Catholic priests who don’t report confessions of child sex abuse may be charged

PERTH (WESTERN AUSTRALIA)
Perth Now

June 30, 2018

By Kate Campbell

Catholic priests in WA would face criminal charges if they refuse to break the seal of confession to report child sex abuse to police.

But it appears WA is headed towards a stand-off between Church and State, with Perth’s top Catholic saying this week the Church is not backing down and will continue to practise confessional secrecy.

This week, the McGowan Government unveiled its response to the Royal Commission’s 409 recommendations, which included a call to remove the seal of confession and force priests to report knowledge or suspicions of child sex abuse. The Government accepted that recommendation “in principle”.

“We are considering a number of legislative options,” Child Protection Minister Simone McGurk said.

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

Shame on the church:’ lawyer says London Catholic Diocese is cutting funding for abuse victims

LONDON (ONTARIO, CANADA)
CBC

June 30, 2018

London Catholic Diocese says it is asking for “evidence-based counselling”

The London Diocese serves more than 430,000 Roman Catholics in nine Ontario counties. (File Photo)
A London lawyer says the Catholic Diocese is cutting the amount of money it pays for counselling for victims of sexual abuse at the hands of priests.

The Diocese has been paying for counselling for years after victims of sexual abuse at the hands of church officials launched lawsuits against the Catholic church and won the right to compensation.

Now, London lawyer Rob Talach, who has represented several of those victims, says the Diocese is not only reducing the amount of counselling sessions it pays for, but also reducing the amount covered by up to 50 per cent.

“They wrote a whole bunch of counsellors, saying ‘hey, we’re looking at changing all this and in the meantime it’s $120 a hit and you have to start justifying why you should get more,” he said.

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

Update on priests placed on administrative leave

BUFFALO (NY)
Diocese of Buffalo

June 28, 2018

The Diocese of Buffalo has released the following update regarding priests placed on administrative leave:

On June 27, the Diocesan Review Board met and received the report of Investigator Scott F. Riordan* who was asked to investigate recent allegations of abuse against three (3) priests of the Diocese of Buffalo. Previously, the Diocesan Review Board has reviewed the report of an investigation conducted by Dennis C. Vacco*, regarding allegations made against Rev. Dennis A. Fronczak.

As a result of these reports and the recommendations of the Diocesan Review Board, Bishop Richard J. Malone has made the following determinations:

Allegations against Rev. Samuel J. Venne, Rev. Arthur J. Smith and Rev. Dennis A. Fronczak have been substantiated and they will remain on administrative leave while the results of the Diocesan investigation are reviewed by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in Rome, who will make the final determination.

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.

My view: Victims deserve compassion not criticism

BUFFALO (NY)
Diocese of Buffalo

June 26, 2018

By Siobhan O’Connor

[Previously published in the Buffalo News.]

“Bishop Malone’s office, Siobhan speaking – how may I help you?” Over the last two months, a multitude of callers have been on the receiving end of my phone greeting. I’ve talked to distressed citizens who express anger over Church cover-ups and silence, to concerned Catholics whose faith has been shaken by the priest abuse scandal, and to the victims of this abuse themselves. These latter individuals often share their stories, which are heartbreakingly horrible to hear. Even being on the periphery of their pain has been deeply disturbing. Yet remarkably, it is their strength more than their suffering that has most resonated with me.

It was my privilege to speak with the mother of two abused children, who said she would be praying for the abusing priest because he needs prayers more than anyone. I have spoken to a victim who began to console me when I broke down while speaking to him. Another time a victim shared his story of returning to God and how he found peace and joy through regaining his faith. Often I am overcome by the forgiveness, compassion and resiliency of these individuals.

Yet I’ve also spoken with people who literally mock victims and accuse them of being “out for money” or “making up stories.” Believe me, you can’t make this kind of horror up! The victims’ descriptions are too detailed, their pain is too raw and their memories are too powerful for them to be frauds. To suggest so is a slap in the face to these brave individuals, who have had the courage to speak of the traumatic abuse they suffered when they were young and innocent. Also, not one victim I’ve talked to is “in it for the money.” In fact, one repeatedly told me that “money can’t buy me peace, health, healing or happiness.”

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.

List of Allentown Diocese priests publicly accused of sexual abuse or other offenses

ALLENTOWN (PA)
Morning Call

June 21, 2018

These priests have been accused in court cases or published reports over the past two decades. This listing includes summaries of their cases and their status with the Allentown Diocese.

The Rev. Thomas Bender, former pastor of Most Blessed Sacrament in Bally, was sentenced to seven years’ probation in 1988 for molesting a teenage Pottsville boy in the 1980s. A civil case with the boy and his family was settled by the diocese out of court. Bender was laicised, or defrocked.

Monsignor Lawrence J. Bukaty, former pastor of St. Katharine Drexel in Carbon County, was charged with public lewdness after a park ranger saw him fondling himself on a nude New Jersey beach in 2008. He pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct and received probation. The diocese at the time said he was sent for treatment. He is no longer in ministry.

Monsignor Bernard Flanagan was removed from ministry in 2010 when a review board set up by the diocese found credible allegations that he sexually abused a minor in the mid-1980s while serving at Reading Central Catholic High School. The diocese informed police.

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

Priest Who Served at Jamestown Church, WCA Placed on Leave amid Investigation

JAMESTOWN (NY)
The Post-Journal

June 29, 2018

By Eric Tichy

A retired priest who served in the Jamestown area, including as chaplain at then-WCA Hospital, was put on leave due to sexual abuse complaints, Bishop Richard J. Malone of the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo announced. The priest — the Rev. Robert Stolinski — was one of four to be placed on leave amid an investigation by the diocese.

In November 2003, Stolinski was named pastor at St. James Church in Jamestown and later at Our Lady of Victory Church in Frewsburg. He also served as Catholic chaplain at WCA.

Stolinski graduated from St. Hyacinth’s Parochial School and Cardinal Mindszenty High School. He attended Fredonia State College and the Diocesan Preparatory Seminary College. He received a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in theology from the former St. John Vianney Seminary in East Aurora.

A native of Dunkirk, Stolinski was ordained a priest on May 23, 1970, and served briefly at St. John of the Cross in Whitesville and St. Mary of Sorrows in Buffalo, according to archives in The Post-Journal. In December 1970, he was assigned to the St. Jude Center, the Catholic Chaplaincy of Buffalo General Hospital and Roswell Park Memorial Institute, where he served until 1978.

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.

Kerala cops to probe priest abuse

CALCUTTA (INDIA)
The Telegraph

June 30, 2018

By K.M. Rakesh

Investigation order after Achuthanandan nudge

Bangalore – The Kerala police chief has ordered a crime branch probe into allegations that a group of priests misused confession secrets to sexually exploit a woman, the directive apparently following a nudge from former chief minister V.S. Achuthanandan.

Sources said the CPM veteran had written to director-general of police Loknath Behera requesting the police register a suo motu case, based on the allegations by the woman’s husband.

In a letter to the Kottayam-based Malankara Orthodox Church, the husband has accused five priests of using his wife’s secret confessions to blackmail and sexually exploit her. However, neither the husband nor the wife has lodged a police complaint.

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

Paedophile priest investigation turns to regional Western Australia to reveal full extent of child abuse

GERALDTON (WESTERN AUSTRALIA)
ABC

By Laura Meachim

The horrific crimes of paedophile priest, Denis McAlinden, are being investigated in regional Western Australia by lawyers committed to revealing the full extent of his abuse of young children.

McAlinden died in 2005 before he could be charged over five decades of sexual abuse that spanned Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, the Philippines and Papua New Guinea.

Now, Canberra-based law firm, Ken Cush and Associates, is turning its attention to the Diocese of Geraldton, where McAlinden was sent in the 1980s.

It wants to hear from witnesses and victims from the Diocese of Geraldton, Bunbury and the parish of Wickham and Kojonup.

Senior Associate Nick Kitchin said the firm was currently working on several cases, both in Australia and overseas, involving the former priest.

“We are retracing his steps to gather information on his past actions,” he said.

“As we undertake this work, we are encountering more people who were abused by him.”

While McAlinden’s name is well-known, Mr Kitchin said the extent of the priest’s abuse was not.

“He is known to be one of the worst well-known paedophile priests,” he said.

“The number of victims could be in the tens of people, it could be even more.

“We do not know, despite the various inquiries and the commission that has taken place. People are still coming forward for their own reasons and in their own time.

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

Alleged priest abuse victims updated on delayed Pennsylvania grand jury report

ALLENTOWN (PA)
Morning Call

June 28, 2018

By Steve Esack

One said he was an ex-priest turned whistleblower about the sexual abuse of children. Another said as a boy he was plied by a priest with porn and attacked in a cheap motel. And one woman described how a Bethlehem Township priest abused her as a 12-year-old and later proposed marriage.

Those three adults and others met privately Thursday with Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro and a victims’ advocate for an update — which resembled a therapy session — on how prosecutors were handling a court-ordered delay of a state grand jury report examining sex abuse claims and possible cover-ups in six Catholic dioceses, including Allentown.

“We were all people who testified in front of this grand jury,” said James VanSickle, 55, of Pittsburgh, after the meeting. He said he was abused growing up in Erie by a priest criminally charged as part of the grand jury probe. “Attorney General Shapiro and [assistant state prosecutor Dan] Dye reached out to us to let us know they are working hard, they are doing the things they need to do to get this report released. They put us a little bit at ease. A lot of us victims were appalled and angry and hurt.”

The two-hour meeting was held in Shapiro’s Harrisburg office on the same day Shapiro had planned to hold a news conference and release the grand jury report.

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.

Pennsylvania attorney general to challenge court order halting priest sex abuse grand jury report

ALLENTOWN (PA)
Morning Call

June 29, 2018

By Steve Esack

Harrisburg – Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro said Friday he will challenge the state Supreme Court’s order postponing publication of a grand jury report about child sex abuse and cover-ups in six Catholic dioceses, including Allentown.

Shapiro plans to file an appeal Monday of the order forbidding him to release the report, which also covers the Erie, Greensburg, Harrisburg, Pittsburgh and Scranton dioceses.

“There are legal filings the court must decide,” Shapiro said in a statement. “In acting on Monday, we are hopeful the court will expeditiously decide these issues and lift the stay.

