Sunday, May 06, 2012

Five Philadelphia Priests Ousted For Sex Abuse - NC Bishops Attack Gays

In yet another example of the utterly f*cked priorities of the Catholic bishops, as note in a prior post, the bishops of Charlotte and Raleigh, North Carolina, have mobilized to urge Catholics to vote in support of Amendment One to bar any legal recognition of sames sex couples in North Carolina.  When it comes to weeding out sexual predators, about the only thing the bishops do is drag their feet as illustrated by the cesspool situation in Philadelphia.  More than a year after a grand jury raised concerns about 37 accused priests, only eight of the cases are resolved with five priests being removed from ministry.  The other 29 remain thankfully have been suspended from ministry positions.  The conclusion is pretty obvious: depriving LGBT citizens of civil law rights is a high priority while protecting children and youths from would be child rapists is barely on the radar screen.  I ask you, which situation poses the greater harm?  These men are despicable and I hope exit polls on Tuesday reflect that a majority of Catholics vote against Amendment One.  Here are details from MSNBC on the morally bankrupt archdiocese of Philadelphia:

Five priests have been deemed "not suitable for ministry," the Catholic Church of Philadelphia announced Friday, in its first action since it suspended 26 priests after a January 2011 grand jury report detailed dozens of cases of sexual abuse by clergy.   Philadelphia Archbishop Chaput said three other clergy were reinstated to the ministry and one had died without a determination. 

SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, sent out a statement saying they're shocked that more than a year after a grand jury raised concerns about 37 accused priests, only eight of the cases are resolved, according to NBC Philadelphia.

SNAP had called on Chaput to personally visit every parish where priests with "unsubstantiated" allegations have worked and appeal to "victims, witnesses and whistleblowers to come forrward and shed light on the accusations, one way or another." Instead, the victims group said, "we predict he'll do the bare minimum and make no real outreach efforts."

In an interview with the Philadelphia Inquirer, a 51-year-old Philadelphia man said Feret [one of the removed priests] sexually assaulted him at least 100 times in the 1970s when he was a student at St. Timothy's school in Northeast Philadelphia. The abuse occurred in the church confessional, choir loft and other places, according to the victim, who the newspaper said chose to remain unnamed.  He told the paper that he once reported the abuse to a teacher and the school principal, but nothing happened.

After the 2011 suspensions of the priests, including Feret, the man contacted and was interviewed by police. News that the priest was being removed came as a huge relief, the man told the Inquirer.  "It's affected my whole life — in every way," he said.

The Catholic laity truly needs to rise up and demand that many bishops and cardinals be thrown from office.  If the Vatican and the Nazi Pope refuse, then the laity needs to "vote with their feet" and leave.  There are many wonderful ELCA and Episcopal parishes where they could find new church homes and cease being accessories to child abuse.

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