Bishop Accountability

Accused Priests: 21 (including 11 clergy against whom there were substantiated allegations and 10 against whom there were unsubstantiated allegations; substantiated allegations are ones "for which there is clear evidence, a confession or a civil conviction"; total does not include 1 substantiated allegation against an extern priest, and allegations against an unspecified number of order priests)
Total Diocesan Priests: 334
Alleged Victims: NA
Cost: $352,604 for counseling fees and settlements
Sources of Funds: $310,000 from the diocese, and $42,604 from insurers

See the Dallas Morning News database entry on Emeritus Bishop Anthony Bosco. The June 2002 database examined the records of bishops and identified those who had allowed accused priests to continue working or had otherwise protected priests accused of sexual abuse. The database is relevant to the bishops' "Nature and Scope" study because the bishops who prepared the surveys for the study are in many cases responsible for the "scope" of the problem.

Diocese releases John Jay abuse survey results

By Angela J. Burrows
Executive Director, Infomedia Services
The Catholic Accent
February 19, 2004

GREENSBURG — Results of the national John Jay study into the problem of sexual abuse of minors by Catholic clergy in the United States will be released publicly Feb. 27. Today the Diocese of Greensburg released the numbers that it gathered last summer and submitted to John Jay representatives.

Conducted by the City University of New York's John Jay College of Criminal Justice, the study represents a quantitative description of the scope of the problem of sexual abuse of minors by Catholic clergy in the United States in the last half-century.

According to Greensburg diocesan officials, of the 334 diocesan priests who have served the diocese since 1951, 11 or 3.2 percent have had substantiated allegations of sexual abuse of minors made against them. In addition to the 11 diocesan priests, one priest from outside the diocese, who for a time served in the Greensburg Diocese, was involved in the substantiated cases. (These numbers do not include religious-order priests who have served in diocesan parishes since 1951.)

The diocese has received allegations against 21 of 334 diocesan clergy since 1951, diocesan officials said. This number includes the 11 clergy against whom there have been substantiated allegations and 10 clergy against whom there were unsubstantiated allegations, officials said. Substantiated cases are those for which there is clear evidence, a confession or a civil conviction, according to Father Roger A. Statnick, general executive director for the diocese.

The study was commissioned by the national review board, which was established by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops to ensure compliance with the USCCB's charter to protect children and young people. The USCCB adopted the charter in June 2002 after widely publicized reports of sexual abuse of minors in the Archdiocese of Boston and other dioceses rocked the church around the country. The John Jay study is the first of its kind to look at any specific population in such comprehensive detail and represents the USCCB's commitment to addressing the problem.
Of the 11 diocesan priests involved in the substantiated allegations, none is currently in active ministry, according to Father Statnick. Two are deceased; one has resigned from ministry; and Bishop Anthony G. Bosco has forbidden the rest from exercising public ministry or publicly representing themselves as priests. The priest who had temporarily served in the diocese has also been banned from public ministry and has returned to his diocese of origin.

The diocese and its insurance carriers have paid $352,604 in counseling fees and settlements related to the allegations since 1951, Father Statnick said, explaining that $310,000 has come from diocesan coffers and the remainder from the diocese's insurance carriers. The money that came from diocesan coffers was from the diocese's insurance fund. Of the total, $267,600 was spent on one case, which was settled in the early 1980s.

Release of the national John Jay results comes one month after release of the aggregate results of a compliancy audit of all U.S. dioceses. The audit, conducted by the New York City-based Gavin Group, was commissioned by the USCCB to ensure that all dioceses are following the guidelines set forth in the charter and its associated norms. The audit of the Diocese of Greensburg gave the diocese high marks and included a commendation for Bishop Bosco's proactive and forward thinking in the handling of the problem of clergy sexual abuse of minors. The diocese also was commended for the efforts of its pastoral care team.

As part of its implementation of the charter, the Diocese of Greensburg is requiring awareness training for all clergy, school personnel, religious education instructors and other staff and volunteers who have contact with minors. The National Catholic Risk Retention Group developed material for the Virtus "Protecting God's Children" training. The diocese selected the program for its quality and the ability it affords the diocese to "train the trainer" and then have them train others in their regions, diocesan officials said. To date about 2,600 or nearly all diocesan employees and volunteers who work with children have been trained.

In addition, in April 2003, the diocese released its Minor Protection Policy, which was a consolidation of all of its already-existing personnel policy requirements governing diocesan employees and volunteers who have significant contact with minors, officials said. These requirements include background clearances and guidelines for appropriate contact with minors. The policy was further refined in September 2003 with the addition of a mandate that all employees and volunteers who have significant contact with children receive Virtus training or something similar.


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