BishopAccountability.org
 
  Removal of Two S.J. Priests Will Stand, Bishop Insists
Vatican's Revision 'Demands No Change at All'

By Richard Scheinin
San Jose Mercury News
November 12, 2002

The removal of two local Roman Catholic priests from the ministry will stand, San Jose Bishop Patrick J. McGrath said Monday, even if the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops passes a revised policy on sex abuse Wednesday in Washington, D.C.

The revised document "demands no change at all" in his June decision to remove the Rev. Leonel Noia and the Rev. Robert A. Gray from ministry for molesting minors, McGrath said. "None."

Noia's case dates to 1976, Gray's to 1993. Both men were convicted of sex crimes, received psychiatric treatment, and eventually returned to work in the church -- until McGrath removed them from ministry in June, after the U.S. bishops approved a "zero tolerance" policy for priests who abuse minors.

In each case, McGrath said, "there was a civil procedure" that established guilt. "I most certainly won't be reversing anything I've done," he said. "I may have to do more procedures canonically, but this will in no way reverse anything that has happened."

The revised document, negotiated with the Vatican, calls for church tribunals to hear the cases of priests who say they are innocent. It also reinstates the church's 10-year statute of limitations on bringing complaints, but bishops still can ask the Vatican for a waiver in special cases.

"When I went to Dallas in June," McGrath said, "I promised the people of San Jose that I would enact whatever was decided in Dallas. I did that and I am not going back on that promise. I believed in it then and I believe in it now."

Speaking at the end of the first day of the bishops' four-day conference, McGrath maintained that the document on sex abuse being considered in Washington has "strengthened the document of Dallas.

"It says," he continued, "that any person who works in the church who has done anything of this nature, molesting of a minor -- once that is demonstrated and proven to be a reality, then they will never be able to hold a position in the Catholic Church in the United States. I don't know how it can get any stronger than that."

Overall, critics say the Dallas policy gave bishops authority to oust guilty priests more swiftly. But McGrath said the revised plan improves on the Dallas document by spelling out church procedures for removing sexual abusers from their duties.

 
 

Any original material on these pages is copyright © BishopAccountability.org 2004. Reproduce freely with attribution.
     
guide of business management sytem guide of job opinions guide of capital goods guide of make fast money guide of Debt restructuring guide of home business guide of income money guide of hospital products guide of international market guide of repair roof before winter guide of website income guide of secure your business guide of face makeup tools guide of jewellery arts guide of tv shows guide of best places on earth guide of job plans guide of cheap cars guide of creating products guide of women tools guide of eat less guide of car insurance process guide of sport stuff guide of garden home guide of cheap insurances guide of electronic tech guide of healthy feeding guide of what is next in fashion guide of improve company guide of tactical insurance guide of make money at home guide of development in business guide of dept loan guide of cooking secrets guide of correct companies guide of jobs with more income guide of reviews o general products guide of improving technology guide of ideal job guide of business sectors guide of dept problem guide of unlimited business guide of suitable insurance company guide of money cars guide of how to market guide of heatlhy diet tips guide of decoration tipse guide of security problems