There are several new posts which I want to comment upon, some at more length than others.
Here we go:
(1) 30 June 2010: Belgian raiders went to National Archives
I wonder what, if anything, the raid uncovered about Father Eric Dejaeger omi?
(2) 29 June 2010: Belgium urges Vatican to stay out of child sex abuse investigations
If the Belgian police know that Dejaeger is a convicted molester who was wanted by Interpol will they take any action? If the Interpol warrant is no longer in force, is there any action which can be taken? For example, could Dejaeger’s fellow Oblates in Belgium be charged for obstructing justice?
For that matter, what about the Canadian Oblates who refused to divulge Dejaeger’s whereabouts to police after he fled Canada for Belgium?
Does that not constitute obstruction of justice?
I added Fatehr Titian Miani (James Miani) to the Accused list. He is not Canadian, and he was abusing in Canada long before his ordination as a Salesian of St. John Bosco in 1955. However, Miani’s time in Edmonton Alberta was apparently suffice to abuse a number of children.
According to media reports Miani was at a Salesian operated facility called St. Mary’s, which was either a Boy’s School or an orphanage. I can’t sort out which. As far as I can figure he must have been a Salesian brother at the time
What is particularly disturbing here is that there is proof positive that this man was molesting children years before his ordination to the priesthood, and still he was ordained!
This is an excellent letter which has been circulating amongst those who attended Basilian schools, specifically those in which Father Hod Marshall taught, i.e., Toronto (St. Michael’s College School), Windsor (Holy Names HS and Assumption College School), Sudbury (St. Charles College School), Sault Ste. Marie (St. Mary’s College HS), Saskatoon (St. Thomas More), Houston, Texas (St. Thomas HS).
I decided to post it in the hope that it may reach former students who are out of the mail or email loop.
(5) 30 June 2010: School board issues apology
Rather strange. I still think this looks and sounds like an apology ‘mandated’ by a settlement.
I wanted to check to see what the Catholic District School Board of Eastern Ontario had to say in the paid notice it ran in the Freeholder. The Freeholder was having website problems yesterday – every time I went back to see if I could find the notice the website was down. However, since it’s a paid notice I’m not sure that I would be able to get it online. I will try again tomorrow. In the event that I can’t get it could anyone who saw it pass it along?
(6) 30 June 2010: Vatican promotes controversial Quebec priest
This has bothered me since the moment I came across it.
Cardinal Marc Ouellet will be the next Prefect for the Congregation of Bishops.
I know that some victims groups were upset when Ouellet’s name was being tossed around as potential successor to Cardinal Re. I am sure they are not happy with the news.
My concerns are two-fold:
(i) Ouellet’s brother was charged with child sexual abuse. In and of itself that is no negative reflection on the Cardinal. My concern is that the situation may have fostered an overt sympathy in Ouellet for clerical molesters. Whether or not that’s the case I have no idea, but it causes me concern, particularly in a country where sympathy for molesters invariably trumps concern for his victims.
(ii) Ouellet was a “collaborator” in the production of From Pain to Hope, the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops sex abuse guidelines.
Several recommendations in From Pain to Hope relate to “reentry” or “reintegration” of known clerical molesters.
I don’t believe there is need to go beyond that. Any rationale for reintegrating/recycling a clerical molester falls short.
Bad enough that these men are recycled, the deceptive fashion in which they are recycled speaks volumes. Recommendation #43 reads as follows:
Clearly inform the parish council or representative parishioners, in an open and responsible manner, before appointing a priest who has been reintegrated into the pastoral ministry, and ensure that the receiving parish community will support the initiative of this appointment.
This sharing of information is not without problems, given the additional pressure it puts on the candidate for re-entry. Nonetheless, experience tends to indicate that those few who are involved in the situation will be fully supportive.
Note “parish council” OR “representative parishioners”
First and foremost, I don’t believe these men should be near a parish. I believe they have proven themselves unfit to serve as priests.
There are no second chances for the child whose innocence is lost forever. Why the second chance for the molester, a second chance which invariably and wilfully places children at risk?
That said, if recycling is the name of the game, why not be really honest and notify the entire parish community that their priest is a sexual predator? Why not allow parents to decide if they want their children to be around or catechised by a known molester? Why not allow parents to decide if they want a clerical molester as a role model for their children? Why not allow parishioners to decide if they want to seek spiritual guidance from a molester? or if they want to confess to a known molester?
As for informing the parish council OR representative parishioners, who decides which route to go? Who decides which two parishioners are “representative” of the entire parish? What kind of an oath of secrecy must these parishioners take to ensure their fellow parishioners are kept in the dark about the past sins and crimes of their parish priest?
How are those who are “informed” chosen? What character traits are requisite of those who must keep Father’s dirty little secret secret?
In the early pages of From Pain to Hope the bishops muse:
How, in a spirit of openness and truthfulness, can we restore the confidence and credibility that the Church has unfortunately lost in the eyes of many Canadians?
What, pray tell, is honest and open about the reintegration process?
Perhaps this is fallout from integrating a child molester into the collaboration of From Pain to Hope?
