Thursday, 7 February 2019

Catholic Abuse News - Texas Abusers Named

Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo,
Archbishop of Galveston-Houston and President of US Conference of Catholic Bishops
Hundreds of accused abusers named by Catholic leaders in Texas | NBC News via Associate Press.

According to Associated Press, the Catholic Church has released the names of 286 Catholic priests who have credibly been accused of the sexual abuse of children in Texas since 1950. Of these 286, 172 have since died.

This is the largest US state-based cohort of abusers since the 300 predatory priests named by the Pennsylvania Grand Jury report last August, although this Pennsylvania tally is likely to be dwarfed by Illinois where the attorney general reported last month that at least 500 Catholic clergy has sexually abused children.

The Texas list brings the total named by the 50 US Catholic diocese so far the report to 1,250. A further 30 diocese are yet to report so a final tally of around 2000 is to be expected. If Pennsylvania, where about 300 priests abused about 1000 children between them, is typical, this figure of 2000 predatory priests probably represents some 6-7,000 childhood victims of the priests and those who facilitated their abuses by covering them up.

This release of names by Texas diocese comes ahead of the three-day crisis Conference of Catholic Bishops called by Pope Francis for 21 February, to develop a protocol for the church heirarchy to use to investigate complaints. This crisis summit is likely to be attended by Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo, Archbishop of Galveston-Houston, Texas, and president of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops.

The Texas list was drawn up by police and federal investigators who reviewed church files and other records of complaints to assess their credibility. What is not clear is how many of these investigations by law enforcement agents will now result in prosecutions. A spokesman for the Texas attorney general confirmed that, while they stood ready to assist local law enforcement and district attorneys that asked for help in removing these threats and protecting children from theses predatory priests, no such request have yet been received.

What a mere list of names, drawn from records held by the church doesn't shed any light on, is who therefore knew of the predatory activities of these priests but did nothing to protect their victims and bring the criminals to justice.

It appears that the policy of the blind eye and cover-up was the norm throughout Texas as elsewhere.

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