Student Stalked by Priest Testifies for the Prosecution


Click here to read: “Witness recall being stalked by priest,” by John P. Martin, The Philadelphia Inquirer, March 28, 2012

 

Excerpt: “I told you I’d find you,” the Rev. Francis Trauger allegedly told the boy, then 15.

The priest ordered the boy to kneel and unzip his pants, but the forced encounter abruptly ended when a faculty member began banging on the door, the student said.

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58 Responses to “Student Stalked by Priest Testifies for the Prosecution”

  1. This is just heartbreaking…. ugh!

  2. That is one scary predator… Those who defend this mess ought to crawl away in shame.

    It begs the question, has Lynn been investigated for pedophilia? There seems to be a peculiar lack of surprise or revulsion on his part when it came to receiving reports from parents and others effected by these priests’ crimes.

    • crystal, I can’t help but think as you….my experience has led me to believe that those who do not expose the sins and crimes of others may well be afraid of having their own exposed as well, so they defer, cover and hide the truth….ah oh! This could get worse!

      • And remember, you are only hearing a tiny fraction of the truth, since it is so easy for a band of criminals to hide secrets when the victims don’t want to come forward. Take what you hear, and multiply it by 2, 5, or 10, and that is what really happened.

        The cool thing is, you find out the actual number on your judgment day, when God asks, why didn’t you see the truth about this?

  3. This shows the certitude these deviants have that they’re protected by the church, even to the breaches of the confessional.
    There’s no connection with clergy who seek the intimacy of family life who go off the rails, refused rescripts of their vows if belonging to religious orders that I’m sure of.

  4. crystal, I don’t think Lynn’s reactions are those of a pedophile/ abusive priest, I think they are one of having disregard for children and instead the interest of preventing scandal to the Church. I think there are many non pedophile priests/hierarchy throughout the world, Ireland, Australia, U.S, who were not horrified by these types of situations and consistently put the church before the children. I wish his reaction was unique,it’s not.

    • I agree, Kathy. I think the acceptance of such behavior has gone on for so long, that it was just a way of life and protected with no thought of what it was doing to the victims. All for the sick behavior of a few. Even if a priest did not actively participate in these crimes, I’ll never understand how any human could stand by and let it continue. Then, the fact this is world wide… words cannot describe how it baffles and sickens me.

    • ..but you’ve got to wonder how he could be so very OK with collecting and hiding the dirty, sordid, sex-ridden reports and stacks of pornography, and with meeting victims and stricken parents week after week… The shenanigans of his many kiddie-prone priests had to fill up most of his time. You’d think he’d have put in for a quick transfer if he was offended by the nature of the crimes! He was fairly steeped in pedophilia in that weird job–and yet he contentedly stayed for a decade.
      Part of him had to think sex with young boys or girls was normal stuff.–The same with the rest of the guys who permitted this pedophile ring to go on so long.

    • And Crystal if you remember ,I think it was Msgr Molly who said that he and Lynn were told to show no emotion when meeting with victims. I would be jumping out of my chair sitting in a room hearing these things!

    • I sat in the courtroom yesterday and just about every document produced by the prosecution from the archdiocese files had the word ‘scandal’ . It is apparent to me that the rcc’s only concern was being exposed for a ‘scandal’ as no where in the documents was any concern written for the VICTIM (S) . I can not believe this has gone on for so long as the dates of the documents show unequivocally that lynn and those he proceeded just did everything possible to protect and enable the perps, the VICTIMS are expendable to preserve the ‘image’ of the church. I hope this trial raises the awareness of the public to what the archdiocese did and failed to do , this ‘sin of silence’ is disgusting !

      • Unable,

        When I went to the Diocese of Wilmington Bankruptcy hearing in 2009, it was a whole bunch of “I don’t know, I can’t remember, that doesn’t ring a bell, I’ll have to look into that, I don’t have that with me right now, I’ll ask my staff, somebody else took care of it, I didn’t know that, I never heard about it, blah, blah, blah.” The guy being deposed was the Vicar Msgr. I thought he was one of the bosses. Shouldn’t he have to know this stuff?

