que encubrió a sacerdote acusado de violación [VIDEO]

PERU
La Republica

May 28, 2018

[Former seminarian confesses that he concealed a priest accused of rape [VIDEO]]

By Melissa Goytizolo

Verdad amarga. Gilberto Huamán Yuca admitió que el cura ayacuchano Félix Pariona Huacre, protegido por el arzobispo Salvador Piñeiro, lo obligó a declarar a su favor ante el Ministerio Público a cambio de trabajo bien remunerado y vivienda estable en el Seminario San Cristóbal de Huamanga. Huamán también revela que el cura lo acosó sexualmente.

Hay una persona a la que el ex seminarista Gilberto Huamán Yuca teme como a nadie en el mundo: el sacerdote ayacuchano Félix Pariona Huacre. Huamán había sido presentado por Pariona ante la fiscalía como testigo de su honorabilidad e inocencia, con el propósito de desmentir a la menor A.L.L, que lo acusaba de abuso sexual dentro de las instalaciones del Seminario San Cristóbal de Huamanga. Casi temblando, el ex seminarista Gilberto Huamán decidió confesar que el sacerdote Pariona lo usó para que mintiera ante las autoridades.

Entrevistado por La República, Gilberto Huamán, de 26 años, declaró que aceptó el pedido del cura Félix Pariona por miedo. No hay otro motivo. Miedo. Solo miedo.

[Google Translation: Former seminarian confesses that he concealed a priest accused of rape [VIDEO]

Bitter truth: Gilberto Huamán Yuca admitted that the Ayacucho priest Félix Pariona Huacre, protected by Archbishop Salvador Piñeiro, forced him to testify in his favor before the Public Ministry in exchange for well-paid work and stable housing at the San Cristóbal Seminary in Huamanga. Huamán also reveals that the priest sexually harassed him.

There is a person whom the former seminarian Gilberto Huamán Yuca fears like no one else in the world: the Ayacucho priest Félix Pariona Huacre. Huamán had been presented by Pariona before the prosecution as a witness to his honor and innocence, with the purpose of denying the minor ALL, who accused him of sexual abuse within the premises of the San Cristóbal Seminary in Huamanga. Almost shaking, the former seminarian Gilberto Huamán decided to confess that Pariona priest used him to lie to the authorities.

Interviewed by the Republic, Gilberto Huamán , of 26 years, declared that he accepted the order of the priest Félix Pariona for fear. There is no other reason. Fear. Only fear.]

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 2:38 PM

Sex abuse scandal is latest CPS fiasco under Rahm Emanuel’s watch

CHICAGO (IL)
Chicago Sun-Times

June 10, 2018

By Fran Spielman and Lauren FitzPatrick

Days before the boom dropped on a sexual abuse scandal in Chicago Public Schools, Mayor Rahm Emanuel was unveiling a $175 million plan to provide universal preschool for the city’s 4-year-olds.

His homegrown schools CEO Janice Jackson was touting CPS’ progress in commercials bankrolled by a nonprofit with close ties to the mayor.

But now, Emanuel’s plan to seek a third term using education as a major cornerstone has been blown out of the water by a scandal that hits home like none before it.

This time, children have been directly victimized. And the adults in charge — including the mayor of Chicago — should have protected them. They didn’t.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 2:36 PM

Report on Pennsylvania priest abuse to be most extensive yet

PENNSYLVANIA
Associated Press via WRAL.com

June 10, 2018

By Claudia Lauer

The results of a lengthy probe into the handling of sexual abuse claims by Roman Catholic dioceses throughout Pennsylvania, which victim advocates say will be the biggest and most exhaustive ever by a U.S. state, could be made public within weeks.

A statewide grand jury spent nearly two years looking into the abuse scandal, and Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro has said he plans to address the panel's findings by the end of June.

WHAT TO EXPECT

The grand jury investigated six of the state's eight dioceses, which collectively minister to more than 1.7 million Catholics. The report is expected to reveal details of widespread abuse and efforts to conceal and protect abusive priests.

A judge's ruling last week gave the first real details of an investigation that started in July 2016. Judge Norman Krumenacker rejected an effort to delay the report's release or allow people named in the report to challenge parts of it before its release.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 2:26 PM

NSW to change laws to allow child abuse survivors to sue churches

NEW SOUTH WALES (AUSTRALIA)
Australian Associated Press via The Guardian

June 10, 2018

Berejiklian government says laws will allow thousands to seek compensation

Survivors of child sexual abuse will be able to sue churches and other institutions under changes to New South Wales’s civil litigation laws.

The state’s attorney general, Mark Speakman, on Sunday said the state government would remove legal barriers that have stopped victims from seeking justice, based on recommendations from the royal commission into institutional child sexual abuse.

“These reforms will provide access to new avenues to allow survivors to pursue compensation so they can focus on recovering and moving forward with their lives,” he said.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 10:35 AM

3rd man charged with child sex abuse from Utah doomsday group

SALT LAKE CITY (UT)
The Associated Press

June 9, 2018

By Brady McCombs

A third man has been charged with child sexual abuse in connection with a Utah doomsday group that believed in polygamy and took child brides.

Robert Shane Roe, 34, of Castro, California, met the two founders of the group in a Facebook discussion group last year and traveled out to Utah where he was given a “bride” — a 5-year-old girl related to one of the men, prosecutor Kevin Daniels said.

Investigators knew previously that Roe was involved in the group, but the girl only recently revealed what happened when she was alone with him, said Daniels, the Sanpete County Attorney in central Utah.

Roe was charged Thursday with sodomy of a child for the alleged activity in August 2017. No attorney is listed in court documents for Roe.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 10:32 AM

Catholic priest Carlo Alberto Capella to face Vatican trial for child pornography

VATICAN CITY
Deutsche Welle

June 9, 2018

A Catholic diplomat was recalled from the Washington embassy despite US requests to charge him in the country. He allegedly possessed and exchanged "a large quantity" of child pornography.

A high-ranking Vatican diplomat will face trial in the Holy See on charges of possessing child pornography in the US and Canada.

Catholic priest Carlo Alberto Capella was indicted on Saturday after a Vatican investigation found he had allegedly possessed and exchanged "a large quantity" of child pornography during his diplomatic posting.

His trial will start on June 22 in front of a Vatican magistrate.

If convicted, he could be sentenced to between one and five years in prison and fined between €2,500 and €50,000 ($2,100 to $42,000). He is being held in the city's police barracks.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 10:25 AM

Chilean diocese opens investigation of priest accused of sexual abuse

LINARES (CHILE)
The Catholic World Report

June 8, 2018

The Diocese of Linares confirmed Wednesday the receipt of a complaint of alleged sexual abuse by Fr. Germán Cáceres Fuentes.

The diocese explained in a June 6 statement that a preliminary investigation has begun and Fr. Cáceres has been removed from ministry until the decision of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith is obtained.

It was also determined that the priest has the obligation to remain in the diocese and be available when required “within the next 48 hours for any proceedings” of the investigation.

They also requested the “cooperation of everyone who could contribute pertinent or relevant information in this investigation.”

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 10:18 AM

Canberra archbishop clashes with local government over seal of Confession

AUSTRALIA
Catholic Herald

June 8, 2018

Archbishop Prowse criticised new mandatory reporting laws which include the sacrament of Confession

An Australian archbishop has warned that a new local law could penalise priests who refuse to break the seal of Confession in cases relating to child abuse.

The legislative assembly of the Australian Capital Territory has expanded regulations on abuse reporting to include information divulged in the confessional.

In an article for the Canberra Times, Archbishop Christopher Prowse of Canberra and Goulburn, supported the effort to protect children but said that “breaking the sacred seal of Confession won’t prevent abuse”.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 9:49 AM

Former Vatican diplomat to Washington indicted on child porn charge

VATICAN CITY
Washington Post

June 9, 2018

By Cleve R. Wootson Jr. and Julie Zauzmer

A Catholic priest who once was one of the church’s top diplomats in Washington was indicted by the Vatican on accusations of possessing and sharing “a large quantity” of child pornography.

In a statement obtained by Reuters, the Vatican said Monsignor Carlo Capella would face a trial starting June 22. He is being held in a cell in the Vatican’s police barracks.

Authorities in the United States and Canada had been investigating Capella for nearly two years. Canadian police said the priest allegedly uploaded child porn from a social networking site over the 2016 Christmas holiday.

In August, the U.S. State Department notified the Vatican of a “possible violation of laws relating to child pornography images,” by a diplomat. Soon after, the Vatican recalled Capella, who as a diplomat was one of four staff members who had immunity from prosecution in the United States. The Vatican denied U.S. efforts to have Capella prosecuted in an American court.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 9:46 AM

Editorial: Time is running out to help abuse victims

NEW YORK
Times Herald-Record

June 10, 2018

With only days left in this legislative session, the Republican majority in the state Senate seems determined to acknowledge the plight of young victims of sexual abuse only if it can protect those who are responsible.

That’s quite a trick, but it is at the heart of the GOP alternative to the Child Victims Act which has repeatedly passed the Assembly, which has Democratic support but lacks the vote of even one Republican including those retiring at the end of this term who could go out with this humane accomplishment as part of their legacy.

The background is complex but clear. New York is one of a few states that makes it very hard for those subject to sexual abuse as youngsters to bring their assailants to justice. A package of laws awaiting a vote in the Senate would give those victims more time to lodge complaints, would allow more time for those abused in the future and, most important and contentious of all, would establish a one-year period in which anybody who was abused could bring the case to court.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 9:39 AM

A-G backs laws forcing priests to break confession over child abuse

AUSTRALIA
Sydney Morning Heralnd

June 10, 2018

By David Wroe

Federal Attorney-General Christian Porter has expressed support for changes to the law that would force priests to report suspicions of child sex abuse arising from the confessional.

The changes, which would fall to state and territory governments, are among the most contentious of the recommendations from the royal commission into child sexual abuse.

Speaking on the ABC’s Insiders program on Sunday, Mr Porter said the Council of Attorneys-General – which includes himself and state and territory counterparts – was working on harmonised laws.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 9:37 AM

Child Abuse Survivors Now Able To Sue Churches

NEW SOUTH WALES (AUSTRALIA)
Ten Daily News

June 10, 2018

By Victoria Quested

New South Wales has become the second state to finally give child sex abuse survivors the power to sue institutions such as churches for compensation.

Under sweeping changes to NSW's civil litigation laws, survivors of child sexual abuse will now be able to sue organisations, including churches.

The state's attorney general, Mark Speakman, announced on Sunday the changes would remove legal barriers that have stopped victims from seeking justice, following the recommendations from the Royal Commission into institutional child sexual abuse.

"The Royal Commission found many survivors felt let down by the current civil litigation system which made it difficult for them to seek damages and hold institutions to account," Speakman said.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 9:32 AM

Australia state to allow sex abuse victims to sue churches

NEW SOUTH WALES (AUSTRALIA)
Agence France-Presse via Daily Mail

June 10, 2018

Victims of child sex abuse will be able to sue institutions such as churches under proposed new laws in Australia's most populous state, authorities said Sunday.

The proposed legislation came after a five-year royal commission -- which released its final report late last year -- detailed thousands of harrowing abuse cases involving churches, orphanages, sporting clubs, youth groups and schools and going back decades.

The overhaul of civil litigation laws in New South Wales state will allow claims of child abuse to be brought against organisations including churches which could not previously be sued, said NSW Attorney-General Mark Speakman.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 9:29 AM

Child sex abuse survivors to sue churches under NSW reforms

NEW SOUTH WALES (AUSTRALIA)
The New Daily

June 10, 2018

Thousands of child sex abuse survivors will be able to sue churches and other institutions under reforms to New South Wales civil litigation laws.

The legal loophole known as the ‘Ellis defence’ will be closed under the reforms, Attorney General Mark Speakman announced on Sunday.

Former altar boy and abuse survivor John Ellis tried to sue the Catholic Church in 2006, but the church successfully argued it didn’t legally exist as its assets were held in a trust protected from legal action.

Under the reforms, courts will have the power to appoint trustees to be sued if institutions fail to nominate an entity with assets as a proper defendant.

The overhaul follows recommendations from the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sex Abuse.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 9:23 AM

June 9, 2018

‘I don’t trust anybody’: St. Anne’s survivor feels betrayed, as federal government seeks $25K from lawyer

MANITOBA (CANADA)
APTN News

June 8, 2018

By Lucy Scholey

A former St. Anne’s Indian Residential School student says she has lost faith in Crown-Indigenous Relations Minister Carolyn Bennett after learning the federal government is seeking thousands of dollars in legal fees from a lawyer representing the survivors.

Angela Shisheesh, who attended the Fort Albany, Ont. school infamous for using a homemade electric chair as punishment and entertainment, said she thinks the federal government is warning other lawyers to back down from defending Indigenous people in court.

“I don’t trust anybody anymore,” Shisheesh says.

In a rare legal move, the federal government is seeking $25,000 in legal costs from lawyer Fay Brunning, who has been representing St. Anne’s students for years.

Vatican ex-diplomat on trial for 'child sex abuse images'

VATICAN CITY
BBC News

June 9, 2018

A senior Vatican official who served as a diplomat to the US will face charges of possessing images that show child sex abuse, the Holy See said.

Monsignor Carlo Alberto Capella's trial will begin on 22 June in the Vatican.

He was recalled in September 2017 after US authorities alerted the Vatican that one of its diplomats may have violated child pornography laws.

Monsignor Capella's career took him to India and Hong Kong before his time in the US, which lasted less than a year.

He was arrested in April.

A state department official told the Washington Post that the US government had asked for Monsignor Capella's diplomatic immunity be waived so he could be prosecuted in the US, but the Vatican refused.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 12:20 PM

Shaun Dougherty | Join fight to end statutes of limitations in Pa.

JOHNSTOWN (PA)
The Tribune-Democrat

June 9, 2018

By Shaun Dougherty (Guest Columnist)

By now, most everyone has heard the story of abuse that I suffered as a child while growing up in Johnstown.

I will spare you the gory details as I’m sure that most everyone is growing quite tired of hearing them, as I am of telling them.

Today I’d like to give credit where credit is due, and to hopefully stimulate a larger political conversation about the statutes of limitations in the commonwealth.

First and foremost, I would like to sincerely thank my wife, D’Arcy. I told you before we were engaged that I had this thing in my past that you needed to consider before we discussed marriage, and you married me anyway.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 9:52 AM

Andreatta: Diocese of Rochester has paid $1.6 million to 20 sex abuse victims

ROCHESTER (NY)
Rochester Democrat and Chronicle

June 9, 2018

By David Andreatta

At least 20 children, and probably more, have been sexually abused by 24 priests in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Rochester since 1950.

Over the years, the diocese has paid $1,616,000 in compensation to those victims. The number of victims is likely higher because not all victims accept financial compensation.

