ABUSE TRACKER

A digest of links to media coverage of clergy abuse. For recent coverage listed in this blog, read the full article in the newspaper or other media source by clicking “Read original article.” For earlier coverage, click the title to read the original article.

July 2, 2015

DENUNCIA A DOS CURAS PEDÓFILOS

MéRIDA (MEXICO)
Tribuna Campeche [San Francisco de Campeche, Campeche, Mexico]

July 2, 2015

By Tribuna

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Al acusar a los sacerdotes Francisco “El Bimbo” Velázquez Trejo y Martín Mena Carrillo de embriagarlo, violarlo e incurrir en otras prácticas homosexuales, lo mismo que ocurrió a varios acólitos de la parroquia Divina Providencia, el padre veterocatólico Luis Felipe Izquierdo Cundafé recalca que su único interés es que los culpables paguen por su conducta inadecuada, que lo condujo en varias ocasiones a atentar contra su vida.

Originario del Estado de Tabasco, el clérigo relata en una extensa carta dirigida a TRIBUNA el calvario que padeció a los 16 años , al llegar con el grupo de misioneros Servidores de la Palabra, de Mérida, Yucatán, a la Divina Providencia, cuyo párroco era en ese entonces el cura Martín Mena Carrillo.

Actualmente a cargo de una misión en Puerto Montt, Chile, Izquierdo Cundafé, hoy de 23 años, afirma que no le importan los señalamientos que hagan en su contra al dar a conocer a la luz  pública los abusos que sufrió. “Por eso me armo de valor y fuerza para contar mi historia, y sé que mucha gente me comprenderá y apoyará”, remata.

En el 2007, recuerda, conoció al padre Martín Mena Carrillo, y en lo que califica como una equivocación que hasta el día de hoy lamenta, se salió de los Servidores de la Palabra para ingresar en agosto, a un mes de cumplir 17 años de edad, al Seminario de Campeche.

Mena Carrillo lo recibió con respeto, y fue tal el interés sentimental que le despertó, que al segundo día lo llevó a un centro comercial de Ciudad del Carmen a comprarle ropa interior. Tras preguntarle la talla, se dedicó a escoger los bóxers, preguntándole cuál le quedaba grande o muy grande, lo que al principio tomó como broma. A este trato le agregó la asignación de cargos, como forma de ganarse su confianza.

Siguieron los mensajes vía celular con palabras en doble sentido y la invitación a que lo visitara en su cuarto, donde tenía cosas de gran valor económico, y a tomar licor. Esa fue la primera vez que le tocó las partes íntimas, lo besó y le hizo sexo oral. “Desde la primera vez que te vi me gustaste mucho”, justificó Mena Carrillo. Después, el hoy veterocatólico regresó a su cuarto, se acostó y lloró. Quería irse de esa casa.

Luego conoció a la mamá y demás familia del párroco, en la capital del Estado. Continuaron las invitaciones a tomar y también a fumar. Incluso a veces lo ponía a contar el dinero de la colecta mensual, que en temporadas altas era de hasta 100 mil pesos y en bajas de 50 mil.

Un día, también en la ciudad capital, lo llevó a una parroquia, cuyo nombre no recuerda, pero cuyo encargado era Francisco Velázquez Trejo, quien también le hizo sexo oral y lo obligó a penetrarlo. Después las fiestas donde a éste le gustaba personificar a Juan Gabriel.

Varias veces intentó matarse, comenta, pero la última logró salvarlo la cocinera, y aunque reportó los hechos al entonces obispo Ramón Castro Castro, no obtuvo respuesta positiva. Le indicó que Martín Mena no aceptaba lo que él denunciaba. Luego le reclamó que se haya ido a la religión veterocatólica.

Castro Castro, hoy obispo de Cuernavaca,  para intentar acallarlo le dio dinero, el suficiente como para comprar un carro y partir. A olvidar lo ocurrido. Lo que hasta ahora no logra, y demanda atención y castigo.

TEXTO ÍNTEGRO DE LA CARTA EN EL SIGUIENTE ENLACE:

Acólito abusado sexualmente narra las experiencias que vivió

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.

ACÓLITO ABUSADO SEXUALMENTE NARRA LAS EXPERIENCIAS QUE VIVIÓ

MéRIDA (MEXICO)
Tribuna Campeche [San Francisco de Campeche, Campeche, Mexico]

July 2, 2015

By Tribuna

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Quisiera contar mi vivencia en la Iglesia Católica Apostólica y Romana en el Estado de Campeche: los delitos de violación en contra de mí  y varios acólitos de la parroquia Divina Providencia.

Mi nombre es Luis Felipe Izquierdo Cundafé, de nacionalidad mexicana, nacido en el Estado de Tabasco. Actualmente  soy sacerdote de la iglesia Veterocatólica, a cargo de una misión en Chile.

Para mí es difícil contar todo lo sucedido en Campeche, ya que sé perfectamente que recibiré apoyo de muchas personas. Muchos me juzgarán y dirán cosas, como que soy el demonio o cosas más, pero en estos momentos es lo que menos me importa. Lo único que quiero es que estas dos personas paguen por el daño que me causaron a mí y a otras personas, por eso me armo de valor y fuerza para contar mi historia y mandarla a los medios de comunicación.

En el 2007 conocí al padre Martín Mena Carrillo, que en ese tiempo era párroco de la Divina Providencia. Yo llegué con un grupo de misioneros Servidores de la Palabra que nos formábamos en Mérida, Yucatán. Fue cuando conocí al padre Martín,  en ese tiempo de misión, yo equivocadamente me salí de los misioneros Servidores de la Palabra para entrar al Seminario de Campeche, donde el padre Martín me ofreció su apoyo. Hasta ahora sigo arrepentido de haberme salido de la congregación que me enseñó mucho.

Cuando llegué a la parroquia, el padre Martín Mena Carrillo me recibió muy bien, con mucho cariño y respeto. Él me dio mucha confianza. En ese tiempo yo tenía 16 años, fue un agosto y en septiembre cumpliría 17.  Al segundo día me llevó de compras a un centro comercial en Ciudad del Carmen. Lo primero que me llevó a comprar fue ropa interior y me preguntó de qué talla eres, y se puso a escoger los boxers. Éste te queda o es muy grande, yo lo tomé a broma. Los primeros meses me compraba cosas, me dio muchos cargos como para ganarse mi confianza, y pues así sucedió.

Hasta que un día me comenzó a mandar mensajes a mi celular con palabras en doble sentido  y pues, como él ya se había ganado el cariño mío y respeto, yo me reía y él me dijo Felipe ven a mi cuarto, ya que yo estaba a tres cuartos, y pues fui a su cuarto. Un cuarto muy lujoso con muchos perros de porcelana que tenía, aparte de varios perros que tenía en jaulas en su patio. Hasta tucanes tenía.

El cuarto me gustó mucho, tenía muchas cosas bonitas y de gran valor. A todo eso no le tomé mucha importancia. El padre Martín me invitó un poco de licor en un vaso, y pues tomé eso. Era la primera vez que yo tomaba licor y pues ahí empezó mi martirio. Después me comenzó a tocar mi parte íntima con sus manos y a besar. Primero me dio asco pero recuerdo estas palabras: Desde la primera vez que te vi me gustaste mucho, por eso te estoy ayudando a entrar en el seminario. Todos pasamos por esto, y pues esa noche el padre me violó, haciéndome sexo oral. Recuerdo que me fui a mi cuarto, me acosté en mi cama y lloré. Quería irme de esa casa que estaba en el tercer piso de la iglesia.

Al día siguiente,el ya mencionado me llevó a Campeche a la casa de su mamá, una señora muy amable. Ahí conocí a casi todo su familia, hasta primo me decían sus sobrinos. Así pasó el tiempo. Yo pensaba que era normal todo eso, tenía mucho miedo de hablar, de lo que diría mi familia cuando yo le contara, y el miedo de que no me creyeran. No fue una sola vez, sino varias veces que me invitaba a fumar cigarros y tomar. A veces él me ponía con otros a contar el dinero de la colecta del mes, que era mucho, hasta 50 mil pesos mensuales en temporadas bajas,y en altas hasta 100 mil pesos.

Un día me llevó a Campeche, ya que no lo acompañó el joven que siempre estaba con él, hasta compartía cuarto con él, habiendo muchos desocupados.  Ese día me llevó de nuevo a casa de su mama, una casa muy bonita. Después me llevó a la parroquia, que no recuerdo su nombre, pero era en Campeche, donde estaba el padre Francisco Velázquez Trejo. Lo primero que preguntó él fue, con estas palabras: ¿Martííínnnnn, es de confianza? y él dijo sí, y nos pasó a un comedor.

