ABUSE TRACKER

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

April 7, 2019

Víctimas de abuso eclesiástico presentarán “Mapa chileno de los delitos” cometidos por religiosos

[Survivors to present map of Chilean clergy abuse cases]

CHILE
El Mostrador

April 5, 2019

La presentación se realizará el sábado 6 de abril a las 18:30 en el auditorio del Museo de la Memoria y los Derechos Humanos.

La Red de Sobrevivientes de Abuso Eclesiástico presentará este sábado el Mapa Chileno de los delitos de abuso sexual y de conciencia cometidos por integrantes de la iglesia católica chilena. El mapa es, según sus creadores, una “muestra pequeña e imperfecta de la enorme cantidad de crímenes que siguen silenciados por parte de las autoridades” de la iglesia en el país.

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.

Scicluna por abusos: Mayoría de víctimas son hombres y muchos de los últimos casos son de Chile

[Scicluna talks about his abuse inquiry: Most victims are men and many of the latter cases are from Chile]

CHILE
BioBioChile

April 5, 2019

By Sebastián Asencio

El secretario adjunto de la Congregación para la Doctrina de la Fe y arzobispo de Malta, Charles Scicluna, se refirió este viernes a la actual situación de los casos de abusos por parte de la Iglesia en Chile, haciendo un llamado a mantener la valentía y esperanza para erradicar dichas irregularidades de la institución.

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.

Violación en La Catedral: Tito Rivera asegura que demanda por 350 millones es una “suma exagerada”

[Rape in the Cathedral: Tito Rivera says that demand for 350 million pesos is an “exaggerated sum”]

CHILE
BioBioChile

April 6, 2019

By Jorge Molina Sanhueza

Patrocinado por el exauditor del Ejército durante la dictadura militar, Samuel Correa Meléndez, el exsacerdote acusado de violar a un hombre en una de las habitaciones del principal templo religioso, respondió al libelo civil que incluye al Arzobispado, presentado por la víctima. En su escrito ante la ministra de fuero Maritza Villadangos, asegura que la cifra solicitada como indemnización “excede con creces cualquiera otra otorgada por daño moral por cualquier tribunal en casos en los que incluso existen víctimas fatales.

El sacerdote Tito Rivera, acusado de drogar y violar a un hombre en una de las habitaciones de La Catedral, en 2015, reapareció. Lo hizo a través de un escrito presentado por su abogado Samuel Correa Meléndez, contestando así la demanda por indemnización de perjuicios de 350 millones de pesos, ingresada en su contra por la víctima y que incluye como responsable solidario al Arzobispado de Santiago.

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 penquista denuncia que hombre le pidió dinero a cambio de no revelar abusos en la Iglesia

[Penquista priest accuses man of asking for money to keep abuse claims quiet]

CHILE
BioBioChile

April 4, 2019

By Nicolás Parra and Fabián Polanco

Una denuncia por extorsión o chantaje investiga la Fiscalía de Concepción tras la denuncia de un sacerdote quien asegura que un hombre se le acercó, exigiéndole dinero a cambio de no entregar a la justicia y a la Iglesia antecedentes sobre los abusos sexuales de que habría sido víctima hace 37 años.

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.

Scicluna asegura que su informe no será entregado a la fiscalía

[Scicluna says he does not think Pope will share Chilean testimonies with prosecutors]

CHILE
La Tercera

April 4, 2019

By S. Rodríguez and MJ Navarrete

El arzobispo de Malta explicó que los testimonios fueron dirigidos al Papa y cree que él respetará esa voluntad.

“La documentación y testimonios que yo recibí de tantas personas que me entregaron su confianza en Chile -en la segunda misión en particular- respondía a que la información iba a ser dirigida directamente al Santo Padre. Esta era la intención y deseo de las personas con las que nosotros nos encontramos en Chile. Yo consigné toda la información al Papa y estoy convencido de que él respetará la voluntad de estas personas, que tuvieron fe en él”, afirmó Charles Scicluna, arzobispo de Malta, en una entrevista con el periódico Encuentro, del Arzobispado de Santiago.

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.

Administrador apostólico de Santiago tras encuentro con el Papa Francisco: “Me pidió que les manifestara su cariño y cercanía a ustedes”

[Apostolic Administrator of Santiago after meeting with Pope Francis: “He asked me to show his affection and closeness to you”]

Sebastián Rivas

CHILE
La Tercera

April 6, 2019

By Sebastián Rivas

Celestino Aós grabó un video desde Asís, donde visitó la tumba de San Francisco, y aseguró que “queremos vivir este tiempo imitando el estilo” del santo italiano.

“Paz y bien desde Asís, junto a la tumba de San Francisco”. Así comienza la declaración del administrador apostólico de Santiago, monseñor Celestino Aós, enviada este sábado desde Asís, donde se encontraba visitando el lugar donde descansan los restos del santo italiano, luego de haberse reunido ayer viernes con el Papa Francisco.

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.

ROMAN CATHOLIC DIOCESE OF SPRINGFIELD-CAPE GIRARDEAU RELEASES SEXUAL ABUSE FINANCIAL REPORT

SPRINGFIELD (MO)
KTTS Radio

April 6, 2019

By Nathaniel Polley

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Cape Girardeau and Springfield has announced in a letter that details the financial expenditure’s of the diocese in connection to sexual abuse over its 64 year history.

The Church has spent a total of 700,000 dollars over the last 30 years in connection to sex abuse claims. Of that, 70,000 has gone to victim support, 450,000 to settlement, and 189,000 to legal fees. None of the money spent came from local churches.

The letter names 16 diocesan priests who were accused of abusing minors over the 64 years of the diocese’s existence.

According to the bishop’s letter, none of these abuses involve anyone in current ministry and all but three occurred before 1990. The internal investigation was launched by the diocese less than a month after the Pennsylvania scandal.

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.

Diocese has policy to protect children

FLORENCE (SC)
Morning News

April 7, 2019

On March 29, the Catholic Diocese of Charleston released its list of priests with credible allegations of sexual misconduct or abuse of minors. Now, I would like to address what the diocese has been doing for 25 years to protect children.

The diocese has had a policy on how to address allegations of sexual misconduct and abuse against children by church personnel since 1994. We were one of the first dioceses in the country to have such a policy. That policy was updated in 2003, after the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) issued its original Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People and its Essential Norms for Diocesan/Eparchial Policies Dealing with Allegations of Sexual Abuse of Minors by Priests or Deacons (revised in 2011 and most recently in 2018). We updated our policy again in 2012.

According to our policy, when the diocese receives an allegation, we direct the claimant to report to civil authorities immediately and then we, too, make a report to law enforcement. We offer access to pastoral resources, including a counseling referral, via our victim assistance coordinator.

When a priest, deacon, religious or layperson is accused of sexual misconduct against a minor, he/she is immediately placed on temporary administrative leave. If the accused is a priest, he cannot function as a priest. An investigation commences by law enforcement authorities, and to the extent it can be done without violating the prohibition against interfering with a law enforcement investigation, an independent investigator is engaged by the diocese.

After the investigation is completed, the case goes before the independent Sexual Abuse Advisory Board. The Board makes a recommendation to me as to the credibility of the allegation. If the allegation is deemed not credible, the religious or lay person can return to ministry. If the allegation is deemed credible, I will move to permanently remove the person from his/her ministry/position and apply any additional sanctions I deem appropriate.

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.

Reno diocese identifies 12 ‘credibly accused’ former priests

RENO (NV)
Associated Press

April 7, 2019

The Catholic Diocese of Reno has released the names of 12 former priests it has determined have been “credibly accused” of sexual abuse of minors.

The diocese on Friday released a statement listing 11 individuals who are now dead and one still living former priest who was removed from the ministry 45 years ago for abusing minors.

Bishop Randolph Calvo called for a review of clergy to help identify the abusive former priests.

The diocese said anyone who has been abused by clergy, a church employee or volunteer is encouraged to call the police and that the diocese offers assistance to abuse victims.

According to the diocese, a review board determined the credibility of the accusations by weighing corroborating evidence, criminal prosecution or an admission of guilt.

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.

Archbishop of Dublin Diarmuid Martin reveals paedophile priests cannot identify new victims because they abused so many

DUBLIN (IRELAND)
Irish Mirror

April 7, 2019

By Lynne Kelleher

The Archbishop of Dublin has told of his shock at finding serial paedophile priests are unable to conclusively identify new cases – because they had so many victims.

Dr Diarmuid Martin said some serial offenders could not recall the names of all their victims which in some instances numbered more than 100.

He makes the disturbing revelation in an RTE documentary detailing how the Vatican came to exert control over almost every aspect of Irish life since the foundation of the state.

Former Minister for Justice Michael McDowell looks at how the Catholic Church wielded so much power over the State for more than a century.

Dr Martin talks frankly about the scale of abuse expressing his deep concern that paedophile priests can often be unsure if they abused a victim or not when a new case comes to light.

He said: “Any organisation has to ask how is it that at a particular time there was large number of serial paedophiles.

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 Glouster priest appeals conviction on sexual battery charges

ATHENS (GA)
Athens Messenger

April 7, 2019

By Steve Robb

A former Glouster priest is claiming he was coerced into pleading guilty to three counts of sexual battery and argues that the 12-year sentence he received is excessive.

Henry Foxhoven, 45, who was a priest of Holy Cross Church in Glouster, filed notice this week that he is appealing his conviction to the 4th District Court of Appeals. He missed the normal 30-day deadline for filing an appeal, but has asked the court to allow him to file a delayed appeal, claiming his trial attorney failed to file a timely notice of appeal.

Foxhoven pleaded guilty last November in Athens County Common Pleas Court to three counts of sexual battery. He was accused of being sexually involved with an underaged parishioner who became pregnant. Foxhoven pleaded guilty to a bill of information, rather than have the case go to a grand jury for indictment.

As part of the appeal, Foxhaven claims he had ineffective assistance of counsel.

“…Defense counsel coerced and induced a guilty plea from Mr. Foxhoven by threatening him with 20 years if he goes to trial for a 3rd degree felony of sexual battery that only carries 1 to 5 years maximum penalty,” the appeal brief argues.

Although he pleaded guilty to three counts which resolved the case, Foxhoven had initially been charged in Athens County Municipal Court with eight counts of sexual battery involving the same girl. If the case had been taken to a grand jury, it’s conceivable he could have been indicted on more than three counts.

Foxhoven was sentenced to four years in prison on each of the three counts, and Common Pleas Judge Patrick Lang ordered the sentences be served consecutively for a total of 12 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.

Chicago priest reinstated after being cleared after sexual wrongdoing investigation

CHICAGO (IL)
WGN TV News

April 7, 2019

By Dina Bair

A Chicago priest who was accused of sexual wrongdoing was reinstated at his parish after being cleared of the allegations. In the wake of the sex abuse scandal, the Catholic Church acted swiftly, but this time, the accused was an innocent man.

It was a happy homecoming Saturday for the Rev. Gary Graf at San Jose Luis Sanchez Del Rio Parish in the Hermosa neighborhood. His parishioners believed in him all along, but he believed in the process of protecting children, and for him, that meant being removed from ministry for nine months.

A church employee, who was a minor, accused him of inappropriate behavior in July.

The teenager said he once received a phone call from the church secretary saying Graf was attracted to him. He said Graf would also rub his shoulders and once offered him a free car. The teen said he immediately told his parents.

According to a policy for the protection of minors, Cardinal Blase Cupich removed Graf from his pastoral duties, and immediately reported to local authorities. The Department of Children and Family Services investigated and found the allegation was not credible.

Chicago police launched their own investigation and the case went to trial where a judge ruled Graf not guilty. Then, the church conducted its own independent review which revealed no evidence of sexual abuse of a minor.

The season of Lent is a time of sacrifice for 40 days in the Catholic Church, but Graf has spent the last nine months in silence.

“It’s a new day, and these kinds of investigations have to take place. If a priest or minister is found not guilty, then he goes back to ministry. And if not, then the priest needs not to go back and be confronted by the law, and to the full extent of the law to be prosecuted,” Graf said. “We have to route out anyone who is going to do any harm to the most significant important members of the church which are our 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.

Erie Catholic diocese will open files to priest sex abuse victims

PITTSBURGH (PA)
Tribune Review

April 7, 2019

By Deb Erdley

The Catholic Diocese of Erie, which recently settled a $2 million clergy sexual abuse complaint, is making “relevant” internal files available to abuse survivors for the asking, church officials said.

The policy has been in effect since the diocese launched its compensation fund for abuse survivors in February, said Pittsburgh attorney Mark Rush of K&L Gates, legal counsel to the Erie diocese.

“They can simply request to review the file, and it will be made available to them. Bishop (Lawrence) Persico has been fully on board in asking us to be as transparent as possible,” Rush said.

Survivors need not be participating in the diocese compensation fund program to access files regarding their abuser, he said. Those files will include any other complaints against the alleged abuser, but will stop short of identifying victims.

“We want to be mindful of the privacy rights of other victims,” Rush said.

The so-called secret archives, church personnel files that detail abuse allegations and the church’s response to them, were kept under lock and key for decades. Subpoenas that compelled Pennsylvania bishops to release the files were a critical factor in building the Pennsylvania grand jury investigation that ultimately detailed allegations of abuse against 301 priests spanning seven decades.

Such files can be key to launching discovery in civil lawsuits, something church leaders across the state hoped to head off when they announced the launch of compensation funds for abuse survivors last fall. Those who accept compensation must sign away their right to sue.

Richard Serbin, an Altoona lawyer who has represented survivors in legal actions against every Pennsylvania diocese, said he was surprised when he received a letter notifying him of the offer to access the Erie diocese records.

“They are the first diocese to my knowledge to do this,” Serbin said. “I give Bishop Persico credit for taking this step to be more transparent.”

At least one person skeptical of the offer is Mitchell Garabedian, the Boston lawyer who settled the $2 million abuse case with the Erie diocese in late March and represented multiple survivors in the 2002 Boston Archdiocese abuse scandal.

“History has proven the Catholic Church cannot practice transparency and appropriate self-policing, so one has to be skeptical of their completeness with regard to the release of files. What the dioceses should be doing is releasing all files, including those of the priests and those complicit in covering up for them. Otherwise, there is serious concern files will be sanitized,” Garabedian 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.

