Accused serial predator priest Fr. Francis E. McGlynn has passed away, and despite repeated pledges to be “open and transparent” about clergy sex crimes, McGlynn’s supervisor Bishop Robert Finn apparently has told no one in the public or the parishes. We suspect he didn’t tell police or prosecutors either. Sadly, none of the hundreds of current or former KC diocesan employees saw fit to spread the news either.
Being honest about the death of a credibly accused predator priest matters for several reasons:
First, it’s comforting when victims know that their perpetrator can no longer hurt any other kids. But that doesn’t happen (or happens years later) if the predator’s death is kept secret.
Second, sometimes victims who are trapped in fear, shame and self-blame feel ‘liberated’ when their perpetrator dies. They are then more apt to speak up, get help, expose wrongdoing and start healing. But that doesn’t happen (or happens years later) if the predator’s death is kept secret.
Third, it’s important and reassuring when bishops keep their promises to be open about clergy sex crimes and cover ups. And it’s distressing – for victims, witnesses, whistleblowers and parishioners – when they do not.
So it’s callous and selfish for bishops to keep secret about the death of a pedophile priest.
According to “Tony’s Kansas City” blog, "McGlynn worked in at least five KC MO churches (St. Catherine’s, Guardian Angel, Holy Cross, St. Louis and the twice at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception) and in at least nine smaller towns (Sugar Creek, Conway, Savannah, Hamilton, Independence, Buckner, East Independence, St. Joseph and Parkville)." He was suspended when church officials deemed that some of the allegations against him were credible.
SNAP learned the news late yesterday from McGlynn’s lawyer, James R. Wyrsch (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Unlike most child molesting clerics, McGlynn sexually assaulted both girls and boys.