Wednesday, August 15, 2018



Pope on sex abuse: “We showed no care for the little ones”

Pope on sex abuse: "We showed no care for the little ones"
The Associated Press

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis has issued a letter to Catholics around the world condemning the “crime” of priestly sexual abuse and cover-up and demanding accountability, in response to new revelations in the United States of decades of misconduct by the Catholic Church.
Francis begged forgiveness for the pain suffered by victims and said lay Catholics must be involved in any effort to root out abuse and cover-up. He blasted the self-referential clerical culture that has been blamed for the abuse crisis, with church leaders more concerned for their reputation than the safety of children.
Francis wrote: “We showed no care for the little ones; we abandoned them.”
The Vatican issued the letter Monday, ahead of Francis’ trip this weekend to Ireland that is expected to be dominated by the abuse crisis.

Nolte: Vatican ‘No Comment’ About Hundreds of Predator Priests Abusing 1,000 Children

Pope Francis intervened several times in the case of Alfie Evans, the terminally-ill British toddler who died on Saturday

The Vatican had “no comment” when asked about hundreds of Pennsylvania priests sexually abusing a thousand children.

Where is Pope Francis?
Where is the moral leader of the Catholic Church?
Where is the compassionate, accessible Wheelchair Pope, the Energizer Bunny Pope, the Cynicism-Busting Pope who has always been so eager to comment on every hot button issue, from Global Warming to immigration to homosexuality?
I know where Francis is not. He is not where he should be, in Pennsylvania overseeing a revolutionary and historic house cleaning of a satanic cancer that infects his Church, a 70-year-old cancer of priests and bishops and cardinals who are guilty of either engaging in an organized cabal to rape little boys and girls, or in covering up those unspeakable crimes.
Worse still, not only is Francis not in Pennsylvania personally disinfecting his Church, all we are hearing from the Vatican, the same Vatican that knew well in advance this utterly damning grand jury report was coming out, is “no comment.”
What we have here is a painfully detailed report using on the record testimony and — my God — the Church’s own secret archives, to lay out a painfully detailed case against hundreds of priests who abused and raped some 1,000 children over 70 years — a highly organized pedophile ring allowed to operate for seven decades.
Moreover, the cover up, the enabling of these child rapists goes all the way to the Vatican itself.
What the Vatican is dealing with here goes beyond even the original child abuse scandal that threatened to swamp the Church some 15 years ago. While the first scandal was its own kind of horror show, we were assured this was behind us, the truth had been fully revealed, the wrongdoers punished, the victims made as whole as possible, the page turned.
Now we are learning this is not even close to the truth, that in just one of our 50 states, the cover up and lies marched on to protect an unspeakable evil.
And where is Francis?
Why isn’t he in Pennsylvania personally thanking this grand jury, personally thanking Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro, and calling on the attorney generals in all 50 states to launch similar investigations with the Pope’s personal assurance they will have the full cooperation of the Church?
You want to know what should chill every Catholic to the marrow? If this is happening here in America, a country with a legitimate criminal justice system and free press, what horrors are being unleashed in third world countries? In corrupt countries?
As a conservative Catholic (I joined the Church in 2008 believing the sex scandal had been eradicated), I have gone out of my way not to beat up Francis. Even though I believe he is wrong about a lot of things, something I admire about the Catholic Church is the intellectual diversity within. That debate is healthy. So this is not me exploiting the opportunity to bash our left-wing Pope, a man whose photo sits on my fireplace mantle. Rather, this is a practicing Catholic who joined the Church as a 42-year-old man with an open heart, who is just as angry and disappointed in St. John Paul II and Benedict XVI, and who fears the Church is beyond redemption.
Follow John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNCFollow his Facebook Page here.
Hundreds of ‘Predator Priests’ Exposed in PA Grand Jury Sex Abuse Report

David Zubik (left), bishop of the Diocese of Pittsburgh, and Cardinal Donald Wuerl, archbishop of Washington, arrive at the Supreme Court in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday, March 23, 2016. Zubik was the lead plantiff in a case brought by religious groups over contraception coverage.
Drew Angerer/Getty Images

At least 1,000 children were molested by hundreds of Roman Catholic priests in six Pennsylvania dioceses, as senior church officials took steps to cover it up, according to a landmark grand jury report released Tuesday.

