The following 2004 testimony of Msgr. William J. Lynn in regard to a document dated Feb. 18, 1994 is admitted as evidence of conspiracy in the upcoming trial. Msgr. Molloy did not shred his copy as instructed by Cardinal Bevilacqua in 1994. It was recently recovered from a safe. It’s a good thing considering Msgr. Lynn’s faulty memory.
Q. And the first paragraph of this document reads: Father Beisel and I reviewed the 323 files that are presently stored in the secret archives. Attached is a list of priests who have been guilty of or accused of sexual misconduct with a minor according to the file material…
…Well, let me ask you this question then, Monsignor (Lynn): After you prepared this document, what action did you take as a result of having gone through the secret archive files? Did you make changes to anybody’s assignment? Did you say hey, we better take a look at this person because you know what, I realize that this person is in assignment and they have a history? Did you do anything like that after reviewing all of the secret files?
Msgr. Lynn: I – we may have.
Q. You don’t have any recollection of it?
Msgr. Lynn: I don’t.
Q. And this memo, apparently attached to it was the list of the priests; is that correct?
Msgr. Lynn: That’s right.
Q. And you can’t find that document?
Msgr. Lynn: I cannot.
Q. What would you have done once that person was in that (guilty) column, if you found out they were still in ministry?
A. Well, as I said, I don’t remember what I did ten years ago, but I think my mode of operation would have been to do something about him, if he was in ministry.
Q. Well, let me ask you this question specifically, and if yo don’t have the recollection, that’s fine, what about Father Cannon? Father Cannon had allegations that brought against him in 1964 by a number of different individuals, I think it was eight at the time, and those individuals were interviewed, and the allegations were determined by the interviewer to be credible allegations.
There was another allegation that came forward – well, I shouldn’t say another allegation, I’m sorry, one of the same victims notified the Archdiocese in 1992 as a result of the Porter case, wrote another letter to the Archdiocese, that’s 1992, and in 1994 when you went through the files, Father Cannon remained in ministry, do you recall that?
….up until December of 2003, is that right?
Msgr. Lynn: That’s right.
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34 thoughts on “Exhibit Eight In Msgr. Lynn Trial: Evil”
Prepare for the big lies and counter lies that will soon deluge us. The finger-pointing and CYA actions have only just begun. Victims, lawyers, greed and, of course, the Devil will all be blamed .
Chaput may sacrifice Bevilacqua, Cullen, Cistone, Lynn and numerous former diocesean lawyers. But he must save Justin Rigali at all costs. Chaput’s boss in Rome will demand it.
Let the trial begin!! We can expect at least one bombshell a week. Hold on to your seats, please.
Jerry, a question…attorneys appear to represent, Lynn, and different attorneys represent the AD and are at odds with Lynn’s attorneys over document distribution. …do we have three separate interests in this trial, ie prosecution, AD, and Lynn????
Joan, you have as many different interests as you have potential criminal defendants, which may be a couple of dozen here.
Criminal lawyers represent a single defendant at a time usually, with the main goal of beating the rap, even if it means having some other lawyer’s client take the fall. It is every man for himself!
The AD may in addition have its own criminal lawyer looking out solely for the AD’s interests, not any hierarch’s interest.
Each client talks only with his own lawyer to preserve the confidentiality privilege. Lawyers then talk with each other, which is also privileged.
A lot of lawyers; a lot of fees. But it keeps secrets protected.
Of course, a client can always tell his lawyer to waive the privilege, e.g., and turn over privileged communications, but that will not likely occur here.
Joan, you thought I was harsh on Dublin’s Abp. Martin, who gave an Emmy Award winning “crying” performance on 60 Minutes.
Please click on to the link below to today’s Irish Times piece. In it, Martin is presenting the Vatican’s new report on Ireland done by NY ‘s Cardinal Dolan et al. The fox inspecting the hen house.
Maeve Lewis, an experienced psychotherapist and a brave women I have come to know, criticizes Martin in effect for hypocrisy about helping victims. Maeve runs an outstanding Dublin victims’ therapy clinic, OneInFour,ie and has had to deal often with Martin.
Abp. Martin worked with Cardinal Rigali for years in Rome. Different countries; identical criminal conspiracies and comparable hierarchical frauds.
Please click on at:
Jarry, thanks for the input. In my ignorance I thought that there were prosecution lawyers and defense lawyers for Lynn and the two other accused priests. Period. Could not understand why an AD lawyer was there, much less refusing to release docs that the Lynn lawyers requested. Thought the AD was paying for and supporting Lynn?
If I read you right, boy was I wrong.
Even if the AD is not presently a criminal defendant, they have lawyers, representing a position that seems contrary to Lynn’ guys.