Para pasar al comedor tuvimos que pasar por su cuarto privado. Él nos preguntó si queríamos comer, yo dije que sí, y me dio una hamburguesa. Después de la comida nos invitó licor de los finos y caros. El padre Francisco ya estaba un poco con alcohol, bueno los dos padres, ya que yo sólo llevaba un vaso. El padre Francisco o “El Bimbo”, como le decía el padre Martín, dijo estas palabras: Martín ten cuidado con el tabasqueño, dicen que cuando se enojan sacan su machete, ¡mmmmm son bravos los tabasqueños! Y con una mirada muy femenina, mirándome agarró mi mano derecha y me dijo: tú no eres así ¿verdad? Tomaron mucho mientras el padre Francisco ponía música de Juan Gabriel y se ponía a cantar creyéndose el Divo de Juárez. El padre Francisco dijo: Martííínnnn yo quiero uno igualito al tabasqueño, y Martín se me quedó viendo.

AFLORAN LOS CELOS

Cuando estábamos a punto de dormir, Martín me dijo: Me puse celoso de cómo El Bimbo te miraba. ¡Cuidadito! Esa noche nada pasó. Al día siguiente fuimos a la parroquia donde él estaba a cargo. Me dio muchos privilegios, como predicar en misa de domingo, ser encargado espiritual de los grupos juveniles, donde él tenía mucha relación y era muy querido por todos en la isla, por su trabajo, pero no sabían que tenía otra cara.

Un día llegó el padre Francisco a la parroquia. Estábamos contando el dinero de las colectas del mes con un acólito que en ese entonces tenía 13 años, otra persona de su confianza de donde él había sido párroco en años anteriores. Pasamos todos al comedor y nos sirvieron licor a todos, hasta al acólito, que era más chico que yo, y pues todos terminamos ebrios. Me fui a mi cuarto y estaba platicando con el acólito, cuando le llegó un mensaje de texto. Me dijo: me habla Martín, ahorita vengo, y tardó casi 3 horas en el cuarto del padre.

Minutos después el padre Francisco me llamó al cuarto donde estaba, que era el cuarto del obispo cuando llegaba a Ciudad del Carmen. Me invitó a pasar y me dio otro vaso de licor. Me dijo: ya sé que tú eres el picador de Martín ¡mmmmm! déjame probar. Me hizo sexo oral y me obligó a que lo penetrara. Yo me fui a mi cuarto muy asustado de que Martín me viera. Poco después el acólito regresó. No puedo mencionar su nombre porque está sufriendo por todo esto, y hasta ha llegado a pensar en matar al padre Martín.

Yo le pregunté: ¿qué tienes? Estaba triste y con los ojos como si hubiera llorado. Nada, me dijo. Así pasó el tiempo. Un día llegó el acólito a la parroquia a quedarse una semana. El padre Martín se lo llevó tres días a Campeche, quedándome yo a cargo de la parroquia. Cuando volvieron yo notaba al acólito rarísimo. Salí a visitar un sector de la parroquia, y cuando llegué lo encontré en su cuarto con el padre Martín. Él estaba como rogándole al acólito, enseñándole una cámara, como diciéndole que se la daría, pero que no dijera nada. Cuando me vio se puso nervioso. Les pregunté: ¿cómo les fue en su viaje? y Martin rápido me contestó: muy bien, nos quedamos en la casa parroquial de Champotón.

Yo noté raro al acólito. Como triste. Cuando llegó la noche y Martín se fue a su cuarto, yo me acerqué al acólito y le pregunté ¿qué te sucede, te hizo algo el padre? Y se puso a llorar, me abrazó y me contó que el padre Martín lo emborrachó y le hizo sexo oral, que nunca se quedaron en Champotón, sino que fueron a una playa en Isla Aguada, y que cuando estaban bañándose el padre le dijo ¡mmm es rico chuparlo debajo del agua! y que él lo empujó y salió del agua. Así entendí porqué el padre Martín le estaba regalando la cámara.

Me enojé mucho. Creo que hasta celoso me puse. Cuando el acólito se fue a su casa, el padre me notó distante de él y me preguntó ¿y tú que tienes? y le dije lo que el acólito me dijo. Él me contestó esto: Sí, es verdad, pero no fue así, sino que él sacó su pene de su pantalón y me dijo: mira lo tengo más grande que tú, y pues tú sabes, el hombre es débil.

AL SEMINARIO EN CALKINÍ

Días después platiqué con un psicólogo amigo que daba charlas en la parroquia, y le conté todo pero con diferentes nombres. Después este psicólogo se lo platicó al padre Martín, que me llamó y me dijo: Sabes el psicólogo me quiso sacar la verdad pero yo se lo negué, y me dijo que eres bueno y fiel. Yo por dentro lo odiaba. Así pasó el tiempo, hasta que entré al Seminario Santa María de Guadalupe, en Calkiní, Campeche. El padre me fue a dejar, porque éramos cinco jóvenes que entrábamos al seminario de la parroquia, y me decía, conocerás a un paisano tuyo, el padre Leobardo Castillo, él es de Tabasco. Cuidadito con él, me dijo.

Así pasó el tiempo en el seminario. El padre Martín varias veces me sacó para apoyarlo en diferentes actividades, ya que poco después lo cambiaron a la parroquia de San Francisco de Asís, en Hecelchakán, Campeche. En diciembre del 2008 fui a mi casa a pasar el 24 con mi familia y el 31 a la parroquia del padre Martín. Ese día llegó su familia y sobrinos. Después de las doce de la noche sacó varias botellas de licor, habíamos varios jóvenes, principalmente de la comunidad. Comenzamos a tomar todos, menos él. Jugábamos a tomar caballitos uno por uno y al primero que caía borracho el padre Martín lo iba a acostar. A un joven de esa comunidad, que su nombre comenzaba con M, lo llevó a su cuarto. Cuando amaneció fui al baño, pero estaba ocupado, así que fui al del cuarto del padre Martín. Él no estaba, pero el joven seguía en la hamaca donde dormía el padre, sin camisa y con los pantalones desabrochados, bien borracho. Yo me imaginé lo que había pasado con él, ya que conocía al padre.

Regresé al seminario. Un día el padre Leo me dijo ¡qué labios más carnosos! Hoy andas muy guapo, te seguirán las catequistas, mejor no vayas. Yo me reí. Se lo conté al padre Martín y me dijo: Me muero de celos con ese Leo. Poco después fui a mi casa, pues pedí cinco días. Fue el primero de febrero del 2009, yo ya andaba muy mal emocionalmente y fui con mis abuelitos, que son como mis papás. Yo a mi abuelita le conté algo de lo que me pasaba, pero no completo. Quedamos en platicar al día siguiente, pero ese día nunca llegó. El 5 de febrero falleció de un paro respiratorio. Ella no estaba enferma, fue algo muy fuerte para mí.

El párroco de San Cristóbal, en Tabasco, me apoyó mucho en lo de la muerte de mi abuelita. En la madrugada le hablé al padre Martín y al padre Leo para darles la mala noticia. Martín me dijo: Ánimo hijito. Llegué a quererlo como un padre. Cuando regresé al seminario, mis compañeros me dieron su apoyo con abrazos. Mi cabeza daba vueltas, yo estaba mal por lo de mi abuelita, echándome la culpa que yo la había preocupado contándole cosas de lo sucedido, hasta que una noche me tomé un montón de pastillas porque quería morirme.

SALVADO DE AHORCARSE

No recuerdo nada, sólo que desperté con un montón de aparatos, mareado como borracho. Recuerdo que había un seminarista cuidando y que cuando desperté salió en busca del padre Leo. Llegó y me dijo:  Te llevaremos a la parroquia del padre Martín, el pidió cuidarte. Ahí me tuvo tomando un medicamento que era como una droga, con la que permanecí durmiendo no sé por cuantos días. Le dije que ya no quería tomar esas pastillas, que por favor no me la diera y no me las siguió dando. Un día que estaba en cama, él me dijo: yo te bañaba ¡mmmm! me pedias más y más.

La verdad yo no recordaba nada por esas pastillas que me daban, no sé cómo se llamaban, pero al día siguiente intenté ahorcarme en una habitación de la parroquia por lo que me había dicho. Gracias a la cocinera que me vio y salió corriendo a buscar al padre. Él habló conmigo. Asustado me puso la unción de los enfermos. Le dije: No quiero estar aquí, me quiero ir a mi casa. Él habló con mis tíos para que me fueran a buscar, ya que ellos no sabían que yo estaba enfermo.

