Monday, June 15, 2015

Can I Get An Amen: The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis Is Charged With Aiding A Pedophile

Well, this is a sign that the times just might be changing: last week charges were filed against the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis claiming that high-ranking church officials downplayed or outright ignored reports of a predatory priest and protected suspected pedophile priests at the expense of children.

The six gross misdemeanor counts are the result of a 20-month investigation into the way archdiocesan officials handled the case of the Reverend Curtis Wehmeyer [left], who was convicted in 2013 of molesting boys but had been flagged for inappropriate behavior years earlier.

The archdiocese sent Wehmeyer to a “monitoring program for wayward priests,” but that program was determined to be a sham, and Wehmeyer continued to sexually assault children.

During a news conference after the charges were filed, church officials pledged to cooperate with the investigation:
"I want to state clearly that we deeply regret the abuse that was suffered by the victims of Curtis Wehmeyer. We will continue to cooperate with the Ramsey County attorney's office because we all share the same goal. That is the protection of children and the safe environment of our churches." — Auxiliary Bishop Andrew Cozzens
Funny, though, that wasn’t their stance when Wehmeyer was molesting children; their stance was to lie about it, cover it up, and shelter a pedophile, so forgive me Father if I think you’re full of it.

The 43-page criminal complaint alleges that archdiocesan officials — most notably, Archbishop John Nienstedt [right] who learned of Wehmeyer’s pedophilia, was warned not to make him pastor of any church, but ignored the warning and continued to let the sexual abuse happen — willfully ignored complaints and reports about Wehmeyer's behavior around children, and his substance abuse issues, for years before he was finally arrested and charged with a crime.

For now, though, only the archdiocesan corporation has been charged, meaning no individual — including Nienstedt — would be held accountable, and only the archdiocese would face a fine if convicted.

A fine? The churches coffers are filled every single week by the faithful, so if, and when, a fine is enforced, the parishioners will pay it; not the church itself. I say take away the money and the fancy shoes and robes, and the big cars and lavish lifestyle, and give that money to the victims of Wehmeyer and the Catholic Church who were made to feel useless and worthless and uncared for by their own faith.

This is the first time an archdiocese of the Roman Catholic Church has been criminally charged in the United States in more than a decade — though some top officials have been charged as individuals in recent years:

In 2012, Monsignor William Lynn was convicted of child endangerment; the conviction was overturned on appeal, but was later reinstated by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.

In 2012, Kansas City Bishop Robert Finn was found guilty of failing to report an accusation of child abuse, for waiting months to tell police about explicit images of children discovered on the computer of one of his priests; a judge dismissed charges against the diocese.

In 2003, the Archdiocese of Cincinnati pleaded no contest for failing to report sexually abusive priests to police and was fined $10,000. That was the first time an archdiocese was found guilty of charges relating to sexual abuse cases.

In 2002, the Diocese of Manchester, New Hampshire, avoided criminal charges and agreed to a settlement in which it agreed to protect children from abuse in the future.
So, remember, this isn’t just a little problem; it’s a systematic issue within the Catholic Church — which hates The Gays, by the way, and loves to call us pedophiles — to protect their own from charges of sexually assaulting children.

How Christ-like.

Archbishop John Nienstedt has announced his resignation:
“In order to give the Archdiocese a new beginning amidst the many challenges we face, I have submitted my resignation as Archbishop of Saint Paul and Minneapolis to our Holy Father, Pope Francis, and I have just received word that he has accepted it. The Catholic Church is not our Church, but Christ’s Church, and we are merely stewards for a time. My leadership has unfortunately drawn attention away from the good works of His Church and those who perform them. Thus, my decision to step down. I leave with a clear conscience knowing that my team and I have put in place solid protocols to ensure the protection of minors and vulnerable adults. I ask for continued prayers for the well-being of this Archdiocese and its future leaders. I also ask for your continued prayers for me."
In other words: the Pedophile Enabler Has Left The Building.


the dogs' mother said...

Is depressing. But glad it
is in the light.

Michael Dodd said...

This resignation is long overdue.
Sadly, it is not the only one but I am not going to hold my breath for others to follow suit.

Helen Lashbrook said...

There are too many sexual abusers hidden and protected by the Catholic church, far more so than any other Christian denomination. That could be ascribed to the Catholic insistence on celibacy for its priests. It is time the church accepted its responsibility for all the abuse and unhappiness it has caused.

anne marie in philly said...

he needs to go to jail for child rape!