Berks lawmaker to host child abuse prevention seminar

PENNSYLVANIA
WFMZ

MUHLENBERG TWP., Pa. – A Berks County lawmaker who has shared his story of being sexually abused as a child will host a seminar in hopes of preventing others from becoming victims.

Pa. Rep. Mark Rozzi will host the free event on Jan. 22 from 6:30 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. at the Muhlenberg Middle School, 400 Sharp Ave.

Offered by Darkness to Light and the Berks County YMCA, the training session will feature a combination of survivor stories, expert advice and practical guidance, Rozzi said.

“I am proud to partner with Darkness to Light to open the conversation on this tragic topic. As difficult as it is to discuss, we have to bring it to the forefront to better protect children from abuse and to help those who have been abused,” Rozzi explained. “Prevention education is essential to breaking the cycle of abuse.”

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.

Catholic priest arrested for giving pornography to minor

FLORIDA
WPBF

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. —A Catholic priest is facing criminal charges of possession of pornography and distributing it to a minor, according to a report.

Reverend Jose Palimattom, OFM, 48, a priest visiting from India, was arrested Monday by Palm Beach County Sheriff’s deputies.

Palimattom was serving at Holy Name of Jesus Parish in West Palm Beach.

According to an arrest report, Palimattom had asked the victim for help in deleting some items off of his cellphone.

While attempting to remove the items, 40 thumbnails appeared which included child pornographic images and words including “little boys,” and “young boys 10-18 yoa,” the report by deputies said.

In returning home, the victim’s father was told of the incident and he immediately called PBSO.

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.

PRIEST WHO TAUGHT AT CARDINAL HAYES FIRED; ADMITTED TO ABUSE, TAKING MONEY

NEW YORK
WABC

BRONX, N.Y. (WABC) — School officials informed parents Monday that a priest at Cardinal Hayes High School has admitted to abuse and has been fired.

Father Robert Harrison, a Franciscan priest who has been at the school since 1989, was investigated for mishandling money, according to school officials. He admitted to borrowing, and in some cases skimming, money from different places and people then using it to pay off a minor he sexually abused decades ago.

Harrison went on to admit, according to the Archdiocese, that he abused 10 minors in the 1970s and 80s in Manhattan, the Bronx and Milwaukee. There is no word on how much money was allegedly misused.

The case is now under investigation by the Bronx District Attorney’s Office. There is no indication that students at Hayes were abused by him.

A letter was sent Monday to students and parents alerting them to Harrison’s admission of sexual abuse. It said that Harrison was fired when the details came to light Dec. 22, and was removed from public ministry.

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.

Victims’ Groups Call for Serious Organised Crime Investigator to Head Westminster Abuse Inquiry

UNITED KINGDOM
Newsweek

BY AMELIA SMITH 1/6/15

Groups representing the victims of child abuse have said that they want a younger figure, who has experience in investigating serious organised crime to head the inquiry looking into abuse by high-profile figures, including politicians, and an alleged cover up by the police.

According to Peter Saunders, CEO of the National Association for People Abused in Childhood (NAPAC), the inquiry should be led with someone with experience of organised crime: “That is essential because that is what is at the heart of this inquiry. I don’t know very many survivors that would be experienced in leading such an investigation.”

He continued: “But it also needs to be assisted and informed by survivors. We are dealing with delicate individuals and so we need to tread very carefully and robustly. If we are going to have a real investigation it has to be done properly.”

His comments come after an angry reaction to remarks made by Baroness Butler-Sloss, who was forced to stand down from leading the inquiry in July, made on BBC Radio 4 last week, in which she said that victims shouldn’t think they could lead the inquiry.

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.

West Palm priest arrested after allegedly sharing porn images with boy

FLORIDA
Palm Beach Post

A West Palm Beach priest was arrested Monday after allegedly showing child pornography to a 14-year-old boy.

Jose Palimatton admitted to a Palm Beach County Sheriff’s deputy that he asked the boy to remove the pornographic images from his cell phone and knew the minor’s age but “considered [the victim] to be mature and viewed him as an adult,” according to an arrest report.

Palimatton, 47, is facing a charge of distributing obscene material to a minor. Palimatton is being held in the Palm Beach County Jail in lieu of $10,000 bond.

Palimatton allegedly had approximately 40 pornographic images on his phone of nude pre-teen boys.

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.

Clergy Learns More About Fatal Accident Involving Bishop

MARYLAND
WJZ

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — The Episcopal Churches of Maryland spoke to the Diocesan clergy Tuesday about the fatal accident that took the life of a Maryland father.

The Episcopal Diocese of Maryland is guided throughout this tragic situation by three core values: accountability, compassion and the rule of law. As we all process and come to understand this tragedy, these values will be our focus.

The Right Rev. Eugene Taylor Sutton, diocesan bishop of Maryland, invited the Episcopal Diocese of Maryland clergy to a closed meeting to give them information about what we know of the tragic accident, including police and church disciplinary investigations. This meeting allowed clergy to express their feelings, ask questions, and get information to share with their congregations.

The clergy met to learn more about the fatal accident which involved one of their bishops Heather Cook, who fatally struck 41-year-old Tom Palermo with her car while he was biking along Roland Avenue. Cook initially left the scene but then returned.

The Rev. Scott Slater has been speaking to Cook since the accident as she called him after “she thought she had hit a bicyclist and was in shock.”

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.

Statement following the Meeting of Diocesan Clergy

MARYLAND
Episcopal Diocese of Maryland

Posted on January 6, 2015

Baltimore, MD – The Episcopal Diocese of Maryland is guided throughout this tragic situation by three core values: accountability, compassion and the rule of law. As we all process and come to understand this tragedy, these values will be our focus.

The Right Rev. Eugene Taylor Sutton, diocesan bishop of Maryland, invited the Episcopal Diocese of Maryland clergy to a closed meeting to give them information about what we know of the tragic accident, including police and church disciplinary investigations. This meeting allowed clergy to express their feelings, ask questions, and get information to share with their congregations.

The following is a summary of information shared with clergy at the Jan. 6 meeting at the Claggett Center, Buckeystown, MD.

A report on events the day of the accident, Dec. 27, in which Thomas Palermo, 41, was killed while riding his bike in northern Baltimore, was given by the Rev. Scott Slater, chief assistant to Diocesan Bishop Eugene Taylor Sutton to more than 100 clergy.

At 2:59 p.m. Slater received a call from Heather Cook. She said she thought she had hit a bicyclist and was in shock. When Slater arrived at the accident scene around 3:10 p.m. police crime scene tape was surrounding Cook’s car and she was sitting in a patrol car. He immediately identified himself to an officer, provided his identification and business card. He told the officer that Cook had called him minutes before.

During the course of the afternoon Slater called Bishop Sutton and informed him of what he knew; gave a detective his statement regarding his and Cook’s phone conversation; and contacted Jeff Ayres, diocesan chancellor (attorney), and informed him of the incident. He did not speak to Cook at that time.

At 5:27 p.m. that evening Slater received a call from the Baltimore City Police Department asking him to come pick Cook up.

Once at her apartment, he went in for a few minutes and talked with Cook and a friend of Cook’s who had just gotten there to check on her dog and to make sure she wasn’t alone. Slater focused his conversation pastorally on her, as a child of God. They prayed together and he went home.

On Monday evening Slater was asked to return to the police station to give a recorded statement. He answered every question as thoroughly and completely as he could recall, including details of his and Cook’s conversation during the car ride to her apartment.

Out of respect for the ongoing police investigation, for the Palermo family, and for Cook, Slater did not share details of his conversation with Cook in the meeting with clergy today. Slater and other staff members are cooperating fully with the police investigation and the Title IV investigation begun last week by the Presiding Bishop’s office. We cannot disclose details of that investigation either, as they are constrained by church disciplinary procedures under canon law.

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.

Episcopal Diocese holds closed meeting over Bishop Heather Cook

MARYLAND
WBAL

BALTIMORE —The Episcopal Diocese of Maryland held a closed meeting with clergy Tuesday to discuss a fatal bicycle crash in Baltimore involving one of its bishops.

The meeting of more than 100 clergy members follows the Dec. 27 fatal crash in the 5700 block of Roland Avenue in north Baltimore in which bicyclist Thomas Palermo, 41, was killed. A memorial now stands at the location where Palermo was hit. Episcopal Bishop Heather Cook, 58, was identified as the driver who left the scene but came back a short time later. She has not been charged.

The Rev. Scott Slater, chief assistant to Diocesan Bishop Eugene Taylor Sutton, shared a report on events from the Dec. 27 crash, according to a diocesan statement. Slater said Cooke called him around 2:59 p.m. on the day of the crash and told him that she thought she hit a bicyclist and was in shock.

Slater said he arrived at the scene of the crash around 3:10 p.m. and he told officers that Cook had called him. Slater said he gave police a statement about Cook’s phone call and he contacted Sutton and the diocesan attorney. He said he did not speak with Cook at the scene.

Slater said he received a call from police around 5:27 p.m. to pick up Cook. Once at her apartment, he spoke with her briefly.

Slater said police asked him on the following Monday to give a recorded statement. Details of the statement were not shared at the meeting, according to a diocesan statement.

Cook remains on administrative leave with pay from the Episcopal Diocese of Maryland. Disciplinary proceedings are underway regarding Cook’s actions.

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.

Visiting priest in West Palm Beach accused of exposing minor to porn

FLORIDA
WPTV

[with video]

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. – A 48-year-old priest serving a two-year contract with a West Palm Beach church is facing serious accusations.

Father Jose Palimattom, who is visiting from India, is accused of exposing a minor to pornography.

Earlier this week the priest, whose address is listed as Holy Name Catholic Church, asked the alleged victim to help him remove items off of his cellphone, according to a probable cause affidavit.

The minor found roughly 40 pornographic images of nude preteen boys but told the priest he was unable to delete them, the report states. He then reported the incident to the church’s music director.

On his way home from church with his mother he told her about the incident and she told his father who contacted the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office.

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.

Cardinal Hayes priest, coach admits to sex abuse

NEW YORK
News 12

[with video]

THE BRONX – A priest and coach from a prestigious Bronx school has admitted to sexually abusing minors.

According to a statement released by the president of Cardinal Hayes High School, Father Robert Harrison confessed just before Christmas break, saying the abuse took place outside of the borough during the 1970s and 80s.

The school says that based on the information Harrison shared, it does not appear that any abuse involved its students; however, the New York Times is reporting that there are victims in the Bronx

The Archdiocese of New York and the school took swift action, saying in a statement, “He was immediately relieved of his responsibilities here at Hayes, and the matter was referred to the District Attorneys for the Bronx, Manhattan and Milwaukee, WI where Fr. Harrison said the abuse took place. He was removed from his ability to serve as priest or engage in any type of ministry.”

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.

$500K at stake for Catholic church in Nevada Supreme Court

NEVADA/WISCONSIN
Chippewa Herald

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Nevada Supreme Court justices hear oral arguments Tuesday on an appeal by Catholic church officials of a $500,000 jury award to a man who says he was molested as a 13-year-old by a priest who’d been transferred from Wisconsin to Las Vegas.

The Catholic Diocese of Green Bay argues it can’t be sued in Nevada, that the case should’ve been thrown out before trial, and that the diocese shouldn’t have been held responsible in 2012 for the priests’ actions in 1984.

The priest, John Feeney, was conviction in Wisconsin in 2004, defrocked and sent to prison for molesting two boys. The Green Bay Diocese paid a $700,000 civil judgment in that case.

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.

Palm Beach Priest Accused Of Sex Crimes

FLORIDA
CBS 12

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. – A West Palm Beach Catholic priest is under arrest – accused of showing child porn to a 14-year-old boy. Police say 47-year-old Jose Palimattom was working as a priest and living on the grounds of Holy Name Catholic Church in West Palm Beach.

Police say he admitted to showing the teen, church member underage porn. Palimattom was in court Tuesday morning. Police say the church’s pastor found out what happened, but it was the child’s father who alerted authorities.

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.

Pfarrer Georg K. aus Willich ab Freitag vor Gericht

DEUTSCHLAND
RP

[Pastor George K., a 56-year-old priest, originally from Willich, must answer to the Krefelt district court a charge of sexual abuse of a minor. He is alleged among other thing to have abused his godson more than 20 times.]

Willich. Ein 56 Jahre alter, aus Willich stammender, Geistlicher muss sich ab Freitag vor dem Krefelder Landgericht wegen sexuellen Missbrauchs verantworten. Unter anderem soll er sein Patenkind mehr als 20 mal missbraucht haben. Auch Alkohol und Drogen soll er den Kindern verabreicht haben. Von Marc Schütz

Schon die Zusammenfassung der Anklageschrift gegen den aus Willich stammenden Pfarrer Georg K. lässt den Atem stocken. Die Vorwürfe sind massiv, gehen über bloße Berührungen der Kinder deutlich hinaus – auch von der Verwendung von Sexspielzeug und pornografischen Bildern ist die Rede. Von kommendem Freitag an werden vor der 2. Großen Strafkammer des Landgerichts Krefeld vermutlich weitere Details bekannt werden. Dann beginnt der Prozess gegen den Geistlichen, der auch in Tönisvorst, Kempen und Nettetal als Geistlicher arbeitete.

