Six men suing the Catholic church for alleged sexual abuse

A group of men from a northwestern Ontario First Nations community are suing a Winnipeg-based Roman Catholic order and others to seek redress for alleged sexual abuse they suffered at the hands of their community priest as young boys.

The six men from the Lac La Croix First Nation near Fort Francis seek unspecified financial damages from the federal government, a Catholic diocese in Thunder Bay and the order of Les Oblats de Marie Immaculee du Manitoba, along with a priest who lived and worked on the reserve in the 1960s.

The men range in age from 55 to 61.

In separate statements of claim, each alleges his life has been deeply and negatively affected by the aftershocks of sexual assaults he was subjected to — abuse the men say they felt powerless to speak out about given the priest’s position of power in their small community.

One man states that when he was 10 or 11 years old, the priest took him to his on-reserve home several times during the summer months and anally raped him. The behaviour continued until he was 13 or 14, the now-56-year-old says.

The other men make similar claims, one alleging he was abused more than two dozen times at the priest’s home and in a schoolhouse room. Another claims he was assaulted by the priest in a hotel room during a trip to Minnesota.

The priest died in May 1986.

The allegations have not been proven, and no statement of defence has been filed. No court date has been set to test the men’s claims.

The men state the Order and the Thunder Bay diocese should be held indirectly responsible for the actions of the now-late priest, who was a member of the order and an employee of the diocese, their lawsuits say.

“The Order and the Diocese held out (the priest) as an individual that embodied the values of the Roman Catholic faith such that it was implied that he could be trusted and that he would do no harm,” one lawsuit states.

The two organizations should have known there would be a “power imbalance” given the emphasis the faith places on obeying the wishes of its clergy, and the power the priest had over the “immortal souls” of the faithful in the community.

Complete Article HERE!

Cardinal George says mayor overstepped with Chick-fil-A remarks

Here is the pot calling out the kettle… This man has no shame!

Cardinal Francis E. George of Chicago says the city’s mayor showed contempt for many residents’ beliefs by stating that Chick-fil-A’s stance on marriage was against “Chicago’s values.”

“Recent comments by those who administer our city seem to assume that the city government can decide for everyone what are the ‘values’ that must be held by citizens of Chicago,” the cardinal wrote in a July 29 online post, responding to Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s assertion.

“I was born and raised here, and my understanding of being a Chicagoan never included submitting my value system to the government for approval,” Cardinal George wrote.

He wondered: “Must those whose personal values do not conform to those of the government of the day move from the city? Is the City Council going to set up a ‘Council Committee on Un-Chicagoan Activities’ and call those of us who are suspect to appear before it?”

“I would have argued a few days ago that I believe such a move is, if I can borrow a phrase, ‘un-Chicagoan.’”

The cardinal made his remarks on the Catholic Chicago blog after the mayor ventured into an ongoing controversy about the Chick-fil-A restaurant chain.

Many homosexual “marriage” advocates took offense at company president Dan Cathy’s support for “the biblical definition of the family unit” in a recent interview.

During a July 30 press conference, Mayor Emanuel said he stood by his July 25 statement that was interpreted by some as supporting a plan to bar the restaurant from the city’s First Ward.

After Alderman Proco Moreno said he would block the restaurant’s plan to open a new location, Emanuel issued a statement saying that “Chick-fil-A values are not Chicago values.”

“They disrespect our fellow neighbors and residents,” the mayor stated. “This would be a bad investment, since it would be empty.”

But a spokesman for the mayor told NBC 5 Chicago that Emanuel did not intend to stop Chick-fil-A from opening, despite his conviction that the Christian-run company’s values were not those of the city.

In Monday’s remarks, the mayor appeared to identify the city’s “values” with government policy on homosexual unions, saying: “When it comes to values, there’s a policy as it relates to gay marriage. The values of our city are ones that welcome and recognize that, and I will continue to fight for that.”

Emanuel’s statement also appeared to identify civil unions – which Illinois implemented in 2011 – with homosexual “marriage,” which has never been instituted in the state. The mayor personally supports a measure to redefine marriage, which was introduced in February but has stalled in the legislature.

