Posts Tagged spotlight

‘Spotlight’ movie about clergy abuse opens nationwide today

Here is one of many online reviews of the “Spotlight” movie, which opens throughout the U.S. today, Nov. 20. Click here to read about what happened next.

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Let victims pursue their abusers: New York’s outdated civil statute of limitations badly needs fixing / New York Daily News

The following is an op-ed piece published in the New York Daily News by attorney Marci Hamilton, a law professor at Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law and author of “Justice Denied: What America Must Do to Protect Its Children.”

The greatest barrier to child protection is ignorance. The movie (‘Spotlight’) shows smart, experienced journalists struggling to comprehend what was right in front of them. ‘Spotlight’ will likely educate millions about the ways in which adults and institutions we trust protect adults and put children at risk every day.

“Despite news coverage of one scandal after another, most adults still trust their instincts regarding who is an abuser and who is not. That is dangerous. Until parents, teachers, clergy and all other adults understand the cunning moves of pedophiles and the ease with which we as adults let abusers persist, kids are at serious risk.

“’Spotlight’ should carry special significance in New York, where, unlike in Boston, so little of the truth about the bishops’ cover-up has surfaced. That is because New York shares the ignominious distinction with Alabama, Michigan and Mississippi of having the worst civil statutes of limitations for child sex abuse in the United States.”

Click here to read the rest of this commentary.

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Voice of the Faithful picks up where ‘Spotlight’ movie ends

Shortly after events in the just released feature film “Spotlight” end, Voice of the Faithful was born of out of the anger and frustration of faithful Catholics at what had happened in their Church: the clergy sexual abuse of children and its coverup. Determined to remain faithful, but to address the wrongs, the movement supported abuse survivors and worked to reform Church structures that enabled the scandal.

As Boston Globe Spotlight investigative team member Sacha Pfeiffer said on ABC’s “The View,” “Certainly some Catholics felt that they couldn’t go back to the church. Others tried to change it from within. There’s a group called Voice of the Faithful. They decided to do that.”

VOTF is what happened next in the Church’s life after the movie ends in 2002, shortly after The Boston Globe published its first stories detailing abuse and coverup in the Archdiocese of Boston. VOTF’s efforts changed how the Roman Catholic Church addresses problems, as described in sociologist Tricia Bruce’s in-depth study of VOTF as an intra-institutional social movement, Faithful Revolution: How Voice of the Faithful Is Changing the Church (Oxford University Press 2011).

Several points paraphrased from Bruce’s book show how VOTF:

  • Refused to let the issue of abuse and the secrecy surrounding it go unspoken.
  • Spoke out through national media and publicized stories of those victimized by clergy abuse.
  • Attended meetings of lay Catholic leaders to focus attention on the scandal.
  • Introduced discussions about sexual abuse, power, authority, and the rights and offerings of the laity into the conversation within the Catholic Church.
  • Reawakened long-dormant conversations about Vatican II.
  • Helped tell the history of the scandal and influenced the Catholic Church’s responses after 2002.
  • Broadened the Catholic “we” to include not just the ordained and the silent majority obedient to existing structures, but also new communities within parishes emphasizing the leadership and abilities of lay Catholics.
  • Expanded the meaning of Catholic identity to contain both faithfulness and challenge to the institution, suggesting it is possible and preferable to keep the faith, but change the Church.

VOTF continues to address the problems of clerically hardened institutional structures, aiming for greater lay input into governance and for healing wounds the scandal has inflicted. Some in the Church’s hierarchy echo this message, especially in light of “Spotlight’s” story.

As one example, Archbishop Michael Jackels of Dubuque, Iowa, was recently quoted in The Boston Globe as saying that, “though failing to report or remove an offender is rare compared with the past, ‘it too still happens, and when it does, a shadow is cast on the church’s efforts to restore trust and to provide a safe environment. And so I suppose the story told by the movie (‘Spotlight’) bears repeating until all of us get all of it right.’”

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 the governance and guidance of the Church. More information is at www.votf.org.

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The long, resistant road to reformation: the Church today and “Spotlight” / America magazine

On Saturday I saw “Spotlight,” the powerful new Tom McCarthy film about the Boston Globe’s work to break the Boston sexual abuse story in 2002 … It’s a surprisingly restrained, quietly devastating drama that well captures the unfolding horror of that moment. To my mind “Spotlight” is also a film that pushes the church to consider where it is today, and where it needs to go.” (boldface added)

By Jim McDermott, America magazine —  Click here to read the rest of this article and click here to read “Watching ‘Spotlight’ as a young priest” by Sam Sawyer, S.J., for a similar take on the movie and the Church’s scandal.

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‘Spotlight’ portrayal of sex abuse scandal is making the Catholic Church uncomfortable all over again / The Washington Post

“‘Spotlight,’ a new film about the Catholic clergy abuse scandal’s explosion in 2002, begs the question: How are things different in 2015?

“Dozens of U.S. church leaders have in the past few days been offering answers in the form of public statements, with some primarily focusing on the survivors and others casting the scandal as fully in the past and framing the church as the leader today in a society that hasn’t fully dealt with the problem.

“‘Spotlight,’ which began playing in U.S. cities Nov. 6, tells the story of Boston Globe investigative journalists who broke the story. (The Globe’s editor at the time was Marty Baron, now executive editor of The Washington Post)

“The range of views in the new statements – which follow a memo of talking points the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ sent to its dioceses in September — show the way the church still wrestles with how to tell its own story.”

By Michelle Boorstein, The Washington Post — Click here to read the rest of this story.

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The longtime advocates behind ‘Spotlight’ / WBUR-FM National Public Radio

Part two of our (WBUR-FM) ‘Spotlight’ series, in advance of the film’s release Friday (Nov. 6). The film ‘Spotlight’ tells a story that broke in 2002, but started years earlier. Before the Spotlight team investigated allegations of clergy sexual abuse, others — like attorney Mitchell Garabedian and Father Thomas Doyle — were already trying to get justice for the victims.” (Website story features photo of Doyle addressing the audience at the 2002 national Voice of the Faithful conference in Boston.)

By Radio Boston WBUR-FM, National Public Radio, Boston — Click here to listen to this story; click here for part one of this series; and click here to purchase Voice of the Faithful advance sale discount tickets to see “Spotlight” at the Coolidge Corner Theatre, 290 Harvard St., Brookline, Massachusetts, on Friday, Nov. 13.

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“Spotlight” trailer previews movie about The Boston Globe clergy sexual abuse investigation

A trailer was released this week for the “Spotlight” movie that follows The Boston Globe’s investigation of clergy sexual abuse of children in the Boston Archdiocese in the early 2000s. The Globe’s Spotlight Team stories led to a 2003 Pulitzer Prize and broke open the abuse scandal in the Church.

Revelations from the Globe’s stories helped fuel the anger, disappointment, and frustration that contributed the growth of Voice of the Faithful. The movie premieres at several film festivals later this summer and is scheduled for wide release toward the end of November.

If you cannot see the video link above or have trouble with the link, click here.

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