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.

Westminster child abuse network: Could 2015 be the year we begin to see justice?

UNITED KINGDOM
RT

Ten years ago, if you talked about an elite network of child abusers, operating among the highest levels of government, media, police, and even the royal family, you likely would have been called a ‘nut job’ or a ‘conspiracy theorist’.

Fast forward to the present day however, and allegations of pedophilia and abuse of the most horrific kind, including even reports of murder seem to be surfacing continually, almost daily at times, so much so that the issue has been forced squarely back on the table. Questions and allegations which have lingered for decades, are now being taken seriously, and most importantly so by Scotland Yard.

While no one has been officially charged as part of the wider investigations, police are now looking into numerous allegations of historic child abuse, which allegedly involve powerful and influential individuals, and which date back many decades.

While acknowledged predators like the late Jimmy Savile and Cyril Smith MP, never faced justice in their lifetime, there seems a real possibility that enough new evidence is coming to light which might mean some of those involved, and whom may still be alive, could at last end up in court facing trial.

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.

Parolin: Francis’ choice of cardinals reflects ‘an opening of heart and mind’

VATICAN CITY
National Catholic Reporter

Joshua J. McElwee | Jan. 6, 2015

ROME
The Vatican’s secretary of state said Pope Francis’ decision to appoint new cardinals from diverse parts of the world reflects the pope’s desire to have “an opening of heart and mind in every place.”

The decision to appoint 20 cardinals from 18 different countries — with several from places that have never before had a cardinal — was “not a sign of any less appreciation of any church” where there have previously been cardinals, Cardinal Pietro Parolin said Tuesday.

“I would like to stress this,” Parolin continued. “I think that we have to change a little bit our minds or our interpretations about this thing, looking at the Holy Father and the criteria he is using as an opening of heart and mind in every place, especially the places that traditionally did not receive any attention.”

Parolin spoke Tuesday morning in brief remarks to reporters during a blessing ceremony for a new addition to the Pontifical North American College, a seminary in Rome owned by the U.S. bishops’ conference that trains and forms many priests from dioceses across the United States, Canada and Australia.

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.

The failure to bind and loose: Responses to Yoder’s sexual abuse

UNITED STATES
Our Stories Untold

by RACHEL WALTNER GOOSSEN on Jan 5, 2015

Note from the Editor: This piece is cross-posted from The Mennonite, which excerpted it from a longer article, “’Defanging the Beast’: Mennonite Responses to John Howard Yoder’s Sexual Abuse,” Mennonite Quarterly Review 89 (January), based on newly available documents and interviews with 29 individuals. Readers interested in Goossen’s work in its entirety, including documentation for women’s accounts of their experiences as well as Mennonite institutional responses, may order a hard copy of the issue from The Mennonite Quarterly Review. The MQR issue is also available as an e-book through MennoMedia.org, Amazon, iBooks and Barnes & Noble.

During the mid-1970s, the renowned Christian ethicist and theologian John Howard Yoder embarked on an experiment in sexuality, devising his own guidelines and selecting his own subjects, whom he called “sisters.”

Following a three-year term as president of Goshen (Ind.) Biblical Seminary, he developed “the notion of a distinction between two dimensions of sexuality, the familiar and the genital.”

Yoder speculated that people plagued either by inhibitions about sexual intercourse or by promiscuity would have difficulty attaining what he termed “the freedom of the gospel,” which he linked to Jesus’ encounters with women.

In a series of essays that he circulated on the seminary campus and beyond, Yoder speculated about Jesus’ sexuality as a model for his disciples, for the men who followed in his path.

Nearly two decades later, in 1992, a denominational task force established by leaders in Yoder’s congregation, Prairie Street Mennonite Church in Elkhart, Ind., confronted him with 13 charges of sexual abuse.

“These charges indicate a long pattern of inappropriate sexual behavior between you and a number of women,” the task force told Yoder, who had been ordained while serving as the seminary’s president. “The settings for this conduct were in many places: conferences, classrooms, retreats, homes, apartments, offices, parking lots. We believe the stories we have heard, and recognize that they represent deep pain for the women. … The stories represent … a violation of the trust placed in you as a church leader.”

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.

Police: Videographer inappropriately touched girls at Greenville church

SOUTH CAROLINA
Fox Carolina

By Casey Vaughn

GREENVILLE, SC (FOX Carolina) –
Greenville police said a local church videographer admitted to inappropriately touching two girls, ages 4 and 6.

Police said they were contacted by the girls’ father on Jan. 1 who claimed 23-year-old Gilbert Broyles had molested the victims at Greenville Presbyterian Church on Pendleton Street.

According to arrest warrants, Broyles touched the girls on several occasions between Nov. 10 and Dec. 31. Police said when they talked to Broyles about the accusations, he admitted to the incidents happening at the church.

He was arrested and charged with criminal sexual conduct with a minor first degree and two counts of criminal sexual conduct with a minor second degree.

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 videographer accused of molesting girls

SOUTH CAROLINA
Greenville News

Anna Lee, zlee@greenvillenews.com

January 5, 2015

A church videographer is in jail facing multiple charges of molesting young girls inside the audio video room of Greenville Presbyterian, authorities said.

Gilbert Evan Broyles, 23, of 1607 Whitehall Road, Anderson, was charged with two counts of criminal sexual conduct with a minor – third degree and criminal sexual conduct with a minor – first degree, according to arrest warrants.

Warrants allege that Broyles inappropriately touched two victims ages 4 and 6 multiple times while at Greenville Presbyterian Church, 711 Pendleton Street.

Warrants allege the incidents happened over the course of several weeks and that the girls were touched underneath their clothing.

Greenville police spokesman Johnathan Bragg said the father of the victims reported the incidents Thursday, telling investigators that his daughters had been molested at the church they attend.

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 videographer accused of molesting young girls

SOUTH CAROLINA
WYFF

[with video]

GREENVILLE, S.C. —A church videographer repeatedly molested two young girls in the audio-visual
The molestation, alleged to have happened at Greenville Presbyterian Church on Pendleton Street, was reported to police on Jan. 1.

The girls, ages 4 and 6, said they were repeatedly molested by church videographer, 23-year-old Gilbert Broyles, in November and December.

Arrest warrants say Broyles admitted to church leaders that he either touched the girls underneath their clothing or got them remove items of clothing and touched them in “their private areas.”

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.

Videographer admits to molesting girls at South Carolina church, police say

SOUTH CAROLINA
The Raw Story

[with video]

TRAVIS GETTYS
06 JAN 2015

A church videographer is accused of repeatedly molesting two girls at their South Carolina church.

Gilbert Broyles admitted to church leaders that he molested the girls, ages 4 and 6, in November and December in the audio-visual room at Greenville Presbyterian Church, police said.

The 23-year-old Broyles was charged with first-degree criminal sexual conduct with a minor and two counts of second-degree criminal sexual conduct with a minor.

He remains held without bail.

Police launched their investigation Thursday after one of the girls’ father reported the alleged abuse.

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.

Top Vatican Official: Washington, NYC likely stops on papal trip

VATICAN CITY
Catholic News Agency

By Alan Holdren and Andrea Gagliarducci

Vatican City, Jan 6, 2015 / 05:38 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Although it’s still not official, the Vatican’s Secretary of State confirmed today that Pope Francis will most likely visit Washington D.C. and New York during his visit to the United States.

“I think the Pope will go to United Nations, everybody is speaking about that… but no official announcement has been delivered,” Cardinal Parolin told CNA Jan. 6.

Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican’s Secretary of State, spoke to American journalists at the end of the dedication ceremony for a new wing of the Pontifical North American College in Rome.

He added that “of course” a papal visit to the nation’s capital city of Washington, D.C. is possibly in the agenda, but he stressed that “no official confirmation has been made.”

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.

Union says N.Y. Archdiocese threatening to close schools unless teachers scrap raises

NEW YORK
Staten Island Advance

By Diane C. Lore | lore@siadvance.com
on January 06, 2015

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — The union representing Catholic school teachers in the New York Archdiocese says the archdiocese is playing hardball with its latest contract proposal, threatening to close more Catholic schools unless teachers forgo a 2 percent raise increase over two years.

Federation of Catholic Teachers’ (FCT) President Julia Pignataro outlined what the union says are the latest contract proposals in a letter to members, a copy of which was obtained by the Advance.

Teachers have been working without a contract since they returned to school in September. Earlier in the collective bargaining process, the union asked for a 6 percent per year wage increase over a three-year period. The archdiocese countered with a 1 percent wage increase offer over three years, and the union then countered with a 5 percent increase.

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.

Archdiocese Letter Warns Employees About Supporting Same-Sex Marriage

FLORIDA
NBC Miami

[with video]

As gay marriage began across Miami-Dade County Monday afternoon, the Archdiocese issued a letter to its employees saying they could be fired for any conduct that is “inconsistent with the teachings of the Catholic Church.”

The letter, from Archbishop Thomas Wenski, told employees that “All employees should note that, because of the Church’s particular function in society, certain conduct, inconsistent with the teachings of the Catholic Church, could lead to disciplinary action, including termination, even if it occurs outside the normal working day and outside the strict confines of work performed by the employee for the Archdiocese.”

Archbishop Wenski’s letter continued warning employees that the conduct requirements also extend to the Internet. “Employees should exercise discretion when posting on social media sites, and not that online activity indicative of prohibitive behaviors may subject an employee to disciplinary action or termination.”

Wenski was critical of the move by the judicial system to overturn the gay marriage ban telling NBC 6, “By imposing a new definition of marriage on the people of Florida, the courts are changing what marriage means for everybody.”

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.

Accused priests lived at Mundelein seminary near school for 13 years

ILLINOIS
Daily Herald

[with timeline]

Bob Susnjara

Priests accused of sexual misconduct against children lived on a Mundelein seminary’s grounds for more than a decade, their names unknown to the public until the recent release of previously secret Archdiocese of Chicago documents.

The priests remained at Cardinal Stritch Retreat House seven years after some Lake County authorities initially suggested they should move, in part citing the building’s proximity to Carmel Catholic High School. The documents detail measures that were in place to keep tabs on the men at University of St. Mary of the Lake/Mundelein Seminary off R oute 176.

Just as quietly as the priests arrived at the retreat house in 2000, the last one departed in 2013, the archdiocese has confirmed. The confirmation came after the release of the documents in November by the archdiocese.

Mundelein’s former police chief, who worked with the archdiocese to address the situation when the priests’ presence became known in 2005, said authorities originally were concerned about them living across the street from Carmel. As part of the fallout, the archdiocese in 2006 banned Carmel students from using the seminary’s property for an annual walkathon.

Raymond J. Rose, the retired Mundelein top cop now working as Lake County’s undersheriff, said safeguards he and others pushed for led authorities to conclude it was safest for the community to have the priests clustered in one building.

And Rose said the church complied with demands to give Mundelein police the names, photographs and other information about the priests at the retreat house.

However, outside visitors who made day and overnight trips to the retreat home were not informed, he said.

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.

Un-hatting, Anyone?

UNITED STATES
National Survivor Advocates Coalition

— Kristine Ward, Chair, National Survivor Advocates Coalition (NSAC) KristineWard@hotmail.com

EDITORIAL

Un-Hatting, Anyone?

The world knows Pope Francis can do surprising things.

He is not hide bound to tradition. The evidence is clear on a number of fronts, the latest of which being his Sunday announcement of the second round of cardinal appointments of his papacy.

Now, how about a surprise that might shake some sense into his hierarchy: un-hatting.

Today, January 6, 2015, — thirteen years into the Boston revelations of the sexual abuse scandal that became the tidal wave of revelations throughout the United States and rippling, then flooding across the world, — seems a most fitting day to consider un-hatting.

Cardinals who don’t deserve their station should have their red hats rescinded. If accountability is a real end of Francis the Reformer, then Francis the Giver should also be Francis the Taker Awayer – and no hat should come with a lifetime guarantee.

If the affront of a naked head would be too much to bear for those who made deliberate decisions not to protect children, then let Pope Francis create a switching-out day as well as a cardinal-making day. Switching out day could swap red hats for black ones.

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.

EPISCOPALIAN CHURCH IGNORED GRUESOME DUI REPORT IN HIRING FIRST FEMALE BISHOP

MARYLAND
Breitbart

The Episcopal Diocese of Maryland has announced they knew in advance of hiring her that the female bishop who struck and killed a cyclist two days after Christmas had a previous citation for drunk driving.

The Diocese said:

One of the core values of the Christian faith is forgiveness. We cannot preach forgiveness without practicing forgiveness and offering people opportunity for redemption. As part of the search process, Bishop [Heather] Cook fully disclosed the 2010 DUI for which charges were filed resulting in a “probation before judgment.” After extensive discussion and discernment about the incident, and after further investigation, including extensive background check and psychological investigation, it was determined that this one mistake should not bar her for consideration as a leader.

The police report the Diocese chose to ignore makes for gruesome reading.

