The Message from the US Bishops Meeting in Baltimore is Clear: US DOJ and State AG’s must intensify their investigations of bishops
November 14, 2018. The US bishops came to Baltimore this week assuring Catholics and the public that they would act with “intense urgency” to implement comprehensive and tough reforms to hold themselves accountable for the decades long cover up of child sex crimes across the United States. Not only are they leaving Baltimore without implementing one concrete change, this afternoon they even voted down a feeble amendment to send to Pope Francis a short message “suggesting” that he should release the documents concerning Archbishop Theodore McCarrick. McCarrick, once a Cardinal, had abused seminarians for decades and at least two minors. His conduct was known about by several of his brother bishops and senior Vatican officials. It is the most egregious case of cover up yet revealed in the American church. The bishop's response to the McCarrick case, the Pennsylvania Grand Jury Report, and other revelations that have been [...]
November 14, 2018. President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, began the week by announcing that per the Vatican, no vote would be taken on measures to reform the process of the investigation of allegations of sexual misconduct against bishops or the bishops’ negligence in responding to allegations. The bishops are expected today to present concrete working proposals that describe how they intend to repair their irrevocably damaged credibility, now considerably worsened by their inaction so far this week. U.S. bishops have demonstrated that they cannot act to protect U.S. children and hold themselves accountable to U.S. laws. Both the reporting system and the Special Commission described in yesterday’s meeting are accountable to no one but the Vatican. The results of the investigations will not be delivered to U.S. law enforcement or made available to the public but rather only to the Vatican embassy, [...]
November 13, 2018. At this morning’s USCCB Assembly, Vice President Most Reverend José H. Gomez unveiled a third party reporting system for clergy sex abuse claims that had been approved by a leadership committee in September, telling the conference it was not an actionable item requiring their vote. He went on to describe the system - a toll-free number and internet link intended to gather and transmit claims of sexual abuse of minors, sexual harassment and misconduct with adults, and mishandling of complaints by bishops and cardinals. It was made clear that this system would not investigate the claims, but simply gather information. The investigations will be conducted by a special commission. Saying “some people think you should go to the Pope directly, but might not know how to reach him,” Gomez shrugged as the audience of bishops burst into laughter, a gesture that could be described as insensitive at [...]
November 12, 2018. President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) Cardinal Daniel DiNardo opened the general assembly this morning with an announcement that per order of the Holy See, no vote would be taken on procedural measures posed to stem the growing clergy sex abuse and cover-up scandal. His announcement was followed by a message from the Apostolic Nuncio to the United States, Cardinal Christophe Pierre. In his message the Cardinal expressed that “the only way of reforming the Church is to suffer for her. The only way of reforming the visible Church is to suffer for the invisible Church.” As a result of inaction on the part of church leaders, including 130 living U.S. bishops who have been found to have covered up clergy abuse, the invisible church of child survivors of clergy sex abuse have suffered greatly. Cardinal Pierre's message made almost no mention of the bishops' [...]
RNS photo by Jack Jenkins. November 11, 2018. This weekend, the Washington Post reported on several proposals from the United States Conference on Catholic Bishops (USCCB) to curb the child sex abuse and cover-up scandal that has gained prominence in international press. The bishops’ early proposals make no mention of compliance with the October 9th letter from the Department of Justice mandating that all documents related to clergy sex abuse by every American bishop must be “preserved in their current format and condition” by dioceses. Evidence shows that some bishops have shredded criminal evidence of abuse in the past, including several who will be attending the conference. Last week, survivors wrote to U.S. Ambassador to the Vatican, Callista Gingrich, demanding her intervention with Pope Francis urging him to order the bishops to comply with the DOJ directive. Under siege by Catholics and the public, bishops are clearly alarmed that outside investigations will expose [...]
Gingrich must get Vatican assurances that bishops will comply with DOJ directive to not destroy abuse files, groups says.
Just days before American bishops meet, survivors urging U.S. Ambassador to intervene with Pope Francis. Also seeking public release of all Vatican and U.S. State Department correspondences on clergy abuse. U.S victims and advocates requesting meeting with Gingrich. Link to ECA 11-5-18 letter to U.S. Ambassador to the Holy See. A global group of prominent clergy abuse survivors and human rights activists today is urging the United States ambassador to the Vatican, Callista Gingrich, to publicly address the sexual abuse crisis and intervene with Pope Francis on behalf of all U.S. victims of abusive priests. The group is also requesting all correspondences concerning the United States and the Vatican related to sexual abuse by clergy, including those by former Apostolic Nuncio to the U.S., Archbishop Carlo Vigano. Vigano publicly accused Pope Francis of covering up for sexual abuse by former cardinal and Washington D.C. Archbishop Theodore McCarrick. Francis has not [...]