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.

March 22, 2018

Under pressure, Buffalo bishop names 42 priests accused of abuse

BUFFALO (NY)
Buffalo News

March 20, 2018

By Jay Tokasz

For more than 30 years, Timothy J. Clark lived with the emotional scars of being sexually abused by a parish priest.

The name of the man who allegedly assaulted Clark remained a closely guarded secret. Clark didn’t want to talk much about it. Bishops for the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo refused to acknowledge anything about priests who were accused of molesting minors.

Bishop Richard J. Malone altered course Tuesday morning by disclosing the names of 42 priests facing allegations of sex abuse, including 27 priests whose names had not previously been linked in public to molestation complaints. The diocese joined about 30 other dioceses in the country that have disclosed the names of clergy accused of sexual misconduct.

Among the 27 new names was the Rev. Louis J. Hendricks, the priest that Clark said repeatedly abused him when he was a teenager growing up in South Buffalo in the 1980s.

The stunning list stirred a mix of emotions in Clark, a former altar boy who is now 49 and lives in Alaska.

“It was very surreal seeing Hendricks’ name finally put out there. And it makes me wonder how much did the church know before he got to me,” he said.

Hendricks died in 1990 at the age of 53. Two dozen priests on the list released Tuesday were deceased, including Monsignor Joseph E. Schieder, a powerful cleric who had advised two presidents on youth issues in the 1950s and 1960s. A handful of other monsignors – a Vatican designation reserved for certain priests who were recommended to the pope because of their good work – made the list.

Most of the priests on the list were never prosecuted on criminal charges or sued in civil courts. Some of the priests were quietly removed from ministry under the guise of early retirements or medical leaves. The diocese on Tuesday did not provide any information about the specific allegations against each priest, or disclose where the living priests are residing.

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.

More names of priests expected to surface after release of list from Buffalo Diocese

BUFFALO (NY)
Buffalo News

March 21, 2018

By Jay Tokasz

A spokesman for the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo declined on Wednesday to disclose more information about 42 priests who were identified as having had credible allegations of child sexual abuse brought against them, but he said further disclosures “certainly will be considered” in the future.

“At this time what we felt was most appropriate was to get the names out on a timely basis and that’s what we did,” said the spokesman, George Richert.

Diocesan officials, he said, will “take under consideration” the release of a fuller accounting, such as when the priests were accused of abuse, what parishes they served in, how many allegations were lodged against them and when they were removed from ministry or left ministry on their own.

Richert also declined to say how the diocese determined that the allegations against the priests were credible.

The list included the names of priests who started working in parishes as far back as 1935. The accused priests served in parishes across all of the eight counties of the Buffalo Diocese.

Bishop Richard J. Malone’s reversal on Tuesday of a longstanding policy in which it kept secret the identities of clergy accused of sexual misconduct with minors failed to mollify victims and their advocates.

They said the list of 42 was incomplete and lacked the kind of full transparency that would help victims heal and find justice.

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 raiding Saginaw diocese, bishop’s home in priest sex abuse probe

SAGINAW (MI)
MLive

March 22, 2018

By Michael Kransz

Police are raiding two Catholic Diocese of Saginaw properties and the home of Bishop Joseph Cistone as part of an ongoing investigation into sexual abuse in the church.

Saginaw County Assistant Prosecutor Mark Gaertner said he can’t say what officers are searching for and taking from the properties, but confirmed the search warrants executed Thursday, March 22, are related to the diocese’s lack of cooperation.

“Contrary to the statements of the diocese and the bishop that they would fully cooperate with law enforcement, they did not,” Gaertner said. “Therefore it was necessary for law enforcement to use other investigative tools, including search warrants.”

Gaertner said search warrants were executed at the bishop’s home on Corral Drive in Saginaw, the rectory at Cathedral Of Mary Of The Assumption, 615 Hoyt, in Saginaw, and the Catholic Diocese of Saginaw offices in Saginaw Township.

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.

Campaigner warns of protests over child abuse during Pope’s visit to Ireland

IRELAND
The Belfast Telegraph

March 21, 2018

The Pope has expressed ‘pain and shame’ over the clerical sex abuse of children.

Pope Francis will face protests about child abuse when he visits Ireland, a campaigner said.

The pontiff will attend part of the 9th World Meeting of Families which will take place from August 21 – 26 in Dublin.

Margaret McGuckin is leading calls for a special payment to child victims of institutional abuse in Catholic residential homes in Northern Ireland.

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.

LDS Church responds to allegations of sexual abuse by former MTC president

PROVO (UT)
The Daily Universe

March 21, 2018

By Ashley Lee

The LDS Church is responding to sexual assault allegations against a former president of its Missionary Training Center in Provo.

The accusations come from a former church member who served as a missionary in 1984, according to a statement released Tuesday, March 20. She reported to the leaders of the Pleasant Grove West Stake in 2010 that Joseph Bishop had sexually assaulted her when she was at the MTC.

According to the church statement, the stake leaders reported the claims to the Pleasant Grove Police Department. “The church does not know what she said in that interview, but the church received no further communication from the police concerning the matter,” according to the statement.

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.

Child abuse imagery found within bitcoin’s blockchain

GERMANY
The Guardian

March 20, 2018

By Samuel Gibbs

Researchers discover illegal content within the distributed ledger, making possession of it potentially unlawful in many countries

German researchers have discovered unknown persons are using bitcoin’s blockchain to store and link to child abuse imagery, potentially putting the cryptocurrency in jeopardy.

The blockchain is the open-source, distributed ledger that records every bitcoin transaction, but can also store small bits of non-financial data. This data is typically notes about the trade of bitcoin, recording what it was for or other metadata. But it can also be used to store links and files.

Researchers from the RWTH Aachen University, Germany found that around 1,600 files were currently stored in bitcoin’s blockchain. Of the files least eight were of sexual content, including one thought to be an image of child abuse and two that contain 274 links to child abuse content, 142 of which link to dark web services.

“Our analysis shows that certain content, eg, illegal pornography, can render the mere possession of a blockchain illegal,” . “Although court rulings do not yet exist, legislative texts from countries such as Germany, the UK, or the USA suggest that illegal content such as [child abuse imagery] can make the blockchain illegal to possess for all users.”

“This especially endangers the multi-billion dollar markets powering cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin.”

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.

Revelan primeros dos nombres de 18 presuntos curas pederastas de Coahuila

MONTERREY (MEXICO)
Vanguardia MX [Saltillo, Coahuila, Mexico]

March 22, 2018

By Armando Ríos

Read original article

Saltillo

Ignacio Martínez Pacheco por fin reveló dos de los 18 nombres de los presuntos curas pederastas que han oficiado misas dentro de la Iglesia Católica de Coahuila

Después de un año de haber empezado la lucha contra ‘El Padre Meño’, Ignacio Martínez Pacheco por fin reveló dos de los 18 nombres de los presuntos curas pederastas que han oficiado misas dentro de la Iglesia Católica de Coahuila.

Además de que la Fiscalía General del Estado, reveló que existen once curas señalados por estos delitos en el Estado, José Ignacio Martínez Pacheco, el activista contra la pederastia clerical, aseguró que unos de los nombres de los curas que presuntamente habrían atentado contra la integridad sexual de menores son: Adolfo Villanueva, y Jorge Alonso Campos Rodríguez. 

Ambos curas, han pertenecido al régimen de la Diócesis de Saltillo. En el caso de Adolfo Villanueva, se sabe que este aún oficia misas en la parroquia del Sagrado Corazón de Jesús ubicada en la calle Leona Vicario del Centro de la Ciudad.

Sin embargo, en el caso de Jorge Alonso Campos Rodríguez, se sabe que oficiaba misas en la parroquia de Santa Teresita del Niño Jesús en la colonia Teresitas, y que además fue vicario en la iglesia Cristo Rey de la colonia Guayulera; sin embargo, la Diócesis afirmó que ésta ya no está en funciones. 

Recientemente, la FGE del Estado, afirmó que de manera formal, existen denuncias de cuatro víctimas en el Estado que fueron abusadas en seminarios e iglesias reiteradamente por hasta seis años, y a en su testimonio señalaron a por lo menos once curas que habrían cometido delitos sexuales contra menores, y que son pertenecientes a la Diócesis de Saltillo, de Torreón y de Piedras Negras

Asimismo, el Fiscal Ministerial, Norberto Ontiveros, aseguró que de los once señalados, se sabe que actualmente tres están en activo dentro de iglesias de Coahuila, y otros cinco abandonaron el Estado. 

Este viernes, José Ignacio Pacheco, adelantó que aportará pruebas de 18 curas señalados de Coahuila por pederastiadesde una rueda de prensa celebrada la Ciudad de Méxicorealizada en el Hemiciclo a Juárez; y aseguró que se escogió ese lugar, para recordar la separación que enmarca la constitución entre el Estado o la justicia, y la Iglesia.

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Guam Catholic Church ‘has a lot of work to do’

GUAM
Radio NZ

March 22, 2018

A Catholic Church watchdog on Guam says the church has a lot to do to rebuild trust, after the top Archbishop was convicted by a Vatican trial last week.

A secretive Vatican trial on Friday found Anthony Apuron guilty of “certain accusations” related to the sexual abuse of minors.

Dave Sablan, whose group, Concerned Catholics of Guam, was formed around the time allegations began to surface, said the verdict was the first bit of justice for the dozens of men who came forward.

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.

Fiscalía de Coahuila identifica a dos curas pederastas; la Diócesis de Saltillo opta por el silencio

MONTERREY (MEXICO)
Sinembargo.mx [Mexico City, Mexico]

March 22, 2018

By Redacción

Read original article

Recientemente, la Fiscalía General del estado de Coahuila afirmó que, de manera formal, existen denuncias de cuatro víctimas en la entidad que fueron abusadas en seminarios e iglesias reiteradamente por hasta seis años, y en su testimonio señalaron a por lo menos once curas que habrían cometido delitos sexuales contra menores, y que son pertenecientes a las diócesis de Saltillo, de Torreón y de Piedras Negras.

Coahuila/Ciudad de México, 22 de marzo (SinEmbargo/Vanguardia).- Después de un año de haber empezado la lucha contra “El Padre Meño”, Ignacio Martínez Pacheco por fin reveló dos de los 18 nombres de los presuntos curas pederastas que han oficiado misas dentro de la Iglesia Católica de Coahuila.

Además, la Fiscalía General del Estado de Coahuila reveló que existen once curas señalados por estos delitos en el estado, José Ignacio Martínez Pacheco, el activista contra la pederastia clerical, aseguró que tiene ya algunos de los nombres de los curas que presuntamente habrían atentado contra la integridad sexual de menores son: Adolfo Villanueva, y Jorge Alonso Campos Rodríguez.

Ambos curas, han pertenecido al régimen de la Diócesis de Saltillo. En el caso de Adolfo Villanueva, se sabe que aun oficia misas en el Sagrado Corazón de Jesús ubicada en la calle Leona Vicario del Centro de la Ciudad.

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Investigan a 11 sacerdotes por abuso sexual a menores en Coahuila; activista revela nombre de dos

MONTERREY (MEXICO)
Reporte Indigo [Mexico City, Mexico]

March 22, 2018

By Indigo Staff

Read original article

José Ignacio Martínez Pacheco, activista contra la pederastia en la iglesia católica, aseguró que son al menos 17 los sacerdotes acusados de abuso sexual contra menores… reveló el nombre y ubicación de dos de ellos

La Fiscalía General de estado de Coahuila informó este miércoles que son 11 sacerdotes católicos los que están siendo investigados por el delito de pederastia, luego de que cuatro víctimas presentaron denuncias formales en su contra.

La investigación se enfoca en una presunta red de corrupción de menores a lo largo de todo el estado de Coahuila, a través de las diócesis de Saltillo, Torreón y Piedras Negras.

“En este caso sí hay indicios que comprueban los delitos, porque las víctimas han sido muy concretas en señalar quienes fueron sus agresores, de manera muy específica y muy circunstancial”, dijo Norberto Ontiveros, fiscal ministerial de la entidad.

Detalló que las víctimas eran amenazadas y en algunos casos manipulados para que no denunciaran.

“Les decían que iban a dañar a su familia, que los iban a poner a ellos como agresores y no como víctimas. Fueron una serie de manipulaciones, incluso algunos de los afectados refiere que hubo uso de la fuerza y violencia psicológica”, aseveró.

De los 11 sacerdotes acusados, cinco huyeron del estado; sin embargo, están “bien ubicados”, dijo Norberto Ontiveros.

También confirmó que tres de los religiosos aún se encuentran oficiando misas dentro de iglesias católicas de Coahuila.

Cuatro de las presuntas violaciones habrían ocurrido en Torreón. Las otras agresiones sexuales se suscitaron en la región de la diócesis de Torreón, Saltillo, y de la región centro, específicamente en Monclova.

Son 17… no 11

José Ignacio Martínez Pacheco, activista contra la pederastia en la iglesia católica, dijo que son al menos 17 sacerdotes los que son investigados por abuso de menores en el estado.

