Saturday, June 21, 2014

More Sexual Abuse in the Catholic Church! (Part 2)

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Pope Francis: 'About 2%' of Catholic clergy paedophiles
BBC News Europe
David Willey
13 July 2014
Earlier this month the Pope begged forgiveness from victims of child abusers within the Church
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Pope Francis has been quoted as saying that reliable data indicates that "about 2%" of clergy in the Catholic Church are paedophiles.
The Pope said that abuse of children was like "leprosy" infecting the Church, according to the Italian La Repubblica newspaper.
He vowed to "confront it with the severity it demands".
But a Vatican spokesman said the quotes in the newspaper did not correspond to Pope Francis's exact words.
The BBC's David Willey in Rome says there is often a studied ambiguity in Pope Francis' off-the-cuff statements.
He wants to show a more compassionate attitude towards Church teaching than his predecessors, but this can sometimes cause consternation among his media advisers, our correspondent adds.
In the interview, Pope Francis was quoted as saying that the 2% estimate came from advisers. It would represent around 8,000 priests out of a global number of about 414,000.
While the incidence of paedophilia as a psychiatric disorder in the general population is not accurately known, some estimates have put it at less than five percent.
"Among the 2% who are paedophiles are priests, bishops and cardinals. Others, more numerous, know but keep quiet. They punish without giving the reason," Pope Francis was quoted as saying.
"I find this state of affairs intolerable," he went on.
Many Catholics feel the Church hierarchy has not taken strict enough action against abusers
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Many Catholics feel the Church hierarchy has not taken strict enough action against abusers
Above the interview La Repubblica ran the headline: "Pope says: Like Jesus, I shall use a stick against paedophile priests."
Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi denied that Pope Francis had said that there were cardinals who were paedophiles.
Last year Pope Francis strengthened the Vatican's laws against child abuse and earlier this month begged forgiveness from the victims of sexual abuse by priests, at his first meeting with victims since his election.
Many survivors of abuse by priests are angry at what they see as the Vatican's failure to punish senior officials who have been accused of covering up scandals.
Asked in the same La Repubblica interview about the celibacy rule for priests, Pope Francis recalled that it was adopted 900 years after the death of Jesus Christ and pointed out that the Eastern Catholic Church allows its priests to marry.
"The problem certainly exists but it is not on a large scale. It will need time but the solutions are there and I will find them."
Father Lombardi also denied that these were the Pope's exact words.
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Catholic Church apologises to child sex abuse victims
Sunday, June 22, 2014
Warsaw, Poland (AP):Leaders of Poland's Catholic Church apologized last Friday to the victims of child sex abuse by priests and admitted they have long ignored the problem.
Abuse victims and experts on child psychiatry and sex abuse from Germany and the United States attended a conference behind closed doors in Krakow. The first day closed with a Mass held in apology.
"Ashamed and repentant, we ask for forgiveness," said presiding Bishop Piotr Libera. "We ask God and we ask people who were hurt by the priests."
He said Poland's bishops "too often" instead of protecting the child gave credence to the "negation coming from the perpetrators of the crime of pedophilia" and to their insistence that the child was "imposing itself and trying to seduce".
The media were only allowed to attend the opening and the evening apology Mass. Last Friday was the first day of the two-day conference led by Krakow Archbishop Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwisz, who was previously personal secretary to Pope John Paul II.
Some 30 priests have been convicted of pedophilia in Poland, and a few of them are serving prison terms.
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Vatican Tells of 848 Priests Ousted in Decade
By Nick Cumming-Bruce
May 6, 2014
GENEVA — The Vatican has dismissed more than 800 priests for sexual abuse of children in the past decade and paid billions of dollars in compensation, senior Vatican officials told a United Nations panel on Tuesday, presenting the Roman Catholic Church as a model of reform but drawing the ire of victims’ groups that said it still seeks to dodge responsibility for the harm that priests continue to inflict.
