Verdict


I will have limited access to technology over the next few days. Please use this blog post to respond to a verdict should it come during my absence. I apologize for what will probably be unfortunate timing.

Prayers and peace,

Susan

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132 Responses to “Verdict”

  1. God Bless you Susan in what ever need you are taking care of..Prayers and peace be with you..gloria

  2. The jury isn’t done yet. Lynn’s lawyer Brennan asked for a mistrial, and the judge quickly denied it and sent jury back to work.The judge talked to the jury, offered them help on any lingering questions, and will have the portions of the transcripts read to them that the jury asked for earlier, but she refused.

  3. Well st least the trial will get some publicity. At best they will be smart enough to convict those who have encourasged sex abuse of. Innocent children …..It must be. recognized for what it is, a hideious evil to inflict on any. person who trusts. a person of. Authority & a person of God. Its evil, evil & of the devil!

  4. At noon today as I left the golf course I hearde the Jury was Hung on 4 of the 5 charges. This si tragic that after all this presentation by the DA and the defense one or more members of the Jury can’t make a decision about the guilt of these individuals. Based on what I read in the news media and I followed this story closely, I find it hard to believe that not only were the two defendents guilty but the adminsitration at 222 was guilty.

  5. The judge denied a mistrial, and she told the jurors to keep trying, so it is not over yet..
    The waiting is extremely hard but we hope victims are staying calm and that no matter when or how this trial is resolved, know that your voices are strong and they are being heard.

    Judy Jones, SNAP Midwest Associate Director, USA, 636-433-2511.,
    (SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests,)

  6. Lets hope the RCC HAS NOT PAID A FEW JURORS to have a Hung jury. HANG THE RCC…..IF THEY DID. WOULDN’T PUT ANY THING PAST THEM.

  7. I am so disappointed. To me, it was so clear.

  8. Kate FitzGerald (hadit) Reply June 21, 2012 at 12:14 am

    It’s not over, Susan. Hang in there. If it ends in a hung jury, the DA’s office will come back with vengeance. Another trial will ensue. The second time around will decimate the two clerics, the AD, and the likes of Cullen and Cistone. Bring it on…

    We’ve gotten plenty out of the priest trial to continue on with our agendas. Regardless of the verdicts, the trial has done nothing but empower us. We are in an excellent position.

  9. But if it’s a hung jury, does it mean that the higher ups can continue to protect the abusers? I hoped that Lynn would be an example to anyone who would even think of protecting an abuser. To me, it’s a slap in the face to the victims especially.

  10. Kate FitzGerald (hadit) Reply June 21, 2012 at 12:35 am

    I think a hung jury should be perceived as a slap in the face to PA laws, not victims/survivors. They didn’t fail us or the jury, PA laws did!

    Will a hung jury permit clerics to continue protecting perpetrators and enablers? A hung jury won’t affect that pattern one way or another, nor would convictions. Clerics will continue to protect clerics as long as the priesthood is saturated with clericalism.

  11. The case to me seemed disjointed since the guilty plea was entered shortly before the trial started. I believe the DA was ready to go to trial with Avery , Brennan and Lynn. When Avery pled guilty , their game plan was messed up. I get the feeling that the jury was totally confused about the law as it pertained to Lynn. No matter what happens, I want to thank Seth Williams for taking this to trial. He showed tremendous courage. Also a note of gratitude to Lynn Abraham who convened the first grand jury. Our fight will continue. Nothing about this abomination has been easy. Why would we think it would be now.

    • Jim….It never is ‘easy’ when the stakes are high….

      A ‘hung jury is NOT an ‘acquittal’…the majority of the Jury most probably wanted the prosecution position, on just about every count. We will know more soon, but I would not be surprised with a 10-2 vote on many counts.

      Retrial is quite possible…Lynn has not been vindicated….the AD’s behaviour in these matters is known, nationally,and internationally.

      Seth Williams will make the retrial decision, Kennerly suggests that it may well be a retrial.

      And, actually a retrial would help reinforce the public’s understanding of AD behaviour.

      • Kate FitzGerald (hadit) Reply June 21, 2012 at 2:45 am

        Joan,

        I’ve been listening to CNN for the past two hours. The words “hung jury” have been used by some commentators regarding the Sandusky trial outcome. Personally, I think he’ll be convicted. BUT, for the sake of conversation, what if his trial, and the priest trial, BOTH end in hung juries? What might that say about sex abuse trials, perpetrators, victims, laws, the public, denial, and institutions… Really, it would be uncanny if they both ended the same way. It would create some really complex questions.

      • Kate…I would be genuinely surprised if the Sandusky trial ended up with a ‘hung jury’…but if it did then we all are going to learn a lot more about local jurisprudence….

