Bishop Wingle letter to Monsignor Kirkpatrick

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The following was posted on Sylvia’s Site 31 July 2010


 July 31, 2010

 To All Our Parishes

 Given all the speculation in media, I think it is important that you read the following letter at all Masses this Sunday and that you also post a copy of it on your bulletin board.

 Msgr. Wayne Kirkpatrick

 Diocesan Administrator


July 31, 2010

Dear Monsignor Kirkpatrick,

With this letter I send you my good greetings. I pray that all is well with you and with the Diocese.

This is to inform you, that as I had announced in the letter that I sent to the Diocese last April, at the time of my resignation, I have now completed the first part of my sabbatical which I spent in the Holy Land in a time of prayer and rest. Later in the summer, I plan to continue my sabbatical doing some writing and research on a catechetical-pastoral project.

I would be grateful if you would extend my sincere thanks and assurances of my well-being to the clergy and faithful of the Diocese. I am deeply appreciative of their expressions of concern and for their prayers.

With you, I am praying earnestly for the needs of the Diocese and for the Holy Father and his advisors in their important work of choosing a new bishop for St. Catharines. As I continue my sabbatical, I would be grateful to have the ongoing support and assistance of your prayer.

Faithfully yours in Christ,

Most Reverend James Wingle

Bishop Emeritus of St. Catharines


24 Responses to Bishop Wingle letter to Monsignor Kirkpatrick

  1. michael says:

    This was an email Msgr. Wayne Kirkpatrick received from Bishop Wingle. I know Bishop Wingle personally and had to deal with school meeting etc. He is a great man and a holy priest.Why Does he not have the right to privacy when he is on Sabatical? As far as I understand when a priest or bishop is on sabatical he does not need to tell the all world where he is and what he is doing. I am quite to sure, the diocesan authorities including the pope knew where he was. Though there are few rotten apples in the catholic church, there are thousands of good and holy priests in the church. That is why in spite of many faults, the catholic church is crowded and stronger than all the churches in the world. Ordinary failthful like me clearly understand the games the media play against the catholic church. In my church more people started coming to church after all these happenings. We have a very good priest whom we love dearly and is a good shepheard. That is what matters for me ,my wife and my young children. God bless Bishop Wingle.

  2. Lina says:

    Michael, I’m happy for you & all your loved ones that care & support Bishop Wingle.

    I will not speak for others.

    Forgive me, if I come across a little paranoid. I am from the Diocese of Pembroke. We had our share of scandals here, & still one is on going with Msgr.R. Borne.

    Just knowing Bishop Wingle hails from Eganville just sends up red flags for me.

    In my opinion, you are assuming a lot but not even you Michael knows what Bishop Wingle does every moment of the day or what he did in his past, that goes for me also.

    I am glad your church is crowded with parishioners mine is not. We are down to two Masses during the weekend.

    As ordinary faithful folks like you clearly understand the games the media play against the Catholic Church? That may be true in some cases but if it wasn’t for the media many victims never would have had closer for the crimes that were done against them.

    Also, the media at times knows more but cannot publish their reports because the accused priests/clergy’s lawyers in some ways puts legal blocks against them.

    As for the right to privacy, yes, Bishop Wingle does have that right. It is just the way he left that was so mysterious.

    No hard feelings. Peace to you Michael!

  3. michael says:

    I have been reading about R. Borne.
    Myself and my family go to church for ourselves, and we benefit from it. I know that part of the country including QC less attendance in churches.Recently I was in NS. There the situation is different. If you happend to visit Toronto, the catholic churches are full. If you happen to travel to US , you will be surprised to see how crowded the churches are. I am sure you know they had greater scandals than we have here. If my memory is correct, there are over 50 thousand clergy in the US . EWTN made a survey some time back. Over 300 clergy were accused of sexual misconduct and over hundred were proved to be true. There were over ten thousad five hundred protestant ministers who were accused of inappropriate behaviour with minor children and all were proved to be tru. You and me do not hear any of these in the media. A couple of months back there was a big news in CNN about a religious education teacher who sexually abused and killed a five year old girl and put her body in a suitcase and threw it in a lake. The woman who did this henious crime was the daughter of a famous church minister. For a while the media did not say that. If something like happens in the catholic church they blow it up.
    Jesus had 12 disciples and one of them betrayed him. So also out of nearly hundred thousand priests in North America, a couple of hundreds have turned to be judas’s. But this should not shatter our faith.
    One think I do not understand: If I am mentally, emotially and physically hurt because of someone’s unchristian and inhuman behaviour, money does not cure my hurt feelings ! I want that person to be executed or put in prison for life. many of the abuse cases ,it seems they are looking for money. I may be wrong. Why did they wait till the age of fourty or sixty to file case?
    Any way let us pray for the church, it’s leaders and also the victims of abuse that they find comfort in their fath.
    Also pray for the good priests that they may be able to overcome the shame caused by a handfull of rotten apples.
    God Bless

