We Can Handle the Truth

“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.” – 2011 Grand Jury Report

Click here to read: “A day of questions at parishes affected by abuse cases,” by Michael Matza, The Philadelphia Inquirer, July 9, 2012

176 thoughts on “We Can Handle the Truth

    1. The lack of intelligence and integrity of the Catholic church and congregation would be comical if it wasn’t such an insult to God.

      “The church has declined to make public the details of its investigations, citing the privacy of victims and accused.”

      That is a complete lie, which a 12 year old could figure out, but the church organizes together to tell it and the sheep in the congregation believe it. Why not call the victims “Victim #1″, etc, like they did in the Sandusky case?

      Why not pay for independent police investigators to investigate the church instead of ” a team of church investigators”.

      Because Catholic sheep don’t have the guts to make their leaders tell the truth, since they think the leaders have the only free tickets to heaven.

      If God isn’t stupid, Catholic followers that tolerated this epidemic will follow their leaders to the same destination for eternity, which will be one of Dante’s circles of hell. Of course, God might be stupid, too, and might fall for all of these lies. Catholic better hope so.

      1. Ouch, Neal.

        It wouldn’t matter if all Catholics were smart. Their leaders have every right to conduct matters in the Church as they deem fit. It’s the bane of organized religion. People can take it or leave it.

      2. Neil, When the church says it won’t release details of their investigations BECAUSE WE WANT TO PROTECT THE VICTIMS, I become enraged!!! They have NO interest in protecting us, it is purly a pr stunt. I totally agree with you, why not use victim #1, or 2, or 3! What utter crap. They are never going to get honest, instead pretend that we care about the victims, we can USE that excuse for the dumb sheep to believe.

      3. Neil. Thanks, I agree with you.

        But you’re either not paying attention, or for some other unknown reason have not mentioned any other group with remarkably similar problems. The Mormons. The Jews. The Episcopalians. The Orthodox. And on and on.

  1. Yes, WE can handle the truth, but the hierarchy cannot handle transparency. It is perceived as threatening to priests, the priesthood, and Mother Church. The hierarchy’s loyalty to these things supersedes the rights of victims, the rights of the faithful, and the protection of children. The hierarchy will never operate according to a wave length other than its own. It is the most ingrained, self-serving, and insulated organization on the face of the earth. Part of why the Church is imploding today is due to the hierarchy’s concealment of the truth. It is antithetical to the modern mind and contemporary society. Continuing the concealment of the truth will ultimately lead to the demise of the Catholic Church. It’s a modus operandi that defies contemporary moral and ethical standards.

    1. The problem here is not the ability of the archdiocese, it is the credibility of the archdiocese. Remember that of the 37 priest who were accused prior to 2011, and the allegations were found to be unsubstantiated, that on re-review 6 have been removed from ministry, 6 have been restored, and the rest are still hanging. A .500 batting average here is not sufficient. The archdiocese is also not competent to review these cases since they have only come on the scene after an assault has occurred. Cases that might indicate that a victim is being “groomed” for an assault should mandate the removal from ministry.

      Releasing all of the gory details may not be possible even with a redacted finding. It is imperative that these cases be referred to an outside unbiased authority on child abuse for investigation. The police department is supposed to fill this role, if the archdiocese would permit it, as the law mandates. The archdiocese believes that they are above civil law, so that will not work until we have a reality base hierarchy. If the priest is cleared of assault or grooming by the civil authorities, then the archdiocese can determine if the conduct is sufficiently creepy to merit a restricted ministry or removal. If the civil authorities, who are the experts after all, believe that a crime was planned or perpetrated, then the archdiocese must act.

      As for the disposition of the priest who is cleared, it is difficult. We do not have a choice of our clergy, although we do have a choice of physicians. Would you send your child to a doctor if the police said he probably did not molest his/her patients?

      1. paradox..I woud not send my dog to a veterinarian who was accused of ‘something” and I was not allowed to know the allegations.

  2. The quote Susan posted is from the 2011 Grand Jury report recommendations. It seems like common sense advice from law enforcement..tell the parents the info they need. The other thing about keeping allegations private is the children at the parishes have no idea what the priest is accused of and now cleared to return. Can you imagine being a parent explaining that to a child at one of those parishes? So many mixed, dangerous messages sent to children..I have voiced my concerns numerous times to the AD on behalf of the children.
    And when the AD says the priest has been cleared by law enforcement, in some cases that could seem to mean nothing was able to be prosecuted because of the statutes…in the end it becomes more of a personnel decision by the AD.

    1. The fact of the matter is that groomers/offenders are good at what they do. They have been doing it for years. They know how not to get caught.They are experts at even adults second guessing themselves that “something just doesn’t seem right about this guy etc but don’t have any concrete evidence of any wrong doing” Now we know more and are educated on how they operate. The only thing they don’t count on is that the victims break their silence. Where there is smoke there is fire you just need to find it.

      1. Child predators are indeed expert manipulators, Beth. It is true that they groom not only the children they abuse, but also the parents or anyone who is inbetween themselves and the destruction of innocence. Unfortunately, too many victims do not break their silence. Only a few do, whereas about 80% of childhood sexual abuse victims will never come forward and report what happened to them.

        How do you find the smoke though, Beth? I’ve been thinking about how to explain “grooming” to people, but I can’t do it. You see, when I was groomed, my abusers were doing what they could to gain my trust so they could have power over me and access to my body, and my mind. But isn’t it important that any adult always try to gain a child’s trust? My abusers did the same things with me that I have myself done with other kids to just have fun. I’ve played basketball with kids at the playground or out on the street, and one of my abusers played basketball with me. I’ve taken kids to a ballgame, and one of my abusers took me to ballgames. I’ve tried to teach kids, and one of my abusers was my teacher. I try to protect kids and I hope they realize that, but my abusers also made me feel like they were protecting me. The only difference between myself and my abusers is that when I have gained the trust of a child, I never took advantage of it. I’ve showed children attention and I’ve encouraged them – all of the same things I believe my abusers used to “groom” me.

        So my question is; how do we identify those who groom children for sexual abuse, and those who gain a child’s trust because they believe children should know they are protected by adults?

        My answer is simple. I don’t trust anyone. But, how can I explain to a parent or anyone the grooming process when I would never trust my child (if I had one) with ANYONE, other than myself, my partner, and one friend? How can I explain grooming if most good dads do the same kind of things with their kids as our abusers do?

        Maybe somebody who wasn’t groomed like myself can see it from a different point of view. I’m not a psychologist. Maybe they have the answers. The problem is that if everybody in the world were like me, you would never trust your child with any adult at all, and I’m afraid that would probably lead to more sexual abuse, because children would have nowhere to go for help. If you knew the things I knew and had the memories I have, I can say with all certainty, your child would probably never be able to leave the house – hypervigilance to the 5th power.

        I hope you can understand what I mean in this response. It’s confusing for me, but I’ve tried to express it the best way that I can.

      2. Rich, I am going to try to answer this, although not very well. I think that some abusers may spend an unnatural amount of time with young people. I love kids but to a point..I don’t want to hang out with kids,spend my free time with kids etc.The things you mention like taking a child to a ballgame..all very normal things. I guess in these situations I would look at the person and ask..”Does this person also do these activities with adults or are the always asking kids to join them?
        My friend who coaches some children’s sports teams posted an interesting message on FB right after the Sandusky story broke. He said “if a coach wants to hang out with your kids before or after practice or wants to spend time with them aside from the team activities…run!” He is a coach and loves the sports aspect with the kids but said he could never imagine wanting to ‘hang out’ with the kids on his teams. He coaches children, he “hangs out” with adults.
        Another aspect is that we as parents have to be very aware. And we have to make that known to the adults in our children’s life..that we are watching. I don’t mean in a suspicious way to make innocent people uncomfortable ,but in a way that a person knows we are very involved with our children and will ask questions about where they will be,who they will be with etc.
        I actually make up scenarios for my kids ” What would you do if…” not to scare them..just to give them some direction if they ended up in a situation they needed to get away from.
        And like you have stated abusers are very often accepted members of society,not the creepy guy in a car we were all taught to run away from as a child. We can’t keep our kids in a bubble or locked away until they are adults but we can give them as much info as possible, watch over them as much as possible, and most importantly have the dialogue already going so that if God forbid something did happen to them, they know that we are here for them and will support them.

      3. Kathy,

        Your explanation makes total sense to me. I just don’t know why I didn’t see it that way before. It seems so obvious now after you explain it like that.

        I think sometimes victim’s instincts are so much different, or maybe it’s just me. Oh well… I’m glad you responded because I think I can work it out in my head now. 🙂


      4. Does someone not agree with me that I understand Kathy’s explanation? I have a thumbs down because I understand. Maybe you might be able to change my realm of understanding. What are your thoughts, Mr. or Mrs. Thumbs Down?

      5. Kathy I would agree with you. It’s the guy that would rather sleep down stairs with the kids then upstairs with his wife when the kids have a sleepover. The one that prefers kids to adults……things will strike you as odd or weird………trust your gut when this happens. Rich I am talking about parents what to look for. Kids are so innocent it is hard for them to tell the fun nice guy from the predator but I always tell my kids if they start to feel uncomfortable for some reason get out of the situtaion and tell a parent etc . It is a fine line between letting our kids live their lives and protecting them. I have trouble with this myself at times.

      6. Rich, some things that get thumbs down and have nothing to do with the Church but just protecting kids in general…my personal opinion is that some people who thumbs down those comments are the ones Beth mentions “would rather sleep downstairs with the kids”

      7. Kathy’s explanation is exceptional… this is what I have learned from many victims themselves..

        Child predators are very cunning and manipulative. They know every trick on how to groom, threaten, lie, and put the fear of god into their victims and sometimes even their family members.

        They also appear to do a lot of goods things, they can be very charismatic and you may think they would never harm a child. They have to be this way, in order to not get caught and to continue to abuse

        Sexual predators are often powerful and well-loved. It would be comforting if those who preyed on the vulnerable were obvious social misfits whose appearance would somehow set off alarm bells and give us the willies or the creeps. They rarely do. Usually, predators are among the last people we would suspect of sexually violating others. At a party, the predator isn’t some oddball sitting alone in a corner because others feel uncomfortable with him. Most often, the predator is the guy throwing the party.

        We must overcome the dangerous myth that because someone is successful or warm or caring, he or she couldn’t have done that!
        Also, we must stop thinking that because a man is old, that somehow he’s automatically safe. It’s just irresponsible to endanger kids by assuming an adult is harmless simply because he or she may be losing hair, wearing glasses, using hearing aids or walking with a cane. These can be signs of advancing age, but they are not signs that an individual is safe around kids.

