According to a Catholics4Change reader this was posted on the Web site of Epiphany Parish in Philadelphia. It appeared in the July 15th parish bulletin and was written by Father John Pidgeon, the pastor.
“Lifting the statute of limitations and opening a window in which victims can sue is a topic that must be given serious consideration. If this is the way to best protect victims and provide justice for those harmed, then I am all for it. While I am not fully convinced that this is the answer, I do find a major flaw in the argument that lifting the statute of limitations and opening a window for civil lawsuits would unfairly target the Catholic Church. Such an argument is like a driver who is pulled over for speeding saying to the police officer, “Its not fair that you pulled me over and not the others”. Other institutions may very well have similar problems like us but to claim we are being unfairly singled out is like the high school student caught cheating complaining that it’s not fair he was caught while others who were cheating were not. Some get caught and others do not.
That is life. While there may be compelling reasons for not changing the current statute law on sex abuse and opening a window for civil lawsuits, this argument that such an act would unfairly target the church is not one of them. Whether we favor the Pennsylvania legislators changing the statue or oppose it, I think we all can agree that a grave wrong has been done to those abused by priests like Gana and Cudemo and these victims deserve to see justice done. One possible way is allowing civil lawsuits for one or two years. It is not so much the money that they would receive that would provide justice, but that a verdict in their favor would validate and acknowledge that a terrible wrong was done to them. If there is another way of providing some justice for these victims, I am opened to proceeding in that way as well. All I care is that justice is provided for the victims. Please remember to pray for the victims.”