65 thoughts on “Happy Mother’s Day!

    1. Special thanks to Susan, Kathy and all those folks who commented on a Question for Survuvors. It was remarkable and a privilege to read.

  1. Just returned from a very rewarding retreat at Malvern Retreat House with many other men and ladies as we spent days reflecting on Archbishop Fulton J Sheen, His Life and Legacy to the Church.” After many years of going on religious retrearts I must admit this one was the most valuable because of what Bishop Sheen wrote and taught us about life, the church and Christ. I had time to spend reading a great deal about the “sexual abuse” by priest and how it is being addressed by the Church heirarchy and I sincerely believe that Philadelphia Archbishop Charles Chaput is providng the correct leadership and action to address this crisis and make sure the guilty are reported and children are protected!

    1. Joe Gable,

      I stated in another post; “Once they (the prelates) had my complete trust, support, and service (I now despise most of them.) It took me a long time to come around to the truth, because I so wanted to believe!”

      “From my own experience I have some understanding and empathy for the Pew Potato. They so want to believe that they can’t let go. They’re frightened!”

      Joe, when you say, “I sincerely believe that Philadelphia Archbishop Charles Chaput is providing the correct leadership and action to address this crisis…;” I drwho, believe that you are a good man, and your statement comes right from the heart.

      I also believe that you are completely wrong. Sorry Joe, it’s just not the Church that we all hoped and believed in. The Church we believed in never existed in any place other that in our minds.

      The Four Stages of Grief and Loss are: Denial, Depression, Anger, and Acceptance. That are a lot of Catholics who have to start doing their grief work. It’s sad; but true, the Church we believed in is dying.

      We were wrong, and we have no choice but to accept it, hopefully with a degree of dignity and humility.

      1. Joe, on retreat you said you read a good deal about abuse. I am wondering if you have had a chance to read Thomas Reese S J ‘s very recent keynote address at a major sexual abuse seminar held at Santa Clara University, in CA…..the seminar had folks from ‘all over the spectrum’ at it.

        I have always thought Reese was a very thoughtful guy and his keynote address was/is worth a ‘read’.


      2. Joe,

        I agree with drwho13. I know you would like to believe that Chaput and the Philly AD are doing all they can to address the priest abuse crisis. I would like to believe this too. Unfortunately this is far from the truth. I know this from my own past personal experiences….. Today I was just informed, that when asked why Father Robert Povish was removed from ministry it was because he drove a minor home. This is the information given from the pastor of Povish’s church to his parishioners. You can’t tell me that this action alone would cause a priest to be removed from ministry. Povish was only in residents at this parish. He was the chaplain
        at Graterford Prison. Chaplain assignments appear to be common
        in priest that are a risk to children. The problem is they are never supervised. Povish was free to say mass with alter servers. He even had the guts to address his parish in a homily last year ( before he was placed on leave) about how ashamed he was about the priest abuse crisis. I want to know when the Ad will begin to tell us the truth and stop lying!!!

        Happy Mother’s day to all our wonderful mothers on this website 🙂
        We are all here because we love our children and would like them to be safe.

    2. Joe,
      I would like to attend a retreat there sometime everyone needs quiet time to hear God. I like Sheen also. He always attended adoration where ever he went and if the church was locked he would stand on the sidewalk outside the church and pray. I wish I had faith like that. Archbishop Chaput is cleaning some things up but is blocking windows and thus children right now maybe being raped by know offenders because the statues of limitations have run out.

      1. Vicky,
        Maybe organizing is a better word. Finances, structure in AD, hiring new people etc. I hear what you are saying Vicky

      2. Vicky,
        I want to ask your opinion. Do you think because he fears more lawsuits in the future he will make it more difficult for pedophiles to become priests? I think we all agree he does not want to pay past victims(changing statues) or hand over past records if he can aviod so.

      3. Will Chaput make it more difficult for pedophiles to become priests??? What do you mean, beth?

      4. YES, we need to address the Statue of Limitations — and we must write, call and meet with our legislative elected officials — if we deal with them we might get some legislative action!

      5. Joe, Archbishop Chaput publicly offering his full throated support for SOL reform would go along way in motivating Catholics to get behind this much needed change.

