Legal and Diocesan Documents

The current stage of the ongoing sex abuse crisis is defined by documents: diocesan documents revealed in discovery by plaintiffs and newspapers, Vatican and bishops' conference documents that adjust canon law in complex ways, testimony by bishops and other high church officials, and investigative reports by grand juries, district attorneys, and attorneys general. We are posting them all.

As church documents in the thousands have come under public scrutiny for the first time, lawyers for the church have redoubled their efforts to prevent other damaging revelations. Innovative claims of "prelate" and "formation" privilege have been advanced, and settlements involving hundreds of survivors have been negotiated among threats of diocesan bankruptcy.

Featured Documents

* Boston Archdiocesan Files - We are the largest source on the Internet of publicly available Boston files, including crucial documents about Birmingham and Shanley.

* McCormack Deposition - This important testimony is available only here on the Internet, and includes links to the 85 exhibits: a cross-section of the Boston crisis, and in-depth look at McCormack's 10-year career as Boston abuse fixer.

* New Vatican Procedures for U.S. Abuse Cases - This previously unreleased document comes from a February 2003 Vatican training session for U.S. diocesan abuse experts. It clearly outlines for the first time the Vatican's role in disciplining accused priests.


Reports by Attorneys General and Grand Juries

1) New York NY - Westchester County Grand Jury Report, June 19, 2002
2) Rockville Centre NY - Suffolk County Grand Jury Report, February 10, 2003
3) Manchester NH - Attorney General’s Report with investigative archive, March 3, 2003
4) Boston MA - Reilly Report and Executive Summary, July 23, 2003
5) Portland ME - Attorney General’s Report, February 24, 2004. See also the attorney general's investigative materials released on May 27, 2005 and July 8, 2005.
6) Philadelphia PA - Grand Jury Report, September 15, 2005


Diocesan Archives

* Manchester NH - The full 9,000-page collection released by the NH arrorney general. Only available here on the Internet.

* Boston MA - The first 500-page installment in our project to post the 45,000 page collection in its entirety.

* San Diego CA - The 10,000-page archive obtained as a nonmonetary provision of the bankruptcy settlement.

* Forth Worth TX - The 726-page collection released by Judge Len Wade.



* Archbishop Robert F. Sanchez [Santa Fe cases and Servants of the Paraclete]
      • Volume 1 – January 12, 1994
      • Volume 2 – January 13, 1994
      • Volume 3 – January 14, 1994
      • Volume 4 – January 15, 1994

      • Volume 5 – October 3, 1994
      • Volume 6 – October 4, 1994
      • Volume 7 – October 5, 1994
      • Volume 8 – Cctober 6, 1994

* Rev. Wilfrid Diamond - September 16, 1994 [El Paso diocese, Fr. David Holley, Servants of the Paraclete]

* Cardinal Bernard Law - May 8, 2002, June 5, 2002, June 7, 2002, August 13, 2002, August 14, 2002, October 11, 2002, October 16, 2002, January 22, 2003, February 3, 2003

* Bishop John B. McCormack - June 3, 2002 through November 22, 2002 [Shanley case involving Boston archdiocese]

* Bishop Daniel P. Reilly - September 24, 2004 [Teczar case involving Fort Worth and Worcester dioceses]

* Cardinal Roger Mahony - November 23, 2004 [Clergy III cases in Los Angeles]

* Bishop Tod D. Brown - September 10, 2007

* Auxiliary Bishop Emeritus Raymond E. Goedert - November 13, 2007

* Cardinal Francis E. George - January 30, 2008

* Archbishop Rembert G. Weakland, O.S.B. - June 5-6, 2008

* Bishop Thomas Curry - September 30, 2009

* Retired Judge Richard P. Byrne - October 29, 2009

* Bishop Victor Balke - December 14, 2009 (with exhibits)

* Cardinal Roger Mahony - January 25, 2010

* Rev. John Doerfler - November 5, 2010 (with exhibits)

* Cited in Motion to Prevent Document Destruction in Merryfield v. Diocese of Green Bay - November 15, 2010