“Los sucesos más recientes fueron hace cuatro años y los más antiguos hace ocho; estos ocurrieron en iglesias y seminarios. Algunas de las víctimas han declarado que fueron abusados reiteradamente durante cuatro o seis años”, detalló.

Asimismo, dio a conocer los nombres de dos sacerdotes acusados de pederastia clerical: Adolfo Villanueva, y Jorge Alonso Campos Rodríguez. 

Según el activista, ambos curas pertenecen a la diócesis de Saltillo.

Según medios locales, Adolfo Villanueva aún oficia misas en la parroquia del Sagrado Corazón de Jesús, ubicada en la calle Leona Vicario del centro de la ciudad.

Por su parte, Jorge Alonso Campos Rodríguez oficiaba en la parroquia de Santa Teresita del Niño Jesús, en la colonia Teresitas.

Martínez Pacheco ha mantenido una lucha contra el sacerdote Manuel Riojas Martínez, conocido como “El Padre Meño”, a quien acusa de abusar sexualmente de él en 2002 cuando ingresó a un seminario de Coahuila para convertirse en sacerdote.

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Editorial: Springfield diocese must do better in response to sexual misconduct

SPRINGFIELD (MA)
The Daily Hampshire Gazette

March 21, 2018

When the Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfield reached a settlement with Richard Koske in 2013 after he described sexual abuse by a former Northampton priest years earlier, it could have remained just another “personnel matter” kept behind closed doors.

In fact, that’s how the diocese treated the incident until Koske, 62, of South Hadley, went public this month, detailing his story of sexual abuse at the hands of retired priest Eugene Honan in the rectory of St. Mary’s Church in Northampton during the mid-1990s.

While the $20,000 settlement may have given Koske a sign that the diocese acknowledged wrongdoing, he was disturbed to learn over the course of several agonizing years how the church dealt with Honan. We also find it troubling.

A devout Catholic who had known Honan since he was a teenager, Koske first told the diocese in 2006 about the sexual abuse involving Honan. Five years later, Koske went to the diocese again after attending services at St. Patrick’s Church in South Hadley and seeing Honan at the altar.

In 2011, a Diocesan Review Board found Koske’s report of abuse credible and the matter was referred to a district attorney’s office. At the time, Honan, who retired in 2010, was already out of regular, full-time ministry. Koske said he was told of a confession by Honan in 2011 and understood that the priest was going to be moved out of state for a month while the diocese decided what to do.

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Hawaii lawmaker is latest to resign after misconduct probe

HONOLULU (HI)
The Associated Press via The Chicago Sun-Times

March 21, 2018

A former speaker of the Hawaii House of Representatives will resign by next week to resolve sexual harassment allegations brought by several women, the latest case of an elected official being forced from office over misconduct.

The Hawaii State Ethics Commission on Wednesday announced the settlement in its investigation of state Rep. Joseph Souki of Maui, a Democrat. The investigation included allegations Souki, 86, sexually harassed multiple women by subjecting them to unwanted kissing, touching and sexual language.

Sexual misconduct allegations against movie producer Harvey Weinstein in October have led women around the country to come forward with claims against powerful men in politics, entertainment, business and media.

Since 2017, at least 23 state lawmakers have resigned or been expelled from office amid sexual misconduct or harassment allegations. That includes the 17 who left office since reports about Weinstein’s misconduct.

The settlement calls for Souki to resign by March 30, issue a public apology, pay a $5,000 penalty and not seek office for two years.

According to the settlement, Souki admitted he “touched and kissed more than one woman in ways that were inappropriate and unwelcome. He admits that this physical contact exceeded the boundaries of the customary ‘aloha kiss.’”

He also admitted making “sexual comments, including comments on the physical appearance of more than one woman, that were inappropriate and unwanted.”

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Hawaii Democrat Resigns In Response To Sexual Harassment Claims He Still Denies

HONOLULU (HI)
The Huffington Post

March 22, 2018

By Carla Herreria

State Rep. Joe Souki had said he merely gave one of his accusers an “aloha kiss” on the cheek, but an ethics report says he admitted it was more than that.

A long-serving Hawaii lawmaker will resign from his post at the end of the month in response to sexual harassment complaints made against him by several women.

Hawaii’s State Ethics Commission said that state Rep. Joe Souki, an 84-year-old Democrat who previously served as the state’s House speaker, has admitted to touching and kissing “more than one woman in ways that were inappropriate and unwelcome.”

The commission added that Souki has acknowledged that his actions “exceeded the boundaries of the customary ‘aloha kiss,’” a customary greeting in the islands that involves a platonic kiss on the cheek.

Souki also admitted to making sexual comments, including comments on physical appearance, to more than one woman, according to the commission’s report on its investigation, released Wednesday.

Rachel Wong, a former state Department of Human Services director, filed a sexual harassment complaint against Souki in February, accusing him of an incident that occurred in 2015 in the presence of another male colleague, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported at the time.

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Former Missionary Training Center president admits to asking a young missionary to expose her breasts in the ’80s, BYU police say

SALT LAKE CITY (UT)
The Salt Lake Tribune

March 21, 2018

By Peggy Fletcher Stack

A former president of the LDS Missionary Training Center has admitted that he took a young woman into a small room at the Provo campus in 1984 and asked to see her breasts, according to a report released Wednesday by Brigham Young University police.

The release comes three days after MormonLeaks published an explosive, taped conversation between the woman and Joseph L. Bishop, who she accuses of attempting to rape her.

Bishop, now 85, said during their December conversation that he didn’t remember taking her into the room, let alone sexually assaulting her. But he repeatedly apologized, describing himself as a predator and saying he had confessed to other sexual misconduct — disclosures that have ignited outrage online and questions about whether the Mormon church failed to protect women.

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Woman levels accusations against former MTC president

PROVO (UT)
Deseret News

March 20, 2018

By Tad Walch

The LDS Church is investigating a woman’s claim that a former president of the Missionary Training Center in Provo sexually assaulted her while she was a missionary there in 1984, an allegation that he denies.

The woman, who is 55, posed as a reporter in December to confront Joseph L. Bishop, 85, who served as MTC president from 1983-86 and as president of Weber State College in the 1970s. She told Bishop that he groomed her by making her feel special, then took her to a basement storage room in the MTC and attempted to rape her, an allegation she later said was rape.

The conversation, which she taped, and its 76-page transcript was released by a website called MormonLeaks run by a former member of the LDS Church. The woman told the Deseret News Monday that the tape was released without her permission. The Deseret News typically does not release the identity of alleged victims of sexual assault.

Bishop adamantly denied the allegations through his son, Gregory Bishop, who questioned the woman’s credibility, saying she has accused 10 other men of sexual assault, sexual harassment or assault without charges being filed and has sought cash settlements in other cases. In 2010, she threatened to kill Bishop, according to police records and her own statements.

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Top judge slams Catholic Church for being “in denial” over sexual abuse

LIVERPOOL (UNITED KINGDOM)
Liverpool Echo

March 22, 2018

By Neil Docking

Father Thomas Wood visited internet chat rooms and watched videos of children being raped

A top judge slammed the Catholic Church for being in “denial” over sexual abuse problems within the priesthood.

Former Liverpool priest Father Thomas Wood, 55, yesterday admitted possessing and making indecent images of children.

He visited internet chat rooms to join other perverts watching videos of young children being raped in November 2015.

Wood’s Internet Protocol (IP) address led police to the presbytery of Our Lady’s church in Southport Road, Lydiate.

But he was spared jail after convincing Judge Clement Goldstone, QC, that he wanted help to address his problems.

Damian Nolan, defending, provided Liverpool Crown Court with a number of references on behalf of the disgraced priest.

Judge Goldstone said: “Some of the references I find much more compelling than others.

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Anglican archbishop tackles sex abuse in the church

CAPE TOWN (SOUTH AMERICA)
News24

March 22, 2018

By Amanda Khoza

The Anglican Church in Cape Town is urgently taking steps to address sex abuse cases in the church.

In a statement, Anglican Archbishop of Cape Town, Reverend Thabo Makgoba, said he has started urgent consultations to address the issue and to “strengthen” procedures which are in place for those who deal with sex abuse cases when they are reported.

His statement comes after “four individuals have either spoken out publicly or contacted my office privately” to report sex abuse in two dioceses, apparently during the 1970s and 1980s.

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Former Elk County priest alleges abuse before grand jury

ERIE (PA)
The Courier Express

March 21, 2018

By Katie Weidenboerner

A former local priest has spoken out, saying he testified about an alleged incident of abuse before a grand jury investigating the Catholic Diocese of Erie.

According to an article from the Erie-Times News, that priest is James Faluszczak, 48, now of Buffalo, N.Y. He was a priest from 1996-2014. He served locally during that time in the Elk County Catholic school system, as the pastor of St. Boniface Parish in Kersey, and as a campus minister at Clarion University before resigning from the priesthood.

The Erie-Times News reported that Faluszczak said, “It hurt me very deeply to resign and cease functioning as a priest…I loved my work. I loved the people and communities I served.”

Faluszczak is believed to be one of many witnesses who have testified before the grand jury, whose proceedings are secret and which was convened at the request of the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s Office around September 2016, according to media reports.

In those media reports, Faluszczak said the attorney general’s office contacted him after he called, in the spring of 2016, a hotline that the office set up in March 2016 for victims of clergy sex abuse. The Erie-Times News reported that on Monday he said that he testified before the grand jury in October 2016, that when he was 16 to 19 years old, he was “molested by my priest in Erie.”

Faluszczak has not publicly named the Erie priest.

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Bishop responds to criticism after naming former priests accused of child sex abuse

BUFFALO (NY)
WIVB

March 21, 2018

By Jenn Schanz

It’s a club Gary Astridge never wanted to be a part of.

“I guess [there were ] many psychological reasons as a little boy for me not saying anything to anyone when this all happened to me, but I can’t stay quiet anymore,” he told News 4.

Decades after he says he was molested by a Buffalo priest, Astridge is speaking out.

“When you look at pictures of me as a little boy, it’s just like oh my God how could someone do that?”

The priest Astridge claims abused him died several years ago.

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N.Y. Catholic Archbishop Opposes Bill Making It Easier for Abuse Victims to Sue

ALBANY (NY)
Advocate

March 21, 2018

By Trudy Ring

Cardinal Timothy Dolan, the famously anti-LGBT Roman Catholic archbishop of New York, is arguing against pending state legislation that would offer a window for survivors of sexual abuse to sue over crimes that happened decades ago.

Dolan made an unannounced visit to the state capitol in Albany to urge lawmakers and Gov. Andrew Cuomo not to support a “lookback” provision in the Child Victims Act, which would give survivors a one-year period to bring suits over decades-old incidents of abuse.

“Lookback would be toxic for us,’’ Dolan told reporters after meeting with politicians, the New York Daily News reports. He added, “The lookback we find to be very strangling because we unfortunately have precedent. When that happens the only organization targeted is the Catholic Church.’’ The church and other organizations, such as the Boy Scouts of America, have warned of a flood of litigation during the lookback period. He said he is not opposed to other moves that would make it easier for abuse survivors to bring the perpetrators to justice, such as easing the statute of limitations.

Abuse survivors and their advocates quickly struck back at Dolan. “Is it a lookback or priest raping kids that is toxic? I’m just trying to figure out which causes more damage to society,” Kat Sullivan, who was raped by a teacher at her private school in 1998, told the Daily News. “I think the words of a man who knowingly impedes a bill that would provide due process to citizens currently being excluded should be ignored because he represents an institution that not only violated children but actively worked to cover it up a

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Bishop speaks about releasing list of priests accused of abuse

BUFFALO (NY)
WKBW

March 21, 2018

[Note: This article is two pages.]

Bishop Richard Malone is speaking for the first time since the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo released the names of 42 priests who were accused of sexually abusing minors.

The list dates back to the 1950’s and includes priests that have multiple allegations against them. Some of the priests on the list have already passed away. All of the priests on the list were removed from ministry, were retired, or left the ministry since the allegations surfaced.

In an interview with 7 Eyewitness News, Malone admitted past policies were only partially adequate when it came to addressing cases of abuse, because they sometimes allowed for accused priests to return to ministry.

“When there was an allegation of abuse that had what we call a semblance of truth, that priest would be removed from ministry and usually sent for some kind of assessment by professionals,” Malone said. “Sometimes in the past, the verdict would be that they could return to ministry.”

Malone said the Diocese now exercises a “Zero Tolerance Policy” and would never allow a priest who has been accused of sexual abuse return to ministry.

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Catholic Church, Boy Scouts Oppose Georgia’s Child Sexual Abuse Bill

ATLANTA (GA)
Courthouse News

March 21, 2018

By Kayla Goggin

A legislative effort to bolster Georgia’s Hidden Predator Act by granting additional protections to victims of childhood sexual assault is under fire by Atlanta’s Catholic Archdiocese and the Boy Scouts of America.

The organizations object to the inclusion of language in the bill allowing victims to sue “entities,” including churches, private schools and youth organizations. Under Georgia’s current laws, organizations are able to escape legal liability for protecting the alleged perpetrators of sexual abuse.

The bill could expose organizations to increased financial liability as well.