    3. Joe, Rigali talked the same thing and we saw what happened. He will have to prove it first. Actions speak louder than words. They no longer get the benefit of the doubt. They have failed us and even lied to us for too long a period of time. I guess it goes back to President Reagan and Russia: Trust but vertify.

      How do you feel how past past victums are being treated by Chaput?

      1. JIm,
        You make alot of good points. A victim made a good point the other day he has not even offered to meet them.

      2. Jim Saile — Rigali was not very effective and cannot in any way be compared to Archbishop Chaput. Rigali did not communicate with us and that is a major part of his job a Bishop! archbishop Chaput communicates, implements action plans and is a teacher of the scriptures. Chaput has met with them and if you read transcript of his press conference and his recent writing you will see he is respecting victims and trying to help them.

  2. It’s kinda ironic my mom who I have not always seen eye to eye is in Rome this mother’s day and what is she doing ?………..asking the Pope to be obedient to Our Mother Mary………..Apparently the last few Popes have not done as Our Lady of Fatima has requested……….I find this interesting because we have been talking so much about priests being obedient to their bishops etc and the bishops to the Pope but the Popes have not been listening to Mary……..so maybe my mom is on to something:) Today was such a strange day at mass so many things collided I almost could reach out and touch God’s presence………I have not had one of those days in awhile. Happy Mothers Day everyone. I am praying we all have a heart like Mary and the Pope listens to Our Mother.

    1. Please don’t start that Fatima nonsense. Even the Pope does not believe that one–from the LA TIMES–“The Vatican’s top theologian gently debunks a nun’s account of her 1917 vision that fueled decades of speculation. Releasing the full text of Lucia’s prophecy at the pope’s instruction, the Vatican’s top theologian Monday gently debunked the Fatima cult and said Catholics were not required to believe it.” http://articles.latimes.com/2000/jun/27/news/mn-45242

      1. Mark, I am not commenting on the Fatima issue, as frankly, I haven’t a clue…but there was a thoroughly irreverent joke making the post conciliar rounds…it went something like this…

        From Pope to pope the ‘Fatima message’ was shared(internally)..but never publicallly announced…the message was three words. Luther was right.

      2. Isn’t it time for some responsible pope to be honest and announce to the catholic world that apparitions and miracles are really just myths or lies or hallucinations…( one that gets me is the tolerance for teaching on stigmata– this is just gross, not to mention, wrong.)
        IMO, the rcc makes faithful followers look so sad and foolish while they traipse up the sides of mountains with rosaries in hand and bathe half naked in waters at grottos…It’s all such a discredit to the religion– and every once in a while an elderly person dies as a result of MI or heat exhaustion etc. at these on site
        adorations/tourist attractions…
        The Vatican rarely back-pedals or recants ..When will change ever happen?

    2. Crystal and Mark,
      Time will tell……..I don’t understand all God’s ways………I do believe in miracles………have experienced my own…….I have experienced many encounters with Christ many times thru people and everytime I am amazed………God’s plans and ways are much bigger than we can imagine……..I have been blessed many times to see his hand in my life and for that I am grateful.

  3. Happy Mothers Day to all the mothers who blog here. I especially remember in prayer those mothers whose hearts were pierced by the revelation of their own child’s abuse. I pray for their healing as well as for the courage and grace for them to compassionately support the healing of their child.

  4. Who are you Joe Gable. ?…You must live under a rug & a not too pretty one at that. . with all the crap swept under it. I am ashamed you have the nerve to write on this web site where the abused have just written their hearts out about the abuse they have. been trying to heal from.You are il-informed by people who do not represent the Christ of Christianity as we know HIM on this blog.

    1. glorybe1929,

      “Who are you Joe Gable. ?”

      Joe Gable is a good man, but he is unable to psychologically accept what is actually taking place within the RCC.

      I would like to be a member of the Church that Joe belongs to, as it sounds like one which is very close to God.

      The problem is, Joe’s Church exists only within his own mind, and within the minds of other Catholics who can’t let go. The Church Joe is involved with is found ONLY in the Catholic movies of the 1940’s, i.e., “Going My Way, “The Bells of St. Mary’s.” Joe’s Church has never existed in reality (not even back in the 40’s), and it certainly does not exist now!