By the same logic, I guess you could have lawyers individually representing Cardinal Rigali, Bishop Chaput and those other auxiliary bishops.
How does that work, sounds like a three ring circus to me. Does the judge limit some of this? Questions, always questions! but serious thanks ….joan
Joan ,it is going to be every man for himself and the brotherhood and obedience that put children at risk for so many years will be tossed out the window when it comes to saving themselves.
I am certainly in no way a supporter of Msgr Lynn and his part in all this- not at all -but my prayer is he takes them all down with him.
Jerry, I read your fox guarding the henhouse analysis regarding the ‘report’ and sympathize with the victims groups.
Sorry if I was harsh, regarding Martins TV appearance, which I recall I thought was heartfelt.
There is, of course, no excuse for the Vatican/church not taking responsibility for the horrors that have occurred in Ireland.
Yes everyone is quiet about Rigali he knew about the letter in the safe right?
“big lies and counter lies that will soon deluge us”. No doubt Jerry
Proverbs 12:12 The Lord detests lying lips.
If he is capable of this kind of deception, does anyone really know WHAT else he is or has been capable of? This man, as pastor of my church, had responsibility of MY children who attended the school. And for anyone who disputes that, or thinks the parish and the schools are separate, guess again. This parish was more or less paralyzed after his arrest. The principal claimed she had been given absolutley no guidance from the AD on handling the fall out from the arrest, nor did she seem to know what to do or say without having a pastor to run to. Other than protest his innocence and claim HE was in fact a victim.
I have found this disturbing, all along. Yet those of us who have spoken up and out (as Sr. Maureen suggested in another post), have been vilified.
Until some heads roll in the AD, and more facts presented, nothing will change. I’m not sure for some, if facts could even change thier undying faith in those who don’t deserve it.
I’m astounded though, by how much no one remembers about anything. If such important issues can slip the mind, imagine what else has been occupying them. Wow.
That’s why we’re here…we will never let the people forget. Ever. They may slip in and out of denial, but the victims will remind them.
The AD has beaten down victims…and they are still talking. They abused and coerced and shamed silence…and yet, the truth is coming out. They paid off and bullied and drafted gag orders…and yet, the victims are still talking. Never will they be silent again. The church wants them to go away. Never. Until their last breath, they will tell their story of abuse and how those who should have done something turned against them in their hour of need.
The victims have what the hierarchy of the church does not…integrity and courage.
You know what I want to know? Who served at these parishes with these pedophiles? Don’t tell me they flew under the radar. Other priests knew and turned a blind eye.
That’s what I’d like to know too. Why are they so afraid to speak out? What ever happened to the priests (I think there were 4) who wanted to testify against the accused and for the victims in this trial?
child guardian, We have heard that up to 40 priests and 20 nuns have been called as witnesses for the prosecution. Those numbers may not be exact,but it is much more than the 4 we all heard of a few months ago.
It’s why their positions are held in such high regard…and I’m not debating whether they should or should not be…but, their role is influencial at the very least.
On one hand we are to see them as every other person who sins…and yet, they have this position of trust and influence all connected to the Sacraments.
It no longer becomes, solely, a betrayal to the victims, but to the laity and brother priests as well.
So Kathy …….that many witnesses nuns and priests………….are they ordered not to speak til they go to court? By the judge or the Archdiocese?
Beth – I am not sure about any witness not speaking/speaking before any trial . To be honest I personally don’t associate the deafening silence of the clergy in Philadelphia and the possibility of being a witness at some point. Until the evidence of past abuse cases was determined to be allowed as part of this case a short time ago -many of these clergy would probably not have been called to the stand.
Fr John Cannon was a priest at my parish when I was a child -he heard my first confession. He was in charge of the altar boys and also taught at a local diocesan high school. This was in the 70’s and 80’s years after the original allegations came to light.
In 1985 when my father died he was to be the celebrant at the funeral. He was “suddenly and unexpectedly” (his words) called into the Archdiocese for a meeting and called to say he would have another priest take his place. It turns out he made it back in time to co celebrate the funeral mass for my father. He was gone the next day. He had been in the parish for about 15 years and was pulled overnight. This was in November -assignments are usually changed in June. No good bye party,no explanation -just gone overnight after 15 years. My father’s funeral Mass was the last thing he participated at the parish. When we were leaving the Church Fr Cannon stood in the back in tears, I thought he was sad for my family, how wrong I was. None of this made sense until I read the 2005 GJ report,although it never explains why he was pulled in 1985 and transferred to be the chaplain of a nursing home. I guess that is what happened at the “sudden and unexpected’ meeting at the archdiocese.
Not only were the allegations deemed credible in the 1960’s against Fr Cannon but a fellow a priest who worked at the Catholic run camp where the boys were abused ,also alerted the Archdiocese (also in the 1960’s) to his own concerns about Cannon’s behavior with children.
