Statement regarding deposition of Bishop Emeritus Matthew H. Clark

Diocese of Rochester

July 6, 2020

The Diocese of Rochester appreciates Bishop Emeritus Clark’s cooperation in undergoing approximately three hours of questioning in his deposition of March 2020. While any individual would have difficulty providing accurate memory of events that occurred over a period of more than 33 years, Bishop Clark was further hindered by his struggle with early Alzheimer’s Disease.

In a January 13, 2020 letter filed with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in early February, prior to the deposition, Bishop Clark’s physician had forewarned of potential issues by stating that Bishop Clark’s “memory impairment limits his ability to assimilate and recall information presented in lengthy and complex questions and his ability to recall past events. His language impairment limits his ability to form clear, cogent and reliable responses to such questions.” As a result of these limitations, the deposition is in many instances imprecise and inaccurate and thus calls into question whether it is a credible addition to the bankruptcy case record.

We continue to pray for the victims of sexual abuse, that they might find the hope and healing they deserve. We pray for Bishop Clark and for all those who suffer from this debilitating and tragic disease, and for the dedicated health professionals and caregivers working to assuage the difficult challenges of Alzheimer’s Disease.

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