Settlement for Abuse Victims at Holy Name Church in Croton
By Lanning Taliaferro
December 12, 2017
The Archdiocese of New York has paid $750,000 to three men who were abused as children by former Hudson Valley priest Gennaro Gentile, The Journal News reports. Gentile served in Catholic churches in Croton-on-Hudson, Poughkeepsie, Tuckahoe and Yonkers, according to lohud.com.
He was removed from the priesthood in 2005.
TJN reporter Jorge Fitzgibbon talked to an attorney for the men, who were Gentile's victims at Holy Name of Mary Church in Croton. "I think the problem is that the church, at that time, was essentially protecting them," Joe O'Connor told him. "I mean, that's the whole story. If you look at the record at how many times Gentile was moved, I think that's the real harm, that they didn't reach out and discipline."
Holy Name had two priests accused of sex abuse, Gentile and the man who replaced him, The Rev. Kenneth Jesselli.
The settlements are under the Independent Reconciliation and Compensation Program, which began in March. Church officials launched an outreach effort in an attempt to locate potential victims who have yet to come forward with sex-abuse claims.
Since the program is not restricted by a statute of limitations, the Archdiocese will be able to settle abuse cases dating back "10, 20, 40 years," Joseph Zwilling, Director of the Office of Communications for the Archdiocese, told Patch.
The scandal has touched many families and parishes throughout the Archdiocese, which stretches from Staten Island to Ulster County in the mid-Hudson Valley. There are 84 priests publicly accused from the New York Archdiocese, according to BishopAccountability.org.
In addition to Gentile and Jesselli, other former Hudson Valley priests who have been accused publicly include Juan Bazalar, who had been a priest in Monticello; Roy Black, assigned to Fordham Prep; Anthony Guiliano, assigned in Dover Plains and Pawling; Lawrence C. Inzeo, assigned in Newburgh; Peter J. Kihm, assigned in Rhinebeck; James Liguori, former head of Iona College in New Rochelle; Donald T. Malone, a former principal at Archbishop Stepinac High School in White Plains; Albert J. Mazza, assigned in Croton-on-Hudson; Richard J. McCormick, assigned in Goshen and Stony Point; John O'Keefe, a pastor in Pearl River after being head of Archbishop Stepinac; Patrick Quigly, assigned in Haverstraw; Sean Leo Rooney, assigned in Goshen; Alan Scheneman, assigned in Goshen.