April 6, 2019

Why this woman is going public for the first time about how a Nashville priest abused her 60 years ago

NASHVILLE (TN)
The Tennessean

April 6, 2019

By Holly Meyer and Anita Wadhwani

Kathleen Lisle cannot forget the summer day a priest at Christ the King Catholic Church called her childhood home, asking her to help fold bulletins for Mass.

She hesitated to go.

Lisle was 12. She did not want to be alone with the Rev. James Arthur Rudisill, but, in the 1950s, explaining that to her mother seemed impossible. A frequent guest at the Nashville home where she grew up with 10 brothers and five sisters, Rudisill sometimes sat next to Lisle, rubbing her leg while playing chess.

At her mother’s urging, Lisle walked the few blocks to the parish church.

“He was kind of touchy while we were doing that and then afterwards he said, ‘I need to go over to the school,’ ” said Lisle, who asked to be identified by her maiden name. “I was afraid to go, but you heard back then, ‘Do whatever father tells you to do.’ So I went.

“He took me over to the gym and up on the stage to the closet on the right hand side and that’s where he molested me.”

It would take Lisle about 40 years to find the courage to report the sexual abuse to the Roman Catholic Diocese of Nashville. Nearly a quarter of a century would pass before the diocese would make the allegation against Rudisill public.

The Nashville diocese is one of about 60 across the nation to release the names of accused priests they have long kept secret — in some cases for decades.

The names have rolled out in news releases and newsletters since a Pennsylvania grand jury investigation in August laid out in detail the “horrifying scale” of sexual abuse perpetrated by 300 priests on more than 1,000 identified victims spanning nearly eight decades.

Rudisill, who died in 2006, is among the 21 clergy the Nashville diocese has named since November.

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.

Father Gary Hayes Obituary

MILLVILLE (NJ)
Daily Journal

April 6, 2019

Father Gary Hayes, 66, of Millville, passed away peacefully on Thursday, April 4, 2019, surrounded by his loving family.

Gary was a graduate of Sacred Heart High School, class of 1971. After high school, Gary attended St. Bernard’s Seminary School in Rochester, NY where he obtained his Master’s Degree in Theology. Gary was ordained a priest in 1990 and worked for the Diocese of Owensboro, KY for many years.

In his spare time, Gary loved cooking, reading, Survivor, game shows, traveling and spending time with his family and friends as well as working within numerous church groups. Gary is also a lifelong member of the Knights of Columbus.

Gary was predeceased by his father, Rutherford B. Hayes and his mother, Alfia M. Hayes.

He is survived by his brother; Russell (Kathleen), brother; Bruce (Toni), brother; Robert, sister; Patricia (Paul) and brother; Richard (Dee), his Aunt; Josephine Lolli, as well as many beloved nieces, nephews and cousins.

Family and friends will be received on Wednesday, April 10, 2019, from 6pm to 8pm, with a service at 7:30pm, at the DeMarco-Luisi Funeral Home, 2755 S. Lincoln Ave., Vineland, NJ 08361. Memories, thoughts and prayers may be extended to the family by visiting dlfuneral.com.

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 abuse crisis as prophecy and pascha Flavor of the Gospel

PARIS (FRANCE)
LaCroix International

April 6, 2019

By Rita Ferrone

When Pope Francis wrote to the American bishops concerning the abuse crisis, he observed that “many actions can be helpful, good and necessary, and may even seem correct, but not all of them have the ‘flavor’ of the Gospel.”

By recommending a return to the Gospel as an essential reference point, Francis is on to something. The horror of the abuse cases, the sheer numbers of victims, the longevity of the crisis, its scope, and the fact that it has proved so hard to change the institutional patterns and habits that abet it—all this has been, for many of the faithful, a profoundly shocking and disorienting experience.

It has eroded the trust we used to give to our church leaders and structures. It has shamed us in the eyes of the world. We do not taste the Gospel here.

Yet we long for it, even when that longing goes unnamed.

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

More church excuses

PRINCE GEORGE COUNTY (MD)
Prince George Citizen

April 5, 2019

Re: Praying for the sinners and the victims, March 30.

Another excuse for concentrating on the Catholic Church and not those victimized by the church.

Such as being concerned about “that damned Catholic,” which is irrelevant to those who have been abused.

“… Their very nature altered by their vocation.” Altered negatively so that they can abuse others? Is that it?

” … Shackled to our vocation.” Again what does this have to do with the victims except more flannel to avoid what happened to those sexually abused?

” … Cover up scandals” “… the person is “part of the faith.” Do the abused get comfort from this? They need more than prayers.

There is a concern to prevent future abuses by the church. The present victims of the Roman Catholic Church have to live with their abuse for the rest of their lives. The Vatican should continue to audit itself? Who audits the Vatican? Whether sexual crimes are far higher in the wider population we do not know. The church covers up its sexual crimes.

“Keep watch and pray.” What satisfaction do the sexually abused of the Catholic Church get from this?

M. Warr, Prince George

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.

Baton Rouge Diocese holds reparation service for sex abuse scandal

BATON ROUGE (LA)
WBRZ TV

April 5, 2019

By Mark Armstrong

A few dozen faithful filled St. Joseph Cathedral in downtown to pray for forgiveness in the aftermath of the Catholic priest sex abuse scandal.

In February, the diocese released a list of 41 clergyman accused of a litany of sexual abuse across several decades. The list, like Friday’s service, are similar to actions taken by other dioceses across the country.

At Friday’s service, Baton Rouge Bishop Michael Duca called on Catholics to be patient friends to abuse victims who are still healing. He said he hopes victims and others disheartened by the scandal will one day regain trust in the church.

“I understand why they left, I understand the hurt and the difficulty they have. And then I pray they may one day see the church is responding in a way that might restore their hope,” said Duca.

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.

Rebuilding trust in the Southern Baptist Church

KNOXVILLE (TN)
Knoxville News

April 6, 2019

By Curtis Freeman

The Roman Catholic Church and the Southern Baptist Convention, the two largest religious bodies in the United States, are both embroiled in a crisis of trust.

For years the public has learned in horrific detail the abuses by Catholic priests who preyed on parishioners and bishops who covered it up.

It is now clear that for decades, the Southern Baptist denominational leadership has systematically ignored, suppressed and denied the right of sexual abuse survivors to be heard. Rather than addressing this problem, church leaders hid behind the excuse that congregational autonomy precludes denominational oversight.

While plenty of new details, based on court documents, published accounts and public records, have been unearthed recently, this sordid tale has been an open secret for decades. Southern Baptist leaders disregarded warnings and dismissed reports.

Even more troubling is that the more than 300 ministers and lay leaders identified in recent news accounts are only the tip of the iceberg. That’s because many survivors of abuse have never felt free to tell their stories, and the church’s power structure shielded countless abusers from facing the truth of their actions.

Southern Baptist clergy, like other Baptist and non-denominational ministers, lack accountability beyond the local congregation that ordains. Clergy are poorly vetted before being ordained, and are rarely evaluated after ordination. Sometimes when an abusive minister is forced by a congregation to resign, he is not prevented from serving in another congregation because unlike many other professions, there is no cumulative list of abusive ministers. It is a structure easy to exploit and abuse.

But Roman Catholics and Southern Baptists have something else in common. Each are controlled by all-male leadership and power structures that exclude women from decision-making and oversight. Only men can be Roman Catholic priests and bishops. And only men can be Southern Baptist pastors. It should not be surprising, then, that men dominate the oversight processes that could demand accountability and honesty.

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

Child sexual abuse in the institutional Church

MANILA (PHILIPPINES)
Manila Times

April 7, 2019

By Fr. Shay Cullen

There are serious and profound changes taking place in the Catholic Church to acknowledge and prevent child sexual abuse by clerics and lay people, prosecute the perpetrators and help the victims in their healing process. It is the belated result of generations of historical clerical child sexual abuse and the denial and cover-up of their crimes by some bishops and cardinals around the world. It has become a crisis for the Church as an institution.

Pope Francis approved recently a new law to protect child victims and prosecute any clerical suspects accused in the Vatican State. Before this, there was no such law protecting children in the Vatican. But the new law is a model for others and is a zero-tolerance law. Every complaint of child abuse must be reported and investigated immediately.

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 molesters need prison time

SALINA (KS)
Salina Journal

April 5, 2019

I read the article in The Salina Journal: “Salina Diocese releases list of substantiated abusers” (March 29 issue).

As a youth, I knew former Rev. Robert Reif who served at Saints Philip and James in Phillipsburg. My late grandmother Dora Marples’ home was at Agra 10 miles away and my late mom and I would go to Mass there.

The other name I know from my adulthood, the former Rev. Allen Scheer who served at Esbon (only 3 houses south of our home) as well as simultaneously serving at Smith Center with main parish being at Mankato.

When mom and I first moved to Esbon, Father Scheer saw me on the front porch sweeping and my mom hand sewing pillowcases. He introduced himself, although we had been to Mass many times.

In 2002, the media nationwide broke the news of the clergy-sex scandal (although it has existed for centuries). With the scandal in the news, I was horrified how he spoke of his days at seminary fairly graphically.

I was appalled with that talk from a clergyman, especially within earshot of my then 80-year-old mother. As I say, I was sweeping the porch and gradually swept near his feet. He backed up and off my porch. He left in peace.

I motioned for Mom to come in the house. I told her: “I will take you anywhere to Mass but not to a priest I have no confidence in.”

I ended up taking her to Mass in Beloit and to Superior and Nelson, Nebraska. Gut instinct was right. Priests convicted of heinous crimes should be imprisoned, not merely laicized. I wasn’t a victim but feel vulnerable potential victims need protection.

James Marples, Salina

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

Lafayette diocese ‘getting close’ to naming priests accused of sexual abuse

LAFAYETTE (LA)
Daily Advertiser

April 6, 2019

By Andrew J. Yawn

The list of priests accused of sexual abuse while serving in the Lafayette diocese is expected to be released soon, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Lafayette said Friday.

The diocese received a report from the committee in charge of assembling the list last week, said spokeswoman Blue Rolfes.

“Getting close to releasing it,” Rolfes said in a brief phone interview last week, although she offered no specific timeline.

The Lafayette diocese is one of two in the state that have not yet released a comprehensive list of priests who had credible complaints of sexual abuse made against them. The Diocese of Lake Charles is the other. The state’s four other dioceses have released their information.

Members of the Lafayette diocese’s lay review board and local attorneys have spent months searching for accusations against clergy by combing through 50 years of personnel records for the hundreds of priests who have served in the diocese, Rolfes has said.

But this is not the first time Rolfes has said the list would be released in short order. In a Daily Advertiser story first published on Feb. 11, Rolfes said they hoped “within the next week or two to release the list,” a timeline that has long since passed.

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.

April 5, 2019

Investigation Unearths Hundreds Of Abuse Allegations In Independent Baptist Churches

HERSHEY (PA)
Herdon Gazette

April 5, 2019

An investigation has uncovered hundreds of abuse allegations against leaders of a conservative, loosely affiliated network of evangelical Christian churches.

The report, identified 412 abuse allegations in 187 independent fundamental Baptist (IFB) churches and institutions across 40 states and Canada, with some cases reaching as far back as the 1970s.

The Star-Telegram spoke to more than 200 current or former IFB church members who shared stories about “rape, assault, humiliation and fear.” Many of the stories have already been made public through, and news reports. However, the newspaper said its reporters 21 new abuse allegations in the course of its eight-month investigation.

In total, the newspaper said it found that 168 IFB church leaders were accused or have been convicted of sexually abusing children.

Some of the women interviewed suggested that the patriarchal theology preached in IFB churches protects its male pastors from criticism and helps create a pattern of abuse and cover-up.

Interviewees that pastors in IFB churches were treated as if they were chosen by God and beyond reproach. Abusers used their power and position to psychologically manipulate and silence their victims, the women said. And often, even when victims spoke up, the accused pastors would manage to avoid criminal charges and use informal pastoral networks to relocate to another church.

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Diocese of Reno Releases Names of Priests Accused of Sexual Abuse of Minors

RENO (NV)
Channel 2 News

April 5, 2019

Bishop Randolph Calvo has released the names of priests and religious credibly accused of sexual abuse of minors.

Bishop Calvo called for a review of policies and procedures as well as a review of clergy files extending back over 80 years, after recent national reports of sexual abuse of minors by members of the clergy.

The reviews were conducted independently by the Diocesan Review Board.

The following is a list of names on that list:
Diocesan priests who formally belonged to the Diocese of Reno:
Robert Anderson
Edmund Boyle
Eugene Braun
Robert Despars
William Duff
Florence Flahive
Harold Vieages

Diocesan priests incardinated in another diocese who worked on a temporary basis in the Diocese of Reno:
Carmelo Baltazar
Timothy Ryan

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Persico comments following new names added to Diocese list of ‘credibly accused’ sexual offenders

ERIE (PA)
WFXP TV

April 5, 2019

The Erie Diocese releasing its fifth update of the public disclosure list in the wake of the church’s sex abuse scandal.

Two priests and one layperson, all deceased, have been added to the list for the first time. The others changed classification, mostly from ‘under investigation,’ to ‘credibly accused’. Of those, two are from this corner of the Diocese, both lay people.

They are Jonathan Borkowski of Fairview and Robert Viszeki of Erie.

Bishop Lawrence Persico of the Diocese of Erie tells us, “I feel it’s very important, especially with people who are living, is the fact that it alerts the public some of these people are living in the community.”

See the full release below:

The Diocese of Erie has updated its Public Disclosure List, which contains the names of persons who have been “credibly accused of actions that, in the diocese’s judgment, disqualify them from working with children.” In addition, it has added an explanation of the investigative process to its website to clarify what occurs when a person is under investigation. The explanation has been included in this release.

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Woman abused by priest shares message with survivors in Iowa

WEST DES MOINES (IA)
KCCI TV

April 5, 2019

By Hannah Hilyard

A West Des Moines woman who survived priest sexual abuse called the Diocese of Des Moines decision to release a list of credibly accused priests a trigger.

The Diocese of Des Moines named nine priests Thursday with credible allegations against them of abusing children.

