Church Memo: Accused Priest Was 'Very Dangerous'

By Robin Washington
Boston Herald
April 15, 2003

One of the highest-ranking clerics in the Archdiocese of Boston accused of child molestation was described in an internal church memo as "very dangerous and deceptive," according to court documents filed yesterday.

The handwritten note in the personnel file of Monsignor Frederick Ryan, vice chancellor under Humberto Cardinal Medeiros, was among papers turned over to Mitchell Garabedian, the lawyer for former Catholic Memorial High School students David Carney and Garry Garland, who alleged abuse by Ryan in the 1980s.

"Father Ryan is `very dangerous and deceptive,' " reads the note, which is unsigned and undated but among similar pages dated 1979.

Church officials did not return a call for comment. Carney suggested the note could indicate allegations previous to his, saying, "If they looked through the files of priests periodically, my incident may never have occurred."

In the Rev. Paul R. Shanley civil case, Suffolk Superior Court Judge Constance M. Sweeney rebuffed a request by attorney Roderick MacLeish Jr. to review the release of a transcript of an April 4 hearing.

"It was an open hearing. No one moved to close it," she wrote.


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