I am referring here to the one molester involved in the process that I know of. There may have been others. Who knows? But definitely Father Peter O’Hanley, a convicted child molester was involved. (O’Hanley’s name is on the Accused page – I haven’t posted any media coverage of the charges yet)
O’Hanley is not identified in the credits as a child molester. No. O’Hanley is described as “priest actively involved in issues relating to sexual abuse and pastoral care (Saint John, N.B.)”
Where’s the spirit of openness and truthfulness here? Why not acknowledge that the bishops deemed it appropriate to have input from a convicted child molester?
A convicted clerical molester helped draw up the CCCB’s sex abuse guidelines! Can you believe it?
And no one had the courage to stand behind that decision by identifying O’Hanley for what he is and forever will be: a convicted child molester. No. They put it this way: “actively involved in issues relating to sexual abuse”!
What role if any did Cardinal Ouellet play in pumping out this deception?
I have no idea. I do know he was a collaborator in the compilation of the guidelines. To my knowledge he never broke ranks by suggesting that (1) clerical sexual predators should not be reintegrated, or (2) clerical sexual predators should not be reintegrated in so deceptive a fashion, and/or (3) it is highly inappropriate for bishops to seek guidance on child sex abuse guidelines from a convicted clerical predator.
If Cardinal Ouellet did speak out in any fashion please let me know. I will joyfully set the record straight. That would be welcome news.
As it stands, and for now, there it is. …
Cardinal Ouellet is the new Prefect for the Congregation of Bishops. If you have a concern about your bishop – he’ll be the man to contact.
Ouellet will also be instrumental in deciding which priests will be elevated to the rank of bishop.
I am not comfortable with this. Not comfortable at all.
Speaking of From Pain to Hope I came across a newspaper clipping a few days ago which I wanted to mention. Now is the time.
A few years ago, while blogging and covering the Cornwall Public Inquiry, I wrote a short insert on www.theinquiry.ca entitled One Big Happy Family? (scroll down page) It related to those in attendance at the 2004 Spring Education Conference of the Crown Attorney’s Association. Attending the conference amongst others was Crown attorney Curt Flanagan. This is what I wrote at the time:
Curt Flanagan: the Crown Attorney who ensured that former Crown Attorney and alleged paedophile Malcolm MacDonald received an absolute discharge after entering a guilty plea to obstructing justice for his role in the $32,000 pay-off and gagging of D.S., the alleged sex abuse victim of Father Charles MacDonald. Flanagan exonerated the other two lawyers who were party to orchestrating the pay-off: (1) Jacques Leduc (alleged paedophile, lawyer and canon lawyer for the diocese) and (2) Sean Adams (local lawyer allegedly retained by Malcolm MacDonald to represent D.S.’ interests in signing the agreement).
Flanagan participated in the January 1990 roasting of his father, former Ottawa Chief of Police Tom Flanagan. Assisting with the roasting were, among others, Liberal leader John Turner, Colin McKinnon(judge who took the bench at Leduc sex abuse trial despite his heavy prior involvement with Cornwall Police Service and Cornwall Chief of Police Claude Shaver), and then Liberal MPP Dalton McGuinty (now Ontario premier whose Liberal government is responsible for the inquiry, it’s mandate and the selection of Justice Normand Glaude).
Who else was at the roast?
Well, there were a lot of people there. But, some are of particular interest to those who followed the Cornwall Public Inquiry, and to those who are interested in the sex abuse scandal in the Roman Catholic Church.
Who else was there?
At the time Jeff King was an Ottawa lawyer. King was a regular visitor at the Nuncio’s palace. More to the point, King was also a “collaborator” on From Pain to Hope.
Jeff King is now Father Jeff King. He was a late vocation. Fifty-eight-years-old when he was ordained.
King was ordained in 1999 for the Archdiocese of Ottawa, Ontario. In fact, strange as it may seem King was ordained the same year as another of Ottawa’s late vocations, Stephen Amesse. Amesse, a former Senate research assistant and legislative assistant on Parliament Hill, was, believe it or not, another “collaborator” on From Pain to Hope!
And another little point of interest here…
The “collaborators” were broken down into groups of four, each group working with the chair of one of four workgroups.
Father Frank Morrissey omi chaired the workgroup which revised the 1987 CCCB guidelines.
Amongst those “collaborating” with Morrisey were: Father Peter O’Hanley, Stephen Amesse and Jeff King.
It’s a small small world takes on more meaning by the day.
Oh yes, one more thing…
Jeff King and Father Frank Morrisey were giving the bishops advice back in the 80s about ensuring that solicitor-client privilege existed in such fashion as to cover those matters which they hoped would never see the light of day.
That came out at the inquiry. It was a shocker.
And one more…
Stepen Amesse was in the seminary (St. Paul’s) back in the 80s. For whatever reason he did not proceed to ordination. Years later he pursued his priestly formation at a seminary in Connecticut. That indirectly came out at the inquiry when Father Claude Thibault testified that he had confided in fellow St. Paul’s seminarian Stephen Amesse about his, Thibault’s, sexual abuse by Father Gilles Deslaurier.
It’s late. Very late. And the long and short of it all I suppose is that it truly is a small small small world. I say that often. It’s true. It just keeps getting smaller and smaller and smaller.
And, yes, perhaps there is One really really Big Happy Family?
Happy Canada Day!
Enough for now,