Child Sex Abuse Victim Reacts to Lynn Sentence

Click here to read: “Monica Yant Kinney: Priest-abuse victim: ‘Lynn didn’t give a damn,'” The Philadelphia Inquirer, July 25, 2012


The judge acknowledged that one conviction “does not reflect the totality of his life.” But neither could she dismiss the wrenching impact of Lynn’s do-nothing approach to people like Cubberley – whom Sarmina mentioned by name in court.

“He is not a scapegoat,” the judge reiterated, explaining the biblical definition of the term. “He is being sentenced for his own actions.”

44 thoughts on “Child Sex Abuse Victim Reacts to Lynn Sentence

  1. Great article! Vicky’s amazing and courageous!

    My favorite phrase, “It’s a start.”

    Our victims are knocking down doors and doing what no one else has been able to do.

    Thank you Vicky. Thank you Monica.

    1. Hi Vicky,

      I read in Monica’s article today that you were ‘targeted’ by 4 priests. In the Witness to the Sorrows video, you cited abuse at the hands of 3 priests.

      Is there another ‘perp’ that we should know about, or is Monica mistaken?

      1. Joe it is hard to figure the tone of that question. One is you really want to know two is that you are being insensitive.. Lynn took advantage of our surviors making them believe the church was handling the situation so kids would be protected little did the survivors know they were being taken advantage of yet again…..make him number 4……..really what else do you really need to know Joe? I am starting to think you might need empathy training either way…..

    2. Bravo, Vicky!! I am so proud of you!! God bless you and may He give you peace and comfort. I believe you!

      What a great article. Thank you to Monica Yant Kinney for all the coverage she has given this topic and especially for this article with Vicky.

  2. The tragedy in Vicky’s life unleashed her character, talents, courage, and persistence to affect change. A truly remarkable and accomplished person. I met Vicky’s wonderful counselor who has provided her with a support system like no other. The two have been joined at the hip through the adversity, towards healing, on to advocacy, and has resulted in the full flowering of the beautiful and capable person named Vicky. Love you Vicky. Thank you for sitting next to me in 304. I am so proud of you. I am in awe of the person you have become and the gifts you bear.

    1. Kate, you are so right, about Vicky!

      When I think of what Lynn did to her, I just plain cringe…thank God for Vicky, and God Bless her therapist and Monica Yant!

      1. Joan,

        Thank you for acknowledging for all of us Monica Yant’s fine work.

  3. Lynn!!!!

    Is that you still giving a “thumbs down” from your cell? Whom else would do such a thing?

    Come on be brave enough to admit placing a thumbs down here; clear Lynn’s “good” name!

    1. drwho13,

      The thumbs down person is reacting less to the content of a post and more to the general objectives of this site, its unveiling of truths, its accomplishments, the wisdom and knowledge of its bloggers, and, ultimately, how they threaten his or her Catholic illusions.

    2. @drwho13

      Loved your comment. I needed a good laugh.

      From now on the commenter with the most thumbs down wins.

  4. I was so glad I was able to be there at Lynn’s sentencing. Knowing what he did and didn’t do to protect children, knowing how he intimidated, harassed and bullied victims and their families when he knowingly unleashed known sexual predators on unsuspecting parishes his guilt merited the sentence that was imposed by Judge Sarmina.

    I know of “priests” who have been removed from ministry and were “retired” to prayer and penance while being “monitored.” Do not believe it. Some of them come and go as they please and have access to cars, etc., The “monitoring” looks good on paper or when institutions are supposedly “evaluated” but don’t believe.

    While the quote that Judge Sarmina used at the end of her sentencing statement was a good one I was only sorry it came from Archbishop Charles Chaput.

    Philadelphia’s Archbishop Charles Chaput is behind the vicious opposition to the total removal of both the criminal and civil statutes of limitation regarding childhood sexual abuse
    (House Bill 832) as well as the bill that would provide a two year civil window for bringing forward previously time barred cases of sexual abuse – by anyone – (House Bill 878) as was passed in the State of Delaware in 2007, (The Child Victims Law).

