Illinois Catholic Church official rips handling of sex abuse cases
"At times it seems that protecting the institution is a higher goal than caring for victims" said Deacon Robert Sondag. "Bishops, you are ordained to lead the church. Years of prolonged mishandling of sexual abuse victims continues to plague the Catholic church. The checks and balances put in place in 2002 through the Dallas charter have been compromised" Deacon Sondag said.
Sondag, recently a diocesan chancellor as well, was speaking in Baltimore where the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops wrapped up its fall meeting.
"We are here today to call for a deeper reckoning and transparent reporting of the past and present mishandling of victims and their perpetrators" he said. "This can only be accomplished by the use of a truly independent auditor beholden to the good of the public, not to the Catholic Church as a client."
His call for independent, outside administration of the church crisis is unusual for two reasons: it comes from a current diocesan employee and it was unfurled at the announcement of a new lawsuit against the bishop's conference by six alleged victims of priest sexual abuse. The lawsuit alleges that church officials covered up the crimes of predator priests.
"We are taking the opportunity to do everything we can together to protect the kids" said Jeffrey Anderson, a Minnesota atto...