The grand jury report, which states in excess of 300 clergy committed abuse over a period of decades from the mid-1950s, the “real number” of abused children could be “in the thousands,” since numerous records were either lost or victims were afraid to come forward. Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro announced the two-year investigation found a systematic cover-up by senior church officials in both the Keystone State and the Vatican.
“The cover-up was sophisticated. And all the while, shockingly, church leadership kept records of the abuse and the cover-up,” said Shapiro at a press conference in Harrisburg. “These documents, from the dioceses’ own ‘Secret Archives,’ formed the backbone of this investigation.”
One Pennsylvania priest sexually abused five sisters from the same family over a period of a decade. The youngest of the girls was just 18-months-old, according to the report. In another case, a priest raped and impregnated a girl, later arranging for the fetus to be aborted.
“The grand jury detailed that the coverups by the church served a key purpose – the longer they covered up abuses, the less chance that law enforcement could prosecute predator priests because the statute of limitations would run out,” said Shapiro.
Among other explosive findings, the report faulted Cardinal Donald Wuerl, a former longtime bishop of Pittsburgh who now leads the Washington archdiocese, for what it said was his role in the concealment of clergy sexual abuse. Wuerl, one of the highest-profile cardinals in the United States, released a statement Tuesday that said he had “acted with diligence, with concern for the victims and to prevent future acts of abuse.”

The president of the US Bishops Conf, Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, released a statement immediately after the report was released. "As a body of bishops, we are shamed by and sorry for the sins and omissions by Catholic priests and Catholic bishops," he said.
Cardinal Donald Wuerl of DC, who was bishop of Pittsburgh from 1988-2006 and whose actions as bishop are chronicled in the report, also released a statement, calling sexual abuse of children "a terrible tragedy" and defending his own record.

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The grand jury scrutinized abuse allegations in dioceses that minister to more than half the state’s 3.2 million Catholics. Its report echoed the findings of many earlier church investigations around the country in its description of widespread sexual abuse by clergy and church officials’ concealment of it. Most of the victims were boys, but girls were abused, too, the report said. The abuse ranged from groping and masturbation to anal, oral, and vaginal rape.
“Church officials routinely and purposefully described the abuse as horseplay and wrestling and inappropriate conduct. It was none of those things. It was child sexual abuse, including rape,” the Pennsylvania Attorney General said.
The panel concluded that a succession of Catholic bishops and other diocesan leaders tried to shield the church from bad publicity and financial liability by covering up abuse, failing to report accused clergy to police and discouraging victims from going to law enforcement.
The document comes at a time of renewed scrutiny and fresh scandal at the highest levels of the U.S. Catholic Church. Pope Francis stripped 88-year-old Cardinal Theodore McCarrick of his title and ordered him to a lifetime of prayer and penance amid allegations that McCarrick had for years sexually abused boys and had sexual misconduct with adult seminarians.
Wuerl has come under harsh criticism over his response to the McCarrick scandal, with some commentators questioning his claims of surprise and ignorance over allegations that McCarrick molested and harassed young seminarians. Wuerl replaced McCarrick as Washington’s archbishop after McCarrick retired in 2006.
The Pennsylvania grand jury, convened by the state attorney general’s office in 2016, heard from dozens of witnesses and reviewed more than a half-million pages of internal documents from the Allentown, Erie, Greensburg, Harrisburg, Pittsburgh, and Scranton dioceses.
A group of current and former clergy named in the report went to court to prevent its release, arguing it violated their constitutional rights to reputation and due process of law. The state Supreme Court said the public had a right to see it, but ruled the names of priests and others who objected to the findings would be blacked out pending a September hearing on their claims. The identities of those clergy members remain under court seal.
A couple of dioceses decided to strip the accused of their anonymity ahead of the report and released the names of clergy members who were accused of sexual misconduct. On Friday, the bishop of Pittsburgh’s diocese said a few priests named in the report are still in ministry because the diocese determined allegations against them were unsubstantiated.
However, the grand jury’s work won’t result in justice for the vast majority of those who say they were molested by priests as children. While the probe yielded charges against two clergymen — including a priest who has since pleaded guilty, and another who allegedly forced his accuser to say confession after each sex assault — the other priests identified as perpetrators are either dead or will avoid arrest because their alleged crimes are too old to prosecute under state law.
“We are sick over all the crimes that will go unpunished and uncompensated,” the grand jury said. “We are going to name their names, and describe what they did — both the sex offenders and those who concealed them.”
“[W]e are going to make our recommendations for how the laws should change so that maybe no one will have to conduct another inquiry like this one,” the grand jury added.
The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