    Anyone who has not read the 2005 and 2011 Grand Jury Reports on the AOP really must read them. They should also read the 76 page rebuttal from Cardinal Rigali by way of his lawyers that followed the 2005 report. When is Rigali going to be brought before the bar of justice?

    Does anyone know where one can access Judge Sarmina’s complete sentencing statement?

    Sister Maureen Paul Turlish

  5. Awesome article Vicky. You are strong, brave, compassionate, intelligent and so very generous. I have tremendous admiration for you. Stay strong and continue to expose the truth.
    To borrow from survivor’s wife once again…I BELIEVE THE VICTIMS.

  6. Vicky: Wow!! It is just the beginning!!! Powerful….I believe the victims/survivors…. Peace

  7. In Minnesota, they will not learn the names of 46 accused child molesting Roman Catholic Clerics, some of whom may have admitted their crimes. As David Clohessy said, the winners are Corrupt Catholic Clergy who protect child molesters instead of protecting boys and girls.

    There are similar secret lists in every diocese in the nation—every one of them. And they’ve got the same operation going on all over the world, and have for centuries.

    This cannot be allowed to continue, especially under the false pretense of religion.

    Vote with your feet.


    1. The people there as here have to bombard the AOP, the archbishop and the bishops, the PR people, their pastors with e mails, faxes, snail mail and letter along with Letters to the Editor and Oped pieces demanding those names from their diocese, what they were accused of and in case, like Philly, they have declared them fit to resume mininstry on what basis was that decided. At this point it is so UP TO THE PEOPLE.

      If you want to really get sick to your stomach listen to Bishop Blair of Toledo, Ohio being interviewed on Fresh Air’s NPR rebroadcast tonight at 7 p.m. at:

      It will be archived so you can also listen when you are able.

      1. Sr. Maureen,

        The NPR interview with Bishop Blair is a great way for anyone who remains a little unclear about the mindset of American bishops, today, to get a real, live, 100% pure dose of it. It will make you vomit. These guys are robots, regurgitating the party line, sworn to maintain the objectives of the papacies of JPII and Benedict, hell-bent on preserving an irrelevant Tradition, impervious to knowledge, reason and the reality of the human condition, myopic and viciously controlling and authoritative, and all for the sake of moving from one rung of the hierarchical ladder to the other where the garb, the perks and the title constitute their very meaning, where they are made to feel regal and important by their participation in an imaginary cloak and dagger kingdom, and where their captivation for each other supersedes that of the Church and humanity.

        Quite a cult-fantasy going on in the Catholic Church. Needs to go down in the annals of psychology.


      2. Sister M, I too thank you for the NPR link (another friend sent it to me at the same time).

        I thought it was somewhat pathetic.

        I do wish Terry Gross had a better grip on the ‘sense of the faithful’ and the whole issue of ‘received wisdom’ as it related to the extensive discussion of the Church and contraception. I would have appreciated her quoting the 85 to 98% of sexually active Catholics who not only did NOT receive the Vatican contraceptive position, but who currently practice birth control. And the notion that ‘natural family planning’ is so very satisfactory to Catholics doesn’t bear discussion.

        Terry could also have benefitted from a ‘heads up’ on the primacy of personal conscience…as she interviewed the bishop.

        Certainly found the balance of the interview, non compelling as well.

        Think the sisters would be wise to go ‘non canonical’….

      3. Sr. Maureen,
        Thanks for the link to Fresh Air’s NPR rebroadcast. Great comparison between the Bishop’s cultish-mentality and the Christ-Inspired Wisdom of Sr. Pat Farrel of the LCWR. These comparisons (including that of the Sandusky Vs. the Priest- Trials), are very useful, as they attract a larger audience.
        As always, I believe the victims.