At 1 a.m. on September 10, 2010, police in Caroline County, Maryland, observed Cook driving 21 mph below the posted speed limit of 50. She was riding on the shoulder of the road. Police also noticed something dragging underneath her car. Turns out one of her tires had shredded and was missing entirely. The police reported they “could not find the tire or any parts of it. It appeared that Cook had been riding on the rim for some time.”

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.

10 Ways You Helped Us Advance Transparency in the Catholic Church in 2014

UNITED STATES
BishopAccountability.org

Please donate today to BishopAccountability.org – your gift is tax-deductible and helps document and promote transparency.

1. Our website hosted 1.5 million unique visitors — a 15% jump from 2013!

2. Our website grew to an astounding 300,000 pages of documents, articles, and reports. We maintain the world’s largest archive of abuse documents outside the Holy See.

3. Our Database of Accused Priests grew by 178 names. It now provides information on more than 4,000 accused bishops, priests, nuns, and brothers.

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.

Police Building Criminal Case Against Bishop Heather Cook…

MARYLAND
Christian Post

Police Building Criminal Case Against Bishop Heather Cook for Fatal Hit-And-Run; Church Says Her Fate Is Out of Their Hands

BY LEONARDO BLAIR , CP REPORTER

The Baltimore Police Department confirmed Monday that it’s building a criminal case against Bishop Heather Cook, 58, the second-highest ranking official of the Episcopal Church of Maryland, after she crashed into a married father of two as he cycled along a local roadway then fled the scene as he lay dying two Saturdays ago.

Clergy from the church are expected to meet about Cook’s troubles on Tuesday, but say her fate is now out of their hands as police suggested the case could be headed for a trial.

“It’s still under investigation. As it occurs at this point it’s still being investigated as a criminal incident,” Detective Ruganzu Howard of the Baltimore Police Department told The Christian Post Monday about the incident that claimed the life of Thomas Palermo, 41.

According to The Baltimore Sun, the doting dad was a senior Johns Hopkins Hospital software engineer and a master bike frame builder who lived in the Baltimore County community of Anneslie with his wife and children.

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 investigates Md. bishop who fatally struck cyclist

MARYLAND
ABC 2

[with video]

By JULIET LINDERMAN, Associated Press

BALTIMORE (AP) — The Episcopal Church has begun disciplinary proceedings against a Baltimore-based bishop who fatally struck a cyclist with her car, an official in the diocese where she worked said Monday.

National church leaders launched an investigation late last week after a complaint was filed with the church, said Sharon Tillman, spokeswoman for the Episcopal Diocese of Maryland. The decision to move forward with an investigation was made by Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori and other national church leaders, Tillman said.

The purpose of the investigation is to determine whether Bishop Heather Cook violated church law.

Contacted for comment by telephone, Schori’s office referred The Associated Press back to Tillman.

“It is an in-depth process that comes with a full investigation,” Tillman said. “They are in the investigation stage.”

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.

Longtime Bronx Catholic School Priest Admits Sexually Abusing Children: Officials

NEW YORK
NBC New York

[with video]

By Ida Siegal

A longtime Catholic school priest at a renowned New York City school has admitted to sexually abusing minors in the 1970s and 1980s, and local prosecutors are now investigating, authorities say.

Father Robert Harrison, a priest who taught for 26 years and coached basketball for more than 20 years at the all-boys Cardinal Hayes High School in the Bronx, has been removed from the school and is barred from any sort of ministry as church and law enforcement officials investigate.

The school’s president, Father Joseph P. Tierney, told parents in a letter Monday that Harrison made the sex abuse revelations during an inquiry into his personal finances.

“As of now, we have not received any allegations from victims/survivors, and based upon information that we have received from Father Harrison thus far, it does not appear that any of the abuse involved students from Cardinal Hayes,” said Tierney.

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.

Sermon speaks volumes about cyclist’s death

MARYLAND
Baltimore Sun

By Larry Perl, lperl@tribune.com
Baltimore Messenger

A Homeland church in the Episcopal Diocese of Maryland is slowly and painfully coming to grips with Bishop Suffragan Heather Cook’s involvement in the traffic collision that killed bicyclist Thomas Palermo on Roland Avenue.

“Has it been only a week since we heard the news?” the Rev. Caroline Stewart, associate senior rector of the Church of the Redeemer, asked parishioners in a sermon devoted exclusively to the issue.

In the sermon, which she delivered at Saturday’s Faith@Five contemporary service and at two traditional services Sunday morning, Stewart said the still-unfolding facts in the case, coupled with “disturbing background information” about Cook’s guilty plea to driving under the influence of alcohol in 2010, have permeated the Redeemer church community of 725 households. The issue has caused mixed emotions that touch on “many, many points of the human compass as well as the institution of The Episcopal Church,” Stewart said.

Police are continuing to investigate the 2:40 p.m. Dec. 27 crash in the 5700 block of Roland Avenue. Police said Palermo, 41, of Anneslie, a married father of two, was riding his bicycle in the 5700 block of Roland Avenue when he was struck by a car. The driver has since been identified by the diocese and by her attorney as Bishop Suffragan Heather Elizabeth Cook, the second-ranking official in the diocese.

Cook initially drove away from the scene but returned a short time later, according to the diocese and witnesses at the scene. No charges have been filed.

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.

Wisconsin priest barred from New York job after admitting past sexual abuse

WISCONSIN
JRN

[with video]

By Katie Crowther. CREATED Jan 5, 2015

MILWAUKEE — A Catholic priest from Milwaukee has been removed from teaching and coaching duties at a school in New York City. He’s being investigated for sexual abuse of minors.

Father Robert Harrison has been barred from public ministry. He’s currently at professional facility where he cannot have any contact with minors.

Harrison, 77, was one of Milwaukee’s first African-American priests. He was also the first black priest ordained by the Capuchins for service in the Milwaukee area.

According to Colleen Crane, a spokesperson for the Capuchin Franciscan Province of St. Joseph, Harrison admitted to the abuse during an investigation into his finances. Harrison allegedly told his superiors that the abuse occurred in various private residences during his early career in Milwaukee, during the 1970’s and 1980’s.

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.

Bronx School Ousts Priest After Admissions of Abuse

NEW YORK
New York Times

By SHARON OTTERMAN
JAN. 5, 2015

An assistant principal at Cardinal Hayes High School in the Bronx has been dismissed after admitting just before the Christmas break that he sexually abused 10 minors in the 1970s and 1980s, authorities from his religious order said on Monday.

The Rev. Robert Harrison, a Capuchin priest, taught religion and black history and was one of two assistant principals at the Roman Catholic school near Yankee Stadium, which counts luminaries like Regis Philbin and Martin Scorsese among its alumni and is known for its success in advancing students to college.

Father Harrison began working at the school in 1989 and was a considerable presence there, coaching basketball and moderating the speech club and Black Heritage Club. Last May, to honor the 50th anniversary of his and a former faculty member’s ordination, the school closed for the day.

The Capuchin Franciscan Province of St. Joseph, to which Father Harrison belongs, discovered the abuse on Dec. 22 after learning that Father Harrison was borrowing money from staff members at the high school, it said on Monday. When asked why, Father Harrison said he was paying an abuse victim, and then went on to acknowledge he had sexually abused 10 minors in Manhattan, the Bronx and in Milwaukee in the 1970s and 1980s, the province said.

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.

Tasmanian police preparing report for DPP on Hutchins abuse claims

AUSTRALIA
news.com.au

PROSECUTORS are considering whether to lay charges against a former teacher from the Hutchins School who was accused of sexually abusing boys during the 1960s.

Ronald Thomas was named by two ex-students during a public hearing in Hobart of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

Former police commissioner Richard McCreadie gave evidence that he had questioned former principal David Ralph Lawrence and Mr Thomas — a former music teacher — about sexual abuse.

Both were thought to have died. Mr Thomas, however, was discovered living in retirement in New Zealand.

Police took statements from two former students last month before travelling to New Zealand to speak with Mr Thomas.

“They have now returned … and will prepare a report for the Director of Public Prosecutions,” a police spokeswoman said.

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.

RMS. THE FINAL CHAPTER. THANKS FOR CRAPPING ON US.

GUAM
Jungle Watch

Dear Apostolic Visitors,

Please pay close attention to the following:

On December 6, 2011, the Archdiocesan Finance Council (AFC: Richard J. Untalan, Joseph E. Rivera, Msgr. James Benavente, Sister Stephen Torres, and Msgr. David C. Quitugua) was scheduled to have a meeting.

They never met. In fact, they were never to meet again.

On the agenda for December 6 was Item #5.

Item #5 was to be another discussion about Archbishop Apuron’s wish to assign the title or control of the Yona Property (the old Accion Hotel) to the Redemptoris Mater Seminary (RMS).

An earlier request to transfer the title to RMS had already been denied by 4 of the 5 members of the AFC, with Msgr. Quitugua, the Vicar General and a member of the Neocatechumenal Way, being the only one in favor.

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.

Concerned Catholics of Guam could sue archbishop

GUAM
KUAM

by Jolene Toves

Guam – The Concerned Catholics of Guam organization is contemplating the possibility of filing a class action lawsuit against the head of the island’s Catholic Church over a multimillion dollar transaction. At the heart of the matter is the Redemptoris Mater Seminary – formerly Hotel Accion in Yona.

The property is valued anywhere between $40 million to $70 million . It was thought to be one of the largest assets of the Archdiocese of Agana, but apparently not anymore.

The CCOG was formed last month to investigate and look into recent controversies in the Catholic Church, and within the past few days the organization uncovered the Archdiocese of Agana no longer holds the deed to the seminary.

According to CCOG vice president David Sablan they’ve uncovered a paper trail that leads to Archbishop Anthony Apuron who in November 2011 signed off on a decree that assigns the property to the Redemptoris Mater Seminary Corporation. According to Sablan the archbishop did this without the consent of the Archdiocesan Finance Council and against the advisement of the archdiocese legal counsel. “Because of the way that transfer was going to take place the Archdiocese of Agana and the archbishop himself would generally have no control over that seminary so they advised the archbishop against it,” he explained.

The CCOG uncovered that the paperwork essentially transfers the Yona property from the Archdiocese of Agana to this Redemptoris Mater Seminary Corporation whose mission is to form men for priesthood following the life and practice of the Neocatechumenal Way, which according to Sablan was not the initial intent of the establishment of the seminary. Additionally the property would be under the control of the corporation’s board of which the archbishop sits on, but has little say on decisions.

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.

Spotsylvania County church youth volunteer accused of sexual abuse of 2 boys

VIRGINIA
Fox DC

[with video]

By Tom Fitzgerald, FOX 5 Reporter

SPOTSYLVANIA, Va. –
Police say a northern Virginia man used his position at a church to molest children.

Gregory Richard Yeamans remains in jail, but police say they are looking for even more victims.

It is a disturbing start to the new year in Spotsylvania County. The allegations of sexual abuse are rocking a Fredericksburg-area church.

Yeamans was arrested on New Year’s Eve for sexual abuse of two boys, ages 11 and 12. Investigators say the boys met Yeamans at the Fairview at River Club Church in Spotsylvania.

“An anonymous tip came in through the Department of Social Services,” said First Sgt. James Konicki of the Spotsylvania County Sheriff’s Office.

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.

Pastor Arrested On Sexual Abuse Charge

NEW YORK
WWNY

The senior pastor of the Smithville Baptist Church is accused of sexually assaulting a young girl.

State police arrested Thomas Wilson, 63, of 20560 Weaver Road, Watertown on a felony count of first-degree sexual abuse and a misdemeanor count of endangering the welfare of a child.

Wilson is accused of having sexual contact with a nine year old girl in the village of Sackets Harbor during the spring or summer of 2008. Trooper Jack Keller, Troop D spokesman, told 7 News Monday night that Wilson was a friend of the girl’s family.

Keller said the girl’s father notified state police after learning some details about what allegedly happened. Keller confirmed the incidents happened behind the former Lake Ontario Playhouse.

Keller said it did not appear the incident was connected to Wilson’s duties with the church.

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.

UPDATE: Family Speaks After Fmr. Buena Vista Pastor Sentenced To 35 Years On Child Sex Abuse Charges

VIRGINIA
WSET

[with video]

Lexington, VA – At 62-years-old, Larry Clark may spend the rest of his life in a jail cell.

But the former Buena Vista pastor says he doesn’t deserve the time, maintaining his innocence. At his sentencing Monday, he said, “My life has been devastated by the lies said about me.”

Sandy McElroy, Clark’s niece, tells ABC 13 that Clark would never harm a child.

“He’s innocent and I just hope whoever or whatever has done this to [the victim] that maybe one day they’ll pay and I’ll just say he wishes him no ill will. I just think in this small town it’s a crime not to let the case be moved out of this town,” said McElroy.

In October, a jury found the former Buena Vista pastor guilty of two counts of carnal knowledge and three counts of indecent liberties. During his testimony on a closed-circuit TV, the victim said Clark raped him.

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.

Va. youth pastor arrested for sexually abusing 2 boys

VIRGINIA
WUSA

SPOTSYLVANIA, Va. (WUSA9) — A fifty-two-year-old youth minister from Spotsylvania has been arrested in connection for sexually abusing two minor boys, authorities said.

