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Archive for June, 2011

ARCHDIOCESE OF NEWARK CONTINUES TO ENDANGER CHILDREN

Sunday, June 26, 2011

 

Fr. Bob Hoatson requested that I post this media release.

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MEDIA RELEASE

 

ARCHDIOCESE OF NEWARK CONTINUES TO ENDANGER CHILDREN

 

MSGR. JOHN LAFERRERA CONTINUES IN MINISTRY DESPITE NUMEROUS ABUSE ALLEGATIONS AGAINST HIM

TWO NEW VICTIMS OF LAFERRERA TO GO PUBLIC, JOINING SEVERAL OTHERS

What

 

A media event and demonstration at which two new victims of Msgr. John Laferrera will speak about their abuse for the first time with their attorney.

 

 

Where

 

At the side entrance of St. Philomena’s Parish, 386 South Livingston Avenue, Livingston, NJ

(in front of Livingston High School).

 

When

 

Sunday, June 26, 2011 from 8:15 AM until 1:00 PM.  Media event at 11:30 AM

 

Who

 

Angel and Miguel Nieves (going public for the first time), Sam and Dan Rivera (brothers who told their stories in March, 2011), Ernest Fabregas (who reported his abuse in 2009 and was told he was not credible), their families and supporters, Attorney Gregory Gianforcaro, and Rev. Robert M. Hoatson, President of Road to Recovery, a charity that assists survivors of clergy sexual abuse.

 

Why

 

When Ernest Fabregas was told by Archbishop Myers that his sexual abuse allegations against Fr. John Laferrera in 2009 were not credible, he refused to take “no” for an answer.  He knew there were other victims, and he found brothers Sam and Dan Rivera who then found five or six other victims.  As a result of their networking and connecting with former altar boys at Immaculate Conception Parish in Newark, NJ, three more men have come forward.  Two of those men, Angel and Miguel Nieves, will tell their stories at the media event along with their attorney, Greg Gianforcaro and advocate, Fr. Robert Hoatson.  In March, 2011, a lawsuit was filed by four men.  There are now eight litigants.  The Archdiocese of Newark has not removed Msgr. John Laferrera, an alleged serial abuser of young boys, from ministry.  Victims of Laferrera will call on the Archdiocese of Newark again to do the right thing, remove Laferrera, and encourage all victims of Laferrera to come forward to begin their healing.

 

CONTACTS

 

Rev. Robert M. Hoatson, Road to Recovery, Inc. – 862-368-2800

Attorney Greg Gianforcaro – 908-310-4624

 

PLEASE READ THIS: INSIDE THE ARCHDIOCESE OF PHILADELPHIA’S SEX-ABUSE SCANDAL

Friday, June 24, 2011

http://blogs.phillymag.com/the_philly_post/2011/06/23/inside-the-archdiocese-of-philadelphias-sex-abuse-scandal/

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Chicago SNAP leader Rick Spinger brought this must read article to my attention.

Thank you, Rick, for this and all you do for victims/survivors of clergy sexual abuse.

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INSIDE THE ARCHDIOCESE OF PHILADELPHIA’S SEX-ABUSE SCANDAL 

Can the Catholic Church as we know it survive?

Posted on 6/23/2011 at 10:21AM

 

It was a little less than a month ago, on a warm weekday evening, that Joe spoke to fellow parishioners at his church—St. Mary of the Assumption Parish in Manayunk. The leader of Joe’s men’s group and a victims advocate for the archdiocese set up the meeting. Perhaps 30 people came. Joe discovered something, after he spoke, that shocked him. It was that other people saw him as a hero.

About 45 years ago, when Joe was a ninth grader at Roman Catholic High School, Father Schmeer, a guidance counselor, would call boys down to his office from English class. One day it was Joe’s turn. He knew what it was about, because other boys had been there. Or he didn’t know exactly what it was about, but he was now going to find out. When Joe got to Father Schmeer’s office, the priest told Father Durante, in the next office, to watch his door. Father Schmeer brought Joe into his office and stood behind him. He reached into Joe’s pants and tried to masturbate him. That was the first time. A month later, Joe was called down to Father Schmeer’s office once again. Father Durante watched the door. This time, Father Schmeer pressed against Joe from behind. His fingers dug into Joe’s shoulders. He pulled down Joe’s pants, and underwear, and raped Joe.