      No one keeping up with the facts related to child sexual abuse within the RCC could believe otherwise. There is a psychological defense mechanism which protects a person from accepting realities which would otherwise be too painful to cope with.

      Such a defense mechanism is real, and maybe one of the mental health professionals on this site could add to our knowledge of how it works.

      1. Joan, drwho, Vicky, beth and Joe G.,

        Joan has repeatedly referenced the sex abuse conference held at Santa Clara University in CA. last week. Thank you.

        There are diverging opinions put forth by drwho, Vicky and Joe G. regarding what Chaput and the Catholic Church are doing in terms of addressing and “fixing” the problem of sexual abuse. beth wants to know what she can expect from Chaput and the Church as well. She anticipates progress.

        The following article says it all.


        1. I have had many comments related to my comments about the religious retreat at Malvern Retreat House; St. Joseph’s -in-the-Hill;s, Malvern, PA and many more comments directed to my comments related to Archbishop Chaput. First of all, I think it is important that all of us be considerate of others and follow Susan’s request that we remain polite. With regard to the many religious retreats I have attended at Malvern, I find they are of value to “recharge my batteries” and spend time alone thinking and reading both sides of many topics. Most of the retreat directors that I have had have been informative, understanding and a big help. With regard to Archbishop Chaput, this man came to Philadelphia only 9 months ago to lead a dioceses that was in trouble and I believe his actions show that he understands the issues and as he stated “”preventing sexual abuse and protecting children has been and lwill remain a priority for me and this archdioceses.” He has set up a process to “investigate any and all allegations of sexual misconduct”: and has pledged that he and the Archdiocese will “cooperate fully with law enforcement and refer ALL our cases to the local district attorney.” Among the many steps he has taken to reform and improve the way the Archdioceses lives up to its duty has been to establish with over 20 experts from the fields of “doctors, police officers, former prosecutors, victims’ advocates and others with experience in the broad societal problem of sexual abuse of minors.” In an effort to move forward he has clearly said “we can’t change the past” and his effort is to learn from the “lessons” and make our “church humbler, wiser and more vigilant guardian of our people safety.” He also has stated that “the sinful actions in the past cannot be changed – but the future will be shaped by our actions from this point forward.” folks, I am as angrey as any of you over what the individuals did to children and the lack of responsible Christian actin by the church hierarchy but we MUST find a starting pint to move forward and I sincerely believe that Archbishop Chaput is attempting to do just that, so along with our prayers and the guidance of the Holy Spirit our Church will be renewed! It is not the time to be NEGATIVE or dwell in the past, we must now work to make sure ALL crimes are addressed by law enforcement and that our church leaders follow Christ teaching and “render unto Caesar” so civil crimes are addressed by civil authorities and the Church authorities address religious and moral aspects of our life and community. .

      2. Hadit…thanks a LOT for that link to the Conference!!!!!!

        I’m walking this week with a friend who attended and I have a bet with her that Doyle was the best…think I just won.

        The conference itself was an amazing mix of players….NCR is planning follow up pieces on it…One of the few times when such disparate views all occur together.

        As to it’s relevance to C4C….Boy is it important where you get your info. If I am a busy layman, who only reads my local catholic paper (where the Conference may not be reported) and I trust the typical Church message regardiing abuse issues, I may well conclude that the problem is over and that’s that.

        This might be harder to accomplish in Philly with the daily drumbeat of trial data.

        If on the other hand, I read the NCR (National Catholic Reporter), Abuse Tracker, America, Commonweal, C4C or the infinite number of other articles available, I would have a very different perspective.

        And the issues are complex. Sorting out the deficiencies of the Dallas Charter, diocesesan Review Boards, the John Jay report, and so much more takes some concentrated work. The data is there, but……

      3. drwho13 – you are a member of the Church I belong to — our problems are not with the Church they are with the individuals who are “leaders.” We need to seek out leaders who will teach Christ word and and live up to His word as taught in the gospel. I just finished an excellent book by Archbishop Chaput, “Living the Catholic Faith, Rediscovering the Basics” I highly recommend it.