Richard Yeamans, 52, of Spotsylvania was arrested on December 31, 2014 for two counts of aggravated sexual battery of a minor and one count of taking indecent liberties with a minor.

The Spotsylvania Department of Social Services received an anonymous tip on December 30 alleging sexual abuse of minors by the local youth minister, authorities said.

Detectives interviewed two victims and found evidence related to the alleged crimes involving Yeamans.

The incidents happened at the home of the suspect in Spotsylvania County, officials said. The 11- and 12-year-old boys both knew the youth minister from the Fairview at Riverclub Church located off Tidewater Trail.

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.

Gresham pastor faces 37 sex-with-child charges

OREGON
KOIN

GRESHAM, Ore. (KOIN 6) — The senior pastor at Powell Valley Church in Gresham faces more than three dozen first-degree sex charges after he was indicted by a Deschutes County grand jury.

James Worley is accused on 37 counts of various first-degree sex acts with a child between September 2002 and June 2004.

Also known as “Jamie,” Worley is accused of sexual abuse, rape, sodomy, attempted sodomy and using a child in sexually explicit conduct. The grand jury indictment was dated Dec. 16, 2014.

The website of the Powell Valley Church said Worley, 42, has been the lead pastor since January 2012, and is married with four children.

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.

Pastor, former police officer accused of child sex crimes

OREGON
KOMO

By Chelsea Kopta, On Your Side Investigator Published: Jan 5, 2015

GRESHAM, Ore. – An evangelical pastor and former police officer is facing more than 30 charges of sex crimes involving two children, one boy and one girl.

James Daniel Worley, 42, has been a senior pastor at Powell Valley Church in Gresham since 2012, according to the church’s website.

The indictment filed Dec. 16 in Deschutes County charges Worley with 37 counts, including two counts of rape, 20 counts of sexual abuse, 11 counts of sodomy, one count of attempted sodomy and three counts of using a child in a display of sexually explicit conduct.

In the latter three counts, the documents state Worley “did unlawfully and knowingly induce (the victims) … to engage in sexually explicit conduct for a person to observe.”

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.

Nazareth homes ‘cold and cruel places offering the children no chance in life’

NORTHERN IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

BY MICHAEL MCHUGH – 06 JANUARY 2015

Catholic-run homes in Northern Ireland in the 1950s were centres of “bleak lovelessness”, an official at the time said.

Kathleen Forrest, a State health inspector, called for the system to be reformed after visiting the Belfast Nazareth House and Nazareth Lodge homes run by the Sisters of Nazareth.

The words of Ms Forrest were read out yesterday at the Historical Institutional Abuse (HIA) Inquiry as it reopened in Banbridge.

The long-running inquiry is now examining abuse claims at Nazareth House and Nazareth Lodge in south Belfast.

Counsel to the HIA, Christine Smith QC, yesterday quoted from Ms Forrest’s 1953 report in her opening remarks to the hearing.

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.

Catholic order accepts Smyth abused children in their care

NORTHERN IRELAND
Irish Examiner

By Michael McHugh

A Catholic religious order has accepted notorious paedophile priest Brendan Smyth abused children while they were in the care of nuns in the North, a lawyer told a public inquiry yesterday.

Smyth visited two south Belfast residential homes at the centre of the independent probe into wrongdoing stretching back decades. The serial molester was later convicted of dozens of child abuse charges.

More than 100 witnesses from Nazareth House and Nazareth Lodge have come forward to the Historical Institutional Abuse (HIA) Inquiry, headed by a former judge, which is one of the largest investigations of its kind ever held in the UK.

Senior counsel to the inquiry, Christine Smith QC, said: “Sexual abuse of children was perpetrated by the now notorious Fr Brendan Smyth.

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.

Ex-pastor sentenced to 35 years in prison in Buena Vista molestation case

VIRGINIA
The Roanoke Times

Mon Jan 5, 2015

Luanne Rife luanne.rife@roanoke.com 981-3209

LEXINGTON — Before the 62-year-old former preacher was sentenced to serve 35 years in prison for child molestation, he urged his victim “to swallow your pride and come forward and fix your mistake.”

Larry McKinley Clark proclaimed his innocence and directed much of his statement at his sentencing hearing at the teenager he was convicted of molesting for two and a half years, starting when the boy was in middle school.

Clark had been the pastor of Pentecostal Outreach Church in Buena Vista and the teen was a member of the church.

Clark said unless the teen confesses the truth “you will carry the guilt of this your whole life.” Clark said his life has been ruined by fabrications.

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.

Pastor of Smithville Baptist Church charged with sexually abusing 9-year-old girl

NEW YORK
Watertown Daily Times

By CRAIG FOX
TIMES STAFF WRITER

WATERTOWN — The pastor of the Smithville Baptist Church has been accused of sexually abusing a 9-year-old girl in 2008.

State police charged the Rev. Thomas W. Wilson, 63, senior pastor of the Smithville Baptist Church, with single counts of first-degree sexual abuse, a Class D felony, and endangering the welfare of a child, a Class A misdemeanor.

Police said Wilson had sexual contact with the girl in the spring or summer of 2008 behind the Lake Ontario Playhouse in the village of Sackets Harbor. He is accused of touching the girl inappropriately, police said.

Trooper Jack L. Keller, public information officer for Troop D in Oneida, said Wilson, of 20560 Weaver Road, was arrested at the Watertown state police station Monday morning after a lengthy investigation.

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 Last Oath: ‘Please Understand That I Am An Innocent Man, Who Was Wrongly Convicted’

PENNSYLVANIA
TheMediaReport

Dave Pierre

The night before falsely accused priest Rev. Charles Engelhardt passed away on November 15, 2014, Pennsylvania prison officials denied the dying cleric critical medical care, and Engelhardt issued a last declaration of his innocence, according to a recent court filing by Engelhardt’s cellmate and exclusively reported by journalist Ralph Cipriano.

According to Cipriano, Engelhardt told cellmate Paul H. Eline before he died: “Paul, I do not feel well. Please understand that I am an innocent man, who was wrongly convicted.”

No end in sight to an outrage

This sad episode adds yet another chapter to the gross injustice against three men – Engelhardt, former teacher Bernard Shero, and ex-priest Edward Avery – who were wrongly convicted for crimes they never committed.

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.

Capuchin priest with Milwaukee ties removed for sex abuse

WISCONSIN
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

By Annysa Johnson of the Journal Sentinel Jan. 5, 2015

A Catholic priest with ties to Wisconsin has been removed from his job at a teacher and coach at a high school in the Bronx after admitting that he sexually abused minors in Milwaukee and New York in the 1970s and ’80s, his religious order announced on Monday.

The Rev. Robert Harrison was relieved of all public ministry, including his job at Cardinal Hayes High School, on Dec. 22, the same day he admitted abusing 10 minors over the years. Colleen Crane, Milwaukee spokeswoman for Harrison’s religious order, the Detroit-based Capuchin province of St. Joseph, said it delayed announcing his dismissal until students could be told personally on their return from Christmas break.

A Milwaukee native, Harrison, 77, was one of the Milwaukee area’s first African-American Catholic priests and the first black priest ordained by the Capuchins for service in the Milwaukee area, in 1964.

Between the 1960s and 70s, he served at St. Francis and St. Benedict the Moor parishes in Milwaukee, the St. Francis Friary, and the Carmelite School for Boys in Wauwatosa, according to the Capuchins.

He also appears to have taught at St. Francis School and Messmer High School, according to a Milwaukee Journal story in 1965.

Harrison did not surface as a potential abuser during an extensive internal review of files undertaken in 2013 to assess the religious order’s handling of sexual abuse cases, according to Crane.

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.

Statement Regarding Fr. Robert Harrison, OFM Cap.

UNITED STATES
Capuchin Province of St. Joseph

5 January 2015

The Capuchin Province of St. Joseph reports that Fr. Robert Harrison, OFM Cap. Has been removed from public ministry. On Monday, 22 December 2014, the Capuchin Province of St. Joseph learned that Fr. Harrison had abused minors in Milwaukee WI, and New York NY.

To the province’s knowledge, that sexual abuse occurred during the 1970s and 1980s. The province has not received any allegations from victims. The province learned this information on 22 December 2014 during an investigation into Fr. Harrison’s finances. When confronted by the province, Fr. Harrison then admitted to abuse of minors. Fr. Harrison informed the province that, to the best of his knowledge, no one ever reported any of the abuse to the province.

During the June 2013 audit of the Capuchin files, Fr. Harrison’s files were reviewed by the auditors. The auditors reported no evidence that suggested that Fr. Harrison may have been involved with the abuse of minors.

Immediately upon receiving the information on 22 December 2014, Fr. Harrison was removed as teacher and basketball coach from Cardinal Hayes High School, The Bronx NY. He is barred from public ministry as required under the terms of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People. He is currently at a professional facility where he cannot have any contact with minors.

Per Capuchin Province of St. Joseph policy, the abuse was reported to the district attorney offices in Manhattan NY, The Bronx NY and Milwaukee WI. The province will continue to work cooperatively with civil authorities in this matter.

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.

NY–Bronx priest admits abuse

NEW YORK
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

For immediate release: Monday, Jan. 5

Statement by Mary Caplan of New York City leader of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests ( 917 439 4187, mcaplan682@aol.com )

For two full weeks, Catholic officials in New York and Milwaukee have hidden an admission by a priest who worked at a Bronx school that he sexually assaulted kids. Shame on all of them. (See official church statement below.)

On Dec. 22, Fr. Robert Harrison told his Catholic supervisors that he had molested children. He was then suspended from his post at Hayes High School in the Bronx.

But neither of Fr. Harrison’s supervisors – the Capuchins nor the New York Archdiocese – told the public. We hope they promptly told police. But there’s no excuse for them not telling parents, parishioners and the public immediately, especially since the pedophile priest admitted his crimes.

We suspect obviously selfish reasons for the two irresponsible weeks of secrecy. We suspect Catholic officials didn’t want to risk hurting holiday donations. We challenge the Capuchins and Cardinal Timothy Dolan to explain why Catholic officials once again chose to err on the side of secrecy and recklessness rather than the side of openness and safety.

We hope every single person who saw, suspected or suffered crimes by Fr. Harrison or cover ups by his superiors will find the courage to speak up, get help, call police, expose wrongdoing, protect others and start healing.

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.

Catholic Bishop prepares for ‘challenging’ 2015

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

The Catholic bishop of Maitland-Newcastle says he heads into 2015 knowing the Royal Commission into child abuse could turn its attention to the diocese.

The Royal Commission into institutional responses to child sexual abuse is investigating how institutions like churches have responded to allegations of abuse.

The Maitland-Newcastle diocese was the focus of a state government initiated special commission of inquiry that recommended one senior church official be prosecuted.

Bishop Bill Wright said the year ahead could be challenging.

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 pastor Larry Clark to be sentenced for sex crimes with a minor

VIRGINIA
WDBJ

Nadine Maeser, nmaeser@wdbj7.com
Jan 05, 2015

Former pastor Larry Clark will be sentenced Monday afternoon in Rockbridge County.

Clark faces 35 years in prison.

Back in October, a jury found Clark guilty of five counts for sex crimes against a minor.

According to the victim’s mother, the child was a member of Clark’s congregation when he was a pastor at the Pentecostal Outreach Church in Buena Vista.

WDBJ7 spoke to the victim’s mother by phone Monday morning.

She says she hasn’t decided if she will give an impact statement or not, but she says her and her son will be inside the courtroom for the decision. They both hope Monday’s sentencing will bring closure to their family.

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.

Will the appointment of new cardinals advance reform?

VATICAN CITY
Catholic News Agency

Vatican City, Jan 5, 2015 / 11:32 am (CNA/EWTN News).- In creating 20 new cardinals – 15 of whom will be cardinal electors – Pope Francis has continued to set his sights on the world’s peripheries, and at the same time he began designing the College of Cardinals in order to push forward his reforms.

Among the new cardinal electors, only Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, prefect of the Apostolic Signatura, hails from the Roman curia; he had previously served, since 2006, as the Vatican’s Secretary for Relations with States.

Most of the new red birettas hail from the peripheries of the world, and follow the rationale of “the universality of the Church,” as Fr. Federico Lombardi, director of the Holy See press office, put it in a written note delivered Jan. 4.

With the Feb. 14-15 consistory at which the new cardinals are officially appointed, the weight of the curia will be diminished in the election of the next Bishop of Rome.
consistory, there will be 34 voting cardinals from the curia, among 125, a reduction of three percent.

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.

Francis chooses new cardinals from the margins

ROME
National Catholic Reporter

Robert Mickens | Jan. 5, 2015 A Roman Observer

ROME
If any other pope had produced a list of newly designated cardinals similar to the one Pope Francis unveiled Sunday, the reaction would have been shock and disbelief.
Instead, there was only momentary surprise.

Cardinals for the first time in ecclesiastical backwaters such as Tonga, Myanmar, Panama and Cape Verde? Only one Roman Curia official on the list? Still not a single American named by Francis? And two of Italy’s traditional “cardinal sees,” Turin and Venice, snubbed for Ancona and Agrigento, places that haven’t been by led by a prelate with a red hat in 100 years?

