Our blog post questioning why (Father) James Flavin is being portrayed as a priest in good standing in the National Catholic Register interview with Mark Wahlberg was highlighted tonight in a segment on Church Militant. The NCR interview with Wahlberg was publicity for the upcoming movie, Fr Stu, for which Flavin is the movie consultant. Catholics4Change did not participate in any manner in the Church Militant segment and we did not share any of the research that the clergy abuse survivor, Rose, has gathered. We have not communicated with Church Militant concerning Flavin. Our blog is public and we have had blog posts picked up by the Catholic press and the mainstream press over the years.
The one Catholic media outlet that I have contacted recently is the National Catholic Register, asking why the interview with Wahlberg is still running now that they have been told repeatedly that Flavin is not a priest in good standing. The interview photos show him in clerical attire and he is identified as a priest of the Archdiocese of Boston.
Also a bit of clarification is needed. In our Flavin blog post we referenced his side hustle, charging $15,000 for outplacement services for priests leaving ministry. That business was developed by Flavin after he left his position at St John Vianney Center and after he left ministry. If that timeline was not clear in the original blog post, I hope that clears up any confusion.
I did reach out to a Catholic journalist who we have had some dealings with in the past concerning the Flavin saga because I think it is a story that needs resources and research that far exceed anything that our site could cover. The movie publicity where Flavin is incorrectly identified as a priest in good standing will come and go, and we hate to see the Catholic laity misled in any way, but there is a bigger story than that it seems. The story of a few former Boston priests, one a former secretary to Cardinal O’Malley, joining together to form an outplacement business for priests leaving ministry is an angle of the Flavin saga that surprisingly surfaced along the way.
An email that we received this week asked us to keep going and follow the Flavin story and its connections all the way up to the Boston hierarchy. It was a nice compliment that a Boston resident thought that we could take on another diocese, but unfortunately the Archdiocese of Philadelphia keeps us busy enough in our efforts to protect children and support survivors.