        It is extremely rare that a child predator has only one victim. It is well known that many child predators have between 60 to 100 victims in their lifetime…

        Also, child predators are very patient, they will spend months gaining the trust of their prey, they will spend hours planning how to get to the kids, it is their life. The sad part is…they can NEVER be allowed to be around kids EVER…. not for the rest of their life.
        At least until someone finds a cure for this terrible addiction that does not use “SOME THING” to abuse… They need to feed their addiction by using “SOMEONE”… and that is an innocent child.

        So the vicious cycle has got to get stopped.. I will not stop doing my work until I take my last breath..

        tks, Judy

      8. I was just rereading what I wrote below and my second to last sentence does not make sense. What I meant to express is that it is a delicate balance keeping your child safe and letting them enjoy their life and not being overprotective. Heard about St. Paul being a tent maker as he preached the gospel interesting concept. St. Paul did not just live off donations from the faithful.

    2. Kathy,

      The hierarchy cannot identify with the concerns of parents and families. They cannot put themselves in your shoes. They cannot relate to your concerns. They cannot see things through your eyes.

      No matter how much they say they can and do, they do not and cannot.

      For centuries, the faithful never challenged this hierarchical disconnect. However, now, you have stepped forward, challenging it at the AD level, but nothing, nothing whatsoever, has prepared the hierarchy to meet the challenge. Your efforts are pointless… which is something all parents and people who care about children should seriously think about.

      1. Susan cited a portion of the 2011 Grand Jury recommendations relating to full disclosure to parishes of a ‘restored’ priest…I am citing the recommendation relating to Diocesan Review Boards and the full disclosure rec.

        • Revise the Review Board process so that credibly accused priests are removed from ministry.

        This recommendation is simple: The Archdiocese must revise its review process to assure that the church hierarchy credits and acts on credible allegations. The cases we reviewed reveal a process that reaches the wrong result in the vast majority of cases. Victim assistance coordinator Louise Hagner told the Grand Jury that, out of all the victims she has interviewed, there have been only two whose credibility she even questioned. Yet Bishop Senior rattled off a whole list of priests the Review Board has cleared for continued ministry by finding allegations against them unsubstantiated.

        We do not know if the members of the Archdiocesan Review Board are not objective, or if someone has instructed them that the standard of proof is absolute certainty, or if they are considering factors that have nothing to do with whether or not a priest committed the offense alleged. Whatever the reason, their decisions appear devoid of common sense. The Review Board currently betrays victims who muster the courage to come forward with allegations. It approves retention in the ministry of serial child molesters. No Archdiocesan official should be accepting the board’s recommendations.

        We do not think the problem lies with the investigators. We read the investigation interviews, and would reach different conclusions from the Review Board based on the same evidence. The Grand Jury urges Archdiocese officials to review their process for deciding when to remove priests from ministry.

        Indeed, the evidentiary standard for personnel decisions involving allegations of sexual abuse of minors cannot be the same as guilt beyond a reasonable doubt associated with convictions in a criminal court. Barring clear indication that an allegation has been fabricated, an accused priest ought to be, at the very least, provisionally separated from children. And Archdiocese officials need to act to protect minors upon receipt of evidence that a priest has acted inappropriately around children, even if the allegations do not specify genital sex.

        We implore Cardinal Rigali and his staff to review all of the old allegations against currently active priests, and to remove from ministry all of the priests with credible allegations against them. By the Archdiocese’s own account, at least 37 priests remain in ministry despite reports that they have engaged in improper behavior with minors. That should not be acceptable to anyone.

        • 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.

      2. Kate, I agree and believe me my questions remain unanswered..but I will ask them because everyone talks about these things and no one ever picks up the phone and calls the AD. They can’t identify,they are not parents ,even some lay people who work on these issues are not parents. I don’t think you have to be a parent necessarily but it is unbelievable to me..so many things happen that I point out to them and ask ‘is anyone thinking about the children” . I don’t disagree that it is pointless, but the kids cant speak for themselves,so I will.

      3. I commend you for your advocacy, Kathy. Just trying to convey what is nearly impossible to convey. The hierarchical disconnect is incomprehensible. Thank you for calling, and continuing to call.

      4. Kate, the Church can make the decisions they want about many things and even if I disagree,it is their right to make the decisions.. but not about children. I have explained many times that as a parent I am at the top of that hierarchy..no one is higher than me…no cardinal, no bishop, no pope,,,no one. They are below me,not above me when it comes to children..and yes I have actually had to explain this hierarchy chart..parent at the top.

      5. Rich; I can certainly understand your not trusting anyone with children. When my son was ten years old , a friend asked if he could come to a sleepover at the boys’ church. It was not a Catholic Church. I didn’t want to pass on my own mistrust of anyone or anything having to do with religion. So he went. That was one night I didn’t sleep a wink. When my son or daughter played little league or softball, I was there. Eventually, I was around so much, they asked me to help out coaching, which I did. I enjoyed coaching so much, I eventually ended up being a head coach. As a kid playing sports, my dad was never there. No i’m wrong, he did show up for one of my football games. The bar must have been closed. But don’t you think my abuser noticed this? Parents who drop their kids off and return after the game or practice are setting their kids up to be abused.Our kids are our most valuable asset. They need to be protected

      6. Jim,

        You know… sometimes I feel like a total idiot, because I now know way more than I ever did about how my abusers got to me and how they were able to continue abusing me and why I never spoke up about it, back then at least. Sometimes I guess I just can’t put the obvious together without someone’s help.

        I didn’t realize until this morning that my abusers spent an inordinate amount of time with me, more than any adult should spend with children. I like being around kids too (just not brats LOL), but I like to hang out with my grown adult friends.

        I actually do not like taking kids to a baseball game because they rarely want to do what I want to do, which is watch the damn game, or talk about the game, or scream across the stands how much Shane Victorino is stinkin’ it up this year. I think now I can understand why he spent so much time with me, because I loved sports and that was his way in.

        It just occurred to me that my interaction with kids is completely different than my abuser’s interactions with me, because I like being around kids, but I don’t want to be surrounded by them 24/7. (Another reason I’m thankful to be a homo because I never wanted any kids of my own. LOL) I have so many memories of my childhood in which I can always remember my abusers in the images with me. Yet, many memories don’t involve my parents or somebody else other than my abusers. I guess that’s why I felt like Kathy hit me with a sledgehammer this morning when I read her reply and immediately thought, “Why didn’t I think of that?”

        This is like an everyday thing of my life. Yesterday, I’m so sure I’ve got everything figured out, then today somebody wakes me up with something I never considered before that is so accurate to my life. It’s like getting hit with new memories I wasn’t expecting. You know the ones that just slam you in the middle of the night after a nightmare or the memories that are triggered by smells, sounds, sensations? It’s just something else everyday. I always wondered why the few great memories I have of my childhood don’t overwhelm all the shitty ones. Trauma I guess is what my therapist would say.

  3. If we can handle the truth–and if the AD will tell us the truth (yeah, right)–then tell us the names and locations of all priests who are secretly being housed by the AD, hiding out in rectories or other facilities within or outside the AD.

  4. A critical phrase in the 2011 Grand Jury recommendation that the AD should disclose ‘at the very least parishioners deserve to know whenever an allegation of abuse is made against their priest. If the priest is cleared …the reasons along with the evidence , should be shared with the parish’…and WHY should parishioners be informed?

    Here’s the critical phrase, “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.”

    1. Joan, you are so right. You can never gain anyone’s trust in an environment where rumors fly. The GJ recommendation strikes me as just common sense.

    2. Joan,

      I’ve argued on C4C that the priests are as disillusioned with Chaput and the USCCB as we are. I believe that and know it to be true. HOWEVER, the implementation of the 2011 Grand Jury recommendations is something priests would not support, considering it a threat to their privacy and reputations. While priests want transparency and see it as integral to Church reform, they are ready and willing to foster the continued lack of transparency when it comes to protecting themselves. This “double-speak” is clerical through and through, and not acceptable.

      Yesterday, I went on the Association of Philadelphia Priests website. Under “meetings,” the next scheduled meeting was listed for April 30, last April 30! How active is this association? Nothing of substance to date has come out of it. Has Chaput silenced it? Do Philadelphia priests lack the intelligence to unify and address substantive issues? Why aren’t members of the priest association addressing the issue of transparency, and why aren’t they taking a hard look at how, in order to protect themselves, they impede it?

      Still ingrained in priests is the feeling that they are above and beyond the rest of us, that they possess some sort of birthright making them immune to the standards and expectations of society. Their reputations and professional positions are no more sacred than ours. If the playing field doesn’t get leveled, the “double-speak” jargon will eventually destroy them. They need to stop refuting the standards of society, favoring some sort of privileged and elite view of themselves. The preferential treatment history of clerics is over. Let’s hear how the priest association intends to handle that because its silence is acting to maintain it.

      1. Kate, when I posted the 2011 Grand Jury recommendations for the Review process and disclosure to the parishioners of facts relating to ‘restored priests’….I thought about who had made these recommendations. AND for that matter, I thought about the jurors selected for the Lynn trial.

        These were Philly residents whose names got pulled out of a pool to do their civic duty and deliberate on the data provided. They were normal 21st century citizens with…in both cases, a tough job to do.

        Whether it was a verdict or indictments and recommendations, these folks had ‘no skin in the game’….they were not trying to protect an institution from litigation, they were simply trying to assess the damage of abuse to innocent children within the confines of PA law. And to attempt to both protect innocent children from abuse and call perpetrators accountable.

        I think that these facts make their verdict, indictments and recommendations especially powerful, and deserving of serious consideration.

        The idea that clergy are somehow ‘above the law’ is NOT a 21st century US citizen’s agenda.

        Nor should it be.

        My personal view is that clergy, hierarchy et al, who do not wish to comply with a 21st century US legal set of standards are welcome to emigrate elsewhere.

  5. Susan, excellent – this information can be shared and the victims ID can be kept secret — we have a right to know since we are the Church.

    1. Joe Gable,

      From my perspective it appears that your position has evolved during the course of the trial. You no longer stridently side with the AD. You no longer appear to be buying everything the AD is selling, simply because clerics are selling it. You’ve had a change of heart.

      Regardless of whether my perception is correct or incorrect, would you please post a little info regarding your change of tone? Thank you.