Welcome to the Era of Francis. The 78-year-old Jesuit pope announced the names of 15 new cardinal-electors and five other non-voters over the age of 80 who will become cardinals Feb. 14 at the Vatican.

His choices belie a preference for those on the peripheries and the men who pastor them, those who are on the margins of the church and society.

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.

Priest charged with public indecency pleads guilty to lesser charge

ILLINOIS
Rock River Times

Rockford priest Aaron R. Brodeski, 45, charged with two misdemeanor counts of public indecency, has pleaded guilty to a lesser misdemeanor charge of disorderly conduct.

The guilty plea was entered in Winnebago County court Friday, Jan. 2. Brodeski was sentenced to two years of court supervision and 30 hours of community service.

Brodeski was charged following a March 27, 2014, incident at Road Ranger Gas Station, 4980 S. Main St., Rockford. Winnebago County Sheriff’s deputies were called to the gas station after receiving a report of a man masturbating in view of a female clerk.

Sheriff’s deputies spoke to a clerk at the station, who said a white male had been inside the business and had exposed himself while in the store and also while parked in a vehicle in the parking lot. Other employees and customers were present at the time of the incident.

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.

Is the Diocese of Gallup New Disclosure Just Bankruptcy Protection?

NEW MEXICO
Legal Examiner

Posted by Mike Bryant
January 5, 2015

This past week the Diocese of Gallup disclosed a list of 30 new names of credibly accused priests. As usual, there is talk about the names being old and in many cases dead. Which raises the question of why weren’t these names disclosed earlier? Why were the names not on the original list that was disclosed back in 2003?

At the time of the 2003 disclosure Bishop Donald E. Pelotte claimed:

Of the 494 bishops, priests and permanent deacons that are known to have served in the Diocese of Gallup from 1950 to 2002, there were 8 known individuals who had credible accusations of sexual abuse of minors made against them.

He also pledged:

As much as all of us would like to put this behind us, the healing process and the development of policies and procedures to prevent it in the future require more attention. We have publicly committed ourselves not to return to “business as usual” but to make every effort to reform and move forward. I, as your bishop, commit myself and my staff to transparency and to the protection of all our children and youth.

So why didn’t they find these names earlier? It looks like the Dioceses filed for Bankruptcy in 2012. The January 14,2014 notice letter from Bishop Wall to parishioners spoke not only of overall debt , but of the claims of survivors:

a committee of those who were abused has been appointed as part of the Chapter II process and they will act in the Chapter 11 case on behalf of all those who were harmed in the Diocese.

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.

Explaining religious decline in the Northeast

UNITED STATES
Religion News Service – Spiritual Politics

Mark Silk | Jan 5, 2015

Last week, American Conservative blogger Rod Dreher asked for help in understanding the decline of Christianity in the Northeast. Here’s my submission.

Let’s think of the decline in terms of the proportion of self-identified adult Christians (with Christians defined broadly to include Mormons and Jehovah’s Witnesses, among others). Based on the American Religious Identification Survey and PRRI’s American Religion Atlas, between 1990 and 2013 the proportion of Christians in the country as a whole shrank from 86 percent to 71 percent. (The proportion of Nones — those who disclaim a religious identity — grew by an almost equivalent amount, from 8 percent to 21 percent.)

The Christian decline was in fact most pronounced in the Northeast, which went from 84 percent to 64 percent. The West, by contrast, only shrank from 80 percent to 71 percent. The decline in the Midwest was from 88 percent to 72 percent and in the South from 92 percent to 77 percent. In short, over the past quarter-century, the Northeast has supplanted the West as the country’s least Christian region, going from near the national average to well below it. How come?

The answer has everything to do with Roman Catholicism, the region’s largest religious tradition. From 1990 to 2013, the proportion of self-identified Catholics in the Northeast shrank dramatically, from 43 percent to 31 percent. By contrast, the Catholic proportion of the population in the rest of the country has declined by only four points, from 26 percent to 22 percent.

Much of the regional disparity has to do with the church’s Latinization. Latino immigration has been disproportionately into the West and the South, increasing the percentage of Catholics in each region. But this does not explain the difference between the Northeast and the Midwest, where the Catholic proportion of the population has declined by just six points (27 percent to 21 percent), despite having fewer Latino immigrants.

To be sure, shrinking Northeastern Catholicism does not account for the entire decline in Northeastern Christianity. The proportion of non-Catholic Christians in the Northeast shrank by 17 percent between 1990 and 2013, from 41 percent to 34 percent. That, however, is equivalent to the shrinkage of non-Catholics in the Midwest (16 percent) and well below the West (26 percent) and the South (29 percent). In other words, to the extent that the Northeast has de-christianized relative to the rest of the country, it has to do with Catholics — and specifically, with white Catholics.

The key event was the sexual abuse scandal that exploded in Boston in 2002. In Massachusetts, the epicenter of the crisis, the proportion of Catholics has shrunk by fully one-third, from 54 percent of the population to 36 percent. In Rhode Island and Connecticut, the shrinkage was 27 percent and 22 percent respectively. Although the scandal rippled across the country, nowhere has the disaffiliation of Catholics been greater than in southern New England, which has historically been the most Catholic part of the country.

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.

The failure to bind and loose: Responses to Yoder’s sexual abuse

UNITED STATES
The Mennonite

1.2. 2015 Written By: Rachel Waltner Goossen

Editor’s note: This is excerpted from a longer article, “’Defanging the Beast’: Mennonite Responses to John Howard Yoder’s Sexual Abuse,” Mennonite Quarterly Review 89 (January), based on newly available documents and interviews with 29 individuals. Readers interested in Goossen’s work in its entirety, including documentation for women’s accounts of their experiences as well as Mennonite institutional responses, may order a hard copy of the issue from The Mennonite Quarterly Review. The MQR issue is also available as an e-book through MennoMedia.org, Amazon, iBooks and Barnes & Noble.

During the mid-1970s, the renowned Christian ethicist and theologian John Howard Yoder embarked on an experiment in sexuality, devising his own guidelines and selecting his own subjects, whom he called “sisters.”

Following a three-year term as president of Goshen (Ind.) Biblical Seminary, he developed “the notion of a distinction between two dimensions of sexuality, the familiar and the genital.”

Yoder speculated that people plagued either by inhibitions about sexual intercourse or by promiscuity would have difficulty attaining what he termed “the freedom of the gospel,” which he linked to Jesus’ encounters with women.

In a series of essays that he circulated on the seminary campus and beyond, Yoder speculated about Jesus’ sexuality as a model for his disciples, for the men who followed in his path.

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.

Vatican officials to hear concerns

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Written by
Gaynor Dumat-ol Daleno
Pacific Daily News

A local Catholic church asset — a former hotel worth $57 million at one time — may no longer be under the full control of the Archdiocese of Agana, government land records show.

The group Concerned Catholics of Guam first raised doubts publicly in July about the property’s control, and now plans to show the documents to a visiting delegation from the Vatican this week.

Department of Land Management documents state that Archbishop Anthony Apuron assigned “perpetual use” of the property to the Redemptoris Mater Archdiocesan Seminary and its institute for academic formation.

The seminary is under a four-member “board of guarantors,” including Archbishop Anthony Apuron, according to the seminary’s articles of incorporation. The majority of the board consists of three New Jersey residents affiliated with the Neocatechumenal Way’s leadership: couple Giuseppe Gennarini and Claudia Gennarini; and Angelo Pochetti, the seminary’s Articles of Incorporation states.

The Neocatechumenal Way is a worldwide movement in the Catholic church, but its practices and influence on Apuron are being opposed locally by certain Catholics, including members of Concerned Catholics of Guam.

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.

US Experts Question Pope Francis’ Strategy

UNITED STATES
Christian Catholicism

Jerry Slevin

* A leading US “expert” on the Vatican, John Allen, in an unexpected analysis, raises fair questions about the wisdom of Pope Francis’ new approach to appointing Cardinals, while a prominent conservative US economist, Stephen Moore, sharply questions the pope’s current approach to economics and climate change. Meanwhile, Pope Francis struggles to steer the Vatican through a child abuse and financial scandal infested tsunami and to change the subject, and may be quite surprised at the unexpected criticism from these seemingly predictable papal promoters. Is Pope Francis’ free pass with the media, even the “friendlier media”, continuing to dissipate?

* Allen raises concerns about the recent appointment of new Cardinals, indicating that many lack both ecclesiastical bureaucratic experience and power bases in large traditional dioceses. Please see Allen’s , “The pope’s new cardinals could perpetuate the system, not upend it” at:

* [Crux]

* And a journalist at the influential Los Angeles Times is even questioning whether Pope Francis’ purported aim for diversity among Cardinals is mainly an effort to centralize more power in the Vatican. Please see:

* [Los Angeles Times]

* Meanwhile, Moore, a prominent right wing Catholic economist and former Wall Street Journal editorial writer, has sharply questioned Pope Francis’ approach to economics and climate change in an article entitled, “Vatican’s left turn would leave the poor even poorer”. Given that Pope Francis’ top financial adviser is reportedly Peter Sutherland, Chairman of Goldman Sachs International and former Chairman of BP, Moore may be taking Francis’ typical rhetoric more seriously than the pope’s inconsistent actions suggest Moore should.

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.

OPINION: Justice for all? Why hasn’t Bishop Cook who struck bicyclist Palermo been charged?

MARYLAND
The Baltimore Brew

Todd H. Oppenheim is a felony trial attorney in the Office of the Public Defender, with 10 years of experience representing indigent clients before the District Court and Circuit Court in Baltimore City.

Todd H. Oppenheim January 5, 2015

The death of cyclist Thomas Palermo has struck several chords in me. First and foremost, his death is a tragedy and an irreplaceable loss for his family. Second, it is a clarion call for heightened motorist awareness of bicycle safety.

Besides grief, though, Palermo’s death has sparked a strong reaction in me as a criminal defense attorney who represents indigent clients. My reaction focuses on justice. Equal Justice.

Palermo died 10 days ago and still no charges have been filed by the State’s Attorney’s Office against the driver of the vehicle that hit him. Why? Based on my experience as an attorney in the Public Defender’s Office for 10 years, I believe one key factor is at work.

Heather Elizabeth Cook, who drove into Palermo and fled as he lay dying, is a member of the upper tier of Baltimore’s socioeconomic ladder as the Bishop Suffragan of the Episcopal Diocese of Maryland.

If one of my clients, who are mostly African-American men, hit Palermo, charges would have been immediately filed against them. This would have been done at the scene by police without a formal arrest – or at the jail if the police took them in and prosecutors looked at the (still publicly unreleased) police report about the incident.

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.

Want to see Pope Francis’ vision for the church? …

VATICAN CITY
Washington Post

Want to see Pope Francis’ vision for the church? Look at his new cardinals

By Josephine Mckenna | Religion News Service January 5

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis reinforced his radical reshaping of the Catholic Church by naming 20 new cardinals from countries as far afield as Ethiopia, Tonga, Thailand and Panama.

The clerics — who come from 18 different countries — include 15 who are eligible to vote for the pope’s successor in a future conclave, and five retired bishops and archbishops “distinguished for their pastoral charity” who are over age 80 and ineligible to select the next pontiff.

Dissatisfied with the slow pace of change in Rome, Francis has made appointments that reflect his desire for “pastors on the front line of difficult situations,” one Vatican observer said, who can bring a new perspective from the often overlooked outposts of global Christianity.

The Vatican’s chief spokesman, the Rev. Federico Lombardi, said the choices showed the pope’s most important criteria was “universality,” and indicated he was not “chained to tradition” as he moves the balance of power at the highest levels of the church closer to the developing world.

It is the first time ever that cardinals have been selected from Tonga, Myanmar and Cape Verde to become “princes of the church.” There are only five Europeans included among the 15 new electors — two from Italy and three others. The United States was shut out for the second time in a row.

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.

Opinion: Pope Francis’ diversity push isn’t necessarily a ‘liberal’ move

UNITED STATES
Los Angeles Times

By MICHAEL MCGOUGH

On Sunday, Pope Francis named 20 new members of the College of Cardinals, 15 of who are under 80 and eligible to take part in the next papal election. As he did with his first batch of appointments to the college, Francis chose several bishops and archbishops from the developing world and bypassed the archbishops of sees in Europe and the United States that traditionally are headed by a cardinal.

More proof that the pope is a liberal, right? That was the tenor of a lot of the coverage. Just as the pope has urged bishops to reach out to the “peripheries” of society (the poor, migrants, fallen-away Catholics), so he is now using his appointment power to name prelates from the peripheries of the world.

But there is a sense in which this diversity initiative is not liberal at all. In announcing the new cardinals, the pope said that they “show the indelible tie with the church of Rome to churches in the world.” But for some liberal Catholics, the goal has been to downsize the papacy and the importance of Rome, not to make the central government of the church more representative.

In 1999, the liberal former archbishop of San Francisco, John Quinn, published a book called “The Reform of the Papacy: The Costly Call to Christian Unity.” In a column in 2005, I summarized the proposal for a downsized papacy as follows: “For one thing, it would be more parochial, more local, with, most likely, an Italian pope who tended to his Roman flock and didn’t stride so much on the world stage.”