“The people of Pennsylvania have a right to see the report, know who is attempting to block its release and why, and to hear the voices of the victims of sexual abuse within the church,” he said.

Grand jury secrecy hides reason for Supreme Court order barring release of priest sex abuse report
The contents of the legal brief Shapiro’s office files will be placed under wraps per the court order sealing most records in the case from public view.

Also Friday, seven news organizations filed a motion to intervene in the case in a bid to argue to the court that it should release the report. If the court decides it needs more time to consider the legal challenges, it could immediately order a version of the report that shields from view only those parts that are in question, lawyers for the news organizations wrote.

The court also should make public the filings and dockets in the case, which would be consistent with practice in other grand jury matters, with redactions if necessary, the news organizations wrote.

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.

Buffalo Diocese puts four more priests on leave over sex abuse claims

BUFFALO (NY)
The Buffalo News

June 28, 2018

By Jay Tokasz

Buffalo Diocese Bishop Richard J. Malone put four more priests on leave due to complaints of sexual abuse, said allegations against three other priests were substantiated and exonerated a fourth priest who had been suspended in March.

A diocesan investigation determined that the allegations against the Rev. Dennis G. Riter, pastor of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church in Dunkirk, have not been substantiated. Riter has been returned to active ministry and likely will celebrate Masses in the parish this weekend.

Removed from active ministry this week were four retired priests who assist at area parishes: the Rev. Pascal D. Ipolito, the Rev. Daniel J. Palys, the Rev. Roy Herberger and the Rev. Robert A. Stolinski.

The four priests were put on administrative leave “for the purpose of investigation” and the leave “does not imply that any determination has been made as to the truth or falsity of the complaint,” the diocese said in a news release.

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.

Lawsuit: Former Guam priest Brouillard abused boy in guise of teaching him how to swim

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

June 29, 2018

By Haidee V. Eugenio

Former Guam priest Louis Brouillard, around 1977 or 1978, sexually abused a Barrigada altar boy under the pretense of teaching him how to swim during a Boy Scouts of America outing at the Lonfit River, according to a lawsuit filed on Wednesday in local court.

The plaintiff, identified in court documents as T.H.Q. to protect his privacy, said in his lawsuit that he was around 10 or 11 at the time the parish priest sexually abused him on church grounds and during scouting events.

Now 50 years old, T.H.Q. demands a jury trial and $5 million in minimum damages. He is represented by attorney Michael Berman.

On approximately five occasions at the Lonfit River, Brouillard would swim naked and routinely instructed T.H.Q. and the other boys to swim naked with him, the lawsuit says. Brouillard was the Guam scoutmaster for the Boy Scouts of America at the time.

“Under the pretense of teaching T.H.Q. how to swim, Brouillard would grope and touch T.H.Q.’s private parts and anus,” the complaint states.

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.

Four more priests placed on leave by Diocese of Buffalo, one reinstated

BUFFALO (NY)
WBFO 88.7

June 29, 2018

By Michael Mroziak

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Buffalo on Thursday placed four more priests on administrative leave, in response to complaints of alleged sexual abuse. Additionally, the Diocese of Buffalo announced claims againast three other priests have been substantiated while a fourth has been exonerated and reinstated.

Reverends Robert Stolinski, Pascal Ipolito, Roy Herberger and Daniel Palys – all of whom are retired – were put on administrative leave “for the purposes of investigation,” said the Diocese in a written statement. The leave, the Diocese continues, “does not imply that any determination has been made as to the truth of falsity of the complaint.”

Herberger, in a letter published by the Buffalo News earlier this week, denies the charges against him. His message reads: “I want everyone to know that I deny these claims completely – 100 percent. I’m not saying that the victim is lying about being assaulted by some priest, a priest but I do emphatically deny that it was me.”

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.

Pa. court refuses to derail retrial of Monsignor William Lynn in child endangerment case

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Penn Live

June 28, 2018

By Matt Miller

A high Roman Catholic Church official facing a retrial on charges that he helped hide child-sex crimes by priests failed Thursday to convince a state appeals court to completely dismiss the case against him.

The Superior Court panel, in an opinion by Judge Jack A. Panella, rejected Monsignor William Lynn’s claims that Philadelphia prosecutors committed deliberate misconduct at his first trial in 2012 by presenting testimony from an accuser they knew was lying.

Lynn, former secretary for clergy of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, claimed the prosecution concealed from his attorneys the fact that an investigator uncovered inconsistencies in the grand jury testimony of an accuser who said he was molested by another priest when he was in fifth grade at a parish school. Lynn was in charge of investigating sexual misconduct allegations against clergy and determining assignments for accused priests.

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

Ex-French bishop to stand trial

ORLEANS (FRANCE)
AFP

June 29, 2018

The former bishop of the French city of Orleans, Andre Fort, was ordered on Thursday to stand trial for failing to report a paedophile priest in his diocese.
Fort, who was bishop of the northern city between 2002 and his retirement in 2010, was charged last June over allegations that he turned a blind eye to child abuse by priest Pierre de Castelet.

Fort had moved de Castelet into roles where he did not have contact with children, but did not inform the police about accusations by a man who said he and others had been abused by the priest as a child.

“My client thought this young man did not want his accusations to be made public, but that he just wanted to make sure Pierre de Castelet had no more contact with children,” Fort’s lawyer Benoit de Gaullier told AFP.

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.

4 additional priests placed on leave as accusations surface

BUFFALO (NY)
Spectrum News

June 28, 2018

Four additional priests from the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo have been placed on administrative leave after new accusations of abuse have come to light.

Rev. Pascal Ipolito, Rev. Daniel Palys, Rev. Roy Herberger and Rev. Robert Stolinski are all retired. The diocese has not released any details about the complaints against them.

In the meantime, the Catholic Diocese has substantiated claims against three priests already on leave: Rev. Samuel Venne, Rev. Arthur Smith and Rev. Dennis Fronczak.

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

Cardinal McCarrick Accused: Critics Demand Answers in Wake of Abuse Claims

NEW YORK (NY)
National Catholic Register

June 29, 2018

By Joan Frawley Desmond

The news that the cleric faces ‘credible and substantiated’ allegations of sexual abuse has reverberated throughout the Catholic Church.

The news that Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, 87, the retired archbishop of Washington, faces “credible and substantiated” allegations of sexual abuse of a minor for incidents dating back almost a half-century has reverberated throughout the Catholic Church.

And in light of the related disclosures that Cardinal McCarrick had engaged in questionable behavior with adult males during the period he served as bishop of two New Jersey dioceses, resulting in a pair of legal settlements, and that some media outlets had received disturbing information about his actions more than 15 years ago but declined to publish any articles, a pair of hard questions now are being asked: Why did the public silence about the cardinal’s behavior persist for so long? And why did he continue to move upward, into the highest ranks of the Church’s hierarchy?

Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York confirmed in a June 20 statement that he had received a report “alleging abuse from over 45 years ago by the now-retired archbishop of Washington, Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, who, at the time of the reported offense, was a priest here in the Archdiocese of New York.”

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

Former Guam priest again accused of prior molestation

GUAM
Kuam News

June 29, 2018

By Nick Delgado

Another child sexual abuse complaint has been filed against the Archdiocese of Agana and the Boy Scouts of America Aloha Council Chamorro District. The latest one filed by THQ to protect his privacy.

He alleges that when he was ten or eleven years old he was sexually abused by Fr. Louis Brouillard. THQ was an altar boy for the Barrigada Parish and a Boy Scout Applicant during the time of the abuse. He was sexually abused on church grounds and at Boy Scout outings.

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.

Kerala ‘sex for silence’ case: Church’s attempts to cover up abuse fails as govt orders crime branch probe

INDIA
FirstPost

June 29, 2018

By TK Devasia

The attempt by the Malankara Orthodox Church to settle the sexual abuse case against five priests has suffered a setback, with the Kerala government ordering a crime branch investigation into the scandal.

State police chief Loknath Behra has ordered the investigation based on a letter he received from senior ruling Communist Party of India (Marxist) leader and former chief minister VS Achuthanandan, said an official at the state police headquarters.

The Kerala State Human Rights Commission and the National Women’s Commission had earlier directed the police to register a case but the police ignored these directions, citing absence of any complaint from either the victim or his family.

Senior high court advocate Mohammed Shah said there was no need for a complaint to register a criminal case if there was a credible information that a crime has been committed. He told Firstpost that the information already available in the present case was sufficient to register a first information report.

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

Priest on leave denies alleged sex abuse in 1980s

BUFFALO (NY)
The Buffalo News

June 28, 2018

By Jay Tokasz

A retired Buffalo priest who was recently put on administrative leave wrote a letter this week vehemently denying that he sexually assaulted a young boy in the 1980s.

The Rev. Roy Herberger, the former pastor of SS. Columba-Brigid Church, said in the letter that he contacted a lawyer after the Diocese of Buffalo put him on administrative leave due to the abuse complaint.

“I want everyone to know that I deny these claims completely – 100 percent,” Herberger said in the letter. “I’m not saying that the victim is lying about being assaulted by some priest, a priest but I do emphatically deny that it was me.”

Diocesan spokesman George Richert declined to comment Wednesday afternoon. Herberger, reached by email on Thursday, declined to comment on the letter or on what prompted it. It’s not clear how many people received the letter, but Herberger said he sent it to relatives, friends and parishioners.

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 donates to child abuse prevention charities at home and abroad

SALT LAKE CITY (UT)
KUTV

June 28, 2018

By Megan Clasper

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints announced two donations, totaling $75,000, to child abuse prevention organizations in Salt Lake City and abroad on Wednesday.

The church’s female leaders traveled to the Children’s Justice Center in Salt Lake City to deliver a $50,000 donation to help child abuse victims and their families. The money will help Children’s Justice Centers statewide.

“[The Church recognizes that abuse is] a societal problem, that it also affects our members,” Jean Bingham, the church’s Relief Society general president, said in a press release. “And so, we want to support these wonderful organizations who are dealing with this on a day-to-day basis.”

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.

Sex for silence: 5 Kerala priests accused of sexually exploiting woman; crime branch to probe

KERALA (INDIA)
Moneycontrol News

June 29, 2018

The priests were allegedly blackmailing the mother-of-two using the secret confessions that she had made to them on various occasions

The Crime Branch will now investigate allegations of sexual assault against at least five priests of the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church in Kerala, news agency ANI has reported.

The Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church, which recently won a century-old battle against the Syrian Jacobite Church, is now caught in the eye of the storm after five priests have been named for sexually exploiting one of the members of the Niranam diocese in central Travancore.

The issue had come to light last month when a man complained to the diocesan head that at least five priests have been sexually exploiting his wife, who was also a mother to two children. He said the priests blackmailed his wife using the secret confessions she had made to them on various occasions. ‘Confession’ is regarded as one of the seven sacraments of the Church.

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

At last, bad news is good news in the Catholic sex abuse scandal

COLUMBIA (MO)
Religion News Service

June 28, 2018

By Thomas Reese

In the Catholic Church’s sex abuse scandals, what seems like bad news for the church — seemingly daily headlines about clergy being disciplined — is actually good news.

The truly bad news of the scandal, of course, has been the horrible abuse of children, which will have negative effects on them for the rest of their lives. The good news is that perpetrators have been caught and exposed. Accusations are being investigated and the guilty are being punished. When the abuse scandal was first uncovered in the United States some 30 years ago, bishops in other countries denied they had a problem. What is clearly a worldwide problem is now getting attention at the highest level in the church, thanks to Pope Francis.

In this sense, we should be happy to see more bad headlines because it means more bad actors are being caught.

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

The neglected root of the Church sex-abuse scandal

UNITED STATES
Catholic Culture

June 28, 2018

By Phil Lawler

Two new episodes in the festering sex-abuse scandal have called attention to a facet of the problem that has long been understood (at least by some analysts), but routinely neglected if not actively suppressed: the connection between sexual abuse of young people and a widespread homosexual culture among the clergy.

Cardinal Theodore McCarrick has been removed from ministry because of one credible report of misconduct involving a teenage boy. But the Newark archdiocese confirmed that in the past, two other complaints against the cardinal had been resolved by out-of-court settlements. And the news of his suspension brought out dozens of reports about his inappropriate behavior with seminarians: young men who were presumably legal adults.

From Rome came the report that a former Vatican diplomat, recently stationed in Washington, DC, had been found guilty on charges of child pornography. The “children” in this case were teenagers.

Which priests sharing pornography? What disciplinary action, if any, has been taken regarding the priests involved in the infamous “St. Sebastian’s Angels” network? Who were the prelates who protected Cardinal McCarrick? Isn’t it time—in fact, isn’t it long past time—to acknowledge the corrosive power of the homosexual network in the Church?

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

Prosecutor to press court to release church abuse report

HARRISBURG (PA)
The Associated Press

By Marc Levy

Pennsylvania’s highest court is being pressed to publicly release of a major grand jury report on allegations of child sexual abuse and cover-ups in six of Pennsylvania’s Roman Catholic dioceses.

Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro will ask the court to swiftly decide lingering legal issues before it, his office said in a statement Friday. He expects to make that request Monday.

“The people of Pennsylvania have a right to see the report, know who is attempting to block its release and why, and to hear the voices of the victims of sexual abuse within the Church,” Shapiro said in the statement.

The state Supreme Court high court is blocking the release of the report as the result of legal challenges filed under seal and the courts have declined to make those filings or dockets public, or name the people who filed the challenges.

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.

Michigan State criticized over head of complaints office

EAST LANSING (MI)
The Associated Press

June 29, 2018

Michigan State University has hired an attorney who defended the school against sexual assault lawsuits to head the office handling sexual assault complaints, sparking pushback from victim advocates.

The university’s interim president, John Engler, appointed Robert Kent this month to temporarily lead the Office of Civil Rights and Title IX Education and Compliance, the Detroit Free Press reported. The school cited his expertise in such cases as its assistant general counsel.

The move comes in the wake of the sexual abuse scandal involving former sports doctor Larry Nassar. Hundreds of women and girls have said he sexually abused them under the guise of medical treatment, including when he worked for Michigan State and USA Gymnastics.

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

He defended Michigan State vs. sexual assaults. Now he heads Title IX.

DETROIT (MI)
Detroit Free Press

June 29, 2018

By David Jesse and Gina Kaufman

A Michigan State University attorney who defended the institution against sexual assault lawsuits is now heading the office handling sexual assault complaints — a move that is drawing criticism from victim advocates.

This month, Robert Kent was moved out of his assistant general counsel position and into the job of interim associate vice president of the Office of Civil Rights and Title IX Education and Compliance — a decision made by MSU Interim President John Engler that is drawing scrutiny from critics, who say the move could send a discouraging messagefrom the university.

“At every turn, they signal an unwillingness to deal with the culture, and a message to survivors that their voices don’t matter,” said Rachael Denhollander, the first Larry Nassar sex assault victim to come forth publicly. She said, in her view, the appointment of Kent to handle Title IX cases was the latest in a string of insensitive moves.

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.

Buddhist leader sexually assaulted students, report finds

HALIFAX (CANADA)
Think Progress

June 28, 2018

By Joshua Eaton

“If you contest anything he says, ‘you’re wrong,'” one survivor said. “He’s a king.”

A prominent Tibetan Buddhist leader based in Halifax, Canada, sexually assaulted three of his female students and engaged in coercive sexual relationships with others, according to a report released Thursday by the advocacy group Buddhist Project Sunshine.

Sakyong Mipham, whose legal name is Osel R. Mukpo, leads a global network of meditation centers called Shambhala International. The report includes two accounts by women who say Mipham sexually assaulted them and one by a woman who says he engaged in an emotionally abusive sexual relationship with her. Other women’s accounts are summarized in an appendix to the report.

Carol Merchasin, the lead investigator for the report and a retired employment lawyer, also spoke to a woman who says she personally overheard Shambala leadership discussing how to cover up an allegation of rape by Mipham. The report does not probe the rape claim, which it calls “second or third hand at best,” citing a lack of evidence.

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.

Shambhala Head Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche Accused of Sexual Abuse in New Report

NEW YORK (NY)
Tricycle

June 28, 2018

By Wendy Joan Biddlecombe

The Buddhist leader apologizes for inappropriate relationships as multiple women allege sexual assault in an independent investigation.

Coming off the heels of a public apology for what might be perceived as harmful “relationships” earlier this week, a new report is claiming that Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche sexually assaulted multiple women in the Buddhist order that he leads and that members of Shambhala International actively covered up his tracks.

The report was written by Andrea Winn, a leadership coach and second-generation Shambhalian who says she was forced out of her Toronto sangha in 2000 after speaking up about the childhood sexual abuse she experienced from multiple members of the community. The latest findings are the second phase of Project Sunshine, which Winn started a little over a year ago as a way to give survivors a support network.

Winn said she did not hear about any allegations against the Sakyong until women started reaching out to her after the first Project Sunshine report was published in February.

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

Leader of Boulder-born Shambhala International apologizes for past relationships in which women felt ‘harm’

BOULDER (CO)
Daily Camera Boulder News

June 28, 2018

By Carina Julig

The leader of Shambhala International, a Buddhist group founded in Boulder, released a statement this week apologizing for past relationships in which the participating women have expressed “feeling harm.”

Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, who lives in Halifax, Nova Scotia, is the spiritual leader of Shambhala, a Buddhist organization created in the west in the 1970s by Mipham’s father, exiled Tibetan monk Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche.

The Canadian-based organization’s U.S. headquarters are located in Boulder, along with the Buddhist-inspired Naropa University, which also was founded by Trungpa.

The organization has been the focus of sexual misconduct allegations for the past several months, after a report called “Project Sunshine” was published online in February detailing a culture of sexual abuse by the organization’s senior teachers. The report contained several anonymous accounts from victims.

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

Report alleges sexual misconduct by leader of Shambhala community

HALIFAX (NOVA SCOTIA, CANADA)
Lion’s Roar

June 28, 2018

Buddhist Project Sunshine released its second report today, containing allegations of sexual assault and clergy sexual misconduct by Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, leader of the Shambhala Buddhist community.

The report includes three victim impact statements by female members of Shambhala. The anonymous statements detail allegations of sexual assault in the form of unwanted sexual touching, alcohol abuse, and sex with multiple female students facilitated by some members of Sakyong Mipham’s staff.

Clergy sexual misconduct is defined by FaithTrust Institute as when “any person in a ministerial role of leadership for pastoral counseling (clergy, religious, or lay) engages in sexual contact or sexualized behavior with a congregant…”

Buddhist Project Sunshine (BPS) was initiated by leadership coach Andrea Winn in February 2017 to raise awareness of gendered violence in the Shambhala community.

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

Catholic diocese slashing funding for priest abuse victims: Lawyer

ONTARIO (CANADA)
The London Free Press

June 29, 2018

By Jonathan Sher

The Roman Catholic diocese in Southwestern Ontario has slashed funds to pay for counselling of those abused by priests and adopted American-style tactics by using a top-dollar legal team to go after those who support victims, a London lawyer says.

The change in tactics by the Diocese of London came suddenly and left victims vulnerable, said lawyer Rob Talach of London, who has represented many victims and complainants since becoming a lawyer in 2002.

“(The diocese) unilaterally decided (to) squeeze back,” Talach said of a diocese in which at least 21 priests have been convicted, charged or sued for sexual offenses, including about 80 claims alone against Charles Sylvestre, who was convicted of abusing 47 victims and died in prison.

The diocese, which serves a region with 440,000 Catholics and stretches between lakes Erie and Huron, has paid counselling bills for years, because when it first started settling lawsuits against its priests, it refused to pay lump sums for counselling to victims, insisting that the church look after their care, Talach said.

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

Court document lists $15 million in quiet sex-abuse settlements by London diocese

CANADA
The Star

June 28, 2018

By Sandro Contenta and Mary Ormsby

A decade-long court battle between the Roman Catholic Diocese of London and its insurance company has disclosed $15 million in largely secret settlements to people who sued priests for sexual abuse.

The payments — listed in a document filed with London’s Superior Court — went to 50 people accusing 12 priests in the diocese of sexual abuse.

The single-page document provides a rare glimpse into how a Canadian diocese dealt with a string of accusers by charting the millions quietly paid to them.

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.

Assignment History– Rev. James P. McSorley, O.M.I.