A la semana mis tíos viajaron a Campeche, y el padre habló con ellos en su lujoso cuarto. Uno de mis tíos me dijo: Ese cuarto parece hotel, por lo lujoso que era. Antes de irme, el padre me dio muchos regalos y dinero. Así salí de ese lugar. Poco tiempo después Martín me habló y me dijo regresa. El obispo Ramón Castro Castro me habló también. Me invitaron de nuevo. Regresé de nuevo a Campeche a finales del año 2009 para seguir estudiando y de nuevo me mandaron con el padre Martín.

Yo era muy distante con él. Dinero nunca me faltó, eso sí. Pero veía como llegaban seminaristas amigos míos y se quedaban a dormir con él en su cuarto. Diferentes jóvenes, de diferentes edades y lugares de Campeche. Un día ya no aguanté más y hablé por teléfono con el obispo, y me citó a su oficina en Campeche. A Martín no le dije nada. Él sabía que llegaba con una psicóloga al Seminario de Campeche. Tenía miedo y estaba nervioso cuando hablé con el obispo Ramón Castro Castro. Le conté todo, él lo escribió en su computadora y me hizo firmar el papel donde anotó lo sucedido, uno parecido a éste mismo.

Me dijo: Dame unos días para que te cambie de parroquia, y el 12 de diciembre me llamó y me dijo: Te vas mañana mismo a la parroquia de San Luis Obispo, en Calkiní, con el padre José Luis. Al día siguiente me fui de la parroquia. Un grupo de acólitos me fue a dejar, pero ya Martín andaba nervioso y poco después me habló y me dijo: ¿Qué hiciste? ¡Yo te di todo! Luego me hablaba con amenazas y pues me dio miedo, ya que él, para destruir a una persona, era peligroso por el poder que tenía. Yo vi como destruyó a un amigo mío y compañero de seminario, hasta con su familia habló. Yo escuchaba todo desde mi cuarto. Pobre amigo, se había enfrentado a este sacerdote romano con poder.

OBISPO NO LE CREYÓ

Poco después el obispo me mandó a hablar de nuevo y me dijo: Hablé con el padre Martín, y me dijo que es mentira lo que tú dices. Le dije: sólo trata de defenderse, a esto es a lo que yo le tenía miedo, ya estoy cansado de todo esto, me voy a mi casa. Me dijo que era lo mejor. Me dio cierta cantidad de dinero. Yo sabía que era mucho, como para que me quedara callado, y el padre Francisco igual me dio bastante dinero. Lo recibí y me fui a mi casa con un carro nuevo.

Después de una semana al padre Martín lo cambiaron de parroquia con el pretexto de que iba a estudiar, pero yo sabía que se iba castigado por el obispo. No tenía ni un año de estar en esa parroquia y lo quitaron. El padre Martín dijo a mucha gente de la parroquia que era mi culpa lo de su cambio. Me enteré de todo por amigos que tengo. Así tardó varios meses hasta que lo premiaron haciéndolo rector del santuario de San Román. Era como un premio que el obispo Castro Castro le había hecho.

Sinceramente en tres ocasiones más intenté matarme en mi casa, sin resultado. Por estos señores me fui y estudié en Xalapa, Veracruz, una licenciatura, y la terminé. Después entré a la iglesia Veterocatólica, ya que aquí los sacerdotes son casados, y después viajé a Chile en el 2013. Escribí una carta parecida a ésta al cardenal Norberto Rivera Carrera, al nuncio apostólico, al arzobispo de Yucatán  y al obispo de Tabasco. Ninguno de ellos me dio respuesta, sólo uno a quien no le envié la carta: el obispo Ramón Castro Castro, ahora obispo de Cuernavaca.

CON ESTO ME PAGAS

Él me contestó diciendo ¿por qué mandaste esa carta a varios obispos? Yo te ayudé, te escuché, ¡y con esto me pagas! Aparte te cambiaste de religión sin saber que los Veterocatólicos  son de la misma línea, pero no iguales. Yo le contesté: Hablé con usted y no me escuchó. Me dijo: Sí te escuché, pero Martín no aceptó su culpa, ¿qué querías que hiciera? y me reprochó que me dio dinero. Me sugirió: sabes, ya no soy obispo de Campeche, habla con el obispo Francisco González, él sabrá qué hacer.

Sinceramente mejor ya no hablé con el obispo de Campeche. Lo único que hace unos días hice públicos los delitos contra mi persona, de violación de los padres Martín Mena Carrillo y Francisco Velázquez Trejo por Facebook, en un mensaje privado. Hace un mes mandé una carta a Roma para el Papa Francisco, contándole lo sufrido junto con otros dos amigos que vivieron la misma experiencia, y hasta ahora no tenemos respuesta del Vaticano.

Todos ellos forman una mafia de poder, quieren tener todo callado y oculto, pero hoy alzo la voz porque ya no puedo estar callado a todo esto. Quién sabe a cuántos más les hicieron daño. Yo les digo a esas víctimas que alcen la voz, que no tengan miedo, porque la verdad nos hará libres. Este es mi testimonio de lo vivido en la Iglesia Católica de Campeche. El poder y el dinero corrompen al clero. Yo sé que me atacarán, pero no les tengo miedo, porque el Señor está conmigo.

Doy fe de que todo lo que está escrito en esta carta es la verdad y nada más que la verdad.

Atentamente

Pbro. Luis Felipe Izquierdo Cundafé

Escrito en la ciudad de Puerto Montt, Chile, el 30 de junio del 2015.

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When the Pope goes to prison …

PENNSYLVANIA
Philadelphia Inquirer

Joe Slobodzian
Posted: Thursday, July 2, 2015

Word that Pope Francis will visit Philadelphia’s Curran-Fromhold Correctional Facility when he is in the city Sept. 26-27 for the World Meeting of Families must have held special significance for one of the 2,760 men in the city’s largest jail.

He’s No. 1102886, also known as Msgr. William J. Lynn, the 64-year-old former Secretary for Clergy of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

Lynn was the first church official convicted for a supervisory role over priests accused of having sexually abused children. Lynn’s conviction was a landmark in the church’s clergy sex-abuse scandal and his appeal of his child endangerment conviction has been a legal roller coaster.

Found guilty by a Philadelphia jury in 2012, he was sentenced that July to 3 to 6 years in prison by Common Pleas Court Judge M. Teresa Sarmina and immediately incarcerated in a state prison.

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RTÉ issues apology to Richard Burke, says no damages paid

IRELAND
Irish Times

Ciarán D’Arcy

Thu, Jul 2, 2015

Former archbishop Richard Burke will have “no exposure to costs” after his legal team settled a High Court defamation action against RTÉ for its ‘Mission to Prey’ documentary.

Speaking outside the Four Courts on Thursay, his solicitor John Dore insisted the ex-clergyman, who was accused of engaging in a sexual relationship with a parishioner who was under the age of consent while ministering in Nigeria in the late 1980s, is a “truthful person”.

“My client, Richard Burke, has consistently and vehemently denied the accusations made against him by Dolores Atwood, as broadcast by RTÉ in the ‘Mission to Prey’ programme,” he said, flanked by Mr Burke and his sister Joanne.

“My client is a truthful person. This litigation has been compromised to my client’s satisfaction, and he has no exposure to costs,” he added.

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RTE agree settlement with former Catholic Archbishop who alleged he was wrongly depicted as a paedophile

IRELAND
Irish Mirror

BY AODHAN O’FAOLAIN

A settlement has been reached in the action by a former Catholic Archbishop who alleged he was wrongly depicted as a paedophile in the RTE Prime Time Investigates: Mission to Prey programme.

On the eighth day of the case brought by Richard Burke alleging he was defamed in the May 23rd 2011 programme, the jury was told the case had settled.

Paul O’Higgins SC, for RTE, read a statement on behalf of the broadcaster which said RTE had said that in the programme it alleged Richard Burke had sexual relations with a girl, Dolores Atwood, who was under age.

“RTÉ accepts it incorrectly stated in the programme that Richard Burke had declined to be interviewed for the programme and for this RTÉ apologises.

“RTÉ acknowledges that Richard Burke has consistently and vehemently denied these allegations, and has done so throughout his evidence at this hearing.

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Defamation case against RTÉ by former archbishop settled at High Court

IRELAND
RTE News

A case being taken against RTÉ by a former Catholic archbishop who had alleged that he was defamed by the broadcaster has been settled at the High Court.

Richard Burke, 66, a member of the Kiltegan Fathers, had alleged that he was defamed in the RTÉ Prime Time Investigates: Mission to Prey programme broadcast in May 2011.

Mr Burke claims that material used in the programme wrongly branded him as a paedophile.

He said he had not known he was to be featured in the documentary until it was broadcast, despite numerous emails having been sent by RTÉ to the Kiltegan Fathers.