House Bill 605 would extend the statute of limitations for survivors of childhood sexual assault, allowing adults up to the age of 38 to sue alleged perpetrators and their employers for sexual abuse. Currently, the Hidden Predator Act only offers protections to adults up to the age of 23.

The bill makes allowances for certain situations in which victims of any age could sue alleged perpetrators and the organizations accused of covering up their crimes.

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List the predators: Ogdensburg Diocese should name all those accused of abuse

OGDENSBURG (NY)
Watertown Daily Times

March 22, 2018

A representative of a law firm in Minnesota called on the leaders of the Roman Catholic dioceses of Ogdensburg and Syracuse last week to release the names of all priests accused of sexual abuse.

“We hope the dioceses will view this as being on the cusp of doing the right thing,” Mike Reck, a lawyer with Jeff Anderson & Associates, said during a March 14 news conference. “They have this information. They could disclose it, and we hope they do.”

The law firm represents victims of abuse by priests in these two dioceses. It released a report naming eight priests from Ogdensburg and 19 from Syracuse accused of sexual abuse.

In so doing, the law firm urged the two dioceses to become more transparent by making public the names of all their priests who have faced accusations of abuse. This would show that church leaders take this crisis seriously by exposing the predators within their ranks.

The Diocese of Ogdensburg, however, has opted to follow a tragic pattern of obstruction. Through a spokesman, Bishop Terry R. LaValley made it clear that the diocese would continue to keep the names of these priests under wraps.

“The concern of Bishop LaValley and the Diocese of Ogdensburg remains with the victims of sexual abuse by clergy and their healing,” Mr. Crowley said in a statement. “To protect the privacy of victims, the diocese will not release or confirm names of accused clergy.”

Mr. Crowley said that some victims have asked Bishop LaValley to withhold the name of their abusers. However, this appears to be a tactic to safeguard the identity of perpetrators rather than to serve victims.

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Outraged Catholics say Australian church leaders are ‘locked in a misogynistic and unaccountable culture’

AUSTRALIA
The Newcastle Herald

March 22, 2018

By Joanne McCarthy

AUSTRALIAN Catholic church leaders are “locked in a misogynistic and unaccountable culture” that has failed to adequately respond to the child sexual abuse scandal and is denying the need for urgent reform, say Catholic groups meeting in Canberra on Friday to demand change.

More than 50 leading Catholic reformists are expected to seek an urgent meeting with Australia’s bishops after a request to release the first formal church assessment of child abuse royal commission recommendations was declined last week by Melbourne Archbishop Denis Hart.

The lack of a decisive response on systemic reform after the “catastrophe of sex abuse by clergy” was “the last straw for many committed Catholics”, said Australian Catholic Coalition for Church Reform in a statement on Thursday.

Coalition convenor Peter Johnstone said the Canberra meeting is a direct response to the bishops’ refusal to release a Truth Justice and Healing Council analysis of the royal commission’s findings and recommendations before a bishops’ conference in May. It was given to a senior church leaders group several weeks ago.

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Australian Catholic Church to hold first Plenary Council in 80 years

AUSTRALIA
VATICAN News

March 20, 2018

By Richard Marsden

The Australian Catholic Church, with the approval of Pope Francis, will hold a Plenary Council in 2020 to discuss its way forward in light of the challenges it faces in contemporary society.

Pope Francis has given his approval for the Catholic Church in Australia to hold its first Plenary Council – the most significant national ecclesiastical gathering – in more than 80 years.

The Council in 2020 will address the way forward for the Church in Australia in light of the challenges it faces in contemporary society.

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Archbishop of Canterbury: Church has failed to protect children from abuse

LONDON (ENGLAND)
National Catholic Reporter

March 21, 2018

By Catherine Pepinster

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby told a national commission investigating child sex abuse that his church has not done enough to root out the problem.

Welby, the leader of the Church of England and the Anglican Communion — who himself has come under some criticism for his handling of abuse cases — told the commission Wednesday (March 21) that the church needs new powers to safeguard children.

He said reading about abuse and listening to survivors was particularly painful because the church had failed victims of abuse by Anglican priests.

“You see this extraordinary and atrocious willingness to turn a blind eye to things going very, very seriously wrong and entirely damaging human beings for their whole lifetimes,” Welby said.

Welby is the most high-profile witness so far to give evidence to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse, a commission charged by the British government to head a wide-ranging investigation into the failures of 13 institutions in England and Wales to protect children.

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Abuse makes me ashamed of church, says Welby

ENGLAND
The Times

March 21, 2018

By Sean O’Neill

The Archbishop of Canterbury told a public inquiry he felt ashamed of the Church of England after hearing evidence of abuse and cover-up over many years.

The Most Rev Justin Welby said the lesson of three weeks of hearings at the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse which focused on abuse scandals in the Diocese of Chichester was that continued training and development was needed.

“I’ve learnt to be ashamed again of the church,” said the archbishop. “You can’t read the transcripts, you can’t read the evidence statements without being moved. The church does wonderful, wonderful things across the country and the most stressful job in the church is to be a parish priest. That a minority, a small minority, has betrayed that is horrifying.”

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BISHOP MALONE ADDRESSES LIST OF PRIESTS ACCUSED OF ABUSE, ANOTHER ALLEGED VICTIM GOES PUBLIC

BUFFALO (NY)
Spectrum Local News

March 21, 2018

By Andy Young

Bishop Richard Malone said Wednesday he wanted to shed light on the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo’s decision to release a list of more than 40 priests accused of sexual assault.

“My job is to bring things out of the darkness and into the light,” said Malone. “Primarily so we can offer healing, mercy and justice to victims, and, in the process, heal the church because something like this obviously mars the integrity of the church.”

Another victim, Gary Astridge of Tonawanda, came forward Wednesday to share the pain he’s dealt with for years, the result of alleged sexual abuse by a priest in the Catholic Church.

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DIOCESE OF BUFFALO NAMES 42 PRIESTS ACCUSED OF SEXUAL ABUSE

BUFFALO (NY)
Spectrum Local News

March 20, 2018

By Mark Goshgarian

In its promise to be more transparent, the Diocese of Buffalo released the names Tuesday of 42 priests accused of sexual abusing a minor. Those identified were either removed from ministry, retired, left on their own amid abuse allegations, or have died.

“Shocking, this news is. But not shocking in one sense because we know that at least four bishops covered this up and secreted these men away for decades,” said Robert Hoatson, Road To Recovery president.

The list comes on the heels of a national law firm representing victims releasing 13 names from the Diocese last week. Some of the names on the list overlap with priests named by Jeff Anderson & Associates in a report released. It also comes weeks after the Diocese announced a new compensation program for victims as well.

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March 21, 2018

Priest who abruptly left St. Mary’s in Batavia named in sex abuse scandal as Diocese releases 42 names

BATAVIA (NY)
The Daily News

March 20, 2018

By Scott Desmit

Four days after The Buffalo News detailed sexual assault allegations against a priest who abruptly left a Batavia parish in 2002 and the priest’s denial, the Diocese of Buffalo has released his name, along with 41 other priests accused of sexually abusing children.

Father Donald Becker’s name was on that list. Becker left St. Mary’s Church in Batavia in 2002, “because of a medical leave of absence,” the Diocese said at the time.

Last week, The Buffalo News featured an article about three men who accused Becker of sexually assaulting them when they were children, including at a camp Becker owned in Java, Wyoming County.

Becker denied the allegations to the paper. He is retired and lives in Florida, according to the article.

The Diocese has seen increasing pressure to release the names of all its priests who have been accused of sexually abusing minors. A press release was sent about 11 Tuesday morning, giving the names of “diocesan priests who were removed from the ministry, were retired or left ministry after allegations of sexual abuse of a minor in the Diocese of Buffalo since 1950,” said George Richert, director of communications.

About half of the men on the list are dead.

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Older pupils also abused students at German Catholic choir school: report

BERLIN (GERMANY)
Reuters

March 20, 2018

A German public broadcaster on Tuesday broadened the scope of allegations of decades of abuse at Germany’s most famous Roman Catholic choir school, saying not only teachers but older students were to blame.

Last July, an independent report chronicled physical and sexual assaults by teachers against 547 pupils between 1945 and 2015 at the boarding school of the “Regensburger Domspatzen”, or Regensburg Cathedral Sparrows.

Citing legal documents and personal accounts, broadcaster Suedwestrundfunk, part of the ARD consortium, reported on Tuesday pupils were also subjected to sexual assaults, ranging from forced masturbation to anal sex, by older students.

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Archbishop of Canterbury ‘ashamed’ of Church over abuse

ENGLAND
BBC News

March 21, 2018

The Archbishop of Canterbury has said how “ashamed” he is of the Church in the wake of the child sex abuse inquiry.

The Most Rev Justin Welby told the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse that it was “horrifying” to read the evidence from survivors.

“I have learned to be ashamed again,” he said.

The three-week hearing is looking into the Diocese of Chichester, where dozens of clergy have been accused of abuse.

Mr Welby said: “To read the transcripts, to read the evidence, to meet the survivors, is horrifying to a huge degree, because you see this extraordinary and atrocious willingness to turn a blind eye to things going very seriously wrong and entirely damaging human beings for their whole lifetimes.”

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Timothy Cardinal Dolan urges state pols to reject ‘toxic’ lookback window in child abuse cases

ALBANY (NY)
New York Daily News

March 20, 2018

By Kenneth Lovett and Glenn Blain

Timothy Cardinal Dolan urged Gov. Cuomo and state lawmakers Tuesday to reject any legislation that gives child abuse victims a window to revive old legal cases.

Dolan, who made an unannounced trip to the state Capitol to lobby the governor and legislative leaders, said the idea of a “lookback would be toxic for us” because it would lead to a flurry of cases against the church.

“The lookback we find to be very strangling,” Dolan told reporters after meeting with Cuomo for more than an hour. “When that happens, the only organization targeted is the Catholic Church.”

A lookback window is among the most controversial components of the Child Victims Act, which would make it easier for abuse survivors to seek justice as adults by extending the timeframes they can bring criminal and civil cases.

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Inhumanity in the Name of Jesus: Catholic Dogma Which Led to the Holocaust also Led to the Cover-Up of Clergy Sex Abuse

SPRING VALLEY (NY)
EINPresswire

March 21, 2018

New book argues that it is the history and magisterium of the Catholic Church which made the Holocaust possible and the cover-up of clergy sex abuse inevitable.

G.R. Pafumi has released the first of two volumes about sex abuse in the Catholic Church, Inhumanity in the Name of Jesus. Volume I: Pain and Suffering, Aftermath of the Catholic Church’s Belief in its Own Infallibility. With sex abuse accusations against major celebrities and public figures, such as Harvey Weinstein, Charlie Rose and Matt Lauer, Pafumi focused on victims abused by Catholic clergy. They paved the way for the #MeToo movement. Victims of Catholic clergy are no longer willing to remain silent about the abuse they suffered, sometimes decades ago. Pope Francis is currently dealing with the fallout from his trip to Chile, where he defended a bishop who covered for a clergy sex offender. The Pope accused the alleged victims of calumny even though he was given an eight-page letter from one of the victims. It seems the Pope lied. Why?

The Catholic Church, including the sex abuse crisis, is not easily understood without a consideration of the Church’s history. The cover-up of sex abuse was inevitable because of the Church’s belief in its ecclesiastical infallibility and its long history of unchecked power. The Church believes it is never wrong because it has been guided by the Holy Spirit for nearly 2,000 years ago. The Holy Spirit would not allow the Church or its popes to make errors in its magisterium, i.e. teaching authority. Pafumi asks, “Where was Holy Spirit when the Jews were being persecuted and children sexually molested?” Since the first century, Jews have been identified by the Church as Christ killers. Jewish disdain is manifest in the Apostolic constitution Ineffabilis Deus (Ineffable-indescribable-God), a decree promulgated by Pope Pius IX in 1854. The Virgin Mary was claimed to be conceived without the stain of original sin. Her entire ancestry back to Adam needed to be immaculately conceived, since the Jewish faith is passed along through maternal parentage. By having an immaculately conceived heritage, Mary had no Jewish blood. It appears that the real purpose of this constitution was to de-Jewify Jesus by de-Jewifying his mother and her ancestry.

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LDS Church responds to allegations of sexual abuse by former Provo MTC president

PROVO (UT)
Daily Herald

March 20, 2018

By Genelle Pugmire

Allegations of sexual assault by a former president of the Provo Missionary Training Center against a sister missionary have resurfaced after 34 years.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints released a statement Tuesday to clarify the path the allegation has taken over the decades, and the controversial audio leaked Monday.

“These allegations are very serious and deeply disturbing,” the church statement says. “If the allegations of sexual assault are true, it would be a tragic betrayal of our standards and would result in action by the Church to formally discipline any member who was guilty of such behavior, especially someone in a position of trust.”

According to the statement, the matter was first brought to the attention of the church in 2010, approximately 26 years after the alleged assault. The woman, who served briefly as a missionary in 1984, told leaders of the Pleasant Grove Utah West Stake that she had been sexually assaulted by Joseph Bishop, then- president of the Provo Missionary Training Center.

