Bishop Deeley Announces Cathedral Mass for Day of Prayer and Penance on March 4
Roman Catholic Dicoese of Portland
March 3, 2016
“We do not want to forget. Remembering keeps us vigilant in our effort to reform.
We should not easily move ahead with life unless we remember the hurt and the pain.
It should give us resolve to do all that we can to prevent such abuse to occur and to heal the wounds of those who have been harmed.”
--- Bishop Robert P. Deeley, Day of Prayer and Penance Mass, February 27, 2015
PORTLAND---Bishop Robert P. Deeley has designated Friday, March 4, as a diocesan-wide Day of Prayer and Penance to seek forgiveness for past harm while offering prayers for the healing of victims/survivors of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church. The day will also reaffirm the Diocese of Portland’s continuing pledge to provide a safe and peaceful environment for children.
Bishop Deeley will celebrate Mass on the Day of Prayer and Penance at 12:15 p.m. at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Portland.
On March 4, priests throughout the diocese will be encouraged to observe the Day of Prayer and Penance by offering Masses that include prayers for victims/survivors of abuse for their healing; for perpetrators of abuse to seek and find repentance and justice; for diocesan clergy, employees and volunteers to serve with a spirit of respect and humility; and for families to create a safe, loving, and peaceful environment for their children.
In 2002, the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People was implemented by the Catholic Church in the United States, mandating that any representative of the Church who sexually abuses a minor will be permanently removed from ministry. The Charter, which is reviewed every two years, also calls for the reporting of all complaints to civil authorities, thorough investigations of all complaints, and reimbursement for therapy to victims/survivors. Since the implementation of the charter, over 14,000 Church employees and volunteers (including all priests and educators) in Maine who work with children have been trained in a safe environment program and have gone through mandated background checks. An independent, on-site audit of safe environment procedures found the Diocese of Portland in full compliance with the Charter for the 2014/2015 audit period.
Bishop Deeley encourages anyone who may have information about any case of sexual abuse of a minor by a Church representative to contact civil authorities and Michael Magalski, Director of the Office of Professional Responsibility for the Diocese of Portland, at (207) 321-7836 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.