U.S. Bishops: ‘We Are Shamed’ by Sins, Omissions of Catholic Priests, Bishops

Cardinal Daniel DiNardo of the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston, center, president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, speaks at a news conference alongside Bishop Christopher Coyne of Burlington, Vt., left, and Bishop Joe Vasquez of Austin, Texas, during the USCCB's annual fall meeting in Baltimore, Monday, Nov. 13, 2017. …
AP/Patrick Semansky

The leadership of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) issued a statement Tuesday in response to a report by the Pennsylvania grand jury on clerical sex abuse.

“The report of the Pennsylvania grand jury again illustrates the pain of those who have been victims of the crime of sexual abuse by individual members of our clergy, and by those who shielded abusers and so facilitated an evil that continued for years or even decades,” said Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo of Galveston-Houston, president of the USCCB, and Bishop Timothy L. Doherty of Lafayette in a joint statement.
The 884-page grand jury report lists the names of 300 priests accused of sexual abuse over the past 70 years, many of whom are no longer alive, and alleges a systematic cover-up by members of the Church hierarchy. Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro, a Democrat, said it was “the largest, most comprehensive report into child sexual abuse within the Catholic Church ever produced in the United States.”
A prior comprehensive investigation into clergy sex abuse resulted in the 2004 John Jay report, which found that over 80 percent of abuse was committed against male victims, which has been used to underscore the predominantly homosexual nature of the clerical abuse crisis.
In its 2011 follow-up report, the John Jay College Research Team found that same-sex sexual behavior in the seminary “was significantly related to the increased likelihood of a male child victim.”
In Tuesday’s statement, the bishops thanked the victims of sexual abuse for coming forward with their testimony.
“We are grateful for the courage of the people who aided the investigation by sharing their personal stories of abuse,” it reads. “As a body of bishops, we are shamed by and sorry for the sins and omissions by Catholic priests and Catholic bishops,” it says.
The bishops say they are “profoundly saddened each time we hear about the harm caused as a result of abuse, at the hands of a clergyman of any rank,” while also promising “to offer avenues to healing for those who have been abused” as well as working resolutely “so that such abuse cannot happen.”
“We pledge to maintain transparency and to provide for the permanent removal of offenders from ministry and to maintain safe environments for everyone,” the bishops said.
“We pray that all survivors of sexual abuse find healing, comfort and strength” from God, the bishops said while pledging “to continue to restore trust through accompaniment, communion, accountability and justice.”
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Catholic Church Covered Up Child Abuse By 301 Priests In Pennsylvania: Report

The grand jury identified more than 1,000 sexual abuse victims over seven decades — and suspects there may be many more.

Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro released an 884-page report on sexual abuse in six Roman Catholic dioceses of the

Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro released an 884-page report on sexual abuse in six Roman Catholic dioceses of the state on Tuesday. He was flanked by victims of the abuse at a news conference announcing the release.
Pennsylvania’s attorney general released on Tuesday the long-awaited results of a damning grand jury investigation into how six Roman Catholic dioceses in the state covered up sexual abuse by 301 “predator priests” over 70 years. 
The 884-page report is the largest, most comprehensive investigation on the church’s sex abuse scandal by a U.S. state, according to Attorney General Josh Shapiro. The grand jury identified over 1,000 victims in the six dioceses examined in the report: Allentown, Erie, Greensburg, Harrisburg, Pittsburgh and Scranton. But the jurors suspected the real number of victims could be much higher.
Shapiro said the report, which was delayed for months while individuals named in it raised legal challenges over what portions should be redacted, showed that senior church leaders in these dioceses and even at the Vatican knew abuse was occurring but systematically covered it up. 
“The pattern was abuse, deny and cover up,” Shapiro said during a news conference Tuesday. 
Listen to Attorney General Josh Shapiro’s news conference with victims below. 
Most of the victims identified in the report were boys, but some were girls. The abuse documented included groping, being made to masturbate with assailants, and being raped orally, vaginally or anally. 
The jurors accused Catholic Church leaders in the state of working hard to avoid public scandal and protect abusers. The grand jury found that victims were “brushed aside, in every part of the state, by church leaders who preferred to protect the abusers and their institutions above all.”
“Church officials routinely and purposefully described the abuse as horseplay and wrestling and inappropriate conduct. It was none of those things. It was child sexual abuse, including rape,” Shapiro said.
Matt Haverstick, an attorney representing the dioceses of Harrisburg and Greensburg, insisted in a statement that the Catholic Church discussed in the grand jury report no longer exists.
“The Dioceses I’ve gotten to know so well over the past two years are incredibly sorry for the harm to these survivors,” Haverstick said. “Today’s Church has listened and learned from its mistakes, and its reforms over the past two decades keep children safe.” 
At the end of their report, jurors included hundreds of pages of previously hidden church documents that illustrate how officials handled reports of abuse. The release also included response statements from the six dioceses. Some of the individuals named in the report included their own rebuttals of the claims made by the grand jury. 
In one egregious case in the Diocese of Scranton, a priest impregnated a young girl and then arranged an abortion, the report reads. The priest resigned in 1986 and was sent to a Catholic psychiatric treatment center.  One year later, in 1987, he was reassigned to another Pennsylvania parish. In 1989, the victim received a settlement from the diocese and, in exchange, was asked to sign a confidentiality agreement. Meanwhile, the priest continued in active ministry until 2002.
In the Diocese of Allentown, the report claims a priest who freely admitted to sexually molesting a boy was allowed to continue in ministry for several years after his confession. The diocese concluded at the time that “the experience will not necessarily be a horrendous trauma” for the victim.
In the Diocese of Pittsburgh, church officials dismissed a report that a priest had abused a 15-year-old girl, claiming the girl had “literally seduced” him into a relationship. 
Tim Lennon, president of the Survivors Network of those Abused By Priests, told HuffPost he was saddened and angered by the report. He believes it proves the church hierarchy was complicit in the abuse. They knew abuse was happening and didn’t work hard enough to discipline abusers, he said, which in turn enabled more abuse to happen over the years.
“They knew for years if not decades of this vile corruption. Those in the church hierarchy went to great lengths to hide and dismiss the suffering of survivors,” Lennon told HuffPost. “How many children were raped and sexually abused because the church authorities covered up sexual abuse and did nothing?”
During the investigation, which began in July 2016, the grand jury heard from dozens of witnesses and reviewed over 500,000 pages of documents from diocesan archives. The probe led to the arrests of two priests on child sexual abuse charges.
However, most of the priests identified in the report may never be brought to justice. Shapiro said most of the accused either are dead or the alleged crimes are too old to prosecute. 
The grand jury report faced heated, behind-the-scenes challenges on its road to publication. A group of individuals named but not indicted in it argued that their right to due process would be violated if they couldn’t hold hearings to challenge parts of the grand jury report and try to protect their reputations. In June, the state’s Supreme Court decided to block the report’s publication.
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Shapiro fought the decision ― at one point appealing to Pope Francis to step in and persuade the individuals to drop their efforts to block the report. Seven news organizations also petitioned the state Supreme Court to try to force the report’s release ― including the Associated Press, Telemundo Mid-Atlantic, NBC subsidiaries, and several Pennsylvania-based publications. 
In the end, the report was published with the names of some Catholic clergy redacted. The state Supreme Court plans to consider oral arguments on those individuals’ claims in September, the AP reports.