In his response to the mayor on Sunday, Cardinal George spoke out on behalf of Catholics, and others, whose “values” do not include what he called “gender-free marriage.”

The cardinal stressed that authentic marriage exists prior to any decree of the state or Church, due to the complementarity of the two sexes and their procreative potential.

The natural definition of marriage is not “bigotry,” nor is it unique to a particular religion, he said.

“People who are not Christian or religious at all take for granted that marriage is the union of a man and a woman for the sake of family and, of its nature, for life,” Cardinal George noted. “The laws of civilizations much older than ours assume this understanding of marriage.”

But the Chicago archbishop also pointed to Jesus Christ’s teaching on marriage in the Gospel of Matthew, in which the Lord affirms marriage as the unbreakable union of a man and woman as “one flesh.”

The citation prompted him to pose a question as to whether Jesus’ own “values” were still welcome in Chicago by Mayor Emanuel’s standards.

“Was Jesus a bigot?” he asked. “Could Jesus be accepted as a Chicagoan?”

To answer your question, Francis; Jesus wan’t a bigot. But the same can’t be said about you. Sheesh!

Complete Article HERE!

Jury awards Catholic school sex-abuse victim $8M

SEATTLE — A King County jury has awarded $8 million to a victim of sexual abuse at a Seattle Catholic school. The sum is believed to be the largest ever against the Catholic Church in Washington state.

The jury found the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, a Catholic order of priests, guilty of ignoring the plaintiff’s complaints of sexual abuse at St. Benedict School in Wallingford. The plaintiff testified in court that he was abused on a weekly basis between 1961 and 1964 by a former teacher and principal, Daniel Adamson.

“This wasn’t minor abuse. This was three years of the worst crimes you can imagine on a child,” said the plaintiff, Stephen O’Connor. “What sexual abuse and sodomy and rape of a 12-year-old child is minimal?”

O’Connor, who grew up in Seattle but now splits his time between Western Washington and Spokane, said he hid the memories of sexual abuse for nearly 50 years but that a 2008 reunion at St. Benedict – to mark the school’s 100th anniversary – triggered an onslaught of feelings.

“I went to the boys’ bathroom, to the stall where it began. I went to the small projection room closet, where some of the worst crimes were,” O’Connor said. “I had to sit down in my house and tell my wife of 43 years who I’ve known since I was 7-years old (about what happened). I had to tell my four children.”

O’Connor says he was especially upset that he noticed Adamson’s photos had disappeared from the school walls – as if someone knew what had happened but tried to hide it.

“It was a trigger point. He went there, expecting to see this longtime teacher and principal – see his picture, see evidence, see evidence of him, and he saw that there was nothing, no evidence of him there,” said O’Connor’s attorney, Darrell Cochran. “What it triggered for him was that somebody knew he was a sexual abuser and they had removed everything about that guy.”

Adamson died in the 1970s. O’Connor testified in court, along with two other former students, that Adamson had an elaborate train set in his basement that he used to lure kids into his home and then abuse them.

O’Connor later dropped out of school to escape the abuse, he said. He joined the Marines and did two tours of duty in Vietnam, before becoming a police officer.

“As a United States Marine in combat, I wasn’t the only one. As a police officer on the worst 911 calls, I knew that Skagit County was coming or state patrol was coming,” he said, “but as a 12 year old 7th grader at St. Benedict’s I had no one. And none of those victims did. I was 12-years old, and everybody thought it was okay.”

The jury’s award of $8 million will be reduced to $6.4 million because the jury found the Seattle Archdiocese – which owned the school at the time – and the Dominican Sisters, another religious order who staffed the school, partially responsible.

The Seattle Archdiocese settled their part of the lawsuit last year for $500,000.

“We settled with them, and that’s in the past,” said Greg Magnoni, a spokesman for the archdiocese. “In every case of sexual abuse that’s occurred in a Catholic institution we deeply regret any harm or pain to the victims or the family.”

Calls to the Seattle attorney representing the Oblates and to the Oblate national office were not returned.

Complete Article HERE!

