Tom Doyle Comments on Cardinal Levada’s Remarks During Papal Visit to US

Following are Tom Doyle’s comments on Cardinal William Levada’s recent remarks reported by David Gibson and published on the BeliefNet blog Benedictions: The Pope In America.

(Also see “Levada Says No Bishops to Face Sanctions” published on this blog 4.19.2008.)

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I vividly recall briefing Levada in May, 1985 when he was an auxiliary bishop, about the sexual abuse crisis. I also have seen volumes of documents and sworn testimony from depositions that clearly shows that most, probably all, bishops clearly knew that priests were raping and otherwise sexually abusing kids as far back as the 40’s….and I limit it to that era because I have not gone beyond that in studying documents. So, Levada’s statement is either an outright lie or evidence of a very narrow understanding and perception of reality.

Bishops have been shifting the blame to psychologists for a decade. This too is grossly dishonest. I have seen scores of reports wherein psychologists said that priests were not fit for ministry. Some bishops just ignored them and many others twisted them to interpret them in a way that would be favorable to their needs. The bottom line is that bishops were intentionally negligent. Any adult male leader of anything who claims that he did not know that grown men having sex with minors is wrong and insidiously harmful to minors, is either an idiot or a liar or both. Levada’s arrogant line is the same as everyone else in the Vatican and most bishops……basically they are saying it’s someone else’s fault and in reality, it’s their fault.

The sexual abuse crisis is far from over. Victims continue to come forward with great regularity…some who were abused decades ago and some who were abused months ago. The press may not jump on it every time but the filth is still present because the system that spawned it is still denying its responsibility.

    2 Responses to “Tom Doyle Comments on Cardinal Levada’s Remarks During Papal Visit to US”

  1. Luke Rheaume Says:

    What does a shepherd do to the hired hands that abuse and loose his sheep? I’m thinking that he would not leave them to watch over his sheep again. Further I would not promote those hired hands either.
    The Pope, Bishop of Rome, Lead Shepherd of the Roman Catholic Church has now acknowledged that something was wrong. That his sheep were abused and many were lost. He has now apologized. Great, but will his words be followed by action? Actions speak much louder than words.
    * Will he direct that the process to defrock the abusive priest be accelerated (it has taken over twelve years to defrock one of thirteen priest from the diocese of Belleville)?
    * Will he act to move those that covered up the abuse (Cardinal Law, Bishop McCormack, Bishop Christian, Cardinal Leveda, Cardinal Regalli, Archbishop Burke, etc., etc., etc…)?
    * Will he look at the other abuses that are being done by some of the American Bishops (Bishop Braxton’s embezzlement of funds; Archbishop Burke’s excommunication of members of Saint Stanislaus Polish Catholic Church)?
    * Will there be an honest evaluation of the new leaders of the churches here in the United States, and throughout the world? Will there be input from the people who have dealt with a leader (both for and against) as well as the people that he will be designated to lead?

    For most of the first millennium, the people or priest of a diocese would vote and elect their own bishop; will we return to that or continue with appointed Roman Governors – hired hands to watch over the sheep? (Enough of that tangent from the Popes apology)

    I will consider the apology genuine when we see that actions are being taken to address the abusers and those that covered for them. In the meantime, they are just words from the leader of a secret society.

  2. Thomas Says:

    Does this mean that if we are all obedient to the Church leadership….it will be business as usual and nothing will ever get done? We have a moral conscience guided by our personal relationship to God—it supercedes all else! I wonder what the desert fathers would say? They were free men and they did just fine in the way that they worshipped and glorified God—an institution of any sort cannot have all these rules, regulations, or guidelines and expect free persons to remain free. We have so many now that we forget the basic ones amd the most important one was to “Love One Another” as “I Have Loved You.”

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