The extraordinary disclosures were made on the second day of hearings by a United Nations committee in Geneva reviewing the Vatican’s compliance with an international treaty prohibiting torture. Church officials faced blunt questions about the measures taken to punish priests who abuse children and the church’s willingness to cooperate with civil authorities in punishing such crimes.
Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, the Vatican’s representative in Geneva, stuck resolutely to a narrow interpretation of the treaty on torture, saying it applied to the Holy See only in the case of the few hundred residents of Vatican City. But he spoke of a new culture in the church over tackling sexual abuse.
He told the panel that in addition to 848 priests dismissed between 2004 and 2013, 2,572 members of the clergy had been disciplined for sexual abuse, putting children beyond their reach.
Compensation by Catholic dioceses and religious orders to victims since 1950 has amounted to about $2.5 billion, Archbishop Tomasi said, detailing about $125 million in other payments for therapy and other expenses related to investigations and litigation. To protect children, the church has spent $260 million in the past decade on background checks of priests, he said.
The barrage of statistics accompanied a broader argument that the Holy See is committed to "cleaning house" and has turned a corner on practices that Archbishop Tomasi repeatedly linked to the culture of times past.
"We must not be fossilized in the past," he said after being asked about transfers of priests from diocese to diocese that enabled them to escape investigation and prosecution. "This was a policy practiced decades ago, mostly."
"It’s clear that the issue of sexual abuse of children, which is a worldwide plague and scourge, has been addressed in the last 10 years by the church in a systematic, constructive, effective way," he told the panel, holding up the church’s record as a model of good practice that other institutions might consider.
The committee’s reaction will emerge in final observations scheduled to be
issued on May 23, but its members clearly found some of Archbishop Tomasi’s responses wanting. Felice D. Gaer, the panel’s vice chairwoman, suggested that the Vatican’s narrow view of the scope of its responsibilities risked "creating gaps in the coverage of the convention." Another panel member, George Tugushi, said he found the compensation figures "very impressive" but added that "on the other hand, we have received many reports of people that did not receive redress."
The archbishop’s responses also drew mixed reviews from representatives of nongovernmental organizations in the audience. Ashley McGuire, a member of Catholic Voices USA’s advisory board, said the archbishop had made clear that "the church is a very different place to what it was a decade ago."
But Barbara Blaine, the president of the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests, said that Archbishop Tomasi had described what the church should be doing, but that "what’s actually happening is very, very different."
"It was good to hear questions that have needed to be asked for far too long, but it was hard to hear the deflections of responsibility," said Katherine Gallagher, a lawyer with the Center for Constitutional Rights, in New York. "I heard nothing about high-level officials who facilitate acts of torture being held accountable. That’s facilitating the commission of more crimes and placing more children at risk."
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A Saint, He Ain’t
Maureen Dowd
April 22, 2014
Pope John Paul II in 1978 Credit Associated Press        
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WASHINGTON — There were some disturbing elements to the Easter Mass I attended at Nativity, my childhood church.
The choral director sang "Amazing Grace" to the tune of "Danny Boy." The pews were half-empty on the church’s most sacred day.
My sister reminisced about my christening, when the elderly Monsignor Coady turned away while he was dedicating me to the Blessed Virgin and I started rolling off the altar, propelling my gasping mother to rush up and catch me.
But it was most upsetting as a prelude to next Sunday. In an unprecedented double pontiff canonization, Pope John Paul II will be enshrined as a saint in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Basilica.
The Vatican had a hard time drumming up the requisite two miracles when Pope Benedict XVI, known as John Paul’s Rasputin and enforcer of the orthodoxy, waived the traditional five-year waiting period and rushed to canonize his mentor. But the real miracle is that it will happen at all. John Paul was a charmer, and a great man in many ways. But given that he presided over the Catholic Church during nearly three decades of a gruesome pedophilia scandal and grotesque cover-up, he ain’t no saint.
Sometimes leaders can be remarkable in certain ways and then make a mistake so spectacular, it overshadows other historical achievements. Lyndon Johnson deserves to be secularly canonized for his work on civil rights, but he never will be because of the war in Vietnam.
