(Have a Hopeful Outlook)
January 1, 2003
“This is he day the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and
be glad!” This was the beginning chant of the Sunday morning
Orthodox worship at 6:00 a.m. on WTAG-AM Worcester. It was an
excellent way that I began my Sundays and this was the new year
which I thought and made my prayer on awaking and encountering each
January 2, 2003
I watched on C-Span a program which had a panel on
Vietnam writings especially Tim O’Brien who wrote July, July.
O’Brien said he writes about feelings and was the only non-historian
sitting on the panel at this time O’Brien was introduced as being
qualifies because of his “story techniques.” After watching this
program, I hoped to add more of my feelings and insights that I was
Another point watching this program that a writer
should produce tow pages a day. This was another goal that I set for
myself from this day.
I was thinking of writing a book entitled Twelve
Steps for My Bishop: Insights from One of His Priest. One
question that I would include what how the Bishop Rueger’s case got
shuffled under like a deck of cards. Rueger has smoking mirrors in
his case, but was proclaimed “immaculate.” This may have been my
time of writing to be aggressive, sarcastic, and brilliant and at a
point of being humorous.
In my spiritual reading this day from Teaching the
Dead Bird to Sing by W. Paul Jones on page 151 had me
contemplating: “In delving into the complexity of human motivations,
I tremble at the deviousness of my own behavior. As Reinhold Niebubr
insists my uniqueness, as a human is my ability for
self-transcendence, which provides the possibility of creativity,
freedom and conscience. And yet this uniqueness to which I am called
can also be my undoing. Just thinking about al this is wearing and
This was something I had with me in my three mile
walk this day in the afternoon.
This was also the year that I thought it was time
“explore a few verbal grenades” about being pointed and number of
issues by the hierarchy, clergy and laypeople. There was now a day
where we lived in an “obsessive” culture for a makeover and
re-branding that was appearing in this world of the day. Groups need
to see themselves trying to re-invent themselves with “image
obsession” with nothing else to add to society. Other people were
their targets so that certain rights groups needed a life.
Witch-hunters were more their identification.
Beginning the year, Kathleen A. Shaw gives us this
day “Clergy sex scandal may intensify in ’03: More revelations as
legal process proceeds” in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette.
She writes: “Worcester-The scandal involving sexual misconduct by
Catholic priests will not be going always anytime son. If anything,
the revelations will be intensifying in this area during 2003,
according to Boston lawyer Carmen L. Durso, who represents several
clients in civil suits involving priests of in the Worcester
catholic Diocese. Daniel J. Shea, of Houston, who is also handling
civil suits in this area, including one against Auxiliary Bishop
George E. Rueger, said he expects more information about sex abuse
scandal to come out as lawyers begin the discovery process in their
civil suits. Mr. Durso said he hope the state legislature passes a
proposal law abolishing the statue of limitations for child sexual
abuse in civil and criminal cases and abolishes the ‘charitable
immunity’ protection that has allowed ‘certain favored institutions’
to avoid paying hefty settlements. Seven priests were removed from
ministry during 2002 by Bishop Daniel P. Reilly after allegations of
sexual misconduct were added and another is on personal leave after
a civil suit was filed naming him as an abuser. The Worcester
diocese currently is facing several civil suits alleging sexual
abuse by priests and one suit alleging rape and sexual abuse by
Bishop Rueger, who denies the charges…Some have called 2002 the
‘annus horriblis’ for the Catholic church as revelation after
revelation came out of Boston, eventually forcing the resignation of
cardinal Bernard F. Law as head of the archdiocese. The sandal by
year’s end reached around the world...”1
Obviously, this will be a media year to watch and
roll besides the church and other issues.
January 3, 2003
I was having coffee with "Father Peacock" this
morning and he told me that he was not going to attend the next
Deanery Meeting (area clergy) because of the agenda: Lay people. I,
only, gave him a look because of his clericalism attitude and
elitism. With that look, I knew he would react and he did. He
slipped in the conversation that SNAP was attacking Bishop Dupree in
Springfield on supporting of his laicized priest. "Father Peacock"
was rambling and in general manner dumping on people in the diocese
and his parish. It was sad to listen to such a person doing this.
What I noticed in myself that I had to watch his technique of
attempting to draw me in to say or comment to what I was hearing or
anything else. The example that I wondered about his story of a
mother asked him to speak to her son about a girlfriend. The
language he used pertaining to this boy-girl relationship had me
wondering if it even happened. All I did was the silence technique
and “down periscope.” I learned he was a person that had to be in
total control and showed a deceiving nature about him.
At time being with "Father Peacock" reminded me of
how one time that Bishop Harrington told a priest friend: “If I told
the guys what it really likes, we would not get anyone (become a
At this time "Father Peacock" continued with his
anger to an unbelievable ranting in that he had not received the
newspaper for two day because of a storm, he had to add that the
delivery is made by a Blackman from Gardner. I only said: “Oh!” I
said he only had to call the newspaper and report this. He wined how
he to find out about funerals, wakes and other information was. I
responded with: It is all on the internet. He used this to sting
back with that he has no computer or know anything about it. He did
not get any sympathy or consolation from this guy.
I had to hear from "Father Peacock" that in the
English speaking world last year the news of sex abuse scandal was
an eclipse of the sun. Not much else was reported in the church but
This day, the Worcester Telegram & Gazette
printed “Systematic problems led to abuse by priest.” Ricard L.
Cravatt, who wrote this article has a Ph.D., of Weston writes
frequently on law, finance and public policy issues: “While
resignation of Boston Cardinal Bernard F. Law has brought closure to
one aspect of the Catholic Church’s widening child-abuse scandal, it
still leave unanswered and troubling questions about the psychology
of the perpetrators and those churchliness who ignored and enabled
their criminal actions. What is it about the Church that attracted
the many priests who would go on to sexually abuse hundred of pre-
and post-pubescent children? What oral machinations specific to the
church could allow the serial complicity of the church hierarchy who
ignoring wrongdoing and shuffled offending priests from parish to
parish? The first critical question is whether the very process of
accepting celibacy and entering the priesthood at an emotionally
immature age predispose priests to conflicting notions about human
sexuality-whether according to Gary Wills in his insightful book,
‘Papal Sin,’ ‘the celibate discipline for a whole class of men ‘not
just for the spiritually gifted individual) is a false, because
unrealizable ideal.’ According to observers, these are real issues,
precisely because these individuals made immense decisions regarding
their psychological and moral life at an early age and these
decisions are not necessarily based on realist expectations…The
church has a false sense of hope in controlling the psychosexual
behavior of some priests. (Gary Wills) ‘Looking the other way is a
deeply ingrained habit and necessity, a tactic of survival, for men
whose lives are honeycombed with furtive acts,’ he suggested. ‘One’s
own life, or that of one’s friends, or of people one must depend on,
will not admit any very severe scrutiny. It would be dangerous-in
terms of scandal and lay disappointment, for those being observant
themselves-to let light flood the shadowy world of secrecy and
evasion and mis-representation that is the priestly way of life.’”
One has to know that the priest life is the most
scrutinized aspect of any life in this society. Besides parishioners
watching what time the lights go out at night in the priest room and
ho hangs around with whom, there is not much of a shadowy world.
January 7, 2003
I was thinking the last few days of “Remember When” I
became pastor of St. Edward’s and I was immediately confronted by
three parishioners after Mass that were member of the Women’s Guild.
I was asked how I was going to run the parish. I thought this was a
peculiar question so soon that my books were not even unpacked. I
explained that I believe I addressed this is my opening remarks on
my installation. It was explained that I would use the model of a
“baseball team: the pastor is the manager and parishioners are the
players. I, actually, read this in a clergy newsletter for pastors.
Well, on e these people said: We (The Guild) can get rid of the
manager. I said that it is only possible by the bishop. The response
from the same person was: We can take care of him, too. I knew my
honeymoon was over. But, it was something to watch because this same
person was planning to start a catering service and use the parish
hall and kitchen for the business. There was an obvious a conflict
of interest because a church-due to insurance-was not to be used for
a private business. This party had the answer: Well, it is an
opportunity for the parish to make some money. In addition, this
party was going to have member of the Women’s Guild have a part time
job in this catering business. I recall that I only walked away by
saying nothing more.
I recall this beginning of more to come especially
with allegations by two girls some nine years later. One of these
two girls was working with a parish member in a neighboring city.
This parishioner was always trying to rum activities in the parish.
Parishioners were very negative with him, which showed that he had
no leadership skills and no overall team player qualities.
In thinking back, this was only a warm-up of dealing
with the Worcester Chancery-smoking gun of obstructions by them- and
a civil lawsuit.
January 8, 2003
I had to real that I was dealing with a mental
struggle with my living arrangements. I enjoyed having a place that
I was able to call “my own,” but was concerned about a rent
increase, moving and: worst case” scenario of be removed from the
priesthood. This day a priest from Hartford called to inform me that
the bishop of Bridgeport Diocese forced priest into laicization
(out). This was where my anxiety was affecting that I would stop
breath deeply and says a prayer: Come Holy Spirit or the Hail Mary.
My day became better by having a regular daily routine-not sitting
January 9, 2003
I visited with Connie Rivard. She flared-up with the
whole issue of St. Edward’s 50th Anniversary celebration.
She said: “You got an invitation? You did not want to go! John
McKenna received Communion from me on Saturday.” I tried, again, to
explain to Connie. I used the question-answer approach: Did you get
a written invitation or not” Wrong question being asked, Connie.
Fr. Kilcoyne sent me an invitation. But, However, it was a situation
that he knew the circumstances. The correct question that should
have been asked: How does it really work in on this issue of such an
invitation with my situation? Answer: The bishop is in charge with
this situation. Therefore, I wanted to be present. Why John McKenna
concelebrated is one for the books.
This whole situation was how the chancery was
handling me: Bouncing-off the ropes after a continuous pounding.
January 10, 2003
Fr. Richard McBrien writes in the National
Catholic Reporter “Vatican remains suspicious of lay demands:
Pressure from Boston clergy had more influence n Law’s decision to
resign.” He writes: “The recent resignation of Cardinal Bernard Law
as archbishop of Boston was the lead story in all of the major media
outlets. What is its significance for Boston, for the Catholic
church in the United States, and for the church universal? For
Boston it means, first of all, a brief respite from the strain of an
extremely tense yearlong crisis. So much time and energy has been
focused over the past several months on Law himself rather than on
the task of devising strategies for working through this crisis and
for rebuilding trust and hope within the archdiocese. A spirit of
demoralization had taken hold, not only among the laity but within
the clergy as well…One would like to think that lay pressures were
also decisive in bringing about the resignation and its acceptance
by the pope, but the greater probability is that the laity’s role
was less significant than the clergy’s The Vatican continues to be
suspicious of lay demands for greater involvement in the internal
governance of the church, not only with regard to finances but also
the appointment of bishops and pastors. One of the key criticisms
the Vatican registered against the charter on sexual abuse approved
by the bishops in Dallas last June concerned the provision that
granted lay review boards’ supervisory authority over the bishops.
For the Vatican, this was incompatible with the church’s
hierarchical structure and so it ordered this item to be amended at
the November meeting of the bishops in Washington. As a result, the
lay boards are to have only a consultative voice. The local bishop
still has the final work…The spirit of automatic deference and
unquestioning obedience based often n fear of reprisal, is on the
Here is the issue of “power and authority” and the
“tightening of the wax” syndrome.
This same day on the front-top page of the
Worcester Telegram & Gazette we get “Diocese says $2M deficit
not caused by abuse scandal.” It states: “The Roman Catholic Diocese
of Worcester and its insurance companies have paid out more that
$2.1 million to settle civil lawsuit alleging sexual abuse, dating
back several years, according to a financial report released
yesterday. Almost two-thirds of that amount was paid out by
insurance companies. The diocese paid $764,833 form it own funds,
while its insurance companies paid $1,384,000, based on their
coverage at the time abuse allegedly happened, the report stated.
The diocese yesterday reported a $2.2 million deficit in fiscal
2003, nearly four times the deficit it recorded the previous fiscal
year. This year’s deficit, however, has little to do with the priest
abuse scandal, according to the report.”4
Then why did the writer of this article, Richard
Nangle, write the beginning of the article about the diocese “paid
out more than$2.1 million to settle civil lawsuits alleging sexual
abuse…” My question is how many more people read much further than
This is why an article of this day in the Catholic
Free Press had “Catholic press need when Church scarred from
crisis.” The article by Catholic News Service had the article from
Ronkonkoma, N.Y.: “The Catholic press is needed more than ever today
when the church is scarred by the bad news of clergy sexual abuse
scandals, said tow bishops involved in church communication. In
separate messages for catholic Press Month, observed in February,
they praise the Catholic press for also reporting the god news about
the church. ‘While pointing out the sins and crises of a few, you
have also supported and pointed out the generous service of man,’
said Coadjutor Bishop Joseph A. Galante of Dallas, chairman of the
U.S. bishops’ communication committee. Archbishop John P. Foley, the
W.S. born president of the Pontifical council for Social
Communications, sad the Catholic press ‘remised Catholics that the
bad news of clerical abuse was in no way the full story of the
catholic Church in the United States.’”5
Most people know the diocesan Catholic press as the
bishops’ paper. As any newspaper, one should read such papers with a
critical viewpoint-use of discernment. But, it is needed to get
another viewpoint. So, what is truthful?
This same issue of the Catholic Free Press had this
article: “Bishop Dupre asks Vatican to laicize priest linked to sex
abuse” by the catholic News Service. This article stated:
“Springfield-In what may be one of the first actions of its type in
the United States; the bishop of Springfield has petitioned the
Vatican directly to forcibly laicize a priest implicated in dozens
of cases of sexual misconduct. In interviews given during the
November U.S. bishops’ meeting, Bishop Thomas L. Dupre said he
intended to laicize Father Ricard R. Lavigne through an expedited
administrative process encouraged by the recently approved U.S.
canonical norms for sexual abuse of clerics. Speaking at a Jan. 3
prayer breakfast in Springfield, Bishop Dupre said a formal petition
seeking the priest’s laicization had been mailed to Rome. ‘We are
hoping that the Holy See will process the case quickly,’ he said.
Father Lavigne was arrested in 1991 on five counts of rape and
sexual abuse of children some of whom wee under the age 14 at the
time of his offenses. He pleaded guilty to two counts in 1992, and
was sentenced to 10 months full-time residence in the St. Luke
Institute, now in Silver Springs, Md., and 10 years of heavily
Another article in this same issue showed “1996 study
says tow-fifths of nuns suffered from sexual abuse.” The article
states: “Washington (CNS)-As many as tow-fifths of U.S. nuns may
have experienced some form of sexual abuse as children or sexual
abuse exploitation or harassment as adults, according to a national
study conducted by a team of specialists at St. Louis University.
The team found that many nuns who experience with feelings of anger,
shame, anxiety, confusion and depression and with difficulty in
praying and difficulty in working. Some had considered leaving
religious life or leaving the church following such an experience.
The results of the study, conducted in 1996, we fully reported in
tow scholarly professional journals in 1998 but did not receive wide
public attention until the St. Louis Post Dispatch did a story on
the study Jan.5.”6
I immediately had questions if this was clergy
related as being abused in the religious life or what? Actually, I
never heard about this talking with clergy or anyone else. Were the
religious sisters a Lost Island in the Church?
Another article, I read this day-January 10th-is
“Sexuality set stage for church’s next reformation expert predicts”
in the National Catholic Reporter. I should mention that on
Friday’s I receive the Catholic Free Press and the National
Catholic Reporter. Therefore, my days show these publications
with church articles.
This article from the National Catholic Reporter
was about Richard Sipe input, written by Arthur Jones. The article
stated: “W.W. Richard Sipe has a huge and quite haughty cat,
Gwendolyn. She only reluctantly relinquished the spare chair in
Sipe’s study. Martin Luther (1483-1546) was ore into dogs-and much
on Sipe’s mind as he weighed the question: Given the uproar over the
clerical sexual abuse scandal, and it’s mishandling, where is the
Catholic Church now? Sipe, Benedictine, monk for 18 years, and then
a married man for 32, in 1990 wrote The Secret World, an
account of his 1960-85 research on celibacy.
The former monk of St. John’s Abbey in Collegeville,
Minn., was trained by the Benedictines to deal with the mental
health problems of Roman Catholic priests and religious. He
continued to do that after he left, and to teach in major Catholic
seminaries declared ex-priests could not be on seminary faculties.
He has been called as an expert witness in more than 95 civil suits
over sex abuse. The cat, miffed, wandered off into the hall.
‘In what form I don’t know, but in 10 years there’ll
be a reformation,’ he said, ‘a reformation in the sense that
fundamental issues of human sexuality will have to be brought to the
fore. In terms of human sexuality, the church is at a pre-Copernican
stage of understanding’-a reference to 15th century
Catholic priest and astronomer Nicolas Copernicus, who resurrected,
despite church opposition, the scientific theory of the sun rather
than Earth as the center of the solar system.
‘The church has not come to understand the nature of
sex,’ he said.’ And it’s not easily understood-we have to struggle
along with the neurological, the genetic, the psychological, and the
evolutionary basis of it.’ The church has not done that, Sipe said,
and is frightened of doing it.”7
This is where I would love to add to a board game
that I should create: Rectory Living. The issue of human sexuality
is such a taboo issue with the last papacy or any church official.
I read in the Catholic Free Press where the issue of
“Theology on Tap” was reported with Bishop Rueger being the guest.
He alluded to sex abuse: “This garbage wakes us up and makes us
accountable, he said. “If we were awake, the some of this scandal
wouldn’t have happened. Above all, we are accountable to each
other.” The paper said that there no questions about clerical sex
abuse, but the bishop refered to it briefly where he talked about
accountability. Bishop Rueger fielded question in everything from
the importance of the sacraments to mythology in the Bible. There
was a picture with Rueger in a re pullover sweater who look s very
odd especially where he is 72 years old- Chancery Poster Boy.
The Bishop Rueger style that I thought about was an
Office Depot TV ad of a woman coming in the store, talking triple
time of items to buy. She meets a salesman and picked=up the
conversation into the same triple times talk. This was the real
January 11, 2003
Richard Nangle writes in the Worcester Telegram &
Gazette “Removed priest is still at church: Rev. Coonan
apparently working at St. John.” He writes: “Worcester-The Rev.
Joseph A. Coonan of St. John church continues in his role as pastor
despite being placed on administrative leave by Bishop Daniel P.
Reilly. ‘He’s pastor her still,’ said a woman who identified herself
as a secretary at the inner-city parish. ‘So any decision-making he
does.’ In a note addressed to the Telegram & Gazette ‘Religious
Services Column’ postmarked Han 7, the Rev. Coonan wrote, ‘One more
change in St. John’s weekly, Saturday, religious services adv.
Please omit: Sunday 10:30 a.m. Mass in Vietnamese which has been
eliminated.’ The letter, written on St. John’s letterhead, is
signed: ‘Thanks, Fr. Coonan.’ Worcester Roman Catholic Diocese
spokesman Raymond L. Delisle said he had ‘no doubt’ that the Rev.
Coonan wrote to the Telegram & Gazette, ‘but he shouldn’t have done
it. He has not been reinstated at St. John’s and is still on
administrative leave,’ Mr. Delise said. He said priests on leave
because of sexual abuse allegations are not to be on parish grounds
or to act in any way as pastor.”8
I had another opportunity this day to have lunch with
"Father Peacock.” We talked small talk at first. Then he began that
Fr. John Paul Gagnon was living in his rectory but was on
administrative leave because he had no other place to go. Then he
said I should apply for the Viannie House, I responded that this
place was not a place for me. I changed the topic back to Fr.
Gagnon. I asked why he hasn’t called him. He reacted by saying that
he should have realized that three or four other priests were
interest to just be called by him. The I senses that “something
else” syndrome was prevalent in how "Father Peacock" was getting
emotional and worked-up in his response. I was thinking that there
was something else with this guy and such a conversation.
What came to mind was when I was in Hartford and Fr.
Kiley asking me: “Is there a sex ring in Worcester?” I watched him
and how nervously he was conducting himself. He changed the topic.
He had more information that he was not sharing with me or should
have shared. But, I was much more aware of his techniques mainly to
get information and positioning himself to be a “Monsignor.”
I also read on MSNBC morning crawl a report from the
New York Times that of 1,200 priest alleged, 4,268 victims
came forward last year. I had a discouraging reaction. The reporting
and all had me losing any hope that my case would be reviewed. I
thought how we have some innocent people in this and previous
priest. Based on that and my previous experience of “guilty till
proven innocent,” there must be some due process. I resented the
fact that a public list of priest alleged as the only point of
interest by all. I felt that I should have written a tart letter.
January 12, 2003
In the Worcester Telegram & Gazette, we read
“Sex scandal hit most dioceses: Survey studies history and impact of
Catholic Church’s crisis” by Laurie Goodstein of The New York Times.
The article reads: “The sexual abuse crisis has engulfed the Roman
catholic Church in the last few months has now spread to nearly
every American diocese and involves more than 1,200 priests, most of
whose careers straddle a sharp divide in church history and seminary
Those are among the conclusions drawn from an
extensive New York Times survey of documented cases of sexual abuse
of minors by priests over the last sex decades.
The survey, covering cases through Dec. 31, 2002, compiled the
names and histories of 1,205 accused priests. Zit counted 4,268
people who have claimed publicly or in lawsuits to have been abused
by priests, though experts say there are surely many more that have
The survey, the most complete compilation of date on
the problem available, provides a statistical framework for viewing
the sexual abuse crisis against the modern history of the American
Catholic Church. It found, for example, that most priests accused of
abuse were ordained between the nid-1950s and the 1970s, a period of
upheaval in the church, when men trained in the traditional and
authoritarian seminary system were sent out to serve in a rapidly
changing church and social culture.
Most of the abuse occurred in the 1070s and 1980s,
the survey found. The number of priests accused of abuse declined
sharply by the 1990d.
But the data show that priests secretly violated
vulnerable youth long before the first victims sued the church and
went public in 1984 in Louisiana. Some incident date from the 1930s
January 13, 2003
The Worcester Telegram & Gazette gives us this
day “Priests abuse victims join: More sessions planned in
Fitchburg.” It states: “About 29 people attended an organizational
meeting last week of the local chapter of the survivors Network for
Those Abused by Priest. The Fitchburg turnout, higher than
anticipated, means more meeting there are likely said organizer
David A. Lawton of Webster. People came from as far as Northampton
and Concord, he said, but most of those in attendance were from
Fitchburg and neighboring communities. Mr. Lawton, who accused the
Rev. Thomas A. Teczar of abusing him and prevailed in a civil
lawsuit last fall, said an even mix of men and women attended the
meeting at the Fitchburg Public Library to discuss their
experiences. For most of them he said, it was the first item they
had attended such a gathering…”10
January 14, 2003
This day Kathleen A. Shaw writes in the Worcester
Telegram & Gazette “Diocesan personal files requested in abuse
suit.” She writes: “Lawyer Daniel J. Shea has asked the Diocese of
Worcester to turn over personnel files of any Catholic priests
accused of misconduct from 1960 to the present. The request is part
of Mr. Shea’s preparation of a lawsuit alleging that the Rev.
Jean-Paul Gagnon, then a priest at Holy Name of Jesus parish, and
Raymond Tremblay, a religious education teacher there, sexually
abused Timothy P. Staney of Worcester. This is the first blanket
request for personnel files on priests in this diocese…”11
I heard a report on Ch. #5 that the American Bishop’s
Policy on Sex Abuse would go into effect on March 1st.
When I heard this, I was not able to eat supper. M stomach was
upset. Actually, it was an AA meeting day for me. I felt good going
to a meeting and driving back home.
During the afternoon, I spoke on phone with "Father
Peacock". I mentioned that I heard on the radio a report: Young
people worried more about bullies than terrorist. Bulling come in
many ways as physical, emotional, verbal and especially mental.
"Father Peacock" acted lie a “bully” especially in the contents of a
verb. He tells me that he will preach the coming Sunday on
terrorists. I thought that he would have developed a sermon more on
January 15, 2003
I was listening to Imus in the Morning this day. He
had Mary Matalion as guest Imus goes to author Michael Moore book
where he comments about George W. Bush being a recovering alcoholic.
Imus asks Matalion: How does he (W) think? She backed-off saying she
does not know. Imus say many definitions exist of what an alcoholic
is. Some say all are sinners and all are weak. Imus ask if the
President has had a slip. Does the President have a Sponsor? Doe he
knows the principles. Imus’ stirring interview had shut-down
Matalion. He mentioned alcoholic/drug person was on a ‘slippery
slop: and prevailed with an issue of “denial.” So, Imus asks: “Is
the President considers himself an alcoholic? He said that he just
doesn’t want the pressure to build and President Bus to fall-off the
wagon. Mary Matalion responds: Nonsense! Yeah, and you can be his
I mentioned this because I was confronted constantly
while in Hartford how the Worcester Chancery mob was telling me that
I would drink, again... This happened in the notorious
interrogations at the Bishop’s Residence by Harrington and Rueger
with Tinsley sitting and saying nothing. It did ring loudly from
them at me: You will drink, again! But, let’s not forget that I was
privy to information of Bishop Harrington drunk-driving accident and
causing bodily injury on a teenage female drive.
This interview of Imus was intense. One has to
realize that Imus is an alcoholic and drug addicted public figure.
He has said on his program and other places that he used alcohol and
drugs and lives day by day with this in mind.
January 16, 2003
I was just thinking reading the different columns
that I read in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette and speculate
of their techniques they must plan in their newsroom. They must do
the same or similar reflections of the chancery techniques. I may be
wrong because the columnist that gets the story to write must on the
“desk” for that day. However, I was just thinking because
this day we get Richard Nangle of the staff of the Telegram
“On-leave priest thought send memory OK: Lawyer says Coonan made
honest mistake.” This column reads: “Worcester-While acknowledging
that the Rev. Joseph A. Coonan sent a memo to the Telegram & Gazette
advertising department last week, lawyer Joseph D. Early Jr., who
represents the priest, said his client has not been involved in
day-to-day activities at St. John Church since being placed on leave
Mr. Early said Rev. Coonan did not realize that he
could not so much as send out the memo while on administrative
In a note addressed to the Telegram & Gazette
‘Religious services Column’ postmarked Jan. 7, Rev. Coonan wrote,
‘One more change in St. John’s weekly, Saturday, religious service
adv. Please omit Sunday 10:30 a.m. Mass in Vietnamese which has been
eliminated.’ The letter, written on St. John’s stationery, is singed
‘Thanks, Fr. Coonan.’
Upon learning of the letter, Roman Catholic Diocese
of Worcester spokesman Raymond L. Delisle said Rev. Coonan should
not have sent it. He also said priest on leave because of sexual
abuse allegations are not to e on parish grounds or to act in any
way as a priest. Mr. Early said Rev. Coonan is allowed access to the
church once a week to pick up his mail and see the library.
January 17, 2003
Kathleen A. Shaw of the Telegram writes this day
“Parishes told to double up: Priest shortage spurs diocesan
consortium plans.” She writes: Worcester-The 126 Catholic parishes
of Central Massachusetts will be required to enter a ‘twinning’
arrangement with at least one other parish within the next six
The twinning or clustering is part of a long-range
planning program by the Worcester diocese to prepare clergy and lay
people for dealing with a decreasing number of priests and the
increasing number of professionally trained lay people who cash
serve in various ministries. (Worcester really only has a Deacon
program that is plugged in.)
People in the parishes can make their own decisions
on which parishes they wan to become involved with, according to the
Rev. Michael F. Rose of St. James Parish in Grafton. He heads the
diocesan pastoral planning committee.
Some parishes may ‘twin’ with just one other parish
while others may form a cluster of three, he said. No parishes will
be left to stand alone, he said. Meeting to explain the process will
be held from 1 to 3 p.m. Feb 10 at Our Lady of Mount Carmel
Recreation center in Worcester and 1 to 3 p.m. Feb. 12 at St.
Cecilia Parish Center in Leominster. Rev. Rose said the diocese is
not planning to close parishes but wants to prepare clergy and lay
people for his future. The day of the self-contained parish that
provided all services to its people is over, he said. The new model
is one that has begun to be followed in dioceses throughout the
country over the last 10 to 20 years, he said.”13
What get interesting with this is how pastor have
their own turf and most will not relinquish their overall
“authority” of their parish. The present set-up of clergy is they
may give facial cooperation, but underneath all they are going
through the motions-until they are able to retire.
Another view is that the chancery has a “ministry
program” from their own office in Worcester. It is all, actually, on
paper, because the only program the chancery is plugging-in is the
clerical-deacon program for parishes.
Given the core issue- the system is the point of
reference. The system that is presently in the Catholic Church and
his country. This was what I encountered in the 70s and again now in
03s-war and protest. The system I speak of is “Me, Me.” The
individualism and self-centeredness is so prevalent from then and
now. Who wouldn’t have issue?
January 19, 2003
This time, my fear buckets beginning filing-up about
March 1st. with anxiety. It is the official day of
implementing the approved Rome standards for the American Bishops on
abuse. In my case, I think I’ve been tried, judged and sentenced.
Let’ not forget no one had talked to me about my status or anything
besides: “We will get a hold of you.” But, my sentencing has been
isolation and out of contact by the diocese. Overall, the experience
this day had me realizing that I was not overwhelmed. Improvement
comes in different forms.
A few close friends of mine had been listening to my
complaints and rambling. But I don’t do this talking and talking out
of this circle of a few people. The specific issues are the
“hothouse kitchen” with shades drawn and close on a sunny day at
1:00 p.m. This Auschwitz interrogation room was at the Bishop’s
Residence on High Ridge Road, Worcester. But, my talking and talking
did help me take one step at a time approach to my personal
I never have discussed the psychological impact of
job disappearing, my self-character, self-esteem and al the other
things the employed take for granted. It is as though someone has
turned-off the lights. One does become frightened and scared.
Even this day with "Father Peacock" at lunch asking
me: “Do you think the issue of this sex scandal is over with?” My
answer: “No! The game will go on with others coming foreword because
of what the bishops’ are doing with last years style of shaking the
tree syndrome. "Father Peacock" asked this very nervously,
wonderment and a scared expression on this face. This was another,
very peculiar time that had me wondering about him. He has a story.
It is not reaching out to a fellow-priest in my case. He, either, is
looking for an appointed position to be “bishop liaison to priest on
administrative leave” (Monsignor Title), something as being
allegated about him or another matter. God only knows. Maybe it had
something to do with his pastorship at parish in Fitchburg with a
priest in residence that was allegated where rumor had the place
know as a “Boys Club.” Possibly I should have asked: How much were
dues for this “Boys’ Club”?
What I had to recall from a mental way was: 1. Think
“success” with events that were good news. 2. Hope- Don’t lose it.
3. Financial ruin but re-workable 4. Why remain? Unlock mysteries
and unanswered questions 5.Unlock good in life with renewal.
I was at this time experiencing emotional abandonment
from other who was dear to me. I realized at one of the AA meetings
and read in a Grapevine (AA publication) issue about this
topic. I sought to understand, without malice the side of those who
had “abandoned” me. I realized that they had lives of their own. Our
culture is very individualistic and many times impersonal. Besides
this area of my life was a time, where priest, as myself, were
considered by some as a “lepers.” In other words, I behaved in a
manner much like Christ. I would like to be like the human Christ
with my behavior. This had been a model to strive for at this time
and was a goal at all times of my priestly ministry.
I even heard about “Talk Therapy” which was in a
described in Time: How your mind can heal your body. This
helps me realize the time and effort by research that I was spending
on wiring my journal-my story.
There was this at this time me hearing about the
“pain of victims” issue talked about by church officials and
victims’ lawyers. I wondered when I would see programs made of TV on
this. I had been surprised that this had not happened with more
intensity by the media. I should say at this time that I prayed for
these victims of sex abuse and any suffering they had experienced
from such a situation daily in my Mass with the “Prayer of the
I was a history program last night where they had a
story about the Sinking of the Maine in Havana Harbor. Years later,
we learned that the ships boiler had proems... Oh? Didn’t we go to
war over this against Spain? History repeats itself in many
different forms in our world.
January 21, 2003
I had my scheduled meeting with Dr. Zeman in
Hartford. At the end of this session, he said that I need to explain
to him why I want to continue being a priest. He said he does not
understand me on this issue. What was an eye opener for me was at
the end of the session and he picked-up the phone to talk with his
secretary. He said to her to schedule me for another meeting in
three months and continue this arrangement, where I was coming every
four months. It was “crunch” time with me coming to Hartford- at
least I thought that to be.
I thought that here comes the “axe” on me being
removed out of the priesthood. Did Dr. Zeman have a message or
conversation with Worcester Chancery? This type of question started
rolling with the fear (anxiety) element of my body having a burning
sensation. I was wondering if I was “radioactive” because of all of
this church sex scandal and Worcester wanting me out and gone.
January 23, 2003
I heard a report on the radio how the Hole Father
commented to American seminarians in Rome of a “long suffering year
for your church.” (Try since 1993). There is the “year issue” of
Bishop Reilly of January 14, 2002 meeting. The “one year issue” is
now a bench mark. I wrote some words about this back then for
prosperity than what I really wanted to write. The Rector of North
American College (Rome’s seminary for Americans) used in a homily
the gospel of Christ and the leper to relate to the last year of the
American Church sex scandal crisis.
Then I heard in this same news report that the Rector
of Boston’s Holy Cross Cathedral sent a letter to Bishop Lennon
asking that victims not be cross-examined by Archdiocesan lawyers...
Later, I was able to hear that the report was corrected to that the
letter referred to deposing the therapist of the victims. The TV
story had that these victim lawyers were saying that “no on will
come out” with additional abuse. These same layers want “mediation”
and not go to trail. Oh?
Another side story was that MacLeish was reprimanded
by the Ethics Committee of Rhode Island because of setting-up for a
certain judge for his client. Another report had that MacLeish had
lied in a court record. He must be laughing all the way to the bank.
This may have been a diversion technique on MacLeish’s part because
money may have been drying-up. One wonders to how much I should
listen to anything at all concerning priest stories. I was thinking
how I felt at times as a leper. I was fearful of calls and bumping
in someone that I knew. I jumped with clergy stories and media witch
I had taken a ride to help a former parishioner- Leo
Grenier. We stopped at his home and I was sitting at the table. He
walks over to me and asked: “How may people have come out on you? I
answered truthfully: “No one since the 1993 situation.” What was
surprising with this that Leo was always quiet and never asked me
anything about my case or what the church was doing with me? Then,
this sudden, quick question had me somewhat stunned. It was similar
to Connie Rivard’s quick shot of question some time back this month.
Why was I surprised because every day, every newscast of radio or TV
and newspaper front page had “another priest story” allegation? Leo
never asked me anything ever again after this encounter about my
situation. We traveled together at least three times a week. But,
this did call to mind how Rueger in 1993 keep going at me: “More are
going to come out on you!” Where are they, Rueger?
What I had to realize through all of this was what we
are hearing is not my case. In addition I was: 1. Tried one without
anything of a due process or anything else 2. Statue of limitations
were told to me by Fr. Picclomini 3. Doctor’s evaluation that I had,
stated that I was normal. I had to remind myself that I worked
extremely hard in the ministry. It didn’t make any difference with
the “system” in place in Worcester. Yet, I was not able to put
something together from canon law to convince anyone in the
‘system.” Actually, I should have realized that nothing was going to
change the “system” as it was. I dug-in where Bishop Harrington was
the “smoking gun” in the diocese as the past Auxiliary Bishop and
then the Ordinary Bishop. Harrington did to in: “Guilty till proven
innocent” with Rueger, Tinsley and Pedone- Harrington’s cronies in a
cover-up. I recall a former priest say that he was told: “Stay out
of diocese’s internal problems. A bishop told this to him.
Harrington was screwing everyone.” How true this advises was because
if I attempted to connect dots to get a picture of what happened to
I would prove nothing for my cause. But, it does help me have a
resolution, at least in my own time.
January 24, 2003
The National Catholic Reporter gives us and
editorial: “Fact upset conjecture.” It states: “There’s an amazing
fact tucker deep within The New York Times recent
reporting on the priest sex abuse scandals. In dioceses that have
voluntarily reported the number of abusing priests, such as
Baltimore, and those that have been forced to courts to do so, such
as Boston and Manchester, N.H., the percentages of priests credibly
accused of abusing children is two to four times greater than in
jurisdictions that have made no such reports…More than a year into
this round of the priest sex abuse crisis, the chattering classes
have told us so much about what we ‘know.’ We know, for example that
the crisis is not about celibacy, or the disproportionate number of
gay priests, or a secretive church culture. We know, further, that
the all-male hierarch has nothing to do with the problem and that
the media has acted irresponsibly in reporting the scandal. The
bishops have appointed a lay board headed by former Oklahoma Gov.
Frank Keating to investigate the causes of this crisis. Maybe
they’ll reach some solid conclusions.”14
This same issue gives us “Board members snubbed in
New York: Cardinal skips meeting dis-invites some from Malta
knights’ event.” The story goes: “Members of the national review
board overseeing church efforts to eliminate priest sex abuse
expressed puzzlement, embarrassment and anger at a recent series of
nubs and what appeared to some to be high-handed directives from New
York Cardinal Edward Egan.
‘I’m taking this personally,’ said board member
Pamela Hayes, a former prosecutor for corruption in New York City.
‘He’s given us the distinct impression he’s not going to desk with a
board that’s been set up by the U.S. bishops.’
In late December an archdiocesan spokesman informed
the board that the cardinal would not be available to meet with them
during their meeting in New York City Jan. 16 and 17, would not say
Mass for them as they had requested , nor would any of his auxiliary
bishops be available for Mss.
Earlier in the month Egan told the board, through
another intermediary, that only those on the board who belonged to
the Knights of Malta should attend the knights’ gala dinner on Jan.
17, although all board members had been already invited.
Furthermore, he did not want Kathleen McChesney, director of the
Office of Child and Youth Protection (the investigation arm of the
board), to come to New York to speak about her work to speak about
her work at the invitation of a local parish.”15
What we start to get from the Catholic hierarch is
the laypeople being put in their place- secondary roles. This was
one of the major undercurrent issues of Rome’s reaction to the
American sex abuse scandal.
January 25, 2003
“Lay group set sights on city” article by Kathleen A.
Shaw and Richard Nangle appeared in this day’s Worcester Telegram
& Gazette. It reads: “Lay Catholic groups are turning their
attention to the Worcester Catholic Diocese, calling for Bishop
Daniel P. Reilly to open personnel records and apologize for
reassigning priests accused of sexual misconduct. A local e-mail
address firstname.lastname@example.org – has been set up for demonstration or
showing their support in other ways. The Worcester action is part of
a new direction being taken by laity who has been involved in
shining the light on priestly sexual abuse. Now that Cardinal
Bernard F. Law of the Boston Archdiocese has stepped down, pressure
is being applied to other church leaders considered enablers of
accused pedophile priests. In New England the bishop of Manchester,
N.H>, John B. McCormick, has come under particularly intense
pressure. The Worcester Voice, which advocates for victims of clergy
abuse, wrote Bishop Reilly this week to ask him to ‘stand forth and
atone for the sins committed against the innocent in the Diocese of
January 27, 2003
“Crows demands bishop step down: Pressure on
McCormack mounts” by J. M. Hirsch (AP) is printed in this day’s
Worcester Telegram & Gazette. It reads: “Manchester, N.H. – More
than woo Roman Catholics and alleged victims of priest sexual abuse
outside St. Joseph Cathedral yesterday to call for Bishop John B.
McCormick’s resignation. Many said they were unimpressed by
McCormack’s apologies and explanations of how he handled accusations
against priests while a top aide to Boston Cardinal Bernard F. Law
from 1984 to 194. ‘John McCormick, don’t ever again, try to confound
the laity with your babble,’ said Stephen Lewis of Lynn, Maas. Who
said he was abused by a priest as a child. ‘We are not your
ring-kissing slaves or servants who you count as you fall asleep in
your brick mansion.’ Holding pictures of 83 children at the age they
say they were abused, the protesters braved frigid temperatures for
more than tow hours as they marched around the cathedral and told
stories of abuse.”17
January 28, 2003
We get another bishop’s story “Bishop Lennon angers
SNAP director” in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette this day.
It reads: “Boston – The director of a national support group for
victims of clergy sexual abuse says he is angry about Bishop Richard
G. Lennon use of ‘hardball tactics’ in subpoenaing victims’
therapists to testify in civil lawsuits filed against the church.
David Clohessy, director of the Survivors Network of those Abused by
Priests, said Lennon has not reached out to victims since he took
over as leader of the Boston Archdiocese following Cardinal Bernard
F. Law’s resignation sex week ago. Instead, he has continued an
adversarial relationship with people who were abused by priests as
children, Clohessy said. ‘Therapy for victims is absolutely
critical, and anything that would stop them from seeking therapy or
drive them always is a horrible revitalization,’ he said. ‘What
makes it particularly egregious is the churches repeatedly said to
victims, ‘come to us for healing.’ It’s the ultimate bait and
There are so many issues that have or not be able to
put on the table as “alleged victims,’ abuse, cross-examinations,
questioning therapist, lawyers and even the money pay-outs?
January 29, 2003
Kathleen A. Shaw writes “Protestors seek files,
records form diocese: Advocates for abuse victims plan demonstration
at cathedral” in this issue of the Worcester Telegram & Gazette.
It reads: “Worcester – Several groups that support and advocate for
victims of clergy sexual abuse plan to gather Sunday at St. Paul’s
Cathedral and demand that diocesan personnel files of accused
priests and church workers and financial records to opened to public
scrutiny. People form Speak Truth to Power, the Coalition of
concerned Catholics and Survivors, Survivors Network of Those abused
by Priests, and Worcester Voice will begin gathering at 9:30 a.m.
They will demonstrate during the 10:15 a.m. Mass at the cathedral,
High and Chatham streets. ‘The primary goal of this protest is to
seek admission, accountability and resolution of sexual abuse by
priests and others under diocesan employ,” said Philip de
Albuquerque of STTOP. The groups also yesterday announced a detailed
list of what kinds of information they are seeking from the diocese.
‘Moreover, we ask Bishop (Daniel P.) Reilly to discontinue the
concealment of this scandal form the Catholic community of the
Worcester diocese so that justice can be done and true healing can
be done,’ Mr. Albuquerque said…”19
How many more groups were there circling the
cathedral? What is more amazing is that “rights groups’ have agendas
within agendas. It keeps rolling.
January 31, 2003
The National Catholic Reporter gives us in
there issue “spotlight of scandal moves westward: With new spate of
abuse cases, Los Angeles cardinal faces test of credibility” by
Arthur Jones. It reads: “The nationwide Catholic clerical sex abuse
scandal is not going away. The spotlight is shifting westward to
California, particularly Los Angeles, where hundreds of new sex
abuse suits are queuing up before the courts. Already comparisons
are being made to the situation in Boston. Mayor differences are
apparent. For starters, there has not been nearly the outcry from
Catholic or media quarter here that there was in Boston. The reason,
according to one expert, is that Los Angeles is not a Catholic city
in the way Boston is – the Southern California city’s
economic-political structure (despite a recent Catholic mayor) has
always been essentially Protestant.”20
This same issue gives us “Book illuminates as if an
illusion-The Other Side of the Altar: One Man’s Life in the
Catholic Priesthood by Paul Dinter and reviewed by William
Cleary. It reads: “Looking over the 40-odd books concerned with the
clergy sexual abuse scandal, this memoir by Paul Dinter promises to
be one of the most helpful. It was originally announced as The
Diary of a Married Priest, but obviously ‘the other side of the
altar’ where the active clergy preside is now more interesting then
the world of a married priest-more interesting because ominous and
frightening. Dinter, author of two other recent books and important
articles in Commonweal and The New York Times, does
not disappoint the reader. Life in the priesthood of our era, he
recounts, is a no-man’s land. You can easily match it to the dark,
underground, almost-all-males, violent world of ‘Lord of the Rings.’
You don’t want to be there. The next text can be uneven, with lapse
in the story for unnecessary lectures on ecclesiastical topics, but
the book remains a great, if sobering read. Dinter’s ministry
experience is often nightmarish, starting in the minor seminary (‘a
prep school for delay adolescents’) and continuing through
ordination, doctoral studies, pastoral wok, campus chaplaincy and a
sabbatical to the Vatican, ‘Men’s club on the Tiber.’ Throughout his
39-yer journey, Dinter kept the rules while keenly observing the
strange milieu. One wonders why he did not take his leave earlier. A
priest’s world these days can be surreal, and has become so in the
I have 23 books in my personal library on this sex
abuse crisis. There are a number of other works on the priesthood
that, also, have this topic in part of their books. The actually
story is far from being told or researched. How it is: Historians
don’t study and issue for at least 30 years of an issue. So, the
present works are mostly authors’ giving their insights at this
time. There really has not been given to the pubic all
aspects of the “crisis” especially the aspect of “power and
authority” or “alleged victims” in the cultural milieu of the day.
I visited the Gizas in Palmer. I first called to say
that I had “cabin fever” and nothing else of news. I didn’t want
them to wonder if anything else had happened to me or any other news
because I didn’t have any news.
Kay Giza said to me when we sat down in the living
room that she had to read my name in the newspaper. But, she showed
me the front-page of The Springfield Union of that day of Fr.
Levine being pit on an “abuse list” and being defrocked. I didn’t
say much else besides that his story was not my story... Stanley and
Kay just listened. I had the feeling that they already had their
minds make-up about priest in general. The do the media stories and
talk with their friends about priest. Stanley said: “You are smart
by not saying anything.” He then shared the Bish story in the same
newspaper of a new investigation by DA Conte. I did tell the Gizas’
that there was a “bigger story” in the Worcester Diocese. I didn’t
mention any specifics. What I was referring to was the “smoking gun”
part of the Worcester Chancery and the “sex ring in Worcester”
question of Fr. Jack Kieley at the IOL, Hartford.
February 1, 2003
I was reflecting where during my last visit with Dr.
Zeman and we were discussing my next appointment, he mention to me
that he needs me next time to explain why I want to remain a priest.
He said he wanted to talk about it more. With that, he picked-up the
phone for his secretary and saying to schedule me for every three
months. Either he was having a bad day or I had not given a
sufficient explanation. It had me thinking in that I knew my
position on my priesthood. It was a vocation and not a job factor.
This was what made all the difference in my journey in life. .
I need to kick-in: One step at a time. There was
slippage on my part in the determination of “hope.” What was
different at this time” I realized it.
It was a time where the trust that once surrounded
the clergy had turned to fury. Abuse L children? With bishops being
complicit did not help the situation. No more in our society. The
atmosphere in summaries and priesthood had some called a corrupted
atmosphere. The issue of dishonesty and illusion are being
recognized. The illusion that had to be banished in that sex is the
enemy and celibacy makes for holiness. Some things are heard and
faced which are vicious and simple-minded. I did realize that a
revealed advocate of newness versus the status quo. The picture in
my seminary yearbook of my only classmate- Joe Sredzinski- on the
front steps of the Seminary Building. The picture had Joe attired in
black cassock and berate and myself with jeans, sweet shirt and
brown hat and coat. The picture was as Joe dressed in pre-Vatican II
and me as being Vatican II model. The real issue in this picture was
authority in the Church as relating to principles of collegiality,
parish pastoral councils, faith communities and much more. So,
things that were being said in this day were so demeaning and lacked
I have to mention that those victims that were
sexually abused by priest are a tragedy of the most serious nature.
These people are in my thoughts and daily prayers. However, I was
even wondering that at this time, there needed to be a program:
Victim for the Day (Queen for a Day Program). It seemed that there
was this media parade of “alleged victims” of priest in sex abuse
each day on page B1- Local News. There would be five victims in the
program. Questions directed those whose head had been jaded? Whose
memories had been rekindled? Would there be different “filters” of a
situation or occurrence?
February 2, 2003
I was reading the parish bulletin from Sacred Heart
Church, Gardner. It had a part: “Lay Presider Training workshop
– will be held at Sacred heart Parish, Gardner, on Saturday,
February 9th and February 22nd, 9:00 a.m. to
1:00 p.m. This is a Diocesan wide program that will be given by Fr.
John Konicek. All Lay Presiders and anymore interested in learning
more about the program or becoming a Lay Presider are urged to
This had my eyes open, because it seemed that the Lay
Presider was a thing of the past because of having a Bishop Reilly
and a resurging clericalism. It seemed that this was for the area
(Deanery) parishes and yet no other parish published this
announcement. Also, who was this Fr. John Konicek? He was not a
Worcester Diocesan priest. Another point was that the priest that
was usually the facilitator for this in the area was off the screen-
he knew that Bishop Reilly was not in favor of this. Therefore, if
this guy wanted to become a Monsignor, he became disassociated from
the Lay Presider and became a teacher in the diocesan Deacon
program. Lastly, Fr. Donald Baker was will to sponsor at Sacred
Heart Parish such a workshop.
February 3, 2003
On the front page of this Monday, the Worcester
Telegram & Gazette had on the front page “Emotions run high at
demonstration: Shuttle, sexual abuse vigil at St Paul’s.” Patricia
J. James wrote: “Worcester- A demonstration at St. Paul’s Cathedral
planned for yesterday morning by members of groups that advocate for
victims of clergy sexual abuse was supposed to turn into a solemn
vigil after Saturday’s loss of the space shuttle crew, but ended up
being a little of both.
In a press release issued Saturday by members of
STTOP – sort for Speak Truth to Power – organizers said, “Sponsoring
groups…have decided it more appropriate to solemnly gather I thought
and prayer for the lives lost in this tragic national disaster.” The
rally’s original purpose was to demand that diocesan personnel files
of accused priests and church workers and financial records be made
About 20 members and supporters of groups – including
STTOP! Coalition of Concerned Catholics and Survivors, Survivors
First and Worcester Voice – gathered at the cathedral at 9:30 a.m.
The press release said they would ‘solemnly honor the pain or child
sexual abuse victims and others.’
While most of those at the vigil mourned quietly, one
parishioner of the cathedral said she was angry at the ones who were
more audible. ‘I have every sympathy in the world for the victims,’
Dora Cullen of Worcester said after attending the 10:15 a.m. Mass
yesterday, ‘but two wrongs don’t make it right.’
Ms. Cullen sad her four young children wee
‘completely terrified’ on their way into the church because a man
with a bullhorn was ‘yelling words like ‘rape.’ She said the
protestors were ‘creating more victims.’”23
February 4, 2005
This day the Worcester Telegram & Gazette
gives us by Kathleen A. Shaw the article: “Worcester man alleges
abuse: Rev. Jalbert accuser says he wants to help other victims:
Shaw wrote: “Raymond Plante jr. grew up in a three-decker on Grafton
Hill, the son of devout Catholic parents who, like many people in
Worcester, struggled with financial problems as they raised their
children. As a boy, Mr. Plante said, he was raped repeatedly by the
Rev. Norman Jalbert, a priest who was also a music teacher and
guidance counselor at Holy Name central Catholic High School and who
died in 1994.
Mr. Plante, now 39, said he has decided to go public
with his story because he believes other victims may exist and the
needs to tell people the extent of what happened to him. He
participated Sunday in the demonstration at St. Paul’s Cathedral, he
appeared on a television interview in front of Holy Name and he was
joined and become active in the new chapter of Survivors Network of
Those Abused by Priests. The alleged rape and sexual abuse of Mr.
Plante also involved abuse of the Eucharist, which Catholic believe
is the real presence of Jesus Christ in the communion wafer; the
Mass, the sacrament of reconciliation; and a violation of the
sacrament of matrimony as part of the Rev. Jalbert’s overall
strategy, he said.
The Rev. Jalbert equated the sexual abuse as ‘how we
do Mass here,’ Mr. Plante said. His parents, Raymond Sr. and Therese
Plante, were active at St. Joseph’s parish on Hamilton street where
the Rev. Jalbert was also pastor, and they did everything they could
to raise tuition money for the Holy Name. The Rev. Jalbert, who was
also his parish priest, became his guidance counselor and music
director. Mr. Plante said he wanted to stop the abuse but the Rev.
Jalbert had information about Mr. Planet’s parents’ personal and
financial difficulties and threatened to use it to destroy their
marriage. ‘The last thing I wanted was for them to get divorced and
he knew it,’ he said. His mother worked at the rectory and spoke
frankly with the Rev. Jalbert about their struggles, Mr. Plante
said. His father, who was active in therapies, went to the Rev.
Jalbert for confession. A sister had also been molested by someone
in Worcester and this had upset his parents. Mr. Plante was afraid
to add to their burden by revealing another incident, he said.
His first trip to camp on Brownie Pond in Spencer, in
1978 when he was 15, came because the Rev. Jalbert offered to help
him with his singing. The youth wanted to perform in the popular
musicals at Holy Name. Mr. Plante, in describing the first time he
was abused, said he was taking to the camp, which was a converted
horse barn with a large fieldstone fireplace. ‘It would start with a
glass of wine,’ he said. Mr. Plante suspected the wine was laced
with some type of drug because he would become spacey and ‘unable to
move.’ Mr. Plante said the Rev. Jalbert would suggest they ‘do a
Mass,’ talk about adolescent issues he was having with his parents,
fondle his genitals and sit on his stomach and chest. ..”24
Any time I read such stories, besides being sad for
the people involved, if they were was thinking about George Rueger
ranting at me in 1993 that more are going to come out on me- no one
did. It obviously was a cover-up by the Worcester Chancery Gang- we
had a “smoking gun” with Rueger and Mob to protect the Bishop
February 6, 2003
I noticed that whenever I was reading any R.C.I.A.
literature in how I became immersed with these readings and how time
pasted. I noticed how I was able to become concentrated. I also
noticed that I felt relaxed on this path. It gave me an internal
peace. The whole process and insights that I had and continued to
have formed a pastoral- working in the parish techniques of this
renewal. It was and still is an experience that I had found in what
I was educated for in the eight years of seminary and post-Vatican
II period of renewal in addition to studying and obtaining a M.A in
Psychology and Counseling. Well, it was over with in any hope of
having this being workable in any pastoral parish experience with me
being allegated. But, it was the one thing that I realized that I
found the “gem” of what the Church had been given to it by the Holy
Spirit. But, studying and reading history had me aware that there
would be a counter move for “restoration” of the 19th
Century hierarchical model which was also occurring in the secular
society especially of “black and white” answers to issues of the
day. Allowing the Holy Spirit to work was not to be at this time in
the life of the Church or my life. I was able to put word and
concepts on a “skeleton” model for parish work. It had me more
excited to do research by reading articles and original sources in
this area of this R.C.I.A. process. I, actually, was cut-off from
any professional or clerical contact to discuss the R.C.I.A. and
different insights that those that were involved with or developing
new techniques to advance this whole process to where it would be
the norm in every parish- possibly five decades. But, it seemed that
with the R.C.I.A. that everything that I ministered with in my
priesthood came together. A vision was a reality. This particular
time had me in “The Leper” category, because of the fear of losing
my “pension- poverty level” and my health plan in the Worcester
Diocese with thirty-three years as a priest...
