Pope sends 2 to St. John's to report on sex abuse

Toronto Star
October 8, 1990

[See the Winter report, Vol. 1, Vol. 2, and Conclusions and Recommendations. See also the subsequent Royal Commission report, Vol. 1 and Vol. 2.]

St. John's, Newfoundland - The Vatican has sent two high-ranking Canadian officials to Newfoundland to meet with church and lay officials in the wake of a sex scandal involving priests and young boys.

A church-sponsored study released in July said lack of leadership may have encouraged the sexual abuse.

Archbishop Alphonsus Penney of St. John's offered his resignation after reading the report but there has been no word on whether Pope John Paul II has accepted it.

The archdiocese of St. John's announced yesterday that Bishop Roger Ebacher of Hull, Que., and Rev. James Weisgerber of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops would arrive in St. John's today.

The two clerics will stay in the province until Friday.

Penney has "assured them of full collaboration and union in prayer for an outcome to their mission which will favor the healing process in our wounded church," the archdiocese said.

Ebacher and Weisgerber plan to make themselves available to the public.

More than 20 Newfoundland priests, former priests, Christian Brothers and others in the church have been charged or convicted of sexually assaulting young boys.

The church inquiry estimated 30 per cent of the province's 107 priests might be homosexual.


















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