        A ‘hung jury’ is not an acquittal….it doesn’t mean that Sandusky or for that matter Lynn is innocent, all it means is that one or perhaps a couple jurors had some doubts.

        THEN we get into the prosecution’s decision for a retrial.

        I did a bit of reading up on ‘retrials’ today, for obvious reasons.

        I could cite a bunch of stuff…but I think, and this is clearly a layman’s opinion, that retrials can be very useful…..

        This is one of those ‘we shall see moments’.

        I know this is very difficult for victims and I wish they did not have to process this stuff. I AM concerned for them.

        But I sure don’t think this is ‘over’…difficult, yes.

  12. How right you are. Were fighting an evil dragoñ!

  13. Sadly, I am beginning to despair that anyone on this earth will hold these men accountable for what they allowed to happen. I was especially disturbed by the archbishop’s comment that looking back is not appropriate and that he is looking to the future. This is like a company producing a defective product and when people are injured or killed they bring in a new management team and say that they have fixed the problem and it will not happen again and they are not responsible for any damage caused by the old management team.

    I am reminded of an incident that occurred at the VA hospital a few years ago that resulted in some patient injuries. When Senator Specter held a hearing the chief physician for the VA showed up and testified that “When we recognize a problem we own it. That means that we identify the problem, we determine how it happened, we see to it that it never happens again, and we take care of anyone injured by it.” Let’s compare this to the actions of the archdiocese.

    The identified the problem but do they own it? The NCCB has an outside panel that gives them an A+ for their new program. The problem with this is that the archdiocese had an outside panel that reviewed their program and dealt with problems after the 2005 grand jury report. The reported that things were fine. Now we find out from the 2010 grand jury that the panel was only informed of 33% of the complaints that were made. The other 67% were deemed not substantial. Now that the archbishop has looked at those 27 cases making up the other 2/3 that were not substantial, two cases were not examined because the priests are dead, he has cleared 3 priests, removed 5 from active ministry and 17 cases are still pending because they cannot reach a decision. I would say that this is an egregious failure to “own” the problem, and this action makes the evaluation of the NCCB’s program not credible at best and a presumed whitewash at worst.

    Next is the issue of how did it happen. We will never know the answer to this question because the church refuses to allow any transparency on their policy even to the extent of reporting how many complaints were filed and how they were disposed. At the very least, they should report that all complaints were presented to civil authorities for criminal investigation and that the civil authorities are satisfied that the matter has been investigated and charges have been filed or the case has been closed. It would be better still if they could report that the complaintant was satisfied that the investigation was adequate.

    Next is the issue of whether they have fixed the system so that it never happens again. Here sadly they have a potentially insurmountable problem. Cardinal Rigali lied to the Faithful about the problem from 2005 to 2010, and now archbishop Chaput asks us to trust him. No matter what his personal credibility may be, the institutional credibility is non-existent, and therefore as long as he holds himself out as the head of the institution he is not entitled to a presumption of credibility. He must find a way to prove it. He asks us to accept his statements on faith, but his organization has exploited our faith for their own benefit for too long to expect any expression of faith in the institution from the faithful. In the recording of his last press conference on the matter there is a whooshing sound in the beginning that I believe might be the Holy Spirit leaving the building.

    Finally, there is the important issue of caring for those injured by the mistake. This may be one area where their actions may increase their credibility. Secretary of State Colin Powell once described what he called the Pottery Barn Rule – You break it, You own it. I also recall from my Catechism class that there are sins which require restitution before one can receive absolution. Stealing was one of those sins and it is required that the stolen item be returned or you must make every effort to restore the to the individual something to replace what was taken. The archdiocese by its actions has stolen the innocence of the victims and broken the faith of its Faithful. Finally, there is the statement in Matthew 5:23-25 that says that if your brother has something against you your must make peace with your brother before bringing your gift to the altar. Collectively these indicate certain actions are mandatory. These include:

    1. An apology by the archbishop in his role as head of the archdiocese on behalf of the organization for the pain caused to the victims and to the faithful for their failure to maintain the moral standard that they expect of the faithful.

    2. A commitment to the victims to assist them in dealing with the damages they sustained. This is more than a year of counseling. This is a lifelong injury with deep scars. It is a commitment to provide lifelong support in dealing with substance abuse problems, job related problems, marital and family problems, suicidal ideation and other psychological manifestations of the abuse. The diagnosis and support of these individuals should be contracted to an independent outside organization similar to the way that an insurance company contracts with hospitals and doctors so that there is no possibility that the archdiocese could be accused of short-changing the abused.

