Posts Tagged roman catholic church

Catholic Church unlikely to change, abuse review head Elizabeth Proust says / ABC News Australia

“I don’t see any sign that the lessons have been truly learned to the point where the institution of the Church is being questioned by those who’ve got the ability to change it,” she (Elizabeth Proust, head of the Australian Catholic Church’s Truth, Justice and Healing Council) said. (ABC News Australia)

The senior Australian businesswoman appointed to supervise the Catholic Church’s response to the sexual abuse crisis says she is ‘pessimistic’ about the Church’s willingness to reform.

“Elizabeth Proust, the head of the Church’s own Truth, Justice and Healing Council, fears the institution will emerge from the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse only ‘partially cleansed and unreconstructed.’

“‘I fear there’s a view that once the royal commission reports, and the publicity around what will be a fairly dire report all dies down, that life will go back to what it was,’ Ms Proust told The Religion and Ethics Report.

“‘I hope I’m wrong. I’d like to think that the possibility for real transformation of the Church exists, but it’s an institution that’s been very slow to change on a whole range of issues.'”

By Andrew West, ABC News Australia — Read more …

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Commission in Australia says priests should report abuse heard in confession / Cruxnow.com

A government commission in Australia on Monday (Aug. 14) said Catholic priests must violate the seal of confession if they hear about the sexual abuse of children. (Cruxnow.com)

Australia’s Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse says the right to practice one’s religious beliefs ‘must accommodate civil society’s obligation to provide for the safety of all and, in particular, children’s safety from sexual abuse.’ Archbishop Denis Hart of Melbourne, the president of the Australian Catholic Bishops’ Conference, said in a statement the inviolability of the seal of confession is a ‘fundamental part of the freedom of religion.’”

By Cruxnow.com Staff — Read more …

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In predominantly Catholic Guam, clergy sex abuse lawsuits near 100 mark / Catholic News Agency

The large number of lawsuits is in part due to the actions of lawmakers in September 2016, when they retroactively eliminated the statute of limitations for civil lawsuits involving child sexual abuse. The criminal statute of limitations, which cannot be applied retroactively, was lifted in 2011. (Catholic News Agency)

“Nearly 100 lawsuits have accused Catholic clergy in Guam of sex abuse over a 50 year timespan, alleging assault, manipulation and intimidation of the alleged victims, according to a new report.

“The accused include Archbishop Anthony Apuron, 13 Guam priests, a Catholic schoolteacher, a Catholic school janitor and a Boy Scout leader. The Archdiocese of Agana is a defendant in 96 lawsuits, which concern claims from 1955 to 1994, reports the USA Today Network’s Pacific Daily News.

“‘We care deeply about every person who steps forward and we look forward to a full resolution of all cases,’ the archdiocese said July 28, saying it takes all allegations ‘very seriously.'”

“The large number of lawsuits is in part due to the actions of lawmakers in September 2016, when they retroactively eliminated the statute of limitations for civil lawsuits involving child sexual abuse. The criminal statute of limitations, which cannot be applied retroactively, was lifted in 2011.”

By Catholic News Agency — Read more …

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Ex-Catholic bishop of Phoenix accused of sex abuse of boy / Associated Press in The New York Times

The bishop acknowledged in a 2003 immunity deal that he let church employees accused of sex abuse continue to have contact with children. Weeks after the deal, O’Brien resigned as bishop after he was arrested in the hit-and-run death of a pedestrian. (Associated Press in The New York Times)

A former bishop who led the Roman Catholic church in metro Phoenix during a worldwide child sexual abuse scandal has been accused of molesting a young boy 35 years ago.

“Retired Bishop Thomas O’Brien is accused in a lawsuit of sexually abusing the boy on several occasions at parishes in Phoenix and Goodyear from 1977 to 1982. The Diocese of Phoenix says O’Brien denies the allegation.

“O’Brien, now 81, led the diocese in Phoenix as it became embroiled in a global scandal that rocked the Catholic church after allegations surfaced in Boston about pedophile priests going unpunished.