  4. Lina says:


    In Pembroke, Our Cathedral: St. Columbkille used to have 4 Masses on Sunday now they have only 2. The Saturday Mass stayed the same. There is still plenty seats available.

    Your comment about money? I believe most victims want healing, closer, & justice. Some may follow the path of turning the other cheek so to speak & offer all their pain & sufferings to God. Like they were taught so well by the Catholic Church’s teachings.

    Guilt & shame are a strong force to stop a crime being reported. Especially, when you are so scared, young, a frighten child or a very vulnerable youth.

    I know of a man that was a victim of abuse by priest(do not know priest’s name) in Sault-Ste-Marie. It took place outside the city at a youth camp. He told his wife about it. At first he seem to be fine to share this with his wife who was supporting him & get some counseling.

    That same priest had other victims that came forward & filed charges. Her husband never filed charges. He stop going for help but only after writing 5 long pages why he hated his mother. His mother was a strong Catholic & did not want to believe a Catholic priest would do such a thing to her son.

    This wife eventually divorced her husband. She tried hard to save the marriage but when she realize her husband needed help but he thought he did not need the help. She decided their children needed to be kept safe & away from their father.

    I did ask her. Your ex must have seen the name of his abuser in the newspaper & heard this priest’s name on the news. You think they would be strength in numbers. He would have company & it would be a little easier for him to file charges.

    I really upset her with that statement.

    She told me he was not her concern now but she still prays for him. I found out later while she was working the night shift at the hospital he was home taking care of their children. She did not know then but he was sexually abusing their daughter. Slapping their son around. It seems the son was trying to help his sister.

    I did say I sorry for upsetting her & I did not know the whole story. She knew I did not mean to hurt her. With all the evidence facing him what did he say to her about that. That is what so weird….he really believes he did no harm, he honestly believes he was just loving their daughter & son.

    This was my first encounter what damage a Roman Catholic priest abuser can do by his evil actions. This relative of mine went through years of hell. Once this sick man was holding a gun to his head threatening to blow it off in front her & the children. She has nothing but praises for the Sault-Ste-Marie police department.

    If any one deserves financial help it was that courageous woman. Surprise…not one cent from the Roman Catholic Church. By the way…her ex-husband didn’t seem to think too much about getting money from the Church. There is one victim I know of that should had filed charges…how many more like him out there we do not know of?

    Michael, yes…lets pray for all good priests & all the bad ones and their victims.


  5. thomas says:

    Coming from the St.Catharines diocese I dont buy Bishop’s Wingle’s note. He was a shepherd who left his flock in the lurch abruptly! Not telling anyone and then sending an email about 4 months later..and claiming he is studying? No I think not….sorry …

  6. Sylvia says:

    I agree with you Thomas.

    I must say that I find Wingle’s use of the word “Sabbatical” puzzling. For a bishop any talk of taking a sabbatical would, I would think, denote taking a sabbatical from his duties as bishop with an intent to return – to his duties as a bishop. But, Wingle resigned his post. He will not return, at least not as bishop. So, why the talk of a sabbatical?

    One defintion of sabbatical is “any extended period of leave from one’s customary work, esp. for rest, to acquire new skills or training, etc.”

    For the past 17 years Wingle’s customary “work” was that of a bishop.

    Why did he use the word sabbatical?

    Another question: Who is financing Bishop Wingle’s costly “sabbatical”?

