High school coach arrested after missing teens found in his Burnsville home

MINNESOTA
Pioneer Press

By Sarah Horner
shorner@pioneerpress.com
POSTED: 09/30/2014

A part-time high school coach is in custody after two missing teens were found in his Burnsville home.

The 13-year-old neighbors from Andover were reported missing Monday around 7:45 p.m. after engaging in electronic conversations with unknown men online.

Using “digital forensic methods,” detectives tracked the girls to Casey Lee Chinn’s residence on the 2400 block of Hayes Court in Burnsville, according to the Anoka County sheriff’s office.

They were found unharmed inside the single family home Tuesday afternoon. Chinn, 23, was arrested at the scene on suspicion of solicitation.

He has not been charged.

“They are as well as can be expected,” Cmdr. Paul Sommer said of the girls. “I don’t think they understand the gravity of what has taken place.”

Chinn is a part-time volleyball coach for Cristo Rey Jesuit High School in Minneapolis, according to Annemarie Hansen, communications director for the school.

He began his employment there earlier this month and has since been placed on leave per school procedure.

A background check was run before hiring him, Hansen reported. She added that Chinn also completed the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis’s mandatory training “Virtus: Protecting God’s Children” in 2010.

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Molest victim makes stand at Fordham against Jesuit priests

NEW YORK
New York Daily News

BY DENIS SLATTERY
Tuesday, September 30, 2014

A Connecticut screenwriter chose the Bronx as the location to make a statement against sexual abuse on Tuesday.

Neal Gumpel stood on the Southern Blvd. median outside the gates of Fordham University’s Rose Hill campus, holding a sign that read “Shame on Jesuits” as passing motorists honked and hollered in support.

Gumpel says he was sexually abused by a Jesuit priest at the Maine Maritime Academy in Castine, Maine, in 1973. The protesters chose Fordham because the priest, the Rev. Roy Drake, once worked for the Bronx Jesuit university.

“I just want justice,” Gumpel said, noting the Jesuit priesthood has refused to acknowledge his claims. “I just want them to admit what happened and provide counseling and compensation of some sort.”

Gumpel, 57, said he has suffered through drug abuse and psychological damage as a result of being molested as a child.

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Governor signs bevy of bills into law, vetoes three dozen others

CALIFORNIA
Mercury News

By Jessica Calefati
jcalefati@bayareanewsgroup.com

SACRAMENTO — With a few hours to go until a midnight deadline to take action on pending legislation, Gov. Jerry Brown this afternoon signed a bevy of bills while vetoeing three dozen others, including several measures introduced in the wake of corruption scandals that would have changed the state’s Political Reform Act. …

The governor also vetoed a bill sponsored by Sen. Jim Beall, D-San Jose, that would have extended the statute of limitations for future victims of childhood sexual abuse from age 26 to age 40, noting in his veto message that he believes statutes of limitations exist as a matter of fairness. Last year, Brown wrote an unusually long, detailed veto message in response to a similar bill that would have made changes to the statute of limitations for past victims of childhood sexual abuse.

“There comes a time when an individual or organization should be secure in the reasonable expectation that past acts are indeed in the past and not subject to further lawsuits,” Brown wrote. “With the passage of time, evidence may be lost or disposed of, memories fade and witnesses move away or die.”

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Jerry Brown vetoes childhood sex-abuse lawsuit bill

CALIFORNIA
Sacramento Bee

By Jim Miller
jmiller@sacbee.com
Published: Tuesday, Sep. 30, 2014

For the second year, Gov. Jerry Brown vetoed legislation Tuesday to give victims more time to seek civil damages against third parties in childhood sex abuse cases – typically private or public employers of the alleged perpetrators.

The Democratic governor, though, signed separate legislation increasing the criminal statute of limitations against perpetrators in such cases.

State Sen. Jim Beall, D-San Jose, the author of both measures, has said the civil damages bill, Senate Bill 924, responded to Brown’s lengthy veto of last year’s Senate Bill 131. Supporters said that allowing childhood victims to seek damages up to the age of 40, instead of the current 26 years old, would correct laws adopted in 1990, 1998 and 2002.

“Changing the law allows more adult survivors of childhood sex abuse to gain a measure of justice by pursing civil damages against their assailants,’’ Beall said in a statement after the Legislature sent the bill to Brown last month. The Catholic Church and nonprofit organizations led opposition to the measure, contending that it “pays lip service to the interests of victims of abuse” while exempting state employees from its provisions. The measure passed the Legislature largely along party lines.

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Jehovah’s Witness congregation sued for alleged child abuse

VERMONT
WPTZ

BURLINGTON, Vt. —Two women filed lawsuits Tuesday in state and federal courts alleging they were sexually abused as youngsters by an authority figure at their Jehovah’s Witness congregation in Bellows Falls in he mid-1990s, and that church elders did nothing to stop him.

The litigation, announced in Burlington, involves sisters Miranda and Annessa Lewis.

Miranda Lewis, now 23, appeared with her mother, Marina, and lawyers Irwin Zalkin and Jerome O’Neill at a news conference to discuss the case.

She said she was 4 years old when she was first molested and fondled by Norton True, a “ministerial servant” in the congregation. Zalkin said that position is one approved by church elders.

She said her sister, Annessa, who now lives in Texas, was similarly assaulted by True.

“The Jehovah’s Witnesses have a policy – a policy that is grounded in a code of silence,” Zalkin said, describing a secretive organization that regards protecting its own image as paramount to protecting its children.

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Bishop Finn in Kansas City: Not quite up to date?

UNITED STATES
Catholic Culture

By Dr. Jeff Mirus | Sep 30, 2014

Frankly, I was among the most vigorous supporters of Bishop Robert Finn when he took over the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph in May of 2005. It did not take this “Opus Dei” bishop long to start making the kinds of changes which are so critical to both Catholic renewal and the New Evangelization. I did not hesitate to provide a long list of reasons to praise Bishop Finn after his first year in a piece called Everything’s Up To Date in Kansas City. And when I rerview that commentary today, I am still struck by how promising Finn’s leadership looked.

Unfortunately, Bishop Finn was somewhat tangentially caught in the sex abuse scandal in 2011 when he failed to report to civil authorities a priest who had child pornography on his computer. Given the rather fuzzy circumstances of Finn’s failure, I did not regard it as extremely significant, except in the sense that a failure to be absolutely on top of these things in today’s Church really does raise questions of competence. Finn’s failure in this regard inevitably called his leadership into question, even more when he granted at least one jurisdiction the right to regularly review the diocese’s handling of sex abuse in return for dropping charges against him. To me, letting civil government into Church administration is the last thing a bishop should ever do.

Now the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph has been the subject of an Apostolic Visitation to determine Bishop Finn’s fitness for leadership. The news was broken (not surprisingly) by the National Catholic Reporter, a newspaper whose middle name is an oxymoron. But it is interesting that the primary question asked by Archbishop Terrence Prendergast of Ottawa—the Apostolic Visitor—did not involve Finn’s handling of sexual abuse. The primary question was this: “Do you think he is fit to be a leader?”

And therein lies a tale.

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U-D Jesuit grad angry over priest videotaping scandal

MICHIGAN
Detroit Free Press

Tresa Baldas, Detroit Free Press September 30, 2014

For years, Mike Baitinger knew Father Kurtz as a friendly, kind and trusted man.

Kurtz was his confirmation sponsor and very involved in his hockey team at University of Detroit Jesuit High School in Detroit. Kurtz led the team prayers.

On Monday night, more than a decade after Baitinger’s high school graduation, that image was shattered.

Baitinger, now 30, learned in a Free Press article that his former confirmation and trusted school priest had been charged with child pornography crimes. Richard James Kurtz, 69, a Jesuit priest and former chemistry teacher at U-D Jesuit, is accused of videotaping hockey players while they changed in the locker room during the 1998-99 season.

Baitinger was a freshman that year. He played hockey. His mind went numb.

“First it was shock. And the second emotion was anger,” Baitinger said. “I was angry that this could happen, angry that he was doing this.”

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Cardinal Kasper defends proposal, sees ‘fundamentalism’ in critics

UNITED STATES
Catholic Culture

Cardinal Walter Kasper continued to defend his proposal to allow Communion for some divorced and remarried Catholics, and to assail critics of that proposal, in a new interview.

The German cardinal said that his critics are fearful that “if you change one point, all would collapse.” Dismissing such fears of a “domino effect,” he said that his critics were displaying “a theological fundamentalism which is not Catholic.”

In an interview with the American Jesuit magazine America and the Argentine daily La Nacion, Cardinal Kasper stressed that his proposal would change the discipline of the Church, but not the doctrine.

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US Cardinal Raymond Burke mounts defense …

UNITED STATES
Washingtion Post

US Cardinal Raymond Burke mounts defense on Catholic teaching on divorce

By David Gibson | Religion News Service September 30

Public disagreements over whether the Roman Catholic Church can change its teachings on Communion for remarried Catholics are growing sharper on the eve of a major Vatican summit, with conservatives led by U.S. Cardinal Raymond Burke making another push against loosening the rules.

In a conference call with reporters on Tuesday (Sept. 30), Burke, who currently heads the Vatican’s high court, singled out the leading proponent of reforms, German Cardinal Walter Kasper, and his claims that critics of his proposals are really attacking Pope Francis.

Kasper has said that the pope supports his efforts to find ways to fully reintegrate divorced and remarried Catholics into church life. The proposals have become a prime focus of the upcoming Vatican meeting, called a synod, which will convene on Sunday for two weeks to consider changes in family life in the modern world.

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Bishop Finn’s spokesman confirms Vatican visitation

KANSAS CITY (MO)
Catholic News Agency

By Kevin J. Jones

Kansas City, Mo., Sep 30, 2014 / 02:59 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- The Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph has confirmed that an archbishop has held a visitation on behalf of the Vatican and met with Bishop Robert Finn, but cannot talk about the reasons for the visit.

Jack Smith, communications director for the diocese, confirmed that Archbishop Terrence Prendergast of Ottawa visited the diocese on behalf of the Congregation for Bishops and met with Bishop Finn.

“Bishop Finn was informed in advance by the nuncio of the visit and Bishop Finn was in Kansas City when it occurred,” Smith told CNA Sept. 30. “He cooperated with the process and was obligated by the terms of the visitation not to speak of it to anyone, including his senior staff and communications director.”

Smith said the same obligation not to speak “presumably, was conveyed to all who were interviewed.”

“We do not know what, if anything, will proceed following the visit. Since the process and visit are supposed to be secret, we cannot comment further.”

Smith said Bishop Finn is presently in Rome on a pilgrimage and for the diaconate ordination of some of the diocese’s seminarians.

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Catholic priest in Puerto Rico accused of abuse

PUERTO RICO
Seattle PI

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — A Roman Catholic priest in a small town on the west coast of Puerto Rico is being investigated for improper conduct with a minor and has been suspended from his duties, church and government officials said Tuesday.

The Rev. Floyd McCoy was provisionally suspended from serving as a priest in the town of Hormigueros pending the outcome of the investigation, said the Rev. Edgardo Acosta Ocasio, a spokesman for the Diocese of Mayaguez.

Parishioners were told he was accused of “improper conduct with a minor,” in a letter issued Sunday by the bishop of the diocese, Alvaro Corrada del Rio, who did not disclose details of the allegations against McCoy.

Puerto Rico Justice Department spokeswoman Amber Lee Velez said there is a criminal investigation under way but also did not give details.

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Diocese to help woman in Cleary claims

IRELAND
Irish Independent

Geraldine Gittens
Published 30/09/2014

A KEY Catholic Archdiocese has pledged to provide assistance to an American woman who claims to be Fr Michael Cleary’s third child.

Felicia Irwin (29) revealed in the Irish Independent at the weekend that she is attempting to find out if she is his biological child.

A spokesperson for the Archdiocese of Dublin yesterday said: “If the Diocese can be of help it will assist where it can.”

However she said: “The Diocese hasn’t received any information on this so far, other than what has been reported [in the media].”

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ARCHBISHOP MSUSA ORDERS SUSPENDED BLANTYRE PRIEST TO BE BURIED AT CATHEDRAL CEMETERY

MALAWI
Maravi Post

BLANTYRE, Sept 30: A Catholic priest in Blantyre, who was suspended in 2010 after it was discovered he had broken his celibacy and fathered two children with a Mulanje woman, was buried with a full solemn and his remains interred at the Limbe Cathedral cemetery before two bishops, scores of priests, nuns and the faithful on the orders of Archbishop Thomas Msusa.

Tasiano Kunkeyani, 32, died on Monday after a short illness at Mlambe Hospital in Lunzu.
He had been teaching at Matindi private secondary school after he quit priesthood following his love scandal.

But before he was admitted to hospital, the Archbishop had ordered that the ex-priest be housed at St. James home within Limbe Cathedral grounds, where sick priests and retired priests stay.

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Pope launches alarm, tells Vatican security force to be ‘gossip police’

VATICAN CITY
National Catholic Reporter

Carol Glatz Catholic News Service | Sep. 30, 2014 The Francis Chronicles

VATICAN CITY The biggest threat facing the Vatican isn’t a bomb or bullet from the outside, but the insidious work of mischief-makers within, who plant discord and resentment, Pope Francis told the Vatican’s security force.

“There are bombs in here, very dangerous bombs in here,” he told security personnel. “Please, keep your eyes open, because in the darkness of so many wicked lives, the enemy has sown weeds,” he said in his homily.

To help celebrate the Vatican security service’s patron saint, St. Michael the archangel, the pope celebrated Mass for security personnel Sept. 27 in the chapel of the office governing Vatican City State. The Vatican newspaper, L’Osservatore Romano, published excerpts from the homily Monday, the feast of the archangels Michael, Gabriel and Raphael.

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Yell County Priest Removed From Church After Sexual Misconduct Accusations

ARKANSAS
KFSM

SEPTEMBER 30, 2014, BY CURT LANNING

YELL COUNTY (KFSM) – A Yell County priest has been removed from his ministry in multiple churches after he was accused of sexual misconduct, according to a news release from Bishop Anthony Taylor of Little Rock.