Just so, John Paul deserves major credit for his role in the downfall of Communism. Even though neocon Catholics who idolize and whitewash John Paul don’t like to dwell on it, he also directed consistent and withering moral criticism at the excesses of capitalism long before Pope Francis did. During his first tour of America as pope in 1979, the rock-star pontiff spoke in Yankee Stadium and warned about "the frenzy of consumerism." (Although John Paul did encourage the royal lifestyle among his own cardinals.)
Perhaps trying to balance the choice of John Paul, who made conservatives jump for joy because he ran a Vatican that tolerated no dissent, the newly christened Pope Francis tried to placate progressives by cutting the miracle requirement from two to one to rush John XXIII’s canonization. That pope was known as "il papa buono," the good pope. He reached out with Vatican II, embraced Jews and opened a conversation on birth control.
"This is a political balancing act," said Kenneth Briggs, the noted religion writer. "Unfortunately, the comparisons are invidious. John opened up the church to the world and J.P. II began to close it down again, make it into a more restricted community, putting boundaries up."
John XXIII, whose reign lasted from 1958 to 1963, comes out "free and clear," Briggs noted, while John Paul has a "cloud hanging over his papacy."
One of John Paul’s great shames was giving Vatican sanctuary to Cardinal Bernard Francis Law, a horrendous enabler of child abuse who resigned in disgrace in 2002 as archbishop of Boston. Another unforgivable breach was the pope’s stubborn defense of the dastardly Mexican priest Marcial Maciel Degollado, a pedophile, womanizer, embezzler and drug addict.
As Jason Berry wrote last year in Newsweek, Father Maciel "was the greatest fund-raiser for the postwar Catholic Church and equally its greatest criminal."
His order, the Legionaries of Christ, which he ran like a cult and ATM for himself and the Vatican for 65 years, denounced him posthumously in February for his "reprehensible and objectively immoral behavior."
The statement followed a United Nations report upbraiding the church for turning a blind eye to child abuse by priests and the sins of Father Maciel, who had serially abused adolescent seminarians, some as young as 12, and had several children with at least two women. His sons also claimed he abused them.
The world has seen many saints, some of them canonized by the Catholic Church, but John Paul II was not one of them. Nor is Pope Francis....
It is wonderful that John Paul told other societies, Communist and capitalist, to repent. But his tragedy is that he never corrected the failings of his own society, over which he ruled absolutely.
His defenders say that the pope was kept in the dark, and that he believed that the accusations were phony ones, like the efforts to slime the church in his homeland, Poland, during the Cold War.
Given the searing damage the scandal has done to so many lives and to the church, that rationalization doesn’t have a prayer. He needed to recognize the scope of the misconduct and do something, not play the globe-trotting ostrich.
The church is giving its biggest prize to the person who could have fixed the spreading stain and did nothing. The buck, or in this case, the Communion wafer, doesn’t stop here. There is something wounding and ugly about the church signaling that those thousands of betrayed, damaged victims are now taken for granted as a slowly fading asterisk.
John Paul may be a revolutionary figure in the history of the church, but a man who looked away in a moral crisis cannot be described as a saint.
When the church elevates him, it is winking at the hell it caused for so many children and young people in its care.
A big holy wink.
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Vatican 'must immediately remove' child abusers - UN
BBC News Europe
David Willey
5 February 2014
The UN has said that the Vatican should "immediately remove" all clergy who are known or suspected child abusers.
The UN watchdog for children's rights denounced the Holy See for adopting policies which allowed priests to sexually abuse thousands of children.
In a report, it also criticised Vatican attitudes towards homosexuality, contraception and abortion.
The Vatican responded by saying it would examine the report - but also accused its authors of interference.
A group representing the victims of abuse by priests in the US welcomed the report.
In its findings, the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC) said the Holy See should open its files on members of the clergy who had "concealed their crimes" so that they could be held accountable by the authorities.