  7. Reality Checker says:

    TheSt. Catharines Standard poll – current results…

    Do you think Bishop James Wingle owes the community some sort of explanation about his mysterious disappearance and resignation from the Roman Catholic diocese? Option % Votes
    Yes 64% 73
    No 36% 41

  8. beth says:

    Wingle? Dingle Dingle wringle Really who is this man ( or whimp) who wants our support? Good questions Sylvia! Who is finnacing this escape so called asabbatical, We could all accept a sabbatical. we wonder what is the whole story
    Who needs our prayers is the MSGR left holding the fort
    Make him the bishop and let him get on with all the real work that needs to be done. And why does all this have to be decided in Rome who once again will send us another Wingle?

  9. Brenda Kirkpatrick says:

    All I can say is…”Our Father who art in Heaven, hallowed by thy name. Thy Kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven, give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us and lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil, for thine is the Kingdom, the power and the glory, forever and ever amen.
    That’s all I can say…God KNOWS all and we can say what we want but all that doesn’t matter, only God’s purpose’s matters. He will do the judging, not us. Amen.

  10. Lina says:

    Blind faith must be wonderful?

    That’s all I can say.

    • Brenda Kirkpatrick says:

      Lina…blind faith IS wonderful! Jesus says we are to walk by faith and not sight. I guess that makes it blind faith! Faith isn’t faith if it is seen. Only Jesus can give peace, not as the world gives…because it cannot give any. We are to give our troubles to Jesus. God IS our vindicator! Man can try but only seems to make it worse and more hate. I am a victim of incest so I know what I’m talking about. It took me a long time to forgive my perpetrator but through Jesus Christ, He set me free from the bondage of shame, and the sin of unforgiveness and hatred. God’s Word is there to set us free from the world and it’s cares and live according to the heavenly principles which in turn gives us peace or …blind faith. It makes for good sleeping. God bless you with peace 🙂

  11. Larry Green says:

    Brenda Kirkpatrick (9)If anyone makes it their purpose to protect children from the beasts who want to use them as things to serve thier own sick cravings, then that persons purpose matters too ( I very much doubt that God’s purpose and that purpose are in contradiction to one another.)Being a Christian dosn’t mean you have to be an ostrich.

    • Brenda Kirkpatrick says:

      Larry Green: I was a(child) victim of that very evil and sick person you talk about. My point is this: God sees all and and His will WILL be done on earth as it is in heaven even though we may not see it or understand. Christ too was abused and nobody advocated for Him. They all turned their heads. It is only through His suffering did Holy Spirit enlighten me to understand that only through suffering can we truly forgive. We are instructed by our Lord Jesus Christ to pray for those who abuse us. God says He alone will have vengeance.
      Only love can overcome evil. Even Jesus said, “Father forgive them for they know not what they do”. These people knew what they did but yet Jesus prays this to His Father. My question is: what would Jesus do if he got raped? A lot to reflect upon….
      I’m not condoning these evil acts but God’s Word clearly says that mercy triumps judgement. He alone is the judge, we are not. That makes us servants, not ostrichs.

      • BC says:

        Your Church doesn’t even agree with you: it’s been litigating against victims of clerical abuse for decades. It has been enforcing non-disclosure clauses in civil settlements against victims for decades. The Holy See itself litigated the ying-yang outta Doe v. Holy See. There are now several cases of Dioceses litigating against their own civil liability insurers. There is even a current case of Cincinnati Archbishop Dennis Schnurr suing ten of his own parishioners for wilful blindness in a clerical financial abuse scam. We also know that the Church retains Big Law and lobbying firms to oppose the lifting of statutes of limitations on crimes involving clerical abuse.

        You even paid for it all at the collection plate. So put your mouth where your money is and quit madvocating that victims of clerical abuse shouldn’t do what you do.

      • Geenda says:

        Try and keep in mind, this is institutionalized abuse, not the actions of a few bad apples. AND IT SHOULD NEVER BE SEEN THAT WAY… This type of abuse does not continue without help from the senior members of the clergy.. Try not to forget that, and try not to forget that these men are phoney, fakes, imposters they believe nothing of ‘God’ they are spitting in Gods face with their horrendous actions, and laughing in the faces of the children they molested. NO ONE who believes in God could perpetrate the horrors that were committed here, the priesthood is nothing more than a sophisticated pedophile ring, no different than the crimes committed by Newton and Truong, in fact I wonder how many priests were in on THAT!

