Rome Diary, part 1

Monday
Off to the airport! We make the first flight easily and after a mad dash through the Atlanta airport we board the flight to Rome. We know we should sleep but are too excited and nervous! We land and catch the Leonardo Express into the city center. After a quick shower we are off to our first event. Great media coverage! 

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Sad tactics from the Archdiocese of Milwaukee

Jim Stang is a bankruptcy expert. He’s been involved in nine Catholic institutional bankruptcies-more than any other attorney. In 2010, he was named “Bankruptcy Lawyer of the Year.” He knows this stuff. 

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Watch Papal candidates deeds, not words

Watch out for papal candidates to start posturing on abuse. On the eve of the last conclave, then-Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger made one brief mention, in a highly publicized talk, of “filth” in the church.

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How do they say this stuff with a straight face?

“How does he keep a straight face?” That’s the question I often think about the public relations staffers who work for Catholic officials. 

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Setting Pope Benedict's record straight

Let’s get specific. What exactly DID Pope Benedict do about the committing and concealing of child sex crimes in the church? LA Times writer Mitchell Lansberg did a good job of summarizing the case made by Benedict’s defenders, who say that he:

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Reading about the Magdalene Laundries is hard

I can stomach a lot. But it's very hard for me to read about the Magdalene Laundries.

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Despite some claims, Donald Wuerl no better than other church officials

A journalist recently  suggested to me that DC Archbishop Donald Wuerl was "less dirty" on abuse than the other US prelates who will attende the papal conclave. "Not so fast," I replied.

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Diligent Journalists at Dallas Morning News

I read The Dallas Morning News series about abuse and cover up at Parkland Hospital at a bad time: while I was sitting in a hospital. (My 93 year old father-in-law is struggling.) It’s a very disturbing but very important series. I encourage you to read it.

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MEMO: To all potential whistleblowers

To: Every current/former church employee/member who suspects child sex abuse

Fr: Barbara Dorris

Subj: Heroism

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Failure to punish enablers gives predators more chances

Stories like these are indicative of the dangers that come when sex abusers have their crimes covered up. Joseph Piña was known to have abused kids in the 1970’s. He himself admitted this abuse. And yet because his crimes – grossly mischaracterized by Piña as “a relationship” – weren’t reported to police, Piña wasn’t made to register as a sex offender.

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