* Rev. Robert Vandenberg - November 5, 2010

Complaints and Other Filings

* Allegations of Sexual Abuse Against Priests in the Archdiocese of Boston, by Roderick MacLeish, Jr., dated 9/27/93 [Lane, Surrette, Roche, O’Sullivan, Tourigney, Mahan, Towner, Shanley, Bretton, Atwater, Barret, Dwver, Dunn, Forry, Paquin, Mullin, and Hickey]
* Demand Letter, submitted 9/22/94 [Br. Ricardo CFX]
* John Doe 1 v. Des Moines Diocese, filed 12/15/95 [Msgr. Francis T. Zuch]
* A, B, and C Doe and Jane Roe v. Geoghan, (7/9/96) [Rev. John Geoghan]
* John V. Doe v. Holy See, filed 4/1/02 [Rev. Andrew M. Ronan, O.S.M.]
* James M. Hogan et al. v. Archbishop of Boston, A Corporation Sole, John B. McCormack, John J. Jennings, Robert J. Banks, Thomas J. Finnegan And Bernard Cardinal Law, filed 8/5/02 [Rev. Joseph Birmingham; 34 named plaintiffs]
* Samide v. Brooklyn Diocese, filed 10/1/02 [Rev. John Thompson]
* Redacted v. Rev. Barry Bossa, filed 10/21/02 [Rev. Barry Bossa]
* Complaint for Racketeering, Personal Injuries, Negligence, and Fraud (4/29/02) [Cicchillo v. Los Angeles Archdiocese, Cardinal Roger Mahony, Fr. Carl Sutphin, et al.]
* John Doe 14 v. Archbishop of Boston, filed 6/4/02 [Rev. J. Kevin McAndrews]
* Plaintiffs' Memorandum of Law in Support of Motion in Limine to Admit Evidence of Practices and Policies of the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Boston, a Corporation Sole, Concerning Sexually Abusive Priests Other Than Paul R. Shanley, in Gregory Ford, et al. v. Bernard Cardinal Law, et al., filed 7/21/03 [Shanley, Buntel, Burns, Coughlin, Finegan, Foley, Forry, Geoghan, Graham, Johnson, Kelley, Lane, Meffan, Morrissette, Murphy, Paquin, Picardi, O'Leary, O'Sullivan, Rebeiro, Rosenkranz, Rynne, Tivnan, Tourigney, and Wilson]
* John Doe 1 et al. v. Rev. Edmond A. Parrakow et al., filed 2/26/04 [Parrakow, Caverzan, Whalen, O’Herlihy, Martin, Rios, Greene, Stewart, Netter, White, Sherlock, and Brady]
* Burnett v. Bishop of Springfield MA, filed 3/29/05 [Doheny, Page, Weldon, Berthiaume, Gatineau, Walsh, and Harrington]
* Chambers v. Kenkel, filed 4/25/05 [Rev. Leonard A. Kenkel]
* Chevedden v. California Jesuits, filed 5/17/05 [Br. Charles Leonard Connor]
* Nicholson v. St. Louis Archdiocese, filed 8/25/05 [Rev. William C. Poepperling]
* John Doe RG vs. Archdiocese of Indianapolis, St. Andrew Catholic Church, Fr. Harry Monroe, and Does 1-100 Inclusive, filed 9/8/05. [Rev. Harry Monroe]
* John Doe CT vs. Archdiocese of Indianapolis, St. Catherine Parish n/k/a Good Shepherd Parish, Fr. Harry Monroe, and Does 1-100 Inclusive, filed 9/22/05. [Rev. Harry Monroe]
* John Doe HB vs. Archdiocese of Indianapolis, St. Catherine Parish n/k/a Good Shepherd Parish, Fr. Harry Monroe, and Does 1-100 Inclusive, filed 10/25/05. [Rev. Harry Monroe]
* John Doe NM vs. Archdiocese of Indianapolis, St. Catherine Parish n/k/a Good Shepherd Parish, Fr. Harry Monroe, and Does 1-100 Inclusive, filed 10/25/05. [Rev. Harry Monroe]
* John Doe DB vs. Archdiocese of Indianapolis, St. Paul Church, Fr. Harry Monroe, and Does 1-100 Inclusive, filed 11/9/05. [Rev. Harry Monroe]