  5. When I think of the testimony of this boy(man now) and what I found out about the 6th priest in our Parish (of pedophiles) at St. Maria Goretti, in /Scottsdale, Az. who’s name was Fr. John Picardi . I see the depositions on line, of CARDINAL LAW writing to our “HIT AND RUN” coward Bishop Thomas , O’Brien, who hit (with his car) and killed an Indian and tried to cover it up.)

    In the deposition,(on line) there was a letter to Bp. O’Brien , asking if he woiuld take in Fr. John Picardi , as Picardi wanted a warm climate and Scottsdale was a good place. Law said that Picardi was in trouble because of raping a young man, 16 , I think and they were after him and would Bp. O’B. take him..? He said ” sure , send him on.”

    We immediately welcomed Fr. Picardi him to our parish . His folks came from Boston for our steak fry and I met them… We had a pre-school there and he loved kneeling down in the court -yard with his Dalmation dog, while the children petted the dog and Picardi hugged kids.

    I look back and see all the signs. He baby sat for two young boys, so the family could go to Vegas( I think) and the children ratted on him but no one believed the children…. so typical. I thought he was creepy then before I knew, as he didn’t have a good knowledge of the historical church, which I did. and seemed to be more interested in fooling around with the kids in the pre school than a pius priest. Neither one can be trusted. More later if you need me ..I’m recalling so much more.

    We also met Fr. Lynn and Bevliaqua, when we were in the “People of Joy” Charismatic Community, in Tempe , Az. It’s now “The City of the Lord”. It used to be ecuminical and now was toldby hierarchy to be just Catholic. We left them long before that, but they were getting way too controlling, wishing to take our youngest son,(16) who was a delight to us, into anothers’s home.( the co-ordinator of the community )Our son was our responsibility under God and no one else would take him. We left the community that we had been in for many years. It was hard to leave good friends but God’s wishes were more important to us than theirs.

    When we knew in 2001, that all we wouldn’t believe before about the rcc, was really true, it was not hard to LEAVE. PTL!!!!!

    • Glorybe, you were lucky to have the strength not to metion foresight to be free, you and your family.
      Having friends “charasmatics”, and the shenanigans going on therein, I could never understand how the Holy Spirit never warned them through “words of knowledge and prophecy”, of what was going on under their very noses disguised as spirituality, not too mention the of sex-abuse of children, rampant withn the body of Christ.
      It’s a huge money making racket for clergy, as spiritual directors special masses and “healing the family tree”, and a good drop off
      too, as with your fr Picardi. No wonder the group had to be soley Catholics, in case someone did spill the beans.

  6. This is just plain sick……………..How the hell did these men or should I say SOB’s let this happen………….No wonder there are more non-practicing Catholics than those who practice.

  7. You are so right WR. “This is just plain sick”
    Mimzyb…you are also spot on. Why in God’s name did the “good” priests stand idly by, and not report this to law enforcement. They are complicit. (Except Father Tom Doyle, Father Andrew Greeley, and a handful of others).
    Ever the same, protect the guilty…abuse the innocent .
    Jesus weeps.

    • What order runs St John Newman HS.

      It’s administration came and visited the parents right after this affair in I think 1991…..In 2003 an archdiocese investigator on Lynn’s watch contacted the parents… Where else was Fr trauger stationed, who else did he intimidate, or assault.

      “Don’t worry, I’ll find you,” he recalled Trauger saying.

      Weeks later, the man said, he was pulled from class one afternoon and found Trauger waiting in the hallway.

      Trauger told him he had approached school administrators, who were priests of an independent religious order, and said he was trying to find a former pupil of his. They let him review student ID photos until he found the boy.

      Trauger kept him in the locked room for at least an hour, the man said. He was freed when a faculty member who had been looking for him banged on the door.

      Trauger told the boy he knew where he lived, the names of his parents and siblings and where his nieces and nephews went to school. He described what the boy’s mother had been wearing earlier that day. Trauger dropped him off at home and had no other contact with hthe witness said.

      The next day, the school principal and vice principal came to his home to discuss the incident with the teen and his parents. More than a decade passed before an archdiocese investigator contacted him, in 2003, to arrange an interview about it.

