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  Shanley Facing Calif. Charge; Files Show Allegations Vs. 3 More Priests

By Franci Richardson and Robin Washington
Boston Herald
December 19, 2002

As more sexual abuse allegations against Archdiocese of Boston priests emerged yesterday, California officials prepared a rape case against the Rev. Paul R. Shanley, who already faces Bay State charges of raping four Newton CCD students in the 1980s.

Shanley, a former Boston street priest released from Middlesex Jail on $ 300,000 bail last week after being held since May on the Newton charges, is the subject of a San Bernardino, Calif., sheriff's probe expected to be forwarded to prosecutors in the next three weeks.

"We have some investigative work still remaining but we anticipate the case will be concluded enough to submit to the district attorney for their review," sheriff's spokesman Chip Patterson said.

The possible criminal prosecution comes after a California man filed suit Monday alleging Shanley sexually abused him at various locations, including a bed and breakfast co-owned by the priest, when Shanley lived there in the 1990s.

"He invited me down to Palm Springs, where he exploited me at that resort," Kevin English, 30, told the Herald. "He would encourage me to have sex with his clients or whatever. He'd say, 'Those guys are from Holland. Why don't you go into the Jacuzzi with them?' I think he was pimping me and I didn't even know it."

Shanley could not be reached for comment, and his lawyer, Frank Mondano, did not return a call.

Yesterday, newly released files provided insight into how the Boston archdiocese has handled disturbing molestation charges against three more priests.

Since the early 1980s, church officials have doled out thousands of dollars to pay for the Rev. Paul Tivnan's housing, therapy, dental and medical costs, including a breast reduction in 1985 - despite his admission he molested two boys in the late 1970s.

"The accusation is that Paul Tivnan, while stationed in (Sudbury, Needham and Marlboro), has used his office to gain sexual satisfaction with these youth," according to church records.

In 1974, Tivnan, now 66, who was associate pastor at Our Lady of Grace in Chelsea, allegedly took a troubled 12-year-old boy on an overnight trip and, "He was bumping and grinding . . .," the boy said in the file.

Another boy, who was 9 in 1978, went with Tivnan - then associate pastor at Our Lady of Fatima in Sudbury - and said the priest "threw himself onto (him) and used his buttocks as a means of sexual activity," read the file.

While Tivnan was sent to St. Luke's Institute in Washington, D.C., for treatment, he was diagnosed with Klinefelter's syndrome, a genetic disorder which results in breast enlargement, small genitalia and infertility.

Tivnan had his breasts reduced surgically in 1985 and was put on twice weekly shots of a female contraceptive to reduce his libido.

After he was released from St. Luke's, Tivnan was reassigned several times as a chaplain until last year when he received senior priest-retirement status and moved to Beverly. He did not return a call from the Herald.

The Rev. Samuel J. Lombard, who died in 1999 a year after he retired from St. Agnes in Middleton, and the archdiocese were named in a lawsuit accusing the priest of sodomizing a 9-year-old altar boy in the sacristy of St. Thomas in Peabody in 1968.

"Cardinal Bernard Law, of the Archdiocese of Boston, failed to respond when he was told of the abuse," reads the ongoing suit filed last year in Salem District Court. "Fr. Lombard abused this authority and trust by sexually molesting plaintiff and causing him deep and tormenting spiritual, emotional, psychological and physical pain and injury."

The suit was filed after the archdiocese cut off financial support for the alleged victim's therapy.

The Rev. Peter Kanchong, 62, originally of Thailand, faced charges in 1984 of sexually abusing a 9-year-old girl while assigned to St. Margaret's in Dorchester.

The allegation prompted Law to write a letter begging Kanchong's Thailand superiors to call for his return home.

"His continued presence in the Archdiocese of Boston runs the risk of serious personal harm and grave scandal for the church," Law wrote in October 1984, days after the abuse allegation surfaced. "At this time, the court is attempting to handle the matter in such a way as to help Father Peter and avoid scandal to the church and the priesthood."

 
 

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