“They listened carefully to the claims being made and then this was immediately reported to the Pleasant Grove Police Department, and the police interviewed her at that time,” the church statement said. “The church does not know what she said in that interview, but the church received no further communication from the police concerning the matter.”

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Louisville priest appealing 7-year prison sentence, saying there was ‘no intent to abuse’ 10-year-old victim

LOUISVILLE (KY)
WDRB

March 20, 2018

By Katrina Helmer

Fr. Joseph Hemmerle, convicted of abusing a boy in the 1970s, is appealing to three judges to reconsider his case.

Michael Norris testified during the 2016 trial that when he was 10 years old, Hemmerle sexually abused him while he attended Camp Tall Trees in 1973. Norris said he had poison ivy, and when Hemmerle offered to treat it in private, Norris said Hemmerle sexually abused him instead. Norris said he never had poison ivy on his genitals, so there was no reason for Hemmerle to touch Norris’ genitals or for Hemmerle to put his mouth on Norris’ genitals.

In 2016, Hemmerle was tried on two different charges of abuse: carnal abuse and indecent or immoral practices. Since the victim said the abuse happened in the 1970s, the language of the law is different from what would be today’s charges of sodomy and sexual abuse.

At trial, Hemmerle testified he would apply lotion to the genitals of child campers for poison ivy, but he denied ever abusing any children.

The jury, in 2016, found Hemmerle not guilty of carnal abuse but guilty of indecent or immortal practices by inappropriately touching Norris. The judge sentenced Hemmerle to seven years in prison. Then in December 2017, after less than a year behind bars, Hemmerle’s request for parole was denied.

On Tuesday afternoon, Hemmerle’s attorney, David Lambertus, presented his case for appeal. Lambertus argued Hemmerle never performed an indecent act on the victim, that there was no intent to abuse the victim, that the verdicts were inconsistent, that the jury was given inconsistent instructions and that the two counts did not differentiate and needed to be merged.

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Several Priests Accused Of Sexual Abuse Served In Local Churches

JAMESTOWN (NY)
The Post-Journal

March 20, 2018

By Katrina Fuller, Mike Rukavina, and Eric Tichy

Several priests accused of sexual abuse of minors by the Buffalo Diocese served in Chautauqua County churches at various times over the last several decades.

The diocese on Tuesday released the names of 42 priests who were removed, retired or left the ministry after allegations of sexual abuse were reported since 1950. Included in the list are priests with more than one allegation; more than half on the list have since died after being accused.

In a statement to The Post-Journal, a spokesman said the diocese could not get into specific dates of when it received allegations of sexual abuse against the priests on its list. No formal statement was being made Tuesday, the spokesman said.

The following are priests named by the diocese that served in local churches. The information was collected from various articles that appeared in The Post-Journal.

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Archbishop Welby to give evidence at national inquiry into child sexual abuse

ENGLAND
The Tablet

March 20, 2018

By Rose Gamble

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, is due to give evidence on Wednesday at the national inquiry into child sexual abuse.

Over the past three weeks, the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) has been examining how the Church of England handled allegations of sexual misconduct stretching back to the 1950s, focusing on the Diocese of Chichester.

Archbishop Welby joins two former Archbishops, serving bishops, safeguarding officials and abuse survivors in giving evidence – or submitting witness statements – to the hearing.

In a statement read by his counsel Nigel Giffin QC on the opening day of the hearing, Archbishop Welby apologised for the church’s “deeply shaming” failure to protect children.

“That children have been abused within communities of churches is indeed shameful,” he said. “We agree..that the voices of these children are not to be marginalised and that the future prevention of such abuse is and must be a very high priority,” the statement continued.

The Church of England’s national head of safeguarding, Graham Tilby, admitted at the start of this week that despite major investments into safeguarding, the CofE still did not have the systems in place to ensure that cases of serious abuse within the church would be reported to his team.

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Canons of St. John Cantius founder removed amid misconduct claims

CHICAGO (IL)
Catholic News Agency

March 20, 2018

By Kevin J. Jones

The pastor of Chicago’s St. John Cantius Church was removed from office last week for unspecified “credible” allegations of misconduct involving adult men, a response the Chicago archdiocese says is typical in such cases.

Cardinal Blase Cupich of Chicago removed Father C. Frank Phillips, founder of the Canons Regular of St. John Cantius and pastor of Chicago’s St. John Cantius Church.

“I am aware that this is difficult news to receive, but the Archdiocese of Chicago is committed to ensuring those serving our parishioners are fit for ministry,” the cardinal said in a statement. “Know that this decision was made after careful consideration. I will continue to pray for you and am confident the Lord will sustain the St. John Cantius community as you make this transition.”

Cupich said he had to withdraw the priest’s faculties to minister in the archdiocese “after learning of credible allegations of improper conduct involving adult men.”

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French government to tackle sexual and gender-based violence

PARIS (FRANCE)
The Associated Press

March 21, 2018

By Sylvie Corbet

France’s government on Wednesday presented a bill to fight sexual and gender-based violence, in the wake of the #MeToo movement.

Junior minister for gender equality Marlene Schiappa said at a news conference the measure will impose fines for gender-based harassment on the street or in public transport of between 90 and 750 euros ($110-920).

Schiappa said she is convinced the measure “will act as a deterrent because never before have we heard so much talk about street harassment.”

Witnesses to such acts will know the French Republic’s law is on the side of women, she stressed.

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Andy Savage resigns from Highpoint Church following investigation

MEMPHIS (TN)
Commercial Appeal

March 20, 2018

By Ron Maxey

Andy Savage, accused of sexually assaulting a teenage girl in Texas 20 years ago, has resigned from his ministerial post at Highpoint Church.

The Memphis megachurch announced the resignation Tuesday, saying that while an investigation found no other instances of abuse, “the leadership team at Highpoint Church agrees that Andy’s resignation is appropriate.”

The statement is the first time the church leadership has termed the encounter involving Savage as “abuse.”

Savage’s fall culminates more than two months of accusations and soul-searching over a case that became symbolic of the #churchtoo offshoot of the #metoo movement.

Savage was teaching pastor at Highpoint, part of the church’s senior leadership team. His resignation from the post follows a lengthy investigation by Scott Fredricks, a Fort Worth, Texas, attorney whose specialties include assisting churches with child abuse investigations.

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CHICAGO PRIEST DEFENDS HIMSELF AGAINST ACCUSATIONS

CHICAGO (IL)
Church Militant

March 20, 2018

By Christine Niles, M.St. (Oxon.), J.D.

Fr. Frank Phillips of St. John Cantius Parish is ‘looking forward to clearing his name’

A Chicago priest accused of “improper conduct” with men is defending himself against the accusations.

On March 16, Cdl. Blase Cupich announced he had removed Fr. Frank Phillips as pastor of St. John Cantius Parish in Chicago over “credible allegations of improper conduct involving adult men.” A spokesman made clear no minors were involved.

“Father Phillips is looking forward to the convocation of the review board,” Steven Komie, attorney for Phillips, told Church Militant. “His religious superiors are going to appoint the board, and he’s looking forward to appearing in front of the board and clearing his name and reputation.”

Phillips founded the Canons Regular of St. John Cantius in 1998 under Cdl. Francis George. The parish is known for its beautiful and reverent traditional liturgy, as well as its preaching of orthodoxy. Last year it undertook a historic Fatima procession through the streets of Chicago, in the 100th anniversary year of the apparitions.

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Justin Welby: sexual abusers can never be trusted again

ENGLAND
The Guardian

March 21, 2018

By Harriet Sherwood

Archbishop of Canterbury tells inquiry even those who repent should not get second chance

People who sexually abuse children or vulnerable adults can never be trusted again even if they genuinely repent, the archbishop of Canterbury has told the independent inquiry into child sexual abuse.

“We know abusive behaviour tends to repeat. If someone has been an abuser, they can never be trusted again. You will never take a chance on them again,” Justin Welby said.

The Bible was “utterly, brutally blunt about the difference between forgiveness and the consequences of sin. Where there is something done wrong, there will be consequences,” he said.

“If you have abused and repent genuinely, you should still go to prison,” he added.

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Judge rules Roman Catholic corporation not liable for abuse at Mount Cashel

ST. JOHN’S (NEWFOUNDLAND)
National Observer/The Canadian Press

March 21st 2018

By Sue Bailey

The Roman Catholic Episcopal Corporation of St. John’s, N.L., is not liable for abuse in the 1950s at the notorious Mount Cashel orphanage because a senior priest likely didn’t believe boys who reported it, a judge ruled Tuesday.

One of the lawyers representing many of the more than 80 plaintiffs swiftly announced plans to appeal.

Justice Alphonsus Faour of the provincial Supreme Court says in a 174-page judgment that he believes men who testified they told a senior priest about abuse at least seven times. Plaintiffs in the case are from an earlier era — long before sexual and physical abuse emerged as a public scandal with criminal convictions and a public inquiry starting in 1989.

But Faour concludes it’s doubtful whether that priest, who can’t be named under a publication ban, would have fully understood or believed the boys who reported similar horrors decades before.

“I do not doubt that the disclosures were made,” Faour wrote, but said they must be put in historical context. “The testimony and statements provided indicate only seven disclosures out of potentially hundreds of confessions heard by the priest during the relevant period.

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The Vatican acknowledges abuse in Guam, and Arizona man rejoices: ‘They believed’ us

GUAM
The Republic | azcentral.com

March 20, 2018

By Jerod MacDonald-Evoy

Walter Denton lives in Casa Grande, half a world away from the Pacific island of Guam, where he grew up in the 1970s.

Despite all the distance and all the years passed, Denton holds close his memories of one night of terror in a church rectory.

He was an altar boy, and he was raped when he was 13, he told church authorities years later.

Denton accused Guam Archbishop Anthony Apuron, then a parish priest, of the sexual abuse. It was just one of many accusations against the clergyman.

On Friday, a specially appointed Vatican tribunal in Rome announced that Apuron was “guilty of certain accusations” related to the sexual abuse of minors, stripping the 72-year-old of his position and prohibiting him from returning to Guam, a U.S. territory.

The Vatican did not address the number of potential victims, but dozens of lawsuits alleging sexual abuse of minors have been filed against Apuron and other clergy in Guam.

Apuron said he intends to appeal the church’s ruling.

Denton said he learned of the tribunal ruling Friday morning through a text message from a friend.

His friend just sent him a story link, and Denton instantly had a feeling he knew what it was.

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What the Buffalo Catholic diocese’s abusive priest list doesn’t say

BUFFALO (NY)
WKBW

March 20, 2018

By Charlie Specht

Victims say it leaves questions unanswered

Sexual abuse victims say the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo releasing a list of priests accused of sexual abuse is a good first step.

But they say that’s all it is — a first step.

Victims and their lawyers say there are categories of potential pedophile priests that this list leaves out.

First, there’s a discrepancy in the numbers. In 2004, Syracuse Bishop Robert Cunningham — who was then the number two man in the Buffalo Diocese — said there were a total of 53 priests in the diocese accused of abuse since 1950.

Fourteen years later, the list released today includes the names of 42 priests. Spokesman George Richert says the missing 11 priests are from religious orders and the diocese is “not intending to release more information than the names.”

There’s no mention of where the abuse occurred (what parishes), during what time period and how the diocese handled the abuse.

The diocese is also keeping secret the names of dead clergymen who had only one allegation against them. If someone else comes forward with allegations, Richert says they may add to the list.

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Reaction to list of priest child sex abusers

BUFFALO (NY)
WKBW

March 20, 2018

By Ed Reilly

The Catholic Diocese of Buffalo released the names of 42 diocesan priests accused of sexually abusing a child. It includes priests who have died, were removed or retired, or left the ministry after the allegations.

However, a local survivor, Tom Travers, who operates a support group for priest child sex abuse victims, called “William’s Place,” wonders why the list is missing the names of his abuser and others he has heard from victims that he works with.

The Diocese said the list does not include non-diocesan priests (such as priests from other religious orders who worked in the Buffalo Diocese) or deceased priests who had only one allegation of abuse. When asked if there are other priests currently under investigation whose names are not on the list, a diocesan spokesman said there was “no comment at this time.”

7 Eyewitness News Reporter Ed Reilly spoke with Tom Travers. Travers has been notified that he is eligible to file a claim under a compensation program set up by the diocese for sex abuse victims. As a young altar boy in the mid-1970’s, Travers said he was abused by a priest at Nativity of Our Lord Parish in Orchard Park.

The diocese previously declined to confirm or deny to 7 Eyewitness News if Travers’ abuser, who has since died, was under investigation.

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Child sex abuse survivor, advocate say Diocesan list doesn’t go far enough

BUFFALO (NY)
WBFO

March 21, 2018

By Michael Mroziak

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Buffalo ended a decades-long policy of withholding the names of clergy accused of sexually abusing minors. That changed Tuesday when the Diocese released the names of 42 priests who were removed, retired or otherwise left active ministry amid abuse accusations. Survivors of abuse and their advocates say the list is a start but doesn’t go far enough to address past wrongdoing.

The list released Tuesday morning by the Diocese of Buffalo identifies 42 priests who were, according to officials, “removed from ministry, were retired or left ministry after allegations of sexual abuse of a minor” and faced more than one accusation. Of the 42 priests identified, 24 are deceased.