    3. If they have the courage to take the first two actions, they should create a more open administration so that the faithful can see the works that are being done. If this is completed they could ask for contributions that are free of any administrative deductions for the care of these individuals. I believe the faithful want to help these people and would support this fund if they know that none of this was going to the operational expenses of the archdiocese. The faith of some has been destroyed and for most others it is badly shaken. This latter group want to believe in the Church and support it, but the administration has shown itself to be not worthy of that faith. The bishops complain that Catholics do not pay attention to their direction, but the actions we have seen in the archdiocese over the last seven years shows that they lack the moral courage to speak with authority on matters of morals. If they begin to show some courage they may earn some authority.

    • Every thing you said is right on, except for your last statement. Courage from the evil empire is not courage at all !. They earn no authority from the children, the handicapped. or the marginalized, nor from any caring adult. Its. a done deal when you can’t even trust “supposed “men & women of God to care for God’s precious innocents.

  14. If Lynn goes free on a technicality, our children are in even greater danger. The church will see that there is no consequence to protecting predators. The Church is forcing parents to choose between it and the safety of their children. I guess that is one way to get the “leaner meaner” Church they want. I am a Catholic parent on the tipping point.

    • Kathryn, if the jury is hung relative to the Lynn charges, that doesn’t mean he is innocent….he would not have been ‘acquitted’…Unless the jury voted for ‘acquittal’.

      The prosecutor decides on a retrial…

      And it has been said often on this blog that the trial itself revealed the behaviour of the AD for all the world to see. Which is a clear ‘heads up’ to everyone from Philly residents, the media, prosecutors in other jurisdictions, the USCCB, and Dioceses worldwide, et al.

      You don’t have an 11 week trial with all that was revealed, over and over and over…and NOT impact these issues. The trial itself has provided lots of ‘consequences’ relative to protecting kids and preventing predator passing on.

      I do think that legislation to tighten up some of the trial issues is a great idea, mandatory clergy reporting requirements with stiff penalties, the extension of the SOLs window and some other laws are important, and folks who care about protecting innocent children, all innocent children need to be aware and involved in these issues.

  15. Go God! -HE IS SO GOOD.The fact that we are all talking about this evil, that has been going on since the beginnig of the institution , is truly what HE has allowed us to find out about. HE IS STILL IN CHARGE! Now that we KNOW what HE has known for millennium(s ) …We face the consequences of what we do ÑOW…. with these facts that WE NOW KNOW to true and not just supposition. It will END because we will DO what is necessary TO DO HIS WILL! AMEN?

    • Agreed. God has blown their cover by giving voice the the victims. Next will be His authority if we fail to listen. This trial, whatever the outome, is just the beginning.

  16. When the proceedings started I noted in a previous posting that Lynn would walk as it would be a hung jury. Fortunate or unfortunate, depending on who you are, it appears Lynn will walk away… As for retrying the case, the Philadelphia DA’s office has spent a lot of time, money and manpower on this horse and it will not run so do not expect an immediate filing. “IF” they do file charges I would expect others (Bishops, Priests) to be drawn into the fray. As for the Philadelphia AD, they have already swept this under the carpet and are moving forward with the closing of school and churches to pay the $11.3 plus legal bill… Chaupt is in Harrisburg fighting to shorten the statue of limitations and the Pope is coming in ’15… Lynn will go back to Dtwon as a hero and the Pew Sheep shall rejoice…Great time to be a Catholic……..

    • WR, max Kennerly on Lynn:

      Importantly, a hung jury does not necessarily benefit Monsignor Lynn.

      As the United States Supreme Court has repeatedly affirmed, most recently in Yeager v. United States, 129 S. Ct. 2360 (2009), the “double jeopardy” clause of the Constitution does not bar re-trial of a defendant where the prior trial ended in a hung jury:

      The “interest in giving the prosecution one complete opportunity to convict those who have violated its laws” justifies treating the jury’s inability to reach a verdict as a nonevent that does not bar retrial. Washington, 434 U.S. at 509, 98 S.Ct. 824.

      Id. If it’s a hung jury, the only question is if the Philadelphia District Attorney declines to re-try Monsignor Lynn. That’s possible, but in my opinion unlikely.

      • A new jury will already then know about Avery. A new trial might now indict Cistone and Cullen. If Lynn”s trial jury is hung I think we are seeing God work it to indict the right people and so we should not be disappointed. We cry for justice. I believe He is listening!!

      • I was being sarcastic in my comments. No one benefits from a hung jury, especially the victims….What I would like to know is what happens to Lynn as a result of a hung jury?? Does he stay in the area or does Rome come calling??? Out of sight out of mind…..