On Sept. 21, Rev. James Melnick was relieved of his responsibilities as the pastor of St. Augustine Church in Dardanelle, St. Andrew Church in Danville and associate pastor for Hispanic ministry in St. John Church in Russellville. He was also suspended from all active ministry, the release states.

In the release, Taylor said that the Diocese of Little Rock received “credible allegations of sexual misconduct against Father Melnick” on Sept. 20.

Officials of the diocese interviewed some of Melnick’s alleged victims and verified multiple acts of sexual misconduct with multiple adult victims during a period of less than a year, according to the release.

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More than 200 boys suffered harrowing abuse in Co Down home, inquiry told

NORTHERN IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

BY DEBORAH MCALEESE – 30 SEPTEMBER 2014

More than 200 young boys are alleged to have suffered “harrowing” sexual and physical abuse at a children’s home in Co Down run by the Christian Brothers.

The abuse that children living at Rubane House in Kircubbin were subjected to was equal to, if not worse than, abuse at Kincora Boys’ Home – the subject of a high-profile child abuse scandal in the 1980s – the Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry has heard.

Fifty-five victims are to give evidence to the inquiry’s third module of public hearings, which opened at Banbridge courthouse yesterday and will focus on the former De La Salle Boys’ Home, Rubane House, from 1950 to 1985.

The abuse they allege to have suffered includes rape, sexual abuse and corporal punishment so severe that some children required hospital treatment.

Lawyer to the inquiry, Joseph Aiken, warned that the victims’ evidence will be “extremely harrowing and difficult to hear”.

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Abuse investigation ‘best dropped’

NORTHERN IRELAND
Yahoo! News

A senior official at a Catholic order investigating the first sexual abuse allegations at a Northern Ireland children’s home said the matter was best forgotten about, a public inquiry heard.

An overseer De La Salle brother at Rubane House in Co Down, now dead, faced claims first raised by a group of four boys who confided about their experiences to a priest in 1958. The number complaining eventually grew to nine, the Historical Institutional Abuse (HIA) inquiry was told.

The alleged victims said their alleged abuser told them he was taking the place of their parents and was entitled to touch them.

Some boys accused him of making them strip and rubbing ointment for scabies on him. Abuse allegedly happened at the home and in a car.

A letter from the senior brother in the order to the alleged abuser concluded that no reference was to be made at any time to his probe into the claims.

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CONNECTICUT LAW UNFAIRLY BURDENS CHURCH

CONNECTICUT
Catholic League

Bill Donohue defends the Archdiocese of Hartford:

* Jacob Doe claims he was molested in the early 1980s by a priest, Father Ivan Ferguson, who died in 2002.
* Doe had until 1988 to file a lawsuit, but he never did.
* In 1991, the statute of limitations was amended to 17 years.
* Doe had until 2003 to file a lawsuit, but he never did.
* In 2002 the statute of limitations for civil cases was extended to 30 years; it was made retroactive.
* In 2005, the Archdiocese of Hartford paid $22 million in a settlement with 43 people who claim they were molested by Fr. Ferguson and other priests dating back to the 1960s. Doe was not one of the parties that sued.
* Doe files a lawsuit in 2008 after the statute of limitations was changed in 2002.
* In February 2014, a jury awards Doe $1 million.

There is something wrong with this picture. It is no wonder that lawyers for the archdiocese argue, among other things, that making the statute of limitations retroactive for sexual abuse cases in 1991 and 2002 violates the civil liberties of their defendant.

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Hasidic Child Molester Rabbi Baruch Lebovits Free

NEW YORK
Failed Messiah

Shmarya Rosenberg • FailedMessiah.com

Rabbi Baruch Lebovits, perhaps Brooklyn’s most notorious hasidic child molester, walked out of prison a free man last night after serving less than three months in prison.

Lebovits was originally convicted for molestation and sentenced to up to 32 years in prison, but that conviction was overturned on appeal after the then-Brooklyn DA Charles J. Hynes indicted Samuel Kellner, another Brooklyn hasid, for alleged extortion of Lebovits and for attempting to bring a false witnesses to testify against him.

The charges against Kellner were eventually shown to be trumped up and the DA’s conduct in the case was exposed for what it truly was – unethical and likely illegal – not surprising because the tainted and often false evidence against Kellner came from Lebovits’ family and his attorneys, Alan Dershowitz and Arthur Aidala.

Nevertheless, Lebovits was still free pending a new trial.

A Brooklyn judge gave Lebovits a two-year plea deal that, with time already served from the original conviction, saw Lebovits serve only about three months in prison. He walked free last night.

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Lebovits Released from Prison After Only Serving 15 Months of a 24 Month Sentence

NEW YORK
Frum Follies

Baruch Lebovits got out of jail yesterday (9/29/14), just 89 days after he started his most recent stint after sentencing on a plea bargain (7/9/14). He pled guilty to eight E felony counts (PL 130.40.2) of oral sex with a minor (aka “deviate sexual intercourse) and he is on the sex offender registry.

Brooklyn DA Kenneth Thompson’s crafted this insult to Brooklyn’s orthodox Jewish survivors in the spring, but now we feel the final sting of his whip. This Yom Kippur, Lebovits’ fine cantorial voice will piously intone about repentance. But he will be poster boy for unrepentant sinning. He never even apologized to to the victim who pressed charges, let alone the hundreds of other boys he sexually exploited.

Yom Kippur is of no avail for sins against another unless one first confesses, experiences regret, attempts rectification of harm, and sincerely seeks forgiveness. Lebovits has done none of these things, except as required to get a good plea deal in a secular lower court.

The unanswered question is why he served slightly more than 15 of the 24 months of his sentence through a combination of 1 year and 7 days after his overturned 2010 conviction and then just 89 days following his reconviction this spring. Mind you, when he was first convicted in 2010 he was sentenced to 10-32 years.

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Brooklyn cantor who pleaded guilty to molesting boy released from prison after less than three months

NEW YORK
New York Daily News

BY OREN YANIV Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Less than three months after getting sent to prison, a Brooklyn cantor who pleaded guilty to molesting a boy was sprung Monday night.

The saga surrounding Baruch Lebovits, 62, stretched for six years and became political fodder during the contentious district attorney elections last fall.

His previous conviction — for which he was sentenced to up to 32 years in prison — was overturned on appeal amid charges that another Hasidic Jew, Samuel Kellner, paid off witnesses and before yet another man admitted he tried to extort Lebovits’s son.

A judge finally offered him a deal for a two-year sentence — he had already served 13 months before the appeal — which Lebovits started serving July 9.

He was released from Rikers after doing the minimum allowed with credit for good behavior.

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Padre acusado de pornografia infantil continua preso

ESTADO UNIDOS
O Povo (Brasil)

A justiça americana ordenou que o padre católico Joseph Maurizio Jr. permaneça na cadeia até ser julgado de acusações de pornografia infantil e de ter tido relações sexuais com crianças durante viagens missionárias a Honduras.

Maurizio, de 69 anos, foi preso na quinta-feira por agentes de imigração e da alfândega. Uma queixa criminal alega que o padre deu doces e dinheiro a meninos em troca de poder molestá-los ou assisti-los fazendo sexo, incluindo um ato sexual com um adolescente de 14 anos em uma capela. Esses episódios aconteceram durante viagens missionárias a Honduras em 2009 e em anos anteriores. O padre foi afastado da igreja Somerset County, onde pregava.

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Pope’s most important step on sex abuse may come in Kansas City

UNITED STATES
Crux

By John L. Allen Jr.
Associate editor September 30, 2014

News yesterday that the Vatican is investigating Bishop Robert Finn of Kansas City-St. Joseph, Missouri, first reported by Joshua McElwee of the National Catholic Reporter, is potentially a prelude to the most significant step Pope Francis may ever take with regard to the church’s child sexual abuse scandals.

Francis has already met with victims, pledged himself to zero tolerance, and launched a criminal procedure against a former archbishop and papal diplomat accused of paying underage boys for sexual acts in the Dominican Republic. He’s also created a new papal commission to lead the press for reform.

While those moves were arguably important in demonstrating Francis’ resolve, none really broke new ground. Even the trial of the former papal diplomat, while novel in that it’s taking place in a Vatican court, builds on prosecutions in other venues of prelates accused of committing abuse themselves.

What would be new in the Finn case, if he’s removed or otherwise sanctioned, is that a bishop would be held accountable not for the crime of sexual abuse, but for the cover-up, meaning failure to respond appropriately when someone else under his supervision is accused.

In September 2012, Finn became the first US bishop to be criminally convicted on those grounds when he pled guilty to a misdemeanor count of failure to alert police of charges against one of his priests, Shawn Ratigan. After admitting to taking pornographic images of children, Ratigan eventually was sentenced to 50 years in prison and also laicized, meaning expelled from the priesthood.

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Priest questioned over sexual abuse allegations

LUXEMBOURG
Luxemburger Wort

A Luxembourgish priest is being questioned by Luxembourg Police over allegations he sexually abused a minor.

The priest in question is believed to have willingly gone to the police. Under Diocese guidelines, he has been suspended of his pastoral duties by the Archbishop, who has contacted the prosecution to ensure they were aware of the affair.

In a press release, the Catholic Church said it was for the legal system to deal with the matter.

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Sydney teacher charged with publishing child pornography

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

A Catholic primary school teacher has been charged with publishing child pornography on the internet after police searched his home in Sydney’s west.

Police said they seized “a number of electronic devices” from the 58-year-old man’s home in Auburn after being tipped off by US authorities.

The images were uploaded to a website that was being monitored by the National Centre for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) in the US, police said.

The NCMEC contacted detectives from the NSW Police Child Exploitation Internet Unit (CEIU) in August.

“After making their own inquiries, NCMEC staff determined that the material had been uploaded from an internet protocol (IP) address in Australia, and subsequently referred the matter to Australian authorities,” a NSW Police statement said.

“CEIU detectives in Sydney subsequently commenced an investigation to determine who was responsible for uploading the material.”

Police said the man was a teacher at a Catholic school in south-west Sydney, but the school has not been identified.

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Bishop mum on accused priest

PENNSYLVANIA
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

By Liz Zemba
Tuesday, Sept. 30, 2014

The bishop of the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown on Monday told parishioners at a Somerset County church whose priest is accused of sexually exploiting teenage boys at a Central American orphanage that he can’t speak about the case.

But Bishop Mark L. Bartchak told about 300 gathered at Our Lady Queen of Angels Catholic Church in Central City that he shares their concerns regarding the allegations against the Rev. Joseph D. Maurizio Jr., 69.

“This is an extremely difficult time,” said Bartchak after a 7 p.m. Mass. “I share the same awkward and difficult feelings about this whole matter.”

In a criminal complaint, federal officials said Maurizio, under the guise of doing relief work through a self-run charity, visited an orphanage in El Progreso, Honduras, at various times for a decade, promising candy and cash to orphaned boys to watch them shower, have sex or fondle them.

During a detention hearing on Monday in Johnstown, Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephanie Haines told a federal magistrate judge that two boys, ages 5 and 7, made allegations during the weekend that are under investigation.

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A tale of Twin Cities…

MINNESOTA
GetReligion

A tale of Twin Cities: Pioneer Press outdoes Strib with stellar story on bishop’s meeting with abuse survivors

Dawn Eden

After I wrote in this space that the Minneapolis Star-Tribune ‘s over-reliance on SNAP marred an otherwise good story on Archbishop John Nienstedt’s meeting with abuse survivors, I received an e-mail pointing me to the Pioneer Press’s take on the same story.

The e-mail was from the meeting’s organizer, Bob Schwiderski, and although he himself did not say which story he preferred, for me it is no contest. Pioneer Press columnist Rubén Rosario didn’t look to SNAP, or any outside advocacy group, to tell readers how they should feel about the archbishop’s meeting. Instead, he did all his reporting from the ground, gathering information only from those directly involved with the event. In this way, Rosario has composed an outstanding piece of journalism, hitting all the right notes while writing on a topic that is notoriously difficult to get right. What is more, he has achieved such balance even while being personally close to the issue, “[as] a victim of childhood sex abuse[, …] raised Catholic.”

I could and will go on about some of the things about Rosario’s article that particularly struck me, but I urge you to read the entire piece.

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Affidavit in Support of Criminal Complaint in Maurizio Case

JOHNSTOWN (PA)
Homeland Security
U.S. District Court – Western District of Pennsylvania

By Special Agent Molly Rock

September 25, 2014

2. This Affidavit is made in support of a criminal complaint charging JOSEPH D. MAURIZIO, JR., hereinafter referred to as MAURIZIO JR, with violating 18 U.S.C. §§ 2252(a)( 4) which makes it a crime for any person to possess images of child pornography, and, 18 U.S.C. § 2423(c) which prohibits a United States citizen or permanent resident from traveling in foreign commerce and engaging in illicit sexual conduct with another person.

* * *

7. According to the reports obtained from the FBI, the allegations of sexual abuse of minors perpetrated by MAURIZIO, JR. first came to light in 2009, after a staff member at the center [a non-profit organization that provides various services (shelter, food, education, etc.) to street children living in El Progreso, Honduras] overheard an argument between children living there. The argument related to whether or not the boys should report to staff members the fact that MAURIZIO, JR., who they referred to as “Father Joe,” had solicited the boys to engage in sexual activity. After hearing this argument, the staff member contacted the Chairwoman of the nonprofit organization to inform her of the allegations.

