Within days of their historic June 13-15 meeting on clerical sex abuse of minors, some U.S.
bishops began implementing the new national charter they established in Dallas.
Several priests with past records of abuse who had been restored to ministry or church-related
office jobs following treatment were removed from those posts, including eight in Chicago.
Some retired priests were informed they could no longer wear clerical garb, present themselves
as priests or say Mass publicly.
There were new criminal and civil actions against priests accused of sexual abuse, and attorneys
on both sides of civil cases in the Boston Archdiocese agreed to try to reach an out-of-court
settlement that could cover up to 275 cases.
In Boston, the starting point last January of the clergy sex abuse scandal that erupted into a
national crisis, alleged victims and their advocates marched June 23 from Boston Common to
the Cathedral of the Holy Cross, carrying signs with childhood pictures of about 75 alleged
abuse victims. They joined about 100 other protesters outside the cathedral.
The core group of the U.S. bishops' new National Review Board overseeing implementation of
the new national policy held its first meeting June 20-21 in Oklahoma City under the
chairmanship of Oklahoma Gov. Frank Keating.
Along with Washington lawyer Robert S. Bennett and Illinois Appellate Court Justice Anne M.
Burke, who were named to the board along with Keating June 14, the core group added a
fourth member, Michael J. Bland, clinical-pastoral coordinator of the Chicago archdiocesan
Office of Assistance Ministry and himself a survivor of sexual abuse by a priest when he was a
A news release from the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops said the full board should be
named by mid-July. It said the core group discussed review board procedures, the structure of
the planned USCCB Office of Child and Youth Protection, which the board will oversee, and a
job description for the office's director.
Cardinal Francis E. George of Chicago announced the removal of eight priests from all priestly
ministry June 23 because of credible accusations against them in the past. Three of them were
pastors, one an associate pastor, one a hospital chaplain, two working in administrative jobs and
one a 72-year-old retiree who was assisting with weekend Masses.
Cardinal George said five of the priests plan to appeal their removal, while two plan to resign
from the priesthood. The retired priest will no longer be able to celebrate Mass publicly or
present himself as a priest.
Concerning the priests who plan to contest their removal, archdiocesan Chancellor Jimmy Lago
said, "Due process is necessary to honor the personal rights of all concerned."
In Minnesota: -- The St. Paul-Minneapolis Archdiocese removed three priests, two from
administrative jobs and one from a convent chaplaincy.
A spokesman for the Crookston Diocese, in the northwest corner of the state, said three
retired priests long ago restricted from ministry -- including one who uses a wheelchair and one
who is bedridden -- have been notified that they can no longer present themselves as priests.
The St. Cloud Diocese gave notice to three priests, one retired and two who held administrative
Abbot John Klassen told the Benedictine monks of St. John's Abbey in Collegeville June 19
that the abbey will follow the bishops' policy and go a step further: If a monk has sexually
abused someone, he will be removed from ministry even if the victim was an adult. The abbey
has 14 monks who live under restrictions because of past abuse of children or young people.
In Evansville, Ind., Father Michael Allen was removed as pastor of St. Peter Parish in Celestine.
Father Allen, who sexually abused a teen-ager in 1976, had received national news coverage
before the bishops' meeting as an example of a former offender who repented and converted
and was loved by his parishioners.
In Louisville, Ky., Father Joseph Stoltz, who had been treated in 1991 following the revelation
of a child abuse incident in the 1970s, was removed from St. William Parish.
Louisville Archbishop Thomas C. Kelly June 20 named the first members of a new advisory
board to handle allegations of sexual abuse and announced that victims of such abuse by priests
will be offered free counseling through the University of Louisville.
Father Thomas R. Malia was asked to resign as pastor of two Baltimore parishes when it was
learned that he had hired Robert Gee in 1999 as interim music director of one of the parishes,
knowing that Gee had been convicted of sexual abuse of a teen-ager two years earlier. A
diocesan spokesman said the priest likely would be assigned to another parish, but not as a
Diocesan officials in Scranton, Pa., indicated four priests would likely be removed from
ministry. One recently resigned from a parish; the others were in limited ministry without contact
In San Jose, Calif., Bishop Patrick J. McGrath permanently removed two priests from their
posts June 21 and informed two retired priests with sexual abuse records that they will no longer
be able to say Mass in public or identify themselves as priests.
Bishop Howard J. Hubbard of Albany, N.Y., met with diocesan department heads less than 48
hours after the Dallas meeting ended to outline responsibilities various departments will have in
implementing the national charter within the diocese. Did absolutely nothing, even though he had
a misconduct panel and guidlines set up since 1993- and current allegations against several
Cardinal Adam J. Maida of Detroit called a meeting of his priests June 24 to discuss the
implications of the charter with them. Just three days earlier a diocesan spokesman said three
priests previously cleared of sexual abuse allegations may be removed from their parishes as a
result of the new zero-tolerance policy and new evidence uncovered in a two-month
investigation by the Wayne County prosecutor's office. Two other priests in restricted ministries
were removed because of past abuse.
Cardinal Roger M. Mahony of Los Angeles announced the establishment of a new 13-member
archdiocesan review board to replace his current nine-member board. Among those named to
the new board were a psychologist who was sexually abused as a child and the parents of an
The following day the Maine attorney general's office announced that it had completed its
review of diocesan personnel files on 33 priests, none of whom is still active in ministry. The
state office distributed case files to local prosecutors to determine if any could lead to criminal
Union County, N.J., prosecutor Thomas Manahan said June 22 that the Newark Archdiocese
had turned over the names of 10 priests, but all the cases appeared to him to be too old to
prosecute under the state's statute of limitations.
Bishops start dealing with new rules on
sex-abusing priests, within days after
Hubbard Odd one Out......