  8. Vicki, we met at one of the C4C Awareness Raising Groupings at the Cathedral front steps a few months ago. It was an honor to meet you and very humbling to know the terible trials you have undergone all these years. I am positive that the statement of the AD was neither healing nor helping you as you read such a trivial statement coming from the Archbishop and this Archdiocese.
    National Geographic Magazine this month portrays the terrible trials of the Native Americans of the West as they struggled for justice, had their lands stolen, suffered under the lies and the swindling of newly arrived settlers and corrupt government officials who degraded these wonderful spiritual people and almost destroyed a culture which offered so many blessing to this country.
    Archbishop Chaput claims native American heritage and it is most sad that he, of all people, would not recognize the horrendous injustice against so many youg, innocent victims, just in this state of Pennsylvania. The statement released by the AD seems nothing more than the type of documents given to his people many years ago, statements which mean nothing and which are even more hurtful and deceiving in light of the evidence presented in this recent trial.
    What does “fair minded people” mean?? Does the AD claim that the jury was somehow swayed by public opinion, or does it mean that they listened to the evidence and made a decision based on facts, not the “tearful” and predjudiced statements of priests,family and friends , post factum before sentencing.
    What could “objectively reviewed” mean??? An evaluation of facts now tainted with the spin of the AD, telling all the good things that Msgr. Lynn has done in his life time? Is this “Objective” to the fact that he could have made decisions which would have made him a hero? Instead, the words of Judge Sarmina make it clear,” it’s not that hard to be good when you don’t have to make the tough choices that challenge your values to the core”.
    That statement says it all.
    Finally, to close the AD statement with the words ” We pray for Msgr Lynn and his family at this difficult time” is really sad. ” Please do not worry you who were sexually abused and victimized by so many priests of this Archdiocese. We have to pray for one of our own right now, but don’t worry we will get back to you..”..AD Philadelphia.

    1. I think they are really praying for themselves that they recieve mercy when they have shown our victims no mercy no justice……………….

  9. Chaput’s Native American name might be “He who stonewalls” or, how about “Bull who sits” because he is so full of BULL that he not only SITS IN IT,” he is spreading it!

  10. Below is content of e-mail sent to Archbishop Chaput yesterday. Though I have received e-mail responses from the Archbishop on occasion, I believe that, in this instance, there will be none. Though the details of the message are somewhat disjointed, I believe the message is quite clear.

    Bishop Chaput:

    For your consideration, from your archdiocesan statement re today’s sentencing by Judge Sarmina:

    First, Judge Sarmina, is a graduate of St. Mary’s College in Indiana:

    As a Catholic college, Saint Mary’s cultivates a community of intellectual inquiry, liturgical prayer, and social action.

    And, second, she is a graduate of Georgetown University Law School.

    Mission Statement: And no matter where they are, Georgetown students and alumni demonstrate a commitment to others that is born of our Jesuit heritage.

    The Archdiocese of Philadelphia said it remained ”committed to protecting children and caring for victims,” while adding that “fair-minded people will question the severity of the heavy, three to six year sentence imposed on Msgr. Lynn today.

    Many “fair-minded people” have been questioning, ever since the release of the first Grand Jury Report in September 2005, why archdiocesan leadership and management, both lay and clergy, chose to protect the leaders and institution at the expense of the innocence, beauty, health, spirit and mind of many young child and young adult victims throughout the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. The “sentences” imposed on the abuse victims are not only “heavy”, but life-long, debilitating, spirit-crushing, devastating and, in the most tragic of instances, lead to suicide attempts or actual suicide.

    Would that all of our elected and appointed public officials live their Catholic faith, heritage and tradition in the same spirit as exemplified by Judge Sarmina.

    Mark Chopko, former long-time general counsel to the USCCB, teaches part-time at Georgetown and is himself a product of a Jesuit education. Some fine, professional and excellent advice and counsel provided by this distinguished attorney over his many years of service to the USCCB. But certainly this counsel was in the best interests of the bishops and cardinals, not in the best interests of our youngest, most innocent and precious Catholic children across the US.


