Brazil--‘Spotlight’ abuse scandal didn’t end in Boston. In South America, it’s still unfolding
By Will Carless, GlobalPost, March 2, 2016
RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil — After the hit movie “Spotlight,” the world might be wondering how many predator priests are still members of the clergy.
The Boston Globe’s investigation busted open a massive Catholic Church scandal in the United States 14 years ago. But in remote parts of South America, GlobalPost discovered that the church practice of reassigning child abusers to another parish, instead of defrocking them, has continued.
In 2014 and 2015, GlobalPost tracked down five priests who were accused of child sexual abuse in the United States and Europe, and who had transferred to parishes in South America where they continued to work in the church.
In the weeks after the publication of the multipart investigation, Fugitive Fathers, two of those priests were removed from their positions by the church. A third was removed after an earlier GlobalPost story and a fourth had already left the church when we tracked him to rural Ecuador.
We’ve just learned that the fifth priest . . .
50 State AG Call for Grand Jury
Any investigation must be:
- independent of and separate from the church
- must have subpoena powers and ability to compel testimony under oath
Anything short of these criteria is a sham and whitewash.
In addition, write letters to the editor, make phone calls to politicians as they can apply pressure to keep them responsive to our demand. We need to make efforts to ensure that they follow up on what the state is doing to investigate these crimes.
Note to Letter Writers
Use your own words and style of writing. Cut and paste from the templates as you wish. Include your experiences, whether as a survivor or as a member of the community. And relate your letter to the state you were abused in or state now living in.