Some of the payouts date back decades, although most were settled since the Catholic clergy sex abuse scandal erupted in 2002.

Those figures are according to the diocese, which released them Friday in response to a request from the Democrat and Chronicle following new accusations that it's protecting and enabling pedophile priests.

The accusations were leveled by a lawyer from Boston, who stood outside Sacred Heart Cathedral in Rochester on Wednesday claiming to represent 17 people who allege they were abused by eight diocesan priests over a period of 28 years, ending in 1978.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 9:48 AM

Holy See Press Office Communiqué

VATICAN CITY
Holy See Press Office

June 9, 2018

The Investigating Judge of Vatican City State Tribunal today notified the defendant Msgr. Carlo Alberto Capella, his lawyer and the Promoter of Justice of the summons to trial of the defendant at the conclusion of the preliminary phase of the investigation against him.

In the indictment of 30 May 2018, the Promoter of Justice, considering the evidence acquired to be sufficient, had asked the investigating Judge to declare the formal investigation closed and to proceed to summon the defendant to trial.

The investigating judge, considering the matter to fall within the jurisdiction of the Vatican judicial authority – since it regards offences allegedly committed by a public official, albeit abroad – declared the formal investigation closed and summoned Msgr. Capella to trial, by the provision of 7 June 2018.

The offence of which Msgr. Capella stands accused is that of child pornography in the particular cases specified and punished by Articles 10 and 11 of Law No. VIII of 2013 (possession and exchange of child pornographic material, with the aggravating circumstance of the large quantity involved).

The first hearing will take place on Friday 22 June, at 15.00.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 9:44 AM

Secret shame — we need to close accountability gap in abuse among religious groups

UNITED STATES
The Hill

June 9, 2018

By Huma Yasin

Sexual abuse within religious communities is not a new phenomenon, but appears to be more prevalent recently as headline-making cases spark attention.

The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary recently fired former president Paige Patterson after reportedly telling a seminary student and victim of rape to forgive her attacker and not report the incident to the police. He is also accused of covering up the sexual abuse perpetrated by another Southern Baptist leader on a member of his youth group, though he allegedly knew of the abuse and failed to report it.

In the Mormon faith, sexual abuse survivor McKenna Denson recently sued Bishop Joseph L. Bishop, who was president of Provo’s Missionary Training Center, and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, for repeated abuse that allegedly occurred when decades ago she was a young “sister” missionary.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 9:39 AM

Former Vatican diplomat indicted on child pornography charges

VATICAN CITY
Reuters

June 9, 2018

By Philip Pullella

A Catholic priest who worked as a diplomat at the Vatican’s embassy in Washington was indicted on Saturday on charges of possessing child pornography in the United States and Canada.

A Vatican statement said an investigation found that Msgr. Carlo Alberto Capella, who was arrested in the Vatican in April after he had been recalled, had allegedly possessed and exchanged “a large quantity” of child pornography.

A Vatican magistrate ordered him to stand trial. It will start in the Vatican’s tiny courtroom on June 22, the statement said.

It was not possible to reach Capella, who is being held in a cell in the Vatican’s police barracks. The Vatican did not identify his lawyer.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 9:37 AM

NY bill no help for victims of sex abuse at public institutions – legal analyst

ALBANY (NY)
CNA/EWTN News via Catholic World Report

June 6, 2018

Backers of a New York bill to open a lawsuit window for civil action from victims of past sexual abuse are wrong to say it would apply to public institutions, a former judge has said.

In a May 21 legal analysis of the proposed Child Victims Act, Judge Susan Phillips Read, former associate judge of the New York State Court of Appeals, said that if it becomes law, “a 34-year old man whose high school wrestling coach sexually abused him 20 years ago would not be time-barred from recovering damages from his high school if the man attended a private school and sued within the one-year window, but he would be precluded from recovering damages if he attended a public school instead of a private school.”

Read wrote the analysis at the request of Richard Barnes, executive director of the New York State Catholic Conference, which opposes the bill in its current form.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 9:29 AM

Anger and tears as 'Magdalene Sisters' hold historic reunion

DUBLIN (IRELAND)
Agence France-Presse via Jakarta Post

June 7, 2018

By Julien Lagache

Scores of women forced to work in "Magdalene Laundries" -- Irish penitentiary work-houses run by the Catholic Church -- gathered for the first time in Dublin this week for an emotional reunion.

The "Magdalene Sisters" -- the title of an award-winning film about this dark chapter in Irish history -- shared stories about their internment and voiced anger at belated official apologies.

Teresa O'Connor, one of 200 survivors of the work-houses for "fallen women" which only closed in 1996, told AFP she was overwhelmed at meeting so many others who shared her suffering.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 9:27 AM

2 former Dansville priests among 8 in Rochester diocese accused of abuse

DANSVILLE (NY)
Livingston County News (NY)

June 8, 2018

By the LCN Staff

Two of the eight priests from the Diocese of Rochester who were accused this week of sexually abusing children were assigned for a time to a church in Dansville.

The priests were among eight who were ordained or assigned in the Diocese of Rochester during the past eight decades who were named at a Rochester news conference by Mitchell Garabedian, an attorney who represents several survivors of abuse in Rochester, and Robert Hoatson, president of Road to Recovery, a non-profit organization that helps victims of sexual abuse and their families.

Eugene Emo and David P. Simon had previously been acknowledged as alleged abusers by the Diocese of Rochester after the allegations of misconduct were reported by area media. Those reports did not note any specific allegations occurring in Dansville.

Posted by Anne Barrett Doyle at 8:47 AM

June 8, 2018

New group campaigns to end Catholic church child abuse

GENEVA
AFP/The Local

June 8, 2018

Child abuse victims and human rights activists from 15 countries, including Switzerland, have launched a new pressure group to campaign against abuse by Catholic clerics.

"The church has got away with crime for too long," said Peter Saunders, a British survivor of abuse, announcing the creation of the Ending Clerical Abuse (ECA) group at a media conference in Geneva on Thursday.

"ECA stands to compel the Roman Catholic church to end clerical abuse, especially child abuse, in order to protect children and to seek justice for victims," added Saunders, a former member of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors.

Jose Andres Murillo, a Chilean victim of clerical paedophilia who recently met with Pope Francis, said: "There is progress regarding clerical abuse in some countries, primarily due to brave victims who have fought to raise their voices."

However, "there are many more places in the world where victims voices are silenced", he added, notably Africa, Latin America and Asia. "ECA seeks to be that voice."

Last month, all 34 Chilean bishops announced their resignation over a child sex abuse scandal that has come to haunt the reign of Pope Francis.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:36 AM

New International Organization against the Epidemic of child sexual abuse in the Catholic Church [with video]

GENEVA
20 Ans Club suise de la presse

June 7, 2018

New International Organization against the Epidemic of child sexual abuse in the Catholic Church

Ending Clergy Abuse (ECA) is a new international organization, formed by survivors and activists from more than 15 countries. All of them are engaged with the end of abuse in all forms, especially the child sexual abuse in clergy contexts. ECA is challenging The Church to punish bishops implicated on child sexual abuse and cover up around the globe.

ECA members will hold a press conference to: – Urge Pope Francis, as the head of Catholic Church, to investigate bishops across the world who have mishandled sex abuse cases; – Challenge the Pope to use his June 21 visit to Geneva to commit to creating a central mechanism for holding bishops accountable; – Announce the formation of Ending Clergy Abuse (ECA) a new global justice effort to end the epidemic of child sex abuse in the Catholic Church.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:34 AM

Current Bishops Accused of Mishandling Abuse Cases

UNITED STATES
Bishop-Accountability.org

June 7, 2018

On May 18, 2018, at the end of their week-long summit with Pope Francis, all 31 active bishops in Chile submitted their resignations, a collective acknowledgement of the Chilean church’s “deplorable” handling of child sex abuse by clergy.

In a ten-page document the Pope gave to each bishop, he said their treatment of the "open wound” of abuse had caused it to "deepen more in its thickness and pain." In the document’s footnotes, he detailed some of the “grave defects” that his investigators had found in the bishops’ management of abuse: minimizing serious crimes as mere moral faults; "recklessly" entrusting abusers with renewed access to minors; ignoring red flags and "superficially" classifying complaints as "improbable"; delaying investigating or doing no investigation at all; and destroying documents. Such practices are “reprehensible,” the pope wrote.

Two weeks later, Pope Francis issued another extraordinary pronouncement, this one a letter to the Catholic people of Chile in which he declared "'never again’ to the culture of abuse and the system of cover-up that allows it to perpetuate …”

It was the first recognition by any pope of the systemic cover-up of child sex abuse in the church.

Now a pressing question emerges: will the pope extend this scrutiny to countries beyond Chile? As dangerous as its practices have been, the Chilean church is not atypical. We see the same cover-up of abusive priests today, the same disregard for victims, in the Catholic churches of Argentina, the Philippines, Poland, and the United States, as seen most recently in the Diocese of Buffalo NY. Change is occurring in Chile only because that situation caused a public relations debacle for the Pope himself.

The most meaningful measure of the Pope's commitment to "never again" will be whether he systematically investigates mishandling of abuse cases by bishops and religious superiors throughout the universal Church.

To deepen understanding of the challenge facing Pope Francis, BishopAccountability.org presents this sample list of current bishops whose responses to allegations and to victims raise questions about their fitness for office. None has yet been disciplined by the pope.

Our list includes five cardinals, two of whom belong to the Pope’s inner circle of advisors. Their inclusion in this list of alleged child-protection violators underscores both the difficulty and urgent necessity of the task facing the Pope. Disciplining such influential friends will be difficult, but for Pope Francis to make good on his promise, accountability must begin at the top. Diocesan bishops cannot be expected to comply with standards that cardinals close to the pope are ignoring with impunity.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:32 AM

Australian law mandates reporting abuse admissions made in confessional

SYDNEY (AUSTRALIA)
Catholic News Service

June 7, 2018

Laws requiring Catholic priests to break the seal of Confession in some cases passed the Australian Capital Territory’s Legislative Assembly in Canberra June 7.

The purpose of the Ombudsman Amendment Bill 2018 was to expand the Reportable Conduct Scheme governing allegations of child abuse and misconduct to include religious organizations.

The legislation passed without amendment. The Archdiocese of Canberra and Goulburn has nine months to negotiate with the government on how it will work before the start of reportable conduct requirements.

The law’s passage comes weeks after the May 22 conviction of Archbishop Philip Wilson of Adelaide, who faces a maximum penalty of two years in jail for failing to inform police about child sexual abuse allegations. The local court in Newcastle found that, in 1976, then-Fr. Wilson had been told by a 15-year-old boy that he had been indecently assaulted by a priest who later died in prison, but that Fr. Wilson, then a parochial vicar, chose not to go to the authorities despite believing the allegations were true.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:31 AM

Archdiocese ordered to give investigator's notes to family suing over alleged priest child-sex abuse

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Penn Live

June 7, 2018

By Matt Miller

The Catholic Archdiocese of Philadelphia can't escape a judge's order to hand over notes its investigator made while interviewing witnesses to prepare its defense against a lawsuit in a priest child-sex case, a state appeals court ruled Thursday.

That call was made in a Superior Court opinion by Judge Jack A. Panella which denied an appeal by the diocese challenging an order requiring it to provide those notes to lawyers for the family of Sean Patrick McIlmail.

McIlmail died of a drug overdose at age 26. His family is blaming his death on sexual abuse they claim the Rev. Robert L. Brennan inflicted on him starting when he was 11 years old. They contend diocese officials, including Monsignor William Lynn, knew of the abuse and did nothing to stop it.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:29 AM

UK: Child Abuse Inquiry Publishes Interim Report

UNITED KINGDOM
Mondaq

June 7, 2018

By Judith Martin

The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse recently published their first interim report, providing an overview of the Inquiry's work and highlighting emerging key themes.

The Inquiry has so far held five public hearings, a series of seminars and published two investigation reports.

The Inquiry Chair, Professor Alexis Jay, anticipates the Inquiry will have made substantial progress by 2020, with a further eight public hearings to be heard within the next 12 months.

The Interim Report lists 18 recommendations to be implemented by the Government, police and other institutions to better protect children from sexual abuse. Of these recommendations, two are of primary importance to insurers:

1. Public Liability Register

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:27 AM

Justice catches up with priest after 50 years

UNITED KINGDOM
Motherwell Times

June 7, 2018

A priest who served in Craigneuk has been jailed for six months for abusing a young girl 50 years ago.

Hamilton Sheriff Court heard his victim says Michael Maher ruined her childhood and she has never got over what he did. Maher (74), now of Stobo near Peebles, admitted using lewd, indecent and libidinous practices and behaviour towards the girl between February 1968 and February 1972. She was aged between 12 and 15 at the time and he was between 24 and 27. The court heard the abuse happened at the girl’s home in Holytown and at St Mary’s Church in Whifflet, where Maher was first posted after his ordination in 1968. Maher was a frequent visitor to the girl’s home and would take her into her parents’ bedroom where he lay on top of her on a bed and simulated sexual intercourse.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:22 AM

Sussex abuse inquiry invites witness statement from Prince Charles

ENGLAND
Sussex Espress

June 7, 2018

By Michael Drummond

The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) has invited a witness statement from Prince Charles.

The inquiry is investigating how far institutions failed to protect children from sexual abuse within the Anglican Church.

Next month it will examine the sexual abuse of 18 men by former Bishop of Lewes Peter Ball and the environment around him. Peter Ball was the local bishop to the Prince of Wales. larence House said Prince Charles ‘has made it clear that he was unaware of the extent of Mr Ball’s behaviour’ but was more than willing to provide context about Ball. The inquiry has been focussing on the Diocese of Chichester as a case study and heard evidence from survivors and clergy alike over the course of three weeks in March.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:20 AM

SEATTLE UNIVERSITY’S SYSTEMIC SUPPORT OF SEXUAL ABUSE

SEATTLE (WA)
The Spectator

June 7, 2018

The Spectator Editorial Board

Skeletons In The Closet
There are few things I find more ironic than the university’s decision to rename the Connolly Center. It was a good thing, don’t get me wrong. Monuments honoring rapists, and those who protected them, should be erased from the face of the Earth. But here’s my question: What about the rest? What about all the other buildings that pay homage to those horrible men? What about the lectures, programs and spaces on this campus that bare their names? And what if, god forbid, one of those men still worked here? What would happen then? What do you think should happen?

The topic at hand deserves plain language and I’m not known to mince words. This week’s feature story is about Seattle University President Father Stephen Sundborg and his connection to the child sex abuse scandal in the Catholic Church.

This isn’t “gotcha” journalism or clickbait or fake news. This isn’t about politics, either. Any impression you have of the Spectator, good or bad, doesn’t matter right now. This is about the systematic concealment of the molestation, abuse and rape of women and children.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:09 AM

OPINION: LETTERS TO THE EDITOR: Letters: Last of the huge civil settlements?

