ONE-ON-ONE: Archbishop John Nienstedt

MINNESOTS
Fox 9

by Tom Lyden

ST. PAUL, Minn. (KMSP) –
The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis has been embroiled in controversy for months, and the man at the helm, Archbishop John Nienstedt — himself accused of impropriety, is breaking his silence.

In a one-on-one interview with Fox 9’s Tom Lyden, Nienstedt made it quite clear he believes he has enough energy, information and experience to be able to lead and represent the Catholic Church in the state’s largest metropolitan area. When asked if he believes he has the moral authority, Nienstedt replied, “I do.”

“I read all e-mails; it’s divided, but I have a lot of support, and I’m grateful for that support,” he continued.

Additionally, Nienstedt also told Fox 9 News, and may truly believe, that the worst of the sex scandal is behind him. According to the archbishop, the archdiocese has reviewed the files and performed background checks on more than 3,000 priests — and beefed up monitoring of priests who have abused.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Nunavut ex-priest heads back to court, this time in Alberta

CANADA
Nunatsiaq Obline

Eric Dejaeger, the disgraced and defrocked priest who is currently in custody awaiting verdicts in 68 sex-related charges stemming from incidents in Igloolik between 1978 and 1982, will face a new judge soon, in Edmonton.

The Canadian Press is reporting that Dejaeger waived his right to a preliminary hearing this week and will return to an Edmonton courthouse Sept. 12 to have a trial date set.

Dejaeger, 67, lived in Edmonton in the mid-1970s and studied at Newman Theological College before heading north to work as an Oblate missionary in what was then the Northwest Territories.

He was charged in 2011 with one count each of indecent assault and gross indecency in connection with a series of incidents involving a minor alleged to have occurred in Edmonton between 1975 and 1978.

The Belgian-born ex-priest, who now holds Canadian citizenship, has a long history with the Canadian justice system.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Minnesota Child Victims Act Year One: Overall

MINNESOTA
Legal Examiner

Posted by Mike Bryant
July 31, 2014

The Minnesota Child Victims Act is now a year old and has two more years to go. The Minneapolis Tribune took time for the anniversary to look at how it is going. The story was interesting for its overview, but there are areas that are worth looking at a little closer.

The headlines of the story were interesting. In the paper the headline was: Abuse Law Unleashes Firestorm On Church and in the internet version it was: Minnesota Child Victim’s Act Generates Nearly 40 Lawsuits, Church Reforms. The law didn’t start things. The abuse that has been hidden for years is what created the firestorm. The hiding is what caused the need for the law.

The numbers are interesting. There have already been over 40 lawsuits against 30 different priests. In comparison, the story points out the other states which have had open window laws:
California witnessed more than 1,100 lawsuits during its one-year window, Hamilton said. About 170 lawsuits were filed in Delaware and about 75 in Hawaii during their two-year windows.

It may be a little early to really compare the numbers. It also should really look at the number of disclosed pedophiles who were credibly accused. Minnesota has over 100 disclosed already.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Financial reports and financial review

GUAM
Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Agana

Statement from the Archbishop Anthony Apuron, OFM Cap., D.D.

The Archdiocese of Agana has been working diligently to review its financial condition with the help of the accounting firm of Deloitte & Touche and the Archdiocesan Finance Officer, following the indication of Cardinal Filoni, Prefect of the Vatican Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples.

Together with the Archdiocesan Finance Council, I decided that on an annual basis the Archdiocese of Agana, Catholic Cemeteries of Guam, Inc. and the Redemptoris Mater Archdiocesan Missionary Seminary of Guam will publish the financial reports and financial review.

I am pleased to tell you that through this review we have verified that the overall financial situation of the Archdiocese is healthy and that the debt of the Archdiocese in the past years has been reduced by twenty percent (20%).

However, two (2) entities of the Archdiocese, the Agana Cathedral-Basilica and Catholic Cemeteries of Guam, Inc. have about seven million dollars of indebtedness which has been reduced only marginally and which accounts for about one quarter of the total indebtedness of the Archdiocese of Agana.

Moreover, Deloitte & Touche has determined that the accounting practices, especially of the Catholic Cemeteries of Guam, Inc., are “inappropriate”. Deloitte and Touche, listing the cases of inappropriate accounting, concluded that an audit is not possible until appropriate accounting has been reestablished in The Catholic Cemeteries of Guam, Inc.

I informed the Presbyteral Council, the College of Consultors and the Archdiocesan Finance Council about this situation, and they expressed their support.
Based on these findings, I have decided that a change in administration in these two entities, the Agana Cathedral-Basilica and The Catholic Cemeteries of Guam, Inc., is necessary and urgent to reestablish proper accounting practices and to complete the financial review, financial report and the audit.

Most Rev. Anthony S. Apuron, OFM Cap., D.D.
Archbishop of Agana

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Archbishop breaks his silence

GUAM
KUAM

by Sabrina Salas Matanane

Guam – The head of the island’s Catholic church is breaking his silence revealing more information as to why he removed Monsignor James Benavente from his duties within the Archdiocese of Agana.

It’s clearly a church divided.

“We are losing confidence and trust in his leadership,” said parishioner Andy Balajadia. “I hope that by praying, he will change.”

Concerned Catholics in Guam united in prayer this week concerned about a series of events that have been occurred in the Archdiocese of Agana. Most recently the sudden removal of Monsignor Benavente as the rector for the Cathedral Basilica and director of the Catholic Cemeteries his termination came just one week after the church celebrated his 20-year anniversary. Tommy Tanaka said, “What the archbishop is doing is providing division not only with the shepherd, but also the flock.”

Earlier this week Archbishop Anthony Apuron through a press release said that based on the findings of a recent audit he decided that a change in administration was necessary and urgent to re-establish proper accounting practices, complete a financial review, financial report and an audit. According to His Excellency, an audit conducted by Deloitte & Touche revealed the Cathedral and Catholic Cemeteries have about $7 million in indebtedness. He added the firm determined the accounting practices, especially in the Catholic Cemeteries, are “inappropriate” and that an audit is not possible until appropriate accounting has been re-established in the Catholic Cemeteries of Guam.

Today the archbishop issued another press release detailing more information from the audit about “significant accounting deficiencies in the Catholic Cemeteries of Guam, Inc.”. Auditors found that the Catholic Cemeteries had incorrectly included it its assets land which was not in its own name, thus overstating its assets and using this property to secure a loan, the audit found that construction costs were duplicated incorrectly overstating its assets by $3.8 million and that the construction contracts needed to verify the exact costs were missing.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Church problems detailed: Apuron defends actions, parishioners petition Vatican

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Written by
Gaynor Dumat-ol Daleno
Pacific Daily News

The previous management of Guam’s Catholic cemeteries overstated its assets and used land that wasn’t under its name to secure a loan, Archbishop Anthony Apuron announced yesterday.

The archbishop issued a public statement to further explain his reason for firing Monsignor James Benavente, who was the director of Catholic Cemeteries of Guam Inc.

Apuron also removed Benavente as rector of the Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral-Basilica — a post he held for nearly 20 years.

Benavente this week declined to comment on the issue, but he participated in a Tuesday prayer, organized by those who do not support the archbishop’s actions.

Richard Untalan, a former finance official for the island’s Catholic Church, this week questioned the decision to blame Benavente, saying Apuron also played a role in the financial decisions.

Untalan, former president of the Archdiocesan Finance Council, said a $7 million debt cited by Apuron is related to money that was borrowed by the church for renovation and construction.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Lay coalition nominates seven clergy to be new Twin Cities archbishop

MINNESOTA
National Catholic Reporter

Brian Roewe | Jul. 31, 2014

On the same day St. Paul-Minneapolis Archbishop John Nienstedt doubled down on his commitment to remain leader of his apostolic see, Catholics elsewhere in the region discussed his possible successor.

The Catholic Coalition for Church Reform announced Wednesday they had identified seven nominees believed to have the ability to lead the archdiocese into its future and likely out of the current clergy abuse scandal ensnaring the archdiocese since September.

While calls for Neinstedt to be replaced have rung louder in recent weeks, including in editorials in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune and The New York Times, Nienstedt on Wednesday fortified his resolve to remain archbishop “as long as the Holy Father has appointed me here,” he wrote in a column in his archdiocesan newspaper.

In the past, Nienstedt cautioned local Catholics from interacting with the coalition, which includes local chapters of DignityUSA, Call to Action, and Roman Catholic Women Priests.

The group reached its seven candidates after whittling down an original list first from 55 priests, then from 23. They are Fr. J. Michael Byron, Fr. Paul Feela, Fr. Paul Jaroszeski, Fr. Phillip Rask, Fr. Timothy Wozniak, current moderator of the curia and vicar general Fr. Charles Lachowitzer, and Auxiliary Bishop Lee Piché.

In the fall, the committee plans to hold “know the nominees” workshops. During the first half of November, an “election-like process” will produce the three names they will send to Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, the apostolic nuncio to the United States. Per canon law, the nuncio provides the pope three people for consideration when a bishop’s see opens.

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Archbishop Nienstedt Denies Allegations: ‘I Am Not Bigoted’

MINNESOTA
CBS Minnesota

[with video]

Esme Murphy

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – The Archbishop of St. Paul and Minneapolis says he will not resign and insists the Church has turned a corner with new policies to better address allegations of sexual abuse by priests.

John Nienstedt is doing a series of interviews about the abuse scandal and he also is answering questions about recently surfaced allegations that he was involved in sexually inappropriate relationships with men.

While talking with WCCO’s Esme Murphy, Nienstedt denied ever having any kind of inappropriate relationships with men. He said he expects to be cleared of the allegations eventually.

The claims surfaced after Jennifer Haselberger, former canon lawyer for the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, revealed she had been interviewed by an outside law firm investigating the allegations.

Those allegations contrast sharply with the archbishop’s campaign in support of the 2012 constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage. The archbishop defended the church’s $600,000 campaign in favor of that amendment.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Former Arctic priest to face sex charges in Alberta

CANADA
CTV

The Canadian Press
Published Thursday, July 31, 2014

EDMONTON – A former Arctic priest defrocked for sexual misbehaviour will face trial on two sex-related charges in Edmonton.

Eric Dejaeger has waived his right to a preliminary hearing and will have his trial date set on September 12.

The 67-year-old former Oblate missionary lost his status as a priest for his behaviour in two missions in Nunavut.

Dejaeger was stationed in Igloolik and Baker Lake between 1978 and 1989, when the Oblates asked him to leave.

He lived in Edmonton during the mid-1970s after moving from Belgium.

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Archbishop Nienstedt sets himself the lowest of bars

MINNESOTA
Spiritual Politics

Mark Silk | Jul 31, 2014

John Nienstedt, the embattled archbishop of St. Paul and Minneapolis, has decided to tough it out and disregard the calls for him to resign over his handling of sex abuse cases. He is now publicly campaigning to keep his job.

“In the end, it comes down to this: 18 years ago, Pope John Paul II chose me to serve the Church as a bishop, an authentic successor of the apostles,” he writes in a column posted on the archdiocesan website. “I am bound to continue in my office as long as the Holy Father has appointed me here.”

In other words, Rome is going to have to give him the heave-ho, which is to say that he’s got to persuade the papal nuncio to the U.S., Carlo Maria Viganò, that he deserves to stay.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Changing needs, changing names: Reform of Curia is Vatican tradition

VATICAN CITY
National Catholic Reporter

Cindy Wooden Catholic News Service | Jul. 31, 2014

VATICAN CITY
Pope Francis and his international Council of Cardinals continue to study the most effective and efficient way to organize the Roman Curia, a large bureaucracy with a long history of expansions and a few, short-term, attempts at consolidation.

For centuries, popes were assisted in their ministry by the cardinals meeting in consistories; the practical matters were handled by what was called the Apostolic Chancery. But as the church grew and matters became more complicated and more time-sensitive, offices were added. The first was the Sacred Congregation for the Inquisition, a tribunal established in 1542 by Pope Paul III to judge heresy and orthodoxy.

Over the next four decades, a few other offices were added, but an organized Roman Curia came into existence only with Pope Sixtus V in 1588.

Currently the principal offices of the Roman Curia are the Secretariat of State, nine congregations headed by cardinals and 12 pontifical councils led by cardinals or archbishops. The offices share the mission of helping the pope carrying out his ministry “for the good and service of the whole church and of the particular churches,” according to St. John Paul II’s 1988 apostolic constitution Pastor Bonus (“The Good Shepherd”).

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No, you can’t have your cake and eat it too

Kol B’Isha Erva: THE VOICE OF A WOMAN IS NAKEDNESS

Oy veh! Did you hear about the female Mashpia who was accused of hanky panky at Jerusalem’s Yeshivas Rabbeinu Moshiach? This sad excuse for a tzanua engaged in regular yichud with bachorim entrusted to her by their parents who are far away in Chutz La’Aretz! Rachmuna litzlon! No you didn’t hear? That would never happen because yeshivas don’t hire women to work in direct contact with their boys? Baruch Hashem!

Of course, how could I have thought such a thing! Yeshivas would never engage in such impropriety as to hire women! My apologies to the nonexistent female Mashpia! Now remind me, what is the excuse for seminaries hiring men?

Sorry, you can’t have your cake and eat it too. You can’t indoctrinate women with the idea that men are animals who can’t control their sexual urges and then paint them as holy bastions of indifference and self control when they have the title “Rabbi” tacked in front of their names. It doesn’t work that way. What applies to one applies to all.

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A Compendium of WWW Postings on Meisels Scandal

UNITED STATES
Frum Follies

On July 11, 2014 I broke the story about Rabbi Elimelech Meisels sexually exploiting female students. I reported that a rabbinical court in Chicago called him out on his conduct and issuing a ruling that students should not attend the four post-high school institutions he owned and operated because they were not safe. There has since been an explosion of coverage, leaked documents, and a defense of those seminaries by another rabbinical court. This controversy has rocked the non-Hasidic ultra orthodox world because these so-called seminaries based in Israel are now practically standard “finishing school” experiences for diaspora ultra orthodox Jews who are not Hasidic.