    • I think it was a mistake to only go after Lynn. The whole personnel squad should have been tried. So a hung jury might just lead in that direction. If it does, then a mistrial benefits everyone. I believe justice will be meted out if there is a new trial.

      • mwest – I agree. I wondered from the 1st day… why wasn’t Brennan tried separately? And if you’re going with a conspiracy charge, Lynn should have been joined by Cistone, Cullen, and Rigali (IMHO). Makes more sense to me. However, this is far from my area of expertise. Can anyone shed some light here? Jerry?

  17. What I don’t understand is that the Grand Jury, the prosecutor and all of the other legal authorities know PA laws, so why didn’t the Grand Jury know whether or not, it would be this difficult to apply PA law. Why didn’t the prosecutor make sure that his arguments showed that the PA laws was broken? I assume that they all did a great job, but wouldn’t they know this is what they had to do???

  18. Kate FitzGerald (hadit) Reply June 22, 2012 at 12:10 pm

    “If the Jury is Deadlocked, Should the D.A. Retry the Case?” by Ralph Cipriano.

    http://www.priestabusetrial.com

  19. Kate, I read the Cipriano piece….one guy says the DA would have to retry the case due to its importance, a second commenter says cut a misdemeanor plea deal.

    There is the thought that it looks like a vendetta to retry,

    Frankly, I find the comments confusing. Either the case is so important that it should be retried…a view with which I agree…Or so trivial that a misdemeanor plea deal is all it needs, a view I DON’T share.

    THe idea of a retrial being conceived of as a vendetta…seems somewhat goofy.

    There were profoundly serious issues dealt with in that trial…rape, sodomy, soul murder…..passing on of perps. I don’t see it as a ‘vendetta’ to readdress those issues, but rather a search for justice in the matter.

  20. Verdict has been reached. Announcement at 2pm

  21. Please, please, please “guilty.”

  22. Channel 10 news right now.

  23. Oh come on! 2pm announcement? Yeah right! The last 30 minutes have been some of the longest minutes of my life. They’re prolonging it now.

  24. This is horrible. No justice ever for us! FUCK!

    • Rich, I’m sorry for Mark and I’m sorry that conspiracy didn’t stick but there was justice for Billy and the marker has been laid down that AD personnel managers are in the position to endanger children and can be held accountable for their role. Bob

      • Martin J. Leahy, PhD Reply June 22, 2012 at 6:55 pm

        Bob, you helped Billy get justice and, by extension, helped all of those abused by this precedent setting conviction. Thank you for your courage.

  25. I just heard

  26. Lynn, 61, had faced about 10 to 20 years in prison if convicted of all three counts he faced – conspiracy and two counts of child endangerment. He was convicted only on one of the endangerment counts, leaving him with the possibility of 3 1/2 to seven years in prison.

    I WAS WRONG AND I AM MORE THAN HAPPY TO ADMIT IT………..

  27. Such a disappointment. Hoping for a retrial. So sad, esp for the victims. I still believe them.

  28. OK-Now they need to pursue Cistone, Cullen and whoever else knew about the list that Bevilacqua ordered to be shredded.

    • Rigali, too…. he is probably already packing his bags for a trip to Rome, where he can hide out in the Vatican.

  29. Child endangerment? Yeah good, but what the hell happened to the conspiracy charge? Did he not conspire to endanger children? What the……….?! There will never be 100% justice for us. Our legal systems is just as screwed up as the Catholic Church and the 12 village idiots just proved it today.

    • Martin J. Leahy, PhD Reply June 22, 2012 at 6:43 pm

      Rich, this guilty charge will ring around the Catholic world. This is a BIG deal.

    • Agree with you re. the conspiracy charge. I’m still hoping this verdict has Cistone, Cullen and any others involved at the top quaking in their boots right now because with everything that came out re. that list it seems like the DA could now go after them. Even if (and please know I don’t believe this myself) Lynn was the one who tried to address the problem by creating that list -those others-now bishops in other dioceses in the country -definitely agreed with Bevilacqua to shred the list -or at least went along with it by not speaking up. If that’s not conspiracy I don’t know what is.

    • Rich hang in there man this is a good verdict the jury got it right in my opinion the conspiracy charge was hard to prove and needed all four elements of it proven which weren’t real sorry for mark but maybe another victim of Brennan will come forward in the meantime the retrial could be a year away do not despair this man who took the kids welfare lightly is going to JAIL

    • V4J,
      That’s why we can’t give up trying to change the laws as long as it takes……..

  30. Martin J. Leahy, PhD Reply June 22, 2012 at 6:42 pm

    Judge said she is currently leaning toward revoking bail and sending Lynn to jail. Attorneys are arguing about next steps right now according to KYW radio

  31. What’s the link, Martin?

  32. Here’s my problem: If Jim Jones and John Jones were on the trial for the same charges, no doubt they would’ve been found guilty on all charges.

