Bishop Responds to Report Detailing Church Cover-up of Child Sex Abuse
By Hope Stephan
March 1, 2016
reporter.jpg A reporter looks at a chart of the results of a Pennsylvania Grand Jury investigation into the child sexual abuse by over 50 priests in the Altoona-Johnstown diocese over the past 40 years. March 1, 2016 at the Blair County Convention Center in Altoona, Pa. Mark Pynes | firstname.lastname@example.org
Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane Tuesday morning released the report from a statewide grand jury investigation into allegations of systemic sexual abuse within the Roman Catholic Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown and a cover-up by church officials.
The report details sexual abuse of hundreds of children by individual priests and religious leaders in the diocese over four decades.
The grand jury found that Bishops James Hogan and Joseph Adamec never reported the allegations of abuse to law enforcement. The bishops also never removed predator priests from their jobs. Rather, investigators found, Hogan and Adamec shielded the priests in order to protect the church and themselves from scandal.
Bishop Adamec released the following response to the report Tuesday evening:
Public Statement of Bishop Joseph Adamec RE: Grand Jury Report
|Bishop Joseph Adamec|
"Bishop Adamec expresses his deepest sympathies to all victims of abuse and deeply regrets any harm that has come to children who were victimized. This is a position, contrary to the tenor of the Grand Jury Report, that he adhered to while in Office and his full, historical record while Bishop of the Diocese reflects it. The Bishop's full record includes his having suspended a number of priests from public ministry and having requested laicization of others.
"Bishop Adamec's full record is described in some detail by his Response to the Report and was formulated based on the access he was granted to only pages 106-112 of the Report. He is grateful to Judge Krumenacker for having provided him the opportunity to file such a Response. Before passing judgment about him based on the Grand Jury's Report, the Bishop encourages a reading of the Response that he has made and asks observers to keep in mind that he did not have the opportunity to respond to allegations made in the Report other than those on pages 106-112 to which he was granted access."