    Michael Skiendzielewski
    Philadelphia, PA
    Captain (retired)
    Philadelphia Police Dept.

  11. I was thrilled to see Monica’s article in the paper today …..keeping the focus on those who have been the victims of these horrific crimes. Vicky, you should be proud of your representation of the many who are hurting and to whom we should be listening. Your honesty, strength and integrity shine through in the article. You have fought hard to survive your trauma and I’m sure you must be a shining star for those who are struggling and forging their own battles for survival. Great job…..and fabulous picture, too, by the way!

  12. All of you good people are on the right track: The RCC will not change unless forced to so so. My suggestion is to support Americans United for Separation of Church and State. If you visit the site now you can provide input on why religious organizations should lose tax exempt status. Rather than see the RCC spend its money fighting against the release of ducments that show how un concerned they are about the safety of children and vulnerable adults, they would be SCRAMBLING AND USING ALL OF THEIR LEGAL TALENT TO STOP THE RESCINDING OF LAWS THAT GUARANTEE THEIR TAX EXEMPT STATUS. To my way of thinking, taking their money away from them is the ONLY way to get the RCC to do the right thing.

  13. I have known Vicky personally for over 30 years. She is a true heroine to all of the survivors. I knew she was strong willed, but never realized just how strong she truely was, and frankly, I don’t think she knew how she had it in her! Through her many,many years of therapy with her very talented therapist, she has blossomed into a wonderfully outspoken woman who is able to address the very specific audience and also has a real gift in penmenship. Love the picture, too! You are my hero and I am very proud of you, my friend!

  14. Vicky and Monica are true champions for the victims of clergy sexual abuse here in Philadelphia. I am honored to have met you, Vicky, and congratulate you for standing up and speaking out so courageously to let people everywhere in this AD know that Lynn’s sentence was truly just. It is a start as you have stated. I hope the DA Seth Williams will continue his work and bring the other fellows, like Cardinal Rigali, Cistone, and Cullen to task and to court. May God bless you, Vicky, and all the victims here in this diocese. You are loved.

    1. Monica, thanks for another great article. Your first article I read was about two woman. They were asking us to send pictures of our children to Ragali to support the victims. You brought me to this wonderful website. Thank you!!

      Vicky, you are amazing !!! You are so courageous and inspiring!!Keep staying strong!!!

  15. Vicky,
    I never had the privilege of meeting you personally, but from your news photo and knowing what you have overcome the words of Helen Reddy’s song “I Am Woman” come to mind:

    Oh yes I am wise
    But it’s wisdom born of pain
    Yes, I’ve paid the price
    But look how much I gained
    If I have to, I can do anything

    You can bend but never break me
    ’cause it only serves to make me
    More determined to achieve my final goal
    And I come back even stronger
    Not a novice any longer
    ’cause you’ve deepened the conviction in my soul

    Vicky, despite all you endured you truly proved invincible. Bravo!!!!!

  16. I’ve always been proud to know you, Vicky. I know that when my voice starts to fade and I go into my dark states of depression, you are still out there “telling it from the mountain.” You’re never polite with your words in a hope of not offending anyone. You give it to the world honest and raw, and I have a ton of respect for your strength and your desire to prevent more people like us. You are committed, and I don’t believe anything will stop you. The single most important part of my life is having been sexually abused as a child, and it will always be important to me, and I will not stop until the world knows what happened to us, and until we have prevented every child who attends a Catholic school, or mass, or spends any time around priests, nuns, or laypeople from sexual abuse. Children don’t understand how dangerous the situation they might find themselves in really is, and I think it’s our responsibility to do everything we can to help keep them safe. I know children are safe today, because of your voice Vicky.