It said it was gravely concerned that the Holy See had not acknowledged the extent of the crimes committed, and expressed its "deepest concern about child sexual abuse committed by members of the Catholic churches who operate under the authority of the Holy See, with clerics having been involved in the sexual abuse of tens of thousands of children worldwide".
It also lambasted the "practice of offenders' mobility", referring to the transfer of child abusers from parish to parish within countries, and sometimes abroad.
The committee said this practice placed "children in many countries at high risk of sexual abuse, as dozens of child sexual offenders are reported to be still in contact with children".
The UN report called on a Vatican commission created by Pope Francis in December to investigate all cases of child sexual abuse "as well as the conduct of the Catholic hierarchy in dealing with them".
Ireland's Magdalene laundries scandal was singled out by the report as an example of how the Vatican had failed to provide justice despite "slavery-like" conditions, including degrading treatment, violence and sexual abuse.
The laundries were Catholic-run workhouses where some 10,000 women and girls were required to do unpaid manual labour between 1922 and 1996.
The report's findings come after Vatican officials were questioned in public last month in Geneva about why they would not release data and what they were doing to prevent future abuse.
The Vatican has denied any official cover-up. However, in December it refused a UN request for data on abuse on the grounds that it only released such information if requested to do so by another country as part of legal proceedings.
Many campaigners feel the Vatican should open its files on priests known to be child abusers.
Many campaigners feel the Vatican should open its files on priests known to be child abusers
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In January, the Vatican confirmed that almost 400 priests had been defrocked in a two-year period by the former Pope Benedict XVI over claims of child abuse.
The UN committee's recommendations are non-binding and there is no enforcement mechanism.
'Non-negotiable'
The BBC's David Willey in Rome says the Vatican has set up new guidelines to protect children from predatory priests.
But, he adds, bishops in many parts of the world have tended to concentrate on protecting and defending the reputation of priests rather than listening to the complaints of victims of paedophile priests.
Meanwhile several Catholic dioceses in the US have been forced into bankruptcy after paying out huge sums in compensation to victims of abuse by clergy.
The Vatican said in a statement following the report's publication: "The Holy See takes note of the concluding observations...which will be submitted to a thorough study and examination... according to international law and practice."
But it added that it "regrets to see in some points of the concluding observations an attempt to interfere with Catholic Church teaching on the dignity of human person and in the exercise of religious freedom" and "reiterates its commitment to defending and protecting the rights of the child... according to the moral and religious values offered by Catholic doctrine".
Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, head of the Holy See's delegation to the United Nations in Geneva, told Vatican Radio the report had failed to take into account the fact that the Vatican had made "a series of changes for the protection of children", and its efforts at reform were "fact, evidence, which cannot be distorted".
He added that the UN could not ask the Church to change its "non-negotiable" moral teachings.
Victims groups welcomed the report as a wake-up call to secular law enforcement officials to investigate and prosecute Church officials who were still protecting "predator priests".
Barbara Blaine, president of a group representing US victims of abuse by priests - Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (Snap) - told the BBC that the UN report "reaffirms everything we've been saying. It shows that the Vatican has put the reputation of Church officials above protection of children".
"Church officials knew about it and they refused to stop it. Nothing has changed. Despite all the rhetoric from Pope Francis and Vatican officials, they refuse to take action that will make this stop."
Catholic Church abuse scandals
Germany - A priest, named only as Andreas L, admitted in 2012 to 280 counts of sexual abuse involving three boys over a decade
United States - Revelations about abuses in the 1990s by two Boston priests, Paul Shanley and John Geoghan, caused public outrage
Belgium - The bishop of Bruges, Roger Vangheluwe, resigned in April 2010 after admitting that he had sexually abused a boy for years
Italy - The Catholic Church in Italy admitted in 2010 that about 100 cases of paedophile priests had been reported over 10 years
Ireland - A report in 2009 found that sexual and psychological abuse was "endemic" in Catholic-run industrial schools and orphanages for most of the 20th century
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Predator Priests Shuffled Around Globe
By CBS News AP
April 14, 2010
This undated photo from a page of Kiremba, the 2008 newsletter released by the Bresciani missionaries, shows Father Mario Pezzotti with Kayapo Indian children in Brazil. (AP Photo/Bresciani Missionaries)
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There he was, five decades later, the priest who had raped Joe Callander in
Massachusetts. The photo in the Roman Catholic newsletter showed him with a smile across his wrinkled face, near-naked Amazon Indian children in his arms and at his feet.
