Posts Tagged church leaders
Prosecutors in Minnesota filed criminal charges Friday (June 5) against the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, accusing church leaders of mishandling repeated complaints of sexual misconduct against a priest and failing to follow through on pledges to protect children and root out pedophile clergymen.
“The charges and accompanying civil petition, announced by the Ramsey County prosecutor, John J. Choi, stem from accusations by three male victims who say that from 2008 to 2010, when they were underage, a local priest, Curtis Wehmeyer, gave them alcohol and drugs before sexually assaulting them.
“The criminal case amounts to a sweeping condemnation of the archdiocese and how its leaders have handled the abuse allegations — even after reforms were put in place by church leaders to increase accountability — and the charges are among the most severe actions taken by US authorities against a Catholic diocese.”
By Mitch Smith, The New York Times, in The Boston Globe — Click here to read the rest of this story.
Records reveal that 10 of the country’s top church leaders defy the Pope’s example and live in residences worth more than $1 million.
“Clearly, ‘lifestyles of the rich and religious’ doesn’t cut it for Pope Francis. The pontiff has said it ‘breaks my heart’ to see priests and nuns driving the latest-model cars. He’s blasted ‘airport bishops’ who spend more time jet-setting than tending to their flocks. And he’s warned against church leaders who bear the ‘psychology of princes.’ The Vatican fired one such ‘prince’ last year: German Bishop Franz-Peter Tebartz-van Elst — aka ‘The Bishop of Bling’ — who spent $43 million to remodel his opulent pad. ‘God save us from a worldly Church with superficial spiritual and pastoral trappings!’ Francis said in his book-length blueprint for the church. Say what you will, but this Pope puts his preaching into practice.”
By Daniel Burke, CNN Belief Blog Editor — Click here to read the rest of this article.
This issue brings together two strains of church life that NCR has been tracking for some 30 years: the sexual abuse of minors by clergy, and the finances of dioceses. It is in these two areas that church leaders are at their most vulnerable.
“The sexual abuse of minors by clergy and the subsequent cover-up by those in the church leadership structure have sapped the hierarchy of much of its moral authority. Many times, the church has seemed to be moving on from the immediacy of that crisis, and then something happens — a priest in Newark, N.J., who is supposed to be on restricted ministry is found on youth retreats, or leaders in the St. Paul-Minneapolis archdiocese ignore their own guidelines and the Dallas Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People — and we are plunged headlong back into that morass.”
Click here to read the rest of this editorial by National Catholic Reporter.
Most Catholics worldwide disagree with church teachings on divorce, abortion and contraception and are split on whether women and married men should become priests, according to a large new poll released Sunday (Feb. 9) and commissioned by the U.S. Spanish-language network Univision.
On the topic of gay marriage, two-thirds of Catholics polled agree with church leaders. Overall, however, the poll of more than 12,000 Catholics in 12 countries reveals a church dramatically divided: Between the developing world in Africa and Asia, which hews closely to doctrine on these issues, and Western countries in Europe, North America and parts of Latin America, which strongly support practices that the church teaches are immoral.”
By Michelle Boorstein, The Washington Post — Click here to read the rest of this story.
Secret Accounts Paid for Clergy Misconduct But Left Church Open to Financial Abuse / Minnesota Public Radio
The Rev. Stanley Kozlak served nearly three decades in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis. But then he fathered a child and the archdiocese needed him gone.
“Removing Kozlak quietly wouldn’t be cheap, but church leaders knew how to move money discreetly. The archdiocese held two secret accounts, controlled by the archbishop, designed to make problems like Kozlak disappear.
“To get him out of active ministry, Archbishop Harry Flynn agreed in 2002 to pay the fallen priest $1,900 a month ‘disability’ for life, plus $800 a month in rent for life, and $980 a month ‘to replace the social security payment until Father Kozlak reaches age 67 when he would receive his full social security.’
“Kozlak’s package was part of a secret financial system that let archdiocese leaders divert millions of dollars away from traditional church work to deal with clergy misconduct.”
By Tom Scheck, Minnesota Public Radio — Click here to read the rest of this story.
Detroit Catholic Archbishop Allen Vigneron has banned an Austrian priest from speaking at a Westland Catholic parish today because the Rev. Helmut Schüller advocates allowing women and married men to be priests, in opposition to current church teaching … But Schüller said that the Catholic Church’s ban on women and married priests is a church order that can be lifted. It’s not an inherent part of the teachings of the Catholic Church, whose positions have varied over the centuries, he said. Church leaders ‘make a mistake’ when they say these are ‘the teachings of the church.’” By Patricia Montemurri and Niraj Warikoo, Detroit Free Press
Read the entire article, “Archbishop Allen Vigeron Bans Liberal Priest Speech from Westland Church,” by clicking here.