    You also have a way of calming me down. On the ride home, after that night in Philadelphia, where that nutjob was talking about the causes of child sexual abuse, and doing a really poor job of it, and Sharon trying to rebutt his ridiculous inaccurate statements until she was cut-off because priests are scared to hear the truth, you calmed me down that night. We talked on the whole way home (and I almost missed our exit), and you just listened and listened and listened. Then you offered me some valuable advice that has worked for you and I appreciated it. I enjoyed being illegally parked in the middle of the street when we got back to your car and we just talked for a long time. I am always hit with something new, something helpful toward my own healing, when I have conversation like that with you or with some of my other victim friends.

    You do know the Church doesn’t care about us, right Vicky? They wish we were dead, or drug addicts, or alcoholics, or severely depressed and unable to verbalize the piles of garbage we’ve got floating around in our minds everyday. They’re glad that some victims are dead, and that others acted out and became criminals. Everything we do wrong can be used against us, to help destroy us.

    The Church tried to hurt me even after I went public in June ’09, and they called my great-aunt Mary, who is the Cardinal’s sister (who I actually had no idea was still alive), and told her that I told the media that my uncle, Cardinal O’Connor abused me. That’s how they spun the story the day before the real story would hit the newspapers. My aunt called my mother and screamed at her and told my mother to tell me “to take it back.” She wanted me to tell the press that I was under a lot of stress and I was depressed and that’s why I’ve said these things. “Stress and depressed, huh? Ya think???? The priests at St. Patrick’s Cathedral tried to make my life a living hell on that day. They just didn’t realize my life was already a living hell. How did they possibly think they could hurt me more?

    I don’t even care about sticking it to the church anymore. I care about protecting kids. If the church comes in between me and protecting those kids, then they’ll be within firing range. I guess they must’ve realized by now, Vicky, that you always have them in your crosshairs.

    1. V4J
      Wise words. I love the 2nd paragraph because it shows you are now protecting “LIttle Me” and focusing your anger in the right direction, on those who want to destroy you and you won’t let them.

      Good for you V4J. You’ve come a long way on you journey of “chewing gum and kickin’ ass.” I know what that journey cost you, and I know it wasn’t easy by any means. For what it’s worth, I’m very very proud of you.
      Thank you for all you do to protect innocent children.

      1. Really liked Marci Hamilton’s article in today’s Verdict…a couple parts of it…but think you would find the entire article great!

        And it is not over.  Trials await against the Philadelphia Archdiocese’s lay teacher Bernard Shero and Fr. Charles Englehardt, as well as against Penn State’s former Vice President Gary Schultz and Athletic Director Tim Curley.  Meanwhile, grand juries are likely busy in both central Pennsylvania and Philadelphia.  There is reasonable certainty that former Penn State President Graham Spanier will face criminal charges, and that Sandusky will face more charges.  And it is possible that past officials of the Philadelphia Archdiocese may face additional charges as well.

        Private Sanctions:  The Philadelphia Archdiocese’s Internal Investigation and the NCAA

        Private justice is often incomplete.  Private parties lack the subpoena powers of the prosecutors, and are not responsible to the people in the way that prosecutors are.  Self-interest has a way of turning private investigations into self-serving public relations projects, rather than paths to authentic justice.

        This is definitely true with respect to the private investigations by the Philadelphia Archdiocese.  As I discussed in another column for Justia’s Verdict, the investigation of the Philadelphia Archdiocese by Gina Maisto Smith has fallen far short of transparency, which is critical to full justice.  Smith has been charged with determining not guilt or innocence, but rather “suitability,” yet another weasel-word in the lexicon of religious organizations that are substituting private investigation for the civil justice system.  Many in Philadelphia are still shaking their heads over the return to ministry of Msgr. Close, who was credibly accused by two different men.  It is inexplicable.  And that means it is not justice.

      2. Joan, great article by Marci Hamilton. This upcoming St. Jerome’s School trial ought to be interesting and may even raise a clamor in the pews.. the charges involve such outrageous evil….(of course, “fair minded” people will question what all the fuss is about, lol!)

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