Below is a compendium of articles to date. I have bolded the articles I consider most important.

Posts on Frum Follies (“Yerachmiel Lopin”)

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Ninth Circuit Says Diocese’s Insurance Did Not Cover Sex Abuse Claims

ARIZONA
Metropolitan News-Enterprise

By ANN ANOOSHIAN, Staff Writer

The Ninth U.S. Circuit of Appeals yesterday ruled that the Diocese of Phoenix of the Roman Catholic Church was not covered by its insurance policy for sex abuse claims.

The panel, in a 2-1 decision, held that an “assault and battery” exclusion in the relevant policy precluded indemnification of the diocese, as well as of the individual priests. It overturned the ruling of U.S. District Judge Neil Wake of the District of Arizona, who held that the exclusion applied only to the offending priests.

The appeals court ruled in favor of Interstate Fire & Casualty Company, Inc., the excess liability carrier for the diocese, which brought a declaratory action after the diocese sought indemnification for settlements it paid in four lawsuits.

In its complaint, the diocese said it settled two claims in California alleging sexual abuse by Father John Giandelone in 2007, for approximately $1.3 million. The complaint also stated the diocese paid $1.8 million to settle claims in Arizona, alleging abuse by Fathers Mark Lehman, Dale Fushek and Phil Baniewicz.

Interstate Fire cited the exclusion of liability to “any Assured for assault and battery committed by or at the direction of such Assured.”

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GAY ISSUES DRIVE ATTACK ON NIENSTEDT

MINNESOTA
Catholic League

Bill Donohue comments on the decision by St. Paul and Minneapolis Archbishop John Nienstedt not to resign:

It’s all about homosexuality. Ever since Archbishop Nienstedt criticized the pro-gay film, “Brokeback Mountain,” he has been targeted by homosexual activists all over the nation. So it is hardly surprising to read a story on him in today’s New York Times that cites his take on the movie. Had he liked it, and had he been silent on the subject of gay marriage, no one would be calling for his resignation.

If there is one area where critics have a point it is the handling by archdiocesan officials, prior to Nienstedt’s tenure, of two disturbed priests: there were enough red flags early on to warrant a more punitive approach. What these critics fail to say, however, is that the red flags involved homosexuality. At least in one case, it appears that the priest was protected precisely because he was gay. This is indefensible.

Further proof that homosexuality is the real issue driving the foes of Nienstedt can be found in today’s Star Tribune and Pioneer Press, two newspapers in the Twin Cities. Both asked him yesterday what he does in bed and with whom. He told the former, “No, I’m not gay. And I’m not anti-gay.” When the latter asked if he had had sex with men since becoming archbishop, he said, “No. Not even before.”

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Lafayette Diocese defends priest accused of pedophilia

LOUISIANA
IND

In reacting to the recently resurrected allegations of sexual abuse among local clergy, is the Catholic Diocese of Lafayette maintaining its old stance of protecting their own?

In a four-part series released last week, Minnesota Public Radio — using a recently un-sealed federal lawsuit filed in 1988 by the Diocese of Lafayette against its insurance broker — has shed new light on the church’s handling of a 1980s pedophilia scandal, including the name of a priest still working in the diocese.

That priest, according to the report, is the Rev. Gilbert Dutel of St. Edmond Catholic Church in Lafayette.

According to a statement filed in 1992 by Dutel’s alleged victim, the sexual relationship with the local priest started in 1976. The victim was 9 or 10, and the alleged relationship would go on for another five or six years, eventually including two additional priests from the diocese.

“[Dutel] would just put his arms around me and he was, I guess, trying to be consoling, kind and gentle and then he just started playing with me and he unzipped my pants,” claims the victim, a former altar boy who’s name was redacted from the 1992 document recounting his first sexual encounter with Dutel in Vermilion Parish.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Leader at N.Y. Priest’s Nonprofit Network Faces Larceny Charge

NEW YORK
The Chronicle of Philanthropy

A longtime executive with a clergyman’s upstate New York charity organization was arrested Wednesday on charges that she stole more than $1-million in taxpayer funds and approved a phony job for a former state legislator, the Times Union of Albany reports.

Prosecutors allege Jacqueline Gentile diverted state grants intended for drug-treatment and job-training programs to cover deficits and pay salaries at the Rev. Peter Young’s network of social-service agencies, with which she has worked for 28 years. She was also accused of falsifying records in connection with what authorities said was a no-show job for ex-state Assemblyman William F. Boyland at a Young charity.

Ms. Gentile was released on $25,000 bail. Her lawyer denied any wrongdoing, and she was vehemently defended by Mr. Young, whose Schenectady-based network operates more than 100 sites statewide that provide housing and other services for the homeless, substance abusers, and ex-convicts. “I’ve been with her for approximately 30 years. In 30 years she’s a person of complete integrity,” he said.

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Judge rules Milwaukee archdiocese must pay $1.35 million in legal fees

MILWAUKEE (WI)
National Catholic Reporter

Marie Rohde | Jul. 31, 2014

MILWAUKEE
U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Susan V. Kelley on Wednesday ordered the Milwaukee archdiocese to use $1.35 million in surplus cash to partially pay legal and profession fees that have been accruing over the past 17 months.

The archdiocese must pay lawyers representing the creditors in the case, most of whom are survivors of sexual abuse, as well their own legal experts. So far, the archdiocese has amassed close to $14 million in legal fees since the Chapter 11 bankruptcy was filed in January 2011.

While the mounting legal bills are a matter of concern to Kelley, a quick end is not in sight. Eight lawyers were in court and four others attended via a telephone hookup for a two-hour hearing Wednesday, further driving up the bills.

The $1.35 million would probably result in a payment of about 20 cents on the dollar, said lawyer James Stang, the lead lawyer for the creditors. Lawyers for the other side restated that everyone would be paid in full once a reorganization plan is approved, a notion that seems distant.

Kelley put the approval process for the archdiocesan-proposed reorganization plan on hold until the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals decides other issues, including whether some $57 million in a trust fund for the perpetual care of nine cemeteries could be used for claims. That decision is not expected until October.

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Seminary Staff made it Possible for Meisels to Abuse Students

UNITED STATES
Frum Follies

Posted on 07/30/2014 by Yerachmiel Lopin

Until now the Chicago Beis Din (CBD) did not discuss the role of staff in enabling Elimelech Meisels to sexually abuse student in his seminaries (Pninim, Binas Bais Yaakov, Chedvas Bais Yaakov, and Keser Chaya). This morning they sent a letter elaborating their concerns. They wrote:

We stand by our July 10 statement that we do not recommend prospective students attend these seminaries, and also note, based on evidence including testimony by victims and staff and admissions by Elimelech Meisels, our conclusion that certain senior staff members failed in their responsibilities toward students.

Thus it is irrelevant whether Meisels actually sold his seminaries to Yankie Yarmush, or whether it was a sham sale with Yarmush fronting for Meisels. What matters is that staff turned a blind eye to his grooming and late night excursions and rebuffed or harangued the students who begged them to intervene. The culprits are still there and cannot be trusted to ensure student safety. Moreover, as we saw with the Kahane letter, the staff who enabled the abuse are now invested in protecting Meisels’ reputation. This makes it possible for him to return some day with a chorus of beholden employees proclaiming his righteousness.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

HTC Suspends Accreditation …

UNITED STATES
Frum Follies

HTC Suspends Accreditation of Meisels’ Seminaries Threatening Cutoff of Governmental Financial Aid

Posted on 07/17/2014 by Yerachmiel Lopin

The Meisels seminaries are accredited through the Israel Experience Program (IEP) of Hebrew Theological College (HTC) in Skokie, IL. This accreditation is essential for getting governmental financial and receiving college credit.

HTC accepts the authority of the Chicago “Special Beis Din” of Rabbis Schwartz, Feurst and Cohen. They accept its July 10th rabbinic ruling to not enroll students in these seminaries because of sexually abusive behavior by Meisels and are freezing any finalization of arrangements for 2014-2015 enrollees.

On July 14 they sent out the following message to the 62 students, accepted through them to the Meisels seminaries, to start in Fall 2014:

Hebrew Theological College
7135 N. Carpenter Rd.
Skokie, IL 60077
Voice: 847-982-2500
Fax: 847-745-0200

7/14/2014

Dear xxxxxx,

In response to the decision of the Chicago Special Beis Din regarding Pninim, Binas Bais Yaakov, Chedvas Bais Yaakov and Keser Chaya seminaries, HTC is currently reviewing the status of these programs with our college. Meanwhile, we request that you send us the signed IEP Participation Agreement (see attached) and $1,500 Program fee by the July 31, 2014 deadline if you have not yet done so. We will not deposit any checks or run any credit card payments unless we determine that our affiliation with these seminaries will continue for the 2014-15 school year. If your program fee has already been deposited, please be assured that if the decision is ultimately made to suspend our affiliation with these seminaries, we will fully refund your payment.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

A Thin Line Separates Charisma from Manipulation: A Call for Meisels Examples

UNITED STATES
Frum Follies

Posted on 07/16/2014 by Yerachmiel Lopin

The great flaw of the Israeli Beit Din dealing with the sex offending Elimelech Meisels (see here) is thinking they are dealing with isolated violations arising from spontaneous lust for which Meisels has repented. In truth they are dealing with a manipulative man who strategically and aggressively groomed his victims, often starting at the admissions and scholarship stages. He created cliques of his favorites that he showered with attention and was often publicly abusive to others, including staff. His manipulations succeeded to the point that housemothers invalidated or berated the concerns of students.

Manipulation cartoon mathThis was also the pattern for serial offenders like Rabbis (sic) Baruch Lanner, Dovid Weinberger, and Motti Elon. All of them persisted in their manipulations even after they offered (insincere) apologies.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Elimelech Meisels Still Listed as Pninim Staff

UNITED STATES
Frum Follies

Posted on 07/15/2014 by Yerachmiel Lopin

According to a letter sent out this week by seminaries owned by the Meisels family (Pninim, Binas Bais Yaakov, Keser Chaya, & Chedvas Bais Yaakov):

Our Founder/Dean, Rabbi Elimelech Meisels, has chosen to resign from his position. This was done in accordance with the beit din of Rav Mendel Shafran Shlitah in Bnei Brak that was retained by Torah Umesorah. Rabbi Meisels resigned eight weeks ago and is no longer affiliated with the institutions in any capacity whatsoever…… The schools will be under new management and G-d willing, in the coming days, an announcement will be forthcoming about the addition of a new menahel who will oversee the running of all four institutions.

There are several problems with this declaration.

Pninim Staff Listing on website on 7-15-14 1 pm EST US1. They claim that “Elimelech [Eli] Meisels resigned eight weeks ago.” Nobody else in the Jewish world knew about that development. In fact the website for Pninim still listed Meisels at the top of their staff list as of 1:00 p.m. (EST) today (Tuesday, 7/15/14). (see screenshot on the side). Eight weeks would have been plenty of time to update their staff listing.

2. They say “Meisels is no longer affiliated with the institutions in any capacity whatsoever.” However it is widely known that his family continues to “own” the institution. I put own in quote marks because technically it is a not-for-profit which gives it all sorts of tax advantages. But in the eyes of a beit din they are accepted as the controlling agents and all the officers with legal control answer to them. As of yesterday the Meisels family continued to refuse to give up their control. Because the family insists on retaining control, the letter is not telling the truth when it claims “The schools will be under new management.” Perhaps that will happen but there is no reason to be certain about it.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Israeli Beit Din Announces Removal of Meisels …

CHICAGO (IL)
Frum Follies

Israeli Beit Din Announces Removal of Meisels from His Seminaries and Gives Green Light for Attendance

On Friday I posted a 7/10/14 Chicago Beit Din ruling about an investigation into sexual misconduct by Elimelech Meisels which advised against sending girls to Meisels’ four Israeli post-high-school seminaries. Last night (7/13/14) an Israeli Beit Din issued a ruling reporting “the removal of the party responsible” [i.e., Elimelech Meisels] and a legally binding agreement empowering the Israeli Beit Din to make, supervise, and control changes in the ownership and management of the seminaries. Based on these interim measures, the Israeli Beit Din advises parents and principals of US and Canadian girls’ high schools to feel comfortable sending students to these seminaries.

Below is an image of the Israeli ruling and my rough translation.

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Rabbinical Court Accuses Seminary Operator Elimelech Meisels of “Unwanted Sexual Contact”

CHICAGO (IL)
Frum Follies

UPDATE 7/14/14: 9:00 a.m. — See new post: Israeli Beit Din Announces Removal of Meisels from His Seminaries and Gives Green Light for Attendance
——–
The Special Beis Din (rabbinical court) of Chicago exists to address allegations of sexual abuse which cannot be, or will not be, directed to the criminal justice system. It is led by Rabbi Gedalia Dov Schwartz, the Av Beis Din (court head) for the Beth Din of America (BDA) and the emeritus Av Beit Din of the Chicago Rabbinical Council (CRC).

Rabbi Elimelech (aka Eli) Meisels with his father, owns and operates several Israeli “seminaries” for post-high-school, year-in-Israel religious education of young women, mostly from Yeshivish ultra-orthodox backgrounds in the English speaking world. These include: Pninim, Binas Bais Yaakov, Chedvas Bais Yaakov and Keser Chaya. Meisels is associated with Ohr Somayach and is second author with Rabbi Dovid Kaplan of The Kiruv Files (2008)

In a ruling issued on Thursday July 10, 2014, the Beis Din reported that they believe “that students in these seminaries are at risk of harm and it does not recommend that students attend these seminaries at this time.

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Archbishop Nienstedt says he won’t resign

MINNESOTA
Fox 9

Posted: Jul 31, 2014

ST. PAUL, Minn. (KMSP) –
Despite rising pressure to resign, Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis Archbishop John Nienstedt says he’s not going to step down.

Nienstedt wrote a letter that will be published Thursday in the Catholic Spirit, and in it, he says he feels bound to his position because the Holy Father put him there. He also claims he never knowingly covered up any clergy abuse, but did say he could have been more involved in handling priest misconduct. He also answered questions regarding allegations of his own possible sexual misconduct, and included how he intends to help the church come together again.