Shapiro said most of the accused in the report either are dead or the alleged crimes are too old to prosecute.   

Shapiro said most of the accused in the report either are dead or the alleged crimes are too old to prosecute.   

Previous investigations have uncovered widespread clergy sexual abuse in the state’s other two dioceses, Philadelphia and Altoona-Johnstown.
Smaller states, including Maine and New Hampshire, have issued reports on the extent of the Roman Catholic Church’s sex abuse scandal. But Pennsylvania is the largest state to date that has conducted such an investigation.  
In April, the Erie diocese tried to get ahead of the report by releasing the names of 51 former priests and lay leaders who were credibly accused of sexual misconduct, ranging from providing pornography to minors to sexual assault.
Erie’s Bishop Lawrence Persico said in a statement that it was “shocking to read the graphic details” in the grand jury report. In a letter that was read aloud in all 97 parishes of the 13-county diocese on Sunday, the bishop said it was clear that church leaders failed to adequately address the problem. 
“The most important thing I want to do at this moment is to express my sorrow to the victims of sexual abuse that occurred within the Diocese of Erie,” Persico wrote in the letter. “As the grand jury report demonstrates, they have experienced cruel behavior by the very individuals who should have had the greatest interest in protecting them.”

Harrisburg Bishop Ronald Gainer holds a news conference about child sexual abuse by clergy on Aug. 1, 2018.

Harrisburg Bishop Ronald Gainer holds a news conference about child sexual abuse by clergy on Aug. 1, 2018.

The Harrisburg diocese followed Erie’s example in August, when it released a list of 71 priests and other members of the church who had been accused of sex abuse. The diocese also removed the names of accused bishops from its church buildings. 
On Friday, Pittsburgh Bishop David Zubik said a few priests named in the report were still in ministry. He said diocesan investigations had concluded that those allegations were unsubstantiated. 
Currently, Pennsylvania law states that adults in their 30s and older who were abused as children can’t sue for damages. Criminal charges can’t be filed after the alleged victim turns 50.
The grand jury had four recommendations moving forward ― removing the criminal statute of limitations, establishing a temporary window for victims older than 30 to sue the dioceses, tightening laws about mandatory reporting, and making sure confidentiality agreements don’t give either party the right to decline to cooperate with criminal investigations. 
The church has opposed moves to change the statute of limitations, claiming it would be financially crippling to Pennsylvania’s Catholic schools and parishes. Fifteen U.S. Catholic dioceses or archdioceses have filed for bankruptcy protection because of the clergy sexual abuse crisis, according to the watchdog group 
Lennon applauded Shapiro’s courage in empaneling a grand jury. But he said the work of exposing sexual abuse within the Catholic Church is far from over.
“We see that when civil society investigates we get the truth,” Lennon said. “There must be a grand jury in every state.”
This story has been updated with more details from the report.



Cardinal Burke: ‘Very Grave Problem of Homosexual Culture in the Church’

A vietnamese man dances as he holds a rainbow flag during the fourth gay pride parade on August 2, 2015 in Hanoi, Vietnam. Hundreds of demonstrators march through the streets of the Vietnamese capital urging an end to discrimination against the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community as homosexuality …
Borja Sanchez-Trillo/Getty Images

Cardinal Raymond Burke has called for “open recognition” of the Catholic church’s homosexual culture in light of recent revelations of sexual abuse.