  8. I went and looked up Trauger in the 2005 Grand Jury report….here is what I found

    Trauger, Francis X. Incidents: 4 male minors   Case Study: Trauger was transferred 6 times to unsuspecting parishes with schools after the archdiocese began to receive abuse complaints – “delicate euphemisms” – when Trauger tried to anally penetrate a 12-year-old boy and manipulated the boy’s penis for hours, the archdiocese noted: “They shared the same bed and there were touches.”  

  9. I think these men are immune to feeling regarding children. They’re so self absorbed (the opposite of what they are supposed to be and portray themselves to be) that all they have concerned themselves with is self preservation. It’s the polar opposite of being Christ like.They have been taking care of themselves…at any price….even if it meant sacraficing children. I am so upset anymore when I hear them saying that they are the representation of Jesus on Earth. It’s so disrespectful to our Lord.

    • This quote is on a huge number of breaking news media outlets, right now….as the prosecution is calling diocesan priests FOR the prosecution!

      “The Rev. Joseph Okonski told jurors Wednesday that he found a box of pornographic magazines and videos in another priest’s bedroom in 1995.
      Okonski said he informed his pastor, who did nothing. But he soon called an archdiocesan official after finding the sexually explicit letter to a seventh-grade boy, which purported to be from a classmate and asked if the boy wanted oral sex.
      “You are soooo cute. I have been thinking about you for a long time. … You’re the cutest in our grade,” the typed letter said.
      The author said he fantasized about seeing the boy getting spanked by his father. The boy was told to write “Yes” on a bulletin board at the parish school if he wanted to engage in sex acts with his “secret lover.”
      The priest admitted writing the letter and soon left the parish, but the next witness said he landed at his rectory, where he worked with altar boys and heard confession.
      Prosecutors want to make the point that dozens of abusive priests were, at best, transferred if they got in trouble, and left in jobs involving children.

      • Aside from the trial…I provided a link on another thread of this story…

        I was disappointed to learn that a grown man (Okonski) in 1995 didn’t know to contact civil authorities in regard to the lewd letter to a 7th grade boy.

        Where are all of those good priests again? Some will see Okonski as a priest who did everything he could within his power…and I see him as complicit in the abuse. Lack. Of. Integrity.

      • SW, thought you might a bit more data on The ‘love letter’ that was written by a Philly priest to a young child, by that very competent blogger….http://www.priestabusetrial.com/

      • SW the citation I linked was today’s Cipriano piece. More prosecution witnesses, Olanski, (sp?), Dilorio and McKee prosecution witnesses, priests all, detailing Murtha’s ugly behaviour, which was first noted and reported in 1995 and ended in 2010.

      • I’ve been following the blog you cited. He does a great re-cap of the trial.

        We’ll never know how many victims he has…from the time of the first documented allegations to his removal…15 years!!!! What were they waiting for?

      • It is a great blog/recap. Who first linked that blog in a comment?Mark? Whoever it was thanks for the heads up.

      • I think it was 13 years on Trauger….absolutely appalling how the Archdiocese treated innocent children.

        And there are many more Phillys..we just don’t have Grand Jury reports! Perhaps, hopefully we will. Apparently 7 DA’s from CA to NY are looking into the matter!

      • Who was the pastor Okonski informed who did nothing?

        Joan… what is the source or where can I find more info on “7 DA’s from CA to NY” are looking into similar Phillys?

        Thank you.

      • Hadit, here’s the quote: From one of Susan’s recent postings…probably an Inquirer article which I am looking for…..

        It’s Patrick Walll……. “Simply that a trial is taking place might be more significant than its outcome, said Patrick Wall, a former priest turned lawyer and victims advocate.

        Since Lynn’s arrest, prosecutors in seven jurisdictions fromCalifornia to New York have started exploring charges against priests’ superiors, according to Wall.

        “Any time I’ve talked to a prosecutor and I’ve brought up Philadelphia, it gives them greater moral authority to do this,” he said. “Because most D.A.s were afraid to take on the Catholic Church.”