Mr Burke said he had not been directly contacted by the station, or given an opportunity to respond to the allegations against him.

Yesterday, the court heard evidence from Dolores Atwood, who claimed she had been abused by Mr Burke in Nigeria when she was aged 13 or 14.

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RTE insists no damages paid as defamation case by former Archbishop is settled

IRELAND
Irish Independent

Dearbhail McDonald Legal Editor
PUBLISHED
02/07/2015

A SETTLEMENT has been reached between RTE and a Catholic Archbishop in a defamation case.

Archbishop Emeritus Richard Burke, (66), a native of Co Tipperary, sued RTE alleging he was defamed in the RTE Prime Time Investigates: A Mission to Prey programme broadcast on May 23rd 2011.

The former Archbishop of Benin, Nigeria – who resigned in 2010 over his failure to adhere to his vow of celibacy – claimed material in the programme wrongly meant he was a paedophile.
RTE had denied defamation.

It is understood no damages were received as part of the settlement. But in a statement issued outside court, Robert Dore, solicitor for Mr Burke, said his client had “no exposure to cost”.

Also speaking outside the court, RTE’s head of news and current affairs Kevin Backharst said no damages had been paid to Mr Burke, but confirmed there had been “a contribution” to costs.

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Ex-archbishop settles case against RTÉ over Mission to Prey

IRELAND
Irish Times

Mary Carolan

Thu, Jul 2, 2015

A settlement has been reached in the action by a former Catholic Archbishop who alleged he was wrongly depicted as a paedophile in the RTÉ Prime Time Investigates: Mission to Prey programme.

On the eighth day of the case brought by Richard Burke alleging he was defamed in the May 23rd 2011 programme, the jury was told the case had settled.

Paul O’Higgins SC, for RTÉ, read a statement on behalf of the broadcaster which said RTÉ had said that in the programme it alleged Richard Burke had sexual relations with a girl, Dolores Atwood, who was under-age.

RTÉ accepted it had incorrectly stated in the programme that Mr Burke had declined to be interviewed for the programme and for that it apologises, the statement said.

It said RTÉ acknowledged Mr Burke has “consistently and vehemently” denied the allegations and has done so throughout his evidence at the hearing.

The statement said Dolores Atwood stands over her allegations and RTÉ considers her a sincere and honourable person. RTÉ and Mr burke agreed the matter is now closed, the statement added, and the case could be struck out with no order.

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Pontifical university plans to offer diploma in child protection by 2016

ROME
DFW Catholic

Rome, Italy, Jul 2, 2015 / 06:02 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Beginning in the spring of 2016, Rome’s Pontifical Gregorian University will begin offering an intensive one-semester diploma program on the safeguarding of minors and the prevention of sex abuse by clergy.

A new one semester diploma course in the protection of minors is being offered by the Center for Child Protection in Rome’s Pontifical Gregorian University, and is set to welcome its first round of applicants in February, 2016.

“There are not courses like this diploma in pontifical universities in Rome. Certainly programs in secular universities and in UK have them, but (this is a) first in pontifical and Catholic universities,” Fr. Hans Zollner, SJ said at the June 24 announcement of the course.

Fr. Zollner is the president of the Pontifical Gregorian University’s Center for Child Protection (CCP) and is a member of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors, created by Pope Francis last autumn.

He was present alongside three other panelists for a press conference at the conclusion of the center’s June 21-24 annual Anglophone Conference, during which the diploma course was announced.

The diploma will be awarded at the close of a one-semester residential course on the safeguarding of minors. The program aims to form persons who will eventually become child protection officers for dioceses, religious congregations, and similar organizations, as well as advisors and trainers in the field of safeguarding.

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Poles critical of Church’s stance on paedophile priests

POLAND
The News

As many as 72 percent of Poles think the Church treats the problem of paedophilia among priests too leniently.

Only one in seven of those polled believes that the Vatican and bishops are actually intervening in solving a problem that has crippled the church in recent years, according to a survey conducted by the SW Research pollster for Newsweek Polska weekly.

Poles aged between 35 and 40 (i.e. people who could have school age children) tend to be most supportive of harsher sentences for paedophiles within the church.

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Uganda: Priest Sues Arua Bishop Over Dismissal

UGANDA
allAfrica

The Monitor

By Clement Aluma

Arua — A Catholic priest in Arua Diocese has sued Bishop Sabino Ocan Odoki over what he termed as unlawful suspension from priestly duties and defamation.

Fr Nakarai Adiga is demanding compensation for what he claims are damages caused to him as a result of the bishop’s actions.

Through his lawyer, Mr Samuel Ondoma of Alaka and Company advocated, Fr Adiga states that on July 4, 2012, Bishop Sabino made a false accusation against him and other priests: Fr Lino Buni, Fr Biajo Candini and Fr Valentino Matua, stating that they were threatening to kill him.

The case was investigated by both the police and secretary to the Papal Nuncio, Mr Edward Karani, but were found to be false.

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Petition for judicial review of appointment of QC as child abuse inquiry chair refused

SCOTLAND
Scottish Legal News

A legal challenge over the appointment of Susan O’Brien QC to chair an inquiry into historic child abuse in Scotland has been refused by a judge in the Court of Session.

The Congregation of the Poor Sisters of Nazareth and The Daughters of Charity of Saint Vincent de Paul sought judicial review of the decision of the Scottish Ministers to appoint Ms O’Brien – who had previously acted for alleged victims of abuse – as chair to the Historical Child Abuse Inquiry in terms of section 4(1) of the Inquiries Act 2005, relying on the common law principle of “apparent bias”.

However, Lord Woolman ruled that the “fair-minded and informed observer” would not conclude that there was a real possibility of bias.

The court heard that in 2007, two alleged victims of abuse had sought damages from the Poor Sisters of Nazareth, but their claims were held to be “time barred” and Ms O’Brien represented the two clients in an appeal before the House of Lords, which upheld the time bar plea.

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Rabbi Charged With Sexual Abuse Arrested Fleeing Israel

ISRAEL
Arutz Sheva

By Oranit Etzer
First Publish: 7/2/2015

A rabbi from the north of Israel, who was distanced from his city due to sexual abuse complaints filed against him by several women, was arrested on Thursday morning as he was on his way to Ben-Gurion International Airport.

The rabbi, who was the dean of a yeshiva and whose identity has not been revealed, was taken in for investigation by the northern district police. A request to extend his detention will be heard on Thursday.

Women who arrived to consult with the rabbi have complained to police, with one claiming he sexually abused her several years ago and another charging him with rape.

A number of high-ranking rabbis had requested that the rabbi step down due to the complaints against him, and he recently gave in to the demands and stepped down as dean of the yeshiva that he founded, and likewise distanced himself from its associated institutions.

The rabbi also was a community rabbi, and distanced himself from his city until the accusations against him were resolved in response to the request of the rabbis.

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‘I never declined to be interviewed’ – former Archbishop Burke

IRELAND
Irish Independent

Tim Healy
PUBLISHED
01/07/2015

A former Catholic Archbishop has said that he first learned about RTÉ’s ‘Mission To Prey’ documentary 12 days before it was to be screened after he sent an email to his order with queries about it.

Tipperary native Richard Burke told the High Court yesterday that he was unaware RTÉ had been in contact with the Kiltegan Fathers on several occasions since March 2011.

He said he did not know in advance he would personally be featured on Prime Time Investigates programme and it was incorrect for RTÉ to say on the programme he had declined to be interviewed.

Dolores Atwood had made a formal complaint of child sexual abuse against former Archbishop of Benin, Nigeria, Richard Burke, to his order, the Kiltegan Fathers, in late 2008, the High Court heard.

She had also written to the Vatican in March 2008 and in 2005 she phoned Mr Burke’s order anonymously alleging he was having relations with women.

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Media Statement from the Archdiocese of Hartford …

CONNECTICUT
Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Hartford

Media Statement from the Archdiocese of Hartford regarding Jacob Doe v. The Hartford Roman Catholic Diocesan Corporaton

The Archdiocese of Hartford remains firmly committed to both the spirit and letter of the U.S. Bishops’ Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People that was adopted and implemented in 2002 and to all of the policies, practices and educational programs arising out of the Charter that are designed to prevent childhood sexual abuse from occurring. In Pope Francis’ recent letter to bishops around the world, he urged them to reach out to victims of childhood sexual abuse by clergy and establish programs to assist victims who are in need of psychological and/or spiritual care as a result of such abuse. The Archdiocese of Hartford has had such a program in place since 2002 and has been reaching out to victims since then, including victims whose accused perpetrators are deceased. Sexual abuse of a minor is reprehensible conduct that cannot and will not be tolerated or condoned. The safety of our children and young people is the Archdiocese’s top priority.