Father Schmeer told Joe not to tell anyone. Joe did not, for four decades. We know all about the local Church’s cover-up now. It has come out in story after story, in two grand jury reports.

We know less about people like Joe.

He is now 59 years old. Joe told his story to me in a corner of a diner in Roxborough a few months ago. He says he is searching for his soul, and in the diner, he held his hands cupped next to him, as if that soul—the size of a small child—might be waiting next to him in the booth.

But a miraculous thing happened, on that warm night about a month ago, after Joe told fellow parishioners what was done to him in Father Schmeer’s office, after he said he still felt ashamed about it. Tim, a member of Joe’s men’s group, got up and said that Joe was one of the bravest men he had ever met. That what he was doing, going public with his story after living with it, alone, for so long—after not even being able to consciously grasp for himself, for four decades, what had happened to him in Father Schmeer’s office—was changing lives.

As Tim told Joe that he was brave, and an example of a real man, Joe broke down. He started crying, uncontrollably for a moment. He seemed shocked by this possibility, that what he was doing, sitting on a low podium telling his truth to fellow parishioners, was brave. Through his tears, Joe gave Tim a thumbs up, thanking him and, more to the point, telling him that he heard. He heard what Tim was saying.

It is hard to understand how an institution built on love and truth can hide behind those very ideals, to make abusive priests untouchable. We do know why men like Joe have spent most of their lives living alone with their pain. It is very difficult to challenge those at the top of the Church, who are direct messengers from God. This insulation—the power it bestows—proved useful. But no longer. Joe—and others—are taking the risk of telling the truth. The shame is moving on. On to men who would hide the truth, and put children at risk for being raped, in order to protect their idea of their sacred Church, and to protect, in turn, themselves.

Read more about the Joe, the abuse scandal, and the men inside the Archdiocese of Philadelphia—Cardinal Justin Rigali, Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua, and Monsignor William Lynn—in Robert Huber’s July Philadelphia magazine feature, “Power, Sex and Secrets.”

 

 

A Penny for the Pope for Peter’s Pence

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

 

PRESS RELEASE

JUNE 21, 2011

CONTACT: FRANK DOUGLAS (520) 404-2489; frankdouglas62@yahoo.com

The 2011 Peter’s Pence collection takes place this Sunday June 26. Ostensibly for papal charities, the latest (2009) information we have—as documented by Jason Berry in his highly praised new book Render Unto Rome—reveals that only about 10% of the Peter’s Pence collection goes to charity. The rest goes to fund the Vatican’s annual operating deficit which flows from the Holy See’s nasty habit of living beyond its means, very much like we see in governments in America and elsewhere in the Western world..

If you are disturbed by the pope’s gross mismanagement of the clergy sex abuse phenomenon, especially putting children at risk of great harm from known and suspected pedophile priests, the Peter’s Pence collection provides every Catholic an opportunity to send a message to the pope in a universal, well-understood language: MONEY.

One can send this message for just one Lincoln penny:

 

 

If you eat at a restaurant and the service is awful, you have three choices: 1) you can leave the usual tip—and the waiter has no incentive to change his/her ways; 2) you can leave no tip which allows delusional thinking such as “They probably forgot;” or 3) you can leave a penny (or two) so that there can be no doubt in anybody’s mind about your dissatisfaction.

Giving as usual means business as usual for the Vatican because there it has no incentive to change. If you don’t put anything in the Peter’s Pence collection, church officials can delude themselves by saying, “It’s the economy!” When you put a penny in the collection plate (along with a brief note expressing your dissatisfaction), there can be no doubt about your message. This Sunday, June 26, send the pope a message: BUSINESS AS USUAL WILL NO LONGER BE TOLERATED.

To send this message, just drop a penny in the collection basket this Sunday.

If you won’t be at Mass this Sunday, June 26, but still want to send a forceful message, a penny and a 44-cent stamp are all it takes for your voice to be heard, too. We urge you to send a penny with a brief note to:
Peter’s Pence Collection
The Apostolic Nunciature, the Holy See
3339 Massachusetts Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20008  .

