NY--NYC’s Dolan continues abuse secrecy, victims say
By David Clohessy
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests
April 5, 2016
Today, more evidence emerges showing that Cardinal Timothy Dolan is among the most secretive US Catholic officials when it comes to the safety of children.
Last week, the website of Dolan’s archdiocesan newspaper quietly posted a short notice that Fr. Keith Fennessy has been suspended because of child pornography.
As best we can tell, Dolan never
--told anyone when Fr. Fennessy was first accused,
--told anyone when church officials deemed the accusations against Fr. Fennessy credible, or
--told anyone about the outcome of the criminal investigation into Fr.Fennessy,
--told anyone where Fr. Fennessy is now living, or
--begged other victims, witnesses or whistleblowers to come forward and call police.
In other words, for months or years, Dolan has known Fr. Fennessy was accused of child pornography. Yet he kept silent, giving Fr. Fennessy years to destroy evidence, intimidate victims, threaten whistleblowers, discredit witnesses, fabricate alibis, flee the country and hurt more kids. Dolan also gave Fr. Fennessy at least ten months (and likely longer) to ingratiate himself into more trusting families who Dolan kept in the dark about the priest’s crimes.
Shame on him. This is a clear violation of Dolan’s repeated pledges to be “open and transparent” about clergy sex crimes. It’s also a violation, we believe, of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops abuse policy – the so-called Charter for the Protection of Children – which mandates such “openness and transparency.”
Many bishops send a news release to secular media when a priest is accused of child sex crimes. Many send another news release when those accusations are deemed “credible.” As best we can tell, Dolan refused to do this, instead opting – as he has time and time again – for secrecy.
And even now, Dolan posts nothing about these serious, credible allegations on his archdiocesan website.
We urge every single person who saw, suspected or suffered child sex crimes and cover ups in Catholic churches or institutions in the New York Archdiocese to protect kids by calling police, get help by calling therapists, expose wrongdoers by calling journalists, get justice by calling attorneys, and get comfort by calling support groups like ours. This is how kids will be safer, adults will recover, criminals will be prosecuted, cover ups will be deterred and the truth will surface.