Today, Archbishop Chaput held a meeting of Archdiocesan priests at Cardinal O’Hara High School. Many presume he shared the outcome of at least some of the investigations regarding the priest removals that occurred in the wake of the 2011 Grand Jury Report. I don’t think we’ll hear much more than speculation until Friday’s public announcement (0n an also undisclosed topic).
According to sources, he asked the priests to keep silent on today’s information. Because of their vow of obedience, they will most likely comply. If only Archbishop Chaput would direct them to police each other more thoroughly, to offer ministry and compassion to victims and to support the removal of the statute of limitations on child sex abuse in PA. Then, we might get somewhere. But priests are well-practiced at silence and the faithful are quite used to it.
Here are the possible outcomes for those who will not be returned to ministry.
– (not-so supervised) lives of prayer and penance
With the latter, the District Attorney might have the opportunity to step in – if the statute of limitations has not run out on newly acquired evidence. That is a big “if.” Otherwise, those laicized priests are free to move right next door to you or me. That’s why this is a public safety issue and not just a Catholic issue.
Priests returned to ministry will be announced in the clerical assignments published by the Diocese each late Spring. It is my understanding the allegations lodged against the cleared priests will not be disclosed to the public.
Thank you for watching my interviews and for your kind comments. I’m going to save my betting for the Kentucky Derby. I’ll keep everyone posted on any information that comes my way.