Theresa Arlaud said she saw the announcement on the news and was instantly taken back to when she was sexually abused by a priest in Ohio.

“It lives with you your whole life,” Arlaud said. “You know, I don’t try to live in the past or anything, but when I saw that on TV, it triggered it.”

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Man claims abuse by Catholic priests in the 1970s and ‘80s

YAKIMA (WA)
Herald-Republic

April 2, 2019

By Tammy Ayer

A man who grew up in Ellensburg is suing the Catholic Diocese of Yakima, alleging he was sexually abused as a boy by four priests. One of the four has served at multiple churches in North Central Washington.

The civil lawsuit filed in Kittitas County alleges that priests Richard Scully, Peter Hagel and Seamus Kerr, who lives at Holy Apostles Church in East Wenatchee, along with another unnamed Yakima Diocese priest, repeatedly sexually abused the boy in the 1970s and 1980s. The abuse allegedly took place at St. Andrews Church in Ellensburg and a YMCA building that the diocese previously used for church services.

Kerr denied the allegations against him through a diocese spokesman.

“Father Kerr has served faithfully as a priest in our diocese for 59 years and we have no evidence or reason to believe that he has abused anyone, much less a minor,” Monsignor Robert Siler, chancellor with the Diocese of Yakima, said Monday.

Kerr retired out of Ephrata several years ago and has since resided at Holy Apostles. At the request of Bishop Joseph Tyson, Kerr has stepped aside from the ministry while the Diocese’s advisory board reviews the lawsuit, which was filed Wednesday, Siler said.

At least one of the priests — Scully — has been laicized, or defrocked, according to a list of clergy and other church personnel accused of sexually abusing children the Seattle Archdiocese published on its website in January 2016.

Scully’s name is one of three on that list of priests who were associated with Seattle and Yakima. Previously, in Yakima records, Scully was listed as retired, but after leaving Yakima, he moved to Texas and a diocese there laicized him.

“Given what we have learned about the sexual abuse that went on in the Church in Ellensburg, we would not be surprised if other abuse victims came forward,” Seattle attorney Daniel T.L. Fasy said in a news release.

Fasy and Spokane attorney Joseph A. Blumel are representing the victim, referred to in court papers as John Doe. The lawsuit seeks to recover unspecified damages and attorney’s fees from the diocese.

Along with alleging that Doe was abused by the priests, the suit alleges that he was forced to engage in sex acts with other boys.

The abuse began when Doe was 10 years old and attending services at the YMCA building in Ellensburg, first by the unknown priest and then Kerr, the suit alleges. Doe was introduced to Scully and Hagel approximately two years later and their abuse began then, also at the YMCA building, according to court documents.

It continued when Doe began attending services at St. Andrews Church in approximately 1980 or 1981, when it was new, court documents state. Kerr was a pastor or co-pastor at the church from 1966-1980, according to Siler.

Diocese response

Siler said while the plaintiff’s name is not listed, given the description, it appears to be a man who previously made a report to the diocese, which has investigated it.

“Our investigation so far is inconclusive,” Siler said. “We have been providing him counseling for probably more than a year now. We have been looking into it.”

There are some concerns, he said. When the plaintiff was interviewed by the diocese’s investigator, he did say he had been abused by more than one priest, Siler noted. “But he was unable to name a single person as an abuser, including one priest with whom he had gotten reacquainted that year,” he said in an email.

“Also, there are inconsistencies in the dates given by the plaintiff in regard to when at least two of the priests were assigned to the parish and when he says he was abused,” Siler added.

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Clarification: Catholic Sex Abuse story

CAPE GIRARDEAU (MO)
Associated Press

Apr 5, 2019

In a story April 3, The Associated Press reported that the Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfield-Cape Girardeau spent more than $700,000 settling claims with clergy abuse victims. Nearly $126,000 of that amount was spent on a related investigation of church files going back decades.

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Sex abuse survivors await Murphy’s signature on N.J. statute of limitations bill

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
WHYY Radio

April 5, 2019

By Joe Hernandez

On a recent afternoon, Todd Kostrub was looking at a photo of himself at seven years old, back when he attended a Catholic school in Roebling, N.J.

“Just got into second grade when those pictures were taken,” Kostrub said in his living room in Surf City.

That year — 1974 — was also when a Franciscan brother in the Kostrub’s parish began sexually abusing him. The abuse lasted until 1986.

It took Kostrub years to accept that he was abused and disclose it to close friends and family members.

And when he finally decided he wanted to sue his abuser in civil court, Kostrub learned that the state’s two-year statute of limitations had already run out.

“You don’t have a voice as a child,” he said. “And then to be an adult and be told I don’t have a voice was extremely painful.”

Many victims in the Garden State may get their voices back if a bill passed by both houses of the state Legislature is signed into law.

The legislation would dramatically expand the statute of limitations on sexual abuse.

It would give child victims until age 55 or within seven years of realizing they were abused to file a civil lawsuit. It would also give survivors who were previously blocked from suing their perpetrators a two-year window to bring cases.

“It’s been introduced every voting session that we’ve had over the past 17 or 18 years,” said state Sen. Joe Vitale, D-Middlesex, the lead sponsor of the bill.

There had never been enough support for the idea, Vitale said, because of opposition from the Catholic church. Now, he believes politicians have had enough.

“To a person, they all knew that it was happening, not just in the church but in the Boy Scouts and other institutions, and individual homes for that matter,” he said.

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy has said he supports extending the state’s statute of limitations, but he has not yet signed the bill.

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Diocese of Springfield-Cape Girardeau releases list of accused priests

SPRINGFIELD (MO)
Springfield News-Leader

April 5, 2019

By Harrison Keegan

The bishop said in a letter this week the Diocese of Springfield-Cape Girardeau has spent more than $700,000 over the last 30 years in connection with sex abuse claims.

Bishop Edward Rice said this week’s letter is the culmination of a review the diocese launched in August to get an accurate accounting of clergy sexual abuse over the diocese’s 63-year history.

The leader of a statewide support group said, however, the bishop should be doing more.

This week’s letter names 16 diocesan priests who were accused of abusing minors in cases that “have a semblance of truth,” along with several other religious order priests who have ties to the area.

All but three of those instances of abuse occurred before the 1990s, and none involve anyone in active ministry, according to the bishop’s letter. Many of the accused priests are deceased.

The letter also breaks down the costs associated with clergy sexual abuse in southern Missouri.

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Asheville priest, convicted of abuse, suffered from ‘boyology’ bishop wrote

CHARLOTTE (NC)
WBTV

April 4, 2019

By Nick Ochsner

Records obtained by WBTV show Catholic Church leaders in Raleigh, Charlotte and Springfield, Mass. Allowed a priest to continue working in a parish for decades after he was first reported to have abused children.

The revelation is the latest in a string of new information that is unfolding about how local Catholic leaders have handled reports of abuse for decades.

Last week, Monsignor Mauricio West—who, as Chancellor of the Charlotte Diocese, was the second-in-command for a quarter century—abruptly resigned after a lay review board found allegations of sexual misconduct against him to be credible.

The nine pages of new records obtained by WBTV show Catholic leaders in North Carolina—first in the Diocese of Raleigh and, later, the Diocese of Charlotte, after it was created—allowed Father Andre Corbin to continue working as a priest decades after first receiving complaints that Corbin had sexually abused boys.

Eventually, Corbin was reported to police in 1988, when he was charged with two counts of taking indecent liberties with a minor in Buncombe County.

He pleaded guilty to one of those counts, was sentenced to five years in jail but served just two months of his sentence before being released on probation, court records show.

According to court records, the criminal charges and conviction stems from an incident in 1966.

But a letter obtained by WBTV from then-Bishop of Raleigh Vincent Waters to Bishop Christopher Weldon, who presided at the time over the Bishop of Springfield, Mass. shows church leaders were aware of Corbin’s behavior as early as 1963.

It was sometime after the summer of 1963 that Waters, in Raleigh, wrote to Weldon, in Springfield.

“Last summer not too long after the new priests were ordained I had a difficulty with the young priest who has written me the enclosed letter,” Waters’ missive about Corbin began.

“I found that he needed psychiatric treatment,” Waters wrote. “The difficulty was boyology.”

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Former Belleville Bishop picked to be Archbishop of Washington D.C.

ST. LOUIS (MO)
KMOX Radio

April 5, 2019

By Fred Bodimer

Pope Francis has named the former Bishop of Belleville — Archbishop Wilton Gregory of Atlanta — to become the new Archbishop of Washington D.C.

Archbishop Gregory is replacing Cardinal Donald Wuerl who resigned last year after he was implicated in covering up sexual abuse in the Church.

“This is obviously a moment fraught with challenges throughout our entire Catholic Church, certainly, but nowhere more so than in this local faith community,” Archbishop Gregory said at a Thursday news conference in Washington D.C. “And as in any family, challenges can only be overcome by a firmly articulated resolve and commitment to do better, to know Christ better, to serve Christ better. I would be naive not to acknowledge the unique task that awaits us.”

Archbishop Gregory was born in Chicago and was consecrated a bishop there in 1983 by the late Chicago Cardinal Joseph Bernardin. He served as bishop of the Belleville Diocese from 1994 to 2005 before being elevated to Archbishop of Atlanta.

Archbishop Gregory has spoken out about sexual abuse in the Catholic Church on a number of occasions, including at a US Conference of Catholic Bishops meeting back in 2002 when he was the Bishop of Belleville and president of the USCCB.

“He’s going to be a great Archbishop for Washington,” said Father Thomas Reese, a senior analyst with Religion News Service and an expert on the Catholic Church. “He’s very pastoral. He’s smart. And he’s got a good record dealing with sex abuse, which is important today in the Catholic Church in terms of healing the kinds of wounds that the church has self-inflicted.”

But the leader of the St. Louis branch of the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests — David Clohessy — isn’t so sure.

“Well there were certainly worse bishops to pick but Archbishop Gregory enjoys a better reputation on abuse than he should frankly,” Clohessy told KMOX. “His record is pretty mixed to be honest. On the one hand he did help shepherd the one strike policy and help it get adopted by America’s bishops. But on the other hand, he’s done very little to make sure that policy is enforced.”

Plus, Clohessy says Archbishop Gregory has benefitted from good timing.

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Byrnes considering Apuron’s return for trial

GUAM
Pacific News Center

April 5, 2019

By Julius Santos

Archbishop Michael J. Byrnes of the Archdiocese of Hagåtña, during a press conference Friday, April 5, said he is willing to request Vatican leadership to allow former Guam archbishop Anthony Apuron to come back to Guam and stand trial.

“I’ll see what they say,” Byrnes said.

The Vatican has officially removed Apuron from his post and upheld its initial guilty ruling announced in March 2018. Apuron appealed the ruling asserting his innocence, which he still clings to, to this day.

During the press conference, the focus of Byrnes is on the healing of those who were directly affected by this case, as well as Guam’s faithful. The matter of providing closure to the victims and their families also came up.

Since the first case on child abuse was unearthed more than two decades ago, certain sectors of the community criticized the church.

When asked how he can defend the church after the discovery of past clergy abuse cases, Byrnes said, “The church is more than its priests. It’s more than its bishops. It’s the place where Jesus Christ is consecrated in the Eucharist.”

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Lead Response to Clerical Abuse

WASHINGTON (DC)
The Hoya

April 5, 2019

In 2009, Georgetown University and Fordham University were both notified of a sexual predator who had taught at both institutions. While Fordham immediately banned the predator, Fr. Daniel O’Connell, S.J., from campus, Georgetown failed to take substantial action until just weeks ago.

Georgetown’s delayed response to credible allegations of sexual assault against O’Connell follows a trend of unreasonably long delays in responding to university-connected clerical abuse: at every opportunity, the university has fallen short in condemning perpetrators.

Despite a 2018 Pennsylvania grand jury report documenting former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick’s abuse and Cardinal Donald Wuerl’s complicity in these crimes, Georgetown only rescinded McCarrick’s honorary degree after he was laicized in February — seven months after the report was released — and has not revoked Wuerl’s honorary degree.

Georgetown’s woefully underwhelming response to the clerical abuse crisis casts considerable doubt on the institution’s moral compass and ability to lead the Catholic community. To re-establish its credibility among Jesuit universities, Georgetown must immediately revoke Wuerl’s honorary degree and condemn the 14 university-affiliated Catholic religious leaders credibly accused of sexual abuse.

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Church Sex Abuse Victim Urges Others to Come Forward

DES MOINES (IA)
WHO 13 TV

April 4, 2019

By Ben Oldach

John Chambers claimed he was abused in the 1960s while at Dowling high school by Leonard Kenkel who was teaching there at the time. His claim was found to be unsubstantiated in the early 2000s. On Thursday he found out that another alleged victim’s 2018 claim against Kenkel had been substantiated this year.

Chambers says it took him nearly 40 years and countless visits to therapy to come forward with his allegations of abuse.

“The ultimate threat is you’ll be excommunicated, and for a catholic that was the kiss of death…I was raised that you have several missions as a catholic. One is to lead a Christ-like life, and another is that the church has to survive, and if children are abused it’s collateral damage” said Chambers.

While the 2018 claim against Kenkel was substantiated by the church’s allegation review committee, two claims in the early 2000s were not, including his own allegation.

“It’s been a significant number of years, but the flavor of the meeting was ‘how dare you, how dare you do this, make this allegation’” said Chambers.

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Survivor: Catholic sex abuse was ‘a test from God’

BURLINGTON (NC)
The Times-News

April 5, 2019

Joan Sullivan raises her hand.

“Excuse me,” she says. “I’m very well into years and I have found, this last 10 years in my life, I have lost my faith and it’s been based on this.”

The “this” she refers to is sexual abuse by clergymen in the Roman Catholic Church, and she’s addressing Robert Orsi, a prominent historian of U.S. Catholicism who’s just delivered a lecture titled, “Violence, Memory and Religion among Survivors of Clerical Sexual Abuse” in Elon University’s LaRose Digital Theatre Wednesday, April 3.

