Church in Crisis
September 29, 2002
[See the main page of this special section on the Church
A former deacon, Griffith is named in one lawsuit. He pleaded guilty in
1988 to indecent or immoral practices and first-degree sexual abuse for
molesting another man who had been a student at St. Raphael Catholic School
between 1974 and 1977. He was sentenced to five years' supervised probation.
Griffith, a Passionist brother, lives at one of the order's residences
in Chicago and has long been removed from public ministry, according to
a spokesman for the order. He declined to return phone calls when the
suit was filed. The victim of Griffith's crime also sued the archdiocese,
in 1988, but the archdiocese won a ruling from the Kentucky Court of Appeals
that post-traumatic memory disorder doesn't constitute grounds for extending
the statute of limitations. That suit was dismissed.
PLAINTIFF: [Name redacted by BishopAccountability.org]
ADDRESS: [Name of town redacted]
FILED SUIT: May 9
DEFENDANT: Archdiocese of Louisville
DATE AND LOCATION OF ALLEGED ABUSE: 1972-74. St. Raphael
Boy Scout troop trips
ACCUSATION: Sexual abuse
DETAILS OF ALLEGATION: [Name redacted], who wasn't Catholic,
said he knew Griffith, a deacon and Boy Scout leader, as a member of a
troop that met at St. Raphael.
WAS ANYONE TOLD? [Name redacted] said he told a friend.
He said he also told his parents several years later.
IN THE PLAINTIFF'S WORDS: "The church beats its
breast saying how sorry we are, but in private, they have tried to preserve
their power and assets. It's time for it to stop."