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Clergy Sex Abuse Scandal

U.S. BISHOPS MEET ON CLERGY SEXUAL ABUSE SCANDAL AT FALL GENERAL ASSEMBLY

The abuse crisis was set to be a major focus on the agenda at the U.S. bishops’ fall meeting Nov. 12-14 in Baltimore. The assembly planned to begin with an address by Cardinal DiNardo, archbishop of Galveston-Houston and President of the USCCB, and also an address by the Papal Nuncio to the United States, Archbishop Christophe Pierre. The bishops then planned to retreat to a chapel for a day of prayer and reflection.

The assembly planned to vote on measures to respond to the crisis, such as a third-party reporting mechanism, standards of conduct for bishops, and protocols for bishops resigned or removed because of abuse. Bishops also planned to hear a report on the recently concluded youth synod in Rome, and vote on a pastoral letter on racism.

News updates, vote totals, texts of addresses and presentations and other materials were planned to be posted to this page: WWW.USCCB.ORG/MEETINGS.

FEDERAL INVESTIGATION

It was announced at the end of October that federal prosecutors have launched an investigation of clergy sexual abuse in all of Pennsylvania’s dioceses. All eight of the dioceses are cooperating with the probe. The subpoenas ask for years of internal church records. Prosecutors are also seeking evidence that Catholic leaders covered up priests’ crimes by shuffling them to new parishes and instructing victims and their families not to tell police. All dioceses in the United States have been told not to destroy documents related to the investigation.

ALLEGED OFFENSES REPORTED SINCE 2004 “OCCURRING OR BEGINNING” DURING EACH 5-YEAR PERIOD CLERGY SEX ABUSE SCANDAL     1,600