The Jacob Doe case was not brought against the priest who was described as having committed the molestation. That priest died many years ago. Under our current policy and practice, any priest who has been credibly accused of sexual abuse involving a minor is removed from ministry. As Pope Francis has said, there is absolutely no place in ministry for those who abuse minors.

The appeal to the Connecticut Supreme Court involves a civil case against the Archdiocese of Hartford alone, and has to do with legal issues and matters of justice connected with such suits. The court’s decision addresses specific issues of law that apply generally in civil actions where one party sues another. It involves issues and questions of law and due process that do not apply to the Archdiocese of Hartford alone.

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Waterbury priest is placed on administrative leave

CONNECTICUT
Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Hartford

20 June 2015

Statement by the Archdiocese of Hartford

“The Archdiocese of Hartford has learned that an allegation of sexual abuse of a minor has been made against the Rev. Jeremiah N. Murasso. The alleged abuse reportedly took place over twenty years ago, while Fr. Murasso was serving in New Haven at St. Francis Home for Children, also known as, Highland Heights. Pursuant to its established policy, the Archdiocese has placed Fr. Murasso, who most recently was serving at Blessed Sacrament and the Shrine of St. Anne in Waterbury, on administrative leave until this allegation is resolved.

The Archdiocese of Hartford condemns the type of misconduct that has been alleged. It encourages anyone who has been a victim of sexual abuse as a minor by any personnel of the Archdiocese, to contact civil authorities (the State Department of Children and Families and/or the local police) and the Victims Assistance Coordinator of the Archdiocese at: 860-541-6475.”
– Archdiocese of Hartford.

Rev. Jeremiah Murasso Parish Assignments

Position, Location, Dates

Asst. Pastor, Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Meriden, 7/16/1979 – 8/27/1982
Asst. Pastor, St. Joseph, New Haven, 8/27/1982 – 3/21/1985
Co-Pastor, St. Vincent de Paul, East Haven, 3/21/1985 – 3/1/1986
Administrator, St. Vincent de Paul, East Haven, 3/1/1986 – 9/14/1989
Pastor, St. Vincent Ferrer, Naugatuck, 9/14/1989 – 5/18/1992
Interim Dir., Highland Heights, New Haven, 5/18/1992 – 7/1/1992
Director, Highland Heights, New Haven, 7/1/1992 – 10/4/1995
Pastor, St. Vincent Ferrer, Naugatuck, 10/4/1995 – 9/15/2003
Pastor, St. Francis Assisi, South Windsor, 9/15/2003 – 3/5/2012
Pastor, Blessed Sacrament & Shrine of St. Anne, Wtby., 3/5/12 – Administrative Leave

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Priest accused of abuse

CONNECTICUT
Republican-American

BY PAUL SINGLEY REPUBLICAN-AMERICAN

WATERBURY — A Roman Catholic priest at Blessed Sacrament Church and the Shrine of St. Anne has been accused of sexually abusing a minor more than 20 years ago in New Haven.

The Archdiocese of Hartford says it has placed the Rev. Jeremiah Murasso, 62, on administrative leave from the Waterbury churches until the allegation is resolved.

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Police investigating Blair County friar’s reported suicide

PENNSYLVANIA
WJAC

Wednesday, July 1 2015

By: Maria Miller

ALTOONA, Pa. — Another friar at a monastery in Altoona has taken his own life following what appears to be an investigation by state officials.

The Blair County Coroner’s Office confirmed Wednesday that David Kaczmarek died by means of hanging. His death was ruled a suicide.

The 53-year-old was found Sunday morning at the St. Bernadine Monastery of the Immaculate Conception Province just two days after authorities reportedly took pictures outside and computers and documents from inside.

The monastery is part of the Franciscan Friars Third Order Regular, defining itself online as a home for retired members of the religious community, but it’s not clear how long Kaczmarek resided there or where he came from.

Searches online and through 6 News archives show no records of Kaczmarek locally, but his picture does appear on their website several times and lists addresses for him in Minnesota and Florida – both states where the friars have ministries.

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Former youth pastor booked on sexual battery charge in New Orleans

ALABAMA
Vestavia Voice

by ERICA TECHO
July 1, 2015

Following a warrant for his arrest, former Vestavia Hills youth pastor Ryan Scott Rodgers, 36, turned himself into the New Orleans Police Department on June 26. Rodgers was on staff at Liberty Park Baptist Church from 2003-2009, according to Pastor Scott Guffin.

Guffin said the allegations against Rodgers first came to the church’s attention when the complaints were filed in New Orleans.

“We initially heard about it when the complaints were filed, and when he was here, there were no incidents or allegations,” Guffin said.

Rodgers is a youth pastor in the Orleans, Jefferson and Plaquemines Parishes in Louisiana.

Rodgers was booked on one count of simple battery, one count of sexual battery and seven counts of indecent behavior with juveniles. Bond was set at $100,000. He is out of jail and faces a status hearing with the Orleans Parish Magistrate Court on July 2.

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Retired assistant priest spared jailed following sex attacks on teenage boys

SCOTLAND
Evening Times

A RETIRED assistant priest has been spared jail string of sex attacks on three teenage boys including one from Glasgow.

The then-father Colman McGrath abused two boys who were training to join the priesthood at Blairs College in Aberdeen.

McGrath, 76, then went on to indecently assault another school boy he was tutoring at his chapel in Langside, Glasgow’s South Side.

The abuse only came to light years later and in June 2014 McGrath – who retired in 2006 – was interviewed by police about his conduct.

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July 1, 2015

Chief deputy coroner: Friar at Blair County monastery committed suicide

PENNSYLVANIA
Tribune-Democrat

BY DAVE SUTOR
DSUTOR@TRIBDEM.COM

Posted on Jul 1, 2015

HOLLIDAYSBURG – A second friar associated with the Province of the Immaculate Conception of the Third Order Regular Franciscans has committed suicide.

Rev. David Kaczmarek, 53, hung himself on Saturday, probably around 6 p.m., according to Blair County Chief Deputy Coroner Paul Kerns. His body was discovered at St. Joseph Friary on Walnut Street in Hollidaysburg on Sunday.

Kaczmarek was reportedly the subject of a legal investigation, per Kerns.

“I don’t know what the deal is with that,” Kerns said.

In January 2014, Brother Stephen Baker is said to have died from a self-inflicted knife wound to the heart, while staying at the province’s St. Bernardine Monastery on Monastery Road in Newry. Baker was accused of sexually molesting possibly more than 100 male students at the former Bishop McCort High School.

Last October, 88 former students received a combined $8 million in compensation as part of a settlement with the Roman Catholic Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown, Province of the Immaculate Conception of the Third Order Regular Franciscans and what is now known as Bishop McCort Catholic High School. Other cases are still ongoing.

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Aker in court for pretrial hearing in Lewis

KENTUCKY
The Ledger Independent

VANCEBURG | A former Vanceburg pastor, facing charges of sexual abuse, appeared in Lewis County Circuit Court Wednesday.

During the pretrial hearing for 63-year-old Duncan Aker, his defense attorney, Daniel Dickerson, told Circuit Judge Robert Conley that he would like more time in order to view the recorded interview with the alleged victim in the case.

Mike Frye, with Commonwealth’s Attorney Mel Leonhart’s office, said after the defense views the recording, his office will work with Dickerson’s office to come to a resolution in the case.

“We’ll go back to court in September and see if we can’t come to a resolution,” Frye said. “If we can’t, then we’ll proceed to trial.”

The next pretrial hearing was set for Sept. 4 at 9:30 a.m.

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Petition to replace Susan O’Brien QC on child abuse inquiry refused

SCOTLAND
STV

A petition for judicial review of the decision to appoint Susan O’Brien QC to chair an inquiry into historic child abuse in Scotland has been refused.

The Congregation of the Poor Sisters of Nazareth and the Daughters of Charity of St Vincent De Paul lodged a petition for judicial review at Edinburgh’s Court of Session objecting to the Scottish Government’s appointment of Susan O’Brien QC.

Their action centred on Ms O’Brien’s involvement in a case brought against the Poor Sisters of Nazareth at the House of Lords by two former residents of Nazareth House children’s home in Glasgow who alleged they were abused in the 1960s and 70s.

Ms O’Brien acted as counsel for the former residents in their 2008 appeal which unsuccessfully challenged an earlier court ruling that the claims were time barred, or made too late.

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Judge dismisses legal bid by charities to overturn QC’s appointment

SCOTLAND
Herald Scotland

Wednesday 1 July 2015

A judge has dismissed a legal bid by two Catholic charities to overturn the appointment of a top QC as chairwoman of an inquiry into historic child abuse in Scotland.