    I guess this is what $15 million bucks gets you. I guess only poor child abusers and their harborers go to prison longterm.

  33. This is a continuation of Marsico and his bullshit. What’s with the whole “okay, we’ll do one thing but not the 5 things that are required?” I’m not happy and I won’t pretend to be. I’m glad Billy and Bob got some justice, but what happened to Mark? Brennan sat in that courtroom everyday laughing and smiling. That alone should’ve convinced the 12 village idiots he was guilty. This is not even a half-win. It’s an almost loss!

    I hope Lynn goes to jail today! I hope he’s scared to death too.

  34. Now it’s Jerry Scumdusky’s time to get off with a slap on the wrist.

    Hung on some counts and not guilty on others will give the Catholic Church more ammunition to call us liars. One charge of child endangerment wasn’t enough. Chaput is going to spin this verdict like a merry-go-round.

    If they were found guilty on all counts, it would give us more ammunition and sheeple wouldn’t be able to deny what happened to us anymore. The Church would have nothing left but a smoking gun.

    • Rich the judge said that even the lawyers are unable to agree on the interpretation of the conspiracy charge the four elements were not met but that doesn’t mean that they won’t be in the next case the ground has been broken church personnel are on notice a precedent has been set Billy Lynn is going to jail

      • Jack,
        I agree and there is another trial coming up in Sept. for the remaining teacher and priest and I think alot more may come out……my husband’s offender got house arrest for 18 months the laws need to change ……

  35. Do you this it is time for St. Joseph’s in DTown to take Lynn’s picture & bio down…

    http://www.stjoesdtown.org/clergy/index.html

    • Yes-and also stop construction of the new multimillion dollar church for Lynn’s parish! Ridiculous to be building a new church at this time-esp. in his (former) parish!

    • As of this week he was still listed as the pastor of St. Joe’s in their weekly church bulletin. What the hell?????

    • The report I heard said that the AD hadn’t decided yet what would happen to Lynn’s status in the AD.

  36. How many kids were abused in Philadelphia because Lynn transferred known pedophile priests? We’ll never know exactly. 3 & 1/2 – 7 years is NOT enough. He is responsible for destroying so many lives. He deserves to sit in a cell and rot!

  37. Martin J. Leahy, PhD Reply June 22, 2012 at 7:09 pm

    Lynn has gone to jail.

    • Judge pulled his bail??

      • Martin J. Leahy, PhD Reply June 22, 2012 at 7:20 pm

        Yes. Said she is willing to consider a petition for house arrest. But, for now, sent him to jail.

      • House arrest – possible? I hope not; Lynn needs to be in prison with every other common criminal.

        Lynn,

        You didn’t get a long time, but I want you to get Hard Time (General Population), you worthless filthy pig priest. I have only contempt and disgust for you!

  38. Oh I’m sorry fellas. I was just hoping on a guilty verdict on all counts against both Lynn and Brennan. I know this is somewhat of a good thing and may lead to the prosecution of other high ranking Catholic officials in this country, but I can’t help but to think about the prison term I’ve served inside my own mind for over 20 years, with no release date in sight. I wanted these guys to be put away for good. They are evil cowards and I hope Lynn is peeing in his pants right now, and I also hope he finds a cell close to another inmate who despises pedophiles and those who place children in the hands of pedophiles.

    I hope he regrets what he did every day he’s in that cell. I hope he’s scared and I hope he wishes he could go home, and I hope he cries out for help, and I hope nobody goes to rescue him. I hope his last days on this earth are miserable for him!

    • What? No 25 thumbs down for me?

    • I agree Rich. Trying to see the positives here but 3 1/2 to -7 yrs –possibly on house arrest?
      Doesn’t seem like enough for the man who was paid by the AD to manage their pedophile ring for 12 yrs…

      • I believe house arrest is in reference to the time before the sentencing on August 13th, not the actual time to be served.
        I also just saw one of the jurors interviewed and she said many thought that there was a conspiracy just the problem of making the charge/evidence fit to the technicality of the law.

      • A law, Kathy that needs to be ‘fixed’.

    • I have to believe this is the beginnig and not the end. Rich, you and all the survivors have our undying support…. it does not stop here! Peace and love…

  39. Rich,
    You are entitled to every feeling you are having.

    I am saddened for Mark too. I am upset the other charges did not get a guilty verdict.

    BUT, this sets a precedent! Every hierarch (and DA) across this country had better wake the hell up!