MINNEAPOLIS (MN)
Pioneer Press

June 8, 2018

By Marshall H. Tanick [The writer is a Twin Cities constitutional and employment law attorney.]

LAST OF THE BIG SETTLEMENTS?

The historic $210 million settlement last week by the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis was a testament to the persistence and resilience of the 443 victims of clergy sex abuse, the skills of their St. Paul attorney Jeff Anderson and his estimable legal team and the elongation of the statute of limitations by the Legislature five years ago.

But one key feature in forging the deal was the ability of the victims to pursue their claims in civil lawsuits. The varied litigation they brought propelled the archdiocese into bankruptcy, which provided a vehicle, albeit a slow-moving one, to reach the record-breaking resolution.

But arrangements of this size, or of any magnitude at all, for victims of massive wrongdoing may be an endangered species as a result of a ruling the previous week by the U.S. Supreme Court. The justices, by a narrow 5-4 vote, ruled that members of labor unions may be barred from pursuing lawsuits in a collective manner, or class actions, and required to arbitrate their disputes with management.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:07 AM

Commissioner Bob Atkinson heartened by church support for royal commission’s work

AUSTRALIA
The Catholic Leader

June 8, 2018

By Mark Bowling

ROYAL Commissioner Bob Atkinson has offered encouragement to Australian churches taking up the recommendations of the Royal Commission into child sexual abuse, including the payment of compensation to survivors.

“I can say it is very heartening to see the support of various faiths in recent times for the national redress scheme,” Mr Atkinson, a former Queensland police commissioner, said while addressing an annual Lord Mayor’s prayer breakfast in Brisbane.

Four out of five child sexual abuse survivors will be covered by the national redress scheme, after the Anglican Church, Salvation Army, YMCA and Scouts Australia joined the Catholic Church in endorsing it.

The Catholic Church has estimated it will be liable for about $1 billion in compensation.

The national scheme will cover about 60,000 institutional child sexual abuse survivors nationally, with compensation payments capped at $150,000.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:00 AM

Child sexual abuse: all states on board for redress after WA resolves doubts

AUSTRALIA
The Guardian

June 7, 2018

By Melissa Davey

Western Australia was the last state not to have signed up for the scheme, but will now take it to cabinet

Western Australia, the only remaining state not to sign up to the national redress scheme for child sexual abuse survivors, has resolved its concerns with the federal government, and its attorney general will now put the scheme to cabinet.

As the council of attorney generals prepared to meet in Perth on Friday the federal social services minister, Dan Tehan, told Guardian Australia that sticking points with WA, including who was responsible for redress for 3,000 Commonwealth child migrants settled in WA after the second world war, had been resolved.

“We have agreed on all remaining issues and the WA attorney general is now seeking approval to join the scheme through their cabinet processes,” Tehan said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:58 AM

Br Paul Dunleavy: Former Catholic school head facing historical sex abuse charges

IRELAND
The Irish News

June 7, 2018

A FORMER Newry Catholic school principal is to appear in court on multiple child sex abuse charges.

Brother Paul Dunleavy (82), whose address is given as the Christian Brothers Province Centre in Dublin, is due in court on June 11 when he will face a total of 41 charges.

He was head of the now-closed St Colman's Abbey Primary School in Newry during the 1980s. He previously served as a teacher in the school before being appointed principal. It is understood he also taught at St Aidan's PS in Belfast.

The charges include 30 counts of indecent assault on a male and eight counts of gross indecency with or towards a child. They relate to when Br Dunleavy taught at the Newry school in the 1960s and 1970s.

He is also charged with inciting gross indecency with a child on dates between October 1973 and July 1974.

St Colman's Abbey PS and St Clare's Convent PS amalgamated to form St Clare's Abbey PS in 2014.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:56 AM

Warminda hostel parent Martin Cooper jailed for 20 years over child sex abuse

AUSTRALIA
Australian Broadcasting Corporation

June 8, 2018

By Joanna Menagh

A man who ran a hostel in Perth for wards of the state has been sentenced to 20 years' jail for what a judge described as the sadistic, perverse and persistent sexual abuse of eight children for whom he was supposed to be caring.

Martin James Cooper, 66, was found guilty last month of 30 child sex offences dating back to between 1978 and 1983 when he and his wife ran the Warminda hostel in East Victoria Park.

Cooper was found to have repeatedly physically and sexually abused the eight children, including raping three girls who were aged between 11 and 16.

Warminda was owned by the government but operated by the Uniting Church, and housed children who had been taken from their families because they could not, or would not, look after them properly.

Each of the children had government-appointed welfare officers and some of them testified at Cooper's trial that they had tried to tell these authorities, and others including the police, what was happening.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:54 AM

#MeToo goes to church: Southern Baptists face a reckoning over treatment of women

UNITED STATES
NBC News

June 8, 2018

By Alex Johnson

"Many women have experienced horrific abuses within the power structures of our Christian world," Beth Moore, an evangelical teacher, wrote in a letter.

The Southern Baptist Convention, the country's largest evangelical denomination, is headed for a showdown over its treatment of women that could not only have far-reaching ramifications for the church but also influence the broader secular #MeToo movement.

At its annual meeting next week in Dallas, delegates called "messengers" will decide whether to approve a resolution acknowledging that, throughout the church's history, male leaders and members of the church "wronged women, abused women, silenced women, objectified women."

"The #MeToo moment has come to American evangelicals," Albert Mohler, president of the flagship Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, wrote last month. "And I am called to deal with it as a Christian, as a minister of the Gospel, as a seminary and college president, and as a public leader."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:52 AM

These Women Survived Ireland’s Magdalene Laundries. They’re Ready to Talk.

DUBLIN (IRELAND)
The New York Times

June 6, 2018

By Ed O’Loughlin

They are a haunting sight in the aftermath of wars and natural disasters: the notice boards that spring up outside Red Cross tents and hospitals, covered in notes from desperate people searching for loved ones lost in the chaos.

As 220 survivors of Ireland’s notorious Magdalene Laundries convened for a state-sponsored meeting in Dublin on Tuesday, strikingly similar pleas for the lost went up at their hotel.

Orders of Roman Catholic nuns ran the laundries for profit, and women and girls were put to work there, supposedly as a form of penance. The laundries were filled not only with “fallen women” — prostitutes, women who became pregnant out of marriage or as a result of sexual abuse and those who simply failed to conform — but also orphans and deserted or abused children.

“Their names were changed in the laundries, and it was often hard to talk, and they didn’t get the chance to really know each other there,” said Maeve O’Rourke, legal adviser for the Justice for Magdalenes Research project. “So they’ve put up a notice board in the hotel, for people to put messages on, to try and trace people they knew in the laundries.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:51 AM

Owego priest among 8 accused by attorney of sexually abusing children

ROCHESTER (NY)
WBNG/WROC

June 8, 2018

By Michael Schwartz

A non-profit organization which aims to help victims of sexual abuse is accusing eight Diocese of Rochester priests of sexually abusing children. One of those priests serves in Owego.

According to Attorney Mitchell Garabedian, Father Thomas Valenti allegedly sexually abused his client, who is now in his late fifties, when he was a teen. Garabedian said his client was 15 years old when the abuse started in 1975, while Valenti worked at St. Mary's of the Lake Church in Ontario, New York.

"He abused my client as a deacon, but in one of those years he became a priest so he was a deacon and a priest when he sexually abused my client," claimed Garabedian

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:45 AM

On the way to GA: #MeToo and the victims of pastoral sexual misconduct

UNITED STATES
The Presbyterian Outlook

June 8, 2018

By Leslie Scanlon

The 2018 General Assembly is being asked to consider the implications of #MeToo in the church — including a recommendation from the Advocacy Committee for Women’s Concerns that the denomination’s stated clerk issue a confession on behalf of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) for its failure to listen to the victims of pastoral sexual misconduct.

That recommendation also asks for some effort to be made to quantify the number of sexual misconduct charges presented at all levels of the church, including in congregations.

And it calls for the creation of a task force composed of victims of sexual assault and advocates of victims, which would conduct a comprehensive examination of PC(USA) policy, judicial process and rules of discipline regarding sexual misconduct.

Also (perhaps surprisingly) coming to the assembly is this question: whether a violation of a council’s sexual misconduct policy should be seen as contrary to Scripture and the denomination’s constitution, and thus subject to the Rules of Discipline.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:42 AM

Mental health worker charged with sex abuse has troubled history

WESTERVILLE (OH)
10tv

June 7, 2018

By Glenn Mcentyre

The mental health worker accused of sexually assaulting a young boy has a long, troubled history with children.

Monday morning 33-year-old Matthew Gatton turned himself into Westerville Police.

Gatton is charged with two counts of gross sexual imposition against an 11-year-old boy in his care.

Gatton was an employed by OhioGuidestone as a mental health worker.

"It seemed like Matthew was a godsend, to be honest," said the mother of that boy.

We're not identifying them, to protect his anonymity.

"He helped him a lot with anger management, how to deal with regular day to day stuff."

But this week Westerville Police said Gatton admitted to touching their son's penis between 20 to 50 times.

"It's just such a shock and betrayal," said the boy's father. "It's a sucker punch and we're still reeling from it."

Public records reveal a long, disturbing trail of red flags in Gatton's history with children.

Vineyard Columbus church says approximately five years ago, Gatton was a volunteer with their kids' ministry.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:40 AM

John Engler involved in MSU misstep, emails show

DETROIT (MI)
Detroit Free Press

June 8, 2018

By Gina Kaufman and Joe Guillen

Michigan State University interim President John Engler was directly involved in the crafting of a detailed public rebuke of a rape accuser’s allegations, a statement that potentially violated a federal privacy law and endangered grant funding for sexual assault counseling services, the Free Press has learned.

Emails obtained by the Free Press show Engler and his closest advisers sharing “essential facts” and edits to be included in the university’s official response to a lawsuit, which accuses MSU counseling staff of discouraging a student from reporting she was raped by three basketball players. Among the emails was one where a spokeswoman acknowledged they had moved quickly “to get materials the President wanted out the door.”

The statement was posted on MSU’s website and sent to reporters April 11. It said allegations in the lawsuit were untrue and refuted the claims with information about the woman's counseling center history.

MSU’s decision to release details about the woman may have violated a federal student privacy law, experts previously told the Free Press, because the information could be used to piece together her identity. Details in the statement included when the woman sought counseling, services provided to her and that she never filed a police report or Title IX complaint.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:37 AM

List of Places Where Priests Accused of Abuse Worked Released

ROCHESTER (NY)
WENY

June 7, 2018

By Caitlin Murphy

On Tuesday, June 5, attorney Mitchell Garabedian spoke on behalf of sexual abuse victims who say that eight priests who were ordained or assigned in the Diocese of Rochester abused them.

Garabedian has represented more than 1,000 survivors of child sex abuse at the hands of priests in the Catholic Church.

According to Garabedian, the priests affiliated with the Diocese of Rochester were ordained or assigned over the last eight decades.

The priests named were Eugene Emo, David Simon, Francis Vogt, Stuart Hogan, Charles McCarthy, Gary Shaw, Richard Orlando and Thomas Valenti.

Road to Recovery, a non-profit organization that helps victims of sexual abuse, listed the timelines and locations for each accused priest and where they were assigned.

The text printed in bold indicates the time period during which they are accused of sexual abuse.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:35 AM

Diocese of Rochester responds to attorney’s allegations

ROCHESTER (NY)
Catholic Courier

June 7, 2018

EDITOR’S NOTE: The Diocese of Rochester released the statement below in response to a June 6 press conference at which attorney Mitchell Garabedian alleged that eight men currently or formerly associated with the Rochester Diocese – including four who are deceased and one who resigned from ministry and was dispensed from the clerical state in the late 1970s – committed sexual abuse during their years of ministry. A story will follow; please check back periodically.

* * *

June 6, 2018

The Diocese of Rochester has been in correspondence for several months with the Garabedian law firm regarding the individuals named publicly at the news conference today. The Diocese has invited participation in a process of investigation and resolution. We have had little or no response.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:34 AM

Iowa priest's suspension is lifted after privacy conviction reversed

DES MOINES (IA)
We Are Iowa

June 7, 2018

By Sarah Beckman

An Iowa priest who was previously convicted for invasion of privacy has had his suspension from priestly ministry fully lifted.

According to a release from the Catholic Diocese of Des Moines, Father Paul Monahan was previously convicted of five counts of invasion of privacy. But that conviction was reversed earlier this year. He was accused of invading the privacy of young boys inside a locker room at Treynor High School in 2016. Father Monahan was the former principal at St. Albert High School.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:33 AM

Les victimes d’abus sexuels maintiennent la pression sur le pape

GENEVA
Le Temps

June 7, 2018

By Simon Petite

Victims of sexual abuse keep the pressure on the pope

Avant la visite du pape François, un réseau international pour mettre fin à l’impunité des prêtres pédophiles voit le jour à Genève

La date de l’offensive de communication est préméditée. Deux semaines avant la visite du pape François à Genève, un réseau international pour lutter contre les violences sexuelles commises par les prêtres a annoncé jeudi sa constitution. Formée d’associations de victimes d’une quinzaine de pays, cette nouvelle organisation – nommée Ending Clerical Abuse (Mettre fin aux abus du clergé – ECA) – tient son assemblée constitutive ces jours-ci à Genève.

Devant la presse, ses représentants, dont de nombreuses victimes, ont chacun posé avec un portrait d’un religieux, accusé de violences sexuelles ou qui aurait couvert de tels crimes. «Nous lançons un appel au pape François pour qu’il tienne ses promesses de tolérance zéro à l’égard des actes de pédophilie au sein de l’Eglise», plaide le Français François Devaux, lui-même victime d’un prêtre dans les années 1970. Il préside une association, Parole libérée, qui met aussi en cause le cardinal de Lyon Philippe Barbarin accusé d’avoir maintenu ce prêtre qui a ensuite abusé d’autres enfants.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:29 AM

Amended law mandates breaking seal of Confession in some cases in Australia

AUSTRALIA
The Tablet

June 8, 2018

By Rose Gamble

'Without that vow [seal of Confession], who would be willing to unburden themselves of their sins?'

Catholic priests will be required to break the seal of confession in some cases after new laws passed the Australian Capital Territory's (ACT) Legislative Assembly in Canberra without amendment.

All three parties in the ACT Legislative Assembly supported the bill on 7 June to extend the mandatory reporting scheme to cover churches, including the Confessional.

The new laws will require religious organisations to report allegations, offences or convictions related to children to the ACT Ombudsman within 30 days and launch an investigation.

Writing in the Canberra Times, Archbishop Christopher Prowse of Canberra and Goulburn said that the church “shares the government’s concern to protect the safety of children and wishes to be a part of the solution”.

He added: “The draft laws are a consequence of the profound failure of the leadership of the church and the duty of care we owe to children.”