WALTHAM (MA)
BishopAccountability.org

Summary of Case: James P. McSorley was a priest of the Oblates of Mary Immaculate, ordained in 1946. His first fifteen years of priesthood were spent in the Philippines, where he worked in parishes and helped establish a school. He returned to the United States in the early 1960s, and was moved often thereafter. McSorley went from the diocese of Oakland CA to the archdioceses of Los Angeles CA and Portland OR, then to Germany as a military chaplain. In 1971 he was assigned briefly to a Diocese of Boise ID parish, then as sole priest at another. By 1977 he was back in the Diocese of Oakland, at Bishop O’Dowd High School and then a parish in Pinole. From there he moved through the Diocese of Monterey CA, the Archdiocese of Seattle WA, the Diocese of Great Falls-Billings MT, the Archdiocese of Miami FL, and back to Seattle. His last stop was the Oblate’s Mission House in Oakland CA, where he was based from 1985 until his death in 2005.

McSorley’s Order knew of concerns about his behavior with children at least as early as 1965, when the pastor of St. Alice’s in Springfield OR alerted them and asked that he not be returned to the parish. In a 2001 lawsuit McSorley was accused of having sexually abused a boy at St. Alice’s in 1964. In 1993 a man reported to the diocese that McSorley molested him and other boys at Sacred Heart in Boise during 1971-72. This accuser went to the diocese again in the early 2000s. The diocese never contacted police. McSorley has also been the subject of allegations stemming from his time in Germany and Washington.

Born: April 3, 1921
Ordained: March 6, 1946
Died: May 27, 2005

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.

EDITORIAL: Time for justice

MADRID (SPAIN)
El Pais

June 27, 2018

English version by Susana Urra

The first case to go to trial in connection with a network of stolen babies is a reminder of a pending task in Spain

Before turning the page on history, it is necessary to read that page first. And Spain has yet to read the chapter on the shameful and widespread practice of taking babies away from mothers who were typically single, with no resources or the ability to protest, and then giving those children to wedded couples whom the Franco regime considered appropriate parents.

Starting with the Civil War (1936-1939), and up until 1981, many women were systematically robbed of their newborns during the Franco dictatorship and early democratic years – first inside the prisons and later at health clinics. The baby theft was perpetrated by medical and religious elites who denied these women their ability to be mothers, and who allegedly profited financially from the transaction.

The babies were delivered to couples who were in good standing with the Franco regime, generally prior payment of amounts that fueled the baby trafficking – which was viewed as adoptions back at the time. Prosecutors have received nearly 2,000 complaints so far.

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.

La ausencia del doctor Vela obliga a suspender el juicio por bebés robados

MADRID (SPAIN)
El Pais

June 27, 2018

By Natalia Junquera

[The absence of doctor Vela forces to suspend the trial for stolen babies]

El procesado, de 85 años, está ingresado por problemas médicos, según su abogado

Este miércoles debería haber quedado visto para sentencia en la Audiencia Provincial de Madrid el primer juicio por robo de bebés en España. Pero el procesado, Eduardo Vela, de 85 años, no se ha presentado y la presidenta del tribunal, María Luisa Aparicio, ha decidido suspenderlo de momento. Según el letrado de Vela, Rafael Casas, su cliente está “ingresado en urgencias” desde esta mañana aunque ayer por la noche ya tuvo que ser atendido “por dolores y mareos” en su domicilio. Fue la familia quien lo trasladó a un centro hospitalario.

La presidenta del tribunal ha preguntado al abogado si estaría de acuerdo en hacer, al menos, las declaraciones por videoconferencia previstas para este miércoles con dos periodistas francesas que grabaron a Vela con cámara oculta, pero Casas se ha opuesto.

El día anterior, al finalizar la primera sesión del juicio, el abogado ya preguntó si su cliente podía ausentarse este miércoles. Aparicio le contestó entonces que no veía por qué, ya que había seguido la primera sesión sin problemas. Vela intentó no acudir al juicio el primer día alegando problemas graves de salud, pero el forense de la Audiencia Provincial dictaminó que estaba en condiciones físicas y mentales para afrontar el proceso.

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.

Juiz polémico do caso Casa Pia promovido à Relação

PORTUGAL
DN

June 27, 2018

By Miguel Marujo

[Controversial judge of the Casa Pia case promoted to Relation]

Anúncio de promoção e colocação de Rui Teixeira aconteceu cinco dias depois de Estado português ser condenado a indemnizar Paulo Pedroso

Cinco dias depois do Tribunal Europeu dos Direitos do Homem ter condenado o Estado português a indemnizar Paulo Pedroso, por ter sido detido preventivamente sem indícios suficientes, o juiz do processo da Casa Pia, Rui Teixeira, foi promovido para o Tribunal da Relação de Lisboa.

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.

Casa Pia: Estado condenado a pagar 68 mil euros a Paulo Pedroso

PORTUGAL
DN/Lusa

June 12, 2018

[Casa Pia: State condemned to pay 68 thousand euros to Paulo Pedroso]

A decisão do Tribunal Europeu dos Direitos Humanos foi conhecida esta terça-feira

O Tribunal Europeu dos Direitos Humanos (TEDH) condenou o Estado português a pagar mais de 68 mil euros a Paulo Pedroso no âmbito do processo Casa Pia.

Em causa o facto de não terem sido tomadas medidas alternativas à prisão preventiva. O tribunal considera que não havia razões plausíveis dos crimes de violação de menores que levassem à prisão de Pedroso.

De acordo com o comunicado do Tribunal Europeu dos Direitos Humanos, os tribunais portugueses falharam ao rejeitarem o pedido de indemnização por detenção ilegal do ex-ministro socialista.

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.

Parents outraged as child abuse investigation is launched at church daycare center

CHESAPEAKE (VA)
WTKR

June 27, 2018

By Rachael Cardin

A church is under fire after Child Protective Services launched an investigation related to child abuse at the daycare center.

A letter sent home to parents outlined the investigation going on and many have taken a closer look at their own children who have been attendance, some for years.

More than five moms have reached out to News 3 saying they have taken their kids out. One reports her child was hit, another said their child was restrained. Other allegations include children being shut in closets, hit over the head or pushed into walls. One mom told us they plan to hire an attorney due to injuries their son sustained while at the center.

Mom Sara Jacobs said her husband called CPS after their son Noah was picked up and had large scratch marks on his back. Jacobs said her husband asked where the marks came from and the worker told him she had dragged Noah out from under a table, scraping his back.

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.

Ohio legislative roundup: Pastor Protection Act passes House despite discrimination concerns

COLUMBUS (OH)
Columbus Dispatch

June 27, 2018

By Jim Siegel

A Pastor Protection Act that supporters say protects religious freedom — but critics call unnecessary and discriminatory against gay couples — passed the Ohio House on Wednesday.

The bill says that no licensed minister or religious society can be forced to perform or host a marriage ceremony that does not conform to their sincerely held religious beliefs while protecting them from lawsuits.

Rep. Nino Vitale, R-Urbana, said House Bill 36 is aimed at addressing the tension between the U.S. Supreme Court’s gay marriage decision and the catechism of faith communities.

“Do we want Ohio to be a state that imposes something on pastors that is against their deeply held religious beliefs?” he said.

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

Priest versus church: case should be tried, public deserves answers

FORT LAUDERDALE (FL)
Sun Sentinel

June 28, 2018

By the time a nasty quarrel reaches the Florida Supreme Court, it’s usually about more than just the people involved. If it doesn’t have a broader implication for the public or for the law, the court is not likely to want to hear it. But if there is a significant public policy question, the court serves the people best when it interprets its jurisdiction liberally and agrees to take the case.

The case of Father John Gallagher vs. the Diocese of Palm Beach, Inc., meets the public interest test. The priest is trying to sue the diocese for defamation, alleging that it maligned him after he accused it of trying to cover up the misconduct of another priest who showed child pornography to a teenager. The diocese claims that the lawsuit is really about Gallagher’s pique at not being promoted and that it is exempt from such litigation under what’s known as the ecclesiastical abstention doctrine.

After Palm Beach Circuit Judge Meenu Sasser refused to dismiss the suit, the Diocese won an order from the Fourth District Court of Appeal last month that forbade the trial court from trying the case. It’s that decision that Gallagher’s lawyers are asking the Florida Supreme Court to reverse. They make a good argument.

Here’s the public policy question at the heart of it: At what point is a religious institution immune from secular authority? It’s the same issue that vexed King Henry II of England in his 12th century feud with Archbishop Thomas Becket and led to the cleric’s assassination by four knights.

These days, the courts work it out.

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.

Attorney for church abuse victim says more alleged victims are coming forward

NEW ORLEANS (LA)
WVUE

June 27, 2018

By Rob Masson

The lawyer for a sexual abuse victim who landed a large settlement against the Archdiocese said more potential victims are coming forward. The victim said things should have never gone this far.

Attorney Roger Stetter has litigated nearly 80 cases against the Archdiocese of New Orleans. Last week, Stetter landed a half-million-dollar settlement from the Archdiocese for a man who said teacher and former Deacon George Brignac raped and sexually abused him at Holy Rosary Church.

“Fondled me at the school, at his desk, in his car and in his home,” said the victim.

Stetter said more alleged victims are now calling his office.

“I’ve already had a couple, three, calls,” Stetter said. “I have a client coming in Thursday, another at Holy Rosary next week. I think there will be others.”

Brignac taught at three local Catholic schools in the late 1970s. The Jefferson Parish D.A.’s office prosecuted him for allegedly abusing three young boys at St. Matthew’s in River Ridge back in 1978. Brignac was acquitted, and the Archdiocese then moved him across parish lines to Holy Rosary school in New Orleans.

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 makes donation to Children’s Justice Center to aid abuse victims

SALT LAKE CITY (UT)
FOX13

June 27, 2018

By John Franchi

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is taking a stand against child abuse.

Wednesday, female leaders from the Church’s organizations for women, youth and children presented a $50,000 donation to the Children’s Justice Center (CJC).

The CJC offers victims of abuse a comfortable environment to share their stories with police and connects victims to counselors.

“We support everything that they do,” Cristina Franco, the Second Counselor in the Primary General Presidency said.

The CJC has 23 locations across the state. The funds will mostly be used to provide long awaited upgrades to facilities in rural areas.

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

Varadakar throws support behind ordination of women Catholic priests

IRELAND
Breaking News

June 27, 2018

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has added his support to the ordination of women as Catholic priests but said he “strongly believes” in the separation of state and church.

Speaking at the fourth National Economic Dialogue at Dublin Castle on Wednesday, Mr Varadkar said he believes in equality in the workplace, and said that priests should be allowed to marry.