      4. Thanks Hadit that was a good article. I have not seen any real remorse from those in the heirarchy(many will make excuses with all the legalities that is not possible at this time). The more I hear and am around our survivors the more I am horrified how cold they have been treated.I want all people at the parish level to see this also. I do believe the AD is motivated to make changes to save money not souls………and that is what I find most disturbing……. the lack of basic compassion. I guess my naive hope is that if enough people see this at a parish level some genuine changes might happen

      5. Joe, Father Reese in that keynote address talked about how the church has handled the abuse issue.

        “Second, we need a better system for investigating accusations of sexual abuse. Obviously, all accusations must be reported to the police, but if the statute of limitations precludes prosecution, the police will not investigate. Or the prosecutor may judge there is insufficient evidence to prosecute. Under these circumstances, the church still has an obligation to investigate and determine whether a priest is guilty or innocent, whether he must be permanently removed from ministry or returned to ministry.

        The charter calls for an investigation of the allegations, but there is no standard operating procedure. Each diocese is on its own, with the result that some do better than others. The American criminal justice system sometimes fails even though it has police, prosecutors, grand juries, judges and juries. The church has not had anything like this since the inquisition. Not surprisingly, the church has a hard time getting this right.

        It is essential that the church get this right. The victims deserve justice and children must be protected from future abuse. Innocent priests also deserve justice and a way to clear their names. And the process must have credibility to the public at large…

        We need more research on this topic. We need to find out what are best practices and help dioceses to adopt them. We don’t even know how many priests are suspended or how long their suspensions last…

        In too many instances the investigative process appears suspect because it is under the control of the bishop. Episcopal credibility here is nil. The process will only have credibility to the extent that iis seen as truly independent of the bishop. Only an independent process will have the credibility to say that, “Yes, this priest can return to ministry.”

        I think Reese’s argument that we need an ‘independent process” to determine return to ministry issues makes sense. Sadly we have had examples nationwide, and here in Philadelphia where even the best Review Boards are only as good as the data they receive.

        That point was made in the Grand Jury report where the head of the AD Diocessan Review Board testified that the Board only even heard about 10 of the 37 priests that concerned the Jury…and even that data did not Suggest ‘problems’. THe Grand Jury was appalled…please note it was an independent entity. The Jury did its own research and thus the 37 number.

        There’s nothing simple about this….

        1. Joan, much of what you say is correct. I suggest you read the process that has been put in place under Archbishop Chaput — ALL allegations are being investigated by the new independent Board that he has established in the dioceses. this Board is made up of a multi-disciplinary team of recognized experts in the field of child protection. This is “one small step for the Church but one giant step for the Philadelphia dioceses.

      6. Joe Gable noted, “With regard to Archbishop Chaput, this man came to Philadelphia only 9 months ago to lead a dioceses that was in trouble and I believe his actions show that he understands the issues and as he (Chaput) stated “ “preventing sexual abuse and protecting children has been and will remain a priority for me and this archdioceses.””

        On the other hand, Joelle Casteix stated (link below), “No one can predict the future. But after a careful examination of Archbishop Charles Chaput’s career in Denver, we implore Catholics to be wary, law enforcement to remain vigilant, and law makers to never lose sight of the recommendations that the most recent grand jury report made earlier this year – especially since Chaput has acknowledged he hasn’t read the 2005 report, and refuses to comment on whether he has even glanced at the 2011 document (more on that below).

        “During this tenure in Denver, Chaput was cheered by many for what a “progressive” view on dealing with abuse in the church. The truth was far different. Far, far different.”

        “In 2006, when Colorado legislators tried to expand archaic statutes of limitations for victims of child sexual abuse, including a civil window for older victims, Chaput spent hundreds of thousands of dollars and used the pulpit to kill the legislation. In 2008 when another bill was proposed in the legislature, his (paid) spokespeople called the laws “inherently unfair,” even though an integral part of the law completely removed the civil statute of limitations for all children who were sexually abused from 2008 onward. What about that is unfair?”