    I wish I would have posted this morning when my husband kissed me, wished me a happy anniversary and said, “What do you want for our anniversary today,hon?” My response? “Lynn in cuffs.” He laughed. Who knew? LOL

    If anyone knows Mark or can get to Mark…he needs to know…WE BELIEVE HIM! I believe every word he said. The justice system and laws have failed him. I’m sorry. We may never know who else he has helped by testifying and getting this into public record. Thank you Mark. The outcome in the trial is not what I would have wanted for you. But, you have the truth! I believe you.

      • Husband and I will celebrate tonight at our son’s baseball game. We’ll give a “cheers” with our nachos.

        Thank you Bob. For everything. For speaking up when no one listened. For persevering when it would have been easier to do nothing. For testifying. A huge thank you to your family as well. So many will never fully understand what you did on that stand for the sake of their children. You told your story, but you also told the story of hundreds of victims. I’m sure it did not come without sacrifice. Thank you.

      • Thanks SW, Now I’m all verklempt

    • As always, SW, well said. I echo your sentiments 100%. I’m very concerned for Mark… I pray a retrial is on the horizon for Brennan.

  40. Rich – no handcuffs they just led him away the family was crying I’m at the beach but our friends were there

  41. GIVE LYNN THE MAX IN GENERAL POPULATION !

    RETRY BRENNAN !

  42. Lyrics to The Party’s Over :
    Turn out the lights
    The party’s over
    They say that
    All good things must end
    Call it tonight
    The party’s over
    And tomorrow starts
    The same old thing again

    But the crazy crazy party
    Never seen so many people
    Laughing dancing
    Look at you you’re having fun
    But look at me
    I’m almost cryin’
    That don’t keep her love from dyin’
    Misery cause for me the party’s over
    Turn out the lights…

    Once I had a love undyin’
    I didn’t keep it but I tried
    Life for me was just one party
    And then another
    I broke her heart so many times
    I had to have my parting wife
    I had to have my party
    Why broke her heart so many times
    But one day she said
    Sweetheart the party’s over
    Turn out the lights…

  43. After hearing this and thinking the DA needs to go after Cistone and Cullen-my next thought was this is what should have happened to Cardinal Law in Boston.

  44. Let’s think about what the Grand Jury reports and this trial have accomplished. Avery plead guilty and is in jail..Lynn found guilty on one count and is in jail..Brennan hung jury and looking at another trial. Let’s not forget one very important thing. Prior to the 2011GJ report there were 27 priests with abuse allegations/boundary issues in the Archdiocese. They were in our parishes,schools, CYO, Prep programs. Every single victim who has ever came forward, even if not involved in the trial, has kept our children protected,kept them safer than they ever would have been had the truth not been revealed. There is no amount of justice that could ever be served to the victims in the Philly AD for the years of horror that occurred, but your efforts have kept this generation of children safer from child predators. Each night when every victim closes their eyes they can say that they protected children..others have done just the opposite and some day will answer to a higher authority than any judge or jury. This trial produced a mixed bag of verdicts… a plea deal, acquittal,hung jury and conviction. My verdict on what the victims have accomplished…Heroic.

    • WHen I think of today’s verdict…..child endangerment conviction of an ‘episcopal manager…ie ‘stand in for the bishop’ I reflect AGAIN on the comments made at the very recent National Bishops Conference…

      ……“Bishop Daniel Conlon of Joliet, Illinois, said the bishops had no intention of looking back at allegations of abuse years in the past and holding church authorities responsible for ignoring the reports or transferring accused priests to other parishes.

      “I’m not sure there’s any effective way… the Conference of Catholic Bishops is going to address that,” Conlon said.”

      AND it occurs to me that the bishops may not ‘look back at allegations of abuse in the past and holding church authorities responsible for ignoring the reports or transferring accused priests to other parishes…” BUT law enforcement JUST DID in PHILLY and God willing will do so elsewhere.

      Games over you guys.

  45. It’s the beginning!!!!Guilty is Guilty……He is in custody….1st cleric to be convicted in the USA…Going to jail… I Believe the Victims/Survivors…..Jesus knows all….As brennan sits and smiles and laughs, let him stand before Our Lord and smile and grin on judgement day. I will continue to pray for all victims/survivors…Peace

  46. Guys do me a favor and keep the comments clean..Susan is not able to moderate the site right now. Just think PG rating and go from there.

    • Sorry Kathy. I believe this statement is directed toward my and I deserve it. I did cuss out of frustration and I was kind of on another planet in my mind at the time. It’s no excuse though. I apologize and I’ll keep it clean for now on.

