NEW ORLEANS (LA)
WWL 4 CBS and Times-Picayune and Advocate
November 5, 2020
By David Hammer and Ramon Antonio Vargas
The consequences for not properly reporting abuse cases in the church can be harsh.
Mark Vath thought the sexual abuse complaint he filed against his father’s cousin, a Roman Catholic priest named Paul Calamari, was resolved when the Archdiocese of New Orleans put Calamari on a 2018 list of clerics strongly suspected of molesting children.
Church officials also agreed to pay Vath a $100,000 settlement for his ordeal. That was less than a month before the release of the roster of fallen priests and deacons. Church officials also later told him they believed his allegations.
But it turns out a formal investigation of Vath’s case by the church didn’t even start for another two years. Archbishop Gregory Aymond informed Vath in a letter in September that the church had only begun scrutinizing Calamari a month earlier, a process that might refer the matter to top Catholic bureaucrats in Rome to consider removing Calamari from the priesthood.
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