Roman Catholic Glass Houses In Maine
So with a bit of dusting off, here it is again…
From the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland comes the following:
Bishop Malone Issues Statement on Signing of Same-Sex Marriage Bill
Bishop Richard Malone, spiritual leader of Maine’s 200,000 Roman Catholics, said today (May 11, 2009):
“I am deeply disappointed in the Maine Legislature and the Governor for making same sex-marriage legal in our state. The family, consisting of mother, father and children, has served throughout the ages as the natural place for the healthy development of children into well adjusted and productive citizens.
Same-sex marriage is a dangerous sociological experiment that I believe will have negative consequences for society as a whole. These are profound changes that will reverberate throughout society with tragic consequences.”
So nice of The Bishop to step out of his luxurious posh mansion to release a statement, wasn’t it?
Note that the mansion is constructed out of brick, the choice of smart pigs, and not a “glass house”, so vulnerable to stones cast by angry parishioners…
Let’s go below the fold and see what Bishop Malone and the Roman Catholic Diocese of Maine together have done to preserve the safety of the children, shall we? Actually, it seems they have done alot- but that they have HAD to.
A former Maine priest has been barred from the ministry and an Augusta man prevented from church service due to a history of child abuse, according to the Diocese of Portland.
Frederick A. Carrigan, 74, who served at St. Joseph in Gardiner as well as parishes in Bath, Bangor, Dover-Foxcroft, East Millinocket and Hampden, has been assigned to a life of prayer and penance, which means he cannot have any ministry, present himself as a priest or wear clerical clothes, according to a statement released by the Diocese on Friday.
In a separate case, Paul Douin, 69, of Augusta, has been permanently removed from his volunteer position. The Diocese said it made that decision after confirming that Douin was convicted in 1977 of sexual abuse of minor.
Carrigan was permanently removed from service after The Vatican accepted the decision of a tribunal that heard Carrigan’s case during a church trial last October. The judges, all from outside of Maine, found Carrigan guilty of abusing a minor.
The tribunal’s recommendation was sent to Rome, which gave final approval in a letter sent to Bishop Richard Malone April 22.
Carrigan was removed from ministry in 1989 for “inappropriate behavior” with an adult, the Diocese said. Carrigan was accused in 1991 of abusing a minor in 1972. His ministry ended 2002.
Douin, who was most recently a volunteer at St. Augustine’s Church in Augusta, was sentenced to four years in prison in 1977, the Diocese said. He has not been arrested for any offense since his release from prison, according to the Diocese.
Quick action there, kids- the abuses occurred decades ago?
And apparently I’m not the only one who feels handing in your robes is a pretty lame punishment:
Harvey Paul, director of the Maine chapter of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, found little satisfaction in The Vatican’s decision to bar Carrigan from service.
“It’s way too little, way too late,” Paul said.
Carrigan, who lives out of state, lives in anonymity, Paul said.
“We don’t know where he is. We know nothing about him,” Paul said. “We really have a problem with that.”
SNAP is pushing for a Diocese-run web site, similar to Maine’s sex offender registry, that would list priest the diocese has determined have abused children.
The Diocese has said only they will consider a site, Paul said.
“They’ve been thinking about it a few months now,” he said. “It should have taken about a day of thinking. In the time they’re thinking about it, children are at risk.”
No kidding, the kids are at risk. But these are just isolated incidences, right? Right?
Not even close.
Raymond Melville. In 2005, Maine Supreme Court Justices found that a sex abuse victim can indeed sue church leaders such as the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland. But thie was the real stunner:
The impact of the case is unclear. Lipman said it opens the door to other suits against the church by sex-abuse victims. According to a report issued in 2004 by Maine Attorney General Steven Rowe, 63 priests and other diocese employees had been accused of sexual abuse over the previous 75 years, but most of those cases would be too old for lawsuits under the statute of limitations. Also, some cases have already been settled by the church and could not be brought again.
The two dissenting justices argued that the impact will be felt by a variety of institutions who could face lawsuits for failing to protect people from their employees.
“With these rulings the court invites lawsuits against businesses, schools, camps, churches and youth sports organizations for real or perceived improprieties by their members or employees that occur outside of the course and scope of the organizations’ responsibilities,” wrote Justice Donald Alexander.
Not 63 total cases of abuse- 63 SEPARATE PRIESTS HAVE BEEN ACCUSED. That’s an overwhelming number and shows a systemic problem within the Maine Catholic community.
Lest we forget:
Remind me again, isn’t suicide a big no-no in the Catholic Church?
A priest suspected of sexually abusing a girl in 1979 was found dead Friday morning in the Dover-Foxcroft rectory where he lived.
Police confirmed the Rev. James P. Robichaud, 56, an Augusta native, committed suicide.
Robichaud, who was born and raised in Augusta, became an ordained priest in April 1979 and the same year was assigned to St. Jean-Baptiste Parish in Lowell, Mass. He served at that parish until 1983.
“This is a tragic end to a story that we may never completely understand,” Bishop Richard Malone said in a statement released Friday by the diocese. “It is simply our mission to bring the healing presence of Jesus to this agonizing situation.”
The same statement noted there is not yet sufficient information to dismiss or substantiate the abuse charge.
I’m not buying this, Mr. Malone… alot of people aren’t.
When you have a link instructing people “How To File a Sexual Abuse Report” on your own Portland Diocese website under the section marked “Child and Youth Protection”, you KNOW you’re not doing enough- and that you never have!
Lemme point out that any other Mainer suspected of having committed sexual abuse of a minor is taken into custody, not simply told to hand in their robes and behave themselves, as happened with Carrigan.
That the crimes are not covered up by layer upon layer of bureaucracy for decades and victims left to fight your corporation for years in court.
Leave these Mainers alone and let them live their lives in our state, without your judgements or interference, and clean up your own house, Mr. Malone…