Cardinal speaks on abuse crisis, need to ‘rebuild trust’

The Pilot

By Antonio M. Enrique

SOUTH END — On Jan. 6, 2002 the Boston Globe began a series of articles revealing that archdiocesan officials reassigned Father John Geoghan to parish ministry even after it was known he had abused children in former assignments, sparking public outrage.

Over the next 12 months, the court-ordered release of personnel files led to the revelation of numerous other past allegations of abuse of minors by priests and, ultimately, to the resignation of Cardinal Bernard Law on Dec. 13, 2002. By then, what had become known as the clergy sexual abuse crisis had spread to dioceses throughout the United States and prompted the U.S. bishops to implement new policies for the protection of children.

In July 2003, Blessed Pope John Paul II appointed Cardinal Seán P. O’Malley, OFM Cap. as Archbishop of Boston. Cardinal O’Malley came to Boston with a reputation as a healer after having been appointed bishop of the neighboring Diocese of Fall River in 1992 in the aftermath of a highly publicized case of a priest abusing minors, the case of Father James Porter.

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