      • Hadit on page two of a five page very thorough piece on the trial, you will find the following:

        “Simply that a trial is taking place might be more significant than its outcome, said Patrick Wall, a former priest turned lawyer and victims advocate.

        Since Lynn’s arrest, prosecutors in seven jurisdictions from California to New York have started exploring charges against priests’ superiors, according to Wall.

        “Any time I’ve talked to a prosecutor and I’ve brought up Philadelphia, it gives them greater moral authority to do this,” he said. “Because most D.A.s were afraid to take on the Catholic Church.””

        and the citation , from the citation queen…is:
        http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=inquirer%2C%20lynn%20trial%20patrick%20wall&source=web&cd=2&ved=0CBQQFjAB&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.philly.com%2Fphilly%2Fnews%2F20120325_With_church_abuse_trial_set_to_open__tensions_abound.html%3FviewAll%3Dy&ei=9-tzT4jAFIWW2AX34PDRDg&usg=AFQjCNHskMlkrPuujbLj4t99ToGl4PsyIA

      • You’re remarkable, Joan. Thank you so much.

    • Jackie, twelve months ago, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin confessed that most abusers are not remorseful, and the two most common attributes being grandiosity and narcisism.
      I would include desensitized.

  10. “Delicate euphemisms.” “There were touches.”

    I am completely creeped out knowing this is how they “framed,” sexual abuse of innocent children.

    I want to scream…do the math!!!!!! These are only the people who have come forward and have fallen within the statutes.

    Practicing catholics should do their own little experiment with collections. Did anyone save a bulletin from Mass this past weekend? Do they list the amount collected each week, like they do where I live? Compare and contrast…before the trial…and after the trial. It would be interesting to see if your average catholic in the pew gets the correlation between what the hierarchy did the children and what they are doing to their laity now?

    • SW, if I lived in the Philadelphia Archdiocese, right now and attended church, I would not only not be contributing, but I would drop notes in the collection plate describing my feelings about this kind of garbage, very explicit notes!

      • Me too. And before I left the church, I did precisely that.

        Makes me wonder if Catholics around the United States (or globe), in a show of support to victims and disgust at the hierarchy, should be dropping a line or two in the collection baskets of their respective churches.

    • sw – there ought to be a lot of jingling of coins in those baskets this Sunday! lol

  11. I tried posting this twice in response to Jerry’s comment about the defense’s strategy of focusing on Bevilaqua on another thread…both are awaiting moderation…I don’t know what the deal is with that, the blog must be acting up.

    Hopefully, it will work here.

    Jerry,
    I’ve been wondering the same thing about going after Bevilaqua. Sure he may have given the directive…but Lynn participated in and conspired to pass along predator priests thus endandering children in the process.

    Boil it all down and it’s clear he was a part of the process of endangering children and conspiracy…what the heck difference does it make that someone else directed him to do it.?

    If, at my job, my superior tells me to do something I feel is unethical (possibly criminal)…and I go along with it anyway…I’m still accountable (and guilty) for participating.

    This is like playground dynamics…what’s their argument? “He (Bevilaqua) said it was ok, so it’s not my fault!”

    Sorry for my bottom line in all of this…but the entire chain of command ought to be sitting next to Lynn

    • survivors wife,did you have links on that post that is in moderation? I think the moderation has been acting up the last few days,maybe due to site traffic.

      • Kathy,
        No links. The exact post is what is posted above your question…it’s directed to Jerry.

      • Okay I will check with Susan -I know a bunch of mine ended up in moderation yesterday.If that keeps happening to people just rewrite and submit again.

  12. Today with tears in my eyes I asked God how many times can a heart break enough is enough…………..too many children I grew up are most likely victims(2 predators there during my 8 yrs there)………….I emailed Archbishop Chaput awhile back and he commented he has been dealing with this for awhile……..maybe that is the problem…………..it does not break their hearts anymore………………if ever……..it’s just busniess as usual…………….