His interview and announcement comes in the wake of lawsuits filed regarding the alleged abuse and cover up of crimes committed by church officials and priests. In court depositions, Nienstedt said he knew of priests accused under the church’s internal monitoring program but weren’t removed from their respective parishes.

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Francis takes action against Argentine priest in divisive diocese

PARAGUAY
Buenos Aires Herald

Pope Francis is taking action in a divisive diocese in Paraguay where an Argentine priest, accused by a former superior of being a “serious threat to young people,” has been removed as the No. 2.

Carlos Urrutigoity is still an active priest in the Ciudad del Este diocese, however, in a sign that he remains in good standing with his bishop.

Urrutigoity has denied allegations of impropriety, even though he has never been charged. His bishop, Monsignor Rogelio Livieres, has stressed that there is no accusation of sexual abuse against the priest. But Urrutigoity’s case re-emerged after Francis sent a team of Vatican investigators to the diocese this month to look into criticisms against Livieres by other Paraguayan prelates.

Livieres in 2005 allowed Urrutigoity to join his diocese, even though Urrutigoity’s then-superior in Scranton, Pennsylvania had warned the Vatican that he was a threat and unsuitable for the priesthood.
Urrutigoity had been a member of the schismatic, traditionalist Society of St. Pius X. He later joined the Scranton diocese and founded a priestly society where the old Latin Mass was celebrated.

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Priest abuse survivors group marks milestone

UNITED STATES
The Washington Times

By Meredith Somers-The Washington Times Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Fearless advocates. Vicious enemies. The Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests has been called a variety of names — positive and negative — in the last quarter century.

On Friday what’s projected to be the largest conference in SNAP’s history is set to begin in Chicago, where members of the 19,000-strong advocacy group that has been the leading voice in the Catholic Church’s priest abuse scandal plan to discuss the challenges and triumphs of the past year, and usher in the next 25 years under what leaders say is a “cautiously optimistic” view.

“It does feel like we’ve come a long way,” said David Clohessy, SNAP’s national director. “At the risk of sounding cliche, we’ve all seen just the tip of this devastating iceberg that doesn’t ever seem to shrink in size.”

Unlike the first year of the Survivors Network, which Mr. Clohessy said was little more than an answering machine and a post office box, the advocacy group now has numerous prosecutors, advocates and victims that are part of their ongoing fight against clergy abuse.

“The most encouraging milestones have been when secular authorities … either investigated or exposed cover-ups and reformed archaic, predator-friendly laws,” Mr. Clohessy said. “When those things happen, that’s what really encourages us more than anything.”

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Records: Family drained priest abuse victim’s settlement accounts

DELAWARE
The News Journal

Beth Miller, The News Journal July 30, 2014

A 43-year-old Newark man who was sexually abused by a Catholic priest was victimized again by family members who used much of his $347,901 in settlement money to buy cars, jewelry and other property, a Chancery Court judge said in a scathing opinion Tuesday.

Duane Hardy was among more than 150 abuse victims who reached settlement with the Catholic Diocese of Wilmington in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in 2011. He was among those who had been sexually assaulted by the late Rev. Edward B. Carley, who died in 1998.

The money was meant to supplement his disability payments and provide for his care for a lifetime. A trust set up in his name, though, was drained by two family members, court documents say – his older sister, Sherry Hardy, and her son, Michael Hardy – to barely $3,000 in just five months’ time.

Court records show both denied cheating their relative out of his funds, saying their purchases were made with his consent and often for his benefit. Neither Sherry nor Michael Hardy could be reached for comment Wednesday.

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Justice For Magdalenes critique of McAleese report could be ready in months

IRELAND
Irish Examiner

By Noel Baker
Senior Reporter

An extensive critique of the McAleese Report into the Magdalene laundries could be published by the year end, according to the Justice for Magdalenes (JFM).

The campaigning group, now known as JFM Research, is currently compiling its analysis of the McAleese Report which was published last year and which has been strongly criticised on a number of fronts.

“We are going to put out all the evidence that we have and to show where he went wrong,” Claire McGettrick of JFM Research, told an audience at the Mother Jones Festival in Cork’s Firkin Crane.

Ms McGettrick said there had been a number of shortcomings in the McAleese Report, including that it did not examine all records and that it had inadequately investigated deaths.

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Nigeria: Police Arrest Woman, Pastor for Allegedly Killing Her Children

NIGERIA
allAfrica

Daily Independent

The Police in Delta State have arrested a 25-year-old woman, Ese Oghenevwe, and her church priest, Austin Eduviere following a report that her two sons died after consuming a liquid substance the priest gave to her.

According to a police press release issued on Wednesday evening, the Police at Abraka received information that the women had killed her two children, Prayer Clement, nine months old, and Wisdom Clement, 2, by giving them a liquid substance to drink.

“Based on the information, detectives arrested the said Oghenevwe. The suspect revealed that the liquid substance was given to her by Eduviere of Triumphant World International Church Abraka for healing purposes as the Apostle claimed he had prayed over it,” the police release by the Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Celestina Kalu said.

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Accountability – For Whom?

IRELAND
Ian Elliott

Accountability – For whom?

I have been watching with interest the media coverage of the first meeting in Rome of the newly established Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors in the Catholic Church. This body carries on its shoulders the expectations of many millions of interested observers all hoping that it will guide the Church down the right path to a position where we can all be confident that vulnerable children will be safeguarded in its care. The signs so far have been encouraging in that emphasis appears to be placed on establishing how accountability can be strengthened when the abuse of a child is suspected or discovered.

Holding people accountable is an essential requirement of a responsible organisation. However from a safeguarding perspective, it is not enough to focus only on those who have directly harmed a child when pursuing accountability. It is also necessary to look at and address the issue with regard to those in leadership who have failed to discharge their responsibilities adequately. This is not comfortable territory for many in the Irish Catholic Church, because if you examine the abusive career of most of the offenders that have been identified and brought to justice amongst the clergy, you will find a list of missed opportunities to intervene and prevent further abuse. Superiors, and sometimes peers, failed to act and as a consequence abuse continued for longer than it should.

In addressing this issue, it is necessary to reflect on why such a situation has been allowed to exist for so long in the first place. The abuse of a vulnerable child is an abhorrent act which has a profound impact on most people who come in contact with it. Why then was “a blind eye” turned to its existence so frequently when it was suspected or known about in the Church? I do not believe that there is one definitive answer to that question but there is evidence that is relevant to aiding our understanding that has emerged from within the Irish Church.

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The Hidden Problem of Abuse

IRELAND
Ian Elliott

Recently the media has focused on the incidence of abuse in society and also specifically within the Catholic Church. Pope Francis mentioned in an interview that he gave to a reporter that he understood the incidence of paedophilia to be approximately 2% amongst the clergy in the Catholic Church worldwide. Many would regard this figure as an underestimate of what is the likely reality but in the absence of sound evidence it is impossible to be certain. Similarly the media in the United Kingdom have given prominence to the arrest of 660 individuals for accessing images of children being abused from the internet. Only 39 of those arrested were on the sex offenders register. In their coverage much emphasis has been placed on the occupations of these individuals. Some were doctors, teachers, youth leaders, and care workers.

To anyone who has worked in the field of safeguarding there is nothing in this that would be surprising. Indeed, it has previously been reported in the media that there are a substantial number of individuals in the United Kingdom that regularly access hard core child pornography sites on the internet. This figure should be regarded as just the tip of the iceberg. The numbers involved have been quoted as being very much higher than just 660 in the past. What is surprising and worthy of comment is the fact that society, through the operation of the National Crime Agency, has at last taken action. It is acknowledged that it has not had to use new technology in doing so. The means of doing so was previously available but not applied in a focused way until recently.

The possibility of past abuse being covered up by powerful individuals at the heart of the establishment in the United Kingdom, is to be the subject of a full judicial inquiry. Allegations that senior politicians and others were involved in the abuse of young children are now to be properly investigated. All this is following in the wake of the scandal of the hidden abuse by Jimmy Saville.

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Keeping It Simple

IRELAND
Ian Elliott

I was struck recently by the content of an article carried by the Catholic News Service published on 24th July. The article was headed “Vatican revising canon law on abuse penalties, cardinal says”. This is a subject that has interested me for some years and so I read the article with great interest. It reported the content of an interview given by Cardinal Francesco Coccopalmeiro who is the president of the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts. He was speaking to a reporter from the Vatican newspaper L’Osservatoire Romano. What was described shocked me.

The Vatican is indeed revising the canon law penalties which it has recognised are too vague and this is creating a situation where they are being applied haphazardly. The latter opinion is not only mine but is the stated view given by Bishop Ignacio Arrieta, the Council secretary. I was encouraged to hear that this was actually recognised and being acted upon but then I read on and discovered that the work of revision has been in progress since 2008! There is no anticipated date offered as to when it will be finished.

This really shocked me. On the one hand, a picture is being presented that it is understood that all that can be done to address the problem of clerical abuse within the Catholic Church, will be done but here we have a revision of canon law penalties taking six years and counting with no end in sight! With respect, I do not regard that as a credible position. Either there is a serious effort being made or there is not. I would suggest that taking six years to revise a section of the code of canon law does not indicate that the issue is being sufficiently prioritised.

I appreciate that the Catholic Church is not known for changing quickly. It tends to take its time to make decisions but there are some matters that require speedier responses. If a house is on fire, there is little to be gained in discussing fully with everyone the merits of calling the fire brigade before you actually do it. With regard to the problem of clerical abuse in the Catholic Church, the house is on fire and has been burning for quite a while and has really caught hold. It is time to get the fire brigade out.

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‘The Church is dragging its heels on child safety’

IRELAND
Irish Independent

Sarah MacDonald
Published 31/07/2014

The Catholic Church’s revision of penalties and procedures for dealing with clerical sexual abusers is taking far too long, the former head of the national board for safeguarding children has warned.

Ian Elliott described himself as “shocked” that the revision of canon law’s abuse penalties has been going on since 2008 and there is still no sign of it nearing completion.

In his blog, ‘Keeping it Simple‘, the safeguarding consultant said “some matters require speedier responses”.

He said that a picture is being presented by the Catholic Church that all that can be done to address the problem of clerical abuse is being done.

But he said the credibility of this was thrown into doubt by the six years the revision by the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts has taken so far. No date has been given for its completion.

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Churches, denominations bear responsibility for unethical clergy

UNITED STATES
Word & Way

By Vicki Brown
Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Ministers are responsible for their actions as individuals, sometimes by civil authorities and ultimately by God. But what responsibility, if any, should the local church and the denomination bear for unethical behavior of their pastors and other church ministers?

Ministers must be aware of their relationship with each church member. Role reversal can open the possibility for confusion and abuse.

That question is difficult for religious bodies that follow a congregational form of governance that emphasizes the autonomy of the believer and of the local church. That stance has become the primary basis for refusal by many groups, including many Baptist denominations, to compile lists of ministers caught in unethical or immoral behavior, particularly sexual misconduct.

Establishing an organization-wide procedure is more difficult for denominations without a hierarchical structure, Joe Trull acknowledged. “As Baptists, we want to maintain our belief in local church autonomy and are hesitant to be viewed as telling churches what to do,” noted the retired professor of Christian ethics at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary and a former editor of Christian Ethics Today magazine.

Trull also was an adjunct professor at Logsdon Theological Seminary in Abilene, Texas, and at Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary in Austin, Texas. The author of several books co-wrote with James Carter two editions of “Ministerial Ethics.” The 1993 edition is titled “Ministerial Ethics: Being a Good Minister in a Not-So-Good World,” with the 2004 edition as “Ministerial Ethics: Moral Formation for Church Leaders.” The authors currently are updating the book, due to be released next year.

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Everyone pays a high price for ministerial misconduct

UNITED STATES
Word & Way

By Vicki Brown, Word&Way Associate Editor
Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Anyone who has ever googled any topic or product online usually will get a similar ad from amazon.com at or near the top of the returned search list. Smart marketing — but in the case of ministerial or pastoral ethics, everyone pays a high price when the church shepherd breaches trust.

God’s under-shepherds must be held accountable for the care of their congregations.

“I just wanted to talk to the pastor about my uncle’s abuse,” the young woman sobbed to her friend. “Instead, he pushed me down on the couch in his office and raped me.” Though she remains active in a local church in a different town, she still has difficulty sitting through most worship services.

The teenaged girl often hung out with her best friend, a PK (pastor’s kid), after school, usually at one or the other’s home. One day at the minister’s house, the pastor grabbed his daughter’s friend while his daughter was next door. The girl managed to fight him off. A few years later she learned her mother and the pastor were having an affair.

Both these stories are true. The victims aren’t identified because neither reported the incidents and probably never will.

Sexual misconduct and abuse grab the most headlines among the ethical and moral breaches ministers make, primarily because of the clergy sexual abuse scandal that rocked the Roman Catholic Church. Uncovered first in Boston in 1992, the scandal and ongoing investigations continue to unveil abuse.

While sexual misconduct gets the most attention, other moral issues also are garnering notice. The Internet and social media have helped both to uncover unethical behavior and to contribute to it, believes Tarris Rosell, Rosemary Flanigan Chair at the Center for Practical Bioethics in Kansas City, Mo.

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Pastor Opens Up About The Childhood Sexual Abuse That Contributed To His Sex Addiction

UNITED STATES
Huffington Post

[with video]

Dr. Mark Laaser is a thriving ordained pastor today, but his past is much darker thanks to another man of the cloth abusing him as a child. He joined HuffPost Live to talk about his sexual assault and how that contributed to his addiction to sex.

Laaser opened up to host Nancy Redd about how his childhood abuse by a pastor fueled his 27-year battle with a sex addiction. After the assault, he said he did the “typical route” through pornography, masturbation and sexual encounters throughout his adult years until he went into treatment in 1987.

“What helped me finally was breaking that silence, being able to talk about the immoral behavior that I was doing and to get community around me to support me in making the healthy changes,” Laaser said.