“I for so long tried to put it aside,” Sullivan continues, “because it’s not all priests, it’s not all nuns, but it is so prevalent and it’s been kept under wraps and ignored to the extent that people with whom I was going to church said, ‘Why are people bringing this up? It’s 30 years old.’ I mean how could they think these things? I am disappointed in the congregation. I am disappointed in those who are supposed to be keeping my faith.”

Orsi says, “I understand when you say you have lost your faith. I think I’m in a similar situation, to tell you the truth. And so, this is part of the incredible damage that those men did to the world of Catholicism. There’s no doubt about that.”

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Another accuser recounts encounters in New Mexico priest’s abuse trial

ALBUQUERQUE (NM)
Associated Press

April 4, 2019

By Morgan Lee

A New Mexico man counted scores of instances Thursday of sexual abuse by a former Roman Catholic priest in the early 1990s, testifying that the then-pastor inappropriately touched him at an amusement park, church rectory, military base and veterans’ cemetery when he was as young as 10 years old.

The testimony came during a federal jury trial in Santa Fe for Arthur Perrault, who has pleaded not guilty to charges of aggravated sexual abuse and abusive sexual contact.

He was accused in court of abusing the witness at each of the locations in New Mexico. However, the federal charges only stem from abuse that authorities say occurred at Santa Fe National Cemetery and Kirtland Air Force Base in Albuquerque — two military sites that fall under federal jurisdiction.

Now 81, Perrault entered and left the courtroom with the aid of a walker, and used a hearing device to listen to his accuser’s testimony. He returned six months ago to the United States from Tangier, Morocco — where authorities say he had been teaching for more than a decade at an English-language school for children before he was arrested.

Merrica Heaton, a consular official for the U.S. State Department, told jurors she had visited Perrault in January 2018 inside a Moroccan jail. She was checking on Perrault’s well-being after his detention by local authorities in response to an Interpol warrant.

She testified that Perrault volunteered to tell her without being asked that he was surprised and unhappy to learn the U.S. government still was pursuing him for transgressions decades ago. A defense attorney for Perrault pressed Heaton on whether “transgressions” referred to any specific allegations of sexual abuse against Perrault or specific victims.

“He admitted to — I don’t know what specific acts — but misconduct involving young boys,” responded Heaton, who said that the conversation left a lasting impression because of her own Roman Catholic upbringing. “You can’t un-hear that.”

In response to a civil case filed against him, Perrault said in a 2016 letter to a New Mexico judge that he denied abuse allegations.

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Bishop calls for vigilance, releases list of accused priests

LINCOLN (NE)
News Press

April 5, 2019

By Andy Raun

Calling for vigilance on the part of all church members to prevent future instances of child sexual abuse, Bishop James Conley of the Catholic Diocese of Lincoln has released a list of 12 men who have worked in priestly ministry in the diocese and have been the subject of allegations involving minors or young adults.

The list released Tuesday includes the names of nine priests or former priests who have served in the diocese — including four who held positions at one time in Tribland communities — who have been the subject of “substantiated” allegations of sexual misconduct or sexual abuse involving minors or young adults through the years, by the reckoning of an independent task force advising Conley on child abuse, sexual misconduct and related matters.

Three other priests, including a deceased former longtime diocesan vocations director, were identified as being under investigation for alleged misconduct involving minors or young adults.

The Diocese of Lincoln encompasses all of Nebraska south of the Platte River and includes all of the Nebraska portion of Tribland.

Conley, who has led the diocese since 2012, released the list of accused priests or former priests in a special statement alongside a newly revised, comprehensive diocesan policy for the protection of youth.

The policy revisions, which take effect June 1, cover everything from protocol for clergy and seminarians participating in youth outings, to procedures church personnel must follow in reporting suspected child abuse or neglect to civil and ecclesiastical authorities.

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Key witness testifies in priest sex abuse case

ALBUQUERQUE (NM)
Albuquerque Journal

April 5, 2019

By Colleen Heild

Locked in a Moroccan prison in January 2018, Arthur Perrault told a U.S. State Department employee that he was “unhappy and surprised” that his transgressions from the 1980s and 1990s had resurfaced, noting that the Catholic Church had dealt with them years earlier.

To Merrica Heaton, a State Department employee assigned then to Casablanca’s consular office, Perrault’s statement was “admitting to sexual misconduct involving young boys,” she told a jury in U.S. District Court in Santa Fe on Thursday.

Heaton, who said she is a Catholic, added, “This is a huge issue that’s in the church. You can’t un-hear that.”

At the time, Perrault, now 81, had been arrested and was being held by Moroccan authorities on an Interpol warrant, said Heaton, who testified by video from Missoula, Mont.

As an American Citizens Services officer with the State Department, Heaton said, she met Perrault as part of her job to ensure the welfare of U.S. citizens being held in foreign custody.

Perrault’s warrant stemmed from a sealed grand jury indictment issued in 2017 in Albuquerque, charging the former pastor of St. Bernadette’s Parish with seven federal counts of sexual misconduct on federal property involving an 11-year-old altar boy from 1991 to 1992.

His trial on the charges began Tuesday. He has pleaded not guilty.

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In Memory of a Giant: David Clohessy’s Eulogy for Gary Hayes

ST. LOUIS (MO)
Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

April 5, 2019

Our movement is filled with brave, eloquent survivors who have uttered lines at news conferences that fill me with pride and amazement. One of them is Fr. Gary Hayes. Or I should say “was.” Gary has passed away.

He was the first priest to have been molested by a priest to file a lawsuit and hold a news conference. One of the proudest moments of my life came in the early 1990s. Along with Steve Rubino, I had the honor of helping Gary organize the event. I stood next to him, and his mom, when he issued an opening line that still brings goosebumps to my skin today when I recall it:

“I am here seeking justice in the courts because I could find no justice in my church,” Gary said before a crowded hotel conference room and a dozen or more reporters in Philadelphia.

Fr. John Bambrick, another SNAP pioneer and priest who was abused by a priest, sent us this email:

“Gary Hayes, a SNAP pioneer and former president of Link-Up died this week after a long battle with cancer. Gary was one of 50 survivors who testified at Dallas in 2002 and was instrumental in the changes that occurred. He was a true heroic figure in our movement.

Gary will be waked at DeMarco-Luisi Funeral Home 2755 S. Lincoln Ave in Vineland, NJ on Wednesday April 10, 2019 from 6pm to8pm. There will be a service at 7:30pm. Cremation will be private and burial in the family plot at a later date.

In lieu of flowers the family asks that donations be made to Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests in Gary’s memory.”

In the early days of our movement, Catholic officials played “divide and conquer.” They’d toss a bone to Link UP, hoping they’d undercut or criticize or distance themselves from SNAP, the group perceived to be the more unreasonable by the bishops. To his credit, Gary never took the bait or played this game. He was the ultimate ‘priest of integrity.’

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Proposed state law would require priests report sex abuse discussed in confession

SACRAMENTO (CA)
Fox 5 News

April 4, 2019

California lawmakers are hoping to reverse hundreds of years of tradition in the Catholic church and mandate that priests who hear of child sexual abuses in confession report it to law enforcement.

“The victims are told to be quiet, abusers are let go, free. Nothing happens to them and the cycle repeats and repeats,” Kameron Torres said.

It was just two years ago Torres, as he puts it, woke up to the brainwashing of being a Jehovah’s Witness. He says at 6 years old he was sexually abused by a person of authority within the church and nothing was done about it.

“You go to meetup groups, that’s what happened to me, and I started hearing the same stories,” Torres said. “I realized very quickly it wasn’t just me.”

Torres said abuses happen in many religious denominations, and too often the abuser gets away with it. He’s now helping lawmakers push Senate Bill 360 to end the silence around abuse.

“SB 360 requires clergy to report suspected child abuse or neglect,” said Sen. Jerry Hill, D-San Mateo.

But many people are wondering if the bill goes too far.

It would challenge centuries of church tradition in which priests are sworn not to violate their promise to God to keep what’s said in confession private.

“It would undermine the entire sacrament of confession for something that’s not likely to happen,” said Steve Pehanich with the California Catholic Conference of Bishops.

Pehanich said SB 360 would essentially put clergy in an impossible position and violate California laws or violate their oath to God.

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Rev. Gary Hayes RIP

BishopAccountability.org
April 4, 2019

Survivor activist Rev. Gary Hayes died yesterday, April 4, 2019, after a battle with cancer. Gary was a major figure in the survivor movement and a spiritual force. He served as a director, advisory board member, and president of the Linkup, the groundbreaking survivor organization. Gary’s own landmark case was described in an early issue of Linkup’s newsletter Missing Link:

Black Collar Crimes, Missing Link, Volume 1, Number 4 (Fall 1993)

These articles from Gary’s own archive give some sense of the man and his significance:

Ex-Millville Priest Named in Suit Alleging Child Sex Abuse, Cover-Up, by Jean Jones and Gary Miller, Bridgeton Evening News (6/11/93)

Restoring Faith: Priest Who Was Sexually Abused As a Teen Wants to Aid Others in Recovery, by Karen Owen, Owensboro Messenger-Inquirer (3/6/94)

Victims Then, Priests Later, by Bonnie Miller Rubin, Chicago Tribune (6/3/02)

Dozens Pray to Heal Church’s Wounds, by Brandy Warren, Courier-Journal (6/11/02)

4 Cardinals + Archbishop H. Flynn Meet 25 Survivors of Clergy Sex Abuse, transcribed by Helen Daly, healingtogether.org (6/12/02)

Once a Victim, A Priest Wants Zero Tolerance, by Sara Rimer, New York Times (6/12/02)

Gary Hayes will be waked at DeMarco-Luisi Funeral Home 2755 S. Lincoln Ave in Vineland NJ on Wednesday April 10, 2019 from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm. There will be a service at 7:30 pm. Cremation will be private and burial in the family plot at a later date.

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Washington’s New Archbishop Has A History Of Fighting Child Sexual Abuse

WASHINGTON (DC)
WAMU Radio

April 5, 2019

By Esther Ciammachilli

Archbishop Wilton Gregory has been working to combat child sexual abuse in the Catholic Church since the early 1990s – long before the church was forced to reckon with decades-old allegations and cover-ups.

“This is obviously a moment fraught with challenges,” Gregory said at a press conference Thursday at the Archdiocese of Washington after he was appointed the new archbishop. “Throughout our entire Catholic Church, certainly, but nowhere more so than in this local faith community.”

The challenges Gregory references are those left by his predecessors.

The former archbishop, Cardinal Donald Wuerl, became the first U.S. cardinal to resign last fall after a Pennsylvania grand jury criticized him over his handling of child sex abuse cases when he was bishop of Pittsburgh. Another blow came in February when Wuerl’s predecessor, Cardinal Theodore McCarrick was defrocked after the church found him guilty of sexually abusing children and adults for decades. Gregory says his job will consist of helping the community to heal and cope with the church’s past.

“As in any family, challenges can only be overcome by a firmly articulated resolve and commitment to do better,” Gregory said. “I want to offer you hope. I will rebuild your trust.”

Gregory found Catholicism as a teenager growing up in Chicago. He was ordained a priest at age 25 and became an auxiliary bishop under the late Cardinal Joseph Bernardin.

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Federal subpoena seeks records from Buffalo Diocese’s clergy abuse compensation program

BUFFALO (NY)
Buffalo News

April 5, 2019

By Jay Tokasz

Federal authorities have sought more records as they investigate the handling of clergy sex abuse cases in the Buffalo Diocese.

Two retired judges who are overseeing a diocese program to compensate abuse victims were served in March with a federal grand jury subpoena for records they reviewed to determine who should be paid and how much they should get.

The law firm of Woods Oviatt Gilman LLP — where one of the retired judges is senior counsel — mentioned the subpoena to at least three lawyers of people who applied to the diocese’s Independent Reconciliation and Compensation Program.

The two IRCP administrators, former state Surrogate’s Court Judge Barbara Howe and former Appellate Division Justice Jerome C. Gorski, declined to comment on the subpoena.

“It would be totally improper for us as IRCP administrators to speak with anyone about any subpoenas issued or other confidential inquiries made to us by any law enforcement officials,” the former judges said in an email.

A spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Western District of New York would not confirm or deny the subpoena.

But three people told The News that Brian D. Gwitt, a partner and general counsel at Woods Oviatt Gilman LLP, called lawyers as a professional courtesy to let them know that a subpoena had been served on his office seeking records related to their clients. Gwitt declined to comment.

Lawyer Barry N. Covert said Gwitt contacted him on March 7 to tell him that a subpoena sought records related to one of Covert’s clients, Stephanie McIntyre, and for six other people who applied to the diocese’s compensation program.

McIntyre, 50, alleged that the Rev. Fabian J. Maryanski repeatedly sexually abused her when she was a teenager in the 1980s. She agreed in December to accept a $400,000 offer from the diocese in exchange for signing away her right to sue over the alleged abuse.

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LDS Church dumps its controversial LGBTQ policy, cites ‘continuing revelation’ from God

SALT LAKE CITY (UT)
The Salt Lake Tribune

April 4, 2019

By Peggy Fletcher Stack
·
For LGBTQ Latter-day Saints and their allies, it’s been a long 3½ years.

In November 2015, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints instituted a policy deeming same-sex married couples “apostates” and generally barring their children from baby blessings and baptisms.

Such harsh and restrictive rules triggered widespread protests and soul-searching. Hundreds, maybe more, resigned their church membership. Even believers felt wounded and betrayed. Families were torn. Tensions erupted. Some were disciplined by the church. Some died by suicide.

On Thursday, the Utah-based faith walked back all the hotly disputed elements. Church rituals for children now are OK, and LGBTQ couples are not labeled apostates. The shift comes after 41 months — by Mormon historical standards, an astonishingly rapid reversal.

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Behind Closed Doors: Abuse In Northern Kentucky University Women’s Basketball Program

HIGHLAND HEIGHTS (KY)
Odyssey

March 25, 2019

By Taryn M. Taugher

The emotional abuse by current head coach has lasting effects on its players. But, it ends here.

There is a deep, dark, hidden secret that lies within the women’s basketball program at Northern Kentucky University which has been swept under the rug by the athletic department for three years.

