It’s deceitful and insulting for Bishop Bransfield to claim he has “tangible proof” that the allegations against him are false. Bransfield has no sworn affidavits, notarized statements or even signed letters. He has two Catholic men who haven't faced real scrutiny or questioning and who say he never molested them.
No child molester molests every child he or she encounters. So if Bransfield finds two or two hundred Catholics who say he never molested them, that means virtually nothing.
And very few child molesters molest in front of witnesses. So if Bransfield finds two or two hundred Catholics who say they never saw him molest anyone, that means virtually nothing.
If you come to Missouri, we can show you hundreds of banks that Jesse James never robbed. That doesn't mean he wasn't a bank robber.
Again, these two Catholic men aren't anything close to "tangible proof.” He insults parents, parishioners and the public by claiming it is.
On the other hand, the allegations of alleged abuse by Bransfield were made in open court by men under oath. Those men were questioned by defense lawyers and prosecutors.
And look at motive here. Bransfield clearly has something to gain by denying the accusations. These two men who testified in court have nothing to gain by making the allegation.
Bransfield may be innocent. We simply don’t know. We do know, however, that he only hurts his own diocese and credibility by making what seem to be wild and exaggerated self-serving claims while refusing to give interviews and continuing to hide behind lawyers and public relations experts.
We also know only a fool would believe Cardinal Justin Rigali’s secretive handling of the accusations against Bransfield was an independent, thorough investigation.
And we know we are grateful that prosecutors are looking into the serious accusations against him.
Until that’s resolved, as we’ve said before, he should temporarily step down.