      1. drwho, I don’t want to answer for Joe but I have followed his comments and I never thought he was stridently siding with the AD, at any point. There are two ” Joe’s” that post on C4C. I thought Joe Gable’s letter that he wrote to the AD and posted on C4C was excellent. The people in the pews are who they need to hear from.

        Joe, I agree..allegations can absolutely be public without naming the victim. And to make things even more complicated,if some of these allegations are being deemed unsubstantiated ,than the AD would believe there are not actual victims in those cases,so if they say the allegations won’t be public to protect the victim…what victim? If there is a victim than there is a substantiated case..right?

        Drwho, I agree concerning the younger generation..I see it everyday. We grew up with an unhealthy reverence for clergy,these kids are hearing about clergy and rape,sodomy,stalking of children,child porn etc…it will never be the same and thank God and the bravery of the victims for that.

      2. I have to be more careful. The character (and I do mean character) I was thinking of is “Joe B.” Sorry Joe Gable!

  6. As for me, I will not be a secret anymore. I wasted too many years of my life on secrecy and silence.

    “There is no longer any room for hope. If we wish to be free–if we mean to preserve inviolate those inestimable privileges for which we have been so long contending–if we mean not basely to abandon the noble struggle in which we have been so long engaged, and which we have pledged ourselves never to abandon until the glorious object of our contest shall be obtained–we must fight! I repeat it, sir, we must fight! An appeal to arms and to the God of hosts is all that is left us! They tell us, sir, that we are weak; unable to cope with so formidable an adversary. But when shall we be stronger? Will it be the next week, or the next year? Will it be when we are totally disarmed, and when a British guard shall be stationed in every house? Shall we gather strength by irresolution and inaction? Shall we acquire the means of effectual resistance by lying supinely on our backs and hugging the delusive phantom of hope, until our enemies shall have bound us hand and foot? Sir, we are not weak if we make a proper use of those means which the God of nature hath placed in our power. The millions of people, armed in the holy cause of liberty, and in such a country as that which we possess, are invincible by any force which our enemy can send against us. Besides, sir, we shall not fight our battles alone. There is a just God who presides over the destinies of nations, and who will raise up friends to fight our battles for us. The battle, sir, is not to the strong alone; it is to the vigilant, the active, the brave. Besides, sir, we have no election. If we were base enough to desire it, it is now too late to retire from the contest. There is no retreat but in submission and slavery! Our chains are forged! Their clanking may be heard on the plains of Boston! The war is inevitable–and let it come! I repeat it, sir, let it come.

    It is in vain, sir, to extentuate the matter. Gentlemen may cry, Peace, Peace–but there is no peace. The war is actually begun! The next gale that sweeps from the north will bring to our ears the clash of resounding arms! Our brethren are already in the field! Why stand we here idle? What is it that gentlemen wish? What would they have? Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!” – Patrick Henry, 1775

  7. In the British Parliament circa 1870, Lord Acton is quoted as saying, “Power corrupts, but absolute power corrupts absolutely.” This can be applied to Lynn, the AD and any other diocese in the church. Forget hearing the truth from the church … they are corrupted inside and out … their clandestine meetings and files concerning priest pedophiles will never reach our ears or newspaper/internet stories.

    1. The RCC will never consent to a system of checks & balances, thus they’re free to try to get away with whatever they can.

      The upside of this is that the younger generation is not intimated by a clerics’ position, as were their parents. This gives them their own form of checks & balances.

      If something doesn’t feel right, stay away from it, and they do!

      1. drwho13, where you and I differ from a lot of our friends here; is that I apply “If something doesn’t feel right, stay away from it, and they do!” to the whole Roman Catholic setup, not just sex abuse. I also believe most kids know what they are told as kids is bogus; they just have their own thoughts overwhelmed by the adult parents and teachers. Christ is not bogus, but what men have said about Him and tried to make a living doing it is.

    2. “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely”

      The context for Lord Acton’s quote is important… he, a good Catholic, was objecting to papal infallibility. Many Amercian bishops at the time of Vatican I were equally opposed to the doctrine of papal infallibility.

      ‘I cannot accept your canon that we are to judge Pope and King unlike other men with a favorable presumption that they did no wrong. If there is any presumption, it is that other way, against the holders of power, increasing as the power increases. Historic responsibility has to make up for the want of legal responsibility. Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Great men are almost always bad men… There is no worse heresy than that the office sanctifies the holder of it.’


      1. Also, note that the doctrine wasn’t made an “infallible teaching” until 1870, relatively recent when we’re talking centuries since Christ resurrected.

  8. Paradoxparadox:
    I think that there is some confusion about the “lists” and this is part of the acts of obfuscation which has been engaged in by this Archdiocese.
    Msgr Lynn prepared a list of about 35-37 persons who had significant accusations of pedophile activity. That was the list that Cardinal Bevilaqua wanted shredded and the list that one of the staff priests kept a copy with the notation that The cardinal wanted to be destroyed (tampering with evidence). That list appeared during the grand jury deliberation but disappeared until the 2nd Grand Jury in 2008(?) and then that list disappeared again until February 2012 showing that there was colllusion on the part of the Archdiocese to hide and keep these names secret.
    But in 2011, Cardinal Rigali then had his own list of persons who had some accusations which none of us have any idea what those accusations were. ?27 names were on that list and they were “suspended” until the list was evaluated by the AD own office with the new chairperson, former sexual abuse investigator, but not by the DA’s office.
    This latter list is what is happening now in the parishes. Some have been returned and others fully suspended and others still waiting investigation.
    But Archbishop Chaput has also released his own list of some priests who have been “defrocked” . So there is a lot of confusion about”who is one first and what is on second”. I still believe that this activity is part of a “dazzle them with the footwork” routine.

  9. Thanks, C4C bloggers, for your tenacity and diligence.

    It is very encouraging that you continue to push so hard after the Lynn conviction and don’t fall for Chaput’s and his high-priced lawyers’ efforts to provide continuing cover for the likes of Rigali, Cullen, Cistone, Bransfield, et al.

    Bishops Cistone and Bransfield are currently running dioceses, without even fully responding to the major allegations against them. Bransfield called the Lynn trial a ‘circus”. One wonders if Bransfield and/or Chaput told the circus’ ringmaster, the pope, this when they met separately at the Vatican recently. What arrogance! How dangerous and sick.

    Chaput may be worried now about his red hat. If he doesn’t start operating more openly, he may eventally get a orange jumpsuit instead.

    One can be guilty of child endangerment even when guided by lawyers. After all, Bevilacqua was a lawyer.

      1. But wait a minute!!! Is that what is going to be the future— over and over again, one after the other a long parade of abused kids, accused clerics, and trials and misery and more misery. It could go on forever!!!! This stuff must stop now for heaven’s sake.

  10. But the hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church, the United States Conference of Bishops, Archbishop Charles Chaput and the bishops of Pennsylvania cannot handle the truth.

    What is not surprising at all is how little information regarding accused priests was given to the people of the archdiocese by Archbishop Chaput or his spin doctors.

    Just look at who’s baaaaaccck; Brian Tierney and Company, the ultimate public relations firm whose history with the AOP goes back many years.

    The ordinary people in the pews and those who are not should accept the fact that Philly’s Archbishop Chaput has squandered any credibility he may have had when he first arrived here.

    Personally, he lost it all with the misinformation he spread about Colorado’s proposed legislation introduced by Legislator Gwyn Green who is a Catholic. Chaput said the bill only covered Catholic Priests which was untrue. Gwyn Green was trashed and shunned by her parish and her own pastor.

    Bishop Chaput was successful in getting the Colorado bill defeated with the help of all the Catholics who believed him. Why do you think he ended up as Archbishop of Philadelphia.

    Read my articles:

    CATHOLICS LEADERS KNEW – Guest Commentary






    You’ve read his words and listened to him and his priests giving a standing ovation to Bill Lynn months ago. 11.7 million of your money financed the Dream Defense Team so far and possibly Lynn’s appeal. Do you think those defense lawyers stopped submitting all those billable hours when the guilty verdict came down? You’re mistaken – they are still getting paid.

    You’ve heard him trash House Bills 832 & 878, haven’t you? And the well paid lobbyists of the Pennsylvania Catholic Conference are doing the same thing as per his orders and the support of all the PA bishops.

    Remember, too, that there are no truly independent investigations being conducted by the AOP. It is impossible. It is a contradiction in terms. They were appointed by the present archbishop or his predecessor and they operate under the mandate given to them. We already know that they haven’t received all the information from the archdiocese on credibly accused priest and we know that as recently as a year ago they were investigating only those priests whose names were given them by the archbishop. Why in the world would anyone take anything coming from the AOP about credibly accused sexual predators whom they have protected for years as the Truth. The inherent conflict of interest is overwhelming.

    It’s already 9:30 a.m. Be sure to listen at 10 a.m. to Marty Moss-Coane on WHYY today, Tuesday, and call in with your comments. I believe the topic is SOL REFORM.

    Sister Maureen

  11. The truth?? What are you talking about….. The AD has swept this whole deal under the rug and our “leader” Chaput has gone into overdrive to blame others and at the same time sell assets to pay for the legal fees. Transparency is a dirty word for the Philadelphia AD as there are 1.4 million of us and we do not need to know everything….So how do we get the answers??? Can you say MONEY as in collections and gifts… Come on now, you know who you are, you still put that cash or check in the basket each week because you feel “guilty”.. Do you realize that significant portion of every dollar you give your local parish goes downtown…It is time to get tough people and stop being a Pew Sheep..Cut off the money and Chaput and his team will get the message real fast…Money is like oxygen, you need it to live. The Philadelphia AD needs to have their air cut off and allowed to suffocate.. Maybe then Chaput and his friends will get the message that transparency is must and not a luxury..

  12. “We can handle the truth.” (the faithful whine, beg, and plead…)

    Maybe so, but I agree with bilgrimage.com on why the hierarchy is utterly disinterested in all of the utterances posted on C4C on this subject. This is why they are ignoring us, smirking behind our backs, and publicly asserting that, if we are so mad and fed up, what’s taking us all so long to leave?

    Bilgrimage: “I’ve said before, and I keep thinking, that the top leaders of the Catholic Church have made a cynical, calculated decision to write off the majority of Catholics in the developed sector of the world for crude market-driven reasons. At the urging of the super-rich handlers to whom the Pope, the Curia, and the bishops answer more than anyone else these days, the leaders of the Catholic Church are seeking to rebrand Catholicism as true blue old-time religion that appeals to the current growth market of Christianity in the developing parts of the globe.”