Lord Woolman refused the challenge from The Congregation of the Poor Sisters of Nazareth and the Daughters of Charity of St Vincent De Paul to the Scottish Government’s choice of Susan O’Brien to lead the probe.

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Abuse inquiry challenge over Susan O’Brien QC dismissed

SCOTLAND
BBC News

A judge has dismissed a legal bid by two Catholic charities to overturn the appointment of a top QC as chairwoman into historic child abuse in Scotland.

Lord Woolman refused the challenge from The Congregation of the Poor Sisters of Nazareth and the Daughters of Charity of St Vincent De Paul.

The Scottish Government’s appointed Susan O’Brien to lead the probe.

The charities had raised fears of “apparent bias” relating to her involvement in a previous case.
It had been brought against the Poor Sisters of Nazareth.

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„Täterorganisationen neigen zur Vertuschung“

DEUTSCHLAND
Freitag

[The Bundestage on Thursday is scheduled to set up a national commission to explain sexual violence in the country. ]

Missbrauch Der Linken-Abgeordnete Norbert Müller findet die neue Aufarbeitungskommission gegen sexuelle Gewalt zu schwach. Wer aufarbeiten will, brauche echte Ermittlungsinstrumente

der Freitag: Herr Müller, der Bundestag will am Donnerstag eine nationale Kommission einsetzen, die sexuelle Gewalt aufklären soll. Seit 2010 wird doch überall aufgeklärt, reicht das nicht?

Norbert Müller: Nein, ein Schlussstrich bei der Aufarbeitung sexualisierter Gewalt wäre völlig falsch. Der droht aber meines Erachtens gerade dadurch, dass Berichte aus Institutionen wie der Kirche, den Reformschulen oder bei den Grünen vorliegen und das öffentliche Interesse langsam abnimmt.

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Second Blair County friar commits suicide in province under sex abuse investigation

PENNSYLVANIA
Tribune-Review

By Mike Wereschagin and Brad Bumsted
Wednesday, July 1, 2015

A Blair County friar hanged himself two days after agents with the state Attorney General’s Office raided another, nearby monastery connected to a sexual abuse scandal, the Blair County Coroner’s office confirmed Wednesday.

The Rev. David Kaczmarek, 53, died around 6 p.m. Saturday at St. Joseph’s Friary in Hollidaysburg, the coroner’s office said. Another friar found him about 8 a.m. Sunday. The Immaculate Conception Province website, of which St. Joseph’s is part, lists Kaczmarek as provincial secretary.

On Thursday and less than four miles away, state investigators raided St. Bernardine Monastery, where a friar accused of molesting children killed himself in 2013. Kaczmarek was not a target of the investigation, a source told the Tribune-Review.

Both the St. Bernardine Monastery and St. Joseph’s Friary are part of the Immaculate Conception province of the Franciscan Friars of the Third Order Regular. St. Joseph’s serves as the province’s home for semi-retired friars, according to the province’s website.

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Man claims sadistic sex abuse

AUSTRALIA
The West Australian

[with video]

A former resident of a Christian Brothers boys’ home has launched a Supreme Court bid for damages over claims of sadistic sexual abuse by three brothers more than 40 years ago.

A writ filed this week outlines the Perth man’s claims of psychiatric and psychological harm from the abuse he alleges was inflicted at Castledare Boys Home by Brothers Verdon, Dick and Daly between 1971 and 1973.

The action comes after a royal commission last year scrutinised historic sexual and physical abuse in a case study of Castledare and three other WA Christian Brothers homes.

The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse heard from 11 former residents of the homes, who named 16 Brothers as abusers.

The writ, lodged against the Trustees of the Christian Brothers and the estates of seven late leaders and members of the congregation, claimed the man was owed a duty of care and the sexual and physical assaults on him were breaches of that duty.

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Retired archdeacon appears at crown court over historic sex abuse allegations

UNITED KINGDOM
Durham Times

A FORMER senior clergyman has appeared at crown court for the first time in relation to historic sex allegations.

The Venerable George Granville Gibson, who previously served as Archdeacon of Auckland, one of the leading posts in the Durham diocese of the Church of England, faces a total of eight charges dating from the late 1970s and early 80s.

Following an initial hearing at South Durham Magistrates’ Court in Newton Aycliffe, last month (June 17), district judge Stephen Harmes sent the case involving the 79-year-old former church minister to Durham Crown Court.

During a short preliminary hearing at the crown court today (Wednesday July 1), the charges were not put to Mr Gibson, but arrangements were made for future proceedings in the case.

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Youth minister accused of sexually abusing juveniles surrenders

LOUISIANA
The Times-Picayune

By Jonathan Bullington, NOLA.com | The Times-Picayune
on June 26, 2015

Ryan Scott Rodgers, a 36-year-old youth minister accused by New Orleans police of having “inappropriate sexual behavior” with two male teenagers, surrendered to authorities Friday (June 26), NOPD said in an email.

Police have accused Rodgers of sexually abusing the teenagers over the course of at least a year, starting sometime in 2014. Most of that abuse took place inside Rodgers’ Central City apartment in the 1700 block of Baronne Street, police said, and involved inappropriately touching the teenagers as they slept. Police also said he purchased underwear for the teenagers and forced them to pose in front of him.

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Former Vestavia Hills youth pastor arrested in New Orleans, accused of fondling teen boys

ALABAMA
AL.com

By Carol Robinson | crobinson@al.com
on July 01, 2015

A former Vestavia Hills youth pastor has been arrested in New Orleans, accused of repeatedly touching two teenage boys while they were sleeping and making them pose in underwear.

Ryan Scott Rodgers, 36, surrendered to New Orleans police on Friday, June 26, according to NOLA.com. Rodgers is charged with sexual battery and seven counts of indecent behavior with juveniles. He formerly served at Liberty Park Baptist Church as youth pastor for six years.

New Orleans police on June 25 announced the charges against Rodgers in a press release. He was not in custody at the time, and had moved out of his apartment and was believed to be staying in hotels to avoid arrest. He turned himself in two days later.

Authorities said most of the incidents are reported to have occurred at Rodgers’ Central City apartment, and said the boys were awakened by Rodgers fondling them. The victims told New Orleans Police Department Special Victims Section Detective Stephanie Taillon that Rodgers sexually abused them for over a year.

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If You See Something, Say Something

UNITED STATES
Christianity Today

Ted Olsen

MAY 8, 2015

I don’t usually get mad at news stories. Not anymore. After 20 years of working at CT, I’m used to reading about human sin. Part of my job used to include sifting through every religion news tidbit and highlighting the top stories for our online readers. The daily drumbeat of ministry leaders resigning or being fired for moral failure was so common that I rarely noted it. But it was demoralizing. During one period, I kept hoping for a break in the streak. After one unbroken month of moral failure stories, I sought out spiritual help. My crisis passed.

So I was surprised to find myself grieving this month amid another series of reports. Grieving, and mad.

There was Patrick Sookhdeo, one of the most prominent advocates for persecuted Christians, especially in Muslim-majority countries. A British court found him guilty of sexually touching a female employee and intimidating witnesses.

Around the same time, human rights activist Chai Ling was accusing apologist Yuan Zhiming of raping her in 1990, before they both became prominent Christians. (See “Matthew 18, 25 Years Later.”)

And these weren’t the only two such cases we investigated this month. But the Sookhdeo and Yuan cases illustrated the defensive response we tend to get from organizations when their leaders’ sins are made public.

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Coroner confirms friar’s suicide

PENNSYLVANIA
Altoona Mirror

Rev. Kaczmarek was center of AG investigation last week

July 1, 2015

By Russ O’Reilly (roreilly@altoonamirror.com) , The Altoona Mirror

HOLLIDAYSBURG – Another friar of the Immaculate Conception Province has died by suicide, Blair County Coroner Patty Ross confirmed Tuesday.

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Friar commits suicide at Blair County province

PENNSYLVANIA
WJAC

By: WJAC Web Staff

HOLLIDAYSBURG, Pa. — WJAC-TV is working to learn more on the details surrounding the death of another friar at the Immaculate Conception Province in Blair County.

The state Attorney General’s Office is investigating the death, which authorities said was a suicide.

The Blair County Coroner told the Altoona Mirror that Rev. David Kaczmarek died at the province’s friary Saturday evening. Kaczmarek was at the center of an investigation last week, but little details are being released on what the investigation was about.

