For immediate release: Monday December 16, 2013
Because he's being forced to do so by a judge and a determined victim, Winona’s Catholic bishop will release a list of proven, admitted and credibly accused predator priests soon. That's just the beginning.
Winona Catholic officials must now go further. The bishop should
-- turn over to law enforcement every shred of paper he has about these potentially dangerous men ,
-- put them in a remote, independent treatment center so they'll be kept away from kids, and
-- personally visit each parish where they worked, begging victims, witnesses and whistleblowers to call the police.
Even if a predator is deceased, these records should be turned over and this appeal must be made. Even though an offender may not be able to be prosecuted, those who ignored or concealed his or her crimes might be.
We are absolutely certain that there is more information about child molesting clerics in Winona that should be made public too. The bishop should voluntarily provide that to parents, parishioners and the public.
Let no one breathe a sigh of relief today. Let no one misunderstand what's happening in Winona. This is not reform. It's simply a bishop obeying a court order so he won't get in trouble.
Continued vigilance, skepticism and action are what’s needed. This is no time for complacency.