He made the comments after the Minister for Culture and Heritage Josepha Madigan clashed with Archbishop of Dublin Diarmuid Martin.

It emerged earlier this week that Ms Madigan stepped in to lead prayers at a church in Dublin after a priest failed to show up.

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.

Probe clears interim leader of renowned drum and bugle corps

ALLENTOWN (PA)
The Associated Press

June 29, 2018

The suspended interim CEO of a champion Pennsylvania-based drum and bugle corps will return to the organization cleared of accusations he knew about the previous director’s harassment and failed to act.

Sean King was tapped to lead the parent organization that runs the Cadets — Youth Education in the Arts — in April after George Hopkins stepped down. That came after 11 women accused Hopkins of sexual harassment or abuse.

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

VATICAN INTERVENES IN SAGINAW SCANDALS

SAGINAW (MI)
ChurchMilitant

June 22, 2018

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

Bishop Joseph Cistone slammed for keeping abusive clergy in power

The Vatican is now intervening in the scandals currently wracking the diocese of Saginaw, Michigan, pressuring the bishop to oust various clergy. The bishop’s leadership ability itself is being called into question.

“Bishops Cistone and his inner circle have far too much faith in themselves, and little faith in the Truth,” one reliable inside source told Church Militant, who asked to remain anonymous for fear of reprisals. “It would be best if the bishop would resign, so we can move forward with leadership that will confront the generations of destruction laid here by liberalism.”

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

The Fight To Bring A Paedophile Principal To Justice

AUSTRALIA
Marie Claire

June 27, 2018

By Alexandra Carlton

Three sisters share their heartbreaking stories

Dassi Erlich and her sisters risked everything to tell their stories of sexual abuse at the hands of their headmistress at an ultra-Orthodox Jewish school in Melbourne. Years later, they’re still fighting to bring her to justice.

It’s difficult to imagine that not long ago they were subjected to a breach of trust so sickening that a Victorian Supreme Court justice called it “monstrous”. When they were teenagers, each of the girls allege, they suffered sustained sexual abuse at the hands of their female school principal. The woman, Malka Leifer, was the headmistress of Melbourne’s all-girls ultra-Orthodox Adass Israel School – and the one adult the sisters felt they could trust. Perhaps more monstrous still is that Leifer – in her privileged position – was then protected and spirited away to safety in Israel before the girls could seek justice.

The sisters – once manipulated into terrified silence – are now fighting a courageous battle to bring her back to Australia to face 74 charges of child sex abuse. “This is about owning my own story,” Dassi has said. “My daughter will one day grow up and read about my life. I want it to be a story of strength and inspiration rather than victimhood.”

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

New Mormon Leaders Bring Diversity, New Perspectives

SALT LAKE CITY (UT)
The Associated Press

June 28, 2018

By Brady McCombs

The two newest members of a top Mormon governing panel say they hope to bring a new perspective as the first first-ever Latin-American and the first-ever person of Asian ancestry to a previously all-white top leadership group that helps make church policy.

The two newest members of a top Mormon governing panel said Thursday that they hope to bring a new perspective as the first Latin-American and the first person of Asian ancestry to a previously all-white top leadership group that helps make church policy.

Ulisses Soares of Brazil and Gerrit W. Gong, a Chinese-American, made the comments during their first media interviews since being chosen for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ leadership panel called the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles earlier this year.

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.

Woman says Mormon church failed to report dad’s sexual abuse

SALT LAKE CITY (UT)
The Associated Press

June 28, 2018

By Brady Mccombs

A woman who claims in a lawsuit that her father sexually abused her as a child said Thursday that Mormon church leaders allowed the sexual assault to continue by failing to report it to police.

Kristy Johnson said at a news conference that her now-deceased mother told local church leaders in Utah and California about the abuse multiple times during the 1960s and 1970s. Her father, Melvin Kay Johnson, a church employee who worked for the religious education arm of the faith, was relocated to different cities by the church after each report, but police were not contacted, she alleges in a civil lawsuit filed Wednesday in federal court in Utah.

Johnson, now 55 and living in La Habra, California, said she finally reported the abuse to police in California in 1986 when she returned from a Mormon mission. Her father was never arrested, but the church kicked him out. He was allowed back one year later after he went before a church court and persuaded them he had repented, the woman said.

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

Vatican intervenes in Indian archdiocese embroiled in controversy

KOCHI (INDIA)
La Croix International

June 27, 2018

By T.K. Devasia

Prelates removed from administration of Ernakulam-Angamaly Archdiocese as administrator appointed to look into allegations of financial irregularities

The Vatican has bypassed the Eastern-rite Syro-Malabar Church’s decision-making synod and taken away the administrative jobs of three prelates of an archdiocese beset with financial controversy.

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

Pope Francis reshuffles top Vatican positions for greater transparency

VATICAN CITY
La Croix International (with Catholic News Service)

June 27, 2018

New appointments to manage church’s real estate holdings, secret archives

Pope Francis has made good on his promise to start shaking up the Administration of the Patrimony of the Holy See (APSA) in the interests of greater transparency with a series of high-profile appointments.

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.

USA Gymnastics names Forster high-performance coordinator

UNITED STATES
The Associated Press

June 28, 2018

By Will Graves

USA Gymnastics is turning to Tom Forster to help plot a way forward in the wake of the scandal against a former disgraced national team doctor that has rocked one of the crown jewels of the U.S. Olympic movement.

The organization named Forster as the high-performance director for the U.S. Women’s National Team on Thursday. Forster, who will start on July 1, is tasked with developing a strategic plan and training program for all national team members.

USA Gymnastics president Kerry Perry called Forster, who owns Colorado Aerials in Colorado Springs, Colorado, the right fit because his philosophy “mirrors our priorities.”

The organization is in the middle of a massive overhaul following the downfall of Larry Nassar.

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.

Serve the poor, shun ‘palace intrigue,’ pope tells new cardinals

VATICAN CITY
Reuters

June 28, 2018

By Philip Pullella

Pope Francis installed 14 Catholic churchmen as cardinals on Thursday, putting another stamp on the group that will one day elect his successor.v

Presiding at a ceremony known as a consistory in St. Peter’s Basilica, Francis told the new cardinals that their mission was to serve the poor and the Church and not seek privileges.

Francis has now chosen 59 of the 125 cardinal electors under 80 years old who would be eligible to enter a conclave after his death or resignation. Eleven of the new cardinals are under 80.

With each future consistory, Francis will add to the number of cardinal electors he has chosen, increasing the possibility that his successor will continue his policy of a more open, inclusive and forgiving Church.

“What does it profit us to gain the whole world if we are living in a stifling atmosphere of intrigues that dry up our hearts and impede our mission?” Francis said at the service where he gave each man a three-cornered “red biretta” hat and a ring of office.

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

French NGO founder priest dismissed from clerical state

FRANCE
La Croix International

June 28, 2018

By Céline Hoyeau

The Vatican Congregation for the Clergy has issued a ‘final’ decision dismissing Heart’s Home founder Father Thierry de Roucy for ‘disobedience’

In a rare Vatican decision, the founder of the international association Points Coeur (Heart’s Home), which has been sending young volunteers on mission since 1990, has been dismissed from the clerical state, La Croix has learned.

The Vatican decision brought to a close a ten year long process marked by a complex process between Father Thierry de Roucy, now aged 61, the Heart’s Home organization, the bishop of the Diocese of Fréjus-Toulon and Rome.

In 2011, de Roucy was found guilty of abuse of ecclesiastical power, sexual abuse and absolution of an accomplice in the person a young assistant priest.

The latter was subsequently relieved of his priesthood at his own request after church authorities concluded that he had been subject to undue influence.

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.

Attorney General Shapiro meets with victims of clergy sex abuse

HARRISBURG (PA)
Penn Live

June 28, 2018

By Ivey DeJesus

Attorney General Josh Shapiro on Thursday seemed to send a message to anyone standing in the way of the release of a grand jury report into clergy sex abuse.

Shapiro met with a group of survivors of clergy sex abuse from Pennsylvania, and in a written statement to the media said: “The people of Pennsylvania have the right to hear what I heard today. The voices of these victims, who have held this pain inside themselves for far too long, must not be silenced.”

The meeting comes a week after the Pennsylvania Supreme Court temporarily halted the release of the report in response to challenges that have been filed by individuals named in the report.

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.

Matt Flynn says he ‘won’t back down’ amid calls to end campaign (AUDIO)

MADISON (WI)
Wisconsin Radio Network

June 27, 2018

By Bob Hague

Democrat Matt Flynn says he has absolutely no plans to abandon his run for governor following calls for him to do so by a couple of fellow Democrats. “You ever heard the Johnny Cash song ‘I Won’t Back Down,’ well my advice to them is play that song and they’ll understand my position,” Flynn told WIBA on Wednesday morning.

Madison state Representatives Chris Taylor and Melissa Sargent accuse Flynn of being involved in a cover up during the priest sex abuse scandal, when he worked as the attorney for the Archdiocese of Milwaukee from 1989 to 2004. The Democratic lawmakers were joined at a Capitol press conference on Wednesday by Peter Isely of SNAP, the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests.

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.

Head of prominent charity that campaigns against child abuse is arrested for ‘trying to arrange to rape multiple children as young as two’

NEW YORK (NY)
Daily Mail

June 26, 2018

By Emily Crane

– Joel Davis, 22, was arrested in New York on Tuesday on child sex abuse charges
– Davis is the chairman of the International Campaign to Stop Rape and Gender Violence in Conflict – an organization devoted to ending sexual violence
– He is accused of trying to set up sexual encounters between himself and children as young as two years old
– Davis also allegedly solicited an undercover FBI agent to send sexually explicit videos of young children

The head of a charity that campaigns against sexual violence has been arrested in New York for child pornography and allegedly trying to meet with children as young as two for sex.

Joel Davis, 22, is accused of trying to set up sexual encounters between himself and young children, as well as soliciting an undercover FBI agent to send sexually explicit videos of minors.

The New Yorker was arrested on Tuesday on child sex abuse and child pornography charges.

Davis is the chairman of the International Campaign to Stop Rape and Gender Violence in Conflict – an organization devoted to ending sexual violence.