Overcoming the abuse wasn’t Laaser’s only struggle — once he recovered, he and his wife had to redefine their sexual relationship after 15 years of marriage.

“Part of the first 15 years of our marriage, we had sexuality, we produced three children, but it wasn’t imminently connected,” Laaser said. “My brain was never really in the room when we were having sex. My brain was off other places, and I think part of our journey of healing has been the integration of emotions and spirituality into sexuality.”

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Archbishop, Under Fire Over Abuse, Apologizes but Says He Won’t Resign

MINNESOTA
The New York Times

By MICHAEL PAULSON
JULY 30, 2014

The Roman Catholic archbishop of St. Paul and Minneapolis, under fire for the way his diocese has dealt with sexually abusive priests, apologized Wednesday for his conduct but rejected calls for his resignation.

The archbishop, John C. Nienstedt, acknowledged errors in his diocese’s response to abuse allegations, writing in a column for the diocesan newspaper that “it is very clear that we did not handle all complaints the way we should have in the past” and that he had only recently removed from ministry several priests accused of abuse.

The American bishops agreed 12 years ago that all clergy members facing credible accusations of abuse would be permanently removed from ministry.

“I have never knowingly covered up clergy sexual abuse,” Archbishop Nienstedt wrote. “I have, however, been too trusting of our internal process and not as hands-on as I could have been in matters of priest misconduct.”

He did not directly address accusations that he himself had had inappropriate sexual relationships with adult men, other than to say that he commissioned an investigation “because I had nothing to hide and wanted to be vindicated from false allegations, as anyone would.”

“I have no doubt that my administrative and personal style, with its strong point of view, may have offended some,” he wrote. “I apologize to those I have hurt. The last year has helped me realize I need to change my administrative style, soften my words, and get out from behind the desk to spend more time with the faithful.”

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Diocese of Lafayette Defends Priest As Abuse Allegations Resurface

LOUISIANA
KATC

The Diocese of Lafayette is defending one of its priests after old allegations of sexual abuse resurface in a report by Minnesota Public Radio.

Father Gilbert Dutel (pictured) is the priest at St. Edmund Catholic Church in Lafayette. In a recently-released court deposition from 1992, an alleged victim claimed Fr. Dutel sexually abused him when he was a child.

When the allegations first surfaced in the 1990’s, the Diocese of Lafayette, under then-Bishop Harry Flynn, investigated and found no truth to the allegations against Fr. Dutel.

The Diocese of Lafayette released the following statement Wednesday:

Many years ago, unproven allegations were made about Father Gilbert Dutel. An investigation took place back then which considered the totality of the facts available. No new information exists that warrants any action by the Diocese. In the absence of any contrary information, Father Dutel remains a priest in good standing at the Diocese of Lafayette.

The Diocese of Lafayette is committed to providing a safe environment for children. Anyone who has been a victim of abuse by church personnel or who may have information concerning a crime is encouraged to call a local law enforcement agency.

In light of the report by Minnesota Public Radio, the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests, SNAP, is calling for Father Dutel to be suspended.

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Attorneys clash over release of church documents

MINNESOTA
Star Tribune

Updated: July 30, 2014

Attorneys clashed in court Wednesday over how much data the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis must release in two lawsuits alleging sexual abuse by a priest.

The hearing before Ramsey County District Judge John Van de North involved two men, John Doe 100 and John Doe 104, who allege in separate suits that the Rev. Thomas Stitts abused them in the early 1970s. Both suits allege that the church was aware of previous allegations of sexual misconduct by Stitts years before he allegedly abused Doe 100 and Doe 104 at St. Leo’s Church in St. Paul and St. George’s parish in Long Lake, respectively.

Attorneys Patrick Noaker and Craig Vernon filed a motion to compel the church to release more documents about other priests who allegedly abused children and church “communications” about sexual misconduct, among others. The documents will help show there was reason to suspect that Stitts was capable of abusing children, Noaker said.

Archdiocese attorney John Gunderson argued that Noaker’s motion was too broad and the suits’ claims were “amorphous.” The church has provided all of its documents on Stitts, about 1,000 pages of paperwork and electronic data, Gunderson said. The other data are beyond the scope of the lawsuits, he added.

Van de North asked attorneys to submit additional written arguments in August. He told Noaker to narrow the time frame and scope of his request.

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Lawyers seek decades-old church records …

MINNESOTA
Insurance News Net

Lawyers seek decades-old church records on late St. Paul priest linked to sex abuse scandals

By Marino Eccher, Pioneer Press, St. Paul, Minn.
McClatchy-Tribune Information Services

July 31–Records of what the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis knew about sexual misconduct within its ranks decades ago are critical to show a pattern of negligence, attorneys suing the church argued Wednesday.

But the archdiocese said those requests go beyond the scope of what the plaintiffs are entitled to.

The arguments before a Ramsey County district judge concerned a lawsuit about the late Rev. Thomas S. Stitts.

The lawsuit alleges abuse inflicted by Stitts occurred at St. Leo the Great Church in the Highland Park neighborhood of St. Paul when the plaintiff, an altar boy, was about 14.

Other lawsuits claim that Stitts sexually abused boys in the 1960s and 1970s and that the church should have known about it and done more to prevent it.

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Archbishop Nienstedt: I will not resign. (Updated)

MINNESOTA
dotCommonweal

Grant Gallicho July 30, 2014

In a column that will be published tomorrow, the embattled archbishop of St. Paul and Minneapolis says he will not resign. Soon after I reported that Archbishop John Nienstedt was being investigated for a series allegations of inappropriate sexual conduct with seminarians, priests, and other adult men–part of which is now complete–an affidavit filed by Nienstedt’s former top canon lawyer strongly criticized the archdiocese’s sexual-abuse policies and practices. …

Update: I asked archdiocesan spokesman Jim Accurso when the investigation of Nienstedt would conclude and whether the investigating law firm’s report would be made public. In response, he sent me a statement from auxiliary Bishop Lee Piché, which read in part: “I have received [the law firm] Greene Espel’s information. However, this matter involves more than just their role. The investigation is ongoing and I will respond appropriately as the review process continues.”

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The Top Ten Suggestions for the Pope as He Starts to Plan His Fall 2015 Trip to Philadelphia

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Hamilton and Griffin on Rights

July 29, 2014

It is not terribly surprising to hear that Pope Francis has chosen to visit Philadelphia during the fall of 2015, when the city will be hosting the 2015 World Meeting of Families.

Philadelphia is a landmark for the Catholic Church in many ways. There are roughly 4 million people in Philadelphia and about 1.5 Catholics; no fewer than three major Catholic universities: St. Joseph’s University, Villanova University, and La Salle University; and a blanket of parishes and parochial schools and Catholic high schools.

Philadelphia also was the home of the remarkable American saint, Sister Katharine Drexel, who was born Catherine Marie Drexel into the wealthy Drexel family, but who chose devotion to the needs of the Native American and African American communities over marriage proposals and money.

To his credit, Pope Francis has been outspoken about the evils of child sex abuse and the need to bring priest perpetrators and bishops responsible for the coverup to account. Fittingly, Philadelphia is the American city that knows the most about the Catholic bishops’ coverup. Why? Because it is the only American city where the District Attorney’s Office has pursued and published in-depth grand jury investigations into the ways in which the Archdiocese covered up and fostered child sex abuse by its priests. It is also the only Archdiocese to criminally prosecute a higher-up, Msgr. William Lynn, for his role in the perpetuation of abuse by serial pedophiles. There is much the Pope can learn here about the betrayal of some of the most loyal Catholics in the world.

Knowing that the Pope will want a people’s tour of Philadelphia and that he will also want to capitalize on this opportunity to understand how the American bishops have failed to protect so many of the Church’s own children, I make the following humble suggestions for his trip. The Philadelphia region has been my home for 30 years, and I look forward to his arrival.

Handy Reading List

1. The 2005 Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office Grand Jury Report on the Sexual Abuse of Children in the Philadelphia Archdiocese

2. The 2011 Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office Grand Jury Report on the Sexual Abuse of Children in the Philadelphia Archdiocese

3. Benjamin Franklin on Tolerance. Ben Franklin founded the University of Pennsylvania, which was the first major American university to have no religious affiliation. He believed in God, but he declined to accord allegiance to any one religion. Ben was also relentlessly practical and down-to-earth. I believe the Pope would have liked Ben and vice versa.

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Twin Cities Archbishop Nienstedt vows to ‘continue serving as I have been called to do’

MINNESOTA
National Catholic Reporter

Brian Roewe | Jul. 30, 2014

Apologizing “for the distractions I have inadvertently caused,” St. Paul-Minneapolis Archbishop John Nienstedt expressed Wednesday his resolve to lead his archdiocese through its current clergy abuse scandal — with no intention of resigning.

“A bishop’s role is more like that of a father of a family than that of a CEO. I am bound to continue in my office as long as the Holy Father has appointed me here,” he said in a column in the archdiocesan Catholic Spirit newspaper, echoing comments he made to NCR in early July.

“I have acknowledged my responsibility in the current crisis we face, and I also take responsibility for leading our archdiocese to a new and better day,” Nienstedt said before quoting 2 Chronicles where the spirit of the Lord tells King Jehoshaphat and his army, “Stop being afraid, and stop being discouraged because of this vast invasion force, because the battle doesn’t belong to you, but to God.”

As for the calls he resign — most recently from the Minneapolis Star-Tribune editorial board — the archbishop said he has heard them all and has heard similar chants since his arrival in the Twin Cities in 2007. He has read letters labeling him “a hypocrite, a domineering boss and a liar,” as well as “a courageous moral leader and a true shepherd.”

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Bankruptcy judge orders Milwaukee Archdiocese to pay attorney fees

MILWAUKEE (WI}
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

By Bruce Vielmetti of the Journal Sentinel

The Archdiocese of Milwaukee must come up with $1.35 million to pay lawyers involved in its ongoing bankruptcy case, at least a portion of the many more millions they’re owed, a judge ordered Wednesday.

The lawyers and other professionals involved haven’t been paid since the archdiocese won a suspension of payments more than a year ago, saying it barely had enough money to continue operations.

At the same hearing Wednesday, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Susan V. Kelley also granted the archdiocese’s request late Tuesday to return the case to mediation for a possible consensual resolution to the long, complex and fractious proceeding.

“If the parties truly are sincere and willing to work issues out, we should explore that post haste,” Kelley said. “Let’s ‘git ‘er done,’ to use the vernacular.”

Kelley gave the parties 28 days to submit statements for the mediator, who ideally would begin the process in early September. A prior mediation effort in 2012 failed to reach a settlement.

The bankruptcy case has been at a standstill since June when Kelley ruled that she does not have jurisdiction to approve the archdiocese’s bankruptcy reorganization plan while key questions in a related lawsuit over $60 million it holds in trust for the care of cemeteries are pending before the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals.

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Milwaukee church bankruptcy headed to mediation

MILWAUKEE (WI)
Post-Crescent

M.L. JOHNSON, Associated Press July 30, 2014

MILWAUKEE — A federal judge ordered mediation Wednesday in the Archdiocese of Milwaukee’s bankruptcy case, saying she believed it was the best bet for resolving the hard-fought case and keeping more money from going to lawyers rather than sexual abuse victims.

The archdiocese filed for bankruptcy in January 2011, saying it would not have the money to pay if it lost lawsuits filed on behalf of victims of clergy sexual abuse. More than 500 abuse victims have since filed claims in bankruptcy court.

A reorganization plan proposed by the archdiocese earlier this year would give 128 victims roughly half of an $8 million insurance settlement. Others who have filed claims would receive nothing. Meanwhile, attorneys’ fees are now estimated at $13.7 million, and victims have been outraged by the idea that attorneys would receive more money than them.

Bankruptcy Judge Susan Kelley said during a morning hearing that she would likely issue a written order later in the day for mediation to take place in early September.

“The point of this is to try to negotiate a resolution quickly and stop the legal fees,” she said.

A mediation attempt in 2012 failed, in part because the archdiocese maintained there were too many issues to hash out. A sticking point this time could be whether the archdiocese’s former insurers participate.

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St. Ann asks Vatican investigate Chaput; ‘He’s gone too far’

PENNSYLVANIA
Bucks County Courier Times

Wed Jul 30, 2014.

By GEMA MARIA DUARTE Staff writer

St. Ann parishioners in Bristol have asked the Vatican to investigate the stewardship of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia on the recommendation of a consultant hired to appeal the closing of the parish.

St. Ann is one of five Bucks County churches closed in June and merged into nearby churches this month.

The parishioners are appealing the closure of their church too. They hired Boston-based consultant Peter Borre and two lawyers based in Italy who are familiar with canon law to handle that appeal. Borre recommended they also ask the Congregation for the Bishops, the senior personnel department of the Vatican, to look into how Philadelphia Archbishop Charles Chaput is overseeing the diocese.

“We are asking for a formal investigation of Archbishop Chaput’s stewardship of the archdiocese because we contend that the cure is becoming worse than the disease,” he said.

The request and the church closure appeal were included in 48 pages of documents sent to Rome this month.

It is unfortunate that “rapidly spreading dysfunction,” as Chaput’s critics call it, is spreading through the archdiocese as Philadelphia prepares for the World Meeting of Families in September 2015, the investigation request states.

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Nienstedt says he will continue as archbishop

MINNESOTA
Minnesota Public Radio

MPR News Staff St. Paul, Minn. Jul 30, 2014

Archbishop John Nienstedt, under increasing pressure to step down amid scandal, said he will continue to serve as leader of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis.

In a column posted to the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis’ website, Nienstedt acknowledged that he has been a divisive figure among Twin Cities Catholics.

“I will continue to listen to those who express concerns about my leadership,” he wrote, “but I will also continue serving as I have been called to do.”

Nienstedt wrote that he has “never knowingly covered up clergy sexual abuse.”

“I have always been honest with the Catholics of this local Church,” he added.

Calls for Nienstedt’s resignation, which began soon after the clergy sexual abuse scandal erupted in the Twin Cities last fall, have grown louder in recent weeks. The Star Tribune joined the chorus Sunday, with an editorial calling for his ouster.