      • no apology necessary…just want to keep it clean. I simply cannot imagine the emotion for all of the clergy abuse victims this afternoon. Once I heard there was going to be a verdict announced, I felt like I couldn’t breath and could not listen to the news. I had to have a family member listen and then come and tell me the verdict.. And also want to let people know that many local area Catholics are thrilled with a guilty verdict..a lot of eyes were opened over the past few months and many people were pulling for the victims..even though they might not attend vigils or comment on C4C.. a lot of catholic people hoping for some justice for the victims.

      • Kathy you and I and Crystal were discussing the silence of AD school parents yesterday…Is this a game changer?

      • Joan,
        I hope it opens the eyes and mouths of parents.

        It’s such a slow process…little by little. Denial is powerful. But when they realize the AD blew over 11 million to defend a guilty man…while merging schools and parishes…we might see some people talking that weren’t before.

        Strike while the iron is hot.

      • Kathy I agree. I don’t keep my mouth shut and I have spoken to family, friends, bible study, my priests, pastoral council etc and now people come up to me and say things like the victims deserve justice…..they are reading more and being informed about abuse in the church in the past and present…..the laws need to change……they are tired of excuses that the priests are just human etc……and these are the things I can say on this site…..you should hear what else they say…….I know many that have left also….

      • SW yesterday we had a rather long discussion of AD parents who needed to have their kids in Philly parochial schools but weren’t speaking up about the abuse, because it was very politically incorrect.

        I take your point that the end of ‘denial’ is a slow process….but it seems to me that today’s verdict is definitely a ‘game changer’ and not only that, but you have two more very ugly trials of Spero and Englehardt coming up soon whose details in the RESOURCES segment are sickening. They, basically, along with Avery, apparently passed around a very young victim from person to person, from abuse to abuse.

        You could also have a Brennan retrial. And for that matter, where are all those other ‘suspended priests’?

        I can’t help but think that it will become much more PC to speak up for victims, HB 878 and 832 et al. When the AD has been shown to be so guilty.

  47. For all those who came forward in Philadelphia, you have my profound respect and support. You may feel this was a bad verdict, and of course on some levels it was. But it is nonethless paradigm shifting! You have managed to get someone sent to jail because of his managemnet of abusers. This is a first, as far as I know. He wasn’t an abuser himself but he was guilty as charged of endangerment — and so much more.

    You need to gather your friends and loved ones around you and give yourself some well deserved nurturing support. It probably doesn’t feel like much of a victory, and in any case, the whole mess doesn’t incline us to celebrate anything. But it is a victory — for justice, for victims, for children who were in danger and have been rescued from one man, at least. It is a step on a long journey. And If we victims continue to support each other it is not a journey we will ever have to take alone.

  48. I have taken great consolation in this song by Tom Baxter, “My Declaration”. So to all those brave souls out there tonight in Philadelphia who refused to run away, I send you these words. It is a beautiful song and you can hear it on YouTube.

    My Declaration

    Gonna be someone, gonna give something,
    I’m taking it on, i’m taking it on,
    It’s gonna be my life, so i’m gonna live each day and each night,
    Taking it on, i’m taking it on

    ’cause i can’t keep hiding, i can’t keep hiding, i can’t keep running away
    So i’m gonna be stronger, i’m gonna be better made, i’m gonna give everything,
    Just to bring me back again.

    I’m gonna be a braver soul than this,
    I’m gonna jump at all those many chances that i’ve missed,
    I’m gonna live my life beyond these fears and forms of cowardice that keep leading me on.
    I’m gonna shine out like a beacon in the night,
    I’m gonna wrap my fingers round the stars tonight,
    ’cause i’m taking it on, ’cause i’m taking it on…

    I can’t keep hiding, i can’t keep hiding, i can’t keep running away
    So i’m gonna be stronger, i’m gonna be better made, i’m gonna give everything,
    Just to bring me back again.
    So i’m gonna be stronger, i’m gonna be understood and i’m gonna give everything
    Just to bring me back again!

    So i’m gonna be stronger and i’m gonna be better made, i’m gonna give everything,
    Just to bring me back again…
    ’cause i can’t keep hiding, i can’t keep hiding, i can’t keep running away.

  49. Kate FitzGerald (hadit) Reply June 22, 2012 at 8:36 pm

    Take that Lynn!

    FINALLY, the secular world passes judgment on clericalism!

    No mother on earth failed her son more than the mother of Mark Bukowski… in the beginning, throughout, and at the end.

    To the victims/survivors: The trial produced everything we need to secure justice. This is a beginning, not an end.

    Many thanks to everyone on C4C.