I believe that there needs to be an open recognition that we have a very grave problem of a homosexual culture in the Church,” Burke said in an interview Thursday, “especially among the clergy and the hierarchy, that needs to be addressed honestly and efficaciously.”
The former head of the church’s equivalent of the Supreme Court said it was already “clear after the studies following the 2002 sexual abuse crisis that most of the acts of abuse were in fact homosexual acts committed with adolescent young men.”
“There was a studied attempt to either overlook or to deny this,” he said, referring to the mainstream media cover-up of the homosexual nature of the abuse as well as such denial within the church itself.
“Now it seems clear in light of these recent terrible scandals that indeed there is a homosexual culture, not only among the clergy but even within the hierarchy, which needs to be purified at the root,” Burke said.
The cardinal’s analysis of the situation coincides with another report, also released on Thursday, by the president of the Catholic League, Bill Donohue.
In his report, Mr. Donohue, who is a trained sociologist, decried the ongoing “media cover-up of the role played by gay molesters” in the church.
Referring to the 2004 John Jay study on the sexual abuse crisis in the United States, Donohue notes that “81 percent of the victims were male, 78 percent of whom were postpubescent.” Since all of the abusers were male and most of the victims were postpubescent males, “that is a problem called homosexuality,” Donohue stated.
Despite the media’s insistence on referring to a pedophilia crisis, the report revealed that “less than five percent” of the cases involved pedophilia, Donohue said, and studies done in subsequent years report approximately the same ratio.
“It’s been a homosexual scandal all along,” he said.
“No amount of compassion for those who have been violated by priests should ever be done at the expense of telling the truth, no matter how unpopular it may sound. To do otherwise is cowardly, shameful, and unjust,” he said.
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Theologians, Lay Leaders Call for ‘Collective Resignation’ of U.S. Bishops

Catholic church attendance
AP Photo/Andrew Medichini

More than 700 educators and Catholic lay leaders have written an open letter urging the United States bishops to tender their collective resignation to Pope Francis in the wake of a string of scandals related to clerical sex abuse.

The letter references a recent Pennsylvania grand jury report that alleges not only clerical sexual abuse but also “systematic cover-ups by bishops and others in positions of power.”
The report came hard on the heels of “revelations of decades of sexual predation by Cardinal Theodore McCarrick and in the long shadow of the sexual abuse crisis in Boston and beyond,” the letter states.
The centerpiece of the open letter is the following line: “Today, we call on the Catholic Bishops of the United States to prayerfully and genuinely consider submitting to Pope Francis their collective resignation as a public act of repentance and lamentation before God and God’s People.”
In May, the bishops of Chile resigned en masse following a three-day meeting with Pope Francis in the Vatican to discuss the sex abuse crisis that had shaken the church in that country.
In a written statement, the bishops said that their joint decision to hand in their resignations meant that “the Holy Father can freely decide on what to do with each of us.” On that occasion, Pope Francis ultimately accepted three out of 34 resignations.
The letter declares:
After years of suppressed truth, the unreserved decisiveness of the Chilean bishops’ resignations communicated to the faithful a message that Catholics in the United States have yet to hear, with an urgency we have yet to witness: We have caused this devastation. We have allowed it to persist. We submit ourselves to judgment in recompense for what we have done and failed to do.”
The letter writers justify the amplitude of their proposal by pointing to the momentous nature of the problem.
“The catastrophic scale and historical magnitude of the abuse makes clear that this is not a case of ‘a few bad apples’ but rather a radical systemic injustice manifested at every level of the Church,” they state.
The wounds of systemic sin “are not healed through statements, internal investigations, or public relations campaigns but rather through collective accountability, transparency, and truth-telling,” they add.
The authors further embrace proposals for specific reforms, including “external investigations of every ecclesiastical province in the United States akin to the one just completed in Pennsylvania.”
At the same time, other groups such as the Catholic League, while sharing an abhorrence for the crime of clerical abuse, have also pointed out the intentionally incendiary language of the grand jury report, as well as the anti-Catholic animus that seems to have motivated it.
The report is not crafted in the measured and objective tones one would expect in such a document, but seems designed to stir up anger and revulsion.
In a lengthy analysis of the report, Catholic League President Bill Donohue corrected what he saw as the errors contained in the report or propagated by the media in their interpretations of it.
He noted that the grand jury’s preliminary report was not a finding of guilt, but a list of unsubstantiated accusations that were never verified. In other words, it reads more as the statement of the prosecution without any possibility of defense.
In the 2004 report by the John Jay College for Criminal Justice, Donohue notes, only half the number of those “credibly accused” were actually substantiated.
“Importantly, in almost all cases, the accused named in the report was never afforded the right to rebut the charges. That is because the report was investigative, not evidentiary, though the report’s summary suggests that it is authoritative,” Donohue stated.
Moreover, he noted, the report covers accusations extending back to World War II, and “almost all the accused are either dead or have been thrown out of the priesthood.”
Mr. Donohue also takes issue with a targeted investigation of the Catholic Church when no such investigation is made into other institutions where adults regularly interact with young people, in which there is a comparable or even superior probability of sexual abuse.
Attorney General Josh Shapiro and his predecessor, Kathleen Kane (who is now in prison), “have never sought to shame imams, ministers, or rabbis—they just want to shame priests,” Donohue said. “Nor will they conduct a probe of psychologists, psychiatrists, camp counselors, coaches, guidance counselors, or any other segment of society where adults routinely interact with minors.”
“No amount of compassion for those who have been violated by priests should ever be done at the expense of telling the truth, no matter how unpopular it may sound. To do otherwise is cowardly, shameful, and unjust,” Donohue said.
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Pennsylvania Bishop Says Prelates Involved in Sex Abuse Cover-Up Should Resign