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.

Local Vatican Watcher Says Latest Class Of Appointed Cardinals Sends A Message

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
CBS Philly

Mark Abrams

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – A veteran Vatican watcher based in our area says people shouldn’t be surprised by the 20 men Pope Francis picked over the weekend to be elevated next month to the position of cardinal in the catholic church.

Some were shocked that the church leaders in the United States were bypassed by the pope. But Philadelphia-based journalist Rocco Palmo, who covers the papacy and church affairs, says Pope Francis wants the College of Cardinals to look more like the universal church – a place where wealth or the size of a diocese is immaterial:

“Francis is using this list to basically to cement his legacy in choosing people who look at the church the way he does and who act the way he does, who will choose his successor and determine the long-term future of the church.”

As to why Philadelphia’s archbishop didn’t get the nod this time for a red hat…

“By Rome standards, Philadelphia already still has a vote – at least for another couple of months in a hypothetical conclave – because Cardinal Rigali is still an active papal elector until he turns 80 this coming April,” Palmo says.

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.

Oregon JWs face $10.5 abuse law suit

OREGON
Freethinker

Two people who say that they were sexually abused as children by a leader in a Hillsboro Jehovah’s Witnesses congregation have filed a $10.5 million lawsuit against the cult.

According to this report, attorneys for Velicia Alston, 39, above, and an unnamed man said the Jehovah’s Witnesses leadership continues to cover up sexual abuse against children by leaders. They say it is more than a decade behind other organisations, such as the Catholic Church, that have been forced to address their problems through many years of civil litigation.

Said Irwin Zalkin, one of several attorneys representing Alston and the man:

There is a crisis of silence in the Jehovah’s Witness organisation.

Zalkin described the religious organization as:

More concerned about protecting its reputation than it is about protecting its children.

For example, Zalkin said the seven men who make up the Jehovah’s Witnesses’ Governing Body have a policy requiring a confession from the perpetrator or two eye witnesses to the abuse before leaders will take any action.

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.

Francis’ Radical Take On The Papacy

UNITED STATES
WBUR

Pope Francis –“The Great Reformer” – just keeps shaking things up. We’ll take a closer look at the motivations of the Pontiff moving the Catholic Church and the world.

The year is young. So is the time of Pope Francis. Without turning a single element of Catholic Church doctrine, the first pope from Latin America – from Argentina – has somehow turned the world’s sense of the Church and its mission and the papacy in a dramatic new direction. We have to “flip the omelet,” says this humble, potent pope. We have to put the interests of the poor first. And that’s not all he’s up to. Pope Francis is the most compelling new figure to come on the world stage in a long time. What drives him? This hour On Point: my guest says we’ve got a radical Pope. Understanding Pope Francis.

– Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Austen Ivereigh, writer and journalist. Author of “The Great Reformer: Francis And The Making Of A Radical Pope.” Founder of the Catholic Voices project. (@austeni)

Phil Pullella, senior Italy and Vatican correspondent for Reuters. (@philippullella)

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.

The triumph of the southern hemisphere

VATICAN CITY
Vatican Insider

With the upcoming Consistory Francis is continuing along the path he set out on a year ago: restructuring the Curia and focusing on the peripheries whilst doing away with automatically assigned titles

ANDREA TORNIELLI
VATICAN CITY

More than the statistics and percentage analyses, it was the pronouncement of the names of the new cardinals that really signalled change in the upcoming Consistory: most of the choices made came as a complete surprise and were totally unexpected. Pastors from the peripheries of the world, in many cases bishops of dioceses that had never had a cardinal before. This is a sign that Pope Francis intends to continue along the path he set out on a year ago: cutting down on the number of cardinals who are members of the Curia (on 14 February their number will drop from 30% to 27%); stopping the Cardinalate from being automatically connected to certain sees, that is the unwritten tradition of naming cardinals the archbishops of certain sees considered “cardinalatial sees”; and above all giving a voice to the southern part of the world, thereby allowing the true universality of the Church to increasingly shine through.

The names on the list all appear to be very personal choices made by the Pope: the new cardinals learn about their nominations on the television. The Italian, Edoardo Menichelli, found out through a friend who called up to tell him the news, which at first he believed to be a joke. The elderly Sardinian archbishop Luigi de Magistris, a pupil of Cardinal Ottaviani, was in Cagliari Cathedral listening to faithful’s confessions. Other “chosen-ones” were reluctant to believe journalists as they tried to get a statement. Nothing was leaked and even the timing of the announcement caught many by surprise.

Francis clearly wants to restyle the future Conclave, bringing into the College of Cardinals pastor-electors who have first-hand experience of difficult contexts, in countries like Tonga and Myanmar that act as frontier lines, in regions torn apart by violence such as Morelia in Mexico and sometimes in small Churches or in areas where the Church represents a minority. In Italy, the Pope chose pastors from periphery Churches over bishops from the country’s biggest dioceses, Turin and Venice. Menichelli from Ancona and Francesco Montenegro from Agrigento. The former drives around his diocese in an old Fiat Panda and has started initiatives to help fragile marriages. The latter is the Bishop of Lampedusa and is right in the thick of the immigration problem. Three of the new cardinals are Italian, two of them are electors and one is over 80, which shows Francis’ attention for Italy.

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.

Order accepts Fr Brendan Smyth abused children in North homes

NORTHERN IRELAND
Irish Times

A Catholic religious order has accepted that paedophile priest Fr Brendan Smyth abused children while they were in the care of nuns in Northern Ireland, a lawyer has told a public inquiry.

Fr Smyth visited two south Belfast residential homes at the centre of the independent investigation into wrongdoing stretching back decades. He was later convicted of dozens of child abuse charges over a 40-year period .

More than 100 witnesses from Nazareth House and Nazareth Lodge have come forward to the Historical Institutional Abuse (HIA) Inquiry, headed by a former judge.

Senior counsel to the inquiry Christine Smith QC said: “Sexual abuse of children was perpetrated by the now notorious Fr Brendan Smyth.”

“There will be evidence given in this module that he abused children both in Nazareth House and in Nazareth Lodge in Belfast,” she said.

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.

Paedophile priest Brendan Smyth ‘abused boys at two care homes run by nuns’, inquiry hears

NORTHERN IRELAND
Irish Mirror

Jan 05, 2015 By Maurice Fitzmaurice

The homes in Northern Ireland were run by the Sisters of Nazareth and the inquiry heard one witness describe the nuns as “sadistic and bullies”

Paedophile priest Brendan Smyth abused boys at two care homes run by nuns, an inquiry heard Monday.

The Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry was told today that a religious order accepts that the notorious cleric abused children in their care.

The inquiry’s barrister, Christine Smith QC, said witnesses have alleged they were abused by Smyth in two care homes, Narareth House and Nazareth Lodge, in south and east Belfast.

The homes were run by the Sisters of Nazareth and today the inquiry heard one witness describe the nuns as “sadistic and bullies”.

The HIA inquiry was set up in 2013 to investigate child abuse in residential institutions in Northern Ireland over a 73-year period, up to 1995 with a total of 13 Northern Ireland institutions being investigated.

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.

Historical Abuse Inquiry …

NORTHERN IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

Historical Abuse Inquiry told paedophile priest Fr Brendan Smyth abused children in Belfast care homes

BY MICHAEL MCHUGH – 05 JANUARY 2015

A Catholic religious order has accepted that a notorious paedophile priest abused children while they were in the care of nuns in Northern Ireland, a lawyer told a public inquiry.

Fr Brendan Smyth visited two south Belfast residential homes at the centre of the independent probe into wrongdoing stretching back decades. The serial molester was later convicted of dozens of child abuse charges.

More than 100 witnesses from Nazareth House and Nazareth Lodge have come forward to the Historical Institutional Abuse (HIA) Inquiry, headed by a former judge, which is one of the largest investigations of its kind ever held in the UK.

Senior counsel to the inquiry Christine Smith QC said: “Sexual abuse of children was perpetrated by the now notorious Fr Brendan Smyth.”

She added: “There will be evidence given in this module that he abused children both in Nazareth House and in Nazareth Lodge in Belfast.”

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.

The pope’s new cardinals may risk boosting the system, not upending it

VATICAN CITY
Crux

By John L. Allen Jr.
Associate editor January 5, 2015

ROME – “Throw the bums out” is a well-recognized instinct in politics, often fueled by cycles of scandal and corruption or simply a perception that the same cast of characters has been in power for too long.

In the 1990s, for instance, the desire to shake things up led to the adoption of term limits in 15 American states, usually due to popular referenda or ballot initiatives. Legislators in those states now are compelled to step down after a fixed period, often six to eight years, ensuring a steady infusion of new faces.

Pope Francis appears driven by that same anti-establishment instinct with the College of Cardinals, the body of senior prelates that sets the tone for leadership in the church and also enjoys the exclusive right to elect the next pope.

The pope announced a lineup of 15 new voting-age cardinals on Jan. 4, and it’s clear he’s changing the mix. The experience of American term limits, however, suggests Francis may need to be attentive to the law of unintended consequences, to avoid inadvertently strengthening the very bureaucracy he’s trying to upend.

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.

THE SCHEDULE

GUAM
Jungle Watch

SCHEDULE OF PASTORAL VISIT OF ARCHBISHOP SAVIO HON TAI-FAI, SDB, SECRETARY OF THE CONGREGATION FOR THE EVANGELIZATION OF PEOPLES, ARCHBISHOP MARTIN KREBS, APOSTOLIC DELEGATE TO THE PACIFIC ISLANDS, REV. FR. TADEUSZ (TED) NOVAK, OMI, C.E.P. – OFFICIAL FOR THE PACIFIC REGION

(As you can see, no non-neo priests were given time, not even Fr. Mike Crisostomo who is the president of the clergy association, except for Msgr. James and Fr. Eric (both of whom the visitors themselves probably asked to see because of Msgr. James’ case and Fr. Eric as a representative of the Capuchins.)

JANUARY 4-10, 2015

Saturday, January 3, 2015:
* arrival 10:15 p.m. (UA 197). Greeting of three Guests @ Guam International Airport by Archbishop Anthony and brought to Discalced Carmelites Guesthouse, 153 Tamuning Villa, Tamuning, Guam 96931

Sunday, January 4, 2015:

* 7:30 a.m. Breakfast with Archbishop Anthony
* 9:30 a.m. Pontifical Mass @ Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral-Basilica with Archbishop Savio as Principal Celebrant & Homilist & Greeting of people following Mass.
* 12:00 pm. Lunch & Rest
* 3:00-5:00 p.m. Quick tour of the island with Vicar General, Msgr. David C. Quitugua, JCD & Dr. David Atienza, Ph.D., and Mr. Joseph Terlaje, Driver of the Van
* 6:30pm. Evening Prayer with Benediction & Dinner @ Redemptoris Mater Seminary, Yona & * Pastoral Visit. Fr. Pablo Ponce Rodriguez, Rector

Monday, January 5, 2015:

* 7:30 a.m. Breakfast with Vicar General, Chancellor & Vice-Chancellor

[Archbishop Anthony asks to be excused @ 7:30 a.m. for the Official Inauguration Ceremonies of Governor & Lt. Governor @ 8:00 a.m. and Inauguration of 33rd Guam Legislators @ 11:00 a.m.

N.B. Private Meeting with Individuals or Small group up to 10 will be at Carmelites 3rd Floor.
Groups of 10 or more will be at St. Anthony Spiritual Center, next to St. Anthony Church, Tamuning]

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.

‘It’s a travesty of a mockery of a sham of a mockery of two mockeries of a sham.’

MINNESOTA
Canonical Consultation

Jennifer Haselberger

01/04/2015

Or so saith Woody Allen.

Interestingly, it was this quote (and in fact the whole ‘trial scene’ from ‘Bananas’) that came to my mind earlier this weekend after a priest emailed me a question. Perhaps surprisingly, the question was not about the ‘investigation’ into Archbishop Nienstedt (although the quote would certainly be apt). Instead, the question that was posed was this: ‘Why do you think Nienstedt appointed [Father Peter] Laird as Vicar General?’

I remember my colleagues and I asking the same question in November of 2009, when it was announced that Laird would be taking over for [Bishop] Paul Sirba, who had been just appointed Bishop of Duluth. In the interests of full disclosure, I should say that I initially greeted Father Laird’s appointment with a cautious optimism, although that didn’t last for long. I suspect that the same was true for Archbishop Nienstedt.

Obviously, the Archbishop never unburdened himself to me as to what motivated his choice, nor am I aware of him doing so with anyone else. However, I can provide a context with which to understand the appointment, as well as to understand what would eventually transpire. I also know for a fact that Father Laird did not enjoy the level of confidence that he (and others) probably thought he did. As the person who prepared the Archbishop’s list of three (canon 413, 1), I can assure you that Father Laird was never high on that list.

In fairness to the Archbishop, it is important to note that Father Laird was also not his first choice to serve as Vicar General. Incredibly unpopular from the moment his appointment was announced, Nienstedt, as coadjutor, would watch as the ship in Saint Paul was scuttled before he could take command. Auxiliary Bishop Pates was transferred to Des Moines in the month prior to Archbishop Flynn’s retirement, and influential and well-respected priests like Bishop Peter Christensen and Bishop John LeVoir were named to lead dioceses of their own. Even lay staff members such as my predecessor and the long-time Schools staffer and Superintendent Lori Glynn would take the opportunity to depart.

