Catholic Culture Trusted Commentary
Catholic Culture Trusted Commentary

and waiting on deck,....

By Diogenes ( articles ) | Nov 14, 2007

Vision Book Cover Prints

Let's get acquainted with the new vice-president of the US bishops' conference, since the odds are overwhelming that in another 3 years, he'll be elected president.

Bishop Gerald Kicanas now heads the Tucson, Arizona diocese. But he's a native of Chicago: another product of the powerful archdiocese that has already produced 4 presidents of the US bishops' conference (Bernardin, May, Gregory, & George) in the past generation.

But now he's in Tucson, and the Tucson diocese has just been through bankruptcy. You'd think that might be embarrassing to the USCCB, but then remember that the outgoing president, Bishop Skylstad, also presided over a bankrupt diocese.

So where does Bishop Kicanas stand on the all-consuming issue of sexual abuse? The Chicago Sun-Times caught up with man who was once seminary rector there, to ask him a few questions about the case of Father Daniel McCormack. It turns out, you see, that Kicanas was aware of three different incidents involving sexual impropriety by McCormack prior to his ordination. Did he therefore blow the whistle, and hustle the young man out of the seminary? Guess again.

"There was a sense that his activity was part of the developmental process and that he had learned from the experience," Kicanas said. "I was more concerned about his drinking. We sent him to counseling for that."

Drinking can be a problem, certainly. Especially if it's not part of a developmental process.

Just in case you've missed the headlines, McCormack is now in prison, serving a term for 5 counts of sexual molestation of young boys. But now, looking back from the post-Dallas perspective, surely Bishop Kicanas has second thoughts, right? Wrong.

"I don't think there was anything I could have done differently," Kicanas said.

They still don't get it.

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