The Rev. Mario Pezzotti was working with children and supervising other priests in Brazil.
It's not an isolated example.
In an investigation spanning 21 countries across six continents, The Associated Press found 30 cases of priests accused of abuse who were transferred or moved abroad. Some escaped police investigations. Many had access to children in another country, and some abused again.
Sex Abuse Scandal Has Vatican in Damage Control
A priest who admitted to abuse in Los Angeles went to the Philippines, where U.S. church officials mailed him checks and advised him not to reveal their source. A priest in Canada was convicted of sexual abuse and then moved to France, where he was convicted of abuse again in 2005. Another priest was moved back and forth between Ireland and England, despite being diagnosed as a pederast, a man who commits sodomy with boys.
"The pattern is if a priest gets into trouble and it's close to becoming a scandal or if the law might get involved, they send them to the missions abroad," said Richard Sipe, a former Benedictine monk and critic of what he says is a practice of international transfers of accused and admitted priest child abusers. "Anything to avoid a scandal."
Church officials say that in some cases, the priests themselves moved to another country and the new parish might not have been aware of past allegations. In other cases, church officials said they did not believe the allegations, or that the priest had served his time and reformed.
Callander says he was 14 when he was raped three times and abused on other occasions in 1959 at the now-closed Xaverian Missionary Faith High School in Holliston, Mass. The Xaverians settled the case for $175,000 in 1993. At least two other accusations of sexual abuse were leveled against Pezzotti in the Boston area.
In the meantime, from 1970 to 2003, Pezzotti was in Brazil, where he worked with the Kayapo Indians.
In a handwritten note of apology to Callander in January 1993, Pezzotti said he had cured himself in the jungle.
"I asked to leave Holliston and go to Brazil to change my life and begin a new life. Upon arrival in Brazil, confiding in God's mercy, I owned up to the problem," Pezzotti wrote. "With divine help, I overcame it."
There is no evidence that Pezzotti, now 75, abused children in Brazil, which has more Catholics than any other nation. Brazilian law enforcement officials said they were unaware of any complaints about him.
The Rev. Robert Maloney, a former provincial of the Xaverians who worked closely on Callander's settlement, said Pezzotti was allowed to stay in Brazil for another decade and work with children after a psychological evaluation. He added that a Xaverian investigation into Pezzotti and his work in Brazil turned up nothing.
After Pezzotti returned to Italy in 2003, "he was constantly being asked for by Brazil and by the people he worked with," Maloney added.
In 2008, Pezzotti returned to Brazil. A few months later, Callander saw the photos of him on the Internet and complained to the church. The priest was quickly sent back to Italy.
The Xaverian vicar general, Rev. Luigi Menegazzo, said Pezzotti works at Xaverian headquarters in Parma tending to sick and elderly priests. Asked if Pezzotti had any contact with children or public parish work, he said, "Absolutely in no way."
Reached by telephone, Pezzotti said only: "I don't see why I have to talk about it. Everything was resolved and I don't feel like talking."
Father Vijay Vhaskr Godugunuru was forced to return to India and then was transferred to Italy after pleading no contest to assaulting a 15-year-old girl while visiting friends in Bonifay, Fla. He now ministers to a parish in a medieval town of about 4,000 in Tuscany, where he hears confessions, celebrates Mass and works with children.
The bishops supervising him said they were aware of the case but believed he was innocent.
"The evidence that has been given does not support the accusation," Monsignor Rodolfo Cetoloni, the bishop of the Montepulciano diocese, told the AP last week.
Cetoloni said he saw no reason for any restrictions. Godugunuru, now 40, "enjoys the esteem of everybody," he said.