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DUGGAR INVESTIGATION: EMAILS REVEAL COPS WERE PAID TO GUARD THE VERY FAMILY THEY’RE INVESTIGATING

ARKANSAS
In Touch Weekly

In Touch magazine has exclusively learned that Tontitown, Arkansas, cops recently took off-duty paid jobs guarding the Duggars while the department has an open investigation into the family.

Emails obtained exclusively by In Touch through a Freedom of Information Act request reveal that the interim police chief of Tontitown OKed the off-duty work.

Kate Gosselin’s longtime bodyguard Steve Neild — who’s now working for the Duggars — paid off-duty officers from the local force in Tontitown, Arkansas, $25 an hour to provide security at the Duggar family home on May 21, 2015, and Josh’s new home on May 20 and 21 when Josh returned home from Washington, D.C., after In Touch broke the story about his sexual molestation scandal and he resigned from the Family Research Council.

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DUGGARS FACING LAWSUIT FROM NONFAMILY MOLESTATION VICTIM

UNITED STATES
In Touch Weekly

A non-Duggar family molestation victim is preparing to file a civil suit against Josh Duggar, sources tell In Touch magazine exclusively in the new issue on newsstands today.

The shocking development means that Josh and his parents Jim Bob and Michelle could be forced to give depositions and testify about Josh’s molestation scandal. The Duggars likely will have to answer every question as they will not be able to invoke their Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination because the criminal statute of limitations has expired.

The family is once again under investigation the Department of Human Services and the fate of their reality show 19 Kids and Counting is still undecided. The impending lawsuit sets up a nightmare scenario for TLC: if the network brings back 19 Kids and Counting, the show could be on the air while the Duggars are fighting a lawsuit that exposes all of Josh’s secrets surrounding the molestations and how the family covered it up.

The Duggars will face questions about how many years it took them to get Josh and his victims counseling, what type of safeguards they put in place in 2002 after first being alerted to Josh molesting female minors. “All the church elders who knew about this will have to be named,” a source tells In Touch.

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Blogging Truth to Power

UNITED STATES
Christianity Today

From Unquestioning Submission to Speaking Out

Michelle Van Loon

My husband and I once belonged to a congregation where leaders took their cues from the Shepherding Movement. Emphasizing allegiance and church unity, they expected members to submit to their authority in all matters. One of their favorite mantras came from 1 Corinthians, using the King James Version for extra emphasis: Touch not God’s anointed. I was taught that to question a leader was to defy God himself.

I was a naive sheep in this flock until I stumbled upon the elaborate efforts to keep hidden the pastor’s porn addiction and infidelity with a congregant. Anyone who got too close to this secret was branded a problem. I found myself drafted into the uncomfortable role of whistleblower. After my husband and I brought our concerns to church leadership, the elders made it clear that we were untrustworthy and troublemakers. After a number of failed attempts to resolve the situation, we left the church.

It took a while to heal from the manipulation and misuse of authority my husband and I experienced at the hands of these men. Over time, others experienced the same treatment, which, turns out, was a demonically effective way of deflecting attention from the real problem. Over a decade passed before the pastor’s marriage fell apart and the truth came out.

I’ve watched from afar as similar scenarios play out as whistleblowers decry leaders-gone-bad in organizations and congregations across the country: Doug Phillips, Bill Gothard, Mark Driscoll. Especially online, we hear from these voices long before the pastor finally makes a grudging public admission of his wrongdoing.

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Catholic Priest Claims SNAP Defamed Him

ST. LOUIS (MO)
Courthouse News Service

By JOE HARRIS

ST. LOUIS (CN) – A Catholic priest accused of sexual misconduct with minors sued an accuser’s parents and the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests, claiming they targeted him for monetary gain because of his race.

The Rev. Xiu Hui “Joseph” Jiang sued St. Louis, two city police officers, the parents A.M. and N.M., the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests and SNAP leaders David Clohessy and Barbara Dorris in Federal Court.

Jiang claims the officers failed to fully investigate the claims and that SNAP embarked on a smear campaign, damaging his reputation.

The charges against Jiang were dismissed by St. Louis City Prosecuting Attorney Jennifer Joyce in June without explanation.

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Cardinal Pell’s 40-year-old passport …

AUSTRALIA
The Tablet (UK)

Cardinal Pell’s 40-year-old passport ‘disproves allegation that he knew about child’s abuse by priest’

01 July 2015 by Mark Brolly

A Melbourne newspaper says passport details prove Cardinal George Pell was studying in Oxford 46 years ago at the time a survivor of child sexual abuse says the Australian prelate, then a young priest, heard him plead for help a few weeks after being raped by a Christian Brother in the Victorian city of Ballarat.

The Herald Sun reported on 27 June that the Prefect of the Vatican’s Secretariat for the Economy, a former Archbishop of Melbourne and later of Sydney, had given it access to a copy of his full passport, showing his travel in the 1960s and ’70s.

“The passport makes it clear that Cardinal Pell was not in Australia in 1969,” the paper said in a story headlined ‘Pell’s passport proves point’. The Herald Sun reported on Monday that Paul Lyons, 55, had challenged the cardinal to prove he was not in Ballarat at the time he told priests at St Alipius Presbytery of his rape.

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Woman tells court she was abused in hospital aged 13

IRELAND
RTE News

A woman who alleges she was sexually abused by a catholic priest in Nigeria has told the High Court she was first abused while in hospital at the age of 13.

Dolores Atwood has begun giving evidence in a defamation case taken by former archbishop Richard Burke, who claims he was wrongly branded as a paedophile in an RTÉ television programme.

Ms Atwood said she first met Mr Burke when she was a schoolgirl and had gone to her local church to buy rosary beads.

She said she began meeting him after mass on Sundays and he began giving her hugs.

Ms Atwood said she found it very comforting as she had no emotional support at home. Her parents had divorced and she had problems with her stepmother.

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Woman claims archbishop fondled her when she was a child

IRELAND
Irish Times

Mary Carolan

Wed, Jul 1, 2015

A woman has told the High Court a priest kissed her and touched her breast while she was being treated for typhoid fever in a hospital in Nigeria in 1983.

Dolores Atwood, who was born in August 1969, said she first met Richard Burke, a member of the Kiltegan Fathers order, after mass at a Catholic church in Nigeria in 1982 and had enjoyed conversations with him.

When she became ill in 1983, she was treated in hospital for typhoid fever and he came to visit her, she said. She was “surprised” and, while he was there, the light went off and he kissed her and touched her breast and was “touching me inappropriately”.

When the light came back on, he had gone back to the position where he was standing before the light went off, she said.

Ms Atwood has begun her evidence in the action by Mr Burke (66), a native of Co Tipperary, against RTÉ alleging he was defamed in the RTÉ Prime Time Investigates: Mission to Prey programme broadcast on May 23rd 2011. He claims material in the programme wrongly meant he was a paedophile. RTÉ denies defamation.

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Priest abused teenage boys in 1970s and 80s at training college

SCOTLAND
STV

A priest who abused three teenage boys in the 1970s and 80s has avoided jail.

Colman McGrath, 76, abused two boys who were training to join the priesthood at Blairs College in Aberdeen and went on to indecently assault another school boy he was tutoring at his chapel in Langside, Glasgow.

But McGrath, who is now retired, was only interviewed by police in June 2014 after the abuse came to light decades later.

McGrath pleaded guilty to three charges of indecent assault between August 1972 and September 1982 at Glasgow Sheriff Court.

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Welcome Mass for Archbishop Hebda

MINNESOTA
Canonical Consultation

06/30/2015

Jennifer Haselberger

Priests and parish staff have been asked to add the following announcement to this week’s bulletins.

Come welcome Archbishop Bernard Hebda to the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis. Our new Apostolic Administrator will be celebrating the 10:00am Mass at The Cathedral of Saint Paul on Sunday, July 12th. All are encouraged to gather for the Eucharist and meet Archbishop Hebda following Mass. The Cathedral of Saint Paul is located 239 Selby Street in Saint Paul. For directions and other information about The Cathedral of Saint Paul, go to www.cathedralsaintpaul.org or call 651.228.1766.

If you have trouble finding the Cathedral, you can also navigate by the ‘For Sale’ signs that surround it.

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Retired priest Colman McGrath sentenced over sex abuse

SCOTLAND
BBC News

A retired priest has been told to carry out 200 hours of unpaid work after admitting indecently assaulting three teenage boys in Aberdeen and Glasgow.

Colman McGrath, 76, abused two boys who were training to join the priesthood at Blairs College in Aberdeen and a boy at his parish in Langside, Glasgow.

The offences were committed between August 1972 and September 1982.

At Glasgow Sheriff Court, McGrath was put on the sex offenders’ register and placed on supervision for three years.

