News Story of the Day

Mercy, charity lose all meaning amid deafening silence of nuns

SILENCE can build walls, not to protect but exclude. It is not always golden or calming – silence has the capacity to shatter peace and cause pain.

The four congregations who owned the Magdalene Laundries have declined either to contribute to a redress fund for survivors, or to explain why they won't. Their silence injures the mainly elderly victims of laundries, but it is also damaging to the nuns.

Newark Archdiocese stirs outrage after allowing accused molester to live in parish

Parishioners at St. Joseph Roman Catholic Church in Oradell first noticed the man in November. Each night, he slept in the rectory. Every morning, he attended Mass in the soaring brick church, across the street from the parish’s elementary school.

Survivors of Clergy Sexual Abuse Press Vatican for Answers

UNITED NATIONS, Jul 18 2013 (IPS) - Mary Caplan was just 14 years old, and her father was dying of cancer. When she went to the local priest in her hometown of Jersey City to ask for prayers and help, he sexually abused her, and went on to do so for the next two and a half years.

“[The priest] told me there was a way that I could have a miracle for my father,” Caplan told IPS. “If I did certain things to him, because he represented Jesus, my father would have a miracle.”

Catholic Church lobbies to avert sex abuse lawsuits

SB 131 would give some victims of sexual abuse more time to file suit against employers. But church officials argue the bill opens it up to suits that are too old to fight.

At the height of the clergy sex-abuse scandal in 2002, Catholic leaders stayed silent as California lawmakers passed a landmark bill that gave hundreds of accusers extra time to file civil lawsuits. The consequences were costly.

Bearing False Witness

You’d think lawyers suing a major religion that proclaims itself to be the guiding authority on moral behavior in every aspect of life would have the easiest job in the world.

Defendants wouldn’t even need to swear to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. They’ve already declared themselves the world’s foremost authorities on the truth.

Cardinal Timothy Dolan's smoking gun: Editorial

When New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan was in charge of the Catholic Church’s Milwaukee operations, he moved an enormous pot of the church’s cash — $57 million — into a trust fund for cemetery maintenance. Though the archdiocese was in the middle of a gigantic lawsuit over its priests’ sexual abuse of children, Dolan called it routine bookkeeping.

Now the New York Times reports the discovery of a smoking gun: documents including a letter from then-Archbishop Dolan to the Vatican, explaining how the transfer protected the church’s millions in the event it lost in court.

Church drags feet on punishing sex-assaulting priest, but not on protecting $57M

When then-Milwaukee Archbishop Timothy Dolan sounded the alarm on abusive priests, the Roman Catholic Church dragged its feet — but when Dolan needed to protect tens of millions of dollars, the church acted without hesitation, bombshell documents revealed Monday.

The Vatican took only a month to give Dolan the go-ahead in 2007 to move $57 million into a trust in anticipation of an avalanche of sexual abuse lawsuits against the Milwaukee Archdiocese, which Dolan ran from 2002 to 2009.

But it took six years for Dolan to get the Vatican to defrock an out-of-control priest who had been convicted of sexually assaulting a 17-year-old boy.

Clergy abuse case filled with silent bystanders

Long before Father Donald Patrick Roemer was charged with molesting a young boy, his behavior had been observed by churchgoers, fellow priests, school officials and police authorities. Yet none of them did anything.

They stared at each other, the detective and the priest. Kelli McIlvain found interrogating him somewhat surreal. She had been raised Catholic and taught that a man in a black clerical shirt and white collar was nothing less than an emissary of God.

New Minnesota law gives child sex abuse victims more time to sue

Hundreds of lawsuits with potential big payouts for victims of child sex abuse are expected after a new state law allows more time to sue accused perpetrators and the institutions where they worked.

The Catholic Church and other religious groups stand to be hit hardest under the Child Victims Act, according to victims rights advocates, who call the measure the nation’s most expansive such law.

Whistleblower Clohessy: "Nothing Can Erase the Horror"

US Star Whistle-Blower Clohessy on Sexual Abuse and the Difficulty of Coming to Terms

(This is the English translation of an article that appeared Sunday in the Kurier in Vienna)

He sat on the couch with US talkshow star Oprah Winfrey, he was a guest on Good Morning America, and even the The New York Times Magazine dedicated an extensive reportage to him. This man who has received so much media attention in the United States in recent years is David Clohessy, the spokesman of the NGO SNAP (see Info), which has taken up the cause of victims of sexual abuses in the church. He is the star among the investigators of sexual abuse in the USA.

SNAP Network is a GuideStar Gold Participant