But, another reality had me watching the media and
newspapers for the daily church sex abuse scandal list. Actually,
the Worcester Telegram & Gazette seemed to carry two or three
clergy stories a week on Tuesdays and Saturdays.
But, watching Channel #5 News at 5:30 p.m. ran a
story of a lawyer making a presentation at the Massachusetts Supreme
Court on a case from1958 issue- Statue of limitations. My fear
buckets became filled-up. The reporter was saying that this will
affect hundred of cases in the state. I had my stomach upset after
hearing this report and developed the weak-feeling and skin had a
burning feeling that was previously common to me a number of times.
I attended my Thursday Step Meeting. This day the
meeting covered Step #10 of list or inventory as my emotional
hang-ups as an example being fear. I departed from the meeting:
Here is Friday and
we get the Catholic Free Press version of Sunday’s cathedral
protest. Kevin Luperchio reports: “Worcester- Representative of
several abuse survivor groups picketed outside St. Paul Cathedral
Sunday to urge Bishop Reilly to release documents they say would
reveal the scope of the clergy sexual abuse scandal in the Diocese
of Worcester. The bishop was not at the cathedral but the head of
the Office for Healing and Prevention was there to offer the
services of the diocese. About 25 people form Survivors Newark of
those Abuse by Priests, Speak Truth To Power, Coalition of Catholics
and survivors and Worcester Voice stood outside with signs and
spoke with people entering the cathedral…Some of the pickets were
upset the bishop was not at the protest. Mr. Delisle said Bishop
Reilly was not scheduled to celebrate Mass at the cathedral on
Sunday. He was attending a Catholic Schools Week event at St. Joseph
Basilica in Webster at the time of the protest.
director of the Office for healing and Prevention, said she decided
to attend the protest to extent herself and the service of here
office to those who may have been victims of abuse. ‘I thought it
was appropriate that I would be there to let them know that we
care.’ Mrs. Engdahl said, ‘We are concerned for them and we welcome
them and we are very open to helping them.’ She said the protestors’
reception to her presence was mixed. Some in the group responded
positively, she said, while others were unwilling to listen. Several
people said they would like to speak to Bishop Reilly and Mrs.
Engdahl told them she would relay the message to the bishop.”25
must have been more heated than either the Catholic Free Press
or the Worcester Telegram & Gazette. What was interesting to
have a Mrs. Engdahl acting in her role and what Rome was saying
about laypeople involved in the whole sex abuse crisis in the
church? How long would she last and what will happen to her?
The Catholic Free
Press, also, published this same issue “Editorial-The place to
turn.” It stated: “The Church is going through a grace period and
the focus of the secular media is generally on the negative. We
Catholics need to keep hearing about the positive things that are
happening in our Church as well: the celebrations of new life, the
good works that are done, the solidarity we share, and the
commitments to a holy life... the Catholic media can help tell “the
rest of the story” about today’s Church. Yes, in our Church this
year there has been abuse and there has been remorse. There has been
sin and, most importantly, forgiveness. And there has been a real
attempt to take corrective measures with regards to the scandal of
child sexual abuse. The Catholic media can put all of that, good and
bad, in the context of faith. We strive to present a balanced
picture of life and faith in the Church. We look to Scripture, for
it is only through God’s Word that we can make sense of what is
happening around us. ‘Be strong and take heart, all you who hope in
the Lord’ says Psalm 31.”26
The spin masters
are at it in all avenues. Meanwhile, will we ever get the real story
out on this side of the issue versus the system?
This day’s issue
of the National Catholic Reporter had an article by Fr.
Richard P. McBride “Political instructions may go unheeded.” It
states: “For those unfamiliar with the ways of the Vatican, it may
have come as something of a surprise last month when the
Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith issued specific
guidelines for catholic politicians that attempt to dictate how they
should vote on various issues relating to the protection of human
life…But there is another factor at work here. The ecclesiastical
environment has changed dramatically since January of last year when
the same Boston Globe first exposed the local sex-abuse
scandal. Catholics are now much less inclined to accept moral
guidance from the hierarchy without first taking a hard, critical
look at it. Bishops and other purveyors of moral wisdom be
When this article
says that the paper exposed the local sex-abuse scandal, it was a
long time before this that The Boston Globe and the
Worcester Telegram & Gazette of this year were reporting this.
My story was reported in 1995 and there were a number of cases that
I recall back in 1984 and after about allegated priest.
I had one of those “Remember When”
moments when my cousin, Michael Bish called. He was telling me how
he attended a Confirmation Mass at St. Stanislaus, West Warren-my
home parish. Bishop Rueger was telling the parishioners that “Fr.
Jack” was doing a great job at St. Stan’s. Michael (Mickey) then
told me that “Jack” went to Florida for a week’s vacation. But, the
“remember when” moment came in was me recalling Rueger in ’93
Confirmation Ceremony at St. Edward’s doing the opposite by telling
the candidates: “You don’t have to listen to Fr. Kardas.” This was
the same incident that Fr. Picclomini was the Master-of-Ceremonies
and sitting in the vestibule with a glowing smile looking at Rueger.
Mrs. Leola Leger was the lecture and was sitting next to me saying:
“Oh, my God. I don’t believe what I just heard. Look at Picclomini
with that disgusting smile ay Bishop Rueger.” There was another
story here where the picture said more than any words would have
The Sentinel &
Enterprise reports: “Local church lay leader to meet with Bishop
Reilly.” The story: “Leominster – Mary I. Jean of Leominster, and
head of the Worcester Voice, will meet with Bishop Daniel P. Reilly
on Wednesday to discuss her recent request that the Worcester
Catholic Diocese release the names of those priests who have been
accused of sexual abuse in the diocese.
Voice is an advocacy group for the victims of clergy sexual abuse in
the Worcester Diocese. Reilly agreed to a meeting with Jean alone
Wednesday morning, despite hr request that representatives from
other victims’ groups attend the meeting. Jean said she believes
Reilly agreed to the meeting as a direct consequence of a letter she
sent him last month.
“In the letter,
Jean charged that the ‘church culpability in the cover-up of clergy
sexual abuse is now evident’ and asked that bishop to release the
names of accused priests as will as personal records in order to
‘expedite the healing process in our diocese.’ According to Jean,
the meeting, which was arranged by the bishop’s secretary, the Rev.
Rocco Piccolomini, is a ‘positive’ sing from the diocese. ‘This is
an historic step on the part of the bishop,’ Jean said. ‘It’s an
extension of an olive branch…’”28
interesting how a person like Jean who started out with an agenda
about her child attending St. Leo’s Grammar School in Leominster
became a self-proclaimed advocate on clergy sex abuse issue? This is
something of the victims’ groups in questioning who are they and
their real agenda. There are more questions that no one is asking in
regards to who, what and where issues on this abuse crisis.
woman, Mary T. Jean, who began the Voice of Worcester because of
issues with her son attending St. Leo’s School in the same town, had
an internal issue with the school board. She made it a clergy issue.
I wondered about her real agenda- selfishness. It seemed that a few
groups had a cause and rallied around the clergy sex abuse issue and
discovered each other. These groups send to be hitting on that you
give me mine issues. Jean had memory about everything and wanted
accountability. Actually, word from sweetness was her “calling card’
but it did not take much to read in between the lines her real
I was still
dealing with the “fear buckets” syndrome in coming into my place and
seeing the phone message light blinking. I was still thinking how it
might have been Fr. Picclomini calling from the Worcester Chancery.
It had not happened since 1995, but I was not able to clear this
issue from my mind of the worst case scenario. I rebutted the
allegation then and that should have been that. But, I notice that I
was working on this issue. It did get better. It became a non-issue
in that I was encountering any issue directly because it was not
true then or ever had been. I was challenging any issue at this time
with dealing in values, ideals and goals.
whenever the issue of the “statue of limitations” was heard by me
either through the media or "Father Peacock" throwing a remark at
me, I was able to divert the usual “stinken thinking” of hear and my
mind racing. It was Harrington’s remark at me: “You’re guilty till
proven innocent.” It was actually becoming part of me to rally my
personhood and know that I didn’t do what I had been allegated with.
I was not allowing “March Madness” (College Basketball) to be “March
Disaster” of having been judged “guilty” by my friends in the
Worcester Chancery Mob.
What did come to
mind whenever I was, at this time, getting into my “stinken
thinking” I picked-up my copy of Teaching the Dead Bird to Sing
by W. Paul Jones about God’s love?
Kathleen A. Shaw
writes this day in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette
“demonstrators at church can use bullhorn: ACLU chapter to assist
protestors.” She writes: “Worcester – The Worcester County Chapter
of the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts will assist
demonstrators at St. Paul’s Cathedral if police or church officials
try to curb the protest and the use of bullhorns.
went to St. Paul’s Cathedral on Sunday and were met by police
requests that the get a permit for their bullhorns. One of the
protesters was threatened with arrest if he did to cease use of his
bullhorn, according to Mary T. Jean of Worcester Voice, a group that
advocates for victims of clergy abuse. Police Chief James M.
Gallagher said yesterday the protesters do not need a permit for
bullhorns, but police can ask them to turn down the noise level if
it is deemed excessive.
“Ronald C. Madnick,
executive director of the Worcester County Chapter of ACLU, said
yesterday that protesters have a right to use bullhorns in the front
of the cathedral and can legally say whatever they want about the
bishop, other church officials and the abuse scandal in general…”29
Another day and
Kathleen A. Shaw reports “Accused priests identified for Diocese
gave list to DA a year ago-group wants list released.” The story:
“Worcester-The names of priests accused of sexual misconduct dating
back to 1944 were turned over nearly a year ago by the Catholic
Diocese of Worcester to District Attorney John J. Conte.
yesterday verified that he received them after issuing a grand jury
subpoena, but will not ever make public the names of the accused and
will not tell how many priests are involved until his investigation
is complete. ‘Or function is prosecuting,” he said. Mary T. Jean of
Worcester Voice, A Catholic advocacy group fro victims of clergy
sexual abuse, said yesterday the information was relayed to her by
Bishop Daniel P. Reilly during a meeting with him on Wednesday at
the chancery. Monsignor Edmond T. Tinsley and a member of the
diocesan review board also attended, she said. She was told the
names were turned over last March, although the bishop could not
give an exact date. Mr. Conte said yesterday that he received the
names from the diocese under grand jury subpoena several months ago
and said the names were instrumental in his investigation…”30
I was realizing
that getting excited at this time in my journey was more controlled.
So, this morning at 6:00 a.m. radio news on WEIM-AM of
Fitchburg/Leominster had the story of the Worcester DA had the list
on priest in the sex abuse scandal? The news reports that the list
goes back to the ‘40s. It also report mentioning Mary Jean of
Leominster being involved in getting this list. Circus time was the
first thing that came to my mind on hearing this.
What I had to
notice in myself to be aware of people that would bring the salt to
dinner in such stories or encounters. It has helped me realize that
an unexamined life is not worth living. I have examined my life more
than I thought possible. I had approached most people in silence on
my particulars and did realize that any verbal approach of any
reaction was to be in a limited nature. Life was worth living more
now than ever on my part.
One of my
classmates told me that I was not Irish enough in the Church. He was
referring to the authority of the bishop and the challenge of the
chancery structures of my time. The real issue was that I knew too
much of the Worcester Catholic Church. I possibly should have
written a book entitled: Windows in the Chancery Building:
Ambitions. I had to realize that my entire situation damaged my
reparation, well-being and psyche. Yet, I was not a “dead bird.” I
was flying freer than ever.
Kathleen A. Shaw
continues on in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette “Records on
priests targeted: Alleged abuse victim is pushing diocese for
answers.” She write: “Worcester – Craig Lecaire wants to see all of
the records on accused priests within the Catholic Diocese of
Worcester opened to public scrutiny, because he might get answers
to his own questions regarding his abuse he says was at the hands of
“Mr. Lecaire, of
Spencer, said he was raped by the Rev. Brendon W. O’Donoghue, now
retired, and sexually assaulted by the late Rev. Norman Jalbert,
‘grave harm is being done to the body of Christ and it needs to be
taken care of,’ he said. ‘Opening up all those files will certainly
answer some of my questions, I have herd things. It appears that
Brendon O’Donoghue was moved around the diocese and no one has said
why,’ Mr. Lecaire said…’He (O’Donoghue) told me that if I were to
ever talk about it to others, it would break this sacred trust and
part of God’s commandment, and if I did, I am possibly my mother and
father could lose our souls to the devil in hell.’”32
This same issue
and page had a small insert article by Kathleen A. Shaw entitled
“O’Donoghue moved frequently by church.” The part that made me
interested was: “During his time in Spencer, he spent several months
on leave before being sent to St. Peter, Petersham, where he served
from 1979 to 1984. He retired in 1984 from St. Matthew’s in
Southboro. He is now retired, but the diocesan directory of retired
priests doe not list where he is living.”32
Why this opened my
eyes was that when I was assigned to St. Edward’s, Westminster, Fr.
"Shach", of the Priest Personal Board told me: “That was not the
place that you were supposed to be sent too.” What I was able to
find out was that O’Donoghue was going to St. Edward’s and I was
going to St. Matthew’s, Southboro. O”Donoghue visited St. Edward’s
rectory and viewed the condition of the rectory and refused to go
there. So, Bishop Harrington assigned him to St. Matthew’s and
Kardas was sent to St. Edward’s. Harrington switched lines on this
assignment. My question: “What did O’Donoghue have on Harrington
that he was able to refuse an assignment? I was only told by Msgr.
Ray Page by phone that I was going to St. Edwards- the rectory
conditions were a “pig pen” condition with the pastor and his dog.
There most likely is a better story on this Harrington-O’Donoghue
The Sentinel &
Enterprise had a picture and story “Priest reinstated.” It
reported: “Rev. Edward McDonagh dresses for Friday night mass at St.
Ann’s Catholic Church in West Bridgewater on Friday. McDonagh, who
was removed from the church in November 2002 after allegations
surfaced that he had raped a boy in the 1960s, was reinstated
Thursday after Boston archdiocese officials said they couldn’t
substantiate the claim.”33
My only question:
How was it possible for the Boston archdiocese not able to
substantiate the claim versus substantiating the claim?
Worcester Telegram & Gazette gives us this day from The
Associated Press “Geoghan got trip to Rome after ‘trauma.’” It
reports: “Boston – After church officials cleared the Rev. John J.
Geoghan of a sexual abuse complaint in 1979, Bishop Thomas Daily of
Brooklyn, N.Y., allowed Geoghan to make a trip to Rome because he
felt Geoghan ‘had been through a traumatic experience’ because of
the accusation. Daily, formerly a top aide to Cardinal Bernard F.
Law made the remarked doing a civil deposition made public
yesterday. ‘So, out of the 800 priests in Boston, why Father Geoghan
in 1979, did you think he should go to Rome?’ asked lawyer William
Gordon, in the deposition. ‘Because I felt that he had been through
a traumatic experience because of the letters and accusations, etc.,
and that it was needed for him. It would have been helpful to him,’
daily replied. In correspondence between daily, Geoghan and
Geoghan’s supervisor, it is unclear exactly what the woman claimed
Geoghan did with children.”34
interesting in such a report is that one never heard of such an
approach by Bishop Harrington or anyone in the Worcester Diocese.
Harrington had the nickname: Bulldog. The other thing with Geoghan
taking a trip to Rome and being a diocesan priest, who paid for the
trip? Most likely Geoghan did the paying out of his own pocket.
Another point was that the archdiocese may have wanted Geoghan off
the radar screen.
tells me that Bishop Reilly met with the diocesan priest that was on
Administrative Leave at Fr. Rochford’s rectory in Blackstone, Mass.
Fr. Rochford is the bishop’s delegate to priest on Administrative
Leave. Rochford had never contacted me. I was told that “all priest”
were priest except Fr. John Bagley who supposedly said that the
meeting should have bee held at the Bishop’s Residence. The meeting
was held in Blackstone because of not having any publicity. Fr.
Bartlett picked-up the bishop and drove him to the meeting. I was
told that Fr. Jerry Branconia had no contact in six years and
therefore was not at the meeting. Branconia might have been in the
same category as me: non-person (Harrington’s issue and not
Reilly’s). In addition, I was told that Fr. John Paul Gagnon was
told by Bishop Reilly that he “would be back in the ministry.”
"Father Peacock" said that he reminded Gagnon not to get his hope-up
because Reilly said this all the time. My only reaction was that I
did not know anything about such a meeting. I felt that "Father
Peacock" was “fishing” on my situation and my reaction-hovers over
Besides this he
told me that a priest told him that Attorney Dan Shea was deposing
Fr. LaBair. Who know what LaBair was saying according to this priest
on the priest of this diocese? This was interesting to hear. I said
nothing but kept my poker face working.
With all of this,
"Father Peacock" then asked: “How are you doing?” He only returned
from another three weeks in Canada- doing his Lenten Sermons- which
was his pattern of smoke-screening. It was another aspect of the
“Gong Show” for life from such a person.
The front page of
the Worcester Telegram & Gazette gives us this day: “Accused
Monsignor has Whitinsville ties- Official linked to House of
Affirmation.” Richard Nangle reports: “A Long Island grand jury’s
inquiry into priest abuse took on a Central Massachusetts flavor
when it linked a high-ranking church official who bragged about
negotiating law cash settlements there to do legal work for the
scandal-plagued House of Affirmation in Whitinsville.
“In a report
released last week, the Suffolk county supreme Court special Grand
Jury noted that Monsignor Alan J. Placa, who is a civil lawyer as
well, ‘was also counsel to at least one clergy-related treatment
center, The House of Affirmation in Massachusetts. This fact was not
well known to other high-ranking priests in the diocese.’ The
finding make a strong case for convening a similar grand jury in
Worcester county, according to Daniel J. Shea, a Houston-based
lawyer who repress several local people who allege clergy abuse. ‘We
never knew Placa was the counsel to the House of Affirmation,’ Mr.
Shea said of the former clergy treatment center.
“The grand jury,
which heard testimony from 97 witnesses, reported that Monsignor
Placa strove to settle potentially multimillion-dollar sex-abuse
cases inside a range of $20,000 to $100,000. ‘That tells me that the
sum in the Mark Barry settlement agreement of $42,500 is in Placa’s
range, which in truth would be worth million of dollars,’ Mr. Shea
said…A grand jury is hearing testimony on the priest sex-abuse
scandal in Boston, but in more than a year since the scandal
remerged locally, Mr. Conte has made no indication that he would set
up a similar proceeding here.
“In 1995, the
Catholic Diocese of Worcester agreed to pay Mr. Barry to settle a
lawsuit in which he claimed that beginning at age 9 in 1968 he was
repeatedly sexually abused by House of Affirmation co-founder the
Rev. Thomas A. Kane. Rev. Kane left the House of Affirmation, a
treatment center for priests with sex abuse and other problems in
1986 amid allegations of financial impropriety. The facility closed
in 1989. The Barry settlement agreement, obtained in February 2002
by the Telegram & Gazette named three other priests but provided no
context for inclusion of their names. The three were: the Rev.
Thomas Teczar, the Rev. Robert Shauris and Monsignor Brendan
“Those names had
never been linked to the Barry case in the past. Disclosure of the
settlement clause prompted Mr. Shea to say, ‘I can only conclude
that there was a ring of priests who passed Mr. Barry around.’ The
diocese had denied that any such priest sex ring existed and Bishop
Daniel P. Reilly has said he signed the agreement ‘in good faith as
prepared and approved by the legal counsels representing al the
parties and agreed upon by Mr. Barry at the time.”35
This was one of
those times that I heard about a “priest sex ring” term when I was
in Hartford. Fr. Jack Kiley asked me in one of those conferences “if
there was a priest sex ring in Worcester?”
requests information on abuse: Letter sent to school alumni,
parents” was reported in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette by
Kathleen A. Shaw. The article: “Holy Name Central Catholic
Junior/senior High School has sent a letter to alumni and parents of
current students asking that any students who may have been sexually
abused by there. Donald J. Robokus and the Rev. Norman Jalbert
contact either the Office for healing and Prevention or District
Attorney John J. Conte.
of the school have recently spoken publicly about their alleged
abuse years ago by the two priests, both of whom are now dead. Rev.
Robokus was headmaster was headmaster at the time he allegedly
sexually abuse Bryan Smith of Hubbardston and Rev. Jalbert was
guidance counselor when he allegedly raped Raymond Plante Jr. of
Worcester. Craig Lacarie, now of Fisdale, which is part of
Sturbridge, said late last week he was sexually assaulted by Rev.
Jalbert, while the priest was his guidance counselor.”36
I was having
coffee with "Father Peacock" when he said that Fr. Gagnon was
telling him that Attorney Dan Shea deposed Fr. LaBair of St. Luke’s,
Westboro. The comment followed which was most interesting the
comment: Who knows what he will he will be saying? This begs the
question: Saying about what? There was rumor in the diocese that
LaBair should not be talking because the story is that LaBair
frequented gay bars. (This is what I mean of “priest talk.” Vicious)
"Father Peacock" continued by saying that other priest may be
dragged into the church sex scandal. A lot of shoes must have been
I mentioned an
obituary item that was in the morning Worcester Telegram &
Gazette and his comment was “cute”: He does not read that
obituary page and he throws the paper away. Interpretation: He read
it-wouldn’t miss-but did not want to talk about it or save it for
me. This was done to me by him on material from the chancery or
other publications that he received and read. This was his
technique. He missed nothing. But, he may have been worrying about
something. This was why I think he traveled with me as being “safe
from the cliques in the Worcester priest and “fishing” for
information. I felt that he had other agendas in that he was worried
about “something” else.
I didn’t mention
anything but I was concerned about the list given to DA Conte by
Bishop Reilly with my name on it. I was thinking-as usual-the worst
case scenario: Cops at my door?
The article “Group
want Reilly to tell truth about abuse” by Kathleen A. Shaw in the
Worcester Telegram & Gazette. It reports: “Worcester-The
Worcester Diocese Voice of the Faithful said yesterday the Catholic
Church is facing ‘the most devastating crisis’ of modern times and
called on Bishop Daniel P. Reilly to tell the truth on the sexual
abuse scandal in the diocese.
Catholics asking for disclosure of flies in the church sexual abuse
scandal, VOTF is the first to specifically ask for information on
women who were abused. A letter to the bishop was adopted and singed
by members at a meeting held Wednesday at the College of the Holy
cross. Members of the group are drawn from parishes through out the
“They said laity
and priests of the diocese are feeling great pain ‘caused by the
protection given by some members of the hierarchy to predators at
the expense of victims. The organization commended the bishop for a
‘brief disclosure’ he made several weeks ago about the cost of the
sexual abuse crisis to the diocese last year. ‘It was a good first
step, and in distributing this information you recognized the need
for openness as a critical step in healing the Church,’ they said.
credited Bishop Reilly with the ‘courageous act’ of responding to
the effort of the lawyers, whose fees are paid by diocesan insurance
company, to subpoena files of Survivors Network of Those Abused by
Priests, a support and advocacy group for victims of clergy sexual
abuse. The establishment of the Office of Healing and Prevention was
also cited as a positive accomplishment.”37
Here was the first
time that I read or heard “They also credited Bishop Reilly with the
‘courageous act’ of responding to the effort of the lawyers, whose
foes are paid by thee diocesan insurance company…” Sure, the sharps
were being paid=off and the priests were thrown to the “sharks” and
anyone else to get the spotlight-off hierarchy.
The Catholic Free
Press gives us from Catholic news Service “Long Island diocese calls
grand jury’s report on clergy sex abuse untrue and unfair.” It
states: “A spokeswoman for the Diocese of Rockville Center rejected
as untrue and unfair a 181-page report of the Suffolk County grand
jury charged with investigating the diocese’s handling of sexual
abuse of minors by clergy.
characterization…that the Diocese of Rockville centre conceived and
agreed to a plan using deception and intimidation to prevent victims
from seeking legal solutions to their problems is simply not true,’
said Joanne C. Navarro, director of the diocese’s Office of Public
information, at the Feb. 10 news briefing. In addition, she said,
‘it is unfair to use today’s standards to judge sincere attempts in
the past to assist victims and to help perpetrators not to offend
against.’ “While sexual abuse of minors is always a grace sin and a
crime, the ways of dealing with it have developed over time, Navarro
said. “This is every bit as true of law enforcement officials ass of
church personnel.’ The grand jury’s report, made public Feb. 10
following nearly nine months of work, concluded that priests who
abuse minors ‘were transferred from parish to parish and between
dioceses’ and ‘were protected under the guise of confidentiality
under the guise of confidentiality, their histories mired in
My file or case
had nothing besides my alcohol treatment in October of 1977. Nothing
This same issue of
the Catholic Free Press had in its editorial “Atmosphere of healing
needed.” It stated: Have the victim advocate groups that are
clamoring – even with bullhorns p for release of the records of
alleged sexual abusers ever thought that they may be scaring away
victims who need help but don’t want to be so public about their
abuse? Bullhorns outside of cathedrals may be legal but they don’t
create an atmosphere of healing that is desperately needed by the
parties in the sexual abuse scandal in the church. Neither would the
releasing of church personal records…”39
The next day –
February 22nd – the Worcester Telegram & Gazette published
“Diocese speaks out in editorial: Catholic Free Press fault
demonstrators, urges confidentiality.” Kathleen A. Shaw wrote: “The
Catholic Free Press, the official newspaper of the Worcester
diocese, in an editorial yesterday criticized those who are
demonstrating in front of St. Paul’s Cathedral in Worcester on
Sundays and said all diocesan records should be kept confidential.
confidentiality of those records is the right things to do. While
the district attorney is ready to take legal action, then details
will be public,’ the newspaper said. The newspaper, which is
published by Bishop Daniel P. Reilly, made its piston known after
several recent attempts by catholic groups to get all of the records
opened on past sexual abuse allegations within the diocese.
Diocese Voice of the Faithful joined with Mary T. Jean of Worcester
Voice, a Catholic advocacy group; and victims groups such as
Survivors Network of Those abused by Priests, Coalition of Concerned
Catholics and Survivors and Speak Truth to Power by calling for
disclosure of the records as a first step in the healing process.
The Voice of the Faithful, which also wants a full accounting of
complaints against priests made by women, said its call for openness
is seeking ‘restorative justice’ as found in the Gospels. The
diocesan newspaper questioned the motives of these people and
questioned whether their real aim is for ‘justice’ or vengeance”
Healing or money?”40
There was no
cross-examination of alleged victims for any defense of most alleged
priest – besides if you were a bishop - to get what each alleged
victim had as an agenda besides their mantra.
I was told that
one was able to purchase “Kit-On how to sue a Catholic priest.”
Supposedly this was available in the Yellow Pages. I never
did see this but would not have been surprised. Money seekers are
Another comment I
heard this day was that Bishop Rueger was able to smile through a
court marital. This was a character trait that he had-the smile. It
was wondered by many if he even slept with that smile. Rueger’s
smile was something else if one was around him. It was a good cover
if one was trying to read facial expressions. He always had it on.
magazine printed “The Decade That Shook It All Up: Change came
almost daily in the 60s. So how to pick the days that mattered most?
80 days that changed the world.” It reads: “Many of the nation’s
dreams seemed to go off course in Dallas on the afternoon of Nov.
22, 1963, when Kennedy was shot. Then much of the country’s bold
optimism soured as American watched the war in Vietnam spin out of
control on the news. When Ho’s forces surprised U.S. troops with the
Tet offensive on Jan. 30, 1968, threatening Saigon, most American
realized the government had been deluding itself that victory was
close at hand. Disillusion was followed by despair when assassins
shot King on April 4, 1968, and Robert Kennedy tow months later, on
June 5, and as young protestors overshadowed that summer’s
Democratic convention in Chicago. By then, all conventions were out
the window. The introduction of the birth control pill on May 9,
1960 had unleashed the sexual revolution. Pope John XXIII led an
ambitious attempt to modernize the Roman Catholic Church when he
convened Vatican II on Oct. 11, 1962. The Beatles heralded not only
a change in music but also the arrival of the youth movement when
they appeared on the Ed Sullivan show on Feb. 9, 1964. By Aug 15,
1969, the revolution was in full swing when thousands of young
people gathered in upstate New York for the Woodstock Festival. Just
when the whole planet seemed to be spinning out of control, everyone
stopped on June 20, 1969, to watch tow men walk on the moon. It was
the most thrilling night in expiration’s history and is sure to be a
day that our issue will remember. – By Mitch Frank”41
summed-up somewhat the period of time that I was in the seminary
(1962-70). I was ordained on May 23, 1970 and had my first
assignment with a Monsignor Manning at St. George’s, Worcester with
Fr. George Rueger in residence. My experience of “power and
authority’ was a restoration of a clerical hierarchy even then with
Manning and Rueger experience of 1950. Talk about a “shock
treatment’ issue, it was at this assignment.
Another visit with
"Father Peacock" had the conversation of the latest group of priest
allegated. It seemed that only Fr. Jean-Paul Gagnon and Fr. Messier
were being sued for money. The others were not. It was rumored that
Fr. Bagley was asked to retire. This group (7) was still getting
full monthly payment for their parishes. He told me that Fr. Gagnon
was going to his paths and did the weekly checkbook in parish bills.
He then told me that the “last group” allegated were promised that
they would be back in ministry. "Father Peacock" said that he told
Fr. Gagnon that this was a “lie.” "Father Peacock" seemed to be in
the know of the bishop’s thinking? However, it proves to be true
because this group were “retired” with respect financial packages
and any future increments.
Nothing as such
was directed to me. "Father Peacock" knew this. So, he was using
this as another issue that he knew affected me. I was living
actually with a 1993 package that evolved with monthly dedications
which had me living at a poverty level.
Besides this, I
had anxiety working on me because of the coming church document in
March _New Canon Law of American adaptation of priest on
This was a
surprised morning. I stopped at Bob’s Hot Dog Truck with Richard
Cieslak who I drove to Worcester for treatment. When we entered the
cab of the truck Bob said: Did you see the paper-Worcester
Telegram & Gazette-this morning? He told me that it had me it on
page B1-front page of the second section “Sex abuse documents made
pubic: Rev. Kardas received treatment in Conn. - Priest accused of
molestation.” Kathleen A. Shaw writes: “Worcester – Carol felt grown
up She had a boyfriend and told her closest friends about him. He
told her he loved here, wanted to marry her, and that she was to be
the mother of heir children. (I thought I was reading a soap opera
script of afternoon TV.) On her first encounter, she went into the
kitchen of her Holden home to pour him a scotch; he came up behind
her and gave her a kiss. (This never happened. A fantasy story was
being told that had no truth in it whatsoever.) On another occasion,
she joined him for a scotch. It was in the rectory of St. George’s
Church on Brattle Street. Her ‘boyfriend’ was the Rev. Thaddeus J.
Kardas, then in his mid-20s, and she was only 11. (When McCormick
was 11, I was not even In Massachusetts.) The story of Carol
McCormick, who now is married and living in Chelmsford, is told in
depositions in a civil suit she settled with the Worcester diocese
in 1995 for $55,000 (Lawyer’s fees without her getting a dollar).
The suit was settled without admissions of liability by the diocese
or Rev. Kardas who remains on leave…Of Ms. McCormick, Sister
Kelleher wrote ‘Ted Kardas molested her when she was 12 years ago
while he was stationed at St. George’s in Holden. There was a lot of
touching. He tied to penetrate her but she fought him off. That
happened over a period of time.’ The church actually is in
Worcester, not far from Holden…Ms. McCormick said last night that
the Worcester diocese need to open all its records on accused
priests ‘and stop hiding behind the veil of secrecy that has
existed.’ People need to known what happened.”42
When I read this,
I realized that McCormick must have had the deposition documents and
was speaking to Kathleen A. Shaw of the Telegram & Gazette by phone.
This was the same Carol McCormick that visited me at St. Edward’s,
Westminster on a Saturday afternoon with her daughter. She asked me
at that time to give her daughter First Communion. Games were being
played by her even with a parishioner (Bob Chatrand) with whom she
worked with at GE in Fitchburg. Let’s not forget that there were
only a deposition papers and no cross-examination of McCormick. The
last statement by McCormick in this article must have had her being
coached to make such a remark about the Worcester Diocese.
I would have hope
that a reporter would have had all the fact, being objective and
impartial. This article was, in my observance, against Bishop Reilly
to release the files on the “7 priests: of the diocese that he put
on Administrative Leave.
Obviously this had
me sit in the truck and my first reaction that possibly this was a
reaction by the advocacy groups for victims or the newspaper to the
Editorial in the Catholic Free Press of February 21, 2003.
I denied this
allegation, as well as the allegation of Abby Marshal Weber who was
in contact with McCormick. I never did touch or violate these two
girls or anyone else. I was never able to give any facts to these
allegations especially when these two girls claimed in the documents
that they were 12-years old and I was not even residing in
Massachusetts. This issue would have been only the beginning. But,
the Worcester Diocese had me out, settled lawsuit- nothing on my
part- and nothing heard from the chancery for over seven years –
This had me back
into or says under, again, the shadow of the sex abuse scandal. What
made me think that this was not so. I was getting a distance away
from this shadow because my case was not a priest abuse situation.
This article had me back-under the shadow emotionally and
What I was told by
Mrs. Connie Rivard was that the next door neighbor- Ralph Delmonico-
who was the guy going up and down Main Street of Westminster telling
everyone in May 1993 that I embezzled parish money of a total of
$40,000. He story was a lie and had a history of defaming my
character even when I was in the parish. So this day he met Connie
and asked her if she “read the newspaper and the story about
‘Kardas’?” Connie told me that she only said:” So!” She walked
always, leaving him reading the newspaper in the stand at the
door-would not pay for the paper. This was Ralph.
morning, I e-mailed Dr. Zeman: “Yesterday, the Worcester Telegram
& Gazette had an article about me- Sex Abuse made public-Rev.
Kardas received treatment in Conn. I’ll sent you a copy of the tow
other articles of the atmosphere in Worcester. I will see you at my
next appointment on March 20th. (Signed) Fr. Kardas.”
The articles I mailed: Worcester Telegram & Gazette story of
February 26th, article of Kenneth Moylan about the
Worcester Diocese and the Catholic Free Press Editorial of February
The Catholic Free
Press published “Holy Cross to sponsor forms on abuse crisis.” It
prints: “Holy Cross College, beginning next month will sponsor a
series of public forums addressing the ongoing sexual abuse crisis
in the Catholic Church. The forum will be presented through the
Center for Religion Ethics and Culture. They are dinged to enhance
understanding of the problems that have merged and to engage in
meaningful reflection on them, according to information released by
In a small article
the Catholic Free Press had “Vatican official cites papal move to
ease removal of abusive priest.” It reads: “Washington (CNS)- An
official of the Vatican Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith
said Wednesday that People John Paul II has given the congregation
the power in some ‘very clear, grace cases’ to laicize priests who
have sexually abused minors without going through an ecclesiastical
trail. Only the people himself had that power before. The official
said the pope has also empowered the congregation to make
case-by-case exceptions to church rules requiring only priests with
doctorates in canon law to serve as judges in trails of accused
The Catholic Free
Press also printed “Canonical trails for accused priest may begin
soon” by Kevin Luperchio. He writes: “The revised U.S. procedure for
dealing with priests accused of sexual abuse against minors takes
effect March 1, paving the way for canonical trails to begin.
“That means the
six diocesan priests currently on administrative leave due to abuse
allegations may soon be brought through a canonical process that
will determine their future in the Church, according to Msgr.
.Stephen Pedone, diocesan judicial vicar.
attended a conference in Washington, D.C. last week to learn moa
about the process by which canonical trails of accused priest are
undertaken. About 75 canon lawyers from dioceses across the United
States were invited into the conference, which was sponsored by the
United States Catholic Conference of Bishops.
“He said canonical
trails are special trails conducted by the Church in cases where a
priest is accused of breaking a church law. Sexual abuse of a minor
is termed a ‘grace delict’ or grave offense against church law.
Canonical trails do not take the place of civil trails but rather
focus solely on the accused priests’ status in him Church, he said.
“Under the revised
U.s. procedure, Msgr. Pedone said, a bishop in a given diocese must
report what he believes to be credible allegations of abuse against
priests to the congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in Rome.
‘The decision has been takeout of his (a bishop’s) hands,’ he said,
adding that previously a bishop could choose for himself whether to
opt to handle the matter judicially or administratively.
“Though a bishop
must report all abuse cases within the Church’s predetermined statue
of limitations for sexual abuse (10 years after the victim’s 18th
birthday), he does have some leeway in cases that fall outside the
statue, Msgr. Pedone said. ‘Under the new procedure a bishop can
apply to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith to nullify
the statue on a case by case bias. He can also opt to handle these
cases through other methods.”45
My particular with
Bishop Harrington were only told to me in the comment from
Harrington: “You’re guilty till proven innocent.” But what about
your bishop that is in the same category as you are in regards to
alleged abuse- alcohol and a minor? But Bishop Harrington was
driving his car and was caught at the scene of the accident. But,
someone immediately escorted him from the accident according to the
girl’s father- Mr. Palmer. Nothing was ever publicly or otherwise
reported or knows about Harrington’s car accident.
I was reading an
article on the internet from the National Catholic Reporter
“Word from Rome” by John L. Allen, Jr. of February 21, 2003. He
wrote about journalism: Jesuit Fr. Robert White of the Gregorian
University (Rome) position paper as an ‘ideological filter’ in the
press about journalism. It was an analysis of the dynamics in the
mass media, ongoing that the fewer reporters knew about a topic, the
more likely they were to recycle stereotypes and official
propaganda. Allen was troubled, however by the one point White made:
“Great journalist are people who have a sense of when a group is
being treated unjustly, who have a passion for justice.” Personally,
Allen said he became nervous around journalist drives to appease
what they perceive as injustice because sometimes they end up
screwing the facts to support their crusades. Allen then said that a
great journalist was one who felt a passion for the story. But
perhaps this was a question of perspective. He said that he was a
firm believer in the prime directive of journalism, which was that
they report and analyze the news, but they don’t make it.
This was some of
the questions of Kathleen A. Shaw’s article about me of in the
February 26th printing. I wondered what was really
happening with this article in that a phone calls from McCormick.
Did Shaw chase her down? Did an advocacy group push McCormick to
read the two depositions to the reporter? I guess that is something
I will not ever know. Actually, it really didn’t matter at this time
of my experiences. I reflected on what Winston Churchill once said:
I don’t care what people say about me but that they spell my name
called me and said that he was thinking of having dinner at his
rectory with Fr. Jean-Paul Gagnon, Fr. Gerry Branconia and I. I said
that I would attend. The, he said that the he thinks maybe to
because Fr. Gagnon “talked too much. Then, he added that Fr.
Gagnon’s case was going to Rome because of the Seal of Confession.
This had me wondering about the “Sex Ring in Worcester” concept.
Now, what was that
all about? "Father Peacock" actually was not going to have such a
dinner gathering. He was one to do “fantasy” projects with no
substance. However, I was thinking how he wanted to be a “liaison”
for priest on “Administrative Leaves.” The position would have, most
likely, had a Monsignor honor-title with it. "Father Peacock" was a
priest that I viewed who did anything had an alternative objective.
In his case, it was becoming a “Monsignor.” He, actually, was
obsessed with such an objective.
Finishing my day,
I received a phone call from a parishioner of St. Edward’s. She told
me he e-mailed Kathleen A. Shaw about the February 26th
article in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette about Father
Kardas. She told me that she wrote that my story was “old news.” She
didn’t appreciate the National Enquirer style. She, also,
canceled her subscription to this newspaper.
March 1, 2003
A printed flier
from the Bishop’s fund Office was mailed to parishioners in the
Worcester Diocese: Frequently Asked Questions. This had a question
and answer printing of nine questions and answers. On the back-page
of this printing were three questions and answers: “…”6) Are
donations to Bishop’s Fund used to settle lawsuits? 7) Are other
sources of charitable funding for the Diocese of Worcester used for
settlements 8) Have there been settlements in the history of the
diocese involving sexual abuse?
There was no real
surprise in the “answers” to these questions. What I found
interesting to read to questions #8: “…In past years, the Diocese of
Worcester has paid $764,833 from discretionary funds in the
settlement of these suits. The various insurance carriers based on
their coverage at the times of the occurrence of the allegations,
paid $1,384,000 over the years.”46
The words that
caught my attention in this “answer” were “In past years….” What
does that mean? Very interesting! This “flier” was most interesting
to read, especially between the lines. There was the issue of “coded
language” that one needed more than a canon lawyer to understand. It
was similar to what a politician would do for a mailer in upcoming
I received an
e-mail to the one that sent to Dr. Zeman. He wrote: “Dear Father
Kardas, I look foreword to talking with you on March 20th
at 1:00 p.m. (Signed) Peter Zeman.”
I realized that I
was more in control of my situation than I thought at one time.
Well, I should have been able to handle anything by this time. Let’s
no forget, my experiences since 1993.
I had a relative
call me and tell me that I was “still” listed in the Worcester
Diocesan Directory.47 What I found peculiar about that was if
there was hidden message in that phone call. There was a circle of
people in the diocese besides the clergy that had a sport activity
on clergy even before the priest sex abuse scandal. This group must
have sat with this directory and used it like a sports page in the
newspaper of the different team standings. But, this relative
calling me to say I was still in the directory had me wondering. He
must have picked-up something in the gossip circle about certain
priest listings. One had to wonder, which obviously by me writing
about this at all.
Sine the January
2002 meeting of mine with Bishop Reilly and the view that the
American Church Hierarchy began a “line in the sand” approach to the
priest crisis, I wondered if the hierarchy shit-off the mike.
There was even the
conversation that I heard how the Pope only hat to send a letter to
remove a priest from the priesthood. Obviously, I asked for the
source of this comment. My thought of the complexities of such an
issue would not lead to such simplicity. However, I may be wrong
especially how the Worcester Chancery Gang operates with my
situation and a Gulag lifestyle-never hear about him again.
March 2, 2003
This day, Kathleen
A. Shaw gives the report “33 priests are on list of accused in
diocese.” She wrote: “Worcester-Mary T. Jean, leader of Worcester
Voice, said she has compiled a list of 33 priests of the Worcester
Roman catholic Diocese accused of sexual misconduct, and she has
received the names of 11 others that she is trying to verify.
“She met last week
with District Attorney John J. Conte to ask him to release the names
that he received from the diocese. She had met earlier with Bishop
Daniel P. Reilly, who also refused to give her any information.
Mrs. Jean said Friday that she compiled her own list based on
conversations with victims and families and other catholic groups.
She said she intends to go back to the bishop to press for
disclosure, and she is in the process of setting up another meeting
with the bishop. Mrs. Jean said the number of priests who allegedly
abused children indicates the Worcester Diocese may have a worse
problem than Boston…”48
interesting having coffee with "Father Peacock" was how he was
nervously talking about this newspaper article. He mentioned how it
was Ms. Jean of Leominster that compiled the list of 33 priest and
11 other priests that she is trying to identify. What was peculiar
with him was the intensity of his conversation about the 11 other
priest. I was not sure where he was going with this because of his
intense concern of the unprinted names of the 11.
I was only
thinking of a 3 Stooges sequence-The Birthday Party. It had Dr.
Zollen, Dr. Zollen and Dr. Zollen throwing cake at each other. They
arrived to fix the phone on a three-seat bike. This was what I felt
I was dealing with the Worcester Chancery Gang when they were coming
at me. Actually comparing the 3 Stooges to this chancery gang was an
insult to the 3 Stooges.
Another insight at
this time that I was sensing in some church people-God’s People-
enjoy the pains of others to sow what kin of an organization would
March 3, 2003
I began reading
The Other Side of the Altar: One Man’s Life in the catholic
Priesthood by Paul E. Dinter. The inner cover-leaf tells: “In
all the coverage of the priestly sexual abuse scandal in the
Catholic Church, one story has been left untold: the story of the
everyday lives of Catholic priest in America, which remain so little
understood as to be a secret, even as one priestly sexual predation
after another has come to light.
In The Other
Side of the Altar, Paul Dinter tells one priest’s story-his
own-in such a way as to reveal the lives of a generation of priest
that spanned two very different eras. These priest ended the
ministry in the 1960s, when Catholic semi arises were full of young
men inspired by both the Church’s ancient faith, and the Second
Vatican Council’s promises of renewal. But by the time these men
were ordained in the early 1970s, the priesthood-and the celibate
fraternity that depended upon-proved quite different from what the
Council had promised. American society had changed, too,
particularly in the area of sexuality. As a result, he emerged a
clerical subculture of denial and duplicity, which al but guaranteed
that the sexual abuse of children by priests would be routinely
covered up by the Church’s bishops….”49
Reading this, one
may think that I had written it. I didn’t. This work was written
with the same time frame of me entering the seminary and ordination.
But another story has been left untold, the story of the everyday
life of a priest that the hierarchy tried to make: The Poster Boy
I was listening to
the radio with Mike Barnacle on the radio talk about watching
reality shows and that he needs the remote control clicker. He takes
on how both the characters of Saddam Hussein and Robert Blake on TV
interviews for a simple reason: the networked will do anything to
attack newer or readers for newspaper firing a “sweeps period” as
This is somewhat
to be what was happening by Worcester Telegram & Gazette and
Kathleen A. Shaw and Dianne Williamson do for readers they
re-trashed junk on priest in the diocese. It’s all about
“presentation” of the reality.
The Boston Channel
#5 news had a story by Amelia Barretta stating: (Archdiocese of
Boston) Church tries to quiet victims’ attorney-Eric MacLeish-of 400
priest. A trail date set in April for the Archdiocese of Boston
where it wants to stop release of documents. New and damaging
information implicating priest on sexual abuse was to be made
public. The Archdiocese was requesting a gag order that this report
said was specifically targeting Eric MacLeish.
March 4, 2003
What if syndrome
began again in my mind? There was the fear buckets’ filling-up. It
made thinking going on-and-on. It was strange but I had my
bi-weekly AA meeting to attend that evening. It was a “Discussion
Meeting” where I heard stories of other difficulties people were
experiencing. Others were struggling so the “Promises” were read at
the end of the meeting. Besides this, the message I carried from
this meeting was when everything in ones previous life was crashing
forward on the back of your head, there is still hope. I was glad
that I attended the meeting. The lesson I carried that if I received
any bad new or “bites” at me of fur and five days after what had
happened. The latest February 26th article was my latest
example. But, there was hope.
March 6, 2003
I had coffee with
Mrs. Connie Rivard this day where she said that “people read and
believe what is in the newspaper.” She was referring to the February
26th article about me. I tried to explain a number of the
points mentioned of false information. However, thinking more about
McCormick gong public with Kathleen A. Shaw in the February had me
wonder if this was kicked-up with the “release of names in
Worcester.” Another thought I had was how McCormick was going after
the money for the cause campaign-American way. It was not clear that
McCormick called her story to Kathleen A. Shaw or was it Shaw
calling her putting the story in a National Inquirer style of
news? The misinformation: 1. Age of McCormick stated as 11 ½- I was
living in Michigan._2. McCormick visited Westminster with her
daughter for Fist Communion ceremony- What kind lf mother would
bring her daughter to the priest she was allegation? 3. McCormick
worked at GE-Fitchburg with Bob Chatrand of Westminster who had an
agenda with St. Edward’s. Besides Chatrand was, always, going to
Msgr. Collette in Fitchburg degrading St. Edward’s policies. 4.
Motorcycle- I never gave anyone a ride because I never had insurance
for a passenger. 5. McCormick walking home- never happened. 6. I was
never alone with her. 7. Drinking-How did she recall “scotch” and
drinking at age of 11 ½? 8. McCormick alleged her father with sexual
abuse. 9. An Alice Gusha-not her married name- who lives in
Pennsylvania wrote me a note that she would testify against
McCormick on my behalf. I really didn’t know if Connie was
listening. She was my parish secretary but was easily influenced by
her good friend-Victoria- where she would follow in different
opinions and expressed absolute perspectives. Connie did show at
times a “black and white” approach to issues. Yet, she was my
biggest advocate in the parish and town: “Don’t treat on Father
with Connie had been back down in my feelings and emotions because
the early morning was in an up-beat attitude. But I was reminded by
another friend: Why do you talk with her about such issues?
I did notice that
there was a period of loneliness besides living alone. I was not
receiving any phone call or visits since the February 26th
article in the newspaper. I was noticing silence and no contact by a
number of people I knew. Nada. Then I thought how the diocese just
pushed me off the table- Gulag-life sentence.
readings for this day’s liturgy (Mass) had the themes of suffering
rejection and self-denial as conditions for being a disciple of
Jesus. One can expect it with resistance, misunderstanding and
accusations in one’s journey. One had to take up the Cross and the
way you recreate you and make a resolution by expressing a different
set of values and actions. I had to realize this message this day
and each day forward.
March 7, 2003
This latest issue
of the Catholic Free Press reported: “Official” and “Canon
lawyers told sexual abuse crisis poses major challenge.”
“His Excellency, the most Reverend Bishop Daniel P. Reilly,
announced the following, Effective immediately: Rev. Msgr. Richard
E. Collette, to administrator pro tem, Immaculate Conception Parish,
Fitchburg; Rev. Donald C. Ouellette, from pastor, Immaculate
Conception Parish, Fitchburg, to medical leave of absence.”50
interesting because of how the church uses “terms” for smoke
screening-medical leave of absence. Also, anytime I read or hear
Msgr. Collette, my eyes and ears become activated-watch this one.
It, usually, takes
a while and the real story will come either come through the gossip
circuit or the media. This smoke screening has another aspect- coded
language where one has to be on the “inside” to understand and even
then one may not understand. But, seeing Collette’s name had my
radar turned on for more to come.
The other article
in this week’s diocesan paper had: “Canon Lawyer told sex abuse
crisis poses major challenge.” It states: “Washington
(CNS)-Archbishop Harry J. Flynn of St. Paul-Minneapolis told U.S.
canon lawyers gathered in Washington for special training that they
can be part of the solution to ‘what I believe may be the most
serious pastoral challenge in our history,’ the clergy sex abuse
head of the bishops’ Ad Hoc Committee on sexual Abuse, addressed
some 100 priests attending workshops in February on church laws and
procedures for dealing with cases of clergy accused of sexually
abusing minors. ‘I think now is a time to focus on the solutions to
this crisis,’ Archbishop Flynn said in his Feb. 24 remarks, released
by the USCCB.
“One aspect of
that, he said ‘focuses upon the individual priest who is accused of
the delict or crime of the sexual abuse of minor. Because of the
gravity of the crime involved and its serious consequences, it is
even more essential that anyone accused of it be able to avail
himself of the processes established by the church.’ Archbishop
Flynn reiterated the statement last April by Pope John Paul II that
‘there is no place in the priesthood or religious life for to see
who would harm the young.’ He said the role officials in church
tribunals judging such cases-judges, notaries, promoters of justice,
advocates-is to ensure ‘justice for all as we seek to bring these
cases to closure.’”51
Kathleen A. Shaw
wrote this day in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette “Worcester
Diocese to hold tribunals on 6 priests.” She informs us:
“Worcester-Monsignor F. Stephen Pedone said yesterday the Worcester
Catholic Diocese is getting easy to move ahead with church trails of
sex men removed from ministry last year because of allegations of
“A seventh priest,
the Rev. Joseph A. Coonan, cannot be tried in the church court
because the alleged events occurred before he was ordained a priest.
‘It’s a tough one,’ Monsignor Pedone said. ‘In his case these are
not canonical crimes so he cannot be tried before the church court.
But the allegations made against him have affected his ability to
effectively minister,’ the monsignor said.
who is judicial vicar for canonical affairs, said the bishop has
other means of dealing with the situating without putting him before
the church court, he said. That could include keeping him removed
from active ministry. The situation is not unique to Worcester, he
said. He has spoken with one bishop elsewhere in the country who
ordained a priest and one month later allegations surface that he
had sexually abused someone 20 years earlier.
“Bishop Daniel P.
Reilly removed Rev. Coonan in August after allegations surface from
15 men of misconduct that allegedly happened during the 1970s when
he was a counselor and public school teacher in Oxford. No
allegations have been made that incident happened after his
ordination in 1989. Priest who are subject to the church tribunal
are the Rev. Lee F. Bartlett, the Rev. John H. Bagley, the Rev.
Gerard P. Walsh, the Rev. Peter J. Inzerillo, the Rev. Chester J.
Devlin and the Rev. Raymond P. Messier.
is justice denied,’ Monsignor Pedone said, noting this goes for the
accused priests and the alleged victims. The priests have been
‘hanging in limbo’ for some time and the victims are also waiting
for this process to begin, he added. The tribunals operate much like
the U.S. Supreme court, he said. The church does not have open court
sessions with oral arguments. The cases are made by the accused
priest and the victim through written documentation, he said.
The tribunals are
conducted according to canon law, which is the law that governs the
Roman Catholic Church. The church trails of accused priests involve
a specific violation of the sixth commandment which in the Catholic
list of Ten Commandments involved improper sexual activity. Accused
priests are still subject to the criminal and civil law of the
state, the monsignor said. If the tribunal finds that a priest has
violated canon law, it can recommend to the Vatican that he be
“The tribunal will
contact to see victims who have made allegations known to the
bishop’s office or the diocesan Office for Healing and Prevention,
Any victims who have not made such reports can still contact to see
offices if they want to be involved in the church tribunal, he
I never was
informed of any canonical procedure by either Bishop Harrington or
Bishop Reilly orally or by letter. I was only informed that Bishop
Reilly requested my resignation as Pastor of St. Edward the
Confessor in Westminster. Here is the famous axiom: Different stands
for different priest in the Worcester Diocese, especially if you are
an auxiliary bishop or chancery staff (black box boys/Gang).