Desert Voices, Inc., an Arizona non-profit corporation, sponsors Send the Bishops a Message.

 

 

You might like this ad, and then again you might not

Friday, June 17, 2011

A tip of the hat to my New Mexico pal Bud Hefley for pointing this ad out to me.

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http://www.noob.us/humor/you-will-never-guess-what-this-ad-is-about/

My name is Father Frank Friendly, and I am a pedophile priest

Friday, June 17, 2011

My name is Father Frank Friendly, and I am a pedophile priest.

 

So far I have molested 23 boys.

 

I have tried to stop, but I keep on sinning.

 

I have gone to confession to Bishop Brian Brown after every sin, have asked God to make me strong and pure, have made a firm resolution not to sin again, and, thank God, I have received absolution each time.

 

Bishop Brown and I pray together that I will be delivered from the evil that drives me to sin against these boys. But sometimes, when the circumstances are right and the opportunity presents itself, I sin again.

 

We are all sinners, including Bishop Brown. I and many of my priest friends know that Bishop Brown and Father Paul Paulson from St. Anne’s have gone on vacation together numerous times to Palm Springs to a hotel that is known to cater to gay men. Many priests in our diocese know this.

 

I hope and pray to God everyday that I won’t sin again, but Mike Murphy in the eighth grade has been tempting me. Yesterday I saw him in his basketball uniform and the sinful stirrings between my legs began again.

 

Frank Douglas  |  Tucson, AZ  |  June 17, 2011

 

Where in the world has Milwaukee’s Bishop Sklba been?

Friday, June 17, 2011

I received the following email message from Midwest SNAP director Peter Isely on 6.16.2011.

Thank you, Peter.

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Where in the world has Milwaukee’s Bishop Sklba been?

Not under oath in Milwaukee for the clerical sex abuse cover up

 

We have not heard or seen much from auxiliary bishop Richard Sklba since the Milwaukee archdiocese filed for bankruptcy in early January.

 

After years of delay by archdiocesan attorneysSklba’s long anticipated and potentially explosive deposition was finally scheduled to take place this January.

Sklba, who has been directly implicated in nearly all the major child sex crimes in the archdiocese, was called by Archbishop Emeritus Rembert Weakland under oath in 2008 his personal “go to guy” on “all abuse cases”, including the notorious Fr. Lawrence Murphy who, according to court ordered released archdiocesan records, sexually assaulted over 200 deaf children at St. John’s School for the Deaf (see “Sklba Clergy Abuse Fact Sheet” posted below).

 

With the legal maneuvers exhausted and just days before his grilling under oath, it is no accident that Archbishop Listecki filed for bankruptcy in Federal Court in Milwaukee, effectively halting or significantly delaying yet again, Sklba’s deposition.
So where has Sklba been as the rest of us were struggling with below zero temperatures in Milwaukee this winter and enduring a chilly spring and early summer?
Enjoying himself, presumably for months, in the Mediterranean, on the warm, picturesque, and historic Greek resort island of Patmos.

Which is interesting, since Listecki last week again argued that Sklba’s deposition should not go forward, this time arguing it would be “too expensive.”  Perhaps Listecki was thinking that Sklba could only be deposed in Greece.

 

 

 

Sklba talks about his time in Patmos, where he says he “fasted from the Eucharist”, in the Herald of Hope column in this week’s Catholic Herald:  “The paschal mystery: A community empowered” (“paschal” is the Hebrew word for “the passing over” and refers, in Christian belief, to the suffering, death and resurrection of Jesus).

 

Last year, in a Herald of Hope column, Sklba described the sexual abuse of children by priests as part of the “paschal mystery,” claiming that he, too, is a victim, right along with the children that were raped and sexually assaulted by clergy that he placed or kept in ministry, because he “clumsily” tried to “do the right thing.”

 

Archbishop Dolan publically shared Sklba’s fine and forgiving opinion of himself, writing in effusive praise in 2004 how Sklba was “St. Joseph in our midst” and  a “just man” among us.   Why?  Because Sklba knows how to keep “silent”:  “And you realize how silent St. Joseph was. We have no recorded words from him. For Joseph, actions speak louder than words. So, too, for Bishop Sklba.”