But, he said he could not support a requirement to break the seal of confession.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:28 AM

2 members of secretive NC sect charged with fraud conspiracy

SPINDALE (NC)
The Associated Press

June 7, 2018

By Mitch Weiss and Holbrook Mohr

Two members of a secretive evangelical church in North Carolina were charged Thursday with conspiracy to commit wire fraud in an alleged unemployment benefits scheme that former congregants have said was meant to keep money coming into the sect.

Marion Kent Covington, 63, and Diane Mary McKinny, 65, both of Rutherfordton, North Carolina, were indicted in U.S. District Court in Asheville.

Prosecutors say Covington and McKinny decided to lay off employees at Covington's business so they could collect unemployment benefits in 2008 when the company was struggling financially. But the employees continued to work at the company, Diverse Corporate Technologies. They later put the scheme into place at Covington's other business, Integrity Marble & Granite. Covington then put in place a variation of the scheme at Sky Catcher Communications, Inc., a company he managed, prosecutors say.

The scheme resulted in more than $250,000 in fraudulent claims between November 2008 and March 2013, according to court records. The charges carry a maximum penalty of 30 years in prison and a $1 million fine. Prosecutors are seeking the forfeiture of at least $309,660. Both defendants will be arraigned on June 18.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:24 AM

Les victimes d'abus sexuels dans l'Eglise veulent des annonces du pape

GENEVA
RTS

June 7, 2018

Victims of Sexual Abuse in the Church Want Ads from the Pope

Des victimes d'abus sexuels du clergé et leurs défenseurs, regroupés dans une nouvelle faîtière mondiale, veulent que le pape annonce un tribunal lors de sa visite du 21 juin à Genève.

Il y a quelques semaines, l'ensemble de la hiérarchie de l'Eglise catholique chilienne avait démissionné pour ne pas avoir pris les décisions adaptées face à des dénonciations d'abus. Une décision qui n'a pas été validée par le pape, ont notamment déploré les victimes et leurs défenseurs.

Les scandales de prêtres couverts par des évêques sont "un problème mondial", a dit jeudi devant la presse Peter Saunders, l'un des membres de l'association Ending Clergy Abuse ("Mettre un terme aux abus du clergé", ECA) formalisée cette semaine à Genève. Il est impossible d'établir un nombre de victimes, ni dans le monde ni en Suisse.

Rien qu'aux Etats-Unis, il dépasserait les 100'000, selon une estimation de 2012.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:21 AM

Chilean Catholics weather fallout from clergy sexual abuse crisis

SANTIAGO (CHILE)
Catholic News Service

June 8, 2018

By Jane Chambers

Teresa Correa, a mother of four and a member of the Catholic parish in the Chilean capital’s upscale Las Condes neighborhood, has lost some of her confidence in the Catholic Church.

Correa admitted to Catholic News Service in early June that the clergy sexual abuse crisis has left her and her friends wondering where the Church is headed. She said it’s “time for the laity to take the lead and help out.”

She also said it is important to be strong and brave during what is a difficult time for Catholics in Chile.

Her friend Pilar Concha, a mother of six, agreed.

“My children are between 15 to 6 years old,” she told Catholic News Service. “They see what is going on in the press. When we eat together in the evening, they talk to me about it, especially the older ones. They say, ‘Mummy, did you see what happened in such and such place with that bishop? Did you hear what the pope said?'”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:18 AM

Former Westchester Priest Among Eight Accused Of Child Sex Abuse

ROCHESTER (NY)
Mount Pleasant Daily Voice

June 7, 2018

By Zak Failla and Joe Lombardi

A former priest in Westchester was among eight named by a prominent Boston attorney on Wednesday who allegedly sexually abused children decades ago.

On the steps of Sacred Heart Cathedral in Rochester on Wednesday, attorney Mitchell Garabedian announced the names of eight pastors - including Thomas J. Valenti, who served at St. John the Baptist Church in Yonkers for a decade before departing in 2014 - who are alleged to have sexually abused more than a dozen children while serving at the Roman Catholic Diocese of Rochester.

Valenti currently serves as the parochial administrator at Blessed Trinity St. Patrick’s parish in Owego. Allegations against him in Rochester stem from his time as a deacon around 1976 and continued at his next stop in Ontario in Wayne County. Garabedian also called on him to resign his current position.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:58 AM

June 7, 2018

New group fighting Catholic clergy abuse launches in Geneva

GENEVA
National Catholic Reporter

June 6, 2018

By Joshua J. McElwee

Advocates discuss UN reports criticizing Vatican actions

A new global coalition of clergy sexual abuse survivors and advocates aiming to push the Catholic Church to better protect minors is set to formally launch June 7 with a press conference in Geneva.

Ending Clergy Abuse, an organization made up of some of the most prominent voices on the issue from 15 countries, will specifically call on Pope Francis to more thoroughly investigate bishops who have mishandled abuse cases and to create a centralized Vatican process to hold them accountable.

José Andrés Murillo, the head of an organization in Chile that combats child abuse and who is taking part in the new endeavor, said the coalition is different from previous survivors' groups because its advocacy is focused on changing the church.

"We are not an organization of victims," said Murillo, one of three Chilean abuse victims who met the pope at the Vatican between April 30 and May 2. "We are a group of survivors, but also advocates and activists. We search for change. We're not searching for only justice, but we are searching for change."

Ending Clergy Abuse began last fall with the help of the late Barbara Blaine, founder of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP). Murillo and three other advocates will officially announce the group June 7 at the Swiss Press Club, a short walk away from the United Nations Office in Geneva.

The advocates say that in the days before the press conference they have also been meeting with U.N. officials, partially to discuss two 2014 reports by separate U.N. panels that criticized the Vatican's handling of abuse.

In February 2014, the Committee on the Rights of the Child said the Vatican had adopted policies that led to "the continuation of the abuse and the impunity of the perpetrators." Later in May 2014, the Committee Against Torture urged the church to place "meaningful sanctions" on bishops who mishandle abuse accusations.

Francis will be visiting Geneva June 21 for the 70th anniversary of the World Council of Churches, which is headquartered in the city. He is not scheduled to meet U.N. officials during the one-day visit.

Murillo called the June 7 launch a symbolic action to bring the issue of abuse back into the spotlight at the international level.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:47 PM

Catholic church abuse survivors launch effort to end impunity of bishops

GENEVA
The Associated Press

June 7, 2018

Some of the most prominent figures in the fight against sexual abuse in the Catholic Church are joining forces in a new international effort to end abuse and the impunity of bishops and religious superiors who enable it.

The multinational initiative, End Clergy Abuse, was announced Thursday in Geneva. One after another, more than a dozen members of the new organization held up their national flags and denounced a bishop who they said had botched an abuse case.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:45 PM

Three former Michigan State football players avoid jail in sexual assault case

LANSING (MI)
The Associated Press

June 6, 2018

Three former Michigan State football players accused in the sexual assault of a woman have avoided jail time after pleading guilty.

Former Hinsdale South star Josh King, Donnie Corley Jr. and Demetric Vance were sentenced Wednesday to three years’ probation, sex offender treatment and therapy. They pleaded guilty in April to seducing an unmarried woman, a reduced charge.

They could have been imprisoned for up to five years. Prosecutors recommended no jail time.

A woman says she was assaulted in an apartment bathroom last year. King, Corley and Vance were kicked off the team when charges were filed in June 2017 and later dismissed from school. All three were freshmen in 2016-17.

Karen Truszowski, the victim’s attorney, told WILX-TV it was best for her client to agree to the plea agreement to avoid a trial.

King, a defensive end, was the top-ranked football recruit in Illinois in 2016 and a two-time state champion in wrestling. He started two games for Michigan State as a freshman in 2016.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:37 PM

Ex-Brighton Priest, Accused of Sexual Abuse, Has Headstone Destroyed

BRIGHTON (ENGLAND)
Brighton Journal

June 6, 2018

By Jack Mitchell-Charman

Canon Dermod Fogarty’s legacy has been dramatically rewritten since his death

Dermod Fogarty, a fixture in the Brighton and Arundel diocese for 67 years, has been a figure of major controversy.

A dramatic video has revealed the destruction of the ex-senior churchman’s gravestone.

Following his death in 2012, a series of startling revelations surfaced.

An Oxford academic, Stephen Bernard, claims that Fogarty sexually abused him.

The abuse allegedly began when Bernard was aged just 11.

The claims were made in the acclaimed Paper Cuts, a book released by Bernard in 2018.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:35 PM

LIST: Parishes, churches where priests accused of abuse worked

ROCHESTER (NY)
WHAM13

June 6, 2018

On Tuesday morning, an attorney spoke on behalf of 17 survivors of sexual abuse, saying eight priests who were ordained or assigned in the Diocese of Rochester abused those individuals.

The attorney, Mitchell Garabedian, has represented more than 1,000 survivors of child sex abuse at the hands of priests in the Catholic Church. Garabedian said the priests affiliated with the Diocese of Rochester were ordained or assigned over the last eight decades.

Those priests are Eugene Emo, David Simon, Francis Vogt, Stuart Hogan, Charles McCarthy, Gary Shaw, Richard Orlando, and Thomas Valenti.

Road to Recovery, a non-profit charity that helps victims of sexual abuse and their families, listed timelines and locations for each accused priest and where they were assigned. Text printed in bold next to a priest's name indicates a time period during which an individual is accusing them of sexual abuse.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:33 PM

Priest in child safeguarding probe moves into house near four schools

IRELAND
The Irish News

June 7, 2018

By Brendan Hughes

A CATHOLIC priest who resigned from senior roles after a child safeguarding investigation into a "historical complaint" has moved into a parish-owned house near four schools.

Monsignor Aidan Hamill stepped down in November as parish priest of St Peter's and St Paul's in Lurgan and vicar general in the Diocese of Dromore.

It followed a probe into a complaint made in 2014. The diocese said the complaint was "upheld" but did not give further details.

Police were informed, but no formal complaint was made.

The retired priest has since been assigned to "some chaplaincy services in the diocese" and assisting with administration.

Mgr Hamill, who is in his seventies, is understood to have moved into a vacant house in Newry last week.

The property is understood to be owned by the parish and has previously housed retired priests.

Some residents have expressed concern over Mgr Hamill living there after learning of the child safeguarding complaint.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:17 PM

When Are Clergy Required To Report Sex Abuse? Arizona Case Shows Why It Doesn't Always Happen

KINGMAN (AZ)
91.5 KJZZ

June 5, 2018

By Lauren Gilger

Clergy are often some of the most trusted figures people can turn to in times of need. In one Arizona case of sexual abuse, that’s exactly what happened.

A Mormon bishop in Kingman was told about sexual abuse happening within a family. But when the victim didn’t want to report it to law enforcement, he didn’t.

That has sparked some concerns about the legal counsel he was given by a law firm for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Now a prosecutor with the Mohave County Attorney’s Office has filed a bar complaint about it.

To explain all of this, The Show spoke with Nate Carlisle, who’s covering the case for The Salt Lake Tribune.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:16 PM

Erie Bishop Persico Only Bishop to Testify Before Grand Jury Investigating Clergy Sex Abuse

ERIE (PA)
Erie News Now

June 6, 2018

By Paul Wagner

Update on grand jury investigation into clergy sex abuse.

There is new information about the grand jury investigation into clergy sex abuse in Erie and five other catholic dioceses around the state.

We have confirmed that Erie Bishop Lawrence Persico testified before the panel.

He was invited to do so, and testified voluntarily.

Other bishops only gave written statements.

That information came out of a ruling yesterday by the judge overseeing the panel.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:14 PM

Church group asks #MeToo activists for solidarity with persecuted women

VATICAN CITY
Catholic News Service

June 7, 2018

Under the title “#MeToo for All,” Aid to the Church in Need has published an open letter to four famous actresses asking their help in publicizing the widespread sexual exploitation of women because of their faith.

The letter, addressed to Asia Argento, Meryl Streep, Sharon Stone and Uma Thurman, was printed as an ad June 6 in the Italian edition of Vanity Fair. The four women have been leaders in denouncing sexual abuse and harassment in Hollywood.

While the four actresses have been effective in “calling the world’s attention to the sexual molestation women have suffered, particularly in the world of entertainment,” Aid to the Church in Need said it was “intolerable” that little or no attention is given “to the very many women who endure sexual and psychological violence because of their faith.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:12 PM

Mexico City Archdiocese, abuse survivors network pledge cooperation

MEXICO CITY
Catholic News Service

June 6, 2018

By David Agren

The Archdiocese of Mexico City and SNAP Mexico — the Mexican chapter of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests — have agreed to work cooperatively to protect children, promote healing and pursue justice in the cases of pedophile prelates.

The archdiocese and SNAP Mexico said in a joint statement June 4 that they “will be working to promote initiatives related to strengthening practices to protect children, young people and adults at risk against sexual abuse, along with promoting local responsibility in churches and vulnerable areas.”

The tasks to be undertaken by the two organizations include developing protocols to “help victims, to create consciousness and educate people on the need to protect children.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:11 PM

The Vatican in disarray

ROME
Catholic Culture

June 7, 2018

By Phil Lawler

The past few weeks have brought several positive signs from Rome:

The Chilean bishops resigned as a group after meeting with Pope Francis, thereby raising hopes that the Holy Father is finally following up strong statements with strong action against bishops who cover up abuse.

In a talk with Italian bishops, the Pope showed further evidence of a
new attitude, with a reminder that homosexuals should not be admitted to seminaries.

The prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith issued his own reminder that women cannot be ordained to the priesthood, and that teaching can never change.
And the CDF, with the Pope’s approval, instructed the German bishops not to proceed with a new policy on intercommunion.

Each one of these new developments left some questions unanswered. (We don’t know how the Pope will react to the Chilean resignations, for instance; and the message to the German bishops could be read as “not yet” rather than simply “no.”) But at worst, these stories were not bad news for orthodox Catholics who have been shell-shocked by previous developments in Rome. Taken together, the welcome news items prompted both Jeff Mirus and myself to wonder aloud whether perhaps Pope Francis was shifting his sights. That question, too, remains unanswered—and is reason (as Jeff observed) for faithful Catholics to redouble their prayers.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:08 PM

FR. GLODD ASSIGNED AS PASTOR AT ST. JOSEPH

LAFAYETTE (LA)
Evangeline Today

June 7, 2018

By Tony Marks

The clergy at Sacred Heart of Jesus Catholic Church and St. Joseph Catholic Church in Ville Platte learned of new job responsibilities over the weekend. One of the new job responsibilities is as pastor of a parish in Plaisance with its chapel in Frilot Cove.
Parochial vicar of Sacred Heart Fr. Taj Glodd was named pastor of St. Joseph Parish in Plaisance and its mission St. Anne in Frilot Cove by Bishop Douglas Deshotel of the Diocese of Lafayette.