I was hearing the
morning new about the Boston Archdiocese and the sex abuse issue in
that I had to realize that it did not involve the Worcester Diocese.
Therefore, it was nothing to do with me, but was into the “fear
buckets filling-up” syndrome. I noticed that my back would ache.
Here was the stress issue occurring.
In this same news
broadcast this morning, there was the report of 54 sex abuse cases
at the Air Force Academy. Sex abuse was the in-issue of the day and
I found in a
business report statement: “Let them know about it and wash it out
of your mind.” Yah! “Wash it out…” is so easy to print but I find it
had to follow such a directive.
In addition I
heard this day that the Vatican way is reluctant to impose
additional penalties of one offense many years ago, who had led
exemplary lives since that time. Consequently, the time issue is
quite critical but the high handled behavior of some American
Ordinaries was an issue. Here is the prime example of the Vatican
defending Bishop Harrington in that he did what he should have done.
This same discussion was heard on the radio with Brian Arsenault who
mentioned it to his mother-in-law-Mrs. Joanne Curtin. This Arsenault
guy said he knew more about priest sex abuse by “reading all the
newspapers and the article about me in the February 26 article.
Brain said that the article showed Bishop Harrington was doing the
right thing with me.” Here was Connie’s remark to me about people
read and believe everything that was in print. Arsenault I thought
had more dept and knowledge than he showed in this matter especially
if he only read newspapers. targeted me 2. Put an X mark on me
3.Worcester’s Poster Boy image prevailed.
The trend of talk
that came back to me was mixed. Mrs. Joanne Curtin, who was a nurse
at Gardner Hospital with a Vickie Connor of Winchendon asked: “Are
there new allegations against Fr. Kardas? Curtin answered: “No!”
Then Curtin responded that it was The National Enquirer approach
with old news.
I wondered if the
Vatican was more concerned for repairs of their hierarchy (bishop)
with: How to put the toothpaste back in the tube principle. A good
source, at this time, was for me a John L. Allen, Jr. of the
National Catholic Reporter other church sources had the “guilty
till proven innocent” answers in their stories.
March 8, 2003
Digest of the Worcester Telegram & Gazette reported
“Catholics for Christ Mass set at Marriott.” It stated:
“Worcester-The Catholics for Christ Mss with the Rev. David Kerrigan
will be held at 10 a.m. tomorrow at the Marriott Courtyard, 72 Grove
St. The chrch-21 meeting will follow at 11 a.m. at the same place.
The meetings a self-help group to help Catholics resolve negative
feelings about the sexual abuse scandal in the church as well as
discussion of other issue.”53
What is peculiar
about this is that the priest doing this Mass and discussion is on
“inactive duty.” Here is a case where the bishop and his group from
the chancery have not responded. This may have been the best
approach because of negative publicity by distancing themselves. But
Kerrigan keeps on going like the ad of energizer rabbit-batteries-
keeps on going.
March 9, 2003
This day, there
was no news on clergy in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette.
But, the New York Daily News published “Change has to come
for a church in denial.” It reports (no author): “’the whole sex
thing. All the abuse,’ the priest was saying the other day. ‘We
haven’t even scratched the surface. The problem is an institutional
one. The bishops have encouraged a culture of abuse, deceit and
denial. And they’ve been doing it for years.’ He is 51 now, He
marched off to religious life in 1970, thrilled with the proper of
realizing a dream he’d always held dear: to serve God and the people
who sought faith and hope from the pulpit.
personally gone to a bishop to ask him if he knew that a priest who
had been assigned to the parish where I was working had been an
abuser, and the bishop looked at me and said, ‘Oh yeah. The poor
guy. What he’s been through.’ That’s what catholic are dealing with
The man loves his
job and still loves his vocation. He’s been working at a church in
the metropolitan area for six years. He has a doctorate in religion
and a well-earned rebutting among his bosses for being unafraid to
speak out about the scandal that will certainly change the American
Catholic Church in ways that all these old men in Rome as well as
the United States could never have imagined a year ago, before the
stench of decedent and the extent of cover-ups was exposed to
daylight. ‘They protect the predators,’ the priest was saying. ‘The
attitude runs right through the whole structure of the church. I
knew,’ he pointed out. ‘I was abused as a child by a member of my
own family. And I was abused in the seminary. It has taken me years
of therapy to come to drips with what happened to me. I had a
session today. I want to get the story at. I give sermons about it;
not about me personally, but about own church elders have let
Catholics down. Of course, once my name is out there, I know what
will happen. The bishops will say, ‘He’s crazy. He’s paranoid. He
has a problem with authority.’ But I want people to know that we
have all been operating under a culture of deceit for decades. The
moral corruption, the lies are enormous.’
“Why has he
stayed? ‘The people are great. The work is great,’ he replied. ‘And
I always wanted to be a priest.’”54
I had to deal with
a phone call from Mrs. Lola Leger, questioning me about the two
girls. She was in her form of “dog on a bone” approach. I first
should have asked her: “Who called you that you had to try to
understand the February article concerning me?” She had to have had
a number of calls for gossip about me. There was nothing new. She
knew everything of my story, but that was not enough. So, when she
used the 11 1/2 and 12 age concept. Lola was even expressing the
question: Where were there mothers. (Where did such a comment come
from?) I related to her that I was not a resident of New
England when they were that age. She persisted about the age factor
as not hearing me where I changed the conversation. I told her how
this girl (McCormick) was visiting with her daughter at St. Edward’s
rectory, six months before the allegations asking for First
Communion for her daughter. Lola then changed the topic to talk
about her ex-husband Ron and his doings. I should have had a weekly
column on a web page to have those so interested in such of my life
But, I said: It’s all in my book. Bye, Lola.
March 10, 2003
Telegram & Gazette printed this day “Diocese ignored priest’s
report: Gagnon cited in 1987 clam.” Richard Nangle of the
Worcester Telegram & Gazette staff: “A Westboro priest says he
reported a parishioner’s sexual abuse claim against Rev. Jena-Paul
Gagne to his superiors 16 years ago and never heard another word
about it until the alleged victim filed a lawsuit over the matter
late last year.
lawsuit, Bishop P. Reilly has not removed Rev. Gagnon from his post
at St. Augustine church in Millville. Instead, Rev. Gagnon remains
on personal leave... In a January lawsuit deposition, Rev. Steven M.
LaBaire also said he rebuffed an attempt by a diocesan lawyer to
arrange an informal meeting with alleged victim Timothy P. Staney,
who had confided in Rev. LaBaire on the condition of anonymity. Mr.
Staney later cast aside anonymity to file the lawsuit against Rev.
“During the summer
of 1987, in the late summer, in a conversation that I had with Mr.
Staney, he shared with me in a very general terms inappropriate
interaction of a physical sexual nature that went on between him and
Rev. Gagnon,’ said Rev. LaBaire, who was assigned to Holy Name of
Jesus Church in Worcester at the time. His predecessor there was
Rev. LaBaire said
he immediately reported the allegation to his pastor, Rev. Roland G.
Hebert, who he said directed him to report the matter to Rev.
Raymond Page, whom he described as vicar of priest. Testimony from
another Staney lawsuit deposition showed the former pre-seminarian
Chad Bosivert said Bishop Reilly removed him from consideration for
the priesthood in 1998 after learning that a series of homosexual
encounters occurred between Mr. Bosivert and Rev. Gagnon at St.
Augustine’s in Millville…”55
March 10, 2003
gives us “’I’m a Church Man: after the scandal, a handful of priests
get back to work.” It prints: “In the back of St. Ann’s Catholic
Church in West Bridgewater, Mass., there’s a bulleting board covered
with yellow Post-Its. It’s the parish Payer wall. Most of the
supplicants seek God’s help for relatives who are sick. But
scattered among the postings are prayers for their priest, who’s
been facing a unique peril. ‘For Father’s return and the clearing of
his name,’ says one. ‘For Father McConagh to come back soon,’ reads
another in a child’s penmanship. The missives are for Father Edward
C. McDonagh, 65, the parish priest until last May 24, when he was
placed on leave by the Boston Archdiocese for allegedly raping a
teenage boy 39 years ago. Last month the parish prayers wee
answered. Father McDonagh is back, giving homilies about lepers and
possessing a newfound perspective on what it’s like to be shunned by
“It’s been 14
months since the scandal over the Roman Catholic Church’s handling
of priest sexual abuse broke in Boston and rippled across the
country. (This is a combined Catholic Church, lawyers and media
bench mark.) Nation-wide more than 200 priests have been removed
over abuse allegations. Most will eventually face charges before a
church tribunal and never minister again; some will go to jail. But
a handful-as many as two dozen nationally, experts guess-will return
to their posts after investigations conclude the allegations are
unsubstantiated. Last month, McDonagh became the first parish priest
in Boston to be returned to his flock. He remains pained by the
months in exile, but he’s intent on finding usefulness from his
ordeal. ‘I’ll use the pain of my wounds to help heal other people’s
wounds,’ he says.
against McDonagh were impossible to prove. Some time in the early
1980s a male prostitute with a history of drug problems told his
sister that McDonagh had raped him in 1964, when the man was 17. The
alleged victim died of AIDS in 1996; his sister’s recollection was
the only evidence against the priest, and no other accusers came
forward. McDonagh did work in the family’s parish in 1964, but says
he doesn’t remember the family and denies the allegation. While
church officials investigated. McDonagh was forced out of the
rectory and into an apartment. He couldn’t visit his parish, wear
his collar or say mass. ‘They tore his heart out,’ says Elizabeth
Williams, the church organist. ‘He was crying and crying, banging on
the coffee table, ‘I didn’t do that! I wouldn’t do that!’ McDonagh
prayed, read and reread ‘The Gift of Peace,’ Cardinal Joseph
Bernardin’s account of being wrongfully accused of sex abuse, and
watched the History Channel and ‘Law & Order’ reruns. McDonagh
called archdiocese investigators twice a week to ask what was taking
so long both he received little information. Unsure of his future,
he looked into getting a job at a local supermarket. ‘I was saying,
‘How am I going to take care of myself?’ he says.
The length of the
McDonagh investigation-as well as other priests’ experiences-suggest
that the church, excoriated for mishandling abuse allegations in the
past is proceeding with extreme caution before putting any accused
priests back into parishes…”56
March 11, 2003
Kathleen A. Shaw
writes in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette “Conte denies
getting call in ’87 over alleged abuse.” She writes:
“Worcester-District Attorney John J. Conte said yesterday he was not
contacted in 1987 by a mental health counselor regarding alleged
abuse of Timothy P. Staney.
“’I never herd of
Timothy Staney until 2002,’ Mr. Conte said yesterday. He and his
staff yesterday checked their 1987 records and found no
documentation of such a call. ‘It never happened,’ Mr. Conte said.
“In January, the
Rev. Steven M. LaBaire gave a deposition in connection with a civil
lawsuit filed late last year by Mr. Staney against the Worcester
Catholic Diocese and the Rev. Jean-Paul Gagnon, who Mr. Staney
alleges sexually abuse him as a child when he was a member of Holy
name of Jesus parish.
deposition, Rev. LaBaire said he was told by the late Monsignor
Raymond Page that Mr. Conte had been notified by the counselor 16
years ago of the alleged sexual abuse of Mr. Staney. Rev. LaBaire,
who is now associate pastor of St. John the Evangelist parish in
Westboro, said he was told the notification of Mr. Conte
precipitated a meeting with the late James G. Reardon, lawyer for
the diocese, Rev. LaBaire said…”57
At 10:30 a.m.,
Attorney Jim Morarity called me to “hello.” I realized it was a
fishing call on his part where nine times he asked me if I was
“still a priest in the diocese?” Very strange on his part because
we have talked over lunch and see each other a number of times. He
told me that Mrs. Ann Racine (Roger Racine’s wife) hugged him at his
place of work when my name was mentioned in the February article
about me. According to him, she was sorry for him. He was a person I
enjoyed visiting with but wondered why he was using the questioning
approach that he used. I had to remember that he was a lawyer by
Morarity then said
to me that a metal good friend from the parish-Richard Cieslak-
received a phone call that morning from Boston. Rumor was that he
had three months to live. Richard had “brain cancer.”
Then, there was
the delayed slow fuse reaction on my part about 4:00 p.m. “stinken
thinking” if the Worcester Chancery Mob gossiping information to
that I was not a priest anymore. The name of Mrs. Ann Racine-former
Religious Sister- sequence with Morarity had it going because her
husband-Roger- was a priest with a position in the Worcester
Chancery. Again, they may have had a chart on their living room wall
of clergy tracking.
Since I had him on
the phone, I asked Jim about responding to reporters all or rap on
the door and about a deposition? He told me that a deposition is
breathable and attainable the climate is now emotionally charged but
they are usually free wheeling. Answers should be short and direct
and tell the truth. (This I did.)
The reporter issue
was where he said that I may respond by saying: “A statement would
not serve any purpose at this time.” Better yet: “I have nothing to
say right now.”
that a lawyer’s role may be to answer questions (issue) today is one
way but next week the answer may be answered differently. Something
to reflect upon where I noticed that all type of people were
inquiring and being around me.
Morarity did say:
The priest now is despised as much as a lawyer.
March 13, 2003
What I was facing
at this time was a widely disseminated situation. Things were
decidedly stacked against me I was still writing and expression my
feeling in this written form. I had found consultation in my
writing. I would write something of concern or insight and was able
somewhat to leave it on the pad-computer keyboard developed-and move
on that day. This was most of the time. However, there were times
that I carried issues in my head with the “stinken thinking.” In
actuality, I fashioned a new mission for myself in this writing-get
my story in writing.
March 14, 2003
The Catholic Free
Press published an interview with Bishop Reilly in this Friday
issue: “Focus on healing, preventing abuse: Bishop Reilly speaks out
about crisis.” The story: “It has been more than a year since the
Church sex abuse scandal broke in the national media. In an
interview (questions and answers format) with Editor Margaret M.
Russell, Reilly answered questions about how the diocese has
responded to the crisis… ‘What is the diocese doing for priests who
have been accused? Where are they? (Reilly) They’re for the most
part living on their own. We are staying in touch with them, seeing
that they’re OK. I’ve gathered with them. I went to visit then in
their homes. I celebrated Mass with them in private settings. I had
dinner with them. Listened to them and listened to what their
concerns are. (Never happened with me.) It’s getting more intense.
It’s bee a long stressful period for all of them and it’s getting
more intense as we come to the time when we will be having these
ecclesiastical tribunals set up. So I try to give them the best
support we can. Father Dennis Rochford is in touch with them. (He
never contacted me.) Probably, certain, he’s hearing from them on a
daily or weekly basis. If they have any needs that come up, they
call him and he’ll be in touch with me. I’m sure they would love to
be back doing their work. This is not just a job, this is their
life. But we have to follow the law and we have to follow the rules
of the Church, too, and that's what we’ll do. It’s too easy on me
because it’s a brother priest. It’s like tearing yourself apart but
that’s what we have to do and we’ll do it. How can you be happy in a
situation like that? It’s an awful time; it’s sort of a limbo
situation. We just have to see where it’s going to go…”58
This was hard to
read because I have never had any contact with the bishop’s liaison
by any means. It seemed that this liaison was to deal only with
Reilly’s group that he placed on Administrative Leave. So, it begged
the question: What about the other entire priest? Even when I met
with Bishop Reilly in January 2002, I asked for help with my rent
and my list of personal items stolen from my rectory private
residence. He used his, what one other priest told me “Reilly’s
Irish blarney” (Seven priest invited but only 6 attended except
Bagley of out the 33) and nothing happened nor any contact
whatsoever with me.
Another article in
this same Catholic Free Press “Office offers services to victims who
call.” Kevin Luperchio of the staff wrote: “Worcester-Eight people
have filed abuse complaints with the diocesan office for Healing and
Prevention since its conception in May 2002, according to Frances J.
Nugent. As victim services coordinator, Mrs. Nugent is often the
first contact for anyone wishing to file a complaint.
initial conversation with an alleged victim occurs over the phone.
She said the firs thing she does is explain that the person must
submit a singed complaint copies of which are give to Bishop Reilly
and the Worcester District attorney’s office. (Anyone under the age
of 18 is referred immediately to the Department of Social Services.)
“If the alleged
victim decides to file a complaint, Mrs. Nugent, who is a member of
the Initial Review committee, and another member of the committee,
meet with the alleged victim. They often travel to the alleged
victim’s home or another location to garner any relevant
information. ‘I’ll go anywhere to meet with these people,’ she
I was reading this
article with Bishop Reilly and became weak in the legs and had to
sit down. I was becoming emotionally drained. I had to leave the
room where Connie Rivard showed me the article at her home. I didn’t
say much in only that I had to leave.
At this time,
whenever I called Connie, I was at least using the expression: Am I
in the newspaper today? I dreaded each day for a story being
published concerning me or including me. It was nerve racking, but I
tried to make light of the matter by asking a question as I did. It
was some time lately that I would take any article and read it
privately in dept and making notes for my writing.
I knew that I had
to find a way out for this impasse. I did not give up on hope and
being the person that was a survivor. I recalled reading in The
Gift of Peace: Personal Reflections by Joseph Cardinal Bernadine
that “accusations startled and devastated me.” I recall hearing him
say in an interview that the voice of trouble was heard but
distorted. The attack was directed against the most important thing
he had- his name and reputation. He said that he only had going for
himself as a religious leader was his reputation. If his credibility
was destroyed, so was his ability to lead. How would anyone trust
him? But, he said he had an inner strength, and that the Lord was
giving him the strength- moment of grace. He spoke of the moment of
pain as a moment of grace because he felt the great love and support
that many people were giving his spiritual growth. He said he was
entering a new phase of his spiritual journey because of events of
those days of being allegated. But, he was a bishop- Cardinal. He
had a structure that circled the wagons on his situation. In on way
I am glad and fortunate that I did not have such a structure but did
have support of the ordinary people who I always identified with-
Worcester Telegram & Gazette published an article by Jennifer
Lucarelli. She wrote: “East Brookfield-An 84 year-old monk at St.
Joseph’s Abbey in Spencer was found not guilty yesterday of fondling
a woman while spiritually advising her. A jury of five women and one
man found the Rev. Joseph Chu-Cong not guilty of a single count of
indecent assault and battery of a person over 14. The verdict came
after just over an hour of deliberation in Western Worcester
“The defense had
attacked the 27-yer old woman’s credibility, saying she had
impersonated a nun and had an obsession with the abbey. The woman,
Keri Burnor, of North Brookfield, testified yesterday that she was
studying to become a hermetic nun and began calling herself ‘Sister
that she asked to speak with Rev. Chu-Cong on Aug. 23, 2001, about a
book he wrote about spirituality and contemplation, and afterward
she confessed her sins to him in a conference room in the guest
house of the abbey. She then said she stood up and gave Rev. Chu-Cong
a hug, and he ‘moved forward in his chair,’ and she began to feel
uncomfortable. ‘I went to gather the two or three books I had
brought with me, and he reached over and grabbed my left breast,’
“In April 2002,
Mrs. Burnor filed a complaint against Rev. Chu-Chong with St.
Joseph’s abbey. Rev. Isaac Kelley, who was serving as the prior of
the abbey, began investigating the incident. During his testimony
yesterday, Rev. Kelley said the abbey community had been having
problems with Ms. Burnor because she has not taken her knows as a
nun and was not a member of any church…”60
It keeps on
rolling of stories from all aspect as this abbey story and the
priesthood. Someone has to speak out about this fervor and besides
the bishops making a bench mark in 2002 do a similar stance on
behalf of the Catholic clergy.
Another insight I
offer in how the Telegram and Gazette had been writing with such
details in their articles concerning the alleged sex abuse by
priest. Ex. “…grabbed my left breast.” Many other such descriptions
give it a tabloid, garbage nature.
National Catholic Reporter gave us in this weeks issue
“Scandal’s fallout still settling in Palm Beach: After losing tow
bishops in sex abuse crisis, Florida diocese struggles to recover.:
the article states: “In Palm beach, Fla., the first Sunday in
February was the kind of warm, sunny day that snowbirds fly south
for. On the ground of Holy Name of Jesus Church in West Palm Beach,
Boy Scout Troop 197 was holding a pancake breakfast to raise money
for the troop. Inside the church, parishioners got what was for many
of them a first look at their new bishop. Replacing the homily, a
video giving the parishioners the pitch for the Diocesan service
Appeal opened with Bishop Sean O’Malley speaking to the importance
of the appeal, previously know as the Annual Bishop’s Appeal.
“The new name,
like the new bishop, reflects a tumultuous year in the Palm Beach
diocese. On March 8, 2002, Bishop Anthony j. O’Connell had engaged
in sexual improprieties with seminarian more than 25 years earlier.
O’Connell’s swift resignation was the second of a bishop in Palm
Beach. His predecessor, Bishop Keith Symons, left the Palm Beach
diocese in 1998 when it was revealed that he ad sexually abuse five
young men earlier in his career…”61
It keeps on
March 15, 2003
I was getting
contacts of interest that were surprising by e-mail and even for G.
Ronal Leger in Florida at 8:00 a.m. I responded with a degree of
dignity and appreciation.
March 16, 2003
In the Church
calendar, this day is the Feast of the Transfiguration of Christ.
This is where the placing of the three tents is celebrated. So, I
was in going to my “tent” which was a place for my peaceful renewal.
It was in my “toolbox” of my life’s journey and a very comfortable
place that I was able to call mine- my apartment. I was able to
sharpen-up on issues and find my moral hi-ground.
I was thinking how
many times I had to struggle with my insights having to work and
live in a “gay atmosphere” of the past and present presbyter
(priesthood). It was extremely different especially if one was
March 17, 2003
us this day of today’s atmosphere with “Out of the Closet and On to
Fraternity Row: Gay college kids are making their brotherhood
official on U.S. campuses.” It states: “As it is at every
fraternity, brotherhood is the bond that holds the members of
Florida international University’s IF.I.U.) Gamma Lambda Mu
together. But the Gamma men have taken pains to spell out the
precise limits of their bonding: brothers, their bylaw say, may not
date one another. All the Gammas, you see, are openly gay. The
chastity rule is necessary, the say to prove to their schoolmates
that gay men can come together in the spirit of service and
camaraderie and not for sex. ‘People think [a gay fraternity] is an
orgy,’ says Mario Camp, 21, a fine-arts senior and Gamma Lambda Mu’s
co-founder. ‘It’s not.’
“Gay and lesbian
groups have gained acceptance on most college campuses, but becoming
part of the conservative Greek system has happened more slowly.
Shame Windmeyer, co-editor of Out on Fraternity Row (Alyson
Publications), estimates that 10% of men in traditional U.S.
fraternities are gay-but that almost al of them stay in the closed
for fear of reprisals from the brothers with whom they share the
The atmosphere of
the day is more “out of the closet” in the Catholic Church. It is
reacting as the hardening of wax on a candle. The culture is more
secretaries than ever, especially in what I have noticed in the last
I was listening to
Imus in the morning on the radio that had this day Mike Barnacle of
96.9 FM of Boston as guest. Imus asked Barnacle: Are you an
alcoholic? Barnacle answered: No! But, he explained that he stopped
drinking a number of years ago. He said he does not drink, now.
Barnacle then changed the topic to Elizabeth Smar case that he found
it a joy that she was found guilty. He continued to say that the
“media will kill her.” But, he did not go back to the drinking
question. Barnacle did not consider himself an alcoholic.
Interesting because he is in the public eye?
This same day, I
had an interesting conversation with Mr. Joan Keena relating how she
was dealing with her cancer. She said she went right back to her
daily living of being who she was and enjoyed most. My lesson form
this was that I had to realize that I was alive and that I had to
adjust my priesthood to the lifestyle and prayer life of my
circumstances. In thinking about being outside the active priest
box, I became extremely anxious. My mission, at this time, was to
write and pray. The aspect of being treated as a leper was to be,
but living in a “Gulag” was not the best atmosphere. Actually, at
times my story was like a sage being even more entertaining at this
time even though if its tragic nature. It may best be described by
the example of an octopus legs-all moving at the same time- in
I noticed that I
experienced a tailing down of any anxiety moments in about six hours
after an event-occurrence.
I, also, was
speaking with Mrs. Gloria (Miller) May burgh telling me: It (abuse)
is going on around the world. Then, she asks me what I thought about
Cardinal Law and what does the Pope think about all this (abuse)?
She followed-up with that this crisis is from form over with. Gloria
had a “French” rearing of Jansenism and the 50s religious education
background. Oh! I never had a chance to answer Gloria’s questions.
March 19, 2003
Then we go to the
Worcester Telegram & Gazette and we get this day “Rev. Teczar
arrested on charge from Texas.” Kathleen A. Shaw did this article:
“Worcester-The Rev. Thomas H. Teczar was arrested yesterday on a
governor’s warrant in connecting with a charge in Texas that he
sexually abused an underage person. He was released on personal
recognizance after papering before Judge John S. McCann in Worcester
Superior Court. Arrangements are being made for him to voluntarily
return to Texas. Lawyer Michael C. Wilcox, who is representing Rev.
Teczar with Louis P. Aloise, said the man making the sexual-abuse
allegation is in prison in Texas. Rev. Teczar denied any involvement
with the man, who admitted that at one time he was a teenage
prostitute. Mr. Wilcox said. He said there still is not indictment
against Rev. Teczar. He said the process has been slowed because the
complainant appears to be ‘unreliable.’
“Mr. Wilcox said
Rev. Teczar is ready to return to Texas when law enforcement
officials in that state are ready to accept him. Mr. Wilcox said
Rev. Teczar wanted to voluntarily surrender in January but Texas
authorities asked them to hold off because he had not been indicted.
The Texas Charge of aggravated assault on a child was made 10 years
after Rev. Teczar moved back to Massachusetts, he said…”63
This is the feast
of St. Joseph and the Gospel passage (Lk. 2: 41-51) shows us
Joseph’s anxiety over Jesus burst of independence at the age of
twelve. It, also show us that he must have installed confidence in
the child he was raising. St. Joseph is the living saint who is
there to guard and guide one. There is the hope it make one happy
just to know that he’s (Joseph) besides one in their journey-besides
God. Happy St. Joseph’s Day in supporting ones strength and gifts.
I was looking to
such a feast of this day because I noticed my mood as being intense.
The reason was the upcoming appointment in Hartford. I had fear of
ultimately being told of a “Tribunal Trail” to canonically remove me
from the priesthood. This was how different my mod swings were
occurring at this time.
It keeps on
March 20, 2003
The atmosphere of
the day may be sow when even a TV/radio program of Imus in the
Morning had Chuck reading the news. He reads about the Vatican
statement being deeply troubled of U. S. attack on Iraq. Imus jumps
in and says: Let them tell their priest to keep their hands of the
kids. This is how poisoned the atmosphere of the day was.
I received a
forwarded letter from the Worcester Chancery for a Mrs. Theresa
Paunchier of Leominster. It read: “Dear Father, my prayers with
Mary.” A priest told me that this woman sends out these letters all
the time. I was surprised that anything was forwarded to me by the
chancery at all. It had been years since I had any forwarded.
I had my regular
appointment with Dr. Zeman. I spoke about my fears and outlook. But,
I wanted to express that I was over all taking care of myself in
spirit and otherwise. I explained how the article of February 26th
and comments of non-support: Connie Rivard saying people believe
what they read in articles. The Gizas were ashamed of what is about
me in print. Lola’s thing is the constant referring to the 11-yr old
girls. I handed a cop of what I considered my “Mission Statement of
my Priesthood” of Fr. Karl Rahner on a card stating what a priest is
to Dr. Zeman. He only looked at it a moment and focused in what I
was saying. I was very strong of what the priesthood was to me.
Dr. Zeman then
asked me: You didn’t not do it (allegations) as you knew it? You
were not aware of this (due to drinking)? Right? I said an emphatic:
No. I then said that have a goal: Write my two volume work of my
journal. He asked me if I meant my experience at the Institute of
Living (IOL). I said “No” because my journal was about what had
happened with me and the authority and power of the hierarchy in
Worcester. Actually, my experience, while having to endure the
mandated full evaluation by Bishop Harrington of the Worcester
Diocese, was that I was treated professionally in a very strenuous
Dr. Zeman said
that I was kicked in the teeth. The Dr. Zeman talked that I was
able to make any appointment anything that I would want to see him.
What was interesting that on the departure we shock hands and tapped
me on my shoulder that I interpreted as a sign of support?
I had noticed that
I was finding a “family” in my AA group. I, also, noticed that I
didn’t want to go out at times. I was very selective in my visiting.
I felt abandoned by certain friends. I had an upset stomach at
different time with a strange feeling.
March 21, 2003
“ The Word from
Rome” by John L. Allen, Jr. of the National Catholic Reporter
writes: “Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (dismissal from
the clerical state and dispensation from obligations) Prot. N. 26/82
Mr. Franco Barbero from the diocese of Pinerolo 25 January 2003 The
Sovereign Pontiff John Paul II, having heard the report of the
secretary of this congregation concerning the grave mode of acting
of the above-cited priest of the diocese of Pinerolo (Italy), and
having seen to all the preliminaries, in a supreme decision with no
possibility of appeal., has decreed that upon the above-cited priest
is imposed the penalty of dismissal. To the same presbyter he ahs
also conceded a deposition enters into vigor for the moment of the
decision of the Roman Pontiff. +2 The decree of dismissal and of
dispensation will be communicated to the presbyter by the competent
ordinary of the censure. +3 The news of the dismissal and
dispensation will be opted in the books of the baptized of the
parish of the above-cited presbyter. +4 For that which concerns the
eventual celebration of a canonical matrimony, the norms established
by the Code of Canon Law are to be applied. The ordinary
should in any event handle the matter so that it takes place with
circumspection and without publicity. +5The ecclesiastical authority
whose task it is to communicate the decree to the above-said priest,
would exhort him vividly so that, in conformity with his new
condition, he participate in the life of the people of god, giving
edification and demonstrating himself a good son of the Church…”64
supposedly a form that was being carried out in the universal
Church. This reads more as a legal document which is how Rome
operates. But, Rome has to realize that the local ordinary in my
particular and diocese is more of an issue especially if one priest
allegations are somewhat similar to the ordinary. Yet, Vicar for
Canon Law of the Diocese, who had been appointed by this ordinary,
is his “hatchet” and using power in the worst case scenario-
Harrington- Pedone. The next ordinary that followed my bishop that
sent me for an evaluation was only “covering” for his predictor by
claiming he was not involved in my case. But, he was he one that
demanded my resignation. Watch the bouncing ball.
An article by
Kathleen A. Shaw in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette reports
“Parish circulates ‘Voice’ letter.” It states: “Sturbridge-The
parish council of S. Anne and St. Patrick Church circulated to
parishioners a copy of a letter sent by Worcester Diocese Voice of
the Faithful to Bishop Daniel P. Reilly asking that he be
forthcoming with information on the sexual abuse scandal in this
“The Rev. Norman
Meiklejohn, A.A., pastor, said he and the parish council approved
distribution of the letter in the interest of presenting a full
range of information to people in the parish ‘so they can make up
their own minds.’ The letters were handed at al masses last weekend
and parishioners were asked to sing them and return them in the
collection basket. The council will send the singed letters to the
bishop. ‘To be honest, we have gotten less than a handful back, but
we wanted to give them the opportunity,’ he said.
“The letter was
sent recently by Voice of the Faithful to the bishop commending him
for steps he has taken to deal with the crisis but asked that he
divulge information to area Catholics on how many minors and women
were victimized, own many cases were reported to legal authorities
and the disposition of those complains. The organization, which
includes lay Catholics, also wants full financial disclosure on the
cost of the scandal…”65
A coupe points
must be made in that the term “Worcester diocese” is used is not the
Worcester Diocese of the Chancery building mailing. It must have
referred to the location of the Church of Worcester by their use of
“Worcester diocese.” Another point of interest was that the
Sturbridge parish is operated by a religious order-The Assumptions.
This order is administrating a diocesan parish and is equal as any
other parish. Then the issue of “have gotten less than a handful
back” is interesting reaction from the general population of
who was professor of moral theology at St. John’s University,
Queens, N.Y. wrote “Stunned teaching on sex role in church's crisis”
in this weeks issue of the National Catholic Reporter.
He writes: “the effects of the sexy abuse crisis in the American
church aren’t going away. A host of issues concerning church
government and accountability continues to surface. Everyone from
the bishops on down may agree that change is needed, disagreements
fundamental differences, for instance, emerge when it come to the
future role of the official teachings of Roman authorities on
matters of sex and gender. Two opposing agendas for the church
group sees our current sex abuse troubles as stemming from past and
present infidelities of priest perpetrators to Pope John Pal II’s
articulation of sexual teaching. In this view, sin and evil are
recognized as always present, but abusing priests have been led to
violate their vows of chastity and celibacy because of the
debilitating permissiveness toward sexuality that pervades both the
church and the culture. Offending bishops did not exercise their
proper authority of oversight and correction, in part because, they,
to, were infect by the climate of laxity and infidelity to the
church’s sexual teachings. Granted, the bishops had to cope with the
‘60s sexual revolution and bad psychological advice, but, goes this
indictment, infidelity lies at the heart of the matter. Many
seminarians have been remiss in to adhering to the strict
theological and practical formation necessary for priest. The
solution? In the neoconservative diagnosis, the American church and
its leaders must conform more strictly to the church’s sexual
teachings as articulated by the Vatican…”66
circulating the concept of “laicization of priest.” This is the
surrounding involuntary canonical equivalent of the death penalty.
There was a new judicial system explained by the Congregation of
Doctrine of Faith. There is the belief as one clerical canon lawyer
said that one “can not take from my heart the ministry to which God
has called me. The Presbyter (priesthood) is a gift from God.”
Discussions were developing in the non-clerical level of “off with
their heads.” Then my mind began playing games because of hearing of
late of “defrocking a priest” with Rome saying with a new Canon Law
in the next few weeks.
Then a priest told
me that the latest Presbyter’s (Priest) Minutes stated that Bishop
Reilly was going to attend a national meeting on how to handle
“compensation” for priest on Administrative leave. I had not
received any of these minutes or any corresponds for some time. So,
I had to believe what this priest was telling me. What I realized
was that this priest was doing the “lording-over” priest on
Administrative Leaves. It was the way he enjoyed relating this
information to me. What I needed to do when experiences with such
individuals was to “flush” this stinken-thinking.
“compensation” was nothing different than from what I was receiving
in 1993. Actually, there were deductions from my monthly pension
without any explanations. The money was deducted without any
explanation or even a printed code interpretation. I did not have
any recourse or advocate even if the bishop related that the priest
are being taken care of. I really was being “taken care of” as a
I had to realize
that my ‘experience” in the Presbyter of Worcester had me
ministering with a gay sub-culture that is nerve-racking,
uncomfortable and not being one-of-the-boys. Actually, this
prevailed when I entered college and was and still very much
imbedded in the local church.
So, when I heard
John Paul II in March tell priest that celibacy “is not an added-on
useless element of priestly life-a sort of superstructure-but a
valuable means of participation in the dignity of Christ and the
service of humanity.” Very important insight but the real world
priest atmosphere had a “pink cloud” over it in the local church
that I was with.
March 23, 2003
weekly bulleting announced: “Talking to your children about abuse: A
program for parent, Sponsored by: The Office for Healing &
Prevention, Diocese of Worcester. This was presented by the Child
Assault Prevention (CAP) Project. This 90 minute program will offer
parents information on: the various forms of child abuse, with a
focus on sexual abuse; signs of abuse; characteristics of
perpetrators; healthy and unhealthy sexual behaviors in children;
and tips on talking to children about abuse. Fro Training Dates
please contact the Office for Healing & Prevention, 508-929-4362.”67
I was told there
were only 12 to 15 people in attendance. I heard nothing from anyone
about it in any way. The silence was deafening or was it more of a
none issue to talk about because only a few people were pushing this
type of agenda or was it the present culture of fear and terrorism?
It is the present American way.
In addition this
day, Dianne Williamson writes in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette
“Local stars entertain get Oscars; All of life is a stage for better
and worse.” She writes: “I’m happy that tonight’s Academy Awards
telecast will proceed as scheduled, and not only because millions of
anxious Americans are eager to learn what Catherine Zeta-Jones
thinks about the war with Iraq…So without further ado-and without
gold statues or pricey goody bags-we present our own 2003 Academy
Awards to deserving local newsmakers: Best Actor: Raymond Delisle,
spokesman for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Worcester, for his
subdued and often adlibbed portrayal of a man searching for answers
in ‘The trouble with Angels.’ Critics hailed his ‘deft handling of
difficult material’ along with his creative comments to the media.
actor: Bishop Daniel P. Reilly for the same film, who was singled
out for his many memorable lines: ‘Well let you know when we feel
like letting knew!’ and ‘Why is it different form the Boston
Archdiocese? Because this is the Worcester Diocese!’ Critics
applauded his passionate use of powerful dialogue…”68
March 25, 2003
“Priest get trail
date” by Kathleen A. Shaw of the Worcester Telegram & Gazette
appeared this date. She wrote: “Worcester-A July 21 date has been
set for the trail of the Rev. Robert E. Kelley on charges of child
rape in connection with alleged abuse of a girl when he was
associate pastor at St. Cecilia Church, Leominster.
John J. Conte said the Worcester Superior court trail date was set
yesterday. William M. McCourt, assistant district attorney, with be
prosecutor, Rev. Kelley is represented by lawyer Anthony M. Salerno
of Worcester. This trail involves changes that he raped Heather
Mackey of Tewksbury when she was 7 years old.
conference has been set for the same day in connection with rape
charges brought against Rev. Kelley in connection with alleged abuse
of Diane Gallina of Ashburnham when she a child. Prosecutor in this
case is Kathleen M. DelloSrtitto, assistant district attorney, Mr.
Conte said. Rev. Kelley remains free on $10,000 cash bail on both
cases, the district attorney said…”69
Bobby Kelley name
keeps re-appearing and re-appearing. It is in the courts again.
March 30, 2003
Richard Nangle of
the Worcester Telegram & Gazette staff writes “Diocese to
fight deposition: Ban on transcripts release sought in Rueger
lawsuits.” This is somewhat of a switch of staff writers because
the public usually had Kathleen A. Shaw doing certain priest
stories. Now, we have a switch from Shaw to Nangle. Possibly Shaw
was on vacation. He wrote: “Worcester-A lawyer for the Catholic
Diocese of Worcester will ask a Superior Court judge tomorrow to
limit the scope of a deposition that Bishop Daniel P. Reilly is to
give later the day in connection with a lawsuit that accuses
Auxiliary bishop George E. Rueger of rape of a child.
“James B. Reardon
Jr., a lawyer for the diocese, wants to prevent the public release
of court documents, especially distortions, generated by the
lawsuit. He also is seeking to delay discovery in the case until the
court rules on a motion to dismiss the lawsuit.
“Daniel J. Shea of
Huston, the lawyer for plaintiff Sime J. Braio of Shrewsbury, will
argue that thorough questioning of Bishop Reilly is necessary in
order to properly represent his client. He will argue that Bishop
Reilly’s public defense of Bishop Rueger and threat to bring
extortion charges against Mr. Braio warrants that questioning. ‘I’m
trying to agree with Mr. Shea on parameter and timing,’ Mr. Reardon
said. ‘I’m not seeking to prevent Bishop Reilly’s deposition.’
“Mr. Shea said he
sees the matter differently. ‘They’re trying to stop Bishop Reilly’s
deposition,’ he said adding ‘This is something that would preclude
the lawyers from providing discovery materials to the press.” He
noted that a Boston judge endorsed the release of discovery
materials as they relate to the sex abuse scandal in the Boston
Archdiocese. The same rules should apply in Worcester, he said. Mr.
Reardon said Mr. Shea, in a March 21 letter, indicated ‘he is
unwilling to discuss the terms or scope of Bishop Reilly’s
deposition…Mr. Braio’s lawsuit alleged that Bishop Rueger, them a
parish priest, began sexually molesting him in the 1960s when he was
13. The suit alleges that the abuse resulted in behavior that landed
Mr. Braio, now 52, in the former Lyman School for Boys in Westboro.
“In a July letter
to parishioners shortly after the Braio lawsuit was filed, Bishop
Reilly wrote that as Monsignor Thomas J. Sullivan ‘stated to the
media, the claims made by the accuser to the diocese have been
spurious and, indeed, attempts at extorting money from the church at
the expense of bishop Rueger.”70
Anytime I read
such an article, I wonder about the double standard by the Diocese
of Worcester in regards to handling the ordinary priest and a
bishop/chancery staff member. Different strokes for different folks.
I had lost my career, reputation, financial position and personal
March 28, 2003
When I received my
copy of the Catholic Free Press this day, my anxiety began to react
in wonderment to see if the “Diocesan Tribunal” had any printed
reporting, I heard nothing an isolation atmosphere- Gulag. It was a
mental struggle of what would be next in the case of the “axe” being
put in motion.
I had even hears
the story of a priest in Hartford Archdiocese who is now working in
a civil job and paid $365,000 in addition to the archdiocese paying
$365,000 for a total of $730,000. Where would any priest,
personally, get that kind money?
So if my diocesan
tribunal had my case, there was no presumption of innocence. I was
already tired. My bishop told me that I was resumed guilty and that
there were tow other witnesses. This would have been a kangaroo
court or Communist show trail. For anyone to see through the veil of
what was covered-up in my diocese and my case would have had many
diocesan clerics in a conspiracy model.
March 30, 2003
visited me to tell me that Father Rochford may be called back to
back to military service ad chaplain because of his previous time as
a Catholic Chaplin. This did not make any sense. "Father Peacock’s”
voice change to a low pitch in telling me that Rochford is the
bishop’s liaison to “priest-on-leave.” People like "Father Peacock"
and his “boys0in-the-band” group use psychic and emotional “drill”
as with Rochford to dominate an issue. This was a typical climate of
any clergy gathering or personal encounter in general. I had to
watch and experience this time-in and time-out.
My reaction was to
just kick-out these conversations in my mind by silence and a poker
face style. Living and minis trying in this was something very
difficult to experience. Then "Father Peacock" started about going
to the Chrism Mass with a reminder that I attended last year. I did
not attend the Chrism Mass that year. I was wondering the mental
game he was playing out. I said that I was not going to attend- no
written invite or announcement was sent to me. Then I had to realize
that "Father Peacock" was using me in that he would have made it
know that he brought me-the leper- into this annual Chrism Mass. It
was something I didn’t realize before but he was using me as another
form of his “Poster Boy” that he was reaching out to priest that was
out of the ministry. It was a peculiar situation to be in on my
part. It was best that I followed my insight with this guy-distance
myself and doing it immediately. It was in this matter best to be in
my “Gulag.” Clergy political-controlling games were another issue
that made me frightened that I was even a priest at times in such
circumstances- cliques of who hanged around with whom.
April 1, 2003
Answer had in its “Editor’s note” by Father Peter M.J.
Stravinskas wrote: “…Indeed Pope John Paul II’s tough talk to the
Americans was applauded almost universally. Now, we could fix it up
after that jump-start. And then came Dallas. Amazingly. Dallas
botched things up even more because a serious effort was made to
placate the bloodthirsty media. But the media folks weren’t
satisfied and, within days or even hours, they were expressing
concern that the bishops had now gone to the opposite extreme. Zeal
had moved into the category of zealotry. Added to the victims of
abuse were now priests-victims. Once more, Rome had to come to the
rescue, so that the Dallas norms were significantly modified, lest
gross injustices be perpetrated in the name of justice. Finally, we
have something that is workable…”71
Workable is only a
word here. Nothing in my particulars had been addressed or even
given an opportunity of anything but exiled- out of sight, out of
It seems that the
cartoons catch the social and cultural atmosphere more directly than
one might want to admit. The point of this time was “Beetle Bailey”:
“Sarg is on the scale and looking at the weight number “Wh-Oh! I
gained another 5 pounds! Beatle responds “You should stop going to
‘Huggable Harry’s Hamburger Heaven” Sarge responds “Keck no! I’m
going SUE them!”72
Sue someone is the
in-thing to do for some time. Actually, it is a know fact that most
people will never win anything in a lottery. So, if one wants to get
rich, sue someone. How true I had to learn this fact of life.
April 2, 2003
Channel 5, Boston
had Attorney MacLeish interviewed in what I may be wrong, but him
saying that more trouble was coming for the Catholic Church by
in-fighting issues of Church personal. Then another report tells how
another priest was suing another priest and one diocese suing
another diocese. Then another story that certain priest
“kicking-back” on Church Tribunal trails and possible removals.
This was another
aspect of the media running with “Church bashing.”
April 6, 2003
The New York Times
reporter, Adam Liptak, writes an article in the Worcester
Telegram & Gazette of this day “Legal scholars bemoan church
abuse scandals.” He writes: “Boston-The sexual abuse scandals that
have engulfed the Archdiocese of Boston and the Roman Catholic
Church have become a powerful threat to religious liberty, said
several legal scholars who spoke yesterday at a conference at a
Catholic law school.
“‘These cases will
profoundly alter the nature of organized religion,’ said one
professor, Patrick J. Schlitz, of the University of St. Thomas
School of Law in Minneapolis. ‘This litigation has the potential to
do church what many a tyrannical government count not.’
The conference, at
the Boston College Law School, in Newton, included many of the
leading legal scholars of church-state relations, canon lawyers and
the general counsel of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. They
acknowledged that the scandals arose from widespread and terrible
“But they also
expressed surprise at now quickly and vigorously the law governing
the activities of churches had reacted to the scandal. Several
suggested that the legal system had overreacted and perhaps acted
liability for a diocese is now on the table, something that would
have been unmovable not long ago,’ said Angela Carmella, a professor
at Seaton Hall Law School…”73
When I finished
reading this article, I wondered where these people were with my
situation and Bishop Harrington: “You’re guilty till proven
innocent.” The church system had already dumped bodies all over the
street, fields and ocean harbors. The systems internal operations
may have been orientated more on personalities than any justice.
This says when I
finally began to writ my text from my journal. I figured-out and
began using the split screen sequence I figured that my work would
be a two-volume work: Volume I for 1993-2001 and then Volume II-
2002 and etc.
Besides writing my
daily journal, researching and doing a weekly homily-like the
Beatles’ sang: “Father McKenzie writing a sermon, no one will hear.
What I found
interesting that I had to discipline myself to stay with one
The rumor mill had
it that Fr. Gerry Branconia did not receive an invite to the Chrism
Mass. Gerry sent a note to Bishop Rueger and he mentioned in the
note that he had nothing written about him in the Catholic Free
Press stories of priest that wee clearing their 24th
Anniversary of Ordination.
My question was
why Branconia wrote to Rueger. He should have written directly to
Then I was
watching 60 Minutes on CBS and their first story was: Guilt till
proven innocent. The story was about an Arab arrested after 9-11. He
was too charged with any offenses. This was the same thing that
occurred to me and control by the system. This was the same thing
the Worcester Diocese did to me. There were even reports how
priest-sex abuse victims overreacted on 9-11 arrests: Living in
depression, headaches, flashback and can’t work was reported. The
sex abuse of Ford being abuse by his father was reported at this
April 8, 2003
Kathleen A. Shaw
back on scène with an article in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette
“Reilly due to answer questions under oath” of this day’s issue. She
wrote: “Worcester-Bishop Daniel P. Reilly will answer questions
under oath tomorrow in connecting with a lawsuit that a Shrewsbury
man has brought against the catholic Diocese of Worcester and
Auxiliary Bishop George E. Rueger.
“Sime m. Braio,
52, alleges in his suit that he was sexually abused and reaped by
Bishop Rueger at age 13. Bishop Rueger, who in July flatly denied
the accusations, testified in a deposition last week. Mr. Braio is
scheduled to testify at a.m. Thursday.
attempted to block public access to the depositions of both Bishop
Reilly and Bishop Rueger but was overruled March31 by Judge Mary Lou
Rupp in Worcester Superior Court. The diocese also asked the court
to block bishop Reilly from giving testimony.
James Gavin Reardon Jr. argued that Bishop Reilly did not come to
works until years after the alleged incidents involving Bishop
Rueger and Mr. Braio in the 1960s. The judge said Bishop Reilly has
‘institutional knowledge’ of the diocese and should testify. She
added that he can be questioned about the House of Affirmation.
“Mr. Shea said
Bishop Reilly testimony is relevant because he made public
statements after the suit was filed last July indicating that Mr.
Braio tried to extort money from the diocese and he intended to seek
criminal action against him through the office of District Attorney
John J. Conte. Mr. Conte declined to bring criminal charges.
“Daniel J. Shea of
Houston, the lawyer representing Mr. Braio, said it could take a
month before the depositions go through the legal process and become
part of the public record in the suit…”74
interesting reading to know the background of Shea and Reilly in
Rhode Island. The picture of the day that wasn’t in the paper would
have been Shea questioning Reilly in the courtroom. No such luck.
I was having a
phone conversation with Mrs. Gail Robinson and she questioned me:
Would I have done anything different in my defense? First of all I
never was given an opportunity for a defense, which I did not say to
her. The reason was she would never understand or even begin to
understand the hierarchical system in the Church. So, I answered
with a “No.” I always maintained that I was innocent and maintained
my priesthood. This I sure, Robinson did not understand from a
vocation point-of-view. I became suspicious of her questing in that
she must have been talking with someone about me. She did not have
it in her to wonder if any other approach would have possible in my
situation. I wanted to say to her: You can read it in my two-volume
work of what happened to me since March 23, 1993. It will be printed
after I die so I may not be defrocked from the priesthood or sued-
there would be no estate after being sent to the “Gulag.” I stayed
on message at all odds.
Robinson did walk
with me through all of my experience. She was somewhat careful
asking for information and comments. It was nothing in comparison of
Connie Rivard, who was the closets to my story at the parish, where
she made the remark: “Is your name in the paper again today? Her
remark was going back to March 26th article on me. It did
hurt hearing her make that remark to me. But, I suspected that
someone was giving her an ear-full about me. I knew Connie somewhat
in that she was not one to think in that fashion.
I heard Jeff
Greenfield say on the Imus Morning radio interview how there is a
history principle that we won’t have a clearer picture of an event
for possibly 20 or 30 years. It was peculiar how Bishop Harrington
and the Chancery Gang knew that I was “guilty till proven innocent”
at least three months before I was called about an allegation.
April 9, 2003
Moynihan- a Roman Catholic- writes this day in the Worcester
Telegram & Gazette “Judge’s ruling in Rueger case seems ‘open to
interpretation.’” Moynihan’s column appeared regularly in the
Worcester Telegram & Gazette. This column-lengthily but not
complete may be found in footnote material-states: “You may recall
reading last week about a hearing at which Superior Court Judge Mary
Lou Rupp ruled on a diocesan request for any order protecting Bishop
Daniel P. Reilly from being questioned about the Huse of
Affirmation. ‘Ruling goes against diocese on questioning Reilly.’
“The lead sentence
of the story said: ‘A Superior Court judge yesterday ruled against
attempts by the Diocese of Worcester to limit questioning of Bishop
Daniel P. Reilly in a coming deposition and to prevent the release
of transcripts to the media.’ A little later the report said that
diocesan attorney James G. Reardon had hoped to prevent plaintiff’s
attorney Daniel J. Shea ‘from asking Bishop Reilly about the House
of Affirmation, a Whitinsville treatment center for priest with
psychological problems, including sexual problems.’ The facility was
open from 1970 to 1989.)
The same event was
covered in Thursday’s edition of the diocesan weekly newspaper, The
Catholic Free Press. That account quoted the judge as saying, ‘I am
granting the protective order as to Bishop Reilly.’ In striking
contrast to the T&G report, the Free Press’s lead sentence quoted
the judge as limiting questioning of Bishop Reilly about the Hose of
Affirmation ‘to the nature of (his) personal involvement with the
treatment facility.’ The Free Press went on, ‘The court order says
that otherwise, the request for protection order of Bishop Reilly
“So, let’s see:
Did the ruling, as the T&G headline said, ‘go against’ the diocese,
or did the judge ‘grant the protective order to Bishop Reilly’? The
issue argued by the lawyers was whether events at the House of
Affirmation had relevance to the case at hand, which involves
allegations dating from the early 1960s against Bishop George E.
Rueger. Both newspapers agree that the judge limited her protective
order with respect to the Huse of Affirmation, but they seem to have
interpreted her differently.
“As the Telegram &
Gazette reported it, ‘Judge Rapp said she was skeptical that our
questions about the House of Affirmation would be relevant. But she
said if either bishop admitted to any involvement with it, the
questioning would be allowed. Bishop Reilly once served on its board
of directors.’ Well, then, it would seem to be settle. Serving on
the institution board would surely qualify as ‘involvement’ with the
House of Affirmation, and once that’s established Mr. Shea will be
able to get on with what he calls his ‘conspiracy case.’
“But maybe not.
The Free Press quotes Mr. Reardon as contradicting the T&G story.
‘It was wrong in the paper,’ the Free Press quotes Mr. Reardon as
saying. “The judge said the Huse of affirmation was not relevant and
Shea can ask what the bishop knows about it, but not any specifics
about other priests or information that may be privileged. The judge
limited the questioning to general knowledge.’
What the judge
said, according to the Free Press, was ‘I simply have not been
superseded at this point, that generalized inquiry of the House of
Affirmation is in any way discoverable or relevant.’ The diocesan
paper reported that the judge ‘said the House of Affirmation didn’t
appear to have any connection to this particular plaintiff’s
allegation’ and that she later said to Mr. Shea, ‘You may inquire
generally what his official position was. So what we seem to have is
tow newspapers covering the same event and coming to different
conclusions about what happened….
“It would not be
fear or reasonable to pass judgment on the reporters who were these
two articles, but their differing interpretations of the same event
can serve as a reminder to all of us that in these matters, as in
many other, we all have a point of view, a set of attitudes that is
operating even before we try to make sense of new evidence. As we
respond, we run the danger of hearing what we prefer to hear, and
believing what we prefer to believe.
“We need to be on
guard against those temptations, because what they causes us to miss
might just e the truth.”75
I guess Kenneth J.
