For immediate release: Wednesday, Oct. 16, 2013
Statement by Bob Schwiderski of Wayzata, Minnesota SNAP director (952 471 3422, firstname.lastname@example.org)
A police report reveals that yet another Twin Cities priest who suspected child sex abuse refused to call the police and tried to handle it quietly and “in-house.”
He’s at St. Thomas University. He’s the uncle of accused predator Fr. Michael Keating. And when he suspected that his nephew, Fr. Keating, might be molesting a girl, he arranged a meeting between the suspected predator and his prey.
Shame on this priest.
This happened, according to the police report, in 2005, three years after America’s bishops adopted an allegedly binding national policy requiring clerics to promptly call police when child sex crimes were suspected.
This St. Thomas priest can’t “un-do” his unbelievably callous and hurtful deed. But he can – and should – speak up now.
Obviously, Fr. Keating is a popular, charming and charismatic cleric. And at this point, he formally faces only one accuser (thought the police report mentions an Italian girl who reportedly was also abused by Keating.)
So there will be some (perhaps many) who will assume Fr. Keating is innocent. Since Fr. Keating is not in jail, and since Archbishop John Nienstedt refuses to house and monitor his proven, admitted and credibly accused child molesting clerics, Fr. Keating still has access to kids.
So for the sake of children’s safety, this St. Thomas priest should speak up now. He should publicly explain what made him suspicious that Fr. Keating was abusing a girl. And he should explain why he didn’t call the police.