“For the sake of one of this state’s most valued institutions and the Minnesotans whose lives it touches, Nienstedt’s service at the archdiocese should end now,” the paper wrote. The New York Times last week cited the Twin Cities archdiocese in an editorial insisting the Catholic Church make its bishops accountable for covering up clergy abuse, saying the archdiocese has “made a mockery of accountability.”

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Ordered to stand trial: Father James Dokos, accused of stealing from church in Wauwatosa

WISCONSIN
WITI

JULY 30, 2014, BY KATIE DELONG

MILWAUKEE COUNTY (WITI) — A former Milwaukee-area priest accused of stealing from his church will stand trial.

Father James Dokos was in court on Wednesday morning, July 30th — facing charges of felony theft.

Prosecutors say he took more than $100,000 from Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church in Wauwatosa when he was a priest there.

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Diocese’s Insurance Does Not Cover Abuse Claims

PHOENIX (AZ)
Courthouse News Service

By TIM HULL

(CN) – The Catholic Diocese of Phoenix’s insurance policy does not cover sexual abuse claims, the 9th Circuit ruled Wednesday.

After settling with four men who say they were sexually abused by priests in the 1970s and 80s, The Roman Catholic Diocese of Phoenix sought indemnification for excess liability from its insurance company, Interstate Fire & Casualty Company.

The insurer shot back with its own request for a judgment stating that the Diocese’s policy excluded liability for assault and battery.

U.S. District Judge Neil V. Wake ruled for the Diocese in Phoenix, finding that the exclusion applied only the offending priests and did not necessarily deny coverage for sexual abuse claims.

A divided appellate panel reversed on Wednesday.

The question came down to the relative meanings of the words “any” and “such”.

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Bob Schwiderski releases map of accused Christian clerics in Minnesota

MINNESOTA
City Pages

By Jesse Marx
Wed., Jul. 30 2014

For decades, Bob Schwiderski has been a voice for victims of clerical abuse. He’s blanketed the neighborhoods of accused priests with fliers and held press conferences to encourage others to speak out.

This week, Schwiderski kicked up his crusade. He released an updated version of a map he created showing where each of the allegations of sexual misconduct that he’s recorded over the years occurred and by whom. There’s 250 names total, and they include not only Catholic priests and monks, but Episcopal and Protestant pastors and their staff. You’ll also find four nuns.

The map is entitled “The Hunting Grounds” because Swiderski believes that places of worship, no matter the denomination, attract sexual predators. “Some people know that if they present themselves in this godly way they’ll have access to children,” he tells us. “And the families are trusting of the people who work in the churches.”

He would have included allegations against leaders of other religions, but he doesn’t know of any. And even if he did, he’d need a second source. Every person on the map has at least two allegations against them, he says. Another list he keeps private includes 261 Christians.

His careful approach of naming people publicly, which he honed as the head of the Minnesota chapter of SNAP, has the benefit of bringing victims together. Schwiderski asks everyone who comes forward with an allegation to contact their old friends and classmates, looking for similar stories of abuse. “All of a sudden, there’s two or three people and they haven’t talked in 20 years,” he says, “but now they have people to walk forward with.”

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Rome- Vatican confirms predator priest is ousted

UNITED STATES
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

For immediate release: Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests ( 314-566-9790 cell, SNAPclohessy@aol.com )

The Vatican confirmed today that Fr. Carlos Urrutigoity, a credibly accused serial predator, has been suspended from his post as deputy bishop of a diocese in Paraguay.

[Vatican Radio]

[NBC News]

The Pope should fire Bishop Rogelio Livieres Plano. Livieres deliberately promoted a credibly accused abuser who admitted sleeping with teens and allegedly molested several of them.

Livieres ignored a fellow bishop who explicitly warned that Fr. Carlos Urrutigoity is “a serious threat to young people.” How much more reckless can a church official be?

And Pope Francis should harshly and publicly explain and denounce Livieres’ irresponsible actions, instead of letting him “save face” by yet-another vague and minimizing statement from a lower-level Vatican staffer.

This piecemeal, reactive approach – gently disciplining egregious wrongdoers only when they’re publicly exposed – won’t cut it. For years Vatican officials have taken belated, grudging and lenient action against church officials when their wrongdoing has been so bad that it prompted international criticism. So this hand-slapping of one Paraguay bishop is inadequate. It is far from ground-breaking.

Covering up abuse and endangering kids is a cancer on the church. It requires severe surgery, not an occasional band-aid only applied under duress. Francis must publicly oust a number of complicit bishops and say why in no uncertain terms if he really wants to get other bishops to stop putting innocent children in harm’s way.

Fr. Urrutigoity spent time in Canada, Switzerland, Minnesota (Winona), and Pennsylvania (Scranton). He’s accused of abuse in Minnesota and Pennsylvania.

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Archbishop Nienstedt: I will not resign.

MINNESOTA
dotCommonweal

Grant Gallicho July 30, 2014

In a column that will be published tomorrow, the embattled archbishop of St. Paul and Minneapolis says he will not resign. Soon after I reported that Archbishop John Nienstedt was being investigated for a series allegations of inappropriate sexual conduct with seminarians, priests, and other adult men, an affidavit filed by Nienstedt’s former top canon lawyer strongly criticized the archdiocese’s sexual-abuse policies and practicies. Calls for his resignation began to grow. Earlier this week, the Minneapolis Star Tribune ran an editorial urging the archbishop to step down. So did the New York Times. But Nienstedt won’t go.

Eighteen years ago, Pope John Paul II chose me to serve the Church as a bishop, an authentic successor of the apostles. A bishop’s role is more like that of a father of a family than that of a CEO. I am bound to continue in my office as long as the Holy Father has appointed me here. I have acknowledged my responsibility in the current crisis we face, and I also take responsibility for leading our archdiocese to a new and better day.

“This is what the Lord says to you,” Nienstedt’s column continues, citing Second Chronicles: “‘Stop being afraid, and stop being discouraged because of this vast invasion force, because the battle doesn’t belong to you, but to God.'”

Apologizing for the “distractions I have inadvertently caused,” the archbishop emphasizes three things about his response to the months-long scandal. First, he announces that he has a new leadership team that operates with the philosophy of “Victims First.” In consultation with victims, Nienstedt says he plans to hire a new victims liason–who will be a layperson. Second, he claims that he has never knowingly covered up sexual abuse. He admits that he was too trusting of the archdiocese’s process, and that “we did not handle all complaints the way we should have in the past.” And third, Nienstedt says that he has always been honest with his people. Over the past year, according to the archbishop, he has learned that he must change his leadership style.

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Bangalore’s nightmare continues as priest rapes minor at her home

INDIA
Hindustan Times

Bengaluru, July 30, 2014

An 11-year-old girl was allegedly raped by a temple priest in Bangalore on Tuesday, less than a month after a seven-year-old was raped in a city school, sparking widespread protests in the southern city.

Police say the 53-year-old priest, a friend of the victim’s family, has been arrested. On Tuesday night, he forced himself upon the girl at her home when her parents were away. Hearing the victim’s screams, her two sisters – also minors – ran in from another room, forcing the priest to flee. Later, the parents filed a case with the local police.

In another incident that came to light on Wednesday, a 26-year-old carpenter has reportedly confessed to police that he raped a seven-year-old girl. Results of the victim’s medical tests will reveal when the incident took place, police officials said. The carpenter’s mother worked as a domestic help at the girl’s residence. His family, however, says police tortured him to get the confession.

Anger against sexual violence has been rising in the country since December 16, 2012, when a 23-year-old medical student was brutally gang-raped, and killed, by six men inside a private bus in south Delhi.

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Of three accused priests, one commits suicide, second admits molestation

LOUISIANA
The Advocate

Claire Taylor
July 30, 2014

On June 15, 1992, a 26-year-old man provided a legal statement accusing three Diocese of Lafayette priests of sexual misconduct against him in the 1970s and 1980s.

One of those priests, Ronald Lane “Jean Paul” Fontenot, pleaded guilty and was convicted in 1986 of statutory rape in Spokane, Washington, where he was transferred for counseling after he was placed on leave in Lafayette in 1983 when a civil lawsuit was filed.

A second priest, David Primeaux, admitted in a 1984 psychological evaluation that he started abusing children in 1980 at St. Benedict in Covington. The Diocese settled a lawsuit in 2000 in which Primeaux allegedly admitted molesting a boy while serving at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Milton in the early 1980s.

Primeaux left the priesthood in 1985 and later got married. When some of his victims confronted the wife of the priest-turned-professor in Virginia in December 2012, he committed suicide.

The final priest accused by the young man is the Rev. Gilbert Dutel, who today serves as pastor of St. Edmond Catholic Church in Lafayette.

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Fr Lombardi on the situation in Ciudad del Este, Paraguay

VATICAN CITY
Vatican Radio

(Vatican Radio) Responding to journalists’ questions, the Director of the Holy See Press Office, Father Federico Lombardi SJ, made a statement about the situation in the Diocese of Ciudad del Este (Paraguay) and the Apostolic Visitation of Cardinal Santos Abril y Castelló.

The Visitation was announced by the Apostolic Nuncio to Paraguay on 2 July, and took place from 21-26 July.

“Concerning the situation in the Diocese of Ciudad del Este (Paraguay),” Father Lombardi said, “I can confirm that in the course of the visitation, Cardinal Santos Abril y Castelló cautioned Bishop [Rogelio Ricardo] Livieres [Plano] against proceeding with further priestly ordinations. No other provisions were announced. Cardinal Santos Abril y Castelló will report the results of his visitation to the Pope.”

News reports had also suggested that the Vicar General of the Diocese, Fr Carlos Urrutigoity, had been fired. Father Urrutigoity has been the subject of accusations of sexual misconduct involving minors at a school in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania. The Diocese has pointed out the allegations against Father Urrutigoity were never proven.

In his statement, Father Lombardi noted that Father Urrutigoity had been relieved of his duties as Vicar General shortly prior to visitation: “With regard to Father Carlos Urrutigoity, he had been relieved of his duties as vicar general by Bishop Livieres on July 14, a few days before the visitation, on the grounds of the completion of other duties on his part.”

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Vatican takes action in Paraguay diocese where accused Argentine priest was removed

VATICAN CITY
TribTown

By NICOLE WINFIELD Associated Press
First Posted: July 30, 2014

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis is taking action in a divisive diocese in Paraguay where an Argentine priest, accused by a former superior of being a “serious threat to young people,” has been removed as the No. 2.

The Rev. Carlos Urrutigoity is still an active priest in the Ciudad del Este diocese, however, in a sign that he remains in good standing with his bishop.

Urrutigoity has denied allegations of impropriety, has never been charged and his bishop, Monsignor Rogelio Livieres, has stressed that there is no accusation against him that he sexually abused minors. But Urrutigoity’s case re-emerged after Francis sent a team of Vatican investigators to the diocese this month to look into criticisms against Livieres by other Paraguayan prelates.

Livieres in 2005 allowed Urrutigoity to join his diocese, even though Urrutigoity’s then-superior in Scranton, Pennsylvania had warned Livieres and the Vatican that he was a threat and unsuitable for the priesthood.

Urrutigoity had been a member of the schismatic, traditionalist Society of St. Pius X. He later joined the Scranton diocese and founded a priestly society where the old Latin Mass was celebrated.

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Archbishop Nienstedt says he won’t resign, vows to make changes

MINNESOTA
Pioneer Press

By Elizabeth Mohr
emohr@pioneerpress.com
POSTED: 07/30/2014

Responding to calls for his resignation, Archbishop John Nienstedt said Wednesday that he will remain at the helm of the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis.

Nienstedt has come under fire in recent months for his handling of clergy sex abuse cases.

“I have acknowledged my responsibility in the current crisis we face, and I also take responsibility for leading our archdiocese to a new and better day,” Nienstedt wrote in a column to be published in Thursday’s Catholic Spirit newsletter.

That “crisis” is the result of accusations and lawsuits against the Archdiocese, church officials and priests regarding alleged child abuse and what some have called cover-up of crimes.

Critics say Nienstedt and his predecessors did not take action to remove credibly accused priests from the ministry.

Nienstedt said he will not resign and will, instead, “apply these hard lessons that I have learned over the past months.”

The archbishop said that he is creating “a new leadership team that operates under the philosophy of ‘Victims First’ ” and that he’s appointing a victim liaison. Nienstedt said the church has reached out to victims of abuse for their input.

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Minnesota Archbishop John Nienstedt Says He Will Not Resign Despite Mishandled Sex Abuse Claims

MINNESOTA
Huffington Post

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – The Roman Catholic archbishop of St. Paul and Minneapolis says he won’t resign despite criticism over the archdiocese’s handling of sexual abuse claims involving priests.

Archbishop John Nienstedt made his comments in in a column that will appear in Thursday’s archdiocese newspaper, The Catholic Spirit. He says he’s bound to stay in office as long as Pope Francis wants.

Nienstedt says he’ll continue to apply the hard lessons he’s learned over the past months.

He says he’s never knowingly covered up clergy sexual abuse. He says he’s created a new leadership team that puts victims first. And he maintains he’s always been honest with Catholics of the archdiocese.

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Tough lessons lead to significant changes

MINNESOTA
Roman Catholic Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis – The Catholic Spirit

Archbishop John C. Nienstedt | July 30, 2014

To say that this has been a difficult year is quite an understatement.

Here in the archdiocese, Catholics have witnessed many troubling media reports, and many of us have had difficult conversations with friends and family about what it means to be Catholic and why we still profess the faith. I, myself, have been the subject of two investigations, which have brought with them more public scrutiny. I have received messages calling me a hypocrite, a domineering boss and a liar. Others have written that I am a courageous moral leader and a true shepherd. I have read them all. I am grateful for everyone who has taken the time to write, regardless of how they feel, as most believe they are acting in the best interests of the Church.

In the end, it comes down to this: 18 years ago, Pope John Paul II chose me to serve the Church as a bishop, an authentic successor of the apostles. A bishop’s role is more like that of a father of a family than that of a CEO. I am bound to continue in my office as long as the Holy Father has appointed me here. I have acknowledged my responsibility in the current crisis we face, and I also take responsibility for leading our archdiocese to a new and better day.