    Face it, folks. Our Church is leaving us in the dust. Expelling us. Excommunicating us. We think we can do something about it but we can’t. We really can’t. We have no power whatsoever to wrestle it into submission. There are no structures within the institution of the Church that permit us to affect or influence it. Our only affecting instrument is the courts, which we can use to systematically bludgeon offending clerics for their crimes. Necessary, yes, but hardly a cooperative climate for affecting change in the 21st century.

    I am disgusted with the priests. Were they to revolt, it would result in a hierarchical paralysis. Instead, they cover and protect their own interests. There’s a special place in hell for you guys.

      1. Joan,

        The powers and “graces” of the Holy Spirit are enabling ones. They are not imposed on people according to the Holy Spirit’s will, nor are they miraculously prescribed or ordered. The transference of the gifts of the Holy Spirit depends on the accepting wills of human beings, which is why the main complaint over the centuries has been that human beings all too often fail to acknowledge and appropriate the gifts. The Holy Spirit will not independently intrude on fixing or repairing the Church, nor will it transfer its gifts to humans against their will, or without their knowledge, or without their summoning. Because, say, the hierarchy rejects the enabling gifts of the Holy Spirit, we can’t expect the Holy Spirit to wrestle it into submission for us. Why? Because the entire dignity of each and every one of us lies in our freedom of will. Ultimately, our dignity– derived from freedom to make choices freely– supersedes the value and worth of the enabling powers of the Holy Spirit, even when our free choices result in sin, the breakdown of our institutions, injustices, and so on.

      2. Kate…assuming the ‘accepting wills’ of folks who are trying to assist the Church in much needed reform…I am trusting that the Holy Spirit is a ‘player’…..Joan

    1. Kate, Sadly, I agree! This doesn’t mean we give up, our children are worth every bit of effort, we can make a dent, however, Kate is right. The hierarchial top will NEVER change which is where real change can begin. They have to much to protect and safeguard. I believe the ONLY way to cripple them is withholding your money and how very sad that statement is!

      1. It is sad if you believe the hierarchy are following in the steps of Jesus. They are not. Catholics around the world have walked out or closed their wallets. The RCC is in big $ trouble everywhere including Rome; it is all over the global news. The RCC needs your $ to evangelize the developing countries, or they tap into their reserves. “By their fruits (deeds), you will know them.”

      2. This is for Kate [hadit]. With all due respect to your penetrating and erudite mind, just what are your “credentials” that make you superior in wisdom to that of St. Paul, whom Christ chose to be the herald of Christ’s gospel? You have already divulged that you don’t “believe” in God’s Word as being “God’s Word.”

      3. nichols1,

        My main complaint with Paul centers on the fact that he was a Greek-Roman. His Christian ideology or “wisdom” is a blend of Greek-Roman thought. The Greek characteristics of his thought, in particular, diverged from Judaic thought. While Paul did much to articulate and organize Christian thought, Christianity is more the thought of Paul than it is the thought of Jesus. Paul dispelled and/or removed from his interpretation of Christianity important Judaic traditions, additionally, he was not faithful to Hebraic linguistics, preferring Hellenic linguistics. Western civilization took Paul’s brand of Christianity and ran with it.

    2. Kate, I agree with you. I’ve said that’s why the recent push to support immigrants over the last few years. That’s who the diocese are looking for to fill their pews and baskets. Not us anymore.

  13. I’m just wondering if many of you really can handle the truth?

    I remember when this site was first started and some of you, including its administrators, were angry about the way in which all of our cases of clergy abuse were being handled. I told you that I was abused in school by a priest and at first you didn’t think your children were in danger of being abused at their own schools. A few months ago, I read on here that some of you are now withdrawing your children from Catholic schools because you cannot trust their safety there anymore.

    I wrote my own version of the Johnny Cash song, “San Quentin” here just the other day. More thumbs up than thumbs down. Funny thing is, my post from the other day is still viewable to all and hasn’t been removed, whereas several months ago I posted the exact same version and it was removed immediately, and I was reprimanded immediately via email. (Don’t worry, no grudges here. 😉 )

    I remember many people posting on here when the 2011 Grand Jury Report was released and many claimed they couldn’t even get through reading it because they were disgusted by it. Those who did read the entire report were harsh with criticism, but still I found they were not yet criticizing their own Catholic leaders, or not at much as I thought they should be.

    I remember reading many of your posts that claimed you still love the church and you love your parish priests. I told you they couldn’t be trusted and you’d have to be a fool to trust them with your children. You blasted me for my comments. You also slammed me for the responses I posted to threads warning you, in fact begging you, to keep your children away from priests. Now most of you have finally come around and you are seeing the darkness of the Catholic Church that I see.

    Still though, can you really handle the truth? Can you handle all of the disgusting and horrible details of what was done to us when we were kids? Even if I were brazen enough, which I’m not, to post all the details of my own sexual abuse on the Information Super-Highway, could you handle that much truth in one sitting, or will it only take another trial for you to re-invent the past year, start all over again, and figure out why me and some of my friends keep telling the same stories over and over to deaf ears?

    I wish some victims would come on this website and dump some of our details in a very raw form, but I don’t blame anybody for not doing something I don’t have the courage to do myself. I wonder what your reaction would be after hearing constantly about anal rape, oral rape, physical beatings, torture, mind control, brainwashing, and guess what? I don’t even consider that shit to be the worst of it.

    So my question is simple. Can you really handle the cold hard truth?

    1. Rich: unlike you I am new to this site. I only recently started to read the blogs. But I was amazed to find that there actually were real Catholics who believed victims were telling the truth. Most of the stories that I had read in the newspapers or watched in the news were people who couldn’t understand why their wonderful pastor had been taken from them. MY own sister who works in an archdioceses parrish[the only one of seven of us who still practices the Catholic religion] was totally oblivious to what the Church was doing until I convinced her to read the 2011 Grand Jury Report. She told me later that she cried the whole night for the victims after reading the report.If I recall when the earlier Grand Jury report was issued Bevilaqua told his pastors to tell their parishoners not to read it. Progress is being made. Though much too slowly for any of us. From observing both the Lynn trial and the Sandusky trial, I think the public, including the jurors in both cases do not respond to our hitting them over the head with this sorry mess. I wish they did. The main thing is to keep spreading the word. It would be hard to imagine any halfway intelligent person reading either of the Grand Jury reports who would come away with a new understanding.

      1. Jim, for what it’s worth, there are lots of folks I know who are very very supportive of victims of abuse….many have left the Church as they did not want to be a part of an organization that abused innocent children and passed on predators, some stayed.

        The largest percentage of religiously affiliated folks in the US are the 25 per cent who self identify as Catholics, about a third of these actually attend mass weekly…the second largest religious denomination is the 10 per cent of the US population who identify themselves as Catholics who have left the Church, many of them because of the abuse issue.

        C4C is a site for victims and survivors, but you can trust the fact that there are lots of folks on this site who are not victims but are very very interested in supporting them and protecting kids.

        Like your sister, I have learned a huge amount about abuse on this site…I have nothing but respect…and concern…for victims.

        I think it’s going to be a slow process for true justice for victims, but I am cautiously optimistic that we’ve reached a tipping point…the Lynn verdict was hugely important. The Church has gotten away with horror upon horror, but civil and criminal law is catching up….I think the number of prosecutions of hierarchical predator passing on will increase, the media will be involved and God willing, serious change is possible.

        I, like many many others on this site, emphatically believe the victims and am doing everything I can to help….not only on C4C but elsewhere.

      2. They couldn’t help but be changed by it; unless they’re pure evil. Satan is alive and well in the RCC from the top down. Not all, but some of the clergy have sold their souls. The Holy Spirit has freed me from going anywhere near the RCC, but I am still Catholic. I know to some that might sound odd or scary, but Jesus knows my pain and He walks very close to me and warns and protects me. I thought I arrived at this website by accident, now I know. I will never attend a “new catholic mass.” A while ago through education I was warned that the only way to recognize false prophets in the RCC was to check what they said against the Bible. Now I know why that information was made available. Read this: http://www.npr.org/2011/11/25/142618277/new-catholic-mass-already-causing-a-stir
        Someone here referred to “smoke and mirrors” and someone said, “this is not the RCC I knew.” You are so right. I am not slamming the RCC, I am warning to check what your are being told, you already know how deceiptful some bishops are. God is not deceiptful. If you don’t own a Bible go to a used book store and buy an older Bible “pre 1980”. Our Bible, our catechism, and our mass are being changed for a reason. Pray for discernment.

        Peace and Love Cathy

    2. Rich, I think it is hard to classify all of the laity into one category just like a survivor mentioned that classifying all victims is like ‘trying to herd cats”. I read both GJ reports..every single word and I tried to convince others that they HAD to read the reports. Many did, but some told me they could not do it. I have to respect that. I don’t know everyone’s personal history..maybe they are victims of sexual abuse themselves. So instead I gathered some articles that focused on the cover up to distribute.
      I read the reports and heard the victims testimony at the trial..but you know what really did it for me? it was being present for Lynn’s testimony when he was describing the children being lined up in an assembly line to go to confession to Avery,a known predator. I don’t know why that affected me like it did, but it did. And the comment you wrote about praying to God and Superman for someone to rescue you…probably affected me more than anything you have ever written. I think when I read about specifics of abuse or heard the victim’s testimony, a natural defense mechanism kicked in..like I had to hear it but had to protect something for myself. When Lynn testified and you wrote about praying to God and Superman,I wasn’t in that defense mode and it hit me like a ton of bricks..so you never know how you will be successful at reaching people.

      1. I don’t remember writing about praying to God and Superman anywhere here, but I guess I must have at some point, because I’m pretty much the only person who knew that I prayed to them. I was a kid and I didn’t really know what to do, so I prayed to God and Superman, but I guess it seems kind of foolish and childish now. I guess everyone knows now. I don’t remember 90% of the stuff I write on this site, to be honest. I try never to re-read anything I write.

        But I believe you anyway. I believe you and so many others here give a damn. Thanks for believing me and taking to heart issues I write about. The situation has gotten easier in the last year or so, because I’ve finally felt like I’m not fighting my battle alone anymore.

        Thanks to the Supermen and Superwomen here, who continue backing us up and coming to the rescue when we need you all. Please don’t fly away!

      2. Kathy, Rich’s Superman prayer did it for me, too and the idiot mother whose son had been repeatedly anally raped and she took the child to the doctor because she thought he was lactose intolerant.