* John Doe KW vs. Archdiocese of Indianapolis, St. Paul Church, Fr. Harry Monroe, and Does 1-100 Inclusive, filed 1/30/06. [Rev. Harry Monroe]
* John Doe 141 vs. Archdiocese of Indianapolis, St. Paul Church, Fr. Harry Monroe, and Does 1-100 Inclusive, filed 2/7/06. [Rev. Harry Monroe]
* John Doe WD vs. Archdiocese of Indianapolis, St. Andrew Catholic Church, Fr. Harry Monroe, and Does 1-100 Inclusive, filed 2/14/06. [Rev. Harry Monroe]
* John Doe 103 v. Chicago Archdiocese, filed 3/23/06 [Rev. Chester Przybylo]
* John Doe OD vs. Archdiocese of Indianapolis, St. Michael Church, Fr. Harry Monroe, and Does 1-100 Inclusive, filed 6/5/06. [Rev. Harry Monroe]
* John Doe WC vs. Archdiocese of Indianapolis, St. Patrick Church, Fr. Harry Monroe, and Does 1-100 Inclusive, filed 6/13/06. [Rev. Harry Monroe]
* John Doe HS vs. Archdiocese of Indianapolis, St. Paul Church, Fr. Harry Monroe, and Does 1-100 Inclusive, filed 6/15/06. [Rev. Harry Monroe]
* John Doe 113 v. Bishop Fliss, filed 11/22/06 [Rev. Edward Beutner]
* John Doe 26 v. Miami Archdiocese, filed 10/25/06 [Rev. Anthony Mercieca]
* JP v. Archbishop of Seattle, filed 3/9/07 [Rev. James Knelleken]
* Hoatson v. Egan, filed 8/14/07
* John Doe 116 v. Chicago Jesuits, filed 8/21/07 [Rev. Donald McGuire SJ]
* John Doe 119 v. Las Vegas Diocese, filed 1/15/08 [Rev. John Patrick Feeney]
* Cunningham v. California Franciscans, filed 8/6/08
* John Doe 129 v. Chicago Province of the Jesuits, filed 2/20/09 [Rev. Donald J. McGuire SJ]
* Ernesto C. v. Franciscan Friars of California, filed 10/5/09
* Craig Clover v. Franciscan Friars of California, filed 11/3/09
* John Doe 16 v. Holy See, filed 4/22/10 [Rev. Lawrence Murphy]
* John Doe v. Diocese of Manchester and Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, filed 7/21/10 [Rev. George St. Jean OMI]
* Alfred A. Moya v. Gallup Diocese, Santa Fe Archdiocese, Corpus Christi Diocese, Our Lady of Guadalupe Church, and the Hageman Estate [Rev. Clement A. Hageman]
* Willard Trent v. Archdiocese of Miami, filed 10/5/10 [Rev. Thomas Dennehy]
* John Doe 31 v. The Roman Catholic Bishop of Stockton, filed 10/27/10 [Rev. Oliver O'Grady]
* Jane Doe 40 v. The Roman Catholic Bishop of Oakland, filed 11/9/10 [Msgr. Vincent Ignacio Breen]
* John Doe 75 v. John Roe 1 et al., filed 7/21/11 [Rev. William G. Allison]
* John Does 1–16 and Jane Does 1–29 et al. v. Ursuline Sisters of the Western Province and the Diocese of Helena, filed 10/3/11
* Michelle S. v. the Bishops of San Jose and Fresno, Sacred Heart Parish, and Fr. Don Flickinger, filed 3/20/12
* John FD Roe 1 v. the Bishops of San Jose, San Francisco, and Fresno, St. Frances Cabrini Church and School, and Fr. Don Flickinger, filed 9/28/12
* Doe 16 v. Diocese of Winona, filed 8/28/13 [Rev. Thomas Adamson]
* Doe YZ v. Shattuck-St. Mary's School, filed 10/4/13 [Mr. Lynn Phillip Seibel]
* Redacted v Ricardo Gonzalez, filed 9/22/16; see also the settlement release dated 11/7/16 and the dismissal