In Second Chronicles 20:15, the spirit of the Lord tells King Jehoshaphat and the troops, as his enemies are approaching across the Palestinian wilderness in battle, “This is what the Lord says to you: ‘stop being afraid, and stop being discouraged because of this vast invasion force, because the battle doesn’t belong to you, but to God.’ ”

I have heard calls for my resignation since I arrived in this wonderful archdiocese seven years ago. I will continue to listen to those who express concerns about my leadership, but I will also continue serving as I have been called to do. I am devoted to serving this local Church, and I will continue to do so and to apply these hard lessons that I have learned over the past months. While it may be difficult to believe, the suffering we have endured is bearing much fruit in reform of practices and correction of decisions that were made in the past, either by me or my predecessors.

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Vatican confirms suspension of ordinations in troubled Paraguay diocese

VATICAN CITY
Catholic Culture

Catholic World News – July 30, 2014

The Vatican has confirmed that all priestly ordinations have been suspended in the Diocese of Ciudad del Este, Paraguay, after a Vatican investigation of the diocese.

Father Federico Lombardi, the director of the Vatican press office, told reporters that Cardinal Santos Abril y Castello, who headed the Vatican investigation, was reporting his findings to Pope Francis. The Vatican spokesman said:

I can confirm that in the course of the visitation, Cardinal Santos Abril y Castelló cautioned Bishop Livieres against proceeding with further priestly ordinations. No other provisions were announced.

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Former priest and serial child abuser Tony Walsh fails in sentence appeals

IRELAND
Irish Times

Wed, Jul 30, 2014

Former priest and serial child abuser Tony Walsh has failed in appeals against separate sentences imposed on him for what the Court of Criminal Appeal has described as the “depraved” rape and sexual abuse of young boys.

Walsh, who was known as the “Singing Priest” for his role in a travelling all-priest vocal group before he was defrocked, is serving a 16-year sentence imposed on him in 2010 for the rape and abuse of three schoolboys.

In 2012 Walsh had 15 months added to this sentence for abusing two other boys.

In a written judgement delivered by presiding judge Mr Justice John Murray, the appeal court said that with regard to the first appeal the offences were of the “utmost gravity”, but even that description did not do justice to the “appalling nature” of the offences committed against young boys.

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Archbishop Nienstedt won’t resign

MINNESOTA
Star Tribune

Article by: JEAN HOPFENSPERGER , Star Tribune Updated: July 30, 2014

John Nienstedt writes in a church newspaper column, “I am bound to continue my office.”

Archbishop John Nienstedt will announce Thursday that he is not resigning as head of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, despite growing pressure for him to step down.

Nienstedt will make the announcement in his column in the The Catholic Spirit, the newspaper of the archdiocese.

“To say that this has been a difficult year is quite an understatement,” wrote Nienstedt.

“In the end, it comes down to this: eighteen years ago, Pope John Paul II chose me to serve the Church as a bishop, an authentic successor of the Apostles … I am bound to continue in my office as long as the Holy Father has appointed me here.”

Nienstedt, who has led the Twin Cities archdiocese since 2008, has been under growing criticism for his handling of child clergy abuse cases in the archdiocese.

A Minneapolis law firm hired by the archdiocese to investigate allegations of sexual misconduct by Nienstedt with adults has completed its work and submitted a report. Auxiliary bishop Lee Piché said Tuesday that church officials will review that along with “any other information we receive.”

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Vatican intervenes to remove a priest in Paraguay accused of sex abuse in US

VATICAN CITY
Religion News Service

Josephine McKenna | July 30, 2014

VATICAN CITY (RNS) The Vatican has ordered a Roman Catholic diocese in eastern Paraguay to remove a priest accused of sex abuse in the U.S. and to restrict the activities of the bishop who hired him.

Pope Francis is sending a papal delegation to Paraguay to investigate the activities of the Rev. Carlos Urrutigoity, a priest accused of sex abuse in Pennsylvania.

Pope Francis sent a papal delegation to Paraguay to investigate the activities of the Rev. Carlos Urrutigoity, a priest accused of sex abuse in Pennsylvania. Photo courtesy P. Alvarenga, Vanguardia
Pope Francis sent a cardinal and an archbishop to investigate Carlos Urrutigoity in the diocese of Ciudad del Este. The two men visited the country July 21-26.

The removal is the latest demonstration of the pope’s “zero tolerance” of clerical abuse, and it suggests priests suspected of child abuse in one country can no longer find shelter in other countries.

In 2002, Urrutigoity was accused of sexual abuse of minors in a highly publicized lawsuit in the Diocese of Scranton, Pa. He and another priest, Eric Ensey, were suspended by then-Bishop James Timlin amid allegations they had sexually molested students at St. Gregory’s Academy. The diocese reportedly reached a $400,000-plus settlement in the case in 2006.

Urrutigoity, a native of Argentina, was transferred to Canada before settling in Paraguay.

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Church deacon who blamed Satan for sex abuse may have jail time cut from 20 years to one

IDAHO
The Raw Story

By David Edwards
Wednesday, July 30, 2014

An Idaho church deacon who blamed Satan after he molested a 12-year-old girl in a storage closet has been sentenced to 20 years in prison, but could spend less than a year behind bars.

Alexander Gonzalez Garcia, 57, was arrested last December on charges of lewd conduct with a minor.

According to authorities, the girl said that Garcia had touched her inappropriately while they were in a storage closet at Nampa Seventh-Day Adventist Church, where he was a deacon.

Garcia reportedly told investigators that “Satan was in the storage room with him and the girl.” But he insisted that he had only kissed her and hugged her.

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Attorney for priest charged in theft case cites ‘jurisdictional issues’

MILWAUKEE (WI)
Chicago Tribune

By Alexandra Chachkevitch
Tribune reporter
12:12 p.m. CDT, July 30, 2014

A Greek Orthodox priest charged with felony theft waived his right to a preliminary hearing in a Milwaukee County courtroom this morning.

The Rev. James Dokos, who was affiliated with Saints Peter and Paul Church in Glenview, is scheduled to be arraigned Aug. 26.

“There are significant jurisdictional issues to address in this matter,” Dokos’ lawyer Patrick Knight said in court Wednesday. Knight did not specify the issues.

Dokos is accused of improperly spending more than $100,000 from a trust fund intended to benefit Annunciation Church in Milwaukee, where he was a longtime pastor until transferring to Saints Peter and Paul Church in 2012.

Dokos, 62, who has been suspended from his duties at the Glenview church, made his initial court appearance two weeks ago, where bail was set at $5,000. Because it was a personal recognizance bond, he was not required to post any money for his release.

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Ex-Salem pastor pleads guilty to sexually assaulting child, will get prison term

NEW JERSEY
South Jersey Times

By Alex Young | South Jersey Times
on July 29, 2014

SALEM — The former pastor of the First Presbyterian Church of Salem pleaded guilty Tuesday to sexually assaulting a minor child — one of his own relatives — in the summer of 2013.

Jonathan Smith, 59, formerly of Market Street in Salem, will be sentenced to four years in New Jersey State Prison when he returns to Superior Court in September. He pleaded guilty to one count of second degree sexual assault.

In court Tuesday, Smith admitted to sexually assaulting a victim less than 13 years old. At Smith’s arraignment in April, Assistant Salem County Prosecutor Lisa Rastelli revealed that the victim was a relative who spent time during the summer of 2013 at Smith’s home, the Presbyterian pastor’s house on Market Street.

The boy’s mother reportedly became concerned when he returned home after his time in Salem and something didn’t seem right. The victim told his mother about the incidents, who then alerted the authorities.

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SA extradites Catholic priest to Germany

SOUTH AFRICA
Eyewitness News

JOHANNESBURG – Police say the extradition of a German Catholic priest to face charges relating to sexual abuse is the culmination of a process that began last year.

The 56-year-old priest was handed over to German police officers last night having spent seven years living in South Africa.

He has been in custody since being arrested in September but the local charges have been withdrawn to pave the way for the extradition which will see him face almost 40 charges back home

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Lafayette Diocese hit once again with allegations of abuse

LOUISIANA
IND

The spectre of priest sex abuse has returned to haunt the Roman Catholic Diocese of Lafayette following the recent release of an investigative report by Minnesota Public Radio, revealing new allegations of another child predator hiding behind the clerical collar.

The investigative, four-part series by Minnesota Public Radio delves into court documents tracing as far back as the 1980s, when the first reported priest sex abuse scandal put the Lafayette Diocese under the national spotlight. New information revealed in MPR’s report, however, shows one alleged child predator, the Rev. Gilbert Dutel, has remained with the Diocese, and currently serves as the pastor of St. Edmond Catholic Church in Lafayette.

According to MPR, Dutil’s alleged sexual abuse traces back to the 1970s, during his tenure as pastor of St. Theresa Church in Abbeville, and a case involving a young boy:

In the case of Dutel, the documents show, the allegations weren’t limited to young adults. Dutel had also been accused of sexually abusing a child. In an interview with a lawyer in 1992, the alleged victim said Dutel had abused him in the 1970s, starting when he was 9 years old.

Despite the allegations, Dutil, who is now 69 years old, has remained with the church, even receiving assignments to work with several elementary and high schools over the 22 years since the claims first surfaced, including a spot on the St. Thomas More Catholic High School’s board of directors, as well as a more than 10 year stint with the St. Peter and Paul Church in Scott. The church in Scott also operates as an elementary school, and in 2010 an anonymous donor who paid for the school’s playground requested it be named “Father Gil’s Playground” in honor of Dutil.

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Milwaukee archdiocese owes millions in legal fees

WISCONSIN
Madison.com

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Is the Archdiocese of Milwaukee too broke to pay its legal bills?

That’s the question Bankruptcy Judge Susan Kelley will be asked to answer Wednesday.

Kelley agreed more than a year ago that the archdiocese would not have to pay legal fees while its bankruptcy case was pending so it could keep enough cash on hand to cover at least one month’s bills. Bankruptcy law requires the archdiocese to pay legal fees for itself and its creditors.

In this case, most creditors are victims of clergy sexual abuse.

Their attorneys say the archdiocese has more cash than anticipated, and they’d like to get paid. The lawyers say they are owed more than $2 million.

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MN- Archbishop to speak today, SNAP responds

MINNESOTA
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

For immediate release: Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Statement by Frank Meuers of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests ( 952-334-5180, frankameuers@gmail.com )

Twin Cities Archbishop John Nienstedt may speak to some reporters today about partial results from an investigation into his alleged sexual misconduct with adults. We hope he’ll explain why he has so clearly violated the US bishops’ abuse policy by hiding and helping proven, admitted and credibly accused child molesting clerics. We doubt, however, that he will, in spite of his repeated promises to be “open and transparent” about clergy sex crimes.

[Star Tribune]

[Commonweal]

As we’ve said before, we don’t care about Nienstedt’s private behavior, unless it involves sexually harassing seminarians or underlings or makes him unable or unwilling to discipline predators in his archdiocese.

We care deeply about Nienstedt’s public behavior which inexcusably puts children in harm’s way. He has been and remains, secretive, reckless and callous about clergy sex crimes and cover ups.

We have little faith in so-called “investigations” that are funded or carried out by Catholic officials. Powerful prelates can always find and pay lawyers or “experts” who will tell them what they want to hear. (This is why they continue to quietly send proven, admitted and credibly accused child molesting clerics to the same church-funded “treatment” centers year after year after year, while hypocritically blasting those same centers in public for the allegedly “bad advice” they gave about putting predators back on the job.)

As my colleague, Barbara Dorris of SNAP said:

“We believe that most priests don’t or can’t honor their celibacy pledge. So they have sexual secrets. And if you have a sexual secret, you’re less willing to report the sexual secrets of your colleagues and supervisors, especially if those secrets involve criminal behavior.

This is perhaps the most disturbing sentence we’ve read about this investigation: ‘he also stands accused of retaliating against those who refused his advances or otherwise questioned his conduct.’

We are highly skeptical when bishops like Nienstedt claim that allegations against them are ‘personal attacks’ due to ‘my unwavering stance on issues consistent with church teaching, such as opposition to so-called same-sex marriage.’ This is especially unlikely if there are in fact ten accusers including some who were or are Catholic clerics.”

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Former Zion pastor had troubled history in Va.

PENNSYLVANIA/VIRGINIA
Philadelphia Daily News

VALERIE RUSS, DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER RUSSV@PHILLYNEWS.COM, 215-854-5987
POSTED: Wednesday, July 30, 2014

THREE WEEKS before taking the helm of North Philadelphia’s Zion Baptist Church, the Rev. A. Carl Prince met with leaders of the small Virginia church he was leaving.

On Dec. 18, 2011, he and Mount Hope Baptist Church leaders signed an “Announcement of Retirement” that took effect at the end of that year.

Prince asked that “in the interest of the Church and Christian civility, that all litigation and investigations both civil and criminal, present and future, be ceased,” the statement said.

On Jan. 12, 2012, Prince officially started at Zion, at Broad and Venango streets, one of the city’s most prominent churches. For 38 years, it had been the church of the late human-rights and economic-development advocate Rev. Leon Sullivan, the “Lion of Zion.”

It seems that Prince, who was voted out as pastor of the Philly church this month, had left some problems behind at Mount Hope, in Prince George County, 30 miles from Richmond.

There were 400 members when Prince arrived, but just 20 when he left, former trustee John Allen said.

“He wrote new bylaws that made him both the CEO and CFO of the church,” Allen said.

“He had his name put on the church bank account and he tried to sell the church out from under the last 20 members.”

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Welcome news from Paraguay

CANADA
Sylvia’s Site

Posted on July 28, 2014 by Sylvia

Amazing and most welcome news from Paraguay:

28 July 2014: “Reports: The Vatican fires a priest in Paraguay accused of molesting US seminarians” & related articles

The articles are of interest to Catholic around the world, but of particular interest to many Canadians whose sons were exposed to Father Carlos Urrutigoity while the latter – and fellow priests from the fledgling Society of St. John – first lived at and then near at St. Gregory’s Academy just outside Scranton Pennsylvania. St Gregory’s, an all boys Catholic school, was then run by the Fraternity of St. Peter.

