2011 August

Aug 30, 2011: Settlement of sex abuse case requires release of archdiocese files

For more than a quarter of a century, Angel Santiago has suffered from a recurring nightmare. “Father [Joseph] Fitzharris chasing me in my dreams,” the 44-year-old Bensenville man said. On Monday, Santiago joined his attorneys to announce that a settlement has been reached with the Archdiocese of Chicago for sexual abuse Santiago suffered as a boy at the hands of his family’s priest, Fitzharris. Attorneys with the case declined to specify the monetary amount of the settlement. The archdiocese confirmed the settlement. “The settlements announced [Monday] confirm that this process works, and…

Aug 25, 2011: Boston church releases list of accused priests

BOSTON — Cardinal Sean O’Malley on Thursday released a long-awaited list of priests accused of child sex abuse in Boston in the last 60 years, but he opted not to include certain priests, including ones who died without being publicly charged. In a letter, O’Malley said 248 of Boston’s priests and two deacons have been accused of child sex abuse since 1950. But he said he decided against releasing 91 of the names, including the deceased priests who weren’t publicly accused; those working in Boston under religious orders or other…

Aug 25, 2011: The Crusader

Jeff Anderson’s office might look like a museum, with its stained glass windows and vintage pulpit chairs. But the firm’s harried staff hardly resembles the hushed figures of the typical arts organization. Here, nobody pauses to admire the antiquities. They only stop to shout as Anderson speeds through. “Nice article in The Philadelphia Inquirer this morning,” bellows John Wodele, a publicist on contract with Jeff Anderson & Associates. Little surprise there. Anderson, the world’s pre-eminent counsel for survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic clergy, is a lightning rod for media coverage…

Aug 22, 2011: Attorney: Vatican Didn’t Turn Over All Documents

An attorney for a man who claims he was sexually abused by an Oregon priest in the 1960s said Monday that the Vatican failed to produce all court-ordered documents in the case, and that papers it did turn over show how the Vatican exercises firm control over the placement and removal of offending priests. Both claims were quickly disputed by a church lawyer who said the Vatican gave Minnesota-based attorney Jeffrey Anderson all its documents pertaining to the late Rev. Andrew Ronan.

Aug 18, 2011: Ireland Prime Minister calls on Vatican to come up with $2 billion for abuse survivors

Ireland has been abuzz with news in the last few weeks. First, after sharply denouncing the Vatican’s response to clergy sexual abuse in Ireland, Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny is now calling on the Vatican for money. In support of a compensation bill that would create a fund to compensate victims of child sexual abuse, many of whom were abused in Catholic schools or homes, Kenny is asking the Vatican to contribute close to $2 billion.