Cardinal Donald Wuerl, archbishop of Washington. left, looks toward the crowd with Pope Francis following a Mass outside the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2015, in Washington. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
AP Photo/David Goldman

Pennsylvania Bishop Lawrence T. Persico has called for “complete transparency” in investigating the latest clerical sex abuse scandals, noting late last week that regaining lost trust entails ousting bishops who failed to deal effectively with abuse.

In an interview with Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN) on August 16, Persico, the Bishop of Erie, PA, said that bishops can talk all they like about transparency and truth, “but much is going to depend upon our deeds” and how “we carry that transparency out” moving forward.
“That’s going to be key to all of this and we have to show that we mean what we’re saying,” he said.
During the interview, EWTN reporter Jason Calvi asked Persico whether bishops who knew about or covered up abuse ought to resign.
“I think they should,” the bishop answered. “I think we need complete transparency if we’re going to get the trust of the people back. We have to be able to demonstrate it.”
The Erie diocese was one of the six Pennsylvania dioceses investigated in the grand jury report alleging over 1000 credible cases of clerical sex abuse over a period of some 70 years.
Nearly all of the cases in the report were too old for charges to be filed and a good number of the 301 priests, deacons, and lay people named are either dead or no longer in ministry. But Catholic laity have been demanding accountability for those involved in covering up the abuse. As Breitbart News reported, the Pennsylvania grand jury report faulted Cardinal Donald Wuerl, a former longtime bishop of Pittsburgh who now leads the Washington archdiocese, for what it said was his role in the concealment of clergy sexual abuse.
“We need this transparency and we also need action, so that if there were other bishops or leaders that were negligent, then they need to be removed because the more we cover up, the less credibility we have,” Bishop Persico said.
The bishop noted that there has been significantly less abuse since 2002, when the first sex abuse crisis struck and the bishops implemented a series of measures meant to safeguard the young, but added that “we still have to be on guard.”
On Monday, Pope Francis issued a letter to “the people of God” recognizing the recent sex abuse scandals and promising further efforts “to create a culture able to prevent such situations from happening” and “to prevent the possibility of their being covered up and perpetuated.”
Nonetheless, the pope nowhere even mentions the name “bishop” in the entire 2,000-word letter and fails to propose that those responsible for the present situation should be held to any accountability.
He also chose not to address the root causes of the abuse and the homosexual nature of the vast majority of the cases.
This past week, a number of prelates, priests, and laypeople have insisted on the need for straightforward and direct recognition of the extensive “homosexual subculture” that currently exists among bishops and clergy and that lies at the root of the abuse crisis.
In his letter, Pope Francis sidesteps the question of homosexuality in the clergy, preferring to speak generically about solidarity and the general need for prayer and penance in the Church.
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Culture Warrior Morse: Weinstein and Archbishop McCarrick Both Believed They Were ‘Entitled’ to Sex

Weinstein, McCarrick
AP/AFP Images

The founder of the Ruth Institute, a pro-family nonprofit that teaches about the “poisonous consequences” of the Sexual Revolution, says disgraced Hollywood magnate Harvey Weinstein and Archbishop Theodore McCarrick have both lived by the “sexual revolutionary creed.”