There have been allegations about the goings on in the Society in the Society of John for years, and often battles and friction between those who alleged that Fathers Urrutigoity and Eric Ensey were sexual predators and those who defended the pair.

Some may recall that Bishop Rogelio Livieres the Opus Dei bishop of the Diocese of Ciudad del Este in Paraguay took Urroitigoityand other members of the Society of Sgt. John into his diocese. Livieres allegedly refused to believe the allegations against the priest, and refused to heed warning from the Bishop pf Scranton, NY when Urrutigoity was previously incardinated.

Urrutigoity became Vicar General of the Diocese. Dominic Carey, a Canadian who has had no problem at all with priests bedding down with young lads, is, I think, serving in the Ciudad del Este seminary and assisting – or perhaps even directing? – the formation of new priests (? – I must check this out )

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ID- Victims blast judge over child molester’s light sentence

IDAHO
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

For immediate release: Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests ( 314 566 9790, SNAPclohessy@aol.com )

We’re appalled that an admitted child molesting deacon who abused a 12 year old and blamed it on Satan may spend just a year in prison.

Prosecutes say Deacon Alexander Gonzales Garcia molested the girl by locking her in a closet during a July 2013 potluck at his church. That kind of crime strongly suggests that Garcia is out of control and not likely to respond well to treatment.

We are deeply disappointed in Judge Bradly S. Ford’s decision. And we call on him to publicly explain why he gave such a lenient sentence – more appropriate for a purse snatcher than a child molester.

We beg officials in the Seventh-day Adventist Church – at the national and regional levels and the congregation in Nampa where the crime happened – to aggressively reach out to anyone who saw, suspects, or suffered child sex crimes and urge them to call police and start healing.

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‘Singing priest’ Tony Walsh loses appeal over abuse sentences

IRELAND
RTE News

Former priest and serial child abuser Tony Walsh has failed in appeals against separate sentences of 16 years and 15 months imposed on him.

The jail terms were handed down for what the Court of Criminal Appeal has described as the “depraved” rape and sexual abuse of young boys in the 1970s and 80s.

Walsh, who was known as the “Singing Priest” for his role in a travelling all-priest vocal group before he was defrocked, is serving a 16-year sentence imposed on him in 2010 for the rape and abuse of three schoolboys.

In 2012 Walsh had 15 months added to this sentence for abusing two other boys.

In a written judgment delivered today by presiding judge Mr Justice John Murray, the appeal court said that with regard to the first appeal the offences were of the “utmost gravity”.

He said even that description did not do justice to the “appalling nature” of the offences committed against young boys.

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Vatican suspends priestly ordinations in scandal-hit Paraguayan diocese

PARAGUAY
The Tablet

30 July 2014 by Liz Dodd

The Vatican has suspended ordinations to the priesthood in a Paraguayan diocese in which its vicar-general has been accused of sexual abuse while serving as a priest in the US.

The Church has not given an official reason for the ban on ordinations in Bishop Rogelio Livieres Plano’s diocese of Ciudad del Este.

A week-long Vatican investigation into the diocese led by Spanish Cardinal Santos Abril y Castello ended on Saturday.

The investigation followed allegations that the diocese’s vicar-general, Argentine priest Fr Carlos Urrutigoity, had abused seminarians in Minnesota and Pennsylvania more than a decade ago.

Fr Urrotigoity denies the allegations.

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Forum for people with disability in Sydney

AUSTRALIA
Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse

30 July, 2014

People with disability have been invited to attend an important information session in Sydney next month to find out more about the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

Royal Commission CEO Philip Reed said the forum was part of ongoing consultations with the disability community on the issue of child sexual abuse in institutions.

“The Royal Commission is aware that many people with disability have experienced child sexual abuse while in the care of an institution,” Mr Reed said.

“We are determined that people with disability can participate in the process of the Royal Commission.

“You will not be required to discuss your personal story at the forum, it is a chance to find out more about the work of the Royal Commission and how you can share your story.

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Royal Commission to visit Geelong

AUSTRALIA
Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse

People in Geelong are invited to learn more about the work of the Royal Commission at a community information forum next month.

Chair of the Royal Commission Justice Peter McClellan will address the forum on Wednesday 13 August 2014.

Royal Commission CEO Philip Reed said the community forum is open to any members of the public who have an interest in the Royal Commission.

“We particularly encourage people affected by child sexual abuse while in the care of an institution to attend the community forum,” Mr Reed said.

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Portion of investigation of Archbishop Nienstedt is complete

MINNESOTA
Star Tribune

Article by: TONY KENNEDY, Star Tribune
Updated: July 29, 2014

A Minneapolis law firm hired by the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis to investigate allegations of sexual misconduct with adults by Archbishop John Nienstedt has completed its work and submitted a report to church officials.

Attorney Matthew Forsgren of the firm Greene Espel declined to discuss the findings and referred questions to the archdiocese.

The archdiocese commissioned the investigation earlier this summer in an effort to address accusations received by the chancery as Nienstedt fended off mounting criticism over the church’s handling of other sexual misconduct cases.

Lee Piche, auxiliary bishop of the archdiocese, said in a statement late Tuesday that the Greene Espel report “does not comprise” the entire investigation.

“We need to digest the information and any other information we receive,” said Piche, who was not available to answer questions.

Piche announced July 1 that Nienstedt asked him to investigate claims about the archbishop, which he said were received by the archdiocese several months earlier. Piche said the misconduct allegations “did not involve anything criminal or with minors.”

Nienstedt said at the time that the accusations were “absolutely and entirely false.” He called the allegations “a personal attack against me due to my unwavering stance on issues consistent with church teaching, such as opposition to so-called same-sex marriage.

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‘I didn’t believe it would produce any real result’ says son of abuse victim

IRELAND
Irish Times

Patsy McGarry

Wed, Jul 30, 2014

Adam contented himself with decorating a letter from his sister, Nicole (14) and putting a seal on it instead.

He didn’t write himself as he felt “cynical”, he said. “I did believe the gesture [of the pope meeting his mother] was sincere but I honestly didn’t believe it would produce any real result.”

Nicole Kane with her Mum Marie and the letter she received from the Pope. Photograph: Thomas NolanPope Francis thanks Irish teenager for supporting mother

However, following reports of the meetings Francis had with his mother and the five other abuse survivors, he now believes the pope is sincere about the abuse issue “more so than his predecessor. It seems that way. I’d like to think so”.

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Opferinitiative wirft Bistum Diffamierung von Missbrauchsopfern vor

DEUTSCHLAND
Focus

[Summary: The Trier diocese has been sharply criticized for returning to service a priest who was accused to sexual abuse. Hermann Schell of Schafsbrief initiative, said on Tuesday that the move was unacceptable. He said it defames all abuse victims and shows that the diocese lacks awareness of injustice. A spokesman for the prosecutor’s office said the charges could not be proven. The arrest of judgment was not carried out “because of proven innocence, but due to low guilt,” said the spokesman. The pastor is alleged to have given the youth money in exchange for sex but the boy ran away.]

Nach der aufgehobenen Beurlaubung eines früheren Pfarrers hat eine Missbrauchsopfer-Initiative das Bistum Trier scharf kritisiert.

Es sei nicht hinnehmbar, dass der Geistliche aus dem saarländischen Lebach wieder als Vertretung oder Aushilfe arbeiten dürfe, sagte der Sprecher der Initiative Schafsbrief, Hermann Schell, am Dienstag. Dies sei eine Diffamierung aller Missbrauchsopfer und zeige beim Bistum „fehlendes Unrechtsbewusstsein ohne Ende“. Das Verfahren gegen den früheren Lebacher Pfarrer wegen des Verdachts des sexuellen Missbrauchs war im März dieses Jahres von der Staatsanwaltschaft Saarbrücken gegen die Zahlung von 6000 Euro eingestellt worden. Die Einstellung sei nicht „wegen erwiesener Unschuld, sondern wegen geringer Schuld“ erfolgt, sagte der Sprecher der Staatsanwaltschaft am Dienstag.

Man gehe davon aus, dass sich der Geistliche über eine Internetplattform mit einem Jungen in Saarbrücken „zu sexuellen Dienstleistungen“ verabredet habe, sagte der Sprecher. Bei dem Treffen habe der Pfarrer dem Minderjährigen auch Geld gegeben, der Junge sei aber weggelaufen und es sei nicht zu sexuellen Handlungen gekommen.

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An adequate response to child sexual abuse

AUSTRALIA
Eureka Street

Andrew Hamilton | 30 July 2014

Reckoning: the Catholic Church and Child Sexual Abuse, written by Chris McGillion and Damian Grace, and jointly published by Eureka Street and ATF Press, offers a useful map of the journey that has led to the Royal Commission into Sexual Abuse. It recalls how the widespread sexual abuse of children within the Church came to prominence in Australia, outlines the variety of responses to it, and reflects on the explanations given for it.

The book is modest and even in its tone. It offers a broad perspective on the challenges that will arise from ensuring that children are safe in the future.

The dimensions of an adequate response to child sexual abuse by the Catholic Church are now fairly clear. First, children must be protected from abusive behaviour. This requires curtailing the opportunities for potential abusers to meet, groom and abuse children. It also requires preparing, monitoring and supervising church representatives who are in contact with children.

Second, the criminal gravity of sexual abuse must be recognised, and the response both to victims and offenders be proportionate to the seriousness of the crime. This requires responding professionally and transparently to accusations of abuse, excluding from public ministry those who have offended, and continuing to monitor any offenders who remain within religious communities.

Third, the serious harm suffered by people who were abused as children must be recognised. This is done by ensuring they receive the pastoral care and counseling they desire, and can claim compensation.

Finally, the Catholic Church must take responsibility for the sexual abuse inflicted by its representatives and for its concealment, and for ensuring that aspects of its culture that encourage abuse are remedied. For this, serious and independent study will be necessary.

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Satan-blaming church deacon gets rider in sex abuse case

IDAHO
KTVB

Katie Terhune, KTVB July 29, 2014

CALDWELL– A Nampa deacon who claimed that Satan took control of his body and made him molest a 12-year-old girl in a church storage room is headed to prison.

But 57-year-old Alexander Gonzales Garcia, who was arrested in December, could spend only a year behind bars after Judge Bradly S. Ford opted Tuesday to retain jurisdiction.

Garcia was sentenced to 20 years in prison with five years before parole eligibility, but could still be released as early as 2015 if he successfully completes his term of retained jurisdiction, commonly known as a “rider.”

He will also be required to register as a sex offender and pay about $8,000 in civil fines and court costs.

Garcia, a deacon with the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Nampa, was originally charged with lewd conduct with a minor under 16. In an interview with police detectives, he admitted touching the girl inappropriately during a July potluck at the church, but insisted Satan had been in the storage room with him, and had made him molest the girl.

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Former church deacon sentenced for lewd conduct

IDAHO
Idaho State Journal

Associated Press

CALDWELL, Idaho (AP) — A former southwestern Idaho church deacon who told police Satan may have taken control of his body, causing him to molest a 12-year-old girl in a church storage room, has been sentenced to five to 15 years in prison.

However, District Judge Bradly S. Ford retained jurisdiction for a year, meaning 57-year-old Alexander Gonzalez Garcia of Middleton could get out of prison after a year if he responds well to treatment programs.

Garcia was initially charged with lewd conduct with a child, but pleaded guilty in March to sexual abuse of a minor. He must register as a sex offender and have no contact with the girl, her family or any girls under the age of 18.

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Deacon sentenced to prison after claiming Satan made him have illegal contact with 12-year-old

IDAHO
KIVI

By On Your Side Newsroom.
CREATED Jul 29, 2014

Alexander Gonzalez Garcia, 57, of Middleton has been sentenced to five years fixed and up to 15 years in prison for felony sexual abuse of a minor under 16 years of age.

Garcia was a deacon at the Nampa Seventh-Day Adventist Church was arrested in December 2013 after the Nampa Police Department found he had sexual contact with a 12-year-old female victim on church grounds. In an investigation revealed in July of 2013, detectives found that Garcia locked the 12 year-old in a closet and began kissing, hugging and touching her inappropriately.

Garcia in an interview with police claimed that Satan was in the room with him and made him do it.

During today’s hearing, Judge Ford commended the victim for her courage in coming forward immediately and reporting the abuse. He noted that if there’s one place a child should feel safe, it’s in a church.

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Ex-deacon sentenced to prison for molesting girl, could get out in one year

IDAHO
Idaho Statesman

Last December, Alexander Gonzalez Garcia blamed Satan for causing him to molest a 12-year-old girl in a storage room at the Nampa Seventh-Day Adventist Church where he served as a deacon.

On Tuesday, 3rd District Judge Bradly Ford sentenced the 57-year-old Middleton man to at least five and up to 15 years in prison for that felony. But the judge retained jurisdiction, which means Garcia will be evaluated in the prison system for one year, after which Ford can decide whether to release him on probation or have him complete his prison term.

“Mr. Garcia used his position of trust in the church to take advantage of the victim, and he deserves to be behind bars where he can no longer be a danger to the community,” Canyon County Prosecutor Bryan Taylor said in a news release. “This case should serve as a reminder to every parent that you need to be very careful of who your kids are hanging around with.”

Ford commended the victim for her courage in coming forward and reporting the abuse, which reportedly happened in July 2013. Court records show Garcia initially denied the abuse but later told police Satan was in the locked room and made him touch the girl inappropriately.

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Ballarat teacher Scott Williams ‘charismatic’ before founding abusive cult: former student

AUSTRALIA
The Courier

By FIONA HENDERSON July 29, 2014

PASTOR Scott Williams was described as “charismatic” by former Ballarat East High School staff and students.

However, concerns were also raised about the ex-teacher’s daily lunchtime meetings with senior students during his Ballarat tenure to discuss religious matters.

Williams on Monday night was accused of horrific sexual and physical abuse at his religious cult Christian Assemblies International (CAI) by the ABC’s Four Corners program.