        I have hated sexual abuse, especially clergy abuse and ‘cover up’ for many many years, but those two reports truly ‘did it for me’. I will never be the same after hearing them. And I mean it when I say that I owe a huge debt of gratitude to the victims for their TRUTh…and to you and Susan for creating an arena where it is available.

      3. I cant speak for other survivors, but I had to read the reports because the more I know about this evil, the better I can protect me and my loved ones. My children and my grandchildren who are old enough know my story; they know Rick and Jim’s story. Their story broke my heart all over again, I cried for their pain and still do, but this empowers me to do whatever I can to stop the abuse of innocent children everywhere.

    3. Rich to answer”can you really handle the cold hard truth?”. No I don’t think anyone really can except the predators and their sense of reality is twisted anyway………I pretty much grew up like alot of people thinking that people were bascially good with a few bad people here and there but that I would never encounter them myself. It’s hard reconciling your ideal vision of how life should be with how it really is……..maybe that is a lesson we all learn one way or another thru our different trials and thru death of loved ones and tradegies such as your’s, our victims and even my husband……..things happened that never should have been…….things that were against any common decency but they happened despite how we feel about them because the reality is evil exists whether we want it too or not.

      1. I accept the truth, I accept evil happens but I will never understand it……..it so senseless and destructive

  14. I know that sometimes my comments are way off topic … this is often because I only post once-a-day, if that’s possible and, secondly, as you may have guessed, I am not from Philadelphia. I am presently watching the series ‘God-Father’ and I am amazed at the parallels I can draw between the Mafia and Clericalism … the old boy’s club … the corporation … indoctrination over generations … secrecy … crime … protecting the family etc. I had stayed away from the series because it was not recommended for ‘Catholics.’ You can see how obedient I was. I like my new-found freedom and I truly believe the victims.

    1. What a coincidence. I was just discussing the parallels of the current RCC clergy crisis to the Thorn Birds and the Godfather. Evil people have infiltrated the RCC. Cathy

  15. Speaking of “handling the truth”, I was reminded yesterday of a very important story re Archbishop Chaput when he led the Denver Catholic Church in March 2010. It appears, to this writer, that, once again, the “best interests” of the children come in last place.

    It’s an inflammatory decision, for sure. In his weekly column, Archbishop Charles Chaput of Denver reaffirmed the Diocesan decision not to allow a lesbian couple to re-enroll their two children in a parish school. (One of the children would be in kindergarten, the other in preschool, at Sacred Heart of Jesus School in Boulder.) While he acknowledged the “human side of a painful situation,” the Archbishop stated that letting the children attend would compromise the school’s mission and its ability to offer coherent moral teaching; it would create untenable stress for the children, the lesbian couple, the staff, and parents of other students as well.

    1. William Lynch was acquitted of assault on his abuser, Father Lindner in CA a few days ago ….he has just started a non profit to help abuse victims….see below for details:

      End the Cycle of Sexual Abuse Against Children

      Make a Donation Now! Home Who Are We? Make a Donation Our Work Vision For The FutureContact Us
      WHO ARE WE?

      R.I.S.E. is a nonprofit Public Benefit Corporation and is not organized for the private gain of any person. It is organized under the Nonprofit Public Benefit Corporation Law for public and charitable purposes. 

      We seek to protect and empower Survivors of Sexual Abuse by: 

      Providing resources, training, and counseling programs to assist victims of sexual abuse in achieving emotional health, financial independence, and improving their quality of life.

      Combating future sexual abuse by advocating for the removal of the current Statute of Limitation laws to provide Survivors an avenue to expose and face their abusers, so that their abusers can face treatment, and justice, as necessary to end the cycle of abuse.

      Removing unfair advantages and protections of abusers within the clergy and the ____ system, so that victims may seek justice and peace, and that perpetrators of abuse can no longer hide behind positions of power, able to abuse again.

      Increasing public awareness of sexual abuse through education and outreach to communities and institutions

      1. Thanks for the info. Wonder why I ever gave $ to the RCC in the past, there’s so many good charities that need my $.

  16. After reading Bishop Accountability daily, as much as I wish it were not true and still find it difficult to accept, I cannot escape the conclusion that the RCC is an ongoing criminal enterprise orchestrated at the highest level by men with criminal intent. Consider this 2009 NCR article.

    “Frank Keating, [former] Republican governor of Oklahoma, agreed in 2002 to serve as the first chair of the board established by the U.S. bishops to investigate clergy sex abuse… “I couldn’t imagine that something like this could happen,” Keating told … the 21st annual gathering of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests… Initially, said Keating, he believed that accusations that bishops and other church leaders coddled molesters and covered up their actions were largely untrue, the result of “an anti-Catholic bias.” But as he began to understand the scope of the crisis, said the blunt-spoken former high-ranking FBI official and federal prosecutor, he concluded that there was only one adequate response. Those guilty of “criminal conduct should be locked up,” he said. “Criminals are criminals — take them out and jail them.”

    “Further, said Keating, bishops and other church officials who covered up for clergy molesters were also culpable. “What these people did is criminal … and if I aid and abet I am equally a participant in that crime,” he said.

    “That law enforcement approach, said Keating, did not endear him to the bishops who had asked him to lead the National Review Board. In his yearlong tenure heading the panel, said Keating, he was subjected to backbiting and vicious innuendo that he did not expect from leaders of the church. Among the incidents was an accusation from a church official in Keating’s home state of Oklahoma that Keating “never goes to Mass and actually keeps a mistress.” Both charges were untrue, Keating said, though he never received an apology.

    “Likewise, he said, when he suggested that Catholics unsatisfied with a particular bishop’s response to clergy molesters should “vote with their feet” and withhold their contributions, the Boston archdiocesan newspaper accused him of “encouraging Catholics to commit a mortal sin.” In fact, said Keating, he was urging Catholics to attend Mass elsewhere and direct their contributions to other Catholic institutions.

    “The final straw in Keating’s rocky one-year tenure came when he told the press that that some bishops were trying to quash the board’s inquiry by using tactics more suited to an organized crime entity than a church. “My remarks, which some bishops found offensive, were deadly accurate,” wrote Keating in his resignation letter. He continued, “I make no apology. To resist grand jury subpoenas, to suppress the names of offending clerics, to deny, to obfuscate, to explain away; that is the model of a criminal organization, not my church.”

    1. Mark, I think it was Judge Burke who took over when Keating moved on, who was equally disenchanted with the USCCB and said so, in spades!

      1. Judge Anne Burke on the bishops and their Charter…and she took over for Keating:

        Abuse and the Catholic Church
        Can the bishops ever be trusted?
        April 29, 2011|By Anne M. Burke

        Just when it appeared that the fallout over the abuse scandal in the U.S. Catholic Church could not get any worse, another shoe dropped in Philadelphia.

        On Feb. 10, 2011 three veteran priests of the archdiocese of Philadelphia were charged with rape and indecent assault, accused of the abuse of minors dating back to the 1990s. Monsignor William Lynn, who served as the archdiocese’s point person for investigating reports of clerical sexual abuse from 1992 to 2004, was charged with child endangerment for allegedly covering up abuse by priests.

        Ads By Google
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        The archdiocese has placed another 21 priests on leave while accusations of child abuse are investigated. The district attorney’s office in Philadelphia says there was “a pattern of the church looking the other way when it came to investigating these charges.”

        It appears that even after years of investigation of child abuse by priests, the cover-up of that abuse has been further institutionalized. Some of the alleged crimes in Philadelphia transpired while the National Review Board of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, on which I served, was trying to get to the truth of the scandal. The indicted monsignor is accused of turning a blind eye to things in his chancery office. Of course, to blame a clerical official, and not his archbishop, of such deviousness presents a mistaken analysis of how the church works.

        The bishops say they responded to this scandal, and hold up as evidence the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People, which they put into motion back in 2002. I do not denigrate that historic step. It did a lot to make children safer in our Catholic institutions. It permitted the National Review Board the opportunity to examine the causes and effects of the scandal.

        But the news that more than 24 active priests in Philadelphia face abuse accusations, and that some were allowed to remain in active ministry after accusations were made against them years ago, raises new fears.

        For me, these are much more than institutional nightmares. This makes me wonder what kind of people we are dealing with when we engage the bishops. How is it that they say one thing and secretly intend something else? Are they ever to be trusted?

        I remember the sometimes vicious response some members of the church hierarchy gave to the National Review Board when we were doing our work some years ago. Cardinal Edward Egan, the former archbishop of New York, actually wanted to ban us from his fiefdom, as if we were coming from some rival kingdom to challenge his rule.

        All the events of our investigation and audit get colored with new meaning in light of the charges in Philadelphia. Little has changed.

        Thomas Jefferson put it best: Honesty is the first chapter of the book of wisdom. I’m curious: How do the cardinals of the United States view the behavior of Cardinal Justin Rigali in Philadelphia, and the behavior of his predecessor, Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua?

        I traveled on St. Patrick’s feast day this year to Dublin for a law conference and was refreshed by the lyrical camaraderie that is such a part of Irish life. The journey was particularly energizing and fulfilling, but there also was an element of sadness to the visit.

    1. With all due respect, the Catholic Church will be standing only if Catholics continue to support it emotionally and financially. In my opinion, (again with respect), Catholics are waiting and hoping for the hierarchy to change but they don’t have a reason to change. They still have the upper hand, finances and power. Why? Because the Catholics are giving it to them. Why don’t Catholics break away from the church as we know it? Chaput and the rest of them can keep the rapist priests in ministry but they would have no one to minister to. This is no different thab being in an abusive relationship and giving power to our partner by hoping they will behave with integrity and honor. Well, I think it’s past the time to walk away.

      1. My hope is in the Living Jesus. I have seen His power in my life. He has literally walked me thru the fires of hell. So until the Holy Spirit guides me elsewhere, I will wait. I give no financial or emotional support to the clergy. Some have said, “you’re not really a Catholic, so leave” to them I say, “it’s Christ’s church not yours. He welcomes everyone, ” Peace and Love. Cathy

      2. And no I’m not a Jesus freak, but He died for me and what kind of traitor would I be if I ran out on Him when things got tough.
        Peace and Love Cathy

      3. Susan
        Please don’t think I gave you a thumbs down. My comment was not in oppostion to yours.

    2. I read this earlier on NCR. The answer is yes, unless the world ends because Chirst promised “the gates of hell will not prevail against it”.

    1. lol can we start that with a party……everything has been so sad and sober lately…………

    2. Mark You made me laugh. Right now it’s more like pitifully limping, but you’re right a better description is Recovering.