        1. drwho13 thanks for your comments but the quote by Chaput was made in only the 2d week after he arrived in Philly.If you check you will see he has read the grand jury reports (both) and many other documents related to this matter. With regard to change in the time — please, this is an elected officials task and that the bishop does not support it or works against it is the same with many bills, people and organizations opposed will use the resources to fight it — it did not pass in Colorado and is sitting in committee in Harrisburg because the “voter/taxpayers” are doing little or nothing to support the legislation. Failure of the legislation to pass has nothing to do with the “lobbies” (they are not just the catholic church they are municipalities, school districts, etc) against it — it has to do with elected officials not wanting to make a decision and voters not caring.,

      7. Jim Jenkins who chaired SF’s Review Bd, many years ago, commented on the NCR article regarding Father Reese’s address:

        Jim Jenkins review Bds

        Let me stipulate from the

        Submitted by Jim Jenkins (not verified) on May. 11, 2012.
        Let me stipulate from the get-go, were the ranks of the American Catholic hierarchy filled with the likes of Thomas Reese, SJ, not only the sexual abuse and exploitation of children by priests and bishops with impunity would probably have ceased by now, but, by now, the offending priests and complicit bishops would have had to resign in shame from their high offices.
        Sadly, none of that – the necessary anecdote to the abuse crises – none of that has yet come to pass. Catholics have witnessed their church adrift in a rip tide of guilt and shame.
        Frankly, as the obviously appropriate Reese’s suggestions for improvement in the “review board” approach are, Reese’s prescriptions for the future is a lot like “Too little, Too late.”
        From my time as SF review board chair, the single biggest reason the review boards have been rendered ineffective in investigating past abuses and preventing new ones is that review boards are the creatures of the hierarchs who created them.
        As presently constituted, review boards – including the National Review Board – have no independent authority to conduct their investigations and reviews – review boards are simply “advisory” in nature. Review boards are completely dependent on the bishops for staff support, for investigative information and sources, for budget support, on the bishop.
        The review boards were never intended to be an effective response to the rape and sodomy of children. They were never more than elaborate public relations schemes designed to disingenuously shield the hierarchy from public scrutiny.
        The investigative activities of the review boards are completely controlled and circumscribed by the bishops and their attorneys – who have a very different agenda. By design, the review boards’ independence and integrity died in the crib.
        [Think Philadelphia, Kansas City, Los Angeles, Boston, New York, San Francisco, Oakland, San Diego, Ireland, Germany, Italy, Austria, Australia, and on, and on … Abuse-related costs to American Catholics alone so far: $2.6 billion!]
        When the full scope and dimensions of the scandal became apparent to me [just from my very limited perch in SF], I tried to lobby now Cardinal William Levada to support the creation of a truly independent and international “Peace and Reconciliation Commission” modeled on the one led by Nobel laureate, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, which investigated the rape, murder, torture and political extortion during the South African apartheid regime.
        Only such a body, perhaps under the aegis of the United Nations, could compel the cooperation and participation of Catholic bishops and priests around the world. Like in South Africa, if bishops and priests came forward and acknowledged their offenses they could have been accepted back into the full life of the church. If clerics would have stonewalled this process of healing [as many, if not most, hierarchs and priests still do today] then they could have lived out their lives in disgraced retirement.
        Finally, with such an international investigation, the full scope of the abuse could have been revealed. Most survivors [many of whom have yet to come forward with their stories of abuse] could have been identified, making reconciliation and healing at least possible.
        I know, that’s a lot of coulda, woulda, shoulda …
        Of course, the process of healing would have probably taken maybe decades. But in the meantime, Catholics could have gotten on with business of the renewal and reformation of the priesthood from parish to pope. I would suggest first on the agenda would be to separate the MONEY from the MINISTRY – a major corrupting factor in the burgeoning scandal.
        Levada only condescendingly sneered at me saying: “We have already done so much [to address the abuse scandal].” We all know how that’s worked out for us.

        1. Joan, thanks for the detailed comment — I think that you have pointed out very well that we “can’t change the past” so now we MUST move forward — our Catholic faith is centered on the Eucharist, Scriptures and the Liturgy of the Mass so now it is time to make sure the successors of the Apostles, Bishops, are true leaders and faithful to the word of God. I believe Archbishop Chaput is doping that with his decisions and actions.