Moynihan never really personally encountered a bishop who had “sole”
authority and power. Try finding the truth in such a circumstance-
Bishop Harrington and then Bishop Reilly protecting the Office of
Bishop. It goes on and on.
The way and means
that the diocese was using for Rueger had a double standard. I was
given no procedure so that I would have been able to defend myself.
My case was settled and I was told that was it-history. But, a
bishop (Rueger) gets all type of perks and diocesan newspaper giving
their version and “interpretations.” I had no opportunity to make a
public statement or address my parishioners.
April 11, 2003
“The Word from
Rome” with John L. Allen, Jr. of the National Catholic Reporter
states “Vatican prevailed for priest accused of sex abuse.” He
writes: “An update on implementation of the American norms on sex
abuse as approved by reform, those norms envisioned canonical trial
for accused priest. In fact, however, there may be significantly
fewer trails than once anticipated. The New York Times found
in January that 432 accused priests had resigned, retired, or been
removed from ministry in the previous 12 months. Many of these men
admitted guilt, or are already out of ministry. Precise numbers are
not available, but perhaps only half or some of these cases have
required notification to the Holy See. Under the norms, bishops are
required to report al allegations found to be credible to the
Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, which authorize one of
three procedures: *Canonical trial * An extra-juridical procedure
envision under canon 1720. This option allows the bishop, if he is
morally certain the priest is guilty, to remove him from ministry
without the time and expense of a trail. The canon requires that the
accused be notified of the charges and be given an opportunity for
defense). *Dismissal from the clerical state ex officio et in oenam,
meaning an involuntary laicization approved personally by the
people. This is a rare option because it short-circuits procedural
guarantees. In most cases, however, the accused priest has already
had several opportunities to mount a defense. Sometimes he may be
already having been convicted criminally.
“The news that may
surprise American is that the inclination of the Congregation for
the Doctrine of the Faith is today in many cases to authorized
option two, the extrajudicial route. Last October, the Vatican
rejected the norms approved by the U.S. bishops in Dallas on the
basis of the need to protect due process rights. This led to concern
about a proliferation of lengthy canonical trails that would delay
closure. Sources say, however, that as American case files arrive in
Rome, in many instances the accused priest’s guilt is clear, and
hence the Vatican is opting for the swifter solution.
for the extra-judicial route can be prescription, the statue of
limitations in canon law (for the sexual abuse of a minor, the
period is ten years from the victim’s 18th birthday).
When the American norms were debated, many victims’ advocates
worried the prescription would be used to shield accused priests. In
fact, however, Vatican sources say such an outcome is far more
likely in secular criminal law, where the statue of limitations is
often an absolute barrier to action against the accused….”76
article had me wonder about canon 1720 was used against me by the
Worcester Gang? I mention this as such because at no time had anyone
explained my statutes or any procedure that was use against me
besides Bishop Harrington ranting at me: “You are guilty till proven
innocent.” Besides this entire where the canon requires that the
accused be notified of the charges and be given an opportunity for
defense. A defense opportunity was never given by the church or any
notion of allowing me to present my case in a professional manner. I
was only dragged into the Bishop’s Residence and Chancery with a
“gulag” style interrogation.
What I was hearing
was the new policy had revealed the complexity of individual cases.
Yes, but the allegated priest becomes a non-person. Stress was a
risk factor being announced by the hierarchy to smother any hope of
re-instatement or anything. The system of the Church related that
when a priest was stripped of his livelihood and support system, he
experienced great stress. Then, the inner circles slipped out that
it was dangerous to ‘let loses’ an abuser priest in the
community-everyone was allegated was considered an abuser by the
Worcester Bishop and Chancery Gang. It is a cover-up of “the
element” that maneuvered around the different facets of the diocese.
The gay priests operated in a clandestine way in the diocese. It was
no different in the seminary in the 60s and I had to live with it in
the 70s the 90s.
The Sentinel &
Enterprise prints this day “Some urge unlimited item to
prosecute sexual abuse.” Erik Anderson writes: “Advocates for
alleged victims of sexual abuse by priests urged lawmakers Thursday
to pass legislation that would eliminate the statue of limitations
for rape and other sex crises in civil and criminal cases.
alleged sexual abuse by clergy told a legislature panel that because
of the unique nature of sex crimes where a victim feels guilt,
insecurity and fear, the statue of limitations makes it impossible
to prosecute much abuse crime.
“William Gates, the head of the
New England chapter of the Survivors Network of those Abused by
Priests, said often it takes years for victims of sexual abuse as
children to gain the confidence and self-respect to speak out.
“‘This is no a
crime that lasts an hour. It’s a crime that last a lifetime,’ lately
told the joint Judiciary Committee. ‘It permeates through our entire
being. It affects our psychology and the perception of us and our
souls.’…The Judiciary Committee is considering a bill filed by Rep.
Ronald Mariano, D-Quincy, and several other lawmakers, which would
make sex crimes not subject to a time limit in which an indictment
must be filed. Currently, murder is the only crime not subject to
such a statue of limitations, and most other cries have a six-year
What I find
interesting is this “statue of limitations” issue is, at this time,
on the radar screen. The legal minds obviously had this place into
the law system for a very significant reason. My observation is that
I had to face someone who had a “few issues with the Catholic
Church” and another that was operating on the “golden egg” (money)
mantra to pursue by making an allegation.
of the internet reported “Fall in clergy sex abuse complaints.” The
report states: “The Church is getting on top of the sexual abuse
problem, according to the national directories of Australian
Catholic Bishops’ toward healing strategy according to sr.
But she told that
Catholic Weekly that while the number of complaints has
fallen this year, the flow of complaints tend to be cyclical and
complaints after following media exposure of this issue. If people
say they are going to the media, I say that is their right, it helps
bring it into the open,’ she said. ‘Many of the victims have never
spoken about it before, but they now take about it more openly, and
parents are more likely to believe their children when they mention
the issue. Sr. Angela said most sexual abuse victims merely want an
apology and some recognition from the Church for what had happened
to them. ‘They want counseling and in some cases, compensation,’ she
told the paper. ‘It is a symbolic thing as it can never compensate
that for what has happened. ‘It is better if the compensation is
tied to helping people get on with their lives,’ she said. ‘A large
number of people are being taught to read and rite, or having their
TAFF curses paid for, or their HECS fees met. Their education was
affected by what happened to them. They didn’t finish school.’”78
One had to keep
Sr. Angela’s comments and insights in the context of this day and
age of “closure.” It will be of interest of how all of this will be
looked-upon in 20 years from now when it may be studied in a fashion
that is removed from the emotionality of the day and legal
compensation-the “golden egg” syndrome.
My Lenten struggle
this year was respecting the Office of the Bishop-against. It seemed
that Bishop Reilly was doing everything to protect the Office of the
Bishop and not an issue of truth. It was as though- Here we go
April 13, 2003
This Palm Sunday
morning had me experiencing a strange feeling on hearing on
TV-Channel 7 Boston news about the Archdiocesan Chrism Mass that was
held on Tuesday. My diocese never sent or contacted me in any way
about Worcester’s Chrism Mass which was held on this same Tuesday
(April 8th). My negative thinking began to have me wonder
is a new canon law from Rome was in effect of same nature for me
nothing being invited to participate.
The Chrism Mass
was the annual time of renewing our presbyter (priesthood) with the
bishop at this special liturgy. But, with the “dragnet going though
the water” syndrome with the church’s priest abuse issue, no one
wanted or wants to question the “real issue.” It is the
power-authority operating in a gay culture of control under the
celibacy model (Boys Club).
It was a time
where "Father Peacock" was doing his ranting that his parish
organist was going to leave for St. John’s parish in Clinton,
Massachusetts. This organist was 75 years old. Why was it that I
didn’t believe “anything that "Father Peacock" was telling me? It
was another situation of where my thinking was that he wanted the
spotlight in another direction from something that was actually
taking place. I’ve mentioned a number of times: Watch where the
spotlight is not with this guy. He teaches diversion as a “smoke
I wonder if
"Father Peacock" did not want to talk about Fr. Ouellette of
Immaculate Conception, Fitchburg being on “medical leave of absence”
possibly due to the Worcester District Attorney investigating
missing funds from that parish. "Father Peacock" used to be pastor
at that church.
and I had such a totally different approach to people and
situations. A good example was trying to talk about Holy Thursday
liturgy (Mass). He was “pounding” how people are lacking so much. I
would respond: Well, you are the pastor. Give your people an updated
teaching in an adult education format besides your elaborate
sermons-that no one will hear, my dear.
Then, I had coffee
with “Father Peacock" and he were in his “regular form” of gripping
about the Bishop’s Fund where they are not listening to him about
door-to-door solicitation. There was a new company using direct
mailing and asking for $100 a minimum donation. He used the
argument, as any would be reflected at this time, that a letter had
been sent to the pastors explaining that 89 cent family mailing was
similar to second-class mail which he says most people throw-out. He
used this as the reason for his parish not achieving the parish
goal. It would have been something else as an excuse on his part. He
had already eliminated the “base” of those that he did not send
envelopes or any mailings. So, he only had a certain policy and was
not able to have the percentages work for the parish drive and
collection. He kept playing-rambling- that the new company would not
listen to him. He did this every year- predictable. He was going on
in with his four or five examples playing-out a mind-control
technique he tries to use.
Peacock" informed me, again, that the bishop had seven to nine
priests that were on leave for dinner at his residence. Supposedly
the bishop was telling the priest that they would get some form of
ministry in the future. Then, he said that Fr. Bagley attended and
shared about paying bills because he did not get Mass stipends as he
did when in the parish. This was hard to believe because Fr. Bagley
had Roll-Royce relativability. Mass stipends would not have been an
issue with him. Bishop Reilly was to have stood and “red-faced”
saying that there are priest sending their telephone bills to the
rectory for payment.
Then I was told by
"Father Peacock" that attendance was low and Fr. Picclomini (Vicar
for Clergy) was asked why no invitation was sent to Fr. Branconia.
Picclomini supposedly said: Fr. Branconia attends all the time.
conversation was that Bishop Reilly said that there was o
communication between his office and the Diocesan Judicial Office-
Msgr. Pedone. This I realized was a ploy of "Father Peacock" trying
to get reaction from me because I believe this was a plant on his
Is a coffee or
clerical acquaintance needed as a "Father Peacock" and the mind and
control games that he plays are stressful to say the least.
April 15, 2003
Kathleen A. Shaw
gives us this day in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette “Texas
dioceses sued over Rev. Teczar.” The article states: “A civil suit
has been filed in Texas by a 27-yer man who said he was sexually
abuse in the early 1990s by the Rev. Thomas H. Teczar, a priest of
the Worcester Catholic Diocese who relocated to Ranger, Texas.
Merrit, a Dallas lawyer who filed the case in Tarrant County
District Court, said the ‘$24 million question’ is why Bishop Joseph
P. Delaney of the Fort Worth diocese took Rev. Teczar into the
diocese in 1988 when he had been clearly warned by Worcester
diocesan officials of potential liability…He was assigned in 1984 to
Sacred Heart in Gardner, where he was accused of molesting a
15-year-old boy after giving him alcohol. ‘The minor’s parents
threatened to sue the bishop if he didn’t act responsibly,’ the suit
said. Rev. Teczar was sent back to the Huse of Affirmation in
Whitinsville and was given a psychiatric evolution in Hopedale.”79
April 16, 2003
sues diocese, priest’s estate: Former headmaster accused of abuse”
was reported in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette but Kathleen
A. Shaw. She wrote: “Worcester-A civil suit was filed yesterday in
Worcester Superior Court by a Pepperell man alleging he was sexually
abused by the late Monsignor Richard J. Carelli during the
Carelli, a former diocesan chancellor, died in December 2000, but
the suit names his estate and the Worcester Catholic Diocese.
“The alleged abuse
occurred around 1964 when Monsignor Carelli was headmaster of the
former Sacred Heart Academy in Worcester, according to the suit.
victim, who is represented by lawyer Nance Lyons of Boston, is
listed into the court documents only as Kevin Doe of Pepperell.
According to the suit, Mr. Doe repressed memory of the incidents
until 2002, when he began remembering and realized the harm that had
been done to him.
“Mr. Doe said in
the suit that Monsignor Carelli told him that no one would believe
him if he complained about the abuse and that only he or his family
would be hurt if he reported the behavior. Monsignor Carelli told
the youth that the behavior was ‘appropriate between a boy and a
man,’ according to the suit…”80
Here is the
“repressed memory” syndrome which one didn’t hear much about in the
Worcester Diocese. I did hear about this in other part of the
country as an issue used in suits against priests.
April 18, 2003
John L. Allen, Jr.
of the National Catholic Reporter reports “Homosexuality a
risk factor, Vatican told: experts emphasize it is not cause of
abuse; message may derail document on seminaries.” Allen writes:
“Homosexuality is a risk factor in, but not the cause of the sexual
abuse of adolescent males, according to experts who addressed an
irate April 2-5 Vatican symposium attended by officials charged with
handling the abuse crisis that has rocked the Catholic Church.
official who attended parts of the four-day event told NCR that this
message came through ‘loud and clear’ and predicted that it might
help delay, or even derail, a much-anticipated document on the
admission of homosexuals to Catholic seminaries.
“The same official
said Vatican observers were struck by criticism of zero-tolerance
policies, suggesting that it may lead to guidelines about support of
priests after they are removed form ministry.
“An April 5
Vatican statement said the meeting featured eight of ‘the most
qualified experts on this topic; me.’ There were four Germans, three
Canadians and an American. All eight, in what planners described as
a coincidence, were non-Catholic. The chief organizer of the
symposium was Dr. Mandred Lutz, a member of the Pontifical Council
for the Laity and a psychiatrist from Germany.
according to participants, was to expose Vatican officials to
‘state-of-the-art information’ from scientific point of view.
Participants included officials from the Congregation for the
Doctrine of the Faith and the Secretariat of State, as well as from
the Vatican congregation for clergy, religious and Catholic
“The lone American
expert was Fr. Martin p. Kafka of the Harvard Medical School, whose
field is sexual impulsivity disorders, Kafka spoke to NCR April 5,
after the close of the symposium
“Kafka said that
homosexuality was not the main focus of the meeting, though there
was interest in the subject. ‘We descried it as a risk factor,’
Kafka said, noting that the majority of cases in the American crisis
involve adolescent males between 14 and 17 victimized by adult by
however, that this does to mean homosexuality causes sex abuse. ‘A
risk factor is not a cause,’ he said. ‘The great predominance of
homosexual males is in no way sexual abusers,’ Kafka said. ‘There
is, however, a sub-group at risk.’
“Kafka noted that
since priests who abuse minors tend to perform most such act within
give seven years after ordination, being recently ordained is
another risk factor. That does not mean that being freshly ordained
‘causes’ abuse, any more than homosexuality.
“’We don’t really
know in a scientific way what the factors are’ that cause abuse,
Kafka said. ‘We don’t’ have thee evidence.’... Beyond the discussion
on homosexuality, the Vatican official said another pint that seemed
to merge clearly is that zero-tolerance policies are problematic. He
listed three pints made by the experts: 1) the complexity of
individual cases (not according to Bishop Harrington); 2) stress is
a risk factor, and when a priest is stripped of his livelihood and
support system he experiences great stress; 3) it is dangerous to
‘let lose’ an abuser priest on the community.
“For those reason,
the official said, the Vatican may consider a set of instructions
about the responsibility dioceses have to priests who are dismissed
for sexual abuse. This would not mean a retreat from permanently
removing a priest from ministry after one proven act of abuse, but
it would mean the diocese could have some responsibility to support
and assist that priest even after dismissal…”81
This brings me
back to what I’ve been saying that one had to live in a Catholic
Church system that is the issue. Supposedly with the Second Vatican
Council, there was to be reform of the hierarchical system that
obviously were re-establishing themselves in the castle and
pulling-up the draw-bridge Oh! What are those special instructions
the Vatican developed for diocese o follow for their priest that
were allegated? Worcester did appoint a priest-liaison but no one
has heard anything. Street talk is that each case (priest) is
handled differently. I bet! My case must be under the category: Out
of sight, out of mind.
I received an
Eater card from a classmate in Boston. He wrote on the inside of the
card: Just keep things going as great as your doing. Best Wishes.
Have a Blessed and Happy Easter.
If he only knew
the past year or so had been the Stations of the Cross in another
manner in my journey of life. There were the emotional highs and
lows and other aspects that had me struggling. But, I had the
ability to get myself up and standing straight.
called from St. Edward’s and said she did not read the article of
March 26th about me. She said I should speak-out now: Do
something by showing this girl of 11 ½ in that you were not in New
England at that time. She said that I should show that this girl was
lying and then all the issues fall down as being untrue. I responded
that really nothing was able to be done because of the atmosphere of
that present society. She actually begged: Do something, please!
April 19, 2003
This Saturday of
the Easter Vigil had been a “downer” in y spirit. It was a day where
it was difficult to do anything. I was having a hard time with not
celebrating the Church Liturgy of the Triduum and Eucharist (Holy
Thursday, Good Friday, and Easter Vigil/Day). It was an empty
feeling and I missed the “faith community” aspect. It was a lonely
day even if I trying to do things to change my mind.
April 20, 2003
I celebrated my
Easter Sunday Mass in my “tent” at 40 Comee Street, Gardner. In the
“Prayer of the Faithful,” I used Pastoral Patterns-Spring 2003
for April 20th for those who have been sexually abused,
especially by priest, that they will see through the veil of
hardness and learn over again to glimpse the truth that Chirst died,
rose to see the world free from fear, we pray to the Lord! The next
petition in this crisis was: For those who have abused others, that
they will know that God’s forgiveness knows no bound, we pray to the
Lord! (Jerry Galipeay, editor, World Library Publications, Illinois
printed this work
I missed the
“faith community” and assembly with similar anxiety and loneliness
even at this being near ten years since I was removed from my parish
(Canon Law concept). Fortunately, I had acquaintances and friends
that I was fortunate to know.
What I noticed of
late in writings of the church and government in describing
situations enthusiastically, they were misleading in two ways: the
process they revealed the assumptions by which thy misconstrued the
supposed situation. They tend to put the best possible face on
everything they encountered in a particular crisis which was a
second distortion into the accounts.
It shows how it is
an art to read documents and other written materials in our present
society, as well as in previous times.
April 21, 2003
Telegram & Gazette printed “Letter implored diocese to take
accused priest” reported by Richard Nangle. He writes: “Auxiliary
Bishop George E. Rueger, who has been accused of sexual abuse by a
Shrewsbury man, asked the Fort Worth, Texas diocese in 1988 to take
a priest form the Worcester diocese who had been similarly accused.
attacked to a sexual abuse lawsuit against the Rev. Tomas Teczar
sows that Bishop Rueger wrote to the bishop of Fort Worth, ‘Our
diocesan attorney has advised that Father Teczar be incardinated
immediately in the diocese of Fort Worth. Pursuant to this advice,
the bishop would be anxious for us to undertake this process.’ The
lawyer he referred to in the Sept. 13, 1988 letter was the late
James Reardon of Worcester.
“On Oct. 8 of that
year, Fort worth Bishop Joseph P. Delaney wrote to Worcester Bishop
Timothy J. Harrington, ‘I understand very well Mr. Reardon’s pint of
view; the sooner the Diocese of Worcester can rid itself of Father
Teczar the better…”82
This is something
of its own being a priest in the Diocese of Worcester with Bishop
Harrington as the Ordinary. How much more does the world need to
know of the atmosphere of being a priest in this diocese? Let’ not
forget, that Rueger was the auxiliary.
April 22, 2003
Press article appeared in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette
“Jury get H.H. Priest sex trail.” It stated: “Laconia, N.H.-Jurors
yesterday started deliberating the case of a Roman Catholic priest
accused of raping an altar boy in 1985, the first priest to face
criminal charges in New Hampshire since the church-abuse scandal
erupted 18 months ago.
“After 1 ½ hours
of deliberation, the jury recessed until 9 a.m. today. The Rev.
George Robichaud, 58, of Sanbornton, has admitted having
inappropriate sexual contact with the youth, now a 33-yer old state
trooper. Rev. George Robichaud denies the charges. He has pleaded
not guilty to rape and attempted rape.
“The case depends on how old the
trooper was at the time of the alleged assault. The rape charge
covers only the ages of 13 through 15. Defense lawyer Peter
Callaghan noted that the trooper at different times said he was 14,
15, or 16, legally old enough to consent to having sex, when he was
allegedly assaulted in 1985. He pointed out that the trooper, who
took a polygraph test when applying for his job, first said he
believed he was 16.
“’Credibility is a
big issue in this case,’ Callaghan said. ‘His statements are all
over the place.’ Callaghan said that during his testimony, the
trooper never described any pain or discomfort, He also said that
after the trooper not married in the1990s, and he brought his bride
to meet Robichaud. ‘That doesn’t make sense,’ Callaghan said…”83
A bit of
information to repeat here was how one of the girls (McCormick)
visited me with her daughter while I was pastor St. Edwards. Does
this make any sense and then allegated me?
April 23, 2003
Mike Recht of The
Associated Press reports “Jury deadlocked in sex abuse trial of N.H.
priest” in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette. The article
reads: “Laconia, H.H.-the first criminal trail of a priest in New
Hampshire’s church abuse scandals ended in a deadlocked jury
“Jurors got the
case of the Rev. George Robichaud on Monday afternoon and
deliberated 13 ½ hours over three day before telling Superior court
Judge Harold Perkins they could not agree. Earlier yesterday, they
told the judge they were deadlocked and Perkins told the six men and
sin women to try against before he declared the mistrial…”84
Kathleen A. Shaw
reported in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette “bishop won’t
release numbers to Catholic group.” The article states:
“Worcester-Bishop Daniel P. Reilly told member of Worcester diocese
Voice of the Faithful that he will not disclose information they
requested on the numbers of sexual abuse victims and abusers or the
total financial cost associated with the church scandal.
“With his written
response, the bishop enclosed a clipping from to
The Catholic Free Press, which he
published, that explained how he is dealing with the church abuse
“Mary Keville of
Harvard, Voice of the Faithful coordinator, said the response, which
she got late last week was a ‘non-answer’ and ‘disappointment,’ and
the group’s leadership have to decide what its responsibilities will
Voice of the Faithful asked the bishop to disclose members of minors
and women who wee victims, the number reported to legal authorities,
the disposition of all complaints and the number of confidential
agreement reached with victims; the total financially cost to the
diocese, including all settlement, service to victims, legal fees,
and medial and psychological treatment of offenders; child support
payment and what the sources of these funds were. The organization
also wanted to know the total number of priests and church workers
against whom credible allegations of sexual abuse were made…The
bishop said ‘good progress’ is being made in helping victims of
sexual abuse, and he referred Ms. Keville to Patricia O’Leary
Engdahl and Frances Nugent, will staff the diocesan Office of
Healing and Prevention. ‘I am sure they will be happy to speak to
you about how you may be assistance to them,’ he said…”85
I was told by a
former parishioner that I needed a place to heal and didn’t need
scrutiny of the media or otherwise. Oh? I reacted defensively which
I believe was in order because I had a story to tell that would have
thrown a different light on my whole situation- very difficult to
comprehend, yet unravel.
Another factor of
this season of the year (Easter) was that I did not receive an
Easter message from Bishop Reilly. I sent him an Easter card,
nothing in response as it was in previous years.
April 23, 2003
Here is the clergy
game of hearing a story and wonderment of what was the real message
being portrayed or being deceived for whatever reason. This was
where "Father Peacock" mentioned Fr. Donald Ouellette of Immaculate
Conception parish in Fitchburg being on “Medical Leave” and “guys”
were saying the Ouellette was very sick. Then, "Father Peacock" goes
at me: “Your other observation of him (Ouellette) being blackmailed”
was not true in any sense. There was a big concern on "Father
Peacock" switched the conversation to how teenagers from his parish
cleaning his private “lake house property.” The description he was
giving on how it one guy that two more. He had to embellish it by
how unusual in all that they cleaned by their raking and their
effectively do the work where they asked him what else they were
able to help with. He told me how impressed he was because they did
more than expected. This was very peculiar description with his
emphasis and overkill in telling me about them. One should be aware
that I was working with him during the last few years. So, I thought
this is good because I would not have to do it.
had a heavy hand approach- do it now- when he wanted something done
or to do. I was very uncomfortable with his heavy- handed manner
because it was such a dominating nature that had me concerned.
"Father Peacock" expressed and obsessions on certain news items like
teens killed in a car accident of late at Cape Cod. He stressed how
he awake to get the details of this particular accident. Very weird.
I was even
reflecting on how I was handling myself of late: 1. The label of
“guilty till proven innocent 2. Documentation- Medical statement
form IOL stating that I am not a danger. 3, What happened to my
carrier (vocation) 4. Isolated- living in a “gulag” atmosphere in
being told that “We’ll get a hold of you.” (Chancery) A vindication
existed of having it out for me. I was warned by a former priest:
You don’t want to get involved with Worcester Chancery internal
works. This I was told was a dangerous direction. 5. Living on a
“pension” that was below the poverty level.
I was even
thinking of late of writing a “Preface” as such: I entered a Church
that was a Vatican II dream with the “opening of windows.” But the
environment of suspicion as the rectory-parish housekeeper acting as
a spy of the pastor from a 1949 model of Church authority was the
way it was. I was reminded that the Church, as a newly ordained
priest, was not a democracy. Rectory life and work was a reminder of
was war zone still fighting of different groups in the Church (Ex.
Cardinal Law’s treatment). Then, of late, some people were looking
just for a place to “play” with clergy bashing. Yet, I gave of my
total being- helping others make a decision. I was trying to give a
more mature Catholic Church in Christianity. But, I ended-up in
being sent in isolation, but at least I’m getting fresh-air. In my
“journal,” I have tried with essay style to construct a brief guide
for who may wish to pursue further the issues I have discussed. I
was forced through legal deceit to resign my pastorship. The
Worcester Diocesan ideology of conquest and attempted conversion was
carried-out to a brutal extreme.
April 28, 2003
The Giza’s called
me because there was a letter from the Finance Office of the
Worcester Chancery. Stan (Giza) was concerned so I asked him to open
the envelope because it was 50 miles from my place. It was an
insurance coverage statement that was a memo to a standard
announcement. It was a “fax” mailed to my old address. It announced
that the diocesan “lay” insurance coverage would conduct a meeting
that took place at Ascension Parish, Worcester on April 30th.
What I did not
understand was this just a quirk or was it important. The Worcester
chancery knew my address as 40 Comee Street, Gardner. I never heard
anything more. Was my insurance (health) changed to a “lay” status?
I used this time
to talk to both Stan and Kay in a three-way conversation about
February 26th article that was in the Worcester
Telegram & Gazette. Stan related with a bit of advice: “Keep you
chin-up.” Kay said: “I’ll pray for you.” Stan then asked: “Can’t you
sue the newspaper?
April 29, 2003
web site for clergy-abuse victims” was reported by Kathleen A. Shaw
in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette. She reports:
“Worcester-the Web site of the Worcester Voice, an advocacy
organization for victims of clergy sexual abuse in the Worcester
Catholic Diocese, was hacked into over the weekend and files were
“Mary T. Jean,
leader of Worcester Voice, said most of the site was operating again
by Sunday night, because most data had been saved on a backup
“Paul Baier of
Survivors First, which was another advocacy organization, offered
technical assistance to Mrs. Jean. He said hack attacks have been
made in the past on the Survivors First Web site which contained a
national database of accused priests, and the national site of Voice
of the Faithful.
“Mrs. Jean, a
Leominster resident who launched the site several months ago, said
the site was damaged by a hacker and she does not know who did it.
“Mrs. Jean said
she expects to have the Web site fully operational within a week,
with new features…”86
I persisted at
working at alleviating stress and promoting strength and fitness.
But, it hurts when some scrap your life as being an “agent” of the
bishop’s culture and being a person with a conscience to break open
the Word of God in everyday living.
April 30, 2003
We read in the
Worcester Telegram & Gazette by Kathleen A. Shaw: “Church
scandal has parish lobbying for pastor.” It reads: “Millville-Two
women from St. Augustine parish are enlisting support of their
fellow parishioners to preserve their community of faith and to keep
the parish alive in the absence of a permanent pastor.
“Lois Salome and
Margaret Carroll, retired elementary school teacher, have worked to
get more than 400 people in the parish and the town to send letters
and postcards and to make personal telephone calls to Bishop Daniel
P. Reilly and other chancery officials asking for a permanent
pastor. The mail is going to the chancery at 49 Elm Street, and to
the bishop’s home, also in Worcester.
“’We are in a
vacuum,’ said Ms. Salome, who with Ms Carroll is active in the
struggle goes beyond the women. Others from the parish have gotten
involved to focus efforts on saving the parish. The church was
rebuilt 25 years ago after a fire destroyed the old church.
“The parish is
debt-free, Ms. Carroll said. ‘We are very proud of that. We care
about our parish.’”
Jean-Paul Gagnon, , their pastor fro several years took personal
leave last fall after a civil suit was filed alleging that he
sexually abused Timothy P. Staney of Worcester when he was a
responded to their call for help by holding a Holy Thursday service
for them in their church, and said he will return to meet with
parishes, the women said.
“St. Augustine was
the church of 450 families before Rev. Gagnon left the parish.
Attendance at Mass had dropped dramatically, they said. : Parish
life is as it should be, they added.
“The women said
their issue is the maintaining their faith community. They sad the
issue of Rev. Gagnon has been let to others…”87
Bishop Reilly is
only acting “politically” with this situation. Life goes on- Church
May 1, 2003
A Denise Lavoie of
The Associated Press wrote in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette
“SJC rules alleged abuse victim waited too many years to sue.”
states: “Boston-In a decision that could have ramifications on other
clergy sexual abuse cases, the state’s highest court dismissed a
lawsuit yesterday in which a woman said she was molested by a priest
while she was a teenager more than four decades ago.
The State Supreme
Judicial Court rules that the woman should have filed her lawsuits
sooner because a reasonable person should have been able to make a
connection much earlier between the abuse and the emotional harm she
said she suffered.
identified only as Jane Doe in court papers, is now in her early
60s. She filed her lawsuit in 1998-40 years after she said she was
sexually abused by the Rev. Gerard Creighton when she was a high
“The case was
dismissed in 2000 by a Superior Court judge, who said the statute of
limitations had expired because the woman had taken to long to make
the connection between the abuse and her problems with depression.
The woman said she made the connection in 1995, when she told
another priest about the abuse and stopped blaming herself for her
decision was overturned by the State Appeal Court, reinstating the
“The SJC, however,
upheld the decision of the Superior court judge, ruling that the
woman knew or should have known that the abuse was the root of her
problems long before 1995.
requires that sexual abuse lawsuits be filed within three years of
the person’s 18th birthday or within three years of the
person’s 18th birthday or within three years of the time
the victim discovered that his or her emotional problems were linked
to the abuse.
lawyer said it was not surprising that the woman did not understand
the connection between her abuse and her emotional problems.
“’This person was
victimized. This person had all sorts of denial, depression,
self-blame, which distorted reality, distorted her ability to make a
connection,’ said lawyer David Dwork.
“But the SJC said
the connection between the alleged abuse and the woman’s symptoms
should have been particularly obvious because the woman first began
showing signs of emotional problems shortly after she was molested.
“The woman joined
a convent shortly after her high school graduation in 1958. She left
the convent in 1968 and later married, but said her symptoms of
grief, shame and depression persisted.
“The court also
said that because the alleged abuse occurred when she was 16 and
17-as she neared the age of maturity-the woman should have realized
“’There is, in short, o evidence
tending to support the plaintiff’s person in her position would fail
to realize, for almost four decades that her injuries were cause by
the defendant,’ Justice Judith Cowin wrote in he court 7-0 decision.
lawyer, Marie Lisa Kelly, said she believed the ruling had strong
implications for the approximately 500 clergy sex abuse lawsuits
pending against the Boston archdiocese of the Roman Catholic Church.
Many of the lawsuits were filed after the abuse allegedly took
gives the church tremendous leverage to get these claims-many of
them-dismissed outright, and at a minimum, give them substantial
leverage for settling the claims for amounts that I would suspect
are different form what the plaintiffs were looking for before
today,’ Kelly said…”88
This was something
else in my particulars because what I heard from my lawyer was that
the two girls going at me did not get a dollars-the diocese paid out
the cost of each lawyer and said “Good-bye.” But, I had no
opportunity of any manner to present my case-information. How about
what I heard that counselors were asking people if their
“depression” may have had something to do if they were priest in
their rearing? What about a few months before an allegation the girl
brought her daughter to my parish for First Communion. The other
girl had invited me while she was in college to come for a
visit-University of Maine, Orno, Maine which was a day’s trip one
It was the
diocese’s opportunity of doing one thing with the two girls and put
me into isolation. Actually, the diocese expressed a treacherous
manner on my behalf of their interrogations, full psychological
evaluation, surprise vision by Harrington in Hartford while I was
under evaluation, Diocesan Junta (6) meeting with my Canon Lawyer
and myself at the Bishop’s Residence- discarded by Bishop Harrington
and “the element”- and no contact by anyone of the official church
staff. I became a non-person in leper identification because of
voodoo investigation. Interrogation may be open to challenge. But, I
had to experience this by a paranoia group of the Worcester Chancery
May 2, 2003
“A year later, sex
abuse storm cold bring changes” editorial appears in this issue of
the National Catholic Reporter. It states: “A year ago, the
country’s attention was riveted on the Catholic bishops, the plight
of the victims of sex abuse by Catholic clergy and the plans to deal
the crisis at an upcoming meeting in Dallas.
“The meeting was
media mad-house, the cameras catching the bishops trying their best
to convey accountability and approving a charter that was as severe
and absolute in dealing with accused priests as the bishops had been
lax and irresponsible in the preceding decades.
“The phrase that
was used a year ago to describe people’s frustration at the
hierarchy’s ineptitude at dealing with the crisis over more than 15
years was, ‘They just don’t get it.’
“A year later,
with cardinal Bernard Law forced into retirement in disgrace and
with so much of the scandal now turning on legal proceedings, it is
natural to ask if the bishops, finally get it, or, perhaps more
important, whether the church is moving toward a scouting to the
I was surprised to
hear on Book TV- C-Span when I heard Fr. Richard Neihaus saying: The
Church is taking care of our own as would any other group as the
policy or firefights would do. The number of pedophile is very, very
One didn’t hear or
read very many or if any such comments. But, it says there was
another version of a story that people didn’t want to be mentioned-
May 5, 2003
was going strong in a negative manner about having to attend an
annual meeting on sex abuse with the diocese and all the lay
employees. He started how each “CCD teacher” (old term) had to be
investigated. He was saying how one parent of a 16-yer old would not
allow this. The “nun” did nothing about this and the 16-yesr old
continued teaching. He was, again, giving his interpretation and
dance of his situation.
This was a repeat
performance on his part which was an annual event because there was
the follow-up of the May-Bishop’s Fund, his June vacation (study
week?) and a Fall retreat with finally a winter bread to prepare his
sermons for Lent- those sermons that no one would hear, my dear (The
Beatles). This was best descried as looking at nature picture of a
Northern Loon dancing on the water with its wingspread of a matting
dance. This also was "Father Peacock" slanted interpretation of
whatever he was attacking. One had to watch his guys because it was
a very diversion technique of something else-taking very good care
of his solo world.
Besides of this I
was reacting and carrying luggage in my head of a former parishioner
– Mrs. Lucille Fitzgerald- telling me that I was to “rigid” as a
pastor and only had it “one way.” What were behind this were her old
friends in town that had their grown children moving back into town
and filling the “Gas Station” Catholic model. Another insight was
this “me-me” culture of plain self-interest and call it- Faith.
May 6, 2003
I experienced a
stress moment of how my back and shoulders were aching this morning.
I herd for the first time on the radio at the 6 a.m. Local news of
WEIM that Bishop Reilly was retiring. It was announced that it may
take-up to six months for a replacement. My mind started: What next
may happen to my situation and me. This theme was played by "Father
Peacock" in the way he played his mind games for any reaction from
me. He realized that I was using my “poker face” technique.
May 7, 2003
I was at the
Fallon Medical Center in Leominster for my annual physical check-up.
I was sitting waiting for my appointment when someone tapped me on
my shoulder. It was a Norman Cote for St. Edward’s, Westminster. He
was always stand-offish to me at the parish. He played the guitar
and was part of the original fold group. We had the nick-name for
him as “Twang Eddie” in his style and singing. He began the
conversation by asking me: What are your doing? I answered that I
was at the Chancery-true in the sense that was how I was listed in
the diocesan directory. Norman proceeded to ask me: How is (Bishop)
Reilly? He had a snappy way of making remarks and questioning. He
proceeded to tell me that I wouldn’t be able to do anything because
of the media and accusations. What was surprising in his remarks was
he had to have been talking about me and my particulars. He told me
that his brother-Dennis Cote who is a resigned priest of the
Worcester Diocese-was working as a Business Manager at St. Mary’s,
Jefferson. He made it a point to tell me that this job was a
full-time position. He proceeded to tell me that the choir at St.
Edward’s was growing and that he was building an addition on the
choir. Also, he said that the parish liturgy committee was expanding
with many subcommittees and the religious education program way
flourishing since I left. I knew that Norman’s remarks were “digs”
on me in that he and his wife-Joan- were stand-offish even that they
never contributed to the church renovation or faith community
(parish center) drives. But, he was making it know that everything
was “flourishing” since I departed. His next door newborns, Russ and
Kin Brillion were the Finance Chairman and Religious Education
facilitator with the new regime at St. Edward’s. What he was not
telling me but I sensed that what I called the “Sweet-Pea and Popie
Couple” image was involved at the parish.
I then asked him
how “Mystagogia” was going. He played the sarcastic part by
responding: “What is that?” He knew, but was his way of making the
point that was not to be with the group and him in the overall
“la-la” style he portrayed. He continued to say that the St.
Edward’s now has a Parish Council. There was a Parish Council that I
formed and existed in my time at St. Edward’s. Where was Norman?
But, he wanted to know that things at the parish were going much
better since I departed. I know this is being reactionary but know
Norman for some time, I don’t believe I was wrong in these comments.
He did say that I
did a good job building the parish center because it was very much
needed. I responded to this that he would be able to read all about
this in my two volume work that I have been writing. What was
interesting in this comment from Norma was that he world not talk
about the church renovations.
Then he related to
me how he was painting the church hall because they wanted the
parish to look appropriately for the 50th parish
anniversary. In actuality, the parish burned a $2,000 bill for
Norman-painter- who had a winter job because what was needed was
renovated church all. The painting was only a band-aide approach.
Then I was called
in for my appointment. My blood-pressure must have been up after
this encounter. I had eventually disciplined myself to handle such
people as a Norman Cote. But, there were times that I had to
step-back and breath-out. This was always part of my life as a
priest. It was something in me that had people thinks to “unload” on
me. I had to realize that it was not all against me personally. But,
you were times it was. I’m not addressing this as a “pity-pod” time.
If anything, it was the way things were and move on.
May 10, 2003
The People’s forum
of the Worcester Telegram & Gazette carried this day:
“Priests sow church in a positive light.” It was written by Kathleen
Carelli (Worcester) who stated: “I am writing to you today to
express my dismay about the negative comments regarding the Catholic
Church and Catholic priests.
“I am a member of
St. George’s Parish in Worcester; my pastor is Rev. Henry Donahue. I
would like to express how wonderful and compassionate Rev. Donahue
is to his congregation. Fr. Example, my son is an altar boy and has
been for a few years. He has been teased recently by his peer
especially since the article about his late uncle, Monsignor Richard
J. Carelli. On Easter Sunday, Rev. Donahue stood before the entire
congregation and discussed the allegations against monsignor
Carelli. He stated his support of innocence against any charge of
misconduct. He then brought my boys to the altar and gifted them
with Monsignor Carelli’s vestments. My family’s experience with Rev.
Donahue has always been positive. He is a warm, caring,
compassionate human being. So, there are still May Catholic priests
who represent the church in a positive light.
“With the entire
negative portrayed about the priests in the recent years, I still
think we need to remember that there are priests whom we can till
trust and who continue to do the work of God.”90
Here is another
view of the Church through the eyes of a priest and a parishioner.
Yet, Fr. Henry (Donahue) might have been compassionate, but what was
really going on in this parish-different strokes for different
May 12, 2003
My mind was racing
where I was replaying the March 26th article about me in
the newspaper. I was dragging about my concern for the future
outlook of what to do. I had a fear stepping out in the public and
reaction that I would experience since the latest March article.
Then, my experience with meeting Norman Cote at Fallon had me
grinding that I allowed working in my head. Sunday was a low pint of
being Mother’s day issue. My phone did not ring that day. I even was
unable to do any writing or research overall. It seemed of late the
when I wrote about my personhood or situation, I believe that I was
thinking about the March 26th article. It was the stinken-thinking
syndrome working in me which caused a stressful situation in
anything I was attempting to do. Then, I began wandering what next
may happen which was not good overall. I didn’t even react to the AA
mantra; One day at a time. Another viewpoint was that this was a
“depression” mode I was walking through.
May 13, 2003
I moved myself
into a new phase of my continuing education by watching how I was
listening to people and allowing issues to disturb me. When I had to
hear people that were close to me say that I “rigid and one way” in
parish, how things at St. Edwards flourished after I departed and
having to answer questions: What are you doing for work?
Well, it was time
to move my head into a new direction for my total betterment. I
believe that this was a point in my overall attitude of shifting my
mental gears into a forward direction of bettering me especially in
my writing and research.
May 14, 2003
In a guest
columnist-Christine McKenna of Leicester is a member of St. John’s
Parish (Worcester) in “As I See It: Bishop must resolve Coonan
case.” It states: “As Bishop Reilly celebrates his 75th
birthday and prepare to retire, he rightfully can feel proud of many
accomplishments. However, he also will be remembered for his role in
the church sex abuse scandal.
Reilly’s original dealings with accused priest were reflective of
church culture. He was part of a system that preferred to hide these
crimes and hope for the best rather than hold priests accountable
for their behavior. Bishop Reilly’s creation of a new diocesan
Office for Healing and prevention in June 2002 was a hopeful moment.
“Also a positive
move was his decision to place seven priests on administrative leave
after they were accused of sexual misconduct. In March, District
Attorney John J. Conte determined that none of them will face
criminal charges because of the statue of limitations has expired.
That same month, Bishop Reilly announced that sex of these seven
priests will be charge under canon law in church tribunals.
“What about the
seventh priest” The Rev. Joseph Coonan was a popular priests who
discovered his vocation in mid-life. On Sunday evenings he packed
St. John’s church on Temple Street in Worcester with his
down-to-earth approach integrating poetry and popular music into
sermons sand reminding listeners that God’s love and forgiveness are
immeasurable. Parishioners were stunned in August to find that he
had been placed on administered leave...Bishop Reilly has yet to
make the difficult decision that the pastor of St. John’s can never
return to active ministry…”91
May 15, 2003
I used to write a
short outline daily on the Eucharist (Mass) I celebrated. So, I
orientated myself in writing a “Weekly Column” (never printed) for
my creativity and challenge. Column title would have been: Nail
Salon Syndrome. Deck-of-Cards: Tweet, Tweet, Fat Cats of the
Westminster parish, following the money in the Bishop’s Fund,
Stewardship, and Double Dippers in parish ministry, New
“Sanctuaries”, and Church Tribunals as “Kangaroo Courts” with
judgments predisposed. What became interesting was it was somewhat
difficult choosing a topic in which to write each week even though I
had so many different insights of a “dynamic nature.” I was a
success in my own mind that needed humility.
May 16, 2003
Father Richard P.
McBrien wrote “Forgiveness form sin but not pardon for crime:
Redemption defense in sex abuse cases is defective.” This article
was in the National Catholic Reporter. He states: “Various
U.S. Catholic bishops have been excoriated during the past year, not
only in the media but by their own laity, for having transferred
sexually abusive priests from parish to parish without apparent
regard for the safety of other potential victims.
“When sued for
their behavior, some bishops have resorted to a theological
argument, namely that central to the church’s faith is its belief in
the power of redemption and the forgiveness of sins.
“In a deposition this past
January, Cardinal Bernard Law, the resigned archbishop of Boston,
invoked this very belief in ‘the resurrection of new life’’ to
justify his reassignment of a predatory priest to a new parish.
“Since, the issue
of redemption has played a key role to the archdiocese’s legal
argument that the First Amendment’s guarantee of religious freedom
protects it from liability in the 500 civil lawsuits it faces for
having moved sexually abusive priests from parish to parish. In
mid-march, the archdiocese unsuccessful appealed a decision by
Superior Court Judge Constance Sweeny, who had refused to dismiss
the suits on the basis of the theological argument….
church’s theological argument misses as crucially important pint. To
be forgiven from a sin does not carry with it pardon for a crime or
a guaranteed return to one’s former employment. A murderer who
repents and confesses may be restored to the state of grace, but to
Then the Catholic
Free Press gives us “Speaker: Many priests feel bishops abandoned
the” by a Marty Denzer. He states: “Kansas Cit, Mo. (CNS)-After
child sexual abuse scandals in the church exploded into headlines
last year, ‘many priest felt that the bishops simply abandoned them’
and enacted policies which left them vulnerable, the president of a
national priests group said May 6.
“The community of
priests is ‘one priestly body and one family,’ Father Robert Silca
said, referring to a Second Vatican council document, ‘Christus
Dominus’ (Decree on the Bishops’ Pastoral Office in the Church).
This calls for a different response to difficulties and failures
than a corporation would have, he said…”93
No if this priest
was in the Worcester Diocese with Bishop Harrington and Bishop
Rueger. I had the privilege to serve in a diocese where my bishop
said: “You’re guilty till proven innocent.” (Harrington).
Besides, I was never given any canonical or civil rights by anyone-
Catholic Church and America. Or was there a cover-up of the
Worcester Chancery Office and the Office of the Bishop?
Besides the above,
we read in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette “Reilly wants
seven priests to quit” reported by Kathleen A. Shaw. She wrote:
“Worcester-The seven priests removed last year by Bishop Daniel P.
Reilly for alleged sexual misconduct are being asked to resign so
permanent replacements can be appointed.
Delisle, spokesman for the Worcester Catholic Diocese,, said he
does to know whether any of the priest have resigned, but he said
the bishop has other administrative procedures because to remove
them if they decline to resign.
Messier, Bagley, Walsh, Devlin, Coonan and Bartlett) are being asked
to resign so that the parishes can ‘move forward,’ Mr. Delisle
Jean-Paul Gagnon of St. Augustine parish, Millville, who was name in
a civil suit alleging sexual abuse of Timothy P. Staney of
Worcester, is on personal leave, which is different from the
administrative leave imposed on the others. That parish is currently
being served by a priest who comes in from Shrewsbury to celebrate
filed-away document: Priests’ morale” by Father Eugene Hemrick of
the Catholic News Service appeasers in this day’s Catholic Free
Press. He writes: “During a radio program known for its little
factual tidbits, an announcer reported that 70 percent of documents
that are filled always are near read against. This may be true.
Nonetheless, there is a ‘filed way’ document that I think people
should read against. It is entitled ‘Reflections on the morale of
priests,’ and it was published by the U.S. bishops’ Committee on
Priestly Life and ministry in 1988…What makes the document
especially valuable today is its sensitivity to the grass roots and
its incisiveness. It knows where priests are at in their ministry,
and it minces o words about the exact causes of poor morale on the
grass-roots level…And too, many officials argue that they do not
want those lines between the office of the priesthood and the office
of the laity blurred. (Elitism?)
“The 1988 document
went on to say that thee we a significant number of priests who had
settled for ‘a part-time presence to their priesthood.
(Nothing new) Many feel they have worked hard and on to implement or
at least adjust to, the practical consequences of Vatican II. They
sense that much of that effort is now being blunted or even
betrayed, and they elect to drop out quietly.’ This candid statement
couldn’t be truer today with the divines that have occurred between
those wishing to lead the church back to the past and those who want
to enter the third millennium employing post-modern methods of
coping with its challenges (My experience with the R.C.I.A.)….”95
There is the
age-old issue of a new resurging clericalism that is the issue. Many
of my brother priest live a quiet comfortable life of a general
income of $50,000-single-and at least nine to eleven weeks away from
duties besides possibly three or four days a week-off a week or
daily on the golf course. What is interesting is to find and read
priest’s wills on their eternal demise- this is not a relative
ability inheritance either. Very interesting reading.
May 18, 2003
I took a ride to
the Trappist Monastery with "Father Peacock". I had an experience
where he was so uptight more than usual. It was all about how he was
showing me a “resurging clericalism.” He told me that he refused to
attend the last Deanery Meeting XII because the agenda was about
“Lay Council.” He even told me that he was against this and did not
want to hear anything that spoiled his clerical syndrome. He told me
that he was for everything of the ministry of the Deaconate. He
said: We, priest, never get a break in the year. (He took care of
himself very well-nine weeks away from the parish. He portrayed in
his fantasy mentality of a high church Anglican model with the
English queen image.
While he drove,
without telling me, he was going to St. Paul’s (Preparatory school)
in Concord, NH. He was in a “la-la land.” He had to show me the new
Book of Common Prayer with was the ’77 version. In his
source, he had to sow me the Eucharistic Prayer IV being “so
poetic.” The songbooks were not like Gathering of St.
Edward’s and Holy Rosary of Gardner. He had to tell me that
Gathering was not of quality and what we reviewed in St. Paul’s
was outstanding music. Then, he went into his trance presentation of
how he visits at his parish for Sunday in an annual meeting of the
area St. Vincent de Paul who attended his Mass. He said that a
number of the visiting members told him that it was so good that
once in a while to see an ass like they experienced with him. He
continued to say that it was obviously a fact they did not get it in
their parishes- his dynamic style and preaching. Now, this was his
story, if it ever happened.
Then, I had to
hear how the French-American issue of schism of the 20s in RI of an
Irish Bishop on parochial school issue caused such an issue of
taking away the French-Catholic schools. He was off and running with
this and why he was in favor of Quebec severity.
"Father Peacock” went on a rage about his religious sister handling
the “volunteer form” on the Diocesan Policy on Sex Abuse. He, also,
had to tell me that he was becoming a “conservative” in his old age.
(Avoid pastoral work) H e read an article, he said, by Hitchcock on
evil and Stan and will get me a cop for me to read. (Beware of
anyone that only reads one book and only thing published all year to
share with parishioners. (LAZY). Then, I had to hear how he said to
me that he was going to make me an Anglican before “he gets done.”
May 20, 2003
Kathleen A. Shaw
writes this day in then Worcester Telegram & Gazette “Conte
closes priest sex abuse cases: Statue of limitations issues end
investigations. She writes: “Worcester-District attorney John J.
Conte has closed criminal investigations into alleged sexual
misconduct by six suspended Worcester diocese parts, because of
statue of limitations issues.
Conte has asked Canadian authorities to take over his investigation
of seven priest, the Rev. John J. Bagley, who alleged took a
Worcester youth to Canada during the 1970s and sexually abuse him…He
discovered during his investigation that Canada does not have a
statue of limitations for this type of crime, so he turned over the
file to Canadian authorities, he said.
relations office for the Toronto Police Service had no information
on the files that Mr. Conte said were handed over to them in late
April. The sexual crimes unit in Toronto did not immediately return
telephone all seeking comment.
“Mr. Conte said
his investigation into allegations against Rev. Bagley turned up
more than one victim. One alleged victim has asked the district
attorney’s office to pursue the case, Mr. Conte said.
“Rev. Bagley, a
former Vatican official and diocesan vocations director who last
served as pastor at St. Mary’s parish, North Grafton, was removed
and placed on administrative leave in February 2002 by Bishop Daniel
P. Reilly. The removal followed an allegation made to the diocese by
a man, now in his 40s, who claimed he was raped by Rev. Bagley in
1967 when he was serving at Christ the King parish.
victim has not wanted to be publicly identified, and the incident is
beyond the statue of limitations…”96
interesting about the media is that we get bits and pieces about an
individual or story and then nothing. Here is a good case of point.
Father Bagley story is put-out and then there is nothing. The media
is sound what was done even in the 1950s where one is never given a
story to connect the “dots.” There is the end of the story. But, the
Bishop and Worcester Chancery tell, when asked, that the priest have
been taken-care-off. Boy, have they been taken-off- out of sight,
out of mind.
May 21, 2003
This day, Rachel
Zoll of The Associated Press gives us in the Worcester Telegram &
Gazette “Diocese obliged to fight back: Lawyers say cost
involved in abuse scandal demand defense.” She writes: “The nations
Roman Catholic bishops promised at the height of the clerical sex
abuse crisis last year to heal the church quickly, but critics say
that-when it come to dealing with lawsuits-many dioceses are
fighting as hard as ever.
“They have been
challenging claims form accusers and resisting prosecutors’ demands
for personal files, arguing both violate the constitutional
separation of church and state.
astounded that bishops have dared mount any challenge, considering
the damage some of them wrought by keeping guilty priests in
parishes where they had access to children.
lawyers say such a reaction is unreasonable.
entitled-even required-to get a vigorous defense and the financial
and legal stakes involved are enormous. In the last year alone about
1,000 people have made new claims against U.S. dioceses, said Mark
Chopko, general counsel for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops…
“Yet lawyers on
both sides say many dioceses have little choice but to contest the
suits. They are required under their insurance contracts to
aggressively defend themselves or forgo coverage, and must raise any
plausible defense theory-including invoking the statues of
limitations and freedom of religion.
carriers who wrote policies for the dioceses had claims that far
exceeded what they expected, and a lot of them are digging their
heels in,’ said Sylvia Demarest, who helped abuse victims of former
Dallas priest Rudy Os with more than $30 million…”97
company issue was something I never herd anything about. It would
have been only by chance that I began hearing “insurance companies”
as a factor in what was happening. Here was the “money” issue: The
two girls didn’t get a dollar but the lawyers were played-off and I
became a non-person. Once the insurance companies became an issue,
we had the last Reilly meeting of January ’02 with nothing more. It
was very interesting that I was part of a church operation that I
was only a “pawn” with no right eighth civically or canonically. Yet
Bishop Reilly asked: “What did ‘they’ do to you here?” (Bishop
Harrington and his Chancery Gang).