Godugunuru had been charged with fondling a parishioner in her family's van on June 23, 2006. The priest, visiting from India's diocese of Cuddapah, had been allowed to assist at the Blessed Trinity Catholic Church in Bonifay.
The girl, now 19, told police in a sworn statement that Godugunuru "fondled her breasts and penetrated her vagina with his fingers." In his own interview with police, Godugunuru said the girl "had taken his hand and placed it between her legs." He denied intentionally touching her.
The priest was arrested the next month for lewd or lascivious battery on a minor. He faced up to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine but in exchange for his no contest plea was required to return to India, undergo counseling, not supervise minors for a year and not return to the United States.
The girl's mother brought the case to the attention of Pope Benedict XVI.
"My family and others have been forced out of our church," she wrote in an Aug. 23, 2006, e-mail obtained by the AP. "Just when our faith and our faith in our church were tested most, our Priest chose the side of silence. ... To make matters worse, it was my daughter who was the one being attacked and he just sat back and watched. ...
"This is the biggest problem my family has ever dealt with," she continued. "Please Father, help us. Remember us in your prayers, especially for the speedy healing of my daughter."
The e-mail also said she had contacted the bishop of Cuddapah, the Most Rev. Doraboina Moses Prakasam, and asked if there had been any past accusations of sexual improprieties against Godugunuru. "I have not heard back from him and I don't expect to," she said.
The pope never answered.
Prakasam told the AP he was under the impression that Godugunuru had been absolved of the charges.
"What I was told by the people looking after that case was that he was cleared and ... he was allowed to come back to India," he said.
He said he told the Italian bishop of the case when Godugunuru moved to Tuscany.
The priest of San Lorenzo parish told the AP by phone last week that Godugunuru works as his deputy. He refused further comment, except to say that Godugunuru "does what all deputy parish priests do" and "helps the parish priest."
Godugunuru declined to be interviewed by the AP.
Clodoveo Piazza is an Italian Jesuit who ran a homeless shelter for street children and worked in Brazil for 30 years. In 2005, he was awarded $600,000 from Brazil's national development bank to set up four facilities in the northeastern city of Salvador.
Last August, prosecutors said at least eight boys and young men had come forward to say either that they were abused by Piazza or that he allowed visiting foreigners to sexually abuse boys. Brazilian police are seeking his arrest.
Piazza now works in Mozambique, according to the Catholic nonprofit Organizzazione di Aiuto Fraterno, and the church has come to his defense.
"The Italian Jesuits express their solidarity with the brother and father Piazza," reads one note on the nonprofit's Web site. The group adds that "the slander against missionaries is becoming an increasingly popular game."
Brazilian prosecutors say Piazza, a naturalized Brazilian, has refused to respond to the charges of sexual abuse and sexual exploitation of children.
Interviewed in Maputo, Mozambique, this week, Piazza said the charges were false and part of a campaign to blackmail him by "political circles" in Brazil that he did not identify. He said he had been acquitted of the charges twice in Brazil, and that there is no evidence against him.
A spokeswoman with Bahia state's Public Ministry said there were no records of Piazza ever being tried or acquitted and that the case against him is still open. She spoke on condition of anonymity, in keeping with department policy.
"This is propaganda in order to earn money," Piazza told the AP, saying people in Brazil had asked him for money, which he could not pay.
He said he has been living in a Jesuit residence in Maputo for about seven months. He said he was working with Italy's Turino University on "economic projects" and was not working with children.
Joseph Skelton was a 26-year-old student at St. John Provincial Seminary in Detroit, Mich., in 1988 when he was convicted of sexual misconduct with a 15-year-old boy. He was given three years' probation and dismissed from his seminary.
Two decades later, he lives in the Philippines, where he was ordained a priest and now serves as parochial vicar of the St. Vincent Ferrer parish in the remote town of Calape, according to the diocese directory. He is also a popular gospel singer in the heavily Catholic country.
Reached on his cell phone, Skelton declined comment.