“The mission of NKU Athletics is to advance the University’s vision while focusing on the wellbeing of our student-athletes as we prepare and empower each of them for academic and competitive success at NKU and beyond.” This is quoted right from the NKU Athletic Department’s Mission Statement, but apparently, this doesn’t apply to the student athlete’s mental well-being.

Emotional abuse is defined as any abusive behavior that isn’t physical, which may include verbal aggression, intimidation, manipulation, and humiliation, which most often unfolds as a pattern of behavior over time that aims to diminish another person’s identity, dignity, and self-worth, and which often results in anxiety, depression, and suicidal thoughts or behaviors (Crisistextline.org).

Northern Kentucky University’s athletic department seems to be willing to do anything to silence the multiple emotional abuse allegations against current women’s basketball coach, Camryn Whitaker.

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April 4, 2019

Whitmer requests $2 million for Catholic clergy abuse investigations

DETROIT (MI)
Detroit Free Press

April 5, 2019

By Niraj Warikoo

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is requesting $2 million in her budget for state investigations into abuse by Catholic clergy in Michigan as an advocacy group calls upon Catholic officials in Detroit to include more priests on the list of clergy accused of sexual abuse.

The money Whitmer is asking for would be used by the Michigan Attorney General’s Office for an investigation launched last year into abuse by Catholic clergy in Michigan.

“The appropriation will be used to hire investigators and victims’ advocates to continue the detailed investigative work necessary to review and pursue the information we have gathered from all seven Michigan dioceses,” Kelly Rossman-McKinney, spokesperson for Attorney General Dana Nessel, told the Free Press this week.

The $2 million would designate money that the Attorney General’s Office “has already received in settlement monies for the investigation,” Rossman-McKinney said.

The Attorney General has received about 400 tips and complaints so far of abuse allegations against Catholic clergy, Rossman-McKinney said.

In February, Nessel said Catholic Church leaders were not fully cooperating with law enforcement on the abuse investigations, claims the Archdiocese of Detroit denied.

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Diocese of Des Moines Posts List of Clergy Accused of Abuse, SNAP Urges Further Outreach

ST. LOUIS (MO)
Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

April 4, 2019

We are grateful that the Diocese of Des Moines has published a list of clergy accused of abuse. This move is the first step that church officials in Des Moines can take towards protecting children in their diocese and helping survivors heal.

Now that they have taken this first step, we call on Bishop Richard Pates to take several more in order to demonstrate his commitment to transparency, accountability, and prevention.

First, Bishop Pates should include on his list the names of not only diocesan priests, but also those of religious order priests and nuns who have been accused of abuse – whether in Des Moines or elsewhere – and spent time in his diocese.

Second, Bishop Pates should also update his list to include information regarding when church officials at the Diocese of Des Moines first received the allegations against each named person and what actions they took in response to those allegations. Only by knowing what went wrong in the past can we know how to improve for the future and prevent future cases of child sexual abuse.

Third, now that this list has been published, Bishop Pates should personally visit each parish where these accused priests served, notify parishioners about the list, and urge victims, witnesses, and whistleblowers to come forward and make a report to police and prosecutors.

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“Healing Our Church” Will Not Heal the Church

Patheos blog

April 4, 2019

By Mary Pezzulo

I want to open by mentioning that I asked one of my friends who was raped by a priest if she wanted to write this article for me as a guest post, and she asked me to write it instead. That’s why I’m presuming to talk about it. I’ve taken my own medicine.

I’ve just been shown a sample chapter from a book called “Healing Our Church.” The author of this book doesn’t seem to be listed in the sample or the website, but it comes from the “Renew International” organization, with which I’m not familiar. This book is really a set of readings and instructions for the “Healing our Church” program, which is apparently a series of seminars being practiced in some parishes across the country and marketed to many more. The seminars are meant to “minister to hurting parishioners,” so that they might “start on the path to healing and renewed discipleship.”

The sample session provided is Chapter Three, “Rebuilding Our Church.” And if it’s an indicator of the thinking behind the whole of the book and the whole of the program, then I can safely say that both are worse than useless.

Let me walk you through the session as it’s written in the sample chapter. I’ll point out my objections as I go along.

It starts out with a hymn that sounds unbelievably sketchy in context. “O Jesus Healer of Wounded Souls” contains a line asking Jesus to “touch us” which I would leave out of any discussion of sexual abuse at all costs. There are better, non-triggering ways to say the same thing.

Then there’s a prayer, the Prayer of Saint Francis, which includes the line “O Divine Master, grant that I may never seek to be consoled as to console, to be understood as to understand, to be loved as to love.” This is an excellent prayer for many occasions. I like to pray it myself. But as far as a meeting addressing sexual abuse, it’s toxic. Abuse survivors very often find themselves in an agonizing vortex of self-blame. What they need is consolation, love and understanding, but they have been denied it and told that they don’t need it– indeed, oftentimes they’re told by their abusers that their natural longing for understanding is the victim being selfish. I have known emotionally abusive priests to quote prayers by Saint Francis in order to paint victims demanding redress as self-centered, in fact, and I don’t think I’m the only one. This particular prayer is a shockingly imprudent choice in any context to do with abuse.

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Former priest with ties to Simpson part of list alleging clergy abuse

INDIANOLA (IA)
The Simpsonian

April 4, 2019

By Alex Kirkpatrick

A former Indianola priest who served as a liaison between St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church and Simpson College was part of a list issued Thursday by the Des Moines Diocese identifying nine priests “credibly accused” of sexually abusing children, according to a KCCI report published Thursday.

The diocese said The Rev. Howard Fitzgerald, who served in Indianola from 2013-14, is one of only two living priests facing sexual abuse allegations. The other living priest, The Rev. Leonard Kenkel, lives at a senior care facility within the diocese.

The Simpsonian reported in June 2014 that Fitzgerald was placed on indefinite administrative leave after allegations of a “decades-old” incident of sexual abuse were found credible.

Fitzgerald provided personal counsel and spiritual guidance to Simpson students. He was removed from ministry in 2014 and laicized in 2015.

Alex Kirkpatrick is a 2018 Simpson College graduate and former Managing Editor for The Simpsonian. He who now works full time as the Digital Editor for KCCI News in Des Moines.

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Former Catholic priest to plead guilty in child porn case

GREAT FALLS (MT)
Associated Press

April 4, 2019

A former Roman Catholic priest in northern Montana accused of possessing child pornography plans to plead guilty.

The Great Falls Tribune reports that a motion filed in federal court last month says 80-year-old Lothar Konrad Krauth will plead guilty to receipt of child pornography at a hearing on Monday.

He was accused in November of having about 400 images of child pornography, including children as young as 2 or 3 years old, on his computer.

According to the motion, Krauth will plead guilty without an agreement with prosecutors on his punishment. He faces a mandatory minimum sentence of five to 20 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and three years of supervised release.

Krauth worked at Our Lady of Lourdes Church in Great Falls from 1989 to 2014

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Pennsylvania House to again consider clergy child sex abuse bills

HARRISBURG (PA)
Associated Press

April 4, 2019

By Mark Scolforo

Two bills that could make it easier for victims of child sexual abuse to file lawsuits, an issue that roiled the General Assembly last year, are expected to get votes next week in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives.

House Judiciary Chairman Rob Kauffman, R-Franklin, said Thursday he supports the pair of proposals scheduled for committee votes Monday.

“It’s not perfect and everybody’s not going to like it,” said Kauffman. “But getting something done is really the key here, getting something accomplished.”

One bill would eliminate the criminal statute of limitations for child sexual abuse crimes entirely and give victims of future abuse until age 55 to file lawsuits. Current law gives victims until age 30 to pursue criminal charges and until age 50 to sue.

The other proposal would begin the process of amending the Pennsylvania Constitution to allow a two-year retroactive window for lawsuits over past abuse.

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Atlanta Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory promises transparency as he accepts D.C. job

ATLANTA (GA)
Atlanta Journal-Constitution

April 4, 2019

By Shelia Poole

Atlanta Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory, in his first press conference since being named to lead the Washington Archdiocese, promised transparency and said he would rebuild trust in the church and “reclaim the future.”

“This is obviously a moment fraught with challenges throughout our entire Catholic church certainly, but nowhere more so than in this local faith community,” said Gregory, who becomes the seventh and first African-American archbishop for Washington. “And, as in any family, challenges can only be overcome by a firmly articulated resolve and commitment to do better, to know Christ better, to love Christ better, to serve Christ better.

“I would be naive not to acknowledge the unique task that awaits us. Yet, I know as I have always known that I can, and will, rely upon the grace of God and on the goodness of the people of this local church to help me fulfill those new responsibilities.”

He was introduced by Cardinal Donald Wuerl, the apostolic administrator of the Archdiocese of Washington, who is Gregory’s immediate predecessor. Wuerl resigned last year amid criticism of his handling of sex abuse scandals.

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David Joseph Perrett committed for trial on New England historical child sex abuse offences

TAMWORTH (AUSTRALIA)
Northern Daily Leader

April 5, 2019

By Breanna Chillingworth

A FORMER priest will stand trial on close to 130 historical abuse charges, after prosecutors laid more child sex offences that carry life behind bars, if found guilty.

David Joseph Perrett appeared via video link in Armidale Local Court on Wednesday from prison where he was being held on more than 140 historical abuse allegations.

In court, prosecutors laid eight new counts of adult maintain unlawful relationship with a child – a charge that carries life imprisonment, if convicted.

The child abuse allegations stem from when Perrett was a serving Catholic priest in the Armidale, Walcha, Guyra and wider New England area, in the 1970s, ’80s and ’90s.

Magistrate Michael Holmes formally committed Perrett for trial to the district court on 130 separate charges.

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Former priest on sex offender registry while he awaits sentencing

LAFAYETTE (LA)
KATC News

April 4, 2019

Former priest Michael Guidry is now listed on the sex offender registry as he awaits sentencing.

Guidry, 76, pleaded guilty last month to sexual molestation of a juvenile, admitting that he molested a child who was the son of one of his church deacons.

KATC was in the courtroom when Judge Alonzo Harris accepted Guidry’s plea and set a sentencing date of April 30; to read that story click here. To read KATC’s continuing coverage about sexual abuse in the Catholic Church, click here.

During that hearing, Harris ordered that Guidry be placed on the sex offender registry and turn over his passport.

He’s now listed in both Acadia Parish, where he lives, and St. Landry Parish, where his church was located, as a sex offender.

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Gregory’s promise: ‘I will always tell you the truth’

WASHINGTON (DC)
National Catholic Reporter

April 4, 2019

By Tom Roberts

In what he termed “a moment fraught with challenges,” the new leader of the Archdiocese of Washington, in his first public appearance here April 4, repeatedly pledged to be honest with his flock.

“I believe that the only way I can serve the local archdiocese is by telling you the truth,” said Archbishop Wilton Gregory, who will become the seventh archbishop of Washington. He repeated the claim several times during a 45-minute news conference in which he also answered questions about the effects of clericalism, the need for transparency in the church, the need to address mistakes of his predecessors, and how he intends to relate to the city’s political scene.

Gregory, 71, currently the archbishop of Atlanta, will be installed in Washington, D.C., on May 21.

“This is obviously a moment fraught with challenges throughout our entire Catholic Church, but nowhere more so than in this local faith community,” he said in prepared remarks, making a reference to the turmoil that has roiled the archdiocese during the past year.

His immediate predecessor, Cardinal Donald Wuerl, who introduced Gregory, resigned in October after a Pennsylvania grand jury report raised questions about his handling of abusive priests in the 1990s while bishop of Pittsburgh. Wuerl’s predecessor in Washington, Theodore McCarrick, was removed from the priesthood after revelations he sexually abused a youngster and sexually harassed seminarians.

“I would be naive not to acknowledge the unique task that awaits us,” Gregory said in his remarks. He spoke of his confidence in the grace of God and the goodness of the people of the church as aids in facing his new responsibilities. “I want to come to know you, to hear your stories, to listen to the emotions and experiences and expectations that have shaped your precious Catholic faith, for better or for worse. I want to offer you hope.”

He characterized his new archdiocese, its ethnic and social diversity. In a compact line that spoke of both the material and spiritual richness and poverty of its people, he said: “The Archdiocese of Washington is home to the poor and the powerful, neither of which realizes they are both.”

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Des Moines Diocese names 9 priests accused of abusing children

DES MOINES (IA)
Radio Iowa

April 4, 2019

By O. Kay Henderson

The Des Moines Catholic Diocese released the names of nine priests with “substantiated allegations” that they had abused children while serving at parishes in the diocese.

The list includes the names of two priests who had not previously been made public. Both have died. Bishop Richard Pates today said victims and church members deserve a “full accounting” and Pates said he’s tried to be “a bulldog” on the issue.

“The behavior by some clerics and church leaders is a source of shame,” Pate said during a news conference late this morning.

Pates said the Des Moines Diocese established a child protection policy in 1988 and has had a zero tolerance policy when it comes to child sexual abuse for nearly two decades.

“Any priest who has been established he committed an act of sexual abuse against a minor is permanently removed from church ministry,” Pates said. “One strike and you’re out.”

Pates told reporters society, the medical community, law enforcement and the church did not fully understand the issue of child sexual abuse in the 1960s and ’70s.

“At that time, it was thought that clerical sexual abuse of children was a moral disorder, a sin. We now know it is more than a sin,” Pates said. “It’s a compulsion. It’s a crime.”

Pates estimates about two-thirds of the Catholic Dioceses in the country have released similar lists. Pates, who announced his retirement recently, said he wanted this list released before the pope names his replacement.

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Q & A with Sr. Véronique Margron, leader of religious addressing abuse in church

KANSAS CITY (MO)
National Catholic Reporter

April 2, 2019

by Elisabeth Auvillain

Sr. Véronique Margron is a Dominican sister from and provincial prior of the Dominican Sisters of Charity of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary. A theologian and specialist in moral theology, she is the former dean of the Catholic University of the West in Angers, France, and now is president of CORREF (Conférence des Religieux et Religieuses de France). CORREF aims to further ties between communities, hoping to reach a deeper communion between different institutions; encourage members to listen and pay attention to challenges and questions of the 21st century; and bring support between generations of religious men and women.