May 22, 2003
How long has this
all been going on for me-March 1993? Yet, the way I react simply of
going to the mail box with some freer. What I have done to off-set
this is doing physical excise by one-hour walking and an additional
roll bar for 20 minutes. The walk has helped me with my stress
May 23, 2003
The Catholic Free
Press gives us another priest story of a different slant of the
dragnet going through the water. The story by William T. Clew
entitled “Suspended priest not acting in communion with Church”
appeared in the diocesan paper. Clew reported: “Father David
Kerrigan, who celebrates a Mass on Sunday at a hotel in Worcester,
is a priest under suspension and cannot act in the name of the
Catholic Church, according to Msgr. F. Stephen Pedone, diocesan
Judicial Vicar for Canonical Affairs.
“Msgr. Pedone said
Father Kerrigan’s suspension has not been lifted and when he
celebrates Mass publicly, he is not acing in communion with the
“A group of
married priests has organized to celebrate Sunday Mass in
Framingham. Msgr. Pedone said that, when they married, those priests
were suspended. The prohibitions of suspension also apply to them.
On the web site
for Catholics in Christ, Father Kerrigan said he began to celebrate
Mass publicly according to Canon Law 843. He said he co-founded
Catholics for Christ with tow laypeople.
“Msgr. Pedone said
that Canon Law 843 states that a minister cannot refuse to
administer the sacraments to people if they request them and are
properly disposed to receive them. But, Canon law also states that a
cleric under suspension is forbidden from performing some or all
acts of his office. The cleric can celebrate mass privately unless
the bishop who suspended him has forbidden him to do so, Msgr.
not strip a priest of his priesthood, but it is a serious step and
is not imposed lightly, he said. The bishop must warn the priest
that has actions is disruptive or causing scandal before suspension
is imposed. Suspension is aimed at protecting the faithful against a
cleric who is acting without the authority of the Church. It also is
meant to help bring the cleric back into full communion with the
“He said that when
Father Kerrigan celebrates Mass, he is doing so in this own rite. He
is setting himself apart form the Church and his action is an
expression of disunity.”98
for Pedone to show his stuff with: “But….” This is canon law in
general to be the hierarchical arm to run the Church. It is
something where canonical explanations ay there are rights and
privileges for priest-says so in print but live into this system.
Catholic Reporter has “Researcher studies why priests quit;
(Review) The First Five Years of the Priesthood A study of newly
ordained Catholic Priests by Dean R. Hoge and reviewed by
William Cleary. It reads: “Resigning form the priesthood is
commonplace today, but when I resigned in 1969, it invariably drew a
gasp. It was like telling your companions on an airplane that you
are about to open the cabin door and jump out.
now, but in some ways even scarier. Today many priests leave after
only a few years of service: nearly 9 percent in some studies. That
shocked the U.S. hierarchy into commissioning this study-which
should have been titled Why Priests Leave. Hoge’s team
interviewed more than 500 recently ordained priests-including many
who left. Perhaps the troubling facts should have been simply
circulated fire to professionals. As a book for everyone, it needed
more thorough editing and titling, and a lower price tag.
“Still, it is
decimating read; happy priest, miserable priests, every kind, all
recently ordained. What I find bracing about Hoge's writing and
research is that he is up front about hard questions. Early in his
first chapter, he asks how many recently ordained priests are
homosexual (perhaps up to 50 percent) or if gay priests persevere in
greater numbers (yes). I also like his plain talk. In ‘guessing’
about cultural trends, Hoge speaks of priestly ‘authority,’ then
describes it as, “they can be counted on to know the mind of God.’
Another imp9ortsant question: How many believe ordination confers on
the priest a new status that makes him essentially different from
the laity: (Slightly more than held, all groups considered.)…
avalanche rumbles on. At the clergy abuse tracker on pointer.org you
can still see each day some 20 to 40 headlines and news stories of
grisly new allegations, new law suits, new admission, new apologies,
new arrests, new manhunts for priest, including priests dragged back
from Mexico, and elderly priest arrested at a retirement home in
Florida, another caught on a ship in Alaska, one audiotape for all
to hear apologizing on his knees to his admitted victims. At
Surviviorsfirst.org you can read the names of more than 1,380
American priests alleged in the news to be guilty of crimes. There
are 42 names just beginning with ‘A.’”….99
Here is a little
tidbit of information: Christ was crucified at the age of 33. This
day, I celebrated my 33rd Anniversary of priesthood. My
Mass this day had me reflect on the Eucharistic Prayer of the Mass
and the Sacred Scriptures- never lose hope.
May 28, 2003
I was reflecting
on what the Worcester Diocese had done to me? The U.S. Government
and diocese may be compared to the Guantanamo Bay Prison for
“detainees” or societies ‘Gulag” system. This is similar of what
have somewhat done to me: No contact and told to “just go”
somewhere, no lawyer and no discussion after “Stalag #13
interrogations,” told in canon law that priest has rights and
privileges, no court of appeal process, no identity- I am a priest
but not a priest. Then having an affirmation by my bishop telling
me: “You’re guilty till proven innocent.”
I was thinking how
Bishop Rueger should have been sent to Guantanamo as Catholic
Chaplain. Also, I was wondering at this time where his court case
would have been conducted I would have wanted to sell tickets to it.
I recall reading
at one time a quote from John L. Allen, Jr. of the National
Catholic Reporter: Sometimes events in the Catholic Church are
most noteworthy by what doesn’t happen. Here is a very good time for
May 31, 2003
We get this day in
“The people Forum” of the Worcester Telegram & Gazette
“Parish want, needs Rev. Coonan returned” by a Mary Thomas
Senckowski (Worcester). She writes: “Why is it that Bishop Daniel P.
Reilly is having such a difficult time regarding the Rev. Joseph
Coonan’s return to his pastorate at St. John’s Church on Temple
transgressions are leveled against Rev. Coonan, real or imagined,
took place years before he was ordained a priest n June 3, 1989. He
was in no way under the bishop, so the bishop should know he has not
jurisdiction over Rev. Coonan.
“Rev Coonan has
minded is a 100 percent Roman Catholic priest. He has brought many,
many souls back to Jesus and to our church. Parishioners and
non-parishioners need Rev. Coonan back and Bishop Reilly should be
relieved of an all fears and concerns about Rev. Coonan. The bishop
must please give Rev. Coonan back to us and I hope he enjoys his
retirement in peace.”100
The letter writer
just does not get it-insurance companies.
In addition, we
have Kathleen A. Shaw writing on page A2 of the Worcester
Telegram & Gazette this day “Rev. Bagley resign pastorate at St.
Mary in Grafton.” Her article states: “Worcester-The Rev. John J.
Bagley has resigned his pastorate so that a new permanent pastor can
“Rev. Bagley, a
former Vatican and diocesan official who was last pastor of St. Mary
Church, North Grafton, was removed last year by Bishop Daniel P.
Reilly after an allegation was made that he raped an underage boy in
1967 in the rectory of Christ the King Church.
M. Cara Donna, who has administered St. Mary’s parish, said in the
May 25 parish bulleting that Bishop Reilly requested Rev. Bagley’s
resignation and he complied ‘for he good of the parish, its
parishioners and the church. He did this unselfishly so the bishop
could appoint another pastor to shepherd us.’ The deacon said he had
known Rev. Bagley for several years, ‘and I will testify as to his
character, honesty, veracity and holiness as a priest. Never, Never
have I ever detected anything than could be construed as a person
other than one why is priestly, who leads by example, love and
faithfulness to the mission of Jesus Christ.’
“He said Rev.
Bagley, 69, ‘is undoable to defend himself against these allegations
for a number of reasons. He doesn’t have the kind of financial
resources nor the years that it could take to fight to clear his
good name. He is on his own. Instead, he will go down silently
because of his love for you, his family and his Church.”101
What was done with
this article is done by so many others, one may notice with Kathleen
A. Shaw. This article then goes on with the list of seven other
priests placed on leave with Bishop Reilly and then statement about
District Attorney Conte. She has a pattern of repeating information
for space filling.
Boston Globe writes this day” Gay, lesbians lash out at church:
Same-sex marriage opposition blasted.” The article reads: “Gay and
lesbian groups said yesterday that the Catholic Church, under siege
for the clergy abuse scandal, lacks the moral authority to mobilize
parishioners against same-sex marriage. They are urging parishioners
to walk out of services if priests voice the church’s opposition to
same-sex unions and to boycott church collections.
four Catholic bishops have told pastors to remind parishioners this
weekend of the church’s opposition to same-sex marriage. The bishops
have also asked that announcements be place in church bulletins
telling worshipers how to contact their legislators to express their
the church’s renewed focus on the issue an attempt to regain lost
credibility, and to distract congregations from the damaging sexual
abuse crisis of the last year…”102
June 1, 2003
I was getting a
cold should from "Father Peacock" for over a week. Who knows? It is
like which way the current is running in the Cape Cod Cannel if you
are not actually there to see for yourself. So, when we next went
for coffee, he made a sharp remake at me that I was to saying much
of what was going on in my case-nothing was- so he therefore told me
that he would not tell me anything, either. It was this mind game
technique of his. It was more a child’s game.
Oh, I did feel the
isolation where I would hear about priest meeting at the Cape for
the annual conference of June 1st thru June 3rd.
This time I felt more isolated by not being invited to participate.
But, I have to realize that I have not been invited in the last nine
In addition of
"Father Peacock", not being invited to anything in the diocese,
there was the bit of information that I read about how the procedure
for setting-up church courts for alleged priest had been slow. My
rear buckets filled-up on emotions with weak feeling in my
body-anxiety working. Then, I would try to figure how to defend
myself and not just let it go.
In addition, I had
the foolish notion that the media would be at my front door for an
Then, I thought of
late how Pedone reacted with strong emotions when I mentioned my
position of “Permanent Pastor.” Pedone snapped at me that I was not.
It was his facade of protecting Bishop Harrington.
I sensed that if I
wondered what was happening here, there was a very simple answer-
neutralize my priesthood and told to go away. There was the approach
of remove anyone the Bishop wanted “to” due to his prejudices and
stereotype personalities. Then, there would be or arguments.
Usually, in life there are at least five perspectives on any issue.
But, with the Catholic Hierarchy, there was only one- sole
cooperation. The one that hold the cards owns the table.
writes in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette “Rev. Walsh
resigns as St. Roch pastor.” The article states: “Oxford-The Rev.
Gerald P. Walsh, on leave for more than a year following a sexual
–abuse complaint, has resigned as passport of St. Roch Church in
of Rev. Walsh’s resignation was read at a St. Roch Mass yesterday
becomes the second of seven priests to resign after being placed on
leave by Bishop Daniel P. Reilly.
“Two week ago,
Worcester District Attorney John J. Conte announced the closing of
criminal investigations into alleged sexual misconduct by six of the
suspended Worcester Diocese priest, over statute of limitations
“Mr. Conte had
asked Canadian authorities to take over his investigation of a
seventh priest, the Rev. John H. Bagley, who allegedly took a
Worcester youth to Canada during the 1970s and sexually abused him.
resignation was announced in a May 25 parish bulletin, published by
St. Mary Church in North Grafton…
“Rev. Walsh, a
Catholic chaplain of the Massachusetts State Police, was removed
from is position in March 2002 after state police were notified that
he allegedly molested a boy when he was assigned to Our Lady of the
Lake Parish in the Whalom district of Leominster.
against Rev. Walsh dates back more than 20 years. The statue of
limitations is 15 years for rape and six years for indecent assault
alleged victim, Thomas E. Bedard of Leominster, said Rev. Walsh
admitted to sexual abusing him in a letter, which he turned over to
state police. Mr. Bedard said Rev. Walsh showed him sexually
explicit picture, gave him alcoholic beverages to during and touched
his genitals on more than one occasion while the two were involved
in ‘friendly wrestling.’
“Mr. Delisle sad
at the time that Mr. Bedard made an allegation in 1998 that was
investigated by the diocese. Rev. Walsh had ‘vehemently denied’ the
allegation, he said.
“Rev. Walsh was
ordained in 1974 and served in Clinton, Whalom, Uxbridge and Grafton
before serving in Oxford…”103
June 4, 2003
This day we read
in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette by Kathleen A. Shaw “5
pastors give Reilly resignations.” She writes: “Worcester-The
Worcester Catholic Diocese yesterday said that five of six pastors
accused of sexual misconduct have tendered their resignations to
Bishop Daniel P. Reilly.
“The Rev. Joseph
A. Coonan, pastor of St. John parish, was not asked to resign,
according to his lawyer, Joseph D. Early Jr.
announced yesterday that resignations have been submitted by the
Rev. Raymond P. Messier of St. Peter parish, Petersham, and St.
Francis of Assisi parish, Athol; the Rev. Chester J. Devlin of St.
Bernadette parish, Northboro; the Rev. John J. Bagley of St. Mary
parish, North Grafton; the Rev. Gerard Walsh of St. Rock parish,
Oxford; and the Rev. Lee F. Bartlett of Sacred Heart parish,
removed the pastors last year following allegations of sexual
misconduct, and they nave been on administrative leave.
priests have resigned as pastors, they are still priest of the
diocese spokesman, said they are still on administrative leave and
cannot engage in ‘public ministry in this diocese or elsewhere.’”104
This same page of
this paper and reporter has “Rev. Devlin named in suit alleging
abuse.” It reads: “Worcester-A civil suit was filed this week in
Worcester superior Court against the Worcester Catholic Diocese and
the Rev. Chester J. Devlin alleging that the priest sexually abused
a boy in the late 1970s at Holy Name High School.
“Joseph M. Laconte
of Worcester said in his suit that he first met Rev. Devlin in the
1978-1979 academic her at Holy Name because the priest taught one of
his classes. The abuse, which allegedly included touching and
fondling started late in the academic year and continued throughout
Mr. Laconte’s time at Holy Name ‘and a short time thereafter,’
according to the suit that was filed.
St. Bernadette parish, Northboro, were informed this weekend that
Rev. Devlin has resigned as pastor and Bishop Daniel P. Reilly
intends to appoint a new permanent pastor.
“Rev. Devlin, who
was also diocesan pro-life activities director, was pastor of St.
Bernadette, which also has an elementary school until he was removed
last year by Bishop Reilly after an allegation of sexual abuse was
made to the diocese and later turned over to Worcester District
attorney John J. Conte.
“Rev. Devlin is
the third priest to be named by former make students of Holy Name as
an alleged sexual abuser. Allegations have also been made by area
men against there. Norman Jalbert and The Rev. Donald C. Rebokus
were also at Holy Name in the late 1070s. Rev. Rebokus, a former
state police chaplain, as headmaster there.
“Mr. Laconte, who
is represented by Michael C. Wilcox of Alsoie & Wilcox P.C. of
Worcester, said he did not understand the harm that was done to him
until about June 8, 2000.
“According to the
suit, Rev. Devlin gave Mr. Laconte alcoholic beverages and ‘used his
position as a priest and a teacher’ to gain Mr. Laconte’s
alleges that the diocese ‘knew or should have known that Devlin was
a pedophile’ and he should have been removed as priest and teacher
of minor children…”105
Father Chet was a
classmate of mine in ordination time. I wrote this from the
newspaper because by now there was a pattern of lawyers and media
operating on priest sexual abuse stories. They had their act quite
polished by this time
June 6, 2003
The Catholic Free
Press carried Fr. Devlin’s story on page six: “Lawsuit filed against
priest.” It was a short article with details similar to the
Worcester Telegram & Gazette. However, the article stated: “Mr.
Caconte ‘did not being to appreciate understanding or discover that
he had been harmed by these defendants until approximately June 8,
2000,’ the suit says, mentioning that he ‘achieved various
realizations and awareness after specialized treatment and
counseling.’ Father Devlin has been on administrative leave from the
diocese since April 2002 when the allegations surfaced. This is the
first lawsuit against the priest (Interesting statement).”106
This same issue of
the diocesan paper had on page one by the Staff and wire reports
“Dioceses expand fight against child abuse.” The article stated:
“The statistics are startling. By the time they turn 18, one in
three to four girls and one tin five to seven boys will have been
abuse, two communities educates from the YWCA Daybreak programs told
an audience of 200 at Ascension church Hall in Worcester Monday.
“The session was
one of 10 held in the past three weeks where more than 1,400
diocesan employees and volunteers have learned about child abuse,
according to Patricia O’Leary Engdahl, director of the diocesan
Office or healing and Prevention.
“As a team of
auditors prepares to fan out around the country to asses own well
us. dioceses are conforming to the Charter for the Protection of
Children and Young People, the Worcester Diocese is holding these
trading session and planning is one of the components of the charter
that was approved by the U.S. bishops last June in Dallas in
programs response to the sexual abuse crisis in the Church…”106
The Catholic Free
Press in this same issue had the “Editorial: Abuse awareness a
positive.: It stated: “Two women form the YWCA Daybreak program are
giving eye-opening accounts of what constitutes child abuse and how
prevalent it is in our state. Thousands of diocesan workers and
volunteers will hear these statistics and learn what they can do
about them when the training sessions provided through the Office
for healing and prevention are complete.
“Child abuse takes
many forms, the said. Neglect-failure to provide for the basic needs
of child-accounts for more than half of the case of child abuse
reported to the Department of Social Services. Physical abuse makes
up about a quarter of the cases. Sexual abuse reports about 12
percent. The fourth topic discussed is emotional abuse.
12 in 1, --- children are abused. And those are just the ones we
know about, Lori Santoro and Janet Dorr said. If a parish has 300
children in its religious education program, chances are four of
them suffer from some kind of abuse usually from someone they
June 6, 2003
Here it was that
everything started on my case for more than ten years and I was
having reactions of another rough day-anxiety- in my life. My
stinken thinking had me in that I would wonder what I would have
been doing that day. I lived my vocation 24/7. I reflected on how I
hard from no one in the diocese and being very fortunate to have
friends that would call me. Besides reading the Catholic Free Press,
there was nothing with the Church of Worcester. I was experiencing a
depressing point. Then, I heard on the radio how the Archdiocese of
Boston “swats abuse policy and opens its books for the public.” Yet,
I reflected how I had to hear from Fr. Picclomini (Vicar for Clergy)
and nothing in my personal file of the Chancery in ’93. He told me
this over the phone. Picclomini was flippant in that phone call.
Yet, I was reading during this time that alleged priest were to be
given a “review panel to deal with misconduct.” I immediately
related this to Fr. Tom Lynch’s remark: There is a dragnet going
through the water.”
When I was in such
state-of-mind, I would hope for an e-mail or phone call for anyone.
It, also, was at such a time that whenever I would return to my
place, that I would immediately check the phone answering machine to
hope that someone had called to say “hello.” Most of the time, this
Then, I would
reflect on the worst case scenario- defrocked from the priesthood.
This was my ultimate concern in the overall situation.
I did realize by
this time that priest cases and including myself were part of our
present culture of having the media reporting was not everything
being correct. In addition, anyone of us could have a litigation
dropped on us and would be caught-up in the storm of doubt,
allegations and non-corroborated testimony. The aspect of
individuality being so pervasive, that community was a foreign
element overall. Yet, being Catholic was the faith community that
makes us what we are. Here, this factor was absent in the official
aspect, but not in my private life of people I had kept in contact
with and them with me.
I felt frail and
exhausted but somehow I drew strength and energy for other people
that I was able to push foreword. I used to and regenerated taking
risk (ministry) to place my personal ambitions and any poetical
partnership (acquaintances) in a proper place because It way the
right thing to do.
I heard on the
radio that the sex abuse issue was being described that it was a
latency period. It was said the 12% of the general population is
sexually abuses as minor and 3% meet the criteria for identification
as being pedophiles. This report did state that there was a bashing
of the “clerical culture” and it was fashionable thing to do in this
period of time.
June 9, 2003
The New Yorker
of this day printed “Letter from Hartford- Father’s Helper: How the
Church used psychiatry to care for-and protect-abusive priest” by
Barry Werth. This article was six pages in length. It began with a
background of the Institute of Living (IOL) in Hartford with a
reference to certain key priest highlighted with their stories of
“treatment” But, the last paragraph written: “Last spring, the
institute took steps to distance itself from the Church by
responding to potential clients with a form that requires them to
reveal ‘the full facts and circumstances’ leading to a referral,
including all prior complaints, disciplinary actions, treatment
records, and criminal and civil allegations. ‘Since then,’ Dr.
Schwartz told me, ‘we’ve had very few inquiries’ form the Church.
Looking back, he acknowledged that as long as the goals of
psychiatric treatment were intertwined with the Church’s
determination to return priests to duty, the system was severely
flawed. However, what is required, he said, is not greater scrutiny
of psychiatric methods but greater outside regulation of the
Church-the sort of monitoring that governs teachers, social workers,
doctors, day-care provides, and child psychologists and which the
Church has historically resisted. ‘It gets down to the issue of how
the Church conducts itself witching the larger society,’ Schwartz
said. ‘We’re talking about something a lot bigger than
June 9, 2003
called me to tell me that the diocese was “not kidding about this
sex abuse policy.” He spoke with intensify. Besides, he was arguing
with his religious education “nun” about a high Scholl student that
was teaching and whose parent would not let her be RICD.
I didn’t say it,
but the diocese should have “not kidding about this sex abuse
policy.” I was always skeptical anytime he spoke to me. It was a
though he lorded-over me attitude. But, it was an issue that he
wanted me to be aware-off. Well, the newspapers have this topic
It was a though as
Chris Mathews-cable talk sow host- said in an interview: Everyone
that come on his program has a plan. His hob was to know that person
off the plan. This was what I realized with a “Father Peacock” or
listens and says good-by and “Next!”
thinking-which get dangerous- that going through full evaluation
(nine weeks) sand I would be able to demand the mental health of
victims and priest that I was assigned with- divorced from reality.
There was Fr. Charlie Dutrum caring a pistol around the rectory, yet
he treated me the best of all of the pastors what I had to live
with. Fr. Paul Foley, who had his stuffed animals in the church
sanctuary, trying to slam me around with his fists on his rampages,
Msgr. Frank Manning in his red cassock as he paraded around like a
Then this day,
Molly Bish’s remains were identified. It was the grief all over
against. It was horrible. Therefore, I turned to offering my daily
Mass (Eucharist) for her intentions and the family to have strength.
June 14, 2003
Talking heads is
the term of the day of what we have on TV and the radio of what is
happening in this day and age of our society. These-old terms-
commentators on political, religious and social issues -claim to
have the latest information and insights to what is in front of
people of the day. It is a claming they make. But a statement of a
few chosen words is more appropriate and to the point. Some of these
“talking heads” are interceptors of their insights and only that.
The art of discernment is so important in this day and age. However,
most people hear what they want to hear and move on-individuality
personified. Many people have answers to questions before they are
asked-arrogance. It prevails with the present administration in
Washington, DC. It is also in certain elements the Catholic Church
at this time.
June 16, 2003
The war of words
started to heat-up with the allegation case of Bishop Rueger. This
issue of the Worcester Telegram & Gazette had two front page
stories on Rueger by Ricard Nangel-Telegram & Gazette Staff: “Conte
aide reportedly brief the diocese” and “Monsignor claimed extortion
attempts.” The first article had Nangle report: “District Attorney
John. Conte has convened a grand jury to look into charges of
alleged clergy sexual abuse, and one of his assents has kept the
Worcester Catholic Diocese informed about some of its
investigations, according to pretrial testimony for a civil lawsuit
charging Auxiliary Bishop George E. Rueger with rape.
“In a deposition
last month Monsignor Thomas J. Sullivan, diocesan chancellor and
liaison to Mr. Conte's office, also testified that he was told by a
first assistant district attorney that Bishop Rueger’s accuser, Sime
Braio of Shrewsbury has HIV.
however, denies both that he has HIV and that he ever told anyone he
“On Friday, James
Reagon, the assistant district attorney in question, denied telling
Msgr. Sullivan that Mr. Braio has HIV,
is mistaken,’ Mr. Reagon said. ‘I did not make that statement,’ Mr.
Reagon said. ‘I did not make that statement,’ Mr. Reagon also said
he would not comment on any of Msgr. Sullivan’s comments regarding
investigations of clergy sexual abuse.
said there was a general sharing of information between the diocese
and the district attorney’s office but added that he thought there
was ‘a great deal more ‘that was not shared with the diocese. (I was
wondering if the Monsignor had black outs because of answering in
his deposition: “I don’t recall.” If he would have been asked what
he had for breakfast, he would have, most likely, responded: “I
“In the course of
the deposition, James G. Reardon Jr., lawyer for the Worcester
Catholic Diocese, instructed Msgr. Sullivan to answer no questions
that would impede the secret grand jury proceedings…”109
Then the other
front page article “Monsignor claimed extortion attempts.” Nangle
reports: “During cell phone convocation while driving his car on May
9, 2002, Msgr. Thomas J. Sullivan alleges, Worcester lawyer James J.
Gribuski attempted to extort money form the Worcester Catholic
Diocese to settle a sexual abuse claim against Auxiliary Bishop
George E. Rueger.
“In making that
allegation in pretrial testimony last month, Msgr. Sullivan
contradicted a diocesan statement form last July which recanted the
monsignor’s public accusation of extortion against what was then
termed an unnamed lawyer
“In a deposition
last month, Msgr. Sullivan said he told Mr. Gribouski he had spoken
by telephone with Bishop Rueger’s accuser, Sime Braio of Shrewsbury,
who he said threatened to go to the press if he could not obtain a
said Mr. Gribouski responded, ‘Well, how about if the diocese would
offer us some money and a confidentiality agreement?’
“’I said to words
to him very hot. ‘Absolutely not,’” Msgr. Sullivan said. ‘We hung
up-oh, then at that point he said, ‘Then I just decided I will not
be representing Mr. Braio.’”
said he was incensed by what he termed an immoral request by Mr.
Gribouski, one he believed was attempt extortion.
“’I’d say it this
way: When there is-knowing that the case has to merits, and
believing fully in my heart that Mr. Gribouski at that time also
realized that the case had not merits, to simply ask the question,
would the diocese be willing to pay money and have a confidentiality
agreement over the matter is immoral,’ he said.
“On Friday, Mr.
Gribouski reasoned to Msgr. Sullivan’s comments this way:
“’I have a
practice of not commenting on pending cases. Msgr. Sullivan is
entitled to his own opinion although I disagree with his opinion. I
also want to remind you that his employer issued a retraction
stating that I did nothing wrong and counsel for the diocese stated
for the record in open court that they do not allege that I did
anything wrong. I stand on my reputation as an attorney in the
So, what was
happening but the “war of words” that lawyers and some people have a
knack for their professions?
Another bit of
information that was most interesting was the Bishop Rueger’s file
was to be included with files sent by the Bishop to Conte (Protect
their own-hierarchy). Another aspect of how Sullivan was supposedly
interviewed by the press on a cell phone while driving his car. It
seemed that he had been dragging himself deeper into the fry with
the newspaper interview.
I wondered when I
read parts of Sullivan’s deposition in the paper and he responded:
“I don’t recall.” My initial reaction was that Sullivan experienced
“black outs”? This is where; I would like him to answer if he
recalled what he had for breakfast that morning?
In addition this
day I read in U.S. News & World Report “Welcome to Sue City,
U.S.A.” It reads: “Every day in America, someone pays a price for
the enormous inflation of rights over responsibilities. The pregnant
woman nearly killed by a stool hurled into the street from high
school’s sixth-floor window in New York is not just a case of
another unruly school. It is also an example of the consequence of a
mass retreat from responsibility-one fomented by the way our legal
system has evolved.
“Teacher who are
firm with badly behaved students know all too well that they run the
risk of being sued by parents who smell money more than they seek
justice. Nobody can be sure that reason will prevail since juries
produce dramatically different conclusions form one case to the
next. Doctors are so worried about protecting themselves from
potential lawsuits that they prescribe medicines order unnecessary
test and procedures that amount to an estimated $100 billion a year.
Why? So they have a legal defense if they’re sued. Some doctors,
unwilling to play that game, have abandoned the practice of
medicine. This is not the rule of law. It is the fear of law.
And it affects our lives in profound ways.
“Anyone, it seems,
can haul anybody into court for just about anything. Many are
tempted to play because the entry stakes are low and the rewards,
potentially, are huge…Litigation has become our national pastime,
but it is fracturing our society. We must restore a sense of order
June 17, 2003
On the national
scene, the Worcester Telegram & Gazette gives us two stories
about the Church on the same page.
The first story
“Bishop arrested in fatal hit-and-run crash” reported by The
Associated Press. This story: “Phoenix-The Romans Catholic bishop of
phoenix was arrested yesterday in a deadly hit-and-run accident
after police traced a license plate number to his car and found the
windshield caved in.
O’Brien, 67, was driven away in an unmarked detective’s car. Police
said he would be booked n a charge of leaving the scene of a fatal
accident. Sgt. Laurie William said he was not handcuffed.
Jordan Green, said the bishop was taken to the hospital but wouldn’t
say why he was there.
Jose Robles would say only that the bishop ‘was very exhausted.’
month, it was announced that O’Brien had relinquished some of his
authority in an unpredicted agreement with prosecutors that spared
him from indictment on obstruction charges for protective
hit-and-run case, 43-yer old Jim Reed died after he was hit by two
cars while crossing a street in the middle of the block. Both cars
“The bishop ‘does
admit that he was driving the vehicle and in the area at the time,’
The second article
carried by The Associated Press in the Worcester Telegram &
Gazette was “Keating quits, blasts bishops: Church leaders reel
from blows.” The article reads: “A defiant Fran Keating took another
swipe at some Roman Catholic bishops yesterday, defending his
comments that compared church leaders to the mafia as he official
resigned as head of a panel keeping tabs on the prelates’ sex abuse
which some bishops found offensive, were deadly accurate. I make no
apology,’ the former Okalahoma governor wrote in his resignation
letter to Bishop Wilton Gregory, president of the U.S. Hierarchy.
“’To resist grand
jury subpoenas, to suppress the names of offending clerics, to deny,
to obfuscate, to explain away; that is the model of a criminal
organization, not my church ‘
added that ‘most of American’s bishops are fully supportive’ of the
reform campaign and ‘have stood up for virtue.’ He also praised
“’You are a model of the Good
Shepherd,’ he said.”
“For the past
year, Keating has led the National Review Board, an all-lay panel
charged with keeping track of bishops efforts to rid the priesthood
of sexual molesters…”114
Another items in
this issue of the Worcester Telegram & Gazette of “The
people’s forum: Victims of priest struggle to salvage lives” written
by Lisa M. Zajkowski (Dudley). It reads: I must comment on the rev.
Joseph Coonan after reading a letter to the editor by Denis Garofoli
of Worcester (Telegram & Gazette, June 5) in which he asked, ‘What
is his crime?’”
“I am always
amazed at the reverend’s ability to both insisted and bamboozle his
followers. His parishioners at St. John’s are not the first. As a
youth leader in Oxford in the 1970s, Rev. Coonan was highly regarded
by both students and parents. The kids thought he made all their
activities great fun, the way he does with Catholic Mass. The
parents thought he was the greatest guy giving so much time to their
children. Yet, he allegedly was molesting children.
of Rev. Coonan’s followers seem to believe that whatever he may have
done in the past is irrelevant now that he is a priest, and such a
wonderful priest at that. Please tell me why it is acceptable to
ignore a molested child for every Catholic he has ‘brought back to
the church?’ In the wake of his destruction, he has left dozens of
victims trying to savage what’s left of tier lives.
“Thanks to the
statue of limitations, he has gotten away with his crimes. That
doesn’t make him any less guilty.
worshippers should wake up. This is not the cartoon world of their
childhood, where the bad guy was always dark and brooding. The bad
guy is friendly, charismatic, warm and witty. The bad guy is your
June 18, 2003
I was watching ABC
Evening News which reported about the annual meeting bishop in St.
Louis. The commentator said “a lot is at stake. Priest is to be
‘suspended.’ He continued to report that not enough is being done by
the bishops where 100% was needed.
It is the story of
the day in capital form. Some commentators have said that the fog is
the crisis is lifting. Actually, I see the fog getting thicker.
June 19, 2003
I finally began
writing my “Journal” into a text format. I only did two pages today.
But, I was able to see insights that I may not had when I first
began writing my journal in 1993. It is like seeking the hills and
mountains. Now, I have seen different waves coming-up. I would write
in the journal an overall situation which I noticed was declining
and then there would be a boom-hurricane comes-up from no where. At
this time, the entire priest story is relatively quiet. However,
there are whispers of Fr. LaBair in Westboro.
June 19, 2003
I received in the
mail my monthly Christopher News Notes for June entitled
“From whispers to headlines, it hurts us all.” Obviously it was
about the priest sex abuse scandal. This is a monthly pamphlet out
of New York City. The subtitles in this pamphlet: “did you hear
about…Making ethics the bottom lie…Winning really isn’t
everything…Casting a vote for truth…Silencing scandal…Keeping faith
in forgiveness…and Let your conscience…” 116
interesting overall in reading this pamphlet and surprising to read
the word “conscience” in this subject of abuse? Not that I see
anything wrong with that. I never have seen that word “conscience’
since the 70s or 80s. By the way, I read extensively as many
different Catholic sources and other sources as possible.
June 20, 2003
exploited, prelates say” appeared in The Boston Globe written
by Michael Paulson. It reads: “St. Louis-(Cardinal Law’s picture
inserted) The embattled Catholic bishops of the United States,
meeting during an extraordinary week in which al leading layman
resigned his church post after comparing some bishops to criminals
and an Arizona bishop was charged with a felony, yesterday insisted
that their occasional lapses are being exploited by interest groups
that don’t like the teachings of the church.
“From the pope’s
top representative in the United States to rank-and-file bishops
from around the country, the bishops said they believe they are not
getting enough credit for the progress they have made over the last
year in responding to the clergy sexual abuse crisis.
“’We all know that
we are going through difficult times and that some real problems
within the church have been magnified to discredit the moral
authority of the church,’ Archbishop Gabriel Montalvo sad in a
speech at the opening session of the bishops’ semiannual meeting
yesterday Montavo said in a speech at the opening session of the
bishops’ semiannual meeting yesterday. Montalvo is the apostolic
nuncio, the pope’s ambassador to the United States.
day, other bishops added their voices to that theme. ‘It’s an
incontrovertible fact, just from reading newspaper article, magazine
columns, opinion pieces…that many have chosen this crisis to move
forward their own agenda.’ Bishop Donald W. Wuerl of Pittsburg sand
in an interview…”117
There is some
truth in this but they haven’t included the Worcester Chancery
Group: Harrington, Rueger, Reilly, Pedone, Tinsley, Sullivan, and
Piccolomini. It is a lot more complicated situation as a Vatican
Official said to John L. Allen, Jr. in the past year. It is
something how the bishops drew a line in the sand for 2002
especially with Bishop Reilly calling me into his office of that
January and then hearing nothing since that time.
This issue of the
Catholic Free Press the “Editorial: Wait for trail” not
surprisingly carried the Bishop Rueger’s side of the story of his
court proceedings. One must not forget that people call this
newspaper: The Bishop’s Newspaper.
I am including the
full editorial because it is a piece that would need to be re-read
in the full context and future reference.
It reads: “The
Telegram & Gazette continues to print portions of pretrial
depositions in the civil case of Sime Radio against Bishop Rueger
and the Diocese of Worcester with questionable movies.
One story earlier
this eek leads with the statement that District Attorney John J.
Conte ahs convened a grand jury to look into charges of alleged
clergy sexual abuse. It has been clear for a long time that grand
jury proceedings are taking place. In the May 3, 2002 edition of the
T&G, reporter Kathleen A. Shaw states that Mr. Conte said he was ‘in
the midst of a major investigation of possible abuse by priest.’ The
story further states that the diocese turned over information too
his office ‘after being issued a grand jury subpoena.’ Why is it
front page news again?
attorney’s office has been conducting a double-sided investigation
with regard to the Braio case. They have been trying to determine if
Mr. Braio was the victims of abuse and/or whether there has been
some improper attempt to pressure the diocese into paying money
based upon a false claim of sexual abuse. The district attorney’s
office stated publicly that after investigating Mr. Braio’s
allegation they couldn’t substantiate any claim of abuse. So that
leaves the diocese as the possible victim of a false claim.
He recent stories
are trying to find inconsistencies between testimony and what has
been previously reported. How they continue to downplay
inconsistencies in clams made by the plaintiff.
Sullivan, diocesan chancellor, said that Sime Braio threatened, in
February of 2002, to go to the newspaper with his story if the
diocese did not settle with him. Though the T&G’s own newspaper
article of July 12, 2002, we know that Mr. Braio spoke with Kathleen
A. Shaw in February, five months before he filed the civil suit. We
have some questions then. Why didn’t Ms. Shaw write a story about
Sime Braio’s allegations against Bishop Rueger when Mr. Braio first
to came to her? The newspaper at that time was liberally reporting
on allegations other people were making against priests in the
diocese-even when there was o court action. Was it that Ms. Shaw
didn’t believe Mr. Braio? The newspaper wont’ says and is trying to
block any attempt by the diocesan lawyer to question Ms. Shaw on
“It is also
significant that Mr. Braio’s first lawyer, James Gribouski, rejected
this case based n the fact that Mr. Braio’s own psychiatrist refused
to substantiate Mr. Braio’s claims of abuse, and the diocese
rejected the possibility of settling the claim. In ding so, Mr.
Bribouski, a capable and well regarded attorney acted appropriately.
Mr. Braio’s present attorney, Daniel Shea, has submitted the
psychiatrist’s report into the public record of this case. So why
hasn’t there been a headline reading: “Psychiatrist doubts alleged
victims symptoms related to sexual abuse’?
“Mr. Braio also
had stated in an affidavit that he was abused at Bishop Rueger’s
family home in Scituate. Msgr. Sullivan stated in the same
deposition quoted by the T&G that there never was any Rueger family
home in Scituate. That’s not in the lead of the story.
inconsistencies in the plaintiff’s civil case are buried under
innuendo of other’s perceived wingding. Is it because Mr. Shea is
trying to use the case to rove something other than abuse against
Mr. Braio, and the T&G is going along with it?
“The diocese has
no interest in litigating cases in the newspaper; claims should be
litigated in court, said diocesan lawyer James G. Reardon Jr., when
asked to comment on the recent reports. ‘The diocese continues to
defend itself vigorously and Bishop Rueger vigorously. We are
confident what the ultimate outcome of this case will be. We look
forward to the day we can try this case before a fair, impartial
“You, the jury in
the court of public opinion are not getting the whole story through
the T&G and should hold off on your verdict until the case goes to
trail and all the fact are brought to light.”118
questions should be asked? One of many might be asked: Didn’t Bishop
Rueger attend seminary in Boston? Next question: Maybe one of his
classmate friends from the seminary or otherwise (group of priest
owning a home- common in that period of time) had such a place in
Situate? How would Braio have known the difference of his age or
circumstances? Also, one should be aware that when Rueger took him
from the Westboro location, it was known as a “Reform School.” By
the way, Situate is known as the “Irish Rivera.” But, these
questions that were never asked would take another whole book.
story must be realized about Scituate. A couple priests of the
Worcester Dioceses- Further Denomme (Headmaster) and Father Bedard
(Catholic High School Teacher) - in the 1960s with Father George
Rueger was also a Headmaster of a Diocesan Catholic School. It was a
common practice that a couple or larger group of priest used to poll
their finances to buy a house. So, what we had was Denomme and
Bedard owned a house in Situate. Rueger was part of this certain
group of priest in the school system and knew each other by being
part of the diocesan school system group. So, as Rueger was telling
other priest that he never owned a house in Situate where the
alleged victim- Braio- did said Rueger used to take him. It begs the
question: Did different priest possibly let other priest use their
places in Situate? If so, who were they?
But one had to
realize how the Worcester Diocese put resources into Rueger’s case
and no other priest even had any defense of any nature. Back to
myself: “Guilty till proven innocent!” The issue is if you are part
of the Worcester Chancery you have everything available for
resources. If you are not-you’re history but certain strokes for
different folks- Reilly’s #7.
More was going or
is going to come out on Bishop Rueger. Or was this a attic of the
Worcester Diocese of what may happened to anyone that would
speak-out and dare to face the powerful with their wrath
“After the Keating
Resignation” but E.J. Done Jr. (Washington) appeared in The
Boston Globe. He wrote: “It has been a truly lousy week for the
Roman Catholic Bishop Thomas J. O’Brien of Phoenix, who had already
admitted to shielding abusive priests form criminal prosecutions,
resigned after being arrested on charges of leaving the scene of a
“Two day earlier,
former Oklahoma governor Frank Keating resigned as the chairman of a
board of lay Catholics looking into the child abuse scandal. In his
resignation letter, Keating was unapologetic for having compared
some Catholic bishops to LasCosa Nostra.
“’To resist grand
jury subpoenas, to suppress the names of offending clerics, to deny,
to obfuscate, to explain always,’ he wrote to Bishop Wilton Gregory,
the president of the US Conference of catholic Bishops, ‘that is the
model of a criminal organization, not my church.’
“Just to bring
home the material costs of this mess, the Archdiocese of Boston,
facing a sharp drop in contributions, warned on Tuesday that it
might have to lay off employees or cut their health benefit.
“The Catholic bishops had hoped
they could hold their annual. Meeting in St. Louis this week without
formally addressing the sexual bused issue. Not a chance. At the
last minute the problem that won’t go away was added to the agenda.
Today the bishops will devote themselves to ‘prayer reflection.’
They need it.”119
June 21, 2003
wrote an article in The Boston Globe “Resignation has to end
Law’s role in church.” He reported: “St. Louis-they cal him
archbishop emeritus. Once, he was a force to be reckoned with in the
US Conference of Catholic Bishops, a leading spokesman on foreign
policy, abortion, and other matters.
“Now, six months
after his resignation amidst scandal, Cardinal Bernard F. Law has
lost his job, house, and his vote at the bishop’s conference, which
clouds its semiannual meeting here today. The attorney general in
Massachusetts is wrapping up a lengthy criminal investigation into
the Archdiocese of Boston under Law’s stewardship and that of his
resignation as archbishop of Boston has not ended his career as a
leader in the Catholic Church.
“Law was here in
St. Louis, working the crowd of bishops as in the good old days,
offering a smile or an arm around the shoulder as he chatted amiably
about the issues of the say.
“’He looks god and
sounds like he always did, and he’s very much involved in the
deliberations that are going on,’ said Bishop Daniel P. Reilly of
Worcester. ‘I admire him. He knows who he is, as a man in the
church, a cardinal in the church, so he’s carrying that role out.
Continuing his teaching forth and so forth. Who knows what the
future will be?’
E. McCarrick, archbishop of Washington, also welcome Law’s
“’He's a good
bishop, a good man, who maybe made mistakes,’ McCormick said. ‘But
show me the fellow in there who hasn’t made mistakes. I’m certainly
not one of them….’”120
Another article by
Kathleen A. Shaw on a priest allegated: “Rev. Szantry to be
arraigned July 18.” She reports: “Worcester-the Rev. John J. Szantyr,
72, who served in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Worcester during the
1980s, face three charges of indecent assault and battery on a child
under 14 and is to be arraigned July 18 in Central District Court
according to District Attorney John J. Conte.
“Mr. Conte also
announced yesterday that he has applied for misdemeanor criminal
assault and battery complaints against Brother Lewis Laperle, 75, a
former teacher at Notre Dame Academy in Fitchburg. A show-cause
hearing for him is scheduled for July 23 in Fitchburg District
The charge was
brought against Rev. Szantyr and the application for criminal
complaints was filed against Brother Laperle on Thursday, Mr. Conte
“Rev. Szantry was
assigned to Our Lady of Czestochowa parish, Worcester, when the
alleged incidents happened in the 1980s. The three charges involve a
single male victim, Mr. Conte said. He said that Rev. Szantyr was
located in Waterbury, Conn. his hometown.
“Formerly a priest
of the Marian Order of the Immaculate Conception, Rev. Szantyr
entered the Worcester diocese in 1980 and was assigned to Our Lady
Immaculate parish, Athol, where he celebrated is 25th
anniversary of ordination in 1982.
attorney is not revealing the name of the alleged victim.
Chesnee of Worcester said several months ago that after he went to
Worcester police station about 15 years ago to report an allegation
that Rev. Szantyr had sexually abused a member of his family, Rev.
Szantyr disappeared from Worcester. Mr. Chesnis has been vocal about
the alleged abuse and has shown up in front of St. Paul’s Cathedral
and other locations in the city with a bullhorn…”121
In addition on
this day, Kathleen A. Shaw wrote in the Worcester Telegram &
Gazette “Laity groups call for openness from Reilly, Worcester
Diocese.” Advocates urge Catholics to ask questions and become more
Worcester-David J. O’Brien, director of the center for Religion,
Ethics and Culture at the College of the Holy Cross is calling on
Catholics to become informed and ask questions about what American
bishops are doing to resolve what he calls a 20-year-old sexual
“If public forums
such as diocesan pastoral councils or priests councils are not
available, he said, they may have to organize their own meetings
‘and seek the help of the much feared media.’
emerged as an issue in the Worcester Diocese. Bishop Daniel P.
Reilly has refused requests to open diocesan records n the scandal
from Worcester Diocese Voice of the faithful, an organization of
concerned Catholics, and the Worcester Voice, another catholic
of Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests is also questioning
whether the diocesan Office for Healing and prevention is serious
about helping victims.
might seem to ‘perpetuate the pain of the crisis,’ Mr. O’Brien said,
but the truth needs to come out before the church as whole can move
well appreciate and old poster of a ragged person, head emerging
from a ringer washer, under the heading. ‘The truth will make you
miserable,’ he said…”122
June 27, 2003
This day the
Worcester Telegram & Gazette published “Diocese says it is
complying with sex-abuse guidelines” by Kathleen A. Shaw. She
writes: “Worcester-The catholic Diocese of Worcester is cooperating
with the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and is auditing its
compliance with the Charter for the protections of Children and
Young People adopted last years by the American bishops, according
to Raymond l. Delisle, diocesan spokesman.
“The diocese wants
to demonstrate that ‘we are complying with the national charter and
understand better the scope of child sexual abuse in the church’s
recent history,’ he said.
“’For example, we
are completing the audit this week as part of the effort being
directed by Kathleen McChesney’s office,’ he said. Any comments or
results of the audit or the study been conducted by John Jay College
for the American bishops on the extent of clergy sexual abuse in the
United States will come form the Catholic bishops main office,’ he
David J. O’Brien,
director of the Center for Religion, Ethics and Culture oat the
College of the Holy Cross, this week asked Catholics of the diocese
to fully inform themselves about the audit and what bishops are
doing to resolve the crisis and to ask questions about how
information being collected by Ms. McChesney’s office will be
Knowing how the
hierarchy operates somewhat, all this will be reported and business
as usual for the hierarchy with a very shuttle reminder that the
laity is not in the hierarchical circle of authority.
June 26, 2003
On the news, I
heard that the Supreme Court said the ‘statue of limitations’ was
not to be dropped for priest. I didn’t realize this subject was at
the Supreme Court docket.
I had lunch with
"Father Peacock". H had not seen him in three weeks and twice in
three months. He had to tell me how he did 13 sermons on his “study
week.” He also rambled on about a long description of John’s Gospel
fro five Sunday’s that could be cut to three weeks. I responded:
“You’re so good, Father!” I said this because I knew that he takes
his sermons from The Priest magazine. What a technique he
used to buffalo parishioners. Unless, he was practicing on me what
to tell his parishioners on this subject? He had been doing this for
interesting issue he was defending was the laity is involved because
he read a thick French edition of a book from Quebec. The contents
according to him were that the church has twenty-five hers or two
term so new bishops to change or there will be a total collapse of
the Church. He goes on about “band aided: approach of Communion
Services. (He has a persona agenda against these services- resurging
clericalism). He said that the church had to admit Deacons. I
reminded him that lay people could do, with proper permissions and
education, what Deacons do. He agreed with me that Deacons are a
band aides because I would not back –down from the principle.
continued to say that lay people should be brought into the ministry
and the parishioners pick themselves the leaders of the
parish/Church. He was only lapin. "Father Peacock" is so clerical in
his overall orientation and this approach way only him “changing
colors” to impress others. Don’t bet he would do this to Bishop
Reilly or any hierarchy unless Reilly was pushing another aspect of
In addition this
day, I received my monthly diocesan statement. I had a new deduction
of $45.85 for “Fchp Select Pre” (Falon Clinic health plan select
premium). I did not receive any correspondence or explanation of any
type concerning this. This was another-Diocese just did it.
June 27, 2003
I read on the
internet of CN (Catholic News-Australia) that Archbishop Harry Flynn
at the St. Louis Meeting of W.S. Bishops said; Priest who abuse
minor “Should undergo voluntary or forced laicization, except of
advanced age or infirmity.”
Well, this had my
fear buckets fill-up. Anxiety route, again. I even looked up
infirmity” in the church sense meaning of moral weakness or failing.
This would mean practically anyone. It always is interesting
watching how the church system operates.
June 29, 2003
I had to be
reminded by "Father Peacock" how that with the bishop I was a
“liability.” This came out of no where from him in going out to have
lunch. I wondered what was “egging” him this day with such a remark
towards me. It did hurt hearing him say that. But, against, I
realized that he had to do the “control factor” for some reason in
that he noticed that I was standing-up and speaking-out on different
issues. It was "Father Peacock" control factor to make a call and
make such a statement.
This time, I
notice that I felt hurt but I was “letting the water roll-off the
This same phone
conversation had "Father Peacock" say to me” “don’t slap the hand
the eyed you.” I responded: “Yes, Father!” This was he showing me
his control nature but I realized it was his degrading part of his
What I realized
was that I questioned him of the supposed election of people from
the Deanery (local parishes) for the Diocesan Pastoral Council. When
he told me of who was elected-his Deacon. I knew for a fact that
five area parishes didn’t vote for any candidate and yet his Deacon
was “elected.” I wondered to him how that was. He responded that I
better keep quiet for my own good. Actually, I found out that the
Bishop appointed his Deacon. It was an ego trip on his part but
interesting about positioning an individual. Then he said that
Bishop Reilly was a “politician.”
I mentioned about
my encounter on the phone with the Polish National pastor at Holy
Cross, Church, Ware, and Massachusetts. This priest said that they (PNCC)
would be able to use me in their ministry. What he was implying to
me was that I become a Polish National priest? I mentioned that when
I talked with Bishop Reilly about this and how I felt exposed to
others taking liberty to operate their agendas on me. I even said to
"Father Peacock" how Reilly just listened and preceded to what he
next wanted to relate. I said that Reilly didn’t hear me or want
hear anything pertaining to what I was experiencing.
then threw at me that “with a new bishop may take all the priest
files and throw everyone out.” He enjoyed throwing case scenarios at
me to sow his dominance decontrol personality. Then, he quickly
said: “You are retired!” This he would insert into his conversations
raises the question: Why do I keep contact with this priest? Answer:
He is the only priest I have any contact to talk about Church with.
I realized there was a piece that I paid. But, it was also an
opportunity of sharpening my debating skills.
In the evening of
this day, I was going through my books and found a framed stitched
hand crafted work: “All the wealth of the world could not buy a
friend.” This was made and give to me in 1976 by Abbey Marshall
(Weber) as a gift on my depart party at St. George’s, Worcester for
my new assignment in Leominster.
It would be
interesting to check this and time line for her allegations against
June 30, 2003
I read in
Newsweek this day “Is it too late to save The Catholic Church?
Not if it slanders will take this opportunity to make much-needed
reforms. I’m not holding my breath” by Tom Hogan who lives in Los
Gatos, Calif., with his wife and tow daughter. He writes: “As a
Roman Catholic seminary dropout, I’ve watched the ongoing pedophile
scandals and the church’s equivocal response with sadness button
surprise. This is, after all, Catholicism’s Enron, where insiders
knew all along what was going on and wondered when the rest of the
world would notice-or care.
“I grew up
catholic in California, a sure-fire recipe for schizophrenia. I
would attend mass every morning, then spend the rest of the day
flirting with the ‘60s trinity of temptations-sex, drugs and rock
and roll. In 1971, I joined a seminary program attached to a coed
catholic university, so that I could study for the priesthood while
keeping an eye on what I would be giving up.
“The seminarians I
encountered were truly decent young men; there wasn’t an obvious
pedophile in the lot. From the start, though, thee was a distinct
division within the ranks, one that would play a large role in the
crisis to come.
“On one had, there
were the ‘Secularists,’ men who believed, as I did that the best way
to make our faith relevant was to make it contemporary. The
protested the war, manned soup kitchens and maintained friendships
with the opposite sex. They accept the challenge of resisting the
temptation of the present with very little support from a church
moored in the past
Secularists were those I call ‘Refugees,’ men wholly at home into
church’s cloisters. They were socially awkward and uncomfortable
with modern culture-boys in a hurry to become middle-aged men. While
the Secularists drank beer and listened to the sonnets, the Refugees
sipped sherry and listed to classical music. For them, the
priesthood was more a career than a calling…It’s a broke system that
only the Refugees can fix. Let’s hope they’re up to it.”124
Well, Tom Hogan,
that all is left in the Church because there are dead bodies along
the spiritual highway of life.
July 1, 2003
O’Malley was appointed Archbishop of Boston. The local media had on
Channel #5 (ABC) a spokesperson for the Voice of the Faithful saying
that they are looking for “transparency” and “accountability.” Then,
the 7:00 a.m. news has the reporter with pickets at the Boston
Chancery in the background with signs “Support the Victims.”
July 4, 2003
I had breakfast
with "Father Peacock" this morning. He did show his arrogance in his
dynamic way by saying to me: “You are a pedophile!” I, immediately,
said to him: ‘I am not and don’t ever say that about me again!” I
was angry; He apologized by saying that he was sorry. He tried to
explain that this is what the newspaper said. I responded: “I don’t
care.” I proceeded to drop this discussion. But, what I notice
traveling with this guy; everything is calculated on his part.
Something was significantly bothering him whenever he would act-out
as he did.
I wanted to
continue this but did not. The atmosphere of the church sex abuse
crisis was a victim makes an allegation, accused never able to
exonerate oneself. One example was that I heard how SNAP said that
the California bishop should set a financial reward for victims to
come foreword against priest-slippery money slop continues. Besides
the money issue, I believe the neurotic behavior in society was like
the gunpowder pushing the shell syndrome.