Diocesan officials said there would be no local interviews granted Tuesday. However, Bishop Richard Malone offered comments to the Buffalo News while on a trip to Albany.

“I have just become more and more convinced it was time to put those names out,” he told the newspaper. “The main reasons are really transparency.”

Tom Travers, a childhood sexual abuse survivor, says the Diocese of Buffalo is being “semi-transparent” with the release of the list. He also told WBFO that list is incomplete and omits the name of his own alleged abuser, the late Monsignor Sylvester Holbel, who died in 1983.

“I’ve been invited into the reconciliation program that the Buffalo diocese has forwarded,” Travers said. “I’ve received a letter from them yet they fail to acknowledge Monsignor Holbel in their current list.”

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Childhood sex abuse survivor speaks of getting help for victims [with audio]

BUFFALO (NY)
WBFO

March 21, 2018

By Michael Mroziak

On the same day the Roman Catholic Diocese of Buffalo released a list of 42 clergy accused of sexually abusing minors, a childhood sex abuse victim – himself allegedly abused by a now-deceased priest – shared his experience of coming to terms and reaching out for help.

Tom Travers, who now brings people together to share and cope with their childhood experiences with the group William’s Place, told WBFO although he was abused as a child, he didn’t feel strong enough to reveal his trauma until he was in his late 40s.

At the age of 48, he returned to the church where he said he was abused. Travers says it took about a year after that until he could go public with his story. The few he told, he explained, didn’t receive him well and left him feeling re-victimized.

“Shame and guilt are major driving factors in being able to come to terms with this,” Travers said. “When these things happen to us as children, we absolutely feel that we were involved in it, that it was partially our fault. And often, abusers convince us that we have to remain secret and that we were an active participant in the abuse.”

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World premiere of “An Undivided Heart” about church abuse and tainted water

LOS ANGELES (CA)
People’s World

March 20, 2018

By Eric A. Gordon

Twenty-five years or so ago two major moral crises unfolded at about the same time in Massachusetts. One had to do with the widespread cover-up of child abuse in the Roman Catholic Church, the other with toxic drinking water caused by unregulated corporations (W.R. Grace Co., Beatrice Foods, and the Unifirst Co. were implicated). The first issue was handily dealt with in the 2015 film Spotlight, which won Academy Awards for Best Picture and Best Original Screenplay. The water crime was the subject of the book and 1998 film starring John Travolta, A Civil Action.

In a world premiere collaboration production of Yusuf Toropov’s An Undivided Heart by the Echo Theater Company & Circle X Theatre Co., the author conflates these two crises and asks how far will powerful men and institutions go to keep their secrets—and who pays the price when they do?

Yusuf Toropov surely knows Henrik Ibsen’s 1882 play An Enemy of the People, which deals with moral issues over contamination of the town’s public baths. One more thing that Ibsen’s and Toropov’s plays have in common is the issue of whistle-blowing in the media—a newspaper in Norway, a book in Boston.

The play also shares some common ground with the 2005 Pulitzer Prize-winning Doubt, A Parable by John Patrick Shanley, which similarly, in a Catholic school setting, took on the question of how much and what kind of proof do we require to act on our suspicions.

What distinguishes Toropov’s play is the focus on the different hierarchical levels, generations and standards of ethical commitment within the Church, as well as on the townspeople whose entire lives have been spent in the arms of the Roman Catholic religion—and within homes supplied by toxic, unholy water. Interestingly, Toropov, an American writer, is himself a convert to Islam who lives in Ireland, where a bright light on the misdeeds of the Catholic Church also has been shining for the past several years.

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Clergy burnt church files after being accused of covering up abuse, inquiry hears

ENGLAND
Christian Today

March 20, 2018

By Harry Farley

A senior clergyman burnt church files, an inquiry heard today, after he failed to report the systematic abuse of children by a priest to the police.

John Treadgold, the former dean of Chichester Cathedral, returned to the empty deanery after he retired in 2001, took files from the basement and burnt them in the garden, his former colleague Peter Atkinson said.

It happened as Terence Banks, the head steward of the cathedral, was convicted of 32 sexual offences against 12 boys over a period of 29 years. He was sentenced to 16 years in jail in 2001 after an investigation by Sussex police.

However it later emerged through a report conducted by Edina Carmi in 2004 that Treadgold had been told of Banks’ abuse by a victim in 2000 but had not reported it to the police, the child protection adviser or social services.

Of Banks’ 12 victims, all were under 16 years of ago and some were as young as 11. He was eventually convicted in 2001 of 23 charges of indecent assault, five of buggery, one of indecency with a child under 14 years, and two of attempting to procure acts of gross indecency.

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Clergy sex abuse mediation set for September

GUAM
The Guam Daily Post

March 21, 2018

By Kevin Kerrigan

The attorney for the Archdiocese of Agana said Tuesday in the District Court of Guam he would begin taking sworn statements from the plaintiffs today. He hopes settlement offers will be ready for mediation in the clergy sex abuse cases by September, three months later than previously expected.

At the status hearing yesterday, attorney Michael Patterson said he will begin taking sworn statements from 161 alleged victims, 151 of whom have filed sexual abuse lawsuits in either the District Court or the Superior Court of Guam.

Ten alleged victims have declined to file lawsuits, Patterson said, but he said they will be included in the final mediated settlement offers.

Superior Court Judge Michael Bordallo has 53 of the cases and Chief Judge Frances Tydingco-Gatewood has 108. The two judges sat side by side on the bench Tuesday, presiding over this unusual joint hearing at the District Court. Fifteen attorneys representing all the plaintiffs were either in the courtroom or on the phone for the hearing.

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Tennessee megachurch pastor steps down after admitting to 1998 sexual assault

MEMPHIS (TN)
New York Daily News

March 21, 2018

By Nicole Hensley

A Tennessee megachurch pastor who admitted to having a “sexual incident” with a teen girl more than 20 years ago resigned Tuesday.

Andy Savage had been on a leave of absence from Highpoint Church in Memphis for about two months after the victim came forward accusing him of the 1998 assault in January.

Jules Woodson alleged that Savage assaulted her while he was a youth minister at the Woodlands Parkway Baptist Church in suburban Houston, Texas. He was 22 at the time, while Woodson was 17.

“I have come to see that many wrongs occurred in 1998,” Savage said in a statement to Highpoint’s website.

“The first was my inappropriate relationship with Jules, which was not only immoral, but meets the definition of abuse of power since I was her youth pastor,” the pastor wrote. “Therefore, when our relationship became physical, there could be no claim of mutual consent.”

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TENNESSEE PASTOR WHO RECEIVED OVATION AFTER ADMITTING ‘SEXUAL INCIDENT’ WITH TEEN RESIGNS

MEMPHIS (TN)
Newsweek

March 21, 2018

By Tom Porter

Andy Savage, a Tennessee megachurch pastor who admitted to a “sexual incident” with a teenager 20 years ago, resigned from his position Tuesday.

He had been on a leave of absence from the Highpoint Church in Memphis since January, after a woman came forward and alleged that she had been assaulted by him when she was a 17-year-old high school student and he was a 22-year-old youth minister.

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Memphis megachurch pastor resigns following sexual abuse investigation

MEMPHIS (TN)
The (Memphis) Commercial Appeal

March 20, 2018

By Ron Maxey

A pastor accused of sexually assaulting a teenage girl in Texas 20 years ago resigned from his ministerial post Tuesday at a Memphis megachurch.

Andy Savage, teaching pastor at Highpoint Church and part of the church’s senior leadership team, follows a leave of absence and lengthy investigation by Scott Fredricks, a Fort Worth lawyer whose specialties include assisting churches with child-abuse investigations.

Savage’s fall culminates more than two months of accusations and soul-searching over a case that became symbolic of the #churchtoo offshoot of the #metoo movement.

While the investigation found no other instances of abuse, “the leadership team at Highpoint Church agrees that Andy’s resignation is appropriate,” officials at the nondenominational church with campuses in Memphis and suburban Collierville, Tenn., announced in a statement.

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Weinstein Co. files for bankruptcy, voids nondisclosure pacts

SAN FRANCISCO (CA)
SF Gate

March 20, 2018

By Brooks Barnes

The Weinstein Co. clung to life longer than anyone in Hollywood expected following a sexual harassment scandal so big that it started a global workplace reckoning.

But the troubled studio finally flatlined.

The Weinstein Co. filed for bankruptcy protection late Monday in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware. The company had been struggling after one of its co-founders, Harvey Weinstein, was fired as chief executive in October after women publicly accused him of sexual misconduct stretching back decades.

The studio said that it had lined up Lantern Capital Partners, a Texas private-equity firm, as a “stalking horse bidder,” meaning that it will be the first bidder in the bankruptcy process, which allows a distressed company to avoid low bids on its assets.

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March 20, 2018

Un cura mexicano acusado de pederastia afronta otro cargo por presunta violación

XALAPA (MEXICO)
La Información [Madrid, Spain]

March 20, 2018

Read original article

 10 feb (EFE).- Un sacerdote católico del estado mexicano de Veracruz (este), actualmente juzgado bajo sospecha de que abusó sexualmente de menores de una casa hogar, enfrentará un nuevo cargo por la presunta violación de dos niñas, informaron hoy fuentes judiciales.

Portavoces de la Procuraduría General de Justicia del estado de Veracruz indicaron que la Fiscalía de Delitos contra la Libertad y la Seguridad Sexual y la Familia consignó un segundo expediente contra el cura José de Jesús Sandoval González, conocido como “Padre Chucho”.

El religioso está en prisión desde el 12 de enero pasado, un día después de que se destapara el caso de presuntos abusos sexuales de menores de una casa hogar del estado.

Las víctimas supuestamente violadas por el sacerdote son dos niñas albergadas en la casa hogar “Manuel Pío López”, del municipio de Boca del Río, que administraba el religioso.

La jueza Beatriz Rivera Hernández anexó el expediente por violación en contra del cura al anterior, lo que implica que tendrá que rendir declaración sobre estos nuevos cargos para hacer frente a las imputaciones.

El 11 de enero pasado las autoridades de Boca del Río, municipio cercano al puerto de Veracruz, rescataron a 20 niños del hogar “Manuel Pío López”, donde presuntamente eran abusados sexualmente por Sandoval González, con quien al parecer colaboró la monja María Guadalupe Zaragoza.

La alcaldía de Boca del Río presentó una denuncia penal para que se investigara el caso, reveló entonces el alcalde Miguel Ángel Yunes Márquez, quien constató que había quejas y testimonios de niños sobre maltratos físicos y abusos sexuales por parte del cura y su presunto compinche.

Al parecer, la monja trasladaba a los menores a cambio de 500 pesos (36,2 dólares) a la casa del sacerdote, quien abusaba de ellos.

El sacerdote, encarcelado en el puerto de Veracruz, enfrenta un primer juicio por el delito de abuso erótico sexual.

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WELL-KNOWN TORONTONIAN CHARGED WITH CHILD SEX ASSAULT

TORONTO (CANADA)
The Canadian Jewish News

March 16, 2018

By Sheri Shefa

Phillip Kravetsky – who’s well known in Toronto’s Jewish community as a family law mediator, psychotherapist, teacher, family man and DJ – is being investigated by the Toronto Police Service on a child sexual assault complaint.

The 51-year-old Torontonian was arrested on March 13, after police were called in to investigate a claim that a child was assaulted in the Lawrence Avenue and Bathurst Street area of the city.

Kravetsky is charged with sexual assault and sexual interference and is scheduled to appear in court on April 27.

Although police released Kravetsky’s photo and a request for information from anyone who might have any details related to the case, Toronto Police Const. Jenifferjit Sidhu said that, “In order to protect the identity of the victim, we cannot provide any further details.”

According to a police press release, Kravetsky was arrested by members of the Child & Youth Advocacy Centre, a group that partners child abuse investigators from the Toronto Police Service with community and government agencies, including the Children’s Aid Society of Toronto and Jewish Family & Child.

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Buffalo diocese names priests accused of abusing minors

BUFFALO (NY)
The Buffalo News

March 20, 2018

By Aaron Besecker

Bishop Richard J. Malone on Tuesday released the names of priests who have been accused of sexual misconduct with minors.

“The following list identifies diocesan priests who were removed from ministry, were retired or left ministry after allegations of sexual abuse of a minor,” the diocese said. The list includes deceased priests with more than one allegation made against them. Priests who are deceased have their year of death listed next to their name, the diocese said.