The new assignment will be made effective on Monday, July 2, and will be for a term of six years.

Pastor of Sacred Heart Fr. Tom Voorhies also learned that he was named interim administrator of St. Peter Church in Morrow and Resurrection Chapel in Whiteville.
The move came, according to KATC-TV, following news that “Father Michael Guidry, Pastor of St. Peter Church in Morrow and Resurrection Chapel in Whiteville, had been placed on administrative leave while allegations of sexual abuse against Guidry are investigated.”

During a press conference Monday, according to KATC, Bishop Deshotel “said the abuse was reported by the parents of the alleged victim and their current pastor in Ville Platte. The abuse allegedly occurred while the victim was a minor; he is now an adult. The alleged abuse happened since Guidry became pastor in Morrow.”

The allegations are being investigated by the St. Landry Parish Sheriff Office.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:06 PM

Two-year process to revise charter on protection nears completion

The Catholic Spirit
Catholic News Service

June 6, 2018

By Peter Finney Jr.

The chair of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on the Protection of Children and Young People said a two-year project to revise the charter that guides the U.S. church in protecting minors from sexual abuse is nearly ready to be presented to the full body of bishops.

Bishop Timothy Doherty of Lafayette, Indiana, the committee chairman, told the 13th annual Child and Youth Protection Catholic Leadership Conference in New Orleans that the proposed revisions of the “Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People” will be discussed and voted on at the bishops’ June 13-14 spring general assembly in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

“We’ve done a lot of nice work over the last two years,” Bishop Doherty said. “The great thing people should know is that this has been a collaboration among a lot of bishops’ committees and the National Review Board, who are professional people — judges, lawyers, therapists, trauma experts. There’s a lot of healthy conversation there, and our church can be very proud of the people who are working toward the protection of children.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:04 PM

“Even the word ‘help’, I didn’t know how to say it” – abuse survivor tells her story

LONDON (ENGLAND)
Anglican Communion News Service

June 7, 2018

Survivors of abuse have been telling their stories to members of the Anglican Communion’s Safe Church Commission. The Commission was set up to promote the safety of people within churches of the Anglican Communion throughout the world, with a particular focus on children, young people and vulnerable adults. It met last month in South Africa to plan the next step of its work, and to meet with abuse survivors.

“Every time he would go to work I would just look through the window and just stand”, one survivor said as she recounted the abuse she had endured as a child. “Neighbours would see me and come close to the window and talk to me. I couldn’t speak it. I don’t know. . . even the word ‘help’ – I didn’t know how to say it. I didn’t know what to say. They want to reach out. They would ask me why I was not in school . . . but I can’t respond.”

Commission member Cleophas Lunga, the Bishop of Matabeleland, said that the Commission was “humbled” by the courage of the survivors who met with them. “In many cases, the stigma associated with such kind of stories makes it difficult for people to come out publicly, to tell their stories and to find ways as to how best that they can be helped. So the work of this Commission is quite important in that regard.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 2:03 PM

ABUSE VICTIMS CALL ON BUFFALO’S BISHOPS TO RESIGN

BUFFALO (NY)
Church Militant

June 6, 2018

By David Nussman

Report reveals diocese's history of covering up priestly sex abuse

The diocese of Buffalo is under intense criticism for covering up alleged clerical sex abuse.

On June 1, survivors of priestly sex abuse called on Bp. Richard Malone and Auxiliary Bishop Edward Grosz to resign from their positions in the Church. They also called for a criminal investigation into the diocese.

In calling for the bishops' resignations, the victims referred to investigative videos produced last month by local 7 Eyewitness News. The video reports documented the diocese's decades-long history of covering up pedophile priests.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:43 PM

Pervert priest caged for child abuse which 'ruined victim's childhood' 50 years ago

SCOTLAND
Daily Record

June 7, 2018

By Stuart Macdonald

Father Michael Maher preyed on the girl at her home in 1968 when she was 12 and he was 25.

A priest who was exposed as a pervert when his victim confronted him 50 years after he molested her was yesterday jailed for six months.

Father Michael Maher preyed on the girl at her home in 1968 when she was 12 and he was 25.

The abuse continued for four years, including at his parish house in Coatbridge.

Maher was close friends with the girl’s parents and regularly called at their Lanarkshire home.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:41 PM

Boy Scouts Sued for Child Sexual Abuse in AR

LITTLE ROCK (AR)
FOX16

June 6, 2018

A civil lawsuit was filed today in Pulaski County Circuit Court against the Boy Scouts of America for sexual abuse.

Today’s suit – filed by former scout William Stevens – alleges that the Plaintiff was sexually abused by his Scoutmaster, Samuel C. Otts, first in Webelos Pack 13 and then in Troop 16, which met at the Salvation Army in Hot Springs.

The suit alleges that Otts sexually abused the plaintiff – including on at least six occasions between approximately 1979 and 1980 when Plaintiff was approximately 10 to 12-years-old. The alleged abuse occurred during Scouting-related meetings, events, outings, and over-night excursions in and around central Arkansas.

The lawsuit alleges claims for negligence and fraud against BSA. Specifically, the suit alleges that, before the plaintiff was abused, the Boy Scouts knew about Scoutmaster Otts’ sexual abuse of other scouts. In fact, the lawsuit alleges that the Boy Scouts removed Otts from Scouting in Georgia for abusing boys, but then allowed him to register as a Scout Leader in Arkansas.

At the center of the victim’s allegations is a secret file kept by the Boy Scouts of America on Otts. The “Perversion file” on Otts – created at the Scouts national headquarters in 1977 – was kept secret at the Boy Scouts’ headquarters until it was ordered to be revealed by a Court in Oregon in 2012.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:38 PM

Nun rejects 'hard as nails' evidence given at child abuse inquiry

SCOTLAND
Press Association

June 7, 2018

A nun has told an inquiry she may have lost her temper with children in her care but rejected suggestions she was "hard as nails".

The woman, now in her mid-70s, denied being someone that youngsters would have been scared of.

She agreed there was "probably" a strict regime at Nazareth House in Aberdeen but told a probe she had not witnessed any abusive practices at the orphanage.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:36 PM

The #ChurchToo Movement Isn’t Just About Gender

UNITED STATES
Jezebel

June 7, 2018

By Laura Bullard

Emily Joy tweeted out her #ChurchToo story a full decade after the alleged abuse had ended. “I’m sure I’ll tease this out more in the months to come,” Joy wrote, “but after ten years I finally felt like now I could come forward. It’s a weird story. It’s ‘not that bad.’ It’s the kind of story women self-gaslight about.” Taking direct inspiration from Tarana Burke’s #MeToo movement, she accused a youth group leader who was then in his 30s of “grooming” her for abuse when she was 16, and named him, in a Twitter thread that began:

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:35 PM

Former Jehovah’s Witness jailed for child sex crimes

AUSTRALIA
PerthNow

June 6, 2018

By Elle Farcic

A FORMER Jehovah’s Witness who sexually assaulted three young boys says his homosexual inclinations were repressed by his religion and manifested in his crimes.

Gavin Andrew Lamont, 46, was jailed for four years today for assaulting two vulnerable teenagers in the early to mid-90s and another boy about 20 years later.

Lamont encouraged the teens to give him massages and suggested he needed help checking for testicular cancer.

District Court Judge Linda Petrusa said Lamont, who knew he was homosexual from about age 13, had significant cognitive distortions around sex because of his religious beliefs.

She said the victims, who were aged between 14 and 16, were vulnerable because of their youth and lack of sophistication.

Judge Petrusa sentenced Lamont to four years behind bars for indecently dealing with a child and four counts of indecent assault.

Lamont was kicked out of the Mundaring congregation in 1997 after one of his victims complained to other members, but was reinstated after doing counselling with elders.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:34 PM

Pope’s abuse investigators headed back to Chile June 12-19

ROME
Crux

June 6, 2018

By Inés San Martín

In what amounts to Pope Francis’s latest attempt to resolve a massive clerical sexual abuse crisis, the Chilean bishops’ conference announced Wednesday that his top two investigators will return to Chile June 14-17, visiting a diocese where a controversial bishop has been accused of covering up acts of abuse.

The bishops’ statement said that Archbishop Charles Scicluna of Malta, a former official of the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, and Spanish Monsignor Jordi Bertomeu, a current official of the congregation, will be in the diocese over those three days.

Osorno is the diocese led by Bishop Juan Barros, appointed to the position by Pope Francis in 2015. That move caused an uproar and triggered Chile’s present crisis, which is seeing new revelations and allegations emerge almost every day.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:32 PM

The Neglected Cases Of Sexual Abuse Of Women And Girls

NEW YORK (NY)
Forbes

June 7, 2018

By Ewelina U. Ochab

In October 2017, the #MeToo movement went viral. It’s aim was to raise awareness of sexual harassment and assault, and to provide a platform for discussion about increasingly widespread reports of sexual harassment and assault, especially those perpetrated in the workplace. The movement received the support of several celebrities, including Alyssa Milano, Gwyneth Paltrow, Ashley Judd and Jennifer Lawrence. It was followed by another movement, Time's Up, which was established in January 2018. With similar aims to the #MeToo movement, it aimed to raise awareness on the issue of ' sexual assault, harassment and inequality in the workplace.’ It established a Legal Defence Fund to help combat the issues. The Time's Up initiative was originally supported by hundreds of women from the entertainment industry and the DMK cosmetic foundation. It quickly took over the Grammys in 2018 and the 2018 BAFTA Film Awards in London. Despite drawing some criticism, the initiatives are positive and helped to shed light on the disgraceful scandal of sexual abuse suffered by women in the entertainment world and beyond. They should be praised for providing a platform for survivors of sexual harassment and assault, and for making a clear statement that such treatment of women is not acceptable.

There is no doubt that the #MeToo and Time's Up movements have been the most successful such campaigns in years and have gained overwhelming public support. Despite this, there are still aspects of sexual abuse perpetrated against women that even the #MeToo or Time's Up movements have not been able to adequately address. Indeed, neither movements have sought to actively encourage debate on the ever-growing issue of sexual abuse used as a method of religious persecution.

In response, on June 6th, 2018, Aid to the Church in Need, a Pontifical Foundation which provides humanitarian assistance to persecuted Christian minorities worldwide, published a letter in Vanity Fair aimed to raise awareness of this neglected issue. The Vanity Fair open letter is addressed to four famous actresses: Asia Argento, Meryl Streep, Sharon Stone, Uma Thurman and others who have publicly supported the #MeToo movement. The Aid to the Church open letter and its associated campaign are accompanied by photographs of three brave women who suffered such sexual abuse because of their religion; Rebecca, Sister Meena and Dalal.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:29 PM

Column: Rahm Emanuel owns Chicago's school sexual abuse scandal

CHICAGO (IL)
Chicago Tribune

June 5, 2018

By John Kass

Rahm Emanuel isn’t bishop of Chicago. He’s the mayor of Chicago, for now.

But the shocking sexual abuse scandal at his Chicago Public Schools uncovered by the Tribune brings immediately to mind the sex scandals of the Roman Catholic Church.

Church leaders actively engaged in a cover-up over decades. The CPS abuse scandal seems more about the cost of bureaucratic indifference.

But the outcomes are terribly similar, aren’t they?

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:28 PM

Year on year rise in allegations of clerical child sex abuse

IRELAND
The Irish Times

June 7, 2018

By Patsy McGarry

Most of the 135 allegations of abusive behaviour reported in last year occurred before 2000

There has been a significant increase in clerical child sex abuse allegations reported to Catholic Church authorities in Ireland over the past year.

A report published on Thursday morning showed that during the year April 2017 to April 2018, 135 notifications of allegations, suspicions and concerns were received by the Church’s child protection watchdog, its National Board for Safeguarding Children (NBSC), compared to an overall figure of 86 for the previous year.

A total of 104 of the 135 notifications related to allegations of child sexual abuse.

The 135 notifications allegedly involved 35 diocesan priests and 63 members of religious orders or congregations, or 98 individuals in total. That compares with 76 in the previous year, an increase of 29 per cent.

Of the 98 clergy concerned 45 are deceased, 21 are unknown (identity not given by the complainant), and 32 are alive.

NBSC chief executive Teresa Devlin pointed out however that “with one exception, most of the alleged abusive behaviour occurred before 2000, in line with previous reports and should not be taken to indicate that the church is currently becoming a less safe place for children.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 1:23 PM

Abuse survivors launch global bishop accountability effort

GENEVA
The Associated Press

June 7, 2018

Some of the most prominent figures in the fight against sexual abuse in the Catholic Church are joining forces in a new international effort to end abuse and the impunity of bishops and religious superiors who enable it.

The multinational initiative, End Clergy Abuse, was announced Thursday at a press conference in Geneva. One after another, more than a dozen members of the new organization held up their national flags and denounced an individual bishop who they said had botched an abuse case.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:55 AM

Bishops' prosecutions may point to new phase in church's sex abuse crisis

ROME
National Catholic Reporter

June 6, 2018

By Joshua J. McElwee

Pope Francis has been dealing over recent months with what has seemed like an unending saga of the Catholic clergy sexual abuse crisis in Chile.

After being criticized for saying abuse victims had committed "calumny" during his January visit to the country, the pope has since admitted making "serious mistakes," met with Chilean victims in Rome, and received offers of resignation from most of the country's bishops after a three-day group encounter at the Vatican.

But if Francis' response to clergy abuse in Chile has appeared unending, recent developments across the world indicate that an examination into how the global Catholic Church has handled — or, mishandled — sexual abuse is just beginning to ramp up.

These developments include: Two church officials being prosecuted in Australia, a local cardinal and the Vatican's doctrinal chief being ordered to stand trial in French court, a police raid on a Michigan diocese's chancery, a grand jury report on six dioceses in Pennsylvania, and nationwide inquiries in Australia, Scotland and England.

The litany of events has led some who have closely followed the church's response to abuse to speculate that we may be entering a new phase in the decadeslong crisis — one where local and national authorities in countries the world over are showing less hesitancy in holding church leaders to account.

"The prosecutions of members of the hierarchy that would not have happened even a decade ago indicate that we are in a new era," said Marci Hamilton, a noted lawyer and children's rights advocate.

"Before the scandal became public, prosecutors often assumed that it would not be in their interests or anybody else's interests to prosecute even priests or hierarchy," said Hamilton, CEO of the think tank CHILD USA. "But the more facts that have come out ... prosecutors are changing their calculus."

Marie Collins, an Irish abuse survivor who resigned from Francis's papal abuse commission in 2017 over frustration with Vatican officials, said simply: "We are at a new point."

"The more it is seen that the church is refusing to hold accountable its bishops, the more secular powers will move in and see it is done," she said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 11:54 AM

Sex abuse panel seeks witness statement from Prince Charles

LONDON (ENGLAND)
The Associated Press

June 6, 2018

By Gregory Katz

Prince Charles has been asked to give a witness statement to a public inquiry into how abuse allegations against a pedophile bishop were handled.