“The bishop acknowledged in a 2003 immunity deal that he let church employees accused of sex abuse continue to have contact with children. Weeks after the deal, O’Brien resigned as bishop after he was arrested in the hit-and-run death of a pedestrian.

“O’Brien’s accuser says the clergyman sexually abused him when he was a child and he had suppressed his memories of it, said Tim Hale, his lawyer.”

By Associated Press in The New York Times — Read more …

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German abuse report ‘shocking’ and not the end, Church expert says / Cruxnow.com

“I’m sad to say, but from all I see on other continents, I’m quite sure we are going to encounter more cases like this. I [especially] anticipate it in other parts of the world where this issue has not been talked about, either in the Church or in society at large,” said German Jesuit Father Hans Zollner. (Cruxnow.com)

A recent German report documenting hundreds of cases of physical and sexual abuse at a famed boys choir in Regensburg, led for part of the seventy-year span covered in the report by Pope Benedict XVI’s brother, was “shocking,” according to one of the Church’s leading experts on child abuse – and what’s worse, he warns, the story hardly ends there.

“‘I’m sad to say, but from all I see on other continents, I’m quite sure we are going to encounter more cases like this. I [especially] anticipate it in other parts of the world where this issue has not been talked about, either in the Church or in society at large,’ said German Jesuit Father Hans Zollner.

“‘This topic is starting to surface now in countries like India, where up until five years ago one heard nothing about this.  Yet today the topic is openly discussed  in the media again and again, both regarding [cases] in the Church and in society at large,’ he said.

“Zollner runs the Center for Child Protection at Rome’s Jesuit-sponsored Gregorian University, and is also a member of Pope Francis’s Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors.”

By Ines San Martin, Cruxnow.com — Read more …

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A predator walks while his protectors never had to stand / The Boston Globe

“It should surprise no one that Shanley’s victims and their lawyers think he got off easy, and that he remains a sexually dangerous person, despite being 86 and having been deemed not sexually dangerous by two doctors retained by Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan.”

It seems achingly unfair that Joe Crowley is dead and Paul Shanley is about to go free.

“Shanley, a predator in a Roman collar, is wrapping up a 12-year sentence for raping a Sunday school student in the early 1980s.

“Some have the audacity to suggest that Shanley was overpunished, that he got more time in prison than he deserved because he eluded justice for his multitude of other crimes on technical grounds.

“Fine. So Paul Shanley is the O.J. Simpson of the clergy sexual abuse scandal. It is what it is.

“The reality is that Paul Shanley ruined countless lives, including Joe Crowley’s, and he was never held accountable or punished for that. Shanley got off easy, if you ask me. The bigger scandal is that so many of his fellow predators, and their supervisors, never saw the inside of a prison cell.”

By Kevin Cullen, The Boston Globe — Read more …

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A First: Cardinal Pell Appears in Australian Court on Sexual Charges / The New York Times

“There must be perpetrators out there who would be looking at this thinking if a cardinal can be charged, anyone can be,” (clergy abuse survivor) Mr. (Andrew) Collins said. “It gives survivors faith in the system again.” (The New York Times)

Cardinal George Pell, one of Pope Francis’ top advisers, made his first court appearance in Australia on Wednesday (Jul. 26) after becoming the highest-ranking Roman Catholic prelate to be formally charged with sexual offenses.

“Cardinal Pell, 76, was flanked by police officers as he entered Melbourne Magistrates’ Court through a thicket of camera crews, reporters and photographers.

“He said nothing during the filing hearing, which lasted about six minutes.

“One of the cardinal’s lawyers, Robert Richter, told the court that his client would plead not guilty to all charges and vehemently maintained his innocence. Magistrate Duncan Reynolds set the next court proceeding for Oct. 6.

“Journalists from around the world started lining up outside the court as early as 5 a.m. to get a seat at the hearing, which was purely administrative in nature and allowed the magistrate to set dates for future hearings.”

By Jacqueline Williams, The New York Times — Read more …

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