2011 July

Jul 28, 2011: Denial Extends to UK: Diocese Asks High Court for Unprecedented Absolution

The UK’s high court heard the case of a woman this month, “JGE,” who was six years old when she was sexually abused by a priest at a children’s home in Portsmouth, England. “JGE” was abused by Father Wilfred Baldwin, a priest in the Diocese of Portsmouth, who visited Firs children’s home regularly. In addition to her negligence claim against the nuns who ran Firs, “JGE” and her attorneys say that Fr. Baldwin was working as a priest in the Diocese, so the Diocese is also responsible.

Jul 25, 2011: It’s About Time-Irish Prime Minister Denounces Vatican; Vatican Responds by Withdrawing its Irish Ambassador

News headlines resounded last week as Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny attacked the Vatican over its response to clergy sexual abuse.  Reacting to the Cloyne report, which exposed the Vatican’s cover-up, failures and astounding mishandling of child abuse by Irish clergy, Ireland’s Prime Minister expressed unprecedented public fury.   Kenny’s harsh words for the Vatican and top church officials revealed sentiments that are rarely, if ever, heard from civil leaders.  It’s about time.

Jul 19, 2011: Rigali and Chaput: Iron Fists in a Velvet Glove

This morning Pope Benedict XVI accepted the resignation of Philadelphia Archbishop Cardinal Justin Rigali.  This news comes only five months after a grand jury condemned Cardinal Rigali, Monsignor Lynn, and other top officials in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia for not only failing to address the child sex abuse crisis but for their roles in concealing predator priests. While people have called for Rigali’s resignation since the issuance of the grand jury report, his departure is nevertheless abrupt and sooner than expected. 

Jul 14, 2011: Statement by Jim Keenan of Savage, MN.

Statement by Jim Keenan of Savage, MN.Today, I’m asking a judge to publicly release the names of 46 Minnesota Catholic priests whohave been accused of sexually victimizing children.My motivation can be summed up in two words: kids’ safety.Sitting in two diocesan headquarters, and in the Ramsey County Courthouse, are the names ofthese accused predator priests. As best we can tell, none of them are locked up. Most are likelyliving with or near unsuspecting families. Some may still be molesting kids. And this afternoon,one of them may be tutoring a young girl who’s struggling in school, or taking…

Jul 14, 2011: Ireland report on Catholic clergy sex abuse: deceit and deception continues

With every new revelation of Catholic Bishops conspiring with the Vatican to cover-up the sexual abuse of children by priests, my heart gets more and more heavy. Today, it is a report of an Irish government investigation that revealed Catholic Church officials in Ireland (including a Bishop who had previously served as personal secretary to three Popes) covered up the sexual abuse of children over many years—and as recently as 2009 blatantly disregarded the Irish Bishops’ policies that required reporting to law enforcement. Similarly, in January of this year, a Philadelphia Grand Jury grand …

Jul 14, 2011: Attorneys file motion seeking release of names of priests accused of sexual abuse

Attorneys file motion seeking release of names of priests accused of sexual abuse   Names of 46 priests in Archdiocese of St. Paul & Minneapolis and Winona Diocese are contained in Ramsey County court documents. Attorneys for a Savage, Minnesota, man who was sexually abused as a child by a Minnesota priest are asking a Ramsey County judge to unseal court records that contain the names of 46 priests accused of molesting children in the Archdiocese of Minneapolis and St. Paul and the Dioce…