8. In response to this information. the non-profit organization began an internal investigation, which included interviews of various children residing at, and associated with, the non-profit ‘s residential center. During these interviews, the children disclosed that on several occasions MAURIZIO, JR. offered boys items of value, such as money and candy, in exchange for various sexual acts. Detailed below are some of the instances described by the children during interviews conducted by staff members:

a) MAURIZIO, JR. asked males, including minor boys, to masturbate themselves while MAURIZIO, JR. watched;

b) MAURlZIO, JR. photographed some victims while they were naked and photographed them while they were urinating and photographed them while they were masturbating at MAURIZlO JR.’s direction;

c) MAURlZIO, JR. took pictures of naked children at one of the center locations;

d) MAURIZlO, JR. took nude pictures of the victims during shower time and propositioned them with money for additional pictures or for their silence as to his picture-taking;

e) MAURIZIO, JR. asked a minor boy how much he would charge for MAURIZIO, JR. to masturbate him. The minor boy refused: however, MAURIZIO, JR. paid him 400 lempiras (about $20 US Dollars) to remain silent about incident;

f) MAURIZIO, JR. placed the hand of a minor boy on MAURIZIO, JR.’s genitals or asked a minor boy to touch his genitals;

g) MAURIZIO JR. touched a minor boy’s penis and gave the boy money immediately following the sexual contact;

h) MAURIZIO, JR. performed oral sex on a 14-year-old boy inside a chapel located at the center.

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Judge: Duluth Diocese papers won’t be released

MINNESOTA
Duluth News Tribune

By Tom Olsen on Sep 29, 2014

Internal church documents and deposition testimony in two ongoing sex abuse lawsuits against the Diocese of Duluth can remain confidential, a judge ruled recently before recusing himself from hearing the cases.

Sixth Judicial District Judge David Johnson last week granted the diocese’s motion for a protective order on evidence and pretrial testimony, acknowledging that there is significant public interest in the cases, but citing the need to protect the jury pool.

The order will allow any party to designate any document as confidential if it includes sensitive information, such as the names of sex abuse victims or details about the church’s handling of abuse allegations and clergy personnel matters.

“The court is not naïve in thinking that blocking public access to this information will somehow insulate the public from the general issues involved,” the judge wrote, “but it will protect the parties from unfettered public access to documents and testimony pertaining to victims and local churches and church officials prior to the resolution of this case. Although there are no guarantees, a protective order is the best chance the court has to protect the jury pool from contamination.”

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MN- Judge blocks release of child sex abuse files, SNAP responds

MINNESOTA
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

For immediate release: Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests ( 314 566 9790, davidgclohessy@gmail.com )

A Minnesota judge has granted the Diocese of Duluth’s request to block the release of internal church documents relating to a clergy abuse lawsuit. We are disappointed by this action. Releasing information about predator priests and complacent officials helps keep children safe.

Judge David Johnson says he granted the church’s order to keep the jury pool as uncontaminated as possible. The judge later recused himself.

This lawsuit involves two priests who allegedly sexually abused children and the Duluth Diocese. Releasing these kinds of documents are almost always necessary for public safety. When parents are given complete information about child abusers and complacent officials they can make informed decisions about the safety of their children.

So the burden again falls on victims, witnesses and whistleblowers to help expose clergy sex crimes and cover ups in Duluth. We beg everyone with information or suspicions about child molesting clerics to search their consciences, find some strength and speak up so kids are protected. And we beg people to call secular authorities, not church officials.

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Australian Indigenous Ministries apologises to sexual abuse victims

AUSTRALIA
ABC – PM

MARK COLVIN: The head of the evangelical group which ran the Retta Dixon Home in the Northern Territory has apologised to former residents of the notorious Indigenous children’s mission.

But it says the group can’t afford to pay financial compensation.

Reverend Trevor Leggott today faced the child abuse royal commission, which has been looking at allegations of severe physical and sexual abuse at the home.

Trevor Leggott told the commission that, despite running Australian Indigenous Ministries for the last 18 years, the first he had heard of the severity of sexual and physical abuse was this year.

He told the commission that while AIM had more than $4 million in property assets, it would be impossible to sell them to raise money for compensation.

Will Ockenden reports.

WILL OCKENDEN: Reverend Trevor Leggott has been the head of Australian Indigenous Ministries (or AIM) for 18 years, taking the top job in 1996.

Reverend Leggott began giving evidence early this afternoon, but before answering questions he asked to make a general statement.

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Royal commission: NT magistrate Michael Carey admits recommendation to drop court action against sex offender did not meet guidelines

AUSTRALIA
ABC News

By Xavier La Canna
Updated 30 Sep 2014

A Northern Territory magistrate has admitted a recommendation he made in 2002 to drop court action against sex offender Don Henderson was made quickly, and did not meet guidelines.

At the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, the NT’s Acting Chief Magistrate Michael Carey gave evidence about a memo he sent in 2002 when he worked at the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).

The memo sent to the DPP recommends dropping court action against Henderson, a convicted sex offender who the royal commission has heard molested several children who were housed at the Retta Dixon home in Darwin.

The note from Mr Carey in 2002 has been described as “pivotal” to the decision to drop action against Henderson, who was never prosecuted for his alleged crimes while working as a house parent at Retta Dixon.

Under questioning from Counsel Assisting the Commission, Sophie David, Mr Carey agreed the memo failed to adhere to prosecutor guidelines.

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Group ‘can’t afford’ NT abuse compensation

AUSTRALIA
Sky News

A Christian organisation that ran a Northern Territory home where numerous Aboriginal children were sexually abused says it can’t afford to compensate its victims because that would mean curtailing its missionary work.

Darwin’s Retta Dixon home was run by the Aborigines Inland Mission – now the Australian Indigenous Ministries, or AIM – from 1946 until 1980 when abuses were perpetrated by staff against resident mixed-race Aboriginal children who had been taken from their families.

AIM general director Reverend Trevor Leggott, who’s headed the organisation since 1996, and says he didn’t know of the abuse claims – some of which date back more than 60 years – before last week.

He made a formal apology to victims a day before his appearance on Tuesday at the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Abuse sitting in Darwin.

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Suspenden a sacerdote por conducta impropia

PUERTO RICO
El Nuevo Dia

[The Bishop of Mayaguez, Alvaro Corrada del Rio, has provisionally suspended a priest who is accused of inappropriate conduct with a minor. Suspension of Father Floyd McCoy, who was associate pastor of the Sanctuary of Monserrate de Homigueros, was announced in a letter from the bishop that was circulated on Sept. 22. The letter was also posted on a regional cyber newspaper called La Calle (The Street) and was communicated to all Catholics of the diocese of Sunday.

Specifically, the announcement was read as follows: “The father Floyd McCoy, associate pastor of the Sanctuary of Monserrate Hormigueros, has been provisionally suspended on charges of misconduct with a minor.”]

Un sacerdote de Hormigueros fue suspendido “cautelarmente” por el obispo de Mayagüez, Álvaro Corrada del Río, tras ser imputado de conducta impropia con un menor de edad.

El anuncio de que el padre Floyd McCoy, quien era vicario parroquial del Santuario de la Monserrate de Hormigueros, fue suspendido se dio a conocer en una carta firmada por el obispo y distribuida al clero diocesano el pasado 22 de septiembre.

Según la propia misiva, divulgada por un periódico cibernético regional (La Calle), la suspensión fue comunicada a todos los católicos de la diócesis en las misas del pasado domingo.

Específicamente, el anuncio leído fue el siguiente: “El padre Floyd McCoy, vicario parroquial del Santuario de la Monserrate de Hormigueros, ha sido suspendido cautelarmente por una acusación de conducta impropia con un menor de edad”.

La comunicación se da en medio de un cambio de proceder de la Iglesia Católica ante los escándalos de abuso sexual de sacerdotes contra menores de edad en la Diócesis de Arecibo y Caguas.

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Priester vergeht sich an einem …

LUXEMBURG
Volksfreund

[A priest in Luxemburg is under investigation by the Catholic Church because of an allegation that he sexually abused a minor.]

Priester vergeht sich an einem Minderjährigen und erstattet Selbstanzeige

(Luxemburg) Ein Priester in Luxemburg erstattet Selbstanzeige. Grund: Er habe sich an einer minderjährigen Person vergangen.

Dies meldet das erzbischöfliche Ordinariat am Dienstag. Zur Tatzeit der sexuellen Belästigung war das Opfer minderjährig. Als Folge der Selbstanzeige suspendierte der Erzbischof den Priester von seinen pastoralen Aufgaben. Inzwischen wurde die Staatsanwaltschaft eingeschaltet.

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The Whole World Was Watching when Catholics let pedophiles go, setting a new amoral era in motion

UNITED STATES
City of Angels

Kay Ebeling

The world watched as American bishops covered up pedophile priest crimes and our Justice Department looked the other way.

The US sets the tone, others follow. You can’t let criminals run major organizations in your country and expect it to not affect the culture.

Catholic Bishops are the original, indeed quintessential, corporate criminals. We see now global chaos as the the economy collapses. The Vatican set the moral standard for the globe: Greed at the top, beat down the rest of us; no matter who gets damaged, the corporation, which in the bishops’ case is the Catholic Church, must live on.

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Unfaithful bishop must move out of the Diocese-owned £1m house

UNITED KINGDOM
The Argus

Tuesday 30 September 2014
by Neil Vowles

THE FORMER head of the Catholic Church in Sussex will have to move out of his £1 million country house following his shock resignation.

Kieran Conry stood down as Bishop of Arundel and Brighton on Saturday after admitting he had been “unfaithful” to his promises as a Catholic priest “going back some years”.

Now The Argus has learned Mr Conry will have to move out of the Diocese-owned gated house in Old Brighton Road, Pease Pottage, near Crawley, where it is alleged the wife of another man stayed on three nights.

The search to find a permanent replacement for Mr Conry may take up to a year, while a stand-in diocesan administrator will be announced within eight days. Mr Conry resigned the day before claims were made in the Mail on Sunday that he had written a love letter to a married woman, who is claimed to have spent three nights at his home.

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Bishop says church hierarchy had no idea of his affair with woman six years ago

UNITED KINGDOM
The Tablet

30 September 2014 by Liz Dodd, Christopher Lamb

The Bishop of Arundel and Brighton, who this week said he was “relieved” that a relationship he had with a woman six years ago had come to light, said that the church authorities did not know about the affair.

Bishop Kieran Conry said that if they had known, his fellow bishops would have done something. He told the Catholic Herald: “someone would have said something to me, someone would have taken me aside, and nobody did”.

Bishop Kieran Conry announced at the weekend that he was submitting his resignation to Pope Francis after The Mail on Sunday newspaper revealed details of the affair. The paper also made allegations about a friendship with a married mother-of-two, although Bishop Conry denied that this is sexual.

The bishop told the Daily Mail: “It has been difficult keeping the secret. In some respects I feel very calm. It is liberating. It is a relief. I have been very careful not to make sexual morality a priority [in his homilies]. I don’t think it got in the way of my job, I don’t think people would say I have been a bad bishop. But I can’t defend myself. I did wrong. Full stop.”

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Verhaftungen im Vatikan

VATIKAN
Stuttgarter Nachrichten

Der Papst macht ernst im Kampf gegen Pädophilie: Ein Kardinal und mehrere Bischöfe werden des Kindesmissbrauchs angeklagt. Die vatikanische Justiz ermittelt auch in anderen Ländern.

Rom – In dieser Woche hat im Kirchenstaat eine neue Zeit begonnen. Papst Franziskus hat auf Missbrauchsvorwürfe reagiert und den Bischof der Diözese Ciudad del Este in Paraguay abgesetzt. Die „schwere Entscheidung“ diene dem Wohl der Kirche, teilte der Vatikan am Donnerstag unter Anspielung auf Pädophilie-Vorwürfe gegen den Geistlichen mit. Vorangegangen sei eine eingehende Untersuchung der vatikanischen Bischofs- und der Kleruskongregation in der Diözese und den dortigen Priesterseminaren. Anstelle von Rogelio Ricardo Livieres Plano ernannte der Papst den bisherigen Bischof der benachbarten Diözese Villarrica del Espíritu Santo, Ricardo Jorge Valenzuela Ríos, zum Apostolischen Administrator und damit geschäftsführenden Bischof.

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Pa. Catholic priest accused of ‘sex tourism’ with kids to remain jailed: ‘Jekyll & Hyde’

PENNSYLVANIA
PennLive

By John Luciew | jluciew@pennlive.com
on September 30, 2014

The words uttered in court by a U.S. magistrate judge about a Catholic priest in Johnstown, Pa., known for his charity but now charged with traveling to Honduras for sex with children during missionary trips were chilling: “What you’re describing is Jekyll and Hyde, Father Jekyll and Mr. Hyde,” Judge Keith Pesto said, before noting he can’t let “Jekyll go free and detain Mr. Hyde.”

With those words, the Associated Press reports that Pesto ordered the Rev. Joseph Maurizio Jr., 69, detained after prosecution evidence contrasted sharply with character witnesses who on Monday described the defendant as “priestly, faithful and committed to helping.”

Background according to AP: Maurizio has been jailed since Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents arrested him Thursday. A criminal complaint alleges Maurizio gave boys candy and money so he could molest them — including performing a sex act on a 14-year-old in a chapel — or watch the boys have sex. It happened during missions trips to Honduras with his self-run charity in 2009 and prior years, according to the complaint. Maurizio has been placed on leave from the Somerset County church he also pastored.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephanie Haines told the judge authorities have found “child erotica” — which may later be proven to be child pornography — on the priest’s camera when he returned from another Central American country in July. Federal agents were still reviewing the 18,000 images and won’t know for about three weeks whether any are criminal.

For now, the child pornography case is based on two photos of a polio-stricken boy found on Maurizio’s rectory computer, though agents are also poring through four other computers and various storage discs and other devices. The Honduran boy was “posed” to show off his genitals and could not have moved that way by himself. Haines said. He has since died.

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Woman priest, abused as child, rescues prostitutes; now they make scented lotions

ALABAMA
AL.com

By Greg Garrison | ggarrison@al.com

BIRMINGHAM, Alabama – The Rev. Becca Stevens, an Episcopal priest, rescues prostitutes and puts them to work making scented lotions and soaps.

Stevens will be in Birmingham on Wednesday to talk about the ministry, speaking at Canterbury United Methodist Church in Mountain Brook at 6:30 p.m. The event is open to the public.