  13. Martin J. Leahy, PhD Reply March 28, 2012 at 10:01 pm

    Latest from Father Tom Doyle

    Father Tom Doyle, March 27, 2012 in The Irish Times

    On the recent Vatican report about the sex/power abuse crisis in Ireland…

    “The Irish people didn’t deserve the insulting claim that the ‘shortcomings of the past’ caused an inadequate understanding of the ‘terrible phenomenon of the abuse of minors’. The people named the causes head on: the secretive clerical culture, the lopsided theology of sexuality, seminary training disconnected from reality and the “church’s” obsession with control.”

    http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/opinion/2012/0327/1224313953836.html

    • Martin, I almost cited Doyle’s article, and I am you did. The piece that gets my attention is: ‘The second half of the report tells the real story. The agenda is not that of the victims. The true goal is rescuing the Irish clerical institution from its descent into irrelevance by imposing a return to the model of church as monarchy. The “renewed call to communion” is a thinly covered call to docile, unthinking submission.

      Catholics in Ireland are walking away not because they need a “deeper formation in the content of the faith” but because they no longer equate faith in God with childish obedience to a clerical establishment that feeds on control.’

      And I think that point about no longer equating ‘faith in God, with childish obedience to a clerical establishment that feeds on control’
      Has resonated on C4C.

      I can’t begin to list the number of times C4C folks have made the distinction between their ongoing faith in God and their lack of faith in institutional church…it’s like a litany…in fact, it IS a litany.

      A lot of our folks have had to learn that the hard way, through abuse, or very painful personal exploration. But they have learned it and they have moved on. They thank God, and so do I.

  14. Father Doyle has said it all correctly.

    The hierarchy are still in power, still clilnging to their old ways–hoping all the sin and shame will go away?? They may be that foolish; certainly they don’t care for the needs of the the people–who ARE the CHURCH!!

    I pray for the day when one or more bishop–or cardinal–goes to jail. Smarter people than I have said it will never happen and nothing will change…Hopefully the number of RCC people leaving will continue and they will have nothing but dust to cling to.

    Sad to say this about the church and the religion I loved and cherished so much when I was a child…

  15. Can anyone tell me why, with all Fr. Tom Doyle has known for 20 yreas or more, why at this point in time, he does not LEAVE this evil place.?? He knew more than any of us back then and he didn’t call the authorities. I like to think he thought that he could do more to help the innocents by staying in but it has NOT helped one bit to STOP this evil from continuing. He sounds as angry as I and many others on this blog but at this point he could do more by getting out and testifying against these monsters, or is there something or someone else keeping him IN????

    What say any of you?? The, minute we KNEW “what we had NOT believed” was TRUE we could no longer stay and be an assessory to these hideious CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY!

    How can anyone wish to continue to drive the “get-a-way cars” so evil people can sexually attack our innocents? Work to get all these “sicko’s canned and put in the can, away from the defenseless.. precious of God. …

  16. Gloria,
    Everyone’s reasons for staying or leaving are different and personal.

    Many feel they can effect change by staying.

    Tom Doyle…a testament that you can be angry at your church and still be Catholic. I think that says a lot, don’t you?

    • Does tom doyle still live in a rectory, say mass and receive a paycheck? I thought maybe he was out of ministry and sort of only a catholic by his history and associations.–I say whatever he still is or does, TG for what he’s exposed about the RCC!

    • No. I don’t think father Doyle as a
      grown man and a priest as well, should have at least gone to the authorities. He has been at this a long time with nothing in the hierarchy changing. I think his words really help us get a handle on the problem but as the “gate keeper” he took on too much for one person.

  17. Does anyone really think that Fr Trauger just stalked one boy?

    Let’s say your eternal life depended on the answer. Remember, Trauger did everything he could to keep from being caught. He was also transferred 6-8 times, so I would think he was caught at least 6-8 times if I had to bet my eternity on it. In fact, I would imagine that he was only transferred after he was suspected more than once, making it 12-16 times he was caught, and I would guess he was only caught one out of every 5-10 times, making the total number of letters/stalkings/advances/attempts in the 60-160 range.

    Every 10 years, how many young boys do you think he went after? I’d guess at least one a month, and probably more. Think about normal men trying to date normal women. They certainly approach more than one a month. Now you’ve got a deviant pedophile priest who knows he won’t get in trouble no matter how many times he does this and he knows his victims won’t come forward or be believed.

