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Proposed legislation could bankrupt diocese, Milwaukee archbishop warns

Catholic World News - January 13, 2010

Newly installed Archbishop Jerome Listecki of Milwaukee has warned a Wisconsin legislative panel that a proposal to extend the statute of limitations for child-abuse lawsuits could push local dioceses into bankruptcy. Noting the good works done by Catholic agencies that would be endangered by new lawsuits, the archbishop said: “We can’t ignore the injustice of targeting the Catholic Church.”

Archbishop Listecki was angrily challenged by one lawmaker, state senator Glenn Grothman, who questioned the status of Milwaukee’s former Archbishop Rembert Weakland, who attended the installation of the new archbishop last week. Noting that Weakland himself resigned in disgrace after being charged with abuse, Grothman asked: “Isn’t it really a poke in the eye to all these people who’ve suffered so horribly, to continue, after the actions of this man, to give him a place of honor in ceremonies?” Archbishop Listecki replied that Archbishop Weakland is now retired, and holds no position in the archdiocese.

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  • Posted by: ltoscan2645 - Jan. 13, 2010 1:00 PM ET USA

    The legislator is unfortunately correct, it was disgraceful for the former Archbishop to be part of the installation ceremony, it is a scandal and it really hurts the Church's credibility with regards to the whole mess of sexual abuse cases. We just keep giving the Church's enemies more fodder for their criticism. Why don't the Bishops get this!!!!

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