        • 1 abandoned sheep says:

          Geenda, your bias against anything Catholic is obvious.
          I am far from young, and I have known many, many good priests in my lifetime- and still do.
          The wide brush you apply to an organization , the religious denomination I belong to, is so wide it is a wonder you can swing it the way you do. Perhaps you should return to the afternoon soap operas for your entertainment.

          • Geenda says:

            1 abandoned sheep.
            It’s not entertainment for me, quite the contrary it’s heartbreaking. I grew up in a convent school and I don’t think I really need to say anything more. However, I’ve not been fortunate enough to meet ANY clergy with any redeeming characteristics, I’m sorry if that doesn’t mesh with you view but that doesn’t mean you get to diminish my opinion…

          • BC says:

            The fact remains that clerical predators are apt at appearing to be good priests. Some manipulate the faithful so adroitly that they are adulated. We now have cases involving convicted clerical perverts being reinstated into function. We also have cases involving clerics who disclosed their perversion to their superiors and were nevertheless tolerated. They were all good priests until they got caught.
            The worldwide cover up of clerical abuse means that without a due diligence check on every member of the clergy; it is impossible to know a good priest from a pervert. It also means that defrocking clerical perverts is the only viable solution to re-establish the good reputation of the clergy as a professional class.

            The bias against the clergy was incepted by the institutional cover up. You can’t blame public opinion for it. The generalisation against members of the clergy is actually a healthy defense mechanism. Any institution which would have been bold enough to allow perverts to make global pronouncements on human welfare would have faced the same negative bias when exposed as being so careless in it’s gross mismanagement of human suffering.

            And this bias isn’t going to go away: the Church still improvising it’s silly response to clerical abuse. Just a few days ago, the very vain and sneaky Pope Francis scrapped his own plan to establish a tribunal for negligent bishops. As long as the Church will not get real about clerical abuse and man-up the bias against it will continue.

          • PJ says:

            BC, you are absolutely right on the money! Until that church does the right thing with the perverts and their protectors, they cannot be trusted…period.

        • Sylvia says:

          I agree with much of what you have to say Geenda, but by no means all. Yes, some, without doubt many, senior members of the clergy are complicit – but not all. And yes, agree that those who abuse and enable are spitting in Gods face.

          Where I part way with you specifically is in your conclusion that “the priesthood” is nothing more than “a sophisticated paedophile ring.” I have said countless times that I believe to the depth of my being that “the Church” has been hijacked by these men. There are good and decent priests out there who suffer greatly because their bishops and/or superiors have refused in the past, and continue to refuse, to get these molesters out of the priesthood.

          I would refuse to darken the door of a Catholic Church if I for one moment believed or even thought that the entire priesthood is nothing but a ring of paedophiles. Go after the molesters and their enablers. I have no problem with that. It must be done. But for me a line is crossed when one concludes that every single priest is a paedophile or a molester.

  12. Mike Fitzgerald says:

    Brenda – I, and many others will agree with you about praying for our abusers. It gives us strength and purpose.
    But really dear, we must also have civil and criminal laws to protect us here in this life. Imagine if all the rest of the world just prayed for Adolf Hitler. Where would we be now?
    Yes, quite possibly God would have intervened for us – Yes, quite possibly we would be dead – Yes, quite possibly Hitler could have tripped on a sidewalk and killed himself.
    The point I’m trying to make is that we have a duty and responsibility in this life to support good, and to resist and fight evil. Putting our heads “in the sand” and pretending that the evil will go away is foolish and irresponsible. Mike.

  13. Geenda says:

    Re:BC June 6
    Thank you for saying that. I suppose in many ways my generalization is a defence mechanism. To this day seeing nuns and priests makes me stomach sick and gives me horrible flashbacks. In my situation I did tell what was happening only to be re-victimized by the people I trusted enough to ask for help. I really had no idea of the full extent of the abuse, and when I found out I thought they all must be in on it, clearly that’s not the case but it certainly was in my mind.

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