John R. Aurelio (2009)
Donald W. Becker
David M. Bialkowski
Robert J. Biesinger (2012)
James H. Cotter (1991)
Donald S. Fafinski
Douglas F. Faraci
Fred G. Fingerle (2002)
Michael R. Freeman (2010)
Joseph P. Friel (1995)
Mark M. Friel
Thomas G. Gresock
John P. Hajduk
Michael J. Harrington (1989)
Brian M. Hatrick
James F. Hayes (1988)
Louis J. Hendricks (1990)
J. Grant Higgins (2016)
Francis T. Hogan (2010)
Fred D. Ingalls
Florian A. Jasinski (1983)
Gerald C. Jasinski
Richard P. Judd (1988)
Timothy J. Kelley
Thomas L. Kemp
Richard J. Keppeler (2011)
John D. Lewandowski (1982)
Bernard M. Mach (2004)
Loville N. Martlock (2014)
Thomas J. McCarthy
Basil A. Ormsby (1997)
Norbert F. Orsolits
Martin L. Pavlock
Roy K. Ronald (2013)
Joseph E. Schieder (1996)
Gerard A. Smyczynski (1999)
James A. Spielman
Chester S. Stachewicz
Edward J. Walker (2002)
William G. Ward (2008)
William F. J. White (2016)
Robert W. Wood

The list includes 26 priests who have not been previously linked to allegations of sexual abuse. Some of the priests have already been publicly identified.

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Diocese to release names today of priests accused of abusing minors

BUFFALO (NY)
The Buffalo News

March 20, 2018

By Jay Tokasz

Update: The diocese released the list Tuesday morning.

Bishop Richard J. Malone is planning to release a list later this morning of the names of priests who have been accused of sexual misconduct with minors.

Malone alerted diocesan priests in an email Monday of his decision to disclose the names of priests that have been kept secret for decades.

Diocesan spokesman George Richert did not return multiple calls from late Monday and this morning. But a lawyer for the diocese, Lawlor F. Quinlan III, confirmed this morning that the list would be made public today, likely by noon. Quinlan declined to provide any further details.

Malone’s email on Monday said the list would include “all priests of our diocese who were removed from ministry, were retired or left ministry after allegations of sexual abuse of a minor.”

The bishop has been under growing pressure to provide a fuller accounting of the clergy sex abuse scandal in the Diocese of Buffalo, following retired Rev. Norbert Orsolits’ admission in February that he had abused “probably dozens” of boys in the 1970s and 1980s.

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Victims to give sworn statements, mediation moves forward in Guam’s clergy sex abuse cases

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

March 20, 2018

By Haidee V. Eugenio

Clergy sex abuse accusers will begin providing sworn statements for case review and claims evaluation Wednesday. Mediation has been pushed back to Sept. 17-19 as part of the process to try to settle 160 sex abuse cases.

A new lawsuit was filed Tuesday, with another Capuchin Franciscan priest named as a defendant for the first time.

Three sets of lawyers, led by Attorneys Delia Lujan Wolff/David Lujan, Kevin Fowler and Michael Berman, are proceeding with mediation for 150 plaintiffs. Ten other accusers, represented by attorney Anthony Perez, haven’t signed off on the proposed pre-mediation protocols due to settlement concerns.

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Another Capuchin priest named for first time in clergy sex abuse suit

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

March 20, 2018

By Haidee V. Eugenio

Another Capuchin Franciscan priest was named as a defendant in a clergy sex abuse lawsuit, filed Tuesday by a former seminarian identified in federal court documents only as K.B.

The lawsuit states another seminarian later confided to K.B. that the same priest also sexually abused him.

K.B. now resides in California and was 14 or 15 years old when Father Leon “Warren” Murphy sexually abused him around 1969 in the rectory living room of the Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in Agat, the lawsuit states.

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Saginaw-area priest suspended amid abuse allegations

SAGINAW (MI)
The Associated Press

March 19, 2018

A 72-year-old Roman Catholic priest accused of sexual abuse has been suspended in the Saginaw area.

The suspension, announced Saturday, is described by the diocese as a “precautionary measure.” No charges have been filed.

Church officials say they were contacted by a man last Thursday. He told officials that he was a boy at the time of the alleged conduct.

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Church Council to map future of Australian Church after damning abuse report

AUSTRALIA
The Tablet

March 20, 2018

By Mark Brolly

Pope Francis has approved the Australian Church’s first Plenary Council in more than 80 years and the first set to include lay members – the major gathering planned to chart the future of Australian Catholicism following the gruelling five-year Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

The Pope has also approved Archbishop of Perth Timothy Costelloe, nominated by his fellow bishops, as president of the council.

It is due to be held in two sessions – in late 2020, in Adelaide, Darwin or Alice Springs; and in May 2021, probably in Sydney, where the most recent Plenary Council, in 1937, was held.

The Plenary Council’s new website says Canon Law requires that all diocesan Archbishops and Bishops, auxiliary bishops, Vicars-General, Episcopal Vicars, some Superiors and Congregational Leaders of religious orders and rectors of seminaries in Australia must be called to the Council, while those who may be called include lay people, clergy and retired bishops.

“The number of people who can be called to the Council must be a maximum of half of those who must be called: i.e. if the total number of people who must be called is 164, then the maximum number of others who may be called is 82 people,” the website says.

“All Council delegates have a vote. Some have a deliberative vote, while others have a consultative vote. The deliberative voting is how the final decisions are made at the Council. These deliberative decisions are forwarded to Rome to ensure they are consistent with the universal teachings of the Catholic Church and then the legislation becomes binding for the Catholic Church in Australia.

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Abuse allegations must be reported, Church of England safeguarding adviser tells IICSA

ENGLAND
Church Times

March 20, 2018

By Hattie Williams

THE National Safeguarding Adviser of the Church of England, Graham Tilby, has said that the language of safeguarding policies and regulations could be clarified to support the call from survivors for mandatory reporting in the Church.

Giving evidence on Monday and Tuesday to the public hearing being conducted by the Independent Inquiry into Child Sex Abuse (IICSA) into safeguarding failures of the Anglican Church, Mr Tilby said: “I would agree that if a matter is reported to whoever, whether it is a member of [the] clergy or a layperson, that clearly is a safeguarding allegation or an admission, then that must be reported. . .

“Our guidance — as I say, I’m happy to look at it in terms of whether there are ways of strengthening that, but I think the position is clear: it must be reported. I would have to have those conversations with lawyers to work out whether that was something that needed to be enshrined in legislation.”

Asked on behalf of the lawyers representing survivors how the Church could ensure that the number of reports of abuse went up, unless there was mandatory reporting, he said: “It is equipping people with the skills and confidence to recognise abuse, so fundamentally training has to be key to support that.

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Mediation protocol still not finalized in sexual abuse cases against Catholic Church

GUAM
Pacific News Center

March 20, 2018

By Jolene Toves

An agreement on the mediation protocol to be used in the sexual abuse cases against the Archdiocese of Guam is still on the drawing board as several modifications have gone back and forth between the parties. While one group of plaintiffs is still not on board, Archbishop Anthony Apuron is now expressing interest in the mediation. Last Friday, a Vatican Tribunal found him guilty of certain accusations stemming from sex abuse claims.

Six months ago, the court had ordered all parties to participate in the mediation process that includes Archbishop Anthony Apuron. According to his attorney Jacque Terlaje she has received the latest version of the mediation protocol and will review it to determine her clients course of action.

“Our participation in mediation has always been about cost that one of the problems that many plaintiffs, that small plaintiffs and small defendants have in a large suit like this is simply the cost factor in litigating 160 different cases,” stated Terlaje.

At this point the court has held a status hearing to deal with potential issues in the mediation protocol which governs how the parties will conduct themselves during the mediation, but still debatable is whether or not all parties are in agreement with the mediation protocol. While Anthony Perez’s clients and Thomas Brown’s client the Sisters of Mercy are still on the fence, the Archdiocese of Agana is ready to move things forward and that the door to mediation for Perez’s clients is still open.

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Ex-priest says a priest abused him as a teen in Erie

ERIE (NY)
GoErie.com

March 20, 2018

By Ed Palattella

James Faluszczak, now of Buffalo, said he testified about the abuse before a grand jury investigating the Catholic Diocese of Erie.

A former northwestern Pennsylvania priest has provided a glimpse into a Pennsylvania grand jury’s investigation of the Catholic Diocese of Erie.

James Faluszczak, who resigned from the active priesthood in the Erie diocese in 2014, said he testified before the grand jury about how a priest in Erie sexually abused him when he was a teenager in the 1980s.

Faluszczak, 48, now of Buffalo, is believed to be one of many witnesses who have testified before the grand jury, whose proceedings are secret and which convened at the request of the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s Office around September 2016.

But he is one of the few witnesses who have publicly commented on their grand jury testimony, which the law allows a witness to disclose. His comments also show how state investigators gathered witnesses for the probe, which the attorney general’s office is leading.

Faluszczak said the attorney general’s office contacted him after he called, in the spring of 2016, a hotline that the office set up in March 2016 for victims of clergy sex abuse.

He said on Monday that he testified before the grand jury in October 2016. He told the Erie Times-News about his testimony a day after he told the Buffalo News that, when he was 16 to 19 years old, he was “molested by my priest in Erie.”

Faluszczak has not publicly named the Erie priest. He said he wanted to wait on releasing that information until after the grand jury releases its report.

“I want to see how the grand jury deals with the material I presented them,” he said.

Faluszczak was a priest from 1996 to 2014. For the last four years in the ministry, he was pastor at St. Boniface Church in Kersey, Elk County.

The Pennsylvania Attorney General’s Office since 2016 has been using the grand jury process to investigate how the Catholic Diocese of Erie and five other Catholic dioceses in Pennsylvania handled allegations of clergy sexual abuse.

The Erie diocese has never disclosed the names of priests accused of or dismissed in the past over allegations of sexual abuse. In February 2004, the diocese released data that showed 20 priests were credibly accused of sexually abusing a total of 38 minors in the diocese from 1950 to 2002.

In Buffalo, Faluszczak made the abuse allegation on Sunday during a demonstration outside St. Joseph Cathedral, where he and others called on Bishop Richard J. Malone to release the names of clergy involved in sexual-abuse cases in the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo.

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Gove faces fresh scrutiny over school sexual abuse case

ENGLAND
The Guardian

March 20, 2018

By Owen Bowcott and Rob Evans

Second witness tells inquiry that then education secretary intervened in Downside case

Michael Gove is facing fresh questions about his alleged intervention in a sexual abuse investigation at a Catholic school after further evidence emerged that appears to link him to the inquiry.

The independent inquiry into child sexual abuse (IICSA) has already written to Gove asking whether he tried, during his time as the education secretary, to find out about an investigation into a priest suspected of abuse at Downside Abbey boarding school in Somerset.

Now the environment secretary, Gove denied making any calls to the local authority about the investigation.

It has now emerged that a second witness testified to the inquiry that Gove took an interest in the Downside investigation.

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Guam’s Catholic church apologizes to former archbishop’s abuse victims

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

March 19, 2018

By Haidee V. Eugenio

Guam church apologizes to child abuse victims

HAGÅTÑA, Guam — Archbishop Michael Jude Byrnes on Monday said Guam’s Catholic church is beginning a new journey following a Vatican tribunal’s conviction of former Archbishop Anthony S. Apuron.

“We are becoming a better church,” Byrnes said at a press conference, three days after the Vatican announced its decision to convict Apuron in a case that includes child sexual abuse accusations.

Byrnes apologized to the former altar boys who publicly accused Apuron of childhood sexual abuse, and to the mother of one who is now deceased.

“I convey my deepest apologies to Mr. Roy Quintanilla, Mr. Walter Denton, Mr. Roland Paul Sondia, and the late Joseph ‘Sonny’ Quinata for the tremendous damage inflicted upon each of you by now Bishop Apuron and the Archdiocese of Agana,” Byrnes said.

He said the victims’ families have suffered as well.

“I apologize to them too, most certainly to Doris Concepcion, who stepped forward courageously to speak and lobby on behalf of her son, Sonny,” Byrnes said. “I issue this public apology on behalf of the entire Archdiocese of Agana.

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Conservative groups split over child sex abuse legislation

VIDALIA (GA)
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

March 19, 2018

By Ty Tagami

A lawsuit has split a South Georgia town between supporters of a local church and those who are deeply troubled by allegations of child sexual abuse involving church members.
A man from the world’s sweet onion capital says in a lawsuit that he was a child when an older man associated with the youth group at First Baptist Church molested him a couple of decades ago.

“Things are not real good in Vidalia, Georgia right now. Citizens are torn up,” said Kay Stafford, a church member and retired attorney who isn’t directly involved in the lawsuit but is bothered by what he sees as a culture of silence around child sexual abuse. “It ain’t going to be right until there’s justice.”

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Longtime pastor removed from Chicago parish over improper conduct

CHICAGO (IL)
WGN News

March 19, 2018

A longtime pastor has been removed from a local church after three decades following reports of improper conduct.

Reverend Frank Phillips from St. John Cantius Church in Goose Island was removed by the Chicago Archdiocese.

Cardinal Cupich says there have been credible allegations that Phillips engaged in improper conduct with other adult males.

The allegations do not involve improper contact with minors.

Church members learned of Phillips’ removal during Sunday services. A statement on the church’s website refers all questions to the archdiocese.

Phillips’ has been with the parish since 1988. He’s also a founder of an order of men who devote their life to the church.

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Steve Wynn settled with second woman over sex allegations

LAS VEGAS (NV)
The Associated Press

March 19, 2018

By Regina Garcia Cano

Embattled casino mogul Steve Wynn brokered a settlement more than a decade ago with a second woman who accused him of sexual misconduct and recently reported her to the FBI, his attorneys say in court documents.