Jennifer Roback Morse, Ph.D. writes at National Catholic Register that it is irrelevant that Weinstein prefers female sexual partners and McCarrick prefers male. What they have in common, she asserts, is they are both “powerful men who believed they were entitled to use people sexually.”
In May, Weinstein was arrested and charged with rape and sex crimes some eight months after his once-powerful career crashed as it also triggered sexual assault accusations across industries and the global #MeToo movement.
McCarrick, the former archbishop of Washington, DC, was removed from ministry following allegations he sexually abused boys and engaged in sexual misconduct with seminarians.
Morse contends the root cause of the sexual abuse problems of both men is the same:
Men like Archbishop McCarrick and Weinstein think they are entitled to sex. And they both have (or used to have) enough power to take whatever they wanted. The fact that Archbishop McCarrick’s preferred sex partners are male and Weinstein’s are female should not distract us from this most basic point. Both men live by the Sexual Revolutionary Creed:
Sex is a private recreational activity with no moral or social consequences. Everyone is entitled to the sex lives they want, with a minimum of inconvenience. Any sexual activity is morally acceptable, as long as the participants consent. Believing all this is called being “sex positive.”
Morse says that, of course, the “creed” is “a sham,” and that both powerful and influential men have been able to “manipulate the terms of ‘consent’ out of all recognition.”
“The sexual revolutionary ideology creates cover for the predator, especially the well-connected, powerful predator,” she writes, adding that it is the ideology itself that caused the #MeToo movement to stall.
Morse notes the starlets who criticize the exploitation of women, but who still endorse the ideology that objectification of women is acceptable. She observes how many actresses wore black dresses to the Golden Globe Awards to protest sexual abuse toward women, yet many of those dresses were very revealing.
These women “want to keep their pills and their pornography and their view of themselves as progressive,” she notes. “They want to be ‘sex positive’ and never be caught in the predatory trap that the sexual revolutionary ideology makes possible.”
Urging Catholics not to make the same mistake, she says living by the true teachings of the Catholic faith in terms of sexuality and marriage – even when bishops and priests do not – is what is needed for lay people to effectively eradicate the “poisonous consequences” of the Sexual Revolution within our culture.
Morse asserts bishops and priests who are discovered in sex abuse scandals or in covering up such abuse are enjoying “worldly double-lives” in which they have not only brought immediate harm to their victims, but are also likely failing to teach the Church’s doctrines from the pulpit.
“Their silence has been a contributing factor to the advance of the sexual revolutionary ideology throughout society,” she writes. “Their corruption undermines their brother priests who are living godly lives. And the scandal of the predatory priests casts a cloud of suspicion over innocent priests.”
Because of the failure of these Church leaders to teach the faith and its doctrine on sexuality and marriage, Morse asserts the Church is no longer the “guardian of traditional sexual morality.” Instead, “the Catholic Church has become a symbol of hypocrisy or worse.”
Urging Catholics to take matters into their own hands – even if bishops do nothing – Morse teaches the way to do this is to stop watering down Catholic teaching in their own lives in order to be politically correct:
Let go of any part of the sexual revolution that you are holding on to. Maybe you agree that abortion is wrong, but you think contraception is OK. Maybe you are one of those parishioners who complain if the pastor preaches on pro-life topics. Maybe you are one of the parents in a Catholic high school who thinks the “gay” gym teacher shouldn’t be fired just because she married her same-sex partner in a public ceremony.
“Let’s go all in for the full truth,” she urges.

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