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USA: Illinois Attorney General: Catholic Church Protecting At Least 500 Accused Priests

Saturday 22 December 2018, by siawi3

Source: https://www.patheos.com/blogs/progressivesecularhumanist/2018/12/illinois-attorney-general-reports-catholic-church-protecting-at-least-500-accused-priests/?utm_source=Newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Nonreligious&utm_content=44

Illinois Attorney General: Catholic Church Protecting At Least 500 Accused Priests

December 19, 2018

by Michael Stone

They’re still protecting pedophiles: Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan reports that the Catholic Church withheld the names of at Least 500 priests accused of sexual assault.

The New York Times reports:

A scathing report by the Illinois attorney general accused the Roman Catholic Church in the state of failing the victims of clergy sexual abuse by neglecting to investigate their allegations against priests and finding flimsy reasons to dismiss their claims.

The names of more than 500 priests who were accused of sexual abuse did not show up on lists of credibly accused clergy that have been released by the Illinois Catholic dioceses, according to the preliminary report from Attorney General Lisa Madigan.

CNN reports:

In yet another blow to the Catholic Church in the United States, Illinois’ attorney general says the state’s six dioceses have failed to disclose accusations of sexual abuse against at least 500 priests and clergy members.

The report is yet another bombshell revelation concerning the Catholic Church protecting and shielding pedophile priests and other clergy members suspected of sexual abuse. Earlier this year, a stunning grand jury report released by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court found over 300 predator priests sexually abused over a 1,000 children in Pennsylvania.

That report released by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court detailed a “systematic” cover-up effort by church leaders going back more than 70 years. There is no reason to believe that the church leaders in Illinois behaved any different.

Earlier today Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan released preliminary findings of her ongoing investigation into the Catholic Church. So far “Madigan’s investigation has found that the dioceses have received allegations of sexual abuse of at least 500 additional priests and clergy members in Illinois” not reported by church officials.

In a statement concerning her investigation Madigan said:

Because I know that the Church has too often ignored survivors of clergy sexual assault, I want to share the initial findings from our work. While the findings are preliminary, they demonstrate the need for and importance of continuing this investigation.

Madigan notes that the Church “has failed in its moral obligation”:

By choosing not to thoroughly investigate allegations, the Catholic Church has failed in its moral obligation to provide survivors, parishioners and the public a complete and accurate accounting of all sexually inappropriate behavior involving priests in Illinois.

The failure to investigate also means that the Catholic Church has never made an effort to determine whether the conduct of the accused priests was ignored or covered up by superiors.

Madigan concludes that the Catholic Church cannot be trusted to police itself:

The preliminary stages of this investigation have already demonstrated that the Catholic Church cannot police itself. Allegations of sexual abuse of minors, even if they stem from conduct that occurred many years ago, cannot be treated as internal personnel matters.

Madigan is right. The Catholic Church cannot be trusted to police itself, and there is no doubt that the Church “has failed in its moral obligation.” Indeed, every state attorney general should follow Madigan’s lead and begin to investigate the criminal practices of the morally bankrupt Catholic Church.

Bottom line: The Catholic Church continues to protect and enable pedophile priests and other clergy members suspected of sexual misconduct, but Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan is going to try and hold the criminals responsible for their deplorable crimes.