  50. Peter Isely said it far better than I could in a quote from SNAP, today

    “There is a Monsignor Lynn in every single diocese and religious order around the United States. That includes, of course, the Milwaukee Archdiocese, which is now in federal bankruptcy court, seeking to keep secret 40,000 pages of internal church files and testimony by former Milwaukee bishops concerning the transfer and concealment of child sex predators. Principally, Bishop Richard Sklba, who former Milwaukee Archbishop Rembert Weakland testified was his “go to guy” on “all abuse cases”. Sklba remained the number two man of the diocese under Cardinal Timothy Dolan as well. Yet Sklba, unlike Lynn, has yet to face a single criminal charge for his decades long involvement in covering up child sex crimes, just like Lynn. And Sklba is not the only conspirator who endangered children in the Archdiocese of Milwaukee.

     

    Today’s verdict should send a chilling message to Sklba and every senior church official around the country: your boss—even if he is a cardinal or an archbishop–will no longer be able to protect you from following and implementing their child sex abuse cover up directives. From now on, the excuse, “I was just following orders” is not only a thoroughly discredited moral defense, but a legal one as well.

    The next major criminal trial of a top church official is scheduled to take place in Kansas City for Bishop Finn’s failure to report suspected child abuse. At least that defendant is finally a bishop.

  51. Brennan (the defendant) and Brennan (the attorney) are hitting the airways.I think Brennan does not realize that a hung jury is not an acquittal because he is thanking everyone like an Oscar acceptance speech. In one interview they sat in front of a poster/sign that said “Living well is the best revenge” sigh…I miss the gag order already and it has only been a few hours.

    • Kathy,

      Every time I’ve seen a video of Brennan (the defendant) he always struck me as being a bit emotionally unstable. So, to me it appears that his current actions are simply a reflection of who he is as a person.

      If I see much more of him, I too will miss the gag order. I do however look forward to seeing him at a retrial.

  52. Does anyone know if the judge did a roll call of the jury regarding how they voted? I’m wondering which way the split went on the hung charges. I heard that if the majority was in favor of conviction, the DA is more likely to try Brennan again.

  53. Jane Robinson (Jane R) Reply June 23, 2012 at 12:51 am

    Hey everyone remember the feeling of disgust that we all felt when it was revealed that the priests first clapped for Lynn at the meeting to introduce chaput? How about the applause at the end of the trial? Well …I ask you …who is clapping now?

    Actually I hear the applause in my head….

    Applause for the victims who had the courage to stand up against evil, applause for the Philly D A who had the tenacity to start this whole process convening the very first Grand Jury- thank you Lynne Abraham and all who came after her – They worked tirelessly for many years to get to today. And although we prayed for more – Mark you deserved better- it is a beginning. We are living history my friends. Our grandchildren will read about this someday and they will applaud. We may all be dead and gone before it is really safe for all our children and the Catholic Church that we love in our hearts sees real reform, but in our small corner of the world we have made a difference.
    Thank you my friends. We all deserve an applause!!!!! I BELIEVE THE VICTIMS AND I APPLAUD THEM!!!

  54. Kate FitzGerald (hadit) Reply June 23, 2012 at 1:38 am

    There’s a verdict in the Sandusky trial. UNCANNY both trials’ verdicts came the same day!

  55. Thank you to the jurors in the Jerry Scumdusky trial for giving ALL of us victims peace of mind, and a belief that someday we’ll all get our justice. Children are more protected today because of 9 heroic men.

    Thank you to the jurors in Philly in the priest sex abuse trial for send Msgr. Lynn to jail for child endangerment. The verdict in Philly was not exactly what I wanted as the jury was hung on all counts against co-defendant James Brennan, and hung on other counts against Lynn.

    With both of these verdicts today, our legal system has not failed us and we are sending a clear message that you can no longer abuse a child and hide behind a little white collar or the prestige of a popular college.

    I didn’t you smiling in those handcuffs, Jerry. Haha! Payback’s a bitch!

  56. There has been a change in the imbalance of power today……..thank God…….I hope these verdicts give our victims some peace……..

  57. The lawyer for Brennan was like an immature 5th grader who was constantly disrespectful to Judge Sarmina. He gained all the negative attention he wanted. Many times I wanted to take him to task for his disrespectful stance during the trial and the deliberations. Meanwhile the ex priest Brennan was like a clown in court laughing and fooling around like he was at a carnival or something. Hope Brennan will be tried again. He got off scott free … he needs to be tried again.

  58. Jane R………”.We, “you said, or I should say..” I,” have no love for the catholic church in my heart or in any place. I was there for over 60 yrs. and I know God heard my prayers and my heart for” HIM “………but there is nothing at all there but contempt for that” faux church ” that FAILED US ALL! We were generationally BRAINWASHED by the evil one!

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