Kansas City Star Calls for Bishop’s Resignation


Why won’t The Philadelphia Inquirer’s editorial board take this strong a stand? Kudos to the Kansas City Star. Even though Cardinal Rigali sent in his resignation papers upon his 75th birthday (as required), our newspapers could do a better job of making him more uncomfortable while he waits.

“Kansas City Star Calls for Bishop Finn’s Resignation,” by Thomas C. Fox, The National Catholic Reporter, June 4, 2011.

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19 Responses to “Kansas City Star Calls for Bishop’s Resignation”

  1. No offense, Susan, but this still isn’t a strong stand.

    Bishop Finn in Kansas City, and Vicar Murphy should go to jail for reckless child endangerment and aiding and abetting a known pedophile.

    Read the stories – Bishop Finn was warned about Fr Ratinger, and his pedophile tendencies a YEAR ago. He was warned by a principal at a school. He now says he didn’t read the memo. WHAT? Then go directly to jail.

    He left Ratinger in a positions where he was regularly around small children, taking pictures up their skirts, wrestling with them, et cetera. You have to decide in your own mind whether he raped a child or would have if he could get an opportunity. Re-read the Philadelphia Grand Jury report.

    Catholics are too soft on child rape and aren’t responsible enough to make those decisions. Bishop Finn should go to jail. So should Rigali for hiding credibly accused priests, and lying about it to the congregation right up until the day when the Grand Jury report came out.

    The strong stand is to demand that Rigali and other complicit bishops in the Catholic church go to jail. If that can’t be done, do whatever you can to choke off their money supply, which may be one of the few things you can do to control them. Demand the full truth, and full punishment for anyone who didn’t do What Jesus Would Do.

    Catholics don’t seem to realize that history is being written, and children in the future will see the Catholic church as a church that was

    – soft on child rape
    – strong on dishonestly
    – strong on fighting or ignoring victims

    Intelligent children will leave the Catholic religion because of today’s Catholic church. You have a limited amount of time to take a strong stand, and make drastic changes to save it. The click is ticking.

  2. (Patrick – Your typo on Ratigan’s name speaks volumes.)

    In 2003, law prof. Marci Hamilton proposed RICO prosecution of the Catholic Church authorities because of their traditional abuse operations. It would be interesting to know if this may apply. Apparently, RICO was devised to go after legitimate organizations with infiltration by criminal elements as well as others in which the boss himself never committed the actual crimes. Internally initiated Church improvement looks less and less likely as Kansas City and the like crop up, Rigali leaves the US for the Czech Republic, and the USCCB plans to go to Seattle to review progress since Dallas.
    See http://writ.news.findlaw.com/hamilton/20030619.html

    • Patrick, I support the prosecution of the Catholic Church authorities using RICO statutes. There is no other way that the clergy will ever understand that they are responsible to society–civil society–and not to their superior general, vicar general, pope, whatever they may want to call their superiors. They are just as responsible as any teacher, principal, superintendent, attorney general, whatever. BUT, they don’t get it. They believe they are IN the world but not OF the world. They really believe that!!!

      We must disabuse them of that fact. We must demand prosecution of the RC hierarchy.

      • Eliz. T,

        They will eventually be prosecuted. The evidence is overwhelming. The question is whether Catholics believe strongly enough in their religion that they have the guts to replace leaders that don’t practice Catholicism, or whether they wait for lawyers to do it for them.

        I don’t understand why Catholics aren’t smart enough to understand that.

  3. Patrick
    I don’t disagree with you about the hierarchy being criminally charged. I don’t disagree with you about people cutting off the money supply.
    You write:
    The strong stand is to demand that Rigali and other complicit bishops in the Catholic church go to jail. If that can’t be done, do whatever you can to choke off their money supply, which may be one of the few things you can do to control them. Demand the full truth, and full punishment for anyone who didn’t do What Jesus Would Do.

    All good points. My question to you Patrick is how? Am I supposed to call D.A Seth Williams and demand he arrest Rigali because I want him to? Am I supposed to not understand that there are people who have their head buried so far in the sand that they will never cut off their money donations to the Archdiocese?
    What we have chosen to work on is having the statute of limitations in Pennsylvania changed in cases concerning child sex abuse. This is our only hope to see real change and have some justice for victims. If the statute of limitations is changed to open a 2 year window for people to file civil lawsuits,that is where more discovery of the cover up will be exposed.
    Which can possibly lead to criminal charges against the hierarchy.
    That is where our energy is being placed as we are working with many advocates and LEGAL representatives who realize that the only real change will happen when the LAWS change.
    I imagine that most people who visit this site have already stopped donations.We are going to post something shortly that will show the number of people in the Philadelphia Archdiocese who have answered a survey stating that they WILL continue to contribute even in the midst of this crisis. I can’t make those people stop donating.I can work for legislative reform in our state that will help ALL the children of Pa. who have been victims of child sex abuse.

    • KK,

      This would be a part of my plan if I lived there:

      – call Seth Williams, write him a letter, and post on his Facebook page, which is completely public.
      – start Facebook fan page called “Cardinal Rigali should be arrested” after you know you can get 50-100 people to join
      – get 10, 20 or 50 people to protest with signs in front of Rigali’s church before the most popular mass. Hand out the first 6 pages of the Phil Grand Jury report
      – get those people to go to that mass, and stand up during the collection, refusing to donate, which would make everyone ask after mass
      – tell them you were “standing up for raped children”
      – tell everyone at Rigali’s church that you want them to read just the first 6 pages of the grand jury report

      God’s children deserve more, and I will give them a lot more, but that’s a good start. It’s not even hard, and you were probably going to go to mass anyways, right?