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

Former St. Agnes priest John Wisner formally defrocked 6 years after abuse allegations surfaced

KANSAS
Shawnee Mission Post

June 28, 2018

By Jay Senter

Two years after a lawsuit against the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas alleged that a priest working at St. Agnes Church in Roeland Park had sexually abused a boy during a church trip, the Vatican has affirmed a decree removing him from the priesthood.

An alleged victim of abuse by Father John Wisner first came forward in 2012, saying that Wisner had molested him when he was a 15 year old on a youth outing to Table Rock Lake in Arkansas in 1982. Two additional men came forward with similar allegations against Wisner. The archdiocese investigated those claims and found them credible. Archbishop Joseph Naumann suspended Wisner from active ministry in May 2012, but he was not defrocked.

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.

Judge won’t dismiss ritualistic sex abuse lawsuit against Warren Jeffs and the FLDS Church

SALT LAKE CITY (UT)
FOX13

June 27, 2018

By Ben Winslow

A judge has refused to dismiss a lawsuit filed against polygamist leader Warren Jeffs and the Fundamentalist LDS Church alleging “ritualistic sex abuse.”

Third District Court Judge Vernice Trease canceled a hearing scheduled Wednesday and instead issued a written ruling, denying a request by the United Effort Plan Trust to dismiss a lawsuit filed by a woman only known in court documents as “R.H.” The UEP is the real-estate holdings arm of the FLDS Church, which is now under court control.

The UEP Trust has also sought to force R.H. to reveal her identity. Her lawyers have argued that R.H. should be allowed to proceed under the pseudonym for safety reasons and have sought a protective order to prevent her identity from being made public. In her ruling, Judge Trease suggested that proceeding under anonymity was not improper. However, the judge said she would rule on whether it applies in this case at a later time.

The UEP has also asked to dismiss the lawsuit on other grounds or move it out of Salt Lake City. Judge Trease said she would rule on that at a later date.

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

Ex-priest Evasco named 4th member of panel in church dialogue

MANILA (PHILIPPINES)
Phil Star

June 28, 2018

President Rodrigo Duterte has appointed Cabinet Secretary Leoncio “Jun” Evasco Jr. as the fourth member of the panel formed to dialogue with the Catholic Church and other religious groups, Malacañang said Thursday.

Presidential spokesman Harry Roque said Evasco, a former priest, may have been asked to join the panel because of his familiarity with Catholic dogma.

“I was just informed very late last night that he (Evasco) will be the fourth member,” Roque said in a press briefing in Malacañang.

Evasco will join Roque, political strategist Pastor “Boy” Saycon and foreign affairs undersecretary Ernesto Abella in the committee.

Evasco was ordained as a Catholic priest in 1970 and was assigned in different municipalities in the province of Bohol. He also served as mayor for Maribojoc from 2007 to 2016.

He was also appointed as head of the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council in 2016 after Vice President Leni Robredo ressigned from her post.

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.

Lawsuit Accuses Priest of Committing Sex Acts During Video Chats With Teen Boy

ALLENTOWN (PA)
NBC Philadelphia

June 27, 2018

By David Chang

The lawsuit states the teen boy took screenshots of some of the encounters.

A priest has been removed from the Allentown diocese after a lawsuit accused him of persuading a teen boy to commit sex acts during video counseling sessions.

Reverend Monsignor Francis Nave allegedly contacted the 16-year-old boy in 2012 through a gay social media website. Nave was the pastor of the Sacred Heart parish in Bath, Pennsylvania at the time.

The lawsuit alleges the teen was depressed and Nave told him it was his job as a Catholic priest to help people and listen to their problems. Monsignor Nave then began to mentor the teen, assuring him that he just wanted to be his friend and help him, according to the lawsuit.

Nave then allegedly persuaded the teen to speak to him via Skype or Facetime during their counseling sessions. During some of those sessions, Nave took off his clothes and masturbated on camera and told the teen to do the same, the lawsuit alleges.

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

No liability for Grand Rapids diocese in abuse case

GRAND RAPIDS (MI)
The Associated Press

June 27, 2018

The Michigan appeals court says the Grand Rapids Catholic Diocese isn’t liable for a sexual relationship between a high school tutor and a student.

The appeals court affirmed a decision to dismiss a lawsuit against the diocese. The court says church and school officials had no knowledge of sex between Abigail Simon and a teen boy in 2013.

The 38-year-old Simon was sentenced to at least eight years in prison for criminal sexual conduct. She’s eligible for parole in 2022.

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.

Survivor describes impact of sexual assault by Lancaster piano teacher

LANCASTER (OH)
Lancaster Eagle-Gazette

June 27, 2018

By Spencer Remoquillo

In more than 6,000 words, a teen victim — now a young woman — explained how being sexually assaulted by her 56-year-old piano teacher at a local church impacted her life.

The victim, who was 16 when the abuse started, read a detailed statement to Fairfield County Common Pleas Judge David Trimmer who sentenced her abuser, 56-year-old Carlyle Sparrow, to complete five years of community control and to register as a Tier III sex offender.

“I didn’t want to be at school,” she said in court Monday. “I didn’t want to be at home. I didn’t want to be anywhere. I wanted to be dead. I wanted my living nightmare to stop. I Googled which type of pills I could take to kill myself and how many it would take. Every time I drove my car, I looked for the places on my road that would be ideal to crash my car: over a cliff, down a hill, in a ditch. I thought about my future and decided it wasn’t worth living. I would never be the girl I used to be.”

The Eagle-Gazette preserves the identity of crime victims, particularly those who suffer sexual abuse.

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

National Commission of Women asks Kerala police to investigate priests accused of sexual abuse

INDIA
Scroll.in

June 27, 2018

The commission asked the police chief to apprise it of the action taken.

The National Commission of Women said on Wednesday that it had written to the Kerala police chief to seek investigation into allegations of sexual abuse against five priests in the state. The commission asked the police chief to apprise it of the action taken.

The women’s commission took cognisance of the matter after the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church sent the priests on leave on Monday following accusations that they blackmailed and sexually abused a woman for three years.

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 women leaders present donation to prevent child abuse in Utah, Bolivia

SALT LAKE CITY (UT)
Deseret News

June 27, 2018

By Tad Walch

The new leader of the LDS Church’s Young Women organization said Wednesday that when a Utah girl is sexually abused, she can find safety, help and healing at one of the state’s Children’s Justice Centers.

“These centers provide a location where victims can go that are safe and where they can receive healing,” said Sister Bonnie H. Cordon, Young Women general president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. “Ecclesiastical leaders are a great resource, too.”

Sister Cordon presented a $50,000 donation from the church Wednesday to support Utah’s rural Children’s Justice Centers. She provided the gift after a tour of the Avenues Children’s Justice Center in Salt Lake City.

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.

2 more bishops in Chile resign over sex abuse scandal as Pope Francis cleans house

VATICAN CITY
The Associated Press

June 28, 2018

Pope Francis on Thursday accepted the resignations of two more Chilean bishops, the latest fallout from a sex abuse scandal whose scope and gravity were initially underestimated by the pontiff.

Last month, all 31 of Chile’s active bishops offered to quit for collectively failing to protect children from pedophile priests.

The Vatican announced that Francis allowed Bishop Alejandro Goic Karmelic of Rancagua and Bishop Horacio del Carmen Valenzuela Abarca of Talca to resign, bringing to five the total number of resignations accepted so far.

In the Rancagua diocese, 14 priests have been accused of having had sex with minors. Goic had served as head of the Chilean church’s child protection commission.

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.

Resignations and Appointments, 28.06.2018

VATICAN CITY
Holy See Press Office

June 28, 2018

Resignation of bishop of Rancagua, Chile, and appointment of apostolic administrator “sede vacante et ad nutum Sanctae Sedis” of the same diocese

Resignation of bishop of Talca, Chile, and appointment of apostolic administrator “sede vacante et ad nutum Sanctae Sedis” of the same diocese


Resignation of bishop of Rancagua, Chile, and appointment of apostolic administrator “sede vacante et ad nutum Sanctae Sedis” of the same diocese

The Holy Father has accepted the resignation from the pastoral care of the diocese of Rancagua, Chile, presented by H.E. Msgr. Alejandro Goić Karmelić.

The Pope has appointed H.E. Msgr. Luis Fernando Ramos Pérez, auxiliary bishop of Santiago de Chile, Chile, as apostolic administrator “sede vacante et ad nutum Sanctae Sedis” of the diocese of Rancagua, Chile.

—-
Resignation of bishop of Talca, Chile, and appointment of apostolic administrator “sede vacante et ad nutum Sanctae Sedis” of the same diocese

The Holy Father has accepted the resignation from the pastoral care of the diocese of Talca, Chile, presented by H.E. Msgr. Horacio del Carmen Valenzuela Abarca.

The Pope has appointed H.E. Msgr. Galo Fernández Villaseca, auxiliary bishop of Santiago de Chile, Chile, as apostolic administrator “sede vacante et ad nutum Sanctae Sedis” of the diocese of Talca, Chile.

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.

Isle of Man diocese to review alleged abuse by clergy

UNITED KINGDOM
BBC News

June 27, 2018

Victims of alleged child abuse by Church of England (CofE) clergy have been urged to come forward after calls for a fresh inquiry on the Isle of Man.

Last week a report examining the Church’s “flawed” Past Case Review (PCR) said it failed to identify at least 22 cases of possible abuse.

Sodor and Man is one of seven CofE dioceses whose efforts were deemed “inadequate”.

A diocese spokesman acknowledged “shortcomings” in its record-keeping.

The investigation by Sir Roger Singleton was due to be published next month, but was released earlier following an investigation by BBC News.

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.

‘I think we’d all make quite good priests’: Josepha Madigan responds to Archbishop’s criticism

IRELAND
The Journal

June 26, 2018

On Saturday, Culture Minister Josepha Madigan stepped up at her local church to lead prayers after a priest failed to show up.

CULTURE MINISTER JOSEPHA Madigan has hit back at Archbishop of Dublin Diarmuid Martin after he accused her of being ”deeply disrespectful” to her parishioners.

On Saturday, Madigan stepped up at her local church, the Church of St Therese in Mount Merrion, Dublin, to lead prayers after a priest failed to show up. A local parish priest confirmed to TheJournal.ie that the absence was caused due to a miscommunication of the monthly rota.

Madigan works on the team of the Ministry of the Word at the Church of St Therese in Mount Merrion, Dublin, and gives a reading at Mass once a month.

