Posts Tagged Archdiocese of Hartford
Voice of the Faithful, a Roman Catholic Church reform movement, is gratified the Connecticut Supreme Court has upheld a superior court ruling finding the Archdiocese of Hartford “acted negligently and recklessly” in assigning a known pedophile priest as director of an elementary school where he abused Jacob Doe, the plaintiff in the case.
In the same ruling, the Connecticut Supreme Court rejected the Hartford archdiocese’s argument that the 2002 extension of the state’s statute of limitations for victims to file lawsuits against their abusers was unconstitutional.
In 2012, A Waterbury Superior Court jury had found the archdiocese negligent and reckless in allowing Rev. Ivan Ferguson to work with children in 1981 as director of St. Mary’s Elementary School in Derby after Ferguson had admitted child abuse in 1979.
Dioceses have repeatedly attempted to avoid their responsibilities for protecting children from abusive priests and have covered up their wrongdoing, but this ruling is an example that at least civil courts, if not yet ecclesial courts, will no longer tolerate such actions.
Voice of the Faithful: Voice of the Faithful is a worldwide movement of faithful Roman Catholics working to support survivors of clergy sexual abuse, support priests of integrity and increase the laity’s role in governance and guidance of the Church. More information is at www.votf.org.
“Always be prepared to make a defense to anyone who calls you to account for the hope that is in you,” we read in 1 Peter 3:15. We are called to be “a people of hope.” Some days, watching and listening to Pope Francis, being hopeful comes easy, even naturally.
“Today (Oct. 29) is not one of those days. In naming Bishop Leonard Blair to become the next archbishop of Hartford, Conn., the Holy See has sent what can only be described as a counter-sign. This was a missed opportunity to send a signal to all the bishops in the United States that the Holy Father is calling for a different style of pastoral leadership in the Church. In June, Pope Francis spoke to the nuncios from around the world assembled in Rome. He sketched the type of pastoral leadership he expected in the appointment of bishops. The pope said he wanted pastors who would serve their people, not serve as overlords. They were, he famously said, to be men who “have the smell of the sheep.
“The good news is that Archbishop-designate Blair has the smell of the sheep. The bad news is that one suspects he thinks the sheep stink.”
By Michael Sean Winters, National Catholic Reporter — Read the rest of Winters’ article by clicking here.