According to CORREF, there are 20,584 apostolic women religious in France, including 2,411 foreign nuns, in 315 communities, and 5,989 men religious, including 681 foreigners. Also members of CORREF are 1,079 monks and 3,038 women in contemplative orders.

Margron has written several books. Her latest, Un moment de verité (A Time of Truth), deals with the crisis of abuse in the Catholic Church.

GSR: Recent revelations of spiritual and sexual abuse of nuns by priests have shocked with their magnitude. The documentary “Abused Sisters: The Other Scandal of the Church,” shown by the Franco-German public TV channel ARTE on March 5, was a shock for many viewers, including Catholics. Were you aware of these abuses?

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Kathleen Holscher on Lack of Attention to Colonialism and White Supremacy in Accounts of Catholic Abuse Crisis

LITTLE ROCK (AR)
Bilgrimage blog

April 4, 2019

In today’s Tablet, a valuable reminder from historian Kathleen Holscher of the University of New Mexico that how we view the abuse story in the Catholic church depends on how we frame it — and on who is doing the framing: Holscher writes,

There have been two side-effects of the Boston and Pennsylvania reports’ ascendance in the US. One is the absence of non-white victims from coverage of abuse, and subsequently from scholarly conversations and – importantly – ecclesial responses to it. The other is the inattention to colonialism and white supremacy as interlocking structures that formed Catholic sexual violence in many parts of the United States, and created the distinctive and historically pervasive Catholic phenomenon of sexual abuse against Indigenous young people.

To read (or read about) the Boston and Pennsylvania accounts is to learn about a pattern of behaviour by Catholic priests that plagued white ethnic, urban, suburban and semi-urban Catholic communities in many parts of the US during the twentieth century.

This has led many Catholics, both laity and members of the hierarchy, to imagine that the abuse of children by priests has been a scourge of tightly knit Irish-American, Polish-American or Italian-American parishes that pepper East Coast cities, and of Catholic communities in the industrial towns of what now gets called the Rust Belt. They have fed the assumption that perpetrators and victims of sex abuse in the United States were white, and that almost everyone involved was Catholic.

Places such as Pittsburgh or Scranton, Pennsylvania, are a big part of the history of sex abuse in the Church. Today there are thousands of people living in those and similar places who are the survivors of predator priests. Their stories are important. But these places and communities are not the history.

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Ex-priest convicted of altar boy abuse awaits new court date

ALFRED (ME)
Associated Press

April 4, 2019

A former Massachusetts priest who was convicted of sexually abusing an altar boy is awaiting a new court date in Maine.

Ronald Paquin was slated for sentencing, but that was delayed when his attorney filed a motion
requesting a mental health evaluation. Officials at York County Superior Court in Alfred say Paquin’s most recent court appearance, scheduled for March 29, was continued and a new date has not yet been selected. They say it’s unclear when his case will return to court.

Paquin was found guilty of 11 of 24 counts of gross sexual misconduct in November. A pair of men who testified during Paquin’s trial said they were altar boys when the priest invited them on trips in the 1980s and assaulted them repeatedly.

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Baton Rouge bishop hopes to ask God for forgiveness, healing at prayer service for sexual abuse crisis

NEW ORLEANS (LA)
The Advocate

April 4, 2019

By Andrea Gallo

Baton Rouge Bishop Michael Duca said Thursday that he hopes the “Way of the Cross” ceremony he will host April 5 in reparation for sexual abuse by Catholic clergymen will add a more spiritual aspect to the church’s response to the crisis, a dimension he hopes will acknowledge the pain of abuse and lead toward healing.

Duca will pray the “Way of the Cross” at 7 p.m. April 5 at St. Joseph Cathedral, a service that marks Jesus’s walk toward crucifixion. Each of the 14 stations of the cross will include specific prayers about sexual abuse within the Catholic Church and healing for those who have been hurt by it.

“Hopefully, the prayer will be a way for me to become more aware of the sin of the church, more sorrowful, more a need to ask God for forgiveness and love,” Duca said Thursday in an interview with The Advocate. “What it’ll do for the people there — that’s all grace.”

Not long after becoming bishop of Baton Rouge, Duca in late January released a list of 37 clerics who served in Baton Rouge at some point in their careers and who were credibly accused of sexual abuse. The list has since grown to 41. Since releasing the names, Duca said he has spoken to multiple people who have also wanted to share their stories of betrayal and abuse by trusted priests.

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Diocese of Des Moines, following Sioux City’s lead, names 9 priests accused of abusing minors

DES MOINES (IA)
Des Moines Register

April 4, 2019

By Shelby Fleig

The Diocese of Des Moines on Thursday publicly named nine priests it said are credibly accused of sexually abusing minors while serving the diocese.

The Allegation Review Committee, made up of of local clergy, a judge, a lawyer, a police chief and a retired teacher, substantiated allegations of abuse occurring between 1940 and 1997.

“I share the anger and frustration of recent reports of clerical abuse of minors and young people,” Bishop Richard Pates wrote in a letter to parishioners Wednesday. “It is my sincere hope the release of this list facilitates healing, encourages additional victims who have faced abuse to come forward and begins to restore trust.”

Two of the nine names had not been previously tied to abuse of minors by the diocese. Both are deceased. The diocese has previously confirmed abuse allegations against Albert Wilwerding, John Ryan, Richard Wagner, Phillip Hobt and Howard Fitzgerald.

In 2003, Albert Wilwerding, John Ryan, and former Dowling president Richard Wagner were defrocked after the review committee said they were credibly accused of abusing children.

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SNAP Supports the Passage of Vermont Bill H.330

ST. LOUIS (MO)
Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

April 4, 2019

A proposed change to Vermont law that would help protect children and support survivors of child sexual abuse, H.330, has passed in the House and is now with the Senate Committee on Judiciary.

This important bill would eliminate the civil statute of limitations (SOL) for child sexual abuse going forward, and also allow a “look back window” for survivors whose cases are beyond the SOL.

These changes would reflect the realities of sexual violence against children. Survivors often take decades to come forward about their abuse – the average age of a survivor coming forward is 52 – and when they do speak out they are often barred from seeking justice by statutes like those that H.330 seeks to amend.

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Rejecting appeal, Vatican hands down final ruling against Guam bishop

LONDON (ENGLAND)
The Tablet

April 4, 2019

The Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has rejected an appeal by the now-former Archbishop Anthony S. Apuron of Agana, Guam, upholding its judgment of finding him guilty of abuse against minors.

The doctrinal tribunal’s decision is final and no further appeals are possible, it said in a communique published April 4.

“The penalties imposed are as follows: the privation of office; the perpetual prohibition from dwelling, even temporarily, in the jurisdiction of the Archdiocese of Agana, and the perpetual prohibition from using the insignia attached to the rank of bishop,” it said.

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Dos curas y tres profesionales integran nueva comisión de la Iglesia católica para proteger de abusos a menores

[Two priests and three professionals form new Catholic Church commission to protect minors from abuse]

COSTA RICA
La Nación

April 3, 2019

By Juan Diego Córdoba

Abogada en derecho de la familia y exdiputada de Restauración Nacional, Alexandra Loría, es una de los miembros

La Iglesia católica de Costa Rica tiene desde este martes una comisión para proteger a menores contra abusos sexuales. Con ese fin, los obispos de la Conferencia Episcopal reunieron a dos curas y tres profesionales en distintas áreas. Los miembros son los sacerdotes Alejandro Jiménez, del Tribunal Eclesiástico, y Mauricio Solano, de la Comisión Nacional del Clero; la comunicadora Lis Chaves, el psicólogo Juan Carlos Oviedo y la abogada en derecho de familia Alexandra Loría, quien también fue diputada de Restauración Nacional en la legislatura anterior.

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El intendente Cuenca dijo que la detención del cura Aguilera “no sorprendió a nadie”

[Mayor Cuenca says the arrest of priest Aguilera “did not surprise anyone”]

ARGENTINA
Cuarto Poder Salta

March 28, 2019

El capellán de la Universidad Católica está acusado por abusar de dos personas, cuando estaba a cargo de una iglesia en Campo Santo. Al parecer todos sabían ahí qué pasaba.

Desde hace más de siete días que el capellán de la Universidad Católica, José Carlos Aguilera, está tras las rejas. Está acusado por abuso sexual a dos personas, cuando estaba a cargo de una iglesia en Campo Santo. Una de las víctimas era menor de edad.

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Abusos: Ojea se comprometió a colaborar más con la justicia civil

[Argentina’s bishops promise more cooperation with civil justice]

ARGENTINA
Valores Religiosos

April 3, 2019

El presidente de la Conferencia Episcopal aseguró que la Iglesia en Argentina y en todo el mundo se propuso “no creer que solo con un proceso canónico puede alcanzar”. También procurarán escuchar más y dar acompañamiento a las víctimas.

El presidente de la Conferencia Episcopal Argentina (CEA), monseñor Oscar Ojea, afirmó que, tras la cumbre antiabusos que convocó Francisco en el Vaticano, la Iglesia católica en Argentina y en el mundo, “se comprometió a estar cerca de las víctimas” y ofrecer “mayor colaboración a la justicia civil cuando se producen denuncias de este tipo”.

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Además de abusar de menores, al capellán Lorenzo lo acusan de encubrir otros casos

[In addition to abusing minors, Lorenzo is accused of covering up other cases]

ARGENTINA
La Izquierda Diario

April 1, 2019

By Daniel Satur and Estefanía Velo

A mediados de los 90 un joven le relató al capellán penitenciario y de los grupos scouts el abuso que habría sufrido por parte del cura Rubén Marchioni, actual titular de la Pastoral Social de La Plata. Pero Lorenzo no hizo nada. Años después se lo acusó de conseguir impunidad para un capellán de Olmos. Asustado o preocupado, el cura habló sobre el tema en su misa dominical: “son todos una manga de mentirosos. No voy a hablar con ningún medio”, les dijo a sus fieles.

¿Cómo puede Eduardo Lorenzo mantenerse incólume como capellán del Servicio Penitenciario Bonaerense y párroco de diversas iglesias de la región, desde hace más de veinte años, encubriendo casos de abusos sexuales y siendo él mismo acusado desde hace más de una década? ¿Tan normal es esto dentro de la Iglesia?

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The reform seminaries need

PARIS (FRANCE)
LaCroix International

April 4, 2019

By C. Colt Anderson and Christopher M. Bellitto

As former seminary professors, we have looked upon the last several months of revelations about clergy sex abuse, cover-ups, and institutional infighting with the same disgust and sadness as our sisters and brothers—but we are not surprised.

Though we honor and support the many good people who work and study in seminaries, we know that seminaries have played a significant role in the church’s current crisis. It is essential to understand how priests and thus, ultimately, bishops are formed, especially the way they are enculturated into clericalism from their first days in seminary.

It is the air they breathe there.Clericalism in seminary formation is explicitly singled out as a problem in the Synod on Youth’s final document, approved in late October 2018, and it affects everyone in the church—it is a systemic and widespread problem.

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Victim of pedophile priest seeks to sue Montreal archdiocese

MONTREAL (CANADA)
The Canadian Press

April 3, 2019

One of the victims of a Montreal priest recently sentenced to eight years in prison for sexually abusing boys under his supervision is suing the archdiocese of Montreal.

A class-action lawsuit was filed Wednesday on behalf of victims of sexual abuse by priests in the Montreal archdiocese between 1940 and the present.

A 33-year-old victim of Rev. Brian Boucher is acting on behalf of the entire class as lead plaintiff and is seeking a total of $600,000 in damages in his name. A judge must authorize the action for it to move forward.

Boucher was sentenced last week to a federal prison term for assaulting two boys.

The filing alleges the lead plaintiff knows of at least two other victims of Boucher, who worked in 10 Montreal-area churches between 1985 and 2015.

The law firm spearheading the action says it covers anyone assaulted by an agent of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Montreal, or as it was known before 1950, the Corporation archiepiscopale catholique romaine de Montreal.

The archdiocese of Montreal said in a statement that it had received notice of the class action. It would not comment further but noted the Quebec Superior Court filing is limited to facts arising from the criminal proceedings against Boucher.

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Accusers details encounters with Albuquerque priest in abuse trial

SANTA FE (NM)
Associated Press

April 3, 2019

Four men who say they were sexually abused by the same Roman Catholic priest decades ago have been recounting the details of their experiences as children before federal jurors this week in a Santa Fe courtroom.

One of the accusers, identified as John Doe No. 8, testified, while wiping tears from his face, that he still sometimes thinks about dying, but he couldn’t take his own life because he cares for a son who is a quadriplegic.

The trial of 81-year-old Arthur Perrault before a federal judge in Santa Fe began Tuesday and is expected to last another two weeks.

Perrault’s case marks an unusual federal criminal prosecution of a former priest in a state where dozens of clergy abuse victims have won more than $50 million in settlements from the Archdiocese of Santa Fe. The archdiocese also is in the midst of bankruptcy proceeding as a result of the church-wide scandal, which has tarnished parishes across the globe.

Testimony earlier this week by one of the unnamed men revealed that the archdiocese in 1992 had denied that he had been sexually abused by the priest, but the claims were settled out of court at the time with the promise that Perrault would get therapy to prevent another boy from being harmed.

John Doe No. 8, told jurors the first assault occurred when he was 12. Perrault was driving the altar boy to the mountains outside of Albuquerque, he said, and the priest had told the boy’s parents they would be doing “church business.”

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Man who told Catholic church about past sexual abuse says he was brushed aside

NEWARK (NJ)
North Jersey Record

April 4, 2019

By Deena Yellin

When Johnrocco Sibilia finally broke a 29-year silence about the priest who sexually abused him when he was a teenager, he said he hoped to ease his pain and extinguish the demons that tortured him for years.

Instead, he said he was thrown into a labyrinth of frustration that left him wondering if opening up about his past was a mistake.

At first, he said he was hopeful, moved by Cardinal Joseph Tobin’s impassioned speeches apologizing for the sins of the church, and urging victims to step forward.

But when he approached the Archdiocese of Newark, he said, each person to whom he revealed his terrible secret either sent him to someone else or brushed him aside.

One reason could be that his alleged abuser, the Rev. Rene Lima, was a member of the Society of Divine Vocations (SDV), also known as the Vocationist Fathers, a Roman Catholic congregation of priests founded by the Rev. Justin Russolilo in 1920.