“I’m bringing the message that love heals, and we don’t have to leave anybody behind,” Stevens said.

In 2000, she started Thistle Farms in Nashville, an outgrowth of her ministry, the Magdalene residential community, that rescues women and offers them a job.

“We have a manufacturing company that manufactures and sells bath and body products, oils, lotions, soaps, candles,” Stevens said.

The business enterprise keeps growing. “So many people were coming,” Stevens said. “So we opened a café.”

Stevens felt the need to help other women because of her own experience as a child.

“At 5, my father was killed by drunk driver,” she said. “My dad was an Episcopal priest. After his death, an elder in church sexually abused me, in the church. That’s the beginning of where this ministry started for me. I needed to believe that there was a healing community. I felt a need to reach out to women on the streets.”

Most of the prostitutes she meets were child rape victims first. “They typically experience their first rape between age 7 and 11, and hit the streets at 14 or 15,” she said.

From 2005-2012, 80 percent of the women who came to Thistle Farms graduated from the program clean and sober, Stevens said. “We employ over 70 women, 50 of them graduates of the program,” she said. “They work through a recovery program. Women heal and they go back and heal whole communities.”

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Finance workshop gets down to business for future and current parish leaders

UNITED STATES
National Catholic Reporter

Vinnie Rotondaro | Sep. 30, 2014

BALTIMORE Just off a suburban thoroughfare on the outskirts of Baltimore, tucked away behind the cover of trees and a few rolling hills, sits the oldest Catholic seminary in the United States: St. Mary’s Seminary & University, founded in 1791.

In late July 2014, an economics professor by the name of Charles Zech visited the historic divinity school to teach a seminar on a subject that most U.S. seminaries, to this very day, do not touch: financial management.

Church finance, to be exact.

“No one I know who wants to become a priest says they want to run a business,” said Zech, who directs the Center for Church Management and Business Ethics at the Villanova School of Business, “but that’s what a parish often is.”

Zech’s July 28-31 workshop focused on financial issues at the parish level and drew 18 participants from East Coast states. Some were seminarians. Others were parochial vicars. Many were already serving in pastoral roles. Nearly all appeared to be under the age of 50 — most in their 30s or early 40s.

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Dear media liberals: one priest breaking his vows is not a reason to rewrite Catholicism

UNITED KINGDOM
Telegraph

By Tim Stanley Religion Last updated: September 30th, 2014

Compare and contrast two stories of men with personal failings. A Catholic bishop admits to breaking his vows, resigns and everyone says it’s indicative of the madness of Catholic theology. A Tory MP finds himself in a sexting scandal, resigns and no one (no one) says that it’s indicative of the madness of Conservatism. Why the difference? Because a lot of the people writing about the bishop’s errors don’t like Catholic teaching and will use any excuse they get to prove its “flaws”.

The bishop I’m writing about is, of course, Bishop Kieran Conry, who has admitted to an affair and has quit his post. It’s an old story that goes back centuries – priest makes vows, is tempted, breaks those vows, resigns. No more to it than that. Although Andrew Brown in The Guardian seems to imagine that it’s going to spark a second Reformation. Traditionalists, he claims, were “jubilant at his resignation” (evidence for this is scant: even the waspish Damian Thompson has been admirably charitable) while liberals will be deeply upset. Brown seems to imply (and his logic is bizarre) that a) this will kick off a debate about celibacy and birth control (?!) and b) conservatives have been preparing for said debate by silencing liberals:

These are particularly neuralgic matters for the Catholic church in Britain at the moment, as one of the country’s leading liberal theologians, Prof Tina Beattie, has just been banned from lecturing in church premises in Scotland after an intervention from Rome. The denunciation of supposed heretics has been a feature of the Catholic civil wars in North America for decades now, and it appears to be spreading to this country.

If only that was true, Andrew! After all, isn’t part of the job of the priesthood to correct heretical errors and halt false teaching? Beattie and the liberals want a reckless debate about sex and Catholicism that goes way beyond the celibacy issue – and it’s a conversation that the Church neither needs nor wants. We Catholics believe in an inerrant God whose agenda for humanity is laid out in our Catechism. The Catechism cannot be rewritten and any Catholic interested in doing so is gravely wrong. They should reconcile themselves to the Truth, tout de suite.

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Should We Forgive Bishop Conry?

UNITED STATES
Standing on My Head

September 30, 2014 by Fr. Dwight Longenecker

Over the weekend Bishop Kieran Conry, the Bishop of Arundel and Brighton resigned in disgrace after admitting not one, but two affairs with women. One of the women was married with two children.

During my time in England I first met Bishop Conry when he was in charge of the English Bishop’s media office. He was Monsignor Conry then and I couldn’t tell he was a priest as he was not wearing clericals. When I said I was hoping to be ordained as a Catholic priest he shook his head negatively and discouraged me from doing so.

Bishop Conry was part of what Damien Thompson calls “the magic circle.” This is the “inside circle” of mainstream, moderate or liberal priests and bishops who govern the Catholic Church in England and Wales.

After our conversion to the Catholic Church I spent seven years working for a small Catholic charity in England visiting parishes each weekend, and through this job I learned what life was really like in the trenches in England’s Catholic Church. It was a complex network of contacts and contacts within contacts through which, in the usual English Machiavellian way people and situations were manipulated while a polite and diplomatic facade was maintained at all times.

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Vatican Sends Official to KC in Pedophile Shielding Case

KANSAS CITY (MO)
Newsmax

Monday, 29 Sep 2014
By Cathy Burke

The Vatican has sent a church official to Kansas City to examine the leadership of Roman Catholic Bishop Robert Finn, who in 2012 became the first prelate convicted of shielding a pedophile priest.

Ottawa, Ontario, Archbishop Terrence Prendergast visited the diocese last week, interviewing more than a dozen people about Finn’s leadership, according to the National Catholic Reporter, which first posted an account Monday on the Vatican-ordered probe.

The archbishop’s main question was: “Do you think [Finn)] is fit to be a leader?” according to the report.

But one pastor who met with Prendergast told the Kansas City Star he didn’t recall the question being that “bold.”

“His visit suggested a concern,” the pastor, Patrick Rush, told the Star. “This is not a routine procedure for the Vatican.”

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Arcivescovo arrestato, l’indagine sui complici estesa a tutto il mondo

CITTA’ DEL VATICANO
La Stampa

The investigation of former nuncio Jozef Wesolowski has expanded into Puerto Rico. The former archbishop, who has been under house arrest at the Vatican, allegedly protected priest Colon Otero, who is accused of sexually abusing minors in Arecibo.]

GIACOMO GALEAZZI
CITTÀ DEL VATICANO

Si allarga a Porto Rico l’inchiesta sull’arcivescovo pedofilo, già ridotto allo stato laicale dall’ex Sant’Uffizio e adesso in attesa del giudizio penale. Nell’isola caraibica, Josef Wesolowski, da cinque giorni agli arresti domiciliari in Vaticano, è sotto inchiesta per altri abusi su minori, oltre a quelli commessi nella Repubblica Domenicana che hanno portato al suo arresto. Inoltre a Porto Rico l’ex ambasciatore papale avrebbe protetto un sacerdote, Colón Otero, accusato di abusi sessuali su minori nella città di Arecibo.

Una vera e propria rete di sacerdoti finiti negli ultimi tre anni nella rete della giustizia (Tomás Pagán, Andrés Dávila, Edwin Mercado, Pedro Hernández, Efraín Montesino) che avrebbero trovato coperture nell’ex nunzio. Nel pieno del caso Wesolowski, il Pontefice evoca l’insidia del male nella Chiesa, nella nave di Pietro «sballottata dalle onde». Sotto la lente di ingrandimento degli inquirenti vaticani non ci sono solo le vicende attribuite a Wesolowski durante la sua permanenza a Santo Domingo, dal gennaio 2008 all’agosto dello scorso anno. Al setaccio vengono passati anche gli anni in cui il 66enne presule polacco ha prestato la propria opera in numerose missioni diplomatiche in Africa meridionale, Costa Rica, Giappone, Svizzera, India e Danimarca, quindi come nunzio apostolico in Bolivia, dal 1999 al 2002, e nei Paesi ex-sovietici dell’Asia centrale (Kazakhstan, Tagikistan, Kirghizistan e Uzbekistan), dal 2002 al 2008, quando infine è approdato alla nunziatura della Repubblica Dominicana. Il mirino è puntato sulle precedenti permanenze dell’ex diplomatico vaticano, acquisendo informazioni per verificare la possibilità altri casi di abuso. Il Pontefice vuole vederci chiaro sui motivi dei continui trasferimenti di sede diplomatica dell’ex nunzio e su quali coperture all’interno delle gerarchie ecclesiastiche gli avevano consentito di restare a piede libero fino ad oggi.

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Vaticano pedofilia, vittima di abusi denuncia: “Io violentato per 6 mesi e pagato per tacere”

CITTA’ DEL VATICANO
Urban Post

[Marcin Kubicki, a 26-year-old victim of sexual abuse, wrote a letter to Pope Francis denouncing the silence of Cardinal Kazimierz Nycz when he was head of the Szczecin diocese in Poland.]

Ecco la testimonianza di Marcin Kubicki, lo studente 26enne vittima di abusi sessuali che ha scritto una lettera a Papa Francesco per denunciare l’omertà del cardinale Kazimierz Nycz, quando era a capo della diocesi di Stettino (Polonia)

Lo scandalo pedofilia che ha travolto il Vaticano non finisce. Nuove tristi realtà emergono dall’inchiesta voluta fortemente da Papa Francesco. L’accusa di abusi sessuali su minori non riguarda infatti solo il cardinale Joseph Wesolowksi, arrestato in Vaticano il 23 settembre. Retroscena meschini ed omertosi si celano dietro l’apparenza, e si ha come l’impressione che le notizie diffuse dai media non illustrino che una minima parte della verità.

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Bishop says pope ‘will answer to God’

VATICAN CITY
ANSA

(ANSA) – Vatican City, September 26 – A Vatican spokesman on Friday shrugged off angry comments from a Paraguayan bishop who said Pope Francis “must answer to God” for his suspension amid allegations of embezzlement and covering up sexual abuses.

“It was a very violent reaction,” Father Federico Lombardi said when asked about the reaction of Msgr. Rogelio Ricardo Livieres Plano, removed Thursday from his role as head of the Diocese of Ciudad del Este in Paraguay.

“Maybe it is easier to understand why there was a problem,” added Lombardi.

In a letter to the Prefect of the Congregation for Bishops, Canadian Cardinal Marc Ouellet, Livieres called his suspension “unfounded and arbitrary” and added that Francis “must answer to God, rather than to me”.

In the letter, obtained by local media, Livieres also said that some other bishops in Paraguay hatched a plot against him, suggesting he has been “persecuted” for what he called “the many human errors that I may have committed”.

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Daphne Bramham: Pope’s sacking of Paraguayan bishop resonates in Vancouver

CANADA
Vancouver Sun

BY DAPHNE BRAMHAM, VANCOUVER SUN SEPTEMBER 29, 2014

When news of the Vatican’s sacking of a Paraguayan bishop broke late last week — ostensibly because he was protecting pedophile priests — it had a special resonance in Vancouver.

For more than four years, the Shaughnessy parish raised money for priests, a seminary and an orphanage in Bishop Rogelio Ricardo Livieres Plano’s diocese of Ciudad del Este.

Parishioners at Saints Peter and Paul supported priests belonging to the Comunidades Sacerdotales de San Juan (aka the Society of St. John), students in the Paraguay seminary that the priests built, and a “non-church orphanage,” Father John Horgan told me in an interview.

But all of that came to an abrupt end in 2011.

Parishioners complained to Archbishop Michael Miller about the Comunidades Sacerdotales de San Juan. It began in Pennsylvania when the Society of St. John was suppressed amid rumours of sexual abuse of seminary students and as its priests fled first to Rome and later Paraguay.

Archbishop Miller ordered the fundraising to stop.

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PA- Altoona priest will remain behind bars; SNAP responds

PENNSYLVANIA
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests

For immediate release: Monday, September 29, 2014

Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests ( 314 566 9790, davidgclohessy@gmail.com )

An Altoona-Johnstown priest, who was arrested on child sex charges, will remain behind bars until the start of his trial. We are grateful that he will be kept away from children until his trial.

We now want Bishop Mark Bartchak to take real action to reach out to other potential victims. We asked Bartchak to write his Central American colleagues and urge them to aggressively reach out to others who may have seen, suspected or suffered crimes or misconduct by Fr. Joseph Maurizio. Bartchak should also use his own parish bulletins, church websites and pulpit announcements to persuade his flock to share what they know or suspect about this priest with law enforcement.

We are disappointed that he still has not responded to our request.

Fr. Maurizio says he has “traveled to 100 countries and has worked with orphanages in El Salvador, the Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Haiti, Nicaragua, Bolivia and Peru,” according to Tribune Review. That’s very worrisome to us.

Now more than ever, we hope that every individual with knowledge of Fr. Maurizio’s wrongdoing – in Pennsylvania or elsewhere – will find the courage to speak up, call law enforcement, and help get this troubling situation resolved.

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A Bishop Shows How an Abusive Priest Should Be Handled

UNITED STATES
Waiting for Godot to Leave

Kevin O’Brien

For some reason I take a lot of things personally.

For instance, the Sex Scandal in the Catholic Church.

I love the Catholic Church, which is the Body of Christ, and which I have paid dearly in many ways to enter and to try to conform myself to. So when bishops behave badly by enabling those who prey upon children to do so, I get very upset. These are men who are the successors to the apostles, “other Christs” among us – and yet they typically behave in ways that make you wonder if they worship Christ or Satan. And I can only echo Boys’ Town founder Fr. Flanagan, “I wonder what God’s judgment will be with reference to those who hold the deposit of faith and who fail in their God-given stewardship of little children.”