      Peace and Love Cathy.

  17. For those who have expressed an interest in having a voice in the church this group might meet your needs. Came across it while doing some research. It’s called Voice of the Faithful and it is worldwide. Here is their mission statement and a link.

    We work towards achieving our mission by pursuing three goals:
    •Support survivors of clergy sexual abuse
    •Support priests of integrity
    •Shape structural change within the Catholic Church


    1. Kate… absolutely NO! I wouldn’t take an oath to abide by our hierarchy. Heck, I’m at the point where I don’t believe a word that comes out of their mouth!

    2. These people have no shame, but we here at C4C knew that already!

      My in-laws are members of a RC parish in West Palm Beach. That parish (or maybe it was the entire AD, not sure), in an effort to intimidate and shame the non-givers, posted the names of those who contributed to whatever special fund raising effort they had going on at the time. These people would be excellent at moonlighting in a “telemarketing boiler room.”

      My in-laws are pew sheep. They’re retired and regularly put money into the Sunday collection, but this tactic even caused them to become irate.

      1. When I was a kid, drwho13, our pastor published every Senday a list of each parishioners contributions and posted it at the door of the Church..he also preached on giving every Sunday….I attended a private catholic girls school in the parish where kids from lots of neighboring parishes attended…Monday morning we were supposed to report on Sundays sermon ….but our teacher exempted all of us in that parish as she did not want to hear our reports…Smart nun, ancient history revisited ….. A disgrace then and NOW. Perhaps THAT will wake up the laity….

      2. Joan, my husband has told me years ago the Presbyterian church that he belonged to posted details on how much each member donated on a regular basis, and they were contacted if they weren’t donating enough. He didn’t remain a member there very long!

        We have no made financial contributions for a while now. A friend recently became involved in parish a member of the financial committee. She’s appalled at how people do not contribute. She’s ignored me and I’m pretty certain it’s because she now has access to the files and sees what’s listed under our name. Sorry, but until I see serious changes, my money is going directly to causes that do not protect pedophiles.

      3. It is so interesting that this topic has come up. In the sixties our pastor published how much each family contributed in the Sunday bulletin. I believe this practice was instrumental in the early questioning of my religion. Why was it anyone’s business to know what a struggling family could afford? How cruel, I thought. Should have trusted my instincts sooner!!

      4. You guys…it’s no one’s business what you contribute or for that matter to whom…that’s between you and God.

        We have told folks who thought they were coming ‘to pick up the check’ for a very unnecessary parish addition that not only were we not donating , but the money should have been spent on the poor…where we were donating.

        I might add that the very expensive and unnecessary addition is relatively empty as the parish has shrunk to half it’s size and many folks have either left over the abuse issue or moved on to a more Vatican 2 type parish.

    3. Never take an oath. It is offensive to God, and that is clearly stated in the Bible. Please, please, please read your Bible to check what they are telling you. When making a decision remember the church clergy are not Christ no matter what they tell you. He warned of false prophets, “By their fruits (deeds), you will know them.” Back in the 1980’s some high ranking members of RCC joined the freemasons, which are a cult forbidden by the RCC (look it up). Read or research Il Divo, the list of who joined is availabe. Satan is behind the evil in the RCC.

      1. Be the change,

        “Never take an oath.”

        You have a lot of good things to say, but not taking an oath involves fundamentalism, and I’m not with you on that one. It depends on what the oath is. Twice I took an oath to defend this country (USA) against enemies, both foreign and domestic.

        Fundamentalism of any type scares me!

      2. We have no disagreement. I think we are talking about two different things, and my statement was to general. Sorry. I have taken an “oath” of allegiance to the flag many times as well oaths to defend my government. Many federal and state employees take “oaths” including judges, governors, even the president. Some might argue the Nicene Creed is an oath, and I have said the Creed many times. I was referring to “oaths” as they pertain to religion and to clarify – I never take an oath before reading it. . You will note I said “read or research” and that is an individual decision for each to seek their own truth not mine. I am concerned as many are about the RCC and currently I would not take any oath they offer. Peace and Love

      3. Be the change,

        “I am concerned as many are about the RCC and currently I would not take any oath they offer.”

        I hear what you’re saying, and I’m with you! I can’t even say the Creed on Sundays anymore.

      4. “I believe in one holy Catholic…” Thumbs downer, it’s the “holy” that gives me a problem. I would be lying if I were to say it.

      5. “Definition of HOLY

        1 : exalted or worthy of complete devotion as one perfect in goodness and righteousness” (Merriam-Webster Dictionary)

        Thumbs Downer,

        Does your Church measure up to the definition? Mine doesn’t!

    4. Kate,
      So they could take my free will? Emphatically No! Without free will there is no love. For love is not love if it is not given freely. This will not lead me to Jesus love. Catholic hierarchy I see you for what your are. Cathy

      1. Be the change,

        The Catholic Church teaches that no teaching or doctrine supersedes a person’s conscience on the matter. The fidelity oath in the Diocese of Arlington makes a mockery of individual expression of conscience. The fidelity oath is completely how the clerical world functions, now they want us to function in the same manner. Blind loyalty. A Church that does not permit inquiry and critical thinking, and ignores how experience informs Truth, is not a Church nor a community of people, rather it’s a cult.

        My Church is scary.

  18. I may be off topic from Susan’s original posting, but I hope you all won’t mind.
    I’ve been watching the coverage today of the Freeh Inquiry Report on the Penn State/Sandusky case. I am absolutely enraged.

    It is a horrible situation that has occurred at Penn State. The abusive acts against the children, the coverup, the conspiracy are all appalling. I relate it so closely with the AD of Philly. What puzzles me is how the investigation at PSU has progressed as quickly as it has, compared to how slowly it has progressed in Philly. Sandusky has been arrested, tried, convicted and jailed in about a year’s time. Philly has had 2 Grand Jury Reports and is still dragging it’s feet. I have to give some credit to PSU, because at least the Freeh Inquiry has been much more independent in its investigation as compared to the AD. The Freeh report was presented publicly, on a Thursday morning before it was even given to PSU officials. Philly AD would never have allowed this. At best, they’d have a press release late on a Fri afternoon.

    There are many similarities between PSU and the ADofP: Abuse of children, conspiracy amongst the hierarchy, concern to protect the institution and preserve funding, and the overall lack of concern for the children. The media is on fire and people are outraged at what has occurred at PSU. There is such passion in the reporting. I haven’t seen that in the reporting on the RCC. It just doesn’t make sense to me when the crimes of the ADofP, as well as the worldwide RCC, are so much more horrendous. Sandusky is ONE man who committed crimes against children. The RCC has HUNDREDS of priests who committed crimes against THOUSANDS of children. PSU has 4 top men named in their investigation, in addition to however many others knew of the events. The RCC has numerous men in power in a hierarchy that stretches to the level of the Vatican that have been aware of events and conspired for DECADES.

    Maybe I’ve overdosed on watching the coverage today. I don’t have anyone in real life who “gets it.” Most Catholics I know just sigh, roll their eyes and prefer to put their heads back in the sand. Non Catholics… just bash the whole RCC. I knew this is a group where I could vent my anger and frustration.

    Here’s to the hope that there will be more criminal investigation of the RCC. The church itself is never going to clean house. Let’s hope the government officials do something. Let’s hope the people in the pews speak up and somehow changes happen.

    1. The Penn St. issue will spill over into the RCC’s issue, and will be a major factor in reforming SOL laws.

      Today Penn State is being cover in depth by every major news outlet.

    2. Call or write your local news media (newspaper, tv, rado) and pose the question to them. Who wrote the original article(s)? Contact them. Do you have new info the share with them? Having worked with media I can tell you it is a business that seeks followers for advertising $.

      1. A picture says a thousand words!

        Granted, I think it is important that teachers in CCD or Catholic school do not go against church beliefs. I wasn’t happy when I had a discussion with an 8th grade Catholic school teacher who felt it was ridiculous to have to be against birth control in the classroom, nor was I happy with the CCD teacher who imposed her belief that the children HAD to receive the Eucharist on the tongue rather than in hand or the other who taught them they could just pretend to drink the wine. I expect teachers to be professional and follow church teachers, but to also teach the children to think and reason why we believe what we do.

      2. Thanks for sharing. A new TV show: “Meet your enemy”; makes my blood run cold. What happened to religious freedom that RCC bishops claim they champion. God could have had us do that. He chose to give us free will instead, and so these bishops know something God doesn’t? Are we not capable of exercising free will and a conscience? If they say no, do they get fired?

      3. Mimzgb…your comments make me really happy that I am soon to be 74 and not fussing with catholic dogma and kids in a classroom…

        BUT having said that….think I would like to revisit the issue of being against birth control in an 8 th grade classroom…first of all I think it’s an inappropriate subject for that age group…but I think I would like my grandchildren introduced to the concept of sensum fidelum…ie the sense of the faithful that ratifies church doctrine…the birth control issue is a classic example…

        In a post Vatican 2 period after much debate and a majority opinion in favor of it …a cautious Pope backed off….and the sense of the faithful didn’t buy….they practiced birth control and stayed in the church…I have always thought this was the ‘tipping point’ in terms of subservient Catholics, ‘growing up’….it has been described quite differently by the Conservative milieu.

        The deal was, and I think still is…that married Catholics chose to make their own family planning decisions….not Rome’s.

        Interestingly enough in 2012…this is an icon of faith for the bishops in this election year, and somewhere around 85 to 98 per cent of sexually active catholics ARE or HAVE used contraception….either the vast majority of practicing Catholics( an ever smaller constituency) are going to hell in a hand basket or the sense of the faithful is not with the Vatican printout on this decision.

        Which, of course raises all kinds of other issues…and indeed…we have folks exercising their primacy of personal conscience…ie their conscience…right or wrong..trumps church printout…when facing their Maker….and it was our good and current Pope who was the Council expert on this subject…

    3. There seems to be a major difference in how the media covered thePenn State Scandal and how it covers the Catholic Church sex abuse scandal. But their is also a major difference in how each of these institutions dealt with the scandal once it made the headlines. Penn State opened up an investigation into what went wrong. That investigation ended today with a scathing report that held everyone who covered up the abuse responsible. And the Catholic Church? they remain in a state of denial., paying lip service to wanting to help the victims.Perhaps Louis Free who is now available, could conduct an investigation into the Catholic Church and its coverup. Can you imagine the Church hiring him to do this investigation? Neither can I.

