Consider the Source: Archdiocesan Press Release Short on Facts

As we predicted, the Archdiocese of Philadelphia waited until late Friday afternoon, a dead-zone in the news cycle, to issue a revised press release about three priests removed from ministry.

We alerted the Office of Communications to specific inaccuracies in their press release a week prior. Even though we provided corrections, they needed a lot of time to confirm the truth. Go to Google and people in the pews if you want clergy sex abuse facts.

As was likely intended, local new sources relied upon and quoted the inaccurate and incomplete press release during the week it remained unrevised. Read the updated press release here.

Rev. Raymond Smart’s parish service has been updated. The date of the sexual abuse of a minor allegation is also revised.

Negligent or Deliberate?

In an email regarding the inaccuracies, Ken Gavin, of the Office of Communications, explained his office used the official clergy personnel assignment list. This means, that despite three separate investigations since 2011, the Archdiocesan Office for Clergy didn’t have accurate records of Father Smart’s living arrangements and ministry for the past 16 years. Or, they didn’t pass on complete information to the Office for Communications.

Maybe a bishop’s after-dinner drink spilled and damaged pages? Maybe a clergy office staffer lost a few pages after tripping over the cot we suspect is set up for Father Joseph Gallagher, an alleged abuser who is M.I.A. We will never know. We’re just really glad we could help update their records.

The Archdiocese was also off by an entire year in regard to when the allegation was received. It stands to reason it would be the Office for Investigations responsibility to ensure the accuracy of allegation dates.

In the past, clergy suspension and removal announcements have been coordinated between the Office of Investigations and the Office of Communications. We know this because an investigator once hit “reply all,” forgetting to remove us from an email thread.

It’s still unclear when the allegation concerning Father John Meyers was received by John Delaney, Delegate of Archdiocesan Investigations. He has not replied to our emails.

Scooby Doo Where Are You?

We will publish a separate post this week on the now twice-removed Msgr. Joseph Logrip. His assignment record in the press release still does not show where he resided between 1983 and 1990, nor does it indicate his many years serving as St Aloysius Academy’s chaplain.

A few years ago, we shared troubling information about an Archdiocesan priest with the police and the Archdiocesan Investigations office. When we followed up with the police, they said the Archdiocese told them the priest was in his 90’s and living in a private residence. We knew this was wrong based on our limited information and were quickly able to estimate his age based on his ordination date and a newspaper article found online. Why were we able to land within one year of his actual age but the Archdiocese was off by decades? Also, the priest wasn’t living in a private residence.

The Archdiocese had supplied the police information on an elderly relative of the priest, who happened to share the same name. The detective said the Archdiocese should hire us.

But does the Archdiocese of Philadelphia really want accuracy and transparency?

10 thoughts on “Consider the Source: Archdiocesan Press Release Short on Facts

  1. Stay on top of them, please. It seems you two are our one source of accurate information. Don’t choke too much on the “Yes, Father”.

  2. What a tangled web they weave. They will never spit out the truth themselves. It must be dragged out by the laity and the legal system. I am surprised the local catholic cemeteries are not experiencing huge earth tremors. My parents and grandparents and their friends and relatives who lie in their catholic graves must be turning over at the behavior of the church they loved, supported and adored.

    The Friday afternoon press releases are not new to this issue. It happened when they were closing schools and parishes and wanted to offer some chill out time to those affected. Its just how they operate.

  3. They are nothing if not predictable with the Friday afternoon press releases.
    They will keep playing the same misinformation game as if it is still the 1950’s and people don’t have access to information on the internet. Also the news from the pews is at an all time high,people seem to have finally had enough.

  4. Remember that The Source will be deciding the credibility of survivor abuse accusations as it goes about its compensation program. In NY, all of the dioceses have completed their compensation programs and many accusations of abuse were deemed “not credible,” resulting in no compensation. Outraged survivors whose accusations were deemed “not credible” have reported them to the NY attorney general’s office. It is investigating every diocese in NY state and will get to the bottom of the matter. But PA might want to know that two factors incline a Source to deem an accusation “not credible”: (1) if the accusation is the only accusation reported regarding a particular priest and (2) if the accused priest has not admitted to the reported abuse. Beware of The Source that will determine the credibility or lack thereof of survivors’ accusations. The Source is hardly fit to be labeled a reputable investigative unit. Its goals are to protect clergy and its money.

  5. And the church continues to ask for money close schools in poor neighborhoods, while ROME is encased in SOLID GOLD !

    1. I agree, I was asked to give money to the archdiocese and I feel like it’s being used to pay for the sex scandals against innocent children Anyone who committed or tried to cover up by passing these priests on should be in jail for life , including of course the Pope or any higher ups . Discusting what they did to precious innocent children.

  6. “If it were possible for one who loved God to be damned without fault of his own, he would easily bear all the pains of hell save the blasphemies of the damned against God” Saint Ignatius of Loyola

    Today is the feast day of Saint Agnes. She was between 12 and 13 years old when she was to be sacrificed to the pagan gods and raped and for resisting she was murdered. A church in Rome was built in her honor where he was martyred. I visited that church a few years ago when I traveled to Rome. It’s sad to think that today it is so called Christian priests raping children and instead of making them saints the victims are demonized many times as wanting to destroy the church. When will the priests and bishops stop acting like pagans and treat our survivors with the respect and care they deserve? So many have lost their faith and serve another.

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