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.

New cardinals from the church’s ‘periphery’

VATICAN CITY
John Thavis

With today’s announcement of 20 new cardinals, Pope Francis has moved decisively toward making the College of Cardinals a truly global institution.

The cardinals come from 14 countries on five continents, including Cape Verde, Myanmar, Panama, New Zealand and even the Kingdom of Tonga, a Pacific archipelago that is home to a mere 15,000 Catholics.

They will receive their red hats at a consistory in Rome in mid-February. The list of appointees included no one from the United States or Canada. Pope Francis, in fact, has yet to appoint a cardinal from the United States, which today has 18 cardinals, a relatively high number.

There are several things to note in the pope’s selections:

— By choosing prelates from eight dioceses that have never had a cardinal, Francis is clearly shaking up the geographical mix of a group known as the church’s “senate.” In effect, the pope is removing the expectation of red hats that have attached to many established major dioceses for centuries. This new policy – enunciated explicitly today by the Vatican spokesman, Father Federico Lombardi – sets in motion further globalization for the future: expect fewer Europeans, and more cardinals from the Catholic “periphery.”

— Of the 15 new cardinals who are under age 80, and therefore able to vote in a conclave, the pope chose two Italians. That means Italy would continue to have great influence in a potential papal election, with more than one-fifth the number of voting cardinals. But as he did last year, the pope selected Italians from smaller dioceses, passing over traditional cardinalate sees like Venice and Turin. Once again, the effect is to remove the customary expectation of a red hat.

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.

Aussie teacher faces child abuse prosecution

NEW ZEALAND/AUSTRALIA
New Zealand Herald

John Weekes

Police investigating sex crime allegations against a teacher long presumed dead before being found in rural New Zealand have returned to Australia to prepare a report for a prosecutor.

The allegations relate to Ronald Thomas, formerly a teacher at Tasmania’s elite Hutchins School, who now lives in Tangimoana, near Bulls.

Mr Thomas, aged in his late 70s, has denied allegations of historical sex offences.

Two of his former students made claims to Tasmania’s Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

The commission, investigating allegations of abuse at Hutchins in the late 1960s, named Mr Thomas in November.

The commission and Mr Thomas’ alleged victims believed the teacher was dead. But last month The Australian newspaper revealed Mr Thomas was living in a rural Manawatu dairy-farming community.

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.

He Is Pope. Elected by All the Rules

ROME
Chiesa

An authoritative canonist rebuts the arguments of those who view Bergoglio’s election as invalid and therefore do not recognize him as pope. But uncertainties remain about the maneuvers that preceded the white smoke

by Sandro Magister

ROME, January 5, 2015 – Even after the unveiling of the names of those whom Pope Francis will elevate to the scarlet in the second round of cardinalate appointments of his pontificate, the conclave that elected him pope remains tinged with shadows.

Naturally, there is no conclave that does not draw together the threads of “maneuvers” aimed at the election of one or another candidate to the papacy. They are “maneuvers” that may mature in a few days, or even in a few hours. Or they may go on for years. Even their innocence can be of varying levels. So much so that the apostolic constitution “Universi Dominici Gregis,” which regulates the election of the popes, expressly invalidates “any form of pact, agreement, promise or other commitment of any kind” that in exchange for the vote would lay claim to bind the future elect.

In an article last July 1, www.chiesa demonstrated in what sense and to what extent the election of Jorge Mario Bergoglio could approach – without being equated with one – a pact of this kind, seeing the insistence with which the current pope says that he “follows what the cardinals asked for during the general congregations before the conclave”:

But this in fact has to do with the natural dynamic of every papal election. And it is what the English vaticanista Austen Ivereigh has brought to light in a passage from his recent book on Pope Francis, “The Great Reformer,” identifying cardinals Cormac Murphy-O’Connor, Walter Kasper, Karl Lehmann, and Godfried Danneels as four active promoters of the election of Bergoglio.

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.

Residential school settlements reach $2.6 billion

CANADA
The StarPhoenix

BY JASON WARICK, THE STARPHOENIX JANUARY 4, 2015

More than $2.6 billion has been paid out to date as compensation to former Indian residential school students across the country, but some say money alone will not heal their wounds.

“There’s still a lot to be done. There are many different ways of healing,” Lac la Ronge Indian Band Chief Tammy Cook-Searson said.

As of Dec. 1, $2.643 billion had been paid out by the federal government in more than 30,000 settlements across Canada, according to the Indian Residential Schools Adjudication Secretariat. More than 6,300 of those claims came from Saskatchewan.

That figure is sure to climb. There are still 7,691 claims in progress, including nearly 2,500 from Saskatchewan.

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.

Nazareth homes focus of abuse inquiry

NORTHERN IRELAND
UTV

Published Monday, 05 January 2015

Some Catholic nuns at children’s homes in Belfast have been described as “sadistic bullies” at the Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry which resumed on Monday.

The fourth module of the inquiry at Banbridge Courthouse is focusing on the former Nazareth House and Nazareth Lodge, run by the Sisters of Nazareth order of Catholic nuns.

A total of 102 witnesses from the homes have come forward to give their accounts and more than 90 are expected to give evidence.

The atmosphere at the two properties was described as “bleak, harsh and cruel” by alleged victims, a lawyer told the inquiry.

Senior counsel Christine Smith QC quoted one witness: “The nuns were at best indifferent and most often sadistic bullies who spoke with harsh, loud voices in scornful, dismissive tones.”

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.

HIA inquiry told Fr Brendan Smyth abused children in Belfast care homes

NORTHERN IRELAND
BBC News

The Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry has been told a religious order accepts that a notorious paedophile priest abused children in their care.

The inquiry’s barrister, Christine Smith QC, said witnesses alleged they were abused by Fr Brendan Smyth in two care homes in south and east Belfast.

The inquiry is examining abuse claims at Narareth House and Nazareth Lodge.

The homes were run by the Sisters of Nazareth, who have repeated an earlier apology to all abused in their care.

‘Sadistic and bullies’

The HIA inquiry was set up in 2013 to investigate child abuse in residential institutions in Northern Ireland over a 73-year period, up to 1995.

A total of 13 Northern Ireland institutions are being investigated.

The latest module, focusing on the two Belfast homes, is the single biggest module of the inquiry, in terms of the number of witnesses who have come forward to given evidence about their time in the care of the nuns.

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.

Children’s home nuns ‘sadistic’

NORTHERN IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

05 JANUARY 2015

Some Catholic nuns at a children’s home in Northern Ireland were sadistic bullies, a former resident has claimed.

A “bleak, harsh and cruel” atmosphere was described by alleged victims at two properties in Belfast run by the Sisters of Nazareth Order, a lawyer told a public inquiry.

More than 100 witnesses from Nazareth House and Nazareth Lodge have come forward to t he Historical Institutional Abuse (HIA) Inquiry, headed by a former judge.

Thirteen institutions are being considered by the inquiry panel, which is tasked with making recommendations to Stormont ministers on issues such as compensating alleged victims.

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.

Bishop Patita Mafi, Tonga’s first Cardinal

TONGA
Matangi Tonga

Monday, January 5, 2015

Nuku’alofa, Tonga

Bishop Soane Patita Paini Mafi (53) is the first Tongan to be made a Cardinal of the Catholic Church.

He was the youngest of the 20 cardinals that Pope Francis announced at St Peter’s Square at the Vatican, on Sunday January 4.

Fifteen of the newly appointed cardinals are from the developing countries and three, including Bishop Mafi, held the title of bishop rather than archbishop. The cardinals will be officially installed to their posts on February 14. They will be able to vote for the Pope’s successor.

Bishop Soane Patita Paini Mafi was consecrated as Coadjutor Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Tonga and Niue on 5 October 2007.

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.

Argentines second only to Poles in pope approval

ARGENTINA
Buenos Aires Herald

91 percent of citizens have a favourable opinion of Francis despite declining numbers of Catholics

Having dramatically changed the way that the Vatican reaches out to Catholics, followers of other religions and non-believers, and giving the Catholic Church a softer touch, Pope Francis enjoys broad global support with a median of 60 percent of people in 43 countries having a favourable image of the pontiff.

Of the countries surveyed by the Pew Research Center, Poland took the spot for the country with the greatest sympathy for the Argentine pope with as much as 92 percent of the population indicating that they held him in high regard. Remarkably, only three percent of Poles held an unfavourable view, with the remaining group indicating that they had no impression of the pope.

While not rejecting the pope on a majority basis, roughly 40 percent of those in the Middle East, Africa and Asia had no opinion.

Broadly speaking, Francis has taken a far more pastoral approach to the papacy than his immediate predecessor Benedict XVI, while also bringing winds of change to the way that the Vatican is managed and promising no-tolerance for sexual abuse crimes committed by the clergy.

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.

Group from Vatican on island

GUAM
KUAM

by Jolene Toves

Guam – A delegation from the Vatican has begun their weeklong pastoral visit. The group which consists of Archbishop Savio Hon Tai-Fai, the secretary of the Vatican congregation for the evangelization of peoples; Archbishop Martin Krebs, the apostolic delegate to the Pacific Islands; and Reverend Father Tadeusz Nowak arrived to the Guam International Airport Authority Saturday evening where they were greeted by Archbishop Anthony Apuron and KUAM News.

He would not grant an interview.

According to a press release from the archdiocese the pastoral visit is in an effort to foster reconciliation and understanding within the archdiocese. The local Catholic Church has been divided over the last several months. Some of the controversies include last year’s sudden removal of Monsignor James Benavente as rector of the archdiocese, the closure of the Cathedral Museum, and allegations of sexual abuse made by a third party against the archbishop. In response to the controversies a group of parishioners came together to form the Concerned Catholics of Guam with the intent to investigate the issues within the church.

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.

“Cassockists” and the “Maciel Method”

UNITED STATES
Waiting for Godot to Leave

Kevin O’Brien

Grant Gallicho concludes his excellent eight part series at Commonweal on the “Curious Case of Carlos Urrutigoity” here.

The conclusion is a bit anti-climactic. The only major player to suffer any kind of serious consequences for this long and tawdry affair seems to be Bishop Livieres of Ciudad del Este, who was asked to resign by Pope Francis back in September. Meanwhile, Urrutigoity and his crew of followers and supporters are still out there, many of them are still functioning as priests, at least one of them continues to fund raise despite his association with the Society of St. John – an organization whose founder allegedly engaged in sex abuse and financial fraud – and I am told that even though Urrutigoity’s associate Eric Ensey has been “defrocked” he still continues to present himself as a priest.

One of the themes that runs through this story is how easy it is for scoundrels to prey upon conservative Catholics simply by using the Fr. Maciel Method – be anti-liberal, pro-Latin Mass, say the right thing, wear cassocks, and you can raise as much money as you want, even while admittedly sleeping in the same beds with underage boys and lavishly wasting the money that’s donated to you. Urrutigoity and his crew were simply preying upon disaffected Catholics, who are angry at the abuse of doctrine and liturgy under the reign of the liberals, and who let that anger cloud their judgment and affect everything they do.

In fact, these disaffected Catholics are still so eager to root for anyone in a cassock (a conservative) as opposed to anyone in a sweater (a liberal), that many of them refuse to see the truth of Livieres removal and of the Urrutigoity situation. And they’ll howl if Bishop Finn is ever (justly) removed.

In fact, the party spirit in the Church is so great that some “cassockists” even continue to spread Bill Donohue’s lie that the priest arrested in the Kansas City case (Fr. Rattigan) was not guilty of producing child porn – despite his being sentenced to 50 years in prison for that very thing. Others seem to think that Finn was not himself convicted, but entered into a plea deal for the sake of the diocese – which is simply not true. But truth is not an issue for these people. They can’t see past the cassock.

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.

No meeting planned with Guam Concerned Catholics

GUAM
Marianas Variety

04 Jan 2015 By Jasmine Stole – jasmine@mvguam.com – Variety News Staff

HAGÅTÑA — More than a week has passed since the Concerned Catholics of Guam requested a meeting with Archbishop Anthony Apuron, but spokesman Rev. Adrian Cristobal said on Friday there were no plans to meet with the group.

A meeting with the group is up to the archbishop and he has not yet seen the letters from the Concerned Catholics of Guam, Cristobal said.

Since the group announced their organization​ on Dec. 9 at a press conference, at least one letter has been sent requesting a meeting with the archbishop, according to Concerned Catholics President Greg Perez and Treasurer Deacon Steve Martinez.

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 law extends sexual abuse filing window, puts pressure on archdiocese

MINNESOTA
Business Insurance

January 4, 2015

A 2013 Minnesota law easing the state’s statute of limitations on sexual abuse claims has led to a barrage of claims against a Minnesota Catholic archdiocese and renewed concerns among institutions nationwide about the potential effect of such laws.

The Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis recently filed suit against its liability insurers dating back to 1952 for coverage of claims arising since Minnesota opened a three-year “window” for those with previously time-barred abuse claims. With more than a year before the window closes, the archdiocese has said the growing cost of dealing with the claims may force it to seek bankruptcy protection.

Minnesota is the fifth U.S. jurisdiction to enact a temporary waiver of the statute of limitation for abuse claims, and similar legislation continues to be introduced in several other states.

“Window” legislation and other retroactive extensions of statutes of limitations are a major concern for institutions that care for children, experts say.

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.

Uruguay archbishop ‘shocked’ to be named cardinal

URUGUAY
The Peninsula (Qatar)

MONTEVIDEO – Uruguay’s Archbishop Daniel Sturla spoke of his shock on Sunday after being named as one of 20 new cardinals by Pope Francis.

Sturla, 55, only the second Uruguayan to be appointed a cardinal, said the honor marked a distinction for the Catholic Church in Uruguay.

I was and am still shocked by the news, Sturla told reporters after a Sunday Mass in Montevideo following the Vatican’s announcement.

I was only very recently appointed as archbishop of Montevideo so I view this as a distinction for the Church in Uruguay, rather than to me, added Sturla, appointed archbishop of Montevideo by Pope Francis in February 2014.

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.

Bishop summons clergy to meeting after death of bicyclist in Baltimore

MARYLAND
The Baltimore Sun

By Luke Broadwater
The Baltimore Sun

The Episcopal Bishop of Maryland has summoned all the clergy of the Diocese of Maryland to a Tuesday morning meeting in Frederick County after a high-ranking church official was involved in a crash that killed bicyclist Thomas Palermo, 41, a married father of two.

Church spokeswoman Sharon Tillman confirmed Sunday that The Right Rev. Eugene Taylor Sutton has called church clergy to a meeting at the Claggett Center near Buckeystown. She said the meeting was closed to the public to “allow clergy time to process the tragic events of the past week that involved a colleague.”

Police are continuing to investigate the 2:40 p.m. Dec. 27 crash on the 5700 block of Roland Ave. Episcopal officials have identified the driver of the car as Bishop Suffragan Heather Elizabeth Cook, the second-ranking official in the Diocese of Maryland. Cook initially drove away from the scene but returned a short time later, according to the diocese and witnesses at the scene. Another bicyclist followed her to a gated apartment complex. No charges have been filed.

Cook, who has been placed on administrative leave, is “barred from performing any duties of a bishop or a priest,” Tillman said.

Palermo’s death has galvanized many in Baltimore in recent weeks, prompting hundreds to attend a memorial bike ride and Sutton to ask all church members to engage in “silent prayer and reflection” on Saturday.

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.

Pope Francis Names New Cardinals

VATICAN CITY
New York Times

By ELISABETTA POVOLEDO
JAN. 4, 2015

VERBANIA, Italy — Pope Francis named his second group of new cardinals on Sunday, including 15 who will be eligible to elect the pope’s successor after his death or resignation. Many are from developing countries, reflecting the Roman Catholic Church’s growth in Asia and Africa.

The bishops and archbishops come from Italy, France, Portugal, Ethiopia, New Zealand, Vietnam, Mexico, Myanmar, Thailand, Uruguay, Spain, Panama, Cape Verde and Tonga, representing “every continent, to manifest the indissoluble links between the Church of Rome and the particular churches present in the world,” the pope said.

The new cardinals from Myanmar, Tonga and Cape Verde come from countries that have never been represented in the upper echelons of the church’s hierarchy, Vatican officials said. Nine come from developing countries; only one — from Wellington, New Zealand — is a native English speaker. Five are European.

“The most evident criteria is evidently that of universality,” the Rev. Federico Lombardi, a Vatican spokesman, said in a note published Sunday. “Fourteen different countries are represented, including some that do not currently have a cardinal, and some that have never had one.”

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.

Wellington archbishop made a cardinal

NEW ZEALAND
Sky News

A New Zealand archbishop has been named among 20 new cardinals appointed by Pope Francis.

The archbishop of Wellington, John Atcherley Dew, 66, is among several appointments seen to reflect the Roman Catholic Church’s changing demographics and efforts to recognise increasingly key areas of support outside its traditional European stronghold.

Of the new cardinals, 15 are considered “princes of the church” and under the age of 80, reports AFP.

This means they are eligible to join the conclave which will elect the pope’s successor.

The list of newly named cardinals includes five from Asia and the Pacific, three from Africa, and five from Latin America.

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.

Pope Francis Overlooks Women as New Cardinals

UNITED STATES
Christian Catholicism

Jerry Slevin

* Pope Francis added new Cardinals disregarding as absolute monarch the canon law cap of 120 voting Cardinals, yet he still left out women. He picked only men who previously had been selected apparently as obedient and conformist bishops by the current pope’s two conservative predecessors. Francis could have added some women, but as expected, he failed to do so. Of course, he still can add women. He now will move forward soon to preach the ban on contraception to the overcrowded Philippines, and in nine months to conclude his lackluster October Final Synod of the Family run solely by celibate men. Hello?

* Cardinal appointments and papal elections take on special significance now, given the rapidly declining papal prestige and power due to the unchecked priest child abuse scandal. Ironically, the same day that the new Cardinals were named, BishopAccountability.org carried a well deserved tribute to Trish McClelland, one of several unheralded women including Kathy Shaw, Anne Barrrett Doyle and Sylvia Demarest, who have quietly and effectively helped to bring the child abuse scandal to the world’s attention. See:

* [BishopAccountability.org – Trish McLelland]

As expected, “”rubber stamp” journalists and opportunistic apologists, including pathetically many women, have praised Francis for advancing with his latest appointments to the 19th Century with greater geographical diversity, while underplaying Francis’ failure to move into the 21st Century without even a token appointment reflecting gender equality.

Pope Francis will, it appears, continue to rely for women’s input mainly on the likes of US conservative, Mary Ann Glendon, as he continues to work hard to install a friendlier (Republican) US president and to continue a friendly US Supreme Court, while “keeping women in their proper place” principally as child bearing producers. Please see my remarks. “Hillary Clinton vs. Pope Francis in 2015″ at:

* [Christian Catholicism]

Catholics have now seen enough of Pope Francis’ “words without deeds” strategy. They all need now to require that their leaders follow the Gospels. Catholics can require this by (1) ending their donations that even indirectly benefit bishops, (2) publicly challenging their bishops often, and (3) demanding that their democratically elected officials (A) investigate, and if the evidence is found, prosecute suspected bishops, and (B) end all subsidies to bishops.

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.

Pope Francis favors developing world in naming new Catholic cardinals

VATICAN CITY
Reuters

By Philip Pullella January 4, 2015

Pope Francis on Sunday named new cardinals to the group that will choose his successor, with appointments that strengthened the Catholic Church in Asia, Africa and Latin America and further shifted its power center away from the developed world.

It was the second time the 78-year-old Francis has used the appointment of cardinals to put his stamp on the 1.2 billion-member church. The two sets of appointments increase the chances that the next pontiff will, like Francis, be a non-European.

Only one of the new electors is from the Curia, the Vatican’s central administration, which Francis has pledged to overhaul. Last month, the pope said the Curia was infected with careerism, scheming, greed and “spiritual Alzheimer’s”.

Francis’ nominees now make up a quarter of the 125 “cardinal electors” under 80 years old — easily enough to sway the election of a new pope when Francis dies or resigns.

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.

Cupich Not on List of New Cardinals Named by Pope Francis

CHICAGO (IL)
NBC Chicago

By Mary Ann Ahern

Pope Francis has announced 20 new cardinals, 15 of whom are less than 80 years old. While there had been speculation that Chicago’s Archbishop Blase Cupich would be one of them, he was not included in Sunday’s list.

If Cupich had been chosen, it would certainly have seemed that he was on a very fast track, considering his recent appointment as archbishop. Other American archbishops, including Jose Gomez from Los Angeles, Wilton Gregory from Atlanta and Charles Chaput from Philadelphia, have not been named cardinals either, and they have been archbishops for much longer.

Another point against Cupich is that his predecessor, Francis George, is a cardinal. It would be unusual to have two voting cardinals from the same archdiocese. While Cardinal George has retired, he will still be a voting member of the College of Cardinals until he is 80 years old. George will turn 78 in January.

There isn’t much doubt that Cupich will eventually be named a cardinal, as Chicago has been a “cardinal seat” since George Mundelein in 1924.

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.

Pope Francis Announces the Names of 20 New Cardinals, 15 of them Electors.

UNITED STATES
America

Gerard O’Connell | Jan 4 2015

Pope Francis has announced that he will create 15 new cardinals from 13 countries who will have the right to vote in the next conclave, almost all are bishops of dioceses from all continents, and several are from ‘the peripheries’ of the world.

He will also give the red hat to 5 retired archbishops and bishops who are over the age of 80 and are “distinguished for their pastoral charity in the service of the Holy See and of the Church”.

Significantly, abiding by past practice, he has not named any new cardinal-elector from a see where there is still a cardinal under the age of 80, and so he has not given the red hat to the archbishops of Chicago, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Madrid or Sydney.

At the time of the announcement there were 10 vacant places in the College of Cardinal Electors, which according to the norms set by Paul VI and approved by his successors should have a total of 120 members. Pope Francis, however, has decided to exceed that number by 5, and so on the day he holds the Consistory, if my calculations are correct, there will be a total of 125 cardinal electors.

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.

Pope Francis names 15 new cardinals from every corner of the world…

VATICAN CITY
Daily Mail

Pope Francis names 15 new cardinals from every corner of the world – including Tonga, Cape Verde and even Burma

By CLAIRE CARTER FOR MAILONLINE

Pope Francis has named 15 cardinals from countries across the globe, including nations in the developing world.

Cardinals have been appointed from Ethiopia, Tonga and Cape Verde as well as Vietnam and Sicily – reflecting the diversity of the church.

Pope Francis told a crowd gathered in St Peter’s Square that the church leaders come ‘from every continent’ and ‘show the indelible tie with the church of Rome to churches in the world’.
The 15 cardinals, who hail from a total 14 nations, are all under 80 and will therefore be able to vote for the Pope’s successor.

He also made a surprise announcement and said he would lead a meeting of all cardinals to ‘reflect on the orientations and proposals for the reform of the Roman Curia’, the Vatican’s administrative bureaucracy, between February 12 and 13.

Since he took on the role, Pope Francis has remained committed to root out corruption and inefficiency from the curia.

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.

Pope Francis names diverse new ‘princes’ of the church

VATICAN CITY
MSNBC

[with poll]

By Anna Brand

Once again breaking from tradition, Pope Francis on Sunday announced 15 new cardinals chosen from nations far and wide, including Ethiopia, Vietnam, Mexico, Tonga, and Myanmar.

The new “princes of the church” were selected from 14 diverse countries, marking another big move for inclusion within the Catholic church; Francis declared that the churchmen come “from every continent,” according to a statement from the Vatican.

Francis also named five churchman older than 80 – and thus not eligible to vote – for their distinguished commitment to the Vatican.

The new archbishops and bishops will join in a ceremony called Consistory Feb. 14. The Pope said from a Vatican window onlooking St. Peter’s Square that on On Feb. 12-13 he will gather all of the cardinals to “reflect on the orientations and proposals for the reform of the Roman Curia.”

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.

Francis diversifies cardinals, choosing prelates from Asia, island nations

VATICAN CITY
National Catholic Reporter

Joshua J. McElwee | Jan. 4, 2015

ROME
Continuing to diversify global representation in the most select body of Catholic prelates, Pope Francis announced Sunday that he will be creating 20 new cardinals from 18 different countries — with several from places never before included in the elite group.

Among those Francis has chosen for the role: Bishops from the island nations of Cabo Verde and Tonga; archbishops from the Asian cities of Bangkok, Yangon, and Hà Nôi; and the leader of an Italian community dealing heavily with refugees and migrants from Africa.

Francis made the announcement of the new cardinals, long expected in recent weeks, during his weekly Sunday address following the noon-time Angelus prayer in St. Peter’s Square.

Cardinals, sometimes known as the “princes of the church” and for their wearing of red vestments, are usually senior Catholic prelates who serve either as archbishops in the world’s largest dioceses’ or in the Vatican’s central bureaucracy. Their principal role is to gather in secret conclave following the death or resignation of a pope to elect his successor.

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.

Pope names 20 new cardinals including Africans and Latin Americans

VATICAN CITY
Yahoo! News

Vatican City (AFP) – Pope Francis on Sunday named 20 new cardinals including many from Latin America and Africa, which have become key areas for the Catholic Church as its demographics have shifted away from Europe.

Fifteen of the new cardinals are also under the age of 80, meaning they are eligible to join the conclave which elects the next pontiff.

The list includes African leaders Archbishop Berhaneyesus Demerew Souraphiel of Ethiopia and Bishop Arlindo Gomes Furtado of Cape Verde.

The Latin Americans were Archbishop Alberto Suarez Inda of Mexico, Archbishop Daniel Fernando Sturla Berhouet of Uraguay, Bishop Jose Luis Lacunza Maestrojuan of Panama as well as archbishops emeritus Luis Hector Villaba of Argentina and José de Jesus Pimiento Rodriguez of Columbia.

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.