This was a time
where I recall Walter Cronkite saying on CBS Evening News that
President Ronald Reagon presented his fact on the invasion of
Grenada: “It is clear now that we have to look beyond the facts to
what may be the truth.”
Another aspect I
was deeply experienced was the “isolation” of the Worcester Diocese
in that there was not contact with me.
We read this day
in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette of “the people’s forum”
(Letters-to-the-Editor) “Pastor of St. John’s was ‘set out to dry.”
Slavinskas (Worcester) wrote: “This is in response to a letter
written by Lisa M. Zajkowski of Dudley (Telegram & Gazette, June
17). A few statements that were made must be clarified.
I would like to
begin by saying that we are to followers of Rev. Joseph Coonan but
merely supporters of our pastor. We are people who worship at St.
John’s Church; because many of us simply found the message of love
thee. We do not attend because he makes Mass ‘fun.’ It was the
teaching and spirituality that was gained from his homilies that
drew the people, not the Grateful Dead. Rev. Coonan was the first to
stand at the pulpit of a church and call him a sinner. He was not a
pompous, arrogant priest, but a priest who truly loved and cared for
all those who passed through St. John’s Church.
“I have worked at
St. John’s parish since I was in high school. I have never once
encountered any problems with Rev. Coonan. I am amazed at own so
many people can comment on a man they don’t even now. My vocation to
the priesthood would not be what it is if it wasn’t for Rev. Coonan.
He is a man who has simply fallen victim to public opinion, not a
man who has gotten away with any crime. The only travesty of this
happening is that he as been sent out to dry by the very church that
he so loved very much.”125
“Holy Mother the Church” operates.
In this day’s
Sentinel & Enterprise, we read “Archbishop-elect” allowed
accused priest to continue at mission.” The article state, with a
picture of Archbishop-elect O’Malley: “Boston (AP)-An organization
of alleged victims of clergy sexual abuse says there have been
questions in the past about the way Boston arch-bishop-elect Seam
Patrick O’Malley has handled allegations of sex abuse.
“’Everybody is so
desperate for a hero, they’re willing to tout him as a hero before
he does anything that warrants that’ said Ann Hagan Webb of the
survivors Network of those Abused by Priests.
“While he was
bishop of Fall River, O’Malley allowed a priest accused of molesting
a girl in the 1960s to continue working at a Bolivian mission for
eight years after the alleged incident was reported to him,
according to a spokesman for diocese.
Kearns said O’Malley followed diocesan policy in the case involving
the Rev. Donald Bowen, and maintained that the unidentified woman
who told O’Malley her story was comfortable with his response.
“’He believes the
person was satisfied on that count,’ Kearns said.
“Kearns added that
Bowen’s superiors in Bolivia guaranteed he would be periodically
evaluated and that he would have no contact with children.
“But for Webb, the
assurance is inadequate because it’s impossible to know how closely
Bowen was supervised. She says she’s troubled by O’Malley’s handling
of the Bowen case and that his reputation as a savior of troubled
dioceses may be ‘overblown.’”
“’This man has a
reputation for being wonderfully well-spoken and coming across as
understanding of survivor issues,’ Webb said. ‘That’s great. Let’s
see him do something.’…”126
This type of
article about Archbishop O’Malley is the hit on the American
bishops. One may read some articles are “bottom dragging” with the
dragnet going through the water. Then one has to watch another
reporting scope that was being presented in the media and the
July 5, 2003
So, in addition,
Mike Barnacle who used to work at The Boston Globe but was
fired and at this time writes for the New York Daily News on
Archbishop O’Malley. He states: “’The old style of the imperial
bishopric is on its way out in the United states,’ Eugene Kennedy
was saying the other day. ‘And some like Ed Egan probably doesn’t
realize it, but his days are numbered. Catholics want their church
“Kennedy is a
former priest, a writer and a friend and biographer of the late
Joseph Cardinal Bernardin of Chicago. He was on the phone to me as
soon as Rome announced that Bishop Sean O’Malley had been sent to
Boston to replace Bernard Cardinal Law, who came to symbolize the
rot, corruption, indifference and blindness to the fact that many in
the hierarchy of the Catholic Church-Edward Cardinal Egan right up
there-had spent ore time protecting a pack of perverts in Roman
collar than they did in helping heal their victims, many of them
appointment reminded me of that long-gone summer when Bob Lemon was
hired to replace Billy Martin as manager of the Yankees, a team that
had imploded to dissent under the deeply troubled Martin. The new
guy was a pro, a veteran; plus Lemon had the type of calm demeanor
that brought stability and confidence to a clubhouse shaken by the
insanity and alcoholism of the tortured guy he replaced.
up for his press conference wearing the brown robes of a Franciscan.
He is 59, with a well-timed and deeply gray beard and mustache that
cannot hide a warm smile and eyes that invite conversation.
“He has been
around the edges of many of the sex scandals that have shaken the
church, first in Fall River, Mass., where he arrived in the wake of
revelations that a single parish priest, James Porter, had been a
serial predator for decades, sexually abusing dozens of children.
Then, quite recently, O’Malley was in Palm Beach, Fla., dispatched
by Rome after a couple of bishops were forced to admit that they
couldn’t keep their hands off teenagers.
“Nobody would ever
confuse O’Malley with the pompous Egan. The Franciscan took an oath
of poverty when he was ordained and, quite clearly, took it
and several other church leaders think their principal mission is
live well, get front-row seats and free parking, hang with the rich
and generally behave like 18th century nobility. Staff is
always on hand to keep them a good distance from the poor.
“’The days of the
lordly manner in a bishop are over,’ Kennedy noted. ‘Especially
those guys like Ed Egan who treats Catholics belonging to groups
like Voice of the Faithful as outsiders or as a threat. They’re not
a threat. The is the real future of the church….”127
Here is Barnacle a
Boston guy that was giving O’Malley the “honeymoon” period.
July 7, 2003
Kathleen A. Shaw
falls in an old trap of writing a column: “Catholics wonder who will
become the next bishop (Worcester)” in this days Worcester
Telegram & Gazette. One thing I learned whenever this was being
addressed was: God doesn’t even know. So, she writes:
“Worcester-With Bishop Sean P. O’Malley due to be installed as head
of the Boston archdiocese at the end of this month, speculation is
turning to who will replace retiring Bishop Daniel P. Reilly of
“’I think people
will be surprised,’ said Owen J. Murphy Jr., an author and former
editor of The Catholic Free Pres.
“Mr. Murphy said
the Vatican needs to ‘make a statement that the old boys network is
dead.’ The Vatican may have started making that statement with the
appointment of Bishop O'Malley, a Franciscan friar, to Boston, he
said. ‘They are going to have to make that statement with the next
two or three appointment.
“; I wouldn’t be
surprised if the next (Worcester) bishop is a priest of the
diocese,’ Mr. Murphy said. ‘Fall rive just promoted for it own
ranks. We just have to keep praying.’
Mary Keville of
Harvard, a leader in the Catholic lay organization called Voice of
the Faithful, said she believes selecting and elevating a priest of
the diocese ‘would be welcomed by laity and clergy alike, although I
think this would be unlikely.
“’Of course my
hope is that it will be someone who is both pastoral in a approach
and collaborative in ministry with the priests and the laity,
someone who will be sympathetic to the victims of clergy abuse and
will follow his heart and the Gospel values in solving the crisis,’
Letourneau of Shrewsbury said she has heard that some people in the
diocese want to see Monsignor Francis D. Kelley, a priest of the
Worcester diocese who is rector of Blessed John XXIII National
Seminary in Weston, got the appointment.
“She is also
hearing the name of Monsignor Thomas F. Sullivan, current
chancellor, who was elevated to monsignor last year. Ms. Letourneau
said she believes Monsignor Sullivan’s public role in handling the
current sexual abuse scandal might have hurt his chances.
who heads life Action league of Massachusetts, said he want a
bishop, a bishop who is humble and ‘really pro-life.’ She would like
to see the next bishop move out of the bishop’s house on High Ridge
Road and into more modest housing.
the current bishop for putting politics first and publicly taking an
anti-abortion stand while cutting funds from his pro-life
continues with quotes from Shaw’s contacts in her writing columns.
The one thing I wondered about if they were Catholic was that when
the last time they read anything of late was or anything in history
about the Vatican since 1870 and especially with the papacy of John
Paul II and his style of governing. Oh, some centuries back, the
people of the diocese with Cathedral Chapters and other selections
procedures. But, this day and age was something else of the 17th
or 18th Centuries.
Therefore, any ink
used to speculate was I believe useless. God didn’t even know who
was going to be the next bishop of Worcester. But, it did have
July 9, 2003
In small box
newsprint in these days Worcester Telegram & Gazette we read:
“Clergy abuse accuser faces drug charges.” It states: “Boston – A
key figure in the clergy sex abuse scandal pledged not guilty to
drug possession charges yesterday after he was arrested in a motel
room where marijuana and heroin paraphernalia were found.
29, an alleged victim of defrocked priest John Geoghan, nearly
drowned after falling into the Neponset River last month.
“He was arrested
Monday evening at a Dedham motel, the Boston Herald reported in a
story posted yesterday afternoon on it s web. site.”129
I didn’t her any
commentaries on this particular vase. But, I imagine the
psychiatrist and others had McCorley in a certain category due to
the priest-Geroghan. Everything of late is because of the priest,
the priest, the priest.
This same section
of the paper has a “State Digest” a report “25 Springfield priests
accuse in 18 month.” It stated: “Springfield- Twenty-five priests in
the Springfield Diocese have been accused of misconduct during the
past 18 months, according to a lay commission handling complaints
came up as the diocese takes part in a national survey studying
clergy sexual abuse over the past half-century. But not all the
accusations involve sexual misconduct, according to Mark Dupont, a
spokesman for the diocese.
are about drug and alcohol abuse, he said.
handles all varieties of misconduct among priests,’ Dupont said.
: A total of 43
complaints of misconduct have been made against 30 diocesan workers,
The Republican of Springfield reported yesterday. All but five of
the workers are priests.”130
One needed a
scorer card with all this priest abuse-dragnet going through the
July 11, 2003
Telegram & Gazette Staff reported “Alleged Abuse victim says HIV
test is negative.” He wrote: “An alleged victim of clergy sexual
abuse who has sued the Worcester Catholic Diocese has him tested for
AIDS and says the results refute pretrial deposition testimony by a
diocesan office (Sullivan) that he is HIV-positive.
“Sime Braio, 53,
of Shrewsbury, said he decided to get tested and go public with the
result because recent news accounts suggesting he is HIV-positive
were making life difficult for him. He sad the test was conducted by
Quest Diagnostics Inc. of Cambridge and the test result was
testing is not 100 percent accurate. Mr. Braio said he is satisfied
that the result would ease the concern expressed by people close to
him. He said he has constantly been asked in recent weeks why he
would keep such information private but make it available to country
and church officials.
“Mr. Braio has
filed a civil suit charging Auxiliary Bishop George E. Rueger, then
a priest at Our Day of Lourdes parish with, raping him in the early
deposition testimony made public last month. Monsignor Thomas J.
Sullivan, diocesan chancellor and liaison to District Attorney John
J. Conte’s office, sad he was told by First assistant District
Attorney James Reagon that Mr. Braio is HIV-positive.
disposition, Mr. Braio denied that he had HIV or that he ever told
anyone he had been infected. After reading the deposition testimony,
Mr. Reagon denied telling Monsignor Sullivan that Mr. Braio had HIV.
“In the deposition
Monsignor Sullivan said, ‘He (Mr. Reagon) told me that he (Mr.
Braio) was a very sick man. That he, you know, has heart-had heart
problems, was HIV-positive. You know, had, you know-we already knew
he had a criminal record.’
lawyer, Daniel J. Shea of Houston, said the conversation between the
district attorney’s office and diocese amounted to defamation of
“’It’s clear that
somebody is manufacturing information in an attempt, to discredit
Mr. Braio,’ Mr. Shea…:131
What you have here
is character assassination, slinging of information that were all
“hot button” for this age and time. What became more interesting was
that nothing was followed up in a classic grand jury model. Things
just died. But, watch who it died with-Rueger and that Chancery
July 13, 2003
I heard on the
radio John L. Allen, Jr. of the National Catholic Reporter
speak that Rome was going to begin “laicize” priest that had been
allegated. This was my initial reaction in 1993 and has lived with
this fear-even without any defense or anything on my part to defend
myself besides saying that I never molested anyone. One must not
forget that Rueger was time-in and timeout saying that more were
going to come out against me. But, we know he was “chirping” to
protect Bishop Harrington and his drunk-driving cover-up.
I was on an
emotional roller coaster concerned that I would be run through a
canonical trail on my two situations. Reilly and the Chancery Gang
would use me as the “Poster Boy.” The anxiety at times had me
experience a burning feeling on my arms. The anxiety was working
overtime. My “stinken thinking” would creep in: Leave the whole
fight and live again.
I was realizing
that the Worcester Chancery Gang (“Selective-Element”) was putting
out fires and in Westminster, the were dancing with the Gospel Book
being carried to the Ambo (Stand for this Book)
This day the
associated Press in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette gives us
“Psychiatrist blast Boston archdiocese-Information withheld on
abusive priests.” It reads: “Boston – A psychiatrist sad he was
‘stupefied’ that the Boston archdiocese withheld key information
about abusive priests he evaluated and would nave recommended hail
for the Rev. Paul R. Shanley had church officials provided all
information known about the accused pedophile.
“The Rev. Dr.
Edwin Cassem, a Jesuit priest a former chief of psychiatry at
Massachusetts General Hospital, evaluated dozen of priests accused
of sexual misconduct in the late 1980s and 1990s.
“In a two-day
deposition taken by lawyers representing alleged abuse victims,
Cassem strongly criticized former church leader, particularly Bishop
John B. McCormack, a former top aide to Cardinal Bernard F. Law, fro
failing to provide him with key information about priests he
“The list of
priests Cassem evaluated included notorious names, such as Shanley,
who faces criminal charges for allegedly raping young boys…”132
This is a similar
situation of what the Institute of Living in Hartford was reporting
of their experiences with bishops and priests that were evaluated by
` Bishop McCormick
was promoted to become the bishop (Ordinary) for Manchester, NH.
July 14, 2003
Back to Worcester,
we read “Man in abuse case to sue DA for $1M” by Richard Nangle in
the Worcester Telegram & Gazette.
It states: “A
Shrewsbury man plans to sue District attorney John J. Conte fro $1
million, alleging that a member of the district attorney’s staff
told a church official the man had HIV.
“Daniel J. Shea,
lawyer for Sime J. Braio of Shrewsbury, filed a notice of intent
Thursday, charging Mr. Conte with negligent supervision.
“Mr. Shea of
Huston said he will file suit after the mandatory six-month waiting
prod that follows the notice of intent.
“Mr. Braio, 53,
last year filed a civil shit charging Auxiliary Bishop George E.
Rueger with raping him while a priest at Our Lady of Lourdes, a
parish in the early 1960s.
“In contrast to
their allegations of clergy abuse in Worcester County where priests
were removed from their posts, the Worcester catholic Diocese has
mounted a spirited defense of Bishop Rueger. It began with a
sidewalk press conference in front of the chancery a day after the
suit was filed last July and has continued in the course of
pre-trail depositions…Mr. Shea wrote in his court filing, ‘With
respect to the reason defendant, at time of trail, plaintiff will
prove that Reardon intentionally slandered or defamed his reputation
per se by manufacturing a story that Sime Braio had a loathsome
disease, namely, human immunodeficiency virus that was neither
justified nor true.
“Mr. Shea said the
information was used to discredit his client and may help explain
why Bishop Rueger has not been removed from his post.
“In his complaint
to the court, Mr. Shea wrote, ‘the failure of the Reagon defendant
to act upon the sworn deposition testimony of the Sullivan
defendant, and instead to characterize it as ‘mistaken,’ is direct
evidence of the conspiratorial intent of these defendants.’
Catholic Dicoese has filed a motion to have the suit dismissed. A
hearing is scheduled fro 2 p.m. today in Worcester superior
I was not able to
find any information about this particular hearing or conclusion.
Actually, I should have checked public court record. Were their any
public records on this or anything else with Bishop Rueger? It is
very interesting how all this was off the screen very quickly. The
Worcester Chancery did use many resources that no other diocesan
priest had made available.
I read all this
and was bitter where I wanted to give Rueger comfort as the same
comfort he gave me- more is going to come out on you, George!
This same day of
this paper’s “The People’s Forum” with the letter “Coverage of
sex-abuse issue commendable” by Virginia M. Ryan of Worcester. She
wrote: “I want commend the news and editorial staff of the Telegram
& Gazette for keeping its readers informed about developments and
ongoing issues in the sexual abuse crisis in the Diocese of
Worcester elsewhere. The paper’s commitment to cover the story and
stay on it even when the issue has appeared to lose steam at times
has been immeasurably important for the future of the Worcester
“This crisis has
taken a deep toll on many Catholics and I wouldn’t be surprised if
many wish it would simply go away.
“But the crisis
and the accompanying issues of accountability, honesty and
structural change within the church will not go away, no matter how
much some might hope.
“It is at this
point, when some readers may be tired or so discouraged about the
issue that they don’t want to know more, that a paper might make a
decision to move away from coverage.
“I am grateful for
the courage and persistence of reporters Kathleen A. Shaw and
Richard Nangle, and columnist Kenneth J. Moynihan and others, so
full disclosure, justice and truth will continue to be pursued.
“Also, I am very
grateful to them because true among Catholics would be impossible
without their coverage. We Catholics have needed the T&G reporters
to ask the hard questions and we continue to need the T&G to
challenge the church and to take the necessary steps that will lead
to full transparency, accountability and honesty.”
Here we had
another viewpoint of the complexity of what is happening with the
diocese and the Catholic Church.
July 15, 2003
Then we get
“Diocese argues it has immunity in Braio lawsuit” in the
Worcester Telegram & Gazette. Richard Nangle writes: “Worcester
– A lawyer for the Worcester Catholic Diocese argued in Superior
Court yesterday that a civil lawsuit charging Auxiliary Bishop
George E. Rueger with rape should be dismissed (Why not my case or
other priest of the Worcester Catholic Diocese?)
James G. Reardon Jr. said the lawsuit incomplete and that plaintiff
Sime J. Braio cannot demonstrate that the diocese is not entitled to
the protection of common law charitable immunity.
“Mr. Reardon said
the curt should not entertain theological, religious or
ecclesiastical questions that Mr. Braio’s lawyer, Daniel J. Shea of
Houston, has injected into the proceedings.
“‘It’s just wild
accusations through out there for the purposes of some sort of
discovery,’ Mr. Reardon said. (The same may have been said in my
“The rape is
alleged to have happened in the early 1960s. Mr. Reardon argued that
in a previous clergy sexual abuse case, the Worcester Superior Court
‘specifically held that charitable immunity applies to any cause of
action based n activities alleged to have occurred prior to 1971.’
“Mr. Shea, in his
filing with the curt, said the pre-1971 charitable immunity ruling
did not dismiss the direct negligence claim against the diocesan
corporation for negligence hiring and or supervision. He sad the
ruling did not affect criminal actions that happened outside the
scope of the charity.
“Judge Leila R.
Kern took the matter under advisement.
Mr. Shea argued
that the church as taken steps as an institution to cover up clergy
sexual abuse and the evidence of that has bearing in his client’s
claim against Bishop Rueger…’What’s that all about? Doesn’t that
sound to you like obstruction of justice?’ Mr. Shea asked…”135
One doesn’t have
to go very far in thinking to see the different standard this
Diocese of Worcester is operating on. One set of rules for their
priest and another for a bishop-hierarchy structure. Any standard
conflict with these guys is the “certain element” that is so
prominent in this diocese.
Another factor was
that there had been about 33 diocesan priests that had been
allegated. Rueger was the only case of priest sex abuse that the
diocese used any recourse of defense. I know- Rueger was a bishop.
But, it is most interesting of how this Worcester Gang operated.
July 16, 2003
Kathleen A. Shaw
wrote “Child-rape trail to start for priest: Shrewsbury woman
accuses Kelley” in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette. She
writes: “”Worcester – trail is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. Monday
in Worcester Superior court on child rape charges against the Rev.
Robert E. Kelley.
“He was indicted a
year ago on five charges that he sexually abused and raped Heather
Mackey of Tewksbury when he was assigned as priest at St. Cecilia
parish in Leominster. She sad the abuse started when she was 4 years
“According to Ms. Mackey, who has
talked publicly about her alleged abuse, she first met Rev. Kelley
when she visited her grandmother in Leominster. He was assigned to
that parish in 1976.
conference is set the same day regarding child rape charges brought
against Rev. Kelley in connection with the alleged sexual abuse of
Denise Gallant of Ashburnham.
“The trail and
pretrial conference are listed on the court docket for Monday. A
spokeswoman for Worcester District attorney John J. Conte said
yester the trail is scheduled for that day.
“In the meantime,
a civil trail is scheduled for Oct. 7 in Hampden superior Court in
Springfield regarding a civil suit brought by Jane martin, which
lives in that area, alleging that Rev. Kelley sexually abused her
when he was assigned to Notre Dame Parish in Southbridge, which was
his first parish assignment after ordination in 1968...”136
Kelley had all
type of cases going- some dismissed where his lawyer only said that
he was not free to discuss the details.
July 18, 2003
Father John F.
Madden wrote a two – part series – Guest Column on the sex abuse
crisis for the Catholic Free Press. The first article appeared on
July 11- “Focus on healing, forgiveness will erase failure” and then
July 18th “Finding the truth and achieving healing and
The first part he
writes: “We have failed. The resignations of the five pastors in the
diocese who had been on administrative leave because of allegations
of sexual abuse is a failure on the part of every member of the
Church of Worcester.
something had to be done to allow the five parishes immediately
affected by their pastor’s absence to move forward. If all of us
have suffered during this crisis, and we all have some extent, those
five parishes have suffered significantly. We all hope and pray that
they will be able to move forward now.
crisis has never been about them - ours – primarily. It has always
been and remains concerned, firstly with the victims, the
victim/survivors and the accused priests. A general inability or
unwillingness to see this truth has been a major part of our
failure. It appears that too many have seen and still see the crisis
as being concerned principally with the authority, power and
structure of the Church – for some, what power and authority they
will be able to gains because of the crisis. Indeed, there are many
important issues facing the Church today and authority, power and
the structure of the Church are part of them. Nonetheless, people
using the crisis to pus h forward one agenda or another is one of
the main reasons that we have failed. The failure has been
perpetrated by both ‘liberals’ and ‘conservatives’ and is, too often
worsened but the less than sympathetic language that is employed.
The crisis is not and never has been about jus and, least of all,
about our ideologies.
“The only way that
we can reverse this failure is to place our primary focus where it
rightly belongs, that is, on healing for the victim, justice for the
victim survivors, forgiveness and therapeutic treatment for the
guilty priests and public, heartfelt apologies for the innocent
The second part of
this series, Madden writes: “Only by approaching the resolution of
the clergy sexual abuse case in a Christ-like manner will we be
productive and successfully. A critical insight that it will offer
us is the ability and willingness to make necessary and important
distinctions in each case. If we truly want to forgiven and find
“wholeness in relationship’ with each other and with God and with
Jesus, then we need to discern what, exactly, is to be forgiven and
crisis each of the accused priests has been painted with the same
broad brush. In a recent story concerning one of the lattes to civil
suits, the young man says that he was abused when he was in high
school and, yet, his attorney is quoted as referring to the priest
as a ‘pedophile.’ Distinctions like these are critically important.
Each of the accused priests and every alleged victim are individual
distinctions that must be acknowledged if we are going to come to
the truth and achieve healing and justice.
“As I have written
previously, and based on the instruction of Jesus himself, the best
and perhaps only way to discern these distinctions is to bring the
accuser and the accused together in a safe confidential, impartial,
non-contentious and Christian setting. There the people of God can
determine, in each individual case, what did or did not occur? What
harm was done? Was their harm done? What is necessary for that harm
to be healed? A process closely analogous to South Africa’s Truth
and Reconciliation Commission is a perfect paradigm…”138
Father Madden –
money is the issue in my case and agenda against the Church’s
teachings. There are agendas that are different from this culture
and those to which he is referring too. Was the money line! Besides
the generalization for “guilt” is so foreign to our culture and yet
“group guilt” hits the wrong buttons and is an idealism that even
Christ-like goals are too realistic.
This day, we read
in the National Catholic Reporter article by Father Ricard P.
McBrien “Keating was wring choice at the outset.” McBrien wrote:
“former Oklahoma Gov. Fran Keating resigned last month as chair of
the U.S. bishops’ National review Board, which monitors the
enforcement of their sexual abuse policy adopted a year ago in
organizations, such as the Survivor’s Network for those Abused by
Priests, SNAP, dedicated to the interests of survivors of sexual
abuse, as well as leaders of lay movements, such s Voice of the
Faithful, saw the resignation as a telling sing of the bishops’
failure to honor their commitment of last June.
exposed their stonewalling and got-dragging, and the bishops did not
like the one bit. Did they expect the National Review Board to
operate as a compliant adjunct of the bishops’ conference rather
than as a genuine independent body?
of the hierarchy, on the other hand, thought that Keating was out of
control, that his public attacks on the bishops (and not just his
final comparison of their behavior to that of Las Cosa Nostra) had
undermined his effectiveness as chair of the National Review Board.
“Even a majority
of the board itself thought Keating had crossed the line of
appropriate public comment and needed to set aside…”139
What I was able to
read about Keating and this issue was “impatience.” This and being
laymen were two factors that had me thinking that he was history. He
became that with the bishops and the “right-wing element of American
July 18, 2003
writes this day “Lennon questioning on Rueger is shelved” in the
Worcester Telegram & Gazette. Here we read: “Worcester – An
attempt by Houston lawyer Daniel J. Shea to question Bishop Richard
G. Lennon of Boston under oath has been derailed, at least for now.
“A Superior Court
judge granted an emergency motion yesterday indefinitely postponing
the deposition, which had been scheduled for today.
installed as the interim head of the Boston Archdiocese after
Cardinal Bernard F. Law resigned, had been subpoenaed in connection
with a civil lawsuit charging Auxiliary Bishop George E. Rueger of
the Worcester Catholic Diocese with rape.
“Mr. Shea said the
motion was granted without a hearing. He said he will try to obtain
the information he was seeking from Bishop Lennon from other sources
before attempting to rescheduled the depiction.
spent some time as pastor of a parish in Scituate, the community
where Mr. Shea’s client, Sime J. Braio of Shrewsbury, says Bishop
Rueger took him on weekends to a seaside home and raped him in the
lawyer, Wilson D. Roger III of Boston, said in his filing with the
court that there is not bias to suggest his client has personal
knowledge about the case. . .
“In a sworn
affidavit, Bishop Lennon said he had none of the documents Mr. Shea
was seeking and that he does not know Mr. Braio.
“ ‘I know Most
Rev. George E. Rueger,’ he said into eh affidavit. ‘Others than as
to the allegations disclosed to me, incident as to my view of the
complaint in this matter. I have no knowledge of any such
allegations regarding Most. Rev. George E. Rueger.’
took over St. Mary of the Nativity parish in Scituate in 1973, Mr.
Shea said, but would have a familiarity with longstanding family
relationships there. Mr. Shea said he wanted to question Bishop
Lennon about the occupants of the 51 Egypt Ave., home where Mr.
Braio says he was raped.
“‘There may be
other sources I can use other than him,’ Mr. Shea said, adding that
Bishop Lennon’s reluctance to be deposed surprised him.
“Mr. Shea had
asked Bishop Lennon to produce seminary records of priest accused of
sexual abuse who attended St. Hon’s Seminary in Brighton between
1958 and 1968. A number of those priests had ties to Scituate, he
Attorney Shea was
asking questions. But, these were obviously not the correct one to
ask. Why didn’t he try to find out from Bishop Lennon if any priest
in the Worcester Diocese owned homes/cottages in Situate (Irish
Rivera)? One thing is the “clergy underground” and a pastor had more
knowledge than anyone about who lives in his parish boundaries, but
never says another word by watch and listen – unspoken code with the
stipulation that another priest wanted to “respect the other
priest’s privacy.” Nice goggling gook but watch-out for who hangs
around with whom – cliques of the “Boys-in-the-Band.”
Worcester Telegram & Gazette gives us “Kelly’s lawyer want
trail” but written by Gary V. Murray- new reporter on the priest sex
abuse poll. He writes: “Worcester – the lawyer for the Rev. Robert
E. Kelley is to ask judge today to postpone the priest’s trail on
child rape charges so he and the prosecutor can review
‘medical/counseling’ records of the alleged victim. The lawyer says
those records might contain information benefiting Rev. Kelley’s
Anthony M. Salerno, is also seeking a court order allowing him and
Assistant District Attorney William m. McGourty access to the
records which Mr. Salerno described as ‘potentially exculpatory
evidence.’ Both requests are scheduled to be heard by Judge Ralph D.
Gants in Worcester Superior Court.
“Rev. Kelly, 61,
of Worcester, who ahs not been allowed to fund tin as a priest for
17 years is scheduled to go to trial Monday on charges of sexually
assaulting Heather Mackey of Tewksbury when he was assigned as a
priest at St. Cecilia parish in Leominster more than 20 years ago
“Ms. Mackey, who
has spoke publicly about the alleged sexual abuse, said it began
when she was 4 years old, rev. Kelley, who was sentenced to finv3 to
seven in state prison in 1990 raping a Gardner girl, has pleaded not
guilty to the charges…”141
interesting in reading the newspaper is how it re-cycles the same
story over and over with an additional glitch some other element.
Then the Catholic
Free Press gives us “Diocese await curt ruling.” Kevin Luperchio
writes: “The diocese is awaiting a Superior court ruling in response
to its request this be removed form a vigil lawsuit charging Bishop
Rueger with sexual assault of a minor.
“In the suit,
which was filed last July against the bishop and the diocese, Sime
Braio, 52, of Shrewsbury, alleges that Bishop Rueger began sexually
molesting him when Mr. Braio was an altar boy at Ur Lady of Lourdes
Parish in Worcester and that the diocese knowingly concealed
information about the assaults. Bishop Rueger has denied the
James G. Reardon, Jr. of Reardon & Reardon, a Worcester law firm,
argued in a hearing Monday that the diocese should b e exempt from
the lawsuit infer Massachusetts common law which grant charitable
organizations immunity from liability uncivil lawsuits.
“The law was
changed in 1971 but since the alleged assaults against Mr. Braio
occurred in the 1060s, it should apply in this case, Mr. Reardon
“Daniel J. Shea, a
Houston-based lawyer representing Mr. Braio, argued that the
charitable immunity common law does not apply to cases of claims of
direct negligence against the organization in matters of hiring and
supervision of employees.
“Mr. Reardon also
argued that the diocese could not knowingly concealed information
pertaining to the alleged assaults since, by Mr. Braio’s own
admission, it did not know of the assaults before 2001. In the
original complaint, Mr. Braio said he informed the diocese about the
alleged assaults in 2001.
“‘You can’t have
conspiracy, frauds or deception based on what you don’t know,’ Mr.
“Mr. shear argued that the wider
Church as attempted to cover up instances of sexual abuse and that
those attempts are relevant in his client’s claim…”142
The same issue of
the Catholic Free Press printed “Father Gagnon on leave.” It stated:
“Father Jean-Paul Gagnon has been put on administrative leave from
his duties as pastor of St. Augustine Parish in Millville, effective
July 16, Bishop Reilly announced yesterday.
Lucier is administering the parish and Father Robert Loftus is
providing priestly assistance to the community there, the bishop
“Father Gagnon is
till canonically the pastor; he has not resigned according to
Raymond L, Delisle, and director of the Diocesan Office of
toke personal leave as pastor following a civil suit filed in
Worcester Superior Court last fall by Timothy P. Staney, 32, and his
parents Joseph C. and Corrine L Staney, alleging sexual abuse in
This week’s change
in Father Gagnon’s status from personal o administrative leave came
in the curse of the ongoing investigation by the Diocesan Review
Committee and the Bishop’s Office and was made so the parish will
not be engaging in any public ministry in this diocese or elsewhere.
The Diocesan Review Committee formerly the Pastoral Care Committee,
is a panel of legal , medical and religious experts that investigate
allegations of sexual abuse against diocesan personnel…”143
July 19, 2003
Here is an
eye-opening story in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette of
“Braio drops suit vs. assistant DA: Filer acts without telling his
lawyer.” Ricard Nangle writes: “”Worcester – A Shrewsbury man who
filed a notice of intent to sue District Attorney John J. Conte for
41 million last week has changed his mind.
“Sime Braio filed
notice yesterday in superior Court that he has dropped First
Assistant district Attorney James Reagon from the suit. Mr. Braio
had alleged Mr. Reagon had told a church official he has HIV,
lawyer, Daniel J. Shea of Houston said he had nothing to do with
yesterday’s court filing.
“Last week, Mr.
Shea had filed a notice of intent to sue, charging Mr. Conte with
negligent supervision. He names Mr. Reagon and Monsignor Thomas J.
Sullivan, diocesan chancellor and liaison to Mr. Conte’ office as
“‘It’ taken me
completely by surprise,’ Mr. Shea said. ‘That (Mr. Braio’s action)
let Conte off the hook.’
Monsignor Sullivan left as a defendant, ‘I am totally at a loss as
to where we go from here,’ he said.
“Mr. Shea said the
development does not affect Mr. Braio’s civil lawsuit against
Auxiliary Bishop George E. Rueger, charging him with rape while a
priest at Our Lady of Lourdes parish in the early 1960s.
“Mr. Shea said he
decided to sue Mr. Conte, Mr. Reagon and Monsignor Sullivan after
taking Monsignor Sullivan deposition in May…”144
One may wonder how
the fear element prevails in this case of Braio facing he whole
July 21, 2003
I had lunch with
"Father Peacock.” He staged this lunch by attempting to impress on
me that Fr. Chet Devlin-a classmate of mine of Administrative Leave-
called him and that they spoke for about an hour. I don’t believe
Devlin called. "Father Peacock" most likely called him. But this is
what one had to do with this guy’s stories. I really believe "Father
Peacock" was lobbying to become the Bishop’s Liaison for priest on
Administrative Leave-thing he may then become a Monsignor. "Father
Peacock" spoke how here is a priest (Bishop Rueger), alleged, denied
charges and still functioning-not removed from his ministry. The
discussion evolves to how Rueger get an outside chancery Press
Conference with Chancery Staff- priest and secretarial people in the
One comment that
"Father Peacock" said was that he was able to do so much dusting at
his place in Douglas. He said that Devlin gave him his
address-prestigious fantasy in his head- and private telephone
number. Devil supposedly said he did not have a listed phone any
more. He had his number “removed” since he as allegated. Then I had
to hear how Devlin had only a few years to pay on the mortgage on
his home. He continued to say that Devlin told him that the bishop
wanted to settled his case and make him a “Retired Priest Status
with Clergy Benefits.” Supposedly, the Reilly Group (6) signed-off
their parishes and the case was dropped. But, I realized that
"Father Peacock" wanted to impress me that Devlin gave him his
telephone number and address. It was as thou, he was “so
compassionate” with Devlin and other priest on Administrative Leave.
Why was it that I sensed something more with his “outreaching.” Was
he covering something or developing techniques to future
said to "Father Peacock" that cases were going for $25,000 to
$30,000 to settle. What was interesting with this number was it was
similar to my number. Devlin’s group supposedly was told they were
able to work part-time. The Chancery did not want them to tell their
employer “Why” they were on Administrative Leave.
according to this lunch conversation, was holding “court” at his
Cape Cod home. Why did I sense jealousy? Fr. Adain Walsh was living
at the Cape at his place. The “Reilly Group” had Fr. Dennis
Rauchford as their ad ovate but that he had been “sent for treatment
at the Guest Huse in Michigan to dry-out.” Rauchford used to call
each of them weekly but now no one had contacted them.
I never had a call
from Rauchford. Picclomini only called a few times being inquisitive
or to tell me to report to the Bishop’s Residence.
supposedly had two meeting with is Group but no Fr. Ray Messier in
attendance. Harrington’s Group would have included me as Fr. Gerry
There had been
talk of settlement on a National Policy Issue. "Father Peacock"
related to me that Rome did not accept what was being proposed by
the American Bishops at first. Then he told me: “You have to get a
lawyer!” Oh? I didn’t say much but that I had to process the
information for myself "Father Peacock" was playing his dominating
role and trying to instill fear-repeated performance on his part
with me. I did say it was upsetting to hear this. I should not have
even hinted this to him or show it on my face- poker face should
continued on in that I was told that Attorney Ed Ryan was
representing Devlin. I was told that Ryan was an aggressive lawyer.
conversation turned to Fr. Ouellette in having embezzled between
$100,000 and $150,000 for Immaculate Conception parish in Fitchburg.
This was "Father Peacock" former parish as pastor. The story was
that he was able to get the Chancery to get him an apartment in a
high-rise complex in Worcester.
This was how
"Father Peacock" played his mind game and as a one-upper on
information. I began to answer him with questions where I found it
upsetting talking with him. You did not talk with him. He was
constantly “fishing” for information. Well, I turned any issue into
I had to listen
from "Father Peacock": “Will they (attackers) be happy when they
have the entire priest in the diocese allegated.” Then he went back
to Devlin’s phone conversation in that Devlin was “not happy” about
his case versus Rueger’s statues. Rueger’s case was not working well
with the priest in the Worcester Diocese according to Devlin.
was told in this lunch that Devlin and Branconia were going to
Bishop Reilly’s 50th at the cathedral in August. I was
told: You should be going!” I reacted with: I am not sure. I felt
that he was parading me in with a few other times that I went to the
Cathedral with him. I still was a person that felt a significant
identity of being who I am.
Branconia was only getting $1,000 a month and a new deduction of
$49. He was being limited with St. Francis Nursing Home on a when
needed bases. It was less and less of late
Piccolomini where "Father Peacock" told me that Rocco (Picclomini)
was Secretary to Bishop Reilly and on the Committee for
Collaboration. "Father Peacock" did see Rocco as being in the inner
circle of the Chancery and that I should not bother thinking
anything about the role of Picclomini. Why did I sense jealously
prevailed in his views on the Bishop’s Secretary.
My last comment,
getting out of the car was: It is more interesting to get (Fr.)
Gerry Franconia’s input on all of this.
July 22, 2003
with "Father Peacock", the night sleep had me being interrupted with
awaking a number of times to twice change my pajama-tops which were
wet with perspiration. This was happening to me after I received
news in March ’93, my time of the IOL evaluation staying in the
Hartford Seminary and for a significant time period. It, actually,
was me changing shirts three times in one night. Here it was against
after the previous day lunch with "Father Peacock.”
July 24, 2003
I had been
struggling at times to writ my journal and being my manuscript of
this journal. I had to realize that a positive essential step was
that I take the trouble to evaluate and write my regular experiences
to begin to understand what I was going through. However, it was a
roller coaster ride at different times doing this writing.
July 25, 2003
Telegram & Gazette in their editorial (in our opinion) of this
day writes “The Reilly report’s Boston archdiocese still faces
daunting takes.” It states: Attorney General Thomas F. Reilly’s
announcement that there would be no criminal prosecution of church
leaders in the clergy sexual abuse scandal in the boson Archdiocese
was not altogether a surprise.
“The legal basis
for criminal charges has been problematic from the start of the
investigation 16 months ago. In a meeting with the editorial board
of the Telegram & Gazette this spring, Mr. Reilly was still
uncertain about whether the hierarchy could be charged under state
was palpable on Wednesday, when he released his report which
concludes that more than 235 clergy and other church personal may
have been involved in molesting as many as 1,000 minors in the
Boston Archdiocese since the 1940s. The report makes it clear that
top church official were aware of the problem, the public and law
The pattern of
hush-up and cover-up detailed in the report is numbing as is
documentation that church leaders ignored victims’ complaints and
moved accused priest from parish to parish, to molest against. As
Mr. Reilly put it, archdiocese leaders ‘in effect, sacrificed
children of many, many years…”145
In addition, his
same day the Worcester Telegram & Gazette prints “Church sex
abuse probes net dew priest indictments.” Rachel Zoll of The
Associated Press wrote: “About a dozen grand jury investigations
into sex abuse claims again Roman Catholic clergy and countless
reviews by police and prosecutors have produced just what critics
predicted – few indictments of abusive priests and no charges
against bishops who sheltered them.
The most recent
example came Wednesday, when Massachusetts Attorney General Thomas
F. Reilly filed o criminal charges after a 16-month investigation of
the Boston Archdiocese. Reilly said that, despite finding priest and
other workers likely molested 1,000 people since 1940, each state
law prevented him from pursuing charges.
disagree over whether these investigations are still worth pursuing,
or are just empty exercises that made civil authorities look tough
without winning any convictions.
embarrassment for an institution isn’t consequence enough,’ said
David Cheesy, national director of the Survivors Network of those
Abused by Priest.
officials acknowledged at the beginning of the sex abuse crisis last
hear that it would be difficult to pursue charges, even though
hundreds of priests had been accused over the last several decades.
“Most of the
claims wee so old, the statues of limitations had run out,
authorities said. And to prosecute church officials who sheltered
molesters, state attorneys had to prove bishops meant to help the
offenders commit crimes.
“Knowing there was
little chance for convictions; critics say prosecutors never should
have started inquiries like the ones in Boston, New York and
outcome is preordained, prosecutors should back off and not let
their greed for PR get the best of them,’ said William Donohue,
president of the Catholic League, an anti-defamation group in New
“In some states,
including Massachusetts, bishops were summoned to appear before
grand juries-which were deeply embarrassing to some Catholics…”146
on the same page (A2) of this issue, we read “Worcester diocese
accused of blocking investigations.” Richard Nangle writes: “The
Worcester Catholic Diocese deliberately hampered efforts by District
Attorney John H. Conte to investigate allegations of clergy abuse,
according to Worcester Voice of the Faithful report on the church
“The report, which
is available on the Internet
www.worcestervoice.com says diocesan officials withheld some
documents form the information it turned over to the district
attorney’s office. It offers no proof of the charge, however.
The report written
by May Jean of Worcester VOTF, is the first of its kind of the
church scandal as it affect Worcester. Attorney General Thomas F.
Reilly released finds in this week on his criminal investigation
into the Archdiocese of Boston.
“Mr. Reilly, who has so far declined to get involved
in the Worcester Diocese matter, said the Boston Archdiocese engaged
in a ‘massive inexcusable failure’ to do anything about the scandal.
“Ms. Jean said she
does not believe Mr. Conte will be issuing a similar report on the
Worcester Diocese. In her report she suggested there is much to
investigate in Worcester…”147
July 26, 2003
This day, we read
in the local news section of the Worcester Telegram & Gazette
“Reilly forwards report to Conte: Attorney general cites ‘model for
Worcester diocese, country.” Richard Nangle wrote: “Attorney General
Thomas F. Reilly has sent a copy of his report on sexual abuse in
the Boston Catholic archdiocese to Worcester District Attorney John
J. Conte, as an example of what Mr. Reilly’s spokesman said should
be modeled similar investigations.
general hopes the report ‘will serve as a model for the Worcester
diocese and others throughout the country to better ensure the
protections of children,’ said Corey Wellford, a spokesman for the
attorney general. He handed that Mr. Reilly is not involved in any
investigation of the Worcester diocese, declined to elaborate…”148
July 29, 2003
Kathleen A. Shaw
wrote in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette: Vatican document
instructed secrecy in clergy abuse cases.”
Shaw wrote: “The
hierarchy of the catholic church has been instructed by the Vatican
at least since 1962 to keep certain cases of clergy sexual abuse
secret under pain of excommunication according to Boston lawyer
Carmen L. Duros.
“A cope of the
directive was sent yesterday to U.S. Attorney Michael Sullivan at
his Boston office by Mr. Durso, who said he believes the church ahs
been obstructing justice.
“Mr. Durso said it
might also explain why Cardinal Bernard F. Law and bishops of the
Boston Archdiocese and elsewhere covered up sexual abuse of children
yesterday asked Mr. Sullivan to find legal grounds under federal
laws to prosecute those in the hierarchy who have covered up these
sexual abuse cases.
Daniel J. Shea provided Mr. Durso with a copy of the Vatican
document, called ‘On the Manner of Proceeding in cases of
Solicitation’ (Latin title: ‘Crimen Solicitations’). Both lawyers
are representing alleged clergy abuse victims in central
obviously, had church contacts to get such a document from his
seminary days in Providence and studying in Belgium for the
priesthood and had a “bump” with then Chancellor, Msgr. Daniel P.
Reilly, who became Bishop of Worcester.
July 30, 2003
pledges to share abuse finding: Panel studying church abuse”
appeared this day in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette. Rachel
Zoll of The Associated Press wrote: “Chicago-A pane of prominent
Roman Catholics pledged yesterday to publicly release its findings
from several ongoing studies on molester priests-even if its reports
turn up information that will likely be used in lawsuits against the
“The promise came
as the National Review Board, a dozen lay Catholics appointed by the
U.S. bishops to monitor the church’s reform efforts, issued a
progress report on its first year of work.
Bennett, a former secretary of education, prominent Washington
lawyer and member of the board, said the panel has told the bishops
that the results of four separate studies under way will be released
no matter what. The first study, an audit of whether dioceses are
implementing reforms aimed at ridding the priesthood of abusers, is
scheduled to come out in December.
“‘At the end of
the day, protection of children and youth people is of paramount
importance,’ Bennett said. ‘It is the unanimous view of this
board…that disclosure is what is required.’
“‘It’s going to be
a lot harder to cover up anything in the future,’ he said.
“But a major
victim’s advocacy group immediately raised doubts about the studies’
value. The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, whose
founder, Barbara Blaine, met with the board yesterday, questioned
whether the reports will be accurate since they are partly based on
data provided by dioceses…”150
publication carried this day “Catholics’ priest troubles spawn
variety of web sites.” Kathleen A. Shaw writes: “The allegations of
clergy sexual abuse that surface into the past two years have led to
creation of a number of Web sites that provide information on the
topic from a variety of viewpoints.
of those Abused by Priests, which has operated a We site for victims
of clergy sexual abuse, together with families of a alleged victims
and concerned lay Catholics, this week launched a new site at
through its New England SNAP Chapter.
recently redesigned SNAP site at
www.survivorsnetwork.org focuses on the needs of victims, the
new site is designed to help lay people in Massachusetts who are
‘determined to do whatever we can to make our church safer.’
“While this site
is the latest to arrive in cyberspace, a number of sites already
exist on this issue.
Voice of the Faithful discusses its work at
www.votfworcester.org. The area organization lists resources for
victims incense Massachusetts and posts general information on
“Mary T. Jean of
Leominster, leader of the Worcester Voice, maintains a site at
www.worcestervoice.com. Her site contains her own report on the
extent of the sexual abuse issue in the Worcester diocese. She also
lists resources for victims and provides link to other sites. She
said yesterday the report has been downloaded nearly 1,000 times
since it went onto the site about two weeks ago.
and deacons can find information for an organization headed by
Monsignor Michael Higgins, a canon lawyer, at Justice for Priests
and Deacons. Monsignor Higgins, who is based in San Diego on his
www.justiceforpriests.org maintains priests and deacons
have rights under the church’s canon law and should not surrender
was not in the Worcester Diocese with Bishop Harrington: “You’re
guilty till proven innocent.” Harrington must have taken his line
from Alice in Wonderland: “Then rendered the verdict and then
conducted the trail.”
August 1, 2003
Here is an
eye-opener: “Judge rejects lawyer’s attempt to delay trial of
Rueger” in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette on page B6 and
not on page A1 (Front page) by Richard Nangle. Where is Kathleen A.
Shaw? Is it the switch and bait technique by the newspaper. It is
worth the complete article at this time.
The article read:
“Sine J. Braio of Shrewsbury alleges that Auxiliary Bishop George E.
Rueger plied him with alcohol and raped him during several visits to
a summer vacating home in Scituate in the early 1960s.
interrogatories filed in connection with Mr. Braio’s lawsuit, Mr.
Braio, now 53, says that Bishop Rueger sexually abused him on
several occasions, first while the plaintiff was an altar boy at Our
Lady of Lourdes parish in Worcester and then whiles he was at the
former Lyman School for Boys in Westboro.
interrogatories were filed in response to a motion by Mr. Braio’s
lawyer, Daniel J. Shea of Houston to postpone action on the lawsuit.
Superior Court Judge Leila R. Kern denied the motion yesterday.
Diocesan lawyer James G. Reardon included the interrogatories with
his response to the court. The documents, singed by Mr. Braio July3,
expand upon the allegations he made against Bishop Rueger in his
lawsuits against the cleric.
“The documents sow
that Mr. Braio said he has been under psychiatric care for the past
10 years for a panic disorder and that he takes anti-depression
“‘In early 2002, I
began to read about the impact of parts abuse on minors and began to
connect their stories to what had happened to me,’ Mr. Braio said in
the written answers to questions posed by the diocese. (I never was
given such an opportunity to have available in my two cases.)
“ ‘Since early
2002, I have been very depressed, suicidal at times, and on one
occasion when I visited the Scituate house, I became physically ill
and vomited,’ he said.
“Mr. Braio and Mr.
Shea made an attempt to find the house about a month ago and settled
on 51 Egypt Ave. (All those houses look alike.)
interrogatories entail a number of occasions in which Mr. Braio was
hospitalized for heart problems. He says he had a heart attackin1989
and later suffered a stroke during cardiac catheterization.
hospital stay in 1998, Mr. Braio said he received a visit from
Bishop Rueger. He said he was under heavy sedation and does not
recall specifics but was told by his physician that he was talking
about Bishop Rueger while coming out of anesthesia.
“He said that at
the time of alleged rapes he did not believe he had been harmed,
because Bishop Rueger told him the acts had ‘some kind of religious
significance. I do not know that mechanism that caused me to put the
sexual events out of my mind. However, in early 2002, when I began
to read reports of priest victims having drug problems, suicide
problems, and the like, I began to put the pieces together that led
me to believe, as I do now, that Rueger’s conduct was extremely
“Mr. Braio said he
was convicted of two crimes, receiving stolen property and breaking
and entering, in 1993. He received a suspended sentence and was
placed on probation. In answer to a question about his work history;
he said he has been receiving Social Security since 1982.
“He also said he
filed tow lawsuits that were settled in 1991. In a slip and fall
case against St. Vincent Hospital, he said he settled for $12,000 in
a motor vehicle accident, he said, he settled for $17,000.
“Mr. Reardon also
included a letter from Mr. Braio’s psychiatrist, Dr. Jonathan
Rothman of Worcester. In the letter, dated April 18, 2002. Dr.
Rothman said it was only in the last several visits that Mr. Braio
talked about sexual abuse.
“‘Facts of his
treatment with me would not be supportive that his symptoms could be
casually related to sexual abuse, although it is impossible to rule
that out, or after this period of time, determine what percentage of
his symptoms could be attributed to this,’ Dr. Rothman wrote in his
letter to Worcester lawyer James J. Gribouski, who had been
representing Mr. Braio.
decided against filing suit on behalf of Mr. Braio. Mr. Shea filled
his lawsuit on behalf of Mr. Braio the following July.
“Mr. Shea said he
would not comment on the interrogatories. ‘The documents will simply
have to speak for themselves,’ he said.
“Mr. Reardon said
Mr. Shea provided no bias for his motion. ‘It provided virtually no
information,’ he said.
“In his filing
with the court, Mr. Reardon took issue with Mr. Shea’s contention
that Mr. Braio is incompetent and lack capacity to communicate with
“In addition to
his lawsuit against Bishop Rueger, Mr. Braio has filed notice of
intent to sue District Attorney John J. Conte, first Assistant
District Attorney James Reagon and Monsignor Thomas J. Sullivan,
diocesan chancellor and liaison to the district attorney’s office,
for $1 million.
“Mr. Braio tow
week ago dropped Mr. Reardon from the suit. He had alleged that Mr.
Reagon from the suit. He had alleged that Mr. Reagon told Msgr.
Sullivan Mr. Braio had HIV. The allegation came from pretrial
testimony in which Msgr. Sullivan said Mr. Reagon told him exactly
that. Mr. Reagon denied making the statement.
“In any event, the
testimony so upset Mr. Braio that he sought an HIV test and made the
result public when it came back negative.
“ ‘Obviously, the
burden is on attorney She to demonstrate to the curt that Mr. Braio
is incompetent or suffers from some other mental disability,; Mr.
Reardon wrote in his filing with the court. “…Mr. Braio’s recent
actions in attending the court hearing on the motion to dismiss,
filing answers to interrogatories in this case, filling a verified
complaint for slander against Monsignor Sullivan and Assistant
District Attorney Reardon in Suit 2, and then moving, on his own, to
dismiss only Mr. Reardon from the lawsuit, present strong evidence
that Mr. Braio is competent and making informed thoughtful legal
“Mr. Reardon has
argued in court that the lawsuit against Bishop Rueger should be
“Judge Kern has
yet to rule on the motion to dismiss.”152
There are all
types of questions of proceedings, interrogatories and other factors
that were never allowed in my situation. Obviously, I did not the
money for lawyers and the Worcester Chancery as Rueger had. So, this
is the Church and America. Isn’t it great?
What one has to be
aware of is in the Worcester Diocese, there were over 30 priest
allegated. Rueger was the only one defended in curt as such by the
Dioceses. Even, when in the paper in 1995 that article about me in
the Worcester Telegram & Gazette where Rueger was quoted as
saying that I was “odd.” Did I have any chance of “defamation of
character” direction? I didn’t have a chance.
case should be studied by someone to get doctrines. It would fill
reams of paper. With such a heavy hand of the Worcester Diocese and
legal proceedings, how would have anyone else dared to allocate
George Rueger? More was going to come out on him-as he said to me in
1993- and we will never know.
The Catholic Free
Press carried this day the article “National Review Board work
continues uninterrupted” by the Catholic News Service. It reported:
“Chicago-The work of the National Review Board established by the
U.S. bishops last year ‘has proceeded uninterrupted and with
continued vigor and independence’ despite the resignation of its
first chairman, the board said in an evaluation, the board said in
an evaluating of its first year.