Wynn and one of his attorneys met with FBI agents last month to accuse the woman of trying to extort him by threatening to go public with details from the 2006 settlement, according to documents received earlier this month in state court in Las Vegas.

It comes two months after the Wall Street Journal reported that several women said the billionaire harassed or assaulted them and that one case led to a $7.5 million settlement with a manicurist formerly employed by the company. He resigned as chairman and CEO of Las Vegas-based Wynn Resorts last month.

Wynn has vehemently denied the accusations reported by the newspaper and attributed them to a campaign led by his ex-wife. Her attorney has denied that she instigated the report.

The recent court filings do not provide details of the newly revealed settlement. The woman on Monday did not return a message seeking comment from The Associated Press, which generally does not name people who say they are victims of sexual misconduct.

Her attorney, Lisa Bloom, said in an email that her client denies the extortion allegations.

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Weinstein Company Releases All Accusers From Nondisclosure Agreements With Bankruptcy Filing

LOS ANGELES (CA)
The Wrap

March 19, 2018

By Matt Donnelly

Expect a deluge of new details in the coming days

The Weinstein Company has dissolved its nondisclosure agreements with Harvey Weinstein’s many sexual misconduct accusers, Bob Weinstein said on Monday,

In step with announcing its bankruptcy filing, the TWC chairman said his brother “Harvey Weinstein used non-disclosure agreements as a secret weapon to silence his accusers. Effective immediately, those ‘agreements’ end.”

Bob Weinstein said the Company “expressly releases any confidentiality provision to the extent it has prevented individuals who suffered or witnessed any form of sexual misconduct by Harvey Weinstein from telling their stories. No one should be afraid to speak out or coerced to stay quiet.”

It’s not immediately clear what impact the newfound freedom for accusers means for ongoing civil and criminal Weinstein cases, including police investigations in three cities and a class action against the disgraced mogul.

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Scandal-hit Weinstein Co. files for bankruptcy protection

NEW YORK (NY)
Miami Herald

March 20, 2018

By Alexandra Olson

The Weinstein Co. filed for bankruptcy protection on Monday with a buyout offer in hand from a private equity firm, the latest twist in its efforts to survive the sexual misconduct scandal that brought down co-founder Harvey Weinstein, shook Hollywood and triggered a movement that spread out to convulse other industries.

The company also announced it was releasing any victims of or witnesses to Weinstein’s alleged misconduct from non-disclosure agreements preventing them from speaking out. That step had long been sought by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, who filed a lawsuit against the company last month on behalf of its employees.

“Since October, it has been reported that Harvey Weinstein used non-disclosure agreements as a secret weapon to silence his accusers. Effective immediately, those ‘agreements’ end,” the company said in a statement. “No one should be afraid to speak out or coerced to stay quiet.”

In a statement, Schneiderman praised the decision as “a watershed moment for efforts to address the corrosive effects of sexual misconduct in the workplace.”

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Steven Seagal accused by 2 women of rape and sexual assault

LOS ANGELES (CA)
ABC News

March 19, 2018

By Luchina Fisher

Two women have come forward to accuse action star Steven Seagal of sexual assault and rape.

Regina Simons and Faviola Dadis made the allegations during a press conference alongside their attorney Lisa Bloom. The women have also filed a police report with the Los Angeles Police Department, according to Bloom.

The women first went public with their accusations in a story by The Wrap.

Responding to the accusations from them and others, Seagal told “InfoWars” that women have “lied and been paid to lie about me without any evidence, any proof, any witnesses.”

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Ex-student sues California college, player in rape case

LOS ANGELES (CA)
The Associated Press

March 19, 2018

By Amanda Lee Myers

A former student is suing a Southern California community college and the football player convicted of raping her, accusing the school of allowing the young man to attend school despite a previous sexual assault conviction.

The woman’s attorneys announced the lawsuit Monday against Cerritos College, the school’s dean of student services and the now-former player, 22-year-old Kishawn Holmes.

The lawsuit accuses Cerritos of accepting Holmes to the school and its football program even though he was convicted of rape in 2014 when he was 17.

“Despite having actual knowledge of Holmes’ conviction for rape, absolutely no safeguards were put into place to protect (the student),” according to the lawsuit, filed March 12 in Los Angeles County Superior Court.

University spokeswoman Miya Walker said the school doesn’t comment on pending litigation.

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Buffalo Catholic diocese to release names of priests accused of sex abuse

BUFFALO (NY)
WKBW

March 19, 2018

By Charlie Specht

In memo, Bishop Malone calls it a “very dark time”

It took a victim’s courage, a priest’s confession and a scandal that deepened by the day.

But after decades of secrecy, the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo is taking an unprecedented step toward transparency.

Bishop Richard J. Malone — giving in to mounting pressure from sexual abuse victims — announced in an internal memo obtained by the 7 Eyewitness News I-Team that Tuesday he will release the names of “all priests of our diocese who were removed from ministry, were retired, or left ministry after allegations of sexual abuse of a minor.”

Each of Malone’s predecessors — including bishops Edward Head, Henry Mansell and Edward Kmiec — refused to name suspected pedophile priests in the diocese, even after the international clerical abuse scandal first broke in Boston in 2002.

In an email to priests, Malone called the move “difficult but necessary,” acknowledging the church in Western New York is going through “a very dark time.”

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March 19, 2018

Accused child sex abuser Malka Leifer to stay in jail while extradition case is heard

AUSTRALIA and ISRAEL
The Sydney Morning Herald via AAP

March 19, 2018

With Gabrielle Weiniger

A former Melbourne principal accused of child sex crimes will remain behind bars after a successful appeal against her release to home detention in an Israeli court.

Ms Leifer is the former principal of the ultra-Orthodox Adass girls’ school in Elsternwick in Melbourne’s south-east.

An Israeli judge had said that Malka Leifer could be released to home detention earlier this month after a rabbi offered to take care of her while she awaited an extradition outcome.

But days later, the rabbi withdrew his support for Ms Leifer to be released on house arrest.

Ms Leifer had been ordered to stay in police custody in a medical facility while the Supreme Court considered the prosecution’s appeal against her release to home detention.

The court has now ruled that Ms Leifer is to remain in detention until the completion of the extradition proceedings.

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Malka Leifer to remain in prison in Israel after appeal against releasing her to house arrest upheld

AUSTRALIA And ISRAEL
Australian Broadcasting Corporation

March 19, 2018

A former Melbourne school principal facing extradition to Australia on child sex abuse charges will remain in an Israeli jail after an appeal against releasing her to house arrest was successful.

Malka Leifer, 54 is wanted by Victorian police on 74 charges of child sexual abuse, including rape.

The former principal of the Addas ultra-orthodox girls school in Melbourne has been in custody since February 12, when Israeli police rearrested her, accusing her of faking mental illness for the past three years in order to avoid extradition to Australia.

Earlier this month there were angry scenes outside a Jerusalem court after an Israeli judge ruled Ms Leifer could be freed from police custody to home detention, following the intercession of a high-profile rabbi.

But Israel’s Supreme Court has now upheld an appeal against that decision.

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Guam Catholic Church seeks to rebuild after Vatican verdict

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

March 18, 2018

By Haidee V. Eugenio

After a Vatican tribunal convicted Archbishop Anthony S. Apuron and removed him from office, Catholics on Guam said this could be a turning point in the healing process of a church rocked by clergy sex abuse scandal.

“I feel the healing will start. It will be a slow, slow process but it will happen,” Tamuning resident Van Morada said as he and his family were about to attend Sunday Mass at Dulce Nombre De Maria Cathedral-Basilica in Hagåtña, the mother church on the island.

Morada said regardless of the outcome of Apuron’s canonical trial, he and his family pray for Apuron, his accusers, and the people of Guam.

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Parties for 160 sex abuse lawsuits against clergy due in court

GUAM
KUAM News

March 16, 2018

By Krystal Paco

Back in court this week will be parties for the 160 clergy sexual abuse lawsuits. Back in January, majority of counsels were in agreement on pre-mediation protocol and anticipated mediation to take place in June or earlier.

Only one group of plaintiffs, those represented by attorney Anthony Perez, requested lifting the stay on those cases in the local court.

The deal breaker appears to be how mediation will be handled, the Church proposing global mediation while Perez’s clients have expressed interest in individual settlement.

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A Nashville judge was caught in a sex scandal. Then he hatched a plot to cover up it up, prosecutors say

NASHVILLE (TN)
The Washington Post

March 19, 2018

By Meagan Flynn

It’s not the crime but the coverup, as the famous phrase goes. But nobody seems to pay the warning much heed.

According to federal prosecutors, it didn’t stop Nashville judge Casey Moreland either. He is now ex-Nashville judge Casey Moreland, in jail awaiting trial for obstruction of justice and embezzlement, all connected with his efforts to cover up a sex scandal that threatened to bring him down.

The problems for Moreland started last year when Natalie Amos publicly revealed that Moreland helped her wipe away debt she owed from court fines and traffic-ticket fees – then pursued a sexual relationship with her.

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Lujan: ‘It’s a great verdict’

GUAM
The Guam Daily Post

March 19, 2018

By Kevin Kerrigan

Attorney David Lujan reacted to the guilty verdict handed down Friday against suspended Archbishop Anthony Apuron by the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

“I think it’s a great verdict,” Lujan said. “It vindicates what everyone has been saying.”

The attorney represents five people who have publicly accused Apuron of sexual abuse.

Walter Denton, Roy Quintanilla, Roland Sondia and the late Joseph “Sonny” Lujan, through his mother Edith Doris Concepcion, have accused Apuron of sexual abuse when he was a priest at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in Agat more than 40 years ago.

A fifth victim, Apuron’s nephew, Mark Apuron, came forward in January accusing his uncle of raping him in the chancery bathroom nearly 30 years ago after he had already been promoted to archbishop.

A five-member tribunal, that lasted nearly one year, reviewed several accusations, including accusations of sexual abuse of minors, and found Anthony Apuron guilty of “certain of the accusations.”

The suspended archbishop appealed the verdict, putting a stop to the imposing of penalties cited by the Vatican that included stripping him of his title and banishing him from Guam.

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George Pell accused of cinema, pool abuse

AUSTRALIA
9News

March 19, 2018

Cardinal George Pell is accused of abusing a complainant while watching the film Close Encounters of the Third Kind at a country Victorian cinema.

Australia’s highest-ranked Catholic is also accused of abusing another complainant at a swimming pool.

Pell, 76, returned to Melbourne Magistrates Court on Monday for week three of a committal hearing as he fights charges of multiple historical sex offences involving multiple complainants.

The court has not released details of the charges.

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Former head of Catholic Church in Britain dies after fall

SCOTLAND
The Irish Post

March 19, 2018

By Ryan Price

THE FORMER most senior cleric of the Catholic Church in Britain has passed away aged 80 after suffering a fall.

Cardinal Keith O’ Brien was taken to hospital in Newcastle after suffering a severe head injury brought about by a fall last month in which he also broke his collarbone.

His successor administered the last rites on Friday, on the eve of his 80th birthday.

His passing was announced early this morning.

The Co. Antrim native resigned as Archbishop of St Andrews and Edinburgh in 2013 after apologising for sexual misconduct in his past.

Three priests and a former priest alleged improper conduct in the 1980’s.

Having initially contested the allegations, Cardinal O’ Brien later apologised upon his retirement: “I wish to take this opportunity to admit that there have been times that my sexual conduct has fallen below the standards expected of me as a priest, archbishop, cardinal. To those I have offended, I apologise and ask forgiveness,” he said.

Pope Francis accepted his resignation and stripped him of his duties.

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Cardinal Keith O’Brien, disgraced Catholic church leader, dies

SCOTLAND
The Guardian

March 19, 2018

By Severin Carrell

O’Brien, who died aged 80, was accused of sexual misconduct by three priests and a former priest

Cardinal Keith O’Brien, the disgraced former head of the Roman Catholic church in Scotland, has died, aged 80, in hospital after being injured in a recent fall.

O’Brien was forced to resign as archbishop of St Andrew’s and Edinburgh in February 2013, after serious allegations of sexual misconduct emerged following an investigation by the Observer.

The most senior Catholic figure in the UK at the time, O’Brien was accused by three priests and a former priest of improper sexual conduct in relation to a series of incidents in the 1980s.

After rising to become one of Scotland’s most famous religious figures, O’Brien left the country in disgrace – moving first to Ireland, then to Northumberland, before settling in Newcastle. He retained his title as cardinal despite his misconduct.

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Former head of Catholic Church in Britain Cardinal Keith O’Brien dead at 80

SCOTLAND
Metro

March 19, 2018

By Richard Hartley-Parkinson

Cardinal Keith O’Brien, formerly the Catholic Church’s most senior cleric in Britain, has died at the age of 80.

He had recently been injured in a fall and died in a Newcastle hospital.

Cardinal O’Brien resigned as Archbishop of St Andrews and Edinburgh in 2013 after admitting sexual misconduct.

Confirmation of his death was announced by his successor, Archbishop Leo Cushley.

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Vatican says Guam Archbishop guilty of abuse accusations

GUAM
Radio New Zealand

March 19, 2018

A Vatican tribunal has found the archbishop of Guam, Anthony Apuron, guilty of “certain accusations” related to the sexual abuse of minors.