      • Patrick
        I agree with your points. Here is the thing. Rich has protested and parishioners have cursed at him and thrown things at hime. Buddy recently protested and tried to give out copies of the Grand Jury report-3 people were willing to take the copies of the report.I don’t disagree at all with protesting-I have participated myself. My point is that if people are so brainwashed ,a few people with signs isn’t changing their mind.As for having people stand up during Mass,good luck with that-they will be labeled “freaks” and the congregation will quickly sympathize with the priest whose Mass was disrupted.
        Remeber Patrick there is a faction of Catholics who either have chosen to not inform themselves-and never will.And also those who claim “the victims are liars”.Those groups will never change-it is sad but it is reality.
        The only real change will come from outside of the Church with laws better protecting children. Changes in the laws since the 2005 Grand Jury report is what allowed Seth Williams to indict Monsignor Lynn and the other priests recently.We need to get these criminals into court and prosecuted and that will only happen through improving the laws and statute of limitations in the state of Pennsylvania.

      • KK,

        I talked to Rich for a long time today, and he is gutsy. I won’t get into confidential details, but he has been treated like you say – spit on, accused of lying, sworn at, et cetera. Ironically, so was Jesus.

        People will hate me for saying this, but the Catholic congregation is a group of sheep. If everyone tells them to spit and swear, they will spit and swear, even if that clearly isn’t What Jesus Would Do.

        However, if Rich had 50 or 100 true Catholics beside him doing the right thing, the sheep would eventually turn and get signs themselves. That’s why that would be my approach.

        It must be devastating to God to think that Philadelphia can’t get 50-100 true Catholics to do the right thing and oppose their bishops would couldn’t be more obvious about doing the wrong thing.

  4. To all: Demand the prosecutor arrest the Cardinal, strongly campaign for money being cut off in support of this criminal institution among the Catholic community and vote out legislators who prevent the statute of limitations from being eliminated on child sex abuse.

    Why are we Catholics and society at large being so damn soft on these criminals?

  5. Keep in mind the fact that Cardinal Rigali has shrewdly distanced himself from all of this horror. He still wants Cardinal Bevilacqua and his team to pay. Shame on all! Bishop Tim Senior is just as guilty as the rest, under the direction of Rigali. I say, get active and get them out!

  6. Patrick let me respond to something you wrote:
    “God’s children deserve more, and I will give them a lot more, but that’s a good start. It’s not even hard, and you were probably going to go to mass anyways, right?”
    Actually Patrick I did not spend my Sunday morning at mass.I spent it doing research and making notes for a meeting that Susan and I will be attending this week.A coaltion of clergy sex abuse victims,advocates from various organizations and PROSECUTORS, who know best what laws need to be changed,will be coming together to work on this issue. If I thought standing outside a Church this morning with a protest sign would be a better way to help this issue,I would be there.
    There is room enough in this issue for everyone.It is a huge problem that needs to be attacked from all angles.If people want to protest-God Bless them-and I will continue to join in protests.If people want to withhold money-Awesome.
    I want the state of Pennsylvania to be safer for all children-Catholic and non catholic.
    If you think creating a facebook page stating that Rigali should be arrested is now going to lead to Seth Williams running to 222 N.17st with handcuffs-have at it- and if you are succesful I will be first in line to congratulate you.People need to be involved in this situation to have things change.If people are willing to commit their time-I am not judging how they choose to spend it.

    • I love KK.

      I’ll help with a Facebook page, but you have to know that you can get a few hundred people to click “Like” on the page. Otherwise, with only 100 people being a fan of the page, there isn’t enough public pressure.

  7. Kathy – What you and Susan are doing is superb, praiseworthy, and deserving of all the support you can get and energy you can muster. No defense required. There appears to be nothing to exclude multiple simultaneous efforts, all pushing. At one point in Boston in 2002, four different threats were aimed at Law at once – judge, DA, and 2 others. That may have helped to educate him and the Pope. I’m sure that, as soon as Patrick gets there, he will focus on the other angles. (Coincidently, in Boston the 4 efforts were all led by women. Unfortunately, we’ll probably never find out how that may have affected Law’s thinking.)

  8. Thank you so much Jack for your kind words of support.I think people would be shocked to realize the amount of time Susan and I devote to this cause- off site. Over the past few months we have been busy making some excellent connections with people who have much knowledge about the scope of the problem and what needs to be done.
    At a meeting we attended a few weeks ago it became very clear where our efforts will be most productive.We listened to a clergy abuse survivor who has been advocating for victims for the past 20 years and a prosecutor who has a history in dealing with the clergy abuse crisis. The laws need to change. The Church will not change because it is the right thing to do. Many Catholics will never choose to inform themselves-these are the realities we are facing.

    • Thank you Kathy and Susan… please continue to keep us updated on your meetings and what you are learning. There are many ways to work toward needed change… and many action steps we can be taking in our own parishes. Thank you for the work you are both doing.

  9. Laura
    We absolutley will provide updates for the C4C site about the efforts of the coalition.Our first meeting a few weeks ago was basic introductions and some excellent information provided.We will have professionals from the coalition guest blog on the C4C site in the near future.
    It is a great group of people who have been brought together and our focus at the meeting this week is to identify the strengths and talents of all involved and form committees which will have speciific tasks within the coalition.
    Having statute of limitations changed is not an easy process and will require a lot of work from many different people. In Delaware which is such a small state,the process took 2 years with people working on a full time basis.

  10. I commend the Kansas City Star!

    Thank you for having acted to protect children and expose the corruption in the Catholic Church.

  11. Thank you Kathy and Susan. If there is any help that I can provide you please contact me. I am a retired special ed teacher in Bethesda, Maryland, and there are many things I would be able to do. You can get my email through the site.

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