When New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan was in charge of the Catholic Church’s Milwaukee operations, he moved an enormous pot of the church’s cash — $57 million — into a trust fund for cemetery maintenance. Though the archdiocese was in the middle of a gigantic lawsuit over its priests’ sexual abuse of children, Dolan called it routine bookkeeping.
Now the New York Times reports the discovery of a smoking gun: documents including a letter from then-Archbishop Dolan to the Vatican, explaining how the transfer protected the church’s millions in the event it lost in court.
Damning evidence, in 14 words: “I foresee an improved protection of these funds from any legal claim and liability.”
Few believed Dolan then, when he insisted the money was meant to care for Catholic cemeteries. Doubt only grew when the archdiocese declared bankruptcy to shield its riches...