Speaking to RTÉ’s Today with Sean O’Rourke, Madigan said that she did not read the Gospel, but led the readings from the altar.

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.

Two More Chilean Bishops Are Out As Pope Cleans House

VATICAN CITY
The Associated Press

June 28, 2018

By Frances D’Emilio

Pope Francis on Thursday accepted the resignations of two more Chilean bishops, the latest fallout from a sex abuse scandal whose scope and gravity were initially underestimated by the pontiff.

Last month all 31 of Chile’s active bishops offered to quit for collectively failing to protect children from pedophile priests.

The Vatican announced that Francis allowed Rancagua Bishop Alejandro Goic Karmelic and Talca Bishop Horacio del Carmen Valenzuela Abarca to resign, bringing to five the total number of resignations accepted so far.

In the region of the Rancagua diocese, 14 priests have been accused of having had sex with minors. Bishop Goic had served as head of the Chilean church’s child protection commission.

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.

Sacar a los lobos de El Bosque: la intención de convertir la parroquia de Karadima en un ícono contra el abuso

CHILE – SANTIAGO
El Mostrador

June 26, 2018

[Taking the wolves out of El Bosque: the intention to turn the parish of Karadima into an icon against abuse]

By Alejandra Carmona López

Si bien partió como una idea que da vueltas hace algunos días por redes sociales, diferentes agrupaciones de laicos en Chile la han acogido y están haciendo fuerza para que sea una realidad: convertir ese lugar en un Memorial del Abuso Sexual Eclesiástico en nuestro país. Ya se ha conversado en diferentes reuniones y la iniciativa traspasa el boca en boca con el objetivo de simbolizar un nuevo “Nunca Más”.

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.

Papa Francisco acepta renuncia de obispos Alejandro Goic y Horacio Valenzuela

CHILE
La Tercera

June 28, 2018

[Pope Francisco accepts resignations of bishops Alejandro Goic and Horacio Valenzuela]

La máxima autoridad eclesiástica nombró como administrador apostólico a Fernando Ramos en Rancagua y a Galo Fernández en Talca.

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.

Goic dice que la crisis de la Iglesia “le imprimen un sabor amargo” a su salida de la diócesis de Rancagua

CHILE
La Tercera

June 28, 2018

[Goic says that the crisis of the Church “gives him a bitter taste” when he leaves the diocese of Rancagua]

By Carlos Reyes

El ahora obispo emérito de la capital de la sexta Región agregó que “nunca he eludido los desafíos que se me han propuesto, tampoco las responsabilidades. Mi deber hoy es cooperar con todo aquello que el administrador requiera”.

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.

French ex-bishop to stand trial for not reporting paedophile priest

FRANCE
AFP

June 28, 2018

The former bishop of the French city of Orleans, Andre Fort, was ordered Thursday to stand trial for failing to report a paedophile priest in his diocese.

Fort, who was bishop of the northern city between 2002 and his retirement in 2010, was charged last June over allegations that he turned a blind eye to child abuse by priest Pierre de Castelet.

Fort had moved de Castelet into roles where he did not have contact with children, but did not inform the police about accusations by a man who said he and others had been abused by the priest as a child.

“My client thought this young man did not want his accusations to be made public, but that he just wanted to make sure Pierre de Castelet had no more contact with children,” Fort’s lawyer Benoit de Gaullier told AFP.

He added that Fort “acknowledges that he is to face trial, and he will explain himself”.

De Castelet is accused of abuse dating back to 1993 when he served as chaplain at a camp for young Christians and was charged in 2012. He also worked as a chaplain for the European Scouts movement.

His accuser, Olivier Savignac, said he had reported the priest to Fort personally in 2010, saying he believed de Castelet could have abused around 10 other children.

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

Víctimas de Karadima valoran salida de Goic y Valenzuela

CHILE
La Tercera

June 28, 2018

[Victims of Karadima value departure of Goic and Valenzuela]

Mediante redes sociales, Juan Carlos Cruz y José Andrés Murillo se refirieron a la decisión del Papa de aceptar las renuncias de los obispos de Rancagua y Talca.

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

Pope appoints apostolic administrator for Syro-Malabar major archdiocese

VATICAN CITY
Catholic News Service

June 26, 2018

While Cardinal George Alencherry still retains the title of major archbishop of the Syro-Malabar Archdiocese of Ernakulam-Angamaly, Pope Francis named an apostolic administrator to run the Indian archdiocese.

The pope appointed 71-year-old Bishop Jacob Manathodath of Palghat to be the apostolic administrator “sede plena,” or effective head, of the archdiocese, said a Vatican press release June 22.

Ucanews.com reported the Vatican also removed three prelates from their administrative duties in the same archdiocese, which has been experiencing infighting and financial controversies aggravated by disputed land deals.

It is first time in the history of this Asian church that the Vatican has suspended the administrative powers of all the bishops in a diocese, said a senior priest who asked to remain anonymous.

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.

Port Aransas priest arrested on felony theft charge

PORT ARANSAS
KRISTV6

June 27, 2018

A Catholic priest formerly of a parish in Port Aransas has been arrested on felony theft charges, an arrest affidavit showed.

Kris Bauta was arrested by Texas Rangers on Tuesday following a monthslong investigation and charged with theft from a non-profit organization.

Court documents showed that investigators were approached by the Catholic Diocese of Corpus Christi (Church) back in December 2017 regarding Bauta. Church officials had reportedly accused him of continuous theft of a large sum of money from July 2013 to December 2017.

An investigation then found “numerous items that were reimbursed by the Church” which were “actually personal charges of Bausta.” Further, checks written from the Church were said to have deposited into Bauta’s personal accounts; while other checks designated for “Hurricane Harvey Relief” were also deposited into Bauta’s personal checking account.

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.

Port Aransas priest arrested on felony theft charge

PORT ARANSAS
KRISTV6

June 27, 2018

A Catholic priest formerly of a parish in Port Aransas has been arrested on felony theft charges, an arrest affidavit showed.

Kris Bauta was arrested by Texas Rangers on Tuesday following a monthslong investigation and charged with theft from a non-profit organization.

Court documents showed that investigators were approached by the Catholic Diocese of Corpus Christi (Church) back in December 2017 regarding Bauta. Church officials had reportedly accused him of continuous theft of a large sum of money from July 2013 to December 2017.

An investigation then found “numerous items that were reimbursed by the Church” which were “actually personal charges of Bausta.” Further, checks written from the Church were said to have deposited into Bauta’s personal accounts; while other checks designated for “Hurricane Harvey Relief” were also deposited into Bauta’s personal checking account.

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.

Pa. pastor didn’t report sexual abuse of a child: State police

HARRISBURG (PA)
Penn Live

June 28, 2018

By Travis Kellar

A pastor in Huntingdon County is facing charges after state police say he didn’t report sexual abuse of a child to authorities.

The alleged abuse of a 14-year-old girl happened between June and September 2007, according to police. David Riehl Fisher, a church pastor, was made aware of the abuse on several occasions, but never reported it, police said.

Fisher, 63, faces a charge of endangering the welfare of children.

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

Pa. pastor didn’t report sexual abuse of a child: State police

HARRISBURG (PA)
Penn Live

June 28, 2018

By Travis Kellar

A pastor in Huntingdon County is facing charges after state police say he didn’t report sexual abuse of a child to authorities.

The alleged abuse of a 14-year-old girl happened between June and September 2007, according to police. David Riehl Fisher, a church pastor, was made aware of the abuse on several occasions, but never reported it, police said.

Fisher, 63, faces a charge of endangering the welfare of children.

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

Barros no es el único: Los obispos que han dejado sus cargos tras reunirse con el Papa Francisco

CHILE
Tele13 Radio (103.3 FM)

June 28, 2018

[Barros is not the only one: Bishops who have left office after meeting with Pope Francis]

El Sumo Pontífice aceptó la renuncia de cinco religiosos, luego que todos los prelados del país pusieran sus cargos a disposición tras el escándalo por encubrimiento de abusos.

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.

Comunicado de la Diócesis de Talca

CHILE – TALCA
Diocese of Talca

June 27, 2018

[Communiqué of the Diocese of Talca Regarding Pbro. Luis Felipe Egaña Baraona]

1.- Con gran dolor por el sufrimiento de todas las personas involucradas en esta denuncia, a sus familias y a la comunidad de la Iglesia.

2.- Con el propósito firme de poner todos los medios posibles para buscar la verdad y hacer justicia con la mayor prontitud.

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.

Saludo de Mons. Horacio Valenzuela a la comunidad Diocesana

CHILE – TALCA
Diocese of Talca

June 28, 2018

[Statement of Bishop Horacio Valenzuela about Pope Francis’s acceptance of his resignation]

By Horacio Valenzuela Abarca

A la querida comunidad Diocesana: “Dios que nos da constancia y consuelo, los ayude a vivir en armonía unos con otros, conforme al ejemplo de Cristo Jesús, para que todos juntos, a una sola voz alaben al Dios y Padre de nuestro Señor Jesucristo” (Rom. 15,5).

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.

Informe Especial: “Abusos, sotanas y encubrimientos”

CHILE
24Horas.cl.TVN

June 24, 2018

[Special Report: “Abuses, cassocks and cover-ups”]

[VIDEO]

El reportaje de Santiago Pavlovic analizó las denuncias de abusos sexuales en la Iglesia Católica y el rol de las autoridades eclesiásticas en estos casos. La región de Aysén es una de las más azotadas: 400 casos en cinco años en una población de unos 120 mil habitantes.

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.

Iglesia investiga a ex capellán de Carabineros por abuso sexual a menor en 1985

CHILE – TALCA
Cooperativa.cl

June 27, 2018

[Church investigates former chaplain of Carabineros for child sexual abuse in 1985]

* Luis Felipe Egaña fue apartado de todas sus funciones y responsabilidades pastorales.

* Doctor en Derecho Canónico de la Arquidiócesis de Santiago Jaime Ortiz de Lazcano fue designado Instructor de la investigación.

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

Ex capellán de Carabineros es investigado por abuso sexual a menor en 1985

TALCA (CHILE)
El Mostrador

June 27, 2018

[Former Carabineros chaplain is investigated for minor sexual abuse in 1985]

“Comunicamos que con esta fecha se ha iniciado una Investigación Previa para determinar la verosimilitud de la denuncia de un presunto abuso sexual a un menor ocurrida en el año 1985, presentada en contra del Presbítero Luis Felipe Egaña Baraona”, informó la diócesis a través de un comunicado.