The Catholic Church on the island has been consumed by a child sex abuse scandal that went right to the top of the church’s hierarchy: Archbishop Anthony Apuron.

Apuron was accused of assaulting altar boys when he was a parish priest on Guam in the 1970s.

When the allegations first surfaced in June 2016, Pope Francis suspended Apuron and put his before a secretive Vatican procedure.

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How #MeToo is leaving child victims behind

NEW YORK (NY)
The Week

March 19, 2018

By Dani Bostick

For years as a child, I was abused by an adult. I kept this secret for decades.

I’m sure I knew other victims. But I heard none of their stories. Like me, they chose silence.

We survivors of child sexual abuse don’t just know how to keep a secret — we were groomed to believe secrecy was essential to our survival.

#MeToo has changed that, as more and more survivors of sexual violence and sexual harassment are coming forward to share their stories. But while some of these stories have included child victims, for the most part, the focus of #MeToo has been on adult victims of workplace sexual misconduct. The subsidiary #MeTooK12 movement emerged recently as a way to address sexual misconduct that occurs in schools, but even still, the scores of young girls and boys who experience child sexual abuse are largely cut out of the conversation.

This has to change. Roughly 1 in 5 girls and 1 in 20 boys experience sexual abuse. It is a sad fact that children are the most vulnerable among us and also the least equipped to advocate for themselves.

Children are victimized at higher rates than adults, per Darkness to Light, a nonprofit organization focused on educating adults to prevent child sexual abuse. Their youth renders them “uniquely vulnerable,” Heidi Fuchs, a criminal justice clinician at TESSA, a domestic violence support center in Colorado, told The Week, as they may not be able to properly understand and process the abuse they’ve endured. Children are “most in need of effective advocacy,” Fuchs said, because “they lack the information, resources, experience, and ability to advocate for themselves.”

Moreover, unlike adults, children are often completely powerless in their environments. Abusers are frequently the people who also meet a kid’s most basic needs, like food and shelter. Even when abuse takes place outside of the home, it is often perpetrated by a trusted individual, and often in the context of activities that are presented as mandatory — like USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar’s rampant abuse of young female athletes during medical treatments.

When children are trapped in these abusive situations, the consequences can be devastating. In fact, child sexual abuse can cause literal changes to the structure of the brain, researchers discovered in a 2015 study.

That’s why it is time for the women and men of #MeToo to advocate for children as ardently as they do for adults. Removing stigma is key, and encouraging survivors to disclose their own experiences will help others feel safe enough to come forward. We must disrupt the silence, because silence benefits only perpetrators, never victims.

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Sex abuse lawsuit against Scouts halted, for now

ATHENS (GA)
Athens Banner-Herald

March 18, 2018

By Lee Shearer

A lawsuit filed by former Boy Scouts over alleged sexual abuse by a former Scout leader has been dismissed, but that won’t be the end of it, says a lawyer for the men.

The men filed suit nearly a year ago against the Boy Scouts of America, the Northeast Georgia Council of Boy Scouts, several Athens churches and the estate of Ernest Boland, saying they suffered lasting harm from Boland’s sexual abuse.

The Scouts and the churches knew Boland had been accused of sexual abuse as long ago as 1961, yet allowed him to continue as a Scout leader for years, according to the lawsuit.

A successful Athens businessman, Boland died at age 88 in 2013, the year after an Oregon judge forced the Boy Scouts to release the names of thousands of Scout leaders expelled from the organization because of accusations of sexual abuse.

The Clarke County lawsuit, filed last year, alleged the churches and the Scouts had endangered the public with a “persuasive and systematic cover-up” of those identities.

Darren Penn, the lawyer for the men suing the Boy Scouts and Boland’s estate, said the men will file suit again, but just when, and on what grounds, depends on a bill now pending in the Georgia Legislature.

Penn requested the lawsuit be dismissed without prejudice earlier this month, just days before a hearing was scheduled on defendants’ motion to dismiss the lawsuit before new Western Judicial Circuit Judge Regina Quick, who took over the case when she was appointed to take the place of retiring Judge David Sweat.

Their decision to dismiss the suit hinged on several factors, Penn said, including objections defendants had made about notification, and the possibility that Quick could have ruled in favor of the defendants, which would have presented a big obstacle for the plaintiffs.

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Hannibal Buress’ Microphone Cut During Colossus Performance

CHICAGO (IL)
Loyola Phoenix

March 18, 2018

By Luke Hyland

Comedian Hannibal Buress’ mic was cut after making a joke about the Catholic Church’s history of child abuse during his Saturday night Colossus performance, attendees said.

Colossus is an annual, two-night show held by Loyola’s Department of Programming (DOP) in Gentile Arena, where a musical act performs one night and a comedic act the other night.

Buress reportedly opened his set with pictures of an email he said he received from Loyola detailing the school’s restrictions for Colossus artists, including a ban on any content regarding rape, sexual assault, race and sexual orientation.

The show began with a DJ opener, Tony Trimm, whose set was also reportedly cut short. Buress took the stage soon after another comedian warmed up the crowd.

After making a comment referencing priests’ molestation of children, Buress’ microphone cut out. The upset crowd booed but eventually quieted so Buress could perform without a microphone. The background music’s volume was reportedly increased, according to attendees, and the comedian left the stage for 15 minutes. After the break, he returned and finished his set.

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Parishioners calling for change after second priest suspended on sexual abuse allegations

SAGINAW (MI)
NBC25 News

March 18, 2018

By Jasmyn Durham

A second Saginaw priest is facing sexual abuse allegations in less than a month.

The Catholic Diocese of Saginaw released a statement this weekend, saying they received a complaint against 72-year-old Father Ronald Dombrowski.

Father Dombrowski was suspended from ministry while he is being investigated, and Saginaw worshipers say they want change.

Saginaw resident Dan Renner say although he doesn’t know Father Dombrowski or the victim, he knows a lot of people of the Catholic faith.

“Kids and people that I know went to them in the 70’s and the 80’s and it’s just very sad.”

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Vatican removes Guam archbishop accused of abuse

GUAM
Catholic Herald

March 16, 2018

The Catholic Herald understands that Archbishop Apuron will appeal the verdict

A Vatican tribunal has found Archbishop Anthony Sablan Apuron, who was accused of sexual abuse, guilty of “certain of the accusations” against him, and removed him from office.

A five-judge panel of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) announced the verdict on Friday and imposed upon the archbishop “the penalties of privation of office and prohibition of residence in the Archdiocese of Guam”.

Archbishop Apuron has headed the Archdiocese of Agaña since 1986, but was placed on leave by Pope Francis in 2016 after a series of abuse accusations from young men.

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Sunday school teacher accused of sex abuse

MESQUITE (TX)
WFAA

March 16, 2018

A Sunday School teacher in Mesquite is charged with Continuous Sexual Abuse of a Child.

The suspect, Benjamin Baldiviez, was a volunteer at Parkside Baptist Church.

Police issued a news release Friday announcing the arrest.

They believe the abuse happened between March and October of 2017 both at the church and while away on church events.

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Church child sex abuse inquiry revealed stupidity and lying, claims bishop

ENGLAND
The Times

March 19 2018

By Kaya Burgess

A child sex abuse inquiry has exposed “stupidity, incompetence and lying” at the highest levels of the Church of England a serving bishop has said, calling for an independent body to oversee safeguarding policy.

During two weeks of evidence sessions, with another week still to go, the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) has heard numerous accounts of abusers within the church whose offences were ignored, dismissed or covered up by senior figures.

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Priest accused of demeaning church employees resigns

TRENTON (NJ)
NJ.com

March 17, 2018

By Olivia Rizzo

A Catholic priest accused of harassing female church employees and making inappropriate comments has resigned from his position at The Church of Saint Ann in Lawrence.

Rev. Gerrard Lynch resigned from his position at the parish on March 7. He has since returned to the Trinitarian Order, a Diocese of Trenton spokeswoman said Friday.

A lawsuit filed last month by current and former employees of the church accuse Lynch of being biased against them and saying vulgar, demeaning and inappropriate things, which caused them “fear, consternation and loss of faith.”

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UCLA student wins sexual misconduct claim against professor

LOS ANGELES (CA)
Los Angeles Times

March 18, 2018

By Teresa Watanbe

Kristen Glasgow was tenacious even after a $110,000 settlement. Last week, just over a decade after her first encounter with the teacher, she learned that he finally had lost his job

UCLA graduate student Kristen Glasgow says she first met Gabriel Piterberg, a history professor, in 2008. They had coffee together and then, she alleged, he walked her to her car, pushed her against it and forced his tongue into her mouth.

Glasgow detailed this and other claims of Piterberg’s sexual misconduct over five years in a lawsuit she filed against the University of California in 2015.

The lawsuit said that UCLA essentially ignored her complaints when she tried to go through the Title IX complaint process. It led to a settlement in which the university gave her $110,000 and a fellowship to support her work on her doctoral dissertation.

But even after that validation, UCLA’s initial response to her charges still gnawed at Glasgow — as did the fact that Piterberg still had his job. When UCLA hired a new Title IX coordinator, Glasgow filed a complaint again, in 2016. This time, she won.

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DUTCH JEWISH COMMUNITY DISTANCES ITSELF FROM CHIEF RABBI JACOBS

AMSTERDAM (THE NETHERLANDS)
Jewish Community Watch

March 17, 2018

The organization representing the Jewish community in Amsterdam has severed ties with Rabbi Binyomin Jacobs because of the Chief Rabbi’s involvement in covering up child sexual abuse.

This is according to a letter by David Brilleslijper, Chairman of the Jewish community of Amsterdam (NIHS), which was obtained by The Parool. (A leading Dutch newspaper.)

These actions mark the first time that a Jewish organization has distanced itself from the Chief Rabbi, after years of allegations of his involvement in several abuse cases.

Jacobs is chief rabbi of all Jewish communities in The Netherlands, except for the capitol Amsterdam, the Hague and Rotterdam.

Several parents came forward and testified that Jacobs urged them in 2012 to not report to the authorities, the sexual abuse suffered by their children at the hands of a teacher employed at the Cheider.

Jacobs warned them of “severe penalties” of falsely reporting crimes, and that their children, the abuse victims, would not be able to find suitable marriage candidates within the Jewish community.

Because of the delay in reporting to the police, the teacher suspected of sexual abuse, Ephraim S, was able to flee to Israel where he became a citizen.

After lengthy legal battles, he was extradited in 2016. On Wednesday he will appear in front of a judge for the initial hearing of the case.

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Ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses break silence on shunning: ‘My mother treats me like I’m dead’

DETROIT (MI)
Detroit Free Press

March 18, 2018

By Tresa Baldas

Amber Sawyer was just 8 years old when it happened.

She was watching cartoons on the living room floor of her Mississippi home when she heard the bang.

She went to investigate and found her 21-year-old sister, Donna, dead in her bed. She had shot herself in the heart with their father’s hunting rifle weeks after being excommunicated by their church for getting engaged to a non-Jehovah’s Witness.

For Sawyer — who sat on the bedroom floor near her sister’s body for hours that day, waiting for her mother to come home from her door-to-door missionary work — it was the beginning of a long, painful journey that would one day tear her family apart.

Years later, Sawyer got excommunicated, too, after seeking a divorce from an abusive husband. She ended up leaving the husband — and the faith. Her family cut all ties.

“Jehovah’s Witness kids grow up knowing that if they ever mess up, their parents will leave them — and that’s scary,” Sawyer, now 38, said in a recent interview from her home in Pascagoula, Miss. “The shunning is supposed to make us miss them so much that we’ll come back. … It didn’t work.”

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Diocesan Priest Suspended from Ministry as Allegation is Investigated

SAGINAW (MI)
Diocese of Saginaw

March 17, 2018

A senior priest of the Diocese of Saginaw, Father Ronald J. Dombrowski, 72, has been suspended from priestly ministry by the Most Rev. Joseph R. Cistone, Bishop of Saginaw, as an allegation of sexual abuse against Father Dombrowski is being investigated. A self-identified victim, who was a minor at the time and is no longer a minor, was in contact with the Diocese on Thursday, March 15. The diocese shared this information with law enforcement.

Although nothing has yet been determined, as a precautionary measure, Father Dombrowski was immediately suspended from priestly ministry. He is to have no contact with individuals under 21. This prohibits Father Dombrowski from going on school properties and participating in school and parish activities and functions. In addition, Bishop Cistone has informed Father Dombrowski that he must refrain from wearing clerical garb, refrain from the exercise of public ministry, and may not present himself publicly as a priest while the allegation is being investigated.

Father Dombrowski most recently served as sacramental minister at Holy Family Parish in Saginaw, 1525 S. Washington Ave., Saginaw, 48601, where he celebrated Mass and the sacraments.

Father Dombrowski was ordained to the priesthood on January 22, 1972. Prior to ordination to the priesthood, he served as a deacon at St. Josaphat Parish, Carrollton, from May 1970 to September 1970; St. Joseph Parish, Auburn, from September 1970 to June 1971; and Sacred Heart Parish, Caro, from June 1971 to January 1972.

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