Vatican Cases

John V. Doe v. Holy See et al. [Rev. Andrew M. Ronan, O.S.M.]

* Complaint (4/1/02)
* Civil Appeals Docketing Statement (6/22/06)
* Decision of U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit (3/3/09)
* U.S. Supreme Court Docket (6/28/10)

John Doe 16 v. Holy See [Rev. Lawrence Murphy]

* Complaint (4/22/10)
* Letter Rogatory (9/24/10)

Miani Case [Rev. Titian Miani S.D.B.]

* Bellflower man sues Vatican, Catholic order over alleged abuse, by Gillian Flaccus, Associated Press, June 30, 2010


Canonical Documents

Readers should note that the so-called Mixed Commission (whose work was rubber-stamped at the 11/02 USCCB meeting in DC) revised the Dallas Norms to bring them in line with Pope John Paul II's 4/30/01 Apostolic Letter, its attached Norms, and Cardinal Ratzinger's 5/18/01 explanatory letter (see those documents below). Our intention here is to make available all the documents referred to in the Charter and Norms, and other documents that reflect the church's approach to sexual abuse by its priests and related issues.

* Instructio de modo procedendi in causis sollicitationis (Instruction on the manner of proceeding in cases of solicitation), by Cardinal Rafael Merry del Val y Zulueta, Secretary of the Congregation of the Holy Office, approved by Pope Pius XI (6/9/22) - Latin and English
Religiosorum Institutio (Instruction on the Careful Selection and Training of Candidates for the States of Perfection and Sacred Orders), issued by the Sacred Congregation for Religious (2/2/61) - English
* Crimen Sollicitationis (The Offense of Sollicitation), by Cardinal Ottaviani, approved by Pope John XXIII (3/16/62) - Latin and English

* Conrad Baars, The Role of the Church in the Causation, Treatment and Prevention of the Crisis in the Priesthood (1971)

* Letter to the Bishops of the Catholic Church on the Pastoral Care of Homosexual Persons, a CDF letter to the bishops by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger and Archbishop Alberto Bovone (10/1/86) - English
* Pastor Bonus (The Good Shepherd), Pastor Apostolic Constitution by Pope John Paul II (6/28/88) Latin and English, in which the CDF's jurisdiction over "more serious" offenses is briefly described in Section III, article 52.

* NCCB Guidelines and Other Considerations in Pedophilia Cases, by Bishop A. James Quinn, at Midwest Canon Law Society Meeting (4/23-25/90) Transcript [note in particular the passage (PDF p. 31) on sending documents that "you really don't want people to see" to the Vatican embassy in Washington "because they have immunity"]

* Canonical Delicts Involving Sexual Misconduct and Dismissal from the Clerical State, by Msgr. John A. Alesandro, published by the NCCB/USCB (1995) {1}{2}{3}{4}

* Agendi Ratio (Plan of Proceeding in an Investigation of Beliefs), by Cardinals Ratzinger and Bertone (6/29/97) - Latin

* Always Our Children: A Pastoral Message to Parents of Homosexual Children and Suggestions for Pastoral Ministers, a statement by the then-NCCB Committee on Marriage and Family (9/10/97) - English

* Sacramentorum Sanctitatis Tutela (Safeguarding the Sanctity of the Sacraments), Apostolic Letter by Pope John Paul II with related Norms Regarding the More Serious Offenses Reserved to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (4/30/01) - Latin of the letter and English translation of the letter and the norms, with another earlier translation of the Norms for comparison. The letter is posted only in Latin on the Vatican Web site, and without its attached Norms, which seem never to have been published in Latin.

* Letter Regarding the More Serious Offenses Reserved to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, by Cardinals Ratzinger and Bertone (5/18/01) - Latin and English

* Early Draft of the Dallas Charter - (6/4/02)
* Dallas Charter - (6/14/02)
* Bishop Wilton Gregory's statement on the Charter (6/14/02) and statements by other bishops
* Dallas Norms - (6/14/02)

* Exchange of Letters between Cardinal Re and Bishop Gregory about Vatican reaction to the Dallas Norms (10/14-15/02)
* Changes in the Norms Made by the Mixed Commission - (10/29/02)
* Comparative Text of the Dallas Norms and the Mixed Commission Norms

* A Statement of Episcopal Commitment, USCCB (11/13/02)

* Final Norms (12/8/02)
* Final Charter (12/8/02)

* National Review Board and John Jay College, Cleric Survey and Victim Survey (early draft)
* National Review Board and John Jay College, Victim Survey, Cleric Survey, Diocesan Profile, FAQs, and Related Instructions (final versions, originally posted by Roman Catholic Faithful)

* A Manual for Canonical Processes for the Resolution of Complaints of Clerical Sexual Abuse of Minors, from Msgr. Charles Scicluna's seminar in Washington DC (2/03)

* Cardinals' Oath on Receiving Biretta, Zenit (10/21/03)

* Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People; Essential Norms; and Statement of Episcopal Commitment, USCCB (6/05)
* Comparison of 2002 and 2006 Essential Norms Texts, USCCB (promulgated 5/5/06)




Any original material on these pages is copyright © 2004. Reproduce freely with attribution.