Sex abuse files on 30 Chicago priests going public

2014-01-21 19:35

(Shutterstock)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

kalahari.com

  • Child Abuse
    Provides readers with a wealth of information on topics of current interest. Now R526.95
    buy now

Chicago - Thousands of pages of documents showing how the Archdiocese of Chicago handled the sexual abuse of children by priests will be made public on Tuesday, providing the broadest look yet into the details of what the archdiocese knew and did - or didn't do - about the scandal.

The archdiocese, one of the largest and most influential in the US, handed over last week more than 6 000 pages of documents to victims' attorneys, who said they will show the archdiocese concealed abuse for decades, including moving priests to new parishes where they molested again.

The disclosures involving 30 priests were made as part of legal settlements with abuse victims, and are similar to disclosures made in other dioceses in the US in recent years that showed how the Roman Catholic Church shielded priests and failed for many years to report child sex abuse to authorities.

Chicago officials said most of the abuse occurred before 1988 and none after 1996.

Debra Brian, a 24-year-old Catholic from Chicago, had not yet seen or heard what was included in the documents, but said on Sunday that the church is doing the right thing by acknowledging what occurred.

"Hopefully it will help people come forward," said Brian.

Cardinal Francis George, who has led the archdiocese since 1997, released a letter to parishioners on 12 January in which he apologized for the abuse and said releasing the records "raises transparency to a new level".

He also stressed that much of the abuse occurred decades ago, before he became archbishop. He said all of the incidents eventually were reported to civil authorities and resulted in settlements with victims.

"I apologise to all those who have been harmed by these crimes and this scandal, the victims themselves, most certainly, but also rank and file Catholics who have been shamed by the actions of some priests and bishops," George wrote.

The archdiocese has paid millions of dollars to settle sexual abuse claims, including those against Father Daniel McCormack, who was sentenced to five years in prison after pleading guilty in 2007 to abusing five children while he was parish priest at St Agatha Catholic Church and a teacher at a Catholic school.

The next year, the archdiocese agreed to pay $12.6m to 16 victims of sexual abuse by priests, including McCormack.

Files on McCormack will not be among those released; they have been sealed by a judge because of pending court cases, said Chicago attorney Marc Pearlman, who has represented about 200 victims of clergy abuse in the Chicago area.

Pearlman said he and St Paul, Minnesota, attorney Jeff Anderson will re-release the McCormack documents that they have.

Many of the accused priests are dead, and the documents will include only 30 of 65 priests for whom the archdiocese says it has credible allegations of abuse.

Peter Isely, Midwest director for the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, said it's important for all Chicago-area Catholics to read the documents.

"This is about a part of their story as Chicago Catholics that ... has been systematically hidden," Isely said.

- AP
Read more on:    us  |  child abuse
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
6 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Camping gear!

We’ve got all your camping must have’s right here at mind blowing low prices. Check them out now!

Herbex – buy 3 & get 1 free!

Fat burn packs, appetite control chewies, stretch mark cream and more. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

30% off Jinger Jack handbags

Spice up your wardrobe and save 30% on stylish Jinger Jack handbags. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Buy 3 books & pay for 2

The cheapest of the 3 books will be free. Offer valid while stocks last. T&Cs apply. Shop now!

Deal of the week!

Hisense 40” Full HD LED Television now R3999. Offer valid while stocks last. Buy now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Today is a good day to network and share your ideas and thoughts with your colleagues and friends. Information overload is...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.