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By Diogenes (articles ) | Oct 14, 2009

In conversation with John Allen of the National Catholic Reporter, Archbishop Wilton Gregory looks back on those halcyon days when he was president of the US bishops' conference, and that weighty body was coping so successfully with the sex-abuse scandal: 

I think that the bishops of the United States have taken bold steps. I don’t think there is another public institution in the world that has taken the public steps that the church in the United States has.

True. No other public institution has handed over $3 billion to settle lawsuits brought by sex-abuse victims. No other public institution has seen its leaders profess to espouse a policy of open disclosure and accountability, while fighting against exposure of relevant documents and shirking responsibility for decisions. No other public institution has failed to remove the leaders whose policies brought on a decade of disgrace.  

(Just by the way: Is the Church a "public institution?")

The "Dallas Charter," approved on Archbishop Gregory's watch, called for the removal of any priest credibly accused of sexual misconduct. The current president of the US bishops' conference, we now know, kept a priest in place long after he was credibly accused of sexual misconduct. That priest was ordained, despite accusations of misconduct during his seminary days, in large part because he was championed by a senior cleric who is now the vice-president of the bishops' conference, and heir apparent to the presidency.

No other public institution...

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Show 3 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: Miss Cathy - Oct. 20, 2009 1:58 PM ET USA

    I was disconcerted as well when Archbishop Gregory stated that the election of Barack Obama might pave the way for the first black pope. I think the Archbishop has the Divine Institution of the Church confused with secular political institutions. If he knew history, he would find that the church has had three African popes - all saints, and, correct me if I'm wrong, but I always believed that the Holy Spirit guided the votes of the Cardinals in the election of a new pope.

  • Posted by: a son of Mary - Oct. 15, 2009 12:19 PM ET USA

    Okay Master Di, as usual, great piece on Wilton. How about naming names here? I am so tired of the lavender mafia working for the devil instead of our Lord Jesus Christ.

  • Posted by: usalis549414 - Oct. 14, 2009 6:05 PM ET USA

    Touche, Diogenes! As for the bishops, "There are no so blind..."

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