    2. Glorybe1929 – try to be polite and respect others. I know from reading and meetings how bad this has been for those who ahve been abused and have had no support from their church’s hierarchy but we must work and build if we are going to live up to the name of the blog – it is time for action and to take steps to renew the church — I believe Archbishop Chaput is taking the steps.

      1. Joe,
        I wish you could go to the trial etc. and meet our survivors. You would get a balanced picture of what is going on. I hope for change also but what I have been learning lately is disheartening because certain atitudes are entrenched in our AD and unless we could fire those who were and still in charge during Rigali and Archbishop Bevs time nothing is going to be genuine it will all be window dressing over a big gaping wound and that is not going to heal anything.

        1. Beth, thanks for the comment but my business experience has shown that in order to make change most of the time you must start at the top. we see this in business and in government and I believe it will work in the church. I think we need, as Christians, to give Archbishop Chaput an honest opportunity to try to implement his procedures and policies.

      2. Joe,
        With all due respect you cannot possibly know from “reading and meetings” how bad it’s been to be an abuse survivor any more than I as a survivor can know what the experience of another individual survivor is. All we can do is try to really empathize with the individual sufferer, to give them the respect and space they need for their individual healing. To suggest otherwise is incredibly tone deaf.
        In terms of the AD response to this crisis quite frankly it does little to support those who have been living with the reality of their abuse for decades. Where is the pastoral concern for these people? How about reaching out to us as individuals occasionally and seeing how we are, trying to find out what can be done to ease our healing. I would be happy to sit down with Archbishop Chaput and offer my own unique perspective on this. But I realize that is not likely to happen which is unfortunate. If the AD had really listened 20 years ago when I first came forward one predator would have been sidelined years earlier, at least one and who knows how many other victims would have been spared this pain and maybe the AD wouldn’t find itself in as deep a predicament as they currently do.
        You seem to be a kind, faithful and well intentioned person Joe and I appreciate you efforts in trying to engage this issue, it’s much more than so many others that occupy the pews are willing to do.

        1. James@15 – I agree that reading and meetings will not provide the individual picture but I think it is important that Catholics get as much knowledge about what happened to the victims, what the “leaders” did NOT do to address the matter and now to read what is being done to address the entire matter.I think Archbishop Chaput is taking steps that hopefully will be implemented by Church leaders around the world.It is true we can’t change the past and I don’t think it is helpful to dwell on the past — I think we must move forward and help the victims and renew our Church and i think Chaput has clearly demonstrated that is his plan.

      3. joe, i second what James@15 says about appreciating your efforts to engage this issue!! ..but aren’t you SO weary of trusting? Have you read enough on this mess…on all the messes in the RCC? … It’s just not prudent to trust anymore.

        If (as you say,) this is the moment for renewal in the RCC, how can this be a time to build up?.. This is clearly the time to tear down… A time to go back to our bare roots.
        So much about the institution is all wrong. It is so impossibly filled with lies and secrecy and hypocrisy and excess and nonsensical, oddball teachings. It’s an overgrown mess. So much has to go…

        1. Crystal after a lifetime of business and dealing with many risk and problems I ahve developed a policy that issues and problems must be studied and resolved with an understanding of the root cause. I am a Catholic because of my belief in the Eucharist, Scriptures and the Liturgy of the Mass – this is my faith so now I want to be faithful to my religious principals and address the problems that “men of the cloth” have caused for my faith. We must now try to renew the Church and I believe based on all I have seen and read about Archbishop Chaput that this is his goal to following the teaching of Christ. I don’t believe that I or anyone can accomplish anything “positive” if we only dwell on all the negatives of the past.

      4. Joe,
        That makes good business sense but we are a church and we either act like we care for our victims or not and right now the message the victims are getting is we dont care about you unless you sue us. I am not a politician,business ceo, lawyer, professional advocate etc i am just a mom and I do care about our victims and I want others to care also. All the policies in the world are meaningless with out our genuine compassion.

        1. Thanks Beth, the key to getting back to the reason we practice our catholic faith is to make sure we address the current issues, stick to our belief in the scriptures and the basics of our faith. I am hopeful that new leaders like Archbishop Chaput will lead us back to why we value the mass, Eucharist and Scriptures. It is all summed up in the Nicene Creed and our goal must be to build our faith around the truths of that creed. Chaput pointed out in his book “render Unto Caesar” that change and sticking to principals will only happen if we speak up and live by Christ teachings.