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.

St. Paul’s School details programs for alumni who were sexually abused

CONCORD (NH)
Concord Monitor

June 26, 2018

By Alyssa Dandrea

A new compensation program for former St. Paul’s School students who were sexually abused by faculty and staff allows victims to come forward privately, but does not prevent them from later publicly sharing their stories or from going to court if an agreement isn’t reached.

The program – which allows victims to work with a neutral arbitrator and without a lawyer – is one of several new initiatives announced Tuesday by the Concord prep school and is being deemed “unique” by legal experts. While similar payout programs have been used by the Roman Catholic Church, which has grappled for years with clerical sexual abuse of children, they haven’t surfaced at private schools rocked by sexual abuse allegations.

St. Paul’s is following the lead of other private schools in providing financial assistance for mental health services to former students abused by adults entrusted with their care. The new victim therapy fund, also announced Tuesday, mirrors efforts taken by Choate Rosemary Hall in Connecticut and St. George’s School in Rhode Island.

The Concord prep school, like Choate, is partnering with RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network), which works with 1,000 sexual assault service providers across the country and operates the National Sexual Assault Hotline, according to a letter from St. Paul’s Rector Michael Hirschfeld and Board of Trustees President Archibald Cox Jr. RAINN will have a dedicated phone line (1-855-215-2281) for St. Paul’s School alumni beginning July 6.

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

Church body warns of legal barriers to addressing abuse failings

IRELAND
The Irish Times

June 27, 2018

By Jack Power

Safeguarding board told Government it had no central database of priests facing allegations

The Catholic Church’s child protection watchdog has said legal barriers are preventing it from addressing “serious and widespread” failings in how some allegations of clerical sexual abuse are handled.

Data protection concerns are preventing the National Board for Safeguarding Children from keeping a central database of priests who are facing child abuse allegations, with potentially “devastating consequences for children”, the organisation’s board told the Department of Justice in April.

The problem was creating a “very serious deficiency” in the system set up to prevent clerical sex abuse, the board said, according to correspondence obtained under the Freedom of Information Act.

Citing data protection concerns, some dioceses and orders are not sharing identifying information about alleged abusers with the board, or between each other, which creates a “significant obstacle” in ensuring safeguarding standards, the board told the department.

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.

Eastern Pa. priest suspended after online sex-abuse lawsuit

PITTSBURGH (PA)
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

June 27, 2018

By Peter Smith

A priest of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Allentown, Pa., has been suspended after a lawsuit accused him of exploiting a teenage boy’s trust by engaging in sexual acts over the internet with him beginning in 2011.

The Allentown diocese said in a statement it had just learned of the lawsuit and that Monsignor Francis Nave will be removed from ministry pending investigation. Msgr. Nave was pastor of Sacred Heart Parish in Bath, Pa.

The lawsuit arrives as the Allentown diocese and five other Pennsylvania Catholic dioceses brace for the release of a voluminous grand jury report into alleged sexual abuse and cover-up over the past seven decades. The report remains sealed pending challenges to its release before the state Supreme Court.

The lawsuit — filed Tuesday in the Court of Common Pleas for the First Judicial District in Philadelphia — identifies the plaintiff only as John Doe. His Florida-based attorney, Jeff Herman, said the plaintiff also reported the abuse to law enforcement in Virginia.

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

The Catholic Church turned its back on Father Glen Walsh, says his brother

AUSTRALIA
The Newcastle Herald

June 23, 2018

By Joanne McCarthy

GLEN Walsh was the whistleblower Catholic priest who died alone in a Newcastle church building in November, only weeks before he was due to give damning evidence at the trial of Archbishop Philip Wilson.

He took his own life, aged 55 – a priest who paid a devastating price for reporting Hunter paedophile priest Jim Fletcher to police in 2004, while the archbishop kept silent about what he knew.

“The church turned its back on Glen,” said his brother, John, only weeks after Wilson was convicted in Newcastle for concealing Fletcher’s crimes, in a case that made headlines around the world.

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

Catholic priest removed from Bath church amidst sexual misconduct allegations

BATH (PA)
69 News

June 27, 2018

Civil lawsuit filed against Allentown Diocese

The Allentown Diocese has removed a Catholic priest from ministry following allegations that he encouraged a teenage boy to masturbate while being counseled online by the priest.

Florida-based attorney Jeffrey Herman filed a lawsuit in Philadelphia Tuesday against Monsignor Francis Nave, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Allentown and Bishop Alfred A. Schlert in connection to the alleged 2012 incidents.

Nave, who served as pastor of Sacred Heart Parish in Bath, was removed from ministry on Wednesday after the Diocese said it learned of the allegations.

“The Diocese of Allentown was unaware of this lawsuit or these allegations. As required by our Zero Tolerance Policy, we notified law enforcement (Wednesday). We will remove Msgr. Nave from ministry today, pending the results of the investigation,” according to a statement released by Diocese spokesman Matt Kerr.

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

Opinion: Pennsylvania Supreme Court wrong to block report on church abuse

POTTSTOWN (PA)
The Mercury

June 27, 2018

By Chris Freind

Ahh! Summer. The time of year for ballgames, barbecues, the shore – and the cover-up of a cover-up.

That’s right. Just when it seemed like no one was paying attention, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court sneakily issued an injunction prohibiting the release of a sweeping 800-page grand jury report detailing sexual abuse in six Catholic dioceses.

In allowing the pedophilia scandal – that for decades has plagued children of churchgoers – to once again avoid the light of day, thereby victimizing the victims anew, the court surely had good reason. Right?

Uhhh … no.

Actually, there was no reason at all. In fact, not only didn’t they originally explain their bizarre ruling, but in an unusual move, none of the justices signed their names. How’s that for guts?

In a two-paragraph, six-line ruling, the court simply stated that it found in favor of plaintiffs who were fighting to keep the report sealed.

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.

Sacerdote de Talca es apartado de sus funciones ante investigación por presunto abuso sexual

TALCA (CHILE)
BioBioChile.cl

June 27, 2018

[Priest of Talca is removed from his functions before investigation for alleged sexual abuse]

By Matías Vega

La Diócesis de Talca anunció el inicio de una investigación previa para determinar la verosimilitud de una denuncia contra uno de sus sacerdotes.

Se trata de Luis Egaña Baraona, quien enfrenta una denuncia por presunto abuso sexual a una menor, la cual data del 1985.

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.

Abren investigación a vicario cercano al renunciado obispo valenzuela por abuso

CHILE – TALCA
www.lanacion.cl

June 28, 2018

[Investigation is opened into alleged abuse of a minor by the vicar close to the resigned Bishop Valenzuela]

By Ricardo Pérez Vallejos

Al sacerdote Luis Felipe Egaña Baraona se le han impuesto las medidas cautelares que lo apartan, desde esta fecha, de todas sus funciones y responsabilidades pastorales.

La Diócesis de Talca informó que el miércoles inició una investigación previa para determinar la verosimilitud de la denuncia de un presunto abuso sexual a un menor, ocurrida en el año 1985, presentada en contra del presbítero Luis Felipe Egaña Baraona (foto de abajo).

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.

Varadkar set to confront Pope over abuse scandals

IRELAND
The Times

June 28, 2018

By Ellen Coyne

Backing for Madigan on women priests and celibacy

Leo Varadkar will raise the issue of historic abuse of Irish citizens by the Catholic Church when he meets Pope Francis later this summer.

He is the latest senior member of government to signal that he will use the papal visit to Ireland in August to lobby the Vatican for reform.

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

Priest on leave denies alleged sex abuse in 1980s

BUFFALO (NY)
The Buffalo News

June 28, 2018

By Jay Tokasz

A retired Buffalo priest who was recently put on administrative leave wrote a letter this week vehemently denying that he sexually assaulted a young boy in the 1980s.

The Rev. Roy Herberger, the former pastor of SS. Columba-Brigid Church, said in the letter that he contacted a lawyer after the Diocese of Buffalo put him on administrative leave due to the abuse complaint.

“I want everyone to know that I deny these claims completely – 100 percent,” Herberger said in the letter. “I’m not saying that the victim is lying about being assaulted by some priest, a priest but I do emphatically deny that it was me.”

Diocesan spokesman George Richert declined to comment Wednesday afternoon. Herberger could not be reached to comment Wednesday. A clergy friend confirmed that Herberger wrote the letter and sent it to relatives, friends and parishioners. It’s not clear how many people received the letter.

Herberger said in the letter than he knows the man making the claim because he helped the man’s father, who struggled with alcoholism and was homeless for stretches of time on the streets of Buffalo and took him for treatment. He met the man making the complaint maybe three of four times and always in the presence of his parents, Herberger said in the letter. Herberger said he never was alone with the boy.

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.

Undercover Legal Battle Brewing Over Damning Grand Jury Report Into Clergy Sex Abuse In Pennsylvania

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
CBS

June 27, 2018

By Joe Holden

An undercover legal battle is brewing over what is reportedly a very eye-opening grand jury report about clergy sex abuse in the state of Pennsylvania.

Derailed, at least for now, an 800-plus page report investigating decades of priest sex abuse across Pennsylvania remains barred from release by the state supreme court.

The reasons why have legal experts troubled.

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

No plan to make ‘an additional appeal’ to parishes for settlement funds

ST. PAUL (MN)
Minnesota Public Radio

June 27, 2018

By Martin Moylan

In an interview with MPR News on Wednesday, Archbishop Bernard Hebda addressed a proposed $210 million settlement fund for victims of clergy sexual abuse, efforts to prevent future abuse and the path forward for the Twin Cities archdiocese.

Most of the settlement money — $170 million — would come from insurers for the archdiocese and parishes. Hedba said that parishes will not be required to help fund the rest of the settlement, but he noted some are contributing voluntarily.

“It’s not like we’re going to be making an additional appeal — at least at this point, that’s not part of the plan,” he said. “Certainly, we’ve already been hearing from people that desire to be part of this, who recognize the responsibility of the church at large for the situation.”

But several callers who identified as Catholic chastised the church in comments to Hebda. One woman, a lifelong Catholic from Minneapolis, vowed never to give another dime to the archdiocese.

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.