    Now bet your eternity on it – how many children did he go after?

    • Patrick,
      I’m not sure about speculating how many victims he had…because one was too many.

      If your point is to help the hierarchy understand the scope of one predator priest… or how many times a hierarch was notified about one predator priest…mission accomplished. I think the laity are very well aware they can’t trust the numbers the hierarchy tells them anymore.

      I don’t have to bet my eternity on it because I sit in rooms full of victims and their families that will never come forward.

    • Patrick the weight of what you say has hit me many times in the past couple of years and it did yesterday………that’s where my heart break and justified anger comes from. You are so right……..Those child victims did not even have a chance………it makes me angry

  18. It is not the sick behavior of a few but the horrendous sexual abuse by millions, through out the Catholic world , for milleniums

  19. A few weeks later, Guida testified, he was in seventh period religion class when somebody knocked on the door, and told the teacher he needed to talk to Guida. It was Father Trauger, and this time he was wearing a collar.

    When Guida saw the priest, he told the jury he was thinking, “How did he find me?” Father Trauger took Guida to the disciplanarian’s office and locked the door.

    Will someone please tell us where the administration and leadership at Bishop Neumann High School were while these sexual advances were being made inside the building? Fr. Trauger’s conduct here, I believe, fits the PA Crimes Code definition of burglary….unauthorized entry into a building or premises with the intent to commit a crime therein (the crime of sexual assault).

    • I thought the same thing too Michael. He literallly took him hostage. I had an entire rant about this very thing typed out this morning when I read the article. I didn’t post it because I know people are struggling with their own emotions about the clergy.

      The administration should be in hot water now, since they allowed an “outsider” to come into their building to identify a student, seek them out…clearly a priest in a Catholic school has free reign. It is completely unacceptable for the the priest, for the administration, for the security of the school…and it took the MOTHER to wonder where her child was? Imagine if he had taken him out of class earlier in the day? I shudder.

      What’s the statute on taking someone hostage? Sheesh.

      • I thought the same thing..holding someone against their will..whatever it would be termed. What is the statute on that?

    • Great point, and why isn’t DA Seth WIlliams going crazy about that?

      If Fr Trauger was employee at a local manufacturing plant, and he came in and held that kid hostage behind a locked door, the whole city would be up in arms, and Seth Williams would be knocking down doors to get some answers and get himself some more votes.

      If Trauges’s company knew that Trauger was a child sex abuser, and had hid him and moved him to places where he could access and sexually abuse more children, Seth Williams would indict everyone that was the least bit involved.at that manufacturing plant.

      If Trauger’s manager, Lynn, had moved him and others like him, and if Bevilacqua, the plant manager, had hidden the names of 35 known child rapists, people would be calling to have that plant shut down and no one would ever buy their products again.

      Of course, if DA Seth Williams was a stockholder, and all his voters worked for the plant, he wouldn’t try as hard.

    • Guida was locked in that room in 1991. The School authorities interviewed him and at least one parent the next day. I assume there were no reports to civil authorities and it was in 2003, presumably without any civil authority AD notification, that an Archdiocese detective was involved. Boston blew up in very early 2002. Trauger was removed from ministry in 2003.

      12 years of Trauger… On the loose. If you use Patrick’s numbers, the numbers of other kids he molested are exponential.

    • Was he even a teacher there? If not on what authority did they allow him to do that? If he had an issue usually the principle would remain in the room………..j

  20. I am so sorry that people still believe that staying in this evil place can change anything.

    They, the RCC ,has taken your “free will” to choose. God does not ever take our free will from us, why should the rcc? They have put a Fear into you that if you leave you will not be saved. This is a LIE of the devil. Jesus never said anything of the kind.

    This is called “generational brainwashing” and I’ was but no more!

    We must not allow ourselves to be a part of this same brainwashing, when it comes to our children!

    If we don’t make a choice soon, we will be held accountable for the evil that is continuing to be allowed by the hierarchy, the priests, nuns ,brothers and laity that still listen to these arrogant elitists, who run this so called church, instead of Jesus Christ and HIS
    GOSPEL!

    He never set up a church like this, you must be sure of that!

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