The request for a statement from Charles and his private secretary was made public Wednesday during an Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse hearing.

The inquiry is looking into the way abuse allegations against ex-bishop Peter Ball were dealt with. He was sentenced to 32 months in prison in 2015 for numerous sexual offenses going back to the 1970s.

Inquiry lawyer Fiona Scolding said Charles' lawyers have indicated he is willing to assist and have raised a number of issues being reviewed.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:56 AM

Serial child rapist, whose pending release drew outcry, arrested on new charges

BOSTON (MA)
CBS/AP

June 6, 2018

A 70-year-old convicted child rapist from Massachusetts who was set to be released from custody after two experts concluded he was no longer "sexually dangerous" will remain locked up. Wayne Chapman was arrested Wednesday in prison for indecent exposure and lewd acts that the Massachusetts Department of Correction said Chapman committed on Sunday and Monday.

A lawyer for some of Chapman's victims said she was told Chapman exposed himself to a nurse.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:55 AM

Nxivm leader rips prosecutors in request for $10M bail

NEW YORK (NY)
New York Post

June 6, 2018

By Priscilla DeGregory and Lia Eustachewich

Lawyers for accused Nxivm sex cult leader Keith Raniere asked that he be sprung from jail on $10 million bond — all while ripping prosecutors as the “morality police” for filing sex-trafficking charges against him.

In new court papers, Raniere’s team of five lawyers argue that he’s neither a flight risk nor a danger to the community and should be released from the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn.

He’s been held without bail since his arrest in April.

Raniere is accused of luring women through an offshoot of his self-help group Nxivm — pronounced “Nexium” — and blackmailing them into becoming his sex slaves.

Raniere and former “Smallville” actress Allison Mack — Raniere’s high-ranking “slave” who allegedly helped recruit women to a Nxivm side group called DOS — would brand their initials on their victims, prosecutors say.

Raniere’s attorneys, led by Marc Agnifilo, have maintained everything was consensual.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:54 AM

Customs officer involved in 'rape table' controversy pleads guilty; two others indicted

NEWARK (NJ)
Fox News

June 6, 2018

By Michael Bartiromo

One of three U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers charged with hazing co-workers on a “rape table” has pleaded guilty in court.

Tito Catota, 38, admitted on Monday to forcibly assaulting, impeding, intimidating and interfering with two male customs officers while on duty at Newark Liberty International Airport in 2016 and 2017, the Associated Press reports.

Two of his CBP colleagues working at the airport — Parmenio Perez, 40, and Michael Papagni, 32, were also indicted on those same charges, New Jersey U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito confirmed.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:52 AM

The question of consent with Greitens, Weinstein: This rape law could change things

KANSAS CITY (MO)
The Kansas City Star

June 4, 2018

By Melinda Henneberger

Former Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens: “This was an entirely consensual relationship, and any allegation of violence or sexual assault is false. This was a months-long consenting relationship between two adults.”

Benjamin Brafman, defense attorney for former big-deal Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein: “The only rape victim that Mr. Weinstein is accused of raping is someone who he has had a 10-year consensual sexual relationship with.”

Former New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman: “In the privacy of intimate relationships, I have engaged in role-playing and other consensual sexual activity. I have not assaulted anyone. I have never engaged in nonconsensual sex, which is a line I would not cross.”

Have you noticed those accused of sex crimes talking about their culpability any differently post-#MeToo? I haven’t, though it’s a major myth that men can’t tell consent from its absence.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:50 AM

Michigan Senate panel: Coaches must report sexual abuse

LANSING (MI)
The Associated Press

June 6, 2018

By Alice Yin

Sports coaches are rejoining the list of people required to report child abuse under a batch of Michigan bills spurred by the Larry Nassar scandal, a Senate committee unanimously decided on Wednesday.

Lawmakers convened in a hearing to clear for a Senate vote 24 bills that would revamp how Michigan prosecutes and reports sexual assault. They also moved forward an amendment to mandate that paid coaches and assistant coaches at K-12 and college athletics programs report suspected child abuse and neglect, bucking the House’s earlier decision to remove them due to concerns about clogging the child welfare system with excess reports.

The update is the latest iteration of the legislation introduced in the wake of Nassar molesting hundreds of girls and women while employed as a sports doctor at Michigan State University and USA Gymnastics, a training ground for Olympians. Nassar is now imprisoned after pleading guilty to sexual assault and possessing child pornography.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 10:49 AM

Attorney names eight Rochester priests accused of sex abuse

ROCHESTER (NY)
Rochester First via WROC

June 6, 2018

By Howard Thompson

An attorney claims eight Diocese of Rochester priest are responsible for sexual abuse against children.

Of the eight priests, accusations against three of them were already public knowledge: Father Eugene Emo, Father David P. Simon, and Father Francis H. Vogt.

During a Wednesday news conference, attorney Mitchell Garabedian, who says he is representing victims in the case, named the other five priests who face accusations of sexual abuse. He says 17 victims have come forward.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:41 AM

Owego priest among 8 accused of child sex abuse in Rochester diocese

ROCHESTER (NY)
Democrat and Chronicle

June 6, 2018

By Sean Lahman, Meaghan M. McDermott and Katie Sullivan

Flanked by two former priests, a Boston attorney stood on the steps of Sacred Heart Cathedral in Rochester and called Wednesday for the resignation of a Tioga County priest, naming him as one of eight clergy members accused of sexually abusing children in the Diocese of Rochester between 1950 and 1978.

The Rev. Thomas J. Valenti currently serves as the parochial administrator at Blessed Trinity — which includes St. James Church in Waverly, St. John in Newark Valley and St. Margaret Mary in Apalachin — as well as St. Patrick's parish in Owego.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:40 AM

"Secrecy is what allows the clergy sexual abuse to continue" [video]

ROCHESTER (NY)
Democrat and Chronicle

Tina MacIntyre-Yee/Shawn Dowd

Boston, Massachusetts, attorney Mitchell Garabedian, who has represented thousands of victims of clergy abuse, asks the Diocese of Rochester to come clean about sexual abuse by priests.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:38 AM

Eight priests from the Rochester Diocese accused of sexually abusing children

ROCHESTER (NY)
Democrat and Chronicle

June 6, 2018

By Sean Lahman

Eight Rochester priests accused of abusing kids

Saying it is time for "the church to stop these evil acts" a Boston attorney who has spent decades representing victims of sexual abuse called on the Roman Catholic Diocese of Rochester to release records it may hold concerning allegations of sexual abuse of children by clergy.

Mitchell Garabedian on Wednesday stood on the steps of Sacred Heart Cathedral in Rochester and named eight priests from the Rochester diocese who are accused of sexually abusing minor children. A group of 15 men and two women, now grown, say they were abused by these priests when they were children.

Garabedian said the incidents took place between 1950 and 1978 when the alleged perpetrators were assigned to churches in the Rochester diocese. He said the victims, all of whom approached him within the past six months, are now between the ages of 52 and 77.

"And as you can see from the assignment sheets from the official Catholic directory, these priests were transferred from parish to parish, which is typical of a diocese, or archdiocese or the Catholic Church," said Garabedian.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:33 AM

Local priests accused of sexually abusing children

ROCHESTER (NY)
News10NBC

June 6, 2018

An attorney representing victims in the our area says eight priests assigned in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Rochester are accused of sexually abusing children over almost three decades. The attorney released names of the priests. A list of dispositions against the Diocese of Rochester can be found here.

There are new allegations of sexual abuse by Catholic priests in the Diocese of Rochester.

On Wednesday, the lawyer who helped break the abuse scandal in Boston and whose role was portrayed in the movie “Spotlight” was in Rochester with the names of eight priests, including five never before published.

Many of the eight priests are now dead. However, one is still the pastor of a church in the Diocese. Our news partner, News10NBC is not naming him or the other priest believed to be alive because they have not been charged with the crime of sexual abuse.

But in front of the steps of Sacred Heart Cathedral, attorney Mitchell Garabedian said 17 people have come forward this year telling him they were abused by the eight priests.

“These priests were transferred from parish to parish to parish, which is typical of the Diocese or Archdiocese and the Catholic Church,” Garabedian said.

Garabedian said the abuse happened between 1950 and 1978. He said during that 28-year window the victims ranged in age from five to 18, and two of the 17 alleged victims are women.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:30 AM

[Listen] Attorney Mitchell Garabedian Speaks Out Against Priests That Sexually Molested Boys And Girls

UNITED STATES
iHeartRADIO

June 6, 2018

Kimberly and Beck

Attorney Mitchell Garabedian speaks out against priests that sexually molested boys and girls and was also portrayed in the film Spotlight.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:27 AM

Statement by Kevin Ueckert, Chairman of the Board of Trustees

FORT WORTH (TX)
Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary

June 1, 2018

By Kevin Ueckert

Based on a number of follow-up questions I have received this week, I am providing this additional statement related to our May 30, 2018 statement. The unanimous decision by the Executive Committee to immediately terminate Dr. Paige Patterson was prayerfully considered and warranted.

We confirmed this week through a student record, made available to me with permission, that an allegation of rape was indeed made by a female student at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in 2003. This information contradicts a statement previously provided by Dr. Patterson in response to a direct question by a Board member regarding the incident referenced in our May 30 statement. The 2003 rape allegation was never reported to local law enforcement. SWBTS will not release the student record to the public without additional appropriate permissions.

In addition, as previously disclosed, a female student at SWBTS reported to Dr. Patterson that she had been raped in 2015. Police were notified of that report. But in connection with that allegation of rape, Dr. Patterson sent an email (the contents of which were shared with the Board on May 22) to the Chief of Campus Security in which Dr. Patterson discussed meeting with the student alone so that he could “break her down” and that he preferred no officials be present. The attitude expressed by Dr. Patterson in that email is antithetical to the core values of our faith and to SWBTS. Moreover, the correlation between what has been reported and also revealed in the student record regarding the 2003 allegation at Southeastern and the contents of this email are undeniable.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:22 AM

Southern Baptist seminary drops bombshell: Why Paige Patterson was fired

WAKE FOREST (NC)
The Washington Post

June 1, 2018

By Sarah Pulliam Bailey

In a bombshell announcement Friday night, leaders of a Southern Baptist seminary explained the reasons they decided two days earlier to fire their president, a longtime leader of the denomination. In a statement, they asserted that Paige Patterson lied about his treatment of an alleged rape victim in 2003, and that in 2015 he tried to meet, with no other officials present, with another woman who had reported a sexual assault so he could “break her down.”

Concerns surrounding the behavior of Patterson, who until a few weeks ago was a towering figure in the Southern Baptist Convention, the largest U.S. Protestant denomination, with about 15 million members, have roiled conservative evangelical circles since recorded remarks surfaced this year that were viewed by many as demeaning toward women. They included Patterson’s advice to a woman to return to her abusive husband.

On May 22, the seminary’s trustees demoted the 75-year-old Patterson from his position as president of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, citing vague reasons about his leadership that did not include mention of comments about or treatment of women. Many Southern Baptists considered that decision too lenient because it allowed Patterson to remain on staff as “president emeritus” with compensation and the ability to retire with a campus residence.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:20 AM

Southern Baptist leader Paige Patterson fired over handling of sex abuse allegation

WAKE FOREST (NC)
The Washington Post

May 30, 2018

By Michelle Boorstein and Sarah Pulliam Bailey

A major Southern Baptist seminary has fired one of the movement’s giants of the last quarter-century, Paige Patterson, after new information came to light regarding how Patterson handled a sexual abuse allegation while he led another institution, the school said in a statement Wednesday night.

Patterson was demoted one week ago from his position as president of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary following the publication of a flurry of statements he made starting in 2000 about the Bible’s view of women and his beliefs about spousal abuse and why it’s not grounds for divorce. The school’s trustees moved him from being president to president emeritus, framing it as a desire for change and fresh blood.

Patterson supporters seemed willing to live with the decision but it infuriated many, especially conservative Christian women, who said Patterson had not been explicitly held accountable and had been allowed to retire with his stature intact. Ironically Patterson, leader of a historic conservative purifying in the 1980s and 1990s of Southern Baptism that called for male-only pastors and women to “submit graciously” to their husbands, was being held under the public light by conservative women, who by the thousand signed a May 6 petition calling for him to lose his job.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:18 AM

Southern Baptist leader encouraged a woman not to report alleged rape to police and told her to forgive assailant, she says

WAKE FOREST (NC)
The Washington Post

May 22, 2018

By Sarah Pulliam Bailey

A prominent Southern Baptist leader at the center of controversy this spring over comments he has made about abused women allegedly encouraged a woman who said she had been raped not to report it to the police and told her to forgive her alleged assailant, the woman has told The Washington Post.

The woman said that she was raped in 2003 when she was pursuing a master of divinity degree in women’s studies from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, N.C., where Paige Patterson was president at the time.

“I had bottled it up,” said the woman, who works in public relations in North Carolina. “My husband didn’t know about it until last week. … I told him ‘I need to do something.’ ”

A man who a seminary official confirmed was the alleged assailant’s roommate at the time of the incident said that the woman told him about the assault shortly after it allegedly happened. The woman also provided an email to The Washington Post from the seminary’s dean of students at the time referencing the alleged incident.

The Post has a policy of not identifying victims of sexual assault. The former roommate is not being named so as not to reveal the identity of the alleged assailant, who was not charged with a crime and did not respond to several calls requesting comment.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:16 AM

Lawyer calls on Catholic church to release 'secret' records in Rochester priest scandal

ROCHESTER (NY)
Democrat and Chronicle

June 6, 2018

By Sean Lahman and Meaghan M. McDermott

Saying it is time for "the church to stop these evil acts" a Boston attorney who has spent decades representing victims of sexual abuse called on the Roman Catholic Diocese of Rochester and its bishop to release records it may hold concerning allegations of sexual abuse of children by clergy.

Mitchell Garabedian stood on the steps of Sacred Heart Cathedral in Rochester on Wednesday and named eight priests from the Rochester diocese who are accused of sexually abusing minor children. A group of 15 men and two women, now grown, say they were abused by these priests when they were children.

Garabedian said the incidents took place between 1950 and 1978 when the alleged perpetrators were assigned to churches in the Rochester diocese. He said the victims, all of whom approached him within the past six months, are now between the ages of 52 and 77.

"And as you can see from the assignment sheets from the official Catholic directory, these priests were transferred from parish to parish, which is typical of a diocese, or archdiocese or the Catholic Church," said Garabedian.

In a statement released Wednesday afternoon, the Diocese of Rochester said it had been in correspondence with Garabedian's law firm regarding the priests being accused.

"The Diocese has invited participation in a process of investigation and resolution," the statement said. "We have had little or no response."