 

Patmos is the island where it is claimed that the Book of Revelation, the last book of the orthodox Christian canon, was penned.  Sklba writes this week:

 

John and his community were uncompromising in their opposition, fully conscious of the price which such a stand would entail. John, speaking in the name of God, demanded repentance from those who had allowed social and occupational life to become entangled with Roman idolatry in any form. Taking such a stand in that ancient world could cost dearly! Nevertheless, he pointed out that the first people cast out of the New Jerusalem were the “cowards” (21:8).

 

Or course, it’s not unusual for senior churchmen to disappear to Europe when under fire for covering up child sex crimes.  This week, as the US Bishops meet in Seattle, trying to avoid any serious public discussion of their recent and alarming failures concerning their sex abuse policies, Cardinal Justin Rigali of Philadelphia, excoriated by the Philadelphiagrand jury earlier this year for hiding over 30 credibly accused sex offender clerics and keeping them in ministry, is in the Czech Republic representing the Vatican for some minor event.

 

“Abuse Fact Sheet on Milwaukee Auxiliary Bishop RICHARD SKLBA”*

 

Sklba has been directly identified in church documents, court depositions, and witnesses in directing the cover up of at least the following serial pedophiles priests:  Frs. George NUEDLIG, Peter BURNS, William EFFINGE, Dennis PECORE, Edmund Haen, Simon PALANTHINGAL, Edwin LESNEWSKI, Frederick BISTRICKY, Franklyn  BECKER, David HANSER, Lawrence MURPHY, Norma Giannini, Joseph Turner.

Skbla, as auxiliary bishop of Milwaukee:

  • Secretly authorized Weakland’s hush money settlement of nearly half a million dollars in 1998.
  • Under oath in 2008, emeritus archbishop Rembert Weakland said that Sklba was his “go to guy” on “all abuse cases.”
  • In previously sealed 1993 deposition of Weakland concerning serial child molester, Fr. Peter Burns, Weakland testified that Sklba “made the decision” on returning abusers to ministry
  • In previously sealed 1993 deposition of Weakland concerning serial child molester, Fr. William Effinger, Weakland testified that Sklba compiled weekly “vicar logs” containing ongoing investigations and reports of child sex abuse by priests of the Milwaukee archdiocese.
  • In 1989 column in the Milwaukee Catholic Herald and again in a 1995 Milwaukee Journal interview, Weakland said that Sklba handled all complaints against priests, although no report by Sklba in his 25 years has ever been known to be sent to law enforcement.
  • A 1992 training manual used by all employees of the archdiocese explicitly instructs church workers and volunteers to report sexual abuse to law enforcement unless committed by a priest, which were then to be reported directly to Sklba, not police.

 

*Compiled from Bishops-Accountability.org

 

 

 

You can’t fix stupid

Thursday, June 16, 2011

http://content.usatoday.com/communities/Religion/post/2011/06/sex-abuse-catholic-bishops-forgiveness/1#uslPageReturn

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A wise man has said, “You can’t fix stupid.” The bishops are stupid, narcissistic, and intellectually dishonest. They confuse forgiveness with public safety. If Hitler had survived World War II, should we have forgiven him and allowed him to rule Germany? Wouldn’t that have been stupid?

The bishops focus on reconciliation for criminal priests and not the safety of children. Children are not on their emotional radar screen, if indeed they have an emotional radar screen. (Actually I think part of the formation process for priests is to program the seminarian so he replaces his conscience with a blind, mindless loyalty to his bishop and the pope in the belief that these men speak for the Almighty.) Priests are the bishops’ “sons,” and they protect these sons at any cost because not doing so means their own power, and the power of the entire Roman Catholic Church and Catholic priesthood, goes down the toilet. Bishops exist to mindlessly please His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI or whoever sits on the Throne of Peter.

The story below from USA today contains BS (Bishops’ Speak) of a truly exquisite type. This brand of BS is also known as propaganda. This clap trap will be lapped up by stupid, non-critical-thinking, loyal, “faithful” Catholics who follow the pronouncements of these clerical clowns like children following a modern-day Pied Piper off a cliff. If these Catholics had to think on their own, we wait for a miillenium. If you have a broken-down, old bridge you need to sell, these are the folks who would buy it.