And lately I’ve been on a bit of a roller coaster. It appeared that Pope Francis had made a big statement by sacking Bishop Livieres, who not only enabled a priest accused of both sex abuse and embezzlement by giving him access to children and money, but who made this priest (a priest called “dangerous” by other bishops) his vicar general.

But then, quickly, the Vatican claimed that Livieres was not removed because of his role in the Sex Scandal.

Or did they? Commonweal points out that the situation is more complex than that., and that the reporting of the Vatican’s denial was a bit confused. Livieres handling of the priest in question was certainly the catalyst that led to his removal, even though it might not have been the sole reason.

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School principal preyed on children for two decades without ever being caught

NORTHERN IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

BY DEBORAH MCALEESE – 30 SEPTEMBER 2014

A Christian Brother, who has been compared to notorious paedophile Fr Brendan Smyth, sexually abused children for two decades without ever being brought to justice, it has emerged.

For nine years he preyed on and abused children at the former boys’ home Rubane House in Kircubbin where he was the school principal before becoming overall director of the home, which was run by the De La Salle Order.

The De La Salle Order has accepted that he “sexually abused children in his care before, during and after his time in Rubane”, the Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry heard yesterday.

However he was never reported to the police and has since died.

Lawyer to the inquiry, Joseph Aiken, likened the child abuser to Fr Brendan Smyth – whose abuse of children spanned decades and continents.

“The type of grooming behaviour, abuse of power and sexual abuse of boys are similar to those traits that the public will be familiar with from cases such as Fr Brendan Smyth,” said Mr Aiken.

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Vatican Diary / Behind the scenes of the Chicago appointment

VATICAN CITY
Chiesa

As successor of Cardinal George, a mastermind of the current outlook of the episcopal conference of the United States, Pope Francis has appointed a bishop of the opposite orientation. Here is how and why

by Sandro Magister

VATICAN CITY, September 30, 2014 – While still reeling from the news of the imminent removal of Cardinal Raymond L. Burke, the more conservative and traditional Catholicism of the United States – and historically the more “papist” – has been dealt another blow with the appointment of the new archbishop of Chicago.

Francis’ selection of Blase J. Cupich ( in the photo) as the new pastor of the third-ranking diocese in the U.S. has plunged this particularly dynamic component of American Catholicism into a profound depression, almost to the edge of a nervous breakdown. It is enough to scan the reactions of the websites and bloggers of this area to grasp the embarrassment and disappointment over the appointment.

On the contrary, the more progressive segment of American Catholicism, historically hypercritical of the recent pontificates, has celebrated with enthusiasm the arrival of Cupich, called a “moderate” by the secular press, a description typically used in the United States to indicate a “liberal” who may not be radicalized, but is still a “liberal.

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Priest, formerly of Clarkston, arrested on child porn charges

MICHIGAN
The Oakland Press

By Dave Phillips, The Oakland Press
POSTED: 09/29/14

A priest who formerly lived in Clarkston has been charged with production, transportation and possession of child pornography.

Richard James Kurtz, 69, is accused of surreptitiously videotaping hockey players at University of Detroit Jesuit High School as they changed in the locker room after games in the 1998-1999 hockey season, according to a press release from the office of U.S. Attorney Barbara McQuade. He transferred other child pornographic material from Clarkston to Chicago and possessed other child pornography in Clarkston, the release states.

Kurtz was a Jesuit priest and a teacher at U-D Jesuit. He taught chemistry there from 1970-1973, 1978-1983 and 1984-2001. He was arrested in November 2011 for sexual assault on a child by one in a position of trust. That arrest, which occurred while Kurtz was living in Chicago, was a result of an incident that occurred in Douglas County, Colorado, in 2001.

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Priest with Colorado connection charged in Michigan child porn crimes

COLORADO/MICHIGAN
TheDenverChannel

DETROIT – A priest who taught chemistry years ago at a Detroit Catholic school has been charged with child pornography crimes.

The FBI says the Rev. Richard Kurtz secretly recorded hockey players in the locker room at University of Detroit Jesuit High School during the 1998-99 season.

The 69-year-old Kurtz was arrested Monday in Dittmer, Missouri, and will appear in St. Louis federal court Wednesday. It wasn’t immediately known if he has a lawyer. He’ll eventually be transferred to Detroit.

The FBI says the Detroit case is based on child pornography discovered by priests in 2011 at Kurtz’ residences in Chicago and Clarkston, Michigan. He was arrested in Chicago that year on a sexual assault charge in Douglas County, Colorado, involving a minor in 2001.

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Kansas City Bishop Robert Finn under Vatican investigation

KANSAS CITY (MO)
KSHB

[with video]

Garrett Haake
Sep 29, 2014

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Vatican is now investigating Bishop Robert Finn, two years after his conviction for failure to report possible sexual abuse conducted by a priest in his diocese.

Finn, the highest ranking American Catholic church official to be convicted of failing to support suspected crimes against children, has been the leader of 133,000 Catholics of the Diocese of Kansas City and St. Joseph since 2005.

The National Catholic Reporter first reported the investigation Monday afternoon.

NCR reported that Canadian Archbishop Terrence Prendergast spent three days working out of a private home in Overland Park, Kan., interviewing colleagues and associates of Finn and asking them about Finn’s fitness to remain as leader of the church here.

“By accounts he listened well and listened hard and listened to both sides, and he will issue a report that will be filed with the Congregation of Bishops,” NCR editor Dennis Coday told 41 Action News.

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Kincora should be included in UK-wide abuse inquiry

NORTHERN IRELAND
News Letter

Sept. 30, 2014

Today Stormont will debate a private member’s motion, which in itself is a wearily familiar fact.

But although many such motions which fill the Assembly’s order papers are almost meaningless and are only there due to the scarcity of legislation going through the chamber, today’s motion on Kincora is an example of where private member’s motions can be used to good effect.

The motion, introduced by the Alliance Party but on an issue which has widespread support across the Stormont parties, calls on the Government to include Kincora as part of its UK-wide investigation into allegations that historic child abuse was covered up.

Yesterday the name Kincora was again in the news, with the shocking claim that abuse at the former Roman Catholic care home Rubane House may have been worse than that at Kincora, with an estimated 20 per cent of children there seriously abused.

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Parishes take abuse prevention to the next level

CANADA
The B.C. Catholic

By Agnieszka Krawczynski
The B.C. Catholic
SURREY

The Archdiocese of Vancouver is working with a Texas-based group to train parents, children, and ministry leaders in ways to root out abuse.

“Our policy has a goal of creating safe parish environments, and you can create safe parish environments in many ways,” said Sharon Goh, the coordinator of the ministry called “Protecting God’s Children” (PGC).

PGC issued a new policy in December 2009 requiring every parish to screen every volunteer or employee who might work near children. Now the archdiocese is taking prevention to the next level by working with Praesidium, an organization in Arlington, Tex., that specializes in abuse-risk management.

“We’re trying to make everything as transparent as possible through screening and proper recruitment,” said Goh. “Next is education. Education is important because we’re hoping to get everyone in the community on the same page.”

So far, 17 parishes have opted to use Praesidium’s resources, which come at a cost of $200 a year and include instructional videos, informatiooon on the latest research on abuse, and interactive online training.

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Sex abuse was ‘rampant’ at Rubane House children’s home

NORTHERN IRELAND
Irish Mirror

Sep 29, 2014 By Michael McHugh

Sex abuse at a children’s home run by a Catholic order was “rampant” and as bad as Kincora, a former senior police officer has said.

Around a fifth of boys at Rubane House in Co Down were subjected to sexual or physical abuse, a public inquiry heard yesterday.

Rubane was the subject of a police investigation in the 1990s, the Historical Institutional Abuse (HIA) inquiry was told. Three De La Salle order brothers were charged but none convicted after their trials did not go ahead due to legal issues.

Former RUC detective chief superintendent Eric Anderson wrote a note to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).

It said: “Sexual abuse by a considerable number of the De La Salle brothers on the children and consequently between children is rampant.”

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Diocese of Venice in 2014: Under fire

FLORIDA
News-Press

Mary Wozniak, mwozniak@news-press.com September 29, 2014

The halo of the Diocese of Venice appears to need polishing.

The diocese, which covers 10 counties in Southwest Florida, and its leader, Bishop Frank J. Dewane, have been hit with four incidents so far in 2014 that claim abuse of power or being less than frank about the handling of two cases of sexual abuse.

One case resulted in a six-figure settlement with a victim who was abused in 1993. A $5 million lawsuit has been filed in the second case, the alleged abuse of a boy in 2013.

Those who have openly called Dewane to task, including two liberal Catholic reform groups and 10 priests, believe the incidents tarnish the image of the diocese, hurt its flock, and want church officials to intervene. They say the abuses of power include the unjust firing of more than 20 people, intimidation, bullying, and outbursts of anger instilling fear in the faithful.

Staunch supporters of the bishop say if the image is tarnished, the reason is unfounded accusations. They decry what they say is nothing more than a campaign to smear the bishop. The critics are dissidents who ” have declared war on Bishop Frank Dewane,” in the words of Bill Donohue, president of the Catholic League for Civil and Religious Rights.

The Southwest Florida Chapter of Call to Action, a liberal Catholic group, penned a letter to Pope Francis, asking for an investigation of the bishop. The national Call to Action group posted a petition online that garnered 1,433 signatures. Another group, Voice of the Faithful, also supported the letter and petition.

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Vatican Investigates Missouri Bishop Who Shielded Pedophile Priest

KANSAS CITY (MO)
The New York Times

By MICHAEL PAULSONSEPT. 29, 2014

The only American bishop ever convicted of shielding a pedophile priest is now under investigation by the Vatican.

The tenure of the bishop, Robert W. Finn of the diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph in northern and western Missouri, is being reviewed by a Canadian archbishop, Terrence Prendergast of Ottawa, at the request of Pope Francis.

Bishop Finn was convicted in 2012 of a misdemeanor for failure to report to law enforcement that a priest had taken pornographic pictures of young girls. He was sentenced to two years of probation, and this year his diocese was fined $1.1 million after an arbitrator determined that the failure to report the priest had violated terms of an earlier settlement with abuse victims.

The Vatican investigation, formally called an apostolic visitation, was first reported by The National Catholic Reporter, and was confirmed by a spokesman for Bishop Finn.

“Bishop Finn was notified of the process in advance by the apostolic nuncio,” said the spokesman, Jack Smith. The apostolic nuncio is the pope’s representative to the United States.

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Priest charged with posession, production, and transportation of child pornography

MICHIGAN
WXYZ

[with video]

Sep 29, 2014

Simon Shaykhet

(WXYZ) – The FBI has charged Father Richard Kurtz with possession, production and transportation of child porn. The former Chemistry teacher at University of Detroit Jesuit High School was well known in the community.

Feds allege he secretly recorded players on the hockey team changing in locker rooms during the 1998-1999 season. They say other priests tipped them off.

Kurtz was arrested on other charges back in 2011 for sexual assault. The arrest was based on a warrant out of Chicago.

“He was very well known and the kids loved him, he taught chemistry and other sciences. I never heard any parent or student say anything bad about Father Kurtz,” says one parent.

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REBUTTAL to ‘Pope Francis, an iron hand against priestly pedophilia’. Pope Francis’ hands are tied…

UNITED STATES
POPE FRANCIS the CON-Christ.

Paris Arrow

Vatican Pied Pipers are out in full force to brainwash idiot Catholics on what they must believe about Pope Francis so they’ll keep donating millions of dollars to the Vatican Mammon Beast. On September 29, 2014, Andrea Gagliarducci’s article entitled, “Pope Francis, an iron hand against priestly pedophilia. How will the international community react?” — is one of the worst among the Vatican Pied Pipers that only idiot Catholics would buy and believe. In his first paragraph he is already telling one of the worst pathological lies and false tales ever — “The Church is winning its fight against pedophilia through the work that John Paul II started, Benedict XVI carried forward and Pope Francis is continuing.” WTF John Paul II?

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Priest Charged With Production, Transportation, And Possession Of Child Pornography

MICHIGAN
United States Attorney, Eastern District of Michigan

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE September 29, 2014

Richard James Kurtz, 69, formerly of Clarkston, Michigan, was charged in a criminal complaint with production, transportation, and possession of child pornography, United States Attorney Barbara L. McQuade announced today.

McQuade was joined in the announcement by Special Agent in Charge Paul M. Abbate, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Detroit Division.

According to court records, Kurtz, a Jesuit priest and former teacher at the University of Detroit Jesuit High School, was arrested in November 2011—while he was residing in Chicago—for “sexual assault on a child by one in a position of trust.” That arrest was based on an arrest warrant issued out of Douglas County, Colorado, for conduct that occurred in 2001. After Kurtz’s arrest in Chicago, two Jesuit priests discovered evidence of possible child pornography crimes among Kurtz’s belongings in Chicago, as well at Kurtz’s former residence in Clarkston, Michigan. The Jesuits provided that evidence to the FBI.

According to court records, the FBI’s investigation revealed that Kurtz surreptitiously videotaped UDJHS hockey players changing in the locker room after games during the 1998-1999 hockey season. Beyond this production of child pornography, the FBI also discovered that Kurtz transferred other child pornographic material from Clarkston to Chicago, and possessed still other child pornography in Clarkston.

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Yell County Priest Removed For Alleged Sexual Misconduct

ARKANSAS
Times Record

By John Lyon
Arkansas News Bureau jlyon@arkansasnews.com

LITTLE ROCK — The bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Little Rock says a Yell County priest has been removed from the ministry and will not be allowed to function as a priest again because of “credible allegations of sexual misconduct.”

In a homily that Bishop Anthony Taylor delivered Sunday in Russellville, Dardanelle and Danville and that was posted on the the diocese’s website, Taylor said church officials received allegations the previous weekend that Father James Melnick had committed “multiple acts of sexual misconduct with multiple adult victims” over a period of less than a year.

Melnick, 30, was ordained in 2009 and was assigned to Danville and Dardanelle in March 2013, according to the diocese.