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:14 AM

Parishioners react to sex abuse claims of area priests

ROCHESTER (NY)
WHAM13

June 6, 2018

By Carlet Cleare

The Roman Catholic Church has been dealing with claims of abuse by priests for decades. A dozen dioceses have filed for bankruptcy in order to settle victims' claims.

On Wednesday, the attorney at the forefront of the largest investigation into the cover-up of abuse among priests in Boston, along with an anti-sexual abuse advocacy group, publicly named eight priests accused of sexual abuse.

“It’s really tragic," said Carole Leary. "My heart breaks for these situations, because even in scripture it says if you hurt one of my little ones, it’s better to have a millstone around their neck and thrown into the sea.”

“As long as they were truly affected," Kathleen Wyand said. "Some people have claims that there’s no substance to. So it should be investigated and settled.”

Clergy sexual abuse cases have caused several Catholic dioceses across the nation to file for bankruptcy, after paying out millions in settlements.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:13 AM

Victims of clergy sexual abuse speak out

ROCHESTER (NY)
WHEC-TV

June 6, 2018

By Daniella Genovese

Most of the local priests have passed away before these accusations but the victims of the clergy sexual abuse tell News10NBC that the actions of those perpetrators continue to haunt them every day. They say it feels like the murder of their souls.

"I have been contacted by 17 brave victims of clergy sexual abuse," says Mitchell Garabedian, attorney.

The 15 men and two women are now between the ages of 52 to 77 however, the alleged sexual abuse stemmed from when they were between 5 to 18 years old.

"They finally have the courage to come forward because it's time. This is why the statute of limitations in NY has to be amended," says Garabedian.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 9:11 AM

June 6, 2018

Hans Zollner: Two keys for priests to avoid sexual abuse

ROME (ITALY)
Rome Reports

June 5, 2018

This expert from the Vatican commission for the Protection of Minors explains that to prevent priests from sexual abuse, two aspects must be stressed.

The seminary must closely review candidates before accepting; and once these men have been ordained, they must never lose their spiritual guidance.

“The median age for a priest who begins to sexually abuse is 39. Other abusers, such as family fathers, coaches, professors, psychologists, doctors or lawyers, start at 25.”

Hans Zollner explains that a priest can become an abuser due to psychological problems or another cause: emptiness. This can push him to go through with it.

“It's very important to look at the age and expectations of the priest in his 40s. What's happening to him? At age 40, he's normally responsible for a parish or other institution, which entails more responsibilities, more work. On the other hand, the spiritual life frequently stops, perhaps because he doesn't have spiritual guidance, there's no spiritual growth alongside the increase in responsibilities. A pastor must guide a large group of people, he must manage funds, plan, see many people. He invests more time in that than his spiritual life and he ends up emptying his internal self.”

The Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors teaches bishops and laity from around the world how to prevent abuse. Its fundamental principle is that the solution is found by involving everyone, not only those who govern. Thus, Zollner agrees with the message given to the Chilean people by the pope in his May 31 letter.

In it, the Holy Father said in order to prevent further abuse, it's necessary to put an end to abuse of power by elitist clerics who don't listen to people.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 12:33 PM

2 Former CPS Students Sue Board of Ed Over Failure to Prevent Sex Abuse

CHICAGO (IL)
WTTW

June 4, 2018

By Matt Masterson

[See also the complaints.]

Two former students of Chicago Public Schools, whose reports of sexual abuse at the hands of a high school security guard were among the stories detailed last week in a bombshell report from the Chicago Tribune, are suing the Board of Education.

Kyana Aguilar and Andreanna Paris filed lawsuits Friday in Cook County Circuit Court against the board, claiming it ignored complaints and warnings about their abuser for years, allowing the man to keep his job and eventually molest them both during the 2013-14 school year.

Their suits came hours after the Tribune published “Betrayed,” a series detailing systemic issues within CPS, which failed to correct “obvious child-protection mistakes” and allowed hundreds of students to become victims of sexual abuse by district employees over the past decade.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 11:14 AM

Court orders records unsealed in Penn State officials' case

HARRISBURG (PA)
Associated Press

June 4, 2018

By Mark Scolforo

A Pennsylvania appeals court on Monday ordered the release of documents sealed in the criminal case against former Penn State administrators over their handling of child sex abuse complaints about former assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky.

The three-judge Superior Court panel's unanimous decision concerned many of the more than 200 records sealed in the case against former university president Graham Spanier, former vice president Gary Schultz and former athletic director Tim Curley.

Spanier is currently appealing his guilty verdict on a single count of child endangerment. Schultz and Curley pleaded guilty to the same offense and have served jail time. Lawyers for all three declined comment on the appeals court decision.

The judges said the basic information in many of the documents sought by The Associated Press has previously been made public and should be released, although they also ruled that sealed "proffers" were not made part of the court record and so are not subject to public disclosure. Docket entries also must be revealed.

The appeals court criticized the trial judge for issuing a blanket order sealing all documents rather than specifying why he was sealing each individual record.

News organizations applauded the appeals court's ruling.

"Today's decision is a victory for transparency," said Lauren Easton, director of media relations for The Associated Press. "These records are a matter of great public interest, and The Associated Press is pleased that they will be unsealed."

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 11:09 AM

184 claims of Guam clergy abuse moving toward mediation

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

June 5, 2018

By Haidee V. Eugenio

One hundred eighty-four people said they were sexually abused by members of Guam's Catholic clergy or others associated with the church, but 10 of them decided not to sue, attorneys said at Tuesday's court hearing on the status of efforts to settle the cases through mediation.

Mediation is set for Sept. 17 to 21, which is two days longer than initially anticipated.

Seattle-based attorney Michael Patterson, counsel for the Archdiocese of Agana, told judges 142 sworn statements have so far been gathered from the 174 who filed clergy sex abuse lawsuits.

The deposition-like interviews with plaintiffs on Guam, Hawaii and other states are for case review and claims evaluation. They could wrap up by the middle of July.

U.S. District Court of Guam Chief Judge Frances Tydingco-Gatewood, along with Superior Court Judge Michael Bordallo, said 116 cases have been filed in federal court and 58 in local court, for a total of 174 cases.

In addition to the 174 clergy sex abuse lawsuits, there are 10 other people who have come forward, are receiving counseling from Hope and Healing Guam, and are not suing the archdiocese, for a total of 184 alleged victims.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 11:05 AM

Harvey Weinstein Pleads Not Guilty to Sexual Assault Charges

NEW YORK (NY)
New York Times

June 5, 2018

By James C. McKinley Jr.

Harvey Weinstein returned to court in Manhattan on Tuesday to plead not guilty to sexual assault charges lodged against him in an indictment last week.

Mr. Weinstein, unshaven and in a black suit, limped slightly as he came into State Supreme Court in Manhattan at 10 a.m. The court clerk asked him how he pleaded to first-degree criminal sexual act and other charges, and he answered “not guilty” in a gravel baritone.

It was Mr. Weinstein’s first court appearance since his May 25 arrest on charges that he sexually assaulted two women in New York.

Last week, a grand jury indicted Mr. Weinstein, 66, on the same charges — one count each of first-degree rape and third-degree rape and one count of first-degree criminal sexual act.

Mr. Weinstein’s not-guilty plea had been expected. The disgraced movie producer has steadfastly denied he forced any of the dozens of women who have accused him of sexual misconduct to have sex with him. His lawyer, Benjamin Brafman, said two sexual encounters described in the indictment handed up last week were consensual.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 11:02 AM

Woody Allen: I should be the poster face for #MeToo movement

BUENOS AIRES (ARGENTINA)
Associated Press via Daily News

June 4, 2018

Woody Allen says he should be the face of the #MeToo movement in terms of what to do right.

In an interview that was broadcast Sunday night, Allen said he's a "big advocate" of #MeToo, and once again denied allegations that he molested Dylan Farrow, his adopted daughter.

"It's funny, I should be the poster boy for the #Metoo movement because I've worked in movies for 50 years, I've worked with hundreds of actresses...and not a single one, big ones, famous ones, have ever, ever, suggested any kind of impropriety at all," he told Argentine journalist Jorge Lanata in New York.

"I'm in principle, and in spirit, completely in favor of their bringing to justice genuine harassers," Allen said during the interview with Argentina's Channel 13.

"Now, if innocent ones get swept up in there, that's very sad for the person, it's unjust, but otherwise, I think it's a very good thing to expose harassment."

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 10:59 AM

Priest takes defamation suit with Diocese of Palm Beach to high court

PALM BEACH (FL)
Palm Beach Post

June 4, 2018

By Jane Musgrave

Photo caption: The Rev. John Gallagher talks about the libel lawsuit he filed against the Palm Beach Diocese Wednesday, January 11, 2017. The suit will also expose continuing Vatican efforts to publicly suppress child abuse cases from authorities, say he and his lawyer, Theodore Babbitt.

Rev. John Gallagher is taking his defamation case against the Diocese of Palm Beach to the Florida Supreme Court.

Arguing that an appeals court erred when it in May threw out his lawsuit, Gallagher on Friday asked the state’s highest court to overturn that decision. If it does so, a Palm Beach County jury would be allowed to decide whether the diocese defamed Gallagher by publicly questioning his sanity after he accused it of trying to cover up sexual abuse by a visiting priest.

The 3rd District Court of Appeal threw out Gallagher’s suit, citing the “ecclesiastical abstention doctrine.” The doctrine prohibits secular courts from getting involved in religious matters.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 10:55 AM

Second allegation of child sexual abuse made against Highlandtown priest

BALTIMORE (MD)
Archdiocese of Baltimore

June 4, 2018

By Jerri Burkhardt

Jerri Burkhardt, director of the Office of Child and Youth Protection for the Archdiocese of Baltimore, sent the following letter to parishioners of Our Lady of Pompei in Highlandtown June-2-3. Click here for a Spanish version of this letter.

June 2-3, 2018

Dear Parishioners of Our Lady of Pompei,

A few weeks ago, we shared some difficult news with you about Father Luigi Esposito and an allegation of child sexual abuse against him from the 1970s. Since then, we have received another allegation from an individual who also claims to have been sexually abused by Father Esposito in the 1970s. This second individual was approximately 15 years old when the abuse occurred. Both alleged victims are females and were members of Our Lady of Pompei at the time the abuse occurred. The second allegation, which was prompted by public reports about the initial allegation, has been reported to civil authorities. The Archdiocese has extended an offer of counseling assistance to both alleged victims.

In response to inquiries regarding Father Esposito, he continues to be cared for and is in communication with family members. Any letters or cards to him should be sent to the care of Monsignor Hannon at the Archdiocese of Baltimore, 320 Cathedral Street Baltimore, MD 21201.

The Archdiocese of Baltimore is committed to protecting children and helping to heal victims of abuse. We urge anyone who has any knowledge of any child sexual abuse to come forward, and to report it immediately to civil authorities. If clergy or other church personnel is suspected of committing the abuse, we ask that you also call the Archdiocesan Office of Child and Youth Protection Hotline at 1-866-417-7469. If you have any other information relevant to this matter, please contact the Archdiocese Office of Child and Youth Protection at 410-547-5599.

Sincerely,

Jerri Burkhardt

Director, Office of Child & Youth Protection

Archdiocese of Baltimore

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 10:52 AM

Catholic priest faces trial in Jefferson County child sex crimes case

MADISON (WI)
WKOW

June 5, 2018

By Dani Maxwell

Jefferson - A Jefferson County judge says there's enough probable cause for a trial in the case against the Rev. William Nolan.

The Catholic priest, 65, is accused of sexually assaulting a teenage altar boy in Fort Atkinson. Nolan was arrested in May and charged with six counts of second-degree sexual assault of a child. He was in court Tuesday for a preliminary hearing.

The investigating officer gave testimony, and the judge found cause to bind the case over for trial.

Ft. Atkinson Police Detective Lisa Hefty testifies the victim says when he was in seventh and eighth grade at St. Joseph's Catholic Church, he and Nolan engaged in oral sex on church property. "Also stated that it happened at the rectory, which is also located in the city of Fort Atkinson," Hefty testifies. She also testifies there was another incident at a city park.

Nolan's attorney asked Hefty to confirm Nolan denied having sex with the teen in 2006.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 10:36 AM

Capitol Beat – State Rep. Mark Rozzi

YORK (PA)
WPMT FOX43

June 6, 2018

By Matt Maisel

Berks County Democratic State Representative Mark Rozzi was this week's guest on the FOX43 Capitol Beat.

Rozzi sat down with FOX43 Morning News anchor Matt Maisel to discuss his push to reform Pennsylvania's statute of limitations laws when it comes to child sex abuse crimes.

Rozzi has been Pennsylvania's leading advocate for victims of child sex abuse since coming into office in 2013. Since then, he's told his story countless times; when he was 13 years old, Rozzi was raped by his priest at his childhood church in Reading. He says as he's gotten older, his trauma has gotten worse. Rozzi also considers himself fortunate; three of his childhood friends, also victims of the same priest, committed suicide.

Recently, the State Senate passed SB 261, which would give child victims until they turn 50 years old to seek civil damages against their abusers or those who could have potentially stopped the abuse. Current state law stops the window to sue at 30 years old.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 10:32 AM

Pa. grand jury report on priest sexual abuse won't be delayed by challenges, judge says

HARRISBURG (PA)
Associated Press via York Daily News

June 6, 2018

By Marc Levy

A judge on Tuesday lifted the veil somewhat on a state grand jury investigation into allegations of child sexual abuse within six of Pennsylvania's Roman Catholic dioceses, and refused to delay the grand jury report or allow parts of it to be challenged before it is released.

Judge Norman Krumenacker, in an 11-page decision made public, wrote that people who he did not identify had argued that they have a constitutional due process right to hearings in which they can challenge parts of the grand jury report to protect their reputations before they are named in it.

Krumenacker's decision can be appealed to the state Supreme Court.

Krumenacker, a Cambria County judge who is supervising the state grand jury, did not say what information those unidentified people wanted to challenge or what they may be accused of. Arguments in the case were sealed.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 10:28 AM

Eight priests from the Rochester Diocese accused of sexually abusing children

ROCHESTER (NY)
Democrat & Chronicle

June 6, 2018

By Sean Lahman

A Boston attorney who has spent decades representing victims of sexual abuse by priests says a group of Rochester victims will come forward.

In a press release, Mitchell Garabedian named eight priests from the Rochester diocese who are accused of sexually abusing minor children. A group of men, now grown, say they were abused by these priests when they were young boys. The incidents took place years ago when the alleged perpetrators were assigned to churches in the Rochester diocese.

Three of the accused priests had been publicly identified in the past. Allegations of misconduct by Eugene Emo, David P. Simon, and Francis H. Vogt were reported by the local press and the accusations were acknowledged by the Diocese. Emo and Simon were removed from their ministry and Vogt has since died.