He finished his seminary studies in Manila, the capital, and was ordained in 2001 in the diocese of Tagbilaran in Bohol province.
The bishop who ordained Skelton said he wouldn't have made him a priest if he had known about the criminal conviction.
"I ordained him because, while there was some talk about his effeminate ways, there was no case against him," Bishop Leopoldo S. Tumulak said.
Tumulak, who has since stepped down, said it would be up to his successor to reopen the case.
"The priest is trying to live well," Tumulak said. "If he has really changed, the heart of the church is compassionate - although in America, Europe, they have different ways of looking at it. Not the church, but the government, the people. In the Philippines, it's a little bit different."
The archdiocese of Detroit, after learning Skelton had been ordained, sent a letter about his conviction to the Tagbilaran diocese in early 2003. Tumulak, the former bishop, said he doesn't remember if he received the letter, and in any case it would have been too late.
Informed of the case, current Bishop Leonardo Medroso said he would investigate. But he added:
"The case has been judged already. He was convicted and that means to say he has served already the conviction. So what obstacle can there be if he has already served his punishment or penalty?"
The Rev. Enrique Diaz Jimenez of Colombia was punished three times in three different countries.
He pleaded guilty to sexually abusing three boys while a priest at St. Leo's Church and Our Lady of Sorrows Church in New York in the mid-1980s, and was sentenced in April 1991 to five years' probation and four months of an "intermittent sentence."
He was deported and resumed work as a priest in Venezuela, where he was suspended from the priesthood in 1996 for 20 years after 18 boys accused him of molesting them.
Monsignor Francisco de Guruceaga, the bishop who hired Diaz in Venezuela, said it was not clear to him when the priest arrived that he had been charged with abusing children. De Guruceaga said Diaz told him he had problems with relationships with women, not molesting children.
Diaz returned to Colombia in 1996 and again found work as a priest. Colombian prosecutors say Diaz was charged in 2001 with molesting one more boy and pleaded guilty later that year.
Transferring abusive priests was called "the geographical cure," according to Terry Carter, a New Zealand victim. Carter won $32,000 in compensation from the Society of Mary, which oversees the Catholic boarding school outside Wellington where he was abused by the Rev. Allan Woodcock.
Woodcock molested at least 11 boys at four church facilities in New Zealand before being sent by the church to Ireland. He was extradited to New Zealand in 2004, pleaded guilty to 21 sexual abuse charges involving 11 victims and was sentenced to seven years in jail. He was paroled in September 2009.
"They whipped him out of the country to Ireland," Carter said. "They took him out of New Zealand after years of offending in different locations."
Society of Mary spokeswoman Lyndsay Freer told the AP that some families of Woodcock's victims asked that he be sent offshore.
"He was sent to Ireland for intensive psychotherapy. He had no permission to exercise his ministry or to be involved with youth," she said.
Woodcock was suspended from his ministry in the New Zealand branch of the Society of Mary in 1987, according to Freer. He was removed from the priesthood in 2001, she said.
Freer noted that even 20 years ago, it was accepted belief that "pedophilia could be cured," often with intensive psychotherapy. "Pedophilia is now seen as recidivist," she said.
Woodcock is believed to be living in New Zealand's North Island coastal city of Wanganui. A woman who gave her name as Catherine Woodcock and described herself as "a relative" said she didn't think he would want to make any comment to the media. Asked why, she replied: "It is not appropriate at this stage."
Back in Windsor, Vermont, Callander lives a quiet life with Sandi, his wife of 35 years. It was only last week that he told his siblings about the abuse.
Callander says he is coming forward now because the Xaverians failed to keep their promise that Pezzotti would not be around children. He wants the church to change by defrocking or isolating priests who admit abuse so they cannot work in the same positions again - anywhere in the world.
"All I want is for the church to do what is right for once," Callander said. "To end the facade that a man like that should have the right to call himself a Catholic priest."

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Also See:
More Sexual Abuse in the Catholic Church!
(Part 1)
31 March 2010
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