“Since there were multiple victims, we seem to be dealing with predatory behavior, not romance,” Taylor said in the post.

Taylor said church officials verified the allegations by interviewing Melnick and some of the victims. He also apologized to any who were harmed by Melnick.

“I sincerely regret the harm you have suffered and in the name of the Church I apologize to you for what Father Melnick has done. Given what was shared with you today and what Father Melnick has admitted to doing, the Church would never allow a priest in situation like this to ever to function as a priest again,” Taylor said in the post.

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Feds: Ex-Jesuit teacher videotaped boys in locker room

MICHIGAN
Detroit Free Press

By Tresa Baldas, Detroit Free Press September 29, 2014

A priest and former University of Detroit Jesuit High School teacher has been charged with child pornography for allegedly videotaping hockey players in the locker room during the late 1990s, the U.S. Attorneys office announced today.

Richard Kurtz, 69, formerly of Clarkston, was arrested in Missouri today and is expected to be extradited to Detroit soon to face charges that could send him to prison for up to 30 years.

This is not a first for Kurtz, who taught chemistry on and off for 25 years at the all-boys Catholic high school in northwest Detroit, starting in 1970.

According to court records, Kurtz was arrested in 2011 while living in Chicago for allegedly sexually assaulting a child in Colorado a decade earlier. After his arrest in Chicago, the government said, two Jesuit priests went through his belongings in Chicago and his home in Clarkston and discovered evidence of possible child pornography crimes.

The priests turned that information over to the FBI, which linked Kurtz to the locker room at the University of Detroit Jesuit High School.

According to court records, Kurtz videotaped high school hockey players changing in the locker room after games during the 1998-99 season. The FBI also discovered that Kurtz was transferring other child pornographic material from Clarkston to Chicago, and possessed other child porn at his home in Clarkston.

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KC Bishop Finn under Vatican investigation

KANSAS CITY (MO)
KWCH

The Vatican is investigating Bishop Robert Finn of Kansas City, Missouri, two years after he was convicted of failing to report suspected abuse.

A Finn spokesman says the bishop was notified of the investigation by the papal ambassador in Washington.

The National Catholic Reporter was first to report the inquiry which is being conducted by the Vatican’s Congregation for Bishops.

Archbishop Terrence Prendergast of Ottawa visited the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph last week as part of the investigation. His spokeswoman said Monday only that the visit was private.

Finn is the highest-ranking U.S. church leader to be convicted for failing to take action on child sex abuse claims. He was sentenced to two years’ probation for not reporting a priest who had hundreds of pornographic photos of young girls.

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Priest Detained On Child Sex Abuse Charges

PENNSYLVANIA
We Are Central PA

[with video]

Danielle Krout

JOHNSTOWN, CAMBRIA COUNTY— A federal judge ordered Rev. Joseph Maurizio to stay in the Cambria County Jail.

The 69 year old was in court Monday for a detention hearing after being arrested last week. He was charged by the U.S. Attorney on child pornography and tourism charges.

More than 40 people packed into the Johnstown Federal Courthouse for the hearing, all in support of Maurizio. Many cried as he walked in the courtroom handcuffed escorted by Marshals.

“I thought the two attorneys did a great job the way they are supposed to,” said Father Sean Foley, New Jersey. “I thought the judge was very fair.”

Father Foley came from New Jersey to hear testimony. The prosecution said told the judge ‘they’ve only just scratched the surface of this case.” Investigators are currently going through more than 18,000 images seized from a camera during the September raid.

Prosecutors told the judge two images depict child pornography. They also said they think the 69 year old should remain in jail because since the case went public two victims from the area ages, 5 and 7 have come forward alleging abuse. The defense had no comment about the new allegations, but they did focus on the character or the priest.

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Priest charged in Detroit with child porn crimes

MICHIGAN
Fairfield Citizen

[Assignment Record – BishopAccountability.org]

DETROIT (AP) — A priest who taught chemistry years ago at a Detroit Catholic school has been charged with child pornography crimes.

The FBI says the Rev. Richard Kurtz secretly recorded hockey players in the locker room at University of Detroit Jesuit High School during the 1998-99 season.

The 69-year-old Kurtz was arrested Monday in Dittmer, Missouri, and will appear in St. Louis federal court Wednesday. It wasn’t immediately known if he has a lawyer. He’ll eventually be transferred to Detroit.

The FBI says the Detroit case is based on child pornography discovered by priests in 2011 at Kurtz’ residences in Chicago and Clarkston, Michigan. He was arrested in Chicago that year on a sexual assault charge in Douglas County, Colorado, involving a minor in 2001.

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A Matter of Conscience: Confronting Clergy Abuse: Why We Produced This New Documentary Film

UNITED STATES
Hamilton and Griffin on Rights

Susan A. Michalczyk and John J. Michalczyk

For us, Susan and John Michalczyk, it all started with a radio program on National Public Radio. Susan heard Bob Hoatson, the Co-Founder of Road to Recovery in New Jersey, address issues of clergy sexual abuse. Susan later recounted the content of the program to John, a documentary filmmaker. We invited Bob to our home outside of Boston, the so-called epicenter of the clergy abuse scandal in the Catholic Church, and we discussed our plans to produce a documentary on the survivors. John had produced 20 documentary films on global conflict resolution and disabilities, many of which were broadcast on television nationally and some internationally. Susan had worked on scripts, narrations, and voice-overs for some of these films. Meeting Bob gave us the spark needed to initiate a film production unlike others we produced.consciencepic

What ensued was a chain reaction that brought together a host of individuals, lay and clergy, advocates and attorneys, all committed to supporting survivors abused by pedophile priests. Once the research was completed, interviews were filmed. These were very tragic narratives recounted by the survivors. The transcriber of the interviews said she would type a few paragraphs and cry, then type some more and cry again. Kris Merrill, Jerry Sypek, Bob Hoatson, Alexa McPherson, Helen McGonigle, and Dave Carney spoke from their fragmented souls about the consequences of being abused by someone who represented God to them. Although the psychological scars were apparent, they remarked, and healing would take a lifetime, in Bob Hoatson’s words, these survivors offered a clear and honest insight into the harm done by a clerical predator.

With a very moving script by Susan, the result was our first documentary on the topic of clerical sexual transgressions, Who Takes Away the Sins: Witnesses to Clergy Abuse that was premiered at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston in May 2013, and then screened there again for three evenings in October 2013. The panels of the participants spoke eloquently of the need to reform the Catholic Church and urged the hierarchy to commit themselves to accountability and transparency. Since 2013, the film has been shown on local cable stations and then widely from classrooms and college programs to gatherings of the Voice of the Faithful. Our website (www.etoileproductionsusa.com) provided us with the opportunity to include many further poignant comments by the participants which were unable to be included in the one-hour documentary.

We did not let the urgency of the subject die out. Soon we embarked on a sequel to the film following Susan’s initial idea of tracking down men and women of conscience who reported clergy abuse and were sanctioned by the Church leaders. Some were ostracized, removed from their positions, and deemed disloyal. Others were looked at as traitors to their religious order or Church for breaking the code of silence. Once again, Bob Hoatson as Field Producer contacted his colleagues of the “Catholic Whistleblowers,” inviting them to participate in the documentary. Frs. Patrick Collins, Ronald Lemmert, Bruce Teague, James Connell, and Thomas Patrick Doyle, as well as Srs. Maureen Paul Turlish, Sally Butler, and Claire Smith all agreed to be interviewed, mostly in an office in New York, thanks to the graciousness of Marci Hamilton of the Carodozo School of Law who also provided insights into the extensive phenomenon of abuse in all types of religions and institutions.

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Was Bishop Livieres sacked for abuse-related reasons or not?

UNITED STATES
dotCommonweal

Grant Gallicho September 29, 2014

“Vatican Says Bishop’s Dismissal Not the Result of Sexual Abuse,” read a Catholic News Service headline published Saturday. The story, written by Francis X. Rocca, tut-tuts those who interpreted the firing of Bishop Livieres of Ciudad del Este, Paraguay, as a sign of a Vatican crackdown on sexual abuse. The diocese was investigated by the Vatican in July after local Catholics, including the archbishop of Asuncion, Paraguay, Pastor Cuquejo–the metropolitan bishop–reportedly complained to Rome about several aspects of Livieres’s leadership. Among his concerns was Livieres’s decision to accept and promote a priest, Fr. Carlos Urrutigoity, who had been accused of sexual misconduct by several people dating back to the late 1980s. Rocca’s story suggests that Urrutigoity had little to do with Pope Francis’s decision to replace Livieres.

Coming two days after the Vatican’s arrest of former Archbishop Jozef Wesolowski, pending a criminal trial on charges of paying for sex with boys during his time as nuncio to the Dominican Republic, the dismissal of Bishop Livieres appeared to be the latest step in a Vatican crackdown on sex abuse. But the Vatican says sex abuse was not a significant factor in Bishop Livieres’s dismissal.

Here’s what Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi, SJ, told Rocca: “Let’s not confuse Wesolowski and Livieres; one is a case of pedophilia, the other is not.” Lombardi continued: “Livieres was not removed for reasons of pedophilia. That was not the principal problem.” What was? “There were serious problems with his management of the diocese, the education of clergy, and relations with other bishops,” Lombardi said.”

That sounds a bit like what Lombardi said to the New York Times last week: “The important problem was the relations within the episcopacy and in the local church, which were very difficult.” He explained that the accusations against Urrutigoity were “not central, albeit have been debated.”

For his part, Livieres, a member of Opus Dei, maintains that he was the victim of a smear campaign orchestrated by nefarious practitioners of liberation theology, presumably not those who were recently invited to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith–or were they? Considering this explanation comes from a man who on more than one occasion publicly called his metropolitan gay, it may not be totally reliable.

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KC Bishop Finn Under Vatican Investigation

KANSAS CITY (MO)
ABC News

Sep 29, 2014

By RACHEL ZOLL AP Religion Writer

The Vatican is investigating Bishop Robert Finn of Kansas City, Missouri, two years after he was convicted of failing to report suspected abuse.

Finn was notified of the investigation by the papal ambassador in Washington and has “cooperated with the process,” according to Jack Smith, the bishop’s spokesman.

As part of the inquiry, Archbishop Terrence Prendergast of Ottawa visited the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph last week and spoke with several people, asking if they considered Finn fit for leadership, according to the National Catholic Reporter. A spokeswoman for Prendergast said Monday she could not comment because the archbishop’s visit was private.

Finn is the highest-ranking U.S. church leader to be convicted for failing to take action in response to sex abuse allegations. He was charged in the case of the Rev. Shawn Ratigan, whose computer contained hundreds of lewd photos of young girls taken in and around churches where he worked. Diocesan officials waited six months before they notified civil authorities of the photos. Ratigan pleaded guilty to child pornography charges and was sentenced to 50 years in federal prison.

Finn was sentenced in 2012 to two years’ probation for the misdemeanor, and ever since has faced pressure from local Roman Catholics to step down. Some parishioners petitioned Pope Francis to remove the bishop from the diocese.

Francis has promised he would hold bishops accountable for how they responded when confronted with cases of abusive priests. No U.S. bishop has been removed for covering up for guilty clergy.

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Over 100,000 Sexually Explicit Photos Of Children Found On Arrested Archbishop’s Computer

UNITED STATES
Addicting Info

Former Archbishop Jozef Wesolowski, who was previously stripped of his title over accusations of child molestation, was arrested last week. With an investigation underway, detectives of the Vatican have recently discovered that Wesolowski’s office computer contained sexually explicit content involving children — over 86,000 images and 160 videos were found. An additional 45,000 photos had been deleted from the computer.

Upon examination, the video files were of teenage boys being forced into sexual acts with each other and adults. The 86,000+ photographs had been neatly organized into category-based folders.

Wesolowski, who was head of the church in the Dominican Republic between 2008 and 2012, was originally allowed to walk freely in Rome despite the allegations of having paid minors for sex. Now, the 66-year-old former Archbishop is limited to a tiny room in the Collegio dei Penitenzieri’s basement, the same building that hosts the Vatican’s court and military police.

Rev. Federico Lombardi, the Vatican’s chief spokesman, said:

“The seriousness of the allegations has prompted the official investigation to impose a restrictive measure that … consists of house arrest, with its related limitations, in a location within the Vatican City State.” (source)

The Vatican also said that Wesolowski’s arrest reflected the wishes of Pope Francis, who has vowed zero tolerance against church officials who commit sexual crimes against children. Previously, the Pope has called sexual abuse an “ugly crime” and compared it to “a Satanic Mass.”

Having previously served in South Africa, Costa Rica, Japan, Switzerland, India and Denmark, authorities are now investigating if Wesolowski might have abused minors at other points in his career. Authorities are also looking for evidence that Wesolowski might have had assistance or been involved in a larger network of pedophiles. To date, Wesolowski is the the most prominent church figure to come under investigation for sexual abuse.

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Father Melnick Suspended from Ministry

ARKANSAS
Roman Catholic Diocese of Little Rock

En Español

Bishop Anthony B. Taylor delivered the following homily about Father James Melnick at St. John Church in Russellville, St. Augustine Church in Dardanelle and St. Andrew Church in Danville on Sept. 27-28, 2014.

In the Gospel for Monday of this week Jesus said: “There is nothing hidden that will not be known and come to light. Take care then how you hear. To anyone who has, more will be given, and from one who has not, even what he seems to have will be taken away.” (Luke 8:17-18)

The most difficult thing I ever have to do as bishop is come to a parish to inform the parishioners that I have received credible allegations of misconduct against their priest so serious as to require his removal from ministry. Last weekend we received credible allegations of sexual misconduct against Father Melnick and were able to act quickly enough to prevent him from celebrating his last Mass in Danville last Sunday.

Later that day we were able to interview some of his victims and verify multiple acts of sexual misconduct with multiple adult victims during the period of less than a year. Since there were multiple victims, we seem to be dealing with predatory behavior, not romance.