    4. Great summary.

      Universities and religions have a lot in common. For the most part they are run for the people who work inside them…not the students…not the laity.

      Here’s the difference: the folks who run the RCC think of themselves as the successors to the apostles. Gov Keating could be pretty scurrilous in his commentary. A little moral outrage from Card Mahoney and Keating is submitting his resignation. A layman must show the proper deference to a bishop. Louis Freeh has institutional stature that is acceptable to an educational institution. The RCC will never accept any layman’s inquiry report. Bishop trumps governor anytime. That’s trouble, with a capital T that rhymes with C that stands for clericalism.

      [Useless church history. When Abp (later cardinal) Dougherty arrived in Philly in 1918, he insisted that the city fathers meet him at his ship and escort him up market street…they did it.]

      The RCC will not clean its own house because it is incapable of cleaning it.

  19. I have to comment on the Penn State Report by Judge Freeh”s, before I lose it. Four men, four men who could have protected children from being horribly raped many times by Sandusky, did NOTHING! I am feeling both rage and utter grief. There is not one survivor who does not identify with how these innocent, trusting small children, little boys felt when they were being anally raped by this evil man. I identify with these boys because I was anally raped by a priest many times and at many different locations. People saw him with young girls all the time and yet no one thought it funny that he was alone with these girls all the time. We look the other way and do nothing. Do we think so little of children that we allow them to be object of a monster to do with what he wants. These 4 men choose football and the good of Penn state over the most vulnerable of all, little boys and little girls. My God, what is wrong with our society? It is a fact that sexual abuse of children is still so rampant. I can hardly breathe, I hurt so much not just for me and my child within, but for those little boys who suffered beyond what any human being should endure. Rich is right, unless you have been sexually abused by a trusting adult, one’s mind can not fathom what it does to the survivor no matter how hard you try to understand. It takes so very much from you as a human being. Then add God to the mix and now your soul lives in jeopardy, we either totally disconnect from the soul or we hang on hoping somewhere we might find a good God who might still love us. I am hurting my fellow blogers. It brings up all the pain once again. Yes, I’m happy that at least this is out in the open for Penn state, that FINALLY children will be protected, but what about all those hundreds of priests who raped us, where are they living and where are our children? What is the Archdiocese of Philadelphia doing to help us safeguard our small little children? How can the pew sheep even with all this out about Penn State still “look the other way?” Where is their voice? These priests in Phila, where is their voice for the children?God loved children, what does this say about our faith when they consciencely harm our children with no reguard or care? Sexual Abuse of Children is a crime, and that child will live with what happened to her/him for the rest of their life and it effects every facet of their lives! My heart just cannot stop hurting!

    1. I feel your pain. I cry with you Vicky and with all victim/survivors because all the abused little girls and boys everywhere deserved better we deserved to be protected. We are united in spirit and cry out to the world. No More. When will it end. Stop hurting innocent children. I am afraid it will never end because there will always be evil in this world. The best we can do is cry out in indignation, share our reality to try to save other children, and reach out to the victims. Just as everyone on C4C is doing in unity with us. I love that brave little child within the grown up Vicky. If I could take her pain away and merge it with mine, I would gladly do it . Keep that chid within safe. Love Cathy

      1. You know Vicky…I have been thinking about your TRUTH and that of all the victims and I see it as today’s gospel….one that everyone needs to know, understand and deal with.

        I don’t think a compassionate God is going to be very happy with any of us who don’t listen and learn from you…And that hideous abuse is not limited to disgusting catholic clergy or abusive enabling hierarchy…it’s a horror that is sadly universal…incest in homes, endemic rape in third world countries and God knows everywhere.

        And to not deal with this issue extremely seriously is hugely wrong…so again…many many thanks, many many times over!

      2. Joan I have an interesting story to tell you. I had a priest get very upset and say he was sick and tired of every conversation leading to the sexual abuse scandal; it happened 25 years ago and people needed to stop talking about it. He introduced the subject, I did not. I sadly replied, “I’m also sick and tired of hearing about it and I’m sure Christ is sick and tired of hearing about it too. Imagine how Christ feels: saddened, angry, betrayed with tears running down His face. I don’t have to lie or coverup for Jesus. He can handle the truth. And, no unfortunately, it is not over because yesterday 77 girls at Immaculate Conception Academy in Rhode Island came forward, because the Irish laity have united to find answers and solutions, because it has happened around the world even in Italy, because on the day Jerry Sandusky was convicted Archibishop Lynn was convicted by a jury in Philly. I invite you to verify this information and leave you with this thought if the clergy in the church wanted people to say nice things about them they should have behaved better.” Others witnessed this exchange between us. I was not angry because I was speaking the words the Holy Spirit laid on my heart. The priest was silent and then left. I am sad for any innocent priests (?), but only Jesus knows who they are., and we, the laity, are also paying for sins of guilty priests. Jesus heals. Peace and Love Cathy

      3. Be the Change….thank you for your story…I am mystified as to why it got so many ‘thumbs down’…25 years ago the abuse story was ‘new news’ 1987…and it’s understandable that you reacted the way you did….I think about then the Louisiana story was just breaking and in 1982-1985 the National Conference of Catholic Bishops were exploring their ‘civil liability’…

        Its just a personal ‘take’ on Jesus’s reaction to the abuse issue (everywhere), but I have always thought that if we as …hopefully compassionate folks are appalled and energized to help….how very very very much more is He concerned..

        I also think this is true as it relates to poverty issues, everywhere…and the whole range of other ugliness that occurs.

        We do need to be an active part of the solution…on all these issues!

      4. You have a very kind and caring spirit which this world desparately needs. Peace and Love. Cathy

  20. Vicky, sending you a big cyber hug and wishing I could give you more comfort. I have been so enraged today with hearing the details from the PSU/Sandusky report, I can’t even begin to feel what you and other victims are experiencing.

    I couldn’t agree with you more. I think for so generations, many adults in general, discounted the impact their actions had on children. When it came to abuse, they figured that kids would just get over it or forget about it and move on. That is far from the case. Despite the sad topic, I was glad to watch the coverage today on In Session/Court TV. The commentators didn’t hold back on their rage regarding the topic. They were blunt, pointed fingers and made several references to how the findings related to the RCC. No tiptoeing around and no political correctness in their reporting.

    Let’s hope that the PSU findings will help open the eyes of more people. Let’s hope those who hold the clergy on a pedestal will see the light given the secular or sports reference.

  21. Vicky; I feel your pain. I agree. No one can really know what sexual abuse does to the victim. From the time of the abuse my life has been screwed up . As I approach retirement, I look back and I can’t see any part of my life that hasn’t been influenced by the abuse. From my relationships to people in my family, to my inability to trust anyone. From my anger toward the Catholic Church to my anger toward anyone who doesn’t get it. I don’t want your “f” in money. I want my life back.

    1. Jim,
      Keep an eye on that priest perjury case in Calif. If the priest is convicted imagine what doors it would open to get these lying thugs in bishop’s clothing convicted. They may not be able to hide behind the SOL. Peace and Love Cathy

    2. To Jim Tucker, We the survivors always speak the same language, we feel and know what happened to us. Thank you for your kind comments. I to am a baby boomer and my life has also been terribly affected by the sexual abuse. We lost, so much. What keeps me going is that I made it through as a child, I can make it through as an adult, I owe that to the wounded child inside me. I write letters, I pamphlet, I go to therapy several times a week, and I write, all tools I need to live in this world. I refuse to give up and let “them” win. I also believe that God is using me to reach out to people in the hope some will come to understand what it is to be a victim of a priest. I am confirmed on this blog many times that people are getting it.
      I understand your anger, we have every right to be angry at what was done to us. In therapy I release a lot of my rage in a safe environment, when not in therapy, I yell at home and my dog has to listen! When we take our last breath, Jim, I know with all my heart, God will take us in His arms and apologize for what they did, as I am sure that both you and I have yet to receive a heartfelt apology.

    1. Thanks Cathy!

      Your reference pointed out that “Fascism and Nazism were both focused on the creation of Europe. As early as 1933, Mussolini declared that Europe could once again exert its power in the world if it succeeded in establishing a certain political unity”

      While we’re in the topic of Fascism and Nazism, here’s a bit more on the Mussolini / RCC, connection.

      “Though Mussolini had centralized authority so much in himself that by 1928 he may rightfully be considered a dictator, one sector was not so docile as Mussolini would have liked: the Church. Among Mussolini’s sore spots with the Church were his totalitarian claims over education. Mussolini had yet to patch up his relations with the Church, necessary patchwork if the dictator were to win the ardent support of Catholics.

      So, in February 1929, Mussolini and Pope Pius XI signed the Lateran Accords. They came in three parts and form one of the most curious events in the history of the Pope and the Vatican:

      The Convention: Mussolini gave the Church a huge sum of money thus making it the largest holder of government bonds in Italy
      The Treaty: Mussolini vested in the Papacy full territorial rights over the Vatican City. Now this small enclave of a few hundred people could have its own army, police, courts, radio station, newspaper, and prison.
      The Concordat: This, the most important part, covered the full range of Church-State relations. It:

      Gave the Church broad privileges in education
      Outlawed divorce
      Exempted Church property from taxes
      Prohibited the distribution of Protestant Bibles in Italy
      Outlawed evangelistic meetings in private home”


      1. Very astute observation, and it set the stage for many evils. I follow the news in Europe and there are some very disturbing undercurrents in world politics and affiliations. As noted by many statesmen and scholars “those who don’t know history are destined to repeat it.” Edmund Burke.

    1. This is what got my attention; “On Tuesday, defense lawyers filed a motion in Limine that seeks to limit victims’ testimony at Lynn’s sentencing hearing.”

      Pastoral care for victims, that’s a novel idea.

      I want to see the media rip into the AD with the same vigor that they’re applying to the Penn State case. Reporters, lets get a move on it!

      Mr. DA, you have some bishops you better take a hard look at. The voters are watching.

      1. I happen to have seen Megan Kelly interview one Dr. Ablow on Fox News today. The animus toward the Penn State officials between both of them was really strong. I have to ask: Why is there not similar rage toward the Church clergy and bishops? No difference in the crimes that I can see.

      2. nichols1,

        Penn State rivets the secular world… the 99%. Clerical abuse rivets a handful of Catholics… the 1%. News outlets calculate the interest and go where the money is. If ALL Catholics were outraged it would be a story but they aren’t.