      5. Beth, I agree I think of Tom Doyle’s testimony where he said he would have told Bevilaqua to take off the ring and the robes and go to the people who are suffering. To me that press conference could have been about anything,a capitol campaign,schools..it lacked emotion and compassion..if you had no idea what the subject matter you would have no idea it was addressing crimes against children.
        Things will be better in Philadelphia for children in the schools and parishes because of the victims and the DA’s office..anyone who would not follow the law at this point after multiple Grand Jury reports,massive priest suspensions etc…would be putting themselves in direct line of prosecution eventually..I am not referring to abusers but the hierarchy who would not follow the law at this point..so I can’t get too excited about these new policies because to me they come from being put under a microscope,they simply have no choice at this point but to follow everything according to civil law or their own policies and I can’t give people credit for simply following the law..it is what most people do everyday anyway. To me the real difference would be if someonein the hierarchy..anyone showed real emotion..who knows maybe shed a few tears God forbid..for what has happened to children. Also what ever happened to “fraternal correction”? Obviously with 5 priests already removed does that means that the Charter was not followed? Will we ever see a public condemnation of Rigali by anyone in the hierarchy that children were exposed to problem priests up until last February? What about the clergy that are still in the AD who were mentioned in memos and meetings as being aware of the abuse..they stay in ministry as if nothing happened?
        And what about the AD reaching out to C4C..a community that wants children protected and victims comforted…that has not happened. I can’t even get a meeting after all I went through on behalf of child protection,I am a mother,a professional in the field,and even have one policy now implemented..and no meeting for me. I would think the opposite,I would say “let’s get her in here and listen to what she has to say” ,that is if transparency actually existed. And our work with victims,maybe they would contact us and ask what the victims are saying in regards to how they are treated,the processes involved etc….nope that hasn’t happened either.
        And I literally cringed at some of the language in the press conference about learning lessons from the past, so we have now learned how to protect children based on the sexually violation of other children? That appalled me,I had to walk away from the computer at that point. I would love if someone at some point gave a speech that said:. “we allowed children to be abused, we deserve nothing but your anger, the victims deserve nothing but justice,and we hang our heads in such shame and take no credit for any improvements because we screwed up so bad and endangered children for so long that anything we do now is what we should have always been doing. Every single priest who had anything to do with a cover up is being removed ..including anyone in the present hierarchy…and if we have to start from scratch we will, because the victims deserve no less. We have fired the lawyers and PR firms and are just winging it, what we say may not be easy to hear but it will only be the truth and it will be unfiltered,maybe even more horror coming to light that was not yet disclosed but we are putting it all on the table because everyone deserves honesty.”

        But instead we are not even allowed to know the allegations that had priests removed or cleared,are given sample sermons to be delivered,and a promise to protect children, because at this point how can they not?

      6. Oh Kathy…talk about speaking truth to power…

        We all have to meet our Maker some day, and my guess is that He/She will not forget your comments.

        It’s a privilege to be associated with you…Joan

  5. Beth, I truly don’t understand what you are suggesting? Finances, hiring new people? Everything Chaput does has a prepared agenda. I said quite a long time ago on one of these topics, that when Chaput was coming to Phila, it was to straighten out you catholics, and I was right. And as far as being invited to see Chaput on the off chance he would meet with a survivor, he can come to me and request that I might see him, which by now most of you know would never never happen. I am too honest and truthful to stand in the same space as evil!

    1. Vicky,
      I agree. I said cleaning some things up. I should have clarified there is an agenda. I apologize if I upset you. Your right for the uninformed catholic it might “look ” like he is cleaning things up but it is damage control and you know it. I have emailed Archbishop Chaput and he has brushed me off with me so I cannot imagine how you and other victims must feel.

  6. Hadit,
    What I am saying is that predators want to go where kids are. Boyscouts, coaches etc. I do believe that many predators went into the priesthood to be near children. What I am trying to say is does she think that Archbishop Chaput is going to do absolutely nothing to try to limit new lawsuits in the future by cracking down in some way? I mean pychological testing etc , getting them out after one boundary violation etc even if it is just so he will not have to continue to for lawsuits etc? Just wondering her thoughts….