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Falsely Accused Priest Finally Fights Back! Missouri Cleric Files Federal Lawsuit Against False Accusers, SNAP, and St. Louis Police

ST. LOUIS (MO)
TheMediaReport

Finally! A falsely accused priest has had enough and is not going to take it any more.

After being twice accused and cleared on wild charges of sex abuse, Rev. Xiu Hui “Joseph” Jiang has filed a federal lawsuit against his accusers, the lawyer-funded, anti-Catholic group SNAP, and members of the St. Louis police department for publicly accusing him of being a child molester.

Something rotten in Denmark

[**CLICK to read Rev. Jiang’s federal lawsuit**]

In both 2012 and 2014, Rev. Jiang was publicly accused of abuse charges which received wide media attention with SNAP breathlessly claiming that Jiang was a dangerous child molester on the prowl. Yet even at a glance the accusations against Jiang were clearly bogus.

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St. Cloud Diocese to undergo unprecedented abuse investigation

MINNESOTA
Star Tribune

By Jean Hopfensperger Star Tribune JUNE 30, 2015

The St. Cloud Diocese faces the prospect of making unprecedented disclosures about priests accused of sexual misconduct, under a ruling filed Monday in Stearns County court that builds on a series of legal victories for Minnesotans claiming clergy abuse.

Judge Kris Davick-Halfen ruled that lawyers can proceed with a “public nuisance” claim against the diocese by an alleged victim of priest sex abuse — a move that allows attorneys to investigate the diocese’s records and documents on all priests who have been accused of misconduct over decades.

Four of Minnesota’s six dioceses now face similar court-ordered scrutiny. Judges have made similar rulings on the public nuisance claim in the dioceses of Ramsey, Winona and New Ulm. The motion is under advisement in a case against a priest from the Diocese of Duluth.

The St. Cloud Diocese declined to comment on the ruling. It serves 130,000 Catholics in 16 counties across central Minnesota.

“These nuisance suits put Minnesota at the forefront of a growing national movement to expose those who commit and conceal heinous crimes against children,” said David Clohessy, national director of Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests. “In no state have as many victims successfully used the nuisance argument to unearth more records of abuse and names of perpetrators.”

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Magdalene Laundries services plan ‘missing fundamental elements’

IRELAND
Irish Examiner

Wednesday, July 01, 2015

A range of health services will become available from today for women who worked in the Magdalene Laundries.

The move is part of the Government’s redress scheme for women who were resident in certain institutions.

The services include GP, medical and surgical services, as well as home help, counselling and nursing services.

Ex-gratia payments ranging between €11,500 and €100,000 are also being paid out. About 86% of the applications received so far have been paid, at a cost of €18m.

Claire McGettrick of the Justice for Magdalenes Committee said the health scheme coming into effect today did not go far enough.

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Sex-abuse prosecutor: Church volunteer ‘handpicked these boys.’ Defense: ‘There’s reasonable doubt’

CALIFORNIA
Daily Pilot

By Jeremiah Dobruck
June 30, 2015

Attorneys concluded their arguments Tuesday in the case of a Costa Mesa Sunday school volunteer accused of sexually abusing a half-dozen boys and trying to lure another.

Jurors will decide whether they believe testimony from witnesses who over the past few weeks accused 51-year-old Christopher McKenzie of fondling or raping the boys.

Deputy Dist. Atty. Heather Brown told jurors that McKenzie is a wolf in sheep’s clothing, a man who hid behind a guise of religious piety that he cultivated at Rock Harbor church in Costa Mesa.

McKenzie met three of the boys at the church, where he helped in a fifth-grade classroom, according to the Orange County district attorney’s office.

“Mr. McKenzie handpicked these boys,” Brown said.

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Gerry O’Carroll: Church must never again place its own interests before the welfare of children

IRELAND
Herald

THE country has been convulsed with shock, disgust and anger since the full extent of clerical child sex abuse became known.

This sickening scandal rocked the Catholic Church to its very foundations and destroyed the trust and faith of many.

Even more shocking have been the extraordinary lengths the church has gone to cover things up.

The overriding imperative of the vast majority of the church hierarchy has been to protect the good name of that institution at all costs.

misery

Many a blind eye has been turned to the misery and suffering inflicted on innocent children by evil paedophile priests.

This was further highlighted dramatically last week when Cardinal Sean Brady, the retired head of the Catholic Church in Ireland, appeared before the Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry in Co Down.

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Former preacher wants second trial on sexual abuse charges moved from Rockbridge

VIRGINIA
Roanoke Times

By Laurence Hammack laurence.hammack@roanoke.com 981-3239

LEXINGTON — A former pastor charged with molesting a teenage boy from his church is asking that his upcoming trial be moved from Rockbridge County.

Larry McKinley Clark’s attorney argued Tuesday that extensive publicity about the case would make it all but impossible to seat an impartial jury. Complicating the problem for Clark, attorney Dirk Padgett said, that news media coverage includes that of an earlier trial in which Clark was convicted of sexually abusing a second young parishioner.

“I do think it raises it to a different level if [potential jurors] are aware of a conviction,” Padgett argued during a hearing in Rockbridge County Circuit Court.

Judge Michael Irvine took the motion for a change of venue under advisement, saying he will first try to seat a jury in Lexington as the law requires. Irvine also agreed to postpone Clark’s trial, which had been set for next week, until Sept. 14.

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Archbishop’s resignation could signal change for church

MINNESOTA
Al Jazeera

by Mary Turck @maryturck

On June 15 Minnesota Archbishop John Nienstedt and his deputy, Bishop Lee Piché, resigned from their positions days after the county attorney filed criminal charges against the archdiocese for failing to protect children from sexual abuse.

Nienstedt may personally be linked to the scandal: In 2014 he first ordered, and then blocked, an internal investigation of his private life. His resignation, which came after years of his insistence that he would not resign, was announced, but not explained. It highlights the bigger issues that are dogging the Catholic Church on every continent. Nienstedt’s resignation also underscores the struggle between progressives and conservatives over abuse of authority by bishops and the Vatican and, ultimately, over the direction the church will take under Pope Francis.

The fallout within the Minneapolis-St. Paul archdiocese is not surprising. Years of clergy sex abuse scandals have led to bankruptcy and the departure of many Catholics from the church. In fact, the abuses that led to Nienstedt’s resignation were first reported more than 30 years ago. Public concern escalated in 2013 as Minnesota Public Radio published an investigative series based on new evidence disclosed by diocesan canon lawyer and whistleblower, Jennifer Haselberger. The MPR reports, which documented sexual abuse of children by priests and the failure of three archbishops to respond over 30 years time, catapulted the archdiocese into a national spotlight.

The new revelations outraged Catholics across the state and nation. They already knew about the sex abuse by priests, with reports starting at least in the 1970s, but the extent of abuse and cover-ups had never been disclosed. For example, archbishops failed to report crimes to police, transferred pedophile priests from parish to parish, and sometimes arranged early retirement and special payments to the accused priests.

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Five abuse victims to take legal action against State

NORTHERN IRELAND/IRELAND
RTE News

A Belfast solicitor has said he is finalising preparations to begin civil actions on behalf of five clerical abuse victims who allege they were let down by Irish authorities.

Last week, Northern Ireland’s Historical Abuse Inquiry heard claims of contacts between a Dublin hospital and gardaí in Finglas about paedophile priest Brendan Smyth.

The substance of the claims being prepared by solicitor Kevin Winters is that elements of the Irish healthcare system and gardaí knew about the activities of Smyth in 1973.

This was more than 20 years before he was brought before the courts for his crimes.

For two decades afterwards, the Co Cavan-based priest abused children in Ireland, north and south and elsewhere.

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Former Archbishop requested that letter by alleged abuse victim be withdrawn

IRELAND
Irish Independent

PUBLISHED
01/07/2015

A FORMER Catholic Archbishop has told the High Court he wanted a woman to withdraw and seek the return of a letter, sent by her to Rome, which accused him of sexually abusing her when she was aged 13 and 14.

Richard Burke denies he sexually abused Dolores Atwood in Nigeria when she was aged 13 or 14. He and Ms Atwood had consensual sex for the first time when she was aged 20 and he was 40, he insists.

Mr Burke (66), a native of Co Tipperary, has completed his evidence in his action against RTE alleging he was defamed in the RTE Prime Time Investigates: Mission to Prey programme broadcast on May 23rd 2011. He claims material in the programme wrongly meant he was a paedophile. RTE denies defamation.

After Mr Burke’s re-examination concluded this morning, the seventh day of the case, Ms Justice Iseult O’Malley and the jury were told the evidence of behalf of Mr Burke had concluded.
The jury was then asked to go out while legal discussion began in their absence.

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