Cardinal Francis George Fears Gay Pride Parade ‘Could Morph Into Klu Klux Klan’

This man has lost his mind!

Cardinal Francis George, the head of the Catholic Conference of Illinois and the Archbishop of Chicago, has said he fears a new Gay Pride parade route in Chicago because it would pass in front of a Roman Catholic church.

George told Fox Chicago that he agreed with Our Lady of Mount Carmel’s concerns about the parade route. The church has asked the city to force organizers to alter their plans.

“I go with the pastor,” George said. “He’s telling us that he won’t be able to have services on Sunday if that’s the case. You don’t want the gay liberation movement morph into something like the Klu Klux Klan, demonstrating in the streets against Catholicism.”

George defended his stance when the host called it “a little strong.”
“It is, but you take a look at the rhetoric. The rhetoric of the Klu Klux Klan, the rhetoric of some of the gay liberation people. Who is the enemy? Who is the enemy? The Catholic Church.” (The video is embedded in the right panel of this page. Visit our video library for more videos.)

Last year, George opposed Illinois’ civil unions law, which is now in effect.
“Marriage is what it is and always has been, no matter what a legislature decides to do; however, the public understanding of marriage will be negatively affected by passage of a bill that ignores the natural fact that sexual complementarity is at the core of marriage,” he wrote.

Complete Article HERE!

Cardinal says he did not have all facts in dispute with governor

It’s just like Francis to shoot first and ask questions later. D’oh!

Cardinal Francis George said Sunday that he did not have all the facts when the Catholic Conference of Illinois issued a statement decrying Gov. Pat Quinn for his involvement with an abortion-rights organization that, it turned out, plans to give an award to an advocate for rape victims.

George, leader of the Roman Catholic archdiocese of Chicago, and the five other bishops who oversee the church in Illinois released the statement Wednesday criticizing Quinn, a Catholic, for his plans to present an award Nov. 17 at the annual luncheon for the Personal PAC. The statement said Quinn had “gone beyond a political alignment with those supporting the legal right to kill children in their mothers’ wombs to rewarding those deemed most successful in this terrible work.”

It was the most recent volley in a dispute between the church and the governor over abortion. But the bishops were criticized when rape victim Jennie Goodman came forward as the recipient of the award presented by Quinn.

“I deeply regret that,” George said Sunday afternoon, en route to Holy Name Cathedral in Chicago, where he was scheduled to present awards to parishioners for their dedication to ministries. “A rape victim demands all the respect and sympathy that anybody can give.”

He said that the Catholic Conference of Illinois, which advises the church on policy, did not inform the bishops about Goodman or her personal story of sexual assault.

“I first heard of Ms. Goodman only after we had crafted the statement (and) published it. Then, all of a sudden she comes forward. All of a sudden, she was there, and that wasn’t part of the story as we did it,” George said.

Bob Gilligan, executive director of the conference, could not be reached Sunday.

Quinn defended his decision to honor Goodman, whom he described as “a strong advocate of helping rape victims all over our state and the country.”

Goodman appeared in TV advertisements last fall that targeted Quinn’s Republican opponent and were paid for by Personal PAC.

But the message contained in the statement, also signed by Catholic bishops from Peoria, Springfield, Rockford, Belleville and Joliet, was meant only for the governor, George said.

“We do not regret reminding the governor that as long as he claims to be Catholic, there are inconsistencies in what he is doing and what the church says is the moral standard for all of us who claim to be Catholic,” George said. “It is the governor we are talking to, not her.”

George said the bishops felt compelled to protest what appears to be a new level of collaboration between Quinn and the political action committee, which describes itself as working to elect candidates who support abortion rights.

“It presented itself to us with news that he was not only pro-choice in his platform — we knew that — nor that he had been receiving help from pro-choice organizations like the PAC,” George said. “The story, from our point of view, was simply that … the governor had crossed a line here in identifying himself with the killing of unborn children.”

George said the bishops might have acted differently had they known Goodman would receive the award.

“I am not sure what we would have done,” he said. “If we had known this, that it was in fact an award to a rape victim, I think our own conversation would have been very different.”

Complete Article HERE!