  7. I thinks “James'” prayer is a beautiful one. As a mother of young children and teens, I feel such an empathy for the mothers of abuse victims. Not only does abuse devastate the victim, but also the parents who love them and try to help them pick up the pieces of their lives. When I was at the trial and saw “Billy”, after testifying, go out to the spectator’s area and hug someone, who appeared to possibly be his mother, I was so deeply moved and, at the same time, felt such gut-wrenching sadness for what they have been through. Thank you, James, for offering that prayer.

    1. Well said Jackie.
      We are also parents of teens and younger children. I can’t imagine the pain victims and their families, have and continue to endure.
      The generational impact must be factored in when considering the true magnitude of the damage done.

    2. Jackie and John, The other dimension I didn’t touch on in my prayer is the fact that often our parents failed as our protectors often at vulnerable times in our families lives which our abusers were able to exploit. So there are often feelings of guilt and denial on the parents part as well as anger on the survivors part that need to be worked through. The grooming process in aimed at the parents as well as the victim and parents were too often taken in. My grooming started at a time when there were six children in our home my father was traveling extensively and the interest from the new young priest was welcome relief. I realize that my mother did her best in an impossible situation, she didn’t realize that her family was under attack and we are now reconciled. My father died around the time I was coming forward to the AD 20 years ago.
      Now my wife and I have 5 children of our own ranging 8 to 20, two in the middle are in parochial grade school. Striking the right balance in their upbringing is difficult, trusting other adults with them sometimes triggers. So far though they’ve been safe and have had a relatively normal childhood. They don’t even seem to notice the 6 foot electrified razor wire fence with alligator stocked moat running around the property anymore……

      1. James, this is one of the reasons I no longer automatically say “Happy Mother’s”.
        So many feel so guilty for failing their children and then there are those forced to relinquish their newborns, making mention of the mothers coerced the fathers being clergymen.
        I even need convincing the church really believes the prayer on Motherhood by Cardinal Joseph Mindszenty: The most important person on earth is a mother.

      2. It’s a complex issue L.Newington with multiple layers but there is healing and parents as well as survivors need our prayerful support.

    1. Beth,

      What? Prelates lying, business as usual, should we keeping looking to these men for moral and spiritual direction? I know people who still do.

      I hope that this trial starts getting more national media attention!

    2. Beth, interesting information — why isn’t he giving names of those that lied? hmmm, I wonder if the AD chief lawyer was one of them and that was another reason why Chaput got rid of the AD chief attorney ( can’t recall his name right now) — he was the AD chief legal wizz-bang for many , many years.and suddenly Chaput let him go with no comments.

      1. Joe,
        With all due respect, it seems as though you’re gunning for a second career as Chaput’s chief PR man and the AD’s point-man for pushing out their shiny, brand-spanking, new brochure for their “new era of transparency.” Sorry, Sir. Been there, seen that, and still threw up.

  8. From an earlier entry in this topic:

    ….. Today I was just informed, that when asked why Father Robert Povish was removed from ministry it was because he drove a minor home. This is the information given from the pastor of Povish’s church to his parishioners. You can’t tell me that this action alone would cause a priest to be removed from ministry.

    Can anyone verify that this in fact did happen, i.e., that the parish priest said that Father Povish was removed for that particular reason (driving a minor home)?

    1. Michael, one of the 2011 Grand Jury recommendations to the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, is relevant here, and I quote from the 2011 Grand Jury recommendations which can be found at the top of this page under RESOURCEs, starting on page 111.

      “• Conduct the review process in a more open and transparent manner.
      If the Archdiocese wants to change the public’s perception and regain the trust of parishioners, it should be more honest and open with the public.

      We saw situations in which the Archdiocese told the public that it cannot conduct an investigation because it did not know the identity of a victim. Yet we saw in their documents that they did.

      We believe the Archdiocese should make public its files on sexual abuse allegations, including any “secret archive files.” This should be done in a way to protect the privacy of the victim. At the very least, parishioners deserve to know whenever an allegation of abuse is made against their priest. If the priest is cleared following an investigation, the reasons, along with the evidence, should be shared with the parish.

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