“In the eight-page
report released at a July 29 news conference in Chicago, the board
thanks former Oklahoma Gov. Frank Keating, who resigned in June as
board chairman, for ‘the leadership in the early stages of our
“But the report
made no reference to the controversy that led to the resignation of
Keating who had characterized some bishops as being as secretive as
a crime family in their handling of allegations of child sexual
abuse by priests.
“Most of the
report undated the status of six major goals set for the National
Review Board when it was established by the U.S. bishop last
August 8, 2003
This will get
interesting for the hierarch and the media: “1962 norms on sex cases
superseded” in the Catholic Free Press of this day’s issue.
stated: “Vatican City (CNS)-The Vatican’s 1962 norms for handling
cases of priests accused of soliciting sex in the confessional have
been superseded by the 1983 Cod of Canon Law and new 2001 forms for
dealing with serious crimes involving the sacraments, said the
Vatican’s top canon law official.
Herranz, president of the Pontifical Council of the Interpretation
of Legislative Text, told reporters yesterday. ‘What a matter is
recorded, the previous procedures are suspended.’
was asked about the status of a q962 doctrinal congregation
‘Instruction on the Manner of Proceeding in Cases of Solicitation,’
a term that refers specifically to sexual misconduct suggested or
carried out by parts in the context of offering sacramental
“An attorney for
victims of clerical sex abuse submitted the document to a
Massachusetts court in late July, claiming it proved a
Vatican-ordered conspiracy to cover up cases of sex abuse over the
past 40 years.
“News stirs about
the condemn in the Massachusetts press in July and nationally in
August portrayed it as an instruction atop bishops to keep every
accusation of clerical sex abuse secret.
insists that the investigation of allegations of solicitation in the
confessional and the trails of accused priests be conducted in
absolute secrecy; however, if a priest was found guilty or simply
‘admonished’ for unsuitable behavior and later was transferred to
another diocese, the bishop was obliged to inform the bishop of the
official who asked not to be identified, said yesterday the
document’s invocation of secrecy was not meant to protect guilty
priests, but to ensure a fair trial and safeguard the reputations of
innocent priests and of the penitent making the claim…”154
his same issue of
the Catholic Free Press had Father John Catoir’s column:
“Spirituality for today-Abuse polices are working” write: “Those of
you who read my column know that I campaigned for a
one-strike-and-you’re-out policy to rid the church of priest
pedophiles long before the bishops voted on it. Child abuse is a
despicable crime. Pope John Paul II said it well, “There is no room
in the priesthood for those who abuse children.”
“Part of my rage
against this crime comes from a bad memory from childhood. I was
abused once by a priest. It happened in the confessional, believe it
or not. I resisted him and went home crying in a state of shock. In
my heart and confusion I buried the story, never telling a soul.
“So when I read a
letter to the editor criticizing me for trying to abolish the new
policy designed to protect children, I have to laugh. I forgive
those who might have misjudged me. I see in them the same rage I
felt myself many years ago.
believe that the time for healing must now begin…All of us need o
forgive our sick brothers because the Lord ask it of us. We also
need to trust the good priests among us. They have chosen a life of
service and altruism, and type deserves our respect and loyalty.
This article had
me sit-up in my chair because I have been reading Catoir column and
works for some time.
Now the editorial
page of this issue of the Catholic Free Press carried “Why delay?”
It stated: “What’s going on between the plaintiff suing Bishop
Rueger and the man’s lawyer” new year after same Braio filed a civil
lawsuit alleging he was sexual assaulted , Houston lawyer Daniel J.
Shea filed an emergency notion in Superior Court to postpone
indefinitely any action on the suit. The reason he sought the
postponement is not clear because Mr. Shea uncharacteristically
would not comment to the press. His motion, however, gives the
impression that he feel his client is incompetent or unable to
maintains a normal lawyer-client relationship.
“James G. Reardon,
Jr. lawyer for the diocese opposed the motion to continue the
“The court denied
Mr. Shea’s notion and the proceedings will continue.
“Bishop Rueger has
proclaimed his innocence from the start. He deserves his day in
court to clear his name.
“It is significant
when a lawyer seeks to delay action on a lawsuit because he feels
his client is either incompetent or unable to communicate with him.
One must ask then: Why did the Telegram & Gazette buy this story on
the back page of the local section.
“If it wasn’t for
the headline, the reader probably wouldn’t have wade past the first
two paragraphs of the Aug. 1 story. The reporter led the story with
details of allegations that have already been made public. The
motion to postpone acting on the lawsuit was an aside to the
repeated allegations. The T&G story did not seek to explain why Mr.
Shea wanted to postpone action on the case. And one wonders if the
question was even asked.
“The Catholic Free
Press reported that Mr. Shea motion said that ‘matters of a
confidentially nature have arisen that mandate immediate and
emergency action.’ Mr. Shea would not elaborate on those
confidential matters for the Free Press or the court.
“Mr. Shea is the
second lawyers who may have some misgivings about working with Mr.
Braio’s case. Early last year the first lawyer contacted by Mr.
Braio decided against filing the case for him.
“After a year of
pre-court proceedings which have received a great deal of publicity,
the time has come for a trail during which fact can be distinguished
Oh! The ability to
have a a similar “editorial” written on my behalf and other priests
of the diocese escapes reasoning or does not escape what was and is
happening on Elm Street, Worcester-Chancery Building and the Free
August 2, 2003
I received a phone
call form some friends at The Cape to tell me to turn on the TV to
NECN live coverage of Molly Bish’s funeral Mass from St. Paul’s
Cathedral, Worcester. They then asked me” How are you doing? Best
answer, always, to give is “Good.” Then I was asked: What have you
been doing? I gave the typical answer to people that I knew: I’ve
been working on my manuscript. I was told that I have to move on and
jettison that stuff behind me. Oh? What about my story and seeking
some sense of justice? I had this time to move on in a “loving”
spirit of my heart. I had taken the challenge. Moving on is so
easily said but some people saying this don’t realize that all
people are not on the same plane of life. The journey continues.
The irony of
ironies was now watching Rueger at Molly’s funeral Mass. Another
observation or thought for me with this funeral Mass: Both the
hierarch and the family were using the Cathedral for “show time” and
Here was the Bish
family who attended Mass very infrequently with a funeral of their
daughter to have Bishop Reilly, Rueger and even the Abbot of the
Trappist Monastery of Spencer concelebrating the Mass for Molly.
Where they there to say: We love you and we are all in this
together? I imagine that some of those watching this were impressed
with the Worcester Diocese showing such an “outreach” and
“compassion” after all the media coverage of cover-up on the priest
sex abuse crisis. Yet, here was Rueger in the sanctuary of St.
Paul’s Cathedral sitting next to Bishop Reilly and concelebrating.
And the band plays on.
August 3, 2003
yesterdays phone call and TV program in what was the picture
portrayed and yet knowing too much of the characters and system
doing the performing.
My reaction to the
phone call from The Cape should have told them that I moved but not
what they are relating should be done-blocked out- where that would
have a re-surfacing at another time. I am or won’t take the rap for
a couple of misfit girls who couldn’t do anything in their lives to
I was able to find
out this day that priest on Administrative Leave now get $1,700 a
month compared to what I get. There is a difference of $520 a month
between what I get and the Reilly’s group. I was told by a priest
that did not have anything to do with the Worcester Chancery but
knew too much (gossip) about priest on Administrative Leave. I was
told by this priest that I was considered under Harrington’ Reign.
However, I told this priest that I had been “told” to resign my
parish with Bishop Reilly. The Church system had its way to get back
I was told by this
same priest that the “system of the Roman Catholic Church is that we
have been in, is there to preserve itself. Whatever people involved
are sacrificed to preserve the system.”
August 7, 2003
The loneliness and
isolation was being felt by me. I get no phone call practically all
week long from former parishioners and people that have waked with
me. I reflect how the dioceses had any contact with me besides the
monthly "insult” statement I am sent.
I get a call from
"Father Peacock" to go for lunch. It didn’t take long to catch how
he was digging for information on my situation. He received the
regular talk of “nothing” from me.
When I returned to
my place, I began working on my manuscript. I cam upon a document of
the phone complain form Carol McCormick. The writing on the form:
“Ted Kardas molested her…” This phrase kept running through my mind
for the reminder of the day because it was a lie on McCormick’s
part. The form stated that the phone call was taken by Sister Paula
Leiher. It was Rueger’s handwriting on the form. The date of the
phone call was March 8, 1993 at 1L45 p.m. I was called by Rueger the
next day to tell me to be in the Chancery at 4:30 p.m. This was when
it all began.
Thursday AA Step Meeting in Rindge was healing for me to attend. It
was times as such that an AA meeting gave me a peace. It was where I
would drive home with an internal serenity.
August 9, 2003
Well, the next
morning the Worcester Telegram & Gazette repots with
“Clergy-abuse lawyer scrutinized.” Richard Nangle writes: “A lawyer
represent alleged victims of clergy sexual abuse wants to read state
police reports he believes would show that Worcester District
Attorney John J. Conte is conducting a criminal investigation
that the state police have confirmed that Conte has been pursuing
two criminal investigations against me,’ said Houston lawyer Daniel
J. Shea who represents some local alleged abuse victims.
“Mr. Shea had
asked for copies of tow state police reports.
“‘I believe I have
an idea of what may be in one of them,’ he said. ‘Since it gets into
privileged matters, I don’t believe I can comment on them.’
“Mr. Shea asked
state police for copies of the reports and received a response from
Beth Crea of the Office of Chief Legal Counsel for the state police.
“; Please be
advised that the records you seek were generated in connection with
investigation conducted under the authority’ of the Worcester
district attorney’s office, Ms Crea wrote. As such the office
‘possesses these records and any privilege that may attach to them.’
“Ms. Crea said
further inquiries should be directed to the district attorney’s
“On Wednesday, Mr.
Shea sent a letter to Mr. Conte asking for two specific reports and
for ‘a true and correct unpredicted copy of any all documents or
reports in the custody or control of the Worcester County District
Attorney’s office that in any way pertain to me…’
“‘Given Ms. Crea’s
letter will not be a correct response that such records do not
exist,’ Mr. Shea wrote.
“In a faced
response to questions from a reporter that was relayed to him by his
secretary, Mr. Conte said, ‘our office response to all
correspondence we receive is that the sender of the correspondence
will be notified. We don’t generally comment on individuals who are
inferring investigation. We do investigate allegations of criminal
“Mr. Shea said he
was not surprised to learn that he was being investigated.
“‘The state police
are telling me there are two active criminal investigations against
me. It must be trumped-up story to bring me down, and I’m going to
get to the bottom of it,’ he said.
“Among Mr. Shea’s
clients is Sime J. Braio of Shrewsbury, who is suing Auxiliary
Bishop George E. Rueger on a charge of rape that dates back 40
years. Bishop Rueger, who denied the allegations, remains in his
So Attorney Shea
takes a double hit-Free Press and DA’s investigation- to bring him
down. There was always talking that there was collusion between The
Worcester DA’s Office and the Worcester Chancery Office.
Msgr. Pedone even tried to do that with me when at one of those
“temporary” chancery meetings he said to me: “We have other stuff on
you, Ted!” He pushed his finger into my chest to make him point.
Boy! This was one time that I was lucky to give him a cold stare.
They know we are
Christians by our love- Top ten on the Worcester Diocese Charts for
August 11, 2003
In “the people’s
forum” section of the Worcester Telegram & Gazette, we get
“Church’s critics must also learn to forgive” by Robert Mezzanotti
“We read in all the papers and see on television about the Voice of
the People, the Survivors Network and Massachusetts Attorney General
Thomas F. Reilly, who keep bashing priests who have sexually abused
children. They even bash bishops, and, now the Vatican.
“We know the
priests should pay for their mistakes. But you would think these
groups who’re raising their voices for justice would also bash the
Internet and television for the garbage about sex that is on day
after day. Young people who see this daily think it’s normal.
“These groups say
they want justice and help for victims of sexual abuse so they can
forget about what happened. You can never forget, but you can’t be
healed unless you learn to forgive.
“Some of those
groups say they care about the abuse, but only go after priests and
bishops. What about lawyers, judges, police and management types who
do the same things? For years, these professionals got away with
sexual abuse and some still do.
These groups don’t
know how to forgive; all they know is to get even. And that is not
what my Bible says. Christ said, ‘He who is without sin, let him
cast the first stone.’ These people would be too perfect, and I am
Fogginess is not
in the style of life that exists. It is only a word. I, always,
watch how said and who uses this word.
August 12, 2003
Kathleen A. Shaw
writes “Secrecy called Vatican mind-set: Canon lawyer says sex abuse
document didn’t cause cover-up” in this days Worcester Telegram &
“Although a 1962 Vatican document detailing how certain sexual abuse
allegations are to be handled shows the mind-set of secrecy of the
Catholic hierarch, it may not be as crucial as some people want to
believe, according to the Rev. Thomas P. Doyle.
document did not cause the clandestine mode of dealing with clergy
sexual abuse.’ He said.
“Rev. Doyle, now
an Air Force chaplain in Germany, is the canon lawyer who wrote one
of the original reports in the 1980s alerting American bishop’s that
they had a problem with clergy sexual abuse and needed to take
“His report was
initially disregarded and was to be acted on by the bishops. He has
since been speaking out for the rights of clergy sexual abuse
I was talking with
"Father Peacock" who asked me if I read Dietzin in the latest
Catholic Free Press issue. The article he was referring towards was
Fr. Dietzin on “laicization.” He realized that I didn’t and said:
“Drop it!” He was playing mind games with me. He had a slide
technique in suggesting an issue and then cutting one as with a
razor- it takes a while before you feel the cutting and see the
blood. He would look at you with an expression stating: Now, that
didn’t hurt? Did it? It was a style of control her would try to work
on other people. So, this article was about laicizing priest
allegated on abusing minors under the age of 16 and now 18. The game
that "Father Peacock" played, I was somewhat aware of his style
which I called a “game.” Even being aware, it did do some mind
cluttering at times? However, I was getting better to block and keep
it out of my mind- not allowing things by him to rent space in my
August 15, 2003
This day Emily
Astell writes in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette “Rev.
Kelley pleads guilty in rape cases: Clergyman say he want ‘closure
for these people.’”
“Worcester-the Rev. Robert E. Kelley unexpectedly pleaded guilty
yesterday in Superior Court to raping two girls in Leominster and
Gardner starting more than 20 years ago/
Judge John S.
McCann ordered Rev. Kelley, 61, to undergo a pre-sentencing
evaluation, to be discussed in court Sept 24. Sentencing is set for
“When asked by
Judge McCann whether the facts were true, Rev. Kelley answered in a
strong voice resting his knuckles against a table as he stood before
“‘I’m guilty,’ he
said. ‘I want closure for these people.’…”160
with Kelley’s story was Kathleen A. Shaw reporting “Tape says Kelley
confided in Medeiros.”
She wrote: “The
Rev. Robert E. Kelley, who pleaded guilty yesterday to child rape
charges of two girls, said he told the late Cardinal Humberto S.
Medeiros of his affinity for young girls in the early 1970s but o
action was taken.
was made by Rev. Kelley to the Massachusetts State Police in 1989,
which included the information on its report when Rev. Kelley was
arrested in connection with is sexual abuse of a Gardner girls.
“A copy of that
report was shown on a 1992 production of ‘Sins of the Fathers,’
showing on the cable network A&E as part of the Investigative
connected to a clergy sexual abuse victim gave a videotape of ‘Sins
of the Father’ to Mary T. Jean of Worcester Voice, and advocacy
group for victims of clergy abuse in the Catholic Worcester diocese.
“‘I was shocked,’
Mrs. Jean said yesterday. ‘The cardinal clearly knew about Father
Kelley’s problem with girls and he did nothing too report it.’
“Mrs. Jean, who
operates a Web site at
www.worcestervoice.com, said this person, whom she declined to
name, had the tape and contacted her because of the Web site.
“The report on the
tape said Rev. Kelley told state police: ‘I did downside in another
priest and Cardinal Medeiros. Cardinal Medeiros told me not to go
near little girls. I made it stop with Jennifer. I realized I had to
stop. I continued to go over the house...
referred to Jennifer Kraskouskas of Gardner, who file a civil suit
in the 1990s….”161
Catholic Reporter gives us in its editorial “Another Vatican sex
disconnects.” It reads: “the Vatican document ‘Considerations
Regarding Proposals to Give Legal Recognition to Unions Between
Homosexual persons,’ introduces o new moral teaching, but
intensifies Rome’s resolve to get into the political fray on sexual
“It s a call to
Catholics to refuse with any measures that suggest any analogy
between same sex unions and traditional marriage between a man and a
woman. Meanwhile, the document will likely be remembered less for
what it says that how it says it. Same sex unions are cast as the
product of ‘deviant behavior.’ These words were quickly picked up in
the media and are reminiscent of two other words used in a 1986
Vatic; a declaration on homosexuality that termed it an ‘objectively
harsh tone makes it less likely it will achieve its internet-to
engage Catholics and others to consider the Vatican position.
admonitions for Catholics of a type and character seldom, if ever,
seen recently outside the area of sexuality. This unfortunately adds
to a stereo-type that sees the church as fixated on sexuality.
“The document has
been on the drawing boards for years, but comes at a time when the
hierarch, through its stunning failure to deal with the clergy sex
abuse scandals, has eroded its credibility to deal with sexual
“It is yet another
tragic manifestation of the disconnect between official church
teachings and catholic practices on sexual matters, a disconnect
that can be traced at least as far back as 1968 when Pope Paul VI
issued Humanae Vitae, condemning forms of artificial birth
“At the core, the
Vatican condemns sexual intimacy between tow men or two women
because they counter traditional, natural law-based teaching on
sexual morality. These teachings go back centuries and evolved out
of a time when sex was viewed as having one purpose alone,
procreation. This view gave way in the second half of the 20th
century to a wilder view of marital intimacy that made room for
metal j psychological support…162
The article that
raised the editorial was “1962 document orders secrecy in sex cases:
Many bishops unaware obscure missive was in their achieves.” John L.
Allen, Jr. reported in Rome: “A 1962 Vatican document ordering
secrecy in cases of sexual misconduct by priests is not, according
to canon lawyers, a ‘smoking gun’ providing evidence of a cover-up
of sex abuse orchestrated by Rome.
handling lawsuits against the Catholic Church have pointed to the
document as evidence of obstruction of justice.
“For one thing,
canon lawyers say, the document was so obscure that few bishops had
ever herded of it. For another, they say, secrecy in canonical
procedures should not be confused with refusal to cooperate with
civil authorities. The 1962 document would not have tied the hands
of a bishop, or anyone else, who wanted to report a crime by a
priest to the police.
document, title in Latin Crimen Solicitations, was issued in March
1962 by the Holy Office (today the Congregation for the Doctrine of
the Faith). It established a procedure for canonical cases in which
priest’s were accused of abusing the confessional to sexually
proposition penitents. The four concluding paragraphs extent the
procedure to crime pessimisms or ‘worst crime.’ Meaning homosexual
acts contrary to a priest’s celibate commitment. The document was
not designed to address sexual abuse of minors, but would include
many such violations…”163
Then we get Msgr.
F. Stephen Pedone writing a “Commentary: Vatican Instruction not
‘smoking gun’” in the Catholic Free Press issue of August 15th.
He wrote: “During
these news-starved days of August some in the media, ravenous for
anything they can sink their teeth into, have expended rives of ink
writing about and saturating the airways with self-proclaimed
experts trying to convince us that they have discovered the ‘smoking
gun’ that provides evidence of a Church-ordered cover-up of clergy
sexual abuse of minors. The Vatican directive form 1962, ‘Crimen
solicitations,’ is not a smoking gun. To claim that it is certainly
and unequivocally false and has no basis in the so-called evidence
the media has presented.
‘Crimen Solicitations,’ was issued March 16, 1962, by the then
Congregation of the Holy Office, now the Congregation of the
Doctrine of Faith. It was primarily directed to bishops to assist
them and ecclesiastical judges in investigating claims of
solicitation by a priest of a penitent during the celebration of the
Sacrament of Penance to sin against the sixth commandment of the
Decalogue (The sixth commandment is ‘You shall not commit
adultery.’) An offending priest can be penalized by dismissal form
the clerical state for violating that church law.
“In the Sacrament
of Penance, a person confesses sins and seeks forgiveness from the
priest, who acts in the name of Christ and His Church in this action
of reconciliation. The priest is bund under penalty of
excommunicating not to bread the ‘seal of confession’ by divulging
the identity of the person and what the person is confessing to him.
“Not bread the
‘cnfessional seal’ even to defend him. Therefore the utmost care
must be taken in investigation claims of solicitation in confession
to protect the confidentiality of the matter confessed, to respect
the good names o the parities involved, namely, the penitent and
priest, and safeguard the integrity of the sacrament.
“Somehow member of
the media and legal profession have attacked the secrecy which the
document calls for in investigation claims of solicitation as
evidence of cover-up and conspiracy to conceal evidence. What about
the secrecy mandated by the legislature surrounding grand jury
proceedings? Would this be used as evidence to prove similar motives
by lawmakers, district attorneys and civil court judos?”164
What we have of
interest from Pedone’s “commentary” was his beginning comment of
“news-starved day of Augusts come in the media, ravenous for
anything...” where we have Bishop Rueger’s court case-when- August.
Was this by chance by the DA and Diocese to run his case? Fewer
medium and the fact of people on vacations have anything to do with
this? I’m sure these parities had answers to questions that were not
August 17, 2003
bulleting of Holy Spirit catholic Parish Community of Gardner,
MA-August 16/17, 2003 announced “Safe Environment Training for
Parish Volunteers: The Charter for the Protection of children and
Youth requires that all ministers, educations, church
personnel, and Volunteers who work with minors participate in
a yearly educational training program. A Training Session will be
held at Holy Spirit church Hall on Tuesday September 9th
form 7 to 9 PM. This is mandatory for all CCD Teachers and
all who work with children.”165
This type of
announcement was being published in the area parishes of the
Worcester Diocese. However, there were issues by some people of who
had to attend and who did not. You may think it is a clear
understanding of attendance. But, there was some bumps in the road.
August 21, 2003
This is my sixth
anniversary of resigning as Pastor of St. Edwards. The fact that my
priestly ministry (carrier) was short-circuited. My persona
character was devastated but not totally snuffed-out. The financial
lost o my part with lawyer’s fees, loss of income and benefits were
and are devastating. In addition, the emotional toll had been
significant. My ministry was at an apex of all my years of study and
previous parish priestly work. I was making things happen in the
parish and diocese as such- R.C.I.A. with “mystagogy”, lay ministry,
two major building programs-church renovating and new parish faith
community center-in addition to personally painting and restoring
the rectory to be inhabited against after an elderly sick pastor
with a dog that was not housebroken. It was exciting for 8 to 9
YeT, my future
were always in perile for what next may happen being aware of too
many internal Church personalities and politics. This is why writing
my journal into a manuscript did create a fire in my being.
Kathleen A. Shaw
picks-up on the 1962 Vatican Document “Crimen Solicitations” with an
article in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette of this day. She
states: “The Vatican recently said its 1962 directive concerning how
allegations of sexual abuse involving the sacrament of confession
are to be handled had to been in force for years, but newsletters of
the Canon Law Society of America show that discussion of the
document continued until last year. “Lawyers Daniel J. Shea of
Houston and Carmen L. Durso of Boston recently presented a copy of
the Vatican document, called in Lain’ “Crimen Solicitations’-or ‘On
the Manner of Proceeding in Cases of Solicitations’-to U.S. Attorney
Michael J. Sullivan in Boston.
“The U.S. Attorney
told Mr. Shea last week that he is studying the document. The
lawyers are asking that the federal government investigate what they
see as an international conspiracy by the Catholic Church to cover
up cases of sexual abuse by clergy.
“The newsletter of
the Canon Law Society show that offers met in Rome in February 2002,
a time when the church wide sexual abuse scandal broke open in
Boston with new revelations about the extent of clergy sexual abuse
within the Boston Archdiocese…”166
August 24, 2003
Richard Nangle and
Kathleen A. Shaw reported this day’s issue of the Worcester
Telegram & Gazette: Geoghan is killed in prison- Pedophile
priest dies after being attacked.” They wrote: “Shirley-Defrocked
pedophile priest John J. Geogahn whose cases helped set the stage
for the resignation of Cardinal Bernard F. Law of the Boston
archdiocese, died yesterday shortly after reportedly being attacked
in the state prison here.
“Joseph L. Cruce,
37, who was serving a life sentence at the Souza-Baranowski prison,
was charged whit murder in connection with the former priest’s
death, according to District Attorney John J. Conte.
“Mr. Geoghan died
at UMass-Memorial-Health Alliance Leominster campus after being
strangled at the prison shortly before noon, Mr. Conte sad, adding
that he will seek a murder indictment.
“Mr. Geoghan had
been in protective custody as a precautionary measure, but still
had some contact with other inmates, said Kelly Nantel, Department
of Correction spokeswoman.
“More than 130
people in civil suits have claimed Mr. Geoghan sexually abuse them
as children while a priest. Mr. Georgian was serving a 9-to 10 year
sentence on a 2002 conviction for indecent assault and battery on a
Christopher Coyne, a spokesman for the archdiocese of Boston,
offered prayers for Mr. Geoghan’s family…”167
The same issue of
this paper had a small article: “Pedophiles are ‘marked’ in jail” by
The Associated Press. It stated: “the prison death yesterday of
pedophile ex-priest John Geoghan struck experts on clerical sex
abuse as a sad but perhaps predictable result of imprisoning such a
“The Rev. Thomas
Doyle, a canon layer turned victim advocate who has worked for two
decade on priest souse cases, said even offender like Geroghan
deserve protection in prison. Georghan died after he was attacked by
August 25, 2003
Globe printed and “editorial: entitle “ONE MORE VICTIM.” It
stated “No chapter closes with the murder of John J. Geoghan-thee
are only more questions crying to be answered. Talk of jailhouses
justice and vindication for the crime of a 68-year-old defrocked
priest merely serve to compound the sorry epic of wrongs committed
not only by one deeply-disturbing individual, but by so many others
in the Catholic priesthood and hierarch.
Saturday at the hand of another inmate at the Souza-Baranowski
Correction Center on the Shirley Correction Complex points to
institutional-something that tragically shaped Geoghan’s life, and
consequently, the lives of the nearly 150 people he had been accused
“Just as the
churchmen lectured to protect the children entrusted to its care, so
too has a correctional facility apparently failed to keep Geoghan
safe in what is supposed to be its protective custody unit.
“And just as
Geoghan’s victims deserve legal retribution for his unconscious
acts, so does Geoghan’s murder row demand a full investigation and
meting out of fair justice. ...”169
Telegram & Gazette this day printed Geoghan became symbol of
horror in church scandal” by Robert O’Neill. He wrote: “Boston-For
more than three decades, John Geroghan molested nearly 150 boys
entrusted to his care. He would seek out boss from broke homes,
ingratiate himself with their families, and then abuse his young
charges during trip to Fenway Park, out for ice cream, visits to
their homes, even in the rectory.
“His abuse curt a
wide swath through parishes within the Boston Archdiocese-and he
came to symbolize the horrors of pedophile priests and the
exhaustive steps church hierarchy would take to keep the allegations
“Then, in January
2002, a judge ordered the archdiocese to release internal documents
related to Georgian’s case-and the paperwork told a disturbing
story: The archdiocese had been well aware of the allegations, but
simply moved Geoghan form parish to parish to try to avoid
August 27, 2003
I was speaking by
phone with "Father Peacock" and he did another one of his games. He
would say: “Since you have off the job…” It was taken by me as a
“put-down” because being on Administrative Leave; he would use this
expression of keeping me in my place. There were times that I
wondered what I was talking about with him that hit a “sore” spot of
his ego or witnessing a mean streak that was a dominate factor in
Here was another
time that it would affect me and other times that I would make a
joke back at him with it.
I knew that I was
on Administrative Leave (Off the job) and I was striving or a “fair
and balanced” presentation to clear myself of a slanderous, slander
and interpretation by church officials in addition to certain
reporters and the media. It was a huge barrier that I really knew
was not going to be allowed to undertake.
August 28, 2003
Then Kathleen A.
Shaw gives us in this day’s issue of the Worcester Telegram &
Gazette “Ex-city priest arraigned for assault.”
“Worcester-The Rev. David L. Blizzard, who left the Worcester
Diocese in 1988, was arraigned yesterday in Brockton Superior court
on a charge of indecent assault and battery of a person over age 14.
John J. Conte initially investigated but turned the case over to the
Plymouth County district attorney because the offense allegedly
happened July 25, 1988, in Wareham.
O’Connell, an assistant district attorney for Plymouth County, sad
Rev. Blizzard, 56, lives at 134 East Pine St., Howey-in-the-Hills,
Fla. Blizzard returned voluntarily to Massachusetts for the
arraignment and was released on person recognizance. He is returning
to Florida but is expected to return for a pretrial conference Oct.
2, he said. Howey-in-the-Hills is a small community in central
Florida, located between Orlando and Altamonte Springs.
The victim was not
named by Mr. O’Connell.
“In a pending
lawsuit, Robert A. Malo of Worcester alleges that he was sexually
abused by Rev. Blizzard in 1978 or 1979 as part of a ‘child sex
ring’ that operated form the former House of Affirmation in
statue of limitations on sexual abuse would have forced in 1988 when
Rev. Blizzard left the state. Raymond L. Delise, diocesan spokesman,
has said Rev. Blizzard left the diocese in 1988 and they did not
know where he was…”171
The stories became
more interesting. Whenever I read about “child sex ring” and the
House of Affirmation in Whitinsville had me recall while in Hartford
during 1993 that Father Jack Kiley of the staff asked me if there
was a “sex ring” in Worcester? The media and legal system were
working this term and wanted it so badly to make some connections.
As far as I know, it never was proven by all the investigations
undertaken by authority systems.
I heard an
interesting interview on the radio this day. Brain Kingman of the
Oakland A’s in 1986 was baseball’s last 20 game loser. He said this
turning into depression, anger and denial on his part towards so
many other aspects of life. It was his living hell.
When I heard this,
I reflected how my experience since 1993 would possibly be the same
if I didn’t do something about it myself. I did in establishing
short and long term goals in my research and writing undertaking. It
had me sharpening-up my skills and especially my mental aspect of
living a priesthood that was much different then my previous 25
years or so.
I had to reflect
in checking my writings because I read my own depression, anger and
denial at different times with my “dynamic” insights.
prints this day “Prey on the Predator in prison, John Geoghan,
became the victim. This sordid crime story has no moral-but it may
result in real reform” by Daniel McGinn. He writes “During has 36
years as a Roman Catholic priest, serial pedophile John Geoghan
preyed upon the most vulnerable members of his flock: poor boys from
broke homes. But during the last moments of his life in a
maximum-security Massachusetts prison, Geoghan received a harsh
lesson in what it’s like to be the weakest guy on the block.
According to new details of the killing that emerged last week,
Geoghan’s alleged assailant, convicted murder Joseph Druce, had been
plotting the attack for a month. He sneaked to Geoghan’s cell after
lunch on a
Aug. 23 and jammed
the doors hut with a paperback book. Druce hound and gagged the
former priest with a T shirt, then used a pre-stretched sock and
shoe to crank a garrote around Geoghan’s neck, strangling him. For
good measure, Druce repeatedly jumped off the bed to stomp on the
dying man. As a 15-man response team struggled tope the cell, one
inmate recalled to a lawyer, Druce taunted the: ‘Don’t bother to
hurry-he already dead.’ Indeed, when guards finally got in Geoghan’s
face ‘looked like the guts you pull out of a dish,’ says a
corrections source. One guard tried performing CPR, but Geoghan’s
innards were so pulverized ‘it was like doing chest compressions on
a concrete floor.’
are a staple of TV crime shows, and as victims go, a child rapist is
hardly a sympathetic figure. But the gruesome details of Geoghan’s
killing and seemingly common-sense measures that might have
prevented it-have transfixed the public and energized prison-reform
advocates. The Geoghan case is unfolding against a backdrop of
nationwide prison budget cuts that even some wardens admit are
making prisons more dangerous than the would be. As prison staffing
level have dropped, inmate violence has risen: in 2000-2001 there
were 42,000 reported inmate-on-inmate assaults, up about 4 percent
from the year before. Geoghan’s case is also drawing special
scrutiny to the systems states use to decide where to assign inmates
and how much protection they’re afforded. While some observers
aren’t surprised Geoghan-a frail pedophile and obvious target-was
killed, most are appalled that he was housed within easy reach of
Druce, a violent neo-Nazi and a clear threat. ‘Prisons ought to be
places where people can live out their sentences-priests or not,’
the most Rev. Wilton Gregory, president of the U.S. Council of
catholic Bishops, told Newsweek…”174
Telegram & Gazette carried the following article by Ralph
Ranalli of The Boston Globe-which is owned by The New York Times
that also owns the Worcester Telegram & Gazette- entitled “Lawyers
hit it big in church scandal.”
I’m one that
whenever a story is developing or being told, my mind wonders and
says “Watch the money line.” So, I include this complete article to
smack my point-money or agenda and truth may be forfeited.
“The $85 million settlement in the Boston clergy sex abuse scandal
is not only the most expensive abuse settlement in the history of
the Catholic Church, it’s a hefty payday for lawyers who sued on
behalf of victims: an estimated $30 million in legal fees, layers
“That figure has
angered some victims and advocates who say that abuse by clergy will
get far less one because so much will go to lawyers. But others say
the customary 33 percent cut, plus expenses, is fair stressing that
they cold not have sued the Archdiocese of Boston had they been
forced top pay legal fees up front.
yesterday, Archbishop Seam P. O’Malley said the archdiocese will
borrow money, consider selling more real estate holdings, and try to
collect from its insurance companies to fund the settlement. He
called the settlement ‘the answer too many prayers.’
are very satisfied, very pleased that the settlement has been
reached,’ O’Malley said at a meeting of the U.S. Conference of
Bishops in Washington, D.C yesterday.
agreement was unanimously ratified yesterday afternoon during a
meeting at a downtown Boston hotel with 57 lawyers representing 552
alleged victims of abuse. The lawyers must persuade 80 percent of
the clients to sign on for it to become effective.
“ ‘They are raking
in millions of dollars and just using victims, propping them up in
front of press conferences so other clients will come in and hire
them,’ John Saco, a victim of defrocked recently slain priest John
J. Geoghan, who had settled an earlier case with the archdiocese.
‘ ‘The money
victims will get is really a slap in the in the face when you look
at what it really is after the attorney’s fees,’ said Sacco, the New
England coordinator for The Linkup, a national group that brings
together survivors of sexual abuse.
“A member of the
group Coalition of Catholics and Survivors, however, said that the
lawyers were crucial in exposing the extent of the clergy abuse
scandal and forcing the archdiocese to deal with it.
“‘No one else was helping the
victims,’ said Susan Gallagher. ‘(The lawyers) are highly
compensated but in this case they did a lot of good.’
defend their fees, saying they have put in thousands of hours over
four years fighting for clients in cases once considered legal long
“They also point
out that the amounts paddle in comparison with the $775 million in
legal fees paid to lawyers who represented Massachusetts in its
landmark lawsuit against the tobacco industry-lawyers who are
seeking abuse victims for years and has 42 clients in the tentative
agreement, said those who resent what lawyers make in
contingency-fee cases do not appreciate the work done with no
guarantee of a payoff.
like that lawyers get the fees they get, though they’re perfectly
willing to accept it if it’s in an automobile case or something like
that,’ Durso said. ‘Look, it’s tow years of work, and we’re not done
by any shape or form.’
“The legal fees in
the Boston abuse case are expected to be a record because of the
size of the unprecedented settlement. In the recent $25.7 million
settlement in the Diocese of Louisville, for example, legal fees
were estimated at about $10 million.
agreement, if all of the victims participate, the archdiocese would
make $85 million available to pay their claims, with individual
awards-the vast majority of which would be between $80,000 and
$300,000-to be decided by a team of arbitrators over the next few
“Of the $85
million, however, lawyers will get to take $750,000 off the top for
expenses in pursuing the cases thus far.
not-of-pocket expenses already estimated in the millions, however,
many will deduct added money from their individual clients’ awards
to cover expenses. They will also deduct the standard 33 percent
contingency fee-or whatever fee was agreed upon-from indicial awards
fee case, lawyers take no money up front, but take a percentage of
any awards or settlement. If there is no settlement or if the case
is lost, the lawyer gets nothing.
yesterday that they typically deduct another 2 percent or so in a
contingency fee case for expense, meaning that if a victim stands to
get a $100,000 award, he or she would keep $65,000 with $35,000
going to the lawyer.
Jr. (my case with the two girls), a lawyer for the Boston firm
Greenberg Traurig, which represented 260 victims-question if this
was from all their clients or only Boston’s Archdiocese- in the
clergy abuse case, said the notion that Boston lawyers are getting
rich off the case is false. MacLeish said his firm-senior partners
there routinely charge corporate clients $500 to $700 per hour-has
at least $10 million in lawyers’ time invested in the case, with as
many as 12 lawyers (one of them deposed me in Boston) working on the
case at various times. (How many other clients did MacLeish and
Garabedian have from outside claims of Boston as Worcester Diocese
and other dioceses?)
“The firm has also
laid out more than $1.2 million in expenses must of which will not
be passed on to clients, he said.
“‘If people want
to criticize us, they are entitled to their opinion,’ MacLeish said.
‘We have not had one request, not one from a client who has said ‘I
want you to reduce my legal fee.’
“MacLeish said he
did not know how much the firm stood to make in fees, but other
lawyers in the case estimated that Greenberg Traurig could bring in
as much as $14 million. The lawyer who represents the next largest
number of clients, Mitchell Garabedian, stands to take as much as $6
million in fees if all his clients opt to participate, lawyers said.
“‘It is certainly
going to be a substantial sum,’ Garabedian said. ‘Bit it certainly
not a windfall for me. I have spent countless numbers of hours on
these cases, with clients contracting me throughout the day and
nights. There are many easier ways to make money than by handling
these kinds of cases.’ “175
I reflected on my
case and tired to put into perspective my situation and how this
information related overall. I recall my civil lawyer telling me
that the “girls got no money at all.” It was all absorbed by lawyer
fees and that seemed what the Worcester Diocese used to close my
case. Then, it was nothing after that with me.
The next day we
get from the Catholic Free Press this editorial: “It not about the
money. The money will not ease the hurt. The money will not erase
the memory. The money will not restore the innocence.
society looks upon someone who has money. We call the ‘well-off.’
But are they really? If all $85 million of the Boston Archdiocese
settlement for sexual abuse victims went to one person, he or she
would not be instantly made will. He or she would still need to know
to know love, patience, gentles, kindness, goodness, peace and
forgiveness. Those are things money cannot ever buy. We can only get
those things through each other and untimely from God.
“The hollowness of
a dropped coin will ring in the ears of one who feels that the money
is the answer. Unfortunately, it is a symbol in this catalyst
society of how much we value something and, in this case, someone.
The more money it cost the more it’s worth.
“These 552 victims
of sexual abuse are worth more than money but some do not know that.
Through our own fault some of us have not made them understand their
value and at this point only a sum of money can convince them.
“They did not know
how valuable they were when the Church sought to help them, through
prayer and counseling, to reach the real healer-God, the only one
who can ease the hurt, erase the memory, and restore the innocence.
That is where the real value of the offer made into the victims of
sexual buses lies: the offer of someone to listen to them and help
them heal. Had we been doing that all along there would be no need
for large sums of money.
“We are all sorry
for what the victims of sexual abuse had to live through. These past
20 months must have been a living hell for some. We pray that this
week is another turning point for those who have not yet fund
healing and forgiveness. We hope that they will mark this day as one
on which they were able to say ‘I am going to be well-off in the
In my reading of
this editorial, I had the issue of compassion to be understood as
being automatic with such a horrendous violation of anyone. But, the
editorial seemed to reflect that the Church was laxed in their
vigilance. If I needed to make a comment-it was wrong in how things
were handled. But, there was the issue that the Church used “the
dragnet going through the water” to take revenge on anyone the
authorities would target. Let’s not forget that I knew about Bishop
Harrington and his drunken driving accident and cover-up. The wrath
of a Worcester Chancery mob to protect the bishop was very clear in
a brutal “cover-up” against me.
This same issue of
the Catholic Free Press printed “Letter from alleged killer tells of
his motivation.” William T. Clew of the Free Press Staff wrote” “In
a letter to The Catholic Free Press, Joseph L. Druce, accused of
the Aug. 23 slaying of John J. Geoghan at Souza-Baranowski
Correctional Center in Shirley, claimed the killing was meant to
show the world that child predators must be dealt with more
said that the sex offenders he ahs spoken to in prison never showed
remorse, ‘only gloating and reminiscing (sic) over past victims.
That was my motivation.’
“He also expressed
his sorrow and sent his ‘sincere and heart-felt apology’ to
Catherine Geoghan. Mr. Geoghan’s sister for her loss, though ‘she’ll
probably (six) not forgive me.’
“In order to mail
a letter from the correctional center, prisoners must give the
letter to a corrections officer, who verifies that the name on the
letter is the same as that of the person handling in the letter for
mailing, according to Justin L. Latina, director of public affairs
for the Massachusetts Department of Correction.
Department of correction officials said the identifying numbers
listed on the letter and envelope in which it was mailed
corresponded to those of Mr. Druce at the correctional center…”177
This day’s issue
of the Worcester Telegram & Gazette had a surprise article
that appeared on page A2 of this day. If you want to see how the
Church system does operate with a heavy hand: “Shea withdraws from
Braio case” Lawyer cites secret settlement try.”
Emilie Astell of
the Telegram I Gazette Staff wrote: “Worcester-A Houston layer
representing a Shrewsbury man charging sexual abuse at the hands of
a Roman Catholic bishop was allowed to withdraw from the case
yesterday, but is charging that his former client is being coerced
into a secret settlement. (This is most interesting.)
withdrew, lawyer Daniel J. Shea filed for intervention in the case
of Sime J. Braio, 53, who alleged in one of tow lawsuits that
Auxiliary Bishop George E. Rueger sexually abused him when Mr. Braio
was a teenager. Bishop Rueger has denied the allegation.
“Mr. Braio also
named the Roman Catholic bishop of Worcester, a corporation, in the
suit but the corporation was dismissed as a defendant yesterday by
order of Superior Court Judge Leila R. Kern.
“The judge said in
her decision that Mr. Braio had not established a factual basis to
hold the corporation liable.
“Mr. Braio also
had a defamation suit against Monsignor Thomas J. Sullivan, diocesan
chancellor and liaison to the office of Worcester District Attorney
John J. Conte. Mr. Braio alleges that monsignor Sullivan
disseminated misinformation within the diocese that Mr. Braio had
HIV Mr. Braio later sought an HIV test, which came back negative. He
made the result pubic.
“During a hearing
yesterday on Mr. Shea’s motion to withdraw, Mr. Braio said he had
waited two months to receive all the files held by Mr. Shea so that
he could find a new lawyer.
“‘I have several
attorneys who want to look at the case,’ Mr. Braio said, ‘but I need
“Judge Kern said
she was reluctant to allow Mr. Shea to withdraw without having
another lawyer to replace him. She called tow Worcester lawyers,
Abigail Williams and Robert C. Fontana, a former assistant district
attorney, to the bench to determine whether they were interested in
taking on the case. Both were interested in taking on the case. Both
were in the courtroom listening to the proceedings.
“Ms. Williams sad
she and Mr. Shea represented Mr. Braio a year ago, but she dropped
out for medical reasons.
for me to say whether I will represent him,’ she said, ‘but I’d be
happy to look at it.’
“After a string of
arguments over possession of the files, Judge Kern ordered Mr. She
at turn over the originals within 10 days. She also gave Mr. Braio
60 days, until Mo. 14 to come up with new legal representation.
“When the hearing
ended, Mr. Braio was approached by a reporter for comment, but Ms.
Williams and Mr. Fontana whisked him away.
application for intervention, Mr. Shea said he learned form multiple
independent sources that people acting on behalf of the Roman
Catholic corporation was attempting to enter into a secret
settlement with Mr. Braio.
“Mr. Shea charged
that the secret agreement was to be reached before Mr. Shea had an
opportunity to take depositions form tow people who would supply
evidence that Mr. Braio was a student at the Lyman school form Boys
at the time he was assaulted.
“Mr. Sea also
charged that attempts were made by the corporation and Bishop Rueger
to impede a police investigation of Mr. Braio attendance at the
school and that attempts were made to impede the effort to determine
whether a connection existed between bishop Rueger and 51 Egypt
Ave., Scituate, where he alleged assaults took place.
“Mr. Sea is
seeking a lien on any awards made to Mr. Braio, either through trial
or settlement; in connection with the 18 months he said he
represented Mr. Braio.”178
The questions here
would be more interesting to know than answers: Why was the
Worcester Diocese trying to close Rueger’s close in a background
operation? Why not clear the 51 Egypt Ave., Scituate location is
connected to possibly other people as priest? Why a settlement of a
backdoor nature being offered? These are only a few questions that
would beg others without hesitation by answers to any one of these
questions. Then, we may be getting a picture that Rueger and the
Worcester Diocese Corporation don’t want addressed. The Worcester
Diocese does not want Rueger’s case to go any further. I wonder why?
The tactics being used are wonderment in themselves.
So now comes the
Catholic Free Press weekly edition: “Diocese dropped from lawsuit”
by Kevin Luperchio. He writes: “Worcester-A superior court judge has
dismissed all counts against the diocese contained in a civil
lawsuit against it and Bishop Rueger. (How was this done because
Rueger was a priest in the Worcester Diocese when Braio claimed he
was raped by then Father Rueger who was an Associate Pastor in a
parish of the Worcester Diocese?)
“In a separate
ruling, the judge also allowed the plaintiff’s lawyer to withdraw
from the case.
“The suit, filed
in July 2002 by Sime Braio, 52, of Shrewsbury, alleges that Bishop
Rueger sexually molested him when Mr. Braio was an altar boy at Our
Lady of Lourdes Parish in Worcester and that the diocese knowing
concealed information about the alleged assaults. Bishop Rueger
denies the charges.
“Judge Leila r.
Kern rules on Sept. 10 that the diocese could not be held liable in
the case since thee was no evidence that it knew of the alleged
assault before 2001(My allegations were not known until some 18
years). Mr. Braio, in his complaints stated he first informed the
diocese alleged assaults in 2001.
“‘There are o
factual allegations this (the diocese) had knowledge of Rueger’s
alleged conduct unto 2001, almost forty years after the alleged
assaults,’ Judge Kern wrote in her decision.
against the diocese alleged aggravated sexual assault and battery;
intentional infliction of emotional distress; fraud or fraudulent
concealment and conspiracy.
James G. Reardon Jr. Of Reardon & Reardon, a Worcester law firm said
Tuesday that he was please with the ruling.
appropriately and accurately applied the rule of law in this case
and dismissed the claims against the diocese which we have
consistently asserted lacked any legal merit,’ Mr. Reardon said.
“One charge now
remains in the suit, a count of aggravated sexual assault and
battery against Bishop Rueger.
hearing last Friday, Judge Kern dismissed Mr. Braio’s lawyer, Daniel
J. She of Huston and postponed the case for 60 days to allow Mr.
Braio to find new counsel. Mr. Shea filed a motion on Aug. 14 to
withdraw from the suit following Mr. Braio’s decision to dismiss him
as hi lawyer.
“Judge Kern said
she was reluctant to discharge Mr. Shea at this point but was doing
so because she felt he was hammering the progress of the case.
“‘The court wishes
this case to move forward,’ she said.
“She also ordered
Mr. Shea to turn over his files of Mr. Braio’s case within 10 days.
Mr. Braio had accused Mr. Shea of withholding the records…. ‘We
don’t’ believe the case has any merit and therefore we will not
settle.’ (Diocesan lawyer James G. Reardon, Jr.) As part of judge
Kern’s ruling a second case filed by Mr. Braio under counsel of Mr.
Shea has also been postponed for 60 days. In that suit Mr. Braio
alleges that Msgr. Thomas J. Sullivan, diocesan chancellor, defamed
him y spreading word throughout the diocese that he was HIV
Also, this same
issue printed on page 1 “Bishop criticizes T&G stories.” This was a
small insert: “Bishop Reilly chastised local media this eek for
‘unbalanced and inaccurate stories on the Sime Braio lawsuit against
the diocese and Bishop Rueger.
“A Superior Court
Judge dismissed the diocese from the suit.
“Bishop Reilly in
a written statement said he was relieved that the curt resolved this
claim but was troubled by ‘unbalanced and inaccurate stories by some
media’ about the case.
“He criticized the
Worcester Telegram & Gazette for its one-sided attention to ‘these
allegations for which there was not basis in fact.’
“‘We know some
survivors have been afraid to talk to our Office for Healing and
Prevention,’ because of the newspaper’s coverage, the said “Perhaps
now they will find a renewed sense of hope.’
also offered prayers to Bishop Rueger ‘as he continues to persevere
in the case still pending against him personally.’ “180
Why is it that I
read this and say with the tactics and resources given Rueger, the
answer is in the cards. I have mentioned a number of times, Rueger
is the only one that has been given such resources by the Worcester
Diocese and was still “on the job.”
This same issue of
the Catholic Free Press-the bishops’ paper- gives us in their
editorial: “Biased- No one is every happy with the media.
“The church in
particular has citied foul about media coverage repeatedly in the
nearly tow years since the clergy abuse crisis broke; sometimes with
good reason, sometime not.
“This week Bishop
Reilly had good reason to blast the Worcester Telegram & Gazette foe
what he called ‘imbalanced and inaccurate stories’ about a civil
suit against the diocese and Bishop Rueger. The suit alleges that
Sime J. Braio, 52, was sexually assaulted by Bishop Rueger nearly 40
years ago and that the diocese covered it up.
coverage of Mr. Braio’s suit has been nothing short of abhorrent…
“Of all the things
lacking from the Telegram’s account of the hearing last Friday, the
most disturbing is the paper’s treatment of a separate ruling from
Judge Kern that released the diocese form the suit entirely.
“In the ruling,
which was released the same day as the hearing, Judge Kern states
that ‘there are no factual allegations that (the diocese) has
knowledge of Rueger’s alleged conduct until 2001, almost forty years
after the alleged assaults.’
“It is very
significant development; the ruling, in fact dismissed all but one
of the points in the suit, the charge of assault against Bishop
“Yet the Telegram
story devoted tow sentences to it.
after at least a dozen article in the last year. Article in which
Mr. Shea accuse the diocese of a variety of conspiracies and frauds
that, according to a Superior court judge, he could not
“Obviously, The Catholic Free Press is in a delicate position when
it comes to accusing another newspaper of bias against the church.
It is, after all owned and published by the diocese.
however, should not stop it from saying what is true and what is for
and what is not.
else too. That Telegram story-the one that told very little about
what happened in a Worcester Superior Courtroom last Friday-is only
one example of an ongoing problem.
“No wonder the
bishop is upset.”181
This day had the
National Catholic Reporter gives us “Gregory faults reports
on scandal: Not enough credit given for sex abuse policies, says
conference head” by Kevin Eckstrom.
He writes: “The
nation’s top Roman Catholic bishop sharply criticized the media for
‘saturation coverage’ of the church’s sex abuse crisis that resulted
in unnecessary damage’ to church leaders.
Gregory, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops,
faulted reporters for only ‘minimal attempts’ to investigate
sexually abuse in other institutions and ‘linking sexual abuse
solely to Catholic clerics.’
“The way the story
was so obsessively covered resulted in unnecessary damage to the
bishops and the entire Catholic community,’ Gregory told the
Religion News Writers Association Sept. 5.
bishop of Belleville, Ill., sad bishops had not been given enough
credit for sexual abuse policies that were implemented before the
scandal erupted 18 months ago.
“Ten years ago,
the bishops approved ‘guidelines’ on handling abusive priests, but
Gregory conceded many dioceses-including Boston, the scandal’s
epicenter-did not adequately implement them.
“Under new rules adopted in June
200w, the bishops established lay review boards and promised to
remove from public ministry any priest who had abused a minor. The
Vatican later abuses a minor. The Vatican later made changes that
detailed an accused priest’s legal right…”182
So, we have that
Rueger’s case is dropped? It seems that the Catholic Free Press
showed this by their “editorial” and article it printed.
One priest told me
that the Bishop (Reilly) fired his torpedoes. Was this the end of
the story on Rueger?
not bias in paper’s church abuse coverage” by Kenneth J. Moynihan, a
columnist in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette addresses the
issue between the Telegram and Gazette and the Free Press.
“Catholic bishop Daniel P. Reilly last week accused the Telegram I
Gazette of being ‘unbalanced and inaccurate’ in its coverage of one
of the alleged child abuse cases by a member of the clergy. The
diocesan newspaper, the Catholic Fee Press, in an editorial titled
‘Bias,’ joined in the complaint.
“ ‘Obviously,’ the
newspaper sad, as a publication of the diocese, it was ‘in a
delicate position when it comes to accusing another newspaper of
bias against the church,’ but that ‘should not stop it from saying
what it true and what is fair and what is not…’
fascinating differences between the ways the tow newspapers reported
the story. The telegram & Gazette’s headline on Sept 13 was ‘Shea
withdraws from Braio case.’ The weekly Free Press’s headline on
Sept. 19 was “Diocese dropped from lawsuit.’
lead sentence was: ‘A Houston layer representing A Shrewsbury man
charging sexual abuse at the hand of a Roman Catholic bishop was
allowed to withdraw from the case yesterday but is changing that
his former client is being coerced into a secret settlement.’ A
couple of paragraphs later came tow sentences reporting that the
diocese had been ‘dismissed as a defendant’ by the judge…
I think the
diocesan people have a pretty good case when they say the daily
paper neglected the importance of the dismissal of charges, though I
doubt that stemmed from a general ‘bias against the church.’ I am
less impressed with their apparent desire to strike back at Mr. Shea
personally-though what they said about him pales beside what he has
said about them.
“It’s a good time
for all of us to remind ourselves that what we say or write should
not only be true; it should also be fair, a judgment considerably
more difficult to make.”183
What I find
amazing is one has to get all that is printed by different sources,
read and re-read with an objective eye and try to develop a sense of
what is and what is being slanted obviously by the write and source.
