Philadelphia and Rome

I had wanted to post on this matter last week but the Blogger blackout got in the way.

Here's a link to an article at Commonweal from Ana Maria Catanzaro, chair of the Review Board investigating complaints of sexual abuse by clergy in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.  (I've posted several times on the Grand Jury reports on abuse in Philadelphia.)

Catanzaro's statement is frank and revealing, adding another tragic chapter to this story.

A related item:

Today the Vatican published a document from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith requiring every bishops' conference in every nation and region to establish guidelines for handling accusations of clerical sex abuse and stipulating that "clear and coordinated procedures" for this purpose be in place within a year. The guidelines are for protecting children, assisting victims of abuse, dealing with accused priests, training clergy and cooperating with civil authorities.

The entire document can be found here at Whispers in the Loggia.

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  1. Deeply depressing and yet the fact that it is being reported all is at least evidence that things cannot stay the same any longer.
    I looked up the book on clericalism mentioned in the Commonweal article and this is one review of it which again is not easy reading but makes a lot of sense (IMHO.)
    My heart gives out to you Fr. Austin and others who no doubt have to bear the brunt of much all the fallout of all this -you don't deserve it at all.
    Also just before reading your post I was looking at this video on the launch of the new series by Fr. Robert Barron - it actually made me physically sick.

    Bad timing !
    Blessings and prayers as always - and what were you saying about a normal quiet day ?!

  2. Are these "guidelines" or "rules" that must be followed? if just guidelines, then it's simply more of the same.,nothing new. Was there lay input into this? I doubt it.

  3. These are instructions to insure that every diocese in the world has a policy in place for dealing with sexual abuse of minors by clergy.

    While I don't know the makeup of the group that wrote the document, I wonder what about it led you to conclude that there was no lay input.

  4. I think, I hope, the Vatican would make it a point to let us know if lay people were consulted. Rebuilding trust is about openness and an appreciation for the opinions of those who are not ordained and are sensitive to the signs of the times. I doubt because we Catholics don't hear about that kind of openness coming from Rome.


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