He is also accused of misusing vast amounts of money donated by CAI members and building up a worldwide multi-million dollar property portfolio.

Mr Williams taught at Ballarat East High School in the early 1970s before heading to Germany as a missionary, where he worked in Feldafing as a pool attendant at a military school for young men.

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State can’t ignore abuse at Kincora Boys Home under secret watch

NORTHERN IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

29 JULY 2014

In the hit Cold War TV drama series The Americans, one of the main weapons both the KGB and the CIA-FBI deploy against each other is sex. The story of the undercover Soviet spies posing as the all-American apple pie family, Elisabeth and Phillip Jennings, swirls around issues of infidelity, bedroom betrayals, pillow talk and the ever-present threat of blackmail in the background.

The Jennings’ unsuspecting nemesis and neighbour, the FBI spy catcher Stan Beeman, is himself using his sexual prowess to seduce an attractive female Russian agent who initially turns to the American because she has been sexually exploited and abused by a senior KGB operative at the USSR embassy in Washington DC.

The Americans plot line and the heavy emphasis on lust, love and treachery (of both the sexual and political kind) is laden with hammed up Holywood-style psycho-drama although to be fair its creator Joe Weisberg was a CIA case officer who served on the Cold War frontline.

Indeed, the series and its main premise is not so far-fetched perhaps when you consider the long history of how intelligence services used sexual blackmail to recruit and “turn’ agents, including here in Northern Ireland.

Back in the mid-1970s there was little or no sign of the Cold War thawing and in the UK there was a real sense of national crisis and decline.

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‘Date rape is bad…

UNITED KINGDOM
Daily Mail

‘Date rape is bad, stranger rape is worse’: Richard Dawkins sparks outrage during Twitter debate

By SAM MARSDEN and STEPHANIE LINNING

Controversial scientist Richard Dawkins provoked fury yesterday after referring to ‘mild date rape’ and ‘mild paedophilia’ in comments on Twitter.

Campaigners for women and child abuse victims condemned the prominent atheist’s posts as ‘offensive and damaging’.

Professor Dawkins, 73, became embroiled in the row when he made a point about logical thinking to almost a million followers on the social networking site.

The academic sparked anger by choosing the example of sexual abuse to illustrate the idea.

He began by writing: ‘X is bad. Y is worse. If you think that’s an endorsement of X, go away and don’t come back until you’ve learned how to think logically.’

Then he added: ‘Mild pedophilia [sic] is bad. Violent pedophilia is worse. If you think that’s an endorsement of mild pedophilia, go away and learn how to think. …

However in a statement on his website last night, he said he ‘was only talking logic’, and had ‘no desire to make light of the seriousness of any kind of rape or [sic] pedophilia’

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Alleged abusive priest serving in Lafayette

LOUISIANA
The Advocate

Claire Taylor July 29, 2014

Here in the heart of Cajun country, where the first priest sex abuse scandal rocked the Roman Catholic Church faithful in the 1980s, allegations have surfaced that a priest who sexually abused a boy in the 1970s continues to minister in Lafayette.

Two documents from the 1990s uncovered during a recent Minnesota Public Radio investigation allege the Rev. Gilbert Dutel sexually abused a boy in the 1970s while serving at a church in Abbeville. He was also was accused of coercing young men into having sex, the MPR story says.

Both Dutel, who is pastor of St. Edmond Catholic Church in Lafayette, and the Diocese of Lafayette denied the allegations Tuesday.

The Survivors Network of Those Abused By Priests issued a statement July 21, following the MPR investigation, urging Diocese of Lafayette Bishop Michael Jarrell to suspend Dutel immediately.

The Diocese of Lafayette, in a written response to The Advertiser’s questions about the reports Tuesday, said the “unproven allegations” against Dutel were investigated years ago.

“No new information exists that warrants any action by the Diocese,” the statement reads. “In the absence of any contrary information, Father Dutel remains a priest in good standing.”

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How many men are paedophiles?

CANADA
BBC News

By Wesley Stephenson
BBC News

The Pope was recently reported to have said that about 2% of Catholic clergy are paedophiles. But how does this compare with society as a whole – is it more or less than average?

As soon as you give this question a moment’s thought, you realise that it’s not going to be an easy one to answer. Paedophiles are not easy to identify.

“Because paedophilia is so secretive and so few people are willing to admit it, there is no meaningful way to get a reliable estimate,” says Dr James Cantor, a psychologist and sexual behaviour scientist at the University of Toronto.

“There’s no meaningfully ethical way of taking 200 men, hooking them up to detectors, showing them pictures of adults and children and seeing how many respond most to children.”

One person who has attempted an estimate is Dr Michael Seto, a clinical and forensic psychologist at the Royal Ottawa Healthcare group.

In 2008 he wrote a book in which he put the prevalence of paedophilia in the general population at 5%.

The figure was based on surveys conducted in Germany, Norway and Finland in which men were asked whether they had ever had sexual thoughts or fantasies about children or engaged in sexual activity with children.

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SA extradites German priest on sex abuse charges

SOUTH AFRICA
Sowetan

By Sapa-AFP | Jul 30, 2014

Originally from Aachen in West Germany, Kerkhoff is wanted for alleged sex crimes against children committed before he moved several years ago to South Africa, where he was arrested on similar charges.

A German Catholic priest accused of sexual abuse of children in his native country and in South Africa has been extradited to Germany, police said Wednesday.

Georg Kerkhoff, who is in his 50s, was put on a plane to Germany on Tuesday night, South African police spokesman Lungelo Dlamini told AFP.

“We took him to the airport and handed him over to the German police. He will face trial in Germany,” he said.

Originally from Aachen in West Germany, Kerkhoff is wanted for alleged sex crimes against children committed before he moved several years ago to South Africa, where he was arrested on similar charges.

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Papal delegation suspends ordinations in Paraguay diocese

PARAGUAY
DFW Catholic

Ciudad del Este, Paraguay, Jul 29, 2014 / 04:39 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- An apostolic visitation of Paraguay’s Cuidad del Este diocese concluded on Saturday with the visitors suspending a scheduled ordination until they have reached conclusions about their investigation.

“For the time, priestly and diaconal ordinations for the students of St. Joseph’s Major Seminary are suspended and it is unknown how long this will endure – it can only be revealed by the Pope,” Cardinal Santos Abril y Castello, who led the apostolic visitation, said at a July 26 press conference.

The diocese was scheduled to have priestly ordinations Aug. 15. A release from the diocese clarified that “the ordinations of Aug. 15 have been suspended until the conclusion (of the visitation), not canceled.”

While the visitation took place July 21-26, Cardinal Abril y Castello and Bishop Milton Troccoli Cebedio – who assisted the cardinal in the investigation – will return to Rome to arrange the data collected and present it to Pope Francis.

The conclusion has not yet been scheduled, but is anticipated in September. The apostolic visitation of the Diocese of Ciudad del Este was announced by the apostolic nuncio to Paraguay July 2.

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Outside group wants to open bishop selection process to laity’s voice

UNITED STATES
NW Times

By Bill Dolan bill.dolan@nwi.com, (219) 662-5328

GARY | A national organization advocating change within the Roman Catholic church wants local parishioners to use the group’s website to tell church fathers who should be the diocese’s next bishop.

“Church law encourages all Catholics to express their views on Church matters that concern them, and this includes who their new bishop may be,” Nick Ingala, a spokesman for Voice of the Faithful, said Tuesday.

However, Debbie Bosak, communications director for the Gary Catholic Diocese, said she is skeptical of the the group, which first formed a dozen years ago in response to the sex abuse scandal of recent years.

“They are not an official organization of the Catholic Church but rather a dissident group of lay Catholics with an agenda,” she said.

Ingala said Voice of the Faithful, headquartered in Newton, Mass., supports “survivors of clerical sexual abuse, recognizes priests of integrity and seeks to shape structural change in the Church,” and wants greater participation in bishop selection.

He said the group’s motto is, “Keep the Faith, Change the Church.”

“That change-the-church part really does create some opposition,” he said, adding his group isn’t challenging the pope’s authority to name bishops.

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Wall Street Journal brainwash idiot Catholics for Pope Francis’s visit – to attend his Eucharist Satanic Mass & stupidly give millions of dollars to Vatican Mammon

UNITED STATES
PopeCrimes& Vatican Evils.

Paris Arrow

Opus Dei Beast PR Stunt of the Day: Wall Street Journal “Speculation Grows Over Potential Visit by Pope Francis to U.S.” to goad big American business donors and American idiot Catholics to give millions to Vatican Mammon Beast.

It’s very easy to detect the American journalists who are part of the Opus Dei Beast PR Deceits Team at the Vatican – they all speak positively and fanatically about Pope Francis — in order to brainwash and entice American idiot Catholics to give blindly and stupidly millions of dollars to the voracious evil Vatican Mammon Beast. Take the Wall Street Journal title Speculation Grows Over Potential Visit by Pope Francis to U.S. and its first paragraph to instantly programme American idiot Catholics that there is an “’intense’ speculation” of Pope Francis’s visit (see news articles below with our comments and emphases). Its purpose is to incite a pop star hype – to attend Pope Francis’s Mass – like attending a concert of porno naked singer Miley Cyrus.

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Catholics criticize Apuron, sect

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Written by
Gaynor Dumat-ol Daleno
Pacific Daily News

There’s a bigger, deeper battle behind the recent controversies involving the local Catholic church, some observers said yesterday.

As dozens of island Catholics gathered yesterday at the steps of the Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral-Basilica to support ousted Monsignor James Benavente, and also to pray for healing, observers said the deeper rift stems from a sect within the church whose actions depart from some of the oldest Catholic traditions.

Archbishop Anthony Apuron removed Benavente from being rector of the Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral-Basilica in Hagåtña over alleged fiscal mismanagement, the archbishop stated yesterday.

“There is a bigger issue at play here: The imposition of the Neocathecumenal Way upon the Catholic Church in Guam,” said Charles White, a Guam resident who writes a blog called The Thoughtful Catholic.

“Members of the Neocathecumenal Way practice their faith in a way that largely separates them from their parishes,” White wrote in an email.

“For example, they celebrate Mass away from the Church proper every Saturday night, instead of attending normal parish Masses,” White stated. “While they insist that these Masses are open to others, in practice, they are not. They are not even published in the parish bulletin.” …
The Guam Catholic church’s leadership, through Archbishop Anthony Apuron, hasn’t responded to phone calls or emailed requests for comment on the Neocatechumenal Way.

Apuron is a member of the Neocathecumenal Way, says Tim Rohr, another outspoken critic of the archbishop who offers daily updates on local church issues on his blog Jungle Watch.

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MY RESPONSE TO THE PDN STORY: “CHURCH FINANCES IN SHAMBLES”

GUAM
Jungle Watch

The story can be found here. Following is the comment I posted on the PDN website.

Here’s a few facts for now. Not that they matter to Apuron.

The 7 million dollar debt was incurred in the building of the Saint Therese chapel and the addition of the museum at the Cathedral. Both projects were approved by all the required boards and councils and ultimately signed off on by Apuron, since HE is the only person who can do so.

The loan is current and is amortized over 30 years. It is also fairly recent. And as anyone with a mortgage knows, the mortgagee makes little headway knocking down the principal for the first several years. Apuron approved the projects with enthusiasm because they made him look good. There will be more facts to come, but for now:

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Church finances in shambles

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

[with video]

Jul. 30, 2014

Archbishop Anthony Apuron yesterday said Monsignor James Benavente was removed as rector of the Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral-Basilica because of poor financial management.

The Cathedral-Basilica and the Catholic cemeteries are millions of dollars in the red, according to the archbishop, and accounting practices are so “inappropriate” the cemeteries’ funding cannot be properly audited.

Apuron released a statement, shortly before a huge crowd of Benavente supporters gathered at the steps of the Cathedral-Basilica, that he decided “a change in administration” at the Cathedral-Basilica and Catholic Cemeteries of Guam Inc. is necessary so accounting practices can be re-established and financial audits can be completed.

Benavente, who had been the rector at the Cathedral-Basilica for nearly 20 years, declined to comment on the allegations.

He did say a prayer before a few hundred of his supporters who gathered despite strong winds and rain outside the Cathedral-Basilica and across the street from the church in Hagåtña.

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Trial set for former St. Patrick’s bookkeeper accused of stealing from parish

CANADA
Advertiser

Rosie Mullaley
Published on July 29, 2014

A woman suspected of swindling hundreds of thousands of dollars from St. Patrick’s Parish in St. John’s will go to trial this fall.

Dianne Clare Coady wasn’t in provincial court Monday when her case was called. Instead, she was represented by her lawyer Amanda MacDougall.

MacDougall and Crown prosecutor Mike Murray agreed to have the trial begin Nov. 3. Murray told Judge Colin Flynn that the trial is expected to last two weeks.

Coady has pleaded not guilty to three charges – theft over $5,000, fraud over $5,000 and uttering forged documents.

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Women priests give $1,000 to shelter after Cincinnati archdiocese withdraws donation

OHIO
National Catholic Reporter

Nicholas Sciarappa | Jul. 21, 2014

The Association of Roman Catholic Women Priests donated $1,000 to a Catholic Worker house that shelters homeless women after the Cincinnati archdiocese retracted its funding because a woman priest led a prayer service at the shelter.

The archdiocese had promised Lydia’s House, which offers shelter to homeless women and their children, $1,000 toward the purchase of a new washer and dryer. A number of community organizations support the house, which can hold up to four women and six children, and the archdiocese was an irregular donor.

“We spent the money in June with the promise that it would be reimbursed at the start of the new fiscal year July 1, and we submitted the receipt on July 5,” said Mary Ellen Mitchell, one of the founders of Lydia’s House. “We found out Wednesday, July 16, of this week that [the archdiocese] wouldn’t do the reimbursement.”

The archdiocese withdrew the donation after learning that Debra Meyers would hold a July 20 prayer service at the house. Meyers is a Roman Catholic Woman Priest, but the house’s monthly newsletter, which contained information about the prayer service, did not identify her as such.

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