It is as gold-panning in the Klondike. You take a segment of grains
and purify it by the water of the spread with swirling motions and a
sharp eye for that gold nugget-of information. Carefully reviewing
all sources and being sensitive, consentience and keeping a clear
unbeatable mind of what you have before yourself. Truth is hard at
times with a public media and here a Church organization that knows
how to use power and authority in its own way. It does difficult to
have a discernment process that allows objectivity.
I was finding it
difficult at this time in reading newspaper article of priest going
from a “Sick-Leave of Absence” to an “Administrative Leave” where
the priest “can not do any priestly duties.” It takes a toll on me
with another reaction of “pit spot in m stomach.” I become weak and
don’t know what to think at moments as such. What I have learned to
do was address it as best as I was able and do something that I
enjoyed doing-going through my books in my library as R.C.I.A.
I was reading John
L. Allen, Jr. where he made the comment that the bad news for the
Catholic Church in the last 18 months was the priest sex abuse
issue. I reflected to my last visit with Bishop Reilly in January
2002. I had felt that it was not going well for me- being put out to
pasture permanently- that it affected me in going out in public. It
was not as easy to go waking into stores and public places. I was
looking around in a paranoid manner wondering what I would say to
someone I would bump into that know me. I was feeling overwhelmed at
times. Other times it was not an issue and I didn’t care. Here was
that emotional roller-coaster of my life at that time.
I was reflecting
how that after the 60s, the 90s were going to make it look like the
50s. This period of time was previous to the Second Vatican Council
in the Catholic Church which was to some glorious time and yet I as
“The Death and Dying Club” atmosphere.
October 2, 2003
We read in the
Worcester Telegram & Gazette “Rev. Kelly (paper spelt it this
way) faces 5 years in prison: Judge has harsh words for diocese.”
Richard Nangle writes: “Worcester-Rev. Robert E. Kelley was
sentenced yesterday to 5 to 7 years in Walpole State Prison for
raping two girls.
“‘I apologize. I’m
sorry,’ Rev. Kelley said, referring to ‘my selfishness.’
sentence, Judge John S. McCann rejected a defense recommendation for
home confinement on a bracelet and with probation. Rev. Kelley bowed
his head and wept softly at several points during the hearing.
ordered Rev. Kelley, 61, into immediate protection custody after an
emotional courtroom scene in which his tows victims and their
parents accused the Diocese of Worcester of indifference to their
plight. Judge McCann also had harsh words for the diocese.
sacredness in this saga is the children victims,’ judge McCann said.
‘The only darkness is the inertness of the hierarchy.’
informed state police in 1989 that he told the late Cardinal
Humberto S. Medeiros of his affinity for young girls in the early
1970s and that no action was taken.
hierarchy, Judge McCann said, ‘could not and was not willing to deal
with this extraordinary difficult issue…
“Judge McCann said
Rev. Kelley ‘suffers from pedophilia which is not considered a
mental illness but represents a significant character pathology that
requires lifelong management.’ He ordered that Rev. Kelley
participates in as much sexual offender treatments as available.
“He said Rev.
Kelley is a Level 7 offender at high risk to sexually abuse young
girls against if left unsupervised. He cited testimony in a
deposition in which Rev. Kelley admitted to at lest 50 other sex
offenses. He said there is no evidence tat Rev. Kelley has
refunded since 1985 and noted that the priest has acknowledged has
October 3, 2003
The Catholic Free
Press presented Antoinette Bosco (Catholic News Service) article of
her column- “The Bottom Line: Required reading.” She wrote: “Parish
surveys done recently in the Rockville Centre Diocese on Long Island
brought out the shock and anger catholic feel over the reported
abuse cases involving certain priest. Consistently, it was clear
that the primary concern was the protection of children…
children from sexual abuse must begin with knowing what a serious,
horrible crime pedophile is. One woman who learned unexpected about
this devious, destructive condition is Dr. Army Hammel-Zabin. A
music therapist, she worked in a prison where a man named ‘Alan’ was
incarcerated. He confided to her that he had abused more than 1,000
boys before he finally was arrested. He also began to write to her,
spelling at the chilling details of his actions. Thus she learned
clearly how the mind of a pedophile works.
therapist, Hammel-Zabin soon realized that Alan’s stories showed
directly and in detail that a pedophile doesn’t lurk mysteriously in
the dark. ‘Rather,’ she says, ‘it could be the nice boy next door,
the distant relative, the sweet baby sitter,’ and as we so sadly
know, a teacher, scout leader and clergyman.
“From what she
learned about the nature of pedophilia, Hammel-Zabin wanted to pass
this information on and provide strategies for parents and educators
to help children avoid becoming victims. She has done this in a book
title ‘Conversations with a Pedophile, In the Interests of Our
Children’ (Barricade Books, Fort Lee, N.J.)
“I had heard that
Hammel-Zabin was writing this book before it was completed because
we met several years ago at the home of my son Frank and his wife
Judi, also music therapists, longtime colleagues of hers. When I got
in touch with her, we talked about the problem, how it causes such
pain and is kept hidden for so long. Hammel-Zabin said that Alan had
allowed her ‘to understand why abuse occurs in the first place. This
understanding is the key to prevention.’
“I thought I knew
a lot about the problem, but in all honesty I was unprepared for the
reality, the tricks sexual abusers perfect to gain the confidence of
their victims, how their fantasies become actions, with no
responsibility taken for what they’ve done, how deviously they use
secrecy-mainly, the child’s shame and fear of own parents would
react if they knew-as a way of staying in control of the child.
“Alan admits he
‘targeted victims,’ looking for bonus with a poor communications
network with others, mainly their parents, and making them feel
accepted, respected, wanted and listened to. We may not like to hear
this, but we must listen.
uncle is a Capuchin priest, Father Lester Knoll, pastor of St. Mary
of the Assumption Church in Herman, Pa. He believes that ‘this book
should be required reading fro all priest, minister, rabbis and all
who are involved in working with the young. It gives a clear
understanding of the nature of pedophilia that is not usually
realizes that one book that sowed one person’s explanation that were
so generalized would develop a “witch hunt’ with these
characteristics. A generalization is so tempting with so many, I
believe in the Catholic Community where it is a help or another
aspect of over simplification that destroys other people in being so
Another aspect of
such an article has to realize that paranoia is established. Yet,
the world we live-in are such that even the TV program “Survivor”
(CBS), a reality program, has what one of the contestants said: You
have to hang-back for an opportunity-to survive. So, a general
outlook as such is looked upon others as a distortion or character
Another article in
the Catholic Free Press this day was “Court says reporter does not
have to answer questions on Braio conversation” by William T. Clew.
He wrote: “Worcester superior Court Judge C. Brain McDonald has
denied a request by the Diocese of Worcester to subpoena the
Worcester Telegram & Gazette and reporter Kathleen Shaw for
deposition relative to a lawsuit against the diocese and Bishop
“The diocese sight
to depose Ms Shaw about conversations she had with Sime Braio of
Shrewsbury. Mr. Braio has sued the diocese and Bishop Rueger,
charging that he was molested as a teenager by Bishop Rueger. Bishop
Rueger has denied the charges. The court dismissed all charges
against the diocese Sept. 17.
said that there is no constitutionally based privilege protecting
news reporters’ sources of information or any statutory privilege or
rule of court providing for such a privilege.
stated, ‘under well-established common law principles, courts
‘afford journalists a measure of protection from discovery
initiatives in order not to undermine their ability to gather and
disseminate information. Journalists are at the personification of a
free press, and to withhold such protection would invite a chilling
effect on speech…and thus destabilize the First Amendment.’
“According to curt
documents, Ms. Shaw had conversation with Mr. Braio concerning his
allegations about Bishop Rueger beginning in February 202. Mr. Shaw
stated in her court affidavit that each of her conversations with
Mr. Braio ‘was based on my promise not to disclose the substance of
the conversations. On information and belief, had I not agreed to
keep the substance of these conversations confidential, Mr. Braio
would not have spoken to me…’ “186
This same day the
Worcester Telegram & Gazette carried the same story by
Richard Nangle “Reporter’s conversations rules private: Judge says
Shaw protected from deposition.” He wrote: “Worcester-A local
reporter will not have to testify about private conversations she
had with a Shrewsbury man about is sexual abuse lawsuit against
Auxiliary Bishop George E. Rueger, according to a ruling by Superior
Court Judge C. Bran McDonald…
“ ‘As demonstrated
by Shaw’s affidavit, the effect of even threatened disclosure has
already chilled Shaw’s relationship with her sources, who are
understandably less confident that Shaw will be able to honor her
pledges of confidentiality,’ Judge McDonald said. ‘Compelled
disclosure would undeniably compromise not only Shaw’s, but other
reporters’ ability to gather and disseminate information about
religious matters in and around Worcester.
diocese contended Massachusetts law did not protect Ms. Shaw form
having to testify and turn over her notes.
“The Telegram &
Gazette argued Massachusetts courts have rules reporters are not
required to testify unless the value of their testimony ‘outweighs
the inevitable interference with the functioning of the free press…’
“The diocese has
deposed James J. Gribouski, a Worcester lawyer who once represented
Mr. Braio but who declined to file suit against Bishop Rueger on Mr.
Braio’s behalf. Mr. Gribouski made that decision after receiving a
letter form a psychiatrist who evaluated Mr. Braio and concluded his
symptoms could not be related to sexual abuse…
“The diocese said
its own investigation cleared Bishop Rueger of any wrongdoing.
Worcester District Attorney John J. Conte has said his office and
state police investigators could not substantiate the charges…”187
Here we have the
same story from two different sources that really didn’t say much
besides the Telegram & Gazette giving more depth of previous events
that have been reported. Do the reporters have a pre-assigned 800
word goal by their editor? This was one characteristic that I
noticed in their reporting- made the article lengthier but nothing
new than the first few comments.
October 6, 2003
The People Forum
of the Worcester Telegram & Gazette printed “Column on sex
abuse case missed the point.” A James F. Cosgrove of Worcester
wrote: “Kenneth J. Moynihan is generally a thoughtful intelligent
commentator. Which is why I was surprised that he somewhat missed
the point in his column (Telegram & Gazette, Sept. 24) as to a
Catholic Free Press editorial concerning coverage by the T&G of an
alleged sexual abuse case.
“The Catholic Free
Press had noted the T&G’s failure to report that the attorney for
the plaintiff had been characterized by his own client, by another
attorney, who might be willing to undertake the case, and a judge as
having been ‘threatening’ on three occasions, and that his own
client had called the police to remove the attorney from his dome.
Such events (coupled with the T&G parting, two sentences aside, that
the case against the diocese had been dismissed0, bring into
question, to say the last, whether the lawyer is a reliable source,
and in turn whether the T&G’s repeated, indiscriminate publication
of is self-serving allegations in many article in recent months
demonstrates wither a shocking lack of critical thinking and editing
lack on the T&G’s part or prejudice against the church.
“The report the
very next day, that the lawyer had accused the attorney for on
defendant in another action of unprofessional conduct, and a
subsequent finding by the judge that this had not been the case at
all, reinforces such doubts.
the CFP’s editorial as evidencing, Mr. Moynihan,
uncharacteristically, unfairly and no doubt unintentionally, assumes
a personal animus not in evidence in the editorial itself.”188
October 7, 2003
I was celebrating
my 59th birthday (The anniversary of my 39th)
and my cousin, John Bish, called me to wish me a “Happy Birthday.”
developed with his comment to me: “The Diocese is a paying your rent
and giving you your salary.” (Try 25% of what I was earning- $200
for rent.) Now, where did he get such information- it was from
“them.” (Clergy gossip faction) Another insight, which is
speculation that Bish being Bish would be “cool” talking with Rueger
possibly talking with him at Anna Maria College Rueger’s flap with a
company answer that they are paying my rent and giving me my salary.
The issue never mentioned is that I receive is below the poverty
level John had so many insights on issues that he had no knowledge
of fact but gossip. He did not get any comment or reaction on my
part. I only listened to him carry on with all his insights.
Possibly, there would be an opportunity to answer his comments that
were so absolute.
I was doing that
stupid-thinking routine. The phrase working its way in the brain:
“You must have done it. You were drinking.” (Harrington-Rueger and
My response then
and now: I never did anything as such with these two girls or ever.
Yet, I was never taken too curt. Any of my blackouts were not one of
these times that I was with the public. I never went to court became
they never had a case. The Church screwed me by not putting me back
in my parish. Life is too short to tangle enough with people that
dysfunctional. There is the Catholic guilt versus Protestant guilt
at work with the Jewish guilt to cover-all. The two girls (victims)
that allegated me should have been cross-examined. There is no
validation to their claims.
I had my eyes
opened when I read on the Internet from Catholic News Service (CNS)
gave Rome’s view of the priest sex abuse scandal as thee was
exaggeration, financial exploitation and nervousness in the United
state. One Cardinal spoke about “tenacious scandalous style” in the
I was reflecting
on my writing with these objectives: 1.Bring everything together. 2.
Sort it all to. 3. Make informal judgments. 4. Take stands. This was
an overview that was helping me deal with my life in what happened
and was happening. Insights were being revealed how the Church
system operated. Why should I be surprised if I claimed anything
about being a student of history?
October 8, 2003
The Sentinel &
Enterprise gave us this day “Abuse victim lobbies to lift statue
of limitations,” reported by their State House Bureau reporter-
Julie Mehegan. She reported: “soon-Thwarted in her efforts to seek
civil damages from the Roman Catholic Diocese of Worcester for
sexual abuse she suffered as a child, Heather Mackey Godwin is now
turning her attention to the State House.
“Godin, a victim
of the former priest, Robert Kelley when he was assigned to St.
Cecilia’s parish in Leominster, joined a group of Huse and Senate
lawmakers on Tuesday to lobby for passage of several bills that
would ease restrictions on victims who pursue civil lawsuits in
sexual abuse cases.
“Joined by her
father, Tewksbury Police chief John Mackey, Godin urged the House
and Senate to lift the statue of limitations in civil sexual-abuse
suits-currently three years from the time a victim realizes he or
she has suffered the abuse-and to eliminate the $20,000 charitable
immunity limit on damages.
“It was the statue
of limitations-and the threat by the Worcester diocese to seek
triples its legal costs if she was unsuccessful in trying to
override it-that prompted a reluctant Godin to drop her civil
lawsuit earlier this year, she said. Godin was abused by Kelley at
St. Cecilia’s beginning when she was 4. The abuse continued until
she was 8.
“‘I had to drop
it, due to the statue of limitations, because I had known that this
abuse had happened for too long basically,’ Godin said.
priest’s guilty pleas and his sentence of five to seven years in
state prison brought her some comfort.
‘But Bodin said he
and her family have borne a significant financial burden because the
psychotically damage she suffered, including cost for
hospitalization, counseling sessions, medication, and even life
insure ace premiums that are higher than average because she has a
document Ted history of depression. She had hoped to hold the
Worcester diocese financially responsible for the abuse.
responsible for that, because they allowed it to happen,’ said Godin,
the mother of a 4-month old baby…’ “189
This was a Friday
and the Catholic Free Press arrived in the mail. This particular
issue had me feel isolated because seeing Bishop Reilly’s weekly
schedule printed with Sunday, October 12th- 6 p.m.
gathering of priest for Bishop Reilly’s 50 Anniversary of ordination
to the Priesthood. It was being held at St. Mary’s of the Hill,
Boylston. I, again, never received any notice or invite. Actually,
there was nothing different than it have been for the last four or
five years. It may be due Reilly’s part since my last “official”
contact with my visit to the Chancery in January 2001. The Worcester
Diocese had isolated me.
In addition, I was
thinking of my health bill itemized on my monthly statement with no
explanation whatsoever-only a code statement. This isolated feeling
persisted that I’m a priest only in name for the Worcester Diocese-
the Rush Limbaugh judgment of everyone else.
Julie Mehegan of
the Sentinel & Enterprise wrote a follow-up article to
October 8th “Kelley victim testifies on Beacon Hill:
Abuse victims want state to lift the statue of limitations.” She
reports: “Boston-Local victims of clergy sexual abuse on Thursday
pleaded with lawmakers to lift a three-year statue of limitations on
civil lawsuits and make other changes that would give sexual abuse
victims more freedom to sue for damages…
adoption of thus legislation would most likely not help my crusade
against the Worcester diocese, I hope you will support it for all
the other victims who have been subjected to the evils that lurk
with the Catholic Church,; said Godin, who last week saw Kelley
sentenced to five to seven years in state prison for raping her and
an Ashburnham woman when they were children. Both have spoken
publicly about the abuse.
“It was the second
trip to the State House this week for Godin and her father to lobby
for passage of the bills. Mackey pledged to spend his retirement-he
will leave the force in three months-working to hold the church
accountable for his daughter’s rape.
massive lobbying efforts of the catholic Church. They do not deserve
your support or your loyalty,’ Mackey urged committee members.
“‘The voices of
young abused children of the past cry for your help, and they
deserve no less,’ he told lawmakers.
is considering several bills pertaining to civil sexual-abuse
lawsuits. In addition to eliminating the statue of limitations and
the $20,000 charitable-immunity limit, another bill would authorize
parents to sue for damages when their children are abused…”190
I realized that I
turned a page with the Worcester Diocese: Just don’t want to think
about them. Less talk about it, the better. I had to develop a "pat
answer" to what are you doing question: I have a regular routine and
intensifying my research and writing.
I was struggling
this day to write my footnotes and any point of my journal writing
this day. My attitude was: What for? I was not a good day even with
my exercise program and prayer ritual.
This day the
Worcester Telegram & Gazette’s reporter Gary V. Murray submitted
“Inmate says priest gave him funds.” Murray wrote: “Worcester-A
Rhode Island man serving a state prison sentence foe child rape told
state police a priest accused of stealing $250, from Immaculate
Conception Church in Fitchburg, where he was pastor before being
place on leave by the Catholic Diocese of Worcester earlier this
year. The thefts allegedly occurred between March 15, 2001, and Jan
2 of this year and involved money raised by parishioners for an
elevator at the church.
District attorney Ricard L. Greco, who is prosecuting the larceny
case against Rev. Ouellette, filed a mention Wednesday in Worcester
Superior court seeking court permission to summon certain
‘financial/back’ records maintained by the state Department of
“The prosecutor is
seeking any records relating to money deposited with the correction
department for the benefit of inmate William Lamenting, 43, formerly
of North Kingstown, R.I.
“On Dec. 22, 1989,
Mr. Lamontagne was sentenced to 12 to 15 hears in state prison after
being convicted of child rape and indecent assault and battery on a
child in Worcester Superior court, according to court records.
“According to Mr.
Greco’s motion, Mr. Lamontagne gave a statement to state police
indicating that he ‘received some of the misappropriated money from
Donald Ouellette while he was incarcerated at MCI Concord…”191
The stories get
more interested especially with a money line. Will we ever know
where the $250,000 really did go?
On the program
“Sunday Morning-CBS,” carried a story entitled “Boomers.” The report
showed that the Boomers thought that they would change the world as
through race and sexual revolutions. This was not what I thought of
race or sexual revolution. But I did think of a change in the
Catholic Church due to the Second Vatican Council that was
understood with a “renewal” atmosphere. But I hit “The Wall at St.
George’s, Worcester-my first assignment. I was then thinking of my
classmate (Joe) in the seminary sending me only an announcement of
his Twenty-Fifth Anniversary on being ordained to the priesthood.
There was nothing else in this mailing. I had not heard from him for
over twenty-years. My thinking was that he was in my face with this
announcement. There was a difference in our yearbook of me standing
with him where I was in clerical attire with winter coat and soft
had and Joe with a clerical cassock and three-pointed black
It was my 26th
Anniversary of sobriety. This day as for 8890 days, I did not drink
with the understanding: One day at a time motto. I attended my
regular scheduled AA meeting at Rindge Original Discussion Tuesday
Group. What was very this day 26 year previously, I traveled the
same road, Rt. #202, through Jaffrey, N.H. to Beach Hill Hospital in
Dublin, N.H. I was driven by another. I was driven by another
priest, my pastor at that time, who was drunk that Friday night.
But this 2003 day
was me driving to Rindge on the same road and it was dark and
pouring rain as I recalled it was 26 years previously. It is
interesting what is remembered at times and yet so clearly to recall
I didn’t accept an
anniversary medallion. There was a definite reason: There were
people in this group of AA that “lorded’ their sobriety time. They
kept making it a known fact. It was not my style. I appreciated each
day of sobriety as a “gift.” Therefore, I kept my sobriety
anniversary private. However, when at the beginning of this group’s
meeting, the chair would ask that those who celebrated one year or
more of sobriety to please raise their hand-in recognition. This I
did with no hesitation.
Kathleen A. Shaw
comes back on board with a story “Embattled priest refuses to
resign” in this days Worcester Telegram & Gazette, She
writes: “Worcester-the Rev. Joseph A. Coonan, who was removed as
pastor of St. John’s Church more than a year ago, has been asked by
the Diocese of Worcester to resign, but he has refused.
“Joseph D. Early
Jr., a lawyer, who is Rev. Coonan’s spokesman, said yesterday the
priest has hired a canon lawyer and intended to get his removal ‘on
“‘He got a letter
from the diocese asking him to resign,’ Mr. Early said. Rev. Coonan
took a weekend to ‘pray on it’ and then decided to fight, he said.
He retained the Rev. Robert Gori of Methuen to represent him in
church proceedings. Canon layers, who can be lay Catholics, members
of religious orders or priests, are people with special training in
the laws that govern the church and in handling church legal
“‘He was removed
more than 425 days ago and he wants to get back to work,’ Mr. Early
Delisle, diocese spokesman, said he had no information on the
situation with Rev. Coonan and said the Rev. F. Stephen Pedone
seeking comment was too returned. Church legal proceedings are kept
“‘I am not a canon
lawyer, but I understand that Father Coonan was never given anything
in writing stating why he was being removed,’ Mr. Early said. Under
the church’s canon law, he is entitled to know what the charges are
against him, he said.
“Rev. Coonan still
retains support within his parish. Mr. Early said at least 200
people attended a recent meeting to discuss Rev. Coonan’s status
with the diocese and how they can get him returned to the
The next day Shaw
writes in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette “Oxford mind warns
diocese on priest: Alleged sexual-touching victim opposes Coonan
reinstatement.” She writes this time; “Worcester-Todd Hammond, an
Oxford resident who said he was a victim of the Rev. Joseph A.
Coonan during the 1970s, said yesterday he was astonished to find
the priest is still trying to be reinstated at St. John’s parish.
“‘If the diocese
ever lets him back in, they are leaving themselves wide open,’ Mr.
Hammond said. Bishop Daniel P. Reilly removed Rev. Coonan from St.
John’s parish in August 2002 after allegations of misconduct
surfacing, and, despite supports’ requests that he be reinstated,
has asked the priest to resign.
“Mr. Hammond, who
operates a landscaping business, is one of about 20 men who gave
statements to state police in 2002 saying that Rev. Coonan had
engaged in inappropriate conduct with them when he was a teacher and
counselor and they were students at Oxford High School. He alleges
that eve. Coonan, who was not a priest at the time, touched Mr.
Hammond’s genitals while they were riding through Worcester looking
for prostitutes addicted to heroin. Rev. Coonan was not ordained
“Rev. Coonan has
hired a canon lawyer, a specialist in churchman, and is seeking
redress through the church law, and is seeking redress through the
church court. He said he was never given anything in writing saying
why he was being removed from his pastorate, according to civil
lawyer, Joseph D. Early, Jr. No civil suits or criminal charges have
ever been filed against Rev. Coonan…”193
Telegram & Gazette prints this day the story by Richard Nangle
“Kelley’s lawyer ruing leniency-Salerno says priest doesn’t deserve
prison.” He writes: “Worcester lawyer, Anthony Salerno believes
prison is not the right punishment for his client, the Rev. Rovert
E. Kelley, who has been convicted of child rape for a second time.
“Mr. Salerno, says
the 61-yer-old Rev. Kelley who has already served a 6 ½ year prison
term, has been a model prisoner, has participated in rehabilitation
programs and cares for his 91 year-old-father.
“To send hi back
to prison serves no purpose, the lawyer insists, emphasizing there
is no evidence that his client has committed an offense since 1986.
“Mr. Salerno is
preparing motions to have his request for a house arrest-type
a criminologist and an advocate for abuse victims, say prison is
newspaper had Shaw and Nangle write: “Worcester-Judge Fancies R.
Fecteau, who has been an active parishioner in the Worcester
Catholic Diocese, has agreed not to sit on a civil case against rev.
Rovert E. Kelley.
sent the civil case in question to another session in Worcester
Superior Court where it is likely the presiding judge will be
formative Central Massachusetts.
“Judge Fecteau has
had some involvement in handling the priest abuse sandal. More than
a year ago, he reduced bail on Rev. Kelley after Judge Vito A.Virzi
in Leominster District Court set it at $200,000. That move angered a
number of area victims of clergy sexual abuse. Earlier this month,
Rev. Kelley pleaded guilty to child rape charges and was sentence to
5 to 7 years in parish.
Daniel J. Shea, who represents Claire Baillargeron Groccia in the
suit filed a motion Oct. 7 on her behalf asking that Judge Daniel J.
Shea, who represents Claire Ballargeron Grocer in the suit, filed a
motion in Oct. 7 on her behalf asking that Judge Fecteau recluse
himself because he has been an active Catholic layman and has raised
money for his parish, Our Lady of the Angles.
alleges she was sexually abused as a child by Rev. Kelley when he
was assigned to Notre Dame Parish in Southbridge…”195
I, for some
unknown reason, was on the Internet and clicked-on the search
engine- Google. I typed my name in the search box and pressed
entered on my keyboard. Bang- one source only: Rev. Kardas abuse
documents made public-Priest accused of 1970s molestation Rev.
Kardas was treated in Conn. Reported by Kathleen A. Shaw-Telegram &
Gazette Staff (no date).196
This source had
the Worcester Telegram & Gazette article of March 1995 of
McCormick’s interview with Shaw.
I was not aware of
such information on Google and nothing else was listed. This was a
first for me and somewhat surprised that someone had not told me
about this. For that matter, most likely anyone I knew or spoke with
didn’t either know about it.
I had that “pit”
filling in my stomach for a few moments. But, this experience was
such by now that I reached for a few antacid tablets and continued
The Sentinel &
Enterprise published a story this day “Decades after abuse,
church goes on: Former priest Robert Kelley has admitted to
molesting 50 to 100 young victims at St. Cecilia’s in Leominster.”
Matt O’Brien writes: “Leominster-Twenty years after former priest
Robert Kelley sexually assaulted Heather Mackey Godin, she still
shudders when she passes by St. Cecilia’s Church.
“‘When I drive
down Mechanic Street, it is still a blow to me,’ she told the
Sentinel & Enterprise.
left St. Cecilia’s who years ago for another church, but his name is
painful memory to some in the parish…
accumulated against the diocese since the outbreak of the Boston
clergy abuse crisis in 2002, and Kelley’s victims believe it is only
a matter of time before they find the Worcester Diocese legally
Sweeney, the Springfield judge why paved the way for the Boston
crisis by ordering the Archdiocese in 2001 to uncover thousands of
documents on defrocked priest John Geoghan, now presides over the
latest Kelley civil trail stemming from the priest’s first
assignment in Southbridge.
“But still, the
church moves on.
“‘I think life has
a lot of ups and downs,’ Goguen (present pastor) said. ‘The life o a
church, the life of a parish, is very similar. The church has been
here for 2,000 years, has had plenty of sinners. On the other hand,
there are plenty of saints.”197
With a subtitle of
“admitted to molesting 50 to 100 young victims” has me wondering.
First Father Kelley had been reported saying to the state police
that he molested 50. Where did the number of possible 100 evolve
from? The issue is where are all these “victims”? The issue had been
so public, why are not more going public because they would have all
type of advocacy and legal assistance?
John L. Allen, Jr.
writes in this issue of the National Catholic Reporter “U.S.
bishops anticipate review of ‘one strike’ policy.”
He writes from
Rome: “Within strict limits reflecting American culture
sensitivities, the U.S. bishops may be open to considering
exceptions to their ‘one strike’ policy for priest sex abuse when a
tow-year review rolls around, as well as the definition of abuse,
according to the president of the U.S. bishops’ conference.
“The comments came
from bishop Wilton Gregory in an exclusive Oct. 22 interview with
NCR at the North American College in Rome. They were
complemented by views from Cardinal Francis George of Chicago in a
separate Oct. 20 interview with NCR. George served on an ad
hoc commission that worked out the American norms with the Vatican.
“Though the norms
were approving by the Vatican on Dec. 8, 2002, their effective date
was March 1, 2003. That means they will expire on March 1, 2003
unless the American bishops request an extension and the Vatican
“Gregory said he’s
not yet sure what the bishops will request, but said it could be
year’s term, or five, or even 10.
“‘I assume we will
need these norms for some time to come,’ he said.
have told NCR in recent weeks that when the review occurs,
they intend to pay special attention to two issues.
“One is the case
of a priest accused of sexual abuse in the past who served whatever
penalty his bishop imposed, then returned to ministry with no
further infractions, who has been removed against under the 2002
norms. Some critics see this as a form of double jeopardy.
concern is the scope of offense subsumed under ‘sexual abuse.’ Some
Vatican officials point to stories of priests removed for pats on
the back or relatively innocuous comments, suggesting that the
definition of the crime needs to be tightened.
NCR that both issues could be reconsidered, but stressed that
the Vatican concerns have to be balanced against the realities of
the American situation…”198
I had lunch with
my cousin John Bish, Sr. at Friendly’s in Gardner. He was doing his
Molly Bish I.D. program at Mount Wachusett Community College.
He suggesting that
I should get a “Disability Lawyer: for my case. He sad he himself is
thinking of getting one with what he had experienced with his
I mentioned our
last phone conversation we had where he told me that I was getting
my rent paid by the diocese and receiving my salary. He denied
saying this to me. He told me that he never said that. I asked him
the same question against: Don’t you recall our last conversation
where you stated to me to me that the diocese was paying my rent and
giving me my salary? This time he denied saying it: “No. I didn’t.”
Then he continued to say to me that the diocese was hoping that I
must resign my priesthood. Where did all of this come from that he
was telling me at this time? Was this John’s fabrication or was he
talking with Rueger or some other clergy which he was one that would
find in his travels and work.
John then changed
the conversation and said we both have been too nice with people we
worked with. He said he wanted to sue the Town of warren and other
people on his daughter’s- Molly Bish-disappearance. And the way they
handled the case. He sad he would find the person who murdered his
daughter because the authorities will never solve this case. He
stressed that he was on a “mission.”
Kathleen A. Shaw
writes “Diocese fires you ministry director over 25-year-old
allegation: Diocese called lawyer about worker” in the Worcester
Telegram & Gazette. She writes: “Worcester-The head if young
adult ministry for the Diocese of Worcester has been fired after a
25-yeasr-old allegation of sexual misconduct surfaced.
Solomon E, Toledo
Jr., 49,who came to the Catholic diocese tow years ago from Portland
Ore., said he was fired Oct. 16 without being told what the
allegation was or who made it. He denies the allegation, and said he
wanted an investigation to ‘clear’ his name, but was told by
Monsignor Thomas J. Sullivan, diocesan chancellor, that 99 percent
of all allegations are true.’ (If Sullivan made this statement that
“99 percent of all allegations are true” is him shooting from the
hip style of a cowboy answer to shoot-off with words with no bases.
God help us with such people running around Chancery Buildings.)
But, one has to remember that were dealing with “Snow White and the
Seven Dwarfs” that proclaims others as: Guilty till proven innocent.
Delisle, diocesan spokesman, confirmed that Mr. Toledo had been
fired by the diocese, but declined to discuss details because
diocesan personal issues are considered confidential. He said it
appears that the diocese acted in accordance with its own policy for
“Mr. Toledo said
Monsignor Sullivan did not knew the name of the complainant nor the
substance of the allegation when Mr. Toledo was fired. ‘They went on
what they got from the Archdiocese of Portland. “Mr. Toledo said he
was provided the first name of the complainant in a follow-up
communications director for the Portland archdiocese said that he
was aware of the allegation, but that it had originated in
California, not in Portland. The archdiocese had not forwarded
information to the Worcester diocese.
“Mr. Toledo worked
for the Portland archdiocese in the early and mid-1990, Mr. Bruce
said. He was to sure whether the woman who made the allegation now
lives in the Portland area…”199
I noticed that I
was writing in a more systematic and precise fashion of my book. I
was working with footnotes of letters, article and other sources. I
had re-written much of my first journal writings since I began in
I, also, developed
a technique on my computer with a split-screen stat had my journal,
footnotes and my written text section. It is three parts on one
screen. Once, I developed this system approach. It became much
easier to continue my working on my book-possibly a two volume work.
“Bishops told of
national sex abuse response plans” by Jerry Filteau of Catholic News
Service wrote in the Catholic Free Press from Washington. He
related: Major national studies on the crisis of clergy sexual abuse
of minor and the U.S. bishops’ response to it will be released next
January and February, members of the U.S. Conference of Catholic
Bishops learned Tuesday.
Burke, interim chair of the National Review Board monitoring
diocesan compliance with the bishops’ program to protect children
and respond to clergy sexual abuse, told the bishops that the board
plans to release two major studies Feb. 27 at a press conference in
“They are the
national study on the extent of sexual abuse of minors by Catholic
priests and deacons since 1950 by the John Jay College of criminal
Justice in New York and the board’s consensus report on interviews
with bishops, priests-abusers, victims and a wide array of
professionals regarding the ‘causes and context’ of the abuse
crisis, she said.
“Burke, a justice
of the Appellate Court of Illinois, has headed the all-lay National
Review Board since last June.
a review board member and veteran communication professional with
the Scrippe-Howard newspaper chain, told the bishops’ that nearly
two months before the release of the two studies the board intends
before the release of the two studies the board intends to release o
Jan. 6 the first annual audit of diocese. The audit will measure
diocesan compliance or failure to comply with the mandate of the
‘Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People…’ “200
This same day, my
eyes opened wider with an editorial in the National Catholic
Reporter “Our compliment to Bishop Reilly still stands.” This is
Bishop Reilly of the Worcester Diocese.
stated: “Last week on this page (NCR, Nov. 7); we complemented
Bishop Daniel P. Reilly of Worcester, Mass. for bringing ‘reason to
the issue of gay benefits.’
“In his Oct.23
testimony on ‘same sex marriage and civil bills’ before the
legislature’s Joint Committee on the Judiciary, Reilly said: ‘some
argue that it is unfair to offer only married couple certain
socioeconomic benefits. That is a different question from the
meaning of marriage itself.’
‘The civil union bill before this committee confuses the two issues,
changing the meaning of spouse in order to give global access to all
marital benefits to same-sex partners in a civil union. This alters
the institution of marriage by expanding whom the law considers to
be spouses. Let’s not mix the two issues. We should consider the
question of distributive justice omits own term. If a bill alters
marriage’s definition or changes the meaning of spouse, we cannot
support it. If the goal is to look at individual benefits and
determine who should be eligible beyond spouses, and then we will
join the discussion.’
“Reilly was making
another-so-fine distinction. A conversation about how to extend the
economic benefits inherent in traditional marriage (health care
coverage for example) to others (including given the context of the
context of testimony, gay couples) would be something the church
“A positive step
forward, we thought. Sure, the church continues to oppose devil
marriage for gay couple or any other legally sanctioned arrangement
(such as, ‘civil union’) that resemble traditional marriage, but it
would join a debate on how to promote economic and social justice.
“But then came the
reaction to Reilly’s comments.
“In an Oct. 28
news release (‘Don’t Believe the Headlines’), the Massachusetts
Catholic Conference said that ‘bills dealing with same-sex domestic
partnerships were not before the committee and Bishop Reilly made no
direct reference to them in his testimony or remarks to the press
is as true as it is irrelevant. The Massachusetts legislature is
considering legislation dealing with gay couples on a number of
fronts, ‘civil unions,’ ‘same-sex marriage,’ and ‘same-sex domestic
partnerships’ among them. There are differences to each of these
approaches and it was clear from the bishop’s comments that
Massachusetts church leader oppose all three. That said, Reilly in
his prepared testimony (it wasn’t an off-the-cuff remark),
indicated the church’s willingness to discuss an acceptable means,
short of marriage or its right civil equivalents, designed to
achieve an end (economic justice) shared by many on each side of the
gay marriage question.
article in the Boston archdiocesan paper, The Pilot, said
that Reilly’s remarks were ‘misinterpreted by [the] media.’ IN an
Oct 30 letter to editors of major Massachusetts newspapers. Reilly
emphasized the distinction between ‘individual rights and whatever
socioeconomic benefits flow from those individual rights’ and the
‘claims of same-sex couples seeking entitlements by virtue of their
nuance of Reilly’s initial testimony, combined with the emotion
surrounding the issue, lent itself to some overstated headlines...
“However, the backtracking by the
Massachusetts church was less artful and unnecessarily defensive.
“We still think
that given the context of the printed testimony, the title Reilly
gave to his testimony, ’Woman’s Right to Know Same-Sex Marriage and
Civil Union Bills,’ and the distinctions he drew, it is reasonable
to deduce he was trying to find away to discuss the matter of
benefits without getting into the issue of changing the meaning of
“And we still think that he
brought rational discourse to a disputed area of public policy that
will not go away and that would greatly benefit both reasoned and
This is the Reilly
that I had two meeting with concerning my situation-he called me
in-and reading such an article which I believe was his political
style.” He tried this with me somewhat in wanting to know what
happened “here” (bishop’s residence) in two meeting with Harrington,
Rueger and Tinsley. Reilly knew what happened and yet “played” me
out to preserve “the hierarchy.” So, what happened with me is I was
put in isolation- no contact what so ever.
I was struggling
of late how Harrington’s regime worked on me. It was a classic tale
of whispers, retribution and rivalries. I felt at times that I had a
bull’s eye target on my back. Then, thinking how that January 1993
stopping at Bob’s Hot Dog Truck and Fred Palmer telling me about his
daughter car is being struck by Bishop Harrington who was drunk and
driving. It didn’t take long from that day to the March call to
report to the Chancery for a 4:30 p.m. meeting with Rueger and
This was where my
feelings became wrought with clashing emotions of hear and hope,
pride and frustration.
Here’s a real good
one. Actually, if one had to have a lesson plan for a class on
“ecclesiology,” this is one. What you have here is what the Church
can do with civil authority and the civil court system with nothing
by brunt authority. It is a short article but one that tells it all
on how “Holy Mother “ operates.: “Suit against Rueger dropped: Sime
Braio files rape case in 2002” by Richard Nangle on page A1 of the
Worcester Telegram & Gazette. Ready for this: “The Shrewsbury
man who sued Auxiliary Bishop Rueger on a rape charge has withdrawn
his case in Worcester Superior Court.
“Sime J. Braio
filed suit against Bishop Rueger in July 2002 (Interesting that the
suit only ran from July to November). The Diocese of Worcester
responded to the suit with a strong denial and Bishop Rueger has
remained in his post. Mr. Braio filed his motion on Wednesday and
Judge Tina S. Page granted the dismissal.
“In the brief,
handwritten motion, Mr. Braio said, 'I am doing this willfully and
voluntarily. No threats have been made against me. Trooper Tom
Greene of Auburn told me to do this.’ Trooper Greene heads District
Attorney John J. Conte’s investigative unit. Call to Trooper Greene
wren to returned last night.
Braio’s former layer, Daniel J. Shea of Houston, accused state
police of coercing his client into a dismissal.
“‘There’s going to
be a tort claims act filed against the Massachusetts State Police
for tortuously interfering with my relationship with Sime Braio,’
Mr. Shea said.
however, dismissed Mr. Shea’s accusation as false and said the
trooper would have been in contact with Mr. Braio because Mr. Braio
is a victim whose allegations are being investigated by his office.
“ ‘Tom Greene told
Sime Braio in furtherance of this motion to dismiss without
prejudice, that he could tell the judge thst the state police had to
completed their investigation,’ Mr. Conte said.
“He could not say
under what circumstances the trooper and Mr. Braio’s conversation
about the civil case may have come about.
“‘Sime is the
victim,’ he said. ‘We talk to all victims.’ (Boy! Does this tell you
more about Conte and the Chancery? Is DA Conte under the power of
“Mr. Braio also
dismissed slander charge against Msgr. Thomas Sullivan and Assistant
District Attorney James J. Reagon, even though he had already
dismissed the charges against Mr. Reagon in July (What type of
tactics did Sullivan and Reagon use on Braio?).
“Mr., Braio had
filed a defamation suit against Monsignor Sullivan, the diocesan
chancellor and liaison to the district attorney’s office. Mr. Braio
alleged that Monsignor Sullivan disseminated misinformation within
the diocese that Mr. Braio had HIV. Mr. Braio later sought an HIV
test, which came back negative, a result that he made public. He had
alleged that Mr. Reagon told Monsignor Sullivan that Mr. Braio was
Sullivan said in pretrial testimony that Mr. Reagon provided him
information. Mr. Reagon denied making the statement (So who is
lawsuit alleged that Bishop Rueger, then a parish priest, began
sexually molesting him in the early1960s when he was 13. The suit
alleged the abuses resulted in behavior that landed Mr. Braio, now
53, in the former Lyman School for Boys in Westboro.
“The diocese kept
Bishop Rueger in his post even as it removed several priests who
also had been charge with sexual abuse during the past two years.
“In September, Mr.
Shea withdrew from the case while charging that Mr. Braio was being
coerced into a secret settlement, Mr. Shea filed for intervention in
the case and a hearing is scheduled for Dec. 3 in Superior Court.
“Mr. Braio had
named the Roman Catholic Bishop of Worcester, a corporation, in the
suit but the corporation was dismissed as a defendant by Superior
Court Judge Leila R. Kern on the same day Mr. Shea withdrew from the
“In a statement
released by the diocese yesterday, Bishop Rueger said, ‘I am deeply
grateful to Bishop (Daniel P.) Reilly for his wonderful words and
has enduring support during ties difficult time. I am grateful to my
brother priest, my sisters in religious life and all the wonderful
lay people whose prayers and kind’s words have sustained me. May all
of us continue to heal our church and one another?’
“Also, in a
statement, Bishop Reilly said, ‘this ordeal will not diminish our
ongoing diocesan program to reach out (CYA) to those who have been
abused and are seeking healing...”
sent a letter to diocesan priests saying he was,’ very grateful for
your prayers and support for Bishop Rueger, and for the
encouragement given to him by the thousands of people throughout the
diocese and beyond.’
James G. Reardon said he had no plans to file any countercharges
against Mr. Braio. Monsignor Sullivan had accused Mr. Braio of
extortion, saying he threatened to file suit against Bishop Rueger
unless he was paid a sum of money by the diocese.
“‘I’m glad the
cases are gone.’ Mr. Reardon said. ‘It was a very difficult thing to
have to endure. Bishop Rueger is very relieved and pleased that he’s
“Mr. Reardon said
the timing of the dismissal caught him by surprise (I bet. How much
was he in coursing on this whole situation?)
never paid any money on either claim, which I think is appropriate,’
however, said he believes the case is anything but over.
“As of July of
this year, Sime Braio had already dismissed without prejudice the
case against James reason and he told me he did so under coercion
from a state trooper,’ Mr. Shea did.
admitting that he’s being told what to do by state trooper Tom
Greene. I’m going to be demanding some answers form the state of
Massachusetts on why a state trooper is practicing law without a
license. I’m never seen anything like this in my life. Thank God
it’s in writing.’
“He said his
office’s investigation into Mr. Braio’s allegations against Bishop
Rueger is ongoing, but he expected it to be completed soon.
going to be completed very shortly,’ he said. ‘There are some loose
ends, but up to now, the allegations have not been corroborated.
(Mr. Braio) asked us to look into certain things and that is what we
should be studied in detail because obviously something very wrong
with this whole case. I can imagine that this article would some day
be handed-out to an introduction law course and “ecclesiology.”
What I noticed
with Rueger lawsuit was handled in five months (July to November).
Rueger was never sidelined with an administrative leave. He never
missed a beat of his ministry. My case was five years to be settled
and I was “shelved” from day one.
I was having a
coffee with Jack Keena where he made the remark: All the priest
allegations (Worcester Diocese) were 20 years ago. My instant
reaction: You mean nothing has happened of sexual abuse since then
and the boys are behaving themselves?
What has happened
by now is that there has been an attempt by many to give a “paint a
picture by the numbers” approach. This picture has been projected by
supposed “victims,” lawyers, DA Offices, police officers, church
authority-bishops and certain clergy. The agenda by these groups
have strong money and targeted individuals. There was an ego police
state mentality at times. The 90s present a time with a situation
that will take a few more years to show what had been the overall
agenda. We watch on TV at this time the circus of Michael Jackson’s
raping a youngster’s trail in California. It carries on to the
clergy sex abuse situation more ways with an atmosphere of hearing
Bishop Harrington telling me: “You’re guilty till proven innocent.”
It is not even that-your guilty-period.
I recall saying to
Stan and Kay Giza in 1993 that I didn’t understand about what was
overall happening but in 10 years we will see a much better picture.
Well, we are coming to that time.
I was lying in bed
and waiting for my alarm to ring for 5:00 a.m. I noticed that I felt
a “negative atmosphere” surrounding me even at this time of day.
I read in the
morning newspaper horoscope: Try to remain calm and don’t pick a
fight with someone you love. Jealousy may play a role in your day.
Don’t fabricate things in own mind.
John Leo, who is a
syndicated columnist, writes “Pretty soon, we’ll all be victims”
appearing in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette. He says.
“Expert iconologists estimate that 91.2 percent of people in North
America and Europe now qualify as victims, at least in their own
minds. This is because hurt feelings keep spreading, and ‘society’
keeps grinding us down. As the everyone’s-a-victim movement
continues to gain momentum, here are some notable victims of 2003:
Male witches, people with tattoos, American Indian costumes, black
women suing Southwest Airlines, lawyers are victims of bad
publicity and society’s prejudices, a high school student in
Trenton, Italy because of math phobia, Catherine Zeta-Jones and
husband Michael Douglas, sued the British magazine Hello! For
publicizing unauthorized photos etc.203
Suing is in. But,
people’s lives are being destroyed by such an atmosphere. Money is
the reason for the season-suing.
I noticed that I
was feeling “uptight” again with my Thursday trip to Hartford-
quietly appointment. I was thinking how I wanted to toss my attempt
of independence form the Catholic Church hierarchy and issues. I
was trying and beginning to distance myself emotionally from those
I was getting rid
of 40 boxes of books. By this action, I was realizing I’ll never use
this book because priestly ministry was a thing of the past. In back
of my head, I was hoping that “maybe” the diocese would call me to
some active ministry. But, I knew differently and tried to tell
myself to forget such thinking.
My goes at this
time was to get my journal written in a book format-it was going to
be so having that if I added anything more, I wouldn’t be able to
lift it off the floor. This is where I think and say to people
asking me what I’m doing , I say: I’m writing my two-volume book.
Somebody has to
hears about priest on administrative leave” with living in a state
of nears poverty, fear and isolation. I was placed by the Worcester
hierarch in the Harrington Group which is different that Reilly’s
“retired priest” group. There is a significant difference of monies
I felt at this
time that it was time for me to stop keeping my ears to the tracks
and time to stand-up straight with personal pride of being the
person that I was.
with Dr. Zeman began by his question: Are you fearful of looking to
get a part-time job.” I answered immediately: Yes! I spoke nervously
of what’s happening. I mentioned that I don’t feel isolated and
feeling good about myself in even losing 25 pounds with a new size
I, also, mentioned
that my group of people that I identify with is the AA group. I feel
isolated from the church as such being a non-person. I make it an
effort to attend prayer and Mass at the Spencer Trappist Monastery
especially in this Advent Season.
I mentioned how
"Father Peacock" raised my eyes wide open by asking me if I had
“Power-of-Attorney on my personal matters. I didn’t want to think
about that at this time. But, I knew that I had to do it at some
So, I said to Dr.
Zeman that I would have to get a “part-time” job if my rent is
raised by the landlord.
Then Dr. Zeman
asked me how much have I written on my book? I said how it has been
one years of my writing the text part and re-working the footnotes.
I then mentioned
how I did a Google search and three sources appeased on my name
insert. It was the same article from three sources. There was
nothing else. But, I had some difficulty being in public and people
asking me “Who are you?”
I did say that one
of my chapters in my book would be: Priest Guantanamo Bay
Syndrome-interrogation in the “hot house” kitchen at the bishop’s
residence. In addition was the living of my near poverty level, fear
We ended with Dr.
Zeman scheduling with his secretary for “every three months.”
I felt that he was
working me out of the priesthood on the word from the Worcester
Chancery Gang. I was holding my position of being a priest and if
otherwise, the “Goon Squad” (Worcester Chancery) would have to pry
me out. I was not giving them the opportunity to carry-out their
wish to be rid of me.
I was read from
You Look Nice Today by Stanley Bing: This author says that one
has to break down barriers of anger, confusion and disappointment.
One had to find out how to get back to the person we thought we had
known. The psychological-mental character type is described of those
who use the legal system in various ways to vindicate themselves. He
suggests that one should develop support in others and compliments
are needed to be heard about ourselves. It was an interesting read.
issue this week carried a front page picture and feature article:
Lawsuit Heel: How fear of litigation is paralyzing our professions.
This article is 10 pages in this issue with the front page picture
featuring: The Rev. Ron Singleton, Dr. Sandra R. Scott and Sheriff
describing doctors, teachers, coaches, and ministers all share a
common fear: being sued on the job. Our litigation nation and a
plane tip fix thus are reported.
I was listening
tapes of Preparing for Christmas by Fr. Richard Roher (1988).
The sequence I heard this time was about the leper in Sacred
Scripture. He made it known that it is not a medial definition but
spoken in the contact of being “unwanted.” Jesus came to the lepers
and reached out to them. I feel that I was treated like the lepers
of the Scriptures by the Church hierarchy and a number of people
especially clerics. I believe I know why. It has nothing to do with
the diocese putting me on “Administrative Leave.” There was that
disposition of feeling a pain and anguish not easily described. But
feeling isolated, u supported, vulnerable to exploitation and
What I notice this
year was that I did not receive a return Christmas card from Bishop
Reilly. He was preparing to retire as bishop due to age (75) and
was “taking a room at St. Paul’s Cathedral Rectory.” He was
preparing himself to be “history.”
Thus story is from
the Archdiocese of Boston but I imagine would be very similar in the
Jenna Russell of
The Boston Globe printed: “Priest-abuse victims learn of
settlements: No solace, no closure, some say.” She writes: “Hundreds
of people who were sexually abused by Catholic priests learned
yesterday, exactly how much money they will perceive in an $85
million settlement with the Archdiocese of Boston.
“The victims’ plan
for the money, described by one victim as less than a year’s pay,
includes buying Christmas presents, paying children’s college bills,
and getting help with substance abuse.
“One man who
received the maximum $300,000 told his lawyer he would buy his first
car; another recipient planned to give the cash to a support group
for victims abused by priests.
payments, which should be distributed to lawyers this week, some
victims said the money brought no closure one day many described as
a final public milestone in the priest-abuse scandal that erupted
tow year ago with revelations that church officials knowingly
reassigned abusive clergy.
“‘As for me, I’m
tired,’ said John King, 37, a victim from Methuen. ‘I have no solace
in any in any of this. I’m drained, and I’m going to go and try to
do some nice thing for my daughter…’ “205
The Sentinel &
Enterprise prints on the top of the front page “Inmate, priest
in prison romance?” Matt O’Brien writes: Bridgewater-Convicted sex
offender William Lemontagne says he had a romantic relationship with
a Fitchburg priest who allegedly funneled stolen money to him.
“‘He came before
everybody in my life,’ Lamontagne told the Sentinel & Enterprise
during an interview inside the Massachusetts Treatment Center for
the Sexually Dangerous. ‘I told my family if they were going to
accept me, they’d have to accept him, too. And then he did this.’
have changed the Rev. Donald Ouellette, pastor of the Immaculate
Conception Parish in Fitchburg, with stealing more than $250,000
form the church.
grew up in Leominster and has served in the Worcester Diocese since
his 1990 ordination.
“‘I just hope that
people in the Immaculate Conception parish know I know that they’re
hurting,’ Lamontagne said. “I really feel sorry for those people. I
felt in some way that I was sharing their pain. But on the other
side, I was sharing what he did to them.’
he called Ouellette collect on a daily basis over several years, and
he said the priest visited him regularly in prison.
himself to getting me a place to live. He promised we’d be together,
that he wouldn’t leave me,’ Lamontagne said. ‘I guess his feelings
were growing towards me. I don’t know how to explain it. There were
a lot of things that were suppose to happen….We were going to go out
and do things together when we were out, be together and
stuff.’ ‘Leominster attorney Michael McEvilly, who represents
his client, denies having a relationship with Lamontagne other than
as a prison minister.
“The convicted sex
offender told the Sentinel & Enterprise, Ouellette bought him a
radio, television, hot pots, fans, a walkman, headphones, and
covered child support the prisoner owned a 19-year-old daughter who
lives with Lamontagne’s ex-wife in Maine.
“‘I owed probably
about $30,000 worth of child support that he was going to pay for,’
Lamontagne said. They come to him at St. Boniface (Church in
to Lamontagne from the state of Maine have arrived for years at the
Lunenburg church where Ouellette once served as associate pastor
before becoming pastor at Immaculate Conception in 2001, accord to
the prisoner and confirmed by a letter sent to him from Monsignor
Thomas Sullivan, chancellor of the Worcester Diocese.
continued to arrive this fall to the church pastor, the Rev. Edward
Nicholls, according to the monsignor’s letter.
“‘For many years (Nicholls)
has been forwarding it to Father Don because he was told to do so,’
Sullivan wrote to Lamontagne last month after visiting the
One becomes dizzy
trying to follow the bouncing ball with church officials and people
involved only in this story.
I feel as though
my treatment by the official church is not the Church of ‘inner
faith” that the Scared Scriptures portray. My particulars are being
treated by “Holy Mother-The Church” as out of sight, out of mind.
But, I am still
myself and proud of my personhood. I was taking care of my
reputation: as any reputation it precedes one like a marching band.