But allegations against five of the priests accused Wednesday had not been previously reported.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 10:20 AM

June 5, 2018

In Chile, a Growing Shadow Over the Church

SANTIAGO (CHILE)
US News

June 5, 2018

By Daniela Mohor

The child abuse charges in the country test the Vatican´s zero-tolerance policy toward sex abuse by clergymen.

James Hamilton recalls clearly the time in late April of this year when he traveled to the Vatican to visit Pope Francis and the pontiff shared a story from his earlier visit to Chile. A papal mass held at the port city of Iquique drew a crowd of 90,000, less than half of the 200,000 the pope's entourage expected.

"The pope looked around and saw there was nobody," says Hamilton, a physician who was one of the first Chilean victims of clerical sexual abuse during childhood invited to meet the pope. He and two other men allege that the abuses were covered up by the Catholic Church for decades.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:32 PM

Why a convicted child molester is likely to be chosen in the MLB draft

UNITED STATES
Yahoo Sports

June 5, 2018

By Jeff Passan

Sometime over the next 48 hours, a Major League Baseball team is almost certain to ask a convicted, admitted child molester to play in its organization. It’s likeliest to happen Tuesday, during Rounds 3 through 10 of the MLB draft, or perhaps Wednesday, over the draft’s final 30 rounds. And on the off-chance that the handful of teams with Luke Heimlich on their draft boards opt against selecting him, the chance that he goes unsigned is basically zero.

For more than a year now, teams have grappled with the idea of Heimlich. He is Oregon State’s ace and one of the best college pitchers in the nation; he is the signatory of a guilty plea to molesting a 6-year-old female relative when he was 15. He is a left-hander whose fastball tops out at 97 mph; he is an endless supply of bad headlines, treacherous questions and awful publicity. He is worthy of a second chance, with low recidivism rates for the crime to which he admitted; he now says that despite the guilty plea, he didn’t commit that crime, which only confuses the matter more.

Sports so often stumbles as it tries to strike the balance between talent and principle, and Heimlich’s case is no exception. His eventual signing will represent a clear value judgment: that his ability as a baseball player outweighs the moral quagmire of his actions and serves as an admission that the organization will embrace someone who in his guilty plea wrote “I admit that I had sexual contact” with a little girl.

It presents a litmus test that the Baltimore Orioles took last year, when they engaged in conversations with Heimlich about signing him as a non-drafted free agent, three sources familiar with the conversations told Yahoo Sports. While the sides did not strike a deal, the discussions with the Orioles showed Heimlich that even a few months after the disclosure of his case by The Oregonian, he was not entirely toxic to teams.

The calculus to draft Heimlich, according to three general managers who said he is not on their boards, is simple: The amateur draft is one of the last places to reap significant surplus value. The notion of viewing Heimlich in such a manner – purely as an asset, with child molestation not a heinous act but simply a negative-value line item – is terribly cynical.

“And it’s true,” one GM said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:30 PM

Victims try to block release of convicted child rapist

BOSTON (MA)
The Associated Press

June 4, 2018

A judge on Massachusetts’ highest court cleared the way on Monday for the release of a 70-year-old convicted child rapist in poor health, drawing condemnation from an attorney for victims who vowed to continue fighting to keep the man locked up.

Wayne Chapman, who was convicted in 1977, lured young boys into the woods by pretending he was searching for his missing dog and then sexually assaulted them, court records say.

He has been civilly committed since his prison sentence ended in 2004 because he was deemed to be “sexually dangerous,” but two experts who recently examined him concluded he was no longer dangerous and should be released.

Justice Scott Kafker of the Supreme Judicial Court said in his ruling that Chapman’s victims were “understandably upset and frightened” about his potential release. But Kafker said the proper requirements governing Chapman’s release were followed under the law.

Wendy Murphy, an attorney for victims, blasted the decision and filed another bid on Monday to block his release while she tries to convince the full court to review the matter.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:27 PM

Church destroys headstone of Sussex accused priest

ENGLAND
BBC News

June 5, 2018

The gravestone of a senior Roman Catholic priest has been destroyed following allegations he abused a boy.

Canon Dermod Fogarty, who died in 2012, is accused by Stephen Bernard in a book written by the Oxford academic.

Dr Bernard says the four years of abuse started in 1987 when he was 11 years old.

Deirdre McCormack, the canon's next of kin, called for the stone's removal as she felt the epitaph to a "much-loved, wise priest" was a "blatant lie".

The Church agreed to remove the stone following a meeting with Ms McCormack and in a statement said it would replace it with a simple headstone.

Ms McCormack arranged for the destruction of the headstone to be filmed and asked for it to be broadcast.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:26 PM

St. Landry priest accused of sexual abuse

LAFAYETTE (LA)
WWL

June 5, 2018

The pastor of St. Peter Church in St. Landry Parish has been accused of sexual abuse of a minor in an alleged incident that occurred several years ago. 75-year-old Michael Guidry has been a priest for nearly 50 years, while running St. Peter for the last nine. Lafayette Bishop Doug Deshotel says the priest has been placed on administrative leave pending an investigation by law enforcement.

“If it was not then father can be restored, and his good name restored also, but if it is then there are civil penalties that will be applied, and also severe church canonical penalties.”

Guidry is also the head of the Resurrection Chapel in Whiteville.

Deshotel says the abuse occurred in a very small church community.

“St peters probably 75 to 100 families, and at Resurrection chapel maybe 50 families.”

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:24 PM

Updated: Will Bishop Deshotel release names of past abusive priests?

LAFAYETTE (LA)
The Advertiser

June 4, 2018

By Claire Taylor

Bishop Douglas Deshotel would not commit Monday to releasing the names of priests in the Diocese of Lafayette whose sexual abuse victims received settlements.

The Daily Advertiser, during a news conference Monday, asked Deshotel to release the list of priests whose sexual abuse victims were paid settlements by the diocese or its insurers.

In 2014, Bishop Michael Jarrell said the Diocese of Lafayette and its insurers paid $26 million to 123 victims of priest sex abuse between 1950 and 2002.

This occurred after sworn statements from the 1990s alleging abuse by local priests came to light.

At that time, The Daily Advertiser followed by an advocacy group asked Jarrell to release the priests' names.

Monsignor Richard Green in 2014 responded that the diocese would not release the priests' names. He said, "Bishop Jarrell sees no purpose in such action."

Deshotel, questioned Monday by The Advertiser, said he was unaware of such a list or if he could release it.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:22 PM

Urgent call for interim report on Catholic Church by national sex abuse inquiry

ENGLAND
The Tablet

June 5, 2018

By Rose Gamble

We say that the Catholic Church, including Ealing Abbey, is not a safe place for children and it is not something we should wait to act upon

Lawyers have called on Professor Alexis Jay, chair of the national inquiry into child sexual abuse, urgently to produce an interim report on the Catholic church, saying it is “structurally, culturally and doctrinally incapable of implementing and enforcing the minimum standards of safeguarding”.

David Enright of the firm Howe and Co, who are acting on behalf of a group sexual abuse survivors, said that following a three-week hearing into the English Benedictine Congregation in December last year, the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) had “heard enough” to compel it urgently to issue a report.

Mr Enright, along with other lawyers representing victims of sexual abuse, was making a submission on behalf of his clients to the IICSA panel at a preliminary hearing into the English Benedictines, which is due to consider evidence relating to Ealing Abbey and St Benedict’s School in Ealing over five days in February 2019.

“We say that the Catholic Church, including Ealing Abbey, is not a safe place for children and it is not something we should wait to act upon,” he told Professor Jay and the panel.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:20 PM

Uniting Church opts in to national redress scheme for victims of child sexual abuse

AUSTRALIA
Australian Broadcasting Corporation

June 4, 2018

The national redress scheme for victims of child sexual abuse continues to gain momentum with the Uniting Church the latest to opt in to the scheme, however the Western Australia Synod's entry is conditional on the WA Government also signing up.

The President of the Uniting Church in Australia Stuart McMillan apologized to victims at Monday's announcement.

"We acknowledge the impact of child sexual abuse in the lives of those who have been abused in our institutions or those of our predecessor Churches," Mr McMillan said.

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:19 PM

Tasmania Anglican church sales to help 'make amends' for abuse

SYDNEY (AUSTRALIA)
BBC News

June 5, 2018

By Frances Mao

Reverend John Stanley says he will always remember the baptisms in his church, and the weddings and funerals that took place under its steeple.

Now, however, the church in Tasmania, Australia, is one of dozens of Anglican properties in the island state that are scheduled to be sold.

Religious organisations have grappled with how they will fund compensation for survivors of child sexual abuse.

In Tasmania, Anglican leaders say property sales will play a key part.

They plan to sell 108 properties, including more than half of the state's Anglican churches - 78 in total - to raise an estimated A$20m (£11.4m; $15.2m).

Posted by Pauline Hodgdon at 4:17 PM

Alleged victim speaks out after sexual abuse case against priest

WHEELING (WEST VIRGINIA)
WTRF

June 4, 2018

By Falicia Woody

It's been over a week since the Diocese of Steubenville removed retired priest, Monsignor Mark Froehlich after allegations of sexual abuse were deemed "credible".

But "Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests" or SNAP officials and alleged victims are now claiming the Diocese knew about the complaint since January.

There is a active investigation ongoing with the Belmont County Sheriffs Office regarding the issue, but according to SNAP, they want to see more being done.

Judy Jones, the SNAP Midwest Associate Leader, is standing alongside one of the alleged victims that came forward, Amanda Dutton. "The victim reported it way back in January. What took them so long?" says Jones.

Amanda tells me that she's been trying to report the incident since she was a teenager. "It's very hard to come forward...[Diocese said] Tell another priest, go within the Diocese. I did, I followed all orders, and once again they told me it was my fault for the way I was dressed."

Fast forward to January 2018, and Amanda made a report to the Diocese of Steubenville. She later called them for an update. "I called the Diocese again, and they say 'oh on the contrary. This has been handled.' I said great! What happened? 'We asked him if he did it or not.'"

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 10:01 AM

‘Pay for your sins’: Jacqui Lambie takes aim at Catholic Church abuse

BRISBANE (AUSTRALIA)
Starts at 60

June 5, 2018

She’s always one to speak her mind and former Tasmanian Senator Jacqui Lambie didn’t hold back on Monday night’s episode of Q&A.

During a heated discussion about the Catholic Church and the National Redress Scheme, the 47-year-old called for the Catholic Church to “pay for its sins” in relation to compensating victims of sexual abuse within the institution.

Lambie became fired up after an audience member questioned why there was a big difference between the amount of compensation available to victims of family abuse and general crime, compared to that offered to people who had been abused at the hands of an institution. At present, victims of crime can access up to $10,000 in compensation, while people abused within the institution can be granted up to $150,000.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 9:48 AM

Catholic church in Minnesota to make second-largest US payout over sexual abuse

WASHINGTON (DC)
The Hill

June 2, 2018

By Max Greenwood

The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis has agreed to establish a $210 million trust fund for 450 victims of clergy sexual abuse, church officials announced Thursday.

The payout is believed to be the second highest by the Catholic church in the U.S., according to The Associated Press.

"I recognize that the abuse stole so much from you — your childhood, your innocence, your safety, your ability to trust and, in many cases, your faith," Archbishop Bernard Hebda said at a news conference, addressing survivors of the abuse.

"Lives were forever changed," he continued. "The church let you down. I am very sorry."

The settlement resolves years of bankruptcy proceedings for the archdiocese.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 9:44 AM

Pope Francis names replacement for Australian archbishop who covered up abuse

LONDON (ENGLAND)
Australian Associated Press via The Guardian

June 3, 2018

Gregory O’Kelly named the special administrator of Adelaide following Philip Wilson’s conviction

Pope Francis has appointed Gregory O’Kelly, the bishop of Port Pirie, the special administrator of Adelaide following the conviction of Archbishop Philip Wilson for covering up child sex crimes during the 1970s.

O’Kelly, who will remain the bishop of Port Pirie, north of Adelaide, assumes administrative and executive authority in the archdiocese until any future decision of the Pope, the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference said in a statement.

Wilson was found guilty at Newcastle local court on 22 May of failing to report to police the repeated abuse of two altar boys by paedophile priest James Fletcher in the New South Wales Hunter region.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 9:39 AM

Pope Francis moves from listening to action against sex abuse in Chile

NEW YORK (NY)
America Magazine

June 4, 2018

By Gerard O’Connell

Pope Francis continues to work to repair the enormous damage done to the victims of the three abuses of power, sex and conscience by clergy of the Catholic Church in Chile, hoping to promote a radical renewal among its pastors and faithful people so that it becomes once again “a prophetic church” and regains the trust of the Chilean population.

Last weekend, Pope Francis hosted a second group of victims of Chile’s most notorious priest predator, the Rev. Fernando Karadima, at Santa Marta, his Vatican guesthouse residence. This time he met with five priests who were victims of Father Karadima, together with two other Chilean priests and two lay people who have helped them with their trauma and sufferings. He hosted the first group at the end of April—the three best-known victims of Father Karadima: Juan Carlos Cruz, James Hamilton and José Andrés Murillo. This time some of the five priests asked not to be identified, and the Vatican and Chilean press respected their wishes.

The group of nine arrived at Santa Marta on June 1. The following day, Francis celebrated Mass with the priests and spent more than four hours with the whole group and then met with each of the victims individually.

After their Saturday encounters, two of the priests spoke with journalists. According to media reports, they said they were deeply impressed by how Francis listened to their stories and left them feeling hope for the future.

Posted by Terry McKiernan at 9:37 AM

Pope Francis appoints first-ever layperson as rector of the Pontifical Lateran University

NEW YORK (NY)
America Magazine

June 3, 2018

By Gerard O’Connell

In another historic step to assign key positions in the Catholic church to lay people, Pope Francis has appointed a married layman, Vincenzo Buonomo, as the new rector of the Pontifical Lateran University in Rome.

He is the first layperson ever to hold this important position in what John Paul II called “the pope’s athenaeum.” Some 3,000 seminarians, priests, women and men religious and lay students from 100 countries, including the United States, study at the university in Rome for degrees in theology, philosophy, civil and canon law.

The Vatican announced his appointment to lead the 245-year-old higher educational institution on June 2. He succeeds Archbishop Enrico dal Covolo, a Salesian, who served as rector of the Lateran University for the past eight years. Previous rectors include Cardinal Angelo Scola (1995-2002), the runner up in the 2013 conclave, and Archbishop Reno Fisichella (2002 -2010), president of the Pontifical Council for the New Evangelization.

Professor Buonomo, 57, is a both a civil and canon lawyer and a specialist in international law. He is a professor at the Lateran University and also teaches future Holy See diplomats in the field of international law at the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy in Rome. He has worked with the Holy See’s missions to various bodies at the United Nations since 1983 and has provided assistance to the Vatican’s Secretariat for Relations with States. He represents the Holy See at the Venice C