|4 Priests Named
$1.6M paid to 19 victims
By Pat Schneider
February 19, 2003
Capital Times (Madison WI)
The Diocese of Madison will no longer make secrecy a condition of settlements for victims of priest sexual abuse, officials said Tuesday as they acknowledged payments of $1.6 million to 19 victims.
Bishop William H. Bullock also named four priests against whom documented allegations of serious abuse have been made: Lawrence Trainor, Michael Trainor, Curtiss Alvarez and Archie Adams.
All of the priests, who were ordained in the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s, resigned 10 to 20 years ago and do not function as priests, diocesan officials said.
The public identification of an abuser is an important step in healing, said Patty Gallagher Marchant, who was abused as a child at a Monona parish in 1965.
"I am absolutely elated as the survivor of Lawrence Trainor that the church had the courage to name him before any of us victims had to name him," Marchant said. "Having the church protect him was as horrible as suffering sexual abuse at the hands of a priest."
Officials of the Madison Diocese released the information on priest sex abusers and settlements to meet policy standards the United States Catholic Conference has requested all dioceses comply with by March 1.
Bullock said that the diocese will not enter into any new settlement agreements that contain confidentiality provisions and that the diocesan Finance Council will review terms of all settlements. An investigation into allegations of sexual misconduct by suspended priest Kenneth Klubertanz is continuing.
The Madison Diocese previously has not released the amount paid in settlement of priest sex abuse cases. Officials said last year that as attention to the widespread practice arose, they did not know how much had been paid out.
On Tuesday, diocesan officials stressed that payments were not financed by the Diocesan Service Appeal, an annual collection from parishes to fund diocesan programs. But spokesman Bill Brophy acknowledged that money from the collection plate likely went toward insurance premiums and a Self Insurance Loss Fund that covered the settlements.
Marchant's complaint against Lawrence Trainor was settled before a lawsuit was filed, and an agreement with the diocese barred her from naming him, so his identity has not been widely known in the community.
Michael Trainor's identity became widely known in Dane County in the early 1990s after about a dozen victims from several area parishes filed lawsuits. Family members of several victims have said they were shamed by diocesan officials for bringing allegations of abuse and were muzzled by settlement agreements with the diocese.
The two Trainors are not known to be related. Alvarez and Adams had not been publicly accused of abuse in the past.
Marchant and other members of Survivor Network for Those Abused by Priests have pressed church officials around the country to lift the shroud of secrecy from abusive priests.
On Tuesday, Marchant praised church officials for taking that step.
A bill expected to be introduced soon in the Legislature would give clergy
sex abuse victims better access to the courts by holding churches liable
for criminal sexual misconduct that could have been anticipated. The proposal
would allow charges to be brought for a longer period after sexual abuse,
and it would require church employees to report suspected abuse to civil
Any original material on these pages is copyright © BishopAccountability.org 2004. Reproduce freely with attribution.
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