The dioceses do not consider it their responsibility to investigate claims against religious orders, even if their priests work in diocese churches.

As a result, the victims of religious order priests have fallen through the bureaucratic cracks, experts say. Their abusers are excluded from lists of credibly accused priests, and the victims are not generally compensated through the diocese funds, experts say.

There are about 11,424 Catholic religious order priests in the United States, including the Vocationist Order, Jesuits, Benedictines, Franciscans and Dominicans, according to the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate, based in Washington, D.C.

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Vatican upholds sex abuse conviction against Guam archbishop

GUAM/VATICAN CITY
The Associated Press

April 4, 2019

By Nicole Winfield

The Vatican has upheld its conviction of Guam’s ousted archbishop for sexually abusing minors and has added an additional penalty on appeal

The Vatican has upheld its conviction of Guam’s ousted archbishop for sexually abusing minors and has added a further penalty on appeal that effectively prevents him from presenting himself as a bishop.

The Vatican announced the definitive decision against Archbishop Anthony Apuron on Thursday. In doing so, it revealed for the first time that he had been originally convicted of sexually abusing youths in the remote U.S. Pacific territory.

Apuron has strongly denied the charges and said he is a victim of slander. His replacement hailed the verdict as necessary closure to a “long and painful period for our church.”

“The victims, survivors and their families who have suffered greatly can have some measure of solace that justice has been rendered in the church’s tribunal process,” Agana Archbishop Michael Byrnes said in a statement.

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Votación unánime: Senado aprueba imprescriptibilidad de delitos sexuales a menores

[Unanimous vote: Senate approves imprescriptibility of sexual crimes against minors]

CHILE
BioBioChile

April 4, 2019

By Jonathan Flores and Gonzalo Cifuentes

Como “un momento histórico para las víctimas, para la sociedad civil y para la propia legislación”, calificaron los senadores el respaldo unánime que entregaron ayer miércoles al proyecto de ley “derecho al tiempo”, que declarará imprescriptible los delitos sexuales contra menores. Siguieron atentamente el debate y la votación desde las tribunas, los representantes de la organización Derecho al Tiempo, quienes tuvieron que esperar nueve años para ver a la iniciativa superar su primer trámite en el Congreso.

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LatAm church grapples with abuse, politics — and welcomes the Virgin

ROME
Crux

April 3, 2019

By Inés San Martín

You can take the pope out of Latin America, but, as it turns out, it’s much harder to take the Latin America out of the pope.

Once again over recent days, there have been several noteworthy developments in and around the church in Latin America, at least some which involve history’s first pontiff from the region either directly or indirectly.

A week after being appointed to replace a prelate being investigated by civil prosecutors for allegedly covering up sexual abuse, the apostolic administrator (interim leader) of Santiago, Chile, is in Rome to meet with the pope.

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Survivors of sexual abuse in Montreal’s Catholic Church file request for class-action lawsuit

MONTREAL (CANADA)
CTV Montreal

April 3, 2019

Victims of sexual abuse in Montreal’s Catholic Church are requesting to file a class-action lawsuit against the diocese.

The request for class action was filed Wednesday on behalf of sexual assault survivors who endured abuse by members of the clergy in Montreal from 1940 to today.

The application was filed against the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Montreal and the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Montreal.

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As Pennsylvania lawmakers stall, child sex abuse victims suffer | Opinion

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
The Inquirer

April 3, 2019

By Marci A. Hamilton and Sarah G. Klein

Legend has it that the Roman emperor Nero “fiddled while Rome burned.” Today, Pennsylvania legislators are fiddling while victims are denied legal access to justice by outdated and unfair statutes of limitations (SOLs) for child sex abuse.

Pennsylvania allows victims of child sex abuse to come forth with civil claims until they are 30, and pursue criminal prosecution until age 50. Both age caps fall short of most states and the estimated average age of victim disclosure, 52.

Instead of passing the urgently needed statutory reform that would give victims from the past a “window” in which to seek justice against their abusers, legislators are making empty promises. A window permits those with expired civil statutes of limitation to bring lawsuits within a given period of years. As neighboring states, such as New York and New Jersey, lead the way on SOL reform with swift passage in 2019, Pennsylvania has taken a step backward.

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April 3, 2019

Maryland panel votes down effort to give more rights to childhood sex abuse victims

WASHINGTON (DC)
Washington Post

April 3, 2019

By Erin Cox

A Senate panel on Wednesday voted down a bill that would have let childhood sex abuse victims of any age sue institutions that harbored their attackers.

The legislation, proposed amid a global clergy sex abuse scandal, had passed the House of Delegates overwhelmingly last month. But the Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee declined to advance it, with one Democrat joining the committee’s four Republicans in voting it down.

The bill had become a heightened source of controversy in Annapolis after its lead sponsor accused the Catholic Church of swindling him into deal that may have granted the organization irreversible immunity from sex abuse cases that happened decades ago.

That deal, part of a 2017 law extending the civil statute of limitations, was a key reason cited by a senator who voted against this year’s proposal.

“It wiped out the compromise from two years ago,” Sen. Michael Hough (R-Frederick) said after the vote. The 2017 law raised the statute of limitations for civil sex abuse cases, increasing the age victims can file from 25 to 38 years old. It also included language some legal experts say makes it unconstitutional by increasing the statute of limitations again.

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As Pennsylvania lawmakers stall, child sex abuse victims suffer

PHILADELPHIA (PA)
Philadelphia Inquirer

April 3, 2019

By Marci A. Hamilton and Sarah G. Klein

Legend has it that the Roman emperor Nero “fiddled while Rome burned.” Today, Pennsylvania legislators are fiddling while victims are denied legal access to justice by outdated and unfair statutes of limitations (SOLs) for child sex abuse.

Pennsylvania allows victims of child sex abuse to come forth with civil claims until they are 30, and pursue criminal prosecution until age 50. Both age caps fall short of most states and the estimated average age of victim disclosure, 52.

Instead of passing the urgently needed statutory reform that would give victims from the past a “window” in which to seek justice against their abusers, legislators are making empty promises. A window permits those with expired civil statutes of limitation to bring lawsuits within a given period of years. As neighboring states, such as New York and New Jersey, lead the way on SOL reform with swift passage in 2019, Pennsylvania has taken a step backward.

Even though state Attorney General Josh Shapiro and a nationally recognized organization led by one of us (Marci Hamilton) have separately argued that reviving an expired civil SOL is constitutional under Pennsylvania law, the Republican leadership has decided that a window cannot happen without a constitutional amendment. Of course it can: It would simply require a majority vote from both houses of the legislature, like any other statute. The preference for a constitutional amendment is just that, a preference.

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Report on Catholic priests sad, disappointing for the faithful

MANHATTAN (KS)
Manhattan Mercury

April 3, 2019

Most of the incidents of sexual abuse happened years ago, and most of the priests who committed the abuse are dead now. Those who aren’t are no longer members of the clergy.

But the Salina Catholic Diocese’s report last week naming 14 priests who, according to substantiated reports, abused children while serving in positions of power in churches and schools, is still tragic and deeply disturbing.

The Salina Diocese oversees Manhattan’s Catholic churches. Of the 14 people named, three of the accused priests had served in Manhattan.

One of them, Monsignor William Merchant, was the superintendent of the Catholic schools here in the mid-1950s to late 1960s. According to a firsthand account from three men who were students at that time, Merchant molested and sexually assaulted them and others while he was overseeing the schools.

“In our collective opinion, Msgr. Merchant’s avocation was masquerading as a Catholic priest while pursuing his true vocation as an aggressive sexual predator,” they wrote, as part of the report.

To learn of such incidents even all these years later is heart-wrenching for our community and especially for the faithful. Parishioners put their trust in these men, and that trust imbues them with power. Some abuse that power.

Over the last decade or so, we’ve learned that across the country, sexual abuse among the clergy is not just a rare anomaly; it’s a disease, an epidemic. The cases now number in the thousands over the last 50 years. That’s appalling.

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Des Moines Diocese will identify 9 priests accused of abusing minors

DES MOINES (IA)
KCCI TV

April 3, 2019

A spokesperson for the diocese said the names will be released at a news conference scheduled for 11 a.m. Thursday at the Catholic Pastoral Center in downtown Des Moines.

Bishop Richard Pates wrote in a letter to parishioners that he apologizes “for the pain experienced by those abused by our priests, as well as the pain this has caused to all the faithful and those in our broader society.”

“I share the anger and frustration of recent reports of clerical abuse of minors and young people, he continued. “It is my sincere hope the release of this list facilitates healing, encourages additional victims who have faced abuse to come forward and begins to restore trust.”

In February, at least 28 priests were credibly accused of having sexually abused more than 100 boys and girls while working for the Diocese of Sioux City.

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Sex-abuse trial of fugitive priest tests federal reach

SANTA FE (NM)
Associated Press

April 3, 2019

By Susan Montoya Bryan

Four men who say they were sexually abused by the same Roman Catholic priest decades ago have recounted the details of their experiences as children as federal jurors prepared Wednesday to hear more about the alleged patterns of abuse.

The trial of 81-year-old Arthur Perrault before a federal judge in Santa Fe began Tuesday and is expected to last another two weeks.

Perrault’s case marks an unusual federal criminal prosecution of a former priest in a state where dozens of clergy abuse victims have won more than $50 million in settlements from the Archdiocese of Santa Fe. The archdiocese also is in the midst of bankruptcy proceeding as a result of the church-wide scandal, which has tarnished parishes across the globe.

Testimony on Tuesday by one of the unnamed men revealed that the archdiocese in 1992 had denied that he had been sexually abused by the priest but the claims were settled out of court at the time with the promise that Perrault would get therapy to prevent another boy from being harmed.

That man, identified only as John Doe #8, told jurors the first assault occurred when he was 12. Perrault was driving the altar boy to the mountains outside of Albuquerque. He told the boy’s parents they would be doing “church business.”

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Diocese of Lincoln priests against whom substantiated allegations of childhood sexual abuse have been reported

LINCOLN (NE)
Lincoln Diocese

April 2, 2019

The Diocese of Lincoln developed this list with the assistance of Bishop Conley’s Task Force on Child Sexual Abuse, which reviewed the diocese’s records related to allegations of sexual misconduct. The Task Force specifically recommended that the diocese publish the names of any diocesan clergy with substantiated allegations.

A “substantiated allegation” is an allegation that, after review of available information, appeared more likely true than not in the judgment of the independent Task Force.

There are no time limitations on this list and it will be treated by the diocese as a living document that will be updated and supplemented from time to time. The information available to the Task Force and the diocese with respect to historic allegations of abuse is largely limited to what exists in the diocesan records. However, if the diocese receives new allegations or new information about existing allegations, it will revisit adding names to this list. The diocese continues to cooperate with the Attorney General’s statewide investigation of clergy sexual abuse and, if that investigation yields more allegations or information about existing allegations, the diocese will add names to the list if warranted.

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Springfield-Cape Girardeau Diocese releases letter regarding sex abuse settlements

SPRINGFIELD (MO)
Ozarks First

April 3, 2019

By Beth Finello

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfield-Cape Girardeau has released a letter regarding sex abuse settlements.

Bishop Edward Rice detailed in the letter how much was spent on settlements and legal fees.

In August of 2018, Bishop Rice wrote a letter to members of the church expressing his sorrow for the hurt inflicted upon anyone in the Diocese by the clergy sexual abuse scandal.

In the 2018 letter, Bishop Rice also stated, “in the spirit of accuracy, transparency, and truthfulness, I directed an independent review of diocesan personnel files of all clergy, diocesan and religious, so that we could have an accurate accounting for the 63-year history of the Diocese of Springfield-Cape Girardeau.”

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Poll: Catholics Question Loyalty to Church Amid Sex Abuse Scandal

WEST PALM BEACH (FL)
Newsmax

April 3, 2019

By Cathy Burke

More than one in three Catholics question if they want to remain Catholic — a sign of their deep “frustration” with church leadership amid reports of widespread sexual abuse, according to one expert.

In a Gallup poll last month, 37% of U.S. Catholics said news of the abuse caused them to doubt their loyalty to the church — up from 22% in 2002.

In a Gallup podcast Wednesday examining the results, lawyer and Catholic activist Sister Simone Campbell said Roman Catholic leaders need to pay attention to those findings.

She said the remark she most often hears about Catholics is “‘when will they ever learn, when will they stop this?’” adding that the Pennsylvania attorney general report on decades of abuse was “shocking and horrifying.”

“Folks are really frustrated by that,” she said.

“My neighbor told me he quit going to church,” she recounted, but said more of “what I hear [from Catholics] is [they’re] shopping around more, looking for leadership they can trust.”

“When there are broader groups involved in managing the diocese… then there’s a whole different change,” she added, saying what’s important for the church leadership to do is “being willing to talk about the sin of our church.”

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Trial Begins Against Ex-Connecticut Priest Accused of Abuse

ST. LOUIS (MO)
Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

April 2, 2019

A criminal trial against a former Connecticut priest accused of abusing nearly 30 children starts Monday in New Mexico.

According to Bishop Accountability, Fr. Arthur Perrault worked in Hartford, East Hartford, Naugatuck and on the Yale campus in the 1960s.

It’s not too late for people with knowledge or suspicions about Fr. Perrault’s crimes to help law enforcement convict him. We hope that Fr. Perrault will be found guilty and kept away from kids for the rest of his life. And we hope anyone who may have been hurt by Fr. Perrault will come forward, make a report to law enforcement, and find help and healing from independent therapists and support groups.

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Diocese of Lincoln Posts Partial List of Clergy Accused of Abuse

ST. LOUIS (MO)
Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

April 3, 2019

The list published today by the Diocese of Lincoln is a small step forward for transparency on clergy sex crimes in Nebraska. We call on Church officials to take additional steps to keep children in Nebraska safe and to help victims heal.

First, the Diocese should include the names of not only Diocesan priests, but also those of religious order priests, brothers, nuns and lay employees who have been accused of abuse and spent time in Lincoln.

Second, the Diocese should include information about when it first received the allegations against each named person and what actions it took in response to those allegations. Only by knowing what went wrong in the past can we learn how to improve for the future and prevent additional cases of child sexual abuse.