Later Father Melnick admitted that this is true. So please do not blame his victims. They are victims. And moreover, they reported violations of the sacrament of Reconciliation so serious as to require his permanent removal from ministry: absolution of persons with whom he had previously committed sins against the sixth commandment — and thus incurring grave canonical penalties that can only be lifted by the Holy See.

I know that his misconduct has harmed some of you directly and if you have been a victim of his misdeeds or know someone who has been harmed by him here or elsewhere, I ask that you contact the diocese to report the incident for your own good and for the good of the Church. I would also like to offer you the assistance of the Church in securing help if you could benefit from speaking with a psychologist or counselor to deal with what you have experienced.

I sincerely regret the harm you have suffered and in the name of the Church I apologize to you for what Father Melnick has done. Given what was shared with you today and what Father Melnick has admitted to doing, the Church would never allow a priest in a situation like this to ever to function as a priest again. Please pray for him. He needs your prayers, probably more than any of us even realizes.

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Priest removed by Arkansas Diocese in Yell County

ARKANSAS
KTHV

YELL COUNTY, Ark. (KTHV) – A Catholic priest serving in Yell County has been removed by the Arkansas Diocese for sexual misconduct.

Bishop Anthony Taylor spoke at mass on Sunday at 3 churches in Russellville, Dardanelle and Danville, saying Father James Melnick had been removed from the ministry.

The Bishop said they had verified multiple adult victims and that Melnick admitted to the incidents.

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KC Bishop Finn under Vatican investigation

KANSAS CITY (MO)
Bellingham Herald

BY RACHEL ZOLL
AP Religion WriterSeptember 29, 2014

The Vatican is investigating Bishop Robert Finn of Kansas City, Missouri, two years after he was convicted of failing to report suspected abuse.

A Finn spokesman says the bishop was notified of the investigation by the papal ambassador in Washington.

The National Catholic Reporter was first to report the inquiry which is being conducted by the Vatican’s Congregation for Bishops.

Archbishop Terrence Prendergast of Ottawa visited the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph last week as part of the investigation. His spokeswoman said Monday only that the visit was private.

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Cardinal O’Malley Promotes Boston Globe Agenda to Boston Priests and Supporters

BOSTON (MA)
Boston Catholic Insider

In yet another disgrace for the Boston Archdiocese, the keynote speaker at last weeks’ Celebration of the Priesthood dinner/fundraiser was John Allen, associate editor of the Boston Globe. Allen was previously a reporter for the National Catholic Reporter. The fundraiser dinner raised $1.6M and was reported on here in the mainstream press and also on Cardinal Sean’s blog.

BCI and a number of our readers were disgusted to learn that Allen was picked to speak for this fundraiser. The Globe, of course, is opposed to every single one of the moral teachings of the Magisterium of the Roman Catholic Church. One reader asked, “Why do we have an editor from a pro-gay marriage, pro-choice newspaper speaking publicly to an event that honors and supports Catholic clergy?” The Catholic Church is diametrically opposed in philosophy to the secular humanism of the Globe. The choice of Allen is simply further evidence that Cardinal O’Malley is a modernist who does not care about promoting the authentic teachings of the Roman Catholic Church.

Also, it should be noted that there have been no communications about the state of the Clergy Fund. Paying the day in and day out operational costs for retired and ill clergy is one thing and it is good that they have stability there. But what about the future for our clergy? Why has the declared deficit of over $175M not been reduced over time? What is going to be done to fully fund the Clergy Fund for future priests? Is the additional $100M+ that used to be in the Clergy Fund deficit now being forgotten about?

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The price Aboriginal children paid at Retta Dixon

AUSTRALIA
Sydney Morning Herald

September 30, 2014

Greg Pemberton

The royal commission into child sexual abuse has asked searing questions about the behaviour of people in power across Australian society, writes Greg Pemberton. In Darwin this week, it turns its attention to the homes for Aboriginal children run by missionaries 50 years ago, when government policy was one of assimilation and young children were stolen from their families.

Barbara Cummings, now a 66-year-old grandmother, told the royal commission last week of how she was taken from her mother at the government-run Kahlin Compound for Aborigines. Her mother, Nellie, had earlier been similarly taken as a child from her people on the Daly River and deposited at Kahlin. Conditions there had been criticised by a Commonwealth parliamentary inquiry in 1923, which would lead to its closure in 1939 and replacement by the new Bagot reserve, co-located with the equally new Retta Dixon home, specifically taking the “half-caste” children in order to keep them separate from “full-blood” Aborigines.

If Cummings thought conditions in a missionary-run home would be better than in Kahlin or Bagot, she was shocked when she arrived in the 1950s. “I got terrible thrashings. We all did”,
Based on previously unpublished documents in the National Archives, Fairfax Media can reveal that in the late 1950s, when a reforming senior Darwin official sought to forbid this “corporal punishment” of Aboriginal children in Retta Dixon home, the former governor-general, Paul Hasluck, as Minister for Territories in the late 1950s, overruled him and ensured the missionaries could continue such practices.

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Missouri man alleging sexual abuse by priest seeks $10 million from diocese

MISSOURI
KFGO

Monday, September 29, 2014
By Carey Gillam

INDEPENDENCE Mo. (Reuters) – It has been 30 years, but Kansas City’s Catholic diocese still should pay a heavy price for allowing a now-dead priest to repeatedly sexually abuse a former altar boy, a lawyer for the alleged victim said in court Monday, kicking off a $10 million lawsuit against the diocese.

Jon David Couzens, then age 10, said he was molested 20 times over two years in the early 1980s by Monsignor Thomas O’Brien, who died in 2013. Couzens was deeply involved in Catholic school and church activities.

The alleged abuse included an encounter in which O’Brien forced Couzens and other altar boys to perform sex acts on each other and on the priest, according to Couzens’ attorney, Rebecca Randles.

The lawsuit alleges that the Catholic Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph intentionally failed to supervise O’Brien despite years of complaints and allegations by teachers and parents about the priest. Randles asked the jury Monday to order the diocese to pay $10 million in compensatory damages along with punitive damages.

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Francis and opposition in the Church

VATICAN CITY
Vatican Insider

Fr. Spadaro says Pope Francis is a leader and is also capable of taking difficult decisions. Organised opposition does exist within the Church

ANDREA TORNIELLI
VATICAN CITY

The arrest of former nuncio Józef Wesolowski in the Vatican three days ago (Wesolowski had already resigned from the clerical state after being accused of sexually abusing minors) and the replacement of Paraguayan bishop Rogelio Livieres (who was sacked for causing division in the Church after he accused other Paraguayan bishops of not nurturing doctrinal orthodoxy) gave the impression that things are speeding up ahead of the Synod on the Family in the coming weeks. The severity – as per the code of law – shown towards the former Polish archbishop sent out a strong message: that the days where impunity and cover-ups were the norm, have now come to an end. Wesolowski’s arrest is the final step on a path courageously begun by Benedict XVI, who sacked hundreds of priests and quite a number of bishops during his pontificate.

“Francis is a leader and is able to take difficult decisions,” Fr. Antonio Spadaro, editor-in-chief of Jesuit periodical La Civiltà Cattolica told Italian daily La Stampa. “But,” he added, “Pope Francis knows when it is important to do justice and act according to the law in cases such as that of Santo Domingo’s former nuncio.”

Straight after his election, having taken on board all that was said during the general congregations held prior to the conclave, Francis immediately set to reforming the Curia. Because of the inquiries that were being carried out by the Italian magistrates, he was forced to start with the Vatican’s finances. The process was slow and cumbersome and the aim was to make it harder for certain past scenarios to be repeated. But more than the structural reforms he has planned or already begun, it is his personal testimony as pastor and the words he pronounces every day that are calling into question certain dynamics within the clergy which are disfiguring the Church. Like an illness that manifests itself in the games played by cliques that form within the Church, in careerism, in the not-always-so-transparent relations with politics, in excessive bureaucracy and structures which transform into clots of self-referential power, losing sight of the real purpose of their existence: serving the people of God.

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Report: Bishop Finn under investigation by the Vatican

KANSAS CITY (MO)
Pitch Weekly

Posted By Steve Vockrodt on Mon, Sep 29, 2014

The National Catholic Reporter says that a Canadian archbishop traveled to Kansas City to investigate Robert Finn, bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph.

The Kansas City-based news outlet covering Catholicism reports that Ottawa, Ontario, Archbishop Terrence Prendergast paid a visit to Kansas City last week to ask members close to the local diocese about Finn’s leadership.

The Pitch has no independent verification of these claims; calls to the local and Ottawa diocese were not immediately returned.

Jack Smith, a spokesman for the local diocese, told the NCR that no one among the Kansas City diocese leadership was aware Prendergast’s queries, although a spokeswoman for the Ottawa diocese seemed to confirm his travel to Kansas City by couching it as a “private visit.”

Finn is reportedly in Rome for the ordinations of seminarians there. Finn time away in Rome seems to make an investigator’s visit to Kansas City timely.

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Kieran Conry resignation highlights faultlines in Catholic church

UNITED KINGDOM
The Guardian

Andrew Brown
The Guardian, Monday 29 September 2014

Kieran Conry’s resignation as the Roman Catholic bishop of Arundel and Brighton at the weekend highlighted traditional faultlines in a church contending with how to handle divorce, birth control and other matters of personal and sexual morality.

The popular bishop left a message to be read from all the pulpits of his diocese in which he confessed to having been “unfaithful to his promises as a Catholic priest”, after the Mail on Sunday published an extract from a love letter he had written to a woman whose husband is divorcing her.

Conry told the newspaper that this relationship was not sexual, and said he was resigning over another relationship that had happened six years ago. He provided no further explanation as to his decision.

Conry was previously in charge of press relations for the Catholic church in England and Wales, and was widely liked and trusted. “He showed how a Catholic priest could be a human being,” said one observer. “Now he has shown us in a way he’d rather not have done.”

The husband of the woman involved in the present case is threatening to sue the Catholic church on the grounds that Conry’s behaviour must have been well known to them.

Traditionalists were jubilant at his resignation. The rightwing blogger Damian Thompson paid tribute to Conry’s human qualities – “he didn’t give us any bullshit and let slip the odd bit of gossip” – but then accused him of bullying a traditionalist parish that was using the Latin Mass, something on which Thompson is a great deal keener than the present pope.

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Catholic bishop in England resigns over affair with woman, calls decision ‘liberating’

UNITED KINGDOM
Religion News Service

Trevor Grundy | September 29, 2014

CANTERBURY, England (RNS) A 63-year-old Roman Catholic bishop who had an affair six years ago with a woman said he feels calm, liberated and relieved after submitting his resignation to Pope Francis.

In an official statement made public Saturday (Sept. 27), Bishop Kieran Conry of Arundel and Brighton — regions in southern England — apologized for his actions.

“I am sorry to confess that going back some years I have been unfaithful to my promises as a Catholic priest,” he said. “I would like to assure you that my actions were not illegal and did not involve minors.” …

After his resignation, the paper quoted the former bishop as saying: “In some respects I feel very calm. It is liberating. It is a relief.”

But it may not be the end of the matter.

The former bishop now stands accused of a second affair, this one with a married parishioner 20 years his junior who is a mother of two children.

The Mail on Sunday featured a photo of Conry in an open-neck shirt and slacks carrying a shopping bag next to a woman with shoulder-length blond hair. Her face was blanked out by the editor for legal reasons.

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Pennsylvania Priest to Remain Behind Bars as He Awaits Sex Tourism Trial

PENNSYLVANIA
NBC 10

By Joe Mandak

A federal magistrate has ordered a Roman Catholic priest from Pennsylvania to remain jailed until his trial on sex tourism charges.

The Rev. Joseph Maurizio Jr. was arrested last week on allegations that he traveled to Honduras to have sex with children while he did missionary work with the poor. He was placed on leave from the Altoona-Johnstown diocese earlier this month.

At a hearing Monday in Johnstown, prosecutors called Maurizio a danger to the community and a flight risk. But a relative and two family friends cited his religious work and said they have seen him around children and had no concerns about his conduct.

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Johnstown priest accused of traveling to Honduras for sex with children ordered detained until trial

PENNSYLVANIA
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

By Torsten Ove / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

A Catholic priest in the Altoona-Johnstown Diocese accused of traveling to Honduras to have sex with children will remain behind bars pending trial.

A federal magistrate in Johnstown this morning ordered the Rev. Joseph Maurizio Jr., 69, detained after the U.S. attorney’s office said he was a danger to the community.

Father Maurizio has been jailed since his arrest last week by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

He is accused of sexually abusing boys in Honduras and possession of child pornography on his computer.

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SOURCE CONFIRMS POPE WILL REMOVE CONSERVATIVE CARDINAL FROM VATICAN

VATICAN CITY
Breitbart News

by AUSTIN RUSE 29 Sep 2014

Though it has been only a rumor until now, and has not yet been announced by the Vatican, a close associate of Cardinal Raymond Burke has told Breitbart News that the rumors of his departure are true, and the announcement is expected soon.

The source said Burke has been told he is out as head of the Apostolic Signatura and that he will assume the position of chaplain to the Order of Malta, a do-gooding organization of wealthy and sometimes European-titled Catholics.

Burke is a darling of Catholic conservatives around the world, having taken strong positions against pro-abortion politicians receiving communion, holding firm on traditional liturgy, and even excommunicating women who have tried to become ordained priests.

The source also told Breitbart News that the Pope did not ask Cardinal Burke where he wanted to go, which would have been a friendly gesture to someone the Pope wanted out of the powerful position in what could be considered Chief Justice of the Vatican Supreme Court.

In recent weeks, Burke has been outspoken that the upcoming planning session for the Synod of Bishops cannot change Church teaching on marriage. He went so far as to co-author a book with other Cardinals making this clear, something that puts Burke at odds with some of the closer associates of Pope Franci

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Conservatives to synod: Don’t go soft on marriage

UNITED STATES
Crux

By John L. Allen Jr.
Associate editor September 29, 2014

One sign that a summit is viewed as crucial is when a tug-of-war breaks out to shape its agenda and outcome. By that standard, the looming Oct. 5-19 Synod of Bishops on the family appears a very big deal indeed.