Kathy and I are from the same parish growing up. My brother was an altar boy there and Fr. Cannon seemed to be grooming there very scary…….. Took the altar boys on excursions on a regular basis..I pray for any victims we are not aware of. Alot of vandalism there around the time Fr. Cannon left ……………alot of things make sense now.
Things like a predator list do not just slip their minds…………
I agree, Beth. It also makes you wonder what else has been shredded.
I too believe our survivors.
Interesting. . .I have mentioned in another blog that I belong to one of the outer parishes. Mr. Cannon is just one of the priests mentioned in the Grand Jury report that was shipped off here. It boggles my mind that almost all of the priests that were associated with my children’s sacraments are involved with this mess. I have belonged to two parishes since I moved to PA in the early 1980’s. It has completely disgusted me.
As well it should Mare, as well it should.
Yes Mare ,so many abusive priests who impacted people’s lives in some way. Susan and I often hear from people who tell us of a now known abusive priest who baptized their children ,performed their wedding ,buried their parents..
Hadit could probably speak best to the dynamics that play out in the priesthood.
I see it too simplistically. I see them as a group of men who lack courage and essentially, are more afraid of what it will mean to their hide than what it means to the children and their flock…you know…the ones they were called to SERVE?
It’s more complicated than how I summed it up. But, it’s a great question to keep asking when there’s deafening silence.
sw – we have to wonder what kinds of scary head games their superiors play with these highly educated, grown men to keep them all in lock-step and so strangely quiet. (other than the priests who post here) –It’s remarkable.
Highly educated??? More like highly indoctrinated in the faith and the priestly culture.
Thank you Kathy for the update on the list of witness for the prosecution. That is comforting news I guess. I so hope that their case is strong enough to bring justice to the victims and truth to the rest of us.
From an article over one year ago…
“Avery and Engelhardt are accused of assaulting a 10-year-old boy at St. Jerome’s School in the Northeast between 1998-99. Teacher Bernard Shero, 48, is also charged with assaulting the same student the following year. Brennan, who also worked at St. Jerome’s, is accused of assaulting a 14-year-old boy in Newtown in 1996.
The grand jury found that, before their assignments to St. Jerome’s, both Avery and Brennan had previously been accused of child sex abuse, which Lynn was aware of.
Archbishop Cardinal Justin Rigali said Thursday that the Archdiocese has not yet had the opportunity to review the full grand-jury report, but that he will “take very seriously any observations and recommendations of this grand jury.”
“I also welcome the opportunity for ongoing collaboration with the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office in the vital work of protecting children,” Rigali said. “At this moment, as people of faith we much reach out in compassion and support for one another and for all who are affected by this news. Victims of sexual abuse by clergy may find this news deeply painful. Our thoughts and prayers are with them. It is in this spirit that the Archdiocese of Philadelphia is cooperating fully with the civil authorities in this and all related matters.”
If convicted, Lynn could face up to 14 years in prison, while the other four individuals face a maximum of 67 years of imprisonment.”
AVERY NOW PLEADS GUILTY AND IS GOING TO BE SENTENCED TO ONLY 2 1/2 to 5 YRS.???
AND AS FOR RIGALI… “THE AD OF PHILA. IS COOPERATING FULLY WITH THE CIVIL AUTHORITIES IN THIS AND ALL RELATED MATTERS”. ??!!
THE PHILA. DA’S OFFICE BETTER FILE CHARGES AGAINST HIM AND HAUL HIS ASS UP FROM TENNESSEE. I WELCOME THAT OPPORTUNITY!!
I AM INFURIATED AND DISGUSTED.
Trust me 4TC, you have lots of thoroughly disgusted company….Avery adopted 6 Hmong kids, noted in the 2011 Grand Jury report, kids whomthe diocese ignored, in terms of their protection or safety, three boys and three girls in I think 1992, on Lynn’s ‘watch’ (and God only knows what happened to them, but I hope the prosecution is looking into it as the AD has responsibility, there too… )
Avery raped one child who was a 10 year old fifth grade altar boy.
He passed this poor kid onto two priests and a school teacher for oral and anal raping, oral sodomization, et al. This poor kid started vomiting, the docs couldn’t figure out why. The victim then started using marijuana….
My fond hope is that EVERY AD person involved in this horror will serve serious jail time!
What makes these stories real to me is when I picture my children at that age and how innocent they were. It’s too much, it’s enough to make me cry.
Mare ….it also makes you comment here, and I would not be at all surprised if you found other ways to help!
Mare, that is what torments me every time I think of this. When I imagine, even for a split second, any of these horrific acts being done to one of my children, I get so upset I have to cut off the thought. Obviously, the hierarchy who covered this up are not capable of this feeling.