        Because media outlets are not fighting the battle with us, does not mean we aren’t winning it. The hierarchy is in shambles which is why its behaviors, agendas, and methods get more bizarre, insulated, and alienating every day. Plus, we must acknowledge that Penn State coverage is extremely beneficial to changes in SOL and child protection laws not just in PA but around the country.

        We’re ok. But our Church isn’t.

      3. You should post that on Change. org asking people to write the judge or whomever decides. Maybe someone back there could be an advocate to the press. Anybody know anyone in the press?
        A group tried this same tactic in Oregon re a serial rapist’s parole hearing. They families posted in the paper and the response was overwhelming plus it educated people to system changes that needed to be made.

    2. Bob,

      What if the pastoral care trip to the jail was a dramatic effort to prevent Lynn from striking a deal where he whistleblows for a lesser sentence? What if the dream team told Chaput he better make an appearance because Lynn is angry and dejected at being the scapegoat and is no longer willing to take the rap for everyone? Maybe all of it is last minute positioning and strong arming before the sentence-date. Will the dough boy remain loyal or not? It all depends on how brain washed he is vs. how intelligent he is. Certainly Chaput reiterated the perks and rewards Lynn will get for doing time for everyone. If Lynn is threatening to whistleblow, god only knows what new perks and rewards have been added to the list. Unfortunately for Lynn, he can’t put all of his eggs in the appeal basket because his attorney said last week that, by the time an appeal rolls around, Lynn will have served his time. It’s great that Lynn gets to reflect on all of this while behind bars. For most people, occupying a jail cell goes a long way in straightening and correcting one’s thinking.

      1. If Lynn has not sought counsel from outside lawyers he’s an absolute, total fool.

  22. With all the bad news about how officials at Penn State and the Catholic Bishops have conspired to lie to us for decades, with an election coming up at least I can derive comfort knowing that our politicians have told us the truth about the great political events of the past decades.

    1. This is in reply to mark even though the forum says it’s Jim Tucker.
      I didn’t miss the sarcasm or irony of your remarks Mark. It is true; whether cleric or politician, one cannot place trust in man without coming up with a loss. And, I am taking advantage of this opportunity to make a statement most will not like— most of you have allowed man to sell you a “bill of goods” as they say. To follow Romanism or if you will— Roman Catholicism is nothing less than to be involved in what is commonly called a CULT. The reason for using that nomenclature is that the things Rome tells you are NOT TRUE! Fortunately, one doesn”t have to take it blindly as coming from me— it is readily available in the bible when one approaches the Word without Rome’s “spectacles” on.

      Rome only uses a handful of verses from the bible to push its wares because the bulk of the bible is contrary to what Rome says. A central theme used by Rome is that Christ made Peter the “first pope” and meant for him to pass on his “authority” to others so that there would always be a “representative of God on earth” to tell people what to do to worship God and gain heaven. Study of scripture reveals this as a fabrication; Christ was ministering to Israel when He walked the earth.
      The church, the Body of Christ could not , and was not spoken of , or revealed by Christ until after His cross-work and resurrection were accomplished. He then called Paul , His former enemy, to reveal in several letters the plan of grace and forgiveness and salvation to both Jew and Gentile. It is found in Romans through Philemon in the bible.

    1. Thanks for posting this, Be. One thing they seem to be forgetting is that confession is often anonymous. If the priest doesn’t know the person, how would he even be able to report it?

      1. I believe this was in response to a letter the Irish Govt sent to the Vatican protesting the treatment of Irish Catholic children and asking for an explanation for the Vatican. In my opinion the Vatican did not answer the question and talked around it. I think the law was a “if you don’t clean your house, we will”. I’m sure it will go through some revisions before it is passed. It may be a mute point since many Irish have simply lost faith.

    1. To some he may seem an “outlier” because they don’t understand. When will people “get it”. It’s not about money, fame, lawsuits, etc., it’s about the silence and indifference.

      Thanks for sharing.

      1. Cathy,

        Judging by the inordinate nimber of thumbs down you have received indicates that you’ve rattled someone’s cage, and that’s a good thing! Keep your ideas coming.

      2. To drwho13
        I appreciate your feedback. I don’t say what I say to be popular; it is a truth that angers people on both sides. I have been tearfully giving the thumbs down on everything right now. I am dealing with two sisters who are dying and because of that interacting with a dysfunctional birth family I mostly avoid because they revictimize me, while also facing an ever expanding redefinition of the truth. Before I came to this site I thought this evil in the church had not directly touched my life. Since then I have learned that not only did it impact the family I was born into, but also the family I married into. The man I married, who saved me from the man who raped me, via his mother’s intervention, later raped our young daughter. Divorcing after 20 years of marriage ending due to physical violence and sexual abuse, I thought his problem was alcohol and drugs caused by his Vietnam experience. Recently, I established that was only partially true his second trauma was Vietnam, the first was sexual abuse of an altar boy on trips with a catholic priest. We look for perfection in parent, spouse, child, sibling, partner, priest, nun, bishop, pope, church, religious denomination, politician, sport hero, etc. and when they fail to deliver many blame God. God did not do these things, humans did, and on that we can all agree whether we be deists or theists. Peace and Love

    2. “The fact is they ignore him because they can ignore him.”

      Just a stunningly moving and inspiring story. Thanks, Mark.

      1. Kate such a similar thought expressed to me by a long time advocate when I was new to this and asking questions. His answer was short and to the point “because they can”

      2. Kathy, the level of hierarchical rejection and dismissal is on the staggering-stratum. Hierarchical moral authority is vaporized by it.

  23. Uh-oh. Trouble’s a-brewin’ for Bransfield.

    While Rector at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, he pushed Medjugorje hard on the little old ladies; will there be a pilgrimmage upcoming?

  24. I have worked in the retail field since I was sixteen. I have learned a great deal about how customers react to bad service. I used to think that unhappy customers came back to the store and raised hell. Actually , this was the vocal minority. Most people simply stop going to that particular store or restaurant or wherever. I think the same thing is true about the Catholic Church. Many have stopped going or found another church. When I hear about the Church merging parishes and closing schools this is what I think. People have given up. The money has dried up. Yet I have yet to hear from anyone in the hierarchy, what if any effect the sexual abuse crisis has played in this problem. Are they unaware? Or do they think if they ignore the problem if will go away?

    1. Jim….according to Thomas Reese….23% of Catholics left over abuse issues, 39% were none too happy with clergy….many many others didn’t like the worship style and became active Protestants….


    2. Jim, this topic infuriates me. I’ve read several articles and heard many priests speak over the years about why the numbers are dropping, why attendance is dropping, why donations are down. They ramble on with all sorts of reasons. The majority of reasons point the finger at the people. The people are consumed with secular activities, sports, work, etc… One of my favorite reasons “shifting demographics.”

      I have never heard or read a Catholic source that gives the abuse scandal as a reason for the decline. Sexual abuse exists in all walks of life, so one can’t expect that it would never occur among Catholics. One could almost understand and not leave the church if it was a sporatic problem. Just once I would love to hear the hierarchy admit that people have left the RCC due to the horrendous abuse, conspiracy and lack of protection of the children. Let them admit to all the lies that have been told to the people, all the money that has been used to pay off victims for their silence, and all the money spent for legal defense of the numerous pedophiles, as well as money spent on ridiculous PR campaigns.

      With all the male leaders of our church, I can’t believe there isn’t one real man among them who could stand up and admit they have done wrong. The board from Penn State wasted no time standing up and admitting mistakes were made and that they would enact the suggestions made from the Freeh Report.

      1. mimzy..I had to laugh when you reference “shifting demographics’ my personal favorite. I live where everyone supposedly “shifted” to and all I see are struggling schools and half empty pews.

      2. Kathy, “shifting demographics” is my personal favorite. It’s such a versatile catch phrase. Have they ever heard of planning ahead? They always give the impression that the demographics suddenly shifted overnight and caught them off guard.

  25. Moral turpitude is the major reason people have left. The clerics’ business is selling morality, and their “OUT OF STOCK!” They have nothing left to offer me; do they have anything to offer you? If so, what is it?

    1. Gallup just reported:

      Protestants More Confident Than Catholics

      Currently, 56% of Protestants express a great deal or quite a lot of confidence in the church/organized religion, compared with 46% of Catholics. This is in line with an average 12-percentage-point difference in the two groups’ confidence, according Gallup polling from 2002 through 2012, with Protestants consistently expressing higher confidence. There are too few respondents of other specific religions to analyze separately; however, confidence among all other Americans combined is 29%, far less than either Protestants’ or Catholics’.

      Catholics’ confidence dipped to a record low in 2002 and again in 2007. The 2002 result most likely reflected a high-profile child sex abuse case against a Massachusetts priest at the time, as well as charges of a cover-up by Boston Cardinal Bernard Law, who ultimately resigned over the matter. The drop in 2007 may have been part of a broader trend that saw confidence in most U.S. institutions drop that year.

      1. <>

        Thank you for posting this, Joan. Funny how secular and other religious sources recognize that the abuse and conspiracy are reasons for the lack of confidence as well as dropping RCC members. Maybe one day the RCC hierarchy will acknowledge it and stop pointing fingers at the failure of the people.

  26. I just read a quote from Matthew Dowd, an ABC news political analyst. He stated “If you took Jerry Sandusky and substituted Jerry Sandusky and put the word ‘priest and then you put Joe Paterno and substitute the word “bishop , its the exact same thing”.Maybe some people in the news media are starting to connect the dots.Its very sad for the many people who deified and continue to deify Joe Paterno, but if he were still alive, he could be facing three felonies: Perjury, Obstruction of justice and child endangerment.I guess the humane thing was he died when he did.

  27. nichols1,

    My main complaint with Paul centers on the fact that he was a Greek-Roman. His Christian ideology or “wisdom” is a blend of Greek-Roman thought. The Greek characteristics of his thought, in particular, diverged from Judaic thought. While Paul did much to articulate and organize Christian thought, Christianity is more the thought of Paul than it is the thought of Jesus. Paul dispelled and/or removed from his interpretation of Christianity important Judaic traditions, additionally, he was not faithful to Hebraic linguistics, preferring Hellenic linguistics. Western civilization took Paul’s brand of Christianity and ran with it.
    Your ideas about Paul are some I haven’t seen before. I would like to discuss Paul with you off site by email if you would. Please let me know here if that is suitable for you?

    1. nichols1,

      Theology and philosophy are my work. They are not why I am dedicated to C4C. I’m here for the purpose of seeking justice for victims and protecting children. I prefer to keep both areas of interest separate endeavors. Thanks for the invitation to talk theology but I prefer to contain it to my work.

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