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On Religion: Sister rises from Africa to confront Catholic abuses

GREENVILLE (NC)
Reflector

April 3, 2019

By Terry Mattingly

At the end of the movie “Spotlight,” the screen went black before a message appeared noting that in 2002 alone, The Boston Globe’s investigative reporting team published nearly 600 stories about sexual abuse by Catholic clergy.

The next screen noted, “249 priests and brothers were publicly accused of sexual abuse within the Boston Archdiocese.”

But there was more. The first time Sister Veronica Openibo of Nigeria saw this film — which won the Oscar for Best Picture in 2016 — she was stunned to see four screens packed with the names of 223 American dioceses and nations in which major abuse scandals had been uncovered.

“Tears of sorrow flowed,” she said, speaking at the Vatican’s global summit on clergy sexual abuse. “How could the clerical church have kept silent, covering these atrocities? The silence, the carrying of the secrets in the hearts of the perpetrators, the length of the abuses and the constant transfers of perpetrators are unimaginable.”

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Correction: Priest Trial Delayed story

KANSAS CITY (KS)
Associated Press

April 3, 2019

In a story April 2 about a delay in the trial of a Kansas priest accused of molesting a child, The Associated Press reported erroneously that he was on a list of 22 priests that the Catholic Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas identified as facing substantiated claims of abuse. He appeared on a separate list of priests facing public allegations that the diocese wasn’t able to substantiate.

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Diocese of Charleston names priests accused of sexual abuse; some had ties to Georgetown, Pawleys Island

CHARLESTON (SC)
The Associated Press

April 3, 2019

By David Purtell

The Catholic diocese in South Carolina on March 29 released a list of 42 priests with ties to the state who have been credibly accused of sexually abusing children.

All but 11 of the priests on the list released by the Charleston Diocese have died. The list doesn’t specify the parishes or institutions where the priests served.

Locally, three of the priests on the list had ties to St. Mary Our Lady of Ransom Catholic Church in Georgetown. In addition, at least one each at Precious Blood of Christ Catholic Church in Pawleys Island and St. Michael’s Catholic Church in Garden City.

Priests who were assigned to St. Mary’s in Georgetown who are on the list include:

Frederick Suggs, who was assigned to Georgetown two times: from 1945-1947 and 1962-1968; died in 1998

John Bench, Georgetown, from 1985-1991, died in 2009

Gerald Ryfinski, Georgetown, from 2000-2001. Ryfinski was laicized (removed from the clerical state) in April 2007. A note on the list states “Unlike others on the list, this case involved possession of child pornography.”

Others who were assigned to nearby parishes include:

Thomas Evatt, Precious Blood of Christ, Pawleys Island, 1986-1988. He died in 2003. He was also with St. Cyprian’s Catholic Church in Georgetown.
Hayden Vavarek, St. Michael’s, 1999-2000. Vavarek was laicized in May 2016

The list was broken into four parts. Twenty-one priests served in South Carolina. Others were named in a class-action settlement over abuse, had abuse claims from a diocese outside South Carolina or were a visiting priest to the state.

Bishop Robert Guglielmone said he was releasing the list with a heavy heart, but also wanting to assure accountability and transparency.

“It is my fervent hope and prayer that publishing this list will help bring healing to the victims and their families who have been so grievously harmed by the betrayal of priests and Church leadership,” Guglielmone wrote in a note released with the list.

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York Region mental health centre speaks out months after explosive report on abusive priests

TORONTO (CANADA)
Toronto Star

April 1, 2019

By Lisa Queen

The Southdown Institute mental health treatment centre missed a chance to explain what its mission is when it didn’t respond to accusations that priests who had sexually assaulted children were sent there as part of a coverup scheme by the Catholic Church, says the institute’s new president.

Attention last August focused on the 53-year-old centre, which operated in Aurora before moving in 2013 to Holland Landing just north of Newmarket, after the release of an explosive Pennsylvania grand jury report.

Of 300-plus priests who had sexually abused boys and girls in that state over decades, the grand jury identified seven predators sent to Southdown for treatment rather than facing criminal charges.

A Southdown spokesperson declined to discuss the revelation then.

Report details how hundreds of priests abused children in Pennsylvania, and the church covered it up

However, on Feb. 1, the centre welcomed new president and chief psychologist, Father Stephan Kappler, who believes Southdown missed an opportunity to respond to the accusations and explain its mission to the community.

The priest and Dr. Eran Talitman, a psychologist with Southdown for 20 years, sat down for a far-ranging interview, including accusations the centre “laundered” offending priests before the church reassigned them to unsuspecting parishes and concerns abusive clergy were tested out in local churches before going on to unknowing congregations.

Both men said they are upset thinking the community might fear Southdown and its clients.

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Still no pedophile-enabler street change nearly a year after issue raised with council

WARRNAMBOOL (AUSTRALIA)
Warrnambool Standard

April 3, 2019

Victims of sexual abuse are mounting a renewed push to rename a Warrnambool street which honours a senior priest who knew about abuse but failed to act.

Warrnambool mayor Tony Herbert previously told a victim that Fiscalini Drive’s name would be changed – but it hasn’t happened despite the issue being first raised mid-last year.

The Standard has contacted Cr Herbert for comment but he has not responded yet.

Monsignor Leo Fiscalini was told by a victim she was being sexually abused in 1972 and he accused her of “telling lies” and left her in the care of her abuser.

The county court has since jailed her abuser.

The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuses acknowledged Fiscalini and former Bishop of Ballarat Ronald Mulkearns knew of complaints relating to pedophile Gerald Ridsdale in the 1970s but permitted him to continue working in the region.

The sex assault victim, who revealed her abuse to Monsignor Fiscalini in a confessional, has previously received support from Cr Herbert.

“I received a very empathetic email,” she said.

“On July 12 last year I first wrote to Tony Herbert seeking support for the name of the street being changed after the story in The Standard.

“He said he was supportive of the removal of names from all public recognition of both those responsible for committing crimes and those who concealed crimes.

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El reservado primer día de Aós en el Vaticano

[Aós’ first day at the Vatican]

CHILE
La Tercera

April 2, 2019

By M. J. Navarrete

Religioso confirmó que le pedirá al Papa Francisco levantar el secreto pontificio de algunas de las investigaciones por abusos a menores de la Arquidiócesis de Santiago.

El nuevo administrador apostólico de Santiago, Celestino Aós, arribó hoy, cerca de las 6.30 de la madrugada (hora de Chile), al aeropuerto de Fiumicino, en Roma. Allí, se refirió a las expectativas de su viaje, que se extenderá por 10 días, donde confirmó que le pedirá al Papa Francisco levantar el secreto pontificio de algunas de las investigaciones por abusos a menores de la Arquidiócesis de Santiago.

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La mujer clave en el caso Karadima

[The key woman in the Karadima case]

CHILE
BioBioChile

April 3, 2019

By Erik López

“En tiempos en que hablamos de empoderamiento de las mujeres, es inevitable destacar el rol de una mujer en el caso Karadima. Lo que hoy presenciamos, el inédito fallo que responsabiliza a la Iglesia Católica por los abusos sexuales cometidos por un cura, tiene su origen en el trabajo profesional y sin miedo de una mujer”. “Se trata de la ministra de la Corte de Apelaciones de Santiago, Jessica González, quien en noviembre del 2011 dictó un fallo que sería el cimiento firme de la resolución que acogió la indemnización a las víctimas del cura Fernando Karadima”.

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After scandal, replacing the Catholic hierarchy in Chile

ROME (ITALY)
Crux

April 3, 2019

By Inés San Martín

To grasp the depth of Chile’s clerical sexual abuse crisis, imagine if around 68 of the United States’ 255 active Catholic bishops had been subpoenaed by civil prosecutors on suspicions of either committing the abuse of a minor, covering it up, or both.

That’s the situation in Chile, where nine of 34 bishops (27 percent) have been subpoenaed, including Cardinals Francisco Javier Errazuriz and Ricardo Ezzati, both former and current archbishops of Santiago, respectively. Errazuriz is also a former member of the council of cardinals that has been advising Pope Francis on Vatican reform.

Ezzati’s resignation was accepted by the pope March 23. The 77-year-old faces not only accusations of abuse cover-up, but is also the target of a $500,000 lawsuit involving an alleged rape at a residence in his cathedral that Ezzati allegedly failed to report.

Ezzati was replaced by Bishop Celestino Aós Bracco, who’s been appointed as apostolic administrator, meaning he’s not the new archbishop, and who himself has a troubled history on the abuse crisis.

The pontiff is having trouble finding a permanent replacement, much as he did when he replaced the other eight bishops whose resignations he accepted after last May, when every Chilean prelate offered his resignation to Francis when he summoned them to Rome. Each bishop was replaced by an apostolic administrator, rather than by a permanent replacement.

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Kansas priest accused of abusing a minor asks for trial delay

KANSAS CITY (KS)
Associated Press

April 2, 2019

A criminal trial of a priest charged with molesting a child has been delayed until at least summer.

The trial of Rev. Scott Kallal was set to begin April 15 in Wyandotte County District Court. But a hearing last week, the court granted Kallal’s request for more time. A status conference is set of June 7.

Kallal was charged in in 2017 with two felony counts of aggravated indecent liberties with a child. He has pleaded not guilty.

He was suspended from public priestly ministry in 2017 as associate pastor at Holy Spirit Church in Overland Park.

In January, Kallal was on a list of 22 priests the Catholic Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas said have had substantiated allegations of sexual abuse of minors made against them in the past 75 years.

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Retired Montana priest intends to plead guilty to receipt of child porn charge

GREAT FALLS (MT)
KTVQ News

April 2, 2019

Lothar Konrad Krauth of Great Falls intends to plead guilty to a receipt of child pornography charge.

Court documents filed on March 22 indicate Krauth, a retired Catholic priest, plans to change his plea to guilty at a hearing next week.

Court documents state Homeland Security agents received a cyber report from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children on Oct. 10, 2018.

The report showed a user with an IP address in Great Falls had uploaded an image of a nude prepubescent male child.

A summons to the internet service provider identified the IP address as assigned to Krauth, according to court documents.

Agents and Great Falls police executed a search warrant at Krauth’s residence on Oct. 26, 2018, where they seized approximately 20 items of electronic media including a desktop computer, external hard drives, six thumb drives, and more.

Court documents state a preliminary examination of the desktop computer identified approximately 400 images of child pornography while a subsequent analysis revealed thousands.

The images showed children as young as two or three years old, according to court documents.

Krauth was assigned to Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church in Great Falls from 1989 to 2014.

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Springfield-Cape Girardeau diocese spent more than $517,000 to settle clergy abuse claims

CAPE GIRARDEAU (MO)
Southeast Missourian

April 3, 2019

By Mark Bliss

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfield-Cape Girardeau has paid out more than $517,000 to victims of clergy sexual abuse and another $189,337 in legal fees since 1986, the diocese’s bishop disclosed in a letter posted on the diocese website and emailed to Catholics in southern Missouri.

The diocese emailed a copy of the letter to the Southeast Missourian on Tuesday.

Bishop Edward Rice wrote the diocese paid $355,000 out of unrestricted cash reserves to settle eight claims. Another three claims were paid by the diocese’s insurer, Catholic Mutual Relief Society, at a cost of $92,500, according to Rice.

The diocese also spent more than $70,000 to assist abuse victims. The money was spent on prescriptions, counseling and “future funeral expenses,” Rice wrote.

The legal fees were incurred in the handling of the claims and the recent review of diocese personnel files, the bishop wrote.

“Absolutely no funds have come from any parishes or the Diocesan Development Fund or the Capital Endowment Campaign,” he wrote.

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First ‘John Doe’ tells of attacks by accused priest

SANTA FE (NM)
Albuquerque Journal

April 2, 2019

By Colleen Heild

When he was a 12-year-old altar boy, John Doe #8 told his mother he was being molested by the Rev. Arthur Perrault, and she didn’t believe him. In June 1992, the Archdiocese of Santa Fe denied the boy had been sexually abused but settled his civil claim out of court, promising Perrault would get therapy to prevent another boy from being harmed.

On Tuesday, the now 60-year-old John Doe #8 told a federal court jury, sometimes through his tears, how he was seduced and eventually molested by Perrault some 48 years ago.

He recalled that the first assault occurred while Perrault was driving him to the mountains northwest of Albuquerque, telling his parents they had “church business” to do.

Perrault began groping him 30 minutes into the trip, he testified, then pulled off the road, stopped the car and finished the assault.

Their trip ended at a building complex John Doe #8 now believes was the Servants of the Paraclete center in Jemez Springs, where pedophile priests from around the country were sent for rehabilitation.

Once they arrived there, he testified, they lit candles, knelt down and prayed the rosary.

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Rockford panel addresses sex abuse in the Catholic Church

ROCKFORD (IL)
Register Star

April 2, 2019

By Chris Green

Involve lay people in the selection of priests and in the power structure of the Catholic Church, hold priests accountable for their behavior as well as for their ministry, and make celibacy an optional requirement for priesthood.

Those were some of the suggestions offered Tuesday night during a panel discussion titled, “Engaging Lent 2019: Ending the Sex Abuse Crisis.” About 80 people, mostly seniors, attended the event held at Rockford University’s Fisher Memorial Chapel and moderated by Register Star Metro Editor Kevin Haas.

The Rev. David Beauvais, a retired Catholic Diocese of Rockford priest, said church leaders from the Vatican down have been slow to acknowledge and fully address the crisis.

“They have to break the clerical stranglehold and allow more people in on the decision-making,” he said.

Ruth Kolpack, a former pastoral associate of St. Thomas in Beloit, added, “If lay people, mothers and fathers, were involved in the governance of the church, this sex abuse business would not be happening.”

Beauvais, Kolpack and Dick Kunnert, a former victim assistance coordinator for the Rockford diocese, served as the panelists.

What is normally a difficult topic to discuss became at times very frank. Sex abuse survivor Don Bondick of Rockford spoke about his long and continuing road of recovery from the horrors of being strangled and sodomized as a child at the hands of a priest and family friend.

“And the priest tells you, ‘Who are you going to tell?’”

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