In the run-up to the synod, we’ve already seen cardinals publicly jousting over the contentious issue of whether the Church ought to relax its ban on divorced and remarried Catholics receiving Communion.

Activists and rank-and-file believers alike have entered the fray on all manner of issues related to the family, with the latest to-do involving a cross-section of 48 mostly conservative intellectuals and ministers, including not just Catholics but also Protestant luminaries such as Rick Warren, urging the synod to hold the line in defense of traditional marriage.

Their open letter to the synod, sent to Rome through diplomatic channels in late September and also posted on the Internet, does not engage any of the hot-button issues expected to surface at the meeting, such as gay marriage or the communion ban for divorced and remarried believers.

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Child sex abuse survivors far more likely to be disabled, poor and live alone in later life

IRELAND
The Journal

A MAJOR STUDY has found that childhood sexual abuse in Ireland does enormous economic and social damage to survivors, even well into later life.

The survey, conducted by the ESRI and Trinity College Dublin, found that Irish men and women who were sexually abused as children were more than twice as likely as others to be forced out of work by sickness in later life.

Among the other major findings:

* Male CSA survivors are three times more likely than other men to be sick or disabled after the age of 50

* Both men and women abused in childhood are more than twice as likely as others to be out of the workforce due to sickness or permanent disability

* The household income of male CSA survivors is 34% lower than the average

Men abused as children are twice as likely to live alone after the age of 50, compared to other men.

Speaking to TheJournal.ie, one of the researchers, Alan Barrett, said that the study measures, for the first time, the sheer scale and durability of the economic devastation that CSA causes among survivors.

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Kansas City Bishop Robert Finn under Vatican investigation

KANSAS CITY (MO)
National Catholic Reporter

Joshua J. McElwee | Sep. 29, 2014

A Canadian archbishop visited the Kansas City-St. Joseph, Mo., diocese last week on behalf of the Vatican to investigate the leadership of Bishop Robert Finn, the first Catholic prelate to be found criminally guilty of shielding a priest in the ongoing clergy sexual abuse crisis.

Ottawa, Ontario, Archbishop Terrence Prendergast visited the Midwestern diocese for several days last week, interviewing more than a dozen people about Finn’s leadership, several of those interviewed told NCR.

According to those who spoke with Prendergast, the main he question asked was: “Do you think [Finn] is fit to be a leader?”

The communications officer for the Ottawa archdiocese, Sarah Du Broy, said the archdiocese did not a have comment as “the Archbishop considers it a private visit.”

The director of the Kansas City diocese’s communications office, Jack Smith, said by phone Monday he had “no personal knowledge” of Prendergast’s visit. Later, after checking with “senior leadership” in the diocese, Smith sent an email to NCR, saying, “Nobody has heard of this.”

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‘Shunned’ victim of pedophile priest turns on royal commission

AUSTRALIA
The Australian

SEPTEMBER 30, 2014 1

Dan Box
Crime Reporter

A FORMER victim of a pedophile priest has accused the child abuse royal commission of treating him “with the same lack of ­respect shown to me by the Catholic Church” after his complaint about the conduct of an inquiry went unanswered.

Peter Gogarty, who was repeatedly abused by a Catholic priest during the 1970s, has written twice to commission chairman Peter McClellan about the hearing into unrelated alle­gations of child abuse, held earlier this year.

His first letter, sent in July, criticised the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse for what Mr Gogarty alleged to be “an opportunistic personal attack” on a senior barrister giving evidence.

A second letter, sent this month, criticised the commission’s lack of response, saying: “I have either been forgotten, or I am being ignored and treated with the same lack of respect shown to me by the Catholic Church.”

Mr Gogarty yesterday received a five-sentence reply from the commission’s chief executive, Philip Reed, saying: “I have brought (both letters) to Justice McClellan’s attention.

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Frisky Bishop of Arundel Faces Legal Charges

UNITED KINGDOM
RIA Novosti (Russia)

MOSCOW, September 29 (RIA Novosti) – After having resigned on Saturday for breaking the vows of celibacy, the Bishop of Arundel is now facing a legal threat from a man, whose wife he had slept with, The Telegraph reports.

The 63-year old Kieran Conry confessed being “unfaithful”, after having a relationship with a woman. As a result of breaking his vows of celibacy, the Catholic priest resigned on Saturday, the BBC said.

Now, the husband of the woman, with whom Conry had the love affair, is filing a legal case against the bishop. The 43-year old woman allegedly stayed over at least three nights at Conry’s house earlier this year, The Telegraph said.

Love letters between the two were discovered, in which the priest told the woman that her husband no longer loved her. The man, who has also filed for divorce, claims that the bishop’s sexual affection for his wife was known among the Catholic clergy. Their failure to take actions against Conry’s advances toward the woman has led to the breakup of his marriage, the man said, according to The Telegraph.

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Abuse ‘rampant’ at boys’ home

NORTHERN IRELAND
UTV

A senior police officer described sexual abuse at a Co Down children’s home ran by a Catholic order of brothers as “rampant”, the Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry has heard.

On Monday, the inquiry was hearing evidence on the Rubane House in Kircubbin, which was run by the De La Salle religious order from 1951 to 1985.

It was a voluntary children’s home for boys aged between 11 and 16 but from the 1970s it accepted children from the welfare authorities, predominantly from deprived parts of Belfast.

Rubane was the subject of a police investigation in the late 1990s.

Three De La Salle order brothers were charged but none were convicted after their trials did not go ahead because of legal issues.

The inquiry heard that in 1997, RUC Detective Chief Superintendent Eric Anderson, wrote a letter to the Director of Public Prosecutions about sexual abuse of children at the home.

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Inquiry hears 1 in 5 boys at Co Down children’s home say they were abused

NORTHERN IRELAND
The Journal

AN INQUIRY HAS been told that one in five former residents of a children’s home in Co Down were sexually abused.

The Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry is examining allegations made about Rubane House in Kircubbin.

The home was ran by the De La Salle religious order from 1950 to 1985 and its residents were mostly boys aged 11-16. It’s one of 13 Northern Ireland institutions being investigated.

BBC reports that 55 of the 1,050 former residents have come forward to the inquiry to allege they were physically or sexually assaulted, while a further 150 boys made allegations in the past but have not contacted the inquiry.

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HIA Inquiry told abuse at Rubane House was ‘as bad as Kincora’

NORTHERN IRELAND
BBC News

Sexual abuse at a children’s home in County Down was equal to, if not worse, than abuse at Kincora Boys Home, an inquiry has been told.

The Historical Institutional Abuse (HIA) Inquiry is examining allegations of abuse at Rubane House, Kircubbin.

The inquiry has estimated that one in five of Rubane’s 1,050 former residents have made allegations of serious sexual or physical abuse.

A total of 13 Northern Ireland institutions are being investigated.

The Kircubbin home was run by the De La Salle religious order, which has already accepted some children were abused.

A lawyer acting for the inquiry said more than 200 children have claimed they were seriously sexually or physically abused at Rubane House, which was open from 1950 to 1985.

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Rev. Roy Alan Drake, SJ is a known sexual offender of minor children and has been accused once again of having sexually abused a minor teenager

NEW YORK
Road to Recovery

Media Release – September 29, 2014

In 2014, Rev. Roy Alan Drake, SJ has been accused of sexually abusing a minor child at Maine Maritime Academy in Castine, Maine, when Rev. Roy Alan Drake, SJ was a professor there and acted as a Jesuit priest

The Northeast Jesuits, formerly the New York Province of the Society of Jesus, refuse to acknowledge and bear responsibility for the allegation of sexual abuse against Fr. Roy Alan Drake, SJ in Maine and give any assistance to the victim, settle and validate his claim, and help him heal

What: A press conference alerting the media and citizens that the Northeast Province of the Society of Jesus (Jesuits) refuses to assist a sexual abuse victim of one its members, Rev. Roy Alan Drake, SJ.

When: Tuesday, September 30, 2014 at 11:00 AM

Where: On the public sidewalk outside the motor vehicle entrance to Fordham University, at the northeast side of the campus on Southern Boulevard, Bronx, NY, 10460 near the Bronx Botanical Gardens (the main address of Fordham University, Rose Hill, is 441 East Fordham Road, Bronx, NY 10458)

Who: Neal E. Gumpel, a native and resident of Connecticut, who has alleged that he was sexually abused as a minor teenager by Fr. Roy Alan Drake, SJ; members of Road to Recovery, Inc., a non-profit charity based in New Jersey that assists victims of sexual abuse and their families, including its co-founder and President, Robert M. Hoatson, Ph.D.

Why: Neal Gumpel was an unsuspecting, innocent high school minor teenager when his brother invited him to spend a weekend with him at Maine Maritime Academy in Castine, Maine. Fr. Roy Alan Drake, SJ was a Jesuit priest who was working at Maine Maritime Academy at the time as a professor and acting as a Jesuit priest. At all times during the period of the sexual abuse, Fr. Roy Alan Drake, SJ was a Jesuit priest although he was on a leave of absence. Fr. Roy Alan Drake, SJ invited Neal Gumpel as a minor teenager to his residence on or near the Maine Maritime Academy campus, plied him with alcohol, and sexually abused him. When Neal Gumpel reported these allegations to the superiors of the Northeast Province of the Jesuit Fathers and Brothers, the Jesuit leaders refused to acknowledge and validate his allegations and told him they were not going to help him heal. Fr. Roy Alan Drake, SJ, who died in 2008, was a repeat sexual abuser of young teenagers. Neal Gumpel and his supporters will demand of the Northeast Province Jesuits, formerly the New York Province of the Society of Jesus, that they acknowledge and validate Mr. Gumpel’s allegations, compensate him for his injuries, and assist in his healing.

Contacts: Robert M. Hoatson, Ph.D., Road to Recovery, Inc. – 862-368-2800
Attorney Mitchell Garabedian, Boston, MA – 617-523-6250

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Inquiry told 20% of boys at NI home allege they were abused

NORTHERN IRELAND
RTE News

[with video]

Northern Ireland’s Historical Abuse Inquiry has been told that 20% of the 1,000 boys who were residents of De La Salle home in Co Down allege that they were physically or sexually abused.

The home opened in 1950 and closed in 1985 and its residents were mainly boys, aged between 11 and 16 from north or west Belfast.

The information about the percentage of allegations was given this morning by Joseph Aiken, junior counsel to the inquiry, in his opening remarks at the module dealing with the De La Salle home, Rubane House, in Kircubbin, Co Down.

Mr Aiken said allegations of physical or sexual abuse, or both, have been made against all five of the brothers who were in charge of the home up to 1980, but that the De La Salle Order is not in a position to accept the allegations against all of the said individuals.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

‘Rampant’ abuse at Catholic home

NORTHERN IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

29 SEPTEMBER 2014

Sexual abuse was rampant at a children’s home in Northern Ireland run by a Catholic order of brothers, a former senior police officer has said.

Around a fifth of boys at Rubane House in Co Down were subjected to sexual or physical abuse, according to a public inquiry, equal to if not worse than that at another notorious home, Kincora in east Belfast.

Rubane was the subject of a police investigation in the 1990s, the Historical Institutional Abuse (HIA) inquiry was told. Three De La Salle order brothers were charged but none convicted after their trials did not go ahead due to legal issues.

Former Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) detective chief superintendent Eric Anderson wrote a note to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).

It said: “Sexual abuse by a considerable number of the De La Salle brothers on the children and consequently between children is rampant.”

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Holder Mistake with Bishops Repeated with Imans

UNITED STATES
City of Angels

By Kay Ebeling, City of Angels

All of a sudden Eric Holder resigns. It looks like Obama’s AG screwed up bad by being too benevolent to “nonprofits” that have Islam in their name. He allowed who knows how many dollars to flow into mosques that produced criminals such as the Tsarnaev brothers in Boston and Alton Nolen in Oklahoma.

This is the same Attorney General who said no when he had an opportunity to file federal indictments against Catholic bishops for aiding and abetting pedophile priests back in 2009-10, astounding crime victims nationwide. Now Holder has made the same mistake with Islamic groups, not believing that a network of criminals could operate at the top echelons of a religion. Holder is now no longer our AG, but we have to deal with the consequences.

Eric Holder did not prosecute the bishops just like he would not prosecute the imans. In the Catholic case it means dozens of felons are still in powerful positions influencing public policy. In the Islamic case, the entire nation’s security has been compromised.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

The Health Effects of Leaving Religion

UNITED STATES
MSN News

By Jon Fortenbury of The Atlantic

How a loss of faith can manifest itself in the mind and body

Curtis Penfold got kicked out of his apartment, fired from his job, and left Brigham Young University all in the same week.

He left BYU—a private university operated by The Church of Latter-day Saints—because he had started to disagree with some of the Church’s views, causing tension between him and school officials. His exit from the school caused him to lose his on-campus job, and he subsequently resigned from the Mormon Church. Resigning from the church resulted in getting kicked out of his religiously-affiliated private housing, and he received angry emails from old friends and phone calls from his disappointed parents who said he “lost the light” and “used to be so good.”

“I felt so hated by this community I used to love,” Penfold said.

Penfold originally went to BYU to be around fellow Mormons. But over the course of the two-and-a-half years he spent there, he started to find the lack of LGBT rights in the church distasteful and was unable to reconcile the idea of a loving God with the evil he saw in the world. This loss of faith in God went beyond his separation from Mormonism, leading to months of depression, anxiety over the prospect of no afterlife, and suicidal thoughts. He’s better now, but for a while there were days when he wouldn’t even leave his bed.

Like Penfold, many who leave religion in America become isolated from their former communities, which can make them anxious, depressed, or even suicidal. Others feel liberated. No deconversion story is the same, but many who leave behind strongly-held religious beliefs can see an impact on their health.

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