Stupid is as stupid does.


Frank Douglas  |  Tucson, AZ  |  June 16, 2011

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Jun 15, 2011

 

Bishop on abuse policy: ‘Don’t we believe in forgiveness?’

 

Comments3

http://content.usatoday.com/communities/Religion/post/2011/06/sex-abuse-catholic-bishops-forgiveness/1

http://content.usatoday.com/communities/Religion/post/2011/06/sex-abuse-catholic-bishops-forgiveness/1

 

By Cathy Lynn Grossman, USA TODAY

Updated 9h 35m ago

Barbara Blaine, President of Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP), displays childhood photographs of adults who say they were sexually abused, during a news conference Tuesday, March 29, 2011, in Philadelphia.

By Matt Rourke, AP

We”ll find out Thursday if the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops will make any significant revisions to the rules set in 2002 for rooting out priests who abused young people and preventing new abuses.

At their annual spring meeting, the indications were, as Daniel Burke of Religion News Service points out, they would simply update the policy with minor tweaks. Yet the discussion at the meeting, in Bellevue, Wash, included one startling comment.

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RNS quotes the retired Archbishop of Anchorage Francis Hurley saying a “goal” of reconciliation should be to put priest abusers back in ministry and asking, “Don’t we believe in forgiveness?”

Whispers in the Loggia poster Rocco Palmo, posting/tweeting in Bellevue expected that “conflating said forgiveness with restoration to ministry….” would be the take-away quote of the day.

Palmo’s Tuesday Whispers post gave a summary of exactly why folks are hopped up about the 2002 rules, known as the Dallas Charter and why victims groups say small changes are insufficient:

The scathing Philadelphia grand jury report look at leaders of the Philadelphia archdiocese mishandling abuse claims and “the subsequent suspension of 24 priests found by the civil panel to have “credible” allegations of misconduct despite their prior clearance on the claims by chancery officials.”

“The last month’s firestorm over a Kansas City priest who, before his May arrest on charges of possessing child pornography, remained in ministry for six months last year after his elementary-school principal reported a series of concerns over the cleric’s behavior around children to top diocesan aides”

“Late May’s five-part report from the Gallup (N.M.) Independent highlighting lapses of transparency and survivor outreach by the New Mexico diocese—where, the paper revealed, the local review board has never met with the bishop it’s tasked to advise.”

The USCCB’s annual report on compliance pointing out that even though 55 of nation’s 197 dioceses were sent warnings after the USCCB’s designated auditors found they weren’t enforcing aspects of the Charter, every diocese surveyed, including Philadelphia, Kansas City and Gallup were found “in compliance” for 2010.

The changes proposed by the bishops, who proclaimed themselves by and large pleased with the Charter so far, are minor ones to bring it into accord with the current Vatican guidelines.

This is all still a far cry from what the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests (SNAP) and BishopAccountability.org have been seeking for the last decade.

SNAP’s press release calls for…

…harsh penalties for any church employee from custodian to cardinal who ignore or conceals child sex crimes. There are no such provisions now, and virtually never, SNAP claims, are those who “enable” child molesting clerics ever punished for their misdeeds.

Bishop-Accountability.org, working from a draft version of the bishop’s proposals, called for several changes in a press release including:

Review Boards must have access to files, must meet regularly and publish their minutes. Survivors should be able to appeal a review board decision.

Bishops and their officials must report all allegations, without exception, to civil authorities.

Accused priests must be removed immediately, not at the bishop’s discretion

Confidentiality agreements must be outlawed.

And, as they have for a decade, the group continues to call for all dioceses and religious orders to publish detailed lists of accused priests.

Forgiveness… well, not mentioned very often, is it?

Is there a lesson in Prison Fellowship, the Charles Colson group bringing an evangelical message to locked-up criminals? Their premise is that forgiveness is between a person and God, a separate issue from legal and due punishment for crimes against other people.

DO YOU THINK… Catholic bishops can counsel victims to forgive abusers for the sake of the abusers’ “reconciliation” and return to ministry?